Posts for Phillies Category

After Another Bad Outing, Nick Pivetta Optioned to Lehigh Valley

BWanksCB - April 17, 2019

Well, that escalated quickly.

After only four starts, Nick Pivetta has been bumped from the Phillies starting rotation.

Jerad Eickhoff is expected to take his place.

Pivetta has been, well, terrible this season, but I thought given the considerable expectations the Phillies had for him during spring training that they would give him the month of April to get things figured out. Guess not. It’s hard to blame them for pulling the plug on a guy who has allowed an obscene 39 baserunners and 17 earned runs in only 18.1 IP.

He did not pitch into the sixth inning in any of his four starts. That just won’t get it done.

After being staked to a 10-0 first inning lead last night, Pivetta labored, needing 100 pitches to complete only five innings. He once again lacked command, and when he was in the zone, he was hit hard. He continues to be fat with his fastball and appears to have absolutely no confidence in what had previously been a formidable breaking pitch.

The Phillies have to hope Pivetta gathers himself in Lehigh Valley with the pressure and weight of those aforementioned expectations now off his shoulders.  A workable changeup would help, too.

I sense that most people have checked out on him at this point, and I know that almost nobody wants to hear this, but the raw talent is still there. Maybe he gets things straightened out with the Iron Pigs and works his way back to Philadelphia later this season. I wouldn’t be surprised if he does.

As for Eickhoff, he was impressive in his season debut with the Phillies last night, tossing four scoreless innings while striking out six to earn the save. They don’t need Eickhoff to wow, but they do need him to provide some consistency and pitch competitive innings deeper into games. He will likely get his first shot to demonstrate he’s the man for the job on Sunday afternoon in Colorado.

Crossed Up: Big Innings and Small Problems

Russ Joy - April 17, 2019

Anthony and Bob discuss the 14-3 win over of the Mets on Tuesday night and talk about growing concerns with the team’s starting rotation and defense. Other topics include Aaron Nola, Rhys Hoskins, plate approach, and the changing role of baseball managers.

Please subscribe to the show ([iTunes] [Google Play] [Stitcher] [RSS]), leave a 5 star review, and follow us on Twitter: @AntSanPhilly @BWCrossingBroad

Check out the other shows on the Crossing Broad Podcast Network including: Crossing Broadcast: A Philly Sports PodcastSnow the Goalie: A Flyers PodcastIt’s Always Soccer in Philadelphia, and Crossing Broad FC: A Soccer Podcast.

Audio after the jump:

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The Phillies Had Quite the First Inning Against the Mets Tonight

BWanksCB - April 16, 2019

The Phillies lost up 6-1 in the sixth inning last week, so there’s a looonnnng way to go tonight. I’m aware. BUT. BUT. HOW ABOUT THAT FIRST INNING?

Breathe this in and let it permeate your being: 14 hitters, 10 runs, five hits, three Mets errors, two three-run homers, and one historically fun inning for the Phillies.

Let’s relive the magic in all of its glory. J.T. Realmuto opened the scoring with a two-run double that was soon followed by this:

After Cesar Hernandez walked and Aaron Altherr reached on Amed Rosario’s second error of the inning, Maikel Franco, the greatest eight-hole hitter in the history of modern baseball, ended Steven Matz after only 31 laughably ineffective pitches:

That’s good. Really good. Like, historically good, if you hate the Mets.

But wait. There’s more!

Andrew McCutchen would later double and Bryce Harper would walk–for the 600th time in his career–before both scored on Realmuto’s second double of the inning.

If only there were some type of photo that could perfectly capture the beauty of what had transpired. Wait. Good news. There is! 

Update: It’s 10-2 now in the third after a Michael Conforto homer. I’m officially concerned.

The 2026 MLB All-Star Game is Coming to Philly, Officially

Kevin Kinkead - April 16, 2019

Secret’s out!

Matt Breen and others reported this more than a week ago, but now you can officially put this on your 2026 desktop calendar.

From MLB Communications:

Baseball’s Midsummer Classic will be held in Philadelphia for the celebration of the 250th anniversary of American independence and follows suit from 1976, when Veterans Stadium hosted the All-Star Game in the year of the nation’s bicentennial.

Hell yeah, America. Can’t do this in New York, because the Declaration of Independence wasn’t signed there. Wasn’t signed in Washington or Boston, either, so suck it Nationals and Red Sox fans.

The announcement was incredibly boring, like worse than watching paint dry, but if you care to watch it, here you go:

Aaron Nola’s Pitching and Rhys Hoskins’ Fielding – To Worry, or Not to Worry?

Kevin Kinkead - April 16, 2019

(Editor’s note: This story appears under Kevin’s name, but Bob wrote it)

This baseball season is still young enough where it’s way, way too early to draw any definitive conclusions about what we’ve seen so far. It’s easy to get caught up in the results of a small sample, particularly after a big win, or a bad “L” like the Phillies took from the Mets last night.

For instance, Aaron Nola wasn’t effective, again. He looks nothing like the Cy Young candidate he was last season. You probably have heard by now that Nola didn’t allow five runs in a single start last season. Well, he has now allowed at least five earned runs in three consecutive starts after last night’s clunker. Should we panic? It would be easy to say this morning that Nola looks destined to repeat Cole Hamels’ letdown 2009 season, but it’s April 16th. It’s been four starts. His struggles to establish strike one, spot his fastball, and find his changeup have all plagued him in the early going, but there’s no reason to think he’s doomed yet. If the results don’t change by month’s end, then we can revisit this.

I would argue the same caution should be taken with regards to Rhys Hoskins’ early defense. It, too, hasn’t been good. His error last night allowed the go-ahead run to score and it was yet another late-game blunder that directly contributed to a loss.

A montage, following the jump:

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Ryan Howard is Calling Tonight’s Phillies Game

Kevin Kinkead - April 15, 2019

Phils/Mets tonight at the ballpark.

Let’s welcome back to Philadelphia, a World Series champion, number six, Ryannnnnnn Howardddddd, who will be calling the game:

ESPN hired Howard back in February as a wide-ranging baseball analyst who appears on a variety of their shows and platforms. The Big Piece is 39 years old and officially retired last September after 13 seasons with the Phils and a pair of minor league stints with Atlanta and Colorado.

It’ll be nice to hear a reasonable and pro-Philadelphia voice on a national broadcast, since all non-local announcers hate Philly, right? Cris Collinsworth, Joe Buck, Troy Aikman, Alex Rodriguez and his cheese sandwiches, etc. They all hate us. They’re all biased against us.

Not Ryan Howard. He’s one of us, just like Kendall Jenner.

Some Quick Thoughts on the Phillies After They Escape Miami With a Series Win

BWanksCB - April 14, 2019

It took 14 innings and 278 minutes, but the Phillies escaped Miami on Sunday afternoon with a series win at Marlins Park for the first time since the 2017 season. I guess we could huff and puff about what’s supposed to be a dominant lineup faltering for most of the day against Marlins pitching, or piss and moan about a clearly superior team almost losing a series to what looks like Major League Baseball’s worst team, but I’m not going to do that.

Marlins Park is a terrible place to play. Consider this: 38,388 was the combined announced paid attendance for this three-game set. According to the Phillies, the team is drawing 38,668 fans per night at Citizens Bank Park this season. In other words, after playing their first 11 games in front of spirited crowds at Citizens Bank Park and Nationals Park, it can’t be easy to rev it up in front of what looks and feels like 900 apathetic fans.

Still, it was a struggle as the Phillies went only 3 for 12 with runners in scoring position, stranding 13 runners along the way, and they ran dangerously close to spoiling an encouraging start from Vince Velasquez. Fortunately, Jean Segura stepped to the plate in the 14th and put an end to the madness with his first home run of the season:

The two-run homer was Segura’s second hit of the day and marked the fourth time he reached base. Segura has only walked four times in his first 48 at-bats with the Phillies, but he now has seven multi-hit performances in 14 games. That’s, uh, pretty good. Yes?

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If Philadelphia Sports Figures were Game of Thrones Characters

Kevin Kinkead - April 12, 2019

(Caution: this post contains spoilers, so if you aren’t caught up on GOT, you’ve got less than 72 hours to binge)


Ah yes.

Fire and blood. Incest and dragons and whatnot.

Game of Thrones returns this weekend.

I’ll be 100% honest with you; I’m not as hyped as I thought I would be. Maybe the two-year break dulled my senses, or maybe some of the story arcs lost me when the show writers moved past George R.R. Martin’s book material. It took Arya Stark five seasons to cross the sea, for example, then she came back and started killing everybody in five seconds, with laughable ease.

It felt like some plot lines were taking forever to develop, then they put the characters in a DeLorean time machine and stuffed four years worth of material into one season, like a high fantasy burrito. We had to endure the Sand Snakes and redundant Ramsey Bolton behavior along the way. Every sadistic move delivered diminishing returns, in my opinion.

But I’m still ready to roll. Jon and Daenerys are on the same side. Cersei can’t be trusted. The Hound is still out there, ready to eat every chicken in Westeros.

Here’s how we imagined Philadelphia sports figures as GOT characters:

Markelle Fultz as Jaime Lannister

Both were excellent at their craft, then they suffered arm issues and were never the same.

What role will they play in 2019?


any Sixers 1st round draft pick as Bran Stark

We see great things in their future, then they get hurt, can’t use their legs, and just watch things happen.


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