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Blanton Changes Grip, Struggles Against Pirates

The Phillies did not win on Saturday.  Nor did they lose.  After ten innings, the Phillies and Pittsburgh Pirates called it a tie, with the game knotted at three.

Joe Blanton made his spring debut, and allowed three first inning runs.  In his two innings of work, he surrendered five hits, three for extra bases.  Blanton explained that he is working on a new grip for his sinker since he was uncomfortable with the previous grip.

Danys Baez made an impressive Phillies spring debut.  He allowed one hit and struck out two in two scoreless innings.

Also, Domonic Brown continues to impress this spring.  He went 2-for-3 against the Pirates.  On the other hand, Ryan Howard remains hitless.  Howard is trying to work on hitting breaking balls, but he has struck out four times in five at-bats.

8 Comments

8 Comments

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  2. John

    March 7, 2010 at 12:48 pm

    I’m not worried about Joe at all, I have a feeling we’ll see a career year from him during the tenure of his new 3yr deal. The guy is young still 28? and has shown consistently good numbers for his spot in the rotation, perhaps recent phils success has me feeling optimistic (gasp) but I think we have yet to see the peak of Kentucky Joe. Setting the bar high, I don’t feel a 3.50 ERA and 15 wins is out of the question.

    Overall, I feel like with a bit better luck for Hamels, and a fair regression for Happ (ERA about 4.00) the Phils 1-4 matches up with any in the majors. As for the five slot, I also think we’re in great shape. I know people like to get on Moyer a lot, but are numbers similar to those of 07-08 that much of a stretch? Indications so far suggest he’s fully recovered from his surgeries and throwing well. I’m no doctor but, I suspect Moyer was having some groin issues prior to the tear that occurred while pitching, perhaps that contributed to his unusual control issues. Also, Kendrick apparently had a winter Halladay flame lit under his ass. I don’t know about you, but I have a soft spot for guys that bust their ass. For me, the best case scenario is Moyer as #5 and Kyle from the pen. Kendrick just seems like the better fit for the long-relief/mop-up role. I hate to bring money into it, but Kendrick is a young guy that has minor league options left (I think?) and it seems like it’s easier to ship a guy back and forth from a pen role than it would be for a starter.

  3. Dan S

    March 7, 2010 at 2:25 pm

    So far, Domonic Brown’s performance has made me feel better about the possibility of the phils losing Jayson Werth

  4. Aaron

    March 7, 2010 at 2:40 pm

    rather have blanton struggle now and work the kinks out. that is why it is spring training.

  5. WFC010

    March 7, 2010 at 6:59 pm

    By the way, I heard that Blanton has already altered his sinker grip again. Apparently this has been working better for him.

  6. BurrGundy

    March 7, 2010 at 10:17 pm

    I hope Big Joe is in good physical shape. They say he can really eat hoagies. He is one of my favorites and hope he has a great year.

  7. Greg

    March 8, 2010 at 3:53 am

    Jeez, lot of Sinker-Baller pitchers this year it seems. Halladay, Blanton, Kendrick. Oh well, never a bad thing. Sinkers = groundouts = more innings pitched.

  8. NJ

    March 8, 2010 at 7:20 am

    Think people around the majors sometimes forget how good Blanton is, he isn’t another Jon Garland. He isn’t Cliff Lee sure but we got him for a lot less than teams were close to paying in the off-season prior to the trade and he’s such a horse. As I see it the knock on him is though he can throw 5 or 6 pitches and give lots of variations on the fastball, he doesn’t command his pitches like a front of the rotation pitcher and struggles once the offense has had a real chance to see what he’s throwing.

    I love those guys who won’t be on the banners outside the ballpark but are there to take so much of the burden off the ones who are. The rotation seems to be in really good shape to keep the bullpen stable.

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