Category Archives: Baseball


The Phillies won the World Series. Wow.

I really could start every post with that phrase.
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I read on that the Phillies are the rumor-mill front runners for Matt Holliday.

I am a huge Matt Holliday fan and would love to see him in a Phillies uniform next season. That being said, I will be a little sad to see Burrell gone next season.

Also, a potential Holliday trade comes with two conditions for me.

1) No one on the postseason roster can be part of the trade except possibly JA Happ. The Phillies can’t trade away key parts of this team–namely Victorino or Werth–to get Holliday. If they really want Holliday they can just wait one year and then sign him as a free agent without giving away players.

2) The Phillies must be able to lock him up long term before the trade. It is not worth having Holliday for just one year and giving up three or four prospects. Having Holliday for 5 years, though, would make up nicely for the loss of the prospects. I would rather have a bird in the hand than 3 in the bush, but I would also rather have 4 in the bush than 2 in the bush.

Since I don’t really care about the NBA or the NHL, I’ll be working on a MLB season in review post. It may be a lot, It may be one, I am not sure. It will definitely focus on overrated and underrated teams looking ahead to next year.


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Filed under Baseball, MATT HOLLIDAY, PHILLIES


AP Image

Wednesday = pretty great day.

My Red Sox started off the title defense with a solid all around showing last night, taking away home field from the Angels (who have now lost 10 straight to the sawx and despite taking all but 1 game from them during the regular season, how can the Angels not be thinking “oh great, here we go again”). If I had more time this week, I would have done a full-blown preview of the series like I had intended, but you’re just going to have to live with some random thoughts for now. First off, what can you say about Jon Lester? The guy is the essential ace of this staff, and certainly one of the best starters in baseball. It’s really a lot of fun to watch him attack hitters (Dice-K, can you take some notes on this?) now that he has put command issues behind him. He’ll get a game 4 start at home, where he’s been lights out (11-1, 2.49). I just don’t see the Angels beating him in Fenway, which makes tomorrow night an obvious must win for the Halos. I believe their best chance is against Dice-K despite his 9-0, 2.37 road split, because it means they’ll more than likely see 3-4 innings of the Sox bullpen (which to their credit, is finally starting to function as intended but I’m still not convinced). While Beckett may be hurting, I’m going to give him the benefit of the doubt when he says he’s good to go because he’s simply one of the best postseason pitchers ever. He has the crucial game 3 start, and you know he’s going to bring it.

Speaking of the Sox bullpen, it was nice to see a quality close to the game last night. I was surprised at first to see Justin Masterson take the mound in the 8th (I thought for sure to see Okajima to put Texiera on the right side of the plate and given Oki’s ability to effictively handle righties). I guess Tito’s idea was to avoid the home run ball and take the chance with the ground-ball inducing Masterson, which worked well. Granted the Sox got extremely lucky with Jacoby’s great catch and Vlad’s AWFUL baserunning (although Kevin Youkilis should get a ton of credit for making a great play and a quick throw), but nobody really hit Justin hard. Plus, if Vlad had stopped at second, the next play was a sure-fire double play ball. I do wonder, however, if we’ll ever see Manny Delcarmen in a big spot this postseason. It’s certainly interesting that Tito went to the rookie over MDC.

Real psyched for game 2 tomorrow night. And a quick shout out to Evan Longoria who’s having an OK playoff debut.

Meanwhile, while October baseball was getting underway, Wednesday night marked the return of one of the best shows on TV. Of course, I’m talking about Friday Night Lights. It’s starting on DirecTV before it makes the switch to NBC later this year, but I just streamed the first episode and it was very solid. It seems like the show’s story line will return to something closer to the first season and avoid the questionable and goofy subplots that dominated the first part of last years shortened second season, which is phenominal news. Plus, according to 7 (Matt Saracen) the “season 3 scripts are much improved.”

Watch it. Now.

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It was a weird year for the Phils.

They gave up Rowand and failed to get a starting pitcher in the offseason. The Mets got Santana. But, It was the Phils who dominated early on.

Then inter-league play hit. All of a sudden a team that scored 20+ runs twice this season, couldn’t score. Somehow they managed to bring it all together in September just like last year.

In the end, They closed out the season on 13-3 run starting with the September sweep of Milwaukee. Somehow, Ryan Howard found his bat, Jimmy Rollins picked up his play, Chase found his swing, Myers found the strike zone and as always Lidge was there to close it out.

To single those players out would be unfair to Jayson Werth, Shane Victorino, Cole Hamels, and the bullpen that were solid for the Phillies all year.

Come Wednesday, It is a second shot for this team, where they failed last year. At home against the wild card with King Cole on the hill.

A position by position look at this series.

CARLOS RUIZ/ CHRIS COSTE: Ruiz is known to all Phillies fans for his perfection of the technique of grounding into a double play. Coste is a great story and a very likeable guy but really has not been as effective with the bat as he was last year. Their respective .320/.325 on base percentages and combined .239 batting averages are not scaring anyone at the plate.

JASON KENDALL: Was once one of the better hitting catchers in the major leagues. Not anymore. 2 homers and 49 RBIs on the year for Kendall. Hit .246 with .327 on base percentage.

RYAN HOWARD: What can you say about Ryan Howard. After strugglingggggggg to start the season, he ended up with a respectable .251 average, 48 homers and 146 RBI. His September performance (.352/11/32 to go along with a .422 OBP and .852 slugging%) vaulted him into the NL MVP discussion. Defense is a bit shaky, to say the least.

PRINCE FIELDER: One of the best first baseman in the NL, Fielder knocked 34 homers and drove in 102 runs this year. He had a huge walkoff homer against the Pirates in the final week of the season.

CHASE UTLEY: Best OBP(.380) on the team, 33 homers, 104 runs driven in, and a slugging percentage over .500. Basically he gives you the same production as Prince Fielder at the plate—and plays second base. His power production has trailed off significantly after having 18 homers at the end of May, he has only 14 since.

RICKIE WEEKS/RAY DURHAM: Chase Utley. ‘Nuff said.

JIMMY ROLLINS: Last year’s MVP was not able to repeat his performance of last year. Of course he was about 15 homers above his career average, and batted about 20 points higher. His .277 average and 11 homers were more in line with his career averages. Rollins did post a career high .349 OBP, solid defense and 47-3 SB/CS ratio defintely helped the Phils make the playoffs this year.

JJ HARDY: .283 average this season, 24 home runs, .343 OBP makes him about the same production-wise as Jimmy Rollins. Maybe a slight edge in power to Hardy, but Rollins makes up for it with his speed and defense

PEDRO FELIZ/GREG DOBBS/ERIC BRUNTLETT: These guys have combined to do a solid job for the Phils off the bench. It seemed like Feliz had a few key hits for the Phillies down the stretch, but in the end the Phillies are not looking for too much production from this spot.

CRAIG COUNSELL/BILL HALL: Counsell’s .355 OBP is slightly higher, but he doesn’t give you too much power. Hall hit 15 homers but a sub-.300 OBP is not very good at all.

THE ARTIST FORMERLY KNOWN AS “PAT BURRELLS CONTRACT YEAR.”: Burrell hit .275/23/57 before the All-Star break with a .404 OBP, when he was known as “PB’s Contract Year.” Since changing his name during the break, He has hit .215/10/29 with a .313 OBP. At this point his only hope is a lefty.

RYAN BRAUN: Arguably the Brewers best hitter this season. His batting avg., OBP, slugging, HRs and RBIs are all better than Fielder this year. I’d say hes definitely the Brewers best hitter.

SHANE VICTORINO: The Flyin Hawaiian has been one of the bright spots for the Phils this year. We all wanted to believe he could replace Aaron Rowand, but we were not quite sure. He certainly showed hes an everyday starting CF, hitting .311 with a .498 slugging percentage after the All-star break. Also, the man can absolutely fly and will chase down anything in centerfield and is always a threat to steal bases.

: Cameron has more power than Victorino with his 25 homers this year, but his .243 avg and .331 OBP are no where near as good.

JAYSON WERTH: He has been a huge part of the Phillies run this season. Always plays hard, is a threat to steal bases and has a better arm than Geoff Jenkins. Hit .313 with 6 homers and a .600+ slugging percentage in August when some of the other Phillies bats were struggling.

COREY HART: Got the most AB’s on the brewers team this year. Doesn’t get on base as much as Werth, will try to steal some bases although not as well as Werth’s 20/1 ratio. Hart has similiar HR and RBI numbers as Werth.

PHILLIES: Led by Cole Hamels who will make the Game 1 start. Hamels had the third highest inning total in the majors behind only Halladay and Santana. He had a solid 196/53 K/BB ratio on the season. Hamels posted a 3.09 ERA on the season, while only getting 14 wins mainly as a result of bad luck and giving up 29 home runs on the season. Jamie Moyer led the Phils in wins with 16 and posted a 3.71 ERA. Somehow the Old Man manages to get it done. Who knows what Brett Myers will give you. After being sent down, he did throw solidly after the all-star going 7-4 with 3.06 ERA and a 75/21 BB/K ratio. The biggest difference: He only allowed 5 home runs after the break(24 before). Blanton should round out the starting four, and you just hope for six innings and less than four runs from him.

: CC was probably the best pitcher in the NL this year. He threw on three days rest seemingly all of September and will probably do so again in Game 2 of this series. 1.65 ERA since coming to the Brew Crew with 114 Ks to only 19 BBs. Ben Sheets has pitched more this season than he has in awhile. 198 innings is his highest total since 2004. And it took a toll too as he is out for the series. He was only 3-6 with a 3.46 ERA in the second half of the season. Jeff Suppan, Yovani Gallardo and Dave Bush should be the other three pitchers for the Brewers, and they aren’t scaring anyone.

PHILLIES: Phillies bullpen has been and undoubted strength for the team this year. Lidge is 41/41 in save opps throughout the season. Durbin, Madson and Romero have largely been solid for the team, although they all may be showing signs of tiring. Heck, even Rudy Seanez and Scott Eyre have made big outs for this team. There is a possibility that Happ and Kendrick will be in the pen to help out.

BREWERS: The Brewers bullpen is bad. Not Quite Mets bad, but the Phillies will have a real chance for a few comeback wins in this series.

PREDICTION: without knowing the Matchups other than King Cole is starting game one, I’ll say Phils in 4.

We should have a live blog running on Wednesday. See you then.

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Filed under Baseball, BREWERS, NLDS, PHILLIES, Playoffs

White Sox Tigers Preview

The White Sox are in a tough spot. After getting swept by the Twins, then losing a few games to the Indians in the final week, they are looking at a collapse similar to that of the awful Mets. The White Sox once had a lock on the central division. Now they have to win two games in a row just to get to the playoffs.

The White Sox and Tigers are the only teams who’s regular season is not yet over. The White Sox trail the Twins by a half game in the AL Central. They need to win this game just to force a one game playoff.

The Tigers are a team that has underperformed all year. There were such high expectations for this team, but their pitching was not there and their hitting was not strong enough this season to make up for it.

The White Sox are sending Gavin Floyd to the hill, who is 16-8 with a 3.91 ERA. He is however, pitching on short rest. Since Floyd isn’t spelled “S-a-b-a-t-h-i-a” this could potentially spell out trouble. The Tigers are capable at anytime of pounding the ball. We should know early on whether Gavin Floyd has enough to get the job done or not.

The Tigers will be throwing Freddy Garcia who has only pitched 10 innings this year and is 1-1 with an ERA over 4. While this game obviously means nothing for the Tigers, I think Garcia is looking to play the spoiler tonight. After suffering a shoulder injury in 07, and not pitching much/well in ’08, look for Garcia to go out with a sense of purpose.


CHW: 7
DET: 5

I think Gavin Floyd will pitch a solid baseball game. Something along the lines of 5 innings 3 earned, a performance that will keep them in the game. I don’t really think Garcia is going to have much to offer today. Look for him to come out with a lot of intensity and the mind set of being the spoiler, but the Chicago bats are going to be too much for him. I just really want to see a one game playoff, so thats where my head is at.

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Filed under Baseball, Freddy Garcia, Gavin Floyd, MLB, Playoffs, Tigers, White Sox