We all make mistakes in life and up until about 5 minutes ago I didn't think my choice of which college to attend was a bad decision. After the jump, you can meet my sophomore year statistics teacher. He is the one in the mullet rocking the keys.
DETROIT – The Phillies beat the Detroit Tigers at their own game in picking up an 8-5 win to salvage one game in the interleague series on Wednesday afternoon.
Aaron Nola pitched well and earned the win. Odubel Herrera had a big hit and Hector Neris was clutch out of the bullpen.
The Tigers are one of the best hitting teams in baseball and the Phillies are one of the worst. But the Phils out-hit the Tigers, 12-10. Two of the Phils’ hits were home runs.
The Phillies entered the day scoring just 3.2 runs per game, ranking them second-to-last in the majors. The Phils had scored just 11 runs in their previous five games; four of them were losses.
The win left the Phils at 26-21 heading into Chicago for three games with the rugged Cubs.
Starting pitching report
Aaron Nola gave up seven hits and four runs over six innings of work. He walked one and struck out six.
Four of the hits and three of the runs Nola gave up came in the fifth. All the hits were singles and one could have been ruled an error. So Nola was not supported by completely clean defense.
The right-hander is 4-3 with a 3.14 ERA in 10 starts. He has 70 strikeouts and just 20 walks in 66 innings.
He is 6-1 in 13 road starts during his young career.
Detroit right-hander Anibal Sanchez took the loss. He gave up eight hits and six runs in six-plus innings. Three of the runs were unearned. The Tigers committed three errors.
David Hernandez inherited a 7-4 lead in the seventh. He allowed two hits, a walk and a run with one out and was removed from the game. Hector Neris came on and struck out Victor Martinez and Nick Castellanos to clean up Hernandez’s mess. Neris stayed on for a scoreless eighth.
Jeanmar Gomez earned his majors-leading 17th save.
At the plate
Peter Bourjos drove in two runs. He singled home one in the second and belted his first homer of the season in the seventh. The homer gave the Phils a 6-4 lead. Tommy Joseph increased the lead to 7-4 with sacrifice fly later in that inning.
Herrera had the big hit for the Phillies, a three-run homer in the fourth. He hit a 2-1 slider from Sanchez far over the right-field wall and scored Jose Bautista points with a big bat flip.
The Phillies scored their second run of the day when Bourjos and Andres Blanco executed a double steal. Blanco became the first Phillie to steal home since Chase Utley in 2009.
Cameron Rupp and Blanco had back-to-back doubles in the eighth to give the Phils some cushion.
Ryan Howard laced a hard, line-drive single to right his first time up then struck out in his next two at-bats. He finished 1 for 5 and is now hitting .160.
Every player in the Tigers’ lineup had a hit except Castellanos.
Maikel Franco limped off the field and out of the game before the start of the bottom of the seventh inning. He jammed his right foot sliding into second base in the top of the inning and was diagnosed with a sprained ankle. It was said to be mild.
The Phillies are off on Thursday. They open a three-game series against the Cubs at Wrigley Field on Friday. The Cubs are the first team in the majors to reach 30 wins. Here are the pitching matchups:
Friday afternoon – LHP Jon Lester (4-3, 2.60) vs. LHP Adam Morgan (1-2, 5.61)
Saturday afternoon – RHP Kyle Hendricks (2-4, 3.30) vs. RHP Jerad Eickhoff (2-6, 3.86)
Sunday afternoon – RHP John Lackey (4-2, 3.38) vs. RHP Vince Velasquez (5-1, 2.75)
In case you were working this afternoon and weren't able to tune in for the Phillies game in Detroit, Odubel Herrera absolutely killed a baseball off of Tigers pitcher Anibal Sanchez to put Philadelphia up 5-1 in the top of the 4th.
The ball was crushed and Odubel knew it immediately. He displayed one of the best bat flips a Phillie has flipped in recent memory.
Franzke and L.A. seemingly enjoyed it greatly.
Franzke -"One of the more emphatic bat flips that you'll see...this side of those cats in Korea"— Franzke & LA (@FranzkeLA) May 25, 2016
LA -"Or Toronto"
You can watch the wonderful bat flip below. And how about the fantastic photo of it above courtesy of Associated Press photographer Carlos Osorio.
Bat flip. pic.twitter.com/YjCFMucm07— Todd Zolecki (@ToddZolecki) May 25, 2016
Odubel Herrera with the A-plus-plus-plus bat flip. https://t.co/JRb2LV5vtL— Baseball Is Fun (@flippingbats) May 25, 2016
Odubel's batflip 😎 pic.twitter.com/JN1phTO7WK— Matt Breen (@matt_breen) May 25, 2016
Odubel Herrera just wants to Make Baseball Fun Again.
The Phillies maintain a 8-5 lead in the top of the 8th at the time of this posting.
In the fourth of our five-part offseason series examining the future of the Flyers, Tom Dougherty, Jordan Hall and Greg Paone give their opinions on who will be and who won't be on the roster. We go alphabetically. Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3 can be seen by clicking the links. Today, we begin with Matt Read.
2015-16 stats: 79 GP, 11 G, 15 A; Contract: Signed through 2018-19, $3.975 mm cap hit
Dougherty: Read is a two-time 20-goal scorer but is coming off his second straight disappointing season. Simply put, he’s not that player anymore. But he’s not as bad as you would think if you were to search his name on Twitter. He can play on both special teams, which is valuable. He’s not a terrible ninth forward or fourth liner. Read is signed for two more seasons, but the Flyers desperately need goal scoring and I think Hextall finds a taker for Read this summer.
Hall: You wonder if a role change will help Read rediscover himself (see story). Maybe a change of scenery does the trick. Or, perhaps Read is simply the player we’ve seen over the past two seasons. He’s a third- or-fourth-liner in the NHL, and that’s OK. But he’s making $14.5 million over four seasons with the Flyers through 2017-18, which doesn’t help. Read will be back but fighting his tail off for playing time. Ultimately, though, Ron Hextall will start looking at all avenues to part ways with Read — it’s just a matter of when.
Paone: No Flyer’s game has fallen off more over the past few seasons than Read’s. After a 22-goal campaign in 2013-14, the 29-year-old forward has scored just 19 goals in the past two seasons combined. That’s a span of 159 games. He struggled so much this past season that he was a healthy scratch at one point. This just screams of a situation where a change of scenery could benefit both parties. The question is how that gets done. Will someone take a chance on Read via trade? Or is a buyout with a projected cap hit at $875,000 next season before going up to $1.375 million in 2017-18 an option? Time will tell. But Read’s time in Philadelphia seems to be up.
2015-16 stats: 80 GP, 26 G, 33 A; Contract: Restricted free agent
Dougherty: Schenn became a go-to guy this past season for the Flyers, which is exactly what you wanted to see from him in his fifth NHL season. He found a consistency in his game that has been lacking and showed he can play at wing. He scored a career-high 59 points and 26 goals and you have to think he’s still not done growing. He’ll be here for a while.
Hall: Schenn, a pending restricted free agent coming off a career season, is hoping for a long-term deal with the Flyers. Ron Hextall and company, of course, want him back. Schenn will be re-signed. As Hextall said, the Flyers will “get it done.” (see story)
Paone: No way Ron Hextall and the Flyers give up on a 24-year-old winger (yeah, Schenn’s found a home on the wing) who’s coming off a career-high 26-goal season and showed profound chemistry with Claude Giroux and Wayne Simmonds on the top line. That’s especially true with the way the Flyers crave goal-scoring. No question Schenn will be back with a not-so-little raise.
2015-16 stats: 81 GP, 1 G, 9 A; Contract: Signed through 2016-17, $2.25 mm cap hit
Dougherty: Schultz is basically the Jason Smith to this Flyers team. He’s respected in the locker room, a guy the team looks to lead and blocks a ton of shots. There’s always room for a guy like Schultz on a roster and it’s good to have him around with the young guns on their way. Ideally, his role decreases next season, but nonetheless, he should stick around.
Hall: Dave Hakstol and the Flyers’ locker room routinely extolled Schultz last season for his presence on and off the ice. He’s under contract and will be here for one more year, a season in which he can continue leading by example. And, who knows, maybe a contending team in need of an experienced blueliner will pursue the Flyers at the trade deadline.
Paone: Schultz is what he is at this stage of his career. He’s a stay-at-home defenseman who blocks a ton of shots. He’s also a leader in the locker room, and that can’t be undervalued. With just a year left on his contract, Schultz isn’t in the Flyers’ long-term plans. Think of Schultz as a veteran placeholder until a prospect is ready to join the big club. In the meantime, he can fill his veteran leader role on the blue line for the upcoming season and then the Flyers can reassess the defensive situation after the season.
2015-16 stats: 81 GP, 32 G, 28 A; Contract: Signed through 2018-19, $3.975 mm cap hit
Dougherty: Simmonds is the Flyers’ first 30-goal scorer since Scott Hartnell in 2011. The Flyers need goals. Simmonds scores goals. This is easy. He’s not going anywhere any time soon.
Hall: Simmonds, the emotional heartbeat of the Flyers, is locked up and fresh off a career-best 32-goal campaign. He’s getting better and going nowhere.
Paone: Power forwards who create havoc in front of the net and continue to increase their production year after year don’t grow on trees. Therefore, the Flyers wouldn’t even think of getting rid of Simmonds, who scored a career-high 32 goals and tied another career-high with 60 points. Plus, it’s probably not a good idea to mess with the chemistry Simmonds, Schenn and Giroux had on the top line at the end of the season.
2015-16 stats: 62 GP, 6 G, 17 A; Contract: Signed through 2016-17, $5.25 mm cap hit
Dougherty: Streit is two years shy of turning 40, but he’s still an above-average puck mover. He didn’t seem to have the same step in his game after returning from his pubic plate dislocation and lost his job as the Flyers’ power-play quarterback to Shayne Gostisbehere, but he still has value. He’s on the last year of his deal. He’s a candidate to be moved to free up a spot for one of the defensive prospects. Plus, I think they could get something of value for him.
Hall: Streit said he takes a lot of pride in training and preparing for the NHL grind at 38 years old. He wants to keep playing until his body says no. The Flyers have an ideal trade chip here in Streit. In 2016-17, he’ll be on the final year of his contract, making him an attractive second-half rental for a win-now team. I think he stays but the Flyers find a suitor and complete a deal before the trade deadline.
Paone: To me, Streit is the most difficult player on the entire roster to answer this question about. On one hand, the Flyers probably would like to move his salary and free up a spot for a younger player or prospect. But, to me, that just seems like it will be easier to do closer to the trade deadline when teams get desperate and will bite on a defenseman who’ll be 39 this coming December but can still produce and can help out tremendously on the power play. I just feel it will be too difficult for the Flyers to move Streit in the offseason. If they do, they’ll have to add something or someone to entice another team into taking him. The chances of having to do that at the trade deadline are much less. For that reason, Streit stays for now.. Plus, it can’t hurt having Sam Morin or Travis Sanheim play a half-season in the AHL until then.
Verdict: STAY (for now)