Trouble leaves Moyer unfazed

Posted: August 21, 2007

 

Jamie Moyer has been in baseball long enough to know he should forget a bad start as quickly as possible.

"You learn to let it roll off your back," he said. "If you don't, it's back-to-back [bad starts] or three in a row."

Moyer is 11-9 with a 4.97 ERA in 25 starts, having allowed seven earned runs in four-plus innings Saturday. The performance continued what has been an interesting season for Moyer. He has pitched well, except for four bad starts:

He allowed seven earned runs in 31/3 innings against Toronto on May 19.

He allowed six earned runs in 32/3 innings at Kansas City on June 10.

He allowed 10 earned runs in 51/3 innings at Los Angeles, against the Dodgers, on July 16.

He allowed seven earned runs in four-plus innings at Pittsburgh on Saturday.

Moyer is 0-4 with a 16.53 ERA in those starts. He is 11-5 with a 3.60 ERA in his 21 others.

Howard's season

Since Ryan Howard's average hit .279 on July 22, he has hit .191, with six home runs and 18 RBIs, in 25 games. He has struck out 40 times in that stretch, in 42.6 percent of his at-bats.

But, entering yesterday's play, Howard led the National League with 99 RBIs and was third in the league with 33 home runs. He was ninth in slugging percentage at .563 and fourth in walks with 79.

Howard, who struck out 181 times last season while on his way to the National League MVP Award - the strikeouts came in 31.1 percent of his at-bats - also was leading the league with 149 strikeouts (39 percent).

He was on pace to strike out 204 times this season, which would break Adam Dunn's single-season record of 195 strikeouts, set in 2004.

Just wondering

The Phillies scored nine runs in last week's three-game series against Washington at RFK Stadium and won the series.

Pat Burrell wondered when had been the last time they had scored nine or fewer runs in a three-game series. Fortunately for Burrell - and sadly for us - we have plenty of time on our hands to look up such things.

The Phillies hadn't scored nine or fewer runs in a three-game series since Aug. 4-6 last season, against the New York Mets at Shea Stadium, when they scored nine. But they hadn't won a three-game series in which they had scored nine or fewer runs since they scored eight while taking two of three from the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on May 6-8, 2005.

By the numbers

.21452

Chase Utley's RBI-opportunities percentage ranks second in baseball, according to Baseball Prospectus. The figure is the percentage of runners on base who were driven in during a batter's plate appearances.

2-30

The Phillies' record when they score three runs or less.

6.36

According to Mike's Baseball Rants (http://mikesrants.baseballtoaster.com/), Adam Eaton could have the 10th-highest ERA in history for a pitcher with nine or more wins, if he remains on the disabled list or maintains his current pace once he returns.

30.24

The percent chance the Phillies will make the postseason, according to Baseball Prospectus. They had a 31.42 percent chance last week and a 25.19 percent chance two weeks ago.

107

Jimmy Rollins' runs scored, which led the National League entering yesterday's play.

282

Rollins' total bases, which led the majors. He had one more than Alex Rodriguez.

Welcome back

Randy Wolf and Mike Lieberthal return to Citizens Bank Park tonight for the first time since they signed free-agent contracts with the Los Angeles Dodgers, but it probably isn't the homecoming they were hoping for.

Wolf, 9-6 with a 4.73 ERA, hasn't pitched since July 3 because of left-shoulder problems. He is expected to try to throw today or tomorrow, but told reporters in Los Angeles that time was running out. If he feels pain in the shoulder, he might not be able to return this season.

Wolf signed a one-year contract with the Dodgers, with a $9 million option for 2008 that vests if he pitches 180 innings. He has thrown 1022/3.

"I feel like I let them down because I haven't stayed healthy," Wolf told the Riverside Press-Enterprise. "I'd love to be back. It's really up to them. Being a Dodger is important to me."

Lieberthal has had 60 at-bats as Russell Martin's backup. He is hitting .233, with one RBI.

They said it

"I'll tell you when we're in good position - when we clinch, when the magic number is zero." - Charlie Manuel, talking about his team's position in the wild-card standings.
Contact staff writer Todd Zolecki at 215-854-4874 or tzolecki@phillynews.com.

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