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Homefield advantage and drawn-out NLDS schedule would be huge for the Phillies

Sep 9, 2010, 2:19 PM EDT

Philadelphia has edged past Atlanta atop the NL East, which means the Phillies also currently have the record in the league. Homefield advantage is always nice, of course, but as Todd Zolecki of MLB.com notes the ability to choose the seven-day or eight-day schedule for the NLDS could be even more beneficial to the Phillies.
By choosing the eight-day NLDS that includes three off days around just five games the Phillies would be able to rely exclusively on their amazing trio of Roy Halladay (2.36 ERA), Roy Oswalt (3.09), and Cole Hamels (3.06) without any starts being made on short rest.
By comparison the seven-day NLDS would force them to either give Joe Blanton and his 5.16 ERA a start or use the Game 1 starter (presumably Halladay) on short rest for Game 4. And if they were to choose Blanton, then Halladay would be lined up to start Game 5 on extra rest because of the extra day off thrown in between.
In any scenario the Phillies’ exceptional Big Three gives them a huge edge throughout the playoffs and capturing homefield advantage is crucial given their 47-28 record in Philadelphia, but the right to also choose their schedule would make things even tougher on their first-round opponents.

  1. Utley's hair - Sep 9, 2010 at 2:42 PM

    Mwahahahaha

  2. Jonny5 - Sep 9, 2010 at 2:47 PM

    I just “pitched a tent”. I mean, yeah, homefield advantage, and all of that. But the thought of Philly heading into the playoffs with these three guys makes me a little tight in the trousers. Aaron, please reserve any talk such as this to the late night hours as it make cause a huge portion of the northeast to type with one hand. Thank you.

  3. Chris Fiorentino - Sep 9, 2010 at 2:50 PM

    I am not really worried at all about this because Halladay is a horse and he WILL go on short rest. That was the one and only negative thing about Cliff Lee in the WS…he wasn’t adamant enough about going on short rest in game 4. If he had said “GIVE ME THE BALL” he would have pitched. Doc will pitch.

  4. Mr. Heyward - Sep 9, 2010 at 2:53 PM

    Moot point.

  5. BleedGreen - Sep 9, 2010 at 3:33 PM

    You can talk all the Braves trash you want, but the fact is, you’re team is now in second place after holding a 7+ game lead at the all star break.

  6. Utley's hair - Sep 9, 2010 at 4:13 PM

    And the Phightins are, at the moment, a scant .5 game ahead of the Bravos, who play tonight against the broken winged Red Birds in Atlanta, where they have quite the home field advantage. One thing the Phightins have working in our favor is the Cards’ starter has guaranteed that he will not lose again. Granted, he didn’t say that the Cards won’t lose–just him.

  7. Hawkeye - Sep 9, 2010 at 8:33 PM

    Braves getting crushed by Cards as I type. No fans at Turner?

  8. Utley's hair - Sep 10, 2010 at 2:01 AM

    A wee bit more breathing room now, but there’s still a ways to go before I can feel any measure of comfort.

    Hey, nps, how’s that rearview looking now? Red is such a harsh color to look at–maybe teal is more forgiving.

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