Posts for Phillies Category

A Phillies Trade For Manny Machado Makes No Sense

BWanksCB - May 18, 2018

The Inquirer’s Bob Brookover explored the possibility of the Phillies adding Manny Machado in a piece published Thursday.

My reaction?

Manny Machado… Phillies… Stimulation…

It’s hard not to get worked up over the thought of the Phillies adding Machado, who has a 1.079 OPS with 14 homers and 40 RBI, to replace the crop of current shortstops who have collectively posted a .690 OPS with only four homers and 12 RBI. Brookover, too, is clearly hot and bothered by the idea:

Sometimes the stars align just right and the thing you need the most is the thing that is most available. This is one of those times for the Phillies, and they must seize the moment. Now, not next winter, is the time to pursue Baltimore superstar Manny Machado.

Really? Now is the time?

Yes, the price is going to be high in terms of players and dollars? The good news for the Phillies is they have both. The better news is that Machado’s move to shortstop is perfect timing for the Phillies.

All I can say is that sometimes the heat of the moment can make a man get a little carried away.

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Were the 2009 Yankees Filthy Cheaters? – Part Two

Kevin Kinkead - May 18, 2018

I wrote earlier this week about Robinson Cano’s 80-game suspension and the group of 2009 Yankees that were linked to banned substances.

“There are new developments” with this story, as they like to say on television.

Cano’s ex-teammate Mark Teixeira was a guest on the Michael Kay Show on 98.7 ESPN New York on Thursday. He said he wasn’t surprised to hear about the suspension:

“Yeah, I don’t really want to get into too much detail. I love Robbie. I’m just not surprised,” said Teixeira, a baseball analyst for ESPN since retiring after the 2016 season. “I don’t really want to go too much further, but I think a lot of people are kind of saying the same thing.”

……

Teixeira said he considered Cano’s associations in his New York days when formulating his suspicions about him.

“Let’s just use this situation here. Robbie Cano’s assistant was on the list for Biogenesis,” Teixeira said, referring to the clinic at the center of MLB’s 2013 PED scandal. “Now, of course, [he] had an assistant, you know, buy stuff for him. Alex Rodriguez got popped by Biogenesis, and [former Yankees outfielder] Melky [Cabrera] got popped. They were best friends. When someone gets lumped into that group, it’s because there’s evidence. There’s a paper trail. There’s a smoke trail.”

Interesting.

Teixeira played 1st base on the 2009 World Series squad and was Cano’s teammate for five seasons before the latter left New York for Seattle.

I think it’s pretty obvious, based on those quotes above, that the 2009 Yankees were vile cheats. THEREFORE – the Phillies are back-to-back World Series champions.

 

Hey, Let’s Complain About How The Phillies Won Yesterday!

BWanksCB - May 17, 2018

Let’s briefly revisit the ninth inning of yesterday’s game between the Phillies and Orioles. With the Phillies holding a 4-1 lead, Gabe Kapler handed the ball to Edubray Ramos to record the game’s final three outs and nail down a win. Or so we thought.

Ramos threw six pitches, all strikes, to record punch outs of both Jonathan Schoop and Mark Trumbo.

Nasty.

Certainly, it appeared Ramos was well on his way to earning his second save of the season, but before Chris Davis stepped into the box, Kapler emerged from the dugout to summon the embattled Hector Neris from the bullpen.

What the hell? Why?

Utilizing an additional reliever to protect a three-run lead with two outs and nobody on base is an unorthodox decision, and it was a move that was predictably blasted by fans on Twitter:

Totally stupid is right! I bet Matt Klentak’s Geek Squad showed Kapler some, like, Microsoft Excel spreadsheet that made him do it. I just hope the people who traveled down I-95 gave him a piece of their mind. Continue Reading

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Thoughts On The Phillies At The Quarter-Season Mark

BWanksCB - May 16, 2018

The Phillies took this afternoon’s rain-soaked matinee with the Baltimore Orioles by a 4-1 final, thus bringing their record to an impressive 24-16 overall. It’s their best 40-game start since 2011 and they now sit one-half game out of first place behind the upstart Atlanta Braves. On their way to this point, there have been some pleasant surprises, underwhelming disappointments and reassuring reasons for hope. Some pretty crazy shit has gone down, too. With the team now at the 40-game milestone, and thus bringing a welcomed end to the “small sample size” qualifier, let us use this otherwise arbitrary schedule landmark to reflect upon and assess what has gone down over the season’s first seven weeks.

Who or What I Liked:

1. Gabe Kapler

Odubel Herrera is playing at an MVP level, and Aaron Nola has emerged as one of the National League’s best starting pitchers, but the biggest story so far has been Gabe Kapler. Did he demonstrate a laughably inept command of how to utilize a Major League bullpen during the first week of the season? Indeed! Is he an egomaniac who is absolutely obsessed with himself? I think so. But I have to tell you, I’m completely into it. You might remember his removal of Nick Pivetta during the sixth inning of the home opener because the fans mercilessly rained boos upon him, but I remember it for the straight sex appeal that emanated from him during his strut to the mound:

“I don’t like all of these pitching changes! Boo! You didn’t let Hoby Milner warm-up last weekend! Boo! Nice abs, asshole! You make me feel like less of a man! Boo!”

While they booed, I swooned. I have this idea that Kapler arrived at the park that morning, went into his office bathroom and put on “I’ll Tumble For You” by Culture Club as he primped himself for the upcoming day. He stood before the mirror, likely shirtless, knowing he was going to get crushed (rightfully so), and said, “Whatever. Doesn’t matter. These aviators are fire, I’m a certifiable TEN, and these people will all love me—they just don’t know it yet.”

On the baseball side of things, Kapler was indeed a disaster in the early going, but he seems to be now finding his way. He hasn’t been perfect, and there’s the occasional head-scratcher, but that’s going to happen with any manager. Plus, as I wrote the other day, I have been impressed with his team’s ability to bounce back from adversity.

2. Odubel Herrera

I’ve never understood any take that opposes Odubel Herrera. Takes like this one:

You can get mad over bat flips, an occasional lack of focus, or a rare jog to first. I’ll marvel at and appreciate plays like this one:

And swings like this one:

And stats like these:

And he’s fun:

But does he bring his lunch pail to work? Is he gritty? Cerebral? You know, is he Philly enough? Stop already. The guy is an absolute stud.  Continue Reading

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Were the 2009 Yankees Filthy Cheaters?

Kevin Kinkead - May 16, 2018

Robinson Cano was suspended 80 games by Major League Baseball this week after testing positive for a banned substance called “furosemide.”

It’s not a performance-enhancing drug, but a water-pill, a diuretic that helps to dilute and mask urine samples.

Per ESPN: 

Under MLB’s drug policy, a player is not automatically suspended for use of a diuretic unless MLB can prove he intended to use it as a masking agent.

A source familiar with the case told ESPN’s T.J. Quinn that Cano tested positive before the season and appealed. During the appeal, MLB apparently was able to determine his intent, which resulted in Cano dropping his appeal, the source said.

Cano said he was given furosemide by a licensed doctor in his native Dominican Republic and the substance is used to treat “various medical conditions” there and in the United States.

“While I did not realize at the time that I was given a medication that was banned, I obviously now wish that I had been more careful,” Cano said.

I’m not sure if any Phillies fans care about the Mariners, but Cano is an ex-Yankee and played on the 2009 World Series squad. He had three hits and an RBI in 22 at-bats. He was pretty bad in the series but drove in 85 runs during the regular season and was a major cog on that team.

Someone shared this tweet on the CB Slack chat:

Again, Cano isn’t a “PED user,” but did test positive for banned substance.

Alex Rodriguez was caught up in multiple drug issues throughout his career. Andy Pettite admitted to using human growth hormone before it was added to the banned substance list. Melky Cabrera was suspended 50 games in 2012 after testing positive for high levels of testosterone, and another guy not on that list, Francisco Cervelli, got 50 games in 2013 when he was caught up in the Biogenesis scandal. He didn’t play in the World Series but got 42 regular season games as a backup catcher.

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Crossing Broadcast: Adding a Star, Video Games in MLB, Sports Gambling

JoyOnBroad - May 16, 2018

Kyle and Russ discuss:

  • Sixers thoughts (1:00)
  • Lottery results and looking forward (2:30)
  • Mikal Bridges at #10? (3:30)
  • Sixers/Celtics future (5:30)
  • Adding LeBron/Kawhi/PG13 (10:00)
  • Fortnite and MLB (19:00)
  • Sports gambling (25:00)

Audio after the jump:

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The Phillies are Showing an Important Ability to Overcome Adversity

BWanksCB - May 14, 2018

What will ultimately become of the Phillies as spring turns to summer nobody yet knows, but with the first quarter of the season nearly in the books, there is one truth that has revealed itself through their first 39 games – this team is pretty damn resilient.

Are they inconsistent? Sure. Are they, at times, frustrating to watch? Sunday’s first inning that featured 45 pitches from Jacob DeGrom that, somehow, failed to yield a run should answer that question. In fact, it was a historic tease:

Neat.

Still, for a young team playing with considerable expectations, but without the experience of dealing with the pressures that come with those expectations, their collective ability to handle adversity has been admirable.

A laughable first week that was headlined by several ill-advised strategical blunders on the part of Gabe Kapler could have derailed their season before it hardly began. No matter. Kapler came back from Crazytown, his bullpen usage normalized, and the team recovered as it eventually raced out to a surprising 14-7 record. That early-season rebound should not be overlooked.

Rewind to that first week. Imagine being a young player told by everybody that you and your teammates were about to embark on a season that would bring relevant baseball back to Philadelphia for the first time in six years. The games begin, your manager pisses away what appeared to be an easy Opening Day win, and then your team gets outscored 29-12 over its first five games. Worse, imagine being Gabe Kapler. You used your bullpen at a record-setting pace, led that Opening Day implosion, inexcusably didn’t provide a reliever a chance to warm up before entering him, and all of baseball is laughing at you after a week on the job. Oh, and the fans are booing the everlasting shit out of you during the home opener as you stroll to the mound to make a routine pitching change:

This all happens while you desperately need to get a young and impressionable team to buy in to your unorthodox methods. If that were me, there would have been tears behind those aviators. Continue Reading

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Aaron Nola, I’m All Yours

BWanksCB - May 9, 2018

Aaron Nola generated 26 whiffs from Giants hitters last night on his way to piling up 12 strikeouts over seven innings of one-run baseball in what was nothing short of a brilliant performance. In many ways, it was more of the same for Nola, who has been outstanding all season.

Before I commence statistically validating my adoration of his performance or inevitably and awkwardly fawning over his physical appearance, allow me to lead with this searing take: Aaron Nola wakes up this morning as not only one of the best starting pitchers in all of baseball, but also as perhaps the most underrated athlete in the city of Philadelphia. If you think that’s hyperbole, fine, but you are wrong.

First, the stats: He’s posted a 2.05 ERA, 0.89 WHIP, .197 BAA, and 2.55 FIP. He leads ALL National League players with a 2.4 WAR, and is third in all of baseball behind only Mike Trout and Mookie Betts.

Decent.

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