Friday, May 02, 2008

In No Particular Order

In no particular order....

The Phillies are a better team when Shane Victorino is in the starting lineup. Yes, he made mistakes last night, especially the base-running gaffe when he was doubled off first on a line drive out to centerfield. And, yes, he has that hitch in his swing. But he is a much better centerfielder than Jayson Werth and he's a sparkplug on a team with little other speed (especially with Jimmy still out.) There were several scouting reports lately suggesting his arm lacks strength and consistency from centerfield, less from right. He hasn't played centerfield long enough for those conclusions to be reached.

Jayson Werth has looked absolutely terrible at bat since the last game of the Pittsburgh series. Bad swings. Tied up often. He simply lacks consistency. If anyone should be platooned, it is Werth, not Victorino.

Everyone in the world knows Pedro Feliz is a complete sucker for a first pitch fastball and for the high fastball in general. Everyone, that is, except Feliz himself. Last night Gary Matthews predicted a strikeout on a high fastball and, bingo, Feliz obliged.

Speaking of Matthews, he might be the worst "color" analyst to come down the pike in decades. And I offer this opinion despite hitting the mute button for 75% of his appearances. He is both master of the obvious and platitude. Tom McCarthy isn't much better. He's dull and canned. Once Harry takes a break from the mike it's easier to just turn off the sound and imagine he's still there.

Ryan Howard may indeed be emerging from his funk. He hit the ball the other way again last night (or at least he didn't pull it dead to right every time) and blasted the game-winning home run. Howard claims he is seeing the ball better. His manager claims he is waiting longer on the ball. Whatever it takes, if he starts hitting the Phils lineup will be that much more dangerous. Now, we just need J-Roll to come back and get on base ahead of him, Chase and Pat.

Brett Myers has relented and is soft-tossing. However, he is still very defensive about his weight and overall conditioning. Look, Brett, no one is asking you to plunge your arm into a barrel of rice for god's sake, but anyone who continues to cite his weight and insist it isn't a problem is just kidding himself, not us.


SirAlden said...

Keep the feisty and intelligent comments coming Tom. I read you religiously.

Tom Goodman said...

Thanks, Sir Alden. Feisty comes naturally to me; intelligence is a struggle.