Friday, October 30, 2009

Phils lose Game 2, Series tied 1-1

Game 2 wasn't exactly what I would call a "winnable" game for the Phils (they never had a comfortable lead), but they certainly had a chance to make it winnable. The 8th inning rally against Mariano Rivera fizzled as quickly as it began. Today, I present a set of haikus about Game 2 and the rest of the World Series.

Have to tip the cap
To A.J. Burnett, who dealt
Nastiness and filth.

Why did Pedro pitch
So long? Didn't Charlie
Learn from Grady Little?

Is it me or does
Rivera look hittable?
Five game series now.

As we thought [slash] feared
It all depends on Hamels.
Pitch like Cliff Lee, Cole!

I predict the Phils
Take two in Philly and win
Game Seven with Lee.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Phils win Game 1, 6-1

A couple of amazing stats about Cliff Lee's performance. First, there have been six all-time postseason complete games where the pitcher had 10+ strikeouts and 0 walks. Cliff Lee has now pitched two of them. Second, Cliff Lee is the second winning starting pitcher in a World Series to have 10+ strikeouts and 0 walks in a game. The first was Deacon Philippe in the first World Series game ever in 1903.

For today's haikus -- we have my post and then a guest haiku from my sister, who is raising her one-year-old right: as a Phillies fan.
C. C., SeƱor, Cliff
Pitched delightfulLEE tonight.
Yanks bullpen exposed.

Guest Haiku

C. C. had nothing
Against the Phils' C and C --
Cliff and Chase. Awesome.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

World Series starts tonight!

For Phillies fans, the World Series of a lifetime starts tonight. Win or lose, the experience of seeing the Phillies play the Yankees in the Fall Classic will be with us forever. I agree with Buster Olney of ESPN, who says that the Series will be decided by the pitching of A. J. Burnett and Cole Hamels. Whichever team gets more production out of those two pitchers will win the Series.

The Phillies have never played in a Game 7. I think that will change this year. My prediction: Phillies win Game 7, 5-4, on a late sacrifice fly.

A deciding game
Lee versus Sabathia
Phils will win it late
Before we move on to the World Series, one last look back at J-Roll's big hit to end Game 4 of the NLCS -- enjoy this fun video send-up of a famous scene from Goodfellas.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Phillies TV Crew Watches the End of Game 4

My brother sent me this great video of the Phillies Post-Game Live crew watching the end of Game 4 of the NLCS, when Jimmy Rollins hit a gapper to win it. Michael Barkann is initially in disbelief ("No way, no way"), Ricky Bottalico puts the consequences together very quickly ("That's gonna win the game!"), and Darren Daulton -- well, he may be talking to aliens the whole time but finally checks back in at the end ("Wow..."). Enjoy.

Barkann says: "No way",
Ricky: "Gonna win the game!"
Daulton chimes in: "Wow".

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Phils win Game 5, 10-4, advance to World Series

Another laugher, although I have to say I would have puked if Jim Thome came to bat in the eighth inning as the tying run. Here are the haikus for this triumphant morning. I encourage all guests to post a haiku of their own in the comments!

Hamels's pitching stunk
But the Phillies won because
Padilla's was worse

They call him "J-Dubs"
He hit two home runs last night
He is Jayson Werth

Last week on this blog
I predicted Phils in five
Was I right or what?

You have to admit:
The Dodgers 'pen was awesome --
For the Phils' hitters.

Have you noticed that
Brad Lidge's slider is back
And the hitters flailed?

Phillies did their part.
World Series for the ages?
Bring on the Yankees!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Phils win Game 4, 5-4

Today is a happy day in Philadelphia. One out from defeat and a tie series, Jimmy Rollins split the gap in right-center field, and Bruntlett and Senor Octubre motored around to score.

A couple of notes. First, the Phillies bullpen (the second-best bullpen in this series -- second to the Dodgers' invincible (or is it invisible?) bullpen) pitched three scoreless innings, including two key strikeouts by Brad Lidge in the ninth. Second, Jonathon Broxton is scared of Matt Stairs even though Broxton is better and Stairs is worse than last year, when Stairs won another dramatic Game 4 for the Phillies. (You can relive this site's first haiku, celebrating Stairs's HR, here.) Third, Cole Hamels better come to play tomorrow.

Two on and two out,
One-one count on J-Roll. Swing...

Monday, October 19, 2009

Phils win Game 3, 11-0

After all of the cardiovascular trauma of the last two weeks, it was nice to watch a laugher. Howard and Werth got things going in the first, Lee pitched one of the best postseason games ever and Ruiz (whom some are now calling "Senor Octubre") came through with some more magic. The big win inspired extra haikus today!

Sara Lee or Cliff --
Both can line up the bagels
We are halfway there.

He has two first names
He has driven in twelve men
He's Ryan Howard

I was hit today
By a baseball. It was from
Jayson Werth's home run.

Speeding down the track
Ruiz -- the Dodger killer
Chug Chugga CHOOCH choo!

The best part about
An eleven-zip blow out?
The game was Lidge-proofed.

Do you think Bowa
Has been sort of rooting for
The Phillies deep down?

Phils lose, 2-1

Count me among the fans who believe that Charlie Manuel overmanaged this game. Pedro was pitching brilliantly -- the only two hits he'd surrendered were a broken-bat blooper into centerfield and a grounder off of his glove. I don't care how hot it was. I don't care how many pitches Pedro had thrown (87 -- not that many anyway). In that situation, I think you have to let Pedro go until he gives up two baserunners. A haiku homage to Charlie's fateful decision (and Chase Utley's error) follows.

He could have pitched nine
The Dodgers couldn't touch him
Why take Pedro out?

Chuck Knoblauch had them.
Now Chase Utley may have them.
What are they? The yips!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Phils win, 8-6

Joe Torre had it right after the game: Game 1 was a "prize fight". The Phillies took the prize, but it was not easily won. It was a gutwrenching thriller, with both teams taking shots throughout the late innings. My hero of the night was Chan Ho Park, who got three huge outs in a row in the seventh inning with the tying run on second base. Three more to go to deaden the Dodgers.

Watching the Phillies --
Cardiovascular hell
But at least they win

Thursday, October 15, 2009


It's Hamels against Kershaw tonight in Game 1. I am predicting the Phillies in five games. Here's a rhyming haiku (a "rhyku?") to start things off.

Hamels toes the slab
The Phillies are looking fab
And Manny has flab

NLDS Game 4

Game 3 was one of the most exciting games I've ever seen. But Game 4 was one of the best games I have ever seen. Both starting pitchers pitched brilliantly. There were exciting plays on defense and on the basepaths. And both teams scoring three runs to take the lead at the end. It calls for a multi-stanza haiku.

The top of the ninth
Dobbs struck out, Rollins singled
And Shane forced him out

Down to the last strike
Chase walked and Howard doubled
Shane almost missed third

Bottom nine, Eyre in,
Then Lidge, to get but one out,
With a vintage K.

NLDS Game 3

This was one of the most exciting baseball games I have ever seen. In freezing weather, the Rockies matched the Phils throughout, tying the score from 4-3 down and 5-4 down. The Phillies broke through in the 9th, though, and Brad Lidge (Brad Lidge!) sealed it.

'Twas football weather
But a baseball game broke out
It was a great one

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Back for more in '09

After eleven months of stagnation, the haikus are flowing again, and the Phillies are back in the playoffs. That was a classy move by Uncle Charlie last night, bringing Brad Lidge into the game to get the final out. This even though Lidge couldn't get my eight-year-old out for most of the season.

Charlie was a mensch
He asked Eyre to get two outs
And then brought in Lidge