An array of decisions face Cliff Lee and the regulars for the Philadelphia Phillies during these first 6 games. Will they get a second line in the sand after them?
I will publish after every battle that is not washed out. I will have many season-long highlights of puzzle pieces, especially important after drubbings and defeats. If you were directed here by a feed and this review does not mention yesterday’s contest, please go to the Phillies page for my most recent coverage. (Early morning readers may arrive before the latest post.) Scroll down to Tal’s Handy Links at the bottom. Thank you.
CAP-SIZE HINDSIGHT: 6-2 Outcome
|The Crystal Champagne Toast||Chase Utley||Four-Star Performance
|The Penthouse||Pete Orr|
|* Smoked A 2-RBI Gap Double To Close
Within 1 Run In The 2nd During His 1 For 2 Game
Stroked A 2-Run Single To Tie It Up At 4 In The 5th
During His 2 For 4 Night With A SB, A BB & 3 RBI
A 2-Out RBI Triple To Take A 5-4 Advantage In The 5th
Smacked A 2-Run Double To Open A 7-4 Lead In The 7th
During His 2 For 5 Evening
|The Workhouse||Home SP||* A 39-Pitch 2nd Inning|
|The Leather Warehouse||1B Darin Ruf||Made A Spectacular Over-The-Shoulder Catch
Of A Foul In The 5th
|The Fun House Of Mirrors||Home RF|
|Takes 1st On A SO WP & 2nd After A Throw (E2)
To The Bag In The 8th
A SO WP With The Bags Full & A DP Tag At The Plate
To End The 8th
|House Call||Ryan Howard|
|Season-Ending Big Toe Injury
Shut Down With A Dead Arm
This Is It:
With the exception of 3 stars, the other main cogs have had a soul-searching vacation. The time to re-energize their heart and drive for a refocused 2.5 months has ended. 2012 boils down to these first 2 series after the break. If the downward trend continues, tomorrow is 2013. The course has to be reversed without a single delay.
The latest odyssey from Lee went completely unnoticed. The team has only 1 win in their last 12 and that belongs to Cliff on Independence Day, which was certainly a freeing experience for him. In this summer of the absurd, he was only victorious when everybody else lost. The 1st battle has been completed, and the Phils have been setback for a continuation of their misery.
The red pinstripes have a daunting task, which would be the highest mountain Cholley Manuel has encountered. There are 5 clubs within 2.5 games of each other for the 2 wild cards, while the locals are 11 out to play serious October baseball. They have to reel off 14 consecutive victories for .500 or 14 more than any defeats before reappraising their chances. Naturally, the 2nd half began on Friday the 13th. And, again, the organizations they face have struggled recently, like they have. In their last 20 decisions before last night, the Phils (6-14), the Rox (8-12) and the Dodgers (5-15) haven’t wowed anyone.
The hometown 9 find themselves in Denver, where Colorado is 18 games under the brake-even mark. The Rockies have the best pitching in the MLB to hit against. In the majors they rank at or near the bottom. Their entire staff (30th), starters (30th) and relief corps (21st) should be a cure for the offense to overcome any ‘pen shortcomings. Vance Worley, Cole Hamels and Jonathan Papelbon should be able to limit their sticks. The only area the Rox excel in is hitting (6th), which means the 8th inning is key to every outcome.
These next 5 contests will determine what the Front Office does or does not do. The hours to reflect on their year were during the 4-day hiatus. With Doc Halladay’s return to the rotation, Kyle Kendrick will find himself in a late-frame role, which is a plugging-a-hole situation. After Kendrick backs up Doc’s first 1 or 2 outings, he will audition for the 8th-inning position. I am nervously curious to see when Antonio Bastardo toes the rubber. Will they begin retooling? Will they wait out a third series? Will they scout out potential relievers on the market?
He is splitting up the southpaw aces to reset the 5-man unit. And he begins the 2nd half after working 7 frames in 4 of 14 efforts, including 3 clunkers. Against Colorado at the Bank in late June, his ledger read: 7 complete, 4 hits, 2 both-earned runs, 2 walks and 2 strikeouts on 108 darts.
|STARTER||RECORD||TM||STARTER||RECORD||DAY & TIME|
|1||LHP Cliff Lee||1-6, 3.72 ERA||@ Nats||RHP Stephen Strasburg||11-4, 2.76 ERA||Tuesday, Night|
|2||RHP Vance Worley||5-6, 3.88 ERA||@ Nats||RHP Edwin Jackson||6-6, 3.52 ERA||Wednesday, Night|
|3||LHP Cole Hamels||11-5, 3.31 ERA||@ Nats||LHP Ross Detwiler||5-4, 3.24 ERA||Thursday, Night|
He has gone from the opening-day assignment to the bullpen long arm, and now he is one of their starters. He has lasted 7 innings in 4 of 13 attempts with 6 monstrosities. He has fired 84 and 83 bullets respectively in his 2 July appearances of 6 frames each, which must mean he could go a full 6, depending on his pitch count after 5 total.
DELIVERY = PITCHER’S 2012
DEFINITION OF SEASON
|Over The Top||Excellent|
|Short Arm||Approximately Average|
Quality number of the pitcher: 1 – 5
Slot on his club: 1 – 5
Ranking is 1 to 5 & 15 for the less adventurous.
|NUMBER||A Five||A Two|
|FOR 2012||1st Start||Over The Top|
|'12 RANKING||-- of 5 Categories||1st of 5 Categories|
|LAST START||1st Start||Changeup|
|LAST HIGH OR LOW||-- of 15 Categories||8th of 15 Categories|
ER - R- H
|1||Gyroball||9 (CG)||0 - 0 - 3||10||Screwball||6||4|
|2||Fastball||9 (CG)||0 - 0||11||Knuckleball||5||3|
|3||Cutter||9 (CG)||3||12||Forkball||0 - 4.2||Monstrosity|
|4||Split Finger||7||2||13||Eephus Pitch||0 - 2.2||Disaster|
|9||Slurve||5||2||*Knuckle Curve||Pitch Count|
|** = Suspended||* = A 2nd Pitch Also|
CLIFF'S LINE: 6 INN, 8 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 0 BB, 7 K & 109 DARTS
W - L
CG - SO
BB - IBB
|Total||34 - 23||3.48||6.1||59 of 86||2 - 2||12||582.2||225||114 -2||557|
|Hamels||17 - 06||3.05||6.2||21 of 31||2 - 2||03||215.1||073||050 - 2||218|
|Lee||06 - 09||3.16||6.1||23 of 30||0 - 0||02||211.0||074||028 - 0||207|
|Halladay||11 - 08||4.49||7.0||15 of 25||0 - 0||07||156.1||078||036- 0||132|
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Check out my previous publications (The After) and the 74 storylines–so far–for 2012 on the Phillies page, where there is an excerpt photo.
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