Results tagged ‘ Rich Dubee ’
Nope, not once.
(Insert “Really?!? with Seth & Amy“ here.)
But the decision is near. Believe that much. In fact, it could be pretty clear after Jamie Moyer pitches tomorrow night against the Yankees at George M. Steinbrenner Field in Tampa. If he pitches OK, the job could be his. If he gets knocked around, things get a little more interesting.
Kyle Kendrick, who is competing with Moyer for the job, impressed again today in an 8-7 victory over the Astros at Bright House Field. Kendrick struggled with his command early and arguably had his worst stuff of the spring but allowed five hits, two runs (one earned run) and two walks in 5 2/3 innings. He struck out one. Kendrick has an impressive 1.37 ERA after five Grapefruit League appearances. Moyer has a 3.86 ERA in four spring appearances, which includes on Grapefruit League and three B game starts.
Big night for Moyer on Friday?
“I don’t know,” Manuel said. “I don’t think so. Not really.”
The Phillies announced on March 31 last year that Chan Ho Park had edged J.A. Happ for the fifth spot in the rotation. It would not be a surprise to see the Phillies make this year’s announcement around the same time with Kendrick scheduled to make his final Grapefruit League start next Tuesday.
“I’m pleased with the way Kyle is throwing the ball, but I also know there’s a track record on the other guy,” Rich Dubee said.
A couple notes from today:
- Brad Lidge and J.C. Romero are expected to open the season on the DL. No surprise there. The Phillies can backdate DL stints to March 26, which means today would have been the last day they could have pitched in a Grapefruit League game. The earliest Lidge or Romero are eligible to pitch is April 10 in Houston. There remains a chance Lidge could be ready to pitch in Houston, but Romero still hasn’t appeared in a Minor League Spring Training game. He is further behind.
- Roy Halladay allowed seven hits, two runs and one walk and struck out seven in seven innings in a Minor League Spring Training game against the Yankees in Tampa. He threw 98 pitches. Halladay will make his final Grapefruit League start Wednesday against the Blue Jays at Bright House Field. He makes his Phillies debut April 5 on Opening Day in DC.
- Left-hander Antonio Bastardo allowed two hits, three runs, one walk and one home run in one inning. He struck out two. He has a 7.71 ERA in six Grapefruit League appearances. “I can’t say a whole lot of our guys have been real sharp the last time out,” Rich Dubee said. “I think we’re at that point right now in Spring Training where guys are going through a little bit of a dead arm and dead body period, which is fine. I’d rather they hit it now than the first week of the season.”
Thanks to WIP’s Howard Eskin and Ike Reese for having me on today to talk about the Phillies and my book.
The Phillies are looking at rookie left-handers Antonio Bastardo, Sergio Escalona and Mike Zagurski to take his place until Romero returns. So far Bastardo and Escalona have struggled. Zagurski has pitched just once.
Escalona allowed four hits, three runs and one walk in one inning today in a 4-3 loss to the Orioles at Ed Smith Stadium. In three Grapefruit League appearances, Escalona has allowed eight hits, five runs and one walk in three innings. He has a 15.00 ERA and two blown saves. Bastardo has allowed five hits, four runs (three earned runs) in two innings in two appearances. He has a 13.50 ERA and one blown save. He has struck out four. Zagurski threw two scoreless innings in his only Grapefruit League appearance. He will pitch Monday morning in a B game against the Blue Jays at Dunedin Stadium.
“Well, not as good as I’d like to see yet,” said Rich Dubee, asked to assess his left-handed pitching situation with Opening Day nearly three weeks away. “But I’m sure it will iron itself out. We like both of those kids. We like Zagurski, even though he hasn’t been in many games. We think those guys have the ability to pitch in the big leagues. But the later we get in the spring the more they’re going to have to show it. They haven’t shown it yet.”
And if they don’t?
“We’ll see,” Dubee said. “We’ll make that call when we have to make that call.”
Ruben Amaro Jr. said Saturday there is no “sense of urgency” to find a left-handed pitcher to help the bullpen, but if the right pitcher comes at the right price (a Minor League contract, for example) and Bastardo and Escalona continue to struggle that could change.
J.C. Romero threw 40 pitches in a bullpen session this morning in Clearwater. Roughly 12 pitchers were breaking balls, the first time he had thrown them this spring.
“Great,” Rich Dubee said. “He threw fine today.”
Next for Romero?
“We’ll see if he throws Tuesday or Wednesday,” Dubee said. “We’ll see how he responds. It’s the first time he’s throwing breaking balls. If he’s doing all right, maybe Wednesday could be a chance to see some hitters. If not, maybe Wednesday he’ll throw another side. But he was good today. Very good.”
Brad Lidge will start the Double A Spring Training game Thursday. J.A. Happ will start the Triple A game.
Good luck to Scott Lauber, who is leaving the Wilmington News-Journal to cover the Red Sox for the Boston Herald. He spent his final minutes on the beat at Frenchy’s Cafe in Clearwater.
You can’t get grouper sandwiches in Fort Myers, dude!
Lidge is recovering from offseason knee and elbow surgeries. He said earlier this week he is about two weeks behind schedule, but the fact he is going to be throwing Monday would indicate he still has a chance to be ready by Opening Day.
Lidge will throw about 20 fastballs off the mound.
“Having not seen him, I didn’t think so,” said pitching coach Rich Dubee, asked if he thought Lidge would be on the mound so early. “Having reports from where he was, all the reports were good. All his workouts from Colorado were fantastic. He was feeling no pain. The doctors came to see him. They’ve tested and examined and moved him a little bit. He’s doing fine. Is he a little ahead of schedule? I would say so, yeah.”
J.C. Romero is recovering from elbow surgery. Romero said earlier this week he should be 100 percent by the second week of March.
“J.C. will get on a mound eventually, not far behind (Lidge),” Dubee said. “J.C. did some agility stuff today. J.C. will start taking part. We’re just trying to watch him throw during his PFP (pitcher’s fielding practice) stuff. He’s doing fine.”
Thanks to We Should Be GMs for plugging my book. It’s appreciated, guys!
Jimmy Rollins said in Philadelphia last month when the Phillies clinched their third consecutive National League East championship that he wanted to wear Harry Kalas‘ jacket and shoes during another parade down Broad Street. He said in Denver when the Phillies clinched the NL Division Series that he hoped the Phillies could be known as the Little Red Machine, referring to the 1975-76 Cincinnati Reds, the last team to win consecutive World Series.
Neither came true when the Yankees beat the Phillies in Game 6 of the World Series last night, 7-3.
A few things from the clubhouse before the Ny-Quil kicks in and I pass out:
- Pedro Martinez left the ballpark almost immediately after the game. A few reporters got him before he jumped on an elevator, which would have been fine except an obnoxious and perhaps drunk Yankees fan stood next to him and harrassed him. No security jumped in. Martinez indicated he was sick during his start. He left before he could be asked about his future. Rich Dubee said he thinks Martinez could pitch effectively through an entire season. We’ll see what his future is with the Phillies, but I tend to think another team will offer him more money than the Phillies would be willing to commit.
- Brett Myers and Scott Eyre both said they would like to be back. Both are free agents. Eyre, who is considering retirement, said he would play only for the Phillies. Myers, who could be a starter or reliever elsewhere, said he likes both roles.
- Asked how he felt about his performance, Ryan Howard said, “I feel cool. I feel cool. I think the only thing you can do now is go home and relax and come back for Spring Training.”
- “Are they better than we are? For this series they were,” Charlie Manuel said of the Yankees. “They’ve got the trophy. We don’t. We gave it up, but we’re going to get it back.”
- Manuel, on if he considered replacing Martinez with J.A. Happ to face Hideki Matsui in the third inning: “Pedro, he knows how to pitch. He’s got experience. I had to let him face that guy. We can go down 4-1 and we can definitely rebound there. But I had to let him – it wasn’t the time for me to take him out.”
Here is tonight’s lineup for Game 3 of the World Series:
- Jimmy Rollins, SS
- Shane Victorino, CF
- Chase Utley, 2B
- Ryan Howard, 1B
- Jayson Werth, RF
- Raul Ibanez, LF
- Pedro Feliz, 3B
- Carlos Ruiz, C
- Joe Blanton, P
Yankees lineup: 1. Derek Jeter, SS; 2. Johnny Damon, LF; 3. Mark Teixeira, 1B; 4. Alex Rodriguez; 5. Jorge Posada, C; 6. Robinson Cano, 2B; 7. Nick Swisher, RF; 8. Melky Cabrera, CF; 9. CC Sabathia, P.
Pitching coach Rich Dubee said Chan Ho Park, who wasn’t available last night for Game 3 because of the flu, is available to pitch tonight.
Access Hollywood’s Maria Menounos has been covering the games in some capacity, and today she signed a ball (at the request of Shane Victorino) for Phillies batting practice pitcher Ali Modami.
Menounos is waving here to Modami.
Neither was Hamels.
“That’s been the story of my whole season,” he said following the 8-5 loss to the Yankees at Citizens Bank Park. “I can cruise through hitters and then all of a sudden — boom. I don’t hit a small speed bump. I hit a big one.”
Asked about the last pitch to Mark Teixeira in the fourth inning that resulted in a walk, which led to a two-run home run from Alex Rodriguez, Hamels said, “It was a strike. It’s the story of my season.”
He thought Rodriguez’s home run was a pop up.
“For it to go over the fence … you know what?” he said. “This is the park I play in, so I definitely know to expect this.”
But then came an intresting comment as he talked about a season that has been a struggle since spring training. Hamels, who is 1-2 with a 7.58 ERA in four postseason starts, told reporters, “I can’t wait for it to end. It’s been mentally draining. It’s one of those things where, a year in, you just can’t wait for a fresh start.”
Hamels lines up to pitch Game 7 at Yankee Stadium, if the series gets that far. Charlie Manuel and Rich Dubee have to wonder how confident they can be sending him out there? Hamels is 1-2 with a 7.58 ERA in four postseason starts and he does not sound like a confident man. Asked if he would feel comfortable pitching Hamels in Game 7, Manuel would not commit.
“I wouldn’t be hesitant to start him,” he said. “But at the same time, we’ll see how the series goes.”
But after sounding like a mentally beaten man, Hamels also said he would like the chance.
“I really do hope I have that opportunity,” he said. “It’s one of those games that you can definitely redeem yourself. I would know it’s the very last game that I would ever have that season. It’s not the type of game you want to have in your last game. It’s just kind of something where if you could end it on a good note, why not? Having a Game 7 opportunity that would be mean a lot. I hope my teammates believe in me and want me to be out there for it.”
If the series gets to Game 7 — Hamels put the Phillies in the difficult position of having to win three of four games against the Yankees — the Phillies have two options: Hamels or J.A. Happ. Do they stick with Hamels, or do they look at what they have seen and heard and take their chances with Happ?
Of course, before we get in a lather about Game 7, Joe Blanton must outpitch CC Sabathia tonight in Game 4.
Teams that fall behind 2-1 in the World Series are 26-55.
Jayson Werth has seven home runs this postseason. He would tie Barry Bonds (2002) and Carlos Beltran (2004) for the single-season playoff home run record with one more homer.
It certainly would help if more than Werth were hitting. Jimmy Rollins (.200), Shane Victorino (.182), Chase Utley (.182), Ryan Howard (.154) and Pedro Feliz (.091) are struggling. Werth (.400), Carlos Ruiz (.333) and Raul Ibanez (.250) are the only players hitting .250 or better.
Charlie Manuel said he wanted to split up his left-handed pitchers against the Yankees, which makes sense. But you’ve also got to think if Hamels were pitching better that he would be pitching Game 2.
Hamels said he is OK with that.
“It’s an honor to pitch. It’s an honor to pitch at home,” Hamels said. “Any time you get to pitch at home, I think it’s great. Especially Game 3. Game 3 is very important. Jamie (Moyer)showed us how important it was last year. That could turn a series. You know what? I think it’s going to be just as important as Game 1 or Game 2 or Game 4 or Game 5. I think this is going to be nice to have the home crowd and no DH. I couldn’t ask for a better scenario.”
Rich Dubee said last week that it seems most of Hamels’ problems have been mental. Maybe he is putting too much pressure on himself. Maybe he has been too concerned with trying to match last season’s postseason numbers.
Hamels went 4-0 with a 1.80 ERA in five postseason starts last year. He is 1-1 with a 6.75 ERA in three postseason starts this year.
“When you have success early you want to continue it,” he said. “You put a little bit too much pressure on trying to be that guy all the time, instead of just letting it happen. … I’ve never gone through the struggles that I have, but I haven’t had a long career yet. I’ve been able to talk to Pedro and Jamie and Cliff (Lee). They’ve had their ups and downs. It’s how you learn to deal with it. I think they understand when you do great things people expect it to happen. All of a sudden you do kind of get wrapped up in expecting it to happen and it can really throw you off your game. I think it has to a point. I don’t want to make excuses. I haven’t been able to do my job as well as I would like, and it’s something that I’m fighting to be that caliber player that everybody expects me to be. But at the same time, I’m not going to put too much stress on it anymore because I’ve gotten myself in trouble when I try to expect too much.”
He threw up his arms.
There is an unwritten rule in baseball about showing up teammates on the field, and when Hamels showed his frustrations after Jimmy Rollins and Chase Utley could not turn an inning-ending double play in the fifth inning last night in Game 1 of the NLCS, he appeared to break that rule. Charlie Manuel said today before Game 2 that he would talk with Hamels about it. Rich Dubee had little to say, other than it would be handled internally.
“It’s not going to look good ever,” Hamels said. “Why do you allow guys to fist pump when they get out of an inning? We’re very emotional, and this game is very hard, so when you get in those situations, you make the right pitch and something actually happens and then you’re not able to come through, it’s draining. But at the same time, you see the ticker and it’s five innings, four earned runs.”
Asked before the game about Hamels throwing up his arms, Rollins said, “So?”
So it didn’t upset him? Rollins shook his head no.
“When you have a group of guys that we have here, those rules can be unwritten and rewritten and overlooked,” Jayson Werth said. “It could really bother some people and disrupt a clubhouse. But since everybody knows each other so well and we believe in each other and we’ve got such a good thing going on here, it wouldn’t necessarily be true for us. I’ve played on teams where that would have been a problem, but that’s not this team. I don’t think Cole was doing that to be malicious. He was just in the heat of the moment. I think Chase and Jimmy would overlook that because that’s a play they could make. They didn’t make it. It’s part of the game. It’s not a big deal, but I know what you’re saying because I’ve seen it be a big deal.”
Hamels said he thinks Rollins and Utley understood it happened in the heat of the moment.
“I’m so into the game. I’m a fan, too,” Hamels said. “If this game was in Philly, what do you think the crowd would have done? It’s high emotions, high intensity. You want to get things done, and I reacted just like the fans would have. But I’m supposed to be the professional and I’m not allowed to do that. I think they understand I didn’t mean anything by it. It looks better to pitch 5 1/3 and give up one run vs. four, but the ultimate goal is to win. I’ll say I’m sorry to the guys. I think we’re such a good team and good teammates that they understand the frustrations.”
I think the issue Dubee might have is not so much showing up his teammates, but the fact that Hamels has lost his focus a few times this season when things haven’t gone his way and it has hurt him. Hamels acknowledged that to be the case last night, and three pitches later Manny Ramirez hit a two-run home run.
Some quick hits after the Phillies’ 8-6 victory over Los Angeles in Game 1 of the NLCS:
- Since the NLCS moved to a seven-game format in 1985, the team taking a 1-0 lead has won 16 of 23 series, including 14 of the previous 16. Eight of the 10 NL teams that took a 1-0 lead on the road have reached the World Series, including the last seven.
- In the NLCS and ALCS since ’85, the Game 1 winner is 28-18.
- Carlos Ruiz hit a three-run homer in the fifth against Clayton Kershaw to make it 3-1. Ruiz, a career .246 hitter in the regular season, has hit .354 (17-for-48) with three doubles, two home runs, 10 RBIs and eight walks in his last 15 playoff games. “He likes the bright lights,” Ryan Howard said.
- Howard smacked a two-run double to right field in the fifth to give the Phillies a 5-1 lead. It was Howard’s 17th and 18th RBIs in the postseason, which set a Phillies playoff record. Howard has 18 RBIs in 22 postseason games. Mike Schmidt had 16 RBIs in 32 postseason games.
- Dodgers left-hander George Sherrill has allowed just two home runs to left-handed hitters the past two seasons: June 14, 2008, against Adam LaRoche and last night to Raul Ibanez. “I think that was a shock for everybody, especially the walks, which really hasn’t been something that he has done a lot of,” Dodgers manager Joe Torre said of Sherrill. “You know, that was a blow.”
- Cole Hamels allowed four runs in 5 1/3 innings. He got rattled in the fifth when Jimmy Rollins and Chase Utley could not turn a double play. Manny Ramirez followed and hit a 2-0 changeup for a two-run home run to cut the lead to 5-4. “It’s tough because you’re battling,” Hamels said. “I got exactly what I wanted and unfortunately the results didn’t happen. It takes a lot out of you because these guys are very tough hitters, so when you do get them in a situation where you can seal the deal, it takes a lot to really get through that. I really thought we had that. It’s the process I’ve had to go through all year – learning how to deal with my emotions and learning to control them and forgetting about what just happened.”
- Hamels went 4-0 with a 1.80 ERA in five postseason starts last year. He is 1-1 with a 6.97 ERA in two starts this postseason, but sounded upbeat after the game. Everybody in the clubhouse thought Hamels had thrown much better than his line indicated, for what that’s worth.
- Chan Ho Park pitched great. He entered the game in the seventh inning with a runner on second and no outs. He got Ramirez to ground out to Pedro Feliz to keep Andre Ethier at second. He struck out Matt Kemp and got Casey Blake to ground out to Utley to end the inning. It was the pitching performance of the night. “I thought he was outstanding,” Rich Dubee said. Charlie Manuel and Dubee said they did not consider sending Park back out to start the eighth. They had Ryan Madson rested, and did not want Park going out throwing 50 pitches his first time back since Sept. 16.
Random thought: I’m looking forward to seeing Pedro Martinez pitch today in Game 2.