Blogging about the 5x NL East Champion Phillies

Monthly Archives: May 2009

Phillies Sweep Nationals

It was a good weekend for the Phillies as they pulled off a feat as easy as tying your shoes: sweeping the Nationals. They out pitched and out slugged them, taking advantage of their poor fielding all weekend to improve their record to 28-20. Brad Lidge saved every game, showing signs of his 2008 form.

They opened the series Friday with JA Happ on the mound. He earned his first win as a starter for the 2009 season. Happ (3-0) went 5 1/3 innings, allowing three runs on as many hits. He got plenty of help with 16 hits even though the offense could only cross the plate five runs. Shane Victorino had four hits and Jimmy Rollins and Carlos Ruiz added a pair of doubles each.

Saturday’s game featured some fire works from Ryan Howard. After trailing early 3-0, Howard stepped up and belted a solo homer to the 2nd level in right field in the second. He then came up in the 3rd with the bases loaded. He jacked a shot over the “Powerade” sign on the 3rd porch 475 feet) for his 3rd grand slam of the season and 8th in his career, a new Phillies record. Cole Hamels (3-2) got the win despite giving up six runs in six innings as the Phillies won 9-6.

Jamie Moyer (4-5) finally got win #250 in his 6th try, pitching six strong innings, giving up one run on three hits as the Phillies won 4-2. He got help from Chase Utley when he drove in Victorino in the first and from Chris Coste’s solo shot in the 2nd. He gave up a home run to Josh Willingham in the 4th. Willingham added another in the 7th off of Clay Condrey. Howard hit an RBI triple in the 8th for insurance.

Series MVP: Howard (4 for 13 with 2 homers, double, triple, 6 RBI’s)
Next Series: @ San Diego Padres
6/1 – Blanton (3-3, 6.14), Correia (1-3, 5.11)
6/2 – Bastardo (0-0, -.–), Peavy* (5-5, 3.67)
6/3 – Happ (3-0, 3.00), Young (4-3, 4.45)
*Would love to see him in a Phillies uniform.

Bastardo to Start Tuesday in Place of Myers

Brett Myers will have surgery next week and his season is about 99.9% over. The Phillies will call up Antonio Bastardo to start in Myers’ spot on Tuesday Comcast Sportsnet just reported. He will face the San Diego Padres. A roster move will be made by tomorrow.

FIM #1: Your 2008 World Champions

Sitting on the edge of my couch I watched on as Brad Lidge had a man on second with 2 outs. Up to the plate stepped Eric Hinske. The first pitch slider was fouled off. The second pitch was also a slider and was swung at. With his deadly slider working like it has all year, the same slider that saved 41 games in 41 chances in the regular season and another perfect 6 in the playoffs, Lidge decided to go with it one more time to get one more save.

To tell you the truth, Hinske didn’t stand a chance.
Hinske couldn’t touch it and at that moment, a lot happened. Lidge fell to his knees, Carlos Ruiz rushed him, Ryan Howard completely flattened him, and 50,000 people in attendance at CBP got on their feet and cheered. Thousands of others rejoiced around the country as their Phillies did what teams before them couldn’t do and that was win the World Series.

I sat there, staring at the TV. My roommate, who doesn’t like baseball that much was watching with me and rambling on and on. I turned to him and told him to shut up as a soaked in the glory of finally watching a team and city I followed for 15 years finally win.

The whole series, just like the playoffs, was one sided for the Phillies. After dominating the Brewers in four games and the Dodgers in five, a series versus the virgin Rays would be tough but in the end, it didn’t appear that way.
Game one was held in Tampa because the American League won the all star game on a Billy Wagner blown save and Brad Lidge loss (his only of the year). They got the game started early as Chase Utley hit a two-run homer in the first. Ruiz had an RBI in the 4th to make it 3-0. Tampa was able to add a run in the 4th and 5th but that was it. Cole Hamels was dominant as he allowed the only two runs the Rays could muster. Lidge got the save in the 3-2 win for Philadelphia.

Game two was the only game where the Rays had hope. They got two early runs in the 4th and added a couple more later in the game. The Phillies could get a run in the 8th and 9th and would lose 4-2.

Game three was a dramatic one and was where all the momentum became Philadelphia’s. With the game tied at 4 in the bottom of the 9th, Eric Bruntlett was hit by a pitch. He moved to second on a wild pitch and to third on a throwing error. Tampa Bay intentionally walked the next two batters to load the bases. Bruntlett scored the winning run on Carlos Ruiz’s 45-foot infield single.

Game four was complete and utter dominance as Ryan Howard hit two homers, Jayson Werth hit a shot, and Joe Blanton hit his first career home run while pitching a dominant game. The Phillies went on to win 10-2.

Game five was the screwiest game in the history of the World Series. They got things going early again as Shane Victorino drove in two runs in the first. The game got suspended after the top of the 6th inning due to heavy rain. The game was moved to two days later, where they resumed it in the bottom of the 6th.

Geoff Jenkins led off with a double and was bunted to third. Werth then drove in Jenkins to take the lead for the Phillies, 3–2. In the top of the 7th inning, Rocco Baldelli re-tied the game with a solo home run. Later in the inning, Utley faked a throw to first, then threw Bartlett out at home for the third out in a play later described as having saved the Series for the Phillies. In the bottom of the seventh, Pat Burrell led off with a double. Bruntlett, pinch-running for Burrell, scored on a single by Pedro Feliz to put the Phillies up by a run again, 4–3.

Now we move to the top of the 9th, with an 0-2 count to Hinske. Tell it to us one more time, Harry:

One strike away; nothing-and-two, the count to Hinske. Fans on
the their feet; rally towels are being waved. Brad Lidge stretches.
The 0-2 pitch — swing and a miss, struck him out! The Philadelphia
Phillies are 2008 World Champions of baseball! Brad Lidge does it
again, and stays perfect for the 2008 season! 48-for-48 in save
opportunities, and watch the city celebrate! Don’t let the 48-hour
wait diminish the euphoria of this moment, and the celebration.
And it has been 28 years since the Phillies have enjoyed a World
Championship; 25 years in this city with a team that has enjoyed
a World Championship, and the fans are ready to celebrate. What a

FIM Recap

I’m still up for absolutely no reason whatsoever so I decided to recap moment 15-2 of the Famous/Infamous Moment series. Tomorrow morning I will post #1 which is pretty obvious as to what it is. Here is the list:

#15 – Steve Cartlon (1994), Mike Schmidt and Richie Ashburn (1995), and Jim Bunning (1996) get inducted into the Hall of Fame.

#14 – The 2007 run when the Phillies helped the Mets create the biggest choke in baseball.

#13 – The birth of our beloved Phillie Phanatic.

#12 – The Phillies record career loss #10,000 versus the Cardinals in 2006.

#11 – Veterans Stadium is imploded.

#10 – Ryan Howard wins the Rookie of the Year and MVP in back-to-back seasons.

#9 – The departure of Harry Kalas and Whitey Asburn.

#8 – The Phillies trade Larry Bowa and Ryne Sandberg for Ivan DeJesus.

#7 – The collapse in 1964.

#6 – Schmidt hits his 500th homer.

#5 – The Whiz Kids win the 1950 pennant.

#4 – Jim Bunning goes perfect in 1964.

#3 – The Phillies win their first world championship in 1980.

#2 – Joe Carter breaks our hearts.

I wonder what #1 will be…..

FIM #2: Joe Carter….

…That’s all I needed to really type for a title. You say his name and every Phillie fan will instantly remember 1993 and the Phillies being one out away from forcing a game 7 with Toronto. Instead, Joe Carter belts a game winning 3-run homer that won the World Series. He became the 2nd player in the history of baseball to win the World Series for his team via air mail. The first being Bill Mazeroski of the 1960 Pirates when he hit “The Shot Heard ‘Round the World.”

After taking a commanding 3-1 series lead, Curt Schilling stepped on the mound for Philadelphia in game five and shut out the Blue Jays 2-0 to pull Philadelphia within one game. Terry Mulholland took the mound for Philadelphia and Dave Bush pitched for Toronto in Game 6. After being down 5-1, Philadelphia scored five runs in the top of the 7th.

It’s the bottom of the 9th of and Mitch Williams stands on the mound. The Philadelphia Phillies, trailing 3-2 in the series, are leading the Toronto Blue Jays 6-5 in Toronto. All Williams needs is three more outs and the Phillies take Toronto to game seven.

It’s now the 9th inning. Ricky Henderson steps in and is walked. Devon White comes up to the plate next and hits a pop fly for out number one. Paul Molitor then singles to put runners on first and second with one out. Joe Carter steps up to the plate and has a 2-2 count on him.

Carter has been ineffective all series, and is looking to get a hit off of Williams. Williams knows Carter is a dangerous hitter, despite his cold spell. He also has Henderson standing on second, waiting to take third at any given moment. Carter steps in. The 2-2 pitch, and Carter hits a shot deep to left field that made the city of Philadelphia moan and mumble to themselves, “maybe next year.”

There’s Good News and Then There’s Bad

I’ll start with the bad news. Brett Myers’ season may be done. Even worse, he may never be a Philly again neither. This was his contract year and it may be going right down the tubes. He sustained a hip injury on Wednesday’s loss to Florida and after x-rays revealed some jaggedness, it just didn’t look good.

“It sounds like surgery is almost 100 percent from the first opinion,” Myers told Todd Zolecki of If the Phillies were to trade for another pitcher, they would most likely go for Eric Bedard of Seattle, Colorado starter Jason Marquis, Houston star Roy Oswalt and unsigned free agent Pedro Martinez. Also Jake Peavy is a great option because the Padres owe him a ton of money.

Now to some good news. On August 7, the Phillies have one more honor in store for the late great Harry Kalas. He will be inducted into the Phillies Wall of Fame that’s located in Ashburn Alley behind the batter’s eye in center field. This will be the first ceremony Kalas has not emceed.

Wall of Famers who are expected to participate in the ceremonies include Robin Roberts (first inductee, 1978), Jim Bunning (1984), Steve Carlton (1989), Mike Schmidt (1990), Dick Allen (1994), Greg Luzinski (1998), Garry Maddox (2001), Tony Taylor (2002), Bob Boone (2005) and Dallas Green (2006). Kalas broadcast games involving all of these players.

Non-Phillies: ESPN Spoofs a Manny Press Conference

This was written by DJ Gallo of “ESPN Magazine.” I thought this was absolutley hilarious!

I am Manny, hear me roar!

Dodgers owner Frank McCourt has spoken with Manny Ramirez. Now he wants the disgraced slugger to speak to the team.

Turns out it already happened — and Page 2 was able to receive the exclusive transcript of Ramirez’s address.

(Scene: Dodgers clubhouse)

Frank McCourt: “Gentlemen, I know we’re all still kind of reeling over the recent news. So I have asked Manny here today to speak to the team. Manny, the floor is yours.”

Manny Ramirez: “Thanks, boss. I’m not used to giving speeches. So I looked on the Internet for tips and they said I should start with a joke to loosen up the audience. OK? You ready? What is Manny Ramirez’s new nickname?”

Juan Pierre: “Womanny Ramirez.”

Andre Ethier: “Ma’am Ram.”

Joe Torre: “That’s just mammaries being mammaries.”

Ramirez: “So you’ve heard most of them already.”

Russell Martin: “We have. We even thought up many of them ourselves.”

James Loney: “Some long before this news came out, actually.”

Ramirez: “I see. OK, let me try another one. A priest, a rabbi and Manny Ramirez walk into a bar.”

Torre: “Just a second, Manny. I don’t mean to interrupt. But do you mind if I record all of this?”

Ramirez: “Umm, I guess not. Why?”

Torre: “Oh, you know. In case I would, say … write a book about my Dodgers years or something. Not that I have any plans to do that, of course, guys. What is said inside the clubhouse stays inside the clubhouse. That’s an unwritten rule of baseball, am I right? But when I write the book, I don’t want to misquote you.”

Ramirez: “Sure. Whatever.”

Torre: “Fantastic. OK, let me press ‘record’ … and continue. Oh, and feel free to talk #$%^ about A-Rod, if you’d like. Readers eat that stuff up.”

Ramirez: “OK, where was I?”

Chad Billingsley: “A priest, a rabbi and Manny Ramirez were walking into a bar…”


FIM #3: 1980 World Champions

It only took 95 years for it to happen. Hell even Cubs fans wish it would have only taken 95 years but they’re still working on 100 right now. It took three Hall of Famers and a great supporting cast of great players to finally get the Phillies over the top. Before then, they had only reached the World Series two times: losing in 1915 and 1950. The year was 1980 and it will be the year that Phillies fans would never forget.

The Phillies won their division. They finished the year 91-71, just a game ahead of Montreal. The would play and beat the Houston Astros in the NLCS and then take out the Kansas City Royals in 6 games to win the World Series.

This team was perfect in the eyes of the fans. They had an experienced skipper in Dallas Green to go along with their veteran-filled team. They were led by MVP Mike Schmidt (.286, 48 homers, and 121 RBI’s) and Cy Young winner Steve Carlton (24-9, 2.34 ERA, 286 strike outs). Pete Rose led the team with 185 hits and 42 doubles as well. They also got plenty of stolen bases from Gary Maddox in centerfield. Carlton was supported by Dick Ruthven’s 17-10 record and 3.55 ERA. In the pen, Tug McGraw tallied 20 saves and held a 1.46 ERA in 92.1 innings of work.

Other key offensive members included Manny Trillo, who batted .292, Bake McBride with his .309 average and 87 RBI’s, and Greg Luzinski’s 19 home runs. Larry Bowa, Maddox, and Bob Boone were all big contributers defensivley.

In game one of the World Series, the Phillieswere down 4-0 going into the bottom of the third. They got a lot of support from McBride’s 3-run homer that set up the 5-run innings that put the Phillies ahead for good. The added on a run in the 4th and 5th to make it 7-4 and then surrendered two in the 9th but held on to win game 1.

In game two, the Phillies were down 4-2 going into the 8th inning where timely hitting scored them four runs to permanently go ahead 6-4 and win.

Game three was won in extra innings by the Royals 4-3, halting the Phillies come-from-behind magic temperarily. The Phillies tied it up on Schmidt’s solo shot in the 8th but the Royals scored on an RBI single in the 10th to win game three.

Game four didn’t look good for the Phillies as they trailed all day. The Royals scored four runs in the 1st and added a run in the second to own a 5-1 lead on the Phillies. The Phillies would add 2 runs in the game but lose 5-3.

Game five was scoreless until when in the 4th, Schmidt jacked a 2-run shot. The Royals would then add a run in the 5th and two in the 6th to go up 4-3. In the top of the 9th, the Phillies magic woke back up as Schmidt led off with a single and Del Unser drove him home on a double to tie it up. Trillo then stepped in and drove in Unser for the go ahead and potential game winner as the Phillies took game five by a score of 4-3.

Game six was the first game the Phillies never trailed. The got two runs from a single by Schmidt in the 3rd and tacked on 2 more runs later in the game. Carlton pitched until McGraw came in to close it out. With the bases loaded and Willie Wilson at the plate, I hand it over to the late Harry Kalas:

65,000 plus on their feet here at Veterans Stadium. The Tugger needs one
more…Swing and a miss! Yes, he struck him out! Yes, they did it! The Phillies
are world champions! World champions of baseball! It’s pandemonium at Veterans
Stadium! All of the fans are on their feet. This city has come together behind a
baseball team!…Phillies are world champions! This city knows it! This city
loves it!

Schmidt won the series MVP and McGraw won the Babe Ruth Award (best performance).

Phils Lose Series to Fish

Series recap:
Monday – L 3-5
Tuesday – W 5-3
Wednesday – L 2-6

The series started on Monday, back in Philly. After a very successful 8-2 road trip that ended with a series win at Yankee Stadium, the Phillies would face the Marlins for three. After sweeping the first series in Florida, they were hoping for at least another series win. They didn’t get that.

Jamie Moyer took the mound on Monday, taking his 5th stab at career win #250. He pitched well until he gave up a 3-run homer to Wes Helms. Ryan Howard teed off that game, hitting a 2-run shot off the top of the batters eye in center field and a solo homer to left center. He was really the only offense as the Phillies could only muster six hits.

Tuesday was a much better game as Joe Blanton went seven shut out innings, striking out 11 total. The Phillies took a 5-0 game into the 9th and after Howard’s first error of the season forced 2 runs in, Brad Lidge came in to get the save after blowing two in New York. They got things going early in the first with base hits that were stretched and good base running, the complete opposite of Monday’s game.

On Wednesday, they couldn’t do much at all… against a reliever! Brett Myers pitched solid until the 6th where he got in serious trouble. Down 2-1, he surrendered back to back doubles to make it 3-1 and the surrendered a 2-run homer. He then left in the 6th with soreness in his right hip. X-rays revealed some jaggedness.

This could be bad news for both Myers in the Phillies. If he is out for a period of time, more pressure will be put on Cole Hamels, JA Happ, Blanton and Moyer. Hamels has been stellar and Myers has been drastically getting better. Blanton showed some life and Moyer is still awful. Not much can be said for Happ yet as he will be making his 2nd start on Friday.

Next will be home versus the Nationals:
5/28 – off
5/29 – Detwiler (0-0, 2.45), Happ (2-0, 2.60)
5/30 – Martis (5-0, 4.86), Hamels (2-2, 4.68)
5/31 – Lannan (2-4, 4.11), Moyer (3-5, 7.42)

FIM #4: Bunning Goes Perfect

1964 was one of the most memorable seasons in Phillies history. It was full of highs and ended in disaster. One of those special moments came on June 21 versus the Mets at Shea Stadium. It was also Father’s Day (ironically this year Father’s Day falls on June 21 again) and Jim Bunning would throw the greatest game any pitcher in a Phillies uniform ever threw.

Johnny Stephenson steps up to the play with 2 outs in the bottom of the 9th. Bunning, who already dropped the first 26 batters, makes Stephenson his next victim as he strikes him out. That’s what we like to call perfection.

Bunning went 9 complete innings, striking out 10 and giving up no runs, hits, or errors. 27 men stepped to the plate and 27 men couldn’t reach first base. Bunning only threw 90 pitches, 79 of them were strikes. His perfect game was the first one the National League had seen in 84 years. Basically a perfect game in the NL was like a World Series to the Cubs (ouch!).

Bunning also helped his own cause offensively as he drove in two runs with a double that game and got offensive support from Johnny Callison’s solo home run.

Here is the box score of that amazing day: