Leaving Those April Doldrums Behind?

rollins in fla.jpgJust chillin’ at the Ft. Lauderdale Airport, waiting to catch my flight back to Philly.

Love 6 a.m. flights.

Love 4 a.m. wakeup calls even more.

But you’re here to talk Phillies, right? The Phillies had a very good weekend, sweeping the Marlins at Dolphin Stadium, winning two games by coming back in the ninth inning Friday and Saturday and clobbering them in a laugher yesterday.

Could the Phillies be close to breaking out of their traditional April doldrums?

That really depends on the pitching, doesn’t it? Have they started to figure out a few things, or was this just a mirage?

Consider:

  • The Phillies are third in the National League with 98 runs scored, and that’s with Jimmy Rollins slumping. Only the St. Louis Cardinals (115) and Los Angeles Dodgers (110) have scored more.
  • The Phillies had a National League-worst 6.31 ERA (87 earned runs in 124 innings) through their first 14 games when they were 6-8. They had a 2.89 ERA over the weekend against the Marlins.
  • The Phillies have a .995 fielding percentage to lead the baseball. They have committed just three errors (Chase Utley, Pedro Feliz and Rollins each have on error), and none since April 16 in Washington.

Hitting and fielding haven’t been an issue for the Phillies. Pitching has. But they are set up nicely this week, opening a three-game series tonight against the Nationals at Citizens Bank Park. (Joe Blanton, Cole Hamels and Brett Myers face the Nationals.) The Nationals have scored just 74 runs this season, which ranks 12th in the National League.

Play well this week against the Nationals, and the Phillies should be feeling pretty good about themselves before playing the Mets this weekend.

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21 Comments

Muck the Fets!

Great weekend of baseball. Kudos to Moyer for being the first pitcher not to allow a HR in a game this season. He’s amazing!

Hopefully we can do to the Mutts what we did to the Fish…..SWEEP!!

Wow. Just, wow! That’s the type of character that champions show.
2 consecutive 9th inning comebacks followed by a blowout, bell to bell; sweeping the division leader on the road.
Champions aren’t bought,they’re made.
World F’n Champions, indeed.

Loved how the Phils made the most out of teh walks early in the game. Great pitching by Moyers and it was nice to see some speed on teh bases again. If the pitching comes around, watch out!!!

How about the stellar defense yesterday by our new leftfielder? It was still a game when he made a couple of those plays.

So far Ibanez has been everything he was advertised as and more. Couldnt believe he stole a base and that defensive play yesterday should’ve been in ESPN’s top ten!

Ibanez is going to make us all forget Pat the bat very quickly (pat the who??). I must admit to being pleased by our offence. Everyone except for Rollins is hitting. Now Charlie has to work on getting Dobbs and Rollins hitting. While Stairs has been great as a PH so far, I think we’ll need Dobbs to go on a tear to truly be the team we want to be. Also, Please, please, please, get the pitching together. Myers had good start yesterday, be nice to see three more against the Nats

I felt a *tiny* bit bad for the Fish’s starter. His 1st ML start, and he’s pitted against the WS champs, in the middle of a losing streak for his team. And at home. Hell of a position to be in. He didn’t last long, after giving up a bunch of walks. McCarthy/Wheels were saying how nervous he looked. But then again……This is the majors, kid.

Loved how Cody Ross , one of their outfielders, came in to pitch in the 9th. LOL! I know they said the Fish were out of lefties, and Ross is a lefty. Guess they figured it couldn’t get any worse. Wonder if he ever pitched in an ML game before. Didn’t do bad. Only allowed one infield hit.

Todd….Again…..All you media guys need to chip in for a charter.

A few questions for teh Phaithful:

1) last Phillies pitcher to win 250th game while pitching for Phils
2) last Phillie non pitcher to pitch in a game
3) is anyone still wishing we had kept Pat and not signed Ibanez?

Let’s go Joe!!! we want 4 in a row…

Hey Norma… That’s baseball. I’d rather welcome the rookie that way than make him look like Cy Young. :-)
I’m a big believer in the difference between runs scored and runs allowed.
Right now, the Phils have scored 98 times and given up 96. That’s a difference of +2, obviously. Then take a look at the other teams Todd mentioned, like St. Louis and the Dodgers. Their difference is +30 and +36, respectively.
My point is that the Phils still have some catchup to do to get some separation between the others in the division. But they are on the right track.
PS – Look at Pittsburgh, too. Their difference is +33. Keep an eye on these guys – this might be the real deal for them this year.

1)….Carlton WON his 250th with the Phillies, but some of those wins were with other teams.

2)….Todd Zeille?

3)….NO!

I think Jim Kaat won his 250th with the Phillies… in 1976, right?
Think long, think wrong!

Deb:
While Zeille did pitch twice in his carreer, it wasn’t with the Phillies. he played for us in 1996 but pitched while playing for Colorodo in 2002 and while with the Mutts in 2004. The last Phillie to pitch who wasn’t a pitcher was…..Thomas Perez in 2002. He pitched 0.1 inning. Before that Glenn Wilson pitched 1 inning in 1987 and Greg Gross pitched .2 of an inning in 1986.

AS for who was last pitcher to win their 250th game while with the Phillies, the answer is Kaat hit 250 in 1977. Lefty reached the 250 mark in 1983

and finally, no one misses pat anymore

Deb:
While Zeille did pitch twice in his carreer, it wasn’t with the Phillies. he played for us in 1996 but pitched while playing for Colorodo in 2002 and while with the Mutts in 2004. The last Phillie to pitch who wasn’t a pitcher was…..Thomas Perez in 2002. He pitched 0.1 inning. Before that Glenn Wilson pitched 1 inning in 1987 and Greg Gross pitched .2 of an inning in 1986.

AS for who was last pitcher to win their 250th game while with the Phillies, the answer is Kaat hit 250 in 1977. Lefty reached the 250 mark in 1983

and finally, no one misses pat anymore

speaking of Lefty: he went from 1976 until 1982 (7 seasons) with a WHIP of under 1.2, averaged 19.5 wins -9.3 losses a year (including the strike shortened season) with 260+ innings pitched and 217 Ks. No one will come close to those numbers again over 7 years

- Ibanez’ play did make espn’s top 5 defensive “web gems” for yesterday. It’s on their website.
– I agree about wanting Dobbs to get on track. He’s one of my favorite players. I’m hoping he’ll get a chance to start 3rd or 1st or even left field one of these days soon, maybe with Blanton or Myers on the mound. Since we know Charlie likes to have Feliz in there for all the ground balls induced by Moyer or Hamels. I think he said recently that he wants to give him a start, so that he can get some more rhythm.

Dobbs will get some starts under his belt soon enough but theres a lot of obstacles to do so:

The lineup is lefty heavy and its hard to sit those guys right now

1. Howard doesnt sit very often, and with his improved glove now, theres literally 0 reasons to give him a rest. Dobbs likely won’t play any 1B.

2. Ditto for Utley. He COULD SIT (but won’t) along with Pedro and EB4 would play 2B to make room for Dobbs.

3. Ibanez is on a tear, so he cannot sit (right now). This is where Dobbs’ few starts should come from once Raul cools down a little, which he has started to slightly. EB4 could play LF for him, with Dobbs at his natural 3B.

When it comes down to it, playing Dobbs weakens our (major league-leading) defense everytime he plays, and even weakens the offense in situations 1 and 2.

So my “Lefty” answer was right?

As for Zeille…….I thought it might have been the Mets he pitched for. I remember thinking it wasn’t all that long ago that he pitched a game, and he’s been gone from the Phils for quite a while. We have a mutual friend, so I try to keep track of him. Have no idea what he’s doing now.

Hey f-i-j, if Kaat won 250 in 1977 and Lefty did it in 1983, isn’t Lefty the last one to do it? Just sayin’…

The purcsahes I make are entirely based on these articles.

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