Originally written June 01, 2013 on isportsweb.com:
When Jimmy Rollins and the Philadelphia Phillies were the hunters before their dominant era, they established themselves with that September run past our northern foe. This season, however, they began for the first time since then as the challenger. TAL’S HANDY CAPS WELCOME, NEWCOMERS: By design my articles represent a baseball man’s thinking, the view from the dugout and the GM’s box. Most fans do not consider the budget, prospects on the radar, the organization’s weaknesses, the track record, the competition and the other intangibles. Please go to my author archives or Phillies page for my most recent coverage. Scroll down to Tal’s Handy Links at the bottom. Thank you. Check out:  Philadelphia Phillies storyline: Answers (Sign Language)  After Michael Young scored the go-ahead run for the Philadelphia Phillies, another development raised eyebrows. Analysts could not explain why a ball rattling around in the right-field corner was only a single.   The new summer schedule will allow me to publish the best 2-3 storylines each week, but there will be an updated calendar included with each feature:  These posts involve commentary, polls and stats for the upcoming 7 days. Post time is mostly 5 to 9 pm for the days listed below. June 3 to June 9 A wild-card feature will be published at times. Any schedule changes and holdups will be posted at Tal’s Handy Caps on Facebook. BASEBALL FIX SCHEDULEFORMATTIMEFRAMEPUBLISHING StorylineNitecap InsightJune 6 & 92-3 Times per Week Story-pollSuds or StudsJune 3Once a Week MLB 5 at Games 58-59 NL East at Games 63-64Tal's Handy Stats (ERA)June 4 June 8Periodically   Dom Brown Swats a 3-run Bomb during the 1st at the Bank on May 31 against the Brewers.   NITECAP INSIGHT       The Deceiving Standings: On April 16, Atlanta was 11 games over .500 and they are currently at 32-22. The disappointment in Philly is misplaced by the standings at face value alone, because it creates the illusion that the Braves are far superior. They are a streaky team that has followed their 12-1 start by going 11-17, 7-0 and 2-4. Meanwhile, the Nationals went 7-2 and 3-9 before posting a more recent 18-16 mark. There are 106 battles remaining on the schedule, and the division does not appear to be a settled issue. Kyle Kendrick Is Incorrectly Ruled Out during the 9th at the Bank on June 1 against the Brewers. Atlanta has a feast-or-famine offense that barrels up a lot of homeruns or strikes out. Entering the campaign, Andrelton Simmons (.249) was the leadoff hitter in front of Jason Heyward (.146), Justin Upton (.254), B.J. Upton (.145) and Dan Uggla (.182). Their manager,  Fredi Gonzalez, has hinted about sending B.J. to Triple-A Gwinnett for a mechanical remedy, but that will not be a popular suggestion. That stated, the Braves are on the hook for $75 million over 5 years, and this is only the first summer. Erik Kratz Tags Out the 4th-inning Runner at the Bank on June 1 against the Brewers.   The pitching in Georgia is also suspect with Tim Hudson and his 5.37 ERA fronting the rotation. He leads Kris Medlen, Paul Maholm, Mike Minor and Julio Teheran, which is not a daunting 5-man staff. Their bullpen until June of 2014 is without those 2 menacing southpaws:  Jonny Venters and Eric O’Flaherty. Plus, if they hand the ball to Craig Kimbrel, he is not automatic like 2012 but is still dominant. Before and After: This table includes stats through 5/31 but 6/1 for only the Phillies with daily updates. TEAMSW - LGBW - LGB The Braves12 - 1---20 - 21--- The Nationals08 - 5420 - 221.0 The Phillies06 - 7620 - 231.5   Lou Ferrigno Hurls the Ceremonial 1st Pitch at the Bank on May 30 before the Game with the Red Sox. Washington has a target on its back after a 98-win tour, which comes with the weight of powerful expectations. They were loose from day one of 2012 and faced no serious threats until the postseason. That said, any club will struggle under the overwhelming prediction to be the favorite in the Fall Classic. And this year, they are scuffling to repeat another stellar 162. Jayson Werth has missed more contests than he’s played in, and Bryce Harper has discovered a few speed bumps on the road to Cooperstown. The league is more familiar with Gio Gonzalez, and Stephen Strasburg is a DL candidate after his oblique injury on Friday night. The Nationals have no lefty in the ‘pen, which will come back to haunt them. Sean Burnett (Angels), Mike Gonzalez (Brewers) and Tom Gorzelanny (Brewers) signed elsewhere.   The red pinstripes don’t have to record 100 victories for another NL East pennant.   Phillies e-mail notification: Email Notifications   LINK-UP BELOW: A link for Phillies e-mail notification is provided above and below. Any schedule changes and holdups that may occur will be posted at Tal’s Handy Caps on Facebook. This is the 39th storyline for 2013. Check out my recent publication (Sign Language) on the Phillies page or my author archives, where there is an excerpt photo. Also, my new feature is Story-poll. The last one was (The Early Returns). I will periodically publish the 2013 ERA for the NL East and the MLB 5. Thank you, to all who bookmarked my page. TAL’S HANDY LINKS Email Notifications TAL’S HANDY CAPS on Facebook  Philadelphia Phillies storyline: Answers (Sign Language) Philadelphia Phillies story-poll: Suds or studs, trades and decisions (The Early Returns) Philadelphia Phillies: 2013 ERA for the NL East at games 52 and 53 Philadelphia Phillies: 2013 ERA for the MLB 5 at game 47 Phillies Tal Venada (Author Archives)
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