The Phils have today announced that they have promoted Marti Wolever to the position of assistant general manager of amateur scouting, to replace Chuck Lamar, who last September had resigned from that position.
Wolever, who had started out as a scout in the Tigers organization in 1984, had been involved in the Phils’ scouting operation for the last nine seasons, helping to oversee the drafting of Ryan Howard, Cole Hamels, Kyle Kendrick, Vance Worley, Michael Stutes and several others, including players who would later be used in trades to bring to the ballclub such players as Brad Lidge, Roy Oswalt, Roy Halladay and Hunter Pence.
Congratulations on your new postion, Marti.
The Phils have tendered contracts to the four players on the team who are still arbitration eligible after they had traded Ben Francisco to the Blue Jays: Cole Hamels, Hunter Pence, Kyle Kendrick and Wilson Vladez. Although it is expected that all four will receive an increase in salary whether they accept the proffered contracts, or go through arbitration, most of the fanbase would prefer that the Phils give multi-year contracts to both Hamels and Pence, especially Hamels, to keep them with the team for a while. As for Kendrick and Valdez, the two have shown their worth as insurance policies in case somebody gets hurt (although Kendrick had also shown that he can be a very good asset in the bullpen).
While this is going on, there has been reports that the Phils have signed to a one-year contract, pending him passing a physical, left-hander Dontrelle Willis. Willis, a former Rookie of the Year (2003 with the Marlins), pitched for the Reds last season, going 1-6 with a 5.00 ERA in 13 starts. Being mostly a starter during his nine-years career with the Marlins, the Tigers, the D-backs and the Reds, Willis had complied a record of 72-69 with an ERA of 4.17, as he had appeared in 205 games, all but three as a starter. The Phils, if he passes the physical, will more than likely be using him out of the bullpen as a left-handed specialist, and a spot-starter, as a kind of compliment to Kendrick, since there is really no way that he will be able to make the rotation, especially with his issues with his control.
Hopefully, the signing of Willis will end up being a good move for the Phils for next season.
Last night, Major League Baseball announced that Placido Polanco has won his third Rawlings Gold Glove Award, this time as a third baseman. His previous Gold Gloves were won as a second baseman of the Detroit Tigers in 2007 and 2009. With his win, he becomes the second man to win a Gold Glove at multiple positions, joining Darin Erstad.
Polanco, starting in 115 games, committed only eight errors during the season, for a fielding percentage of .977.
Congratulation on winning the honor, Polanco.
For the second straight year, the National League All-Stars win the All-Star Game, as they defeat the American League’s best, 5-1.
The American League took the lead in the All-Star Game in the fourth as, with two men out, Adrian Gonzalez of the Red Sox hits a solo home run off of the Phils’ Cliff Lee, giving the AL a 1-0 lead. The AL tried to make it a 2-0 lead three batters later as, with runners on first and second, via singles by Jose Bautista of the Blue Jays, as first baseman Prince Fielder of the Brewers was unable to catch his pop fly, and Josh Hamilton of the Rangers, sending Bautista up to second base, Adrian Beltre of the Rangers hits a single to left. Bautista tried to score on the hit, but is gun down at home plate by a strong throw from left fielder Hunter Pence, as catcher Brian McCann of the Braves applied the tag, 7-2, for the inning’s final out. The National League then took the lead in their half of the fourth as, with two men on, via singles by Carlos Beltran of the Mets and Matt Kemp of the Dodgers, with Beltran stopping at second base, and with no one out, Fielder crushed a 2-2 cutter into center field for a three-run home run, scoring both Beltran and Kemp, giving the NL a 3-1 lead. The NL added to their lead in the fifth as, with a man on second, and with two men out, pinch hitter Andre Ethier of the Dodgers hits an RBI single, knocking in Rickie Weeks of the Brewers, who had earlier reached first base on a fielder’s choice force out, as pitcher Jordon Walden of the Angels threw home to beat out Starlin Castro of the Cubs, who was pinch running for Troy Tulowitzki of the Rockies who had earlier singled, after he had first stolen second base, and then third, as he was tagged out at the plate by catcher Alex Avila of the Tigers for the inning’s second out, 1-2, before Weeks stole second base, giving the NL a 4-1 lead, before he was thrown out at second base as right fielder Bautista’s throw towards home was cut off by first baseman Miguel Cabrera of the Tigers, who then threw to shortstop Jhonny Peralta of the Tigers, who then tagged Ethier out at second base for the inning’s final out, 9-3-6. The NL then made it a 5-1 lead in the seventh as, with a runner on third, and with one man out, Pablo Sandoval of the Giants hits a RBI ground-rule double to left, knocking in Pence, who head earlier singled, then went all the way to third on catcher Matt Wieters of the Orioles passed ball. That would be the final score as Brian Wilson of the Giants would record a save as he got out the last two batters, Michael Cuddyer of the Twins vis a fly out to right and then Paul Konerko of the White Sox via a ground out, 6-3, after the AL had put runners on second and third, via Carlos Quentin of the White Sox reaching base on shortstop Castro’s throwing error and a single by Matt Joyce of the Rays, which sent Quentin to third base, before he went on to second base on right fielder Jay Bruce of the Reds throwing error.
Roy Halladay of the Phils pitched two 1-2-3 innings, striking out a batter. Cliff Lee of the Phils pitcher one and two-thirds innings, giving up a run on three hits. Tyler Clippard (1-0, 0.00) of the Nationals gets the win as he pitched a third of an inning, giving up a hit. Clayton Kershaw of the Dodgers received a hold as he pitch a 1-2-3 inning, striking out a batter. Jair Jurrjens of the Braves also received a hold as he pitched a scoreless inning and two-thirds, giving up a hit, while striking out one. Craig Kimbrel of the Braves also got a hold as he pitched a scoreless third of an inning, as he walked a batter. Jonny Venters of the Braves pitched two-thirds of an inning, striking out one. Heath Bell of the Padres pitched a third of an inning, getting out the only man that he would face. Joel Hanrahan of the Pirates would pitch a third of an inning, giving up a hit, while striking out one. Brian Wilson of the Giants would receive a save as he pitched two-thirds of an inning. Jered Weaver of the Angels pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a walk, while striking out a batter. David Robertson of the Yankees also pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit, while striking out a batter. Michael Pineda of the Mariners pitched a 1-2-3 inning, striking out two. C.J. Wilson of the Rangers blew the save before taking the lost (0-1, 27.00) as he pitched an inning, giving up three runs on three hits, while striking out a batter. Jordon Walden of the Angels pitched an inning, giving up a run on two hits, while striking out one. Chris Perez of the Indians pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit, while striking out one. Brandon League of the Mariners pitched an inning, giving up a run on two hits, while striking out a batter. Alexi Ogando of the Rangers pitched two-thirds of an inning, getting out both men that he would face. Gio Gonzalez of the A’s pitched a third of an inning, striking out the only man that he would face.
The American League All-Stars had six hits in the game, a solo home run by Adrian Gonzalez of the Red Sox, and singles by Jose Bautista of the Blue Jays, Josh Hamilton of the Rangers, Adrian Beltre of the Rangers, Kevin Youkilis of the Red Sox and Matt Joyce of the Rays. The National League All-Stars had nine hits in the game, a single by Lance Berkman of the Cardinals, a single by Carlos Beltran of the Mets, a single by Matt Kemp of the Dodgers, a three run home run by Prince Fielder of the Brewers, a single by Troy Tulowitzki of the Rockies, an RBI single by pinch hitter Andre Ethier of the Dodgers, a double by Yadier Molina of the Cardinals, a single by Hunter Pence of the Astros and an RBI ground-rule double by Pablo Sandoval of the Giants.
The victory gives the National League a 42-38-2 lead over the American League, while it will also give the National League pennant winner home field advantage during the upcoming World Series.
Cliff Lee throws a complete game, two-hit shutout of the fish as the Phils complete a 9-2 home stand with a four-game sweep of the free falling Marlins, 3-0.
The Phils took a 1-0 lead in the fourth as, with one man on, and with two men out, Cliff Lee helped his own cause by hitting an RBI double, knocking in Michael Martinez, who has just singled. The Phils then increased their lead in the fifth as, with two men out, Ryan Howard hits a solo home run, his fifteenth home run of the season, giving the Phils a 2-0 lead. The Phils then made it a 3-0 lead in the sixth as, with one man on, and with two men out, Jimmy Rollins hits an RBI double, scoring Dom Brown, who had earlier singled, moved up to second base on Martinez’s ground out, 6-3, then went to third on Lee’s ground out, 1-3. That would be all the runs that Lee would need, as he pitched a two-hit, complete game, shut out, his second complete game of the season, giving up two singles, one to Mike Stanton, with two outs in the fifth, ending his no-hit bid, and the other in the seventh by Logan Morrison, as he kept the fish under control.
Cliff Lee (7-5, 3.12) took the win as he pitched a complete game shutout, giving up just two hits and two walks, while striking out four. Javier Vazquez (3-7, 6.85) took the lost as he went five innings, giving up two runs on eight hits and two walks, while he struck out three. Michael Dunn pitched an inning, giving up a run on two hits, while striking out a batter. Ryan Webb pitched two 1-2-3 innings.
The Phils had ten hits in the ballgame, with Shane Victorino (Singles) and Cliff Lee (Single, Double, RBI) both leading the team with two hits apiece. Jimmy Rollins (Single, RBI), Placido Polanco (Single), Ryan Howard (Home Run, RBI), Raul Ibanez (Double) and Michael Martinez (Single), had the other six Phils’ hits.
The Phils (44-26, 1st NL East) will now start Interleague Play with a three-game set against the Mariners (35-34, 2nd AL West), starting tomorrow night with a night game at Safeco Field in Seattle. The game will start at 10:10 EDT (7:10 pm PDT). The Phils will send to the mound Roy Oswalt (4-4, 3.14), who is coming off a win against the Cubs on June 12, as he went seven innings, giving up three runs on five hits and two walks, while striking out five, in the Phils’ 4-3 come from behind win. He will be going for his fifth win of the season, while trying to extend the Phils’ winning streak to eight games. The Mariners will try to counter with Michael Pineda (6-4, 2.72), who is coming off a lost against the Tigers on June 11, as he pitched five and one-third innings, giving up six runs, five of which were earned, on eight hits and a walk, while striking out four, in the Mariners’ 8-1 lost. He will be trying to end the Phils present winning streak. The Phils will be looking to not allow Interleague Play to ruin their present momentum, like it has the past three seasons.
A four run outburst in the second inning leads the Phils to a 5-3 win over the Tigers.
The Phils took a 1-0 lead in the second as, with runners on the corners, and with nobody out, Ross Gload hits an RBI single, knocking in Raul Ibanez, who had earlier doubled, then went to third on Delwyn Young’s single, while sending Young, who had just singled, up to second base. One batter later, Brian Schneider made it a 4-0 Phils’ lead as he hits a 3-run home run, his first home run of the spring, scoring both Young and Gload. The Tigers would get a run back in their half of the second as, with runners on the corners, and with nobody out, Brennan Boesch hits into a double play, 3-6-3, scoring Miguel Cabrera, who had earlier singled, then went to third on Victor Martinez’s single, while wiping out at second base, for the inning’s first out, Martinez, who had just singled, making it a 4-1 Phils’ lead. The Tigers would make it 4-2 Phils in the third as, with the bases loaded, via a single to Don Kelly, a walk to Andy Dirks, moving Kelly to second base, and a single to Will Rhymes, moving both Kelly and Dirks up a base, and with one man out, Magglio Ordonez hits a sacrifice fly, scoring Kelly from third. The Phils would increase their lead in the seventh as, with two men out, Jeff Larish hits a solo home run, his first home run of the spring, giving the Phils a 5-2 lead. The Tigers would get that run back in the ninth as, with two men on, and with nobody out, Audy Ciriaco hits into an RBI ground out, 6-3, knocking in Argenis Diaz, who had earlier singled, then went to third on Ben Guez’s double. That would be the final score as Mike Zagurski would end the game by striking out both pinch hitters Ryan Strieby and Scott Sizemore.
Joe Blanton gets the win (1-0, 3.09) as he pitched five strong innings, giving up two runs on five hits and two walks, while striking out three. Ryan Madson recorded his first spring hold as he pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit while striking out a batter. J.C. Romero recorded his first spring training hold as he also pitched a scoreless inning, giving up two hits. David Herndon received his second spring hold as he pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit, while striking out a batter. Mike Zagurski recorded his first spring save as he pitched an inning, giving up a run on two hits, while striking out two. Rick Porcello took the lost (0-1, 4.50), as he pitched three innings, giving up four runs on six hits and two walks, while striking out two. Adam Wilk and Jose Valverde then followed for three scoreless innings, as they together gave up two hits (one hit each) and a walk (Wilk). Duane Below then followed for an inning, giving up a run on one hit, while striking out a batter. Brad Thomas and Ryan Perry then followed with two scoreless innings, giving up no hits between them.
The Phils had nine hits in the game, with Raul Ibanez leading the team with two hits, a single and a double, raising his spring training average to .240. Jimmy Rollins (Single), Placido Polanco (Single), Jeff Larish (Home Run), Delwyn Young (Single), Ross Gload (Single), Brian Schneider (Home Run) and Wilson Valez (Single) had the other seven Phil’s hits, two of which were a three-run home run (Schneider) and a solo shot (Larish). Gload had the other Phil RBI.
The Phils’ Grapefruit League record is now 7-6.
It seems that several things had occurred as far as the Phils are concerned.
First, on December 2, the Phils tendered contracts to outfielder Ben Francisco and pitcher Kyle Kendrick to keep them from becoming free agents. Kyle Kendrick will likely be fighting with Vance Worley for the fifth starter’s spot during spring training, while Francisco will be involved in a platoon situation with Dom Brown, as…
on the following Sunday, December 5, it was announced that Jayson Werth had signed a seven-year, $126 million contract with the Washington Nationals. Although he was expected to leave, Jayson’s signing with another team within the NL East came as a complete surprise to everyone, including Phils manager Charlie Manuel, as everyone had expected him to sign with an AL team, like the Red Sox or the Tigers. Well, Jayson, congrats on the money, but be prepared for a lot of boos, after being given some respectful cheers the first time you come to town in a Nat uniform. (The Nats? I hope you know what you’re doing Jayson.) As for the Phils’ compensation in draft picks, they will get a player in the draft between the first and second rounds, and then a player from the second round, as the Nats’ first round pick did not fall among the first 15 players of the draft.
The next day, December 6, the Hall of Fame Expansion Era Committee announced that it had elected ex-Phil General Manager Pat Gillick (2005-2008) to the Baseball Hall of Fame. Gillick, who was also the GM for the Blue Jays, who won World Series Championships in 1992-1993, to go along with the Phils’ 2008 World Series Championship, as well as being the GM for both the Baltimore Orioles and the Seattle Mariners, in 27 years as a GM, had 11 teams enter the post-season.
The next day, December 7, it was announced that journalist Bill Conlin of the Philadelphia Daily News (also formerly on the Philadelphia Bulletin) will receive the J.G. Taylor Spink Award from the BBWAA, for 50 years of meritorious contributions to baseball writing. He will be given the award during the induction ceremonies at Cooperstown, NY, on July 25, 2011.
Then, on December 8, the Phils announced that they had signed former Cardinal relief pitcher Dennys Reyes to a one year deal for $1.1 million, with a $1.35 million option for 2012. Reyes, who has pitched in the major leagues for fourteen seasons out of the bullpen, will be joining his eleventh team when he joins the Phils, as he finished 2010 with a 3-1 record with an ERA of 3.55, as he pitched in 59 games, with a save, as he struck out 25 batters, while walking 21. The Phils will likely be using him as their left handed specialist out of the bullpen, to compliment Antonio Bastardo.
On the 9th, the Phils took three players in the Rule 5 Draft, with the first one, Michael Martinez, an infielder, coming from the Nats organization, via their Syracuse Triple-A affiliate. Phils’ GM Ruben Amaro Jr. jokingly commented that picking him up was the Phils way of getting back at the Nats for taking Jayson. (I just hope the last laugh ain’t on the Phils with this one.) The Phils would also pick up Chris Frey from the Rockies organization and Justin Friend from the A’s in the minor league part of the Rule 5 Draft. I guess it’ll be a while before we see if any of these guys pan out with the Phils.
Also during the week, the Phils brought Dom Brown back from the Dominican League, as they did not think that he was getting the seasoning that they thought he would need to be ready for spring training. Instead, they plan to do it during spring training itself, to get him ready for the regular season.
Lastly, the Phils had announced on Saturday that shortstop Jimmy Rollins had on Thursday undergone minor surgery on his left wrist. They also announced that he should be able to participate in spring training next year.