The hiatus is over, ladies and gents! We are back after a little vacation right in time for the stretch run. After losing two of three to the Nationals this past weekend at “Nationals Park,” otherwise known as “Citizens Bank Park South,” the Phillies get right back at it tonight at CBP against the Mets. What exactly happened this weekend?
In the 4th annual high school football ranking by Rivals.com, senior analyst Dallas Jackson has put the Explorers at number 88 in the nation. Details here. The Explorers look to repeat the successes of last year and make it to the state championship again, for the 3rd year in a row since joining the PIAA. Along with the Explorers, perennial top ten school and fellow LaSallian school, De La Salle is ranked #4 in the nation and #1 in California. Their goal this year is to win the national championship again, the last coming in 2003, at the end of a 151-0 winning streak.
To see the complete list, click here.
I'd give anything to do this.
The next four games are a huge test for the Phillies. Last week, the Giants came into Philadelphia and won a 3 game series here, and the first to do so since May. The loss for the Phils was their first series loss since fathers day in Seattle, yes Seattle, and their first 2-game losing streak in months. To me, it seemed as if the Phillies bats went cold due to being overly tense and pressured. The Giants always step up to play the Phillies, and for some reason the Phillies get too tense and can't hit anything. Philly fans want to see their team beat the team that ended their playoff run last year and cost them a trip to the World Series. The Phillies are on a 6 game winning streak, which includes two straight series sweeps over the Pirates and Rockies.
Since last year, the Giants have come back down to earth. Cody Ross isn't hitting .350 with an OPS of 1.385, and probably never will ever again for the rest of his career, although he just so happened to have those numbers in the NLCS last year. Instead, he is hitting a whole 100 points lower at .250. Which, obviously is more normal for a generally mediocre player like Ross. From what i can remember during his times as a Florida Marlin, he was very entertaining to watch play the outfield. He would always seem to lose the ball, and he can't use the excuse that he lost it in the crowd, because the seats were bright orange and empty. So the fact that he played way over his head and hit not one but two home runs off of Roy Halladay still has me a little heated (can you tell?). Now not only is Ross the only player to come down off of their playoff run last year, but the entire offense has dropped in production. The team average right now is .240. Obviously, their pitching is what is keeping them barely on top of the NL West. They have the second best staff in the majors behind only the Phillies. Their best pitcher statistically this year has been Ryan Vogelsong. An unlikely person considering the rotation includes arms like Lincecum and Cain. Vogelsong is 9-1 with a 2.19 ERA. San Francisco has the 2nd lowest run differential out of all first place teams in baseball (+2, the lowest is Detroit who actually has a negative run differential). The NL West 2nd place team, Arizona has a run differential of +26 and just took 2 out of 3 from the Giants in San Francisco. Before that, the Giants were in Cincinnati and were swept. The Giants have shown this year that they are a very beatable team and the Phillies just need to get past their mental block that doesn't allow them to do so.
The Giants recently acquired NY Met Carlos Beltran at the trade deadline and so far he has helped the Giants to 2 wins in 7 games. Not what the Giants were expecting but Beltran has always been an opportunistic player. He started to drop in production for the Mets but when his contract year rolled around this year he started playing better and got a trade to a contender. Now, Beltran is still in this contract year and will look to get the most money out of the deal like he did when he went to Houston in 2004.
Tonight the Giants start Madison Bumgarner, who the Phillies did not see last week in town. In Bumgarner's last start, he was roughed up by the Reds for 5 earned runs in 4.0 innings. Phillies send out Cliff Lee who struck out 11 Pirates in 7.2 innings in his last start.
Phillies Lineup Tonight:
Maybe he'll think twice before doing that stupid little skip after he hits it.
Good morning! Once again, Steak and Eggs for breakfast. Phillies use brooms once again, Braves salvage a game, Alex Rodriguez in the news off the field, and Casey McGehee goes off.
The Phillies wrapped up their three game sweep of the Rockies yesterday at Coors Field, 8-6. Roy Halladay did not have his best game yesterday but still escaped with his 14th victory. He went seven innings giving up five runs, four earned, on eight hits while striking out seven. The Phillies put up some big runs for Halladay. The Braves beat the Nationals 6-4 yesterday so the Phillies division lead remains at 8 games. Phils open up a four game set in San Francisco tonight at 10:10. More here.
Alex Rodriguez is back in the news. A-Rod could be facing league discipline for his role in an underground poker gambling game that ended turning violent. A-Rod is already on the disabled list after undergoing knee surgery. More here.
Casey McGehee went off yesterday in Milwaukee’s 10-5 win against the Cardinals. McGehee went 3-for-4 with 3 homeruns and 5 RBIs. McGehee’s performance allowed the Brewers to remain in first place. More here.
Eagles defensive tackle Mike Patterson was carted off the field yesterday during practiced and taken to Lehigh Valley Hospital by ambulance after having a seizure. Patterson was attended to by head athletic trainer Rick Burkholder, his staff, and RG Danny Watkins who is a trained fire fighter. Patterson was alert and joking at the hospital. More here.
Video of the Day:
The Eagles have arguably made the biggest splash in free agency once the lockout was lifted; however, that has not stopped the front office from continuing to look to improve the team. One of the rumored moves is that shortly after Randy Moss filed his retirement papers the Eagles offered him a contract. Now for one second if you believed Randy Moss would stay retired then you had one second on me, but there would certainly be mixed reactions should the birds sign Randy Moss.
I like the idea, assuming the details of the contract favor the Eagles. A deal that is only one year and is incentive-based would both inspire Moss to perform, but also protect the Eagles should he prove to be a distraction in camp. A healthy, inspired Moss would provide another weapon in an offense that is already loaded; however, all of last season provides a stark reminder of the distractions Moss could create.
In other Eagles news—the team suffered a scary moment this morning at practice when DT Mike Patterson collapsed and had a seizure on the field. Eagles athletic training staff and rookie former fighter, Danny Watkins, stabilized Patterson so that he could be transported to Lehigh Valley Hospital. His condition has since improved, however he will be monitored over night. More to come on the Eagles as training camp continues.
Good Morning and Happy Wednesday, or 'hump-day' to all you suits out there. Last night the Phillies won their 70th game, the Eagles made another splash in free agency, the Braves lost to the Nationals again, and the Pirates are back at .500.
Ryan Howard hit 2 home runs and Hunter Pence hit two doubles, but the story of the night was Kyle Kendrick. In what looks to be his last start before Roy Oswalt's return, Kendrick threw 8 shutout innings striking out 7. The win marks the Phillies fifth win in a row and their second consecutive series win after dropping last week's series with the Giants. More here.
The Eagles have added more strength to their running game by adding former Miami Dolphin Ronnie Brown. The key player in the "wildcat" formation for the Dolphins, Brown will serve as a backup to LeSean McCoy and fill in for some 3rd down sets. Brown is an excellent pickup for the birds considering their need for a power back year after year. More here.
The Nationals' Rick Ankiel hit his 2nd career grandslam and John Lannan improved to 3-0 against Atlanta this year. Newly acquired outfielder Michael Bourn drove in 2 for the Braves but it wasn't enough to beat the Nationals. The Phillies keep winning and the Braves keep losing ground, now 8 games behind the Phightins. More here.
Last night the Pirates returned to a .500 record (54-54). After being in first place just a few weeks ago, the Pirates have now lost five in a row and seven of their last eight. Their loss last night came by the long ball. The Cubs had 21 hits last night 6 of them were home runs. The Pirates hit 3 home runs of their own, and hope to salvage 4 game series in the next two days. More here.
Also, Vance Worley is now on Twitter. Follow him @VANIMAL_49
Video of the Day
After all the emotions of last night’s extra inning win, the Phillies are back it tonight at Coors Field in Denver tonight at 8:40. Kyle Kendrick gets the nod for the Phillies. He is 5-5 with a 3.52 ERA for the Phillies this year. This is rumored to be Kendrick’s last start in the rotation with SP Roy Oswalt expected to make his return from the DL this weekend in San Francisco.
The Rockies counter with Aaron Cook. Cook is having a tough year going 2-5 with a 5.05 ERA this year. Playing in a home park that is a launching pad like Coors is doesn’t help those numbers but Cook is struggling.
The Phillies come in having won four straight games and are looking to win yet another series this year on the road. Phillies 2B Chase Utley has hit safely in five straight games. Phils CF Shane Victorino is coming off a poor base running blunder in the third inning last night and the game winning solo home run.
Phillies win in 10 innings. Could’ve used that two days in a row now. Thanks to Chooch, John Mayberry, and Shane Victorino, the Phillies used late heroics to steal game 1 in Colorado. The Phillies offense was asleep for most of the game until the top of the ninth and into the top of the 10th inning. Cole Hamels went 6 innings and got the no decision. Instead, Antonio Bastardo got decision for the second consecutive day.
Good morning! Steak and eggs on a great Tuesday morning. Phillies take another, Braves lose 10,001, Yankees win, Ed Snider honored, and Oswalt returning this weekend.
The Phillies were in a wild won last night in Colorado. For the second straight day the Phillies took a 10 inning ball game. Cole Hamels went six innings, allowed two runs, struck out 5. Powered by a John Mayberry two out, two strike, two run game tying home run in the bottom of the ninth and a Shane Victorino solo shot in the top of the tenth, the Phillies takes game 1 against the Rockies. Braves lost 5-3 to the Nationals to allow the Phillies to open their division lead to seven games. More here.
Roy Oswalt is expecting to pitch this weekend for the Phillies against the Giants. Oswalt pitched for the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs last night as seemed excited to get back at it for the big club. More here.
Philadelphia Flyers chairman, owner, and founder Ed Snider is headed to the United States Hockey Hall of Fame along with Chris Chelios, Keith Tkachuk, Gary Suter, and announcer Mike Emrick. Snider founded the Flyers in 1967 and has turned Philadelphia into one of, if no the, top hockey cities in the NHL. More here.
C.C. Sabathia won his MLB leading 16th game last night despite surrendering 10 hits. Sabathia leading the Yankees chase for the AL East title as they move to within 1 game of the Boston Red Sox. Sabathia also making a bid for the AL Cy Young choice but, as of right now, is behind consensus picks Justin Verlander and Jered Weaver. More here.
Video of the Day:
The Eagles have signed their first round pick Danny Watkins to a 4 year deal worth $7.9 million, with 3 years guaranteed. Reports were that Watkins, the 23rd pick in the 2011 NFL draft, wanted all 4 years of the contract guaranteed, but did not get his wish. Watkins reportedly will report to camp tomorrow and start practicing Wednesday. So far he has missed three days of practice.
More to come as more information is released.
Quote of the Day:
"You don't get to the moon by climbing a tree."