In season with 162 games, there will be games where an offense explodes, a defense plays incredibly, a team’s pitching will be lights-out and the team will win 8-0. Sometimes, teams will play against other teams that have those types of games and lose 8-0. But then, there are games where a team pitches poorly, is unable to get anything going offensively, botches multiple plays in the field and, to make matters worse, plays a bad team that gives them ample opportunities to score. It’s games like these that are the worst and it was a game like this that the Phillies played in their last of a four-game series with the Padres, a game which the Phillies lost 6-1, dropping their record to a disturbing 7-9 against a group of teams that have been nothing but average. Continue reading
The theme of this season for the Phillies seems to be question marks. There is a big question mark next to the return dates of Ryan Howard and Chase Utley, question marks as to how the Phillies offense will fare this year with an aging core of players. Question marks as to whether or not Jimmy Rollins’ contract will be worthwhile or not. However, one of the biggest question marks coming into the 2012 season was that of fourth starter Vance Worley and if he would be able to repeat the success of his rookie season.
Worley had a fantastic rookie campaign, finishing third in NL Rookie of the Year voting after posting an 11-3 record with a 3.01 ERA and a complete game in 21 starts. But Worley had struggled a bit at times, especially against teams that had already seen him, bringing some to worry about his ability to play in the 2012 season. Continue reading
Nobody was concerned about the Phillies pitching and everybody was concerned about the Phillies hitting. If games were played on paper, nobody would have been shocked if the Phillies won 130 games on pitching alone, winning games 1-0. Without Chase Utley and Ryan Howard, the line-up would be even more anemic they said.
Well, as sad as it is, if these two games are any indication of things to come, the nay-sayers and skeptics may be right, as the Phillies have shown nothing but dominant pitching and dormant bats. In their first two games, a win and a loss, the Phillies have scored one run, giving up two runs, neither of which are surprising. Game two even took extra innings to complete, both teams only able to score one run in nine innings (whether it was because of the Phillies’ pitching brilliance or the Pirates’ hitting incompetence, the world may never know). Continue reading
The Phillies’ line-up is flawed. The Phillies’ line-up is injured. The Phillies’ line-up is old. But if there is anything that is young, healthy and nearly perfect about the Phillies’ line-up, it is the outfield. Featuring three men who are in the prime of their careers, few would be surprised if all three of the Phillies projected starters, Shane Victorino, Hunter Pence and John Mayberry Jr., were selected to represent the National League in this summer’s All-Star game. But with great power comes great responsibility and considering the challenges that the Phillies’ offense is likely to face, the outfielders are going to have to do most of the heavy lifting for this line-up. Continue reading
Earlier today the Phillies locked up their final player eligible for arbitration, when the team and All-Star Right fielder Hunter Pence agreed to a one-year, $10.4 million contract. The figure is the midpoint between the $9 million offer from the organization and the $11.8 million that Pence was seeking. Continue reading