Philadelphia Phillies Add Depth With Veteran Mike Sweeney

August 5, 2010 by  
Filed under Fan News

(Philadelphia, PA) – With Ryan Howard on the 15-day disabled list and the Phillies still without a viable right handed bat off the bench general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. made a move yesterday acquiring veteran Mike Sweeney from the Seattle Mariners.

The Phillies acquired Sweeney for a player-to-be named or cash consideration, the teams have yet to agree, and Sweeney will fill in at first base until Howard returns from the DL.

Phillies manager Charlie Manuel seemed pleased with the deal telling reporters. “He can hit…and help us right now”.

Sweeney, 37, is in his 16th season in the majors and is hitting .263 with six home runs and 18 RBI in 30 games. He has been on the disabled list with back spasms but was removed upon the trade to Philadephia.

In his last rehab start for Triple-A Tacoma last night he hit two home runs and had four RBI.

“We still think in the limited playing time he might have that he has a chance to win some games for us.” stated GM Ruben Amaro Jr.

This is a smart move for the Phillies as they make their push towards the playoffs because they gave up very little and added veteran depth to their bench. Sweeney will add something the Phillies have lacked at times this season, the ability to hit with runners in scoring position. (.313 10-for-32).

Sweeney spent the first 13 years of his career with the Kansas City Royals, after he was drafted in the 10th round by KC in 1991, and was a five-time all start at first base. He spent a year in Oakland before joining the Mariners in 2007.

The team expects the newest Phillie to be in tonight’s lineup against the Florida Marlins. Roy Oswalt is scheduled to take on Chris Volstad, game-time is 7:05.

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Phillies First Baseman Ryan Howard to Meet With Team Docs In Philly.

August 3, 2010 by  
Filed under Fan News

Philadelphia, PA- Just when you thought it could not get worse for the Philadelphia Phillies the injury struggles increased and, pending results, could send another Phillie to the overloaded disabled list.

What was thought as a minor sprain for Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard could turn into something more severe as Howard was sent back to Philadelphia yesterday to meet with team doctors.

Howard suffered the sprain in the first inning of the Phillies game three extra-innings-win against the Washington Nationals. Howard was taken for an MRI and X-Ray immediately and neither test showed a fracture.

After the teams off-day Monday the decision was made to send Howard back to Philadelphia to meet with team physician Michael Ciccotti to address the situation.

When speaking with the media Howard seemed optimistic and hopeful the sprain was not severe.

“I guess once the swelling goes down, we’ll see what happens”

For the meantime the Phillies will rely on bench players Cody Ransom and Ross Gload to platoon at first base.

Missing out on Howard’s bat could be tragic for the Phillies as he is leading the NL in RBI with 81 and his 119 hits is a team best.

No word if Howard will be sent to the disabled list but if that happens it will leave outfielder Jayson Werth as the only Phillies starter not to hit the DL.

The Phillies are currently three games back of the Atlanta Braves in the NL East and three and a half games back in the wild card.

Ibanez optimistic about return.

After missing Sunday’s game against the Washington Nationals outfielder Raul Ibanez seem optimistic he will be back in the lineup against the Florida Marlins. Ibanez was held out of Sundays game due to a sore left wrist.

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Philadelphia Phillies Look To Gain Ground With Three Games vs. Florida

August 2, 2010 by  
Filed under Fan News

(Coral Gables, FL) – After a disappointing 1-2 in a three game set with the Washington Nationals the Philadelphia Phillies are heading on the road for a three game set with the Florida Marlins.

For the Phillies a three game set with the NL East third ranked Florida Marlins is coming at the worst time. The Phillies are 25-31 on the road this season and with the Marlins only four games back of the Phillies for second place in the division the Fightin’s will need to gain ground in Florida if they want to catch up to the Atlanta Braves.

As I mentioned a week ago the Phillies have become the walking wounded . The team is still weeks away from getting Chase Utley back from a surgically repaired thumb, Shane Victorino is on the 15-day DL and to top it all off the Phillies are now putting Ryan Howard as day-to-day after he rolled his ankle as second base in yesterdays 6-4 extra inning win against the Washington Nationals.

The Phillies are sitting two and a half games back of the division leading Braves and are in the midst of a nine game stretch against divisional opponents. Luckily for the Phillies their pitching match-ups for the division side in their favor.

Game 1: Roy Halladay (12-8) v. Sean West (0-0)

Phillies ace Roy Hallady starts off the series against an unknown foe in Sean West. West has been called up from AAA-New Orleans where he was 4-3 with a 3.12 ERA. Halladay has done substantially well against the Marlins this season going 2-1 1.08 ERA, and oh, yeah one of those wins was a perfect game.

Halladay has controlled Marlins hitters as Hanley Ramirez, Cody Ross and Dan Uggla have gone a combined 10-40 against Halladay with eight strikeouts.

With the Phillies repleted lineup they will need to rely on players like Jayson Werth and Jimmy Rollins. Werth is hitting a lowly .182 against the Marlins, most of that on his much publicized hitting slump. Rollins, who has historically hit well against Florida will get his first outing against the Marlins as he was out of the previous series nursing his injured calf.

Game 2: Kyle Kendrick (6-4) v. Anibal Sanchez (8-6)

Sanchez is coming off a strong one-hit outing against the San Francisco Giants and looks to do the same against the Phillies. He is 1-1 with a 3.55 ERA this season against the Phillies and has averaged on six and a third innings per outings against the Phillies.

Kendrick is 1-0 against the Marlins and has pitched pretty well since his three day stint in the minor leagues. In his last two starts he has pitched 13 1/3 innings recording eight strikeouts and has held opposing batters to only 10 hits.

The key to this game will be the run support Kendrick gets. If you look at his season numbers when the Phillies hit Kendrick shines.

Game 3: Roy Oswalt (6-13) v. Chris Volstad (5-8)

In the final game of this three game set all eyes will be on the newly acquired Roy Oswalt. After a not so stellar outing in his Phillies debut where he allowed five runs on seven hits in only six innings of work, Oswalt will look to redeem himself with the Phillies faithful.

The only thing that could hurt Oswalt are his career numbers at Sun Life Stadium. In three games at the Marlins Roy Oswalt is 0-2 with one no decision. In 2009 he was drilled for 10 runs in only six innings of work and the year before he was 0-2 with an 11.2 ERA.

Dan Uggla has suffered against the new Phillies going 2-15 with an .133 batting average, striking out five times.

As you can see, other then the Kendrick v. Sanchez match-up, the series could look very positive for the Phillies. It will be important for the Phillies to get wins in the series because as the number two and three teams in the NL face each other the Braves will attempt to distance themselves as they take on the sinking New York Mets.

The Phillies have an off say Monday with game one starting Tuesday night and hopefully that full day of rest will allow Ryan Howard’s ankle to heal and possibly make him eligible for games two and three.

Now that its August it is time for the Phillies to make one of their historical late season runs towards the playoffs. With Utley weeks away things are looking up but the Phillies are definitely showing signs of late season wear. Lets just hope, for our sake, all of the injury setbacks are behind them.

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Philadelphia’s Top Headlines Have Become a Battle for Attention

July 30, 2010 by  
Filed under Fan News

PHILADELPHIA, PA—Lately, the media scene in the city of Philadelphia has become as common as taxes.

Just as one team makes an acquisition for a new star, another team makes a bold move to steal the spotlight. As one team makes a run towards the post season, another makes a questionable contract extension.

In the city of Philadelphia, the sports media culture has been in a constant tug-of-war match for the attention of their two favorite franchises: The Phillies and the Eagles.

This is no disrespect to the cities other two franchises, the Flyers and 76ers.

With the recent struggles of the Sixers and their dismal 27-55 record in 2009-10, they have remained out of the spotlight accept for on small occasions. In the case of the Flyers they must be commended for their run towards the Stanley Cup, but because of the fact that hockey is still a relative niche sport in America, they remain with a strongly secular and specific fanbase.

For decades now, the Philadelphia Eagles have been the major ticket in town. Their constant runs towards the playoffs and their high-profile moves have made for some of the largest crowds and media controls in the city.

Just as the Eagles were making their run for a permanent spot in the mindset of Philadelphians, the Phillies have quietly, since 2006-07, made a run as one of the strongest and fastest rising teams in all of baseball.

As the Phillies got better, their fanbase got bigger, and at times, began to dwarf in popularity to the big dog Eagles. The Phillies back-to-back-to-back NL East titles and their improbable run to the 2008 World Series, along with the opening of the brand new Citizens Bank Park, began to shift the focus to the Phillies in the cities popular culture.

This phenomenon has not gone unnoticed, as beyond the moves of the teams, a seasonal debate has brewed on which team will make the next move to steal the attention.

This week has become another chapter in this long going struggle.

Yesterday, the Phillies made a move for one of the highest touted pitchers available in Roy Oswalt. A move that has been debated for weeks finally commenced, and conveniently enough, just as the Eagles began their training camp with new starting quarterback Kevin Kolb.

Just four months ago, it was the Eagles chance to steal the spotlight. As the seasons do evidently change, so do the teams in their position of prominence in the media eye.

The Phillies began their 2010 season fresh off their second run at a World Series title in as many years. The day was April 5, and the Phillies were set to open their season in Washington to take on the Nationals, for them a huge time for media attention.

But for the Eagles, it was another chance to steal the spotlight.

The same day the Phillies began their third run at a title was coincidentally the same day the Eagles sent Donovan McNabb packing to division rival Washington. The deal to trade McNabb was not urgent and could have come at any time, but in the city of Philadelphia, where fans are constantly pulled for their attention between the two franchises, the Eagles felt it was time to steal the Phillies’ thunder.

The timing was not all that surprising, as the Phillies made their own questionable trade just four months before.

Throughout the Eagles 2009-10 season, their was heavy debate on whether Andy Reid was going to be given a contract extension to remain with the team. Reid’s extension was an issue that many thought would be addressed in the offseason, yet on December 10, the Eagles decided to announce Reid had signed a three-year contract extension to remain with the team through 2013.

At this same time, the Phillies were testing the offseason trade market in hopes to seal another piece of the puzzle for their upcoming season.

Not to be one-upped by the attention the Eagles were getting, the Phillies made their own blockbuster move to steal the spotlight, trading Cliff Lee to the Seattle Mariners and acquiring Roy Halladay from the Toronto Blue Jays.

Just more signs of the ongoing battle in the city of Philadelphia to retain and capture the attention of the Philadelphia faithful.

They call Philadelphia the “City of Brotherly Love,” and just like any siblings that vie for the coveted attention of their mother, both will do anything and everything to quench that desperate need for attention.


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MLB: Even With Walking Wounded, Phillies String Together Win Streak

July 28, 2010 by  
Filed under Fan News

It seems as if injuries are the storyline of the season for the Philadelphia Phillies.

Chase Utley is still a few weeks from returning from the disabled list with his surgically repaired thumb, Jimmy Rollins was benched yesterday with a foot injury, and to top it all off, outfielder Shane Victorino was pulled in the seventh inning with a strained muscle in his left side.

Weeks ago, I preached to the Phillies collective that the describing word for the Phillies was inconsistency, and it still may be, but in this recent six game winning streak, the buzz word must be resilience.

The resilience of a roster that has not been whole in months. The resilience that had one of the best pitchers in the league, Ubaldo Jimenez, running for the showers. The team did this on the back of a pitcher who was just demoted to the minor’s days before. J.A. Happ, who hadn’t pitched in the majors since April, scrounged for a victory on Sunday just days after replacing Jamie Moyer in the starting rotation.

Moyer, who is now injured with a strained tendon in his elbow and forearm, is questioning surgery and even his career which is another injury the Phillies can add to their laundry list of walking wounded.

Yet with all of these issues, the team has managed their improbable winning streak and has even gained ground in the division, now just sitting 3 1/2 games back of division leading Atlanta Braves.

The injury bug is even transcending the Phillies current roster.

Just days ago Dan Haren, formerly of the Diamondbacks, left his first start for his new ballclub the L.A. Angels after taking a line drive off the leg. Haren was one of the key pitching names targeted by the Phillies.

Just yesterday, there were rumors surfacing involving a possible trade between the Phillies and the Tampa Bay Rays. The deal was proposed to send Jayson Werth to Tampa for outfielder B.J. Upton and prospects. Just hours after the rumors, Upton left the game will an injury to his right ankle and is now listed as day-to-day.

It seems as if divine intervention is plaguing even those loosely associated with the team, yet with all of these injuries and proposed injuries, the Phillies manage to pull out wins.

The Phillies have done their best piecing together a roster that, for one reason or another, has been getting it done. Role players like Ross Gload have come up big for reasons unknown to many. Even the slumping Jayson Werth reveled in his resilience, hitting his 14th homerun of the season in the sixth inning of the teams 9-5 romping of the Arizona Diamondbacks.

With the recent roster issues the Phillies have a few options to assess. As many have mentioned, general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. is sitting behind the eight ball with increased pressure to make a move for either a starting pitcher or another right handed bat to come off the bench and add some depth.

Upton would have been a solution to the right handed bat issues, but it would have come at the cost of the teams only other right handed producer in Werth. The Phillies have discussed publicly the option of bringing up minor league prospect Dominic Brown from Lehigh Valley. Brown wouldn’t help with the right handed bat issues, but could ease the stress on the club if they were to make a trade for one of their outfielders.

With the MLB trade deadline just three days away, the Phillies have issues to discuss. The recent injuries make their list of wants even greater, yet with a lack of minor league prospects and their depleted, injured roster, a trade may be even harder to make. What is known is that a move needs to be made the only question is by the time it gets done, will the team have enough players to remain competitive?

Side note: Brown went 2-4 last night against Durham with a triple and two RBI and is currently ranked #1 in MLB Minor League Prospect Rankings.

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Are Philadelphia Phillies’ Recent Headlines Just a Badly Played Bluff?

July 26, 2010 by  
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Philadelphia, PA—Oh, how quickly tides and public opinion can change in just four short games.

Last week, it was all hands on deck panic with the Philadelphia Phillies, who had just dropped six of seven to the Cubs and Cardinals. Yet now, just days after the firing of hitting coach Milt Thompson, the Phillies are playing like a team possessed.

Entering tonight’s game against the Colorado Rockies, the Phillies are on a four-game winning streak and showing signs of production not seen in months. They have outscored their opponents 22-5 and chased one of the game’s best pitchers, Ubaldo Jimenez, from the mound in a morale-boosting 10-2 drubbing.

On top of all of that, the team has done it all without making the major move that many expected just days ago. The question is, will the morale-boosting offense last, or is this all just a quick fix to an even larger problem?

Every Phillies fan is optimistic that the team of players currently in the lineup will rebound and make a charge towards the playoffs, but most, if not all, understand that pitchers like Kyle Kendrick and J.A. Happ make that surge a little more then a gamble.

It is well-known the Philadelphia Phillies need help if they are going to make it to their third straight World Series. Names such as Roy Oswalt, Dan Haren, and Ted Lilly have been flying around the mouths and airwaves of Philly like they are already playing at Citizens Bank Park. Yet in recent days, we’ve seen Roy Oswalt deny any interest in the Phillies and the team’s proposed back-up plan, Dan Haren, was shipped in a four-player trade to the Los Angeles Angels.

We now have less than six days until the MLB trade deadline as, hour by hour, the potential acquisitions get smaller. Yet every time we get a hint of a move, it seems that either the Phillies are too secretive with their intentions or they hoodwink the media of their own organization incompetence.

On Thursday, when Jamie Moyer went down with a potential career-ending elbow injury, we heard quotes from Phillies GM Ruben Amaro regarding trades that “were expected to bolster our roster,” yet no hints towards player movement were ever made.

After the demotion of Kyle Kendrick to Triple-A Lehigh Valley, there was an open spot in the rotation. Then came the injury to Moyer and two spots were now open. Instead of making a move for a reliable starter and acquiring a player to assist his team, Amaro made their emergency procedure of recalling Kendrick from the minors, before he made a start, and rushing J.A. Happ back into the fold to fill in the holes this weekend.

We all know about the ‘unspoken’ ceiling for the Phillies payroll. The magic $140 million payroll that we dare not cross. This magic number is the same reason Jayson Werth will be playing elsewhere next year and the same reason that Cliff Lee is no longer in the rotation, a solution that would eliminate around 90 percent of the team’s present woes.

The next six to seven days are going to define not only the Phillies, but the legacy of GM Ruben Amaro. The Phillies are sitting at the table with fewer chips than ever and, without the monetary backing from the powers that be, it’s looking like Amaro is bluffing and every Phillies fan is learning his tell.

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Philadelphia Phillies Hitting Coach Milt Thompson Used as a Scapegoat?

July 23, 2010 by  
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It is quite obvious the Philadelphia Phillies are in a slump. A team riddled by injuries and inconsistency without an ignition towards change.

Despite getting an extra innings 2-0 win in St. Louis yesterday, where Cole Hamels shined, the team still showed the overwhelming stress that comes from being back-to-back National League Champions.

The Phillies have been plagued by non-existent bats that have turned consistent players like Jayson Werth searching for a way to right the ship.

The legendary preseason beard Werth was rocking during his early hot streaks has been reduced to a whimsical and mildly scary goatee in an attempt to fix his batter’s box issues.

We’ve seen things like Chase Utley using voodoo on his bat to ease his hitting struggles. Yet the hitting gods couldn’t keep him from a thumb injury that will have him sidelined till Labor Day.

When things like this happen to a team with so many expectations from the public, front offices usually try to ignite their lineups with a trade or the firing of a manager or bench coach.

The Phillies did just that last night firing hitting coach Milt Thompson. Thompson, a former Phillie and member of the 1993 NL Champions, was with the team for six seasons and was a main contributor to the team’s 2008 World Series run.

When things go bad for a team, fans and owners are quick to forget previous successes.
Thompson was with the Phillies for six years, five of which the team was in the top three in the National League for runs scored and even lead the league in 2006, 2007, and, 2009.
He was publicly praised for the team’s success in 2008.
However, when a team falls behind for the first time in years, he’s the first to be sent packing. I am not suggesting any one person is responsible, but you have to consider the situation.

The rumors of a firing surfaced just weeks ago heading into the All-Star break. Manager Charlie Manuel vehemently supported Thomspon stating:

“It’s definitely not Milt Thompson’s fault,”…”He doesn’t do the hitting.”… and Charlie is right.

Many people in the Philadelphia media saw this move coming as most of the team’s struggles are coming from the batter’s box.

We all knew a firing was going to take place and getting rid of Thomspon is the easiest solution.

The real question is: are the Phillies using Milt Thompson as a scapegoat for other front office transgressions?

Right now the Phillies are sitting seven games back of the Atlanta Braves in the NL East, which is good for second place. Not exactly where you’d like to sit heading into August, especially with the strength of the NL Wild Card Race.

The Phillies have spent major parts of this season without the services of players like Chase Utley, Placido Polanco, Carlos Ruiz, and Jimmy Rollins and have had to substitute these key players with medicore bench players like Greg Dobbs, Wilson Valdez, and most recently Ross Gload.
Usually players like these are added to rosters to pick up slop time during blowouts yet Wilson Valdez has played in 62 games and had 188 at-bats—a career-high for him.
Any team that loses that much run production from a group of long-time starters will slump.
Couple that with the fact that this is the strongest the NL East has been in almost a decade, no one should be surprised they are slumping.
You won’t gain ground in a competitive division with lousy bench players.
The 2010 Phillies are built for winning when all of their starters are healthy. If you look at the team’s depth chart, it’s filled with extremely inexperienced young talent or role players looking for a pay check.
That’s not just the hitting coaches fault; a team that has a solid bench to fill holes wouldn’t suffer like this.
The trade deadline is 10 days away.
The rumors seem to be that the Phillies are targeting pitching to fill their holes.
Unfortunately, the truth is you can have all the pitching in the world, but without consistency from your bats and a roster full of healthy players, a major trade has no use.
With Thompson as the sacrificial lamb being sent to pass, the pressure is now on Manuel and General Manager Ruben Amaro Jr.
What those two do in the upcoming weeks will have a lasting effect on their job security…
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Panic on Broad Street…Are Fans Too Naive To Realize It?

July 18, 2010 by  
Filed under Fan News

This article is a long time coming. I know the team is only 5.5 back in the division, but with the strength of the NL East and the National League in general, things may become very bleak on Broad Street.

This city of Philadelphia talks about 2008 like it was yesterday, the season where everything was perfect and the Phillies were kings of the world…guess what, it’s not and they are slipping HARD.

Phillies fans have been sold a bill of goods from management with two promises about this season:

1. The team would walk into the playoffs…

2. They would pretty much spend the entire season leading the NL East…

The team has walked with a certain sense of entitlement, believing these things, and if certain parts of their performance don’t change soon, it’s looking like neither will happen.

Just like many Phillies fans, I watched tonight’s Game four of the Cubs series with a sense of urgency. Halladay was on the mound and after stealing a win yesterday, I was hoping tonight would be a sign of brighter days, a refresher toward the team’s potential.

Like the rest of Philly, I watched as the game came and went, seeing much of the same inconsistent play that has haunted the team this season.

The Phillies were given a gift in Game three and, if it weren’t for the epic collapse of Carlos Marmol, they could have been looking at a sweep.

It seems the story of the season is inconsistency. Whether it’s the bats, the pitching, or the roster, this year’s Phillies have been suffering from a severe lapse.

Phillies fans are an interesting breed. Not only do we come off as critical but, at points, show signs of complete oblivion.

Fans are aware of the issues this team is facing, and they talk about how things need to be done; all it takes is a 12-2 win to turn things around and they are once again talking sunshine and daisies.

The four-game sweep of the Reds was incredible. The Phillies were the walk-off wonders and seemed as if the stars were aligning. It seemed as if their luck could never run out. The Reds were leading the Central at the time and, going into the break, all seemed well in the world.

Guess what…they just lost three of four to a team that’s 10 games back in the same NL Central.

The Phillies live and die by the long ball and if the line drives aren’t flying, then they are suffering.

I bet many fans aren’t aware the Phillies are ranked 23rd in batting average and 22nd in hits…not positive for a team coming off of back-to-back World Series.

The Phillies are hemorrhaging and every talking head in the media has their opinions on how to fix it. The talking points for tomorrow’s radio shows are written and the situations are well known. It’s important to address them and realize the logical and sad truths around many of them.

Jayson Werth: Can they/would they trade him and get legitimate compensation?

Most fans in the city have accepted the fact, at the completion of this season, Werth will hit the open market and play elsewhere next year. The Phillies have stated their salary cap ceiling and made it clear with the move of Cliff Lee that there are no exceptions to this rule.

Is it time for the team to sever ties with Werth in an attempt to bolster the team?

Yes this statement can be taken as treason, and without his bat the team will be lacking a strong presence from the right side of the plate. He has the ability to help the team via trade and it is a valid option the team needs to look into.

What would they get for him and would anyone want his expiring deal?…thus bringing up issue No. 2.

Do the Phillies still need another starter?

J.A. Happ is still working on his rehab and no definite date is set. With this known, the team needs to address the fact without another starter in the rotation things are going to get dicey around playoff time.

Fans throw out names like Roy Oswalt, Dan Haren, and Ted Lilly but none of these seems logistically possible without giving up more quality minor league prospects. Seeing as the only legitimate prospect the team has is Dominic Brown, who is the heir apparent to replace Ibanez, the team will balk with any deal involving their prized prospect.

Sure Cole Hamels is improving but with his history of meltdowns, he is never reliable enough to sleep well at night. Jamie Moyer is now you second-most reliable starter and, at 47, you never know what showing you will get.

If you can make a legitimate argument for Kyle Kendrick as a fifth starter, I would like to hear it; in 19 appearances, his 5-3 record and his inability to make it past the sixth inning wont allow fans to sleep well at night, and the same goes for Joe Blanton.

A record of 3-5 from a third starter will not help you in the playoffs, and batters have an .844 on base percentage against him.

Roy Halladay has been everything we thought he would be. He has had his rough outings, but with 10 wins fans are feeling comfortable when that fifth day comes around.

With the way the bullpen has produced, the team may need to send either Happ or Blanton to the pen to ease the suffering. The only problem with that is both may be needed to start.

The Phillies need more depth, and adding another solid starter could make taking the NL East a little bit easier.

Is it just injuries?

Placido Polanco is back from the DL and has looked relatively solid.

Ryan Madson is back from “Toe Gate” and has allowed three runs in 3 1/3 innings since returning with a record of 1-1 and a blown save.

Chase Utley is only weeks away from a return. No word of the healing thumb but even his presence should boost a normally second-half team.

What are their options?

Do they hold out and see how the returns of Utley and Happ help the offense, or is a move the only way to get back on track? And if they make a move, what can they trade and who’s interested?

With the July 31st trade deadline fast approaching, they may not have time to rely on Happ or Utley, and front-office decisions need to be made. If not, instead of talking three-peat World Series visits and 2008 Champions, we may be talking 2006 and missing out on the playoffs.

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All Star Bound: Phillies Send Three to Anaheim

July 4, 2010 by  
Filed under Fan News

(Philadelphia, PA) – Tonight the elusive lineups for the 2010 MLB All-Star game were announced and three members of the Philadelphia Phillies were selected to represent the team in Anaheim California.

Chase Utley was the only Phillie selected to start the all-star game but because of his recent thumb surgery will not be able to participate in the annual mid-summer classic. Utley was elected with over 2.8 million fan votes and surpassed Martin Prado, the starter in Utley’s absence, by over a million votes.

Ryan Howard was selected as the reserve at first base. He was chosen behind NL leading vote getter Albert Pujols. This is Ryan’s third all-star appearance and was the 2006 Home Run Derby Champion.

Making his seventh selection as an All-Star is Phillies ace Roy Halladay. This will be his first trip as a Phillie and as a National Leaguer. Halladay will not start the game as that honor will most likely go to Ubaldo Jimenez of the Colorado Rockies who is 14-2 with an astonishing 2.27 ERA.

The Phillies will have one more member of the club represented as skipper Charlie Manuel will coach the National League All-Stars.

All four will be present when the 2010 MLB All Star Game takes place on July 13th at Angels Stadium in Anaheim.

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Chase Utley Headed for Surgery

July 1, 2010 by  
Filed under Fan News

Only three days after being placed on the 15 day disabled list, Phillies second baseman Chase Utley will now have surgery to repair a strained ligament on his right thumb.

It was originally thought that Utley may just need time to rest the thumb, which he injured in the recent Reds series, but after consulting with team doctors and an MRI, the decision for surgery was made.

The surgery will keep Utley out of the All-Star Game and may keep him away from the reigning NL Champions until early August.

This does not seem to affect the Phillies strategy heading into the trade deadline, but will make Wilson Valdez, for the meantime, the Phillies starting second baseman.

The surgery is scheduled for later today and will take place in New York City with hand specialist Dr. Andrew Weiland.

Chase is hitting .277, with 11 homers, and 37 RBI’s, and he is the leading vote-getter at second base in National League All-Star voting.

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