Tag: Ryan Braun

Ryan Braun hits like eight home runs, but there were a lot of things that we learned about the collector, about the collection process, about the way that the entire thing worked that made us very concerned and very suspicious about what could have actually happened

Brutal, ugly game yesterday as the Brewers bombed the Phils 10-4 in the Phillie home opener. Ryan Braun hit three home runs and drove in seven runs for Milwaukee. Kendrick and Lincoln were both awful. So was the defense, especially at third and in center field, as the Phillies made three errors in the game and another big misplay in center that went for a hit.

The Phillies are 3-4 on the year after losing 10-4 to the Milwaukee Brewers in their home opener yesterday afternoon.

Kyle Kendrick got the start for the Phillies and went five innings, allowing six runs on nine hits and two walks. Only four of the runs were earned. Four of the hits went for extra-bases, two doubles and two home runs. He struck out three.

Kendrick was outstanding in his first start against the Rangers, allowing a run over seven innings. Less outstanding yesterday. 3.75 ERA and a 1.42 ratio after two outings. Lefties are 5-for-13 (.385) against him so far.

Jean Segura singled to center with one out in the top of the first, but Segura was caught stealing and Ryan Braun grounded to short for the first out.

Kendrick started the second up 1-0 and allowed a run on a double by Jonathan Lucroy with one out that was followed by a two-out single by Mark Reynolds. 1-1. Scooter Gennett followed Reynolds with a single that put men on first and second, but Kendrick got pitcher Kyle Lohse on a fly ball to center to end the frame.

Carlos Gomez doubled to left to start the third. Jean Segura was next and bunted, but Kendrick mishandled the bunt for an error that left men on first and second for Braun. Braun homered to left, putting Milwaukee up 4-1. Later in the frame, with two outs and a man on first, Reynolds reached on a throwing error by Asche. It put men on first and second for Gennett and Gennett hit a high bloop into shallow center field that somehow dropped in front of a diving Ben Revere for a single. Reynolds scored to make it 5-1. Kendrick retired Lohse on a ground ball to second to set the Brewers down.

Miserable defense for the Phillies in the inning. Kendrick makes an error on the bunt, Asche makes a throwing error and Revere is not charged with an error when Gennett’s ball somehow drops in center. That one was in the air for a long, long time.

Braun homered to right center with two outs and nobody on, making it 6-1.

It was 6-2 when Kendrick started the fifth. He allowed a leadoff single to Lucroy. He got the next two and with two down and Khris Davis on second, Kendrick intentionally walked Gennett to pitch to Lohse. Lohse grounded to short for the third out.

If we’re voting, I’m voting for trying to get the eight-hitter Gennett out with two outs and a man on second in the fifth inning of a game you’re losing by four runs.

B.J. Rosenberg pitched the sixth with the Phils down 6-3. Segura singled with one out and was caught stealing again with two down to end the frame.

Ruiz throws Segura out twice, once in the first and once in the sixth.

Davis singled off of Rosenberg with two outs in the seventh and the Milwaukee lead cut to 6-4. Reynolds was next and reached on an error by Revere in center, allowing Davis to score. 7-4 with Reynolds on second and two outs. Mario Hollands came in to pitch to the lefty Gennett. Righty Rickie Weeks hit for Gennett and went down on a fly ball to center for the third out.

Rosenberg goes 1 2/3 innings, allowing an unearned run, thanks to the Revere error, on two hits and no walks.

After three appearances, Rosenberg has a 0.00 ERA and a much more telling 2.57 ratio. Opponents are hitting .455 against him.

Hollands faces one hitter in the game, retiring Weeks to drop his ERA to 3.86. He’s been really good since a miserable outing on Opening Day against the Rangers. In three outings since his first appearance, he’s faced six hitters over two innings without allowing a hit or a walk.

Brad Lincoln pitched the eighth and the Brewers broke it open with three more runs. Gomez doubled to left with one out and Lincoln hit Segura behind him, bringing Braun to the plate with two men on. Braun hit Lincoln’s first pitch out to left-center for a three-run homer that made it 10-4. Lucroy doubled off of Lincoln with two outs, but Davis flew to center for the third out.

Lincoln returned for the ninth. He allowed a leadoff double to Reynolds, but retired the next three.

Miserable day for Lincoln, who allows three runs on four hits over two innings. Braun hits the three-run homer off of him in the eighth. 11.57 ERA after two appearances and 2 1/3 innings. He hasn’t walked a hitter, but opponents are hitting .417 against him. Righties 4-for-9 against the righty with three doubles, a home run, a 1.111 slugging percentage and a 444/500/1.111 line.

The pen goes four innings in relief of Kendrick, allowing four runs, three earned, on six hits. Ugly day after a fantastic series for the relievers in Chicago. Lincoln threw 39 pitches in the game and Rosenberg 30.

The Phillie lineup against righty Kyle Lohse went (1) Ben Revere (2) Jimmy Rollins (3) Carlos Ruiz (4) Ryan Howard (5) Marlon Byrd (6) Domonic Brown (7) Cesar Hernandez (8) Cody Asche. Chase Utley out with the flu, so Cesar Hernandez starts at second and hits seventh. Carlos Ruiz hits third despite not having any hits against righties for the season — he comes into the game 0-for-11 against right-handed pitching.

Ruiz walked with two outs in the bottom of the first and moved to third when Howard followed with a double to center. Byrd was next and hit a ball hard at Segura at short, which Segura did not handle for an error. Ruiz scored to put the Phils up 1-0 and Howard took third. Brown walked to load the bases for Hernandez, but Hernandez struck out swinging 1-2 to end the inning.

It was 1-1 when the Phillies hit in the second. Asche led off with a walk and Rollins walked with two outs, but Ruiz flew to right to leave men at first and second.

They trailed 5-1 when they hit in the third. Brown singled with two outs, but Hernandez flew to right to set the Phillies down.

Revere singled with two outs in the fourth and the Phillies down 6-1. Rollins was next and blasted a 3-2 pitch off the wall in right, plating Revere to cut the lead to 6-2. Ruiz flew to left to end the inning.

First XBH for Rollins since the grand slam on Opening Day.

Brown walked with two outs in the fifth and moved to second when Hernandez followed with a single to right. Asche was next and lined a 1-0 pitch into right-center for a single, scoring Brown (6-3) and moving Hernandez to third. Mayberry hit for Kendrick and struck out swinging to end the inning.

This one seems simple to me. Kyle Lohse is right-handed. John Mayberry is right-handed. John Mayberry can’t hit right-handed pitching. John Mayberry has been fantastic as a pinch-hitter early in the season, but he’s been fantastic as a pinch-hitter against left-handed pitching. You don’t want to use him in a big spot against a right-handed pitcher. He doesn’t have a hit against a right-handed pitcher yet this year. He’s a career 227/294/371 hitter against righties.

Revere tripled off of lefty Zach Duke to start the sixth and scored when Rollins followed with a single to left. 6-4. The Phillies went in order behind Rollins.

First extra-base hit of the year for Revere and it comes against a lefty. Career isolated power against lefties of .045.

The Phillies were down 7-4 when they hit in the seventh. Lefty Will Smith walked Hernandez with one out, but Asche struck out behind him. Nix hit for Hollands and lined to third for the third out.

Mayberry didn’t hit against the lefty in the seventh cause he hit against the righty in the fifth. Two men on in the fifth, but the problem there is he doesn’t have much of a chance to get a hit.

Righty Brandon Kintzler set the Phillies down in order in the eighth with Milwaukee up 10-4.

Righty Jim Henderson struck out Howard and Brown in a 1-2-3 ninth.

Revere was 2-for-5 with a triple. He’s 7-for-his-last-19 (.368).

Rollins 2-for-4 with a walk, a double and two RBI.

Ruiz 0-for-4 with a walk. Still doesn’t have a hit against a right-handed pitcher. 0-for-14 against righties for the year.

Howard 1-for-5 with a double and struck out twice. 1-for-his-last-10. On-basing .200 against lefties for the year.

Byrd 1-for-5 with an RBI. 2-for-his-last-17.

Brown 1-for-3 and walked twice. On-basing .529 against righties for the year. 7-for-his-last-14 with four walks.

Hernandez 1-for-3 with a walk to up his average to .375 (3-for-8 with a double).

Asche 1-for-3 with a walk. 3-for-18 since a 3-for-4 day on Opening Day.

Roberto Hernandez (1-0, 3.38) faces righty Matt Garza (0-1, 1.13) tonight. Hernandez allowed just three hits and a walk over 5 1/3 innings while holding the Cubs to two runs in his first start of the year. Garza had fantastic numbers in his first start as he allowed a run on two hits and a walk over eight innings while striking out seven Braves.


Hefty lefties

When the post-season arrives, the Phils will be starting left-handed pitchers in two of the first three games and feature a bullpen with a single lefty who came into yesterday’s game having allowed nine of the last 15 batters he had faced to reach base.

So it seems important to know how their potential playoff opponents in the NL fare against lefties. For the four NL teams other than the Phillies who look like they have the best chance to make the playoffs, here’s what the teams have done overall against left-handed pitching for the year (none of the numbers in this post include yesterday’s games):

Team AVG OBP SLG ISO OPS (NL Rank)
STL 259 333 417 158 750 (2)
ARI 239 314 417 178 731 (5)
MIL 252 314 413 161 727 (7)
ATL 229 292 352 123 644 (16)

So, by OPS, the Cards have been the best of those four teams against left-handed pitching and the Braves have been the worst. It shouldn’t be lost on anyone that Atlanta has been absolutely atrocious against lefties this year, hitting just 229/292/352 against them, which gives them the NL-worst .644 OPS against left-handed pitchers.

Here’s the list of St Louis’s best hitters against lefties who got at least 100 plate appearances against left-handed pitching this season. They are ordered by OPS:

Team Player AVG OBP SLG ISO OPS (NL Rank)
STL Pujols 295 342 590 295 932 (16)
STL Holliday 241 411 446 205 857 (27)
STL Molina 278 364 464 186 828 (36)
STL Rasmus 256 374 451 195 825 (37)

That’s kind of a scary list because of its length, but with a couple of problems for the Cards. Holliday is hurt and Rasmus isn’t on the team anymore, traded to the Blue Jays in July. Oh, and the other problem is that they’re almost surely not going to make the post-season.

If they do, they do have some guys without 100 plate appearances against lefties who have good numbers against left-handed pitching. Allen Craig was hitting 306/338/613 against lefties in 63 plate appearances coming into yesterday and David Freese had hit 348/390/522 against southpaws over 77 plate appearances.

And here’s a lot at the top left-bashers on the other three teams, starting with the Snakes:

Team Player AVG OBP SLG ISO OPS (NL Rank)
ARI Upton 274 385 563 289 948 (12)
ARI Young 282 387 556 274 943 (13)
ARI Roberts 280 400 504 224 904 (22)

Three guys there who have had monster years against left-handed pitching. Notably, two of them, Young and Roberts, have been miserable against righties. Young has hit 216/306/375 against righties and Roberts has hit 238/321/399 against them. Upton has hammered everyone, putting up a 301/372/535 line against righties. As good as he has been against both sides, he has shown a lot more power against lefties with an isolated power of .234 against righties and .289 against lefties.

Team Player AVG OBP SLG ISO OPS (NL Rank)
MIL Braun 362 445 638 276 1.083 (2)
MIL Hart 323 422 586 263 1.008 (7)
MIL Weeks 270 380 472 192 852 (28)
MIL Fielder 279 358 455 176 813 (40)

Two monster bats against lefties for the Brewers in Braun and Hart. Weeks has been struggling with an ankle problem, but is getting stronger and playing again. Fielder, of course, is a lefty, but has still done his share of damage against left-handed pitchers.

Despite the two huge bats against lefties in Braun and Hart, the Brewers have had their share of guys who have brought down their numbers. Righty Casey McGehee has played regularly this year and hit 171/230/187 in his 135 plate appearances against lefties. His fellow righty Yuniesky Betancourt has also gotten a ton of chances and hit 239/256/345 against lefties.

Then there’s Atlanta. And they can’t hit lefties at all — their best hitter by OPS who got at least 100 plate appearances against lefties is their left-handed hitting catcher Brian McCann:

Team Player AVG OBP SLG ISO OPS (NL Rank)
ATL McCann 264 312 486 222 798 (43)

That’s a little misleading because of the miserable year righty Dan Uggla has had with the bat. After hitting 173/241/327 through the first 86 games of the season, Uggla has hit 312/396/620 over his last 288 plate appearances. His numbers against lefties for the year are still atrocious, 197/284/338, but he hit 306/409/575 against lefties in 2010 and you have to think that he’s going to be more formidable against lefties in the post-season than he has during the regular season.

The Braves have had other problems against lefties this year, though. Righty Alex Gonzalez has on-based .284 against them. Lefties Freddie Freeman and Jayson Heyward have both struggled as well. Freeman has hit 256/314/420 against them in 194 plate appearances while Heyward has hit a hide-your-eyes 184/263/301 against them in 114.

So, purely for the standpoint of guys who can hit lefties, who should the Phillies be hoping to face in the post-season? It looks like the answer is clearly the Braves, with the caveat that Uggla is a whole lot better than his numbers so far this year. That can’t happen in the first round, of course. For me, the scariest team against lefties is Milwaukee — despite the miserable numbers for a couple of their regulars, Braun and Hart have just demolished left-handed pitching this season.

Finally, it seems important to point out the NL player who came into action yesterday with the best OPS against left-handed pitching for the season (among players with at least 100 plate appearances against lefties). Shane Victorino is the answer with a 327/444/645 line (1.089 OPS).

Yesterday the Phils played a double-header with the Washington Nationals, dropping both games to fall to 98-56 on the year. The Phillies have lost four in a row and scored three runs or less in 12 of their last 13 games.

The Phils lost the day game 4-3 in ten innings. Kendrick got the start for the Phillies and was fantastic again, tossing six shutout innings before being Schwimer took over in the seventh. Schwimer allowed a pair of singles before Roger Bernadina hit one out to right, putting the Nats up 3-0. The Phils tied it up in the bottom of the inning when Ibanez, 1-for-his-last-18, hit a three-run pinch-hit homer off of Tyler Clippard. Stutes started the tenth and got the first two before walking Michael Morse. Morse took second on a passed ball by Erik Kratz and came in to score on a pinch-hit single by Ryan Zimmerman, putting Washington up 4-3. Kratz doubled to start the bottom of the tenth, his first career extra-base hit, but was left at second when Orr lined to short, Schneider struck out and Gload grounded to short.

Kendrick has a 1.91 ERA in his 33 innings since the end of July. Those innings have come over seven appearances, five of which have been starts.

Not a good day for Schwimer, who saw his ERA on the year rise to 6.97 on the three-run homer. He’s allowed five runs in two innings over his last two appearances.

Joe Savery made his debut for the Phillies in the game. He started the eighth and allowed a single on a ball deflected by Orr. The next batter bunted the runner to second and Savery was pulled.

The Phils lost the night game 3-0. Lee got the start for the Phillies and went seven innings, allowing three runs on 11 hits. Only two of the runs were earned and the Phillies made three errors in the game (Rollins, Utley and Ruiz). The offense had just three hits, two singles by Francisco and one by Polanco, as Ross Detwiler threw 7 1/3 scoreless frames for the Nats.

Danny Espinosa homered off of Lee in the second to put Washington up 1-0. Washington got another run on three singles in the sixth to push the lead to 2-0. Jayson Werth started the seventh with a double for Washington and went to third on a one-out single by Michael Morse. Werth came in to score on a bad pickoff throw by Ruiz, upping the lead to 3-0.

Justin De Fratus threw a 1-2-3 eighth after Lee left and has now thrown two scoreless innings in two appearances.

Herndon threw the ninth, allowing a two-out walks but striking out two and keeping Washington off the board. In his 20 appearances since the All-Star break he has thrown to a 1.65 ERA with a 1.21 ratio.

Vance Worley (11-2, 2.85) faces lefty John Lannan (9-13, 3.68) tonight in leave-your-lefties-on-the-bench night at the yard.

On the please-move-along-there’s-nothing-to-see-here front, Hunter Pence tweaked his left knee in game one yesterday and says it’s going to be fine.

Jimmy Rollins and his wife will host their first annual Havana Nights to benefit the Jimmy Rollins Family Foundation and Prevent Child Abuse Pennsylvania at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia on Monday, November 14. Read all about it.


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).


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.


Super Looper

The Phillies aren’t going to score 11 runs every game, but it’s still a little surprising when they score one. Ryan Howard entered last night’s contest with four home runs in five at-bats against Braden Looper, but the Phillies couldn’t plate a single run against the righty in six innings. Blanton and the pen pitched well, but the Phils went into the bottom of the ninth down by three and their last-gasp rally fell a little short.

The Phillies lost to the Milwaukee Brewers last night, falling 3-1 to drop to 6-7 on the season.

Joe Blanton got the start for the Phillies and went six innings, allowing three runs on eight hits and a walk. Two of the hits went for extra-bases, a double and a home run. He struck out five. He has a 7.31 ERA after three starts.

The Phillies have three quality starts on the season, two of which have been made by Blanton (Myers had the other). The Phillies have lost all three games — they’re 0-3 when they have a quality start and 6-4 when they don’t.

Blanton got Rickie Weeks on a ground ball to third for the first out of the game, but Corey Hart was next and he singled to left. With Ryan Braun at the plate, Marson threw to Howard at first and Hart was caught for the second out. Braun struck out swinging for the third out.

Prince Fielder led off the fourth and hit a high popup in-between home plate and first base that fell between Howard and Marson for a single. Mike Cameron flew to left before a single by JJ Hardy moved Fielder to second. Craig Counsell grounded into a double-play to end the frame.

Blanton set down Jason Kendall, pitcher Braden Looper and Weeks in a 1-2-3 third.

Hart popped out for the first out of the fourth. Braun was next and he ripped a double into the left field corner, but it went off the wall and right to Ibanez whose throw to second was on the mark. Braun was tagged out for the second out. Blanton struck Fielder out looking for the third out.

Blanton got Cameron on a ground ball to third to start the fifth, but Hart was next and he hit a 3-2 pitch just out to left to put the Brewers up 1-0. Counsell flew to right for the second. Kendall followed with a single to left, but Blanton got Looper to fly to center for the third out.

With one out in the sixth, Hart reached on an infield single and moved to second when Braun followed with a walk. Fielder flew to center for the second out, moving Hart to third with two down. Cameron doubled down the left field line, clearing the bases to make it 3-0 Milwaukee. Blanton struck Hardy out looking for the third out.

Durbin started the seventh for the Phillies. He had thrown seven pitches the night before. He quickly set down Counsell and Kendall. Lefty Brad Nelson hit for Looper, who had shut the Phillies down for six innings but needed 107 pitches to do so, and Durbin struck Nelson out swinging 1-2 for the third out.

Condrey started the eighth. He was also pitching for the second straight day, having thrown 22 pitches over 1 2/3 innings in game one of the series. He struck out Weeks and Hart to start the inning. He got behind Braun 3-0 and then walked him on a 3-2 pitch. With the lefty Fielder due to hit, Manuel called on Eyre to pitch to him. Eyre got Fielder on a popup that Feliz took in shallow left to set Milwaukee down.

Eyre has made six appearances on the season and has yet to allow a hit or a walk in three innings pitched.

Madson entered in the ninth, well-rested but coming off a pair of weak outings in which he allowed four runs over two innings combined. He struck Cameron out on three pitches before walking Hardy on four. Counsell popped to Feliz for the second out and Kendall grounded to short for the third.

Overall the pen went three scoreless innings. They didn’t allow a hit and walked two while striking out four. Condrey threw 17 pitches, Durbin 13, Madson 11 and Eyre four. If Condrey were to pitch today it would be his third straight day.

The Phillies lineup against righty Braden Looper went (1) Rollins (2) Victorino (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Werth (6) Ibanez (7) Feliz (8) Marson. Marson catches Blanton with Feliz playing third and Dobbs on the bench.

Victorino and Utley singled back-to-back with one out in the first, but Howard hit into a double-play to turn the Phillies away.

Looper shut them down in order in the second.

Rollins singled into center with two outs in the third. Victorino flew to center to end the inning.

Utley lined to center for the first out in the fourth. Howard drew a walk and was forced at second when Werth followed with a ground ball to third. Werth stole second as Looper delivered ball two to Ibanez to make the count 2-2, but Ibanez grounded to second to end the inning.

Down 1-0, Feliz and Marson went down to start the fifth. Blanton delivered a two-out single to left, but Rollins popped to short to end the inning.

The Phillies were down 3-0 when they hit in the sixth. Victorino chopped a ball to second for the first out and Utley flew to center for the second. Howard drew a walk and Werth followed with a single into left off the glove of the third baseman Counsell. Ibanez lined to right to leave the runners stranded.

Counsell probably should have made the play on the ball hit by Werth.

Righty Mark DiFelice struck out Feliz and Marson to start the seventh. Dobbs hit for Durbin and flew to center.

Seems like it might be early to use Dobbs, especially down three runs with two down and nobody on. At the time I thought it was the right move, though, cause they still had Stairs on the bench and there was nobody they were going to pinch-hit for for a long time. It didn’t work out for the Phillies, who wound up sending Coste to the plate as the winning run to face a righty with two outs in the bottom of the ninth.

Righty Carlos Villanueva entered the game to face the top of the Phillies order in the bottom of the eighth. Rollins got ahead in the count and the 3-1 pitch was low, but Villanueva got the call. Rollins popped the next pitch to short. Victorino was next and put down a pretty bunt, but Counsell made a nice play to get him for the second out. Utley hit a ball back up the middle, but Hardy handled it for the third out.

Righty Todd Coffey came in to close in the ninth. He struck out Howard for the first out before Werth lined a ball out to right-center for his second home run of the year. It cut the Brewer lead to 3-1. Ibanez was next and he singled to left. It brought Feliz to the plate as the tying run. Feliz dribbled a ball to third. Bill Hall fielded and threw to second to get Ibanez, but Feliz beat the relay to first on a very close play. Matt Stairs hit for Marson and delivered a single into right that moved Feliz to third. The pitcher’s spot was next and Coste hit for Madson. Bruntlett ran for Stairs at first. Coste struck out swinging 2-2 to end the game.

So it did wind up costing the Phils to use Dobbs in the seventh with two outs and nobody on, cause it meant the Phillies wound up with the righty Coste instead of the lefty Dobbs hitting against Looper with two outs in the bottom of the ninth. Still think it was the right way to go, though.

Rollins 1-for-4.

Victorino 1-for-4.

Utley 1-for-4.

Howard 0-for-2 with two walks.

Werth 2-for-4 with a home run, which was the only extra-base hit of the game for the Phillies.

Ibanez 1-for-4.

Feliz 0-for-4.

Marson 0-for-3.

Cole Hamels (0-1, 11.17) faces righty Dave Bush (0-0, 5.40) this afternoon. Hamels has made two starts on the year. The second wasn’t as bad as the first, but he let a big lead slip away and wound up allowing five runs over six innings. Opponents have hit .422 against him for the season and he’s yielded four home runs in 9 2/3 innings. He didn’t face the Brewers in the regular season in 2008, but dominated them in game one of the NLDS. In that game he allowed two singles and a walk over eight shutout innings while striking out nine. The Phils won the game 3-1. Bush has made three appearances on the year, two of which have been starts. In each of the starts he allowed three runs — one start went six innings and one went 6 1/3. He made two starts against the Phils in ’08 and threw to a 5.25 ERA with a 1.42 ratio. Dobbs is 6-for-13 with two home runs against him for his career, so if he’s ever going to start against a righty this may be the day. It’s a little tough with Feliz hitting .326, though, so we’ll see. Howard 5-for-14 with two home runs.

This suggests that Lidge has found a flaw in his delivery and that Ruiz could return early next week.

Please note that after the series with the Brewers I’m going to stop doing game recaps. I will continue to post and plan to resume recaps at near the end of the season, assuming the Phillies are in a race for a playoff spot. I may do some game recaps along the way as well.


Phils score Manny runs

The Phillies hammered Manny Parra and the Brewers last night. In three career appearances against the Phils (two of which were starts), Parra has thrown 6 1/3 innings and allowed 12 runs on 16 hits and eight walks (a 17.05 ERA and a 3.79 ratio).

The Phils fared pretty well against the Milwaukee pen as well, scoring five runs in the fifth off of Jorge Julio and their old mate RJ Swindle.

All of the offense was enough to overcome a monster game from Ryan Braun. Braun went 5-for-5 with a pair of home runs and drove in all four of the Milwaukee runs.

The Phillies beat the Milwaukee Brewers last night, winning 11-4 to improve to 6-6 on the season.

Jamie Moyer got the start for the Phillies and went six innings, allowing four runs on seven hits and a walk. Two of the hits were home runs, both hit by Braun. He struck out two and has a 6.35 ERA after three starts.

Moyer struck out Rickie Weeks and Corey Hart to start the first before Braun hit a 1-1 pitch out to right-center to put Milwaukee up 1-0. Moyer hit Prince Fielder with a pitch before JJ Hardy grounded to short to set the Brewers down.

The Phillies led 4-1 when Moyer started the second. Mike Cameron led off and flew to Victorino on the warning track on the first pitch of the inning. Bill Hall was next and reached on an infield single off the glove of Moyer. Jason Kendall followed and blooped a ball into center that dropped in front of Victorino, but Hall read it badly and Victorino was able to throw to second and get him there for the second out. With two outs and Kendall of first, pitcher Manny Parra and grounded to second for the third out.

Casey McGehee, who entered the game to play second when Weeks had to leave after a collision in the infield in the first, led off the third and grounded out. Hart popped to Utley in shallow center for the second out. Braun was next he reached on an infield single off the glove of Rollins in the hole, bringing up Fielder with two down and a man on first. Moyer hit him again, putting men on first and second with two down for Hardy.

Chris Duffy hit for Parra and grounded to short for the first out of the fifth. McGehee followed with a single into center, but Moyer got Hart to pop to Rollins for the second out. Sadly, though, the rules dictate that Ryan Braun be permitted to hit every couple of innings. Braun hit his second home run of the day, this one a monster shot blasted way out to left. It cut the lead to 5-3. Fielder flew to right for the third out.

Up 10-3, Moyer set the Brewers down in order in the sixth.

Up 11-3, he walked Kendall to start the seventh. Mike Rivera hit for the pitcher RJ Swindle and singled to left, moving Kendall to second. Durbin came on to pitch to the righty McGehee and struck him out swinging 3-2 in heavy rain for the first out. And then the game was delayed by rain. The delay lasted about an hour and twenty minutes. When play resumed, Condrey took the mound for the Phils with Kendall on second and one out. Hart moved Kendall to third with a ground out before Braun reached on an infield single that scored Kendall and cut the lead to 11-4. Condrey struck Fielder out looking for the third out.

Condrey came back for the eighth and gave up singles to Hardy and Cameron to start the inning. He struck Hall out swinging, though, and got Kendall to ground into a double-play to keep Milwaukee off the board.

Taschner started the ninth. Lefty Brad Nelson hit for the pitcher to start the inning and drew a walk. Taschner got the next two hitters on popups before Braun reached yet again, this time on another infield single that sent Nelson to second. Fielder popped to third to leave both runners stranded and end the game.

Three scoreless innings for the pen. They allowed four hits and a walk. Taschner threw 23 pitches, Condrey 22 and Durbin 7.

The Phillies lineup against lefty Manny Parra went (1) Rollins (2) Victorino (3) Utley (4) Howard (5) Werth (6) Ibanez (7) Feliz (8) Coste. Werth back at fifth now that the Phils play a team with a lefty. Coste catches with Marson on the bench.

The Phillies started the bottom of the first down 1-0. Rollins grounded to short for the first out, but Victorino followed with a walk. Utley was next and Victorino was running as he hit a ground ball near second. Weeks and Hardy got tangled up as Hardy tried to field the ball and the Brewers didn’t get an out. Utley was safe with a single and the Phils had men on first and second with one down. Howard drew a walk to load the bases for Werth and Werth delivered a double into the left-field corner that scored Victorino and Utley and moved Howard to third with the Phils up 2-1. Ibanez singled into left and everybody moved up a base. 3-1 with men on first and third. Feliz was next and he singled past a diving Hall into left, scoring Werth to make it 4-1 with men on first and second. Coste flew to center and Moyer struck out to end the inning.

Weeks was shaken up in the collision with Hardy and was replaced defensively in the second.

Victorino singled to left with one out in the second. Utley was next and hit a ground ball back up the middle, but Hardy fielded behind the bag and the Brewers forced Victorino at second with Utley safe at first and two down. Howard struck out to leave Utley stranded.

Werth and Ibanez went down to start the third, but Feliz was next and hit a ball out to right field to put the Phillies up 5-1. First home run of the year for Feilz. Coste followed with a double to center, but Moyer struck out to leave him stranded.

Utley drew a walk with two outs in the fourth. Howard grounded to right field, er, second base, ending the inning.

The lead had been cut to 5-3 when the Phillies hit in the fifth. Jorge Julio was in to pitch for Milwaukee and got Werth on a ground ball to third for the first out before he walked Ibanez. Ibanez stole second as the count went 2-2 on Feliz and went to third when Julio bounced the next pitch in the dirt. Feliz walked, putting men on first and third with one out for Coste. Coste hit a slow ground ball to third. Hall made a nice play, bare-handing and throwing to first to get Coste as Ibanez scored to put the Phillies up 6-3. Julio walked Moyer on a 3-2 pitch, putting men on first and second for Rollins. Rollins singled into right and Feliz held at third, loading the bases. A single into center from Victorino moved everyone up another base and scored Feliz to make it 7-3. Lefty and former Phil RJ Swindle came in to pitch to Utley and walked him on a 3-2 pitch that was a little low. 8-3. Swindle got ahead of Howard 1-2 but delivered a wild pitch in the dirt. Rollins stormed home to score and Kendall’s throw to Swindle covering the plate went over the pitcher’s head, allowing Victorino to score and Utley to go to third with the Phils up 10-3. Howard struck out for the third out.

Werth started the sixth with a double off the base of the wall in left. Ibanez moved Werth to third with a ground ball to second for the first out. Feliz was next and he smashed a ball back up the middle and off the body of Swindle for a single. Werth scored to put the Phillies up 11-3. Coste struck out and Moyer hit for himself and grounded to second.

Rollins started the seventh with a single to center. Victorino flew out behind him before Utley drew a walk. Howard and Werth both struck out to leave both men stranded.

Coste doubled to left with two outs in the eighth. With righty Carlos Villanueva on the mound, Dobbs hit for Condrey and drew a walk. It put two men on for Rollins, but Rollins flew to center for the third out.

Rollins was 2-for-6 to raise his average for the season to .173. He’s 5-for-his-last-16 after starting the season 4-for-36.

Victorino 2-for-4 with a walk and an RBI. He’s hitting .245.

Utley was 1-for-2 with an RBI and three walks.

Howard 0-for-4 with a walk.

Werth 2-for-5 with two doubles and two RBI. He’s 3-for-his-last-17.

Ibanez 1-for-4 with a walk, an RBI and a stolen base.

Feliz 3-for-4 with a home run, a walk and three RBI.

Coste 2-for-5 with two doubles and an RBI. 4-for-his-last-12 with four doubles after starting the year 2-for-14.

Joe Blanton (0-1, 9.00) faces righty Braden Looper (1-0. 3.27) tonight. Blanton has made two starts on the season. He got blasted by the Braves in his first outing, but pitched better against the Nats on Thursday, allowing three runs on eight hits and a walk over six innings. Opponents are hitting a brutal .370 against him for the year. Lefties have put up a 444/500/778 line in 20 plate appearances. Looper has allowed four runs in 11 innings over two starts this season. Ryan Howard is 4-for-5 against him in his career with four home runs. Utley 4-for-11 with a double and a home run.


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