August 13, 2014 |
YESTERDAY, FOR the 68th game this season, the Phillies allowed an opponent to score at least four runs. In the National League, only Colorado (84), Arizona (78), Miami (72) and the Cubs (68) had allowed more. In 51 of those games, an opponent had scored at least five runs. Not surprisingly, the Phillies lost yesterday's game despite another late rally. The Mets left Philadelphia with a 5-3 victory, giving them six wins in eight games at Citizens Bank Park this season. The Phillies are 17-52 when allowing four or more runs, and they are 12-49 when they fail to score more than three themselves, which happened for the 61st time yesterday.
August 4, 2014 |
THE TRANSITION from college to the professional level at in any sport can be daunting. Making the transition in baseball is even tougher. Players have no spring training after they are drafted. They go right from the college game to playing professionally in just weeks. For lefthander Matt Imhof, a 2014 second-round selection by the Phillies, not much changed. "The way I always look at it is baseball is baseball," Imhof said. "I'm still pitching 60 feet, 6 inches away. " The Hayward, Calif., native finished his college career with Cal Poly exactly 2 months ago today with a loss to Pepperdine in the NCAA tournament.
August 2, 2014 |
LeSean McCoy has stopped eating Doritos at midnight. That's part of the Eagles running back's emphasis on nutrition, which helped him drop four to seven pounds this offseason in an effort to become even quicker. McCoy led the NFL with 1,607 rushing yards last season, but apparently that was not enough. He wanted to be lighter. McCoy has trimmed down to about 209 pounds. "I felt like last year, even with the year I did have, it was based on guys up front really blocking well and [me]
July 29, 2014 |
ALLENTOWN - Like the Phillies, Freddy Galvis has had a rough year. The 24-year-old infielder found misfortune even before the season started, and it has not gotten much better since. In late March, Glavis contracted MRSA, a staph infection that can easily lead to other infections, and had to be hospitalized. The Phillies made the decision that he would start the season on the disabled list, putting him behind right from the get-go. "It was really tough because I didn't get to do a spring training," Galvis said.
July 28, 2014 |
READING - When the Phillies signed Cuban righthander Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez to a three-year, $12 million contract last August, they envisioned him in the starting rotation, potentially as a No. 3 starter. Gonzalez didn't pitch last year after signing, and the first action he had with the Phillies was during spring training. A shoulder injury in the spring was a major setback, and after three rocky minor-league starts, he was moved to the bullpen. Since being promoted from high-A Clearwater to double-A Reading earlier this month, Gonzalez has proven to be healthy and highly effective as a reliever.
July 26, 2014 |
The 90th strike fired by Cole Hamels was an 85-m.p.h. change-up that darted to a precise spot, low and away from Michael Morse. The San Francisco outfielder flailed at Hamels' signature offering. Hamels, who has the innate skill every fifth day to temporarily suspend the frustration of a $190 million payroll, walked with purpose to the dugout. His start, a 2-1 Phillies win Thursday at Citizens Bank Park, concluded with eight masterful innings. Hamels has expressed his dismay with this underachieving roster but casts himself as a helpless participant.
July 16, 2014 |
MINNEAPOLIS- Benjamin Utley, according to his dad, can do it all. Hit, field, throw, run. The hitting for power will come, surely. "He's an active little guy," the elder Utley said of his 2 ½-year-old son. "He likes to throw everything - not just baseballs. Everything. " As the subject matter changed during a recent conversation, from his own health to his son's baseball activities, Utley couldn't help but break out into a smile. "He's doing everything," Utley said. "Well, it's not like I have him doing drills or anything.
June 16, 2014 |
READING - A former top-five draft pick was playing winter ball in Venezuela when he started to sense he would have difficulty landing a job this spring. So Adam Loewen reverted to an old custom. He began to long toss. More than 5 years had elapsed since Loewen, once a ballyhooed Orioles' pitching prospect, last toed the rubber. Arm injuries had sent the touted 6-6 southpaw into a second career as a hitter. But nearing 30 and after 3 years of stints manning the outfield in Buffalo, Port St. Lucie and New Hampshire, he opted to again gauge the status of his once-prized left arm. "I felt like I left a lot out there, a lot of potential that was untapped, really," he said.
June 4, 2014 |
SOME GUYS like the bull's-eye. Some guys feel every sling and arrow fired once they don it, or once it is draped upon them. In January 2007, Jimmy Rollins spiced up our baseball offseason by proclaiming that the Phillies were "the team to beat" in the National League East. This was after their third consecutive second-place finish in 2006, 12 games behind the Mets, and their fourth runner-up run in the decade. Serious questions had surfaced about the team's mettle and mentality.
June 1, 2014 |
Lefthander Cliff Lee, who has been on the 15-day disabled list since May 20 with a left-elbow strain, has yet to start throwing, but he remains optimistic. "It is slowly getting better . . . there is still a little bit [of discomfort], but I'm progressing," Lee said before the Phillies took on the Mets Friday night at Citizens Bank Park. "Every day I am getting closer to throwing. " Lee is 4-4 with a 3.18 ERA in 10 starts this season. Needing a day off? Counting Friday, Jimmy Rollins had started 21 consecutive games for the Phillies, and he has hit a slump.