July 23, 2016 |
After a comatose 9-3 loss Thursday night, the Phillies vacated Citizens Bank Park with their luggage. They will play just three times here in the next 21 days; the ballpark will serve as another venue for parties during the Democratic National Convention. The home team cannot hit in South Philadelphia, so it might as well allow the politicos to commandeer the stadium. The Phillies are not a good offensive team, but their hitting woes in 51 home games are mystifying. Most at-bats are swift and end with a whimper.
July 21, 2016 |
Once Vince Velasquez raised his arms on the mound at Citizens Bank Park three months ago, the expectations for a young pitcher were considerable. The Phillies have since witnessed the highs and lows of a developing righthander. In a 2-1 home loss Tuesday night to Miami, Velasquez reached a point he had not achieved since that magical April afternoon when he fanned 16 Padres. He recorded an out in the seventh inning. The 24-year-old pitcher has so far outperformed any reasonable projections - even with a brief trip to the disabled list.
July 16, 2016 |
CSNPhilly.com happily reported Thursday that first-half television ratings for Phillies games were up 22 percent over last year, when the ball club was more unwatchable than the 1987 movie Ishtar . This was great news for the website's parent company, because no one on the planet has a more vested interest in the Phillies' television ratings than Comcast. The cable giant has 100 million reasons per year over the next 25 years to cheer for good ratings on Phillies games. It should also please the mother of all cable companies that there are plenty of reasons for us to keep watching when the season resumes Friday with the start of a three-game series against the New York Mets at Citizens Bank Park.
July 11, 2016 |
DENVER - The visitors' clubhouse doors will open Sunday morning, and the Phillies will mark a first in team history when they welcome a player back to the team during the same season in which he tested positive for performance- enhancing drugs. Daniel Stumpf, a rookie reliever, is set to rejoin the Phillies at the conclusion of his 80-game suspension for using dehydrochlormethyltestosterone, an anabolic steroid that was created in the 1960s for East German Olympians. Stumpf is the fifth Phillies player to be suspended by Major League Baseball, which began drug testing in 2004.
July 8, 2016 |
The Phillies crushed two more homers Wednesday, and that is why they swept Atlanta with a 4-3 victory, but when they needed the tying run to reach base in the eighth inning, Maikel Franco did not swing. A 100-mph fastball zoomed past him for ball four. Franco flicked his bat toward the Phillies dugout, a challenge to the rest of his teammates to keep mashing the ball like they have for weeks. "He looks like he's more under control," Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said. "It could a byproduct of the fact that other guys around him have started to chip in, to where he doesn't feel like he has to do it all by himself.
July 4, 2016 |
The Phillies started the international free-agent period on Saturday by signing four of the top 50 available players, according to reports. All six of their signings came from Venezuela, more than any other team in baseball. The Phillies signed the South American country's best pitcher and two of its top infielders, according to Baseball America. All six of the free agents are 16 years old. Because of their dismal record last season, the Phils had the largest allotment to spend in the international market.
June 26, 2016 |
SAN FRANCISCO - Zach Eflin threw his third pitch of the night, a 95-mph fastball that Denard Span tapped toward first base, and the rookie pitcher encountered immediate adversity. Ryan Howard bobbled the routine ball. Four batters later, the streaking Giants led. But, once six innings in a 5-4 Phillies loss were complete, the rebuilding team had learned quite a bit about Eflin. He eluded trouble as he pitched in front of the 444th straight sellout at AT&T Park. San Francisco threatened with a runner in scoring position in four of Eflin's six innings.
June 23, 2016 |
MINNEAPOLIS - For the fourth straight game, Andres Blanco started in the infield, and the implication to young players such as Cesar Hernandez and Freddy Galvis was quite clear. If they do not produce, the veteran Blanco will steal playing time. "They've already noticed," Pete Mackanin said. Blanco, 32, is not a part of the Phillies' future. It is reasonable to wonder whether Hernandez, who did not start for the third time in four games, is either. Mackanin needs offense, so the Phillies manager has opted for Blanco.
June 22, 2016 |
It took just five minutes on Monday afternoon for a 3-1 loss to Arizona to be decided at Citizens Bank Park. Jeremy Hellickson threw 10 pitches, which resulted in three quick hits. The first three batters scored and the Phillies were in a hole. Scoring more than three runs in a single game again proved to be quite an arduous task for baseball's lowest-scoring team. The Phillies have scored three runs in their last 35 innings. It has been a week since the Phillies provided their starting pitcher with more than two runs of support.