Saturday, February 21, 2009

Mac Attack: "the Howitizer Edition", Reviewing The Phillies Starting Rotation

And I cant see the Hand no,
That pulls me to my knees,
But when I meet my shadow
I see gravity,- Embassy, Gravity

Another edition of the Mac Attack here, reviewing the Phillies starting rotation. Gravity seems to love the Philadelphia Phillies rotation, by keeping the ball in the ballpark for the most part. The Phillies franchise has never really been blessed with "hall of fame" caliber pitching, outside of select few: Alexander, Carlton, Bunning, I dare say Schilling.

The 2008 Philadelphia Phillies starting rotation had its bumps and bruises. Brett Myers being demoted. Eaton... uh yeah forget Adam Eaton, Kyle Kendrick shelled out of the rotation, replaced by lefty prospect, J.A. Happ.

The bright spots all so included Cole Hamels' 14 wins and postseason MVP performance, Jamie Moyer's god-like CY Young caliber performance at 16-7, Joe Blanton's 4-0 and playoff performance, and Kyle Kendrick's 11 wins.

So, reviewing the 2008 Philadelphia Phillies Starting Rotation:

Cole Hamels

Record: 14-10 2008
Postseason Record:4-0, 1.80 E.R.A., 30 SO, 9 BB, and 35.0 IP
E.R.A. of 3.09 196 SO, 53 BB, a career high 227.1 IP
Hardware: Two MVPs (NLCS and World Series)

Brett Myers

Record: 10-13
2008 Postseason Record: 2-1, 4.74 E.R.A., 12 SO, 10 BB, and 19.0 IP
E.R.A. of 4.55
163 SO, 65 BB, and 190.0 IP
Notable: 4-5, 3 RBI, 4 H, 1 BB in 2008 Postseason

Jamie Moyer

2008 Postseason Record: 0-2, 1 ND, 8.49 E.R.A., 10 SO, 4 BB in 11.2 IP
E.R.A. of 3.71
123 SO, 63 BB, AND 196.1 IP

Joe Blanton

Record (overall):9-12, 4.69 E.R.A., 197.2 IP, 111 SO, 66 BB
Record (with Oakland):5-12, 4.96 E.R.A., 127 IP, 62 SO, 35 BB
Record (with Philadelphia):4-0, 4.24 E.R.A., 70.2 IP, 49 SO, 31 BB
2008 Postseason:2-0, 1 ND, 3.18 E.R.A., 18 SO, 6 BB in 17 IP
Notable: hit first career home run in game four of the World Series

Kyle Kendrick

Record:11-9 E.R.A. of 5.49

68 SO, 58 BB, in a career high 155.2 IP

Notable: 21-13 in two Major League seasons since being called up from AA Reading

Other Starting Pitchers Used in 2008:

Adam Eaton

2008 Record: 4-8, E.R.A. of 5.80, 57 SO, 44 BB in 107 IP

J.A. Happ

2008 Record: 1-0, E.R.A. of 3.69, 26 SO, 14 BB in 31.2 IP
2008 Postseason Record: 1 game, relief, 3.00 E.R.A., 4 IP, 2 SO, 2 BB
Notable: first career win against Atlanta

Team Starting Stats (win, loss, E.R.A., SO and BB total from PHILLIES SEASON, not other team):

2008 Starting Pitchers record: 60-47
2008 Starters E.R.A.: 4.25
2008 Starters SO and BB Total: 671 SO, 328 BB

And we be...
Taking care of business every day
Taking care of business every way- Bachman-Turner Overdrive, Takin' Care of Business.

Projected 2009 Regular season numbers for the Philadelphia Phillies Starting Staff as well as the projected fifth starter, according to the Mac Attack staff:

Cole Hamels:

21-7, 3.01 E.R.A., 220 SO, 50 BB, 230 IP

Brett Myers:

17-9, 3.59 E.R.A., 200 SO, 70 BB, 220 IP

Jamie Moyer:

16-10, 4.00 E.R.A., 170 SO, 70 BB, 210 IP

Joe Blanton

10-10, 3.75 E.R.A., 132 SO, 60 BB, 250 IP

Projected Fifth Starter: Kyle Kendrick

16-8, 3.96 E.R.A., 100 SO, 40 BB, 200 IP

Other Possible Starters:

Chan Ho Park

Projected 2009 Starting numbers for Park (if Kendrick, Happ, or Carrasco don't take the fifth spot): 15-14, 4.50 E.R.A., 110 SO, 65 BB, 150 IP

J.A. Happ

Projected 2009 Starting numbers for Happ (if Kendrick or Park don't take fifth spot): 16-8, 3.50 E.R.A., 110 SO, 60 BB, 170 IP

Carlos Carrasco

Projected 2009 numbers for Carrasco (if Park, Happ, or Kendrick don't take the fifth spot): 13-4, 4.05 E.R.A., 120 SO, 50 BB, 120 IP

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Mac Attack: "Locked and Loaded" Edition, Reviewing The Phillies Lineup

Locked and loaded, voices screaming
"Let's go! Come on, do it, here we go!"
-Offspring, Hammerhead

The Philadelphia Phillies lineup has not changed much since the postseason. Other than the fond farewell to Pat "The Bat" Burrell, and jolly good welcome to Philadelphia for Raul Ibanez. The Phillies traded offensive stats if you think about. 30 home runs, 90 RBI, and roughly 100 BB for .290-.300 batting average, 200 hits, and 110 RBI.

We will be reviewing the 2008 lineup and previewing the projected 2009 defending World Champion Philadelphia Phillies lineup and projected offensive numbers.

So without anymore posturing, let's begin the Attack.

Reviewing 2008's lineup. Each spot varied certain games, and order varied from game to game to spark offense when it would start to slump.

1. Jimmy Rollins

2. Shane Victorino

3. Chase Utley

4. Ryan Howard

5. Pat Burrell

6. Jayson Werth

7. Pedro Feliz/ Greg Dobbs

8. Carlos Ruiz/ Chris Coste

9. Pitchers

Reviewing the Players 2008 season. Offensive numbers only.

1. Jimmy Rollins. The 2007 MVP had sort of an off-season offensively. Benched twice. He hit .277 with 154 hits in 556 at bats. 2007 for Rollins also saw a dip in hits (154), RBI (59), and average (.277). He was injured in the beginning of the season. He did have 47 stolen bases though and was caught stealing only three times.

2. Shane Victorino. The Flyin' Hawaiian had a break out season. Victorino hit .293 with 167 hits in 570 at bats. Victorino who, smashed a grand slam off of C.C. Sabathia during game two of the NLDS, hit 14 home runs during the regular season. Victorino also stole 36 bases and drove in 58 Runs.

3. Chase Utley. Chase got off to a rip-roaring start prior to the All-Star break. After the All-Star game, that same scorching bat practically fell silent. Chase knocked in 33 home runs, and batted .292 for the season. Not much off of his career average of .298. Last season, Chase drove in 104 RBI and scored 113 Runs, while raking 177 hits.

4. Ryan Howard. The "Big Dog" got off to a slow start in March (and April... and May... and June) but picked up his slack and started to hit the ball. Despite hitting .251 and striking out 199 times, Howard managed to crush 48 home runs. As well as drove in 146 RBI and scored 105 Runs. Howard slapped 153 Hits as well as stole a base. In the month of September alone, Howard hit .352 with 11 home runs, two triples, seven doubles, and drove in 32 RBI.

5. Pat Burrell. "Pat the Bat" got off to a blazing start much like Utley did, and carried the team throughout Howard's slow start. Prior to the All-Star game, Burrell hit .275 with 23 home runs, 57 RBI, and slugged .575. After the All-Star break tough, he cooled down much like Utley, a lot. After the All-Star break, Burrell hit .215, with ten home runs, 29 RBI. During the 2008 season, Burrell was in the top ten in walks with 102.

6. Jayson Werth. Werth had a "breakout" season, if you could call it that. He hit .273 with 24 home runs, 20 stolen bases, and slugged .498. Werth was one the four Philadelphia Phillies hitters with 20+ home runs (Utley 33, Howard 48, Burrell 33, Werth 24). Prior to the All-Star break he hit .271 with 12 home runs, and 36 RBI. After the All-Star break, he hit .275 with 12 home runs, and 31 RBI.

7. Pedro Feliz. Another Phillies hitter that got off to a hot start and cooled of, drastically I might add. Prior to the All-Star break: Feliz hit .270 with 12 home runs, and 45 RBI. After the All-Star break it's a different story. After the All-Star break, Feliz hit .189 with two home runs, and only 13 RBI. 2008 season for Feliz: .249, 14 home runs, and 58 RBI.

8. Carlos Ruiz. Ruiz had an off season hitting, while only hitting .219, with four home runs and only 19 RBI. Ruiz came up clutch when it really mattered especially in the playoffs. Prior the All-Star break, Ruiz hit .202 with two home runs and 20 RBI. After the All-Star break, Ruiz picked it up hitting .244 with two home runs and 11 RBI. 2008 Postseason stats: .261 (.375 in the World Series alone), one home run, and four RBI along with one stolen base.

9. Pitchers: (Hamels, Myers, Moyer, Blanton, Kendrick): The Philadelphia Phillies pitchers last season hit .107 combined with Cole Hamels leading in the average category with a steely .224. Next it was Kyle Kendrick batting .100, and so on. Big Boy, Joe Blanton hit his first career home run during Game 4 of the World Series.

10: The Bench. 2008 numbers for Chris Coste (catcher): he hit .263 with nine home runs and 36 RBI. 2008 numbers for Greg Dobbs (utility): he hit .301 with nine home runs, 40 RBI and three stole bases. 2008 numbers for Eric Bruntlett (utility): he hit .217 with two home runs, 15 RBI, and 15 stole bases. 2008 numbers for Geoff Jenkins (outfielder): he hit .249 with nine home runs, 29 RBI and one stolen base. 2008 numbers for Matt Stairs (outfielder):he hit .252 for the season (.294 with the Phillies) with 13 home runs (two with the Phillies), 49 RBI (five RBI with the Phillies) and one stole base. 2008 numbers for So Taguchi (outfielder): he hit .220 with nine RBI and three stole bases.

If you've got a match then we've got the gas
Let's start a fire and have ourselves a blast- Airbourne, Stand Up For Rock And Roll

Team totals for 2008: .255, 214 home runs, 762 RBI, 586 BB, 1117 SO's, 136 SB. Led Majors with 214 home runs. Second in Majors with 762 RBI. Tenth in Majors with a .255 batting average. Seventh in Majors with 1117 strikeouts.

2009 Projected Numbers for the starting lineup according to myself:

1. Jimmy Rollins- .285, 20 HR, 70 RBI, 49 SB

2. Sane Victorino- .291, 15 HR, 65 RBI, 45 SB

3. Chase Utley- .300, 25 HR, 80 RBI

4. Ryan Howard- .275, 53 HR, 152 RBI, 200 SO, 100 BB

5. Jayson Werth- .293, 30 HR, 29 HR, 75 RBI, 21 SB

6. Raul Ibanez- .310, 30 HR, 110 RBI

7. Pedro Feliz- .250, 15 HR, 50 RBI

8. Carlos Ruiz- .275, 13 HR, 56 RBI

9. Cole Hamels- .230, 2 HR, 13 RBI

Bench players projected 2009 numbers

10. Greg Dobbs- .310, 11 HR, 60 RBI

11. Matt Stairs- .263, 11 HR, 40 RBI

12. Eric Bruntlett- .250, 7 HR, 31 RBI

13. Chris Coste- .264, 10 HR, 41 RBI

14. Geoff Jenkins- .270, 11 HR, 30 RBI

Possible bench players prjected 2009 numbers:

15. Ronny Paulino- .267, 5 HR, 30 RBI

16. Lou Marson- .279, 11 HR, 25 RBI

17. Jason Donald- .281, 9 HR, 30 RBI

18. John Mayberry- .275, 11 HR, 20 RBI

Starting Pitchers projected 2009 hitting numbers:

19. Brett Myers- .175, 0 HR, 5 RBI

20. Jamie Moyer- .155, 1 HR, 7 RBI

21. Joe Blanton- .245, 4 HR, 15 RBI

22. Kyle Kendrick- .133, 0 HR, 3 RBI

Possible starting pitchers projected 2009 hitting numbers:

23. J.A. Happ- .133, 0 HR, 5 RBI

24. Chan Ho Park- .137, 0 HR, 5 RBI

25. Carlos Carrasco- .131, 0 HR, 2 RBI

Monday, February 16, 2009

Five for Fighting

The Phillies and Mets (of all teams) have a similar problem that has to be addressed. Both teams number five starting spot is up-for-grabs. As Richard Marsh, explained in his slide-show about the New York Mets five rotation issue, the Philadelphia Phillies have one of their own that has to be addressed.

As of right now, it is a four man slug-fest for the fifth starting spot between Rookie and top prospect Carlos Carrasco, 2nd year lefty J.A. Happ, third year righty Kyle Kendrick, and veteran right-hander Chan Ho Park. Sub-par veteran right-hander, Adam Eaton has ultimately been "eliminated" from the running; due to his sub-par performance throughout his tenure in Philadelphia going 14-18 in two seasons.

The fifth starting spot has always been a problem for the Phillies.

During the 2008 season the Phillies used a number of different pitchers down the stretch when Kendrick ran out of gas and Eaton just imploded.

Onward to the pitchers fighting for that coveted fifth spot.

Kyle Kendrick

In the green corner: Kyle is returning from a season which featured both his high and low points. At the crux of the season, he was removed due to a number of problems. The 2008 season saw him have a career high in wins, but a career high in losses, E.R.A., walks, etc.

2008 Season:

11-9, 5.49 ERA, 68 SO, 52 BB in 31 games, 30 of which he started with 155.2 Innings Pitched.


21-13, 4.78 ERA, 117 SO, 82 BB in 51 games, 50 of which he started with 276.2 Innnings Pitched

Keys to regaining the fifth starting spot: show he can command his slider, show he's willing to use his changeup and show that he can get left-handed hitters out better. Has to regain his confidence, throw his changeup more and show the Phillies that he is every bit as capable of being a consistent winner like he was in 2007 and early in '08.

James Anthony (J.A.) Happ

In the red corner: J.A. (pronounced: JAY) Happ saw his first career win last season The Phillies won the four games he started, including two games against the Braves in September, when Happ replaced Kendrick in the rotation. Happ proved he can compete in critical situations. He finished strong. He made the postseason roster. So he enters Spring Training with plenty of people feeling good about him.

2008 Season

1-0, 3.69 ERA, 26 SO, 14 BB, 31.2 IP in eight games, four of which he started.


1-1, 4.54 ERA, 31 SO, 16 BB, 35.2 IP in nine games, five of which he started.

Keys to earning the fifth starting spot: outshine all other candidates for the job.

Chan Ho Park

In the blue corner: Park, came here to Philadelphia to do one thing: start. I don't think he expected there to be competition for the fifth starter's job, though. In 280 career starts, Park is 112-85. And last season went 4-4 in 54 appearances, going 1-0 in four starts. But since the 2001 season Park has gone 34-34, 5.48 ERA in 104 starts with L.A.

2008 Season with Los Angeles Dodgers

4-4, 3.40 ERA, 95.1 IP, 79 SO, 39 BB, 2 SV out of 5 SVO in 54 games, five of which he started.


117-94, 4.34 ERA, 1590 SO, 858 BB, 1846.0 IP, 2 SV, in 378 games, 280 of which he started.

Keys to earning the fifth starting spot: prove that veteran know-how is better than youth. As an accomplished starter user the experience to earn the spot.

Carlos Carrasco

And finally in this corner, the Phillies top Minor League Pitching Prospect. He will be pitching most likely for Team Venezuela in the World Baseball Classic. He is highly-toted, and looks forward to breaking into the rotation sometime soon.

2008 Season in Minors

7-7, 4.32 ERA at AA Reading; 2-2, 1.72 ERA at AAA Lehigh Valley; 3-0, 2.11 in 11 starts in a Venezuelan Winter League.

Minors Career

27-20, 3.93 ERA, 510 SO, 240 BB, 581.1 IP in 108 Games, 103 of which he started.

Keys to earning the fifth spot: prove the hype about you is right. Don't expect anything other than most likely a full year at AAA. But be ready if none of the other three don't perform. Show unbelievable poise for someone at his age (21).

Let the fight begin. Let the debating begin.