Monday, July 6, 2015

Is Howard All-Star Worthy?

Ryan Howard won't be making history, but he could be the first player in 60 years to lead his league in home runs and RBIs at the all-star break and not make the all-star team.

Is Howard All-Star Worthy?

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Ryan Howard is leading the majors in home runs and the league in RBIs. Is he an all-star?
Ryan Howard is leading the majors in home runs and the league in RBIs. Is he an all-star? DAVID MAIALETTI / Philadelphia Daily News

Ryan  Howard won't be making history, but he could be the first player in 60 years to lead his league in home runs and RBIs at the all-star break and not make the all-star team.

Elias Sports Bureau's Santo Labombarda said that hasn't happened since Cincinnati Reds leftfielder Hank Sauer in 1948. Sauer was hitting .275 with a league-leading 24 homers and 64 RBIs in 1948, but the NL starting outfield featured Cardinals leftfielder Stan Musial, Phillies centerfielder Richie Ashburn, and Cardinals rightfielder Enos Slaughter. Reserve outfielders included Boston Braves rightfielder Tommy Holmes, Pittsburgh Pirates leftfielder Ralph Kiner, and New York Giants outfielder Bobby Thomson.

Howard still has a chance to make the team because Alfonso Soriano is injured and won't play. That means Rockies manager Clint Hurdle must pick a replacement. Can you imagine if the decision comes down to Howard or Pat Burrell?

Who goes?

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Jamie Moyer pitched very well in yesterday's 4-1 victory over the Cardinals. He is 8-6 with a 3.95 ERA at the all-star break. Can he keep it up in the second half? He was 7-7 with a 4.43 ERA at the break last year, but went 7-5 with a 5.78 ERA in the second half.

Of course, he pitched pretty well the final game of the season last year. But with questions about the rotation, the Phillies could sleep a little easier knowing that Moyer will continue to pitch like he has and not have his ERA balloon like last season.

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Bob Ford wonders why the Phillies won't make that final push to get them over the top.

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In the Phillies Notebook: Carlos Ruiz's job is safe despite his offensive struggles, J.A. Happ hopes to be back soon and the Toronto Blue Jays have been following the double-A Reading Phillies -- which means the Phillies could have interest in A.J. Burnett.

And the Phillies aren't interested in Barry Bonds, just in case you were wondering.

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Carlos Carrasco has the stuff. He just needs the confidence to take that next step.

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Frank Fitzpatrick compares Connie Mack Stadium to Citizens Bank Park.

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Burrell took third in the online vote for the National League all-star team.

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