Phillies’ Playoffs 2022, World Series

The Phillies continue their first playoff journey since 2011.

They swept their best of three wild card round in St. Louis and punched their ticket to the NLDS.

They chopped the legs out from under the Atlanta baseball team taking the best of five series in four games, clinching at home.

Then, they crushed the fifth-seeded San Diego Padres, winning the best of seven series in five games, clinching in CBP.

Now, they’ll travel to Houston for their first world series since 2009.

Houston was the top-seeded and best team in the American League with 106 wins.  Only the National League Los Angeles Dodgers won more games (111) during the 2022 season.  The Phillies were the lowest-seeded NL team with 87 wins.  Only the AL sixth seed Tampa Bay had fewer wins (86) among playoff qualifiers.

The Astros are undefeated in post-season play winning all seven of their games.  The Phillies are 9-2 having played an extra series, the wild card round against St. Louis.

The Phillies and Astros met once this season in the final series of the season.  The Phillies clinched their playoff berth with a 3-0 win by Aaron Nola against Lance McCullers.  The Astros prevailed the next two games with Justin Verlander winning a 3-hit, 10-0 blowout over Ranger Suarez and Framber Valdez leading a 4-hit, 3-2 victory over Michael Plassmeyer.

The seven-game series will follow the 2-3-2 format.

  • October 28, 2022: MLB World Series begins (FOX), all games at 8:03 PM EST
    • Friday, October 28 – Game 1: Phillies at Houston
    • Saturday, October 29 – Game 2: Phillies at Houston
    • Sunday, October 30 – Off Day
    • Monday, October 31 – Game 3: Houston at Phillies
    • Tuesday, November 1 – Game 4: Houston at Phillies
    • Wednesday, November 2 – Game 5: Houston at Phillies  (if necessary)
    • Thursday, November 3 – Off Day
    • Friday, November 4 – Game 6: Phillies at Houston (if necessary)
    • Saturday, November 5 – Game 7: Phillies at Houston (if necessary)

And, then on to the parade!

RHP Aaron Nola will be the starter in game one, RHP Zack Wheeler in game two, and TBD after that.

Houston is countering with RHP Justin Verlander in game one, TBD in game two.

The Phillies announced their playoff roster this morning, 13 pitchers and 13 position players.

  • Left-Handed Pitchers 
    • Ranger Suarez,
    • Jose Alvarado,
    • Brad Hand.
  • Right-Handed Pitchers
    • Aaron Nola,
    • Zack Wheeler,
    • Seranthony Dominguez,
    • Noah Syndergaard,
    • David Robertson,
    • Zach Eflin,
    • Connor Brogdon,
    • Andrew Bellatti,
    • Nick Nelson,
    • Kyle Gibson.
  • Catchers
    • J.T. Realmuto,
    • Garrett Stubbs.
  • Infielders
    • Rhys Hoskins,
    • Jean Segura,
    • Alec Bohm,
    • Bryson Stott,
    • Edmundo Sosa,
    • Nock Maton.
  • Outfielders
    • Kyle Schwarber,
    • Brandon Marsh,
    • Nick Castellanos,
    • Matt Vierling.
  • Designated Hitter
    • Bryce Harper.

Best guess at tonight’s lineup.

  1. Kyle Schwarber, LF
  2. Rhys Hoskins, 1B
  3. J.T. Realmuto, C
  4. Bryce Harper, DH
  5. Nick Castellanos, RF
  6. Alec Bohm, 3B
  7. Bryson Stott, SS
  8. Jean Segura, 2B
  9. Brandon Marsh, CF

They will face RHP Justin Verlander.

Houston added LHP Will Smith to their world series roster.  He and Framber Valdez are the only lefties on the roster.  Valdez is a starter, so Smith would be the only LHP option in their bullpen.

These transactions were made to set the roster for the NLCS.  Being reassigned is NOT the same as being optioned.

10/28/2022 – Phillies reassigned LHP Bailey Falter to the minor leagues
10/28/2022 – Phillies activated RHP Nick Nelson
10/28/2022 – Phillies reassigned SS Dalton Guthrie to the minor leagues
10/28/2022 – Phillies activated SS Nick Maton

357 thoughts on “Phillies’ Playoffs 2022, World Series

  1. One story line that I am curious to see is if Houston pitches to Bryce.

    Phillies winning % during the regular season when Bryce has a hit is .588. In the post season, it is .800.

    When Bryce has a homer the Phils win % was .647. during the regular season and 1.000 in the post season. Won all 5 games this post season when he hit a homer

  2. Let’s go Phillies in 5. Need to get a split in Houston.
    I do not think want to come back although I saw other night that Astros are only 3-9 in WS home games, I think. Maybe we do.

  3. I have watched that Harper home run about 100 times. Absolute hitting perfection. What an unreal at bat. I get chills every time. “The swing of his life!” Just so special.

    4 more wins baby! Let’s go.

    1. I wouldn’t mind hearing a signature close-out line used for the first time in the context of a World Series-clinching victory. “Do you believe in miracles? Yes!”

  4. All the Phillies have to do is be an above .500
    Team from here on out ….

    I don’t care what their record is, as long as the W column has a 4 in it.

    Get ready, it’s going to happen

  5. You can see already what the gameplan is: don’t let Yordan Alvarez beat you. Nola walked him and all the pitches weren’t close to being strikes.

  6. I wonder if this umpire realizes the lines in the dirt are the batters’ boxes and not the strike zone…

  7. Who in their right mind would want to pay Verlander $35m a season? Guy can’t pitch in the playoffs 🙂

    1. The Phillies are working Verlander over and he’s running out of gas. He’s looking tired and beat up.

      1. Exactly. A very frustrating at bat. The pressure should’ve been on near us but instead Neris didn’t even have to throw a strike turn off my alarm yet Castellanos struck out.

  8. The last 5 times these teams have faced each other in the playoffs, they have gone extra innings.

  9. And Castellanos has unbelievably made every play in the field this postseason … some more incredible than others. WOW!

  10. As brutal as it was to watch at times, that was a strong TEAM win. Segura is the only hitter that didn’t get on base and EVERYONE was involved in at least one play that determined the outcome of the game.

    The ‘Stros thought they had to neutralize Harper and Schwarber, maybe even JT and Castellanos. But this game is a gut punch to them. Not only did they just lose their first post season game of the year, it was in a game they were up 5-0. Plus we beat them head-to-head in the areas we were supposed to be worse than them (lineup depth and bullpen depth). They can’t feel super confident about this series anymore.

  11. Gotta a real chance to go up 2 games to none with Wheeler (on 5 days rest) going tomorrow. LET’S GOOO!

  12. I’m impressed with the way Thomson managed the bullpen tonight. I hate to get into this debate Greg Amsinger tried to start on MLB but I think Thomson managed the ‘pen better than Baker. His explanation for why he didn’t pull Verlander earlier seemed weak.

    I have also been impressed with Nick Castellanos in several post-game interviews this postseason. He is coming across much better than the tool I read he was supposed to be. He’s well-spoken and not just about baseball. He’s a lot more human than I gave him credit for being.

    And, Big Papi is fun to listen to. He is a great addition to the post-game team along with Frank Thomas.

    1. Going to Alvarado early was smart, aggressive coaching. Using game 3 starter Suarez was genius. Brilliant coaching. Get that win. Aggressive and smart. Loved his moves

      1. This team has so much grit. Reminds me of the ‘93 team w Daulton and Kruk and Dykstra (Nails). Hopefully with a better ending.

        1. Yeah…..same determination and resiliency.
          Schwarber has a ring, but the 30-year old group of Harper, JTR, Castellanos, Wheeler and Segura probably realize they cannot let this escape them now…may never get back here again.

  13. Great win, But i rally cant see March as a elite centerfielder, I havent seen as much baseball this yr as a lot of you, But its the fourth time i saw him either drop a fly or misjudge a ball,

    1. rocco…..hard to believe three wins from a championship…less than 4 weeks ago never would have thought…..reminds me a little of 2010 Flyers run….seem like a bolt of lightning.
      I wouldn’t worry about Marsh……may get a Gold Glove…one of three finalists this year

        1. rocco……dang….get your tri-split screen TV out for tonight…Phillies, Sixers and Flyers all will playing at the same time at some point.

  14. What if I told you at the beginning of the season that the Phillies would win Game 1 of the World Series in Houston after being down 0-5 in part due to excellent defensive plays from Alec Bohm and Nick Castellanos?

  15. It’s like we all drifted off after the 1980 NLCS…and last night that series picked right up 42 years later. SurrealMUTO!

  16. Do the announcers have better scouting reports than the Phillies? They kept saying how Tucker is batting .151 against balls in the upper part of the the strike zone and the Phils kept pitching him middle down! Still this is going to be fun. Verlander stock down more.

    1. Will find that out tonight. Nola doesn’t pitch up in the zone. Like when the tried to turn Eflin into a 4 seam guy.

  17. Amazing…….of all the OFers in the majors this season…maybe a hundred or more for sure……Castellanos fourth worst in DRS @ -9…..Schwarber second worst @ -14
    And, Castellanos has made two of the most spectacular catches in the last two weeks.

  18. Rewatching game this morning, just saw Schwarber leaping for ball in 10th, flashes back to The Bull vs Dodgers. Also Diaz kept trying to get hit.

    1. pls denny, I was at that game, Still haunts me. all yr he puts in Martin, that game he doesnt

    2. Not sure Vierling could have caught that ball. Would have been very close with Vierling. Ball was fairly high up. Schwarber judged it fine he just couldn’t jump high enough.

      1. I agree, don’t think anyone but Kareem Abdul-Jabbar could have caught that ball, but still had a flashback.

  19. Great game, guys, so many plays made it happen. But, it starts with never giving up, not even down 5-0 to Verlander, and some terrific moves from Topper. Castellanos’ catch and his RBI hit after Dusty held Rhys at 3B, Bohm’s defensive play, great night for JTR, great plays all over the game. I think Castellanos’ catch was better than the one he made in Atlanta. I think he got a late start on the Atlanta one, and made it a bit more difficult. This was better. Robertson made it very stressful! But, we got the W. Now, I am expecting a big game from Wheeler. Go Phils!

  20. Matt… I may be wrong, but I have seen nothing written or said. I think Rhys lost track of the outs. In one highlight he does not break from 2nd on the ball being hit. It looks like he moves up when he sees it is going to drop in from of Tucker. Main thing is Nick picked him up. Big hit and big catch. It takes the whole team if they are going to win this. Amazing Robertson Ks Alvarez and Tucker and runner all over the bases. That was amazing to me. Go Phils.

  21. I think you may be correct, Don. I just saw Harper’s reaction. He was shocked a run didn’t score. Huge hit by Castles. And, we have been, knock on wood! really good with 2 outs in the Playoffs.

  22. Yes. If Rhys had broken on the ball being hit, he scores easily. Tucker even made a 360 when he fielded the ball. It did not appear he even had a thought of Hoskins not scoring.
    I think Rocco is referring to Alutve’s hit in 9th regarding Marsh. I know two things having played lots of CF as a player and watching lots of games as coach and fan. The two balls most difficult for the CF is the one hit right at them and the one where the batter like Altuve swings really hard but does not hit the ball hard. I am sure Marsh would tell you he should have caught it. He did initially take a step to his right back.
    Like JT said he should have blocked the WP by Robertson. No way he could block that but that is their mentality. One other thing in defense of Marsh. Dome and lots of fans in the background. Those factors some as well.

  23. What a game. What a MANAGER!

    Still staying tight lipped, a few observations.

    That left field wall? …. Ummm … this is the major leagues guys… that needs to pushed back

    Sosa made a good play on the last out of the game. The 2B runner was trying to doop him, get him in a run down scenario. Glad he threw it to 1st base versus playing Roulette on whether he could get the tag on the runner before the runner scored. Going to 1st the right move.

    JT also had a nice play on the SO, by waiting long enough to throw to 1st, keeping Altuve at 2B.

    I’ve never seen so many balls bounce so wildly off the plate by Phillies pitchers

    Segura, great tag on altuve. Personally, I think he was out by a millimeter. Depends on how you count when the ball was in the glove.

    Last thing I’ll say, asking because I’m trying to understand the positioning … it looked like the Phillies had one defensive miscue. Astro runners were on the run (I believe after tucker’s 1st hr or before his 2nd hr) segura broke for 2nd as a reaction to the runners moving, in doing so, he ran by a classic double play ball. Did he break right or was that more of a nice strategy play by the Astros.

    They got the W, and that is all the matters. Hyped for Wheeler tonight.

    1. So you think Minute Maid’s 315 feet to the LF wall is too short! LOL
      Not sure they can do it structurally….maybe raise the height of the wall of some sort.

      1. Romus … it looks like a check swing, foul tip could get the ball over the wall.

        Get rid of the seats in that section, push it back to “the stupid train” 🙂

        Btw, are you there or is that a stock photo?

      2. (Sorry if duplicate)

        Yup, looks like a check swing, foul tip could make it over the fence

        Remove those seats, push it back to the “stupid train tracks” 🙂

        Btw – are you at the game or is that a stock photo?

    2. Tac…the runner was stealing. On the play it was Segura to cover. Maldonado just hit the ball right where Segura was. Just good hitting. I am sure Maldonado knew runner was going. Actually, may have been poor location by Nola. Outside pitch made it easier to hit to that area. I think there was 2 outs so it would have ended the inning.

  24. Cherish these memories because you may never see this again. I’ve been watching the Phils since the 60s and I’ve never seen anything like this. My favorite team is the 93 Phils but these guys they’re different. We are definitely taking this trophy home this year. And I wanna give a shout out to Bryson Stott who I think had one of the biggest at bats in the game when he worked at 10 pitch walk off of Verlander. It is hard to fathom that this kid is a rookie. And you know this is not the first longest that he’s had I think two or three others in these playoffs that I also think were huge at bats in the context of the game. Go Phils!

  25. Cherish these memories because we may never see this again. I’ve been watching the Phillies since the 60s and have never seen anything like this including the 93 Phils which before this bunch was my favorite year ever. I wanna give a shout out to Bryson Stott that 10 pitch at bat against Verlander to me with a big key in this game. And start as done that I think two times before throughout these playoffs it is hard for me to imagine this kid is a rookie. We are going to take this championship this year that I have no doubt, go Phils!

  26. Good point. No guarantees. Watching the 80 replays with Astros. Ryan only made one World Series in 27-year career. 1969.
    It is almost winning time. Bottom of 9th on MLB.
    Thinking Phils win again. Nothing was easy.

  27. A lot of us thought we would see the Phillies become a dynasty that would run longer than 2007-2011. Man those rotations were incredible but it all fell apart quicker than Ryan Howards achilleas.

  28. A lot of praise should go to Realmuto. Yes, he gets a gigantic double. Of course, he hits the game winning homer. But what sells me the most on the guy is taking the foul tip on the mug and not dying right there on the field. The guy is a warrior!

  29. Really didn’t like Thomson’s moves tonight. Hated sitting Stott. He’s doing a ridiculously good job of grinding down opposing pitchers. And Vierling isn’t enough of an offensive upgrade over Marsh for the worse defense.

    But the worst of it is he burned a potential defensive replacement for no real reason. Why have Maton pinch hit just to have Marsh take over in the bottom of the inning? Just let Marsh bat.

    1. Guessing he wanted to get Maton the at-bat to get his feet wet before he’s needed in a key spot.

      1. Dusty Baker talking into hishand, Bregman listening to something with his glove to his ear. Are they allowed to communicate that way?

          1. He does have some superb spin-rates,
            ……nah… can’t be….must be just a coincidence.

  30. So funnily enough, last night’s loss continues a trend for the Phils in this postseason:

    1) losing the game before returning to Philadelphia
    2) losing by 3 runs.

    In both previous (non-wildcard) series, the Phillies lost game 2 by 3 runs. Now let’s just hope the other trend continues and they remain undefeated at CBP. Was really hoping for a chance at a sweep since I’ll be at game 4, but I’ll take a championship in however many games it takes.

    1. Not sure how the weather is going to come into play…hopefully the bad weather holds up until after the game.
      “Monday Night……..A chance of showers, then showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm after 11pm. Chance of precipitation is 70%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms.’

      1. Romus, Does it rain or snow in your neighborhood, I heard rich people dont see bad weather, they pay to have sun all the time,

  31. Romus…it is raining here in Indiana this afternoon. Not sure if that has any effect going toward Philly.
    Here is something I just wanted to toss out for all. It appeared to me that both Nola and Wheeler appeared maybe somewhat mentally tired in these 2 starts. Smoltz is always talking about stress pitches. Both of these guys have had lots of stress pitches the last several weeks. Most of their games have been low scoring where neither had much room for error.
    Let’s hope Phillies can get game 3. It is now best 3 or 5 so let’s get game 1 of the 5.

  32. Romus…I just looked at Phillies shop site. They are starting to get in you price range.
    Now have a Harper red pin stripe autographed jersey for only $1,099. Almost gone.
    Also, a shadowbox autographed jersey of Harper for only $1,249. Glad to see they are getting in your price range finally. LOL

    1. LOL….I will pass.
      Maybe there is a Korean Majestic store….somebody needs to look into the knock-offs.

      1. Romus Watching news, some nut is outside majestic store at 6am waiting to exchange a hat, that is too small, for a shirt

  33. Don’t sell rocco short, Don. He has been doing very well with the horses! May be grabbing up that shadow box.

  34. Just a dumb question on my part. Do any of you have tickets the next 3 games.
    I think it would be great, but my chair has my front row seat, so I am happy.
    Do not have to fight the traffic.
    I have not found the Schwarber jersey for grandson yet. All I have located are too big so far. We will keep looking.
    Here is a funny for you Matt and Romus. Phillies season could extend to November 5th. Grandson begins official basketball practice on the 8th. Season begins on the 23rd. Who would have thought they would almost overlap 6 weeks ago.

      1. Thanks Dan. We will check it out. Awesome that you guys get to go.
        Enjoy. Bring the Phillies some wins. It is now a race to 3 wins.

  35. I am on a plane right now about to takeoff for Philly. I splurged and got a ticket for tomorrow night with my nephew! (I flew up to go to the 2008 and 2009 World Series as well.)
    Go Phillies!

  36. Hopefully Thor is better than Nola/Wheeler. This offense can’t keep coming from behind. Glad they made it to the WS but can’t say I have confidence that they will win 3 more.

  37. I have a good feeling about tonight, Trollu. The home crowd is a real advantage, and I believe that we can hit McCullers. Houston played in Yankee Stadium, and thought that was a loud crowd, but they are nothing compared to what our fans will be like tonight. Go Phils!

  38. It is going to be hard to get 3 more wins. But maybe the adrenaline kicks in and gets them over the finish line. One thing is obvious, Nola and Wheeler must do better if they get a 2nd game. Phillies cannot win without that contribution.
    So happy for all of you that are getting a chance to go. Memories are great.

  39. Am I the only one who thinks its ridiculous we are in game 3 of the World Series and are going bullpen game? Hopefully in the off season the starting rotation is addressed, a legit starting pitcher who can pitch in the regular season AND also start in the playoffs would be nice.

    1. It is ridiculous but it’s also explainable and defendable. It’s explainable because Zach Eflin got hurt and couldn’t build up his arm strength in time to be the #4 we would like. It’s defendable because had other options – including Gibson (they tried Falter last series but that clearly didn’t work), but they are worse options than Syndergaard for 3-5 innings and then the bullpen.

      1. That said, I would MUCH prefer they go with Ranger in game 3, which would leave him available for game 7. That’s the move I would like explained to me in a way that makes sense.

        1. Exactly….Ranger would have been the option for me….he only threw a few pitches in game one.
          I think Thomson wants Nola for Wednesday 5 on 4 days rest and not sure about his intentions with Wheeler.

  40. Catch I too was surprised about this. But I heard a couple days ago that Ranger would not go till game 4. Maybe it was the announcers on Saturday night. I forger where I heard it. So where does Nola and Wheeler fit in at the moment? Games 5 and 6?
    Those 2 have to be better for Phillies to have a chance to win.

  41. Remember, before you win game 7 you have to get there. And it’s getting there that is driving Thompson. Can’t say I disagree.

    1. Game 7 is what it is to me. Everyone but Wheeler will be available and game 7 tends to be a bullpen game anyway given the stakes.

      I’d imagine Nola would be the “closer” to free Seranthony, Alvarado, and Ranger Suarez up to cover the middle innings and put out any fires. Hypothetically scripting from the end to the beginning:

      9th: Nola
      8th: Seranthony
      7th: Alvarado
      6th: Suarez
      5th: Suarez
      4th: Eflin
      3rd: Brogdon
      2nd: Robertson
      1st: Syndergaard

      Alvarado is the first man up to face Alvarez or Tucker if there’s a major issue and then everyone slides back an inning is how I’d manage it.

  42. The weather forecast tonight is not good. Rain started between 730 and 8 o’clock and there is a 90% chance of rain straight up to about one in the morning with over a quarter of inch of rain expected. The radar I’m looking at bears that out. They won’t start the game if it’s raining will they? When you consider all the people that have to get down there and everything associated with that wouldn’t be prudent for them to make a decision sometime mid this afternoon to cancel the game tonight? I presume that would mean that they play on Thursday which would be the travel day and then go straight to Houston for Friday night. If the game is canceled how will they do the pitching? Will they skip Thor for game three tomorrow night and go to Ranger? And then come back with Noah and then Willer for game five? That would be my personal preference?

    1. This is the time of the year and circumstance, where a retractable roof would have ben a very nice idea to go with 18 years ago.

      1. Romus…raining here again today in Indiana.
        Not heavy though.
        I hope if game is played it is not like the 6th and 7th innings last week. Not fair to either team in those conditions.

    2. Pops… these are the questions burning in every fan’s mind as we await the (likely) cancellation as a result of the weather tonight. Although it seems to make sense to go Suarez, Nola, Wheeler at home Tues-Thurs all on regular rest+, you’re then left with none of those guys potentially available for games 6 and 7 if it gets there in Houston. I’d probably stick with Syndergaard tomorrow followed by Suarez Wednesday, Nola Thursday, and Wheeler Friday. Basically exactly how it would have been, but just everyone bumped back a day.

      Curious where other’s come out on this, or thoughts on how we turn a 1-day delay to our advantage.

  43. Thursday night will be real interesting if the game tonight is called. Eagles and Phillies going head to head. Which team would get the better TV ratings in Philly?

    1. The game in the Philly and Houston markets will be shown on local TV. Same as it was when the Thursday night game was on NFL Network and the same when the Monday night game is on ESPN. It will be streamed everywhere but the Philly and Houston markets.

      1. NL, I did not realize that! I hear the local radio ads promoting 30 days free to sign up for Amazon Prime so thought it was not being shown here. I haven’t even tried to watch any of the other Thursday night games, and just assumed they were all only shown on Amazon. Which channel would have the feed from Amazon?

        1. Fox has it in Philly. Channel 805 on Comcast. You can’t watch the other Thursday night games live except on Amazon Prime. However, if you have a DVR you can tape the replay of those games on NFLN. They are replayed a few times if you don’t mind knowing the score in advance.

          1. My apologies NL! the Eagles game is on 6ABC Thursday because the Phillies are on Fox. You are correct, and I was wrong, about the local teams getting the Thursday night games. I will be watching the Phils!

  44. CBS is showing 95 to 100% rain from 8 on thru the night.
    It will be tough to make call to play in my opinion.
    Hoping to make decision by 6:30

    1. I hope they cancel. I really don’t want to see a rain influenced game. Not fair to the competition. Not cool when pitchers are loosing grip.

  45. NL, I think that changed for 2022 and Amazon Prime has excliusive rights. ANyway, Hinkie, we may get out first Japanese star player! Masataka Yoshida is ready to be posted and wants to play for the Phillies because Bryce Harper is his favorite player.

        1. Defensively, Yoshida is limited to LF, as he has ‘fringe average arm strength and foot speed. He moves very tentatively in the field and doesn’t seem to get good reads on fly balls, which projects him to have below average range’.
          But he is a pure hitter…..’plus bat speed and plus raw power from the left side, with quiet lower half swing mechanics. His load gets a little long due to a hand hitch keeps him from getting out in front of the ball more on high velocity pitches, but he still has the hand quickness and feel for hitting to spray consistently and drive those pitches up the middle.’

          ….if you ask me he may be more in line with an Ichiro type hitter..not a Matsui..

          1. Romus…looks like another DH guy. I am just kidding. I think Phillies could use another. Looks like he would fit right in with those the Phillies already have in place.

  46. Ranger, then Nola, then bullpen. Wheeler won’t pitch at home. So, there is something wrong.

    1. Just a hunch or do you know something for sure? Maybe his knee is just still bugging him after that liner…

  47. “spahn and spain and pray for rain” has a better sound than “Nola and Zach then hope the rain goes splat” – but the idea is the same, right?

  48. Agree with v1 and RM Boyask. The rainout is a nice break for the Phillies. Using Ranger and Aaron Nola in games 3 and 4 allow both of them to eat maybe five or six innings in a possible game 7. The fact that they’ll keep a travel day (now Friday) is another huge advantage for the Phillies. Their BP is a lot thinner than Houston’s. Eflin, Alvarado, and Ser-Ant’ny are more likely to need the off day. And I also absolutely sense Wheeler is pitching through some sort of minor issue. Wouldnt be surprised to learn more about it after the World Series.

    1. Hinkie, What gets me is everyone, wants Nola And Wheeler, Nolas last two starts were bad, and Wheeler wasn’t any better against Houston, This series scares me, Cause our two Aces haven’t pitched like Aces,

      1. Nola and Wheeler are the team’s 2 best starters so of course you want them to pitch as much as possible. If they don’t get the job done then the team will probably lose the series but they give them the best chance to win.

        Don’t think replacing them with Gibson/Thor will produce a better result.

    2. In regard to Wheeler, I said that a couple months back. Something isn’t right about him and when this is over maybe we’ll find out what it is.

      1. Wheeler has been on and off since ST. He hurt himself last winter and rushed to get ready this spring. It took a while until his FB was sitting above 95 again. And, even with that, he had arm issues the end of the year and his velocity, even when it’s on, can often fall pretty quickly. Not down to the low 90s, but enough where it really makes a difference. If I’m the Phillies, there’s no way I extend Wheeler, as great as he’s been. The 5 year deal was a very good call and he’s still got two years left on that contract. By contrast, if I’m the Phillies, I work hard to extend Nola this offseason. Nola should have a long career if he stays healthy – it might even somehow turn into a HOF career (somewhat unlikely, but it’s more than possible).

  49. One thing is for sure. Regardless of who the starter is for any of the remaining games the Phillies must get better starting pitching. BP has been great but cannot expect all 0s. I mentioned other day that I thought both Nola and Wheeler looked mentally exhausted last weekend. Wheeler looks so thin on TV. Skeet I tend to agree but he has been really good at times recently. I go back to those high stress innings that Smoltz is always talking about. Those are all Nola and Wheeler have had. By and large the offense has not given them much breathing room in most games. Hopefully the crowd can help the guys. Also, the offense needs to improve again since they are back at CBP. Go Phils. I have my front row seat for tonight.

  50. We are built to win by hitting. I am looking at some offense tonight, coupled with the game of Ranger’s life. Feeling good about our chances, and can’t wait for the game to start.

    1. Also … game 3 is the most important contest of any playoff series (think I read the club that wins the third game goes on to win the series 69% of the time). The fact that the Phillies are able to pitch Ranger instead of Syndergaard is pretty big thing.

      matt … Masataka Yoshida sounds like a guy worth looking into if Dombrowski plans to trade Rhys Hoskins (which would allow them to move Schwarber to 1B). Some Japanese player needs to kick the door down, sign with the Phillies, and set the tone for other NPB stars to migrate here. Roki Sasaki (stud RHP) is eligible to head to MLB in 2026. Middleton may have a better chance at him if Yoshida has a great time here.

      1. Remember the Hinkie NPB plan: hire Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto as Director Of Clubhouse Food Services. In Yoshida’s case, sounds like he’d like to play here with or w/o Morimoto.


      2. Hinkie……BITE YOUR TONGUE!
        Signing Yoshida, and then….. trading Rhys.
        Oh no….what have you done.

    1. Romus … he needed to smooth that out before signing here. Like Pete Rose, they hate him when he’s on the other side. They’ll love him in red pinstripes.

  51. Ranger in the first inning was humming his FB at the velo Wheeler was at in game 2 … 94 and 95! Nine pitch first inning. Great start.

      1. Despite all the evidence, I’m going to believe that Bohm (and Harper and Marsh and Schwarber and Hoskins) just did a good job hitting!

        1. Just to be clear, I agree. Even knowing what pitch is coming it is still hard to hit a homer. And they did. That’s amazing. I did not mean to diminish their accomplishments. It’s still impressive.

  52. Absolutely hate using Nelson in the game. Don’t care if they are up 20 the guy is all over the place. Painful watching him pitch.

    1. Yes, I hear you, but . . . if he had faltered (no pun intended), they would have brought someone else in to shut it all down. Thomson would not have let the game go bad and have the momentum total change the way Girardi often did (seriously, has anyone ever seen a manager worse at knowing when a pitcher was done than Girardi? He was so bad at it that it was astounding.). Keeping our high relievers out of that game was enormous. Now, if he doesn’t overuse any bullpen guy, each one can pretty much be available to pitch any day for the series (because there are only two games in a row in both parks and a rest day in between).

      1. I had no issues with him not using high-leverage guys in that spot. Nelson just drives me nuts because he’s so erratic with his control.

        Just leave Gibson in to pitch until he gets into trouble.

        1. 3uo…I see where yuo are coming from with Nelson…he does have those control issues.
          With leaving Gibson further…..he only threw 15 pitches….more or less a shortened-bullpen session , along with his warm-up.
          Perhaps Thomson can go back to him again today or for sure tomorrow .
          Not sure he may want to do that with Bellatti, Nelson or Brogdon….though both Brogdon (15) and Bellatti(14) threw a small amount of pitches.
          Nelson , otoh, was at 30 pitch count for the one inning.

          1. You really only want to see Gibson or Nelson in a lopsided game (either way). Bellatti actually is pretty decent. I’d use him in a meaningful situation without too much hesitation.

            1. Yes, I don’t want to see Gibson pitching any high leverage situations either but at least he has a general sense of where the ball is going when he throws it.

              Bellatti is fine if you can get him in the right matchup with Right-handed hitters.

  53. Dave Dombrowski knows how to build teams to win in the playoffs. He loves power arms and power bats. Thank you. John Middleton for hiring him.

    And Ranger was unreal tonight. The CH and breaker were very good. And the FB was still hitting 95 in the 5th inning. Hope we don’t see a game seven. But if we do, I like Ranger in a clinching contest.

    1. Power arms in the bullpen are huge. In two short years, DD totally flipped the script on the BP (gone are the soft tossers throwing up hanging breaking pitch after hanging breaking pitch) and the funny thing is that all of the more effective guys are the cheaper/younger players. The free agents, as a whole, were pretty much a bust (Hand was okay – nothing more or less), but he acquired so many arms that he could withstand those failures.

      1. Oh yes, and on Marsh. If the Phillies win the WS, the trade for him was worth it even if it was an overpay (which I still believe it was) and even if O’Hoppe becomes a star (which he most definitely could). But the point is to win championships and I get and honor that. I mean, does anyone ever look back on the Brad Lidge trade and think (or say) wow, that was a bad trade because Michael Bourn produced so many more WAR for the Astros than Lidge did for the Phillies? Of Course not! That’s what makes DD the baseball guru that he is and, for the 100th time, I am sorry Mr. Dombrowski, I was soooo wrong about you.

    1. All the years I’ve been watching baseball the Champion always seems to have an unlikely hero. I’m sure if we end up taking this thing that will be Ranger Suarez.

      Sure Harper is going to be the WS MVP but Ranger IMO will have been the ice that cooled everyone else down enough to perform from a relaxed state of mind.

      1. Yes……cannot ask anymore from Ranger this post season….15 innings pitched, 1.23 ERA, 1.02 WHIP…he has delivered.

  54. Pedro had the tip after the game last night. McCullers hands were reaching over his head when he was throwing sliders and curves and then not fully coming over when he threw his FB.

    FWIW that is what Pedro saw. And he stated this after he came back from somewhere off camera as Amsinger and Cam Maybin were interviewing Harper. Pedro was somewhere else.

    1. Smoltz also alluded to the fact that McCullers may have been tipping his pitches…..and then went into every scenario how it can occur……my guess he knew what Pedro knew, more than likely from a text from his co-worker, and kept silent on the matter while the game was going on.

      1. Romus if they win the world Series, Would this be a bigger upset than 69 mets? or Jets super bowl? Or team USA in Hockey in Olympic,

        1. Definitely a bigger upset than the Mets. I’m not as into football so I could be wrong, but on paper looks like a bigger upset than the Jets too.

          But not quite up there with the Miracle on Ice. I’m not sure that one will ever be topped.

        2. rocco…..would be up there somewhere with those upsets. Hard to gauge just where it would be.

        3. I do not think so Rocco. A couple weeks before the end of the season one of the writers was making his WS predictions. This is when the Phillies, Padres, and Brewers were playing for spots 5 and 6. Writer actually had Brewers beating out Phillies. But the one thing I remember was he said no matter who won the NL they would win the WS. As I watch the Astros, they are good but to make 4 of 6 in this era kind of means the competition in the AL may not be as strong year to year as the NL is on a yearly basis. It is hard to make the WS. Another thought is I think Mariners may have been the 2nd strongest AL team. Bad draw, and bad luck and maybe bad manager decision.

      2. Pedro, well let’s just say that guy is ultra committed to his current profession.

        He actually left the set on air to go find out what McCullers was doing. This was after the game of course but still. He wasn’t afraid to get the information and share it with the fans.

        That’s what I love about him. He is a fan first kind of guy. Most former players will be more concerned with keeping themselves in the players club. Which is totally fine also why I find Pedro more compelling.

    2. I’m such a big Ranger fan.

      Earlier this year, I think someone posted here that Ranger could end up being a #3 starter and I said something to the effect of, what are you talking about, at worst, Ranger is a #3 starter now. Ranger had a 1.36 ERA last year pitching over 100 innings. Do people understand how exceptional that is? Bill James had him rated last year as the #10 starter in all of baseball and he was probably right (or damned close to being right). So this is all in line with what he has done. Still, it’s not easy to be this good and cool in the postseason when the pressure is on and I LOVE when he makes fielding plays – there’s a definite Cliff Lee-type of “yeah, this is a piece of cake, of course I’ve got it” aspect to his fielding and throwing to first. The guy is cool and clutch.

      1. Before the year started, I figured Ranger would settle in as a mid-rotation starter. His 1.36 ERA wasn’t sustainable, but he definitely looked like a solid pitcher all the way. But at this point it has to be assumed that he’s one of the rare pitchers that is more than the sum of his parts. His raw stuff doesn’t suggest a TOR guy, but here we are. He’s a huge feather in the cap of the Phillies’ scouting and development.

        Also I read somewhere else that he is now just the second Venezuelan born pitcher to win a World Series game. And that likely means that hr has become a hero for a whole generation of kids. That is just super cool and I’m very happy for him. I hope he can go down as one of the all-timers both in his home country and Philly.

        1. One advantage for the Phillies is Suarez becoming a world series star will likely strengthen the Phillies’ already significant scouting advantage in Venezuela.

          1. Very good point, Jim … especially now that an international draft is not going to be a thing.

  55. Ranger was great, the 5 HRS were awesome, and I have to give kudos to Castellanos for that first inning catch on Altuve. They were trying to replicate the opening inning vs Wheeler and swinging early. Nick made a great play, and I did not see him hesitate at all. It was a really good defensive play. Now, I think we see some of his power back for tonight’s game! Go Phils!

    1. Great point Matt. Nicky Sticks hasn’t been much of a stick of late but he hasn’t allowed it to effect his defense. He’s been great out there.

      After the last out wife was all excited and woohooing about. She looks at me and asks why aren’t you more excited LOL.


  56. Did you guys like how the schwarbomb cleared the Corona advertisement in the centerfield batter’s eye. Looks tacky. I get the added revenue stream … looks horrible placed there

    It is 8:03pm yet?

  57. Nola is pitching the biggest game of his career tonight. I hope he pitches one of the best games of his career tonight.

  58. I love watching Ranger field his position.

    I’m sure everyone saw his quick glove reaction time on the line drive that popped out of his glove, his deliberate saunter over to the ball, and the laser throw to first.

    But, did you notice how quickly he got off the mound on Altuve’s pop-up for the final out in the fifth inning? He pulled up as he approached the foul line, but if Hoskins wasn’t close to the ball, I believe Suarez would have caught it.

  59. Did y’all notice how Brogdon retained his composure after the leadoff single? There was a time (not too long ago) when that would have led to a meltdown. Instead, he remained calm and retired the side.

  60. Is anyone else sporting a playoff beard? When the Phillies clinched a playoff berth in Houston, I decided to not shave for the duration. Not even a trim. I was due for a shave when they clinched, so I’m looking pretty scruffy on my neck. My wife can’t wait for this series to end. Neither can I. We both hope I’m shaving Friday morning.

          1. Bad night for all. I have been feeling down and out since late Monday night, last night around 11:00 took an in house Covid test. Positive. Took another 30 minutes later, positive. Sucks.

            1. Denny……sorry to hear that. I have taken Quercetin and Zinc…seem to work for me. But everyone’s situation is different.

            2. Both from what some do.
              Treat……every day for 3 or 4 consecutive days
              Prevent…..some take once a week
              My friend, after she came back from a family gathering last year felt sick and thought she had got it, and started taking it, after 2/3 days felt fine. After that, she started taking it once a week….but she also added vitamin D and C for good measure.

    1. I’m always bearded, but I’ll note here that Marsh says that, when the season is done, he’s going to trim his. And not a minute too soon, if you ask me.

      1. It is a tradition for Marsh…once the season starts he never shaves….started it in Little League! Mom and Dad said sure, why not.

  61. That is awesome Jim. Hopefully Friday is the day. I agree Connor has been good recently. Hopefully these are signs of good things to come from him in the future.
    Game tonight is so important in so many ways. Let’s hope they can get a quick start again and the fans can really get into it again. Lots of 1sts in these playoffs and WS. Let’s add one more and be the first 6 seed to win the Series in history. Go Phils.

    1. Don…bittersweet times for Hinkie…..Phillies in WS is the ultimate high,
      ……but now, Phillies draft 29th or 30th… he has his work cut out for him now trying to predict who will be there when they pick.

        1. Straight up for the 18 non-play off teams.
          The draft order for the 12 playoff teams is now be determined by a combination of their finish in the postseason, revenue sharing status of the club and reverse order of winning percentage during the regular season.

        2. And more info from BA:
          “Clubs that lose in the Wild Card Round will select before clubs that lose in the Division Series and clubs that lose in the Division Series will select before clubs that lose in the League Championship Series, and so on. Each year the team that wins the World Series will receive the last pick of the first round, as well as all subsequent rounds…Within each group of postseason rounds, draft order will be determined first by revenue sharing status (payee clubs will pick before non-payee clubs) and then in reverse order of regular season winning percentage.”

    1. I am not sure. NFL I know is after Super Bowl. So, Phillies will be 19th in draft if I can count. Or is it 21st. I forget how many teams. 30 or 32.

  62. Romus…or anyone in the know. The other day Smoltz and Davis had the records for Cheesesteaks eaten at CBP by visiting teams. I think it was all visiting. IT just now have some from Astros locker room. Is this list posted somewhere in stadium.
    They had all the names and teams they were on. It was long list as they had various categories. Just a fun thing. They look so good.

  63. The Phillies had a chance to draft Frank Thomas in the 1989 draft. They had the 4th overall pick. They selected Jeff Jackson, WSox took Big Hurt at 7th overall. Jackson never made it to MLB, only to AA ball, 3 years hit .238, .222, .177 then cut in ’94.
    We had Rickie Jordan at 1b. Dumb move.

  64. Sucks to get no-hit. But … looking at the big picture, the Astros have only scored in one of the last 21 innings. Obviously, game 5 is going to be huge. Gotta hope the bats rebound.
    Still believe the Phillies will win this.

    1. Thankfully a no hitter still only counts as one loss. Let’s hope Verlander is his usual terrible self in the World Series and our bats wake back up. Think Wheeler gets us the series in six.

  65. That was a terrible and pathetic game. Needed vintage Nola and he folded. The offense was so bad. Not sure how they can bounce back from that with Thor tomorrow

    1. The reliever who came in after Nola was pulled had been outstanding – but today he got lit up… on Nola’s tab!

      1. rocco….Phillies cannot go back to Houston down 3-2…tonight is a critical game.
        As for Nola…there are quite a few great MLB pitcher who have had mediocre play-off performances. Hopefully this is not his first and last play-off appearance.

        1. Romus, The argument that others have been mediocre, to me doesn’t hold water, i Could care less about others, This is a guy who pitch really great this yr, i will give him that, But i hate to see this team give him long term deal, When he is at 92 he is average, He loses his velocity in games, scares me, i just believe he wont get any better much worse, as he gets older, He needs pinpoint control at 93 which he often doesn’t have, I Dont know who is out there, but if the numbers go up i am looking elsewhere

  66. felt they needed to win whatever game Nola pitched, and based on stats i saw of him being much better with an extra day of rest, i wasn’t loving throwing him last night. Also, Jean Segura’s at bats in this series have been awful.

  67. I know i’m going to sound negative here but I think last night was the key to the series, whoever won was/is going to win it all. It’s still unreal to me that we have to rely on a bullpen game in the world series but it is what it is. Hopefully the lack of quality pitching depth in the starting rotation is address over the off season.
    It’s been a great run, lets hope the taste of the post season and world series fires up the players and front office for next year.

    1. Eric … I’m right with you on the team’s SP depth. I had been concerned since before the season started. And I’ve posted ad nauseam that Dombrowski should spend Middleton’s money on arms instead of bats this winter.

      1. So, which camp are you in?

        a. Buy the arms grow the bats.

        b. Buy the bats grow the arms.

        c. I feel strongly both ways.

        d. I’m really torn and it depends on who’s stinking it up the most.

        1. Bottom- line, for an org to have long term success, they need to both buy and grow the arms. The pipeline cannot afford to dry up.
          Arms are so susceptible in going from a top prospect to an independent league player trying to come back.

        2. Do not spend $20m on one arm, spend $30m on 2 or 3. Days of the ‘Elite’ starter are over. ‘Starters’ need to go 5-6 tops, then it becomes a pen game of Marvel Superheroes for an inning each.

  68. Tesday night I told my wife “look for a drought tomorrow night”, the night of the homerun will go to their heads. So…..even if Nola gives up 1 run and goes 9, they still lose. I think Nola looks physically drained and has for a couple of starts. Agree on Segura, short season 3 games left, got to hit, its now or never. Also, I don’t think Stott is not a SS, IMO, 2B is where he needs to be in 23. If this team was built to hit, it underachieved in 2022. Win 2 out of 3 and none of this matters!

  69. I think a couple of things, First, we can hit Verlander, and we will find a way to win tonight. Second, we were swinging for HRs all night, and kept either fouling off or completely missing on Javier’s pitches. He is really good, no disrespect to him. But, you could see that we never adjusted to what he was throwing. No one tried to go the other way, no one made any adjustments. I don’t know how many fouls we hit, but there were a lot. This team has had to be resilient all season and “flush” quite a few games, and we still got here. I have faith that we win tonight’s game.

  70. Well now it is the best 2 of 3. It is going to be really difficult I think but that is why they play the games. I would have never expected a no hitter last night. Baseball is such a strange game you just have to play one game at a time. If Nola had not made those 2 bad pitches to Altuve and Pena the teams might still be playing.
    Smoltz mentioned on Tuesday that getting beat like the Astros did then is much easier to regroup and come back the next day. Hopefully that is true for the Phillies as well. I do think tonight is really important. But in 19 the home team lost all the games so still possible till that 27th out is made. Let’s go Phils.

  71. At Don53 – agree with you that Nola hurt himself with those 2 bad pitches because he just was not pin point. Otherwise I thought he pitched well. Javier is arguably among the best pitchers in baseball right now and I doubt any team could have hit him, albeit never thought of a no hitter. I see all hands on deck and a gritty fight back tonight – they are not going to go quietly – again.

      1. rocco…..what do you mean the game has changed!
        Robin Roberts in 1953 had 33 complete games……every pitcher in the majors right now, if you added up all their completer MLB games for 2022, probably does not get to Roberts’ one year total.
        Career wise…..Phillies Eflin leads the team with 5, Wheeler is second with 4 and Gibson has 3.

        1. Hammels spoke on that topic other night on MLB pregame. He stated that back in 08 and 09 you took the mound hoping to go 9. Now the guys hope for 3 or 4 at best.
          Romus..1953 is a good year. I was born then. Not a Phillies fan yet.
          Not sure on Nola one of best for 6 innings. He can be really good. But it seems almost each game he misses badly on a couple pitches. Also, almost every bad pitch is hit. Romus…here is one for you. Also, it seems like he gives up a tremendous number of hits with 2 strikes. Most just poor location.
          I do not believe the Phillies can win though without getting at least one win from Nola or Wheeler. Chances are running out on that.

          1. Don……you seem correct, Nola has that one bad moment or inning and things unravel. And at times he can pitch pretty well for a few innings after that moment of debacle. Go figure.

        2. Romus, I believe there were about 44 complete games this season, led by Alcantra’s 6. It’s a whole different world now.

            1. I must have counted those 1’s extra. You are correct. 1 guy with 6, 1 with 3, and 2 with 2. Now it’s hard to have a SP go over 100 Pitches in a start. I wonder how many Robbie had in ’53?r

  72. Prediction – Phils in 7… based on –

    Game 5 – Verlander goes 4, gets gassed, and Dusty keeps him in 1 batter – 3 runs too long. Phils pen is solid. We go to Houston 3-2.

    Game 6 – Wheeler battles, but runs up empty. Pen gets touched, and Framber keeps our bats quiet.

    Game 7 – It’s MVP Ranger’s night. Throws another gem, leaves in 6th. Nola is the bridge to the 7th, where SerAnthony and Jose close it out…

    1. My Prediction:
      Game 5 Noah goes 4 shutout innings while the offense breaks out the bats. The bullpen frustrates the Astros hitters

      Game 6 Wheeler no hits Astros Phils clinch

      Game 7 Astro players show up and pack their lockers up

  73. Totally agree, Nola is not an ace.

    He was only 4th among all ML pitchers with a 6.0 WAR behind only Alcantara, Cease, and Ohtani, and ahead of Verlander, Rodon, Fried, Scherzer, and Gallen.

    He was 4th with 235 K.
    He was 7th with a .9610 WHIP
    He was 2nd with a 1.2732 BB9
    He was 9th with a 10.3171 K9
    He was 2nd with 205.0 IP
    He was tied for 5th with 32 starts
    He was tied for 3rd with 2 complete games
    He was tied for 1st with one shutout
    He was first with an 8.1034 K/BB
    He faced the 4th most batters at 807
    He was 5th with a 2.581 FIP

    He tossed 7.0 shutout innings in the Phillies’ last regular season win against Houston, the game that clinched their first playoff berth in eleven years.

    He pitched in 6 games the last month of the regular season and went 2-2 (the team was 4-2), 34.1 IP, 9 ER (4 in 2 different games, 1 in the other 4), 7 BB, 45 K, 2.36 ERA, 1.95 FIP, .191/.239/.270/.509 slash against, 69 % strikes.

    With 5 starts in the postseason, he has pitched 4 weeks longer than most pitchers, has started a league-high 37 games, and tossed a league-high 230.2 IP.

    His innings were managed during the regular to be stronger in the last month of the season. That worked. I don’t think anyone thought in April they had to manage for late October and November starts.

    Oh, and I hope y’all realize the opening sentence was sarcasm. The Phillies would be smart to extend Nola sooner rather than later.

  74. Boys need to do something with men on base. Have several players who are contributing nothing at the plate right now.

  75. I mean I know Houston as really good arms (rotation and BP) but FFS we are swing thru a ton of fastballs. And maybe it’s just me but they seem to be fairly straight.

  76. Houston basically pitching around Harper at this point. Phillies getting nothing from JTR, Castellanos, and Stott. Hoskins is flying open trying to hit HR on every pitch.

    Tough job going back to Houston and taking two.

  77. Great game, going to have to win it in 7, that’s all. A particular player owes us, so I expect more magic out of him. Gotta believe, Phils in 7, get the defibrillators ready, it’s going to be a bump ride.

  78. They deserved to win that game. Heart breaking loss. Statistically, if you considered all that occurrd with hard hit ball etc. the Phillies should win that game…And hence, the expression, “That’s baseball”. Karma needs to come bite the Astros in the ass. Valdez, who appears to me as a pitcher who is using sticky stuff, represents that energy many of us feel towards the Astros. He rubs his glove hand every pitch, rubs the ball…and when walking off the field, prior to the ump checking just his pitching hand rubs that same glove hand against his pants as if to rub off the sticky stuff. Cheating or not, that is not a good look. Here is hoping to Karma coming back to bite the Astros

  79. Mancini made a tough play, Hoskins and his stone hands muffed a much easier play. Their CF climbed the wall to make a great catch and our CF misread a blooper into a double. And that’s the ball game. Having said that, I love Marsh for the future and I’d keep Rhys one more year. My only frustration with Rhys is I wonder if he’s worked hard enough to improve his defense. I certainly and honestly don’t know the answer to that but he really hasn’t improved. When seeing what Bohm has done this year in comparison, it’s just remarkable. With all due respect to Rhys, maybe he works his tail off and it just doesn’t add up to results. Let’s go shock the world in Houston and win two games.

  80. Thomson needs to change the lineup. Hoskins and Castellanos are both rally killers and positioned perfectly to kill EVERY rally. In addition, Schwarber and Harper need to be closer together in the order. They’re the only ones consistently doing damage, so multiply the damage by having them both hit in the same inning as often as possible.

    I was at the no hitter and felt depressed all day, and now it’s even worse. No matter the outcome I’m proud of our guys for the run they’ve put together. But don’t just roll over at the end. There’s times where you ride out the slumps, but that time is not the elimination game in the world series.

    1. Agree with Dan K. Castellanos provides no protection for Harper. He hasn’t homered in his last 110 ABs.It’s mostly strike outs, ground balls, and pop ups. He rarely drives the ball. I’d move Harper to the 3-hole, and bat JTR cleanup. The Astros don’t use any leftys out of their pen so no need to separate Schwarber and Harper.
      Having said this … I’m not expecting Thomson to change anything.

      And I don’t think this series is over yet.

  81. Outta any of the major 4 sports, Postseason baseball has to be the most stressful on the fans of whatever team. Crazy highs and insane lows. And if anyone has noticed, we’ve lost (I believe) every game where there was a travel day/day off following, just another day to sulk but that’s what makes it so great. The investment we all have in something that essentially we shouldn’t be as invested in. But we are.


    Am I the only one who thought we should have pinch hit for Marsh? He’s literally the last guy I’d want up in that situation.

  82. The difference tonight was their first baseman made a difficult play and ours muffed an easy play. Forget the 0-5 with 4 ks. Castellanos is off. You can tell he won’t hit the ball hard. Pulls off everything.

    How many games has Hoskins single handily lost us in the last 2 months. Has to be 3 or 4.

    Also, how many bad jumps have we seen marsh make. He misses some must catch balls with bad reads. Almost lost game one bc he missed that soft pop up.

    Harper is a machine. Guy is locked. No help around him. Leads off an inning getting on base to be stranded by castellanos. Or comes up with no men on and two outs.

    Rough thoughts.

  83. The pitcher last night did there best, Marsh you are terrible, and if people cant see that, that is 5 misplayed balls in center, and your so call gold glove was for left field, I want him out of here so bad, all those first round bust looking for a centerfielder, Bohm should be hitting second next yr,

    1. rocco…..I feel your frustration…..have patience with Marsh in CF.
      Dombrowski, staff and the scouts have faith him defensively.
      If it doesn’t work they will know when to move on.
      Agree Bohm needs to hit in the 2-hole.
      And would thank Rhys for the past 6 years…and look to make a change.

      1. Romus I am frustrated, for guys like you, 80 yrs old, how many more yrs left? i want you to see a championship, before you go to that big casino in the sky m8

      2. Agree with your comments. Unfortunately over time, we’re now playing more like a mid-80 win team, then a Championship 100+ win team.

        Foundation is there, needs some tweaking.

        I really like Rhys, but I think he’s been exposed. Reminds me alot of what Phils did to Pena and Longoria in ’08. Playoff pitching is much harder – based on talent and scouting than regular season.

        Great run – and not over until Miss Delco starts singing.

  84. Thank God I could watch the Eagles mostly when the Astros batted! Schwarber and Harper only players with a good approach. Was there 3 called third strikes in a row?, thought my head was going to explode. Turned game off after hands of stone Hoskin’s blunder. Okay I feel a little better, but realize they are toast.

  85. I was at game 3. It was incredibly fun!
    I watched the No-hit game 4 and hoped they could just put it behind him.

    I give the team great credit for how well they bounced back in game 5. The pitching was mostly strong. The hitting created many opportunities, but a couple players had horrible nights and several plays just want the Astros way.

    It leaves me believing that this team can still compete in game 6 & 7 and can still continue this magical run. I’m clinging to hope!

  86. Tomorrow’s lineup should be:
    3- Bohm

  87. I don’t think Topper changes the lineup. But, we are built to outhit our weaknesses. Marsh in CF should not be a weakness, but he has to read balls better. I don’t agree with Rocco, I like him, and I think he is going to be a good player for us. But, why didn’t he try a bunt? 1st and 3rd, 1 out, same situation in July when he was an Angel, against the same RP. Beat the Astros. Have to get the bat on the ball. I would have bunted him there. Hoskins can blow an easy ground ball that would have caught a runner at home. 2 runs given away by sloppy play. The BP was supposed to be somewhat less than a strength and has done a great job. Castellanos is giving zero protection to Harper. Hits a line drive to SS and that was his hardest hit ball in the whole Series. Hoskins with truly dreadful ABs. Sure the Astros kid in CF made a great catch and JT was a foot away from extra bases, but there were so many missed opportunities and so many poor approaches to the ABs. Hit the ball the other way! Shorten your stroke, put the ball in play. Game winning singles make you a hero the same as a HR. Just frustrated because we should have won that game, even though on paper, a BP game vs Verlander looks like an Astros advantage, we still should have won that game. Getting no-hit is a different story, aggravating, but kudos to the other guy. This was mistake after mistake and blown chances. I don’t know the status of Wheeler’s health, but I am hoping he is healthy and gives us an Ace performance. We can still shock the Baseball world and win both in Houston. I love Ranger in Game 7, but we have to win 6 first.

    1. Rhys’ slash in 69 PAs in the post season…..169/.217/.462 …7 hits…6 HRS and one double…33% K rate. Great players have had bad post season performances in the past.
      When they had Verlander on the ropes in the 2nd or 3rd…he walked two batters..Marsh and Schwarber on 8 balls way off the plate….bases loaded….Rhys comes up and swings and misses at the first pitch, off the plater slider…..have to use your head
      Nevertheless…business-wise, probably time to move on this off-season

    2. Matt13 – couldn’t agree more. Marsh should have bunted. But – to Others, Marsh is only 24 and is going to get better.

  88. I’m for putting bridling out there instead of castellanos. He gives us a better chance to win tomorrow.

  89. Guys I tried to glance at your comments.
    It may have been mentioned but 2 moves that were not made to me might have eked out a Phillies win. Even with all the failures.
    1. Brogdon begins the 4th inning. Announcers said Thor would not face Alveraz a 2nd time.
    2. Marsh has to bunt down the 1st base line to get Stott in from 3rd. Phillies did those things early in playoffs. Smoltz has said many times the bunt down 1st is indefensible. Plus, Mancini was holding Segura on. He just had to get the ball on the ground and game tied. Plus, Segura now at 2nd and Mancini would not have been standing on 1st base on Schwarber ball. The ball found Mancini. Great catch in center.
    But Astros are pitching around Schwarber and Harper. They know guys 2, 3 and 5 are almost assured outs. Also, Stott and Marsh are overmatched in most at bats. Another reason for the bunt.
    Season is not over. Nats went to Houston and won 2 games in 19. Maybe Phillies do the same.
    I am so frustrated with Hoskins. The number 2 hitter cannot K 4 straight times.
    Pena vs Hoskins. No comparison. Plus, Pena may be MVP of Series.

    1. agreed, if Brogdon coming for Alvarez, may as well bring him in to start the inning- but Bregman’s ball offBrogdon could have been a homer anyway.
      With Marsh K rate, plus with Mancini being new in the game and only a part time firstbaseman, would have liked to see what he did with the bunt.
      I’m still surprised Harper is getting so many pitches to hit. With Baker having managed Bonds in his prime, wouldnt have been surprised by an intentional walk there in the ninth.
      Hoskins frustrating, but he’s not the one batting himself second in the order.
      These 3 games at CBP really encapsulated their season- one game booming homers, another completely shut down, and another without being able to hit with RISP, and some shoddy defense.

  90. It’s on Wheeler’s shoulders. I think we can all agree, the plan was not to go 1-3 in Nola’s and Wheeler’s starts! A dominant Wheeler start in game 6 and the Phils have a shot. I like our chances with Ranger in game 7.

    Realmuto driving the ball to right-center was a good sign. Hoskins and Castellanos have been trying to pull everything all series, although I thought Castellanos had some better at bats yesterday (Hoskins did not).

    Stott hasn’t hit either, though I expect Sosa will start in game 6.

    Bohm’s defense does seem to be getting better.

    1. I thought that was the best Castellanos has looked in awhile, maybe the LHP/RHH match up helps him have a season saving game 6.

      The series isn’t over yet. I look forward to Zack Wheeler stepping up. Valdez isn’t unbeatable and let his emotions get the better of him last post season, maybe he does the same with a chance to close out the World Series and the Phillies can take advantage.

      If not then this was a fantastic season and should be celebrated in the way 1993 is.

  91. Matt. Sorry I missed your post. Totally agree on bunt. I am so tired of all of these Ks.
    As Smoltz says over and over a K never drives in a run.
    I have said this many times. The object is to WIN the game. Whatever that takes.
    Phillies were doing that early in playoffs. Astros also passed on bunting a run in with Gurriel but a right-handed batter. Little more difficult.

    1. About Smoltz’s comment: “a K never drives in a run” ➡ it reminds me of one of my favorite/craziest baseball plays of all time. This happened in an A+ game (Midwest League) about 5 years ago.
      Here’s the setup: Wisconsin Timber Rattlers are losing 6-4 in the bottom of the 9th. Bases are loaded & they are down to their last strike (it’s an 0-2 count). Here’s what happened ⬇

      1. Smoltz still correct. Drove in 3. LOL
        Still just way too many Ks.
        I thought Brogdon was really good. That is hopeful going forward.

  92. One thing that I want to add. I know every player is doing their absolute best.
    The pressure is immense. Like Jim mentioned earlier Nola and I feel Wheeler are just out of gas. Your mind tells you one thing, and your body tells you something else.
    Astros did not have to gear up till the playoffs began. I forget but they coasted to the division. Not much stress.
    Let’s just hope the guys can reach back and find a little extra. Now it is a 1 game season. One game at a time. Let’s see how they respond.

    1. Well, let’s just see what happens.

      Sure, the odds massively favor Houston and Houston will probably win. But if the Phillies can eek out a win on Saturday night, the momentum shifts again and Ranger takes the mound for Game 7 with an all-hands-on-deck bullpen available, including Nola.

      The bottom line is that these teams have played each other very tightly. It feels like the Astros have dominated the series at time, but that’s not the reality.

      It could still end up being a dog fight of a series, but if not, it’s been an amazing ride this year and I, for one, am thankful for that.

      1. Run differential in the series so far is 1 run in Houston’s favor. Very even.

        The difference in game 5 was that the Phils left 12 runners on base.

  93. I saw a video, that stated a when an error is made in a WS game, that take your teams chances of losing to 10%. If you make the error when your team is behind .. it jumps to 54%. Regardless, the Phillies just need to win 2 games, any way they can. Believe.

    Yes, the defense reared its head on 3 plays that really turned the game. Could’ve been a 2-1 victory

    I’d bat;

    At this point – segura and Castellanos look ready to clear the wall, they are do. That said, I’m not about to question Thomson, let him do his thing. 13 wins

  94. Tac, I had Castellanos with a HR vs Valdez the first time around, also thinking he was due. I will take one tomorrow. He has really not looked comfortable all year, seems to constantly be reaching for outside pitches, and hasn’t shown nearly the power he has had. Smoltz thinks he’s a real good hitter, and we will be very happy with how good he is next year. I would like that to start tomorrow! We also need much better ABs from Rhys. Last night’s were not good, at all.

    1. his last homer was in August? looked a little better last night but still trying to pull everything- agree that he’ll be good next year but would be nice if he could start this weekend.

    2. Have to wonder if that oblique injury is still causing him issues. The swing doesn’t look good at all. Everything seems to be flailing. A lot of guessing or just poor pitch recognition.

      Not sure what the oswing % is but likely pretty bad.

      So Rob I know you want to be loyal to your guy but if it is health related you have to get him out. If its just he’s going bad you have to move him down.

  95. I like just 2 stats to determine a teams chances in a 7 game series. Give me OPS and WHIP and I think I’ll predict pretty accurately who had the advantage in a 7 game series.

    Given OPS the Stros were 7th the Phillies 8. WHIP Astro’s 2nd Phillies 18th. It’s not even close who has the better pitching.

    So far in this series the Astros WHIP 1.07 the Phillies 1.20.

    Again I think Robby leaves the dance with the date he brought meaning I don’t think he changes his LU but man if every there was a time to get off script its now. Against Valdez I’d go with

    Nick-Would not hesitate to get Maton in there once Framber is out (sleeper pinch hit role Stubbs. He knows their pitchers pretty good)
    Vierling-Marsh of course off the bench
    Sosa-then Stott for Hoskins or Bohm; Sosa stays in to play 3b and either Bohm moves to 1B or Hoskins stays in and Bohm comes out depending on the scorematch up and inning.

    In a win or go home game you have to throw everything you got at them.

  96. I’m hearing Topper is likely to switch Harper and JTR for Game 6, but leave the rest the same in the top 6. Bottom 3 will likely be Segura, Vierling and Stott in that order.

  97. I hope they start De La Cruz at LHV next year. He will struggle in the beginning but then hopefully come around. He’s a likeable kid and it’s not like the Phillies have a ton of outfield prospects that should be at LHV. Would rather see him and Rojas there than some career minor league journeymen. It would be an amazing journey for him it play in the majors even if he just has a cup of coffee.

    1. Agree…..him and Rojas should be challenged in 2023.
      Interestingly…..De La Cruz ‘s actual height now is 6’9″ according to him.
      I can see now where the Phillies are trying him a little at first base.

    2. His outcome as a minor leaguer is not going to depend on whether he starts in Reading or LHV. His play will determine that.

  98. Suarez in game 6 or 7.

    Wheeler’s arm may be the key. If he struggles to pitch above 95 and doesn’t pitch more than a few innings then Suarez may be used in game 6.
    But if he has enough in the tank to hit 97 and give us 5-6 innings then we can save Suarez for game 7.

  99. I would guess that there is Nothing new about this in Philly. There are idiot fans everywhere perhaps more so in Philly. The Castellanos family should know better than to “tweet” out there frustrations or complaints. In my opinion this is only news in our era of hyper materialism / nihilism. Before the cell phone era, it would not have made the news. I am sure Thomson has them focused on the monumental opportunity before them. 2 more games! That is it! At the beginning of the year, Anyone would have been ecstatic to have that opportunity. That should be the mindset heading into tonight. Be absolutely happy that we get to enjoy the moment as the moment is fleeting, and this moment for the Phillies is rare and almost priceless. Play free with energy and above all else enjoy it. Live and love!

  100. It’s unfortunate these tweets and articles have to be written and distract from the otherwise positive press the Philly fans have gotten this postseason. Don’t these fans have brain enough to know that this kind of stupidity could sway a future free agent from signing to play here. 🙄

  101. rocco … contact you bookie. Too many trends point to the Phillies.

    🔹️ Phillies are 7-0 after an off day this postseason
    🔹️ World Series has been won on the road 8 consecutive years
    🔹️ Player (Schwarber) who has stolen a free taco for America has won the World Series 5 consecutive years

  102. I hope you are correct, Hinkie! I am feeling good about tonight. I think Wheeler pitches great and our RH bats step up. I still feel a good game is coming from Castles. Go Phils!

        1. Philly loses it in the typical Phily phashion….up a man, 3:30 to go and they let LAFC tie it up.
          rocco could have predicted that.

  103. I said he needed to change the lineup, he doesn’t and it takes two batters’ for it to bite us.

    God it’s frustrating.

    1. Rhys has that leg kick that starts when the pitching starts his pitch towards the plate. Unbalanced maybe?

      1. He’s flying open trying to pull everything. Any pitch on the outer 3rd is a simple role over grounder to 3rd.

  104. Wow! What a difference 6 days make. Wheeler looks like he’s old self. 98 and 99 early. Overpowering.

    1. I’ll be interested to see how much his spin rate drops when he can’t rub his hands every pitch.

  105. Hitters need to stop guessing. Going to set a record for pitches taken in the middle of the plate. Rhys and JTR are absolutely killing the offense.

    1. JT is definitely in a brutal slump, but he at least showed signs of life last night and got on base already tonight.

      Hoskins has accounted for more outs than PA at this point, though. Castellanos has also been bad, but to his credit he hasn’t hit into as many double plays as he had been all season.

      Still feels indefensible to run out the same (1-6) lineup that has put up 2 runs in 21 innings.

        1. I fully get leaving them in the lineup. Rhys only needs 1 pitch to change the outcome of the game, and Castellanos and JT are both capable of breaking out at any moment.

          But you can’t keep the status quo when it calls for TWO hitters hitting below .200 for the entire postseason to make up the heart of the order. It probably doesn’t change the outcomes of any of these games so far, but you have to try SOMETHING before you get eliminated.

    1. Darold Knowles pitched in all 7 games for the A’s in 1973 WS vs Mets. Saved games 1 & 7, ERA 0.00.

      1. Sometimes they go on a run, and sometimes they get tagged. But the more you use a reliever, the more likely they are to give up runs. And we used relievers A LOT this post season.

        It’s odd, but it feels like the starting pitchers are the only people Thomson DIDN’T trust. He’s letting multiple sub-.200 hitters work through their slumps at the top of the order. He’s bringing in relievers at every possible spot. He’s letting Castellanos stay in on defense when we’re up late in games. But if Nola or Wheeler give up a ground ball that finds a gap, out they come.

        He had a heck of a run with making the right moves at the right time. But he lost the touch at the end.

  106. Will say that it was a failure by JTR to not recognize that Maldano had moved on top of the plate with the intention of getting hit by a pitch. Needed to change their approach of pounding the inside sinker.

  107. I would not have pulled Wheeler, had 20 pitches left in him. Topper’s moves have worked until tonight

  108. Wheeler’s pitch count was not too high. (Just 70). He was still throwing heat. (97mph). He was not getting hit hard. (Just one ground single.)

    Meanwhile, Alvarado had pitched two straight games (each 20+ pitches) and would be asked to face Alvarez, Bregman and Tucker for 3rd straight game and 4th time in 6 games!! That’s too much familiarity for Alvarado to come in with no room for error given 1st & 3rd.

    Thomson has pulled many right levers but not all. Unfortunately this one really hurts. Oh well.

  109. It was a good year. Just a shame that Schwarber and Harper had to drag the rest of the offense kicking a screaming up until this point and fall just short.

    Rhys needs to do whatever it takes to come back next year and be an absolute menace to opposing pitchers. Castellanos should look into getting an ADHD diagnosis, apparently. And hopefully the team as a whole can play well enough that our SP can get some rest down the stretch.

  110. Tough loss. I would of like to see wheeler stay in.

    Next year need another couple dependable bp pieces.

    Addition by subtraction. Hoskins gone. Turner instead of segura. Second year of stott. Bohm better.

    Dombrokski can’t stick with this team. They got hit at the right time but still have a lot of work to do.

    No shift will make schwarber, Harper, Jt and castellanos much better hitters.

    Just get Rhys out of town. Just pathetic postseason performance. Couple big home runs but other than that totally hurt this team with his glove and bay or lack there of.

  111. In the end … pitching depth caught up with the Phillies. Thomson was working with 3 starters and 3 reliable relievers in the postseason. They wore down.
    The regular season and the postseason are two different beasts. Not to beat a dead horse … but Dombrowski needs to bring in more quality arms. I can see the team using a 6 man rotation for (at least) part of 2023 to limit innings and keep Wheeler/Nola/Ranger/Verlander/Painter/McGarry fresh for another playoff run.

    1. Hinkie…….in the end we lost because we can’t hit and we don’t score runs when they are in position to do so!

      1. They took a 1-0 lead before their best arms were taken advantage of. Wheeler/Nola/Alvarado were running on fumes at this point.

        Yes … Hoskins/Realmuto/Castellanos went cold, but overall this team is much much deeper with the bats than the arms.

        Also … Sosa and Harper each came “this close” to putting another four runs on the board with homers.

          1. Agree to disagree.
            Phillies have one of the deepest lineups in baseball (did you like them a week ago when they were averaging 7+ runs a game at home in the postseason?). The pitching (both starters and relievers) is top heavy. They were using BP games (multiple times) this postseason.

            1. Hinkie – will be interesting to see the how the FO handles this

              Do they sign a FA pitcher, eat up a lot salary or do they believe in Painter and fill out the team sign 2+’bullpen Arms instead. As of now, that’s my preference with signings another top bat like turner or Swanson

    2. Good try but the offense scored how many runs in the last 3 games?

      Too much swing and miss in the lineup which was exploited by good Astros pitching.

      Need to change the mix on offense and improve the defense.

  112. First, thanks for a terrific year. I was one of those who wanted to make the Playoffs no matter what. I thought we matched up well against the Cardinals, and expected nothing beyond that. Once the games actually played, we should/could have won it all. I would not have pulled Wheeler. The hit batter was a crappy call! But Rhys and Castellanos were not good. Rhys, who I have defended forever, had some of the worst ABs you will ever see. But, thank you Phils for so much more than I could have expected. Get better for next year!! I thought we would win tonight.

  113. One more thing. I have been a Rhys Hoskins fan and supporter forever. His HR vs Strider was one of my favorite moments ever, and I have been a fan since 1961. If tey decide to move him, I can’t complain. But, don’t tell me Darick Hall is better. A seriously great season and we should have been able to beat Houston !

  114. Bats came up small in the end, but I have nothing but gratitude for what this team did this year in exceeding (almost) all expectations; feels like this generation’s ’93 team.

    That said, I hope DD shakes up the roster this offseason. Power is great but sometimes you just need a guy (or two or three) who can deliver a timely hit now and again.

    Other than that, I’m just really excited to see Andrew Painter in this rotation next year. Will be exciting times.

    Been a great year overall though — thanks to everyone for their awesome commentary as usual. I’ll see you all again come draft time!

  115. Yes. Should have been able to beat Houston, but that’s the beauty of baseball. Almost every loss has turning points of ” if only ”

    The fact is, the Phillies 1) had a great run and far outperformed expectations and 2) were beaten in the end by a much superior team.

    My guess is that Dombrowski knows what needs to be changed and will change it. The club needs 1) more starting pitching depth, 2) better defense, 3) more consistent hitters.

    So, an enjoyable season of great progress. Let’s celebrate the positives and look forward to more in 2023.

    Can’t wait for pitchers and catchers to report.

  116. ✴️ Quick Survey ✴️

    1️⃣ When will Bryce Harper next play a game for the Phillies?
    A) Spring training
    B) April
    C) May
    D) June or later

    2️⃣ Who is more likely to play for the Phillies in 2023?
    A) Rhys Hoskins
    B) Zach Eflin

    3️⃣ Who bats leadoff for the Phils in more games next season?
    A) Kyle Schwarber
    B) Bryson Stott
    C) Trea Turner

    4️⃣ How many HRs will Nick Castellanos hit in 2023?
    A) less than 15
    B) 15 to 20
    C) 20 to 25
    D) 25 to 30
    E) more than 30

    5️⃣ Will the Phillies City Connect uniforms (assuming they’re unveiled next season) feature …
    A) The Liberty Bell
    B) Benjamin Franklin
    C) Phillie Phanatic
    D) None of the above

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