10/13/23 : Meanwhile … In Arizona
The euphoria of winning the NLDS has engulfed the organization and the PhaM base once again this October as everything in Philly is A Ok 🤓.
Back in March I was on an elevator in Spring Training at the stadium and it was filled with Braves fans as the Braves were the opposition that day - one of the gents decided to let me know that the Phillies didn’t even belong in the playoffs in 2022 and got there only by the expanded pool of playoff teams. I politely told him “It doesn’t matter how you get to the dance but rather how you dance when you get there.” That silenced the fella - last night the Phillies silenced the Braves once again by making sure their on field actions were indeed “something they were supposed to hear” instead of the opposite message voiced in the Braves clubhouse - just sayin 🤓.
If you haven’t noticed that a gang of big arm and/or specialty pitch relievers are the path to playoff success you just haven’t been watching else are in denial of the fact. The Phillies were built for tournament wins - starters who can crank out quality innings will always be important but “in today’s day and age” having a gang of relievers that can close it out, in extended innings of use if needed or planned for, is just as important. The ability to use them in key spots and have the depth to finish out games is indeed huge. Mr Thomson has shown us that time and again in the last two tourneys. And oh by the way protecting the standard by developing more fellas that can fill these roles (AKA - Kerkering) is also part of it - just sayin 🤓.
A high velocity fastball, regardless of whether it’s “straight” is still most difficult to hit. That’s always gonna be true but I remember a quote that the great Larry Bowa once said “A big league hitter can time an airplane and square it up if he sees it enough” - Casty proved that with his second dinger. But yet I still like the chances with guys like Seranthony when he lets it go with confidence and trust. It may not have been as noticed by some but having him coming out firing like he did in the NLDS is a big time advantage and yet another bullet to use going forward - good stuff 🤓
Trust in yourself positions positive results, team accomplishments are built on individual’s having such trust. That’s evident with this group. When ya invest in a baseball super talent like Mr Harper it’s just as wise to surround him with folks he enjoys and has camaraderie with. He’s a mega talent and continues to show that. But shout out to the complimentary parts of the team as well - there’s superstars, support roles and everyday grinders in the mix and they both trust themselves and each other and most importantly the mega star has a bond - that’s both smart and special and is no accident in how it occurred. And by the way it also means 40,000 of the best fans in baseball give ya a home field advantage like no other - just sayin 🤓.
So - back to my “day job” letting ya know about the minor leaguers. Meanwhile in Arizona there was some Phillies minor league baseball as well.
Arizona Fall League :
The Phillies are part of the Scottsdale team this year. Here are game notes from last night as they pertain to the Phillies.
10/12/23 : Scottsdale 9 (5-4) Glendale 6 (2-8)
Oliver Dunn led off and played second base. He went 2 for 4 with a single, double and walk and scored a run. Gabriel Rincones Jr was 1 for 4 as the DH and cleanup hitter - he’s hitting .323 so far for the AFL season with a .995 OPS. Matt Kroon went 2 for 5 with two singles and scored twice, he played third base. Caleb Ricketts was the starting catcher and went 1 for 3 with a single.
Christian McGowan started on the mound and pitched five innings, four runs, seven hits, no walks and four strikeouts - he threw 68 pitches - 46 for strikes. Mitch Neunborn went two strong innings in relief - no runs, one hit, no walks and five strikeouts - 33 pitches - 20 strikes, Andrew Baker closed it out with a perfect ninth inning - one strikeout - 10 pitches - 7 strikes.
For the big club they also will be playing some more ball in Arizona as the D’Backs are next. One pitch, one hit, one out, one inning, one game at a time - enjoy every minute of it all cause there’s no guarantee it comes around again. That’s baseball and that’s life - just sayin 🤓
Happy Day, Happy Baseball ⚾️
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