On to San Diego
That’s the ERA for the Phillies starting pitchers over the last 20 games. It dropped to that figure last night as Brett was outstanding in a 3-1 loss that gave the Dodgers a four-game sweep over the Phillies in Los Angeles for the first time in 46 years.
Over those 20 games, the Phillies are 10-10. Unfortunately, putting runs on the scoreboard is mostly responsible for that .500 record. Last night, two hits and one run.
Ryan Howard said it best in Ken Mandel’s story on this site: “We’re trying to find ways to get runs across. It’s unexplainable. We’re not getting key hits. I’ve never been a part of anything like this before. I’m not taking anything away from [the Dodgers pitchers]. We’ve been in that offensive lull.”
Last time we dropped four in LA was July 2 and 4, 1962, a pair of double-headers. (Heck, Jamie Moyer wasn’t even born then). Johnny Podres, Stan Williams, Sandy Koufax and Joe Moeller were the winning pitchers.
Moyer will try to stop the slide tonight in San Diego against the Western Division’s last-place Padres. The 45-year-old will face 42-year-old Greg Maddux. Combined, they have won 593 games in 43 big league seasons.
Yes, we dropped into second place last night but we’ve begun making plans for the postseason, something quite a few teams are doing.
Every August Major League Baseball sends each contending club a thick manual that covers the Division Series, League Championship Series and World Series.
Chapters include hotel needs, ball park security/banner policies, ticketing, publications, media needs, broadcasting requirements, hospitality functions, merchandise, communications needs (telephones/internet), pre-game regulations, parking, transportation and the postseason rally.
Ticketing invoices are currently being printed. The goal is to mail them to season ticket holders within a week.
Team USA (1-2) lost to Cuba yesterday, 5-4, in 10 innings. SS Jason Donald, 0-2 with a walk and sacrifice. C Lou Marson did not play.
Game was tied, 3-3, after nine. Under Olympic rules, both teams are given a chance to score in the 10th inning. Runners are put on first and second base with no outs. Cuba scored twice, USA once. MLB should adopt that rule for the All-Star Game. That way Brad Lidge wouldn’t have warmed up so many times before finally getting in the game.
Next game: vs. Canada.
Midnight tonight is the deadline for signing players selected in the June First-Year Player Draft.
The Phillies have signed every one of their draftees in the first 10 rounds (13 players) except #7, 3B John Coy of Benton High School, St. Joseph, MO. The 6-foot-7, 18-year-old has opted to attend Arizona State University to play basketball and baseball.
Unsigned draftees go back in the draft next June.
Minor League Awards
RHP Michael Stutes, who was drafted in the 11th round, is the Phillies minor league pitcher of the week for the second time in three weeks. He has been pitching lights out since signing with the Phillies. Marti Wolever, Scouting Director, in one of his reports: “Could be quiet sleeper of 2008 draft.”
Minor League Notes
RHP Carlos Carrasco lost last night for Lehigh Valley, 2-1, allowing two runs (one earned) in 6 innings, five hits. He walked four and fanned eight. Pitching coach Rod Nichols: “Overall stuff was live, but command was erratic. Delivery was inconsistent but he put his team in a position to win.” . . . Clearwater CF Quintin Berry’s hitting streak remained at 30 games as the Threshers were rained out . . . Lakewood RH reliever Zack Sterner became the organization’s first 10-game winner with four, one-hit scoreless innings against Savannah. Need a win? Stick Zack on the mound. He’s 10-2 in 24 appearances.
To Boo, Or, Not To Boo
Jimmy Rollins, an All-Star shortstop, MVP and a human being, said some things the last couple of days that triggered more lightning strikes in the Philly area than a summer’s worth of thunderstorms.
I’m not about to get involved with opinions. Judging from e-mails, blogs and message boards, there are opinions galore. That’s one of the beauties of the internet. Or, a curse, depending upon how you look at it.
Last August, I was saluted on Alumni Night as I approached semi-retirement. A microphone was standing by its lonesome at home plate, which was a sign somebody had to say something.
I thanked the fans, acknowledged that they are the focus for what we do and then asked for one favor, “Don’t boo so much.” It was said if half-jest and half-honesty.
I got booed.