Archive | 12:18 pm

Winning on the Long Ball

29 Aug

Lost in all the talk about the burgeoning team chemistry was this little nugget buried at the bottom of Yahoo’s recap of Monday’s 8-3 loss to the Mets:

The Phillies have hit 38 homers this month. The team record for August is 39, set in 2004. Howard tied Mike Schmidt for the club record for homers in August with his 12th this month. Schmidt hit 12 in August 1975.

Who’d have thunk it, huh? All this team chemistry, small-ball and willing to victory has produced probably the best power output for the Phillies of all-time, for both an individual (Howard) and the team. Somehow this has gotten such esteemed experts as John Marzano, who continues to beat on ‘the little things’ night after night from his cozy chair at Comcast Sportsnet’s studios.

But let’s not all turn into little Johnny Marz’s…spread the word about the Phillies power, as I have done. Take note that our MVP-candidate is Ryan Howard, and not little-ball master Abe Nunez. Take note that our leadoff hitter doesn’t have to steal first, or second, when he hits a double. And in fact, he can just jog around the bases when he hits a homer. Pat Burrell may take a lot of called thirds, but the many does belt some over the fence, and also gets on base at a healthy clip. Our second baseman is thought of as the best in the league not for his ‘grit’, but for the way he hits. People just like him more because his jersey gets dirty. David Dellucci has provided a healthy batting average, a healthy eye, and a helping of doubles and homers.

This is the Phillies’ bread and butter folks. Power. Pure, uncompromising power. Learn to love it.  Leading the Majors in runs since the all-star break takes a bit more than bunting guys over and stealing bases.

– Also posted on The Good Phight

Andre Agassi Wants To Play Two More Weeks

29 Aug

At least that’s what he said to John McEnroe after he he defeated Andrei Pavel in 4 sets. He won the last set in a rather decisive manner. His next challenge is 8th seeded Marcos Baghdatis, who is sure to give him a tough match (and probably will roll over him). However, let’s all root for Agassi, simply so I can see more of the pure joy that he emitted after beating Pavel tonight. Almost everyone can tell he wants to keep playing, even though his body won’t really let him do what he once did. One thing’s for sure, after the U.S. Open, the field is pretty wide open for Roger Federer unless one of the younger guys steps up to rival him (such as 21 yr old Baghdatis).One other thing, the fans at Arthur Ashe were fairly quiet throughout the first set (understandable, Agassi lost it) but really started to pop after Agassi won the second set. If Agassi is going to upset Baghdatis he’s going to need that support twofold.

The final line: 6-7 (4), 7-6 (8), 7-6 (6), 6-2