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Showing posts from July, 2009

Neighbors...They Talk

Links for today from around my bloggerhood... Amanda talks about Ruben Amaro's top 10 moves as Phillies GM, over on PhilliesNation . Late Night with Jimmy Fallon's got a good blog. Here they review funny names in the sport of baseball. Minor league media head Mike Ashmore covered two double headers yesterday in NJ. Read his live blog from the quadruple header right here . Not sure if it's streaming all day, but PhoulBallz.com is fully in the mix on Slugtrail Radio's podcast that was recorded last night. If you like prank calls, random discussion and sports talk...check that out here . SI has a photo list of most recent MLB no hitters by team. Check that out here . Lakewood coach Bob Milacki was part of the Orioles' most recent no-no. David Murphy's got some quotes from Jason Donald on being traded. The Indians' triple A team, the Columbus Clippers, are visiting Lehigh's Coca Cola Park, so the trio of Donald, Lou Marson and Carlos Carrasco had a f

When I Think About You, I GOOGLE Myself

Actually, I use Yahoo as my search engine, but Google is the standard terminology. Anyway, while watching the Phillies game on Thursday night into Friday morning, I proceeded to do some searches on my site name. I've done it before, and found mentions of some of my posts and found other sites linking to me that I had not been aware of, so it's a cool practice I'll do from time to time. Below are some things I learned or came across. Web site TableTennisCoach-"dot something" seems to be a BS site that tries to load malware via fake virus warnings. Some guy named MaseMase on Twitter is cool and reads this page and has refered readers here and has gotten others to see this page and post links to it. He deserves a shout out. ECheats.biz links to this site on a page for a Super Nintendo game called Ballz , thanks to keyword enhanced advertising. MusicReportOnline.net apparently translates articles, that they link to, into to some variation of English. Check out th

Looking Forward With Lee

Cliff Lee is expected to join the Phillies today in San Francisco. American League pitchers have somewhat of a track record of increased success when they initially join a new team in the National League. Here is a look at some excellent cross overs from recent memory. CC Sabathia, 2008. After joining the Brewers midway through last season, Sabathia went 11-2 with 7 complete games, 3 shut outs and 128 K's over 17 starts. Johan Santana, 2008. In his first full NL season with the Metropolitans, Santana posted a 16-7 record with a 2.53 ERA and 206 K's in 34 starts. Bronson Arroyo, 2006. In his first three months with the Reds, Arroyo had a 9-4 record, with a 2.58 ERA and 89 K's in 17 starts. Randy Johnson, 1998. When Johnson left Seattle for Houston, he contributed greatly with a 10-1 record, 1.28 ERA, 4 complete games (all shut outs), with 116 K's in 11 starts. For further consideration, here is a look at those pitchers' statistics with the preceding American

Cliph Lee is a Phillie

The Phillies and Indians have reportedly agreed on a deal which would send Jason Donald, Carlos Carrasco, Jason Knapp and Lou Marson to Cleveland for Cliff Lee and Ben Francisco. FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal reports on the agreement here .

JP's Holla' Day Has Passed

Roy Halladay rumors will continue to swirl throughout the week, even though Toronto GM JP Ricciardi's self-imposed trade deadline for Halladay of July 28th has passed. More teams are becoming players in the Halladay sweepstakes and have begun to make their offers. With the asking price seemingly a steady set of the following- 1 major league ready player (preferably a pitcher), 1 top pitching prospect and 1 much touted offensive prospect...teams like the Red Sox offering Clay Buchholz and the White Sox offering Gavin Floyd seem to be taking over as the more serious contenders to get a deal done with the Blue Jays. With the Phillies apparently stuck on not giving up Toronto's top wish list item, pitching prospect Kyle Drabek, they are rumored to be moving deeper into negotiations to acquire Indians lefty and reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Cliff Lee. If the Phillies can get Lee without giving up Drabek, that would be their more ideal swap. My opinion on Drabek being the piece

Eyes Closed Again

Congratulations, Wild-haired Asian Kid. While all of your Brewers fan cohorts attempt to lunge and catch a homerun ball with their eyes closed, you prevail as the toughest fan in your section. The guy with cap in hand, right in front of you, surely will not be successful in his blind attempt to catch a ball. The orange haired pot head right next to him certainly resembles someone doing the wave in his sleep and not a fan trying to grab a souvenir. The goateed tongue ejector, toward the right of the picture, definitely is in the best position to make the grab, but failure awaits him. Open your eyes, not your mouth, Gene Simmons. Additional props go out to the folks behind all the reaching fans, as they excitedly await the broken hand bones of some seat neighbor with his/her eyes closed. -------------------------------------------------- Once again, Cardinals fans, you are not skilled at catching homerun balls. PhoulBallz has dealt you a blog bashing before , and you've still not

Coach Bob Answers a Few Questions

I spoke with Lakewood pitching coach Bob Milacki recently. Just a couple quick questions, mainly about his visit to the double A all star game and the BlueClaws' pitching prospects. Here is what Coach Bob had to say. Coach Bob, can I get some comments on your experiences at the Double A all star game in Trenton this month? It was fun. It was fun. I went over there, they called me, 'cause I was born in Trenton...and threw out the first pitch. And they also wanted me to participate in the home run derby (Coach Bob threw pitches to Phillies minor leaguer Michael Taylor in the derby), which is different for me. But, it was fun. I got a chance to see some guys who I coached in previous years with the Pirates, so it was kind of neat. Big crowd. Were you a choice of Michael Taylor's at all, or did the organizers assign you to pitch to him? He didn't know I was going to be throwing. He probably would have wanted somebody else. But he did hit one homerun, so it was nice.

Jealous Ones Envy

Joe Blanton continues to excel and prove his worth in the Phillies pitching rotation. In his latest outing on Sunday, Blanton threw 8 strong innings, striking out 6, while walking just 1 and surrendering 2 earned runs, improving his record to 7-4. This season in July, Joe is 3-0 over four starts with 22 K's, 5 walks and a 1.21 ERA. Over his last 6 starts, Joe's ERA is 1.94. As a member of the Phillies, Blanton has a 3.84 ERA after the all star break with a 5-0 record. The Phillies are 20-12 (.625 winning percentage) in games that Blanton has started, since being acquired last July. Combined this season against other National League playoff contenders St. Louis, Chicago and Los Angeles, Blanton has a combined 1.67 ERA in 4 starts with a 2-0 record. Blanton is on such a sizzling run that the Bowling Green Hot Rods, a Tampa Bay Rays farm team, will host a Joe Blanton bobble head give away tomorrow. Bowling Green will host Joe's mother, father and sister for the event, as

Sunday School: Keep the Peace

Your usual dose of Sunday School is preempted, for now, to remind you that we are all baseball fans. From the DelCo Times... According to several reports, homicide detectives are investigating the death of a man fatally injured in a Citizens Bank Park parking lot melee while a Phillies game was in progress.Police say it began at McFaddens Restaurant at the ballpark around 7:00 p.m.Officials say there was a bachelor party going on at the restaurant when the trouble began.The fight, involving as many as 30 people, went outside to Lot M at 7th Street and Pattison Avenue.Police say a 22-year-old man was assaulted in the parking lot outside the ballpark.The game between the Phillies and the St. Louis Cardinals was in the 8th inning when the assault occurred.The man was taken to the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania where he was pronounced dead. Link to story here .

Holliday- Card

Dear Oakland A's, You couldn't have waited till Monday to make this trade?! What the eff-hole? Sincerely, PhoulBallz.com Matt Holliday joined the Cardinals in Philadelphia on Friday, following a trade that sent prospects Brett Wallace, Shane Peterson and Clayton Mortensen to Oakland. St. Louis has upgraded their team with three trades this month adding Holliday, Julio Lugo and Mark DeRosa. Holliday quickly proved to be the impact player that Cards manager Tony La Russa has been wanting to add to the team's offense and contributed for the Cardinals, as he got 4 hits, an RBI, a run scored and a stolen base in the 8-1 defeat of the Phillies on Friday. The Phillies go back at it today, at 4:05pm on the Fox national(/regional) broadcast. ----------------------------------------- Saturday links... PhilliesNation has an article about genius and Blue Jays general manager JP Ricciardi. PhilliesFlow reviews the Phillies performances during the 10 game win streak compared to

Weekend Series Preview: Cardinals @ Phillies 7/24-7/26

St. Louis visits Philadelphia for the first and only time of the season this weekend. The Central division leading Cardinals (52-46) will face the East division leading Phillies (54-39) for three games. Pitching match ups and other notes below. Friday, 7:05pm. Joel Pineiro (8-9, 3.09 ERA) vs. "Jay" Happ (7-0, 2.68 ERA). Pineiro has made 3 career starts against the Phillies and is 1-0 with a 2.33 ERA in 19 1/3 innings pitched. In 10 road starts this season, Pineiro is 4-5 with a 3.86 ERA. Over his last 3 starts, Pineiro has a 1.56 ERA. In 12 appearances at home this season, Happ is 3-0 with a 4.04 ERA. Over his last 6 starts, Happ's ERA is 1.67. Happ as a starter is 5-0 with a 2.74 ERA. Saturday, 4:05pm. Kyle Lohse (4-6, 4.21 ERA) vs. Rodrigo Lopez (2-0, 2.60 ERA). Lohse returns to Citizens Bank Park for the first time since surrendering the infamous grand slam to Kaz Matsui in the 2007 playoffs. In 7 regular season games at CBP, Lohse is 2-0 with a 3.52 ERA. RoLo ha

Mark Buerhle= Curt Hennig

The Chicago White Sox's Mark Buehrle threw the second no hitter of his Major League career, a perfect game, against the Tampa Bay Rays today. Buehrle is now 11-3 with a 3.28 ERA on the season. Tampa sent 27 batters to the plate and did not get a single base runner all day long. This was the 18th perfect game ever thrown in the majors. Fox Sports has more on the story of the day in baseball here . ------------------------------ PAUSE? Since it has become American League day here on PhoulBallz, let's take a glance at all the man-love that went on in the Rangers game last night. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Jeopardy 4

For $250 in the category of Shameful Fans, the answer is: Kansas City Royals fans love to do this at games they attend. It helps them stand out as deserving a really great franchise that always contends for pennants and world titles. Question: What is PARTY? CORRECT! Wow, just look at that lively group of Royals fans partying . They really get rewarded with the team they deserve, don't they?

Eric B Needs to be Cut (and My Name is Rakim)

While the Phillies are on a hot streak this month, one player on the team is not. Eric Bruntlett is 1-for-12 in July. Since the start of May, Bruntlett's apex in batting average has been .167 on June 14th. Bruntlett's ineptitude can be tolerated no longer. Get rid of this guy NOW! Eric B. is the 2009 Endy Chavez. Remember Endy...the guy who in 2005 managed just 2 hits in his final 42 games played as a Phillie? That is about the sort of output the Phillies are getting from Bruntlett, and it's time to fix this void. Julio Lugo was designated for assignment last week by the Red Sox and is expected to become a free agent. The Metropolitans are rumored to be interested. Why wouldn't the Phillies be interested in a guy who could surely outhit Bruntlett? Lugo was hitting .284 through 37 games played this season with Boston. Suspended Lehigh Valley IronPig Pablo Ozuna is eligible to return next Wednesday. Ozuna is batting .294 through 51 games at triple A. Miguel Cairo is a

PhoulBallz Q&A With Jim Murphy

Lakewood BlueClaws first baseman Jim Murphy was a 17 th round draft selection in 2008. Over his time with three Phils minor league teams last year, Jim hit .281 with 5 homers and 30 RBI. Murphy is currently batting .289 with 9 homers and 48 RBI with an .874 OPS this season through 78 games with Lakewood. I had a chance to speak with Jim recently and here's how that went down. Jim, can I get you to speak a little about your draft experience last year? Yeah, I thought I'd probably be between the 15 th and 20 th round. I figured I'd get picked up somewhere around there. And I was driving back home, across the state- I went to school in the eastern part of Washington State- and I was driving back to see my family. I actually got the call when I was driving across the mountains, from our sports radio guy. And he was actually the first person to call and tell me. I didn't hear from the Phillies till after her called. That was kind of interesting. How did you celebr

Series Preview: Cubs @ Phils, July 20-22

The Chicago Cubs (47-43) make their only trip of the season to Philadelphia (51-38) starting tonight. The three game series will pit the World Champs against the team many people thought should have been the World Champs. Below is a look at the pitching match ups for the series and other game notes. Monday, 7:05pm. Ted Lilly (9-6, 3.18 ERA) vs. Rodrigo Lopez (1-0, 3.18 ERA). Lilly has a 2.11 ERA over his last 3 starts. In 4 career starts against the Phillies , Lilly is 1-3 with a 4.88 ERA. On the road this season, Lilly is 3-5 with a 4.66 ERA in 9 starts. Pedro Feliz against Lilly is 4-for-13 with 2 homers and 7 RBI. RoLo will be making his third start of the season for our Phillies . In 4 2/3 innings (1 start) in his career against the Cubbies (a June 2007 start), RoLo gave up 8 earned runs (15.43 ERA). Alfonso Soriano is a career .343 hitter (12-for-35) against RoLo with 3 homers and 5 RBI. Tuesday, 7:05pm. Rich Harden (6-6, 5.06 ERA) vs. Joe Blanton (6-4, 4.44 ERA). Th

Hot in July

The Philadelphia Phillies are movin' on up. Since losing the first two games of July, the Phillies are 12-1 this month and have improved to a season best 13 games over .500. The Phillies are the only team in the NL east above .500 and have a 6 1/2 game lead over the second place Braves. Let the Rookie of the Year talk prevail this week. The Blue Jays trade talk is stale at this point. If it happens, great...but if not, "Jay" Happ has been excellent! After Sunday's win over the Marlins, Happ is now 7-0 with a 2.68 ERA and 1.15 WHIP this season. Over his last 5 starts, Happ is 2-0 with a 2.00 ERA. By comparison, other ROY contenders likely don't match up. St. Louis's Colby Rasmus has posted a .270 batting avg. with 11 HR and 34 RBI in 85 games this season. Washington's Jordan Zimmermann and Atlanta's Kenshin Kawakami aren't close at all. However, the Braves' Tommy Hanson, who is 4-0 with a 2.85 ERA over 7 starts thus far might be Happ's b

Sunday School: History Lesson 24

Elmer Flick was an outfielder with the Phillies from 1898-1901. In 1898, the Phillies signed the 22 year old rookie free agent, after he had played 2 seasons of minor league ball. In Flick's first training camp, he arrived with a home made bat he created on a lathe by himself. A week into the season, an injury to everyday rightfielder Sam Thompson allowed Flick to get a shot at some playing time. In his first start, Flick had two singles and never looked back. He ended the season with a .302 batting average, drove in 81 runs and stole 23 bases. Over the three following seasons, Flick continued to use his speed to his advantage and stole 96 total bases. His quickness also allowed him to cover much ground in the outfield. Elmer Flick's best offensive season came in 1900, when he led the league in RBI with 110 and total bases with 297. He also finished second (to Honus Wagner) in batting avg. at .378. In 1901, the newly formed American League established a new baseball franchise

BJ Rosenberg Q&A With PhoulBallz.com

BJ Rosenberg is half of the closer tandem for the Phillies class A Lakewood BlueClaws. BJ splits the duties with Ryan Bergh . A 13th round selection out of the University of Louisville in 2008's amateur draft, Rosenberg was one of six all stars from the Lakewood team this season. Through 29 appearances this season, Rosenberg is 7-2 with a 1.15 ERA, 1.08 WHIP and 14 saves in 39 innings pitched. BJ took time to answer some questions for me the other day and here's how that went down... Speak a little about your success so far this season, including your all star experience. Right now, I'm kind of on a roll for a little while. Been pitching pretty well. I've been working on some things, like, fix my mechanics a little bit. Been going good. Gonna keep it going, and the season's just over half way done, still a long way to go. The all star game was fun. I didn't get to pitch, but I guess they were saving me for extra innings, since it was such a close game. It wa

Zach Collier Talks With PhoulBallz.com

Zach Collier is pictured on the right, beside teammate Anthony Gose. Zach Collier is an 18 year old outfield prospect in the Phillies system. Collier was a supplemental 1st round pick in the 2008 amateur draft. Baseball America ranked Collier as the 8th best prospect in the Phils' system, earlier this year. Currently batting .226, with 16 doubles and 13 steals for the Lakewood BlueClaws through 79 games, Collier has yet to hit his first professional homerun. I had a chance to speak with Zach on Thursday night after the BlueClaws' loss to Tampa's Bowling Green affiliate and here's how that went down. You hit a deep fly ball that hit off the top of the wall for a double tonight. It barely missed going out. How much did you want that homerun tonight? Maaaan, I thought it was going out, but...once it hit the fence, you know, it's happened before, so I just had to get to second base. Don't want to get caught- think you have a homerun and just get on first base.

Eastern League's Showcase

The Double A Eastern League All Star Game took place Wednesday night in Trenton. The evening included a homerun derby that pitted prospects like the Twins' Rene Tosoni, Boston's Lars Anderson and the Phillies' own Michael Taylor against the likes of two local high schoolers. Mike Fassl, a New Egypt High School senior, won the contest by besting Toronto's Brian Dopirak (19 homers so far in the regular season) 1-0 in the final round. And yes they got 10 outs. The entire Derby was difficult to watch. Futures Game MVP Rene Tosoni put up a goose egg (zero) in the first round. Michael Taylor laid on some drama, going 9 outs into his session before blasting one out to left-center. He ended his round with 1 total homerun. The Indians' Carlos Santana put down his guitar to participate in the derby as well, and slugged just a single shot also. Fassl's father, Mike Sr., was his pitcher for the event. In the game itself, the Southern Division won the game, led by Miguel A

Charlie Speaks on Pedro

Phillies manager Charlie Manuel spoke with the MLB Home Plate channel, on SIRIUS XM Radio, hosts Seth Everett and Jim Duquette, about newly signed pitcher Pedro Martinez, on Wednesday. Here is a look at some of what they spoke about. Host, Jim Duquette: “What are your feelings on where [Martinez] fits in the rotation and what are your expectations of him?” Charlie Manuel: “Basically, the things I was told were that he’s throwing the ball much better than he did last year, he’s in tremendous shape and that our people definitely think that he can help us. And what we’ll do: he’ll work out, have a couple of throwing sessions with [pitching coach] Rich Dubee and probably even throw to some hitters, and then we’ll send him out and let him pitch in a game a couple of times and then bring him back and we’ll plug him in our rotation.” Host, Seth Everett: “Do you guys have the sense of any real expectations from him? What was the report that you got from the people that went down to the D.R

EL All Stars, Pedro and "Jaydio" Plug

The Eastern League All Star Game takes place tonight in Trenton at Waterfront Park. Five Reading Phillies are on the Southern Division team. 3B Neil Sellers, CF Quintin Berry, RHP Vance Worley, OF Michael Taylor and LHP Joe Savery all hope to help their team win. Michael Taylor, New Britian's Brian Dopirak and the Futures Game MVP, Twins prospect Rene Tosoni, will headline the Homerun Derby that takes place prior to the game. Also competing in the Derby will be two local high school players, who are allowed to use aluminum bats. Plans to have former Major Leaguer and current Trenton Thunder hitting coach Frank Menechino participate in the HR Derby have been nixed. The starting lineup for the Southern Division team is as follows... Miguel Abreu, 2B, Bowie Deik Scram, CF, Erie Michael Taylor, RF, Reading Carlos Santana, C, Akron Marvin Lowrance, LF, Harrisburg Neil Sellers, 3B, Reading Jason Delaney, DH, Altoona Beau Mills, 1B, Akron Brian Friday, SS, Altoona Joe Savery,

Done Deal

Many sources are reporting that Pedro Martinez has officially singed a 1 year/$1 million contract with the Phillies, that includes additional incentives worth up to $1.5 million. The team is expected to officially introduce Pedro as a member of the organization on Wednesday at Citizens Bank Park. According to MLB.com's Todd Zolecki , Martinez is expected to begin a "rehab" or conditioning assignment in the minor leagues immediately. As Pedro is already in the Philadelphia region and all the local minor league clubs are home, it might seem unlikely that Pedro would be assigned to Clearwater at this time. The Lakewood BlueClaws are presently in the midst of a home stand that ends Monday the 20th. The double A Reading Phillies, currently on their all star break, are home starting Thursday with games through Sunday the 19th. The triple A Lehigh Valley IronPigs are home Thursday through Sunday also. Stay tuned to learn where to see Martinez.

It's Phantastic, Baby

This art work was submitted by Phriend of PhoulBallz, MVR Joe, recently. It celebrates the Phantastic 4 for becoming the first National League foursome on the same team to slug 20 or more homers by the all star break. All four of the pictured Phils are all stars. My issue with the picture was Rauuul as the Invisible Woman. Surely we could go the John Cena catch phrase route and say that the opposition " can't see him ", but Rauuul with Jessica Alba's body still doesn't sit quite well with me. The others are all fitting. Ryan Howard is a big individual, much like The Thing...plus he kicks crazy butt like Michael Chiklis did for years, starring in The Shield . Chase Utley as Mr. Phanstastic is undoubtedly spot on. And Jayson Werth as The Human Torch, as we documented last week, is accurate, as his bat has been hotter than sun burnt herpes. ---------------------- Scott Lauber has the latest on Pedro Martinez's physical exam as well as a brief Q&

The Dude's Troubles

Former Phillie Lenny Dykstra has been all over the news lately, after the self made stock expert fell on hard times. After reportedly making millions of dollars trading stocks, Dykstra began a venture, a magazine called The Players Club, that was designed to help athletes and former athletes spend, invest and manage their wealth. Last year, Dykstra began being hit with many law suits from people, including some who had worked for the magazine, that charged they were owed money from Dykstra. Dykstra recently filed for bankruptcy protection. Below is a video that shows the drastic change in Dykstra's lifestyle in just one year.