Waiting Game For Werth, Phils’ Fans

Where did it all go wrong?

ESPN’s Buster Olney and Jayson Stark are reporting the Phillies are in trade talks that would see them parting with All Star rightfielder Jayson Werth while bringing in a veteran starting pitcher. The likely suspects?  Ben Sheets, Oakland ( 4-9 4.53 ERA) , Dan Haren, Arizona (7-8 4.60 ERA), Jeremy Guthrie, Baltimore (3-10 4.58 ERA), and the most appealing name being thrown out there, Houston Astros’ righthanded pitcher Roy Oswalt (6-11 3.12 ERA) .

Both Olney and Stark are also reporting that if the Phillies were to acquire Oswalt, they would need a third team in the deal, currently the Tampa Bays, as an unloading destination for Jayson Werth.

In recent weeks, fans have turned their back on Werth. The man behind the beard has been a fan favorite since his arrival, however, a horrendous slump in the last month accompanied with altercations with fans and a poor attitude in the clubhouse has made this once great love affair take a detour towards divorce court. A phenomenal player when he catches fire, Werth’s time in Phillies pinstripes may be drawing to an end, much sooner than anyone would have liked.

For Phils’ fans, this season could have gone any worse to this point. The injury bug has hit the Phillies pretty hard, as starters Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley, Placido Polanco, Carlos Ruiz, J.A. Happ, closer Brad Lidge, and after last nights loss to the Cardinals, starter Jamie Moyer is also on the DL. have all spent significant amounts of time on the disabled list.  After the acquisition of Roy Halladay in the off-season, the Phillies were the popular pick to win the National League Pennant, but as of right now, they are 48-45 and stand 7 games back of the first place Atlanta Braves with 69 games left to play.

For Phils’ fans, it’s very hard to be optimistic at this time, I know, but just remember the good ole 7 in 17 comeback in 2007, that might instill a little bit of hope, right? Right.

Sigh.

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Jayson Werth:Popularity with the People Fading,Popularity With Blogs Rising

The last month or so has been absolutely miserable for Philadelphia Phillies rightfielder Jayson Werth. He’s batting just .222 here in July and for the season is batting just .163 with runners in scoring position. That’s just the beginning. A little less than a month ago, TheDirty.com reported that Werth might of had an affair with Chase Utley’s spouse, Jennifer Utley. The Dirty has since removed said post, but the reporting of that news, true or not, was still a distraction for a team that needed nothing of the sort.

To avoid beating the “Jayson Werth Public Persona” horse anymore than it already has been, I’ll provide some links here that have done so very well of late. Enjoy, or if you’re a Phillies fan, start contemplating what life after Werth is going to be like.

Is Werth Wearing Thin? – (Crossing Broad)

A Note on Werth – ( The Morning Call )

The Werth Hate Fest Continues ( Crashburn Alley)

Jayson Werth: A Poor Man’s Bobby Abreu ( iSportacus )

The Jayson Werth Love Affair Cools ( the 700 level)

There was also this tiff that he had with a fan close to two weeks ago on a foul ball that Werth probably would have had a play on if a father and his son weren’t in Werth’s space.

Jumping off of the Werth bandwagon seems to be the popular trend these days, but that’s how it goes in Philadelphia I suppose. Jimmy Rollins took a bunch of heat for his “frontrunner” and “bandwagon” claims, but sadly enough, it appears that he’s right about them. Phillies fans are a pessimistic bunch. I’ll admit my worries about this team are at a season high right now, but there’s plenty of ball left in the summer.

The Phillies are a team scratching for answers and if they are to right this ship, Werth is going to be a integral part in guiding it northward.

For now, enjoy the simple minded Phillies fans who think Werth “sucks” or whatever clever adjective they can come up with to describe his recent slump. Monitor those fans closely, for they will be driving that wagon when Werth goes on one of those epic tears that will remind us of how special a talent he really is.

6/29/2010 Was Not a Good News Day For the Phillies

Yesterday was a bleak news day for the Philadelphia Phillies. They placed half of their starting infield on the 15-day disabled list. Chase Utley injured his thumb on a slide attempt the night prior and Placido Polanco, who joined him, has had a lingering elbow injury since being plunked in a game against Atlanta.

If that news wasn’t bad enough, Cliff Lee, the man whom most Phillies fans believe should still be donning the #34, threw his third consecutive complete game for the Seattle Mariners against the team that defeated them in the World Series just this past season, the New York Yankees. Why is this a problem for the Phillies? With last night’s win, the Mariners are now just 14 games back of the first place Texas Rangers, which means that Cliff Lee, who is in the final year of his contract, will inevitably be dealt to a contender.

One of the teams that has been rumored to be a destination for Lee would be the Phillies number one rival, the New York Mets, who for the time being are in front of the Phillies in the division standings. The thought of Lee in a New York uniform is something that Phillies fans would rather not think about it. It is very likely that if Lee was dealt to the Mets, that a game played in Citizens Bank Park that featured Lee as the starter, would end with the fans giving Lee a rousing ovation for his efforts last season. Because after all, the fan base in Philadelphia never gave Clifton a proper send off.

Phillies fans, giving a Mets’ starter a standing ovation in the middle of a playoff chase? It’s highly likely.

This team, this city, and I assume the players in this city, all wish Cliff Lee was still on the roster. I don’t need to do responsible research to find out if any of that is true, because there’s no way it’s not true. Cliff Lee wanted the Phillies and the Phillies, minus Ruben Amaro Jr., wanted Lee.

Philadelphia fans from all over should be praying to whatever God they pray to that Cliff Lee doesn’t end up in a rotation with Johan Santana.

Thoughts On the Taser Incident & Fan Behavior

If you were near a television today, you most certainly heard about the incident last night at the Phillies game that resulted in a 17-year-old “fan” getting the taser treatment after police and stadium security failed for about 30 seconds to catch the culprit.

How did he not deserve it?

Why are people saying that the police officer was wrong? The kid was running around the field like an asshole, after a while it was clear that he didn’t pose a threat to the players but he was still running from a police officer. He got what he deserved, although it makes me mad that he’s getting so much publicity where people are defending his stupidity and blatant disregard for the law.

The thing is, you’re not supposed to ever be on the field, ever. Once you think you’re being funny and you step foot onto the playing surface, it’s fair game and nothing makes me happier than seeing that kid go limp and face plant into the Citizen Bank Park surface. The use of a taser is a serious matter, that much is true, but don’t let it get to the point where authorities have to use it, and there won’t be a problem.

Another thing that is also certain, is that Philadelphia has the worst image when it comes to their fans. This situation only makes it harder to defend this city and the fans that I share my passion with about the sports teams here. When people think of Philadelphia fans, they think of Santa Clause, Michael Irvin’s neck., and double-D batteries thrown at J.D. Drew, and with the type of media coverage that last night’s episode got, I’m sure you can throw that into the mix as well.

So after everything on ESPN and the national news that was said about last night, we had another jerkoff run onto the field tonight. Cole Hamels was just about to throw his first pitch of the 9th inning when some worthless piece of shit ran around the warning track before finally admitting defeat. They should have used the taser on him just to show that they aren’t bullshitting anymore.  Real original, fat ass.

I’m tired of defending the pieces of shit in this city who aren’t actually fans. A real fan doesn’t run onto the field when Cole Hamels is in a rhythm in a 1-0 game in the 9th inning. A real fan doesn’t run onto the field a day after an incident made headline news that only added to the battered image that this city’s fans’  have.

The best part about last night is that kid’s father saying his son is a good kid and that he’s attending Penn State next year. I hope that the Penn State Dean acts on that and revokes that kid’s acceptance letter to the university, that would be nothing short of hilarious.

Go Phils’

Knee Jerk Reactions On the Ryan Howard Extension

Phillies slugger Ryan Howard signed a 5-year contract extension today, ensuring that he’ll be in red pinstripes until 2016.

Thoughts?

As a Phillies fan, I feel like I’m forever indebted to Howard and the rest of the 2008 team that brought this city it’s first World Series title in 28 years. I’ve learned to accept Howard’s shortcomings, those being his incredibly high strike out rate, his impatience at the plate, the fact that he cannot consistently make the throw from 1st base to 2nd, and his penchant for going cold at the most inopportune times (See. 2009 World Series)

The problem I have with the deal is this:

Ryan Howard is currently 30 years old. By 2016 he will be 37, if the club decides they want to pick up his option for the final season. There are no guarantees about what the state of the Phillies will be in 4-5 years. Their nucleus (Rollins,Utley,Howard, Werth) are all in their early 30s and history tells us this is where the decline in production typically starts. Not to mention that with this extension given to Howard, Jayson Werth is all but gone in the offseason, so scratch one of the names off of that list.

Also, Ryan Howard isn’t your typical player in terms of free agency. Former Phillies first baseman Jim Thome blocked Howard’s path to the Major Leagues, thus prolonging the his MLB service time. If Ryan Howard was coming up on free agency at the age of 27/28 like a good portion of MLB players do, then giving him a 6 or 7 year deal wouldn’t be as bad. A 37 year old Ryan Howard playing first base scares me, especially given that he’s not the greatest of defenders as it stands today and that’s only going to get worse with age, you can’t argue it.

All my negativity aside, I’m glad that Big Brown is going to be a Phillie for life, I just hope in 4-5 years that Ruben Amaro Jr. looks like a genius for this move and not a complete joke.

What are the Phillies thinking ? – (FanGraphs)

Roy Halladay Transition to The NL: So Far, So Good

I’m not sure Philadelphia fans could of envisioned a better start than this for Roy Halladay. In just his second start as member of the Phillies, Halladay threw a complete game, scattering seven hits and giving up just one run. He pitched out of a couple jams, including one in the 6th inning in which the bases were loaded.

In two games started so far, Halladay has pitched 16.0 innings, struck out 17 batters, and has allowed just two runs, giving him a minuscule 0.56 earned run average. During Spring Training started I offered my opinion that Phillies fan were setting themselves up for disappointment with their expectations of Halladay, but after two starts, he might actually live up to all of those lofty expectations.

There are, however, still some people out there who jumping the gun. Mitch Williams of the MLB Network, who occasionally makes appearances on Phillies Post Game Live on Comcast Sportsnet said last night that he believes that Roy Halladay can win 25 games. Note to Mitch Williams, no player in the National League has surpassed 25 wins in a season since Steve Carlton did so with 27 in 1972. Roy Halladay can win 20 games this season, but 25-30 seems almost unrealistic.

However, with the way Halladay has performed in his first two starts, it almost seems possible. But then reality sets in and you realize he’s faced the Washington Nationals and the winless Houston Astros in his first two starts, and he won’t be that fortunate every time out.

Here’s hoping Halladay goes 24-0, so my critical statements of Mitch Williams end up being correct.

MLB Opening Day

Nationals Park

Ah, Opening Day, is there anything better? For the next six months, hopefully seven if you root for a playoff contender, you’re life will be engulfed by baseball. Alright,that’s probably not the case, but I can dream, can’t I?

Although the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox opened the season Sunday night, yesterday marked the start of the baseball season for the rest of the fans around the country.

I traveled down to Washington, D.C. for the Philadelphia Phillies – Washington Nationals showdown, so I missed a good chunk of the baseball that I normally would have seen had I been home lounging on the couch. Thank God for the MLB Network, though.

Small recaps of the more meaningful Opening Day games after the jump Continue reading