Originally posted on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 8/3/12

Joe Blanton will toe the slab tonight for the Philadelphia Phillies.  If the relaxed version of the red pinstripes continues to win, will he remain in town?




I will publish after every battle that is not washed out.  I will have many summer-long highlights of puzzle pieces, especially important after drubbings and defeats. If you were directed here by a feed and this review does not mention yesterday’s contest, please go to the Phillies page for my most recent coverage. (Early morning readers may arrive before the latest post.) Scroll down to Tal’s Handy Links at the bottom. Thank you.


Check out:  Philadelphia Phillies storyline: Load lifted


CAP-SIZE HINDSIGHT:    3-0 Outcome

TYPEPLAYERREASON The Crystal Champagne ToastCole HamelsThree-Star Performance The PenthouseCole HamelsA Solid 7-Inning Outing With 9 K's
Escaped 2 Runners In Scoring Pos. & 1 Out In The 7th Black CathouseKeystone Combo2 Blown Plays In The 3rd The Leather WarehouseJohn Mayberry Jr.Gunned Down A Runner At Home For A DP End To The 6th The Fun House Of MirrorsTy Wigginton
Home CloserCaught A Foul Ball With Fan Competition In The 7th
Tossed A Curveball To The Screen In The 9th



Ty Wigginton Blows Up A DP Possibility In The 2nd






Opportunity’s Knocking:


The speedster in center and the right fielder are on the west coast, but neither wanted to be dealt. The reason was the money for 2013 and next season’s competitive-balance threshold. Shane Victorino was at $7.33M AAV (Average Annual Value), and Hunter Pence earned $10.4M with a projection to $14M in ‘13. The dollar combination for 22 players is:  The core four ($75M), 2 aces plus a closer ($56.5M), 4 fielding positions other than 3B ($7M), 2 starters ($4.25M), 5 bench roles ($11.25M), 4 young relievers and 1 bullpen buyout ($2.5M). That total is $156.5M from a ceiling of $178M AAV with 3 open spots.

Big John Is Nipped At The Plate In The 2nd

After allowing $5M for the July 31 deadline and $3M in achieved incentives, Rube Amaro would have $13.5M to spend. He would have 3 vacancies to fill, which is third base and 2 backend arms for the relief corps. Re-signing Cole Hamels was a must-do, but a struggling Vic and an undisciplined Hunter were departing necessities. Nate Schierholtz’s 8th-inning play on Wednesday night was probably not caught by Pence. That said, the club is not better without them, but a swapped Hamels would have been worse.

Jayson Werth Draws A 8th-Inning Walk In His Return From The DL

Schierholtz displays a hunger to be in the lineup on a daily basis, and Dom Brown has improved all phases of his game with a glove or a bat. They are likely to occupy 2 of the outfield jobs, while Juan Pierre and John Mayberry Jr. are also in the mix. In order to address the ‘pen and third base, there will be a number of contracts at or near the MLB minimum. In 2014, the Luxury Tax will increase $11M to $189M. This is why the Yankees and Sox have been quiet, while recent buyers will soon reach this boundary also. In other words, it is the look of parity.

Schierholtz wants to be in the order frequently, is solid defensively with strong throwing ability, and he has power.  Brown has shortened his swing, is comfortable at the plate, and he has vastly improved his fielding skills.  Michael Martinez is here only for his leather, which includes centerfield with Vic off the roster.  There may even be a place for Magic Juan on next year’s squad, and Kentucky Joe has a shot at finishing this campaign with the locals.  Don’t expect anything other than Schierholtz, Brown, Mayberry and Pierre sharing the outfield.  The hot corner will have to be a dangerous right-handed stick, who is 32 or younger, and not error-prone.  Rube has $13.5M for the third sacker and 2 endgame pieces, which is enough to accomplish his retooling.


2013 Roster Forecast:

STARTERSRELIEVERSREGULARSOTHER POS.BENCH 1Doc HalladayJonathan PapelbonC Chooch RuizOF Nate SchierholtzTy Wigginton 2Cole HamelsAntonio Bastardo1B Ryan HowardOF Dom BrownLaynce Nix 3Cliff LeeJosh Lindblom2B Chase UtleyOF Juan PierreJohn Mayberry Jr. 4Vance Worley2 Young ArmsSS Jimmy RollinsThird Base FAMichael Martinez 5Kyle Kendrick2 Veteran FA'sBackup Catcher



Kentucky Joe Delivers During 7 Solid Innings On July 28 In Atlanta



Joe Blanton:


He is 3-3 with a 3.55 ERA in his last 8 outings.  Overall, he has worked 6.1 frames plus in 13 of 20 efforts with 5 debacles.


STARTERRECORDTMSTARTERRECORDDAY & TIME 1RHP Joe Blanton8-9, 4.59 ERAD-BacksRHP Ian Kennedy9-8, 4.20 ERAFriday, Night 2RHP Doc Halladay4-6, 4.33 ERAD-BacksLHP Joe Saunders 5-7, 3.62 ERASaturday, Night 3LHP Cliff Lee2-6, 3.73 ERAD-BacksRHP Trevor Cahill 9-9, 3.75 ERASunday, Day 1RHP Vance Worley6-6, 3.63 ERABravesRHP Ben Sheets3-1, 1.46 ERAMonday, Night 2LHP Cole Hamels11-6, 3.34 ERABravesLHP Mike Minor6-7, 5.01 ERATuesday, Night


Ian Kennedy Dials Up A Split Finger At Home On July 28 Against The Mets


Ian Kennedy:


He had a career-best 2011 but he is less dominant this tour.  He has lasted 6.1 innings or more in 12 of 21 showings with 6 clunkers.  That said, he is 4-6 with a 3.68 away ERA, which is 1.10 lower than at home.  In his last 3 appearances, however, he is 3-0 with a 2.42 ERA.


DELIVERY = PITCHER’S 2012DEFINITION OF SEASON Over The TopExcellent 3-Quarters SidearmGood SidearmAbove Average Short Arm Approximately Average SubmarineBelow Average



Quality number of the pitcher:  1 – 5

Slot on his club:  1 – 5

Ranking is 1 to 5 & 15 for the less adventurous.

*** = Approximately equal to after plus-and-minus computation


HURLERJoe BlantonIan Kennedy NUMBERA FourA Three CLUB SLOTFiveOne FOR 2012Short ArmShort Arm '12 RANKING4th of 5 Categories4th of 5 Categories LAST STARTSplit FingerSinker LAST HIGH OR LOW4th of 15 Categories6th of 15 Categories



PITCHINNER - R- HPITCHINNER 1Gyroball9 (CG)0 - 0 - 310Screwball64 2Fastball9 (CG)0 - 011Knuckleball53 3Cutter9 (CG)312Forkball0 - 4.2Monstrosity 4Split Finger7213Eephus Pitch0 - 2.2Disaster 5Curveball7314*Palm BallEjected 6Sinker6.1315*Spit Ball**Ejected+ 7Slider62*Breaking BallInjured 8Changeup63*FoshRain Interrupted 9Slurve52** = Suspended* = A 2nd Pitch Also





COLE'S LINE: 7 INN, 8 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 9 K & 101 DARTS



ACEW - LERAINN+CONVCG SOBADINNHRERBBIBBSO Total17 - 183.726.235 of 53008360.1341155149782338 Halladay04 - 064.337.008 of 14004089.1088043043160072 Lee02 - 063.737.012 of 18002125.1130053052240119 Hamels11 - 063.346.215 of 21002145.2129059054382147




Tal’s Handy Caps on Facebook is for notification of posts and any holdups that may occur. It might be worth your while because there are delays of 2 hours on most feeds.

Check out my previous publications (Spoiler Alert) and the 86 storylines–so far–for 2012 on the Phillies page, where there is an excerpt photo.

Tal’s Handy Stats is daily coverage. I am alternating the 2012 ERA For The NL East and the 2012 ERA For The MLB 5. Thank you, to all who bookmarked my page.



TAL’S HANDY CAPS on Facebook 

Philadelphia Phillies storyline: Beware of the big dog‘s bite


Tal Venada (Author Archives)

Philadelphia Phillies: 2012 ERA for the NL East at game 104

Philadelphia Phillies: 2012 ERA for the MLB 5 at game 103


This article first appeared on isportsweb.com and was syndicated with permission.


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