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SPORTS
September 12, 2014 | By David Murphy, Daily News Columnist
CHASE UTLEY'S name was missing from the lineup yesterday, the fourth time in 15 games that had been the case. At 35, the six-time All-Star and four-time Silver Slugger award winner is still among the most productive players at his position. On the list of issues that the Phillies must address this offseason, Utley's name is near the bottom. Yet there are plenty of reasons to think that the club should take a hard look at second base this offseason as it searches for ways to maximize its roster for 2015.
SPORTS
September 15, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
The Phillies have an imperfect roster, which could lead to compromise for the 2015 season. But it is impossible to predict those decisions for various reasons. There is muddled leadership atop the organization; the team's convoluted public plan changes by the month; and the rest of baseball declared the Phillies' current assets either overvalued or inadequate. A discussion at the micro level - like how the Phillies could best utilize some of the flawed pieces they possess - is incomplete without the macro strategy.
SPORTS
September 19, 2014 | BY DAVID MURPHY, Daily News Staff Writer dmurphy@phillynews.com
SAN DIEGO - The strongest reason you shouldn't get your hopes up about Yasmani Tomas is the self-evident one: The long list of attributes that would make Tomas an ideal fit for the Phillies' lineup are the same attributes that would make him an ideal fit for just about every major league lineup, and the same motivation the Phillies have to pursue the Cuban slugger aggressively is shared with the rest of the teams that will pursue him. Twenty-three-year...
SPORTS
September 22, 1994 | By Jayson Stark, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Once, there may have been no job in America that Lee Thomas would rather have had than general manager of the St. Louis Cardinals. But that was nearly a decade ago - in a very different time, before Thomas ever left the Cardinals to become general manager of the Phillies. Yesterday, however, Lee Thomas' onetime dream job opened up again when the Cardinals fired Dal Maxvill after nine years as GM. And one of the first names to pop to the top of the rumor circuit, naturally, was that of James Leroy Thomas.
SPORTS
September 15, 2014 | By Frank Fitzpatrick, Inquirer Columnist
Sorry, Nat King Cole, but I don't wish that summer could always be here. Not this one, anyway. The most enduring images from these lazy, hazy, crazy days will always be those videos of horror and death. No one, of course, would compare real-life tragedies to a baseball season. Yet when it comes to things that made Philadelphians cringe this summer, the complaint I've heard most often is about the Phillies. "I can't watch them anymore," has become something of a Phillies fans' mantra, one aired as frequently as those annoying "Take SEPTA to the Game" commercials that mar the team's already troubled telecasts.
SPORTS
September 17, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
SAN DIEGO - The last Phillies player to arrive Monday at Petco Park, Jonathan Papelbon, marched straight into the manager's office. For 18 minutes, the crotch-grabbing closer explained his actions. "There was nothing for me to judge," Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg said. "It's not for me to judge. I just listened to hear what he had to say. " Less than two hours after that meeting, Major League Baseball deemed Papelbon's lewd gesture worthy of a seven-game suspension and an undisclosed fine.
SPORTS
September 18, 2014 | BY DAVID MURPHY, Daily News Staff Writer dmurphy@phillynews.com
SAN DIEGO - Closer isn't the most relevant position on a last-place team. After all, his job requires that his team have a lead. But the odds say that the Phillies will have one of those at some point in the next week, and, at that point, Ryne Sandberg might treat the fan base to a glimpse at the future. While the manager has not detailed his plans for filling the void during the rest of Jonathan Papelbon's seven-game suspension for his crotch-grab on Sunday (he is eligible to return Tuesday in Miami)
SPORTS
September 15, 2014 | By Bob Brookover, Inquirer Columnist
It ended with one of those peculiar strikeouts in which bat actually makes contact with ball. After Jeff Mathis' sacrifice-bunt attempt rolled foul for the third strike, manager Ryne Sandberg emerged from the Phillies' dugout and asked Kyle Kendrick for the baseball in the top of the seventh inning. Kendrick's night was over, and as he headed away from the mound, the smallish crowd at Citizens Bank Park gave him a nice ovation for a job well done during the Phillies' 2-1 win over the Miami Marlins.
SPORTS
September 13, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
Jake Diekman has a number in mind. The Phillies lefthander understands why he may not reach it. When the team's brain trust informed some of their young relievers they would not pitch with the same frequency in September, it was not punishment. So Diekman, who needs nine more appearances to achieve his 75-game target, is willing to adapt. "If you need a day off," Diekman said, "you just need to tell them. " That is a culture the Phillies are happy to create among their burgeoning arms.
SPORTS
September 19, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
SAN DIEGO - The Phillies have spent six days in the last two seasons over .500, a status that reinforces that the franchise's current problems extend well beyond one player. The numbers tell a narrative, as do the eyes. "Really," Ryne Sandberg said, "spending a whole year with a team, you get a real good feel on the guys who have been here. " Sandberg sees a need for better starting pitching. He wants improved defense. And, for the middle of his lineup, he craves a consistent contact presence to alleviate the bundles of men left on base.
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BUSINESS
September 19, 2014 | By Joseph N. DiStefano, Inquirer Staff Writer
Shares of DuPont Co. rose more than 5 percent Wednesday, to $69.25, after billionaire investor Nelson Peltz 's Trian Partners dropped the polite public mask he held up when he started accumulating shares last year and made it clear that he's had it with CEO Ellen Kullman 's resistance to his scheme to break apart the Wilmington manufacturer in hopes of fat shareholder payouts. Peltz and his partners, who specialize in squeezing big, old companies like H.J. Heinz and Pepsico , also vented disgust with DuPont corporate spending on "bureaucracy" and century-old hometown perks like the 217-room Hotel du Pont , the 1,252-seat DuPont Theatre , and the DuPont Country Club , with its three golf courses near the company's Wilmington headquarters.
SPORTS
September 19, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
SAN DIEGO - The Phillies have spent six days in the last two seasons over .500, a status that reinforces that the franchise's current problems extend well beyond one player. The numbers tell a narrative, as do the eyes. "Really," Ryne Sandberg said, "spending a whole year with a team, you get a real good feel on the guys who have been here. " Sandberg sees a need for better starting pitching. He wants improved defense. And, for the middle of his lineup, he craves a consistent contact presence to alleviate the bundles of men left on base.
SPORTS
September 19, 2014 | BY DAVID MURPHY, Daily News Staff Writer dmurphy@phillynews.com
SAN DIEGO - The strongest reason you shouldn't get your hopes up about Yasmani Tomas is the self-evident one: The long list of attributes that would make Tomas an ideal fit for the Phillies' lineup are the same attributes that would make him an ideal fit for just about every major league lineup, and the same motivation the Phillies have to pursue the Cuban slugger aggressively is shared with the rest of the teams that will pursue him. Twenty-three-year...
SPORTS
September 19, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
SAN DIEGO - This season commenced with great consternation about Cole Hamels, and it will end with the Phillies ace posting some of the best numbers of his career. He handcuffed his hometown team once more Wednesday night in a 5-2 win over the Padres, lowered his ERA to 2.47, and never looked stressed in seven innings. Hamels has permitted three earned runs or fewer in 21 straight starts, the longest such streak for a Phillies pitcher in 46 years. His ERA ranks fourth in the National League.
NEWS
September 19, 2014 | By Claudia Vargas, Inquirer Staff Writer
Lynne M. Abraham, the feisty former judge and Philadelphia district attorney who reigned over the city's criminal justice system for nearly two decades, says she will make a run for mayor. Just not yet. Abraham, a Democrat, said Wednesday, "I'll be entering the race" to succeed Mayor Nutter. Her disclosure, coming within hours after former City Solicitor Ken Trujillo announced his mayoral run, could rock a field of candidates in the 2015 contest who lack her name recognition.
NEWS
September 19, 2014 | By A.D. Amorosi, For The Inquirer
Being a gay or a lesbian jazz musician isn't new. Take pianist Cecil Taylor, vibraphonist Gary Burton, drummer Allison Miller, and, famously, Billy Strayhorn, Duke Ellington's cocomposer/arranger. Improvisational pianist Fred Hersch, currently on the jazz charts with his new album, Floating , came out publicly two decades ago with the information that he had HIV, and never looked back. "I was advised against coming out" says Hersch. "People thought it was a death sentence - this was 1993, before all the cocktails - that it would screw up my career.
NEWS
September 19, 2014 | BY JONATHAN TAKIFF, Daily News Staff Writer takiffj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5960
MUSIC DOESN'T just soothe the savage breast, it makes us civil and open to one another. And that goes double for jazz. Often cited as the original all-American music form and first to be integrated on bandstands and in audiences, jazz is being celebrated with two socially conscious and embracing music festivals in Philly this weekend. Headlined by the legendary Sun Ra Arkestra (still helmed by 89-year-old Marshall Allen), the Philadelphia United Jazz Festival will be free for all to meet and share tomorrow afternoon and early evening on musically historic South Street between Broad and 16th Street.
NEWS
September 19, 2014 | BY WILL BUNCH, Daily News Staff Writer bunchw@phillynews.com, 215-854-2957
IT WAS ONLY about three years ago Joanne Graham - longtime resident of working-class Eastwick, wedged between the overpasses of I-95 and the Cobbs Creek floodplain under the shadows of jumbo jets landing at Philadelphia International Airport - started to think seriously about the environment. The environment on her block, that is. The nonstop flooding in Graham's stretch of Eastwick, which is causing a corner of her home to slowly sink, turned the part-time consultant into a community activist.
SPORTS
September 19, 2014 | BY DAVID MURPHY, Daily News Staff Writer dmurphy@phillynews.com
SAN DIEGO - For a team with so many players under club control for next season, the Phillies have a remarkably malleable roster that offers few hints as to what their 2015 squad will look like. Barring a trade, Jimmy Rollins and Chase Utley are locks to be in the lineup somewhere. Same goes for Carlos Ruiz. And Ben Revere certainly seems to have done enough to warrant another go-round in centerfield. But one needed to look only as far as the lineup card hanging in the Phillies' clubhouse yesterday to realize that virtually every other position is muddled.
SPORTS
September 19, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
SAN DIEGO - Ben Revere figured it was a trick question. He scanned the Phillies clubhouse Thursday afternoon at Petco Park and looked for the team's last 50-base stealer. He glanced at Jimmy Rollins' locker. Nope, Rollins stole 47 in 2008. But the answer was somewhere in the room. "Who's that?" Revere asked. Juan Samuel, now the team's first-base coach, stole 53 bases in 1985. (Revere, 26, was born in 1988.) Every major-league team has had at least one player with 50 steals since then.
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