It almost that time when we celebrate the begining of a new year
and invariably a new era in the successes of our teams. Before we jump forward
to what could be in 2011, here’s a small review of how my blog saw the Phillies
Here’s hoping you all have a very happy and safe New Year….
The Phillies lost their second straight today as they closed out the final regular season home game. It was fan appreciation day, where the Phillies paid tribute to the fans, the Phillies have now had 123 continuous sell outs at Citizens Bank Park thanks to the fans. Cole Hamels took the start today….
….but had his worst game post All Star Break, he managed just 4 innings, after giving up his 5th run at the start of the 5th inning Charlie decided it was time to make that AT@T call to the pen.
Even though the Phillies lost the game today, the Nationals gave them some support by beating the Braves and making the Phillies magic number 1.
The Phillies head to the nations capitol for a 3 game set starting Monday, where they hope to seal the deal on the National League East division title for the 4th straight year.
One Game at a Time – GO PHILLIES….
UPDATE: The Reds beat the Padres giving the Phillies a
guaranteed play off spot, however they still need that 1 elusive win to clinch
The Phillies and the Mets conclude there weekend of fun in the
sun. The Mets as usual were a tough opponent for the Phillies, but with players
like Ibanez and Ruiz swinging hot bats at the moment the advantage went to the
Phillies. This weekend was the first time this year the Phillies saw Beltran and
as a special treat, Beltran got to taste….
….the cushioning placed on the center field fence, he can
thank former Phillies center fielder, Aaron Rowand for soft get together with
the fence. If you didn’t see this as a web gem you should hunt it down, he back
tracked hoping to catch a ball that just kept going back and he wasn’t expecting
the fence to be there. Obviously it wouldn’t have been so humorous had the fence
not been padded, Beltran suffered no ill effects, just shock of the moment.
in baseball the trading took a curious turn when instead of players on the move
we saw the Pirates finally came to their senses and moved the pitching coach,
Joe Kerrigan, to the long list of unemployed. I have made it no secret that I
have a complete and utter dislike of Kerrigan. The Pirates now need to find
themselves somebody who can help develop the pitching staff into what they
should be, someone like a Duncan, Anderson, McDowell or even a Hickey style
pitching coach, all these guys have different styles yet are very good with
young upcoming talent and can assist the more seasoned pitchers as and when they
need it too.
The Phillies welcome the LA Dodgers to town for a 3 game stint.
Although just 4 games over .500 and currently sitting 4th in the West division,
they are never an easy mark and should be looked upon as if they are running
away with it like last year. Hopefully they’ll leave Manny Ramirez in
California. I guess we can’t do anything about having to endure the onslaught of
Padilla’s constant flesh fluid secretion dowsing the mound on day one of the 3
days, at least it’s Kyle Kendrick sharing the mound with him and not Hamels or
Oswalt or even Halladay, that could scar them for the rest of the season. Lets
see what the Phillies make fo the os called ‘Soap Bubble’ pitch.
Useless stats 101 – This time last year the Phillies had
just experienced umpire Ed Rapuano’s ever changing strike zone and his ability
to to throw out Shane Victorino in center fielder from home plate for throwing
his arms in the air, when an obvious strike was called a ball.
I guess the rivalry between the BoSox and
Phillies has built somewhat over the last
few years, not to the same extent as between other teams. The stage was set
however for the first game of this weekend series, the opener to inter-league
play for the Phillies, and almost every
major league team.
Cole Hamels on the mound for the Phillies,
although he has pitched well in his last few starts, there is still some
elements in the back of your mind, asking who will show up to pitch tonight. The
fears were dispensed after the first inning hiccup, as he gave up a home run to V-Mart,
who by the way doesn’t look right in a BoSox
uniform, from then on he shut the Red Sox
down through 7 innings allowing just the 1 run on 3 hits and a walk, while he
picked up 8 strike outs.
John Lackey took to the mound for the Red
Sox, some of the media in Philadelphia
had labeled him as somewhat of a Halladay clone, when he is on his game.
It appeared as though Lackey was on his game and the Phillies
were in trouble through the first 3 innings. Then the bottom of the 4th inning
came and so did Ryan Howard, who started the Phillies
offense with a home run to left field, then it was like the Boston
Red Sox outfield was playing a game of….
….‘now you see me now you don’t’ or was it WWE‘s
John Cena’s ‘You Can’t See Me’ they lost a fly ball from Jayson
Werth somewhere in the night sky and lights, from then on it was all Phillies
who as a team ended the day with 5 runs on 9 hits, winning the first game by a
score of 5-1. The big set back for the Phillies was that Jimmy Rollins disappeared
into the dressing rooms half way through the game after feeling a twinge from
his right calf muscle. Rollins has just returned from the DL after the strain to
his calf put him there earlier in the season, Rollins will be day to day at the
Tonight the Phillies send Kendrick
to the mound, Kendrick has had a number of shaky starts this year, but
his last 3 have been fairly strong, inline with most 5th place rotation guys.
The Red Sox have the right handed Matsuzaka
who has really only had one good outing this year against the Blue
Jays, he has given up more hits than innings pitched and in 4 games
has served up 19 runs to the opposition.
We all expect our teams to win, but after the was the Phillies
offense failed to produce against both the Pirates and the Cubs,
we must realize you can’t win them all, just be nice to win the more than the
The Phillies left Milwaukee
after sucking the life out of the Brewers,
the sweep was a back to back the Brewers
suffered at the hands of the National League East. It was a little cooler
last night in Brewer Town or were the Milwaukee
Brewers just trying to change their luck at home by closing the roof,
either way it made for a pleasant atmosphere, gave the pitchers a comfortable
environment, but it didn’t change the Brewers
luck as the Phillies completed a 3 game
sweep in a 4-2 win.
The game aired live on ESPN, who as usual showed their lack of up to
date knowledge of teams and players, other than the advanced scouting reports,
which at times are grossly out of date or inaccurate at best, given to them so
they could show some elements of knowledge about the 2 teams that were playing.
They pounded the commercial breaks with the information on the upcoming FIFA
World Cup, which is great for me, but I just hope they really do their
homework on the countries and the players, and don’t just go at it with the
minimum information on the players and the countries abilities and
accomplishments. It’s a little more insulting when you get information about a
country wrong than a home grown city or town.
So last night Cole Hamels got win number 4 and put him at 4-2 on the
year, coincidence that matches last nights score, it means about as much as Mick
Billmeyer using binoculars in the bull pen in Colorado, absolutely
nothing. It was a relatively okay performance by Hamels, nothing earth
shattering, he managed to get a RBI hit, but then left the bases loaded twice,
still ESPN felt he did enough to warrant being player of the game, personally I
don’t think he did, I am not sure anyone player jumped out at me, everyone
seemed to do their thing and no one really screwed anything up, except maybe Weeks,
should have had the out, on the Victorino base stealing, but let the ball
fly into centerfield instead, and he just didn’t seem focused, and
as good a game as Zaun called for the Brewers,
I was a little concerned at how when he went to the mound with the pitching
coach, he just stood there gazing into the air, paying absolutely no attention
to what was going on, does he not like, Rick Peterson, the pitching
coach, because he had that same attitude each time he came to the mound during
all 3 games.
The Phillies are utilizing back-ups for back-ups, with Ruiz out
and 3rd string catcher Hoover working everyday, Ruiz should be
back Monday, maybe. Valdez filling in at shortstop while JRoll
rehabs, Valdez is also filling in for Castro who is also out of
action, Rollins should be back on Monday, then we have Madson out,
Happ out the good news is that Lidge is also back on the DL, the
list goes on a bit, but really the Phillies
have managed just fine and when these guys return it should only be an
improvement, except for Lidge of course.
Last year we saw the images of Lidge where each time he came into a
game you had
to hope that for just this game he was able to hold it together long enough to
close the game. Unfortunately that didn’t happen to often, it was like a Holiday
Inn commercial, where Lidge is on the mound and Dubee comes out
cause Lidge is struggling and you know the conversation, Dubbe to Lidge
“Lidge you good, your our closer, right, you can do this” then Lidge
would reply “Yeah sure, I stayed in a Holiday Inn Express last night, no
problem”. We all know how that worked out.
This year I think we should stay with the Holiday
Inn commercials, you must have seen the new ones, where people are sometimes
doing dumb things, like being total idiots, yep that’s it, we’re going to work
with that this year for Lidge.
The Phillies return home to face 2
against the Pirates, and 2 against the sCrUbs,
then it’ll be on to that stupid thing they call inter-league play. I think we
should get one of those hidden dog fences to keep American League teams out of
the National League games, I am still not sure why there pitchers are such prima-
donnas that they can’t pick up a bat. The
Philles get to host the Boston Red Sox as
the first of what will no doubt be long drawn out inter-league play.
Sunday was a day that companies had the opportunity to commercialize and reap the
financial benefits from all those feeling guilty about not having given enough
attention to their Mothers during the year, a time when that expensive,
worthless, tradition of sending or giving a piece of stiff paper with some words
created by someone paid not nearly enough to dream up such drivel, just so that
those doing the giving can feel good about themselves for having at least on
this day given some attention to the person that gave them life. Yes folks it
was ‘Mother’s Day’ here in America, this past Sunday. For those that don’t care,
it was not Mother’s Day in England, that was back in March and it’s true calling
is ‘Mothering Sunday’, which is actually different than Mother’s Day, as with
most things that are commercialized propaganda, it’s different because it’s
something to do with religion. I personally didn’t receive any cards or well
wishes, even though throughout the year I have heard the word Mother used
in conjunction with other words when referencing me or calling to me.
The Phillies celebrated Mother’s by giving away Phillies
scarves or is it scarf’s, does it matter, since those that got the
scarves/scarf’s wore them with pride, unless they were an Atlanta Braves
fan of course, then they probably kept them to remember the day they went to Citizens
Bank Park to see Atlanta get beat.
Even though the Phillies offense had the Braves pitcher on the ropes
early with hits and home runs by the start of the 4th inning the Phillies
were up 4 – 0, because guys like this….
….decided to show up and play ball, Polanco hit a homer in the
2nd with a pink bat, not that it matters too much the color of the bat, it’s
still a home run, no extra points for the bat being pink, probably extra cash
when it gets auctioned off for the charity.
The Braves pitcher, Kawakami, held his own
from the 4th and stayed in putting up respectable numbers through 6.2 innings,
even though he took the loss. The Phillies had Cole Hamels on
the mound, who during the first 4 innings looked as though he was going to be
cruising his way to a shut out and show Jamie Moyer he could do it too.
Alas it wasn’t to be, even after a major conflab on the mound…..
….somewhere the old ‘K’ Cole got lost and
confused about where to throw the ball….
….he managed to give up 3 runs in the 5th inning, that was
enough for Manuel who let the bull pen finish the game, led by Chad Durbin who
threw 2 scoreless, the bull pen was un-hittable, literally, they struck out 5
over the 4 innings of work and never allowed a base runner, even Lidge pitched
the 9th without giving anyone a mild seizure.
As with any day when the Phillies play at CBP, there is always at
least one creature that gets onto the field, no tasers needed on Sunday it was
….doing his duties, or should I say trying too. Yes, he’s been
reportedly hailed as the best mascot in sports and I understand you either love
him or hate him, but it has become clearer that most hate him because of the
team he’s associated with, not for what he does, because lets face it, no matter
who you are, if he was your teams mascot you’d think he was the coolest mascot
ever, or at least your kids or grand kids or great grand kids would think he was
So the celebration of Mother’s is over and the Phillies
headed to Colorado where the air is thin and they use some kind of machine
to make the balls stay in the park, or so they say.
There was something in the air, maybe it was moisture of some
sort, but Charlie was trying to figure it out….
….as the Rockies made some accusations of
someone spying on the game from the Phillies bullpen, not sure
what it was all about and I’m not sure Charlie was to sure either, but it
prompted Victorino to use the bullpen phone and tell them to stop clowning
It certainly wasn’t the bull pen the Rockies
needed to watch, it was the Phillies catcher, Carlos Ruiz….
….who went 4 for 5, one of them a homer, and it wasn’t a fluke
or the thin air or altitude or something they put in the bottled water in Colorado,
he’s actually been hitting that good of late, with a.354 avg, he’s got himself a
little ‘on base’ streak going, I think he’s actually been on base in all but 1
of the games he’s played this season, he’s picking up more walks and now he’s in
the number 7 hitting slot, he’s getting more hits, lets hope he can sustain this
for the year or majority of it anyway.
The Phillies defense were showing off some quality
….but that still didn’t stop Colorado, with Hawpe
back off the DL and going 2 for 4 on the night, the Rockies managed
to get it all tied at 5 going into the 9th inning. In fashion of the last couple
of years the Phillies put up a 4 spot in the top of the 9th and
the Rockies where unable to find a way to answer, with Contreras pitching
the 9th, who seems to be solidifying himself as a late inning guy that Manuel
can depend on, the Rockies went down on just 1 hit in the 9th, giving the
Phillies game 1 of this series.
Brad Lidge has a sore elbow, waaaaaaaaaa!!! go back on
the DL then don’t tie up a roster spot if your going to keep whining all year so
you have an excuse when you blow your first and subsequent saves this year.
Dallas Braden, who became news worthy earlier this month
when he accused A-Rod of being a ‘dick’, which by the way Braden,
we all knew this before you accused him, just threw a perfect game. So congrats
to him, but you did sour your win somewhat by both you and your Gran-Ma
referencing A-Rod when talking of your perfect game. As much as A-Rod
will take credit for anything good and nothing bad, this I am sure he played no
part in, so let A-Rod go back to denying PED use and not have to
deny knowing unwritten rules of baseball. He’s a Yankee player,
those unwritten rules don’t apply, that’s another unwritten rule.
Milton Bradley is still a bigger ‘dick’ than A-Rod.
Cliff Lee goes for his first win of the season tonight,
the question is if he gets it, will it count, since it’s against Baltimore.
Roy Halladay goes home for first ever start in Colorado,
hard to believe that a guy like Halladay never pitched in Colorado.
This homecoming should be sweet for Halladay and not so sweet for Rockies
fans as Halladay goes for win number 7 and the Phillies try
and clinch the series tonight.
What determines a professional and what determines the right to freedom of
speech and the right to freedom of the press.
Why do I ask?
A "blogger", someone regularly showing intent to provide an
element of news and/or information to the public via any legal means available
to them and allowing the public access to that information for a reasonable
length of time.
A "Member of the Press", someone paid to obtain and report
information or someone paid to report information previously obtained, by any
legal method that is provided by the company for which they are paid, or if
freelance, by any legal means available to them.
In my happy world or "Idiots Guide To Things" you know the big
yellow books without phone number lists, this is how I see the difference
between a reporter and someone, say, like myself. With this in mind there are a
multitude of questions, but here are the ones I am interested in for now.
1 – If I get unknown information from a source within a company or government
and I choose to disclose this information via the means I have to the public, or
in plain terms, if I write about it in a blog post, am I allowed to claim the
same privilege as a reporter and not have to disclose my source if compelled,
since at the time I was acting as reporter?
2 – If a "Member of the Press" writes a blog is that still
classed as reporting, are they still bound by the same rules of verification of
information as they would be if it was written for a newspaper column?
3 – As a "blogger" are you bound by those same rules of
verification, or do you truly just have to ‘in all good faith believe what you
are writing is the truth’?
4 – or can both parties write what ever they like with the appropriate
Still the question – Why Do I Ask?
Some of you may or may not have seen recently a reporters column, John
Gonzalez, for the ‘Sports’ section of the ‘Philadelphia Inquirer‘
which is found online at Philly.com,
columnist handled the mailbag on April 28th, 2010 the day in question
and received a question from someone named ‘Alex’, you can read the
question and answer here
remember this was mail bag day so all questions are sent in by readers. (image
of John Gonzalez linked from his column on Philly.com)
May 1st, 2010 another reporter, Mike
Goldstein, (not the ex-scientologist, or at least I don’t think it is) who writes a blog for ESPN760
and also broadcasts the Saturday morning ‘Sports
Page Show’ chose to target John
Gonzalez and his mail bag post, notably the question from ‘Alex’ and
in doing so he not only questioned the abilities of John
Gonzalez he also questioned his livelihood as a reporter in a post on his
blog titled "This
isn’t journalism, but it’s still not ethical" , if you take the
time to read this great, if you skim over it and get the general census, that’s
okay too, if you do neither, then here’s the key points, Mike accuses John of plagiarism
while fabricating a question to suit his own means.
May 2nd, 2010 the same reporter, Mike
Goldstein, wrote another post in his blog titled "The
Joke’s On Me" where he is supposedly making a retraction of his
previous claims about the ethics of John
Gonzalez, but in my opinion he doesn’t, he just excuses himself as a radio
show host and not a reporter. Claiming he just writes a blog and it is not meant
as journalism. (image of Mike Goldstein linked from his column on
I also understand that exchanges via ‘Twitter’ took place as well as other
possible communications and they have to some extent resolved the issue at hand.
We get back to the question, can people of the media
pick and choose when they are covered by the ‘Freedom of the Press’ and when
they are just trying to make a name for themselves.
I as a blogger, who at times wants to believe I can be a member of the press
would like nothing more than for some big media company to pick up on one of my
stories and start paying me for something I enjoy, or anyone to start paying me for
something would be nice, but again I digress, back to the real question.
With the creation of blogs can members of the press pick and choose when they
are press, and can you and I pick and choose when we are reporters.
I say to you big media sports companies, how about a reality show that
represents the amateur blogger, and less of the ‘so called’ professional sports
reporter playing at being an amateur blogger.
All this and I have to ask, does anyone really care unless it effects them in
someway shape or form, probably not!
The Phillies managed to sneak a win last night in extras from a walk
off by Ruiz, Cole Hamels pitched an outstanding game as did Wainwright
for the Cardinals, the series all tied up tonight will be a good night
to prove to Manuel that keeping him in the rotation is the right thing to
The Howard contract has caused a stir around the bloggers, mostly
those whose team has a 1st baseman due to renew a contract in the next year or
so, they question the value of Howard and say the Phillies paid to
much, I say, someone has to be first and if anyone thinks that it has set the
bar high for others then they are wrong the bar was already high, Pujols
was due to get around $30M a year and anyone who thinks he would have
settled for less is mistaken, just because he gave the Redbirds a cheap
deal last time, doesn’t mean he would have done it again. Suck it up Cardinal
whiners you can’t keep expecting to pay Walmart prices for the very best
UPDATE:(6am May 6th, 2010)
In another pitcher duel last night the Phillies over came Brad
Penny and the Cardinals bullpen to win the 3rd game of the series in
a shut out win 4-0. Well done to Kyle Kendrick for pulling out an
extraordinary night of pitching. Halladay is up today in a day game, the Cardinals
have Lohse on the mound.
After much research I have determined that She
Fan’s continued success after her face to face meetings with the Yankee
players has some elements of validity and has forced me to follow suit and meet
with the Phillies support personnel and ultimately the players required.
Since the process that has been discussed with the Phillies support personnel
is untried and untested they have requested anonymity, however the
players don’t have a choice since they are paid to do everything the club tells
For my first meeting this year I decided to go straight to the root of things
and get in with ‘The Doc’ Roy Halladay, we all know he suffered his first loss
last night, but that wasn’t his fault, even if he wants to take the blame.
here’s how the meeting went….
This was a game of games, it was a battle of the pitchers, the first 2 innings was 1 game, a pitchers duel, not the way you’d expect a pitchers duel, instead of strike out and non hitting batters, it was a duel on who would stay in the longest, who would give up the most hits and runs and who would throw the most pitches. It turns out both starting pitchers got to take early showers, for Stamman of the Nats managed just 53 pitches through 1.1 innings, giving up 7 runs on 7 hits and Kendrick of the Phillies managed 52 pitches through just 1.2 innings giving up 6 runs on 6 hits.
The game was also a game of offensive plays with hits, runs and walks being in good supply, the Phillies relief pitcher Figueroa, got in on that part of the game, with 2 at bats he picked up 2 hits and a run, on the mound he threw 3.1 innings and gave up 1 run on 2 hits. Chad Durbin also pitching in relief and threw 2 shut down innings on 24 pitches. For the Nats, English came out of the pen and shut the Phillies down for 2.2 innings, but after that the Phillies bats came alive, with both Victorino and Utley going deep, it was Utley’s 2nd homer of the game, Victorino also managed a bases clearing triple after the bases were loaded in the 7th, just a double short of a cycle in this the first game he was in the lead off spot with J-Roll on the DL, Wilson Valdez was added to the roster to replace J-Roll.
By the 9th inning the Phillies had 14 hits, 14 runs and 5 walks, while holding the Nats to 10 hits and 7 runs. The Phillies are on a roll to start this season, some are comparing it to the 93 season when the team went start to finish on top of the division, personally without putting a damper on things remember who we’ve played, the Nats and the Astros, lets wait till then end of the month when we will have played at least a couple of other teams before awarding ourselves something we haven’t won.
The game had it’s other moments with Polanco picking up another 2 hits to maintain a .486 batting average, yep it’s still early, but if he keeps this up I’ll be screaming MVP, the Phillies bench also saw the 3 lefties deep in conversation, actually more like Moyer conversing, Hamels smiling and Happ just staring into space, but still could be a caption picture later on in the season, depending on how these 3 progress.
In summary the Phillies add another 14 hits and 14 runs to the already inflated numbers they have, it’s tough this time of year to do the customary comparisons because with the limited games played and the fact that some teams have played 2 or 3 games more than others it can be very deceiving. So lets just say the Phillies have a lot of offensive numbers and it’s “Ripley’s Time“, because believe it or not they are ranked last in MLB for strike outs.
The Phillies played the Blue Jays in two games today. A morning game saw the first outing of Jamie Moyer and a afternoon game saw the first outing of Cole Hamels.
In the morning game Jamie Moyer showed he still has a little something left, after enduring an off-season of operations and hospital visits, Moyer took to the mound Friday morning in a ‘B’ game against the Blue Jays and threw three scoreless innings. Moyer gave up 3 hits and picked up 3 strikeouts in his 3 innings. The Phillies ended up losing this one 3-2, this game doesn’t affect preseason standings.
The afternoon game started by giving the Philadelphia fans a moment of anguish as Hamels second pitch was hit long by Bautista for a home run, then Hamels managed to walk the second batter, Hill, after which Hamels seemed to settle down for the remainder of his 2 innings work, striking out 2 batters. He did manage to mix in some of his newer pitches, which for Hamels is good for his first outing in preseason games. The pitching staff following Hamels didn’t fair quite so well as the 4th inning saw Toronto put 8 runs on the board, Bastardo was the only Phillies pitcher to come away with a clean slate on the day. The Phillies also managed to knock in a few runs as they ended up losing this game 14-9, needless to say both teams had pitchers and players working on the revolving door process, good luck if you kept a full score card on this one.
The Tampa Bay Rays almost threw away a 7 run lead to the Yankees, but ended up holding on to win the game 12-7. For awhile in the middle innings it was touch and go as to whether the Yankees/Rays game or the Phillies/Jays game would have more runs.
The Nats and the Braves were also trying to have the highest scoring game of the day as the Braves beat the Nats 11-8, however the honor of highest score went to the Astros and Tigers as the Tigers beat the Astros 17-7. I am sure the Tigers fans will savor this achievement, since it could be the last this year.
The Mets were playing split squad games today against the Cards and the Marlins. They managed a win against the Cards, but lost to the Fish.
Of course Jose Reyes found a reason not to play in either of the Mets games, but instead flew back to New York with a possible ‘thyroid imbalance’. Speculatively speaking, the blood in his brain could just be dizzy from all the spinning, this claim could be squashed if they prove he’s not brainless, but then who knows, now a ‘roid‘ has been attached to his name the possible outcomes are almost endless.
any sarcasm is not meant to offend, unless it does, then consider the possibilities of more during the season.