Brand Ready To Rebound?

18 08 2010

Elton Brand has three years and $51 million remaining on the 5 year contract he signed in the summer of 2008 with the Philadelphia 76ers. The

Elton Brand of the Philadelphia 76ers

first two seasons were less than memorable, riddled with injuries and substandard play on the court.  He finished last season averaging career-lows in scoring, rebounding and minutes.

This season, however, the team would have us believe (they have to attempt to sell tickets after all) that we should be prepared to see the Elton Brand of old (long before he joined the 76ers).  According to the Philadelphia Intelligencer, Brand has been in regular communication with the team’s new head coach, Doug Collins, during the offseason. “I’ve talked to Elton numerous times on the phone and we’ve texted,” said Collins. “He’s in shape and his legs feel good. He feels like he’s getting more lift. In his words, ‘I’m ready to go.’ ”

In addtion, Brand visited Philadelphia two weeks ago to train with Jesse Wright, the team’s strength and conditioning coach. “He had a great workout,” said Collins. “More importantly, he weighed 255. That’s the weight I want him. I said, ‘Elton, I’d like to see you at 255.’ Here it is early August at 255. It’s going to take all that stress off his legs. To me, that’s an incredibly positive sign to what Elton would like to see happen this year.”

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Phillies Surge Past Mets To Tie Giants For Wild Card Lead

16 08 2010

Kyle Kendrick pitched 6 2/3 innings of one-run ball against a left handed loaded Mets lineup, grabbing the Phillies the rubber game at Citi Field with a 3-1 victory. Brad Lidge picked up the save.

The victory kept the Phillies within two games of the National League East leading Atlanta Braves and pulled them into a tie with the San Francisco Giants for the Wild Card lead. The teams will square off in a three-game series at Citizens Bank Park starting Tuesday. Despite the intrigue of the match up, Philadelphia has attempted to downplay the significance of the upcoming series. “I never even look at the Wild Card,” Manuel said. “I don’t think about the Wild Card. Winning the division is what I look at.”





Phillies Left Handed Relief Options

13 08 2010

With J.C. Romero struggling mightily and Antonio Bastardo bouncing back and forth from Lehigh Valley, the Philadelphia Phillies have Mike Gonzalez Baltimore Oriolesacknowledged their desperate need for a reliable left-handed option from the bullpen.  Scott Eyre, retired, has been discussed and several intriguing waiver trade options exist. Brian Tallet of the Blue Jays, Brian Fuentes of the Los Angeles Angels, and Mike Gonzalez of the Baltimore Orioles could all get the job done.

The most intriguing, in my opinion, and perhaps the most easily attainable, would be Gonzalez. He signed a two year deal worth $12 million dollars last off-season to join Baltimore.  He’s spent most of this season on the DL but has pitched well since returning, yielding just two runs in nine innings of work since the all-star break.  His fastball is now back to over 90 mph. The Phillies, however, may be reluctant to make a move for Gonzalez unless Baltimore is willing to pick up some of his remaining salary.





Phillies Savior: Scott Eyre?

11 08 2010

So, yes, this is what it’s come to.  After another brutal display from the Phillies bullpen and J.C. Romero in particular, the Scott Eyre movement has begun. Eyre told John R. Finger of CSNPhilly.com that the team has not yet contacted him about a return but that he would consider coming out of retirement if they have interest in signing him.

Eyre is 38 years old and had offseason elbow surgery but told Finger that he feels great and would need only three weeks to prepare for big league action. Just last year, Eyre posted a 1.50 ERA in 30 innings with 6.6 K/9 and 4.8 BB/9.

Phillies manager Charlie Manuel told Finger that the team “could use another lefty if he can get people out.”





Congrasterisk

5 08 2010

New York Yankees star slugger Alex Rodriquez finally hit his 600th hr. A Rod is the youngest to ever reach this feat but it had been 12 games since his last swing left the park and Yankees fans were growing restless.

Rodriguez is  only the 7th player in major league history to join the 600 hr club, joining Barry Bonds (762), Hank Aaron (755), Babe Ruth (714), Willie Mays (660), Sammy Sosa (609) and Ken Griffey, Jr. (630). None of the other men ever admitting using performance enhancing drugs, though Bonds and Sosa are suspected of doing so.