Phillies give away 2 in the Desert….

– PhilliesOutside –

A weekend in Arizona may have been a vacation for some, a daily
routine for others, but for the Phillies it was a disappointing series
loss, we can search through every aspect of each game and pinpoint things that
we all would have done differently, but that won’t change the fact that we lost
the 2 out of 3 and now head into San Francisco, where the Phillies
need to at least take 2 out of 3 to stay the dominant force in the NL East for
the first month of the season.

While we spent 3 days at Chase Field in Arizona, there
was some noticeable things, not unlike the fact that they have to have the team
logo on the pitchers mound so their guys remember they’re at home. I don’t know
if any other teams have done this, all I know is I noticed it here in Arizona,
it could be that I haven’t paid that much attention to other mounds, all I
remember being there is the cleat cleaner and the sack of powder.

There were other things to see and since the Phillies were being
a little less than entertaining this weekend I decided to check out some of the
other sights of the D’backs, for example they, like other teams have fans that
attend the games and cheer when they are winning….

 

….they also have an owner who attends the games and occasional
invites friends along to entertain them as we see here they look very
excited….

….I have it on good authority that that’s the Dbacks owner on
the right, they call him ‘Mr. Excitement’, according to an undisclosed inside
source.

There were more Phillies fans having a little trouble figuring
out which way to look….

….this of course could have been attributed to the fact that
the roof and all was open to the Arizona air, and this may have confused and disorientated
the visitors….

….they certainly made it clear that with all the doors and
roof open a fly ball in the right place catches the jet stream through the
stadium and goes for miles, which is probably why the D’backs have so many
homers this early, I am sure that will even itself out when the temperature
forces the doors and roof to be closed.

With the doors and roof open there was definitely people there
for sun and fun, with Phillie fans there is always going to be fun as I am sure
these guys were having their share….

….although it looks like the cheese could be melting, and the
masked warrior on the end looks like the heat may have gotten to him too.

We also had fans there, for maybe, decoration, I am not sure, but
after a number of captions, of what the 2 guys were saying and some of what she
was thinking,  I decided best to leave it alone as I am sure it
could have had serious repercussions….

….here’s hoping San Francisco is little more
entertaining.

I did manage to flip to some other games to catch moments of
what I thought maybe excitement, I switched to the 9th inning of the O’s
and BoSox game yesterday to see if the O’s were
going to lose another, only to see them hold on to win, but what got me was the
commentators for the BoSox, who said ‘that was a disappointing one
to lose’ or words to that effect… wait a minute didn’t you guys just get swept
at home by the Rays and they think this was just disappointing,
why?
because the O’s have the worst record in baseball at the
moment or because the BoSox couldn’t complete a come back in the
9th inning, hey BoSox commentators, let me tell you a secret, your
whole season is disappointing, if the O’s had gotten off to an
average .500 start, your team would be sitting at the bottom of the division and
now you have to go to Toronto, which could make you a .500 team or
completely demoralize you and your fans so early in the season.

San Diego Padres had their hopes dashed at being
the first team this season to hit 10 wins in a row, after taking 8 in a row they
were finally beaten by the Reds yesterday in a close game that saw
the Reds get the winner in a 2 run 8th inning.

The Pirates suffered their 6th straight loss,
after sweeping the Reds they got swept back to back and are now 4
games under .500, still lots of time for them to make it a .500 season.

The Cardinals are the only NL Central team above
.500, but lets face it they have only had to face one real competitive team and
they only managed to salvage the 1 win against them, (the Giants),
now they are back home for the Braves, we’ll see if they’re easy
to win games too.


Cap Tip, Double Take, Spotlight and More…

 

In a week when individual
sports showed how easy it is to lose just because of a temper tantrum
and the NFL got underway with the first week of games. Well done to the
Eagles.

Cap
Tip…

Pedro Martinez has
put in 2 very good performances back to back, I for one am very
surprised. He has come close to self destructing each outing in the
first few innings, but he has got through it and gone on to pitch well,
Sunday night against the Mets especially. Pedro went 8
innings, at least 6 of them were showing a slight resemblance of the 29
year old Martinez, throwing 130 pitches on the night he
struck out 7 and walked 2, he only gave up 6 hits… so well done Pedro…

 

 

Double
Take…

The Phillies played
the Nats last week and the Nats played the spoiler
in 1 game, but the double take was when the Nats
played one of the emerging stars to be from the Washington organization,
a little known short stop named ‘Ian Desmond‘, who has some
pretty big shoes to fill, not because he’s destined to replace a great Nats
player, but because he is being highlighted in likeness, actions and mannerisms
to another short stop in the majors….the player they are a likening
him too reached his own milestone this week…. if you didn’t guess this
one then where have you been this weekend, cause lets face it sports
media has really only talked of one short stop…now you’ve got it…Derek
Jeter
…Who became the new Yankees most hits record
holder… well done Jeter, the Yankees
actually kept a player long enough to achieve this, so well done Yankees
too…but I digress, the look-a-like, act-a-like Nats
upcoming short stop Ian Desmond and Derek Jeter, you
decide….

 

 

The
Spotlight…

The Phillies
starting pitchers do well, they get the glory and the win, the pitchers
from the pen get a hold or a save they get the glory, but what of the
guy behind the plate calling the pitches, or blocking that one in the
dirt, giving the pitchers a target to throw at, or saving a stolen base
with a throw. The catcher, where’s his glory, okay so a catcher has
stats like all players, but mostly if the pitcher throws the ball where
the catcher sets up he doesn’t get smacked around, and in the case of
the Phillies the man behind the mask is Carlos Ruiz. Obviously
not all catchers are equal, some are hitters, but cant throw very well,
some aren’t that good at calling a game and get the signs from the dug
out, some just cant throw very well, and some cant block a really good
slider in the dirt. Ruiz I think is good at all the roles
a catcher plays and yet is in the shadow of the starting rotation or pen
most of the time. So here’s my way of putting the spotlight on one of
the best unsung hero’s the Phillies have on the team and without
question one of the best catchers in the NL…

 

 

and
More…

Streaks… the
only real streak going on this week is that of the Tampa Bay Rays
and unfortunately it’s a losing streak, so my hopes of a repeat of the
2008 World Series clash has been dashed, even if they win every last
game the hopes that the other teams in the Wild Card race would lose
enough to enable them to make it are slim to none.

Spoilers
the O’s have taken a couple from the Yankees… the
Nats
took a couple from the Marlins… the Jays
took a couple from the Tigers… the Braves took 3 from
the Cards… the Padres took a couple from the Rockies
most of the other teams destined for the playoffs only gave up 1 loss to
non-contenders.

Race… the
tightest race is still the NL West, although the Dodgers don’t
seem to be giving any ground and maybe the Rockies peaked
to soon, with the Giants and Rockies getting ready
to play each other, the Dodgers get a chance to extend the
lead by hosting the Pirates…

 

My choices at this time
will put the Angels and the Yankees in the ALCS and
the Cards and the Phillies in the NLCS.

It is September ball and we
all know that can change in a matter of a week….

For the
Phillies it remains the same for this guy…

…make the right choices and
the Phillies can be in the post season shooting for a repeat, the
wrong choices and the season ends October 4th.