Thursday, October 31, 2013

Victorino Wins Another World Series, Rolls with Cops, Remains an Awful Guy

On Halloween day 2008, the Phillies celebrated their second world championship with a parade that drew hundreds of thousands to the streets of Philadelphia. Five years later, a former Phils outfielder has won another World Series. This time Shane Victorino has won it all with another team, the Boston Red Sox.

The 32-year-old is tied for the Phillies' all-time postseason lead in hits with 47 and had at least a couple massive hits to help contribute to Boston's third title run in ten years.

Victorino was featured in a segment of Alaska State Troopers on the National Geographic Channel this week. What better way could there be to celebrate being a World Series hero than to ride along with the po-po?

To see the clip of Victorino's time in the squad car, check out the media player below. Additionally, to listen to my insider tales about Shane's rehab time in the minors during the 2011 season, which includes details on his inappropriate chats with teenage bat boys, his insulting responses to my questions and his aggressively mean reply to a young female fan, listen to the 13th edition of the PhoulBallz Minor League Podcast by clicking HERE


Monday, October 28, 2013

Off-season League Updates: Rupp, Hernandez, Franco, Others Heat Up

Throughout the autumn and winter months, we'll have a weekly run down of how Phillies players are performing in the various leagues around the globe.  Read ahead for loads of details on some familiar names, prospects and more.

Arizona Fall League (seven Phils prospects play together on the Peoria Javelinas)... 

Catcher Cameron Rupp- Thus far in seven games, Rupp, who made his big league debut with the Phillies in September, is batting .300 with two doubles and four RBI.  Rupp has also been solid on defense, gunning down multiple runners in a game twice in AFL play.  The 25-year-old was the Phils' 3rd round pick out of Texas in 2010.

RHP Kenny Giles- The 23-year-old, who regularly throws his fastball in the high 90's, sports a 10.80 ERA through five outings with Peoria.  One disastrous outing (six ER without recording an out) takes away from how Giles has looked in his other appearances (five innings, no runs, two hits allowed, eight strike outs, two walks).  Giles, who missed some time during the 2013 regular season with two oblique strains, was the Phils' 7th round pick in 2011 and posted a 6.31 ERA in 24 games with Clearwater this year.

OF Aaron Altherr- In three games, the 22-year-old is 3-for-11 (.273 avg) with two RBI and has been unsuccessful in one stolen base attempt.  Altherr was the Phillies' 9th round draft selection in 2009.  He batted .275 with 12 homers, 69 RBI and 23 steals in 123 games for Class A Advanced Clearwater this year.

OF Cameron Perkins- In seven games, the 23-year-old is batting .238 with a double, a triple and an RBI.  Perkins was drafted out of Purdue in the 6th round in 2012.  Perkins was called upon late to fill the void left by outfielder Kelly Dugan, who was sent home from the AFL as he is dealing with turf toe. 

RHP Kyle Simon- The 23-year-old has allowed one earned run in 5 1/3 innings (1.69 ERA) in four relief outings in the AFL.  Simon, who was acquired from the Orioles in the 2012 Jim Thome trade, posted a 2-6 record with a 4.45 ERA and 11 saves in 45 appearances for Double-A Reading this year.

LHP Austin Wright- The 24-year-old has allowed five earned runs in six innings (7.50 ERA) over four appearances.  Wright, who was the Phils' 8th round draft pick out of the University of Mississippi in 2011, posted a 6-5 record with a 5.92 ERA in 27 games (16 starts) with Double-A Reading this year.

RHP Mike Nesseth- In five appearances for the Javelinas, the Phils' 17th round draft choice from 2010 has allowed four earned runs in seven innings pitched (5.14 ERA) while striking out four and walking four.  In 48 games at three levels this year, the 25-year-old tallied a 1-5 record along with nine saves and a 2.50 ERA


Venezuelan Winter League...

Infielder Cesar Hernandez-  The 23-year-old switch hitter is batting .316 with two doubles, two home runs and seven RBI in nine games thus far for Margarita.  Hernandez batted .289 with five doubles and 10 RBI in 34 games with the Phillies and was honored as a Triple-A All-Star this past season.

Infielder Edgar Duran- The switch hitting 22-year-old is 3-for-9 (.333 avg) with a triple and two RBI in three games with Margarita thus far.  In 117 games with Reading this year, Duran posted a .225 average with four homers and 33 RBI.

Shortstop Freddy Galvis- In six games the 23-year-old is 6-for-21 (.286 avg) with two doubles, a home run and two RBI for Zulia.  The switch-hitting Galvis missed some time in the early going with a bicep strain.

Outfielder Wilmer Oberto- The lefty hitting 20-year-old has no hits in two at bats for Zulia.  Oberto posted a .316 average with six home runs and 45 RBI in 51 games in the rookie level Gulf Coast League this year.

RHP Severino Gonzalez- The 21-year-old, who was honored as the Phils' Paul Owens Award winner this year, has allowed three earned runs in two innings of work in two appearances for La Guaira.  In the regular season, Gonzalez posted a 7-5 record with a 2.00 ERA and a 10.33 K/9 mark in 25 games at three levels.

RHP Justin Friend- The 27-year-old has had a trio of rough outings in which he has allowed nine total earned runs in one total inning for La Guaira.  Overall in six appearances, the righty has a 12.79 ERA.  Friend posted a 5-4 record with a 3.79 ERA in 46 games with Triple-A Lehigh Valley this year.

OF Steve Susdorf- Thus far in six games, the 27-year-old is 3-for-19 (.158 avg) with two RBI for Caracas. Susdorf, who was drafted in the 19th round in 2008, played in three big league games with the Phillies this season.

1B/DH Jim Murphy- Through 15 games, the 28-year-old slugger is batting .319 with two doubles, two homers and 10 RBI for Aragua.  Murphy, the Phils' 17th round pick in 2008, was a Double-A Eastern League All-Star with Reading in 2013.

Catcher Gabriel Lino- The 20-year-old is hitless in two at bats in three games played for Lara.  Lino was the other player, along with Simon, that was acquired from Baltimore for Jim Thome.  The righty batting Lino posted a .254 average with four home runs and 32 RBI in 56 games with Class A short-season Williamsport and Class A Lakewood in 2013.


Dominican Winter League...

3B Maikel Franco- In seven games for Cibao, the 21-year-old has a .370 average with two doubles, four RBI and two stolen bases.  The righty batting Franco slammed 31 homers and drove in 103 runs with just one steal in 134 games at two levels of the Phils' system this year.

OF Leandro Castro- In eight games with the Estrellas, the 24-year-old is batting .300 with two doubles, five RBI and a steal.  In 117 games with Lehigh Valley this year, Castro sported a .256 average with eight home runs and 55 RBI.

RHP Hector Neris- In three outings for the Toros, the 24-year-old has allowed one earned run in 3 2/3 innings while striking out one and walking two.  Neris, 24, had a 6-4 record with a 4.55 ERA and a .241 batting average against in 46 games this year for Reading.

RHP Juan Sosa- The 24-year-old right-hander has appeared in two games for Licey, allowing no runs while striking out three batters in 2 1/3 innings.  In 42 combined games at Class A Advanced Clearwater and Double-A Reading this year, Sosa sported a 5-5 record with three saved and a 4.77 ERA. 


Mexican Winter League...

LHP Manuel Chavez- The 19-year-old has a 1.93 ERA in eight relief appearances for Mexicali.  In 4 2/3 innings, Chavez has struck out five and walked only one.  This year with the Phils' Venezuelan Summer League team Chavez tallied a 9-0 record with a 2.18 ERA in 14 starts.

Catcher Sebastian Valle- The righty batting 23-year-old is batting .190 with a double, a homer and one RBI in seven games for Los Mochis.  Valle sported a .203 batting average with 12 homers and 41 RBI in 98 games with Reading this year.

Friday, October 25, 2013

PhoulBallz Podcast Episode 45: Desi Relaford Talks Late 90's Phillies Glory Days

On the 45th edition of the PhoulBallz Podcast, Tug and Jay are joined by former Phillies infielder Desi Relaford, who talks about his time in the minors, being part of a forgettable time in Phils history, John Vukovich being a hard guy to play for, hip hop music, his ventures away from the baseball diamond and much more.  The guys also talk about the World Series, Shane Victorino, Terry Mulholland as well as other topics.

Use the media player below to stream the full episode, or simply download it by clicking HERE.

You can also check out previous episodes and subscribe on iTunes.


Monday, October 21, 2013

Weekly Off-season League Updates: AFL, Dominican, Venezuelan and Mexican League Notes

The premiere edition of our 2013 off-season league updates is here.  Throughout the autumn and winter months, we'll have a weekly run down of how Phillies players are performing in the various leagues around the globe.  Read ahead for loads of details on some familiar names, prospects and more.


Arizona Fall League (seven Phils prospects play together on the Peoria Javelinas)...

Mike Nesseth
RHP Mike Nesseth- The Phils' 17th round draft choice from 2010 has allowed four earned runs in four innings while striking out two and walking one thus far with Peoria.  Nesseth sported a 1-5 record with a 2.50 ERA and nine saves in 48 regular season games at three levels during the regular season this year. To hear Nesseth talking about the Arizona Fall League, check out my exclusive interview with him by clicking HERE.

OF Aaron Altherr- In three games, the 22-year-old is 3-for-11 (.273 avg) with two RBI and has been unsuccessful in one stolen base attempt.  Altherr was the Phillies' 9th round draft selection in 2009.  He batted .275 with 12 homers, 69 RBI and 23 steals in 123 games for Class A Advanced Clearwater this year.

OF Cameron Perkins- In two games, the 23-year-old has gone 2-for-6 (.333 avg) with an RBI.  Perkins, a Purdue product, was the Phils' 6th round pick in 2012.  Perkins was called upon late to fill the void left by outfielder Kelly Dugan, who was sent home from the AFL as he is dealing with turf toe.  Dugan, 23, will be in a walking boot for two weeks while he allows the ailment to heal.

Catcher Cameron Rupp- Thus far in five games, Rupp, who made his big league debut with the Phillies in September, is 7-for-20 (.350 avg) with a double and two RBI.  Rupp has also been solid on defense, gunning down two runners in a single game last week.  The 25-year-old was the Phils' 3rd round pick out of Texas in 2010.

RHP Kenny Giles- The 23-year-old, who regularly throws his fastball in the high 90's, had a pair of solid outings to open the AFL season, but struggled on Saturday, walking three batters and allowing six earned runs without recording an out.  Giles, who missed considerable time during the 2013 regular season with two oblique strains, was the Phils' 7th round pick in 2011 and posted a 6.31 ERA in 24 games with Clearwater this year.

RHP Kyle Simon- The 23-year-old has allowed one earned run in 4 1/3 innings (2.08 ERA) in three relief outings in the AFL.  Simon, who was acquired from the Orioles in the 2012 Jim Thome trade, posted a 2-6 record with a 4.45 ERA and 11 saves in 45 appearances for Double-A Reading this year.

LHP Austin Wright- The 24-year-old has allowed three earned runs in 3 1/3 innings in three appearances.  Wright, who was the Phils' 8th round draft pick out of the University of Mississippi in 2011 tallied a 6-5 record and a 5.92 ERA in 27 games with Double-A Reading this year.


Venezuelan Winter League...

Freddy Galvis
Shortstop Freddy Galvis- The 23-year-old is 1-for-3 with a double and an RBI in two games with Zulia.  Galvis left Saturday's game as a precaution as a local media report had him dealing with a bicep issue.

Outfielder Wilmer Oberto- The lefty hitting 20-year-old has no hits in two at bats for Zulia.  Oberto posted a .316 average with six home runs and 45 RBI in 51 games in the Gulf Coast League this year.

RHP Severino Gonzalez- The 21-year-old, who was honored as the Phils' Paul Owens Award winner this year, allowed two earned runs in two innings in his only start thus far for La Guaira.  In the regular season, Gonzalez had a 7-5 record with a 2.00 ERA and a 10.33 K/9 mark in 25 games at three levels.

OF Steve Susdorf- Thus far in six games, the 27-year-old is 3-for-19 (.158 avg) with two RBI for Caracas. Susdorf, who was drafted in the 19th round in 2008, played in three big league games with the Phillies this season.

1B/DH Jim Murphy- The 28-year-old slugger is batting .351 with two doubles, two home runs and eight RBI in 10 games for Aragua.  Murphy was a Double-A Eastern League All-Star with Reading in 2013.

Catcher Gabriel Lino- The 20-year-old is hitless in one at bat in two games played for Lara.  Lino was the other player, along with Simon, that was acquired from Baltimore for Jim Thome.

Infielder Cesar Hernandez-  The 23-year-old switch hitter is 3-for-16 (.188 avg) thus far in four games for Margarita.  Hernandez batted .289 in 34 games with the Phillies and was honored as a Triple-A All-Star this season.

Infielder Edgar Duran- The switch hitting 22-year-old is 3-for-9 (.333 avg) with a triple and two RBI in three games with Margarita thus far.  In 117 with Reading this year, Duran posted a .225 average with four homers and 33 RBI.

RHP Justin Friend- The 27-year-old has allowed three earned runs in 3 2/3 innings while earning a win in three outings for La Guaira.  Friend posted a 5-4 record with a 3.79 ERA in 46 games with Triple-A Lehigh Valley this year.


Dominican Winter League...

Maikel Franco
3B Maikel Franco- The 21-year-old was 4-for-12 (.333 avg) with Cibao in the first three games of the season over the weekend.  Franco slammed 31 homers and drove in 103 runs in 134 games at two levels of the Phils' system this year.

OF Leandro Castro- The 24-year-old righty hitter went 3-for-7 (.429 avg) with a double and two RBI through two games with the Estrellas.  In 117 games with Lehigh Valley this year, Castro sported a .256 average with eight home runs and 55 RBI.

RHP Hector Neris- In his lone outing for the Toros, Neris struck out one and allowed no hits, walks or runs in 1 2/3 innings.  Neris, 24, had a 6-4 record with a 4.55 ERA and a .241 batting average against in 46 games this year for Reading.


Mexican Winter League...

LHP Manuel Chavez- The 19-year-old has not allowed a run in two innings of work for Mexicali.  This year with the Phils' Venezuelan Summer League team Chavez tallied a 9-0 record with a 2.18 ERA in 14 starts.

Catcher Sebastian Valle- The righty batting 23-year-old is 2-for-7 (.286 avg) with a homer and an RBI in two games for Los Mochis.  Valle sported a .203 batting average with 12 homers and 41 RBI in 98 games with Reading this year.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

PhoulBallz Podcast Episode 44: RHP Mike Nesseth Talks About the AFL

On this week's edition of the PhoulBallz Podcast Tug and Jay are joined by Phillies pitching prospect Mike Nesseth who discusses the Arizona Fall League, the Phillies' focus on throwing strikes and a proposed street fight between Cameron Rupp's goatee and Kyle Simon's mustache.  The guys also chat about the MLB postseason, Yasiel Puig, off-season leagues and plenty more.

Use the media player below to stream the full episode, or simply download it by clicking HERE.

You can also check out previous episodes and subscribe on iTunes.


Monday, October 14, 2013

Injury Updates on Watson, Walding

Shane Watson, photo- Jay Floyd
A pair of injured Class A prospects have used time at the Fall Instructional League to rehab their ailments and grow close to a return to the field. Phillies top 2012 draft choice (40th overall) Shane Watson has been sidelined since July with shoulder inflammation while third baseman Mitch Walding, the team's fifth round pick in 2011, missed time with a broken rib dating back to the latter portion of August. Neither player will see game action at instructs, but each of them is nearly ready to get back to full baseball activities.

Watson, a righty hurler, has been progressing through a rehab program that included arm slot correction therapy and throwing on flat ground. The 20-year-old is slated to throw his first bullpen session in many weeks this Saturday at the Phils' training facility in Clearwater, FL. Instructs will wrap up next week and Watson will continue to follow a strict throwing program through the off-season, after he returns home to California.

In 16 starts for the Lakewood BlueClaws this year, Watson sported a 4-6 record along with a 4.75 ERA and a 6.63 K/9 mark.

The lefty batting Walding was initially thought to have a back strain this summer, but further cracked a misdiagnosed fractured rib while going about his normal routine one day in the clubhouse. After spending the past month in Florida rehabbing the injury, the 21-year-old is now throwing and fielding. Walding expects to start hitting in about a week. He'll get a break of about two weeks, then will be among a group of Phillies minor leaguers to get some time at the Phillies' winter baseball academy in the Dominican Republic.

Walding, who shines on defense, but struggled through much of the year with Lakewood on offense (.224/.323/.286 line in 115 games) is set to be joined by OF Larry Greene Jr., OF Andrew Pullin, OF Cord Sandberg and infielder Jan Hernandez in the DR.

Friday, October 11, 2013

#FANtasking Initiative by MLBAM Kicks Off Wireless Improvements at Parks

Thanks to the folks at Qualcomm for the heads up on a big initiative going on throughout all of Major League Baseball.  For everyone that's ever dealt with weak signals on his or her device at the ballpark, new and improved mobile experiences are coming soon!

With All-Star Brandon Phillips on board, helping to spread the word via social networking, the FANtasking has been rolled out and seems quite fun.  Check out the following details from a press release and find out how you could win tickets.


Baseball is a game steeped in history and tradition. Unfortunately for fans, the “tradition” of nose bleed seats is as old as the game itself. With its new FANtasking video feature, Qualcomm is making the impossible possible: turning the worst seats in the house into the very best.

Granted, hot dog piƱatas are likely not going to become all the rage at MLB stadiums, but one thing is clear, the future for fans is brighter than ever thanks to the efforts of Qualcomm and MLB to bring the future for fans into the palms of their hands…or more literally into their mobile devices.
The short video below brings this exciting future to life in some rather “unorthodox” ways that we thought you and your readers would truly appreciate.



(Link:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fquwqFGU_8U)
   
Qualcomm has teamed up with MLB Advanced Media  and is “changing the game” for fans all across baseball by super charging the fan experience through their efforts to maximize mobile connectivity within MLB stadiums. Take me out to the ballgame, is becoming more and more, “take me INTO the ballgame” thanks to the role our mobile devices are playing in the fan experience. 

And speaking of enhancing the fan experience, Qualcomm’s 
FANtasking Photo contest is currently offering fans the chance to win a Samsung Galaxy S4 and a trip with tickets to Opening Day 2014 game of their favorite team (as long as you enter before 10/20/13)!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

PhoulBallz Podcast Episode 43: Gillies, Galvis & Rupp Talk Baseball Card Collecting

On the 43rd episode of the PhoulBallz Minor League Podcast, Tug and Jay feature exclusive interview clips of Tyson Gillies, Freddy Galvis and Cameron Rupp talking about what baseball cards they collected growing up.  The guys also reminisce about KYW-TV's Saturday Night Dead program and old school video games. Other topics include Mat Latos' wife's assault in Pittsburgh, the Indians' season, Delmon Young's postseason prowess and Carlos Alonso's defensive achievements. 

Use the media player below to stream the full episode, or simply download it by clicking HERE.

You can also check out previous episodes and subscribe on iTunes.