2006-04-15T11:41:25.886-04:00Good thing the Phillies are in Colorado this weekend, the way the bullpen is pitching, the Phils need all the runs they can get. Almost spoiling a grand slam by Utley last night, Julio Santana decides to give up 4 runs and almost blow the game in the 8th. To make matters worse, the only way the Rockies didn't tie the game is because of a great throw from center field by Shane Victorino. Consider this: we all know the Phils are off to a shaky start, it's to be expected with some clubs and usually with the Phillies. However, the bullpen has a combined ERA of 4.88 and a record of 1-2. I'm not saying the starting pitching is any better at this point but when you take a 6 run lead into the 9th inning you would think that even in Colorado that is enough of a margin for a sure victory. The starting pitching needs to improve, we can all agree on that, however unless the bullpen gets better, this is going to be a long year from the 6th inning on.
2006-03-09T19:30:46.440-05:00If you watched any of the game between USA and Canada on Wednesday, you'll know by now that Chase Utley nearly pulled team USA ahead in the 8th inning with a blast off current Phillie Scott Matheison. Almost...not quite....Seems to be the common theme amongst American athletes over the last month. Olympics anyone?? While we all thought that Miller, Jacobellis and Cohen would certainly bring home a gold, instead we were all left wondering exactly "What went wrong"? And now another tournament matching country against country, the first annual World Baseball Classic is upon us and once again, high hopes and expectations have been set for Team USA. Already, we've seen the mistakes made in the field, the less than stellar pitching, all the almost, but not quite enough. Team USA has one of the strongest rosters in the tournament if not the strongest pitching rotation. Clemens, Willis, Peavy, Cordero, Nathan, Street, with all this talent, how can you go wrong. Easy, one look at the Domincans boasting Pujos, Ortiz and Tejada, and an undefeated record, it is no doubt that the team to beat in this tournament for the USA will be the Dominicans. However, first it is a matchup with South Africa on Friday where we will see the Rocket for the first time in this tournament. The top two teams in each pool will advance on to the final round. The USA is sure to advance with a Mexico defeat over Canada or a win over South Africa. With the Rocket starting, I'll take bets on the latter, but upsets do happen and as we all saw on Wednesday, nothing is as it seems untill the bitter end.
2006-03-07T19:06:54.466-05:00It came as a shock to me when I heard news the Kirby Puckett had passed away. We all knew that "Puck" had suffered a stroke on Sunday morning in Arizona but I don't think any of us thought this was going to happen. Yes, I do run a Phillies blog and Podcast here however, the Twins were actually the team I followed most closely in my high school days and early 90's when Puckett really became a household name not only in Minnesota but also in the entire United States. I'm not really sure how I came to follow the Twins so intently, I'm not from Minnesota nor have I ever visited there, but sometime in the late 80's I decided that the Vikings were my favorite football team, the North Stars would be my NHL team and the Twins would be my passion in Major League Baseball. Since then, age has brought me closer to my native Central PA homeland and Philadelphia sports in the Phillies and Flyers. Not that any of that matters right now, I just wanted to write about someone who I watched and admired growing up and someone who always seemed to have a smile on his face and always seemed like he was enjoying the game. I was in 10th grade when the Twins defeated the Braves for the 91' World Series. Never will I ever forget the 6th game when Puck hit the game winning home run in the bottom of the 11th. The next night Jack Morris would pitch 10 innings and Gene Larkin would drive home Dan Gladden for the Twins victory in 7 games. Puckett was a huge part of that team, he was the player that stuck out. He was without a doubt in my mind the MVP of that series. When you thought of the Twins, you thought of Kirby Puckett, and I still think back to Kirby stating before game 6 that the "Twins will win". Kirby won game 6 with his play in the outfield and home run in the 11th. A .318 lifetime hitter, Puckett leads the Twins in hits, doubles, at bats and many other categories. A 10 time all-star, we all know that Puck's career was cut short in 1996 due to vision problems, who knows what else he could have accomplished. The baseball world has lost a legend, champion, and friend, Puckett will be missed greatly.
2006-03-05T13:48:45.616-05:00If anyone feels bad about the Thome trade and is hoping that Ryan Howard doesn't have a sophmore slump, don't worry, you're in good company. It seems much more comforting that the Phils have been able to score quite a few runs against the Yanks and Blue Jays and win 3 of 3 spring training games. Even more perplexing is the fact that during a split squad matchup on Saturday against team Valenzuela, the Phils were shutout. The promise of young Ryan Howard, Gio Gonzalez, Daniel Haigwood, Cole Hamels and about 5 other players who have been invited to spring training seems great. It's not even the fact that Howard went 4 for 4 with 5 RBI's the other day against the Evil Empire, it's the pure excitement that lies in some of these youngsters that hold a lot of promise for the Phils this year. I'll be looking to Gavin Floyd and Cole Hamels to have a standout spring training and hopefully become candidates for a callup later in the season. Haigwood and Gonzalez are two who will probably get spots in AA Reading. Micheal Bourne, Shane Victorino, Matt Kata and Danny Sandoval also have looked good at the plate. Hopefully some of these players will help patch up a few of the depleted bench spots before the season. Look to the youngsters to really make a difference this spring training.
2006-02-23T21:06:51.103-05:002006, will it be a transition year for the Phils or will it they be able to get those extra two wins that kept them out of the playoffs last year? Only time will tell with Pat Gillick at the helm (see ya Eddie) and a host of new players, the 2006 phills look good in my opinion. It was sad to see Wags, and J Mike exit but I think signing Flash Gordon was probably the Phils best option over the offseason to fill the void left in the back of the bullpen. It appears as if Ryan Madson will be moved to the starting rotation and it will be fun to watch Giovanni Gonzalez and Daniel Haigwood develop in the minors after they were obtained from the White Sox in the Thome/Rowand deal. We'll have our first podcast of the season in the next few weeks in the meantime, check out the My Space page and enjoy the 2006 Winter Olympics. And, oh yeah....GO FLYERS!!!!!!
2005-11-24T10:02:08.166-05:00Pat Gillicks first trade within the Phillies organization comes as a relief to me and many other Phillie fans. A tentative trade between the Phils and the Chicago White Sox sends Jim Thome to the Sox for center fielder Aaron Rowand, cash and left handed pitching prospects Giovanni Gonzalez and Daniel Haigwood. The trade comes days after it was reported by trainer Jeff Cooper that Thome was in the best shape of his life after working out in Clearwater. There is no doubt that this is a huge weight off of the Phillies shoulders in many ways. It will open up about $24 Million in salary as the Phills have agreed to pay half of the $46 Million on Thome's current contract. It also frees up the first base situtation as Ryan Howard will assume that role full time for the 2006 season. Howard was named rookie of the year for the 2005 season, and along with Chase Utley and Jimmy Rollins, adds more youth and power to the infield lineup.
2005-11-02T21:09:27.493-05:00Pat Gillick was officially named the Phillies new GM on Wednesday closing another chapter in the Philadelphia baseball history books. Gillick becomes the Phil's newest member after Ed Wade was fired in October. Gillick of course has quite a track record of success, as he was actually Vice President of Baseball Operations for the Blue Jays in...you guessed it, 1993. His numbers look good, but that was then, this is now. Nicknamed "Stand Pat" in Toronto for his unwillingness to make trades, one can only hope that this is a good thing for the Phillies organization. Gillick will need to come into a situation where trades were made to get certain players and to build this team. The test now is to work with these same players which were signed for long term contracts and figure out a way to shake things up a bit in the organization and hopefully create a fresh start. We all know what is needed, we all know what players are available, Gillick will obviously get his first test this offseason as Montgomery has said that the payroll will not increase over last year. As the winter meetings approach, time will tell if Gillick was the right guy for the job. You can only trust David Montgomery, Bill Giles and everyone else involved with this process that they made the right decision. I think they did, now we need to make things happen this offseason and the first stop after that will be the NL East Pennant.
2005-10-24T18:52:08.816-04:00A bright spot this week from the Arizona Fall League as a few players that we talked about on previous podcasts were highlighted for thier accomplishments. Scott Mathieson who played in the futures game this past all-star break at Comerica Park was named AFL pitcher of the week. Mathieson has recorded 22 K's for the Surprise Scorpions this AFL season. He is currently 0-1 with a 6.28 ERA in 4 games. Micheal Bourne, an outfielder from the Reading Phillies is hitting .316 with 10 RBI's in 9 games. RHP Travis Minix who was promoted to Scranton/Wilkes Barre this past season is 1-0 with a 1.04 ERA in 6 appearances. Minix has recorded 5 K's and allowed just one earned run in 8.2 innings. Some good pitching to keep an eye on as the AFL continues this year.
2005-10-11T12:52:41.563-04:00Monday October 10 may be the day the Phillies changed forever. Ed Wade was released by the club on Monday just a few months after the club denied a contract extension. Now Bill Giles and David Montgomery must take a strong look at this club and go after the right personality, the right fit for this ballclub. Montgomery and Giles say they are listening to the fans, if that is the case, promoting Mike Arbuckle or Ruben Amaro just will not due. The fact is the Phillies need someone to come into this organization and shake things up. I feel moves need to be made in order to create salary for additional premium players. It is of course better said than done, but Philly has the means to do it, make big moves and to do that, we need an aggressive and upfront GM who will commit to getting things done in a positive manner. Only time will tell who will be in the GM seat for the Phils, but it is good to see this step taken by the ballclub. It is certainly one small step for baseball but one giant step for Philadelphia sports.
2005-10-08T17:59:43.286-04:00As the Phillies head out to thier home away from home and the Boston Red Sox are elimnated from the postseason, things in Phillies land are getting quiet in a quick way. The Phils did give everyone something to cheer about down the stretch fighting the Astros untill the bitter end. However, you can never let a postseason birth in the hands of another NL team especially if it is the Cubs. Things didn't work out, and now Houston is looking to Atlanta and then probably St. Louis to continue thier jouney to the World Series.
We are also working on re-organizing the show for next season. A slimmed down, shorter version of Phillies Weekly is in the works. We want to bring you indepth Phillies opinions and information in 15-30 minutes every week. A big thank you to everyone who contacted us throughout the season and listened to the podcast. We are always looking to make the podcast easier and more fun to listen to, hopefully our new changes will reflect that. In the meantime, we'll have our awards show organized very soon and be sure to check out Flyers Weekly, our new podcast devoted to the Philadelphia Flyers.
2005-09-30T22:40:01.213-04:00Week 13 of the Phillies Weekly podcast covering September 23-29 is now available by clicking here This is what we discussed on this weeks podcast:
All of this and much more on week 13 of the Phillies Weekly Podcast. COMING SOON: PHILLIES WEEKLY YEARLY AWARDS. We'll be posting the categories this week for the Phillies Weekly awards. Be sure to keep checking http://philliesweekly.blogspot.com
2005-09-27T19:03:20.016-04:00After Monday's 6-5 loss to the New York Mets, it is finally do or die time for the Phils. With Houston facing St. Louis and the Cubs for thier final two series of the season, the Phils must win thier remaining 5 games in order to keep pace with the Astros. One could look at the glass half full and say that the Astros have tough competition with St. Louis and the Cubs who never seem to give in, but Oswalt, Pettitte, and Clemens will make thier final starts of the regular season this week. Add to that the fact that St. Louis has already clinched the NL Central and has the option to somewhat shut down some of thier starters for the remainder of the season and you may have a recipe for disaster. The Phils need some help from the Cards and Cubs to make this happen. After the final home series of the regular season, the Phils set off to Washington this weekend. The streaky Nationals could play spoiler to the Phils hopes. We've discussed the play of the Nationals in past podcasts and we all know that the Nationals can get hot at any time.
2005-09-24T06:11:24.296-04:00Week 12 of the Phillies Weekly podcast covering September 16-22 is now available by clicking here Here is what we discussed on week 12 of the podcast:
All this and much more on week 12 of the Phillies Weekly Podcast. As the pennant races heat up and the wild card race goes down to the wire, Phillies Weekly will bring you detailed information, stats and news for the next few weeks. Your one stop for all Phillies is right here!
2005-09-17T07:05:59.286-04:00Week 11 of the Phillies Weekly podcast covering September 9-15 is now available by clicking here It was a great week for the Phils both on and off the field. Here is what we discussed in week 11 of the podcast:
All this and much more on week 11 of the Philadelphia Phillies podcast. Be sure to add Phillies Weekly to your podcast subscriptios and stay in touch with us.
2005-09-14T19:13:01.246-04:00With the Phils in strong position to not only gain some ground in the wild card race but also catch up to the Braves in the NL East, Cory Lidle and Brett Myers will look to round out this four game set. Lidle is the key to this series as the two youngsters in Gavin Floyd and Eude Brito proved earlier in the week they can pitch to the best of them. Lidle must now put together a strong start against lefty Horacio Ramirez and the Phils bats must keep producing to win the final two games of this series. Brett Myers will face Jorge Sosa on Thursday for the fourth and final game of this Atlanta Braves series. The Phils have gotten strong offensive performances by Rollins, Lofton, Burrell and Howard, and great performances from the bullpen have kept the Braves in check. If Lidle can give 5 quality innings and Myers can keep the frustrations out of his game, the Phils should be in good shape when they travel to Florida to face the Marlins this weekend. We'll have a full recap of the Braves and Marlins series this week on the Phillies Weekly podcast.
2005-09-10T08:13:34.656-04:00Week 10 of Phillies Weekly covering September 2-8 is now available by clicking here This week Greg Allen joins us for commentary. Here is what we discussed this week:
All this and much more on week 10 of the Phillies Weekly podcast.
2005-09-06T21:59:51.390-04:00Roy Oswalt and Andy Pettitte both pitched gems and sent the Phils into a 4 game losing streak on Tuesday night with a 2-1 Astros victory. The Phils had some chances against Oswalt late in the game on Tuesday, but couldn't cash in more runs. Billy Wagner also lost the game for the Phils in the top of the 9th on Tuesday night after Eric Bruntlett stole second and third and was singled home by Jason Lane. If this is the low point of the season for the Phils, we can only hope that is doesn't last long. If there is a bright spot to all of this, Brandon Backe will pitch the 3rd and final game of the Astros series on Wednesday. He will be opposed by Vicente Padilla. Backe was just activated off the Houston Dl, he hasn't pitched since July 23rd.
2005-09-02T00:57:31.603-04:00Week 9 of Phillies Weekly covering August 26 to September 1st is now available by clicking here This is what we dicussed on the 9th week of Phillies Weekly:
All this and much more on week 9 of the Phillies Weekly podcast. Make sure to add Phillies Weekly to your podcast subscriptions.
2005-08-27T00:54:39.533-04:00Week 8 of Phillies Weekly covering August 19-25 is now available. You can download the podcast here This is what we discussed in week 8 of the podcast:
All this and much more on week 8 of the Phillies Weekly podcast.
2005-08-24T19:09:08.930-04:00Vicente Padilla gave the Phils 8 strong innings on Tuesday night and Ryan Howard went 4 for 5 including a Home Run as the Phils defeated the San Fransisco Giants 10-2. The Phils wrap up the last game of the Giants series on Wednesday as they send Cory Lidle to the mound against Brad Hennessey. Howard, who got his first start since last Friday, hit his 9th Home Run of the season on Tuesday, a left field blast against Giants starter Brett Tomko. Padilla was equally impressive, pitching 8 strong innings, allowing just 2 earned runs and striking out 3. Padilla's ERA over his last 9 outings is 1.94.
We'll look into the month of September and have a full recap of the Giants and Diamondbacks series this Friday on the Phillies Weekly podcast.
Week 7 of Phillies Weekly covering August 12-18 is now available here This week, Greg Allen joins us again for commentary, here is what we discussed this week:
2005-08-17T19:48:23.530-04:00Crunch time has come for the Philadelphia Phillies against the Washington Nationals this week. After losing the first game of a four game set on Monday against the Nats, the Phils look to rebound for the final three games of the series. Here are the pitching matchups for the remainder of the Nationals series.
With the Houston Astros losing 3 of thier last 4 and the Braves losing 3 of thier last 5, the door is wide open for the Phillies to gain ground on both of these teams. The final three games are a must win for the Phils in my opinion as whoever wins this series may have the momentum to catch the Astros in the wild card hunt. Quality pitching, and the Phils ability to put together offensive outbursts lately are the key. The Pittsburgh Pirates stroll into Citizens Bank Park to round out the week for a 3 game set this weekend. We'll have a full recap of the Nationals series this Friday on Philies Weekly.
Other stories we are working on:
All this and much more this Friday on the Phillies Weekly podcast.
2005-08-12T08:26:16.266-04:00Week 6 of Phillies Weekly covering August 5-10 is now available by clicking here Here is what we discussed this week:
All this and much more, week 6 of Phillies Weekly is now available. Email: email@example.com Web: www.philliesweekly.blogspot.com
2005-08-09T19:02:22.093-04:00The Florida Marlins have helped out the Phils cause in not only the NL wild card race but also the NL East race by dropping both games of a doubleheader against Colorado on Monday. The Phils improved to 3rd place in the NL East, 6 games behind Atlanta and took 3rd place in the NL wild card race just 2 1/2 games behind Houston. With the help of Florida, the Phillies stand in good position to gain some ground on Houston and Atlanta with the start of a west coast road trip on Tuesday. The Phils have struggled a bit on the road this year at 22-29. This week, the club has a chance to improve that record against the LA Dodgers and San Diego Padres. Here are the starting pitching matchups for this weeks series:
Both Lowe and Perez had great outings against the Phillies in July pitching a combined total of 14 innings and giving up 0 Earned Runs. The Phils have yet to face both Peavey and Park this year but they have faced Astacio twice, once with Texas and with San Diego this past July. Astacio has a combined 12.85 ERA vs the Phils this year in 10 innings pitched. The Phils need to capitalize on both of these NL West clubs in order to make a strong bid for the NL wild card race.
Former Phillies manager Gene Mauch has passed away at the age of 79. Mauch may have been best known in the Phillies organization for the manager with the most wins and losses (645-684) in 8 seasons with Philadelphia. Mauch was also the manager of the '64 Phils who lost the last 10 games of the regular season to fall out of the playoff picture after a 6 1/2 game lead over the St. Louis Cardinals. Mauch will be remembered as one of the most celebrated managers in Phillies history who managed greats such as Richie Allen, Jim Bunning and Fergie Jenkins.
2005-08-06T12:36:31.953-04:00Phillies Weekly Week 5 covering July 30 through August 4 is now available here This week we welcome commentary from Greg Allen, a close friend and long time Phillies fan. Here is what we highlighted on week 5 of Phillies Weekly
All of this and much more on week 5 of Phillies Weekly. Send us your comments, suggestions 24/7 at firstname.lastname@example.org
QUESTION OF THE WEEK: A new feature on Phillies Weekly, this week we ask;With the Phillies Bullpen pitching well, what relievers do the Phillies need to secure if Billy Wagner does return?
Send us your comments and thoughts on this question at email@example.com