"No Panic" Says Howard; But He'd Better Start

Twitter and facebook were abuzz after last night’s win due to the fact that Roy Halladay removed his right groin after the second inning, inserted the sutures himself, wrapped the gauze, then fired off four more innings en route to a Phillies victory.

Maybe he didn’t do all that, but it felt like it. Lost in the aftermath of GroinGate, or whatever you want to call it, was Ryan Howard’s putrid performance. Not only was he 0-for-4 at the plate with three strikeouts, his glove failed him again, too.

In the fifth inning, Howard tried to “ole!” a ball hit to his left, in between he and the first base bag. The ball popped loose from his mitt and ricocheted away, allowing Andres Torres to reach base. Luckily, the inning ended two batters later with runners at first and third as Aubrey Huff weakly grounded out in front of catcher Carlos Ruiz. A possible situation was averted.

With his bat, Howard has been downright frightful. Zero. That’s the total number of RBI for Howard this postseason. Let that sink in. Zero. For a guy that has averaged 138 RBI per 162 games during the regular season over the past five seasons, it’s incomprehensible that his RBI count hasn’t gotten off the ground. Not even once, by accident. It’s startling, to be honest.

It’s also part of the reason why the Phillies are in a 3-games-to-2 hole with the Giants. Their big bats have not responded to the Giants pitching, however potent their staff may be. It all starts with their $125 million man.

Howard will have to pull his weight starting tonight. He’s been given a healthy dose of off-speed pitches, sure, but he should be somewhat used to that by now.

Here’s how his at-bats went down last night:

1st AB, 2nd inning: curveball, changeup, changeup, changeup, changeup, changeup. = Strikeout

2nd AB, 3rd inning: changeup, changeup, fastball (fouled), changeup. = Strikeout

3rd AB, 6th inning: slider, slider, changeup, fastball (ball), slider. = Strikeout

4th AB, 8th inning (against left Lopez): fastball, fastball, fastball, fastball. = Flyout to LF

Howard was given just two fastballs before the eighth inning. During his first two at-bats which ended in strikeouts, Howard swung and missed at breaking balls down and out of the zone. In his third at-bat, he was given a borderline slider that he foul tipped into the mitt of Buster Posey. In two strike counts, he isn’t getting much to work with.

Patience has been the key to this series, but Howard hasn’t shown much of it. “No Panic” has been Howard’s mantra, but try telling that to the masses. He’ll need to lead the way in the patience category tomorrow night against tough lefty Jonathan Sanchez, whom the Phillies have hit recently. To be frank, The Big Piece needs to show up in a big way.



  1. therookie300

    October 22, 2010 at 1:56 pm

    It’s hard to drive in runners that aren’t there. The guys in front of him have a total of 18 hits this postseason. That’s good for a .202 average. Howard might not be mashing homeruns, but he is still hitting .285 for the postseason. Right on pace for his normal average. He is facing some premium pitching and the numbers aren’t horrendous, maybe the strikeouts are worrisome. You want him to drive in runs, then tell the guys in front of him to get on base. I’ll be even more specific, Utley. Utley has been looking very bad at the plate as of late. I’m tired of weak groundouts directly to Freddy Sanchez.

    GO PHILS!!!

  2. ActuallyChilled

    October 22, 2010 at 2:01 pm

    rook, i agree. howard has had a number of base knocks/doubles. how many guys on base has he actually stranded? i think its less than 18. also, if he is to pull his weight, i can’t help but comment that perhaps if he wasn’t so skinny, some of those doubles would be HRs. lol. im all for healthy lifestyle. im just sayin 🙂

  3. Pat Gallen

    October 22, 2010 at 2:07 pm

    You can’t honestly pin this on the guys in front of him. He’s had more than enough opportunities. That .285 average is an empty one. He needs to hit home runs plain and simple, that’s what he’s paid to do.

  4. The Dipsy

    October 22, 2010 at 2:07 pm

    The battle isn’t joined until each has tasted their own blood. The Phils have felt SF’s best punch and now we’re coming home. Something inside me tells me, and I have nothing to back this up, that the Phils just didn’t take the Giants as seriously as they should have at first. But now its game on.

    Its Ryan’s job to knock in runs and you can’t do that without swinging. But then again, if Ryan can’t get off, then he should pick his pitches and if he walks, so be it. You has Jayson behind him against a lefty. Shane and Jimmy have to take more pitches.

    The Giants do all the little things right and it makes up for a lot of the things that they lack in their offense. In a tight pitching series like this one, it has gotten them to 3-2. But I think Ryan and Chase (who has quietly had a horrific series, both offensively and defensively) are gonna wake up because thats the kind of players they are. They don’t shrink from the spotlight.

    Please just make Sanchez get the ball over the effin plate. If the Phils do that, then by the 4th or 5th inning I hope the Phils start getting their pitches, and then actually hit them hard.

    Lastly, being pack at CBP is huge. The place is gonna be a hellhole for the Giants. I feel like the series has just officially started.

    The Dipsy

  5. Manny

    October 22, 2010 at 2:10 pm

    I agree with both sides of the issue. On the positive side, he STILL is hitting .285 and has actually done a good job against lefties… hitting doubles and going just not trying to do too much.

    On the negative side, he has ZERO RBIs as Pat mentioned, and he has failed in clutch situations. Guy on third with less than two outs SHOULD equal a run when Howard is at the plate… but that hasn’t been the case. I do hope that now that this series is going back to CBP, his power/RBI numbers improve.

  6. Ryan H.

    October 22, 2010 at 2:18 pm

    I don’t think Howard is the right target.last nights game aside (he was bad) he’s been the most consistent hitter on the team in this series. There has been nobody on base when he comes up. unless he drives himself in he isn’t gonna get any rbi’s. he is hitting over .300 with a couple of doubles. there are lots of other people I would blame first. Utley has been absolutely horrendous.

  7. branderson

    October 22, 2010 at 2:40 pm

    Halladay removed his groin?

  8. branderson

    October 22, 2010 at 2:43 pm

    haha Howard is hitting .294, I know he should be driving in runs but really point the finger and Utley and Victorino. their hitting performances have been paltry at best

  9. branderson

    October 22, 2010 at 2:44 pm

    To add on to my point, if Vic and Utley got on for Howard, his .294 average would have produced more runs. Simple.

  10. Lefty

    October 22, 2010 at 2:58 pm

    I’m one of the biggest supporters of Ryan on this site. I don’t buy the argument there has been nobody on base. He has 9 LOB’s in 8 games, which is really not that much, but it’s the postseason right now, time to step it up a notch.

    It’s time for our star to shine


  11. Lefty

    October 22, 2010 at 2:59 pm

    If he knocks in 5 or 6 this weekend, he could still be the NLCS MVP.

  12. Lefty

    October 22, 2010 at 2:59 pm


  13. Phan in the outfield

    October 22, 2010 at 2:59 pm

    Manny’s right, both sides have valid points. Hey, I’m the first person to say Howard is having issues in the playoffs. I said that b/c until the past day or so no attention had been paid to his hitting problem.

    The fact is the team as a whole has had terrible problems with their hitting. And it is showing horribly in this series. But to say that Howard has been their most consistent hitter is a huge overstatement. I thought Howard was paid specifically to be clutch? He hasn’t been, nor was he last yr in the WS (when it was very needed). This is a real problem.

  14. Phan in the outfield

    October 22, 2010 at 3:01 pm

    And remember Phans . . .

    “Be out there. Let ‘em have it. Let. Them. Have. It. All of ‘em. For real.” JRoll


  15. therookie300

    October 22, 2010 at 3:25 pm

    I will however agree with Lefty, Howard should be even better in these kinds of times. He is the superstar of the team, but I just can’t place all the blame in his lap.
    Don’t some people consider RBIs an overrated stat anyway? I believe I have heard that many times on this site….I’m just sayin’…..


    October 22, 2010 at 3:30 pm

    Sorry folks,CHASE has been far worse!

  17. Andrew from waldorf

    October 22, 2010 at 3:30 pm

    @ rbi over rated
    its probably the most under rated. You play to win the game
    Average and errors are over rated the most.

    Although defense is more important than hitting so just saying about the errors.

    Ryan Howard is ours. Unmovable even to the Yankees. Maybe the Mets will take him once he has a leg amputated for diabettes ( Mo Vaugn and a long list of signees).

    He better knock in 6 runs the next 2 games. The second baseman better too.


    October 22, 2010 at 3:31 pm


  19. Andrew from waldorf

    October 22, 2010 at 3:31 pm

    Actually Howard is worse than the second baseman so far.

  20. BravoMan

    October 22, 2010 at 3:53 pm

    See and I got bashed here for explaining to you Philly fans that your team is getting old. It’s showing now. Utley, Rollins, Ibanez (who’s already gotten old), Polanco and the list goes on. Howard will be leaving his prime in the short future and Werth will all but be gone next year.

    Who know though….. Utley, Rollins, Ibanez and Polanco could save their best for 2011 and Howard could continue to produce at such a high level for the remainder of his contract. Stranger things have happend in this game. I just seriously doubt it.

  21. Andrew from waldorf

    October 22, 2010 at 4:04 pm

    Nice to see some are still around in late October (unlike their franchises).
    Good luck winning with an offensive catcher.

    Definition of TURD
    1: a piece of fecal matter
    2: a contemptible person

    Examples of TURD
    He’s an obnoxious little turd.

  22. BravoMan

    October 22, 2010 at 4:08 pm

    Andrew, no sugar, you just know that I’m right on with my analysis of your team. They’re getting old and fast. Why are you so anal anyways? Calm down, douchebag.

  23. Chuck

    October 22, 2010 at 4:10 pm

    Chase sucks in this series. But Howard sucked last night. BIG TIME.


  24. BravoMan

    October 22, 2010 at 4:16 pm

    I’ve noticed there are some cool people on here. Took a while to see it, but there’s some good folks blogging here. However, Andrew and “miked63” are big time di**heads. Can’t stand either one, especially know-it-all Andouche. You’re a prick Andouche. You think you know everything which is what makes you look even more like a loser.


    October 22, 2010 at 4:18 pm



    October 22, 2010 at 4:19 pm


  27. BravoMan

    October 22, 2010 at 4:26 pm

    I love baseball, so I’ve watched almost every pitch of every game in both the NLCS and ALCS. UTLEY has been worse in the postseason than Howard. His costly errors and awful AB’s sink Howard’s mediocre play, imo. I don’t recall seeing Howard bobble every other thing hit to him and also recall him hitting tough lefties the last few nights.

    But SHHHHH, don’t tell Andouche this. He gets offended very easily. He’s what you call an insecure blogger.

  28. Andrew from waldorf

    October 22, 2010 at 4:26 pm

    @ Jay
    The mongoloid is here in late october. Have to say I like it.
    At least its our team. Imagine us on some other teams site.
    Wait thats impossible.

    los·er (lzr)
    1. a. One that fails to win: the losers of the game.
    b. One who takes loss in a specified way: a graceful loser; a poor loser.
    2. a. One that fails consistently, especially a person with bad luck
    b. One that is bad in quality

  29. Chuck

    October 22, 2010 at 4:31 pm

    Andrew, JAY, BravoMan…

    Just how old are you juveniles anyway?

  30. BravoMan

    October 22, 2010 at 4:33 pm

    Andrew, lets say your Phillies lose this ALCS. Ok, since 2007 the Phillies will have reached the playoffs 4 consecutive years, with 2 World Series appearances, 1 world title. Does this qualify as “chokers”, “losers” and whatever else names you’ve given the Braves and even their fans?

    Personally, I wouldn’t call the Phillies any of those names with a straight face if they lose this NLCS series. If I judged what they’ve done since ’07 I judge that as successful. Just like I judge what the Braves did from ’91-’05 as successful. And how I saw a depleted team reach the playoffs a success. Now you, on the other hand, have to judge (if what I said comes true and they miss out on a world title this season) what your team has accomplished as a failure. Hey, you said it, not me.

  31. Andrew from waldorf

    October 22, 2010 at 4:34 pm

    @ chuck
    Ive ignored the mongotard for about 6 months.
    Its an off day I humored him.
    Its my fault.
    I apologize. Wont happen again.

  32. BravoMan

    October 22, 2010 at 4:36 pm

    Chuck, I’m 28 years old.

  33. The Dipsy

    October 22, 2010 at 4:54 pm

    @Bravoman – You are like the weirdo in the bar that hangs around the guy and the girl, the one you had eyes for, and keeps hanging around trying even though its obvious they’re gonna leave together. And everyone in the bar knows it but you. Those ARE irritated stares the two keep giving you as you keep trying to inject yourself into their conversation. You’re a short, bespeckled man, too.

    Point: Give it up, dude. Your team lost. Please go home until spring training and let us do out Phillies-Giants thing. Thanks. Jesus.

    The Dipsy

  34. Chuck

    October 22, 2010 at 4:56 pm

    I don’t get it. Am I missing something? I would NEVER go onto another team’s blog…. ESPECIALLY AFTER MY TEAM WAS ELIMINATED….and talk sh!t.

    First of all, I don’t have the time. I barely have the time for this site.

    And…secondly, it’s just plain weird. Makes no sense to me.

    Like I said, maybe I’m missing something here…???

  35. biz

    October 22, 2010 at 5:08 pm

    # Andrew from waldorf Says:
    October 22nd, 2010 at 3:31 pm

    Actually Howard is worse than the second baseman so far.


    No one is worse than the 2nd baseman so far. Not Ibanez. Not Rollins. No one. Chase is supposed to be “the best player on the team”. This post season would look even worse for him if the scorekeepers had been correctly assigning errors to him. See the 1st inning of last night’s game and the game which Hamels pitched. He’s been dreadful at the plate and in the field.

  36. Andrew from waldorf

    October 22, 2010 at 5:16 pm


    We are discussing who is more terrible. Howard or Utley and you can at least argue for either. I concede Utley probably worse but I give middle infielders the benefit always. Thats just my prejudist.

    But they are still alive with the 2 franchise players adding nothing.
    Says volumes about the team.
    They are champions.
    And good luck to the Giants or anyone getting that 4th win vs them.
    Its tough.

  37. biz

    October 22, 2010 at 5:24 pm

    Utley has made 6 errors by my count. Last night he made 2 more. He made one when Hamels pitched. The scorers are being way too generous with him. When a grounder comes right to you, and you miss it, it’s not a hit. Add the .200 average to that and he’s the winner.


    October 22, 2010 at 5:40 pm

    I have a suggestion for the Big Man getting an RBI since he “hasn’t had runners on” Hit a F#*KING HOMERUN.


    October 22, 2010 at 9:20 pm


  40. bostonkate

    October 22, 2010 at 11:48 pm

    @jay I think chuck’s trying to make the point that these fights are almost to the effect of girls pulling each other’s pigtails on the playground. Ignore bravo, he keeps going cause he knows he gets under your’s and andrew’s skin. Maybe I’m the odd one out, but I find him oddly endearing.

  41. bostonkate

    October 22, 2010 at 11:50 pm

    In a ‘I feel better about my life knowing that’s pathetic’ type of way.

  42. brooks

    October 22, 2010 at 11:55 pm

    Utley, Ibanez, Howard, Victorino – none of them really have hit much at all. I am hoping this will all change back at the friendly confines. Let me include Jimmy in that mix and Chooch – wow, except for Jayson & Poly we covered pretty much all the starters!

    Time to rise to the occasion – not only do we want a win, how about a butt kickin’

  43. brooks

    October 22, 2010 at 11:56 pm

    bk – I find him odd but endearing?
    More booring…

  44. bostonkate

    October 23, 2010 at 12:10 am

    Brooks- I meant to add that I find him endearing in a way that makes me realize I am not pathetic and my own life isn’t that boring.

  45. brooks

    October 23, 2010 at 2:19 am

    Hah – BK, you just need to spend more time back in Philly girl… = )

  46. MikeB.

    October 23, 2010 at 2:28 am

    Not to get off the subject of Howard but I am sure most everyone has heard about and probably watched the incident where Burrell cursed Halladay who was in the dugout after Burrell stood there and jawed with the umpire after he was called out on strikes in the first inning of that 5th game. No doubt that Burrell would like to stick it to the Phillies by way of the Giants winning this series.

  47. bostonkate

    October 23, 2010 at 7:01 am

    Brooks- ha. I am back in philly, that’s the problem. I’ve been away so long and I don’t know anyone and I’m the typical recent college graduate who is currently unemployed. But still I don’t sit on other team’s blogs all day, which is a win.

  48. Lefty

    October 23, 2010 at 9:02 am

    @Chuck, the reason you don’t get it.. is that he doesn’t go on another teams site. IMO This IS his site, and has been for years, under a different name! He still posts under that name, and for a while never at the same time, but as usual most guilty people deep down want to be caught, so now he is posting simultaneously. This has been obvious to me most of the season. It is really sick, and kind of sad now that I’m certain who it is.

    I cannot implicate him, I have no imperical proof, nor is it my responsibility. Simply ignore him, it’s the only way.

  49. Lefty

    October 23, 2010 at 9:04 am

    “I know it was you, Fredo. You broke my heart. You broke my heart!”

  50. Chuck

    October 23, 2010 at 9:34 am

    Who exactly are you talking about, Lefty…. ???

    (already ignored and forgotten)


  51. jt

    October 23, 2010 at 8:53 pm

    Just when I though the phils were gonna dominate…why can’t we just sjut their lineup down I mean they aren’t an offensive team.

  52. Matt

    October 23, 2010 at 8:58 pm

    Why is there not a running thread for today’s game?

  53. bacardipr05

    October 23, 2010 at 10:01 pm

    Boy we just cant get them crucial hits at all….this isnt the same or even close to same team as before we have been giving plenty of chances…this isnt a good thing,,

  54. bacardipr05

    October 23, 2010 at 10:25 pm

    not getting done…

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