Tag: carlos gonzalez

Fans starting to wonder if the Phillie brain trust might be better off spending less time wondering if Madson can close and more wondering if anyone on the team can hit

The Phils might not be able to hit in 2011, but they sure can pitch. Last night Cole Hamels and Ryan Madson made the most of the two runs the offense provided. Hamels spun eight fantastic innings and Madson shut down the Rockies in the ninth, converting his seventh save in seven tries and dropping his ERA on the year to 0.53.

Hamels lowered his ERA on the year to 2.92 with another outstanding outing. Over his last eight starts he’s pitched to a 2.19 ERA with an 0.90 ratio and thrown 59 innings — that’s an average of more than 7 1/3 innings per start.

Wilson Valdez was as close as the Phils could come to an offensive hero. Valdez went 2-for-3 with a pair of singles, driving in the first run for the Phils and scoring the second.

The Phillies didn’t have an extra-base hit in the game. They are slugging .338 in May, which is 14th-best in the NL. They are 14th in batting average and 15th in on-base percentage for the month.

The Phillies are 26-16 on the year after beating the Colorado Rockies 2-1 last night.

Hamels got the start for the Phillies and went eight innings, allowing a run on five hits and a walk. Two of the hits went for extra-bases, both doubles. He struck out eight.

Dexter Fowler grounded to short to start the game, but Hamels walked Alfredo Amezaga on four pitches behind him. Carlos Gonzalez followed that with a single to right. Amezaga tried to take third, but Mayberry threw him out at third for the second out. Troy Tulowitzki flew to center to leave Gonzalez at first.

Nice throw by Mayberry changes the inning.

Todd Helton grounded to second to start the second. Jose Lopez was next and he singled into center, but was forced at second when Ryan Spilborghs followed with a ground ball to short. Spilborghs was thrown out trying to steal second to set Colorado down.

Hamels had gotten six outs in the game and two of them came on the bases.

He threw a 1-2-3 third, getting Chris Iannetta on a ground ball to third, the pitcher Jorge De La Rosa swinging 0-2 and Fowler on a ground ball to third.

Hamels struck out Gonzalez and Tulowitzki in a 1-2-3 fourth.

He struck Helton out for the first out of the fifth. Lopez and Spilborghs went down on ground balls behind Helton.

Struck out Iannetta and De La Rosa in a 1-2-3 sixth with the Phils up 1-0.

Gonzalez doubled off the wall in left-center with one out in the seventh. Tulowitzki grounded to third for the second out with Gonzalez holding second, but Helton was next and he doubled to right, scoring Gonzalez to tie the game at 1-1. Lopez flew to center to leave Helton at second.

Spilborghs led off the eighth with a single. Iannetta lined to left for the first out and De La Rosa stayed in the game and bunted Spilborghs to second with the second. Hamels struck Fowler out swinging 2-2 to leave Spilborghs stranded.

Madson started the ninth with a 2-1 lead. Lefty Seth Smith hit for the pitcher Alfredo Amezaga and doubled into the left field corner. Madson struck out Gonzalez and Tulowitzki behind Smith and then put the lefty Helton on intentionally after pitching around him and getting behind 3-0. Lefty Jason Giambi hit for righty Jose Lopez. Madson got behind Giambi 2-0, but struck him out swinging 2-2 to end the game.

Gonzalez and Tulowitzki are impressive fellows to strike out with the tying run on second base. Madson threw 24 pitches in the game.

The Phillies lineup against lefty Jorge De La Rosa went (1) Rollins (2) Martinez (3) Polanco (4) Howard (5) Mayberry (6) Ibanez (7) Ruiz (8) Valdez. Martinez plays center for the second straight day with Victorino sidelined with a hamstring problem. Francisco on the bench against the lefty with the lefty Ibanez in left and the righty Mayberry in right. Apparently back-to-back lefties was enough to get Ibanez into the lineup. The righty Valdez plays second.

The Phils went in order in the first and the second.

Ruiz led off the third with a single and moved up to second on a ground out by Valdez, but Hamels struck out looking for the second out and Rollins grounded to third to leave him stranded.

Martinez, Polanco and Howard went in order in the fourth.

Ibanez singled to right with one out in the fifth and Ruiz was hit by a pitch behind hm. The runners moved up to second and third before Valdez singled into left, scoring Ibanez to put the Phils up 1-0 with one out and men on first and third. Hamels grounded into a double-play to keep the Phils from getting more.

Hamels swings away and it doesn’t work out for the Phils.

Rollins started the sixth with a single to left and Martinez bunted him to second. Polanco flew to right for the second out before Rollins stole third, but Howard flew to left to leave him there.

The game was tied at 1-1 when the Phils hit in the seventh. Ibanez and Ruiz both struck out as the Phils went in order.

Valdez led off the eighth with a single to left. Victorino hit for Hamels and bunted him to second. Valdez took third on a wild pitch before Rollins hit a fly ball to right for the second out, deep enough for Valdez to tag and score, putting the Phils up 2-1. Martinez grounded to short for the third out.

Valdez starts the rally that puts the Phils ahead after driving in the first run of the game in the fifth. In both innings the Phillies scored they get helped by a passed ball or wild pitch.

Rollins was 1-for-3 with an RBI.

Martinez was 0-for-3 with a strikeout. 7-for-32 with seven singles and a 219/265/219 line for the year.

Polanco was 0-for-3. He’s hitting 211/246/246 in May.

Howard 0-for-3. 161/268/339 over his last 71 plate appearances.

Mayberry was 0-for-3 with a nice throw to get Amezaga at third. 205/326/410 over his last 46 plate appearances.

Ibanez 1-for-3 with a strikeout. He hasn’t been any worse against lefties than righties this year. A little better, actually. 222/282/389 against lefties and 226/281/321 against righties. As bad as he’s been, I think Francisco needs to be starting against lefties given the current roster and production of Ibanez.

Ruiz was 1-for-2. He’s 3-for-his-last-37.

Joe Blanton (1-2, 5.50) faces righty Jhoulys Chacin (4-2, 2.89) tonight. Opponents are hitting just .211 against Chacin for the year, but he’s walked 12 in 19 innings over his last three starts. Blanton’s elbow saga continues. He hasn’t gone more than five innings in either of his last two starts.

This article suggests that Utley could be back before the end of the homestand and Brown within a couple of weeks.

In the company of men who can hit

Fun for today is trying to find the outfielders in either league that were better than Jayson Werth offensively in 2010. Your mileage may vary.

Here’s the outfield guys that finished ahead of Werth in runs created and runs created per 27 outs as calculated by ESPN and in offensive war (as calculated by Baseball-Reference) in 2010:

Runs Created Runs Created per 27 outs Offensive WAR
Jose Bautista Josh Hamilton Jose Bautista
Carlos Gonzalez Carlos Gonzalez Josh Hamilton
Josh Hamilton Jose Bautista Shin-Soo Choo
Matt Holliday Nelson Cruz Matt Holliday

Toronto’s Jose Bautista and Texas’s Josh Hamilton are ahead of Werth in all three of those categories. Bautista hit 54 home runs and on-based .378 for the year. Hamilton hit 359/411/633 for the year. Both of those guys need to be on any list of outfielders who were better than Werth offensively in 2010.

After that things get a little less clear. There are four players that are better than Werth in at least one of the three categories in the table above, but worse in at least one other. They are Carlos Gonzalez, Matt Holliday, Nelson Cruz and Shin-Soo Choo.

Carlos Gonzalez finished ahead of Werth in runs created and runs created per 27 outs, but behind him in offensive war. Werth got 16 more plate appearances than Gonzalez and hit seven fewer home runs while batting .296 to Gonzalez’s .336. He hit 12 more doubles, but seven fewer triples. He walked more than twice as many times as Gonzalez and put up the better on-base percentage, .388 to .376. Gonzalez hit 289/322/453 away from home while Werth hit 270/365/463. Gonzalez drove in 117 runs and Werth drove in 85. Werth had an OPS+ for the year of 145, Gonzalez 143.

Holliday topped Werth in each of the three slash categories except slugging, where they tied. He outhit him .312 to .296 and on-based .390 to Werth’s .388. In 23 more plate appearances, Holliday struck out 54 fewer times than Werth. Holliday’s OPS+ of 149 tops Werth’s 145.

Cruz got just 445 plate appearances on the season, but outhit Werth .318 to .296 and out-slugged him .576 to .532 with an OPS+ of 150. Werth drew walks more regularly, so despite the fact that Cruz’s batting average was twenty-two points higher, he posted the better on-base percentage (.388 for Werth and .374 for Cruz).

Choo hit 300/401/484 in his 646 plate appearances with an OPS+ of 148. Werth had six more plate appearances and hit five more homers and 15 more doubles. Choo drew 83 walks to Werth’s 82 and struck out 29 fewer times.

In my mind, Gonzalez and Holliday were both better than Werth. I think it’s very close between Werth and Choo, but I would give the slight nod to Werth. I think Cruz has the weakest case of those four players, just because he had so many fewer chances to hit in 2010.

So that’s four on my list: Hamilton, Bautista, Gonzalez and Holliday.

The next question needs to be if there are outfielders that didn’t appear on the table above that could have been better than Werth offensively in 2010. My nominations for the four most productive outfielders not on the table above are Carl Crawford, Ryan Braun, Andrew McCutchen and Vernon Wells.

Crawford may be the guy with the best case there, but I think that Werth has him beat. Five more plate appearances for Werth in which he hit eight more home runs, 16 more doubles and drew 36 more walks. Crawford outhit him .307 to .298 and delivered 11 more triples and stole 34 more bases while striking out 43 fewer times. Better power numbers and the better on-base percentage gives Werth an OPS that’s 70 points better than Crawford’s for the season.

Braun got 32 more plate appearances than Werth and hit fewer home runs and fewer doubles and walked 26 fewer times. He had a nice season, but he wasn’t better than Werth.

So did Andrew McCutchen. But, in one more plate appearance than Werth had fewer doubles, fewer homers and fewer walks. Werth out-OPSed him by more than a hundred points.

Wells hit 44 doubles and 31 homers, but on-based just .331 for the season. Corey Hart had a similar year in the NL with not quite as many doubles and a little bit better average, but again I think his .340 on-base percentage keeps him out of the better-than-Werth picture.

That leaves the list at four. Bautista, Hamilton, Gonzalez and Holliday. I think Choo and Crawford are right behind them, with Werth having had a slightly better year offensively than both of those players.

This article compares Werth and Crawford. It also says that Werth’s agent says Werth is worth more than Jason Bay, who got four years, $66 million from the Mets last winter. Bay had a miserable year for New York in which he hit 259/347/402 with six home runs and struck out at a higher rate than Werth (22.7% of PA for Bay and 22.5% for Werth).

Better late than never

Game three of the NLDS didn’t end until about two o’clock in the morning Philadelphia time, but when it was over the Phillies had a 6-5 win to take a two games to one lead in the best-of-five series with the Colorado Rockies. The Phils won a tight game late thanks to contributions from a pair of players whose seasons didn’t have you expecting a whole lot from them in the playoffs. Jimmy Rollins sparked a ninth-inning rally with a leadoff single and scored the run that won the game for the Phils. Brad Lidge shut out the lights on a game that badly needed its lights shut out, getting Troy Tulowitzki on a soft fly ball to left for the final out of the game with the winning run on first.

It was a close and exciting game, but not a great game. Nobody pitched especially well or looked especially comfortable playing with the temperature in the low 30′s. The most exciting play of the game may have been Utley hitting a ball off his leg that wound up going about ten feet down the first base line. Nobody on the Phillies can get out Carlos Gonzalez, almost literally. He’s 8-for-13 in the series (.615) after going 3-for-4 last night and scoring three of the five Colorado runs.

The Phillies also suffered what could prove to be a big injury in the bottom of the seventh as Scott Eyre sprained his right ankle coming off the mound to try and field a bunt. The Phils already had a lot of problems with left-handers and losing the one guy who has been fantastic probably isn’t going to help. Bastardo looks like he may be the only lefty available tonight out of the pen for the Phils. Other possibilities are Eyre, who hurt his ankle last night, Hamels, who is scheduled to start game five if it’s needed, or Happ, who started yesterday and threw three innings and 76 pitches. So it looks like it may just be Bastardo.

The Phils lead the Rockies two games to one in the best-of-five NLDS after winning last night’s game 6-5.

JA Happ got the start for the Phillies and went three innings, allowing three runs on five hits and two walks. One of the hits went for extra-bases, a double by Garrett Atkins. He struck out four.

He faced a Rockies lineup that went (1) Gonzalez (LF/L) (2) Fowler (CF/S) (3) Helton (1B/L) (4) Tulowitzki (SS/R) (5) Torrealba (C/R) (6) Atkins (3B/R) (7) Spilborghs (RF/L) (8) Barmes (2B/R). That’s the same lineup as game two, but with Torrealba and Atkins switched after Torrealba homered off of Hamels on Thursday.

The Rockies had lefties Jason Giambi, Ian Stewart, Brad Hawpe and Seth Smith on the bench to start the game, along with righty and Chris Iannetta and switch-hitter Eric Young.

Happ started the bottom of the first up 1-0 thanks to an Utley blast in the top of the first. Gonzalez led off and singled into center on a 3-1 pitch. Fowler was next and he got way ahead, too. The 3-1 pitch looked low, but Happ got the strike before Fowler singled into left. It put men on first and third with nobody out for Helton. Helton hit a slow ground ball to second. Utley got the first out at second, but the Phillies could not turn two and Gonzalez scored to make it 1-1 with one out and a man on first. Tulowitzki followed with another hit, a single to center, and Helton went to second. Happ struck Torrealba out swinging for the second out. Atkins was next and it looked like Happ had struck him out, too, but the 2-2 pitch was called low. Atkins singled into left on the next pitch and Helton scored from second. 2-1. Spilborghs was next and smashed a ball to center field, but Victorino took it to end the inning.

Thirty-five pitch first inning for Happ.

Barmes grounded to short to start the second, but the pitcher Hammel was next and Happ walked him on five pitches. Gonzalez popped a 1-0 pitch to short for the second out and Happ struck Fowler out swinging 3-2 to set the side down.

Seventeen more pitches had Happ at 52.

Helton started the bottom of the third for Colorado and drew a walk on a 3-2 pitch that was low. Tulowitzki flew softly to right for the first out and Happ got Torrealba swinging 1-2 for the second. Atkins was next, though, and he smashed a ball over the head of Victorino for a double. Helton scored from first without a throw and the Rockies led 3-1. Happ struck Spilborghs out to leave Atkins stranded.

Twenty-four more pitches in the inning for Happ. 76.

Blanton started the bottom of the fourth after the Phils hit for Happ in the top of the inning. The Phils were up 4-3. Barmes popped to first for the first out. The pitcher Matt Belisle hit for himself and grounded to short for the second. Gonzalez was next and he hammered a 2-1 pitch from Blanton way out to right, tying the game at 4-4. It brought up Fowler and he chopped a ball back to the mound. Blanton fielded and tagged Fowler out to end the inning.

It was still 4-4 when Blanton started the fifth. Helton led off and hit a 2-0 pitch into center for a single, but Tulowitzki was next and Blanton got him to hit into a double-play. Torreabla flew to Werth in right for the third out.

Just seven pitches in the inning for Blanton, who had thrown 22 in the game.

After hitting for himself in the top of the inning, Blanton started the bottom of the sixth with a 5-4 lead. Atkins led off and lined a 2-2 pitch to Ibanez in left. Spilborghs was next and singled into center. Barmes flew to Victorino just in front of the warning track for the second out. Lefty Seth Smith hit for the pitcher Jose Contreras. Eyre came in and got Smith to foul out to Feliz on a 1-1 pitch to set the Rockies down.

Eyre returned to start the seventh. Gonzalez led off and got the Phillies again, splitting the gap in left-center for a double to start the inning. Fowler was next and he bunted, but as Eyre came off the mound he hurt his ankle and fell to the ground. Gonzalez moved to third and Fowler was safe with a single. Manuel brought in his right-handed closer Madson to pitch to the lefty Helton and Madson struck him out for the first out. Tulowitzki was next and he hit a fly ball to deep left. Gonzalez scored to tie the game at 5-5 with Fowler holding first. Madson struck Torrealba out looking 2-2 to end the inning.

Durbin pitched the eighth with the score still tied at 5-5 and set the Rockies down in order. He got Atkins and Spilborghs on a pair of ground balls to third and then got Barmes to ground to short.

Nice inning for Durbin in a critical spot.

Lidge was on in the ninth to protect a 6-5 lead. Brad Hawpe, who was put in right field in the top of the inning by Colorado, led off and grounded to second. Gonzalez was next and Lidge couldn’t get him out either. Gonzalez drew a walk on eight pitches, putting the tying run on first base. Lefty Jason Giambi hit for Dexter Fowler and Giambi got him to foul to Feliz on a 1-1 pitch for the second out. The lefty Helton drew a five-pitch walk, moving Gonzalez to second and bringing up Tulowitzki with two outs and two on. Eric Young ran for Helton at first. Tulowitzki got ahead 1-0 and then lofted a soft fly ball to Francisco, who had just came in to play left with Lidge at the start of the inning, to end the game.

The Phillies lineup against righty Jason Hammel went (1) Rollins (SS/S) (2) Victorino (CF/S) (3) Utley (2B/L) (4) Howard (1B/L) (5) Werth (RF/R) (6) Ibanez (LF/L) (7) Feliz (3B/R) (8) Ruiz (C/R).

The Phillies started the game with a five-man bench that included righties Francisco and Cairo and lefties Dobbs, Stairs and Bako.

Rollins led off the game and flew to center 3-2 for the first out. Victorino was next and he struck out swinging, but Utley followed and he pounded a 1-0 pitch out to right-center to put the Phillies up 1-0. Howard crushed the first pitch he saw down the right field foul line but foul before he struck out 2-2 trying to check his swing to set the Phillies down.

Down 2-1, the Phillies went in order in the second. Werth flew to right for the first out. Ibanez hit a line drive hard back up the middle, but off of Hammel’s glove. Hammel recovered the ball and threw him out. Feliz waved at a 2-2 pitch outside and in the dirt for the third out.

Hammel had thrown 30 pitches through two innings.

Ruiz led off the third and hit a 2-2 pitch hard to third, but Atkins fielded and threw to first. His throw was in the dirt, but Helton scooped it nicely for the first out. Happ struck out on three pitches for the second out. Rollins went down swinging 2-2 to set the Phillies down. Hammel had struck out five through three innings.

Down 3-1, Victorino led off the top of the fourth with a walk. Utley moved him to second with a single to right. Howard was next and he laced a base hit to right-center, scoring Victorino to make it 3-2 and moving Utley to third. Werth walked to load the bases. Ibanez walked to force in Utley and tie the game at 3-3. Feliz was next with the bases still loaded and nobody out. He tapped a 1-1 pitch back to the mound. Hammel gloved and threw home for the first out, Torrealba threw to first to complete the double-play. With men on second and third and two down, Ruiz had a long at-bat before he finally hit a 3-2 pitch and snuck a ground ball into left field for a single. Werth scored and the Phils led 4-3 with men on first and third. Dobbs hit for Happ and the Rockies pulled Hammel from the game. They called on righty Matt Belisle to pitch to Dobbs and Belisle got Dobbs on a ground ball to second to leave both men stranded.

Fantastic inning for the Phils. Great job to get it started by Victorino. Nice at-bat with two outs by Ruiz.

Belisle was back to start the fifth with the score tied at 4-4. Rollins struck out swinging 2-2 for the first out. Victorino went down on a fly ball to right for the second, but Utley followed with a two-out walk. The Rockies called on lefty Joe Beimel to pitch to Howard and Howard popped Beimel’s first pitch to Tulowitzki in shallow center to end the frame.

Righty Jose Contreras was on to start the sixth for Colorado. He got behind Werth 3-0 but came back to strike him out swinging for the first out. Ibanez and Feliz walked back-to-back after that, putting men on first and second for Ruiz. Ruiz grounded a 3-1 pitch back up the middle and into center for a single. Ibanez scored from second to put the Phils up 5-4. With men on first and second and one out, Blanton hit for himself and struck out trying to bunt. Rollins grounded to second to set the Phillies down.

Second big hit in the game for Ruiz. Blanton stays in the game with Pedro presumably available to pitch.

Lefty Franklin Morales set the Phillies down in order in the seventh. Victorino led off and hit a ground ball that Tulowitzki made a nice play on behind second, fielding and throwing to first to nip Victorino for the first out. Utley flew to left and Howard flew to center.

Morales is scary out of the pen for Colorado. I feel much better about the Phillies chances against his fellow lefty Beimel.

Righty Rafael Betancourt pitched the eighth for the Rockies with the score tied at 5-5. He struck Werth out swinging 2-2 for the first out. Ibanez was next and he drew a walk on a 3-1 pitch that was outside. Feliz followed and he dumped a ball down the left field line that fell for a double, moving Ibanez to third. Ruiz struck out swinging 1-2 for the second out. Stairs hit for Madson and struck out swinging 3-2 to leave both men stranded.

Enormous strikeout for Ruiz, who can’t bring the runner on third home with one out.

Righty Huston Street started the ninth for Colorado with the score at 5-5. Rollins led off for the Phils and singled into center on a 3-2 pitch. Victorino bunted him to second. Utley was next and he hit a check-swing dribbler out in front of the plate. Street fielded with his momentum taking him into foul territory and threw to first. Utley was called safe on a close play and Rollins went to third — I’m pretty sure it’s safe to say the Phillies got at least one break on the play. Howard was next and delivered a sac fly to deep left-center, with both runners moving up a base and Rollins scoring to put the Phils up 6-5. Werth drew a walk to put two men on before Ibanez went down on a ball hit out in front of the plate to end the frame.

Rollins starts the rally. The Phils play for one and get one.

Rollins came into the series 2-for-9 with two singles. He was 1-for-5 with a huge single last night.

Victorino was 4-for-9 with a double in games one and two and 0-for-3 with a walk last night.

Utley was 2-for-8 in the set. He went 3-for-4 with a home run and a walk last night.

Howard 4-for-8 with two doubles in the series coming into the game and went 1-for-4 with two RBI last night.

Werth 3-for-7 with a triple and a homer in games one and two. 0-for-3 with two walks last night.

Ibanez 4-for-8 with a double and four RBI in the first two and went 0-for-2 with three walks last night. Werth and Ibanez combined to go 0-for-5 with five walks in the game.

Feliz 3-for-7 in the series coming into the game. 1-for-3 with a double and a walk last night.

Ruiz was 1-for-5 with two walks in the series coming into game three. 2-for-4 with two RBI last night, but a big strikeout in the eighth.

Dobbs and Stairs were both 0-for-1 in last night’s game.

Game four of the series is tonight at 6:07. Cliff Lee faces Ubaldo Jimenez in a rematch of game one.

In his blog, Scott Eyre says that he suffered a mild sprain of his right ankle and that he’ll be able to pitch again. He doesn’t say when, but presumably it’s soon. I’d guess it isn’t tonight.

This says that Chan Ho Park could be available if the Phillies make it to the NLCS.

It’s pretty hard to watch the replay of Utley’s dribbler in the ninth without noticing that the ball hits his leg. It should have been called a foul ball.

Taking stock of the Rox

My hot-or-not opinion on the eight Rockies who have the most plate appearances over the past 14 days:











Fantastic year
for Helton all-around.  If you’re looking for a flaw, he slugged just .372 against lefties, but hit
.311 against them with a .369 on-base percentage.  He hit .300 or
better every month and on-based at least .400 in each of the last four
months of the season.  He was on a huge tear to end the season, going
14-for-30 (467/529/667).  Bright spot number two may be that he has just one home run in his last 119 plate appearances.




Hit 342/421/619
in the second half, so he’s got to be playing pretty well. 
411/488/781 over his last 84 plate appearances.




Hit .322 with a
.379 on-base percentage in the second half after hitting .225 with a .309
on-base percentage in the first half.  Just two home runs on the
season, but has hit 321/372/389 since the start of August and is
8-for-his-last-22 (364/360/545).
Hawpe 285 384 519 The
lefty Hawpe struggled against left-handed pitching this season, hitting
.243 with a .337 on-base percentage (he hit .303 with a .403 on-base
percentage against righties).  He smoked 42 doubles on the year,
which tied him for fifth in the NL.  After a 320/396/577 first half,
though, he hit 240/370/442 in the second half.  He hit just .208 in
September in October, but managed a monster .394 on-base percentage in
those months by drawing 21 walks in 94 plate appearances.  He
finished strong, going 8-for-his-last-24 with three home runs.  He
was ice cold before that, though.  Going into those last 24 at-bats
he was 7-for-47 (.146).
Gonzalez 284 353 525 The
23-year-old lefty fared well against left-handed pitching this season,
hitting 276/343/466 against them.  Like Fowler his numbers at home
were a lot better than his numbers at home.  He hit 305/361/582 at
home and 263/344/467 on the road.  Most of the action he saw on the
year came in the second half — after hitting 202/280/333 in 94 plate
appearances before the break he hit 320/384/608 in 223 plate appearances
after the break.  He went 9-for-28 (333/357/593) to end the regular






Stewart hit .178
against lefties on the season.  Twenty of his 25 homers on the year
came against right-handed pitching.  He’s 3-for-his-last-20 with
three singles.




Career highs for
Barmes in home runs (23) and RBI (76).  Hit 279/323/478 before the
break but trailed off after, hitting just 205/259/394.  He was
atrocious away from home, hitting 207/251/380 for the year.  He went
5-for-28 to end the season (.179).
Fowler 266 363 406 The
switch-hitter Fowler didn’t do much against righties this year, hitting
240/357/372 against them compared to 321/377/482 against lefties.  He
also hit just 236/331/387 away from home.  He comes into the series a
chilly 4-for-his-last-25 (160/222/280).

Assuming the Phillies start Lee and Hamels in games one and two, I would guess there’s about zero chance you see those eight players on the field for Colorado in both of the first two games.

Here are some of the other players that could be a factor for Colorado and what they’ve done recently:

Righty Ryan Spilborghs always kills the Phils, he has a career line of 420/464/660 against the Phillies in 56 plate appearances. He didn’t hit either righties or lefties well this year, though, and managed just a 241/310/395 line for the season. 3-for-23 to end the year.

Righty Chris Iannetta hit just 228/344/460 this season, but his 296/406/580 line against lefties should scare you. He’s another Rockies player that was much better at home than away from it, hitting 295/389/576 at home and 167/302/353 away. He went 5-for-16 (.313) to end the season.

Garrett Atkins is yet another of the Colorado righties. He hit an ugly 226/308/342 on the year, but 268/363/428 against lefties. He hit .200 with a .298 on-base percentage away from home. He was also 5-for-16 to end the season.

Lefty Seth Smith put up nice numbers against both lefties and righties on the season, hitting 293/378/510 overall. He didn’t see much time against lefties, though, getting just 69 of his 387 plate appearances on the year against them. He comes into the post-season 5-for-24 (.208) over the last 14 days.

Lefty Jason Giambi had a terrible year overall, hitting 201/343/382 between the A’s and Rockies. He smoked the ball in limited time with the Rockies, though, hitting 292/452/583 over 31 plate appearances. 1-for-9 with five strikeouts in the last two weeks of the season.

24-year-old switch-hitter Eric Young didn’t do much with the bat this season, hitting just 246/295/316 in 61 plate appearances. He was 1-for-10 in the last two weeks of the season. Really fast, though.

Finally, the Rockies were just a miserable offensive team on the road this season. Overall they hit 235/319/399 on the road and 287/367/482 at Coors Field. Iannetta (.656), Spilborghs (.644), Atkins (.624) and Barmes (.631) all had an OPS for the season that was under .700 away from Coors.

West obsessed

Still a few games left to play, but it looks almost just about sure the Phillies will be playing the Rockies of the Dodgers in the first round of the playoffs. Here’s how the offenses for the three teams compare for the year, since the All-Star break and for the month that just ended:

Team G R R/G
COL 158 788 4.99
LA 159 767 4.82
PHI 158 805 5.09

Second Half
COL 70 346 4.94
LA 71 324 4.56
PHI 72 345 4.79

COL 27 134 4.96
LA 27 132 4.89
PHI 30 140 4.67

The Rockies have been a little better than the Dodgers offensively.

Ignoring the Phillies offense thinking only about which offense the Phils’ pitchers would fare best against, I still like the Phillies chances against the Rockies a little better than the Dodgers given the Phils seem sure to start lefties Lee and Hamels in the first two games of a short set.

Here’s what the Rockies and Dodgers have done against lefties this season — their average, on-base percentage and slugging against them as a team as well as their rate of getting hits, walks, doubles and triples and hitting home runs per 100 plate appearances:
























The Rockies did hit for a little more power against lefties this season, but the Dodgers got hits and walks at a higher rate. LA’s .358 on-base percentage against lefties is particularly impressive.

Here are the Rockies hitters that have at least 50 plate appearances this year with an OPS of .850 or better against lefties:





Iannetta 299 407 597 1.004
Tulowitzki 268 379 530 .909
Fowler 326 379 492 .872
Smith 259 368 500 .868
Gonzalez 294 356 510 .866

Iannetta hasn’t played nearly as much as Torrealba recently. Smith is a left-handed batter who has only had about 18% of his plate appearances against lefties this season. Fowler and Gonzalez can’t both play center field at the same time — Fowler has appeared only as a center fielder this season while Gonzalez has appeared at all three outfield positions, but mostly center and left.

Tulowitzki is just great.

Lefty Brad Hawpe plays right field just about all the time and has hit 252/348/453 against left-handed pitching this year.

Here’s how the list for the Dodgers looks:





Kemp 365 431 620 1.052
Blake 317 441 564 1.005
Ramirez 274 384 521 .904
Hudson 295 363 496 .859

Kemp, Blake and Ramirez are all terrors against lefties. Blake has been out with a sore hamstring, but he should be back this weekend.

Furcal and Pierre have both also been good against lefties this season, but don’t quite have their OPS against them up to .850. Furcal is hitting 298/363/454 against them and Pierre 316/412/398.

Loney and Martin both did a great job of getting on base against lefties this year, but with little power. Loney on-based .373 against them and Martin .411.

On the plus side, Andre Ethier had a fantastic year in which he hit 31 home runs and drove in 105 but was terrible against lefties. In 186 plate appearances against left-handed pitching this season he hit 189/280/341.

Jamie Moyer is out for the season. That is very disappointing — both because it would have been nice to see him help the team in the post-season and because there was a very good chance he was going to be able to given how well he had been pitching. Moyer looking up from his knees, badly injured, to see if Victorino had caught the ball in center wasn’t really the last memory of his season I was hoping for. It is, however, a good reminder of what he has given this team. After a terrible first two months this year he had thrown to a 4.06 ERA with a 1.22 ratio over his last 108 2/3 innings.

This article says that Myers was available last night, that Park will be back “very quickly” and seems to suggest that Myers may be on the post-season roster.

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