To start with, I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and did not lapse into a turkey coma! I also hope no one got trampled attempting to enter Wal-Mart at 3am on Friday ;o) Holidays can either be fun or hazardous to your health…I hope you went with “fun.”
Speaking of holidays and shopping, what would you like to receive this holiday season? I would like for Mike Schmidt to age backwards and play 3rd base for the Phillies again.
I would also like the Giants to release Tim Lincecum for his bad, drug induced behavior so the Phillies can have him. I also wish aliens would come down from outer space and give us back Cole Hamels: Version 2008. Clearly, he was abducted and it is time to bring him back.
By the way, 3 years ago, current GM Ruben Amaro Jr., who was assistant GM at the time, asked a room full of female fans if they could sign any pitcher in the league to the Phillies, who would it be? I shouted, “Tim Lincecum!” Ruben looked at me like I was nuts and decided that the woman who suggested Brandon Webb had a better idea. Webb went down with a shoulder injury in April 2009 and did not play the entire season. Lincecum has now won 2 Cy Young’s in a row. Hey Ruben, still think I am nuts? Just a little holiday fun for you there :O)
Ok, so clearly we cannot sign Mr. Lincecum. But the Phillies have a lot of work to do this off-season to improve the pitching staff. It looks to be a quiet market right now. Things should start to heat up when the Winter Meetings begin on December 7th.
The few moves made so far have not even made a small ripple in the atmosphere. The signing of Juan Castro to replace Eric Bruntlett on the bench seems like a lateral move, rather than an improvement. Castro hit .277 last year with the Dodgers but is a career .230 hitter. This news is not exactly knocking Phillies fans out of their boots. We hope bigger and better things will be coming soon…
In other news, Jamie Moyer was recently hospitalized and had surgery to remove an infected blood collection that may have resulted from his previous groin surgery. It should not affect his Spring Training schedule and he appears to be recovering well. I wish him luck!
From the long time veteran to the rookie, JA Happ has been named to the Topps’ 51st All-Rookie Team, which is just one of many honors he garnered this off-season. Happ is still up for the Rookie of the Year award in the This Year In Baseball awards. Voting continues until December 11th and many Phillies like Ryan Howard, Jayson Werth and others are in the running.
And finally, congratulations to Shane and Melissa Victorino who tied the knot earlier this month in Hawaii! They are two really great people and I wish them all the best!
Lincecum & Happ photos by Jenn
Brandon Webb spun a frightening game together today, allowing only 2 earned runs in a full nine inning complete game. This really left Brett Myers and the Phillies with no room for error, yet err they did. Myers walked 3 and gave up 6 earned runs while an Utley error and overall sloppy play in the field added to the surmounting chaos. The bats came alive towards the end of the game, but not soon enough to untangle the mess. Although, Victorino and Bruntlett did end the game with 2 hits each, continuing their hot streaks.
Speaking of Victorino, I must give Kudos to Shane for have a head of steel after yesterday’s horrible collision at first base! Shane smacked heads with D-Backs first baseman Conor Jackson trying to run out a wild pitch strike out. The collision nearly knocked both men unconscious and Jackson, on his birthday no less, wound up leaving the game. But Shane, the Man Of Steel, got up, and on the very next play, ran all the way home from first base on a Bruntlett hit to score. Well, apparently Shane’s hard head has been in “training” since childhood… I actually met his parents last year at a game and had a chance to talk to them for a few minutes. They were just the nicest people you’d ever want to meet, by the way. They were telling stories about his childhood to his agent who was having a nice laugh over all the times Shane had fallen on his head or run into something and all the trips to the hospital they had taken. So, I am supposing he is used to getting smacked around :o) Although, I assume he’d rather avoid it in the future. I know I’d like to see less of it. Anyway, Kudos to Shane, our hero and resident tough guy!
So, the Phillies walk away from the best team in the NL with a split. Guess we can live with that. On to San Francisco where the Giants have not won a game since they saw us last weekend. Uh oh. They are really going to be fired up for this series I would think, so our guys had better get ready! Don’t underestimate this team…they did not go down easily the last time. It’ll be a late night tomorrow! Go Phillies!