Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Veteran Moyer awarded 5th starter in rotation


Photo from fOTOGLIF

That's the grip of Jamie Moyer down in Florida, he won the 5th staters job yesterday

             No surprise out of Spring Training which is coming to a quick close. Jamie Moyer was announced as the winner in the competition for the 5th starter in the rotation yesterday. If Moyer had faltered just a little in Spring Training, the job probably would have been awarded to Kyle Kendrick, who also pitched a marvelous Spring Training, but for now the Phillies elected to go with Moyer.

            It will be a long season, and if Jamie is up to the task, he’ll be in that 5th spot all year long, but with a few rough outtings, he may find himself back in the bullpen as he finished up the playoffs and World Series last year for the Phillies. That’s not the worse thing that could happen to a quality pitcher, and nice guy like Jamie Moyer.

           The team travels home for Friday and Saturday’s tune up games with Pittsburgh, until then it’s ‘Paint The town Red Week’ with the Phillies PR staff drumming up awareness that the team is back for the start of the season. The Phanatic will be all ‘red’ until the start of the season when he turns his natural green color again.



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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Baseball Bloggers Alliance Podcast: '2010 Preview Show with Rich Baxter and Rob Abruzzese'

Will Moyer or Kendrick take the Fifth?

          Call it one of the best displays of pitching for a coveted starting rotation job for the Philadelphia Phillies. It’s the Spring Training showdown between Jamie Moyer and Kyle Kendrick to be a starting pitcher right out of Spring Training. News flash, Spring Training is over in a couple days now, is there a winner for this spot?

          Solid start after solid start, both Moyer and Kendrick, although they are 20 years apart in age, made solid cases for them to be that Number 5 starter. Moyer is making many millions this year, so my guess is you have to put him into that spot, but then it would be his to lose also if he falters by the end of April or early May.

          No announcement yet from the Phillies top brass, but what else can they do? Some have suggested to let them split the duties and take turns, but I don’t think that’s likely. I think we see Jamie Moyer head to Philly later this week with the job safely secured. That’s why he’s the seasoned veteran and the resurgent Kyle Kendrick did not do too badly, in fact he has raised his own stock price a little higher this spring.

           Join me tonight on a podcast for the Baseball Bloggers Alliance at 8 PM Eastern, you can call in and talk with me and Yankees blogger Rob Abruzzese on the upcoming season tonight via Blog Talk Radio, use the player just below for contact details! We're on from 8-9pm tonight.


Monday, March 29, 2010

Former Phils prospect Carrasco won’t start out of Spring Training for Tribe


Photo from fOTOGLIF

Carrasco's name was supposed to be the prospect to watch from the Phillies

 
       The term ‘prospect’ is a very broad term that gives the baseball fan a glimmer of hope in a player that a team is cultivating in a young minors player. One such prospect that we heard a lot about in Philly over the past couple years was Carlos Carrasco. Carlos was expected to be the next big stater coming out of the Phils minor league teams for a couple years. Carrasco went to the Indians in the Cliff Lee deal, and now with even Cliff Lee gone from the Phillies team, you wonder how much of an impact Carrasco will be still.

       Late word out of the Tribe spring training is that Carrasco will not make the starting 5 man rotation, but he is still only 23 and will be patient with whoever the Cleveland Indians decide as their fifth starter. This according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer newspaper. The race is between 3 rookies and Carrasco did have a rough time in his last pitching assignment against the Angels, and that could have cost him his chance to be number 5 in the rotation for the Indians.

      The Indians are managed this year by former Nationals manager, Manny Acta.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Lidge and Romero, likely still sidelined for start of season


Photo from fOTOGLIF

  Charlie Manuel will have to shuffle the cards with bullpen absences

     Clearwater- The saga of Brad Lidge and J.C. Romero is still rolling into April now that the season is only 8 more days away. There was a question mark on whether or not the duo would be on the team for the start of the season but now it appears certain that they won’t. Lidge’s absence will be felt more than Romero’s and it will be interesting to see if the job of closing will be Madson, Baez, or Contreras’s.

    J.C. Romero has probably missed more time as a ‘regular’ Phillies player of anyone on the active roster in the past year, so his impact of not being there isn’t as severe as Lidge, even though Lidge turned in a subpar year last year.

   The season will open without them, as the bullpen remains in my opinion, one of the biggest question marks of the 2010 Phillies team. It’s the Pirates today at Clearwater facing their cross-state rivals, The Phillies. Joe Blanton gets the ball for the Phils at 1:05 PM.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Fantasy Baseball Leagues heat up with live drafts for MLB start

       The regular season is right around the corner for the MLB, and this means fantasy baseball managers everywhere are participating in live drafts getting ready for the Fantasy Baseball season that mirrors the MLB with stats from every MLB player taking on a new meaning to fantasy league managers.

        FightinPhillies.com has it’s own fantasy league this year, which is the 10th year of participation in ‘fantasy leagues’ from Yahoo Sports, which is one of the biggest places that sponsors Fantasy Baseball Leagues for private leagues and the public leagues. Yahoo Sports is the official sponsor of Fantasy Baseball for the MLB.

         Many team managers scour over all the information they can find on players, and it makes it extra fun for those managers to watch players from all the teams in baseball rather than players from their own favorite team. This year, there is an offering by one of the biggest names in business, Bloomberg. Bloomberg Sports is in their first year of a partnership with Major League Baseball in offering a brand new tool via their online aggregation of the latest news, stats, and updates for fantasy baseball team managers. Bloomberg Sports is a very user friendly graphical interface program online that keeps the latest info flowing to team managers both pre and post draft for owners.

                        Screenshots of Bloomberg Sports Online Tools
BBSports 1
        

  Detailed analysis is available at your fingertips with Bloomberg Sports Fantasy baseball tools. This is not just your average stats aggregation, it’s more of a stats locker on steroids that you can refer to to make you decisions about your draft.


 BBSSports2
  
      
  Bloomberg was nice enough to invite bloggers like the FightinPhillies.com to it’s inaugural press launch of this product. In the ‘information age’ don’t get caught without the proper tools, and this is one of them and it keeps getting better.

          Check back from time to time this season to see the leaders of FightinPhillies.com Fantasy Baseball, a $25 gift certificate to the overall winner is on to the line, plus the bragging rights of being the champion of the league. Want to start your own league?  Just go to http://sports.yahoo.com/fantasy
     
             Want more info on Bloomberg Sports: http://mlb.mlb.com/bloombergsports/

       Good luck to all the teams, our live draft is Sunday night March 28th at 7 pm EST

Thursday, March 25, 2010

What to expect from Raul?


Photo from fOTOGLIF

Ibanez went from stellar to less than stellar last year




         Raul Ibanez was scorching right out of the gate for the Phillies in his first year of his three year contract. The season wore on and the mystic that swirled around Raul went from, “Who’s this?” to “He must be juiced” and anywhere in between. Raul Ibanez jumped out as the leader of the Phillies until mid season when it all just turned around for Raul and then he was mediocre at best.

         In June of last year, there was a report published in a midwestern sports blog that supposedly linked Raul to the steroids issue that has been so prevalent with the bigger names in the game in the last couple years. Raul went on the defensive and attacked the blogger personally, and from that point on in the season was his turning point really. It turns out that the comment wasn’t meant to be an ‘all truth’ just a possible explanation for his stellar start with the Phillies. Raul’s stinging response to the guy who wrote it made headlines everywhere.

       Here is what I wrote last year about Raul’s explosive behavior when asked about ‘steroids’ or ‘peds’.
         
      June 11, 2009 FightinPhillies.com:

I followed this story after it broke in the media, and as a professional baseball player you are going to be asked questions you don't really care to hear. Claiming you're going to sue everyone involved in this silly matter even goes further into the sublime. Did listeners on television who heard Chase Utley utter those famous words after the Phillies won the World Series, that incidentally rang out over public airwaves. Was there a rush to sue anyone? Nothing, not that I am aware of.

The official 'press' feeds off of blogs now as much as bloggers feed off of the printed words of the official press.That is just how it is. Bloggers aren't a bunch of yahoos looking to diss sports players, they are writers that write about a million different things. Drugs in sports is one of them. The fact that a reporter from the Inquirer actually confronted Ibanez should have been an opportunity for Raul to take the high road and explain the dangers of taking illegal banned substances and he never took them would have been a sufficient answer.

You know, in Seattle there used to be a player named Alex Rodriguez he also said he never took steroids, we now know that to be untrue. Not to say Ibanez isn't being truthful but in this day and age you don't really know. The saga of the drug scandal in the MLB has many names involved in it, and a simple question shouldn't turn out to be a raging volcano.

                
    Yes, Raul’s turning point was about June, he never was the same player after this for the rest of the season. We’ll have to see what happens this season as the Opening Day is even closer now with 11 days to go.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Phillies Talk – podcast with Yankees blogger Rob Abruezze for March 23, 2010


           Hear tonight’s show, who is going to surprise both the Yankees and the Phillies this year as we welcome in Rob Abruezze from his Yankees blog. We talk about the mutual respect we have for the Yankees and I think the respect from certain Yankees fans have for the Phillies.



            

Phillies Talk Podcast tonight at 7 PM, Rob Abruzzese from Bronx Baseball Daily

       Bronx Baseball Daily blog

Join us live tonight for another edition of Phillies Talk podcast, this week we chat with Yankees blogger, Rob Abruzzese. He is the mainstay of Bronx Baseball Daily, a Yankees blog.
         You can listen live to tonight’s show easily, just go to this website and check out our audio ‘Talkshoe’ player and you can hear the live audio of the show, want to participate? You can call in with your questions and comments also. Just click on the player to learn how to interact with the show.

           After 9 PM, we’ll have the finished show in podcast form where you can listen to it either here on this website or take us for the ride and download the podcast from iTunes.

  

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Spring 2010 by the numbers so far

RyanHowardTopps2010
     Spring Training 2010 down in Florida has been about the same as our winter this year, miserable. MLB writer Todd Zolecki just tweeted about it today, he said it’s been the worst weather for Spring Training that he’s ever seen. He confirmed this with the locals who also agree that this has been a tough first three weeks of Spring Training.

     So far, with the first three weeks of the Spring Training schedule about gone, the Phillies have stayed near the top of the standings even while tweaking the lineups and with pitchers adjusting the way they go about throwing their pitches.


                              Here is some of the story as told by the Spring Training numbers and stats that have been accumulated up to now. Not that it always tells the whole story, but numbers are fun to look at and compare. Stats through Sunday night 3/21/2010:

Batting Average LeadersMin 20 ABBatting Average
Domonic Brown24 AB.417
Placido Polonco29 AB.379
Ryan Howard 38 AB.316
Greg Dobbs23 AB.304
Jimmy Rollins41 AB.293
Chase Utley24 AB.292

And here is some starting pitching stats also through the Sunday game 3/21/2010:
Pitching LeadersMin 9 innings pitchedERA
Kyle Kendrick14 IP1.29
Cole Hamels10.2 IP1.69
Roy Halladay15 IP2.40
Jamie Moyer’s first start today on Sunday 3/21 yielded, 5 IP – 5H – 1.80 ERA
JA Happ has 2 starts with 6.1 IP – 3H – 0.00 ERA

             Much more to come on stats and Spring Training, watch this blog – and if you like our blog, keep an eye on “The Phield” which is running a neat March Madness bracket with Phillies blogs, where you can vote on your favorite blog: Vote for us!
                                        http://thephield.wordpress.com/


                  sources for stats:   MLB.com and Bloomberg Fantasy Sports program

Friday, March 19, 2010

Grading the Phillies half way through Spring Training -


Photo from fOTOGLIF

 Jason Werth continues his home run hitting ways again this Spring!

               By Richard Baxter
               CLEARWATER - The Spring Training season is well underway now, and it’s time to check in and see how the team is doing through the first half of Spring Training. You can’t say a whole lot about anything yet, but the Phillies are quietly starting to make this an awesome spring by beginning to play as a unified group. The Phils have a record of 8-4 and they have moved up in the standings for the Grapefruit League. The Phils are just below the Atlanta Braves in the standings currently in second place overall in all of the National League teams. In the Grapefruit League, they have moved into third place behind the Tampa Bay Rays, who lead the Grapefruit at an amazing 11-3, and the Atlanta Braves, who occupy second place.
 
 Chase Utley is having a great spring, he’s batting .438 so far, but so is Ryan Howard at .344 and Placido Polonco, at .346 through the games through last night. Phillies top prospect, Domonic Brown, gave the regulars a run for their money, he recorded a .417 average before he was reassigned to the minors from Spring Training. Domonic amassed 10 hits and had 8 RBI in 24 AB’s when he was sent back down. He really has been a bright star on the field for the Phils so far.
 

Howard is having a fun laugh with Nick Swisher of the NYY
Photo from fOTOGLIF


 Pitching has seen a lot of improvement by the starters. Roy Halladay is having a dreamy Spring Training at a scorching .090 ERA, and Cole Hamels is doing much better with a 1.69 ERA. Joe Blanton leads the team with 2 wins, but he also has the highest ERA of the starters at 4.09. The bullpen has been striking out batters left and right. Jose Contreras has 8 strikeouts for the ‘pen and Drew Carpenter has 9 SO’s to lead all relievers. For the starters, Halladay leads the team with 14 strikeouts, and Cole Hamels has 9 SO for the team.
   
 I want to give them an ‘A’ – but I am going to leave some room for improvement, and give them a solid ‘B+' for their efforts so far. Over the weekend, I am going to go stat crazy and post a lot of numbers for you to look at! The stats of Spring!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Phillies Talk podcast - Saint Patrick's Day 2010 Special

   It's Saint Patrick's Day 2010 - one of my favorite times of the year. The wearin' of the green and even the Philles wear their green. Listen to our podcast weekly called "Phillies Talk" - with Rich Baxter and Jim Mulry. Philadelphia's longest running independent Phillies internet radio show.


    

Baseball history: Celebrating Babe Ruth 75 years after his retirement

Babe-Ruth-at-bat


          While I was a young baseball fan in the early 1970’s the number ‘714’ stands out in my mind as the mark of greatness, a magical number that was alone for years. The number of course was Babe Ruth’s home run record. For years it was the mark to look up to, there were songs about him, movies about ‘The Babe’ and so much in between. Babe Ruth commanded baseball for the time that he played and I enjoyed looking at all the artifacts that are still in the Baseball Hall of Fame that commemorate the ‘Sultan of Swat’.

        untitled   Ruth’s birthday just passed in February, what would have been number 115 since his birth. He was born Feb 6, 1895 and started out in baseball at a very young age, he was 19 when he joined the Boston Red Sox as a pitcher, but was sold to the NY Yankees at age 24 because he wanted a big raise in salary. Ruth then became a full time right fielder. Ruth was the powerhouse in the NY Yankee team that saw them win four World Series titles.  Ruth was a character and loved the game of baseball, his lifetime batting average was .342, he hit 714 home runs, and had 2,217 hits. He was on 7 World Series winning teams, having won three of them with Boston and the rest with the Yankees.

           There is so much to learn about Babe Ruth, I think I will end my post here, you can find a lot of info out on him on the internet, in baseball history books and at the Baseball Hall of Fame. He was a legend, a player for the ages and he’ll always be remembered.
                     

       
baberuth
       

       
Number 3, Babe Ruth

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Baseball bookshelf: “Philadelphia Phillies- Past and Present” by Rich Westcott

 

PhilaPhilliesPastPresent

     Making the bookshelf spotlight this week at FightinPhillies.com is a Phillies book that goes way back into Phillies history and tells the story of how it all began and goes right up to last season with the team. The book is Philadelphia Phillies Past and Present by Rich Westcott.

 

      Westcott makes it fun to study the history of the Phillies going back to 1883 with colorful graphics and stories that unfold throughout the book. You never get bored with reading about the past, as just as soon as you’re reading about yesteryear, there is a reference with photos and the names of today’s team.

 

       The book goes through various chapters to tell the story of the Phillies. Well known battles through the years are documented with the chapter called, “Teams, Rivals, Leagues.” In it you’ll find some stories you may remember of bench clearing brawls and different situations that the team was involved in over the years.

 

         There is no shortage of historical photos in the book. You can find the picture of the first World Series (1915) program the Phillies were ever in, of course the program from 2008. There is also a number of photos of the different eras of the team. The 1993 era, the Larry Bowa years, Danny Ozark, and Paul Owens. Another cool section of the book is called, “Home Run Kings”. Another one of my favorites of the book is a chapter called, “Nicknames.” How about the photo of Mike Schmidt when he went on the field wearing a long black haired wig? It’s in there.

 

          A lot of history is packed into this 144 page book, it is a book that wets the appetite for the fan that is fascinated with Phillies baseball. It’s full of information and photos of old scorecards, media guides, and yearbooks and does a wonderful job of presenting the history of the team.  It’s available now at your favorite bookstore or online retailer. A reminder to readers that may want to purchase this, don’t wait to purchase these special books. They tend to go out of print way faster than they should, and then they are no longer available.

 

          We’re trying to get Rich Westcott to appear on an upcoming edition of “Phillies Talk” – the podcast, so keep listening to hear when he’ll be on the show.

Monday, March 15, 2010

ESPN reporting Howard for Pujols talks – nothing confirmed by Amaro



Photo from fOTOGLIF
The Cardinals already have enough distractions with McGwire on the bench - is he the scapegoat for steriods while others just play on without punishment?
  

  
     ESPN’s Buster Olney reported a possible discussion in the Phillies organization for the trading of Ryan Howard for Albert Puljols. “That’s a lie…,” is what Phillies GM Ruben Amaro has responded with early when asked for a comment of this story.

     Every so often, leaks appear in various sources about trade stories, but much like the Phillies story about acquiring a couple Japanese relievers from last month, this story lacks any serious credence. This story was printed in a St. Louis newspaper in the sports section, but no one is saying that it has any truth to it.

       If anyone is the Phillies organization discussed this it could have been the hot dog vendor and the pretzel salesman who work there, but I don’t think there has been any talk about this at all at the level that would be making such decisions to trade Howard. Time will tell if this was just a writer trying to make something up out of nothing or whether or not there was someone in the know in the Phil’s organization that actually heard the talks.

      Howard may be from the St. Louis area, but there’s nothing saying that the Phillies would like to see him play there. Howard also has two more seasons on his contract with a nice $19 million this year, and $20 million next year from the Phillies to keep him here.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

The biggest Phillies story out of Spring Training 2010? Halladay and Hamels

Hamels stands in front of billboard while stretching in Dunedin, Florida last week



The biggest story out of Spring Training 2010 for the Phillies to some is watching how well Roy Halladay is starting out on the mound . That answer has been simple, he's been awesome so far. Halladay is poised to make the Phillies and their fans proud of him this season for sure. He looks ready to make the change from the American League over to the National League without blinking an eye.

   The next concern about pitching for this upcoming season has to be Cole Hamels. Will he return to his awesome start with the Phillies or revert to mediocre? Hamels has worked hard on pitching with acquiring a new pitch to throw hitters this season. The pitch that Hamels learned is the cutter and we'll see how much more successful he'll be by using it along with his curveball and fastball.

 The question of whether or not Hamels will psyche himself out to remain calm on the mound. This also is another one of the issues that even Hamels had acknowledged that he needs to be better at this year. He needs to go out there and not show too much emotion either way while out on the mound.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Phillies Talk Podcast - Spring Training 2010 report with Scott Lauber

Episode Notes: We're joined by our old friend, Scott Lauber from the Wilmington News Journal. Scott gives us a report from Florida on the Phillies and also talks about his new career that he'll be starting in Boston.

What is the biggest story out of Spring Training this year so far? Will Kyle Kendrick be on the Phillies starting rotation this year? All this and more on this edition of "Phillies Talk".




Drabek faces Phillies

 

Photo from fOTOGLIF

    Drabek was the number one Phillies prospect

  
  The former ‘untouchable’ of the Phillies minors pitched against his old team yesterday. Kyle Drabek, who is the son of former major leaguer and Cy Young award winner Doug Drabek, did well against the Phillies on Wednesday.

          Drabek was the number 1 coveted prospect for the Phillies for some time, and was mentioned previously in trade rumors for Roy Halladay last year. The Phillies didn’t want to part with him, but somehow that all changed and he was traded along with many other minor leaguers for Roy Halladay over the winter.

           Drabek did well, pitching 2 innings and giving up only one walk and one hit. Only 25 days to go till opening day.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Baseball bookshelf: Willie Mays- The Life, The Legend by James Hirsch




    With Spring Training now here, the large amount of new baseball books are hitting the bookshelves, and perhaps the best of this season so far is an authorized biography of Willie Mays which was written by James Hirsch.

      An autobiography is usually the most important book you can find about a person, and with this book being ‘authorized’, it’s certainly one of the more accurate portrayals of one of the MLB’s best players ever, Mr. Willie Mays.

      Mays career started in the Negro leagues and morphed into the MLB where he takes his place in history among the greatest players of all time.

            James Hirsch is a New York Times best selling author, and presents us with a great book about the “Say Hey Kid”. From the humble beginnings to 2009 when Willie Mays flew on Air Force One to the All Star Game in Saint Louis with President Obama, this book is one that should be on the baseball fanatic’s bookshelf.

             We will be having James as a guest on an upcoming edition of “Phillies Talk” so watch the blog here for the show when he’ll be on. If you have any questions you would like to ask the author about his new book on Willie Mays, just email them to us and we’ll ask him!

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Retired players numbers being worn again: Good or bad?

      
Phillies Jersey B/W


    A baseball player whose number is retired by a team has a special place in that team’s history. Consider the fact that with the Phillies the following jerseys will probably never be worn again with the numbers: 1, 14, 20, 32, 36, and of course 42 which was retired by every team in the MLB in honor of Jackie Robinson.

       This year in Chicago, the Chicago White Sox will unretire # 11, with the permission of the player who it was retired for. The number 11 jersey will once again be worn on the field by a player on the Sox team. The original retired number belonged to Luis Aparicio and this year it will be worn by Omar Vizquel who is also from the same country as Aparicio, Venezuela.

        This is a debate that has ignited a lot of comments on the situation. Regarding a number that is retired, should it stay retired or should a team or player be able to give permission for it to be worn again? Many players over the course of their career change numbers on their jerseys for one reason or another, and just the fact that this happens makes it a strange occurance that we will never be able to see a particular number worn by a player again. What should be so special about keeping a player’s number locked up for life in a state of suspended animation?

         The other side of the coin says that a retired players number should never be worn again, and that is that. There is no gray area or ‘in betweens’ with some people in regards to this.  There is also another side that wonders, Whose choice should it be to approve this. Should it be the club’s decision or a player? If that player is still living of course. Whatever the case, I sometimes wonder if we’ll ever see a Phillies players jersey unretired and when it will be. There are a couple players on this current Phillies team that might qualify for a retired number if they stay with the Phillies for a few more years, so if should be interesting to see if a the Phillies player will ever wear a retired number that some of us have never seen worn on the field.

              Here’s the ESPN story on the White Sox with number 11:
          http://sports.espn.go.com/chicago/mlb/news/story?id=4897287



            Phillies Retired numbers:
Richie Ashburn1
Jim Bunning14
Mike Schmidt20
Steve Carlton32
Robin Roberts36
Jackie Robinson (every team retired)42

 There is also two players on the Phillies with no number associated with them but they are listed as ‘Retired numbers’: Chuck Klein who wore multiple numbers and Grover Cleveland Alexander who also wore several numbers. Why didn’t the team just pick one and retire it? Or should players numbers be able to be reissued by a team?


  Want to hear a show we did with Todd Zolecki about his new book, which is in bookstores now?
           
    http://www.fightinphillies.com/2010/02/phillies-talk-podcast-todd-zolecki-from.html

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Fightin Phillies Fantasy Baseball league invitation


The first "Fightin Phillies Yahoo Fantasy Baseball League' is looking for dedicated team managers who want to compete for the championship of the Fightin Phillies Yahoo Baseball Fantasy League manager.

Want to join our league? We'll have a live draft on the last Sunday night of March, but if you can't make it, you can always set your draft preferences in advance. We have 6 more spots to fill for this year's league.


Email me here: rich@fightinphillies.com and we'll get you the invite out to you.

Friday, March 05, 2010

Phillies Talk Podcast - MLB Picks Show 2010

   Hear our MLB Picks show for 2010 - who we think will be in the playoffs and win it all in '10. The Phillies Spring Training games are under way and we talk about Roy Halladay's great start in his first start against the Yankees.

  

Thursday, March 04, 2010

In the zone: Halladay finds groove early

 

Photo from fOTOGLIF

Roy Halladay pitching in his first Spring Training game vs. the Yankees on March 4th,  will Halladay be the first Phillies pitcher to win 20 games since Steve Carlton?



   To the relief of many, Roy Halladay went to the mound today and pitched lights out in his first appearance in a Phillies uniform. Like a painter, Halladay painted corners and dropped sinkers in to the strike zone and baffled Yankees batters in his first outing.

    The game was won in dramatic fashion 3-2 in Spring Training game 1 against the Yankees, that's good too, but it's not something to start raving about. It's a long spring training season and when clubs like the Pirates beat you, you start to wonder what's going on.  It's great to win the first time out though and a huge crowd of nearly 10,000 people took the game in.


    Here's the numbers line on Halladay's first two innings as a Phillies pitcher:

  •      2 IP
  •      3 SO
  •      0 H
  •      0 R 

   
       The weekend schedule:
  • Friday  1:05 pm  - Phillies vs. @Toronto
  • Saturday  1:05 pm - Phillies vs. @Pittsburgh
  • Sunday  1:05 pm - @Phillies vs. Tampa



    Picture of the week below:  You create the caption in the comments section !!

Photo from fOTOGLIF


         

1st Spring Training game gets underway today with Yankees


Photo from fOTOGLIF

  A familiar face now in a Yankees uniform

       The tune up game with the Florida State University is out of the way, the Phillies rallied back to win the game 13-6 in 7 innings, but it was more of an exhibition game than anything else and today will start the Grapefruit League for the Phillies.

        You can’t really put much credence into the first couple weeks of Spring Training or even most of the early Spring Training schedule as players are being moved around and everyday players just try to start to get back into game shape for the start of the regular season.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Maple Street Press “Phillies Annual 2010” – not your typical fan’s publication

 

Phillies 2010 Maple      

 

The start of a new baseball season always brings out every pundit and writer and broadcaster trying to catch an angle on the upcoming season for the Phillies. This has been even more magnified as the Phillies have been more successful during the last couple of seasons.

 

     The local bookshops and vendors are usually crowded with baseball magazines and this year is no exception as the 2010 baseball season approaches. This is the second year that a company called Maple Street Press has published a “Phillies Annual 2010” season preview. It’s one publication that stands out and one that deserves a lot of attention. It is a very unique issue in that it is not your ‘typical’ type of baseball magazine about the Phillies. If you go to Citizen’s Bank Park and pickup the latest edition of the official Phillies magazine, you are reading a good quality magazine but not one that you’ll find being overly objective about certain issues.

 

     Phillies Annual 2010 is a neat assortment of stories written by both professional writers and bloggers that follow the Phillies. Jason Weitzel who authors a blog called Beerleaguer, is the editor and also an author of this year’s edition. Jason originally called his blog, “Berks Phillies Fans” back in 2005 before moving the blog to the “Beerleaguer” blog. The original blog was more or less how many blogs start out for the people that blog about the Phillies, but now only 5 years later, Jason now pens this Annual and just authored a Phillies book on the 2008 Championship Phillies season.

 

      Where else can you read that, “Philadelphia’s Defense Isn’t As Good As it Looks” which is an article in this year’s editon. Whether or not you agree with it, or not, it still makes for good reading. It’s objectivity that makes this publication so inviting. It is also full of colorful photos from even the Jim Thome Phillies era which seems like a really long time ago. I would like to recommend the edition to fans. Maple Street Publishing also publishes many other ‘Annuals’ of other teams in basketball, hockey, baseball, and football.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Spring Training - Yankees vs Phillies on Thursday


Photo from fOTOGLIF

Switching leagues means Halladay will now get to bat and slide into bases!






Photo from fOTOGLIF

Cole Hamels signs for a Florida Phillies fan 


       
 Only a couple days until the Spring Training season starts to turn competitive when the Phillies will take on the NY Yankees for the first game of the Grapefruit League schedule.  What a way to start it off, Halladay vs. Sabathia? Isn't this just for getting into shape? Forgettttaaabouuutttt it - this one will be for real! No more playing fun running drills and batting cages, this game will kick it all off, The Rematch.


 The Phillies opponents keep on coming after Thursday also, the weekend brings games against Toronto, Pittsburgh, and Tampa Bay. The Phils next day off isn't until March 18th once the Grapefruit Schedule starts.

  

Monday, March 01, 2010

Bloomberg Sports Fantasy Draft kit likes Phillies players

 

BloombergSportsScreenshot

Perhaps one of the best ‘Fantasy Baseball’ Tools out there with Bloomberg Sports    

 

The Bloomberg Sports new MLB product where you can select your fantasy team based on stats and cool graphics is liking the Phillies. The number 4 pick according to them is Ryan Howard. Howard ranks just behind Albert Pujols at number 1 and A-Rod at number 3. The Bloomberg folks did a great job on this new service which is just in it’s first year.

 

     The main screen for the Bloomberg  features a “News Ticker” that runs across on the top of the screen, and then some heavy duty analysis tools to help you zone in on a particular player or team with an indepth listing of pertinent articles that you can link to on the web. Draft a great fantasy team and then another product that can be put to use during the regular season to keep track of everything, with Bloomberg’s “In Season Tools” package you can buy both the ‘Draft Kit’ and ‘In Season Tools’ for a discounted price here.

 

      Want a sleeper pick for your Fantasy team? Just click the button and instantly many players faces appear on the screen. One of them is Ben Francisco of the Phillies. All of the information you’ll find here on Bloomberg Sports is dynamically displayed in a clear, and concise manner.

 

       We are evaluating and enjoying what Bloomberg Sports has put out on the field so far with this new offering online. We’ll be blogging on this much more during Spring Training as we’ll get to see some more of this service as the games start being played in Spring Training.