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And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights

Aug 19, 2011, 5:42 AM EDT

Texas Rangers v Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Getty Images

Angels 2, Rangers 1: Mark Trumbo hits a walkoff homer off Mike Adams to help Anaheim salvage one in what was still a disappointing four-game set. They trailed the Rangers by just 1½ games early last week and now it’s six. Oh, and Jered Weaver, while pitching well, still managed to get visibly annoyed at his own shortstop for missing a popup and then jawed at the Rangers dugout after Mike Napoli hit a home run. Such a mature young man this Weaver is turning out to be.

Braves 1, Giants 0: Mike Minor and Tim Lincecum were each fantastic, but Lincecum left one out over the plate to Chipper Jones in the fifth inning. Turned out one mistake was the difference. Viva New Deadball Era.

Blue Jays 7, Athletics 0: Ricky Romero tossed a three-hit shutout for his fifth straight win. Colby Rasmus homered and scored three times.

Dodgers 5, Brewers 1: Of course the day after I write about how the Brewers are unstoppable, someone stops them. Clayton Kershaw, specifically (8 IP, 5 H, 0 ER, 6K).

Nationals 3, Reds 1: Jordan Zimmermann beats Bronson Arroyo, with the difference-maker being a two-run bases loaded single for ex-Red Jonny Gomes.

Phillies 4, Diamondbacks 1: Rain turned this from a battle between Ian Kennedy and Vance Worley into a battle between Micah Owings and David Herndon. Thing was, Kennedy was in long enough to dig a hole and Herndon and the rest of the Phillies pen wasn’t very generous to the Dbacks in return. A two-run homer for John Mayberry, Jr.

Padres 3, Marlins 1: The last time we saw Tim Stauffer he was giving up five homers in a 13-1 loss to the Reds. He’s feeling much better now (7IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 5K).

Yankees 8, Twins 4: Nine strikeouts for CC Sabathia and homers from Mark Teixeira, Nick Swisher and Andruw Jones. Joe Mauer played right field, which was fun. And this nugget from the game story was even more fun: “The outfield of Rene Tosoni, Ben Revere and Mauer has four homers combined this season, compared to 34 for Curtis Granderson of the Yankees.”

Red Sox 4, Royals 3: The Red Sox keep pace after Josh Beckett — who struggled early — settled down and figured it out. Dustin Pedroia went 3 for 4 with 3 RBI.

Indians 4, White Sox 2: The Tribe leaves for Detroit on a positive note. Even more positive: they don’t have to face Justin Verlander this weekend. Pretty critical series ahead. And speaking of heads

117 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. joshftw - Aug 19, 2011 at 5:58 AM

    Jered Weaver’s a Rage-aholic! He’s filled with Rage-ahol!

  2. halladaysbiceps - Aug 19, 2011 at 6:24 AM

    Another good win for the Phils. They are sitting at 80 wins and it’s only August 19th. Unbelievable. They take 2 out of 3 with the D-Backs. John Mayberry Jr. proving his weight in gold with another key hit, smacking a 2 run homer. David Herndon looked like David Cone (just kidding)
    out there in relief after the rain delay.

    Now, we need to put Jayson “Moneybags” Werth and the Nats in their place this weekend. Looks like we will have Oswalt, Kendrick and Halladay starting for this weekend series.

    • proudlycanadian - Aug 19, 2011 at 6:47 AM

      How about a sweep to keep up the interest of the fans?

      • halladaysbiceps - Aug 19, 2011 at 6:55 AM

        Lol!! I’m guessing that you want me to guarantee a Nats sweep by the Phillies this weekend. OK. You have it. The Phillies will sweep the Nationals this weekend. As the Senator from the Steven Seagal movie Hard to Kill said: “And you can take that to the Bank!”

      • proudlycanadian - Aug 19, 2011 at 6:58 AM

        Just having fun. We both know that the Phillies should win the World Series this year.

      • halladaysbiceps - Aug 19, 2011 at 7:02 AM

        Well, Proudly, I know all of Canada will be pulling for the Phillies so the Holy One (his name not need be mentioned) will win a ring.

      • proudlycanadian - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:02 AM

        Agreed. We want him to win the World Series.

    • CJ - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:56 AM

      Wait? The Nats play home games against the Phillies?! Based on the number of Phils phans in attandence, I thought they always played in Philly.

      • halladaysbiceps - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:05 AM

        Yeah. And Werth will hear the Phillies fans in his own home park this weekend. And they probably will not be pleasant.

      • FC - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:39 AM

        Can’t be worse than the Nat’s. I’ve read he’s been heavily booed on several occasions.

      • natstowngreg - Aug 19, 2011 at 1:20 PM

        It is true that we Nats fans must, from time to time, suffer an infestation of louts from southeastern Pennsylvania. As we will this weekend.

        One has to just keep in mind that they are spending cash dollars at our ballpark, some of which can be used to acquire better ballplayers. Which in turn will lead to better performance, more locals attending the games, and fewer tickets available to the louts.

        It is also true that Jayson Werth was, for a time, being booed for his poor performance. Since, unlike the louts mentioned above, we generally don’t boo our own players, that was significant. Though “heavily” isn’t quite correct. The booing has pretty much stopped since the All-Star break, as Werth’s batting has improved some.

    • Phillies Homer - Aug 19, 2011 at 10:12 AM

      Damn… Heading down there Saturday for my Bachelor Party and we have to watch Kendrick?? haha… oh well… going to be too drunk and too busy yelling at Werth to care about who’s on the mound!!

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 10:37 AM

        Bachelor Party…Saturday night at a Phillies game in DC…uh huh…sure…does the future Mrs. Homer read this blog or something :)

      • kiwicricket - Aug 19, 2011 at 10:55 AM

        1ste•reo•type [ster-ee-uh-tahyp, steer-]Verb
        Definition of STEREOTYPE
        transitive verb
        : to make a stereotype from
        2
        a : to repeat without variation : make hackneyed
        b : to develop a mental stereotype about
        — ste•reo•typ•er noun
        Examples of STEREOTYPE
        1. It’s not fair to stereotype a whole group of people based on one person

      • Phillies Homer - Aug 19, 2011 at 10:56 AM

        Ha… well that’s just Saturday’s festivities… Tonight might be a different story!

    • pbsenerchia - Aug 19, 2011 at 1:33 PM

      Keep it up, guys – make sure the baseball gods hear you loud and clear. Maybe it’ll end up the Phillies get put in their place this weekend.

      • Jonny 5 - Aug 19, 2011 at 2:13 PM

        “Maybe it’ll end up the Phillies get put in their place this weekend.”

        They’re already in their place. First place.

  3. dailyrev - Aug 19, 2011 at 6:25 AM

    Weaver can bark all he wants at the other team for hitting a HR if it means he avoids throwing at the next guy’s head. But he needs to drop the crap with his teammates. Yes, Aybar ran around that popup like a drunk going up a flight of stairs. Weaver’s job is to get the next guy out. Then if he wants to he can raise hell with mgt. after the game (“why didn’t WE get Furcal when he was available?”).

    • bigxrob - Aug 19, 2011 at 7:19 AM

      He was doing what John Lackey taught him to do

    • drmonkeyarmy - Aug 19, 2011 at 7:32 AM

      Or he could just him into the tunnel and scream at him like Chris Carpenter use to do to Brendan Ryan.

      • Kevin S. - Aug 19, 2011 at 7:46 AM

        Only if he wants the Angels to return to an obviously-inferior hitting and fielding shortstop.

      • paperlions - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:18 AM

        Makes you wonder how many dozens of conversations Carpenter wanted to have with Theriot this year. Carpenter’s BABIP allowed is 6th highest in all of baseball (Garcia and Westbrook are also in the bottom 30); I hope they realize why that is….

      • Kevin S. - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:21 AM

        It’s because Keith Law hates the Cardinals. Obviously.

      • wlschneider09 - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:37 AM

        I don’t get to see the Cards play, is/was Theriot that incompetent at short?

      • Kevin S. - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:45 AM

        Yeah. I think the Cardinals wanted David Eckstein reincarnate, except they got someone who wasn’t even as good as that vastly overrated midget.

      • paperlions - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:57 AM

        Yeah, Theriot was horrible. He made an ungodly number of errors, and was only credited with about 1/2 of them, the rest were “infield singles”. He has no range, no arm, and hands of stone….combine him with Skip and it was a disaster (Skip is actually better at 2B than Theriot is at SS).

      • spudchukar - Aug 19, 2011 at 2:45 PM

        You have no idea how bad Theriot was a SS. Furcal has been a God-send.

        Let’s get one thing straight. Carpenter did not corner Ryan in the dugout runway due to a fielding error. I recognize that Carpenter can be testy, but he was ready to begin the inning and then Ryan remembered the glove he was using had a broken string, and stopped play to go hunt for his other one. It took quite awhile. Carpenter didn’t appreciate the wait, and let Ryan know about it. This came on the heels of a few similar transgressions. Don’t get me wrong, I lamented the trading of Ryan, he was an awesome defender, but his Free Spirit ways upset some teammates, and he was shown the door.

    • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 7:45 AM

      Wasn’t his brother Jeff always known as a pretty calm and laid-back guy?

      • yankeesfanlen - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:31 AM

        So laid back as to be asleep at the mound with RISP.

      • cur68 - Aug 19, 2011 at 11:03 AM

        Hey! Welcome back Len. Hope the sunburn is healing.

      • curr68 - Aug 19, 2011 at 11:56 AM

        Also, Jose Bautista is the mystery and I am the enigma.

      • cur68 - Aug 19, 2011 at 3:09 PM

        Mini-curr! Missed you lil fella. And I agree, you are the enema.

  4. proudlycanadian - Aug 19, 2011 at 6:46 AM

    Just a routine 3 hit shutout for Romero. He is getting better all the time. For those Rasmus haters, he is playing quite well for the Jays. He is a keeper.

    • FC - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:48 AM

      Now if only the Jays could perform in this fashion 3 out of every 5 games… (well not shutouts, that’s asking a lot, but maybe more shutdowns instead of meltdowns with the offense kicking in an average of 5 a game…)

    • paperlions - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:59 AM

      Of course he’s a keeper, the kid has a shit-load of talent….all you need is a manager willing let the talent do it’s thing instead of trying to micromanage every aspect of the game and his players. It is hard to do your job when your boss won’t give you room to breath.

      • FC - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:40 AM

        Wait how did Tony LaRussa end up managing the Blue Jays?

    • cur68 - Aug 19, 2011 at 10:16 AM

      Rasmus has really come on the last little bit, eh? Something Martinez mentioned in the play by play is that the kid seems to be “really smooth”. He never seems to making a whole lot of effort, but is right where the ball is when fielding and runs the basepaths without a lot of wasted motion. I read this as economical with his effort: just enough to get it done but not too flashy otherwise. Of course there is a certain type of individual who, if they don’t see a player laying out on fly balls, sliding into into every base, dirt all over themselves and grunting after every swing, might think the kid “isn’t trying hard enough”. Kind of thought process can get a kid blackballed, you know. Let the boy play on his athleticism, natural talent and instincts, that’s what I say. Seems to be working well enough in Toronto, so far.

      The Beaver Men have stretched their home run streak to 12 games now. They are 4 games over .500 for the first time this season, and, counting only Romeo, Morrow & Cecil, have a dandy rotation, with a promising pitcher in Alvarez (all 21 years old and a half season of AA still gleaming on him). Now that Brad Mills and his mush-pie fast ball has been sent to AAA, it’s probably going to be Perez to be # 5 starter, with another prospect up to fill out the spot in the pen. Counting on the first 3 guys, the productive lineup of Escobar, Thames, Bautista, Lind, Rasmus & Lawrie, there’s not a bad team shaping up there in the AL BEast.

      • spudchukar - Aug 19, 2011 at 2:55 PM

        Your analysis of Rasmus is pretty accurate. He is smooth, possesses awesome talent, can go first to home with the best of them. But he has zero steals since becoming a Blue Jay. He is hitting .256/.330/.756, with 15 K’s, 2 BBs, in 78 PA. That is slightly less-productive than during his tenure in St. Louis.

        Looks like he is one of his streaks, nails a few homers, and then resumes his mediocre numbers. He cannot throw, doesn’t know which base to throw to, and pulls numerous bone-head plays throughout the season. So far Rasmus has been just who I thought he was, potential-laden, and disappointing.

      • cur68 - Aug 19, 2011 at 3:18 PM

        Right about the steals of course, Spuddy. But give him time I say. He might get there yet. First he has to get out of some bad hitting habits. Looks like that’s coming around. The throwing errors haven’t really cropped up yet. I’m hopeful with Jose Bautista out there he’ll have some player support & mentorship. It worked to get Edwin Encarnacion hitting and fielding reliably, after all. I’m hopeful at any rate.

  5. Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 7:22 AM

    Braves 1 Giants 0…then people wonder why the sensible fan in me wants to see Arizona in the playoffs instead of the Giants. Like I have said all along, the 3 NL teams with the best shot at making the World Series are the Braves, Giants and Phillies. If any other team besides these three make it, then it would be a big surprise. I think that is very fair to say.

    Yeah, AZ is a nice story, but they don’t have the pitching and neither does the Brewers. Sure, they have some above average arms, like Kennedy, Wolf, Gallardo, Daniel Hudson, Collmenter, Greinke…but are any of those guys elite or do they have a postseason pedigree? Not really. Not when I can give you Lincecum, Cain, Bumgarner, Tim Hudson, Jurrgens, Hanson, Halladay, Lee, Hamels. There isn’t a single name on the former list that would belong on that list I just gave you. You might want to give me Greinke, but until he pitches in the postseason, I’m not going to assume he will be the 2009 Greinke and his ERA+ this year is only 101. Sure he’s got the good K rate, but that’s about it. Either way, I’m not in love with Greinke in the playoffs until I see him do it.

    Look, CAN the Brewers or D-Backs make the World Series? Of course. But it would be more of a surprise if either of them did ahead of the other three.

    • halladaysbiceps - Aug 19, 2011 at 7:36 AM

      Greinke will fold like a cheap suit in the playoffs if he has to pitch in Philly. The word with this kid is that he has no nerves whatsoever to pitch in high pressure environments. I think they call it High Anxiety Disorder or something like that.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 7:43 AM

        Well, I’m not going to go that far because I do think he could be over it. But you never know until the situation comes up. However, the fans in 2008 rattled CC pretty bad and if this kid pitches in Philly, it could be the next Burt Hooton in game 3 of the 77 NLCS. Either way, for this year, he’s not in the class of the other 9 pitchers I named.

      • halladaysbiceps - Aug 19, 2011 at 7:54 AM

        Chris, I have said it before. There is no team in the National League that scares me one bit. I don’t honestly care who the Phillies match up with in the playoffs. This team is so much better than anyone else, I don’t really think it’s even debatable. They sealed the deal with adding Pence.

      • paperlions - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:20 AM

        That is some funny shit biceps….High Anxiety Disorder…. hahahahahahahahahahahahaha (breath) hahahahahahahahahahaha

      • cur68 - Aug 19, 2011 at 10:45 AM

        HB: It’s a Social Anxiety Disorder Geinke has and, for the record, I don’t think he’s really that bad with it. In fact, considering his lapses of rudeness, throwing at guys he intends to walk anyways, & general surliness (finding a picture of that guy smiling is real hard. As far as I know the HBT crew have but one they can use) I don’t really think he has anxiety so much as a mild sociopathy (either that of he’s just a jerk). I have mild social anxiety. Difficulty with crowds (that’s why I’m a Jays fan, you see), noisy people, and too much human activity around me make me uncomfortable. Being rude and likely to smack someone with a blunt object isn’t really a feature of SAD. In fact rudeness isn’t a characteristic of the disorder at all, as sufferers tend to be too polite, just to keep the noise and emotions down. Whatever Greinke’s issues are, I think he uses that anxiety label to excuse his rather brusque demeanor. I don’t see it interfering with his ability to pitch in the Playoffs so much as he’ll get right pissed when he or his teammates screw up and then he’ll do or say something inflammatory. Not unlike Carlos Zambrano in some respects, IMO.

    • Kevin S. - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:03 AM

      I’m not sure I’d go too much into that “the fans rattled him” stuff with CC. The Brewers rode him like a rented mule on three-days rest for a month, and even a horse like Sabathia was bound to wear down sooner or later. Put it this way, it’s not like the fans rattled him too much the next time he pitched in Philly during the playoffs. ;-) I think Greinke, Gallardo and Marcum is a good enough rotation to keep the team competitive. Their offense is sooooo much better than the Giants that I’d have to make them the third-favorite team in the NL, unless anybody wants to lay down bets on Cody Ross finding a bat with a lightning bolt etched in it again.

      As for that Braves-Giants game, Mike Minor was friggin’ dealing. He only went six innings because the Giants managed to foul off (approximately) 35,635 pitches once Minor got ahead in the count, but he struck out nine and only had one incredibly stupid intentional walk, and other than Ross’ lead-off double, the Giants didn’t have a hard-hit ball off of him. Tiny Tim pitched well, but the Braves were able to get some solid contact, not just on the Chipper homer and the hits that fell, but at least three liners that were either right at outfielders or close enough to be run down. O’Ventrbrel did its thing, and the way Kimbrel stares in when he’s getting the signal makes me feel like the Jumbotron should flash “FINISH HIM!” Mortal Kombat-style whenever he gets two strikes with two outs. Freddie Freeman and Dan Uggla made some pretty awesome plays on tough pop-ups, too. Really fun gave to have the birds-eye (first-row upper deck behind home plate) vantage point for.

      Oh and Craig, I really feel you need to raise some hell on this issue. After hyping the crap out of Dan Uggla Bobble-head night, Delta really should have provided the Braves with some better wares. Both the girlfriend’s and my bobble head came out of the packaging with both arms broken off in different places. I feel defrauded.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:11 AM

        Kevin, that’s true about CC being overworked, but I was at the game and you could see during Brett Myers’ 9-pitch walk that CC was clearly rattled. It was probably a combination of the fans and the fact that Myers was fouling everything off. Still, the fact that he then walked J-Roll on 4 pitches and watched Shane hit a Grand Slam the next at bat had CC rattled.

        And regarding the next time he pitched in Philly, he blew a 2-0 lead and didn’t pitch all that great…6 2/3 7 H, 3 ER and 3 BB.

      • Kevin S. - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:14 AM

        Didn’t say he was great, but that’s a pretty decent start on the road against what was the best offense in the National League.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:19 AM

        I agree with you there…and these Yankees fans conveniently forget how big their whipping boy AJ came up in game 2 at Yankees stadium when they easily could have come to Philly down 2-0. If he pitches bad that game, the whole series could have been different. Yeah he sucked in game 5, but that was the Phillies with their backs against the wall and it had to be expected.

      • Jonny 5 - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:33 AM

        Kevin, one thing I’d like to mention that is going back to 2008 up to today, the Phillies have hit Sabathia quite well. Maybe it’s nothing? Or maybe it’s something to think about?

      • Kevin S. - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:42 AM

        Eh, I’ve got to disagree with that statement, Jonny. In addition to those two playoff starts, he’s faced the Phillies twice since ’08 (once in each of his first two seasons with the Yankees). 15.0 IP, 6 ER, 3 BB, 13 K, 0 HR. I wouldn’t call that really hitting him.

      • FC - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:51 AM

        But hardly dominating Kevin, that’s a 3.6 ERA. If that’s the best CC can do he’d better hope his team-mates clobber the opposing pitcher.

      • Jonny 5 - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:57 AM

        So to suit your ideal you’ll discount more than half the data? 2008 and two playoff starts vs. your two select games? LOL!! Selective are we? And those two games you cite aren’t even close to being CC Sabathia type numbers to help make his overall numbers better. Even your select two games aren’t anything to crow about. The Phillies hit CC well. Not that it’s a given if they face each other again.

      • Kevin S. - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:57 AM

        I never said it was dominating. Mostly, it’s fifteen innings and that just doesn’t mean a whole lot. But Jonny’s statement was that going back to ’08, the Phillies had hit Sabathia quite well, and other than the playoff start in ’08 (when he had been overworked down the stretch), that really hasn’t happened. Saying the Phillies did slightly better than most teams against him might be fair, but that’s about the most one could say.

      • Kevin S. - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:01 AM

        You know, we were talking about Game Four, and I completely forgot about Game One. Fair enough. My point hadn’t been to ignore the playoff games, but to point out that they had only really hit him hard in that one time… but again, I forgot about Game One. I do still think there’s reason to discount the ’08 game, but I guess that reasonable minds can disagree there. Can we say that the Phillies hit him pretty hard twice and that CC pitched well the other three times? I think that’s a fair statement.

        And no, we really can’t read too much from five starts spaced over three seasons.

      • Jonny 5 - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:12 AM

        I think we’re on the same page Kevin. I have nothing but the utmost respect for CC and his skills on the mound, but it looks like the Phillies are high on the list of teams that have been able to get CC to look a little less like CC. That’s all I’m saying. And yes, very small sample sizes here. It doesn’t tell you anything besides what happened already. Like I said to kick this off. “Maybe it’s nothing? Or maybe it’s something to think about?” Good chat.

      • FC - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:57 AM

        Can we say that the Phillies hit him pretty hard twice and that CC pitched well the other three times? I think that’s a fair statement.

        That looks to be fair assessment, with the caveats about sample size naturally. CC is a great pitcher and that means he would face the Phillies #1 in a potential WS scenario. So while his pitching has been solid, he’s going to have to be great. Actually here’s what striking: C.C. has not had a shutout performance in the posteason yet. Though in the ’09 ALD(C)S he was a top performer, his ’09 WS was solid but paled behind Lee’s Game 1 gem. He should have prevailed against Joe Blanton in Game 4 but he was barely holding back the tide (6.2 IP 7 H, 3 BB, 3 ER to go with 6 SO, so he was battling throughout the game).

        And well his 2010 post-season was pedestrian really, Yankees offense picked him up. He did have a good game against the Rangers though, just 2 ER in 6.0.

        It will be interesting to see if he can put it all together and be dominant throughout the post-season with the way he is pitching right now.

      • FC - Aug 19, 2011 at 11:29 AM

        Both the girlfriend’s and my bobble head came out of the packaging with both arms broken off in different places. I feel defrauded.

        As long as you don’t feel deflowered it’s manageable

    • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:03 AM

      Cepts, I learned last year that too much can happen to think in absolutes. Should the Phillies make the World Series? Yes. Will they? Facing the Giants, then the Braves leaves way too much room for the possibility of the offense shutting down. There are way too many studs on both of those staffs. Looking at last night’s 1-0 Braves/Giants game should show you what can happen. One mistake by TIMMAY was the difference between winning and losing. And with that Braves 3-headed monster, if they have a lead going into the 7th, especially since two of them are lefties, it won’t be easy.

      If the Phillies do make the World Series, it won’t be because it was a cakewalk…they will have earned it if they have to go through the Giants and the Braves.

      • halladaysbiceps - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:20 AM

        No. I agree with you. There are no absolutes. But, the time for the Phillies to win is now. I don’t want to hear about offenses excuses again this year if they fail to win from the Phillies fans. At some point, a Halladay must outpitch the other ace. A Lee must outpitch another pitcher. A Hamels must outpitch another pitcher. With all of the money invested in this pitching staff, they need to earn it. Only Cole Hamels has a ring. The others need to step it up. If they face Timmy, Hudson, Greinke, etc., they must outpitch them. That’s what great pitchers do.

      • cur68 - Aug 19, 2011 at 11:07 AM

        Hang on HB. Doesn’t Big Joe have ring? Thought I read that somewhere. Of course it might be a ring for The World Series Of Chicken Fried Doughnut Eating”, but hey, its a ring.

    • kiwicricket - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:33 AM

      Marcum(10-3) Greinke(12-4) Gallardo (13-8) Are a combined 35-15 426 IP 409K. Greinke started the season slowly, but is 5-1 with a 2.12 ERA over his last nine starts.
      Throw in 2 MVP candidates hitting 3rd and 4th in the line-up.
      I think these guys are more than capable of ousting anyone in the play-offs if they maintain a bit of momentum. Plus it would be freaking awesome if the Brewers made it to the WS.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:45 AM

        You didn’t even mention Wolf, who is having the best year of the bunch. He is the only one with an ERA under 3.50. You put way too much emphasis on record. And while I agree that the Brewers have the better offense, when you get to the playoffs, pitching usually wins.

      • kiwicricket - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:00 AM

        Wolf having the best year of the bunch??? As in Randy Wolf??? I would send your morning coffee off for chemical analysis if I were you. I didn’t put all the numbers down because I really couldn’t be bothered, and my point was just to bring up that the Brewers have 3 really good starters who could dominate in a short series.

      • kopy - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:08 AM

        Kiwi is making great points. In the book “Baseball Between the Numbers”, the authors looked for characteristics of winning playoff teams. One of which was a good pitching staff with a high strikeout rate. Marcum, Gallardo, and Greinke have K rates of 7.6, 7.8, and 11.2 per 9 innings. That staff is very capable of keeping other teams behind the best offense in the NL playoffs.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:09 AM

        I’m probably overvaluing ERA, but you are really overvaluing Wins and Losses. I believe we would both agree that Lee and Hamels are both better than Greinke right now, yet Greinke is 12-4 while Hamels and Lee are 13-7. Wolf may be 10-8, but his 3.30 ERA is better than Gallardo(3.55), Greinke(3.92) and Marcum(3.50) so when I said Wolf is having the best year of the bunch, I didn’t mean he is the best pitcher of the bunch…just that he is having the best year. But again, I’m probably overvaluing ERA and ERA+ just a little bit.

        Either way, I’m not taking any of those guys over any of the 9 best pitchers from the Phillies, Braves, or Giants.

      • Kevin S. - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:19 AM

        Thing is, Greinke, Marcum and Gallardo have more going for them than wins and losses. As noted, Greinke’s K-rate is elite (and he’s not really walking anybody either). He’s seeing an abnormal number of fly balls hit against him leave the yard. Given his history (and general league trends), we’d expect that to come back down quite a bit. Randy Wolf is walking three batters per nine innings and striking out less than six. I wouldn’t count on that 3.30 holding up.

      • kiwicricket - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:24 AM

        THHAAAAANNNNNKKKK you Kopy. That’s all I was trying to say. Those 3 guys strike(no partial pun intended) me as guys who, on their night, can dominate another teams line-up. Not throw a load of slop up there which sometimes comes off. I wouldn’t discount them making a good fist of things later in the season. Oh and I have taken your advice. I am now a committed ‘[New Tab]‘ user.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:25 AM

        Kevin, maybe Wolf’s 3.30 won’t hold up…but at this point, looking at their ERA and ERA+, you could say that right now, at this point, right now, at this point, Wolf might be having the best year of the bunch. All the other stats are probably a good predictor of what will happen between now and the end of the season…but again, right now, at this point, you could possibly say that maybe, Wolf might be having the best year of the bunch…right?

      • Kevin S. - Aug 19, 2011 at 10:32 AM

        Let’s put it this way – the combination of pitching, defense and randomness has been best with Wolf on the mound this season. How much credit you want to ascribe to each component of ERA/ERA+ there is entirely up to you.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 10:39 AM

        Yeah, that argument spiraled out of control and I knew I was beat about 5 posts ago. But my first point holds true (I think)…and that was if I were going to take the top 9 pitchers from the Braves, Phillies, Giants, Brewers and D-Backs, I would not have a single pitcher from the D-Backs or Brewers. Do you agree with that (sheepishly speaking: in other words, am I right about that)?

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:50 AM

      but are any of those guys elite or do they have a postseason pedigree

      I assume you mean have any of them pitched in the postseason? Not sure why that matters considering Halladay had never pitched in the postseason before, then threw a no-hitter during his first game. Guys who haven’t pitched in the postseason mean nothing for future years (cf Mussina, Mike who had some great games and absolutely horrid ones).

      You also reference CC getting rattled in ’08, but it really needs to be brought up what he did for MIL down the stretch (Kevin S referenced it). Here’s the dates CC pitched in ’08:
      9/16 – 7IP
      9/20 – 5.2IP
      9/24 – 7IP
      9/28 – 9IP
      10/2 – 3.2IP (Playoffs)

      5 straight games pitching on 3 days rest. Is it no wonder he wore down?

      Also, why bring that up at all when he carried the Yanks through the playoffs the following year? 36.1IP, 7ER (1.74ish ERA), 9BB, 32K

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:58 AM

        church, I may not have worded it the way I meant it so let me rephrase…I think you either have to be elite in the regular season, or have postseason pedigree. And none of those pitchers from the AZ or Brewers fit either category, except maybe Greinke if you want to say he will pitch like he did in 2009.

        I brought up the CC thing ONLY in connection with how I believe the fans definitely played a part in his 5 minute concentration lapse when he went walk(pitcher on 9 pitches), walk on 4 pitches, grand slam. I agree his overuse contributed, but let’s not forget he did go another 4 innings of shutout ball after that little 5 minute lapse so it wasn’t like he gave up 10 runs in 3+ innings. That tells me that the loudness of the stadium contributed…it wasn’t the ONLY reason, but it contributed. And that was only brought up because I envisioned Greinke out there getting rattled the way Burt Hooten was in the 1977 NLCS when he walked 99 guys in a row and admitted the fans rattled him.

      • kopy - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:11 AM

        Jeez, is there any leftover credit for the Phillies players that forced the walks? Or do the fans just regularly win World Series once every 63 years by rattling other pitchers?

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:21 AM

        kopy, no reason to be snarky. Hooten admitted the fans got to him…

        http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0FCI/is_6_64/ai_n15378729/

        Nobody is saying the fans are responsible for it every single time. But in the Hooten case, he even admitted it. And in CC’s case, I don’t think it was a coincidence that he walked the pitcher, then walked Rollins on 4 pitches, then gave up a slam…then didn’t give up another run in 4+ innings. Did he all of a sudden get un-tired? Or did he possibly get a little rattled?

        Geeze, you guys act like these pitchers are robots who don’t hear the crowd at all. Nobody is saying the fans are the sole reason CC got rattled…they contributed is all I am saying. And I was there so I know how loud it was…and it was loud.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:24 AM

        Ah gotcha, although I don’t think fans play as important a role as we think. Except for dome stadiums, it’s not like baseball fans cheer any differently home or away. CC pitched in front of 50k+ screaming fans in NY, why would 45K in Philly make a difference?

        Let’s be careful on the Greinke comments. We don’t know what triggers his S.A.D. so considering he doesn’t pitch before an empty stadium, merely saying playoffs = meltdown is jumping the gun a bit.

      • kopy - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:27 AM

        I believe you. I just think it’s strange that now that we’re finally talking about playoff baseball, all I’m hearing is how the Phillies have this in the bag because of the crowd factor. Phillies fans are definitely loud, but I really don’t think that it will be that big of a deal. And I believe that CC wore down because the Brewers beat him like a rented mule, not because of the noise.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:29 AM

        Yeah, I am not ready to say he will breakdown 100% either…just that it wouldn’t be a surprise.

        And if you read the link I supplied a couple posts up, Hooten admitted the fans rattled him in that good old outdoor toilet also known as the Vet.

        I know I’ll never get anyone here to even indulge me even 1% on the fans having anything at all to do with CC’s 5 minute lapse in concentration in that game and that’s cool. But the 45,000+ of us there at the game know that we contributed. because if it was all that CC was so tired, he would not have gone on to throw 4 more innings of shutout ball after Shane’s slam.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:29 AM

        Hmm probably should have rephrased that. I don’t think fans cheering/booing gets to players, but I know moments do. I’m sure postseason pressure is a lot worst because it’s the postseason (or history, or curses, etc).

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:30 AM

        “all I’m hearing is how the Phillies have this in the bag because of the crowd factor.”

        LOLZ…yeah, that’s what I said.

  6. ditto65 - Aug 19, 2011 at 7:29 AM

    Don’t feel too bad about the Brewers comment yesterday. Kershaw stops a lot of teams.

  7. stackers1 - Aug 19, 2011 at 7:56 AM

    Weaver’s brother used to do the same thing when the Yankees had him. If a fielder made an error behind him, he would throw his arms up, stomp & pout like a spoiled child.

    • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 7:59 AM

      That’s good info for me…because I always thought that Jeff was known as the laid-back one who didn’t care…thus he wasn’t as successful as Jered. I guess this wasn’t entirely true.

  8. Jonny 5 - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:09 AM

    John Mayberry Jr. Is making me proud that I’ve been one of the few people to see his potential and beg for him to get a fair shot in the big leagues (since the middle of last season). IMO, he’s got huge potential, more so than Brown. Every aspect of his game is above that of Brown imo, and he can get better. Way to go John.

    • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:13 AM

      J5, to be fair, he is 4 years older than Brown so he should be ahead of him in his development. But there’s no way you can say Mayberry has a bigger upside than Brown. I like Mayberry, but come on…you are really too far down on the Domo-nator right now.

      • Jonny 5 - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:46 AM

        Mayberry got a late start. He was at Stanford tearing it up pretty good until he was drafted 19th as a junior. He’s had 6 seasons of full time baseball and Brown has had 5, so they are pretty even on the amount of time served playing professionally. Mayberry can run circles around Brown in the OF and it’s as obvious as the fact that Victorino can run circles around Ibanez out there. Mayberry has 10 home runs this season and all of his batting numbers are better than Brown has in the majors. How can I not see the higher upside to Mayberry right now? Maybe in two more seasons you have a case to make, but now, and going into next season Mayberry is better. No doubt in my mind.

      • Kevin S. - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:51 AM

        But playing in college counts towards development time, even if it’s not with the organization. Good college players typically jump right into High-A or AA. I’m not saying Mayberry isn’t the better option right now, but long-term you still have to think it’s going to be Dom Brown.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:52 AM

        Oh I agree 100% that NOW and GOING INTO NEXT YEAR, Mayberry is better than Brown. But I also think Brown needs another year in AAA. Mayberry had almost 3,000 plate appearances in the minors while Brown has almost 2,000. I think Brown was rushed and he wasn’t ready and another year at AAA would be perfect for him. If he were to get that, he would come up in 2013 and be a beast.

      • Jonny 5 - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:04 AM

        Well, being it’s baseball and Mayberry will probably be the better player for the next two seasons at least (maybe eternally on the defense side), I say he’s got the better upside. Brown may never get better, or he will, but it won’t be until he gets that gangly a$$ swing and his 2 left feet straightened out.

        Hey Mayberry is better on the basepaths too.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:14 AM

        J5…I hope you are right. I really hope they hand him Left Field next year and he thrives. He’s never been given the chance, so I hope he gets it and does well.

      • Jonny 5 - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:27 AM

        So do I . But he’s showing he’s a 20+ HR per season player right now with 10 in only 190 PA’s. I don’t expect him to ever have a great BA but I think he can have similar power numbers and OBP as his father did in his prime. Which is nothing to shrug off. Brown has a bright future, I just think it’s going to start later than anticipated by most Philly Phaithful.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:32 AM

        And if it starts when Mayberry’s starts, it will be 4 full years from now :P

      • Jonny 5 - Aug 19, 2011 at 10:04 AM

        Yup, kinda like Mr. Lucky, huh Chris? :P

      • Utley's Hair - Aug 19, 2011 at 11:31 AM

        —Sigh—

        Jonny, where is the requisite reference to Victorino’s birthplace where Danno was busy booking people?

      • Jonny 5 - Aug 19, 2011 at 12:00 PM

        SH!T ! I am not worthy….. I am not worthy…..

    • bigxrob - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:15 AM

      I really wish he would start over Ibanez. He’s better in every aspect of the game.

    • drmonkeyarmy - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:23 AM

      It is that bizarre open stance he is using, it suites him very well. No longer is getting jammed on middle in pitches but is big and strong enough to drive pitches away. Somebody pointed this out last night and I found it interesting: that most people who start with the open stance have a leg kick, they stride more level, but Mayberry strides and still maintains that open position.

  9. FC - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:43 AM

    What? Another win? Yes well but they were lucky the rain took out their Ace, as we know Phillies hitting can’t hit great pitch- oh wait what, they had scored 3 runs off Kennedy by the time the tarp covered the infield? Well you know about that shaky Phillies middle-relief- oh Herndon struck out 4? No runs allowed? Err… Well Ibanez needs to sit down and rest a while because he’s been struggl- oh 2 for 3 last night? RBI Double?… umm… Well Howar- wasn’t even in the game? Well you know the issues we have at the hot corner- Valdez converted a DP and hit an RBI Double? Damn! If they keep this up I’m going to suffer withdrawal symptoms!

    • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:49 AM

      There really wasn’t anything to complain about in last night’s game at all. It was pretty much a perfect win. Without Shane, Ryan, Chooch and Polanco, they went out and won the game beating up the D-backs ace for 3 runs in 3 innings.

      • FC - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:05 AM

        I reserve the word beat up for when a pitcher surrenders at least 5 runs in an inning, can’t close out the inning while surrendering a few runs and leaving runners on bases or the opposing team bats around. They were hitting Kennedy and he was getting into trouble, but we don’t know if he could have righted the ship after the third or the Phillies were going to pile on him further.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:17 AM

        I just thought Kennedy looked terrible…5 hits and 2 walks, 60 pitches through 3 innings. I thought they were going to knock him out in the 4th or 5th and I believe the rain stopped him from getting into that scenario you mentioned. But maybe he rights the ship…who knows.

        That was what sucked about losing Worley…30 pitches, 23 strikes, in 3 innings. He was dealing.

      • FC - Aug 19, 2011 at 10:07 AM

        Agreed. The Rain robbed Worley of a promising comeback performance and another win. The Rain saved Kennedy from having to get outs or getting yanked. Borderline there, but you’re probably more correct, after all he didn’t even face Victorino or Howard.

    • drmonkeyarmy - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:50 AM

      Ross Gload was 0-4 with 2 pop ups and a strike out.

      • FC - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:58 AM

        I hate to kick a man playing with an injury to the hip… really the guy should just get his surgery done as soon as possible so he can work in the off-season and get some offers by the time ST rolls around.

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:00 AM

        Yeah, that’s true. But I wasn’t expecting anything from Gload anyway, so there’s nothing to complain about with him.

  10. yankeesfanlen - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:44 AM

    An obvious observation from last night’s Twins-Yanks is that in typical fashion, the depleted Twins are not up to the task. Even their once-in-a-blue–moon homers get called back, while even Andruw Jones can get into the longball fun
    Strange how I can recall almost all of Grandy’s HRs and can come up with nothing memorable about Tex’s. Just his 1st base defence, which is the best we’ve had in years.

  11. uyf1950 - Aug 19, 2011 at 8:51 AM

    CC finally got #17 after 2 failed previous attempts. He struggled the first couple of innings and then settled down nicely. Today Hughes get another chance to show the Yankees why he deserves to stay in the rotation. I’m sure he will do just fine.
    Colon doesn’t appear to be the same since he came back from the DL perhaps he’s running out of gas. I’m not sure that the discussion about moving a starter to the bullpen shouldn’t evolve around Burnett and Colon. That’s just my opinion.

  12. Old Gator - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:49 AM

    Tweeter Alert: Man Mantis spent the third night of his exile sitting on a bag of frozen peas following yesterday’s discreetly y’clept “groin strain.” From what I understand, he pulled up so hard that the trainer had to take him back into the clubhouse and insert pipecleaners swaddled in cotton up his nostrils to reposition his testicles.The Zephyrs were playing the Sky Sox, so Tweeter was probably lucky they were playing at home instead of in Colorado, where any mountain goat can tell you that they would have extracted them instead and fried them up with cayenne and butter.

    Just one other quick minor league note: Alex Sanabia has come off the DL at last but was clearly rusty last night, getting clobbered for five runs on eight hits with no walks. Here’s hoping the Feesh can bring him up in September to see if he’s regained the impressive form he showed last season during his caffeine stop in Macondo. The sooner they can sell off Christ Volstad for Soylent Green or maybe ethanol the better.

    Anyway, the Feesh played another game like they had a load in their pants last night. There were none of the entertaining gaffes and peccadilloes that have marked their play of late, just a sluggish, mail-it-in sort of performance. Javy Vasquez had a hard luck first inning but was nothing less than dominant after that, but the Feesh have proven depressingly inclined to play ketchup when they need to play killer tomatoes.

    I noted that, flying quietly under the radar – much like Wolfgang Grjonka’s helicopter – while the various folles Hanley and Tweeter and an injury plague of Biblical proportions that has struck my Feesh (what kind of Biblical plagues strike Feesh? In the order given in The Aquarist’s Bible, they are: Ick. Fin rot. Anchor worms. Velvet. White spot. Flukes. Argulus. Costia. Cilodonella. Dropsy. Learn them all by Passover, OK?), Gaby Sanchez’ offensive production has gone to slime like two day old ceviche. Check out his numbers since the All Star Rupture. I paid attention last night, and he was lurching and swatting at pitches like he had no idea where the strike zone was. On one groundout he lunged so far off balance at the pitch that I was surprised he didn’t fall on his face. Gaby has been a one man horse latitude in the lineup lately. If anyone needed to be sent down to work on a swing, he was it.

    But hey, they’ve got an opening on the Zephyrs now with their left fielder discommoded. Just don’t sit on the peas if they’re not frozen solid.

  13. Old Gator - Aug 19, 2011 at 9:50 AM

    Chilodonella, dammit.

    Edit function!
    Edit function!
    EDIT FUNCTION!

    • Jonny 5 - Aug 19, 2011 at 10:06 AM

      There are probably 2 posters who would have known you misspelled that. One being you, and the other googled it. ;)

      • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 10:10 AM

        It would take me 2 hours to google every word I didn’t know in OG’s posts

      • Jonny 5 - Aug 19, 2011 at 10:28 AM

        I used to be an avid fish owner, with some Cichlids which were very prone to most of those diseases mentioned, which I had to treat. I kept this as a hobby for 10 years at least. And I don’t know what Chilodonella is. So there’s that…

    • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 10:09 AM

      Um, I don’t think that is one that many, if any, were going to pick up on OG :)

      • Old Gator - Aug 19, 2011 at 10:17 AM

        I’m a perfectionist. So sue me.

  14. uyf1950 - Aug 19, 2011 at 11:45 AM

    Looks like last nights win is keeping CC Sabathia on track for another 20 win season. That will put him over 60 wins for what will be only his 3rd season as a Yankee. It’s been a while since a Yankee pitcher has had back to back 20 win seasons. In fact you have to go back to 1979 and 1980 when Tommy John had back to back 20 win seasons.

    • Chris Fiorentino - Aug 19, 2011 at 11:55 AM

      Who was the last one in all of MLB to do that? Looks like Roy Oswalt in 2004 and 2005 won 20 back-to-back. Halladay also has a shot to do it again this year too.

  15. Mr. Jason "El Bravo" Heyward - Aug 19, 2011 at 11:57 AM

    I had a couple glasses of Maker’s, a bar to myself with a flat screen, and the braves/giants. It was an excellent night. So excellent in fact, I took off today to remember it’s excellence.

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