November 23, 2011 |
Baseball announced its new five-year collective bargaining agreement Tuesday, and the ramifications for the Phillies were mostly positive. The new deal includes blood testing for human growth hormone (HGH) that is scheduled to begin in spring training next year. Major League Baseball will become the first North American professional league to test for HGH. Baseball already had testing in place for other performance-enhancing drugs. Testing positive a first time would result in a 50-game suspension, which is the same first-time penalty for other performance-enhancing substances.
October 24, 2011
The Phillies officially declined the 2012 options for the contracts of right-handed pitchers Brad Lidge and Roy Oswalt, the club announced Monday. Here is the team statement: "While we will not pick up either of their options, we will remain in contact with representatives for both players about the possibility of bringing them back for the 2012 season," said Senior Vice President and General Manager Ruben Amaro Jr. "Brad and Roy both made significant contributions to the Phillies over the past several seasons.
October 6, 2011 |
ST. LOUIS - For one inning Wednesday night, Roy Oswalt and catcher Carlos Ruiz fell in love with the pitcher's soft stuff, and it proved fatal for the Phillies. So now, after the St. Louis Cardinals staved off elimination with a 5-3 victory in Game 4 at Busch Stadium, the teams will play a do-or-die Game 5 on Friday night at Citizens Bank Park. The winner advances to the National League Championship Series. Oswalt, pitching in the park where he thought his career might be in jeopardy because of a back injury earlier this season, had good velocity in Game 4 and probably would not have allowed a run through the first three innings if not for an unfortunate slip by centerfielder Shane Victorino in the bottom of the first.
October 5, 2011 |
ST. LOUIS - It's probably enough that Roy Oswalt's troublesome back has stopped barking, that the late movement on his fastball has returned, and that his counterpart has had a career that defines mediocrity. There is also this: Busch Stadium, site of Wednesday's Game 4 of the National League division series between the Phillies and the Cardinals, holds a special place in Oswalt's heart. The last time the 34-year-old righthander stood atop the mound here in a playoff game, he pitched the Houston Astros into the World Series.
October 5, 2011 |
ST. LOUIS - Little Roy will be pitching a Big Game. And the scenario will be a familiar one for the Phillies righthander. Roy Oswalt is often the Ringo Starr of the Phillies' rotation. Of the four star starters, he's generally fourth. Tonight, though, the spotlight is all his. A victory puts the Phillies into the NLCS for the fourth consecutive year. Before this era, the Phils had played in the NLCS a total of six times. "It's funny," he recalled before yesterday's game, "6 years later, I'm kind of in the same spot . . . back in St. Louis trying to move on to the next round.
October 4, 2011 |
ST. LOUIS - It's probably enough that Roy Oswalt's troublesome back has stopped barking, that the late movement on his fastball has returned, and that his counterpart has had a career that defines mediocrity. There is also this: Busch Stadium, site of Wednesday's Game 4 of the National League division series between the Phillies and Cardinals, holds a special place in his heart. The last time the 34-year-old righthander stood atop the mound here in a playoff game, he pitched the Houston Astros into the World Series.
September 23, 2011 |
IF IT IS indeed as easy as some might think, it is about time for the Phillies to make their way over to the switch and flick it to the "on" position. The hangover from their division-clinching win last Saturday reached 5 days and six games as the Phils dropped a listless, 6-1 decision to the Washington Nationals in the home finale last night. Is panic starting to creep into the minds of the players or coaches? Is this a ship listing mightily? Or is it just a prolonged headache that will be cured with some wins over the final six games, all on the road?
September 14, 2011 |
HOUSTON - Nights like these have been close to nonexistent for the Phillies this season: Nights when the clubhouse door stays closed a little longer; nights when the silence between the players hangs a little thicker; nights when Charlie Manuel addresses the media in a way that makes the media feel like he is addressing his team. It isn't just that they lost to the lowly Astros for the second straight night. The Phillies, even with their best-in-the-majors record and World Series aspirations, have lost too many games to remember this season.
September 13, 2011 |
HOUSTON - The only thing separating the Phillies and Astros entering Monday was 461/2 games in the standings. That gap only begins to describe the differences between these two teams. Naturally, the pitching matchup in the series opener was perfect baseball poetry. Here was Roy Oswalt, the ace for so many years in this city, starting for the Phillies as their fourth best pitcher in his return. Opposing him was Brett Myers, the man who once showered fans with beer to celebrate the beginning of a majestic era of baseball in Philadelphia.