It was a beautiful, sunny day yesterday for the Phillies Phestival, the annual charity event held at the ballpark with all funds raised going to towards fighting ALS or “Lou Gehrig’s disease.” This year, the event raised a record-setting $758, 540 in its 19th year running. I have posted some PHOTOS here on my photobucket site from the event and have a few to share with you here as well. I apologize for the grainy ones…combo of a very bad back lit situation and the wrong setting on my camera…oops! Oh well…it was hot and my brain was fried. Anyway, first I have a collage I threw together with Cole Hamels, Ryan Howard, Jayson Werth, Chad Durbin, Chase Utley and right in the middle, Jimmy Rollins with your favorite web site voodoo mascot and mine, J-Roll Smurf! And figuring we’ve all seen enough photos of me, I was kind enough to cover that part up J I have a fun story about that photo though…
So I walk over to Jimmy for the picture and he is already cracking up over the Smurf and starts telling me, “You know, I like smurfs too…” And I start telling him I knew that, and that is why I dressed him up like that… Then he proceeds to tell me with a huge grin on his face, “You know what they used to call me, back in the day? Papa Smurf.” Now I am cracking up! I showed him the back of the uniform where I had ironed on his name and number and he was very impressed. He said he liked it and that it was “very original.” So, I think J-Roll Smurf will be attending a few more games for luck J I don’t mind making a fool of myself; it’s all in good fun. J
Here’s another fun photo for the ladies! Should we play the “Guess Who’s Better Side This Is?” game or should I just tell you? Hee! Well, I shouldn’t say “better side,” the man doesn’t really have a bad side. It’s all good. Ok, ok, I won’t keep you in suspense…it’s Chad Durbin. And probably 50 or 60 people cracked up laughing while I took this picture as I turned to the line of people waiting for his autograph and said, “Ok, you know I have to do this, right?” Sorry, couldn’t help myself…he bent over right in front of me…it was like a bulls eye!
Wound up getting 14 autographs by the end of the day and an odd assortment of pictures. I would have done better, but the Chase Utley line alone took me an hour and a half! And what an ordeal that was too. The guy in front of me kept making trouble by trying to let someone cut in; he got caught so then he tried to take that guys stuff for him to get it signed and the ushers wouldn’t let him do that either so he got in trouble again and this time, they pulled him out of the line! And all this happened right as it was my turn at the front of the line so I was already a frazzled mess and then to make it worse, the usher standing next to Chase yells at ME! He points at my camera and says, “Make sure YOU don’t hold up the line by stopping to take a picture. Take it while you are moving!” WHAT??? Mind you, I have been standing by quietly, smiling and behaving the entire 90 minutes and now this guy has the nerve to YELL at me for no reason? I was SO upset I nearly cried and forgot to take the picture at all. Poor Chase saw the look on my face and asked how I was and I was like, “Ok I think” and he signed my photo and gave me one of those “oh you poor thing” smiles. He was already annoyed with how things were going…I had seen him “correct” the ushers a few times before that while I was waiting in line. Earlier, the ushers were telling people they couldn’t take photos at all and Chase looked right at them and said “Yes they can.” By the time I slid over to Jimy Williams (sitting with Chase), I was shaking like a leaf and couldn’t pull his photo out of the sleeve and he was trying to calm me down! He said, “It’s ok, take your time, there’s no hurry.” He’s such a nice man. J Finally, I was out of that line and every other line was fine…no problems at all.
Now, for anyone who has not been to the Phestival, don’t let what you just read discourage you from going. This is NOT typical. I’ve been going every year for 8 years and have NEVER seen this happen or been treated this way. Usually, everyone is very nice and friendly and the event is lots of fun. I have no idea what happened in that one line, but whoever was in charge over there simply blew it. They obviously panicked because they knew there was a high demand for Chase’s autograph and tried to change how things are usually done to try to get the line to move faster. But you can’t tell people not to take pictures or HOW to take them and you certainly shouldn’t be yelling at them.
So, I have certainly not had a lot of luck in the Utley department this week! First the picture that didn’t come out on Photo Day and now this! Geez, when will MY streak end? In other news, the team has officially announced adding JA Happ back to the roster to take Adam Eaton’s spot now that he has accepted a minor league assignment. Do I smell a trade in the air though? Guess we will just have to wait and see… On to DC tonight! Go Phillies!
After a nearly 2 hour rain delay today, the Phillies finally beat Atlanta by a score of 12-10 in a battle that included 7 home runs; 5 from the Phillies and 2 from the Braves. Joe Blanton only pitched 2 innings before the skies opened up. He allowed 2 earned runs on 3 hits and a walk and saw his ERA jump to 5.13. After the rain delay, both the Phils and Braves began to pour on the runs.
Adam Eaton gave up 3 runs on 5 hits in his 2 innings of work during his second appearance as a reliever. Lucky for him, the offense came right back with a huge 5 run inning in the bottom of the forth led by home runs from Chris Coste and Shane Victorino. As the battle of the bullpens continued, the Phillies continued to dominate. Pat Burrell
sent his 26th of the year out of the park in the 5th and Jayson Werth followed suit in the 6th. The hit parade continued into the 7th when Jimmy Rollins joined the party with a solo blast.
This game looked like a laugher by the 8th inning, but Rudy Seanez struggled, giving up a run and committing a fielding error; he was replaced by Ryan Madson who did not fare much better. By the time Madson was through, 4 more runs would score and the Phillies now only led by 2 runs instead of 7. But as usual, Brad Lidge came in and knocked them down for his 24th consecutive save. Actually, I had forgotten to mention it, but Lidge had passed the old Phillies record yesterday for number of consecutive saves; it was 22, held by Billy Wagner. Well, now it is 24 by Lidge. Somewhere, Wagner is complaining and no one is listening… Well, that is a daily event for him anyway J
Off day tomorrow for the Phillies Phestival to benefit ALS. See you there if you are going! Next up…The Nats in DC; 7/29 7:10pm; Brett Myers scheduled to start. Let’s see if we can dig them a bigger hole into last place…Go Phillies!
Yesterday, the Phillies held their annual Photo Day at the park where they allow fans on the field to take pictures of the players. Occasionally, the players will also stop and take photos with you. It is by far, one of my favorite events every year and one that I was really looking forward to. I actually got 10 players to stop this year and pose with me, and probably could have gotten a few more but was busy snapping the camera. 9 of the 10 photos actually came out…the one that didn’t was the one with Chase Utley! UGH! And he was SO nice and had a HUGE smile on his face for me too…I am SOOOO depressed, I cannot even tell you. I just can’t even talk about it…too sad L
Well, let’s talk about the happy ones…I’ll post a couple of them here. I am usually opposed to photo’s of myself, but the players look awfully cute, so I am going to go ahead and grin and bear it…no pun intended. Please excuse my bad hair day and goofy smiles…I had been standing in the hot sun for hours and was melting! First of all, this one of Brad Lidge is hysterical! Does the man have no concept of exactly how tall he is? Most guys bend down so they are on you level, but it was his first Photo Day so he is excused. Now mind you, I am not short…I am 5’7″ which is average for a woman, and he is slouching in the picture. Scary tall.
Here we have Chris Coste…just a cutie. We make a nice couple I think J Hee! And then below that one, there is Jimmy Rollins with his huge grin…he said something silly and I was trying not to laugh. I also got pictures with Geoff Jenkins, JC Romero, Ryan Howard, Carlos Ruiz, Eric Bruntlett and Adam Eaton…there was not a huge demand for poor Adam so I figured I’d bug him J I almost got Pat Burrell but he just put his arm around me, pat me on the back, asked how I was doing and kept going. I was happy with that though J I have also posted a bunch of other photos HERE on my photobucket site for you to see just of the players, coaches and broadcasters as they were walking past me or saying hello. There are a few pretty funny ones in there…some of these guys give you some really cheesy smiles at this event. Check out the shot of Clay Condrey…he gets the prize for the most Cheese ever in a pose.
That’s a wrap on Photo Day! The Phillies are currently in a Rain Delay with the Braves, down 2-0 in the bottom of the 2nd inning. It was Joe Blanton’s home debut which I assume now, will be cut short. Hoping they will get the rest of this game in soon and of course, come away with the win! More later…Go Phillies!
The Phillies beat the Florida Marlins tonight by a score of 4-2, putting them in sole possession of first place in the NL East. Jamie Moyer put forth another quality start for the team, going 6 full innings with only 2 runs allowed on 4 hits and 1 walk while striking out 3. Moyer, despite his advanced years, continues to amaze and show that age is just a number. This is a man who loves him some Fried Fish – record lifetime against the Marlins now is 10-0. Pass the tartar sauce, please. Yum J
Chase Utley looked like he was on a mission tonight, going 2 for 3 and driving in a run. Ryan Howard and Geoff Jenkins each hit home runs with Jenkins also going 2 for 3 and looking as if he may snap out of the slumber he has been in. There was not much else to talk about offensively, but what did happen got the job done. The big story of the night was Adam Eaton being sent to the bullpen as a result of the trade for starter, Joe Blanton. You have to wonder how Eaton will react the first time they throw him out there in a relief situation. I for one, am not anxious to find out.
Ok, as promised, more PHOTOS are now available from my All-Star Week excursion, complete with captions. Feel free to browse. Just click on the word PHOTOS or follow the link which I have set up along the right side of the home page under “Photo Albums.” Have a great night!
Calling him a “workhorse” in their trade headline, the Phillies added right hander Joe Blanton from the A’s to the line-up in exchange for minor league prospects Adrian Cardenas, Josh Outman and Matthew Spencer yesterday. I suppose “workhorse” is fitting for a guy who comes in at 6’3″ and 255 lbs. I hope they have stocked the fridge in the clubhouse.
Kidding aside, let’s get to the numbers. Blanton arrives in Philly with a 4.96 ERA and a 5-12 record…so far, I am not doing cartwheels over here. Also, he has only had 4 quality starts in his last 10. Even Adam Eaton has had 6 in his last 10. Is this supposed to be an upgrade? Ok, well the good news is that last year he posted a record of 14-10 with an ERA of 3.95…let’s hope his second half is closer to the 2007 results. Maybe the change of scenery will do him good. Perhaps they were just not feeding him enough in Oakland and he was grouchy? He did beat the pants off the Phillies on 6/24…let’s see if that guy can show up for every start.
Many unanswered questions left here though…will Eaton be released or sent to the pen? Will JA Happ be back? What happens when Tom Gordon comes back? Is Myers still coming back to start on the 23rd? Ok, my brain hurts…we shall see! Big game tonight as the Mets won yesterday…Phillies need this one to stay in first place. Go Phillies!
Well, I don’t know what is cooking in the Phillies front office these days, but I sure hope it is more than hamburgers! After another artery-clogging
performance by Adam Eaton today, it is painfully obvious that the Phils are desperate for starting pitching. Without enough cooks in the kitchen, we are going to wind up starting a 5-alarm fire and watch this team go down in flames! Eaton only went 3.2 innings and gave up 8 earned runs on 7 hits, 3 walks and struck out 4. The real damage came when with two outs in the 4th, he gave up a double to the pitcher, Randy Johnson! Instead of getting out of the inning, the D-Backs went on to score 7 more runs. What a disaster!
The only bright spots of the day came off the bat of the Flyin’ Hawaiian, Shane Victorino who popped not one, but TWO home runs off the Big Unit, Randy Johnson, who looked less than pleased about it. Those homers accounted for 3 of the 4 Phillies runs in the 10-4 blow-out loss today. The only other run was knocked in pretty much by accident by rookie pitcher RJ Swindle whose bat just happened to magically find the ball, scoring Eric Bruntlett from 3rd base. Bruntlett filled in for Chase Utley who had the day off to rest and, as it turns out, he did not miss much.
Tomorrow afternoon, the Phillies will have one last chance to go out before the break on a high note with Cole Hamels on the mound facing the ace of the D-Backs, Brandon Webb. It is also “Hawaiian Day” at the ballpark, which having been there last year, I can tell you is a lot of fun. They are giving away the Shane Victorino bobble heads again for the kiddies. I will be going again this year and if you remember last year, Shane hit a walk-off home run to end it last year…can we hope for more of the same in 08? Well, I’d even settle for a blow-out win… J
And remember to stay tuned for my All-Star week coverage! I’ll be going to Fan Fest Monday morning and then to the Derby Monday night. Then it is off to the Red Carpet Parade on 6th Ave. on Tuesday J I will be covering all events as I am able to get back to my laptop and upload photos. Hoping to have some coverage of tomorrow’s game before then as well. Until then…Go Phillies!
The Phillies attempted to put an end to their offensive slumber, but it all came after already being in the hole 10 runs to the Mets. All-Star Chase Utley whacked another league-leading home run, his 25th of the year, to start the scoring for the Phillies in the 4th inning, but it was all too little, too late. Ultimately, even with 4 homers and 12 total hits on the night, the Phillies still fell to the Mets for the third night in a row, this time by a score of 10-9. Nearly pulling off an amazing comeback in the ninth inning, they fell just short as Jayson Werth flew out to right field with a runner on second base to end the game.
Pat Burrell made a great bid for getting some more votes towards the All-Star team tonight, smacking his 22nd homer of the year in the 6th inning and he also had an outfield assist. Remember to keep voting for Pat…he needs our help to make the team! Use the link below to vote as many times as you can or you can text the word “VOTE” to 36197 from your mobile phone to have the All-Star Final Vote candidates sent to your phone and then reply with your choice. We only have until Thursday at 5pm to get those votes in, so get moving!
The real story of tonight’s game though is Adam Eaton. A truly awful performance. He went only 2.2 innings, gave up 6 earned runs on 10 hits and looked like the Eaton of 2007, which is someone nobody wanted to ever see again. Clay Condrey did a great job filling in for 2.1 innings and giving up no runs. Then we got to see the rookie, RJ Swindle, making his major league debut on his 25th birthday. Looks like we won’t be seeing a lot of him, except against left-handers as he struggled mightily against the right-handers. I assume the fact that his pitches range from 82-54mph will not help his case. One curve ball he threw at about 54mph looked like I could have caught it barehanded…scary.
So when is this team going to start hitting before the end of the game? Your guess is as good as mine. Someone better figure it out quick though, because now we have both the Fish and the Mets knocking on the backdoor…