Monday, August 17, 2009

Happ, Howard Take Down Braves

J.A. Happ (9-2)  continued to amaze last night, giving up one run on three hits in 7-2/3 innings pitched in the 4-1 victory over the Braves.  Ryan Howard drove in all four Phillies runs, homering twice, including a 3-run shot in the 6th that put the Fightins up for good.  The Phils have won 5 of 6 and head into the off-day holding a 4.5 game lead in the NL East.  Chollie brought Brad Lidge in with two-outs in the bottom of the 9th - not enough time for Lidge to blow one, I guess. - he picked up the one-out save.


Speaking of Lidge, what are the Phils going to do with him? Eight blown saves and a 7.21 ERA make me yearn for the days of Joe Table.  The Phillies cannot be comfortable heading into the postseason with a closer that can’t close, but what are their options?  Do they have someone in-house, or do they need to make a move? Billy Wagner’s name has been mentioned, but he hasn’t pitched since last season, and how effective he would be is anyone’s guess. Brett Myers is supposed to start his rehab assignment this week if his eye is healed up (who injures their eye?), but it would be tough to rely on a guy who hasn’t pitched in months. Ryan Madsen is the guy I would go with. He struggled earlier this season when Lidge was on the DL, but I think he could get it done if Chollie gave him the full-time job. We know he has the stuff, it’s just a matter of whether he has the mentality to be a closer. Regardless of what he did earlier this season, I’d still give him a second chance; it can’t get any worse. 


  1. I would like to see if they can get anything for him and sign Smoltz. He is a proven closer of the past. He has stunk as a starter this year, but in his first two innings pitched he has a 0.64 ERA and opponents are hitting just .196 against him. At his old age he would be ideal in the closers role especially as a Phillie. He throws hard and can get outs. He even knows how to field bunts and throw to first.

  2. this is from, Myers initially told the Phillies on Saturday that he injured his eye while playing catch with his 4-year-old son. He then changed his story, informing the team that he tripped while trying to exit his wife's Cadillac Escalade. He told The Inquirer that he had drank "two or three beers" while out at dinner. A source at the bar confirmed that contention, and said Myers did not consume any hard liquor.

    "The reason I told the Phillies that story at first was because I felt like an idiot, a klutz," said Myers, who maintained yesterday that the second story about the Escalade was true. "But then I felt bad so I told them the truth."

    3 beers my ass. Definitely more to this story. I say his wife punched him.

  3. Smoltz is garbage and I want no part of Wagner's reconstructed arm. Either gimme Myers or make a waiver deal for Chad Qualls. Madson as closer is intriguing, but I have to wonder if he's mentally able to do the role.

  4. Smoltz would be a way better option than Lidge right now. I think that he can still be effective out of the pen. He has proven that he is not a starter.

    How could you want Myers right now over Lidge? Myers has been hurt the whole year. In 07 Myers was not even that good as a closer. He struggled just as much as Lidge has this year. Now he is coming off of hip surgery and no one even knows if he is definitely coming back. He is not a viable option as a closer. If anything he is a 6th or 7th inning guy IF he returns.

    Madson is our set up man. Thats all he is. He is not a closer. He can get people out in the 8th, but not the 9th for some reason.

    Qualls would be a good fit, but I do not think he is going to be dealt. The D-Backs think that they are going to compete next year and they are not ready to sell.

    Heath Bell cleared waivers and it looks like he may be leaving San Diego. The only thing is that the Padres are going to want a lot for him. Someone who we might be able to get for cheap is Francisco Cordero, but there are no guaratees that the Reds are going to give up on him just yet.

    These are all scenarios that are most likely not going to happen because the Phils have said that they are standing by Lidge for the rest of the year. Despite the 8 blown saves.

  5. Smoltz can't get lefties out. He was getting hammered in Boston, why would he be better here? Don't want him. Wagner always faded in September when he was healthy. Not interested.

    Myers would be nice to have but I doubt he would be able to work his way into a prominant role. I think it is Lidge or Madsen. Madsen didnt look good the first time around but it is worth giving him another shot.

    I say try to get into Lidge's head. Next time, put him in the game in the 6th inning. Maybe it motivates him. I don't know what is wrong with him

  6. Smoltz would be better here because he is a National League pitcher. He has made his career in the National League. I am not saying put him in our rotation, but he is good for an inning or two. Why not take a chance on him if we can get him. He was released today by the Red Sox and we would be able to acquire him for a pro rated portion of the league minimum. He is worth a shot if the Phils can get him.

  7. I agree on Myers--he wasn't even good as closer in '07, yet people seem to remember that he was. I want no parts of Wags the Dog. Like you said, this is all moot- they're sticking with Lidge come hell or high water. Chan-Ho!!!

    Myers, what a bumbling idiot with these stories. He can't be out of town fast enough for me.

  8. Isn't the problem that we're already in Lidge's head? I still think he's going to come around and be a force in October. However, if Pujols comes up to the plate in the NLCS, I'm probably leaving the room.

  9. Spider- at this point, if Tomas PErez comes up to the plate, I am leaving the room.

    No, I don't think we are in his head. I think the results are. If you put him in, in a less pressure situation, maybe he can get some confidence. I'm not saying demote him, but let him know that you have other late inning options(even if you don't).

  10. The fans are not in his head. The only person that should be in his head is himself. It seems like one bad pitch, or one play that doesn't go his way, he falls apart. Mitchie Poo made a great point the other night on MLB network. He said "Why is Brad Lidge throwing his slider early in the count. He should be throwing all fastballs until he gets ahead and then use that slider as his out pitch. It forces hitters to swing at those pitches down in the zone with 2 strikes." This is so true. Thats what he did last year, and for some reason that has changed this year.

  11. Something has to change because this team is built to win the world series. Brad Lidge is going to have to play a part in that.

    Maybe he steps up like Madsen did last year. What I am afraid of, is if he doesn't.