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Michael/Male/26-30. Lives in United States/Pennsylvania/Wexford/Christopher Wren, speaks English. Spends 20% of daytime online. Uses a Fast (128k-512k) connection. And likes baseball /politics.
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United States, Pennsylvania, Wexford, Christopher Wren, English, Michael, Male, 26-30, baseball , politics.

Friday, June 10, 2005

Hot, hot, hot… 

Don’t look now, but the Phillies have won 12 of their last 14 and are pretty much the hottest team in baseball. How are they doing it?

Not improved pitching: their ERA is 5.00 over the last seven games.

Answer: the Phillies have been hitting again: .555 slugging percentage in the month of June, complete with 15 home runs and 34 extra-base hits in the last 9 games. Not too shabby. Even guys like David Bell are getting into the act (10 for 27 with five runs scored and a home run). Pat Burrell is continuing to perform well, as is Bobby Abreu. Check out some of the Win Shares as of today, and compare with their expected Win Shares:

Abreu: 15 (7 exp.)
Burrell: 11 (6 exp.)
Bell: 3 (6 exp.)
Thome: 3 (5 exp.)

I’ll write something in the next few days about Win Shares in general. I think it observes some comment.

I was thrilled to see so many people reference my comments about Urbina’s groundball-flyball ratio. Adding fuel to the fire was Tom G’s report at Balls, Sticks & Stuff that Urbina was apparently involved in a drunken fracas on the Tigers airplane the other night.

Losing Polanco, adding a flyball pitcher, adding a potentially disruptive influence in the clubhouse … Anyone else sensing that this trade was a major mistake?

(15) comments

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Back... 

I'm back from D.A. school in Hershey, Pa. (Well, actually Grantville, Pa.) I had fun: I got to shoot a gun, witness a DUI booking session and generally learn about criminal law topics that ranged from the interesting (I loved our Narcotics prosecution lecture, which was presented by Montgomery County Deputy DA Kevin Steele & a county narcotics detective, who both did a tremendous job on a topic that really engages me), to the not-so-interesting. (I won't say.) I met a lot of great people, great Assistant District Attorneys who are going to serve the Commonwealth well. If any of you read this blog, I just want to say that I had a blast.

I watched a little baseball along the way. Naturally I have thoughts on the Urbina-Polanco trade. Namely, I'm baffled why the team dealt Polanco for a guy with a groundball-flyball ratio of 0.38 ... seriously, that's nuts. Urbina might be a great pitcher, but he's got a lot of flaws and isn't a good fit for this team. E.g., he's surrendering 1.6 home runs per 9 innings, product of the fact that he's a flyball pitcher and 13% of his flyballs turn into home runs. Urbina succeeded with the Tigers because he plays in the third toughest AL park to hit a Home Run in: Comerica Park.

Comerica had a home run factor of 86 last year. Only Kansas City and Cleveland had tougher AL parks. Comercia is a tough place to get a run (runs factor of 93) or an extra-base hit (double factor of 83). How well is Urbina going to do in a place so friendly to the long ball? Not well, I suspect. Even with an improved (aka, Eric Milton-less) pitching staff, the Phillies are surrendering a lot of home runs this season. I just don't see Urbina working out.

And to get him the Phillies broke up with 2B platoon. I say bravo to that- about time Chase gets the job -but if Bell or Chase go down the Phillies are going to sorely miss having Mr. Utility back there. And to give up a glove of Polanco's calibur for a player badly unsuited to playing at Citizens ... I think Ed Wade got taken on this one.

More tomorrow. I gotta unpack.

(25) comments

Sunday, June 05, 2005

A Game & a Half... 

... are all that divide the Phillies from first place in the NL East. Their sweep of yesterday's doubleheader was a tremendous victory for the team and put them in terrific position, just 1.5 games out of first place. The team has been doing nearly everything well, scoring runs by the bushel, good D, great pitching. I don't want to pat myself on the back, but I did predict that the Phillies would have success against the Giants and D-backs.

I do have some bad news: I will be taking the week off. I have to go to Hershey to attend "District Attorney School", which is administered through the PA District Attorneys Assocation. I won't have access to my computer, so I'll probably be out of commission until Friday. Check back though, I'll still try to stay in touch.

(2) comments

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