Posts Tagged ‘Shane Victorino.’

Battered by Boston

April 7th, 2015 by AmyMac | Comments Off on Battered by Boston | Filed in Baseball, General, Phillies, TalkSportsPhilly
Cole Hamels lasted 5 innings in today's opener.

Cole Hamels lasted 5 innings in today’s opener.

 Philadelphia Sports

In Shane Victorino’s first visit in a Red Sox uniform, seats at Citizens Bank Park were packed. Today’s beautiful weather was arguably the best in recent Opening Day history, but sadly, it was more of the same from starter Cole Hamels. Today marked his fifth consecutive season debut loss. Hamels lasted just 5.0 innings; despite his six strikeouts, though, Hamels allowed four homeruns on five hits and three walks.  For those of you who need a little math help, that translates to a 7.20 ERA. He was just no match for Boston’s Dustin Pedroia and Mookie Betts. Cole’s 100 pitches (64 were strikes) came with a called balk; of course, neither Hamels nor Sandberg  appeared to be happy. To be fair, though, it was Jake Diekman who allowed Hanley Ramirez’s grand slam in his third of the ninth inning. That’s right, folks: Diekman has begun 2015 with a 108.00 ERA.

To rub salt in the wound, Philadelphia’s offense was a no-show.  With just three hits (thank you, Howard, Ruiz, and Sizemore) the Phils’ lineup managed to strand six runners.  Boston’s starting pitcher Clay Buchholz fanned nine over 7.0 innings thanks in large part to the movement in his changeup and his 92-93 mph heater. Admittedly, Philadelphia lacks power in its lineup; however, there was no compensation for that today. The Phils simply must improve their situatiinal hitting and move baserunners. Period.

No one is happier than I am that the season is underway – unless you count Rockies’ new ace Kyle Kendrick, who bagged a win today. I’m expecting a tough season for Philadelphia, and I’m ready to move past Cole’s slow start, but I’m going to need to see some offense. On a side note, there were three highlights to today’s game: 1) Ben Davis sounded right at home in the booth with Matt Stairs and Tom McCarthy, 2) “God Bless America” singer, the lovely and talented Lori McCarty, gave me goosebumps, and 3) Cole’s beard stubble gets an A+ from me (raise your hand if that surprises you at all).


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Red Sox and Cardinals Could Provide a Real Fall Classic

October 23rd, 2013 by Jim Chesko | Comments Off on Red Sox and Cardinals Could Provide a Real Fall Classic | Filed in Baseball, General, Sports


Remember how much fun it was in and around Philadelphia in late October in 2008 and 2009? The Phillies won their first World Series in 28 years in ’08, beating the Tampa Bay Rays, and returned to the “fall classic” the following year, coming up short in a six-game series loss to the New York Yankees.

Unfortunately, the Phillies have fallen further and further from returning to the Series over the past four seasons, but this year’s Red Sox-Cardinals matchup – pitting a couple of storied franchises that have met three times previously in October – could be a dandy.

And that would be a welcome event for true sports fans locally, considering the current state of the city’s four major teams. The Phillies are coming off their worst season since 2000, the Flyers can’t seem to score goals (and are a good bet to miss the playoffs for a second-straight year if things don’t change quickly), the rebuilding 76ers may be the NBA’s worst team, and the Eagles are trying to resolve a major quarterback quandary.

How they got here: The St. Louis Cardinals finished a National League-best 97-65, earning another Central Division title, then held off the Pittsburgh cardinalslogoPirates in the Division Series and took care of the Los Angeles Dodgers 4-games-to-2 in the National League Championship Series.

The Boston Red Sox, after finishing 69-93 in 2012, hired John Farrell as manager to replace the fired Bobby Valentine, and the BoSox started the season strong and never relented. Like the Cards, the Red Sox had a league-best record of 97-65, then disposed of Tampa Bay in the ALDS and the Detroit Tigers in the Championship Series, sending Jim Leyland into retirement. Of course, the deciding blow in Boston’s Game Six victory was a grand slam by former Phillie Shane Victorino, who now gets to play in his third World Series in six years.


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Offseason Storylines

November 3rd, 2012 by Mike H. | 1 Comment | Filed in Baseball, General, Phillies

Off-Season Storylines

The way that the new MLB CBA breaks down, the offseason starts bright and early Friday night/Saturday morning at midnight. The Phillies have some work cut out for themselves heading into 2013, with priorities set on centerfield, third base, and the bullpen. With over 135 million committed to just 10 players, the Phillies don’t have much wiggle room as far as big free agent signings can go. The Phillies definitely could/should be active on the trade front, but, as always, the biggest question is: “Who is available versus who is tradeable?”

So let’s take a look at some viable options for the Phillies heading into the 2012-2013 offseason. As we head into this, I’ll give you a little insight as to how I assess players:

  • NL/AL West: I rarely trust pitchers from the left coast. Too many pitcher’s parks that effect their stats, i.e. Chad Qualls.
  • Previous Team: Sometimes being the best player on a bad team doesn’t translate to success on a (potentially) good team.
  • Previous Year: Success and failure the previous year shouldn’t disguise the type of player you’re really getting.


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Ten More Reasons to Hate the Giants

October 26th, 2012 by AmyMac | 2 Comments | Filed in Baseball, General, Phillies

By Amy McGinnis

It’s probably not much of a secret that the San Francisco Giants are my least favorite team in baseball.  As Phils fans, we’re still not happy about 2010.  Here are a few extra reasons for you to join me in my hatred.

  1. The brawlsPhiladelphia and San Francisco have had some outstanding bench-clearing fights.  Remember Jonathan Sanchez hitting Chase Utley with a pitch in the 2010 NLCS?  (Is there a pitcher who hasn’t beamed Uts? He’s like a helicopter over that plate.)  Chase tossed the ball back to Sanchez as he took first.  It’s not as if he said, “Here’s your ball, bitch!” like I would have; he just got a little sassy.  Sanchez turned into the Hulk and ignited a melee on the field.  Do you recall, in 2011, Ramon Ramirez getting bent out of shape when Jimmy Rollins stole second with a six run lead? I bet Shane Victorino does, because he’s the one who got plunked for it.  Vic charged the mound, the benches emptied … you know the rest.  What’s the theme here? San Francisco needs to stop hitting our batters, and stop acting like little girls throwing tantrums after the fact.
  2. Plays at the plateScott Cousins collided with Buster Posey at the plate; Posey shat in his Pull-Up and was carried off the field.  Chipper Jones charged Erik Kratz at the plate; Kratz braced for impact, snagged John Mayberry Jr.’s perfect throw, made the tag in time, and shook it off.  Before you call me heartless, understand that I’ve snapped my left fibula and torn apart ligaments too.  It hurts.  I wouldn’t wish that pain on someone.  I’m just saying … maybe learn to take a hit better.
  3. Furry creaturesPablo Sandoval has made me detest pandas.  All of them.  The Phanatic eclipses all mascots, symbols, slogans, and other marketing crap. Period.
  4. FoodWhat do you eat at CBP? A hot dog and crab fries? Maybe a cheesesteak?  At AT&T Park, you can also enjoy the game while eating delicious food in your seats.  How does a deviled egg sound? Maybe some soup in a bowl that’s made out of sourdough bread? Ok, that sounds like stuff my mom would eat … at brunch.  Not to mention, if you need utensils, it’s not ballpark food.
  5. Hunter PenceWe sent HP3 to San Francisco this past season at the trade deadline.  He was a fresh-faced, handsome young man who always smiled because, gosh darn it, that southern boy just loves baseball.  Three months later, he has a gross-looking beard, a half-buttoned jersey, and the smile seems almost … sorry, Hunter … douchey.
  6. AcesOur ace, Cole Hamels, and San Francisco’s ace, Matt Cain, had similar stats in the 2012 season.  Cain had one fewer win, but his ERA is slightly lower.  At the end of the day, though, Cole Hamels is Cole Hamels, and Matt Cain is Not Cole Hamels.
  7. The Journey SongIn 2010, fans in San Francisco made a video with a song they wrote to the tune of Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin’.” I can hear it in my head as I type this (“Let’s go, Giiiiii … ants”) and I may vomit.  As mockery, Ryan Madson used the Journey song when he ran from the bullpen.  Giants’ fans picked ruined a Journey song from the 80s, and that’s what people watched on YouTube … while Phils fans were still watching videos of Chase Utley yelling “World Fucking Champions!!!” on parade day.  Your move, San Francisco.
  8. Names. A Phillies fan can refer to “Jimmy” or “Chooch” and not need to explain who that is.  The Phillies roster boasts first names such as Ryan, Jimmy, and Domonic.  As if Tim Lincecum’s long hair weren’t bad enough, the Giants have Madison and Aubrey in the infield.  I have neighbors with those names.  They’re both little girls.
  9. The Beards. If I never hear “Fear the Beard” again, it will be too soon.  I don’t fear Brian Wilson’s beard; I vomit because of it.  Brian, I know you think you look eccentric, but you really just look bat shit crazy (and not in a good way).  You’ve got Romo and Pence looking like dumbasses, too.  Id recommend a tutorial from Cliff Lee.
  10. The fansSan Francisco has a passionate fanbase just as Philadelphia does.  The difference is that the national media loves to paint us in a barbaric light; even minor incidents are broadcast across the country with the message that fans in Philadelphia behave like complete assholes.  The Matthew Clemmens incident notwithstanding, I can’t think of any recent abhorrent behavior from Phils fans.  Does the name Andrew Vargas ring a bell?  Probably not.  The media seems to think that San Francisco fans have “great energy” and “love for their team.”  What should have been a major nationwide story received a mediocre amount of attention.  Andrew Vargas is the then-21-year-old man from San Francisco who had a run in with a Phillies fan at AT&T Park last season.  By “run in,” of course, I mean that that careless, drunken asshole struck a Phillies fan with his car outside the stadium after the game.  By “Phillies fan,” I’m sure you remember, I mean then-nine-year-old Ryan White of Yardley.  Vargas mowed that child down and fled the scene.  Ryan has undergone multiple surgeries; Vargas was able to plead to a lesser charge of DUI.  It’s hard to say how it would have happened had it been in Philadelphia, but if history teaches us anything, I’d say that the media would still be covering it … and Vargas probably wouldn’t have gotten more than a few yards down Pattison before Philadelphians made him beg to be put in a cell.  While I understand that one person does not a fanbase make, I’m still angry enough to blame the whole damned city.  God help us all if the Giants take the World Series; I want their fans to go away.

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Victorino to Dodgers, Pence to Giants

August 1st, 2012 by AmyMac | Comments Off on Victorino to Dodgers, Pence to Giants | Filed in Baseball, General, Phillies

Aloha and Mahalo, Shane.

By Amy McGinnis

With another Trade Deadline  in the books, there are mixed reactions among Phillies fans.  I had already come to terms with the idea that we would be sellers at the end of July, so I think that today, I fell into the “Let’s do what’s best for the team to move forward” category.  I had more than a few friends in the “I need someone to talk me off the ledge” group, and I understand that mentality, too.  Four weeks or so ago, I was depressed about what I saw coming, and I didn’t want to talk about it with anyone.  By now, though, I think I’ve accepted that 2008 was the year of World F*cking Champions, and 2012 is the year that we retool.  I’m trying to be optimistic (the fact that Cole is still here helps in that department; I won’t lie).  So, here we are, at the end of July, and as they say … the show must go on.

As I type this, it’s the bottom of the ninth inning in Washington, and the Phils are giving us all a little “never say die” lesson.  Though this season has been a nightmare, Philadelphia knows what it means to fight back.  A prime example is the fourth inning of this game.  We’ve all known that Cliff Lee can hit; stealing second wasn’t something I saw coming.  A nod to Victorino, maybe? Rollins saw the stolen base and it’s as if he decided that it would be an outstanding time for an in-the-park home-run.  The fourth inning of tonight’s game is what I love about this team.  If you were expecting a white flag, then you came to the wrong place.

It’s sad to see Shane Victorino leave.  It’s the right thing for the team at this point, and it’s necessary; my daughter Ella is still heartbroken.  We wish him the best of luck in Los Angeles, we’ll always receive him well at CBP, and we’ll never forget what he put into this team and the city of Philadelphia.  Mahalo, Shane.  In exchange for Victorino, the Phillies now have righty reliever Josh Lindblom, AA righty reliever Ethan Martin, and a PTBNL or cash.  For those who maybe don’t agree that Vic should have been sent to the Dodgers, it’s hard to argue with the fact that our bullpen needed help.  It’s a pretty fair trade.


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Keep Cole, Sell the Rest

July 22nd, 2012 by AmyMac | Comments Off on Keep Cole, Sell the Rest | Filed in Baseball, General, Phillies

By Amy McGinnis

After the All-Star Break, the Phils took four of five games, and some of us thought “Sweet baby Jesus, they’re getting their shit together!” As soon as I uttered that sentence (because, clearly, I’m referring to myself when I say “we” are foul-mouthed), Jonathan Papelbon threw the next game right down the crapper.  The evolution of my commentary during Wednesday’s game can be summed up like this: I’m excited to see Lee and Kershaw —> Some runs would be super right about now —> I hope Papelbon is happy when I take him to court for distress and I sue him for $58 kajillion —> So this is what Schilling felt like in ’93.

It took me awhile to shake the rage I felt toward Papelbon, but I let it go in time for Friday night’s game at home against San Francisco.  My youngest daughter Olivia (she’s four) was excited for her very first Phillies game.  She had fun, but wasn’t a fan of Brandon Crawford’s grand slam in the sixth inning.  She told me “Everyone is mad at him,” meaning Crawford.  I replied, “I know, sweetie.  But you know who we’re mad at? We’re mad at Vance Worley.  And we’re mad at Vance Worley because he should know better than to throw every single pitch right down the middle like that, right?” I saved the extensive spewing of expletives for when she was in bed.

Today was a new day.  My man Cole was taking the mound and I was going to forget all about the nightmare from last night.  Right? Not so much.  A few notable moments from today’s game include:

  1. Shane Victorino earned his 1,000th career hit.  (Can he go now?)
  2. Cole Hamels decided to take offense into his own hands and he went yard.  His first ever homerun should have the subtitle, “I Seriously Hope You Don’t Think I’ll Accept Matt Cain Money.” Pay the man, for shit’s sake.
  3. Ryan Howard hit a three run bomb into right-center field. 

While I was very excited to see the Hamels – Cain matchup today, things definitely didn’t turn out the way I had expected.  I figured Cole would hold the Giants to a run or two, and the Phils’ lineup would get mowed down by Matt Cain.  Hamels ended up with this line: 7.2IP 10H 5ER 3BB 6K, and a season-high pitch count.  Phils lost 6-5 in extras, bringing the losing streak to three.  Philadelphia returned from the ASB winning four of five games … then they went right back to pissing me the hell off.  Was this Cole’s last start at home as a Phillie? I don’t know.  Could you blame the man for walking away from this disaster? I realize that I am quite biased, but to be very honest, Hamels is the one player I’d keep at this point.  I’d keep Chooch, too, if he weren’t older than dirt (says the woman who is thirteen days younger than Ruiz).  Keep Cole, give the man whatever he wants, sell the rest, and start over.  That would be my plan.


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Phils Stretch Their Streak to Four

July 19th, 2012 by AmyMac | Comments Off on Phils Stretch Their Streak to Four | Filed in Baseball, General, Phillies

4 Games in a Row...What's Happening??

By Amy McGinnis

Cliff Lee will take the mound this afternoon in Los Angeles as the Phils look to sweep the Dodgers (not a typo) and continue their winning streak (also not a typo).

On Monday night, Joe Blanton pitched a solid eight innings – I love seeing that side of Big Joe – and Papelbon shut it down in the ninth.  Blanton gets a win, Papelbon secures his twentieth save, and Ryan Howard hits his first home-run for 2012.  Not a bad night.


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