Tag: Dave Bush

May and June bug

Overall in 2011, the Phillies finished a disappointing seventh in the NL in runs scored. Things picked up a lot towards the end of the year, though — from the start of July to the end of the regular season, the Phils led the NL in runs score.

When you think about how things went month-to-month for the Phils in 2011, it’s important to remember that the offense had two terrible months early in the year that dragged the numbers down for the season. After a solid start to the year in April, the offense dropped like a stone for the Phils in May as the team finished twelfth in the NL in runs scored for the month. They followed that up with a June in which they were eleventh in the NL in runs scored. After the first three full months of the season, the Phils were eighth in the league in runs scored. But things got better in a hurry.

The table below shows, for each month of the 2011 season, the Phillies rank in run scored for the league for that month, their rank in runs scored from the beginning of the season through the end of that month and their rank in runs scored in the league from the end of that month to the end of the regular season.

Month NL Rank RS for Month Rank RS start of season thru month Rank RS after month to end of season
April 4 4 6
May 12 8 4
June 11 8 1
July 1 6 4
August 3 6 6
Sept 6 7 -

So, for example, in May of 2011, the Phils were twelfth in the NL in runs scored. From the start of the season through the end of May, they were eighth in the NL in runs scored and from the end of May to the end of the regular season they were fourth.

Through end of June July to end of season May and June April, July, August and September
PHI NL Rank Runs Scored 8 1 12 2

Again, two bad months. Start of the season through June they were eighth in the NL in runs scored. Start of July to the end of the season they were first. In May and June combined they were twelfth. In all of the months except May and June combined they were second.

Here’s a look back at some of the monthly performances that helped contribute to the numbers above:

The offense was solid in April, fourth in the NL in runs scored.

Howard led the team in home runs (six) and RBI (27), hitting 291/351/560. Polanco was a monster, too, hitting 398/447/524 in the only month of the season in which he would put up an OPS of .700 or better. After going 2-for-3 with a double against the Mets on April 30, Polanco would hit 243/304/287 in 409 plate appearances for the rest of the season.

Ibanez was atrocious for the Phils in April, posting a 161/247/218 line over 97 plate appearances. Valdez started 19 games and hit 239/282/284.

It wouldn’t last, but Francisco put up solid numbers for April, hitting 266/347/447 for the month and starting 24 games. Things were already looking a little less than fabulous for Francisco, though. After hitting 308/386/513 over 44 plate appearances to start the season, Francisco hit 236/317/400 over the last 16 games of the month.

In May the offense tanked. Eleven NL teams scored more runs than the Phillies in May.

The good news for May was that Ibanez bounced back dramatically, hitting a team-high seven homers and also leading the team in RBI with 19 as he posted a 315/339/602 line.

The bad news was pretty much everything else. Howard hit .208. Rollins on-based .306. Polanco on-based .289 with three extra-base hits in 27 starts. Utley was back at the end of the month, but not helping much. He hit 222/364/370 in 33 May plate appearances.

Francisco couldn’t hit enough to keep the right field job and was out of the lineup regularly during the second half of the month after hitting .103 (really! .103) in his first 50 plate appearances in May (4-for-39 with four singles). It created some openings in the outfield. Mayberry couldn’t capitalize, hitting 194/275/319 in his 80 May plate appearances, but Brown looked a little better. Brown appeared in just ten games in May (seven starts), but hit 333/378/545 in limited action (37 PA).

June was almost as bad as May. The Phils were eleventh in runs scored in the league in June. The team hit .229 for the month and slugged .317 — both would be lows for the season.

Howard was solid enough, leading the team with five homers and 22 RBI. He walked 18 times, putting up a .397 on-base percentage despite hitting just .269. Victorino pounded the ball to the tune of 297/383/505. So did Utley, who would hit 295/378/511 from the start of June to the end of July over 218 plate appearances. In June he posted a 297/387/473 line.

There was more than enough bad news to make up for it, though. Brown became nearly an everyday player in June, starting 22 games and hitting a meager 165/258/354 for the month. Mayberry went 0-for-3 in his four plate appearances for the month. Rollins on-based .314. Ruiz hit .221 and Polanco .213 — that duo combined for five extra-base hits in 194 June plate appearances. Ibanez’s May magic was gone as he hit a paltry 211/258/311 in his second atrocious month with the bat on the year.

The Phillies had their best offense month of the year in July, plating an NL-best 138 runs.

Ibanez was back, hitting seven home runs and driving in 25 with a 284/320/558 line. The 25 RBI he would post in July was the most of any Phillie for any month in 2011 other than Howard’s 27 in April.

Rollins found his power stroke as well, socking six home runs of his own with a 312/375/523 line. Utley had his best month of the year: 293/369/545 with five bombs. Victorino missed a lot of the month with a thumb injury, but was awesome when he played to the tune of 364/462/600 in 66 plate appearances for the month.

Victorino’s injury opened up a lot of time for Mayberry in center and Mayberry delivered with the bat. He came into July having hit 231/316/365 in 117 plate appearances for the year, but blasted a pair of home runs against the Fish on July 6 and hit 300/327/640 for the month in 52 plate appearances. Brown, meanwhile, continued to get chances, starting 20 games. He bounced back from a miserable June in which he hit .165, hitting 296/398/366, but without a home run in 83 plate appearances. Pence would arrive at the end of the month, securing right field for the rest of the season as he hit and hit and hit.

Ruiz, who would hit 317/391/425 in 251 plate appearances from the start of July to the end of the year, started his tear with what would be his best month of the season, hitting 324/432/485 in July.

Howard didn’t join the July party for the Phils, hitting .250 with a .306 on-base percentage, walking just eight times, which was his lowest mark for any month of the season. Martinez started 17 games for the Phils in July, primarily at third, and put up what were by far his best numbers for any month with a 247/300/384 line in 81 plate appearances. Those numbers for Martinez don’t sound great, but it’s important to remember that the Phils primary third baseman, Polanco, on-based .335 and slugged just .339 for the season.

In August the Phils were still hitting, if off the July pace a little. They were third in the NL in runs scored in August.

It was Pence’s first full month with the Phils and he was hitting everything. He hit seven home runs in August, posting a 340/413/596 line over 109 plate appearances.

Victorino was back, playing regularly and still hitting. 316/393/600 in August. Between June 17 and September 2, Victorino got 233 plate appearances in which he posted a stupid 325/409/611 line.

Ruiz continued to hit, too, 329/365/429 in August.

Valdez started 15 games, filling in primarily for Rollins and Polanco, and put up an unexpected 278/322/481 line over 59 plate appearances.

Off were Utley, 245/315/347, and Ibanez, 225/254/323. Mayberry started to see some more time in left — he got just 59 plate appearances in August, but made them memorable by homering six times as he put up a 296/356/685 line. Howard blasted eight homers and drove in 22 runs, but hit just .225 while doing so.

The Phillies were sixth in the NL in runs scored in September.

Pence continued to pound the ball, hitting 317/385/548 and leading the team with 18 RBI for the month. Howard hit 290/417/522. Mayberry got 13 more starts and hit 305/382/508 for the month. In his last 177 plate appearances on the year, Mayberry had hit 302/356/611. Polanco was back and at least got on base, hitting 280/349/344 in September. He ended the season having slugged .287 over his last 477 plate appearances.

Victorino and Utley both ended the year on a downswing. Victorino hit 186/258/319 in 125 plate appearances in September. Utley hit just 205/295/337. Martinez started 13 games and hit .136. After on-basing .368 in July and August combined, Rollins on-based just .308 in September.

The Phillies signed righty Dave Bush and lefty David Purcey to minor league deals and invited them to spring training. Bush is still just 32 and had pretty good years with the Brewers as a starter in 2006 and again in 2008. The lefty Purcey was good for the Blue Jays in a relief role in 2010, throwing to a 3.71 ERA with a 1.21 ratio, before getting hit hard with three teams in 2011.

Rafael Furcal agreed to a deal with the Cardinals, meaning Jimmy Rollins is running out of teams other than the Phils to play for.

Update: The Phillies have traded Ben Francisco to the Blue Jays for left-handed pitcher Frank Gailey. Gailey turned 26 last month and has never appeared in the majors. In 304 1/3 innings in the minors he has thrown to a 2.45 ERA with a 1.03 ratio. He has never pitched above Double-A.

Phillies doing their best to ensure one will not be the loneliest number for long

Apparently the Phils are unsatisfied with baseball and think expansion into the one-breeding business is the way to go. Soon we’ll have ‘em running around everywhere. It’ll be like our own little Weeble village, but with ones instead of weebles. It’s what we’ll have in town instead of a successful baseball team. Things will be fine until PETO hears tell of what’s going on, and with that in mind I offer the following public service announcement: Never, ever, ever buy a one from a breeder. It’s the moral equivalent of driving around in your Hummer and not recycling and removing your mattress tag all at the same time.

The Phillies scored one run for the second straight game yesterday. A day after making Braden Looper look like someone who looked kinda like Braden Looper but had even more fantastic baseball-related abilities, Dave Bush nearly no-hit ‘em. They managed two hits in the game, a single by Victorino and a pinch-hit home run by Stairs.

That’s not even the bad news. The bad news that Prince Fielder blasted a line drive off of Hamels’ shoulder in the fourth inning. Hamels is not expected to miss a start, but the early exit made for a long day for the pen. The other bad news is that the Phillies couldn’t get Ryan Braun out if they attended a seminar. Braun was 8-for-10 with three home runs, four walks and six RBI for Milwaukee in the set. The set is now mercifully over.

The Phillies lost to the Milwaukee Brewers yesterday afternoon, falling 6-1 to drop to 6-8 on the season. The Phils lose the series two games to one. Two games below .500 ties them for their low mark on the year.

Cole Hamels got the start for the Phillies exited early after taking a line drive to the body in the fourth. He went 3 1/3 innings, allowing two runs on four hits. One of the hits went for extra-bases, a home run. He struck out six.

Hamels struck out Rickie Weeks to start the first. Corey Hart was next and he singled into center. Ryan Braun went down swinging as Coste threw Hart out trying to steal second to set Milwaukee down.

He struck out the side in the second, getting Prince Fielder, Mike Cameron and JJ Hardy.

He threw a 1-2-3 third, getting Bill Hall and Mike Rivera on ground outs and striking out the pitcher Dave Bush to set Milwaukee down.

Hart reached on an infield single with one out in the fourth. Braun was next and he hit a 1-2 pitch out to left, putting Milwaukee up 2-0. You would think that would surely be the worst news of the inning, but Fielder was next and he hammered the first pitch he saw right back at Hamels and off his body, up near his left shoulder, hard. Fielder was safe at first with a single and Hamels was out of the game. With Cameron at the plate, Happ came in to pitch and struck Cameron out for the second out. Happ walked Hardy on four pitches, putting men on first and second for Hall. Hall flew to right to leave both men stranded.

Happ struck Rivera out to start the fifth. Bush and Weeks followed with back-to-back singles, putting men on first and second with one down. Hart lined hard to first. Howard caught the ball for the second out. Bush was way off second and looked like he would be easily doubled-off, but Howard dropped the ball and Bush was able to get back. It meant the Phils got to pitch to Braun with two men aboard. If that doesn’t sound like a good idea to you, apparently the Phillies agree. Braun was walked, unintentionally, on four pitches to load the bases. Fielder lined a 2-2 pitch into the left-field corner where it bounced once and found the wall. It cleared the bases and Milwaukee led 5-0. Cameron followed with a walk, but Hardy grounded back to Happ to leave both men stranded.

Howard dropping the ball by Hart after he caught it was huge in the inning. If they had doubled Bush off the inning would have been over. As it was, the Brewers scored three more times.

Taschner set the bottom of the Milwaukee order down 1-2-3 in the sixth.

Taschner returned for the seventh. Weeks led off with an infield single. Hart flew to center before the Phillies walked Braun yet again. Fielder popped to short for the second out and it brought up Cameron with two outs and two men on. Cameron flew to Ibanez to end the frame.

Durbin started the eighth. He was pitching for the third straight day, although he had thrown just seven pitches in his outing on Tuesday. He got Hardy on a ground ball to first for the first out, but Hall was next and hit the first pitch he saw out down the left-field line to put Milwaukee up 6-0. Durbin got Rivera and Bush to set the Brewers down.

Lidge started the ninth down 6-1, coming off his first blown save as a Phillie. He got the first two before Braun singled to left. Lidge hit Fielder with a fastball up and in, putting two men on for Cameron. Cameron grounded softly to first for the third out.

Long day for the pen after an unfortunate early exit for Hamels. They went 5 2/3 innings, allowing four runs on six hits and four walks. Happ threw 43 pitches and is likely unavailable tonight. Durbin just ten, but he was pitching for the third straight day. I’d try hard not to use him four days in a row. Taschner threw 29 pitches, Lidge 14.

Overall, Phillies pitchers threw 27 innings in the three-game series with a 4.33 ERA and a 1.41 ratio. The starters, Moyer, Blanton and Hamels, combined to toss 15 innings with a 5.28 ERA and a 1.37 ratio. The bullpen threw 12 innings to a 3.09 ERA and 1.46 ratio. The Phillies allowed five home runs in the set, four of which were yielded by the starters in their 15 innings (Moyer 2, Blanton 1, Hamels 1). The starters also walked just two batters over three games while the bullpen walked seven in 12 innings.

The Phillies lineup against righty Dave Bush went (1) Rollins (2) Victorino (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Werth (6) Ibanez (7) Feliz (8) Coste. Still no start at third for Dobbs against a righty, even with good career numbers against Dave Bush. Coste catches Hamels.

Rollins was hit by a pitch to start the first. Victorino struck out and Howard hit into a double-play.

The Phillies went 1-2-3 in the second.

Coste walked with one out in the third. Hamels bunted him to second with the second out, but Rollins flew to left to leave him stranded.

Down 2-0, Victorino drew a walk to start the fourth. Utley was next and hit a ground ball to second. Victorino was forced at second for the second out. Howard flew to center and Werth grounded to short to leave Utley stranded.

Ibanez led off the fifth with a walk. Feliz flew to center for the first out and Coste struck out for the second. Cairo hit for Happ and popped to second to end the inning.

Third time in five innings the Phillies had their leadoff man on base and didn’t get him past second base. In one of the other two innings, the third, they had a man on first with one down.

The Phillies went in order in the sixth.

Bush started the seventh with a no-hitter, having thrown 78 pitches. Howard flew to left-center for the first out before Bush hit Werth with a 2-2 pitch. Ibanez flew to left for the second out. Feliz grounded to third to end the inning.

Bush started the eighth having thrown 97 pitches. Dobbs led off, hitting for Coste, and hit a grounder to third. Hall made a fantastic play to get him, fielding and making an off-balance throw with his momentum carrying him into foul territory. Great play by Hall. Durbin’s slot was next and Stairs hit for him. Stairs got ahead 3-1 and hit a ball off the right-field foul pole for a home run. First hit of the day for the Phillies and it cut the Milwaukee lead to 6-1. Rollins flew to center for the second out before Victorino singled to right. Lefty Mitch Stetter came in to pitch to Utley and got Utley on a ground ball to second to end the inning.

Stetter set the Phillies down in order in the ninth.

Rollins was 0-for-3 in the game. 3-for-13 in the series. He’s hitting 169/206/254 for the season.

Victorino 1-for-3 with a walk in the game. 4-for-11 with two walks in the set. 250/323/357.

Utley 0-for-4 with a strikeout. 2-for-10 with three walks in the series. 333/443/588.

Howard 0-for-4 in the game and 0-for-10 with three walks in the series. He’s hitting 278/361/500 for the year.

The top four hitters in the lineup got 44 at-bats in the series and didn’t have an extra-base hit.

Werth did, though. He was 0-for-3 yesterday and 4-for-12 in the series with two doubles and a home run. He’s hitting 288/351/519. He has struck out in just five of 57 plate appearances in 2009, that’s about 8.8%. In 2008 he struck out in 119 of 482 plate appearances, about 24.7%.

Ibanez 0-for-3 in the game. 2-for-11 with two walks in the series. 345/410/727. If he maintains his .727 slugging percentage for the whole season, it would be a career high (that’s a joke).

Feliz was 0-for-3 in the game and may now be eligible at shortstop in your rotisserie league. 3-for-11 with a walk and a home run in the series. 304/382/435.

Coste 0-for-1 with a walk in the game. 2-for-7 with two doubles in the series and 214/290/357 for the year. Marson was 0-for-3 in the series and is 3-for-9 on the year.

Brett Myers (1-1, 5.03) faces righty Josh Johnson (2-0, 2.91) tonight in Florida. Opponents have hit just .237 against Myers and he hasn’t walked a ton of batters, six in 19 2/3 innings. It’s been all about the home runs, he’s given up seven in his three starts. That’s too many. He made one regular season start against the Brewers last year and was fantastic in the big four-game set with the Phillies’ season on the brink. On September 14, in the second game of a double-header, Myers threw a complete game two-hitter. He needed just 95 pitches. He also faced Milwaukee in game two of the NLDS and again pitched well, allowing two runs over seven innings. Johnson made two fantastic starts to begin the season before allowing six runs to the Nats over six innings in his most recent outing. He has an 0.97 ratio after three starts, opponents are hitting .225 against him and he’s walked just three in 21 2/3 innings. Howard is 7-for-16 with two home runs against him in his career.

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