MLB Playoffs: Each Contender’s Nightmare October Matchup

September 3, 2011 by  
Filed under Fan News

In every sport, the postseason is about match-ups.

This was exemplified a year ago when the San Francisco Giants pitching staff neutralized the offensive firepower of the Phillies. The Giants beat the Phillies in six and rode their wave of momentum to their first World Series crown in the city of San Francisco.

In this article, I included the teams that would be in the postseason if the season ended today. I also didn’t include potential World Series combatants; you have to get there first.

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Article Source: Bleacher Report - Philadelphia Phillies

MLB: Every Contender’s Most Valuable Pitcher Down the Stretch

August 25, 2011 by  
Filed under Fan News

There’s a month and change to go, and the playoff picture is taking shape.

The AL East remains intriguing as the Red Sox and Yankees tussle back and forth to see who will have home-field advantage throughout the AL side.

After a three-game sweep over Cleveland, the Tigers have distanced themselves in the AL Central. Detroit’s a team to watch come postseason—especially if Boston or New York sees Verlander twice.

Texas continues to front-run in the AL West, but the Angels aren’t going away. Can the Rangers possibly catch Boston and New York for the top record in the American League?

Even though the Phillies are on pace to win 100-plus games, the Braves are still within shouting distance. The two combatants face off in Atlanta during the last three games of the season. Whether or not those games matter, we’ll see.

The Brewers have played so well over the last month that the Cardinals are no longer a big threat.

The most intriguing race remains out in the NL West. Will San Francisco right the ship? Can Arizona hang on? And finally, don’t sleep on Colorado—’specially if San Francisco and Arizona continue to falter. The Rockies have been known to get hot during the final month. Just look at what they did in 2007 and 2009. The next two weeks will be critical for them.

In this list, I take a look at the most important pitchers down the stretch—not necessarily the best.

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Article Source: Bleacher Report - Philadelphia Phillies

2011 MLB Cy Young Award: Ranking the Top 5 Candidates in Each League

August 18, 2011 by  
Filed under Fan News

The big storyline heading into the season was how Philadelphia’s four aces would do over the course of the season. While Roy Oswalt has been hampered by injury, the trio of Cliff Lee, Cole Hamels and Roy Halladay have dominated. Where will they land on the NL side?

Overall, the American League has had more depth from an aces perspective. Cutting the junior circuit’s list down to five aces was a bit more difficult than the senior circuit’s.

You’ll notice that I included some honorable mentions. They aren’t necessarily my 6-10 rankings as much as I wanted to show some unheralded starters some love.

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Article Source: Bleacher Report - Philadelphia Phillies

Philadelphia Phillies: An Exclusive Interview with Clearwater’s Jon Pettibone

August 16, 2011 by  
Filed under Fan News

The Phillies selected Jon Pettibone in the third round of the 2008 Amateur Draft. He attended Esperanza High School in Anaheim, Calif.

The 21-year old, 6’5 right-hander is having the best season of his four-year minor league career.

His father, Jay Pettibone, had a short four-game stint in the bigs for the 1983 Minnesota Twins. Charlie Manuel managed Jay in 1984 for the Orlando Twins, Minnesota’s Double-A affiliate.

Jon Pettibone hopes to play for Manuel a couple years from now for the Phillies.

Follow Jon Pettibone on twitter @Jon_Pettibone

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Article Source: Bleacher Report - Philadelphia Phillies

Jimmy Rollins and the Best Shortstops in Philadelphia Phillies History

August 3, 2011 by  
Filed under Fan News

Offensive production is expected from the shortstop in modern times, but back in the old days, fielding took precedence over hitting.

Yeah you had your Honus Wagner’s and Ernie Banks, but it was Cal Ripken who revolutionized the position when he stormed onto the scene in 1982 when he won the Rookie of the Year and then MVP the following season.

At 6’4, you just didn’t see shortstops do what Ripken was able to do.

After Ripken you’ve had shortstops who not only could field their position, but also did damage at the dish.

Alex Rodriguez, Miguel Tejada, Derek Jeter, Troy Tulowitzki all came after Ripken. They exemplify the modern day shortstop. Each are/were not only solid in the field, but they produced at the plate. 

Essentially what I’m saying is, don’t expect to see a lot of guys on this list who were adept at hitting.

Let me warn you in advance, this is an extremely thin list…

AUTHOR’S NOTE: I’m in a contest to become the next host on 97.5 The Fanatic, a Philadelphia-based sports talk station. If you could take 30 seconds and PLEASE hit the “Like” button right next to the comment button on THIS LINK I provided, (It’s a rant about the Philadelphia Eagles) it would be greatly appreciated. Thanks to those that helped!

Follow me on Twitter @AdrianFedkiw

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Article Source: Bleacher Report - Philadelphia Phillies

Philadelphia Phillies: Chase Utley and the Best Second Basemen in Team History

July 22, 2011 by  
Filed under Fan News

Ok, so there really isn’t much drama as to who number one will be.

Nonetheless, the Phillies have had their fair share of solid second baseman.

There’s also been some bad. I had a tough time filling out this list.


Best 1B in Phillies History

Best SP in Phillies History

Can the Pirates win the NL Central

Who will win the AL Central?

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Article Source: Bleacher Report - Philadelphia Phillies

Philadelphia Phillies: Ryan Howard and the 10 Best First Basemen in Team History

July 15, 2011 by  
Filed under Fan News

During his magnificent 18-year career, Mike Schmidt played mostly third base and some shortstop.

In 1985, the Phillies moved him to first base to give 23-year-old Rick Schu an opportunity to start at third. The experiment didn’t last a full season, and Philadelphia traded him to Baltimore in 1988.

Pat Burrell started his career at first base due to an injury to opening day starter Rico Brogna.

“Mr. Five for One” Von Hayes played the outfield mostly during his tenure with the Phils, but from 1986-1988, he started a majority of his games at first base.

Some other notable names who played some part-time first base include Dick Allen, Ed Delahanty, Nap Lajoie, Willie Montanez and Dave Hollins.



Phillies’ Best SP of All-Time

20 Most Beloved Phillies

10 Worst Teams in Phillies History

Top 10 Phillies Pitching Prospects

Could the Phillies Face the Braves in the NLCS

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Article Source: Bleacher Report - Philadelphia Phillies

Philadelphia Phillies: Power Ranking the Top 10 Starting Pitching Prospects

July 13, 2011 by  
Filed under Fan News

One of the main reasons why the Phillies won the World Series in 2008 was due to theirhome grown talent hey had during 2007; Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley, Pat Burrell, Ryan Howard and Cole Hamels in particular.

After their World Series title in 2008, the philosophy changed. Before, the club never signed a free-agent pitcher to more than three years. Due to the money they had, they were able to accomplish this with Cliff Lee. They signed him to a five-year deal!

Out of the “four aces” Cole Hamels is the only home grown product.

Don’t worry, there is talent in the farm. Keith Law of ESPN has the Phillies farm system ranked fifth in all of baseball, and most of that has to do with their starting pitching.

So, who will become the next ace in Philadelphia?

Then again, will Ruben Amaro Jr. use one of these “Baby Aces” to acquire a much needed right-handed bat?

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Article Source: Bleacher Report - Philadelphia Phillies

Philadelphia Phillies: Halladay, Lee, Hamels and the Best Starting Pitchers Ever

July 6, 2011 by  
Filed under Fan News

In this golden era of Phillies baseball, starting pitching has taken precedence. If Philadelphia management can somehow find a way to extend Cole Hamels after 2012, the team will have Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee and Hamels together for at least another couple of years. 

Of course, as of right now, Halladay and Lee will not be ranked as high individually in Phillies lore simply because they haven’t pitched enough.

Nonetheless, as the years pile up, it will be interesting to see not only the jumps they make in the all-time ranks from year to year, but where they wind up when their careers are over.

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Article Source: Bleacher Report - Philadelphia Phillies

With Roy Oswalt Injured Improving the Offense Became Even More Important

June 24, 2011 by  
Filed under Fan News

Roy Oswalt‘s been fighting lingering back issues all season long—he already spent some time on the disabled list earlier in the year with the same concerns.

After Oswalt left last night’s game after the second inning, the timetable for his return is indefinite. 

The velocity on Oswalt’s fastball has steadily dipped since his first stint on the DL, and he’s a pitcher that likes to get his fastball up in the zone and blow it by hitters. 

Oswalt hasn’t been able to do that lately—he’s 1-5 with a 4.06 ERA in his previous eight starts.

The back really started to flare up on a road trip in Arizona in April. Before that, in his previous start at San Diego, his fastball routinely hit 93-94 mph.  

Last night, Oswalt consistently hit 90 mph on the radar gun.

He’s had to rely more on command and changing speeds.

Before I was fine with a cheap option like Reed Johnson, but with Oswalt’s future in question, I think it becomes more imperative that the Phillies find a way to add a bat at the trade deadline.

They need to take some pressure off the pitching staff, especially if Vance Worley and Kyle Kendrick are going to remain starters for most—if not the rest—of the year.

Joe Blanton is expected back in late July or early August.



Philadelphia 76ers Select Pennsbury Alum Lavoy Allen

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Article Source: Bleacher Report - Philadelphia Phillies

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