Wednesday, April 16, 2008
A couple of thoughts:
-Don't look now, but Adam Eaton hasn't done a bad job this season. Not good, mind you, but Eaton is clearly improved over 2007. Thus far Eaton has three no-decisions in his three starts, but his ERA is a respectable 4.12. While Eaton's K/BB ratio is pretty terrible (10 strikeouts vs. 8 walks, or 1.25 K/BB, actually worse than last year's 1.37 K/BB ratio), he's allowed just one home run in his 19 and two-thirds of an inning worked. Eaton's ERA will probably move towards the 4.50 mark as the season wears on, but he's no longer the Phillies worst pitcher.
-Pat Burrell is hot, hot, hot at the plate. Last night's two-run shot to tie the game at 3-3 was his fifth home run and fifteenth RBI of the season. His OBP is nearly .500 too. When are people going to give this poor guy his due?
-Eric Bruntlett was 1-for-2 with a walk and a stolen base, but the Phillies need to think about adding some depth in the middle infield after Jimmy Rollins gets back. The lost production from J.Roll's bat is going to hurt the Phillies sooner rather than later and the Phillies are going to need someone with the ability to hit the ball out of the infield if J.Roll or Chase Utley go down.
-Speaking of Chase Utley, thus far this season he's committed four errors after committing ten all last season. And what is up with the Phillies awful fielding?
-Bourn Watch: Bourn's OBP is just .310 ... But he makes up for making outs on the bases when he actually does get on base. So far Bourn is 7-for-7 in stolen bases, which means that he could steal 70-75 bases by the time the season is finished. Unless Bourn increases his ability to get on base he's going to be this generation's Vince Coleman, a speedy threat who never get on base enough to utilize his full potential.
Still, you have to be impressed with Bourn's production and wonder, now that Victorino and J.Roll are out of the lineup, if the Phillies might miss Bourn's abilities more than they realize.
Tonight the battered Roy Oswalt (0-3, 9.00 ERA) matches up against Kyle Kendrick (1-1, 6.14 ERA) is a battle between two pitchers who have gotten roughed up pretty badly thus far this season. Kendrick's struggles are no surprise: I think even before Spring Training I was speculating that Kendrick wasn't going to have the same success he did last season. With eight walks and one strikeout thus far this season, Kendrick is going to have to start finding his control and doing so quickly. Interesting fact: Kendrick has an ERA of 6.14 despite not surrendering a single home run this season. Oswalt, who has struck out twelve to two walks, his a 9.00 ERA because he's given up five home runs. Don't be fooled by the ERAs of Oswalt and Kendrick: this is a major mismatch in favor of the Astros. If the Phillies are going to win, they need to drive Oswalt from the mound with home runs or they'll need another miracle comeback.
No more for the week. I'm out of town for a few days. More on Monday.
My boss invited me out to the game, we were standing behind homeplate behind the first level when Jenkins barrelled around third and slid home to score the winning run. We left the stadium in a giddy glee!
We were witnesses to one of the Phillies miracles of 'o8 - the Phrill is back!!!