Archive for the ‘Sports’ Category

Phillies built for the Postseason

Posted: September 10, 2011 in Sports

The Phillies have 21 games left of the regular season, with a record of 93-48 they look like a pretty solid lock for the postseason. Here are some stats for the Phillies players in the postseason.

Carlos Ruiz– Postseason: .280 Avg, 4Hrs and 15Rbis

Pretty good numbers for the postseason, but Ruiz transforms into Senor Octubre come time for the world series is stats in 11 World Series games are:

.353 Avg, .488 OBP, .706 SLG, and 2 HRs.

Carlos Ruiz is a crucial part of the postseason not just because his great numbers in the World Series, but his handling of the Rotation of Aces and the Bullpen.


Ryan Howard- Postseason: .278 Avg, 7Hrs, and 27 Rbis

Ryan Howard also has solid postseasons, but he shines in the NLCS. In 16 NLCS games his stats:

.316 Avg, 2 Hrs, 10 Rbis, and 12 BBs

He also has 4 Hrs in 11 World Series games


Chase Utley– He has decent postseason stats, but the one that sticks out the most is his 7 Hrs in 11 World Series games.


Roy Halladay– Postseason: 2-1, 2.45Era, 20ks in 22 innings. (Also threw a No-Hitter in his first Postseason game)

Cliff Lee– Postseason: 7-2, 2.13Era, 80ks in 76 innings (Never lost a LDS or LCS game)

Cole Hamels– Postseason: 6-4, 3.45Era (2008 Postseason-4-0 1.80Era and World Series MVP)

Roy Oswalt– Postseason: 5-1, 3.39Era


Ryan Madson– 2-1, 2.35Era, 37ks in 30.2 Innings

Brad Lidge– 2.28Era, 18 Saves in 36 Games, 61ks in 43.1 innings, and 12.7 SO/9


I think the only questions for the playoffs will be is if Rollins, Utley, Howard, and Polanco can stay healthy and if the young guns can live up to expectations (Bastardo, Worley, and Stutes)


My Prediction for the Playoffs

PHL Vs ARZ-  Phils wins in 3 Games

MIL Vs ATL- Mil wins in 4 Games

PHL Vs MIL- Phils win 5 Games


The Month of July was a good month for rookie Vance Worley of the Philadelphia Phillies. Now with a solid spot in the Rotation of Aces, Worley has shown we he can do.



Vance Worley: 4-0 1.23Era 29Ks (5 Starts)

Roy Halladay: 3-1 2.57Era 29Ks (5 Starts)

Cole Hamels: 3-2 3.25Era 30Ks (5 Starts)

Kyle Kendrick: 1-1 3.94Era 13Ks (6 Starts)

Cliff Lee: 1-2 4.91Era 40Ks (5 Starts)


By no means am I saying that Vance Worley is better, or even close to the pitchers that Halladay, Hamels, and Lee are. But I am saying that in a rotation full of aces, Vance Worley held his own this month. Even if it is for one month, it is still impressive with that talent on this starting staff.



The Starters: 

3 All-Stars (Hamels/Halladay/Lee) Each with Era’s under 3.00, over 120ks, and over 130 innings pitched. No trio even comes close to the production these 3 have had so far.

PHL (Hamels/Halladay/Lee) 31-12 2.54ERA/396ks (Wins-1st, ERA-1st, Ks-1st)

LAA (Weaver/Haren/Santana) 26-17 2.75ERA/341ks (Wins-T4th, ERA-2nd, Ks-2nd)

ATL (Jurrjens/Hanson/Hudson) 30-13 2.77ERA/247ks (Wins-T2nd, ERA-3rd, Ks-8th)

SF (Lincecum/Cain/Vogelsong) 21-13 2.82ERA/307ks (Wins-9th, ERA-4th, Ks-5th)

OAK (Cahill/Gonzalez/Outman) 19-16 2.91ERA/225ks (Wins-10th, ERA-5th, Ks-9th)

TB (Shields/Price/Hellickson) 24-21 3.05ERA/330ks (Wins-T6th, ERA-6th, Ks-4th)

PIT (Correia/Karstens/Maholm) 24-20 3.20ERA/192ks (Wins-T6th, ERA-7th, Ks-10th)

SEA (Hernandez/Pineda/Vargas) 22-19 3.23ERA/334ks (Wins-8th, ERA-8th, Ks-3rd)

TEX (Wilson/Ogando/Lewis) 26-10 3.50ERA/291ks (Wins-T4th, ERA-9th, KS-7th)

DET (Verlander/Scherzer/Porcello) 30-14 3.64ERA/299ks (Wins-T2nd, ERA-10th, Ks-6th)


The Phillies rotation as a whole leads the Major Leagues in Wins (42), ERA (2.93), Strikeouts (515), Complete Games (11), and Walks (121). The team next in line with the next best ERA is Seattle, with an ERA 3.14 (.21 points higher then the Phillies). With the injury to Roy Oswalt and Cliff Lee’s slow start it is amazing how the Phillies starting rotation has dominated.


The Bullpen


The Bullpen has been a huge surprise:

Michael Stutes: 3-1/3.26 ERA, 31ks in 30.1 innings and 6 Hold

Antonio Bastardo 3-0/0.82 ERA  (Major League best (30 Ip+)), 38ks in 33 innings, 7 holds, and 5 for 5 in saves

Ryan Madson 3-1/ 2.03ERA, 34ks in 31 innings, 2 holds, and 15 for 16 in saves


Stutes/Bastardo/Madson as a trio have gone: 9-2/ 2.00ERA, 103ks in 94.1 innings, 15 holds, and 20 for 21 in saves.


The resilience of the bullpen in my opinion has been the most surprising part of this year. Brad Lidge Injured, Jose Contreras goes 5 for 5 in saves. Contreras gets injured, Madson goes 15 for 16 in saves. Madson gets injured, Bastardo goes 5 for 5 in saves. The closers never miss a beat.


As a Whole Staff

57-34 (Best in MLB)/ 3.02ERA (Best in MLB), .239Avg (5th Best in MLB), 706ks (4th Best in MLB), 11 Complete Games (Best in MLB), 13 Shutouts (Best in MLB) 226BB (Best in MLB), 61 Quality Starts (Best in MLB), 25 for 28 in saves (89%) (Best in the MLB) and 3.12 K/BB (Best in MLB)


3 All Stars

2 Double digit game winners before All Star Break

3 Starters with 120+ks and 4 Starters with ERAs below 3.00

6 Pitchers (30+ip) with ERAs below 3.00






The 1997 and 1998 Atlanta Braves starting rotations are considered tops in the best rotations in MLB history. I decided to compare some stats from those 2 staffs and the 2011 Phillies starting rotation threw 73 games into those historic seasons.

1997 Atlanta Braves Starting Rotation 

73 Games into the season:                                                   Finished Season:

Denny Neagle: 10-1/3.26Era/68ks                  Denny Neagle: 20-5/2.97Era/172ks

Greg Maddux: 9-3/2.67Era/83ks                    Greg Maddux: 19-4/2.20Era/177ks

Tom Glavine: 7-4/2.70Era/65ks                      Tom Glavine: 14-7/2.96Era/152ks

John Smoltz: 6-6/3.19Era/92ks                      John Smoltz:  15-12/3.02Era/241ks


Neagle, Maddux, Glavine: Made the All-Star teams.

Neagle and Maddux: Finshed 2nd and 3rd in Cy Young voting

1998 Atlanta Braves Starting Rotation:


73 Games into Season:                                                         Finished Season:

Greg Maddux: 10-2/1.62Era/90ks                    Greg Maddux: 18-9/2.22Era/204ks

Tom Glavine: 9-3/2.75Era/78ks                       Tom Glavine: 20-6/2.47Era/157ks

Kevin Millwood: 9-3/4.43Era/76ks                     Kevin Millwood: 17-8/4.08Era/163ks

Denny Neagle: 8-4/3.18Era/80ks                      Denny Neagle: 16-11/3.55Era/165ks

John Smoltz: 4-1/3.94Era/41ks                         John Smoltz: 17-3/2.90Era/173ks


Maddux and Glavine: Made the All-Star Team

Glavine: Won the Cy Young Award/Maddux and Smoltz: Finished 4th in Cy Young voting.

2011 Philadelphia Phillies Starting Rotation:

73 Games into Season:                                                         Finished Season:

Cole Hamels: 9-3/2.51Era/103ks                                 ????????????

Roy Halladay: 9-3/2.56Era/114ks                               ?????????????

Cliff Lee: 7-5/3.12Era/111ks                                         ????????????

Roy Oswalt: 4-5/3.38Era/41ks                                    ????????????


97 ATL, 98 ATL, 11 PHL whole pitching staff threw 73 games:

98' ATL: 49-24/3.42Era/545ks/203BBs/248Earned Runs/Avg .224
97' ATL: 47-26/3.17Era/495ks/188BBs/230Earned Runs/AVg .226
11' PHL: 45-28/3.03Era/578ks/189BBs/225Earned Runs/Avg .243


In the beginning of the 2011 season all the hype was focused on Philadelphia’s 4 Aces. The media and the rabid fans of the Phillies claimed that this was the best  pitching staff that any team has ever seen. The thing was that this staff had yet to throw one pitch in the regular season, and already labeled the best ever. Well since then they have played 73 games and have the best record in baseball of 45-28. This is how “The Best Pitching Staff in History” has fared so far.


34-21/ 3.13 Era (1st in MLB)/ 7 complete games (1st in MLB)/ 424 Ks (1st in MLB)/ 97 walks aloud (1st in MLB)

The starting staff leads all of Baseball in ERA, Complete Games,  Strikeouts, and Walks allowed. That is an impressive stat right there! Now to get a little more impressed, if you take out the 5th Starter (Blanton, Kendrick, Worley) and just show the stats of the highly hyped 4 Aces this is what you have.

4 Aces: 29-16/ 2.83 Era/ 7 Complete games/369 Ks/75 walks aloud   5th Starter: 5-5/5.95 Era/55ks/22 walks aloud

You can find one, two, or three of the four aces in the top statistical categories for Pitchers in the MLB. The thing that sticks out to me is how this compares to other teams starting rotation. There are individuals who are having a better season so far than the four aces. Take Josh Beckett (6-2/1.86 Era/79ks) or Jair Jurrjens (9-3/2.11 Era/53Ks) they have better ERAs then Halladay, Hamels, Lee, and Oswalt. They have a good winning percentage, Jurrjens with the same record of Hamels and Halladay. Still if you look around the league there are not many Duo’s having a better season than Hamels/Halladay. Actually I can only think of 3 that you can even put in the same category so far, and that is Jurrjens/Hanson of the Braves, Haren/Weaver of the Angels and Verlander/Scherzer of the Tigers.

Jurrjens:9-3/2.11Era/53Ks/18BBS              Halladay:9-3/2.56/114Ks/14BBs              Hanson:8-4/2.48Era/89Ks/30BBS               Hamels:9-3/2.51Era/103Ks/19BBS

Verlander:9-3/2.54Era/110ks/26BBS            Weaver:8-4/2.06Era/96Ks/26BBS            Scherzer:9-2/4.32Era/80Ks/32BBS              Haren:6-5/2.96Era/89Ks/16BBS

Now Hamels/Halladay  both have 9 wins so far, the only other staff with two 9 game winners is Detriot with Verlander/Scherzer.  Hamels/Halladay are ranked 6th and 9th in best ERA in MLB. The only other staff with 2 starters ranked in the top ten for ERA is Atlanta with Jurrjens/Hanson. No teams has 2 starters with 100ks so far, let alone 3, as the Phillies do with Halladay/Hamels/Lee. So you can compare the other 3 duo’s so far on Atlanta, Detriot, and LAA, but in my opinion Hamels/Hallday stand out. When you look at the 3 best starters on all MLB staffs no team even comes close to the trio of Hamels/Halladay/Lee. The Phillies trio of Hamels/Halladay/Lee each have 100ks, 7+ wins, ERAs below 3.13,  rank top 5 in K/B ratio and Strikeouts. Roy Oswalt has been hampered by injury and family crisis, yet still has a nice line of 4-5/3.38Era/41ks/18BBS which is not too bad for the teams 4th best pitcher. So individually, as a duo, a trio, or as the 4 Aces no starting staff comes close to what the Phillies have achieved so far.

BEST PITCHED GAME BY A STARTER THIS YEAR: (4/14/2011) PHL @WSH: W 4-0: Cliff Lee: 9ip/3H/0 Runs/12ks/ 99 pitches


11-7/2.80 ERA (3rd Best in MLB)/22 Saves (2nd Best in MLB)/2 Blown Saves (1st in MLB)/ Save % 92 (1st in MLB)/ 67 Runs let up (1st in MLB)

Coming into this season there wasn’t much talk of the Phillies bullpen. Lidge the closer, Madson set up, Contreras 7th inning man. In March Brad Lidge went down with an injury and Jose Contreras took the role as closer. Contreras went 5 for 5 in save chances before going down with an injury himself. Ryan Madson took over as the role as closer and since then has gone 15 for 16 in save chances. Also two young pitchers emerged in Bastardo (25yrs old) and Stutes (24yrs old).

Bastardo: 3-0/1.00ERA/7 Holds/2 Saves/27 innings/32Ks

Stutes: 1-0/2.08ERA/4 Holds/21.2 innings/22ks

Bastardo has become the main setup man in the bullpen and lone lefty. He has shown maturity and confidence in his role. Stutes has been thrown in to keep the lead or prevent the other team from adding on insurance runs. He has earned Charlie Manuals trust and can be used in any situation and has proven to be reliable. Kyle Kendrick has proven he is better out of the bullpen then as a starter. As a reliever he is

Kendrick:2-2/2.21Era/20.1 innings/7ks

Even David Herndon is beginning to come around, not allowing an earned run in 12 innings since coming back up from the minors. But, the true star of the Bullpen has to be Ryan Madson

Madson: 3-1/2.03ERA/15 Saves/2 Holds/31 innings/34ks

He has emerged as one of the best closers in all of baseball this year. He has the mental toughness and the tools to become one of baseball’s premiere closers. He has only 1 blown save all year, and continues to close the door on opponents chances for a late inning rally.

BEST PITCHED GAME BY THE BULLPEN THIS YEAR:  (5/25/2011) CIN @ PHL: W 5-4: Bullpen: 12 innings pitched/4 hits/1 run/10ks


45-28 (1st in MLB)/3.03 Era (1st in MLB)/578ks (3rd in MLB)/7 Shutouts (1st in MLB)/9 Complete Games (1st in MLB)/22 Saves (2nd in MLB)/2 Blow Saves (1st in MLB)

This pitching staff is projected to win 100 games, have two 20 game winners, and a possible third in Cliff Lee, 3 pitchers over 250ks, 3 starters with ERA’s under 3.00,  50+ Saves and a possible Cy Young Winner. If this staff keeps up these numbers, they can have one of the best, if not the best starting rotation in history and possibly one of the best pitching staffs as a whole. If the Phillies do what their team is built to do and win the World Series this year, and continue at this pace I don’t see how they can not be considered one of the best pitching staffs of all time.

Everyone knows that the end of the world is coming this Saturday. In Philadelphia it seemed it was Tuesday night. The World Series favorite Phillies lost their fourth straight game. Everyone in in the city of brotherly and South Jersey had a collected sigh of frustration when J.C. Romero threw his first pitch in the bottom of the 9th inning against the St. Louis Cardinals. Lance Berkman drilled the first pitch he saw into center field and the Fightin Phils lost their fourth straight game. Now every Phillies fan and media personality will be freaking out Wednesday morning on all the radio stations. Let me tell you I will not be one of them. The Phillies still have the best record in the National League don’t forget. On the road trip the Phillies went 3-5 against Florida (2-1), Atlanta (1-2), and St. Louis (0-2). Seems like something to worry about right? Well in 4 of the Phillies 5 losses they went against Josh Johnson (1.64-ERA), Jair Jurrjens (1.66-ERA), Tim Hudson (3.03-ERA), and Jaime Garcia (1.64-ERA). Johnson, Jurrjens, and Garcia are Top 1, 2, and 3 in ERA for starters in all of baseball. Between the 3 of them they have one loss. Now the Phillies did lose to Jake Westbrook which was just a horrible loss, but they have been up against some of the best pitching in baseball in the past 8 games.

Yes the Phillies have a lot of holes on the offense, but hopefully with the return of Chase Utley and Dominic Brown the offense will begin to take shape. Everyone is saying we need to trade for a big bat  (Hunter Pence, Micheal Young etc.) But what do we have to trade? No one will take Joe Blanton or Raul Ibanez, and we can’t start trading our young arms in the farm system either. Hamels is our youngest starter at 27 and Roy Halladay is 34. We need to save those young arms and not throw them away for a big bat. Once Utley and Brown return Charlie will have much more options for his offense.

We as fans have been complaining for years about how we need starting pitching, bullpen, and pinch hitters. Well we have one of the best rotations in baseball, our bullpen has been solid (2.91-ERA, 7-4, and one blown save), and our pinch hitting is 2nd best in the NL (.297 AVG, 19 hits,11 RBIs). We finally have what we wanted for years and now that the offense is slumping against some of the best pitchers in baseball, everyone is flipping out. We all knew since  we let Werth go and signed Cliff Lee that we would be trading offense for pitching. The offense production is way down, but the pitching is way up.

There are still 121 games left to play and the Phillies are just going to get better with the additions of Utley and Dom Brown. I will refuse to let the horrible memories of Phillies of seasons past creep into my mind, and destroy my excitement for this team. Even with this 4 game losing streak I still predict the Phillies will win at least 100 games, Halladay and Hamels will be 20 game winners, and the Phillies will win the World Series (Unless the world does really end on Saturday).