The Phils’ offense, helped by some sloppy play by the Indians’ defense, routed the last place Indians, as they sweep the interleague series between the two teams, 12-3.
The Phils took the lead in the second as, with the bases loaded, via singles by Jayson Werth, Raul Ibanez and Wilson Valdez, and with nobody out, catcher Carlos Santana committed a missed catch error of third baseman Andy Marte’s force attempt throw on a Dane Sardinha ground ball, as it tipped off of Santana’s glove as he tried to get out of the way, allowing Werth and Ibanez to score, giving the Phils a 2-0 lead, while sending Valdez up to third, as Sardinha stopped at second on the error. Two batters later, with the bases once again loaded as Joe Blanton is hit by the pitch, and still with nobody out, Victorino hit into an RBI ground out, 1-3, for the first out of the inning, scoring Valdez, making it a 3-0 Phils’ lead, while moving Sardinha up to third and Blanton to second base. The Phils then made it 4-0 as, with two men on base, and with one man out, Placido Polanco hits an RBI single, scoring Sardinha, while sending Blanton on to third. The Phils then made it 5-0 as, once again with two men and with still one man out, Chase Utley hits a sacrifice fly, scoring Blanton. The Indians cut the Phils’ lead down to 5-2 in the fifth as, with one man on and with one man out, Jason Donald hits a two-run home run, his second home run of the year, knocking in Luis Valbuena, who was earlier safe on a force out, 4-6, as Shelley Ducan, who had earlier singled, was forced out at second. The Phils would get the runs back in their half of the fifth as, with runners on the corners, and with nobody out, Ryan Howard reaches first on a fielder’s choice grounder to first baseman Russell Branyan, allowing Polanco, who had earlier singled, and then went to third on Utley’s single, to score, giving the Phils a 6-2 lead, while Utley, who had earlier singled, would be safe at second base. One batter later, with two men on base, and with still two men out, Werth hits an RBI single, knocking in Utley, making it 7-2 Phils, while Howard would stop at second. The Phils then broke the game wide open in the sixth as Sardinha started the inning off with a lead-off home run, his first of his major league career and the season, making it an 8-2 Phils’ lead. Three batters later, with one man on and with one out, Polanco would hit an RBI double, knocking in Victorino, who had earlier singled, making it a 9-2 Phils’ lead. Three batters later, with the bases loaded, via an infield single to Utley, sending Polanco to third, and a walk to Howard, sending Utley to third, and with still one man out, Werth hits a sacrifice fly, scoring Polanco, making it 10-2 Phils, while sending Utley to third. Two batters later, with the bases loaded again as Ibanez walks, moving Howard up to second, and now with two men out, Valdez hits a two-run single, knocking in both Utley and Howard, giving the Phils a 12-2 lead, while Ibanez stops at third. The Indians then added a run in the eighth as, with one man on and with one man out, Trevor Crowe hits an RBI double, knocking in Donald, who had earlier doubled, making it a 12-3 Phils’ lead. After Blanton got Anderson Hernandez to strikeout swinging, the rains came down in a deluge. The rains would last for over an hour before play resume, with Nelson Figueroa, who has been called up from Lehigh Valley just hours earlier, took the mound in relief of Blanton. Figueroa would proceed to get out the four men whom he would face, leaving the game as a 12-3 Phils’ win.
Joe Blaton gets the win as he pitches seven and two-thirds strong innings, before being taken out because of the deluge, giving up three runs on six hits, while he strikes out eight. His record is now 3-5 with an ERA of 6.53. Nelson Figueroa pitches a scoreless inning and one-third, striking out a batter. Fausto Carmona took the lost as he went only four innings, plus four batters, giving up seven runs, five of which were earned, on nine hits. His record is now 6-6 with 3.64 ERA. Hector Ambriz pitches an inning and two-thirds, giving up five runs on five hits and two walks. Jensen Lewis and Joe Smith combine for two and one-thirds scoreless innings, giving up two hits (Lewis), while striking out two (one each).
The Phils burst out with fifteen hits, with Placido Polanco leading the team with four hits, as he had three singles and a double, knocking in two runs. Chase Utley and Jayson Werth follows with three hits apiece, all singles, as Utley knocked in a run, while Werth scored two runs. Wilson Valdez is next with two hits, both singles, as he knocks in two runs. Shane Victorino, Raul Ibanez and Dane Sardinha had the other three Phils’ hits, with Victorino and Ibanez’s hits being singles, with Victorino knocking in a run, while Sardinha’s hit was his first career home run, a solo shot. Ryan Howard also knocked in a run on a fielder’s choice ground ball, while the other two runs came in on an error.
The Phillies (38-32, 3rd NL East) will finish Interleague Play with a three-game series against the Blue Jays (39-34, 4th AL East) with the Phils as the away team, although playing the series in Philadelphia, thanks to the security worries of the G20 Summit that is being held this weekend in Toronto, Canada. The Phils presently have an 8-0 lead after five innings.
Jimmy Rollins’ flare for the dramatic reappear as the Phils’ spark plug hits a dramatic walk-off two-run home run to right to give the Phils a 7-6 win over the Indians.
The Indians took a quick 2-0 lead in the first as, with a runner on second and with nobody out, Shin-Soo Choo hits a two-run home run, his ninth home run of the year, knocking in Trevor Crowe, who had earlier doubled. The Phils cut the Indians’ lead to 2-1 as, with runners on the corners, and with one man out, Ryan Howard hits into a 3-6 doubleplay, scoring Placido Polanco, who had earlier singled, and had gone to third on Chase Utley’s single, crossing home plate before Indians’ shortstop Jason Donald was able to tag out Utley, who had earlier singled, at second base for the inning’s final out. The Phils tied the game up at two-all in the second as Jayson Werth hits a lead-off home run, his thirteenth home run of the season. The Indians regained the lead in the third as, with a runner on third and with one man out, Carlos Santana hits a sacrifice fly, scoring Crowe, who had earlier doubled, his second double of the game, and then went to third on Choo’s fly out to center, giving the Indians a 3-2 lead. The Phils took the lead in the fourth as, with runners on second and third, and with one man out, Raul Ibanez hits a two-run double, knocking in Howard, who had earlier singled, and had gone to third on Werth’s double, and Werth, who had just doubled, giving the Phils a 4-3 lead. The Indians took the lead back in the fifth as, with one man on, and with nobody out, Choo hits a two-run home run, his second of the game, and his tenth home run of the season, scoring Crowe, who had earler reached base on an Utley fielding error, giving the Indians a 5-4 lead. The Phils tied the game up at five-all in the seventh as Brian Schneider hits a lead-off home run, his first home run of the year. The Indians retook the lead in the ninth as, with two men on and with one man out, Santana scored Crowe, who had earlier singled, and had gone to third when Anderson Hernandez, who had earlier reached base on a bunt single, and had gone to third on Crowe’s single, was caught in a run down between third and home on Choo’s fielder’s choice grounder, before finally being tagged out, 1-5-2, at home, while Crowe went to third on the play and Choo went to second, on a grounder to Jimmy Rollins, who then threw wide to the plate for a throwing error, allowing Crowe to score, while Choo went to third on Rollins’ error, making it a 6-5 Indians’ lead. In the bottom of the ninth, the Phils won the game as, with one man on and with one man out, Rollins hits a two-run walk-off home run, his third home run of the year, and his first walk-off home run in his career, scoring Schneider, who had earlier walked, giving the Phils a 7-6 victory.
Kyle Kendrick receives a no-decision as he pitches a not so hot game as he went only four innings, plus three batters, giving up five runs, four of which were earned, on six hits and two walks. David Herndon, Mike Zagurski and Danys Baez combine for three scoreless innings, giving up two hits (Herndon) and one walk (Zagurski) between them, while striking out two (Herndon (1), Zagurski (1)). Chad Durbin pitches an inning plus one batter, being taken out of the game after suffering an injury while trying to field a ball, gives up a run on two hits. J.C. Romero gets the win as he pitches a scoreless inning, giving up a hit and a walk. His record is now 1-0 with an ERA of 2.51. Jake Westbrook also receives a no-decision as he pitches five innings, giving up four runs on seven hits and a walk, while striking out two. Tony Sipp records his seventh hold as he throws a scoreless inning, giving up two hits and a walk. Frank Herrmann records his first blown save of the year as he gives up a run on one hit. Rafael Perez, Joe Smith (who pitches to only one batter) and Chris Perez combine for a scoreless inning, giving up just two walks (R. Perez (1), Smith (1)). Kerry Wood receives his third blown save of the year as he took the lost, pitching one-third of an inning, giving up two runs on a hit and a walk. His record is now 1-3 with a 7.98 ERA.
The Phils had eleven hits in the game, with Jayson Werth leading the way with three hits, a single, a double and a solo home run, being a triple short of hitting the cycle, as he knocks in a run. Ryan Howard follows with two hits, both singles, while he knocks in a run on a double play ball, not receiving an RBI. Jimmy Rollins, Placido Polanco, Chase Utley, Raul Ibanez, Shane Victorino and Brian Schneider had the other six Phils’ hits, with Polanco, Utley and Victorino’s hits being singles, Ibanez hit being a double, knocking in two runs, Schneider’s hit being a solo home run, knocking in one run and Rollins’ hit being a two-run walk-off home run, his first hit since coming off the disabled list.
The Phils (37-32, 3rd NL East) will conclude their interleague series with the Indians (26-44, 5th AL Central) with an afternoon game, already in progress. The Phils go for the series sweep, as they presently have a 9-2 lead in the sixth inning.
Phillies land Lee from Tribe
Defending AL Cy Young winner to join world champions
By Todd Zolecki / MLB.com
Oh my god!! Are the Phils now the team to beat??? It sure looks that way to me!!! 🙂
Cliff Lee won the American League Cy Young Award last season. Less than a year later, he’ll join the defending world champions.
The Phillies and Indians reached agreement Wednesday that would send the left-handed Lee, along with outfielder Ben Francisco to Philadelphia for a package of four prospects — Class A right-hander Jason Knapp and Triple-A right-hander Carlos Carrasco, catcher Lou Marson and shortstop Jason Donald.
The deal is pending medical reviews and could be announced later Wednesday.
The Phillies have been searching for starting pitching help for months. Lee is 7-9 with a 3.14 ERA this season. He went 22-3 with a 2.54 ERA last season, after spending much of 2007 in the Minor Leagues. And Francisco fills a void for a potent right-handed bat off the bench. Francisco, who played regularly in left field, is hitting .250 with 10 home runs and 33 RBIs.
On the other hand, the trade may be a signal that Cleveland — which traded the reigning AL Cy Young Award winner last year, too, in the person of CC Sabathia — is entering a rebuilding period.
Knapp appears to be the key acquisition for the Tribe. He was the Phillies’ second-round pick in last year’s First-Year Player Draft, and he won’t turn 19 until Aug. 31. Listed at 6-foot-5, 215 pounds, Knapp has an upper-90s fastball and a large frame. He was starting for Class A Lakewood in the South Atlantic League, where he was 2-7 with a 4.01 ERA in 17 starts, striking out a ******** 111 batters while walking 39 in 85 1/3 innings.
Knapp was recently shut down with right shoulder soreness. He hasn’t pitched since July 11.
It was well-documented that the Indians were seeking impact pitching prospects in advance of Friday’s Trade Deadline, and Carrasco is the other pitching piece of the deal. He had been discussed internally by the Tribe last year, when the club was shopping Sabathia. In the end, the Tribe turned down a package featuring Carrasco and instead shipped Sabathia to the Brewers for a package highlighted by outfielder Matt LaPorta.
But the 6-foot-3, 215-pound Carrasco is now coming aboard. Carrasco, a 22-year-old native of Venezuela, was with Triple-A Lehigh Valley, where he was 6-9 with a 5.18 ERA in 20 starts. He had struck out 112 with 38 walks in 114 2/3 innings.
Marson is one of the game’s top catching prospects. His acquisition could signal that the Indians are on the brink of another move, possibly involving Victor Martinez.
The 23-year-old Marson has hit .294 with a homer, 13 doubles, 24 RBIs and a .751 OPS in 63 games at Lehigh Valley this season. He appeared in seven games with the Phillies, going 4-for-17 at the plate.
Donald, 24, was batting .236 with a homer, 15 doubles, one triple, 16 RBIs and a .629 OPS in 51 games at Lehigh Valley. He just recently returned to action after surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his knee.
Lee was one of three pieces acquired by Cleveland in the 2002 trade that sent Bartolo Colon to the Expos, and he’s the second of those pieces to be shipped out, joining the Reds’ Brandon Phillips. Grady Sizemore is the lone remaining player from the trade that has defined Mark Shapiro’s tenure as general manager and the rebuilding effort that got the Indians into the postseason in 2007.
Lee, however, wasn’t part of that postseason run. The Indians demoted him to Triple-A that season to get him straightened out after an ineffective, injury-plagued start to the season. And Lee certainly looked straightened out in 2008, when he became the Tribe’s first 20-game winner since Gaylord Perry in 1974. His .880 winning percentage was the second-best in franchise history.
This season, Lee has continued to put up ace-caliber performances, but his supporting cast has let him down. His 7-9 record is no indication of how well he’s pitched, but his 3.14 ERA is. With the trade rumors swirling, Lee has really heated up in the second half. He was 3-0 with a 1.44 ERA in his first three starts after the All-Star break.
The Indians get four of the Phillies’ top prospects. But in what certainly made the deal attractive to the Phillies, they did not have to part with any of the three players the Blue Jays had been seeking for Roy Halladay: left-hander J.A. Happ, right-hander Kyle Drabek and outfielder Dominic Brown. (H/T Phillies.com)
Oh, my. After letting one get away, Roy Halladay, the Phils are able to hook another pitcher, Cliff Lee, and he’s bringing with him a right handed bat, Ben Francisco, to come off of our bench, two of the three parts that the Phils need to cover before the playoffs. And they did it without hurting themselves too badly among their prospects, or J.A. Happ, as it looks like, to me anyway, that Donald needed to be able to play full time elsewhere, thanks to the roadblocks of Jimmy Rollins and Pedro Feliz. As for Marson, I hate to see him go, but I wish both him and Donald luck in the Indians organization. Now, if Reuben can find the extra bullpen help we need, I think this team will be set for the playoffs. If this works out, all I can say is, Roy who? 🙂 I never thought I would be feeling so happy as July ends. 🙂 Whoo HOOOOOO!!!!!!
Yesterday afternoon, the Phillies faced the Tampa Bay Rays in their final spring training game. Despite their best efforts, they lost the game to the Rays, 9-7.
The Phils’ ace, Cole Hamels, started the game for the World Champs. In five innings of work, he gets rocked by the 2008 American League Champs, giving up six runs on six hits, including two home runs, a solo shot in the first inning to former teammate Pat Burrell and a three-run home run to Carlos Pena, also in the first, and a walk while striking out seven. Gary Majewski followed him, pitching a scoreless inning, giving up only a hit. J.C. Romero then took the mound for an inning, being hit for two runs on three hits and a walk. Cedrick Bowers followed Romero, pitching a 1-2-3 inning. Mike Koplove took the mound in the ninth, giving up a run on one hit and three walks while striking out a batter. Hamels took the lost, with his spring record now at 0-1 with a 9.39 ERA. In spite of the bad outing, the fact that Hamels was striking out a large number of batters in the ballgame should be an indication that he will be tough to face during the regular season.
Among the batters, the Phils had eleven hits against Rays’ pitching. Matt Stairs led the way with three hits, two singles and a double, as he knocked in a run and scored a run, ending the spring with a .288 batting average. Ryan Howard and Raul Ibanez both followed with two hits each, with Ibanez hitting a home run, a two-run shot in the fourth, along with a double, while Howard had two singles and scored a run. Howard ended the spring with a .333 batting average while Ibanez ended his with a .310 batting average. Hopefully, Howard will be able to translate his hot spring hitting into the regular season. If so, opposing pitchers are in for a long season while facing him. Jimmy Rollins, Jayson Werth, Greg Dobbs and Jason Donald had the other four Phillies’ hits, with Dobbs’ hit being a two-run home run in the fourth, while Donald’s was a solo shot in the sixth. Werth’s hit, a double, help knocked in a run. Werth ended the spring with a .333 average, after a slow start thanks to injury problems. Rollins ended his spring with a .351 batting average, after coming back from being hot while playing for Team USA in the WBC. Prospect Jason Donald will be headed for Triple-A Lehigh Valley with a .310 batting average.
The defending 2008 World Champions are now ready to begin their title defense, ready to become the first National League team to repeat as World Series Champs since the Pete Rose-Johnny Bench-Joe Morgan-led Big Red Machine of 1975-76.
The Phillies will play the first game of their title defense tonight at home against the Atlanta Braves, the first game of a three-game series with the Braves. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park, with the game starting at 8:00 pm Eastern time. The game will be televisied nationally on ESPN. The Phillies’ starter will be Brett Myers while the Braves will counter with Derek Lowe. Both starters’ records will be 0-0 with a -.– ERA.
PLAY BALL!!! and GO PHILLIES!!!!!
In the first of two games with the Tampa Bay Rays before Opening Night, the 2008 World Champions Phils defeated the 2008 American League Champs with a two-run ninth inning rally, winning the ballgame 3-2.
Joe Blanton started the game for the Phillies, pitching five strong innings, as he gave up just two runs on six hits while striking out three Rays. He was followed to the mound by Chad Durbin, Scott Eyre and Ryan Madson, who each pitched a scoreless frame, giving up just one hit between them (Eyre) and two walks (Durbin and Eyre with one walk each), while they together struck out two Rays (Durbin and Madson one apiece). Brad Lidge, who got the win, pitched a 1-2-3 inning. Lidge spring training record is now 1-0 with a 4.00 ERA. Looks like Blanton and the bullpen are all ready to start the season.
The Phillies’ bats got six hits last night. Jayson Werth led the team with two hits, raising his spring training average to .324. Jimmy Rollins, Jason Donald, Ryan Howard and Carlos Ruiz got the other four Phils’ hits. Raul Ibanez, Chris Coste and Donald had the Phils’ three RBIs, with Donald’s being a walk-off single in the ninth inning, knocking in Eric Bruntlett with the game winner.
The Phillies are presently playing their last spring training game, also with the Rays, this afternoon at Citizens Bank Park. They are presently trailing the Rays 4-0 in the bottom of the third inning.
In Grapefruit League play, the Phils miss a chance at winning two straight games as they play to a tie game with the Toronto Blue Jays on Wednesday before defeating the Florida Marlins yesterday afternoon.
On Wednesday, the Phils played the Toronto Blue Jays to a 7-7 tie at Bright House Field in Clearwater. Their starter, J.A.Happ, pitches four good innings, although later saying that he was disappointed with his outing. Happ would give up three runs on three hits, with two of them being home runs, a two-run shot to Bradley Emaus in the third and a solo home run to Jason Lane in the fourth. Happ also gives up a walk while striking out two. Gary Majewski takes over for two innings, giving up a run on two hits and a walk while striking out one. Scott Eyre follows, pitching an inning, giving up no runs on one hit and a walk. Ryan Madson goes onto the mound next, pitching a 1-2-3 inning. Joe Bisenius pitches the ninth inning, allowing three runs to cross the plate, leading to a 7-7 tie, as he gives up three hits and walking two while striking out a batter as he blows the save opportunity.
Among the batters, the Phillies would score seven runs on seven hits. Jayson Werth leads the attack with two hits, knocking in three runs with a three-run home run, while also getting a double. Chase Utley, Eric Bruntlett, Matt Stairs, Majewski and John Mayberry, Jr., would get the other five Phils’ hits, with Stairs and Bruntlett hits being doubles. Greg Dobbs, Majewski and Pedro Feliz would knock in three of the other four Phils runs with a single (Majewski) and two sacrifice flies (Dobbs and Feliz), while the other run would come in on a Blue Jays’ error.
Yesterday afternoon, the Phillies would do better as Joe Blanton one-hit the Marlins in a 5-1 Phils’ victory. Blanton started the game for the Phils, going six innings, as he gives up only one hit while striking out three batters. Brad Lidge follows Blanton, pitching an inning, giving up no runs on two hits as he strikes out one batter. Clay Condrey then pitches an inning, giving up the Marlins’ only run on two hits. Robert Mosebach pitches the ninth, giving up a hit. Blanton records the win, with his spring training record now being 1-0 with a 2.30 ERA.
The Phillies would get only six hits in the game. Jason Donald, Ryan Howard, Geoff Jenkins, Miguel Cairo, Marcus Giles and Chris Coste would each get a hit, with Howard and Giles’ hits being doubles. Howard, Werth, Giles and Coste would each knock in a run, with Werth’s RBI being a sac fly. Ever since getting back into the lineup, Werth has batted .333 in Grapefruit League play, while a much slimer Howard has so far batted .282 with five spring home runs and fifteen RBIs.
The Phils are presently playing the Cardinals in Grapefruit League play, with the Phils presently trailing 2-1, with Howard hitting his sixth spring home run.
Meanwhile, team ace Cole Hamels did some extended long toss yesterday, saying that his elbow felt fine. There’s a possibility that he might be able to pitch in a Grapefruit League game next week.
The Phillies lose and then win in their last two games as three different starters appear to be going in three different directions.
Starter no. 1, Kyle Kendrick, appears headed for Triple-A Lehigh Valley as he has yet another bad outing on the mound, as he gives up five runs, four of which were earned, to the New York Yankees, this past Monday afternoon. He would pitch four innings in total, giving up eight hits and three walks while striking out two, as he takes the lost. Rich Dubee did say that the fifth spot in the rotation was Kendrick’s to lose, and sadly, it looks like he has, as he complies a spring training record of 1-2 with a 12.10 ERA. But, on the plus side, it might be best for Kendrick if he was sent down to Triple-A, as it should allow him to regain his composer against major league batters, as well as to develop a new pitch or two to help himself get out of jams, which he constantly gets into.
Kendrick was followed by Robert Mosebach who pitches an inning and a third, giving up four runs on five hits. Jake Woods follows Mosebach, pitching two-thirds of an inning, giving up two runs on four hits. Scott Eyre pitches an inning, giving up no runs on a hit as he strikes out three Yanks. Ryan Madson also pitches an inning, as he gives up an unearned run, the twelfth that the Yanks would score against the Phils, on two hits while striking out one.
Batting-wise, the Phils only got six hits in the 12-0 lost, with Eric Bruntlett, Ryan Howard, Matt Stairs, Geoff Jenkins, Jason Ellison and Ronny Paulino each getting a hit.
Starter no. 2, Brett Myers, pitches a strong outing yesterday afternoon against the Reds in the Phillies’ 8-1 victory, giving up no runs on five hits in five and two-thirds innings of work. He would also strike out seven Reds. Dave Borkowski would follow with a third of an inning of work, walking one batter and striking out one. Chad Durbin would pitch an inning, walking a batter. Clay Condrey would also pitch an inning, giving up one hit while striking out one. Brad Lidge, pitching in his first Grapefruit League game, would give up a meaningless run on two hits and a walk in one inning of work. Myers would get the win, giving him a spring training record of 1-0 with a 2.08 ERA, putting him in position to be the Opening Night starter if Cole Hamels isn’t ready to start. More on that later.
Batting-wise, the Phillies would score eight runs in a fourteen-hit attack, with six of those runs coming in the second inning. Raul Ibanez, John Mayberry, Jr. and Carlos Ruiz would lead the attack with two hits apiece, with Ruiz also knocking in a run. Pablo Ozuna, Bruntlett, Jason Donald, Howard, Stairs, Ellison, Myers and Jayson Werth would get the other hits. Ozuna, Bruntlett, Donald, and Howard would each knock in a run, along with Ruiz, while Stairs would knock in three. The Phillies had a total of six doubles, with Ibanez, Mayberry, Ruiz, Bruntlett, Stairs and Howard each hitting one. Mayberry and Donald continue to impress.
The third pitcher, Cole Hamels, have had his left elbow examined yesterday in Philadelphia. It appears that there is nothing structurally wrong with his elbow, as team physician Michael Ciccotti checked over his elbow before administering an anti-inflammatory injection into it to help it. Although good news, the Phillies will be going slow with Hamels, meaning that more likely than not that he will not be the Opening Night pitcher after all, and might actually miss his first two starts in the rotation. But, as they say, better to be safe than sorry. And with the team’s ace, better that he is pitching healthy than to have him pitching while hurt and blowing up his arm at some point during the season.
Presently, the Phillies are playing the Blue Jays, with the game tied 4 to 4 after six innings of play.