be-LEE-ve ….

Phillies Outside

It may seem like I have been absent, but in truth I have tried
to migrate my blog from here to ‘philliesoutside.mlblogs.com’, unfortunately
after the first post at my new home I have been locked out unable to
perform any actions on the blog. The tech support dept tell me they are working
on it and that I am not forgotten. Hopefully I will be able to use my new blog
by January. 

It’s that time of year when the Phillies organization pulls a
shocker out of the hat. Last year it was trading Cliff Lee and signing Roy
Halladay, this year it’s signing Cliff Lee and trading no one.

Now I know everyone was expecting him to be in either a Rangers
uniform or the Yankee pinstripes, but it was those who truly believed (beLEEved)
was always hopeful of his return to the Phillies and this I am sure has left
fans in New York and Texas seeing RED, yep Phillies RED.

Now lots of people will be saying told you so and they can say
that, even I stated in my blogs earlier in the year that Lee would be back with
the Phillies, as much as I would like to take credit for seeing into the future
it was nothing more than wishful thinking by all that made the claim. I know I
am one happy Phillies fan seeing LEE back in the Phillies uniform….

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I am sure there will be those that will say we paid too much,
that we are trying to buy a World Series, but the truth be known the Phillies
are just putting together a group of players they believe will WIN the World
Series. Some fans will continue to use this as an excuse to trash the Phillies,
that’s okay they can do that, but to all those Phillies fans that were critical
of the organization for allowing Werth to go to the Nationals, I say before you
gloat about this you should issue a full apology to the Phillies organization,
because LEE on the Phillies team is considerably better than what the Nationals
got in Werth.


Visitng Cy Young – finale

Phillies Outside

My last stop on the small excursion to find out more on the life
and times of Cy Young took me to Newcomerstown, Ohio. A small town that is still
within Tuscarawas County, Ohio and sits at the intersection of Interstate 77 and
State Route 36.

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first encounter with this town would include 3 gas stations and a McDonalds, it
was at the McDonalds that you first see signs of Cy Young, where they have
images hanging on their walls, for McDonalds that’s a nice touch.

I headed into the town and discovered somewhere there was a
museum/room dedicated to Cy Young, but locals I spoke to, either pointed me to
the baseball field or looked confused as to who I was talking about.

I chose to head to the ball field I had been directed to, and
this is where I found the State Historical Marker. This was the site of a Little
League ball field, since it was off season and the weather had turned very cold
the field was looking a little worse for wear, although it was mostly leaves and
wind assisted debris that had blown into the area.

At the entrance of this ball field was a nice monument to the
late great Mr Young….

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….as you can see the monument was set at what would be the
pitchers mound of a fake baseball diamond, the white stone in the ground closest
has the words ‘Home Plate’ etched into it. This Little League field is over
looked by SR 36 and is right at one of the main entrances to the town.

I further later discovered the town has a ‘Cy Young Day’ once a
year with a festival that celebrates the life of this great man, I will try and
find out when this is for next year and may make the effort to visit the
festival.

 

Hot Stove – RumorMill

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fact that Jayson Werth is still a free agent is giving media and bloggers
a like the ammunition to claim he is close to a deal with the Phillies, where as
I my unnamed sources tell me this is not going to happen. The problem is Werth
and Boras think he is a 6 or 7 year signing with a $16M to $20M price tag, this
would be like paying a designer price for a Walmart product. It would be good
for a year, maybe, but then you may as well throw it away.

The only club who should be looking to pay over the odds, or
current designer prices for last years model is the Yankees, it’s not that Jeter
is that good of a Short Stop, I think every non Yankee fan knows his Gold Glove
Award this year was without question a joke, don’t get me wrong, he is a very
good Short Stop, but the Yankees aren’t looking to sign him just as a Short
Stop, they are looking to sign a Yankee icon, someone who will help the team and
the ‘Yankee brand’ on and off the field.

When you compare these two free agents, then signing Jeter is of
greater value to the Yankees than the Phillies signing Werth. The Phillies need
to use their resources elsewhere, the bull pen needs help and maybe another SP
instead of Kendrick.

 


Remember, Remember the 5th of November ….

Phillies Outside

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and goals of those doing the story telling. It is over the most recent years,
the story of Guido Fawkes has been told by the world of movie makers and story
tellers alike, to portray an early form of terrorist as a hero, trying to
overcome oppression at the hands of a ruling government.

To most these days it maybe the plot behind a less than stellar
movie ‘V’ for Vendetta, but to others it was and is a part of the history taught in
early school years, as part of the history of the country. It maybe be the
actual events took place some 495 years ago, but they gave a youngster a reason
to be creative as the 5th of November arrive3d each year.

More commonly known as Guy Fawkes, Guido was the fall guy or the
one made famous for the attempted early 17th century destruction of the Houses of
Parliament and the then King of England. With barrels of gun powder located
under the building, Guy Fawkes was the guy left to light the fuse, the problem
was he was caught and the blowing up of Parliament and the King was thwarted.

This single event in English history has given youngster an
interesting challenge over the years, I remember making a ‘GUY’, this would
consist of some clothes stuffed with anything burnable to make the shape of a
person. We would then sit with this character on the street each day collecting
‘pennies for the guy’.
These monies was turned into to ‘fireworks’ for
display at the bonfire event, most communities would have a bonfire built,
everything and anything burnable would be placed on it from the neighborhood,
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old and young alike.

Today, this type of event would cause nothing but problems, from
activists screaming for a ban to local government officials claiming safety
issues, but most of all from people not being able to play together without the
need to cause harm to one another, for no other reason than the senseless need
to do harm or would it be in the name of peace?

Now organized bonfires celebrate bonfire night in England, a far
cry from the community bonfires of roasting chestnuts, baked potatoes as the
young and old enjoyed a small fire work display. Remembering the good old
times….

The good old times, in the Phillies recent years, would be when
Jayson Werth was happy to get some playing time, instead of nowadays when he
turns down a 66 million dollar offer from the team that gave him his lucky
break, in the hopes of a bigger 120 million dollar deal from the likes of the
Red Sox or White Sox or even maybe the Mets or Astros, who knows except given
the chance Werth would probably rather burn the house down in Philadelphia than
take less than Boras tells him he’s worth…

 


Well That SUCKED!!

Phillies Outside

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wasn’t quite the ending I had hoped for this season, but none the less it
happened, one of the beauties of baseball is the outcome is unpredictable. Once
gain the Phillies hurt themselves with too many missed opportunities, the blame
game is rife among Phillie fans, from the fact that they let Cliff Lee go at the
end of last season, to the money they gave Ryan Howard.

It’s a fact that Howard should not have stood with his bat on
his shoulder and watched a low pitch get called a strike, after all isn’t
hitting that ball why he’s paid mega bucks. The fact is it should not have come
down to that ball, the Phillies were a better team than that, they just didn’t
deliver.

For me, I just think they got too comfortable after the sweep of
the Reds, the 7 day rest, put them all into that non- aggressive mode we’ve seen
on and off all season long. It wasn’t just the hitters, the pitchers looked like
they were still in spring training. What’s done is done, it’s easy to sit back
and find fault with the things that went wrong, it’s a little harder to predict
them before they occur. Lets face it, most of the analysts had the New York Mets
and the Atlanta Braves as the 2 top teams in the NL East before this season got
underway.

With the end of the 2010 season comes the end of some players
roles with the Phillies, one in particular, Jayson Werth. Some think he may
re-sign with the Phillies, but my guess is he’s done. Amaro, doesn’t like
pressure from Boras, and with at least a 15 – 17 million dollar price tag, it’s
not going to happen.

A number of Phillie fans see Werth as someone to keep, someone
they invest good money with for the years ahead, which is nothing more than
being sentimental about the team of players. It’s time for him to go, he came to
the Phillies as a pretty Werth-less player and in my opinion he’s leaving a
pretty Werth-less player. He had a good year when he was being platooned in
2008, he had a good year in 2009, he first as a full time outfield player, but
this year, was not the type of year you would want to ride the free agent market
on.

I can hear all the whiners, but he hit….  he did this….
he did that….., maybe but he didn’t appear a team player most of the time, he
had too many lapses of concentration and he didn’t hit for **** with RiSP. So I
say, have fun on the free market Jayson Werth and maybe we’ll see you in someone
else’s outfield or maybe you’ll turn out to be just like Johnny Damon, taking
whatever is on offer just to play and fizzle out.


Werth What Exactly ?

Phillies Outside

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starting to look like Jayson Werth maybe more like his look-a-like character
Edge than just a passing resemblance of features. The ongoing media focus on his
pending free agency this off-season maybe turning Werth into the ‘good guy, bad
guy’ characters that Edge is known for in the WWE.

The current rumors have Werth now looking for a new agent since the old one
was unable to successfully negotiate some closure with the Phillies for a
continued relationship past this season. I think the Phillies have made it clear
that there is almost zero chance that Werth will be back next year, they don’t
want to ante up what he and others believe he can demand and I don’t think the
Phillies want to make any commitment to tenure when they have Brown and Mayberry
for a lot less money and a lot less hassle.

There are apparent questions surrounding Werth, with him not having received
an offer of love from the Phillies, has he been trying to make a point by not
being all he can be as a baseball player for a contending team. Since the All
Start Break we have seen Werth make base running mistakes rarely seen in ‘single
A’ baseball, we have seen him make bad routes in the outfield and miss catches,
and of course as every ‘advance scout’ knows when Werth is hitting 5th behind
Howard, you can safely walk Howard because you know Werth is not hitting with
RiSP.

Is he doing this to make a point and stick it to the Phillies for not showing
him the same love they showed Victorino or is he just proving previous reports
right that he really isn’t an everyday player.

Where will Werth be next year, any guess is pure speculation, so I would have
to speculate at sCrUBs, LOLstros, or even the Mariners.

Useless stats 101 – Shane Victorino added to the quadruple double
stats this season with his 10th triple in Florida.


Visions Part Deux …..

The National League managed an upset of the American League by taking the All Star Game victory, because of recent history showing the dominance of the American League this is a good way to move forward into the second half of the 2010 season for National League teams.

At the beginning of the season I laid out how I thought the season would progress and how teams would position themselves for October baseball, with just over half the games played it’s a good time to reflect and update my season ending visions.

The American League has shown some surprises, out West the Mariners have not faired as I thought so this has left the Rangers and Angels duking it out for a post season place. In the Central the Indians are not performing in the manor they could have been and in the East the top 3 are as expected, but the Jays are doing better than I had thought, as a mid way summary I now have the following possible outcomes.

AL WEST

Angels…………..88-93 wins

Rangers………..86-91 wins

The A’s will hover around the .500 mark and the Mariners will finish below .500 with about 70 wins.

AL CENTRAL

ChiSox… ……..84-89 wins

Twins …………..81-86 wins

Tigers …………..81-86 wins

The Royals and the Tribe will fight, but fail to reach .500 this year.

AL EAST

Yankees ………..93-98 wins

Rays ……  ……..92-97 wins

BoSox…… ……..90-95 wins

As you can see this could be any of these, I had considered the Yankees breaking 100 wins again, but recent history shows last time they had 56 wins in the first half they had a dismal second half with only 33 wins, so the Yankees number is a crap shoot, the Jays should end around the .500 mark and the O’s will probably break 64 wins, but no more than 70 wins.

 

The National League has also given us a couple of surprises, the Padres are the biggest one for me, kudos to them, I thought they would struggle to be a .500 team this year, but they proved me very wrong. The Pirates are more disappointing than anything, I really thought they could be a above .500 team this year, but not going to happen, the Reds are better than expected or are the Cardinals not as good as expected. The East is as expected a 3 horse race and will continue through season end.

NL WEST

Padres …………..85-90 wins

Rockies … ……..84-89 wins

Dodgers … ……..83-88 wins

Giants …… ……..79-84 wins

Arizona will struggle to reach 70 wins this year.

NL CENTRAL

Cardinals …………..85-90 wins

Reds ………… ……..85-90 wins

The Brewers and Cubs will struggle stay around the .500 mark on the year, the Pirates and Astros will have chance to play spoiler or helper in September as the Cards and Reds are on target to give us a game 163 this year, but as the Astros and Pirates play out the year they’ll both struggle to get over 65 wins.

NL EAST

Phillies …………..90-95 wins

Mets ……………..88-93 wins

Braves …………..87-92 wins

Still a close 3 team race and could go to any of the 3, it’ll be up to the Nats and Marlins to play spoiler, since both those teams wont even be knocking on the .500 door.

 

So these are my mid-term visions as far as the divisions are set, as for Phillies players and that dreaded date of July 31st, where teams negotiate to the wire to get the best possible deal, or they think is the best possible deal. The past few seasons the Phillies have faired pretty good at the trading deadline, this year I would say look to see Jayson Werth end up with one of 3 teams, Astros, Pirates or even the Reds, also movers could include, Dobbs, Castro or Ransom and maybe even Kendrick or Happ, I do not think anything major will occur, it is possible we could get Oswalt, but no breath holding here, or even one of the Reds pitchers, it maybe that the Dodgers decide they can lose Broxton, so the Phillies can lose Lidge, but that’s as farfetched as a straight trade of Pujols and Howard, or Werth and Ethier, dream on people ESPN’s got no inside track and the second half is just beginning. So tighten that safety belt, keep your hands and feet inside the car at all times and enjoy the ride, don’t forget to scream and raise your arms at the appropriate times, but most of all have FUN.


WTF Award for May goes to….

– PhilliesOutside –

It’s the end of the Month and since nothing really jumped right out at me and
said here this is it, I have to decide on the WTF Award
for the month of May.

As I reviewed things that came and went there were reasons why I held onto
the award this month. Some of the contenders that could have received it were….

Dallas Braden would be an obvious choice, for the perfect game
earlier this month. In all fairness to Dallas, he hasn’t done anything
before this event and the chances are he won’t do anything after this event,
other than be an average pitcher in the rotation of a ball club that struggles
to stay around the top when there being really good, but are normally fighting
to get off the bottom, in other words your destined to stay in Oakland
or at best move to Houston at some future
date when Oakland no longer wants you.
Actually the real reason is pure prejudice, I can’t give an award to anyone
named Dallas.

The St. Louis Cardinals team were
contenders for this award, last month they were the first team to allow the LOLstros
a win and this month they actually allowed the LOLstros
to sweep them, not on the road in Houston,
but at home in St. Louis. The reality is if
anyone should have got the award for this event it should have been the LOLstros,
which eliminates the Cardinals from even
being a consideration.

The LOLstros for sweeping the Cardinals,
no couldn’t do it, just can’t give anything to a team that has Ed Wade
connected to it, yep call it sour grapes, call it prejudice, I don’t care, just
not going to happen, unless he wants Lidge back.

Andre Ethier of the Los Angeles
Dodgers
, has been a contender for this award, no one can be out that
long with a little injury to your pinky finger, it’s like saying you’ve got to
sit the rest of the game out because your manicure needs touched up, and in his absence
they’re having a competition centered around Matt Kemp, you
can check this out courtesy of fellow blogger Crzblue’s blog,
unfortunately
Andre is eliminated from consideration because he’s on the same team as Manny
Ramirez
.

Shane
Victorino
and Jayson Werth were considered for their
togetherness in the out field while backing up the perfect game, but Jayson
had shaved, so I thought that news may have been leaked to them that I was still
in the hunt for a suitable candidate to receive the award, so I had to instantly
disqualifythem.

It was considered to go outside the world of baseball and give the award to Fox
News
host Greta Van Susteren
who thought it would be rewarding to
have uncontrolled people vote on her stupidity or intelligence or lack of it, Greta
the fact that you had to have a poll that pit you against  a fan that sent
you ‘fan mail’ with a spelling error tells us who is really the one with intelligence,
then of course we have to consider how many college degree’s you need to get
your job, and calling someone out on spelling, doesn’t that make Fox News like
the kettle calling the pot black. (can I use that expression, my mum always
did)
.

There were a number of other contenders, whom I could continue to ridicule as
I explain why they didn’t get it, but I’ll just get right to it. It is possible
that this is a little unfair, it is possible that there may be some bias
involved in this months award, but the award, I believe was given on merit, it’s
been given to a team who during the worst 10 days of this short season has been
shut out 5 times, a team that scored in just 1 inning out 50 innings, a team
known for home run hitting hasn’t hit a home run in 54 innings, a team that has
struggled to hit anything anywhere rallied behind their ‘ACE’ pitcher on
May 29th, 2010 to allow him to throw the perfect game, then went straight back
out there the next day to be shut out, yes my friends I give you the recipient
of this months WTF award Mr. Roy ‘The Doc’ Halladay of
the Philadelphia Phillies.

Due to other commitments I had to enlist some assistance in presenting the
award to Roy…..

….Joe was very helpful and seemed like a profession al
at the job.

Then later Roy got interviewed by Phillies
radio and tv analyst ‘Sarge’ on his great accomplishment….

….as you can see Roy was ecstatic on his great achievement.

Well done again Roy I am sure you will treasure this award, (if he knew about it), and keep it on prominent display, (if
there actually was one to display.)