A few things had occurred since my last post…

Philadelphia_PhilliesFirst. yesterday, former Phil Roy Oswalt announced that he was officially retiring, as he signed a one-day contract with the Astros so that he could officially retire as an Astros. Oswalt, who is an fourteen-year veteran, ten of which was spent as an Astros, was a member of the Phils for part of the 2010 season and part of the 2011 season, during which he complied a winning record of 16-11. Oswalt would also play for the Rangers and the Rockies. Oswalt, during his career, would be the NL leader for ERA in 2006 with a 2.98 ERA, wins in 2004 with 20, games started with 35 games in both 2004 and 2005 and in WHIP in 2010 with a 1.03 WHIP. He was also a member of the 2005 Astros team that would win the NL pennant before losing to the White Sox in that year’s World Series, being swept by Chicago, 4-0. Overall, Oswalt had a career record of 163-102 with a 3.36 ERA as he pitched in 365 games, 341 of which were starts, as he completed 20 games, including 8 shutouts. He would pitch in 2245.1 innings, giving up 2199 hits and 897 runs, 838 of which were earned, as he struck out 1852 batters, while walking only 520. I wish you luck in your retirement, Roy.

Then, the Phils announced that Comcast plans to hire both Jamie Moyer and Matt Stairs to replace Chris Wheeler and Garry Matthews inside the TV broadcast booth, starting this season during Spring Training. Congratulations, guys. Hope you both do well in the broadcast booth.

Lastly, the Phils announced that they have just signed starter A.J. Burnett, who they have been pursuing during the off-season, to a one-year contract worth $16 million dollars. Burnett, who had pitched for the Pirates last year and in 2012, is coming off a 10-11 season, with a 3.30 ERA, as he pitched in 30 games, all starts, with a complete game, as he threw in 191 innings, giving up 165 hits and 79 runs, 70 of which were earned, as he struck out 209 batters, while walking only 67. Burnett, who has also pitched for the Marlins, the Blue Jays and the Yankees, being a member of the 2009 World Championship team, has a 147-132 record with a 3.99 ERA, as he appeared in 375 games, starting 370 of them, as he threw 23 complete games, 10 of which were shutouts. He threw a total of 2353.2 innings, giving up 2140 hits and 1142 runs, 1043 of which were earned, as he struck out 2180 batters, while walking only 955. Welcome to the team, A.J.

Burnett’ll more than likely be the number three man in the starting rotation, after Cole Hamels starts pitching after the start of the season, as the Phils announced that Cole will miss opening day as he has developed tendinitis in his left bicep, which will keep him from throwing the ball for the next eight to ten days, and slow down his participation in spring training, although Cole has said that he should be ready to pitch at some point in April. I’m just hoping that it is only a minor setback, as the Phils will need Cole to back up Cliff Lee, if they expect to get anywhere this season.

Moves the Phils have made during the past off-season…

Philadelphia_PhilliesAs the Phils’ 2013 season wounded down, with the club wounding up in fourth place in the five-team NL East with a 73-89, .451 record, 23 games behind the first-place Atlanta Braves, the Phils first post-season move was to make interim manager, Hall of Famer Ryan Sandberg, the team’s 52nd manager, by signing him to a three-year contract on September 22, 2013. The Phils’ next move was to announce on September 30 that Rich Dubee was not returning as the team’s pitching coach, ending a nine season relationship with the Phils, as the team started to look for a new pitching coach. On that same day, they announced that they were promoting from the team’s Minor League system, Paul Fournier, as the team’s new strength and conditioning coach, replacing Doug Lien, who had held that position for the previous six seasons, as the club hopes to improve the team’s overall health.

The Phils next move was to make a shake-up in their 40 men roster as they outrighted infielders Michael Martinez and Pete Orr, right-handed pitcher Zach Miner and lefthander Mauricio Robles on October 3, while, on that same day, the Indians picked up right-hander Tyler Cloyd off of the waiver-wire, while the Astros picked up leftie Raul Valdes, opening up six spots on the roster.

Two days later, on October 5, the Phils announced that they would not be renewing the contract of bullpen catcher, Mick Billmeyer, who had been with the club since 2004, first as the catching instructor, then as the bullpen coach in 2009, before becoming the bullpen catcher in 2012. The next Phils move came from out of the blue as, on October 8, former Phils’ player and one time Phils’ manager, and fan favorite, Larry Bowa, rejoined the team as the new bench coach, while another ex-Phil, Pete Mackanin, would join the team as the new third base coach. The Phils also announced that Steve Henderson would remain as the team’s hitting coach while Wally Joyner would leave as the team’s assistant hitting coach, later being hired by the Detroit Tigers as their new hitting coach, while John Mizerock would later become the new assistant hitting coach and Jesus Tiamo would become the new catcher coach, as Juan Samuel would stay on as the team’s first base coach, while Rod Nichols would remain the bullpen coach.

The next move occurred on October 17 as John Lannan decided to become a free agent after he had been outrighted by the club, after refusing assignment.

Then on November 5, the Phils announced that they were hiring Scott Freedman to help the ballclub better understand the use of analytics in the evaluation of players. Seven days later, on November 12, the Phils announced their first free agent signing, as they signed right fielder Marlon Byrd to a two-year contract worth $16 million dollars. Byrd, who is a right-handed batter, and an ex-Phil, has played in the majors from 2002, having played for the Phils (2002-05), the Nats (2005-06), the Rangers (2007-09), the Cubs (2010-12), the Red Sox (2012), the Mets (2013) and the Pirates (2013), appearing in 1250 games, hitting .280 (1222 for 4367), knocking in 533 RBIs as he scored 600 times. Among his 1222 hits were 252 doubles, 32 triples and 106 HRs, while he has also walked 307 times. The Phils plan to use him in the line-up behind Chase Utley and Ryan Howard, the later of whom the team hopes will bounce back from several injuries plagued seasons and regain his form as the team’s RBI and home runs leader. The Phils next announced on November 15 that they have given four players minor league contracts with invites to spring training: right-hander Shawn Camp, left-hander Cesar Jimenez and outfielders Clete Thomas and Leandro Castro.

The Phils then announced on November 18 that they have resigned present catcher Carlos Ruiz to a three-year deal worth $26 million dollars with a team option of $4.5 million or a $500,000 buyout for 2017. The next day, the team announced that they have signed a minor league contract, with a spring training invitation, to infielder Reid Brignac, who would be competing for a utility infielder position with Kevin Frandsen and Freddy Galvis. On November 20, the Phils announced that they were adding four minor league prospects to their 40-man roster to keep them from being picked up by other teams in December’s 5-Rule draft: outfielders Aaron Altheer and Kelly Dugan, catcher Tommy Joseph and left-hander Rob Rasmussen.

The following day, November 22, the Phils signed Bob McClure as their new pitching coach, replacing Dubee. On that same day, they announced that they have signed infielder Andres Blanco to a minor league contract, with an invite to spring training.

On December 4, the Phils made a trade with the Blue Jays, receiving right-handed pitcher Brad Lincoln in exchange for catcher Erik Kratz and minor league pitcher Rasmussen. Lincoln, who has pitched for the Pirates and the Blue Jays (2010-13) has appeared in 97 games, 22 of which was as a starter, for a record of 9-11 with a 4.66 ERA. With one career save in two attempts, he has pitched in 220 games, giving up 228 hits, 123 runs, 114 of which were earned, as he struck out 167 batters while walking only 77. The Phils will likely use him in the bullpen. After the trade, the ballclub would sign catcher Wil Nieves to a one-year deal on December 5, as the team’s back-up catcher. Nieves, who has played for the Padres (2002), the Yankees (2005-2007), the Nats (2008-10), the Brewers (2011), the Diamondbacks (2012), the Rockies (2012-13) and the Diamondbacks again (2013), has appeared in 385 games, hitting .242 (249 for 1029), with 46 doubles, 2 triples and 8 home runs, as he knocked in 103 RBIs while scoring 78 times. He has also walked 59 times. On that same day, the Phils signed right-handed pitcher Jeff Manship to a minor league contract with a spring training invitation.

Then, on December 9, Roy Halladay announced his retirement from baseball, ending a 16-year career with the Blue Jays and the Phils, as he didn’t think he would be able to pitch after his most recent arm injury. Halladay, who said that he had signed a one-day contract with the Blue Jays to end his career as a Jay, and had paid a full page ad in the Philly newspaper thanking the Phils fans for their support during his time as a Phils (2010-13), had appeared in 416 career games, 390 as a starter, with a career record of 203-105, with a 3.38 ERA and a career save, had completed 67 games, 20 for shutouts, as he pitched in 2749.1 total innings, striking out 2117 batters as he walked only 592, as he gave up 2646 hits and 1135 runs, only 1034 of which were earned. He also threw a perfect game and a no-hitter in the post-season, both of which occurred during his first season as a Phil (2010). Thanks for being a member of the Phils, Roy, and being a class act, and wish you luck getting into the Hall.

On December 12, through the Rule 5-draft, the Phils would acquire right-hander Kevin Munson from the Diamondbacks’ Reno club, while they would lose right-hander Seth Rosin to the Mets, who would then trade him to the Dodgers for cash in the major league portion of the draft, and shortstop Jonathan Roof to the Red Sox in the Triple-A part of it, both from their Reading affiliate.

Next, on December 18, the Phils signed a one-year deal with right-hander Roberto Hernandez for $4.5 million dollars, plus performance and award bonuses. Hernandez, who has previous pitched for the Indians (2006-12) and the Blue Jays (2013), has appeared in 216 games, 177 as a starter, with a 59-82 record, with a 4.67 ERA. He will be part of the Phils’ starting rotation, along with Cole Hamels, Cliff Lee, Kyle Kendrick and Jonathan Pettibone.

In January, the Phils made a new TV-deal with Comcast for 25-year, which included broadcasters Chris Wheeler and Gary Matthews not returning to the broadcast booth. On the 14, the Phils had four players file for salary arbitration: outfielders Ben Revere and John Mayberry, Jr. and pitchers Antonio Bastardo and Kendrick. The next day, January 15, the Phils announce that former manger Charlie Manuel would be returning to the team as a consultant to general manager Ruben Amaro, Jr. On the 17, the Phils announced that two of the four arbitration eligible players have signed one-year deals: Mayberry, who had agreed to a 1.587 million dollar deal, while Kendrick had agreed to one worth 7.675 million. The Phils then signed two minor league deals on the 21, one to veteran right-hander Chad Gaudin, and one to former Phil and veteran outfielder Bobby Abreu, with both being given spring training invites. On that same day, the Phils and Bastardo agreed to a one-year contract worth $2 million dollars. Three days later, on the 24, Ben Revere signed a one-year deal with the Phils for $ 1.95 million dollar.

With that, the last bit of news is that the Phils might be replacing Wheeler and Matthews with former Phils Matt Stairs and Jamie Moyer, both of whom have impressed the Phils in their separate interviews to join the broadcast team, and that finally, yesterday, the equipment truck has started heading south for the spring training facilities in Clearwater, Florida from Citizens Bank Park in Philly. It is now six more days before catchers and pitchers are suppose to appear in Clearwater.

Can’t wait for Spring Training to officially start. :-)

I know…

Philadelphia_PhilliesThat I’d said I would start posting here more often starting this past Monday, last week, but, as they say, the best laid plans, etc., thanks in part to this past Monday’s snow storm and yesterday’s rain and ice storm here in the Delaware Valley, (I do live in Philly, after all) along with me needing to buy some new stuff for myself earlier today.

Anyway, I plan to get to work on that post on the Phils’ off-season’s moves tomorrow afternoon, no matter what.

Lastly, Spring Training is almost here!!! YAY!!!

Okay, now this is a BIG surprise….

Philadelphia_PhilliesA few minutes ago I’d took a look at MLB.com Blogs Central to look at the top 100 list for 2013 among Fans blogs, expecting to see that my blog has fallen off the list since I knew that the number of people who have visited my blog has been down during 2013, especially after I’d stopped making posts around mid-September, as I’d decided to take a short break, as mentioned in the post that I’d uploaded yesterday. But when I’d looked at the list, I’d discovered, to my great surprise…

That my blog was still on the list, even if it was at number 90 out of 100. To say that I was surprised to see that I had made the list for the sixth straight year, especially with such a low number of views, is an understatement, as I am completely flabbergasted.

Anyway, I would like to take this time to thank all of those who last year have taken the time to look at my blog, especially when I didn’t say anything towards the end of a very rotten season for my Phils.

Now, for your viewing enjoyment, here’s the actual list of the top 100 Fan Blogs:

FANS

1. The Baseball Collector
2. Rays Renegade
3. The AustralianBaseballDigest
4. The Brewer Nation
5. A’s Farm
6. Beisbol 007
7. Cook & Sons’ Baseball Adventures
8. The Unbiased MLB Fan
9. mlbblogger
10. Pinstripe Birthdays
11. Ballparks on a Budget
12. The Baseball Haven
13. La Pagina de Tony Menendez
14. Rockpile Rant
15. Counting Baseballs
16. The Ballpark Guide
17. Three Up, Three Down
18. Dodger Blue World
19. Observing Baseball
20. Born on Third
21. Minoring In Baseball
22. 9 Inning Know It All
23. Phillies Phollowers
24. 7000 Coliseum Way
25. Where Everyone’s a Giant
26. Fish Fry
27. eltubeyero22
28. TheCutoffMan
29. Prospects2Pros
30. Blogging ‘Bout Baseball
31. Rockin’ Redlegs
32. You’re Killin’ Me, Smalls!
33. Los bigleaguers
34. Formerly Fausto: A Baseball Blog
35. baseballqueen
36. The Rays Rant
37. BrokeMets
38. Cream City Cables
39. The Yankee Dinosaur
40. Brewers Rumors
41. DYNASTY League Baseball from designer of Pursue the Pennant
42. A Piece of The Game
43. More Splash Hits
44. The Cub Den
45. The Best MLBlog
46. The Blue Jays Dugout
47. Cove Chatter
48. This is a very simple game…
49. Miami Carlins Fantasy Baseball
50. TheBaseballPHD
51. Rox Addict
52. Bjarkman’s Latino and Cuban League Baseball History Page
53. The Angels’ Ace
54. The Pittsburgh Peas
55. Unfinished Business
56. I’m Not A Headline Guy…
57. Battling Bucs
58. Brewers Farm Report
59. Collection of Baseball
60. Coco crisp’s afro
61. The Baseball Sociologist
62. Flashin’ Leather
63. Reds Country
64. The Ballhawker
65. One Strike Away…Twice!
66. Why Did My Dad Make Me a Mets Fan?
67. Talkin’ Rockies
68. Hoppers Fan
69. Major-League Obie Role-Based Projection System
70. Blue Jays Talk
71. Pinstripe State of Mind
72. Bleacher Boy
73. Balls and Strikes
74. Wrigley Regular
75. If You Write It, They Will Come
76. Plouffe’s New Hairdo
77. All Things Pirates: Breaking down the Buccos
78. Punky G. (G stands for Giants!)
79. Chasing Baseballs
80. Big Apple Baseball Blog
81. Dodgers Insider
82. steel city ballhawk
83. Royal Blues
84. Quisqueyanos en MLB
85. The Take: From 20th & Blake
86. Sarge’s Phillies Phantasy Camp Diary
87. Philadelphia Ballhawk
88. Baseball’s 28th Out
89. The ‘Stros Bros
90. Phillies Red Pinstripes
91. Dodger Familia Thoughts
92. Blue Jays Musings
93. Cubs Crossings
94. Head First Slide Productions
95. The Inherent Dangers of Watching Professional Baseball
96. It’s Always A Good Dre in L.A.
97. The Optimist Tiger
98. Pedro Beato Fan Club
99. 2r2d
100. Skood Sports

As far as I can tell, there are at least three other blogs on the list that follow the Phils. Phillies Phollowers, which has landed at the 24th spot,  Sarge’s Phillies Phantasy Camp Diary at 86 and Philadelphia Ballhawk at 87. Congratulations guys for also making the list.

Remember, please take a look at all of the Blogs among the list. I’m sure that they’ll all appreciate it. ;-)

Hey everyone, I’m back…

Philadelphia_PhilliesHi guys, I’m back.

I’d decided to take some time off during the recent off-season and take care of other things while recharging my batteries for the upcoming season. Well, with spring training just around the corner, it’s time to come back.

Anyway, I’ll start posting stuff for real starting on Monday with a post about what the Phils have done since the end of the 2013 season.

Hope to see you on Monday. And hope that you didn’t miss me. :-)

Cliff Lee strike out fourteen batters and knocked in four RBIs on his way to his fourteenth victory of the season as the Phils defeat the fish, 12-2.

Philadelphia_PhilliesPhils’ starter Cliff Lee wins his fourteenth game of the season, as he help his own cause by knocking in four RBIs, as the Phils crush the Marlins, 12-2.

The Phils took the lead in the bottom of the first inning as, with two men on, and with nobody out, Chase Utley hits an RBI ground out, 4-3, as he knocked in Cesar Hernandez, who had started the inning off with a walk, then stopped at third base on Jimmy Rollins’ ground-rule double, giving the Phils a 1-0 lead, while sending Rollins, who had earlier doubled, on to third base. The Phils added to their lead in the bottom of the third inning as, with two men on, and with one man out, Utley hits a three-run home run, his seventeenth home run of the season, knocking in Hernandez, who had earlier singled, then stopped at second base on Rollins’ walk, and Rollins, who had just walked, giving the Phils a 4-0 lead. The Phils then made it a 5-0 lead three batters later as, once again with two men on, and now with two men out, Cody Asche hits an RBI single, knocking in Dom Brown, who had earlier singled, then moved up to second base on Darin Ruf’s walk, as he bowled over Marlins’ catcher Jeff Mathis, as he was unable to hold onto right fielder Giancarlo Stanton’s throw to the plate, while Ruf, who had just walked, would move up to third base, while Asche would stop at second base on the throw to the plate. The Phils then took a 7-0 lead two batters later, after Roger Bernadina had walked to load up the bases, as Cliff Lee helped out his own cause with an RBI single, scoring Ruf and Asche, while sending Bernadina on to third base. The Marlin got on the scoreboard in the top of the fifth as, with a runner on third, and with one man out, Adeiny Hechavarria hits an RBI single, knocking in Justin Ruggiano, who had started the inning off with a double, then moved up to third base on Logan Morrison’s ground out, 3-unassisted, making it a 7-1 Phils’ lead. The Phils got the run back in their half of the fifth as, with one man on, and with two men out, Lee helped his cause again as he hits an RBI triple, the first triple of his major league career, knocking in Ruf, who had started the inning off with a single, giving the Phils an 8-1 lead. The Phils then made it a 9-1 lead as Hernandez hits an RBI single, scoring Lee. The Marlins made it a 9-2 Phils’ lead in the top of the sixth as, with a runner on second, and with two men out, Ruggiano hits an RBI double, knocking in Ed Lucas, who had started the inning off with a double. The Phils increased their lead in their half of the sixth as, with one man on, and with two men out, Ruf hits a two-run home run, his fourteenth home run of the season, knocking in Brown, who had just walked, giving the Phils an 11-2 lead. The Phils made it a 12-2 lead in the bottom of the seventh as, with a man on third, and with nobody out, Lee helped his cause one more time as he hits an RBI single, knocking in Bernadina, who had started the inning off with a triple. That would be the final score as Ethan Martin pitched a scoreless ninth.

Cliff Lee (14-6, 2.95) got the win as he went eight strong innings, giving up just two runs on eight scattered hits, while he struck out fourteen. Ethan Martin pitched a scoreless inning, as he gave up a walk, while striking out one. Sam Dyson (0-1, 9.28) took the lost as he lasted only two and two-thirds innings, giving up seven runs on six hits and four walks, while striking out a batter. Arquimedes Caminero pitched an inning and a third, giving up a hit. Chris Hatcher pitched two innings, giving up four runs on four hits and a walk, striking out three. Dan Jennings pitched two innings, giving up a run on three hits, while striking out four.

The Phils had fourteen hits in the game, with Cliff Lee (2 Singles, Triple, 4 RBIs) leading the team with three hits, followed by Cesar Hernandez (Singles, RBI), Jimmy Rollins (Single, Double), Chase Utley (Single, Home Run, 4 RBIs) and Darin Ruf (Single, Home Run, 2 RBIs) all following with two hits each. Dom Brown (Single), Cody Asche (Single, RBI) and Roger Bernadina (Triple) had the other three Phils’ hits. The Phils also had five walks (Hernandez, Rollins, Brown, Ruf and Bernadina).

The Phils (70-80, 3rd) will continue their series with the Marlins (55-95, 5th) with a night game tonight. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park, and will start at 7:05 pm EDT. The Phils will send to the mound Roy Halladay (3-4, 7.28), who is coming off a no-decision against the Padres on September 12, as he went four and one-third innings, giving up five runs, four of which were earned, on four hits and five walks, while striking out six, in the Phils’ 10-5 win. He will be trying to get back into pitching shape. The Marlins will counter with Brian Flynn (0-1, 10.13), who is coming off a lost to the Braves on September 12, as he went four innings, giving up six runs on six hits and six walks, while striking out four, in the Marlins’ 6-1 lost. Flynn will be trying to keep from being smack again. The Phils will be trying for another series win at home.

The Phils win their first series under new manager Ryne Sandberg, as they defeat the Rockies for the second straight in walk-off fashion, winning 5-4.

Philadelphia_PhilliesFor the second straight night, the Phils win in walk-off fashion, as they defeat the Rockies, 5-4, giving new manager Ryne Sandberg his first series win.

The Phils took the lead in the bottom of the second as, with runners on the corners, and with one man out, Cody Asche hits an RBI double, knocking in Dom Brown, who had started the inning off with a single, stopped at second base on Carlos Ruiz’s single, then moved up to third base on Chad Bettis’ wild pitch, giving the Phils a 1-0 lead, while sending Ruiz, who had earlier singled, over to third base. The Rockies tied the game up at one-all in the top of the fifth as, with runners on second and third, and with one man out, Dexter Fowler hits a sacrifice fly, knocking in Nolan Arenado, who had started the inning off with a single, stopped at second base on DJ LeMahieu’s single, then went to third base on Bettis’ sacrifice bunt, 2-4, while LeMahieu would stop at second base, before he moved up to third on the late throw to the plate. The Rockies took the lead in the top of the sixth as, with two men on, via singles by Troy Tulowitzki and Michael Cuddyer, with Tulowitzki stopping at second base, and with nobody out, Wilin Rosario hits a three-run home run, his twentieth home run of the year, knocking in both Tulowitzki and Cuddyer, giving the Rockies a 4-1 lead. The Phils cut the Rockies’ lead down to 4-3 in the bottom of the eighth as, with one man on, and with two men out, Darin Ruf hits a two-run home run, his ninth home run of the season, knocking in Chase Utley, who had started the inning off with a walk, then moved up to second base on Dom Brown’s soft ground out, 2-3. The Phils tied the game up at four-all in the bottom of the ninth as, with a man on third, and with two men out, Michael Young hits a slow roller that got past closer Rafael Betancourt, before third baseman Arenado was unable to picked the ball up, for an RBI infield single, as Jimmy Rollins, who had earlier doubled, then took third base on defensive indifference, scored. Two batters later, after pitcher Jeff Francis comes in to replace Betancourt, who had gotten injured on the play, and a walk to Utley, sending Young up to second base, the Phils win the game in walk-off fashion as Brown hits an RBI single, knocking in Young, while Utley would stop at third base, giving the Phils a 5-4 win.

Kyle Kendrick received a no-decision as he threw five innings plus four batters, giving up four runs on eight hits and a walk, while striking out two. Zach Miner pitched two innings, striking out a batter. B.J Rosenberg pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit, while striking out two. Cesar Jimenez (1-0, 0.00) got the win as he pitched a 1-2-3 inning, striking out a batter. Chad Bettis also received a no-decision as he pitched five and a third innings, giving up a run on six hits, a walk and a wild pitch, while striking out five. Wilton Lopez received his sixth hold of the season as he pitched two and a third innings, giving up a hit and a walk, while striking out one. Josh Outman received his tenth hold of the year as he pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up a run on a walk. Matt Belisle collected his twenty-first hold of the season as he also pitched two-thirds of an inning, giving up a run on a hit, while striking out a batter. Rafael Betancourt blew his third save attempt of the season, before taking the lost (2-5, 4.08) as he went two-thirds of an inning, giving up two runs on two hits. Jeff Francis pitched to two batters, getting neither of them out, as he gave up a hit, and walked a batter.

The Phils had eleven hits in the game, with a presently red-hot Carlos Ruiz (Singles) leading the team with three hits, followed by Jimmy Rollins (Single, Double) and Dom Brown (Singles, RBI) with two hits each. Michael Young (Single, RBI), Chase Utley (Single), Darin Ruf (Home Run, 2 RBIs) and Cody Asche (Double, RBI) had the other four Phils’ hits. The Phils also had four walks (Utley (3), pinch hitter Casper Wells) and one sacrifice bunt (Rollins) in the game.

The Phils (57-70, 4th NL East) will conclude their homestand with a three-game series with the Diamondbacks (65-61, 2nd West). The first game will be played tonight at Citizens Bank Park and is to start at 7:05 pm EDT. The Phils will send to the mound Cole Hamels (5-13, 3.61), who is coming off a no-decision against the Dodgers on August 18, as he pitched seven strong innings, giving up just two runs on seven hits, while striking out eight, in the Phils’ 3-2 walk-off win. He’ll be trying to continue his second half of better pitching while trying to lead the Phils to their fifth win in six games. The D-backs will counter with Wade Wiley (9-8, 3.56), who is coming off a no-decision against the Pirates on August 18, as he threw eight innings, giving up two runs on seven hits and two walks, while striking out eight, in the D-backs’ 4-2 win. He’ll be going for his tenth win of the season. The Phils will be trying to get their first three-game winning streak under new manager Ryne Sandberg.

The Phils give Charlie Manuel his 1,000 career win as a manager, as they defeat the Braves, 5-1.

Philadelphia_PhilliesBehind the complete game pitching of Cole Hamels, the Phils give their manager Charlie Manuel his 1000th career win as a manager, as they also end their road losing streak, as they defeat the Braves, 5-1.

The Phils took the lead in the top of the third as, with a runner on third, and with one man out, Jimmy Rollins hits an RBI single, scoring Cole Hamels, who had just tripled, giving the Phils a 1-0 lead. The Phils added to their lead in the top of the sixth as, with two men on, and with one man out, Cody Asche hits a three-run home run, his second home run of the season, knocking in Chase Utley, who had started the inning off with a single, then moved up to second base when Darin Ruf was hit by a pitch, and Ruf, who was just hit by a pitch, giving the Phils a 4-0 lead. The Phils made it a 5-0 lead in the top of the ninth as, with a runner on second, and with one man out, Carlos Ruiz hits an RBI single, scoring Asche, who had earlier singled, then stole second base, his first career steal. The Braves got on the scoreboard in their half of the ninth as, with a runner on second, and with two men out, Chris Johnson hits a ground-rule double, knocking in Justin Upton, who had started the inning off with a double, making it a 5-1 Phils’ lead. That would end up being the final score as Dan Uggla grounds out softly, 5-3, for the game’s final out.

Cole Hamels (5-13, 3.65) got the win as he threw a complete game, giving up just one run on six scattered hits and a walk, while striking out nine. Julio Teheran (9-6, 3.08) took the lost as he pitched six innings, giving up four runs on six hits, a walk and a hit batter, while striking out six. Luis Ayala and Scott Downs combined for two scoreless innings, giving up a walk (Ayala) between them, while striking out a batter (Downs). Anthony Varvaro pitched an inning, giving up a run on two hits, while striking out a batter.

The Phils had eight hits in the game, with Jimmy Rollins (Single, Double, RBI), Chase Utley (Singles) and Cody Asche (Single, Home Run, 3 RBIs), all leading the team with three hits each. Carlos Ruiz (Single, RBI) and Cole Hamels (Triple) had the other two Phils’ hits. The Phils also had two walks (Dom Brown, Hamels), a hit batter (Darin Ruf), a stolen base (Asche (1)) and a sacrifice bunt (Hamels) in the game.

The Phils (53-65, 4th) continue their series with the Braves (72-47, 1st) with a night game tonight. The game is to start at 7:10 pm EDT and is to be played at Turner Field. The Phils will sent to the mound Ethan Martin (1-1, 6.75) who is coming off his first career win against the Cubs on August 8, as he threw five innings, giving up a run on four hits and a walk, while striking out four, in the Phils’ 12-1 rout. He will be going for his second straight victory. The Braves will counter with Kris Medlen (9-10, 3.85) who is coming off a victory against the Nationals on August 7, as he went seven innings, giving up three runs on three hits and a walk, while he struck out six, in the Braves’ 6-3 win. He will be going for his tenth straight win. The Phils will be going for both the series win, and their second straight win on the road.

The Phils win their first series of the second half of the season as they defeat the Cubs in a laughter, 12-1.

Philadelphia_PhilliesThe Phils defeat the Cubs in a laughter, winning 12-1.

The Phils took the lead in the bottom of the second as, with runners on second and third, and with one man out, John Mayberry, Jr. hits an RBI infield single, scoring Darin Ruf, who had earlier singled, then stopped at third base on Cody Asche’s double, giving the Phils a 1-0 lead, while sending Asche, who had just doubled, up to third base. The Phils then made it a 2-0 lead one batter later as Michael Martinez hits an RBI single, scoring Asche, while sending Mayberry over to third base. The Phils then made it a 4-0 lead in the bottom of the third as, with one man on, and with one man out, Ruf hits a two-run home run, his fifth home run of the season, knocking in Chase Utley, who had earlier doubled. The Cubs got on the scoreboard in the top of the fourth as Nate Schierholtz hits a lead-off home run, his fifteenth home run of the year, making it a 4-1 Phils’ lead. The Phils then proceeded to bust the game open in their half of the fourth as, with runners on the corners and with one man out, Carlos Ruiz hits a RBI bunt single, knocking in Martinez, who had started the inning off with a single, had reached second base on Ethan Martin’s sacrifice bunt, 1-4, then reached third base as he beat Cubs’ pitcher Jeff Samardija’s throw to third on Kevin Frandsen’s fielder choice’s grounder to the pitcher, giving the Phils a 5-1 lead, while sending Frandsen, who was safe at first on the fielder’s choice, up to second base. The Phils then increased their lead as Utley hits an RBI double, knocking in Frandsen, giving the Phils a 6-1 lead, while sending Ruiz up to third base. The Phils then made it an 8-1 lead as Dom Brown hits a two-run single, scoring both Ruiz and Utley. The Phils then made it a 10-1 lead two batters later as, with a man on, and now with two men out, Asche hits a two-run home run, his first career home run, knocking in Brown. The Phils then made it a 12-1 lead in the bottom of the eighth as, with a man on first, and with nobody out, John McDonald hits a two-run home run, his first home run of the season, knocking in Ruiz, who had started the inning off with a single. That would end up being the final score as Raul Valdes pitched a 1-2-3 ninth.

Ethan Martin (1-1, 6.75) got the win, the first of his major league career, as he pitched five strong innings, giving up a run on four hits and three walks, as he struck out four. Zack Minor, Cesar Jimenez and Raul Valdes combined for four scoreless innings, giving up just two hits (Jimenez) and a walk (Minor) between them, while striking out four (Minor (2), Jimenez (1), Valdes (1)). Jeff Samardija (6-11, 4.23) took the lost as he lasted only three and a third innings, giving up nine runs on eleven hits, while striking out three. Eduardo Sanchez pitched two and a third innings, giving up a run on a hit and two walks, while striking out three. Hector Rondon pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a walk, while striking out a batter. Michael Bowden pitched an inning, giving up two runs on two hits.

The Phils had fourteen hits in the game, with Cody Asche (2 RBIs) leading the ballclub with three hits, a single, a double and a two-run home run, the first of his career, followed by Carlos Ruiz (Singles, RBI), Chase Utley (Doubles, RBI), Darin Ruf (Single, Home Run, 2 RBIs), and Michael Martinez (Singles, RBI) with two hits each. Dom Brown (Single, 2 RBIs), John Mayberry, Jr. (Single, RBI) and John McDonald (Home Run, 2 RBIs) had the other three Phils’ hits. The Phils also had three walks (Utley, Ruf and pinch-hitter Erik Kratz) and one sacrifice bunt (Ethan Martin) in the game.

The Phils (52-62, 4th) will start a three-game series with the Nationals (54-60, 2nd), starting with a night game tonight. The game will be played at Nationals Park and is to start at 7:05 pm EDT. The Phils will send to the mound John Lannan (3-4, 4.10), who is coming off a no-decision against the Braves on August 3, as he pitched four and a third innings, giving up four runs, only two of which were earned, in the Phils’ 5-4 extra-innings lost. He will be trying to give his old team fits. The Nats will counter with Dan Haren (6-11, 5.14) who is coming off a win against the Brewers on August 3, as he went seven innings, giving up four scattered hits and two walks, while striking out six, in the Nats’ 3-0 win. He will be trying to pitch well against the Phils. The Phils will be trying to start their present series on a good note.

A pair of two-run shots help the Phils end their eight-game losing streak as they defeat the World Champions Giants, 7-3.

Philadelphia_PhilliesA pair of two-run home runs, plus seven well pitched innings by starter John Lannan, put a stop to the Phils eight-game losing streak as they beat the World Champions Giants, 7-3.

The Giants took the lead in the top of the first as, with a man on third, and with one man out, Pablo Sandoval hits a sacrifice fly, scoring Andres Torres, who had started the game off with a double, then moved up to third base on Marco Scutaro’s sacrifice bunt, 1-4, giving the Giants a 1-0 lead. The Phils tied the game up at one-all in their half of the first as, with runners on second and third, and with two men out, Delmon Young came through with an RBI single, knocking in Michael Young, who had earlier singled, then went to third base on Chase Utley’s single, while sending Utley, who had earlier singled, on to third base. Two batters later, with the bases loaded, after Kevin Frandsen had been hit by a pitch, moving D. Young up to second base, and with still two men out, the Phils took a 2-1 lead as John Mayberry, Jr. forces in a run with an RBI walk, bringing in Utley, while sending D. Young on to third base, and Frandsen up to second base. The Giants tied the game up at two-all in the top of the third as, with two men on, thanks to John Lannan walking first Torres, and then Scutaro, moving Torres up to second base, and with two men out, Sandoval hits an RBI single, knocking in Torres, while sending Scutaro on to third base. The Phils retook the lead in the bottom of the fourth as, with one man on, and with nobody out, Carlos Ruiz hits a two-run home run, his first home run of the season, knocking in Mayberry, who had started the inning off with a single, giving the Phils a 4-2 lead. The Phils increased their lead in the bottom of the sixth as, with one man on, and with one man out, M. Young hits a two-run home run, his eighth home run of the year, scoring Lannan, who had started the inning off with a walk, giving the Phils a 6-2 lead. The Giants would get a run back in the top of the seventh as, with a runner on third, and with one man out, Joaquin Arias hits into an RBI ground out, 4-3, knocking in Guillermo Quiroz, who had started the inning off with a double, then went to third base on pinch-hitter Gregor Blanco’s ground out, 1-3, making it a 6-3 Phils’  lead. The Phils would get the run back in their half of the seventh as, with a man on second, and with one man out, Mayberry hits a RBI double, knocking in Michael Martinez, who was pinch-running for D. Young, who had started the inning off with a single, before he moved up to second base on Frandsen’s ground out, 6-3, giving the Phils a 7-4 lead. That would be the final score as Justin De Fratus threw a scoreless ninth.

John Lannan (3-4, 4.10) got the win as he pitched seven innings, giving up three runs on seven hits and two walks, while striking out three. Antonio Bastardo and Justin De Fratus combined for two scoreless innings, giving up two hits (one each) between them, while striking out a batter (Bastardo). Barry Zito (4-8, 5.09) took the lost as he went only three and a third innings, giving up four runs on five hits, two walks, and a hit batter, while striking out two. Guillermo Moscoso pitched two and two-thirds innings, giving up two runs on two hits, two walks and a hit batter, striking out three. Jean Machi pitched two innings, giving up a run on three hits, striking out a batter.

The Phils had ten hits in the game, with Michael Young, (Single, Home Run, 2 RBIs), Chase Utley (Singles), Delmon Young (Singles, RBI) and John Mayberry, Jr. (Single, Double, 2 RBIs) all leading the team with two hits each. Jimmy Rollins (Single) and Carlos Ruiz (Home Run, 2 RBIs) had the other two Phils’ hits. The Phils also had four walks (M. Young, Utley, Mayberry, John Lannan) and two hit batters (Kevin Frandsen, Darin Ruf) in the game.

The Phils (50-56, 3rd NL East) continue their series with the Giants (46-59, 5th NL West) with a night game tonight. The game will be played at Citizens Bank Park and is to start at 7:05 pm EDT. The Phils will send to the mound Kyle Kendrick (9-7, 3.96), who is coming off a lost against the Cardinals on July 25, as he pitched six innings, giving up three runs on five hits and two walks, while striking out one, in the Phils’ 3-1 lost. He will be looking to bounce back, and collect his tenth win of the season. The Giants will counter with Chad Gaudin (4-2, 2.77), who is coming off a lost to the Reds on July 24, as he threw only three and two-thirds innings, getting lit up for six runs on seven hits and five walks, while striking out only one, in the Giants’ 8-3 lost. He will be looking to come back from his lost. The Phils will be looking for their second straight win, after having suffered eight losses in a roll.

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