We're back with our fourth installment of our in-game free-for-all, complete with notes, observations, statistics, analysis, and anything else that does not fit into 140 characters on Twitter. Feel free to dive in to the comments section and discuss what you see. I'll do my best to remains active in there.
MARLINS 6, PHILLIES 2 -- FINAL
Well, the Phillies are 1-3. The offense has scored two or fewer runs in three of the four games. Josh Johnson is on deck for tomorrow.
We'll have more after the clubhouse availability. For now, feel free to peruse our running commentary from the game and chime in with your thoughts.
3:35 p.m. (Marlins 6, Phillies 2, Top 9th) - I happen to agree with the many people who question why Jonathan Papelbon wasn't used in either Saturday or Sunday's games, both of which were tied as late as the ninth inning. Now, he is pitching with a three-run deficit because he needs work. I understand the rationale behind saving your closer for a save situation, but I don't necessarily think it is always logical. Anyway, Papelbon gave up a solo home run to Austin Kearns. That's three home runs today for Omar Infante and Austin Kearns, 1 on the season for the Phillies. Josh Johnson tomorrow.
3:11 p.m. (Marlins 5, Phillies 2, Top 8th) - With runners on the corners and one out in the seventh, my Twitter feed filled up with people urging Charlie Manuel to pinch-hit for Freddy Galvis. Galvis responded by hitting a double to the left field gap that scored two runs, snapping an 0-for-12. The hit notwithstanding, the question about what to do with Galvis in big at-bats is an interesting one. In this situation, Laynce Nix was on deck to hit for the pitcher, leaving Ty Wigginton, Brian Schneider, Pete Orr and Jim Thome on the bench. I guess one solution is to have Thome hit for Galvis and then put Orr at second. If you burn Wigginton, it opens up the possibility of the Marlins bringing in a lefty to face Nix and Manuel not having a righty to counter with. If the Phillies were one swing away from tying the game, I'd agree with pinch-hitting Thome. But they were still five runs down, making it likely that the line-up would turn over again if they were to rally, making it likely that there would be another spot to use Thome. Again, if there was a better option on the bench, then it would have made sense to pinch-hit for Galvis. But all things considered, give him a shot, keep his defense in the game, and if you do rally, then at least you will still have Thome to bat in the bottom of the ninth.
2:47 p.m. (Marlins 4, Phillies 0, Top 7th) - Despite the four runs allowed, a solid showing by Cole Hamels.
Final line: 5 1/3 innings, 8 hits, 4 runs, 3 earned, 0 walks, 9 strikeouts, 1 HR.
Hamels threw a lot of cutters and was in complete command of his change-up. His signature pitch prompted 10 swings-and-misses. He threw 22 of 29 for strikes.
His fastball sat 90-92 for most of the game. Cutter checked in 86-87 MPH.
The breakdown of his pitches (#, Strikes, Swing/Miss)
2:34 p.m. (Marlins 4, Phillies 0, Top 6th) - Every day we see something that we're just not used to seeing out of this Phillies team. Today, it's a failure to cover first base on an Emilio Bonifacio bunt to lead off the 6th. In all honesty, it did not look like Freddy Galvis' fault, even though it looked like he was late getting over to cover. John Mayberry Jr. broke hard from first base even though the ball was clearly going to be fielded by Hamels. Larry Andersen is saying on the radio that Mayberry needs to get back to first, and that makes sense to me. Of course, Hamels also needs to take a peak before he unleashes a dart that goes to nobody and allows Bonifacio to go from first to third. Either way, it might be moot given the offensive showing against Anibal Sanchez thus far.
2:04 p.m. (Marlins 2, Phillies 0, Bot 4th) - Freddy Galvis is 0-for-12 to start his big league career, but he continues to show a veterans fluidity and presence in the field, turning a seamless double play with Jimmy Rollins to end the fourth inning. The play means Hanley Ramirez might not have scored had he not stretched a single into a double to lead off the inning.
1:59 p.m. (Marlins 2, Phillies 0, Top 4th) - One example of how subjective the evaluation of defense can be: Hanley Ramirez lead off the inning with an impressive at-bat that resulted in him lacing a base hit to left field. Off the bat, it looked like it should have been a single. Juan Pierre eventually cut it off, but Pierre does not have a strong arm, and Ramirez stretched the play into a double, with Pierre hitting the cut-off man (Rollins) in order to get the ball to second base. Ramirez then scored on a single to right field by the next batter, fill-in clean-up hitter Gaby Sanchez. We bring this up because defense in left field is going to be a topic of conversation all season with John Mayberry Jr. getting starts at first base and Domonic Brown trying to improve his route-running in the minors. In this instance, the result, at worst, would have been the same with Brown in left field. It might have even been better, given Brown's arm strength.
1:19 p.m. (Marlins 1, Phillies 0) - The Marlins just played small ball. But that's because they have two "small ball" players at the top of the line-up. First, Jose Reyes put a two-strike pitch into play and it leaked through the right side of the infield. Then, Emilio Bonifacio did the same to an 0-1 pitch through the left side of the infield. Then, both players wiped second and third. Then, Reyes scored on a groundout. We saw this a lot against Cole Hamels when Reyes and Angel Pagan were at the top of the order for the New York Mets. The point is, effective small ball is not a series of bunts from a bunch of players who aren't used to bunting. It's what the Marlins did. But they did so because they had the personnel. I'm not sure the Phillies do.
PRE-GAME: I was doing a chat before the game so I didn't have time to do any pre-game match-ups. But here are the line-ups.
- Jose Reyes SS
- Emilio Bonifacio CF
- Hanley Ramirez 3B
- Gaby Sanchez 1B
- Austin Kearns RF
- Chris Coghlan LF
- Omar Infante 2B
- John Buck C
- Anibal Sanchez RHP
Note - RF Giancarlo Stanton scratched with knee injury.
- Juan Pierre LF
- Placido Polanco 3B
- Jimmy Rollins SS
- Hunter Pence RF
- Shane Victorino CF
- John Mayberry Jr. 1B
- Carlos Ruiz C
- Freddy Galvis 2B
- Cole Hamels LHP