Results tagged ‘ Andrew Carpenter ’

Lopez to Start Friday

The Phillies have decided who will start Friday night against the Mets at Citizens Bank Park.

It’s not Carlos Carrasco, Andrew Carpenter or Kyle Kendrick.

It’s Rodrigo Lopez.

Lopez is 5-4 with a 3.91 ERA in 13 starts this season with Triple-A Lehigh Valley. He is 65-65 with a 4.80 ERA in his seven-year Major League career. He last pitched for the Rockies in 2007.

Lopez signed a minor-league deal with the Phillies at the end of Spring Training after they watched him pitch in the World Baseball Classic. He had Tommy John surgery in Aug. 2007, and spent most of 2008 recovering. The Braves signed him to a minor-league deal toward the end of last season, but the Braves did not exercise the option they had on him.

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Carrasco? Drabek? Who?


carrasco.jpgA popular choice to fill Antonio Bastardo‘s spot in the rotation Thursday in Atlanta is Triple-A right-hander Carlos Carrasco.

He is one of the team’s top pitching prospects, and it could be his turn to get a shot.

But while Ruben Amaro Jr. said nice things about Carrasco (4-7, 4.92 ERA) today when I asked about him, he also quickly mentioned Rodrigo Lopez (5-4, 3.91 ERA), Kyle Kendrick (4-4, 3.97 ERA) and Andrew Carpenter (7-1, 2.75 ERA) as possibilities. Carpenter is having the best season of the four. Lopez has the most big-league experience. Kendrick has more experience than Carrasco or Carpenter.

One person who isn’t a candidate is Double-A Reading right-hander Kyle Drabek (4-0, 2.43 ERA). In fact, Drabek isn’t expected to be a candidate to help the Phillies at all in 2009.

Here is what Amaro told me earlier today about Drabek:

“He’s got great stuff,” Amaro said. “He’s going to be a quality Major League pitcher, if he stays healthy. But we do not believe he is ready to pitch in the big leagues at this time. He needs more Minor League experience. I would not count on him for the 2009 season. He’s not somebody we would actively move to the big leagues because he needs time to pitch in the Minor Leagues and he’s coming off [Tommy John] surgery. Now, there are circumstances that may change that, but right now we’re fully committed to having him pitch in the Minor Leagues in 2009.”

That does not shock me because I had trouble coming up with a player recently who made the jump from Single-A to the big leagues in the same season and had success doing it. I also had trouble coming up with a pitcher who made the jump from Single-A to the big leagues in the same season after missing most of the previous season recovering from Tommy John surgery.

Amaro said circumstances could change, which could put Drabek back in the mix. But now it appears Drabek’s earliest shot at the Majors will be 2010.

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Amaro on the trade market at the moment: “When you have this many teams in the race it’s very thin. It’s always thin. Again, there were three teams who got pitching last year. Three teams out of 30. That’s 10 percent. We can say, ‘Pretty please can we have a pitcher?’ but that doesn’t mean one will become available.”

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Scott Eyre is scheduled to make a rehab appearance tonight for the rookie-level Gulf Coast League Phillies.

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Amaro: Losing Brett Would Be A Big Blow


amaro.jpgBrett Myers
said earlier today that it’s almost 100 percent certain he will need surgery on his right hip
, which jeopardizes his season and weakens the rotation.

He hopes a second opinion gives him better news, but he does not sound optimistic.

I talked with Ruben Amaro Jr. about an hour ago outside Chase Utley‘s second annual Utley’s Animal All-Stars charity event – I hadn’t done a stakeout in a while (fun!) – which was held in Olde City. Here is what Amaro had to say about Myers:

Q: Does this increase your urgency to find starting pitching in a trade?
A: We’ve been looking for starting pitching from February on and that hasn’t changed. The urgency, a lot of it depends on what happens at the exam (second opinion with hip specialist Bryan Kelly). We’re going to probably bring somebody from our Minor League system, if in fact we need it. We’ll see how it progresses. The sky is not falling.

Q: Who are the options to take Myers’ spot in the rotation in the short term?
A: (Carlos) Carrasco, (Kyle) Kendrick, (Andrew) Carpenter, (Antonio) Bastardo.

Q: If you lose Myers, is a team with a starting pitcher to trade probably going to wait closer to the trade deadline to make a move, regardless of your situation?
A: That team that decides they want to be a seller? They’re going to try to get the best deal they can possibly get. And if they know Brett Myers is not with us, they’re going to try to get the best deal they possibly can. But I’m sure there are other teams out there who are looking for the same thing. So we have to assess. And if there is a deal to be made we’re going to have to assess whether it makes sense for us, not just short term, but long term as well.

Asked if he had anything else to add, if he wanted to tell Phillies fans to stay calm (all is well!), Amaro declined.

“The fact of the matter is, if we lose him it will be a big blow to us,” he said. “I don’t want to downplay that because if you lose Brett Myers it’s a big deal. But the fact of the matter is, we’ll have to make an adjustment. I don’t know how we’re going to do that, but it starts internally and we’ll see how that works out and we’ll go from there.”

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A big assist to Scott Eyre, who kindly gave me a bag of walnuts from the giveaway bag from the event. They kept me standing on my feet while I waited for Amaro.

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Road Trippin'

phils 052409.jpgThe Phillies went 8-2 on their just completed trip through Washington, Cincinnati and New York. That’s their first 8-2 trip since Sept. 2007, when they handled the Mets, Cardinals and Nationals on their way to winning the National League East for the first time since 1993.

Some interesting numbers/things/events during the trip:

  • They kicked things off at the White House on May 15.
  • Brad Lidge had three saves and three blown saves.
  • Rookies Sergio Escalona and Andrew Carpenter picked up wins in Washington.
  • Rookie John Mayberry got his first big-league hit, a three-run home run at Yankee Stadium on Saturday.
  • Chan Ho Park got bumped to the bullpen. J.A. Happ took his place and allowed two runs in six innings Saturday against the Yankees.
  • The Phillies were tied for second in the majors with the Twins with 65 runs scored in that span (May 15-24). Only the Blue Jays (74) scored more.
  • They hit .288 with 18 home runs, 62 RBIs, a .363 on-base percentage and a .510 slugging percentage. They stole 12 bases and got caught just twice.
  • They had a 4.63 ERA, which ranked 24th in baseball.
  • Raul Ibanez scored 11 runs, which tied for second in baseball in that span. Jimmy Rollins scored 10, which tied for fifth.
  • Ibanez led the majors with seven homers and 17 RBIs.

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Phillies starters have a 6.03 ERA, which is the worst mark in baseball. Lidge has a 9.15 ERA, which is the second-worst ERA in baseball for a relief pitcher. Only Cincinnati’s Mike Lincoln (9.19 ERA) is higher.

But yet the Phillies are six games over .500 to the lead the NL East and have the fourth-best record in the National League. Explain that one.

OK. They’re averaging 5.69 runs per game, which is the second-best mark in baseball. Only the Rays (5.72 runs per game) have been better. They also have committed just 13 errors, which is the fewest in baseball. That’s four fewer than any other team in baseball and 22 fewer errors than the Mets. The Phillies are hitting and playing great defense. If you’re a Phillies fan, you have to like your chances if the rotation can pitch more consistently (they looked good this weekend against the Yankees) and Lidge figures out a few things.

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Feeling Good Again

escalona.jpgSo I leave the Phillies for the weekend and what happens They complete a four-game sweep of the Nationals.

Maybe I should stay away more often. (That’s a rhetorical question … or something. Don’t answer that.)

Raul Ibanez hit .500 (9 for 18) with three homers and nine RBIs in the series. Pedro Feliz hit .500 (7 for 14) with two doubles and two RBIs. Chase Utley hit .444 (4 for 9) with two RBIs and five walks. Jimmy Rollins hit .389 (7 for 18) with a triple, two RBIs and three walks. Jayson Werth hit .333 (5 for 15) with a homer and three RBIs. Ryan Howard and Shane Victorino each hit .294 (5 for 17), with Howard adding two homers and five RBIs.

Yeah, pretty much everybody hit.

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Andrew Carpenter, Sergio Escalona, J.A. Happ and Brett Myers picked up wins in the series, which I’m sure most people would have predicted. Brad Lidge picked up saves Saturday and Sunday after blowing a save Friday. Clay Condrey picked up a save Saturday.

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Is Chan Ho Park‘s spot in the rotation in jeopardy again after Sunday’s poor showing?

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There is only one restaurant in the Green Bay airport, and that is before security. But there is one Cheese Shop, which has an assortment of cheese curds. I’m OK with this.

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