Some quick thoughts on yesterday’s game, before I settle in to watch Game 2 on TV. No visual aids today.
The “August” version of Cliff Lee was in the park yesterday, going the distance as the Phils beat the Rockies 5-1. Thank goodness it wasn’t “September” Lee that showed up! Today Cole Hamels takes the mound – let’s hope we get “2008 Postseason” Cole, and not the inconsistent 2009 version.
Though it looked like a nice sunny day, the gusting, swirling winds made for some entertaining fielding. On one pop-up, the ball must have taken a U-turn while in flight, as Jimmy Rollins first ran out to short left, then abruptly ran back towards third base before making the catch. The wind also robbed Jayson Werth, and possibly Ryan Howard, of homers.
I can breathe a little easier with the Phillies victory yesterday, but if they can win today I will definitely feel more comfortable.
Speaking of TV, I despise the coverage by TBS. They seemed to be having some sort of technical difficulties yesterday, as the sound kept cutting out. I also have it on good authority from Jenn of Phillies Phollowers, who was there in person, that the crowd was REALLY LOUD. You would not have known that from the broadcast – the crowd sounds were buried in the mix, leaving the announcers all too easy to hear. Maybe I should try muting the TV and listening to the local radio broadcast :-).
Following his appearance in Tuesday’s All-Star game, Jayson Werth had the rather ignominous distinction of striking out four times last night in the first game of the second half.
Yup, he earned the infamous Golden Sombrero. Jayson, please do not do this again this season!
[Interesting tidbits: striking out 5 times is called a platinum sombrero, and if you manage to strike out 6 times, it’s called a titanium sombrero. This has only ever occurred eight times, and only in extra inning games.]
On a personal note, I seem to be having a bit of a mid-season blogging slump, and it’s going to persist at least through the next week, as we’re headed off tomorrow on a family vacation. Not much blogging opportunity there.
So for now, I’ll leave you with the latest…
Strange Photo of the Week
Just what is Jimmy Rollins doing to Shane Victorino? Seeing if his waistband is stretchy? Getting ready to give him a wedgie? Allowing noxious fumes to escape?
Maybe he’s seeing if Shane could use a little of this:
I’m sure it would leave him fresh as a daisy!
(photo by Ron Cortes/Philadelphia Inquirer)
Bombs Away in the Bronx
I was a bit apprehensive about the Phillies’ visit to the new Yankee Stadium, given the way balls have been flying out of it, coupled with the propensity of Phillies pitchers to give up those gopher balls. True to expectations, seven balls left the yard tonight.
Jimmy Rollins set the tone for the night by going deep on the very first pitch of the game. There was no looking back after that, as the Phillies never trailed during this game. How many times has that happened so far this season? Don’t know off the top of my head, but I don’t think it’s a very big number.
Carlos Ruiz, Jayson Werth, and Raul Ibanez joined Rollins in the hit parade, with Ibanez hitting his league-leading 16th long ball. This chick is starting to dig it!
Brett Myers pitched masterfully, going eight strong innings while giving up three runs. All three came on the Yanks’ share of the dingers tonight, but thankfully all three were of the solo variety, by Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter, and Mark Teixeira.
Phils win, 7-3. Yay!
Flushed Away in Flushing
You may have already heard about this, but I can’t resist bringing it up. Since it involves a Mets fan and a toilet, I’m surprised the Philadelphia columnists didn’t have a field day with it. Nonetheless, I learned about it on Thursday in a totally non-baseball blog called Lost in Suburbia, written by Tracy Beckerman, published author and fellow Penn Stater. Click HERE to read her take on it.
Seems that at a game last week at Citi Field, a female Mets fan lost a gold tooth in the toilet. For reasons known only to her, she tried to retrieve it, getting her arm stuck in the toilet in the process. According to other coverage, the toilet continued flushing over her arm the whole time, which appears to have been rather lengthy, as EMTs were unable to pry her loose and workers from the company that installed the toilets had to be called in to help. She was eventually freed, but the tooth was not recovered.
OK, how does this happen? If you feel a tooth about to fall out, would you lean over the toilet? And even if it is gold, it’s a toilet, for crying out loud! A public toilet in a ballpark, no less. Unlike your home toilet, Lord knows what’s been in there. Just let it go, and make an appointment with your dentist the next day!
I Need Your Opinion
While lamenting my inability to make the Latest Leader’s List in a comment on the community blog, I noticed a comment from another blogger that thought there were too many blogs with the word “rant” in the title.
I’m familiar with, and often visit, Julia’s Rants and the Rockpile Rant, but how many more are there? Just a quick look uncovered Rainiers Rants, Wrigley Rants, Phillies Cheers/Rants, Random Reds Rants, and the daily rant (who I guess doesn’t feel the need for capitalization). And how many more might there be?
So the question I’m now contemplating is whether or not I should change the title of my blog. Maybe all these different rants are confusing to the blog readers. Do I need something clever to catch the eye? Let me know what you think.
Happy Memorial Day Weekend!
I will be incommunicado this weekend, traveling with the family to the Jersey Shore (or as they say in Philly, going “down the shore”) for a visit with relatives. Here’s wishing everyone a happy and safe holiday weekend!
“I guess he was feeling frisky”
Thus spake Charlie Manuel last night, after Jayson Werth stole home in the seventh inning, for his fourth steal of the night. Manuel was taken by surprise just as much as the rest of us. I have to admit, I was staring right at the TV and almost didn’t realize what was going on, as Werth came flying into the screen and under the tag.
Werth took advantage of catcher Russell Martin’s casual lobbing of the ball back to relief pitcher Ronald Belisario. Martin had pretty much ignored Werth as he was on third, so once the opportunity presented itself, he took off.
Werth’s four steals in a game tied a team record, shared by Garry Maddox and Sherry Magee.
What’s your name?
You may notice in the above picture that Russell Martin’s jersey has his name as “J. Martin”. What’s up with that, my husband and I wondered. A little internet searching turned up an article on the Dodgers website that sheds light on the matter. The J. stands for Jeanson, one of Russell’s multiple middle names, and also the maiden name of his mother. Using the J. is his way of paying tribute to his mom.
In case you were wondering, Martin’s full name is Russell Nathan Jeanson Coltrane Martin.
Quite a mouthful, but still one name short of this beauty:
Calvin Coolidge Julius Ceasar Tuskahoma McLish, aka Cal McLish. Cal pitched for seven teams over the course of his career, finishing with the Phillies from 1962-64.
Gimme some tongue
It seems everywhere I look these days, there are more pictures of players with their tongues hanging out. What is going on here? This image was found on the Philadelphia Inquirer’s coverage of last night’s game, showing Orlando Hudson caught in a rundown:
I’m surprised no one ends up biting their tongue (literally) while doing this.
On Monday morning, I found this little gem, also featured by Jane Heller. Somehow, it looks R-rated (or at least PG-13):
Grammar/music/history lesson for the day
No, I did not make a typo, “spake” is actually a word. It is the past tense of speak, though it is an archaic form. It also reminded me of the Richard Strauss composition, Also Sprach Zarathustra, which is sometimes translated into English as “Thus Spake Zarathustra”. You may recognize its introduction as the memorable musical theme from 2001: A Space Oddysey. Zarathustra, also known as Zoroaster, was an ancient Iranian prophet and religious poet.
So, am I likening Charlie Manuel to a prophet? Absolutely not. It just sounded good.
(Werth/Martin photo and Ruiz/Hudson photo by Ron Cortes for the Philadelphia Inquirer; Yankee tongue photo by Rob Carr/AP)
As I’ve mentioned in a previous blog entry, my sister and I rooted for opposing teams during our formative years. I was, of course, phaithful to the Phillies, while she rooted for the Mets only because she had a crush on Lee Mazzilli. As sisters so often do, we made fun of each other’s choices – the best way for me to get on her nerves was to refer to the Mets as “Mutts.”
Well, judging from this photographic evidence, maybe I wasn’t so far off. Here’s last night’s starting pitcher, Mike Pelfrey, with a little tongue action going on:
Not wanting to miss out on the fun, David Wright joins in on the tongue-wagging:
Kind of like pound puppies, hoping to find a loving home. Well, keep looking, you’re not welcome in my house!
Anyway, the Phillies once again did not heed my advice and administer a butt-whippin’ to the Mets. They were swept in a short two-game set.
In the first game, Chan Ho Park took the mound for the Phillies, looking for a decent start after being pretty dismal so far this year. As Johan Santana was pitching for the Mets that night, all logic seemed to indicate that this game was a lost cause.
Miraculously, Park matched Santana through six innings, before being lifted for a pinch-hitter in a scoreless game. Six innings, one hit, 2 walks, and 5 stikeouts! Way to go, Chan Ho! Who’d of thunk it? Unfortunately for Park, his ERA is still a less than stellar 6.67.
The Mets plated an unearned run in the bottom of the seventh, as Carlos Delgado was able to score all the way from first, on a bad throw by Pedro Feliz that sailed past Ryan Howard and into the outfield. Jayson Werth may have had a play at the plate, but he hesitated before throwing.
Need I remind these guys what happens when you hesitate?
That lone run would be enough, as the Mets won, 1-0.
In the second game, Jamie Moyer pitched like you would expect from a
relic 46-year-old, giving up 7 runs in 2 1/3 innings. Props go again to the bullpen, for pitching 5 2/3 scoreless innings and giving the Phils a chance to stay in the game.
And they did try their darndest to come back once again. Ryan Howard launched a bomb to the deepest part of the field; too bad there was no one on base. Jayson Werth hit a 2-run shot to left. After being down 7-1, the Phils managed to get as close as 7-5, but there would be no miracle.
The Phillies are back home now for a weekend set against the Braves. Despite the two losses, they still hold a slim 1/2 game lead over both the Mets and Marlins. Let’s not let it slip away!
(both photos Julie Jacobsen/AP)
In what has become a disturbing trend so far in this season for the Phillies, starter Brett Myers gave up 3 runs to the Marlins in the first inning tonight on a 3-run homer to Dan Uggla. Cripes, guys, what’s with all the long balls? I’m getting a little tired of it, as I’m sure pitching coach Rich Dubee is, too.
The Fish retained that 3-0 lead through eight innings. Things looked bleak for the Phillies heading into the ninth, as Ryan Howard was retired to start things off. But then Jayson Werth doubled, Raul Ibanez walked, and Matt Stairs singled to drive in a run. Lou Marson walked to load the bases, but then Eric Bruntlett struck out. Next up was Jimmy Rollins, who walked to force in another run, making it 3-2. Shane Victorino picked an opportune time to have his bat awaken, as he then hit a grand slam to give the Phils a 6-3 lead. Chase Utley would add a solo shot of his own for good measure, to make it 7-3.
Ryan Madson took over in the bottom of the ninth, and though he allowed a walk and a double, he retired the side with no further scoring. Phillies win!
No crotch shots in today’s newspaper – darn! Two worthy captions for yesterday’s photo were submitted, they appear below.
“No, if you cover it up like this no one can see the stain”
– OR –
“Hey, get that away from my best friend!!!”
(photo by Steven M. Falk/Philadelphia Inquirer)