Phillies-Yankees World Series Preview

October 26, 2009 by  
Filed under Fan News

A position-by-position detailed analysis of the World Series matchup between the:

Philadelphia Phillies vs. New York Yankees


First Base

NYY-Mark Teixeira may be the second-best all-around first baseman in the game. He is a .290 hitter with a lot of pop. Teixeira is a Gold Glove quality fielder with loads of athleticism.


While he had a MVP-caliber season, he has struggled mightily in the playoffs at the plate, although he has made more hen his fair share of run savings plays in the field to help his team reach the World Series.


PHI-Ryan Howard is the best power hitter in baseball over the last four years. He has the most HR’s and RBI in baseball during that span.


Despite his defensive shortcomings, in the last four years he has finish in the top 5 in MVP voting three times, including winning it once and one runner-up. Due to being much fitter this year he has improved his defense to average.



  • OFFENSE:           TEIXEIRA-[][][][]            HOWARD-[][][][][]
  • DEFENSE:             TEIXEIRA-[][][][][]         HOWARD-[][]1/2
  • INTANGIBLES:      TEIXEIRA-[][][]              HOWARD-[][][][]1/2
  • OVERALL:            TEIXEIRA-[][][][]           HOWARD-[][][][]1/2



These two first basemen were both MVP candidates this year. But with Howard’s experience from winning last years World Series and the fact that he, along with A-Rod, is the hottest hitter in the postseason, the over all edge goes to the power hitter from Philly.




Second Base


NYY-Robinson Cano is going to be a future all-star for years to come. He hits for a great average and puts the ball over the fence 15-20 time a year.  While he has a nice arm, he has limited range and has his share of errors. That said he has improved his defense year after year and is by no means a defensive liability.


PHI-Chase Utley is the best second-baseman in baseball. If he continues his offensive pace he will go down as the greatest slugging second-baseman of all time. Despite limited athleticism, he has willed himself into an excellent fielder. 



  • OFFENSE              CANO-[][][][]                     UTLEY-[][][][]1/2
  • DEFENSE:             CANO-[][][]                        UTLEY-[][][][]1/2
  • INTANGIBLES:        CANO-[][]1/2                     UTLEY-[][][][][]
  • OVERALL:             CANO-[][][]1/2                    UTLEY-[][][][]1/2



As good as Cano is, Utley is the best there is. Along with the fact he is clutch, he is also the clubhouse leader of his team and has come to represent what the Phillies are all about, much like the shortstop on the Yankees.






NYY-Derek Jeter, aka “The Captain”, is one of the most clutch player in postseason history. He is a career .419 hitter against left handers in the playoffs, a stat the Phillies are surely aware of.


While he has lost a step when it comes to running the bases, and fielding range, he still excels at being a  leader and a winner, two things he may have done better then any other player of his generation.


PHI-Jimmy Rollins is not your prototypical lead off hitter. He strikes out and pops out at a much higher rate then you want from your leadoff guy.


That said, when Rollins scores, the Phillies been almost unbeatable. He has good power and great speed. Defensively he is the two time defending Gold Glove winner, and looks to keep adding more to the trophy room for years to come.



  • OFFENSE:            JETER-[][][][]1/2             ROLLINS-[][][][]
  • DEFENSE:            JETER-[][][]1/2               ROLLINS-[][][][][]
  • INTANGIBLES:       JETER-[][][][][]              ROLLINS-[][][][]
  • OVERALL:            JETER-[][][][]1/2             ROLLINS-[][][][]



Both player are perennial all-stars. While it is had to pick between them, the slight edge has to go to Jeter for all he has accomplished, and what he represents to his team.




Third Base


NYY- Alex Rodriguez, scandals aside, is unarguably a top 5 player in baseball. He excels in every aspect of the game, his only flaw being his struggles in the postseason.


But so far this postseason, it seems he has put that behind him. Whether he is able to keep up the hot hitting in the World Series remains to be seen, but as of now he is a power to be reckoned with.


PHI-Pedro Feliz is a good third baseman who excels defensively. When he was with San Francisco, he had a bit more pop and hit for a higher average. Still, he is very consistent and does have his moments at the plate.


The Phillies depend on him to defend the hot corner, and he does just about as well as anyone in the league.



  • OFFENSE:            RODRIGUEZ-[][][][][]      FELIZ-[][]1/2
  • DEFENSE:            RODRIGUEZ-[][][][][]      FELIZ-[][][][]1/2
  • INTANGIBLES:        RODRGIUEZ-[][][]           FELIZ-[][]
  • OVERALL:            RODRIGUEZ-[][][][]1/2    FELIZ-[][]1/2




NYY-Jorge Posada is the long time Yankee catcher. He may not be a defensive stalwart, but he sure has a lot of pop for a catcher.


Posada is no stranger to clutch performances and despite his recent discontent with being sat in the playoffs, the Yankees can always count on Posada to come to play.


PHI-Carlos Ruiz is known in Philly as “Chooch”.  During the regular season Ruiz is a very pedestrian hitter, but does run the bases well for a catcher.


But come October, Ruiz becomes one of the Phillies hardest outs, and that’s saying something. Behind the plate he is as solid as they come and his pitchers completely trust him and love to pitch to him.



  • OFFENSE:            POSADA-[][][][]            RUIZ-[][][]1/2
  • DEFENSE:             POSADA-[][][]              RUIZ-[][][][]
  • INTANGIBLES:       POSADA-[][][][]            RUIZ-[][][][]
  • OVERALL:             POSADA-[][][]1/2          RUIZ-[][][]1/2


Although they are completely different players, the impact they can have on their teams are relatively similar. Both players are uber clutch and are truly apart of the fabric of that is the souls of their teams. Both will rise to the occasion and give it everything they can, there for I see this matchup as a draw.




Left Field


NYY-Johnny Damon is coming off one of the best offensive seasons of his career. While he still has good range, he has the classic “wet noodle” for an arm. Damon does have a ton of experience in the postseason, and has responded in the big moment.


PHI-Raul Ibanez had the best year of his career at the age of 37. After May he was giving Albert Pujols a run for the MVP. After he came back from a foot injury, he never regained quite the same level of play.


Still, he has played well so far this postseason and knows this may be his last, best, only chance at a World Series ring.



  • OFFENSE              DAMON-[][][]                   IBANEZ-[][][]1/2
  • DEFENSE              DAMON-[][][]                   IBANEZ-[][][]
  • INTANGIBLES        DAMON-[][][][]                 IBANEZ-[][][]
  • OVERALL              DAMON-[][][]1/2               IBANEZ-[][][]1/2


This is as close to a draw as you can get. Both players have similar roles for their ballclub. Neither player is depended on to win the series for their team, but both are more then capable. In a series like this, matchups such as these could actually determine who win the series. Both players could be a dark horse or maybe even a dud.


Center Field


NYY-Melky Cabrera may have the least amount of name recognition of the starters on this Yankee team, but he is developing into a pretty good all-around baseball player.


Although he probably won’t win a Gold Glove in his immediate future, he plays a very good center field. His bat does leave a lot to be desired and for a center fielder with some range he does not steal nearly enough bases.


PHI-Shane Victorino is the Phillies mega source of energy. He is known as the Flying Hawaiian for his all or nothing approach in the field, for the havoc he causes on the base paths, and his numerous clutch moments. Simply Victorino the reigning Gold Glove winner and a run scoring machine.



  • OFFENSE:            CABRERA-[][]              VICTORINO-[][][][]
  • DEFENSE:            CABRERA-[][][][]         VICTORINO-[][][][][][]
  • INTANGIBLES:      CABRERA-[][]1/2          VICTORINO-[][][][]1/2
  • OVERALL:            CABRERA-[][]1/2          VICTORINO-[][][][]


Cabrera is a good young player but Victorino has the whole package. Victorino competes as hard as anyone in baseball and may remind many Phillies fans of a player known belovedly as “Charlie Hustle.”




Right Field


NYY-Nick Swisher is nothing if not consistent. He will bat .250, belt 30 HR’s and drive in 80 runs. While he will get you those consistent numbers, he does not contribute much in the field.


If the Yankees did not sign Teixeira, Swisher would be at first base. Whatever the Yankees get out of Swisher this series will come as a bonus, as long as he stays out of trouble in the field and on the basepaths.


PHI-Jayson Werth is a budding superstar. He fills up the box score in all facets of the game. He is coming off a season where he had  just under a 100 runs and RBI as well as 20 stolen bases.


He plays a great right field, has the range to where he could easily be a center fielder, and has a cannon for an arm. The Phillies may not be able to afford keeping Werth after this World Series, but for now he is one more weapon for the Phillies.



  • OFFENSE:        SWISHER-[][][][] WERTH-[][][][]1/2
  • DEFENSE          SWISHER-[][]1/2 WERTH-[][][][]1/2
  • INTANGIBLES    SWISHER-[][][] WERTH-[][][]
  • OVERALL          SWISHER-[][][] WERTH-[][][][]


Swisher is a nice player but Werth does more for things in more ways for then Phillies, then Swisher does for the Yankees. Swisher could have an impact on this series, Werth is expected to have an impact.



Potential DH


NYY-Hideki Matsui is a professional hitter. He has the ability to help the Yankees with his bat throughout the series. He understands how to approach pitchers, and even if he does  not end up with gaudy stats he will be a tough out for all the Phillies pitchers.


PHI-Matt Stairs and Ben Francisco will DH depending on the lefty/righty matchup. Stairs possesses more power but Francisco can gap a ball for a triple as well as steal bases.


Another option is against lefties, the Phillies could have Francisco play LF and have Ibanez DH.



  • OFFENSE:            MATSUI-[][][]1/2    STAIRS/FRANCISCO-[][]1/2
  • INTANGIBLES:        MATSUI-[][][][]       STAIRS/FRANCISCO-[][][]
  • OVERALL:            MATSUI-[][][]1/2     STAIRS/FRANCISCO-[][]1/2


Starting Pitchers


NYY- Sabathia, Burnett, and Pettitte and maybe Chamberlain make up the Yankees rotation. While Sabathia has had trouble in the past performing in the postseason, so far he has been a beast for the Yankees.


Burnett has great stuff but has and is struggling with consistency. Pettitte no longer throws as hard as he used to but he is a big game pitcher and almost always gives the Yankees a chance to win.


PHI-Lee, Hamels, Martinez, Blanton make up the Phillies four-man rotation. Although I see them using a four-man rotation I do see Lee pitching whenever Sabathia pitches. Hamels, last year’s World Series MVP, has struggled mightily this postseason and has not been consistent all year.


Blanton is a work horse and like Pettitte always give the Phillies a chance to win. Martinez gives the Phillies the crafty experienced right hander.


The Phillies may be counting on that experience in Game 2 as they believe Martinez would hold up better in the Bronx then the struggling Hamels.



  • STUFF:                  NYY-[][][][]1/2                  PHI-[][][][]
  • CONSISTENCY:       NYY-[][][]1/2                    PHI-[][][][]
  • INTANGIBLES:         NYY-[][][]1/2                    PHI-[][][][]
  • OVERALL:               NYY-[][][][]                      PHI-[][][][]





NYY-While Coke, Hughes and the rest of the bunch make for a fine bullpen, it’s the closer that sets this bullpen apart from all others.


Even at his advanced age, Mariano Rivera is still the man when it comes to closing a game out. If the Phillies don’t find success in their first seven innings often then this will probably be a very short series.


PHI- Despite the Phillies bullpen being much maligned coming into these playoffs, they have performed exceptionally. Most of that is to the reemergence of their closer Brad Lidge.


If Lidge can keep up the good work and the rest of the bullpen holds form, then the Phillies will have every chance to win in any situation.



  • STUFF:                  NYY-[][][][][]                    PHI-[][][][]
  • CONSISTENCY:       NYY-[][][][]1/2                  PHI-[][][]1/2
  • INTANGIBLES:         NYY-[][][][][]                    PHI-[][][]1/2
  • OVERALL:               NYY-[][][][]1/2                  PHI-[][][][]





  • OFFENSE :           NYY-[][][][][]                   PHI-[][][][][]      
  • DEFENSE:            NYY-[][][][]                     PHI-[][][][][]      
  • PITCHING:           NYY-[][][][]1/2                 PHI-[][][][]
  • INTANGIBLES       NYY-[][][][]                   PHI-[][][][][]
  • OVERALL            NYY-[][][][]1/2                 PHI-[][][][][]




No team plays better for 27 outs then the Philadelphia Phillies, and that will be the difference. Both teams will score runs, so the Sabathia/Lee matchup have that much more importance.


In the end, they will face off in game seven at Yankee Stadium, where Lee and the Phillies lineup will find a way to win and repeat as World Series Champions.

Read more Philadelphia Phillies news on

Article Source: Bleacher Report - Philadelphia Phillies

Philly Fans Dont Want To, But They Should Stop and Smell the Roses

October 21, 2009 by  
Filed under Fan News

From 1983 to 2007, the city of Philadelphia had 99 chances at a season that ended in ultimate glory, and season after season they fell short. Four times they made it to the championship round—once in all four major sports—and could not get the job done.

Championship memories in Philadelphia for two generations amounted to a walk-off World Series winning home run for the opposing team, the decimation of the so called “Legion of Doom” in a four-game sweep on the ice, our best baller who does not like practice, triumphantly stepping over, not Kobe, not Shaq, but the “great” Tyrone Lue, and finally our courageous QB blowing chunks in front of hundreds of millions of people on the way to a Super Bowl loss.

And that was just the last 26 years.

The grand history of Philadelphia sports goes something like this. The Phillies, Philadelphia’s longest tenured team, are the losingist franchise in professional sports history. The cities most beloved team, the “Iggles”, has yet to win a Super Bowl. The 76ers and the Flyers both had their share of success in late 70’s and early 80’s, but neither has recaptured that magic since.  

With all this said, it is but a testament to how special this Phillies team really is. Sports is about memories and the camaraderie that is shared between fans, whether it be family members in front of the home TV, or complete strangers at a bar.

This Phillies team—with the way they play and the way they win—has a great chance to go down as the greatest team this city has ever had. The last 14 months of Phillies Baseball have produced more of these special moments than some Philadelphia fans have had in half a lifetime.

Starting with coming back against the Mets to win the division two years in a row, to tearing through the playoffs last year on route to a World Series Championship, to this year’s numerous ninth inning comebacks, these Phillies have a knack for the dramatic and for winning.

For a fan, that’s a wondrous combination.

When you break this team down individually, you will find terms long not associated with this franchise. Terms such as “A top five player in baseball and the game’s best second baseman,” or “The league’s preeminent RBI and HR king of the last four years,” and how about “Former MVP and multiple Gold Glove winning shortstop.”

And let’s not forget the person that may be the most beloved figure during this magical run, their steady as she goes, ah shucks, just take it one game at a time manager, Charlie Manuel. Charlie, who started from Day One with scorn from the fans in the wake of the Phillies not hiring Jim Leyland instead, and those who did not take to his southern draw and southern nature. He has now morphed into a manager who pushes all the right buttons and has a team that quite literally goes to war for him.

Please understand this is all said before this Phillies team has finished writing its legacy.

They are currently one win away from the World Series, with their next probable opponent being the Kings of Baseball; also known as the New York Yankees. On top of that, they are also trying to become the first team to repeat since the Yankees of the late 90’s, and the first National League team to do it since the Reds of the 70’s. This is some very historic territory these Phillies are treading in.

Even if they fall short this year, this team is built to win titles for the next two to three years. When it’s all said and done and the core of this team leave its primes, the Philadelphia fan base could have very well experienced the greatest era in sports history the city has ever seen.

So Phillies fans, take one moment and relish all this team has already given you.

Be thankful for all the memories you have shared, and the players you will never forget. Also, look forward with a sense of pride and confidence knowing your team can get it done, and has gotten it done. Above all, this team loves playing the game, and the fans love them for it all the more.

So to these phantastic Phillies we say, thank you so much, good luck, and go get ’em.

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Article Source: Bleacher Report - Philadelphia Phillies