Howard & Byrd Go Deep, Manship Pitches Well, & Abreu Moves Opt Out Date – Phillies Nation

Howard & Byrd Go Deep, Manship Pitches Well, & Abreu Moves Opt Out Date

The Phillies bats came alive as Ryan Howard and Marlon Byrd hit back to back homeruns Tuesday night in the Phillies 6-0 win against the Yankees in Grapefruit League action. Byrd, who went 2-3 on the night with a solo homerun and 2 runs scored, brought his average up to .340 for the spring. Howard, who has struggled this spring, has now gone deep twice in his last two games.

One of the Phillies 6 RBIs came off the bat of Bobby Abreu. Abreu, who is trying to make the team as a non roster invitee, agreed to move his opt out date from tomorrow until this upcoming Sunday. We will know by 3PM Sunday if Abreu made the team since that’s when final rosters are due. Abreu is batting .263 this spring.

Phillies starting pitcher Jeff Manship impressed again, pitching 4 innings of  shutout baseball. Manship, who is vying for the 5th starter position, lowered his spring ERA to mere 1.80. Manship exited the game in the bottom of the 5th inning as reliever Mike Adams made his Grapefruit League debut. Adams, who is recovering from shoulder surgery and has targeted April 15th as a return date, pitched a scoreless inning but gave up 2 hits. Reports say his velocity was between 84-87 MPH.

Its great to see the heart of the Phillies order producing like they did tonight. For the Phillies to contend this season they need guys like Ryan Howard and Marlon Byrd swinging the bats well. Another positive was the emergence of Jeff Manship. With David Buchanan being told today that he will not make the team, it is looking more and more likely that when the Phillies need a 5th starter Manship will be their guy. One negative about tonight was the velocity on Mike Adams’ pitches. I realize he is coming back from shoulder surgery, but this was a guy who was throwing 97 MPH just two years ago. He is still building up his arm strength, but it is concerning to me.



  1. Manny

    March 26, 2014 at 11:37 am

    Good stuff all around…

    But apparently we also released Stutes. Dang.

  2. J.L.

    March 26, 2014 at 1:15 pm

    So much for all the byrd hate, guy is a cannon.

    • Lefty

      March 26, 2014 at 2:03 pm

      Byrd hate ? I’ve seen some on other sites, but don’t recall any on this one. I guess I must have missed it. Anyway, FWIW, I think he’s a pretty decent player that can help this team.

      I’m just not sure any of this off-season’s acquisitions are going to make that much difference in terms of making this club better than Altanta, Washington, or any other contending NL clubs.

      • wbramh

        March 26, 2014 at 6:10 pm

        Here ya go Lefty. Just returned from my time machine ride to October.

        Nats – 95
        Braves – 90
        Mets – 74
        Marlins – 68
        Phils – 67

      • schmenkman

        March 26, 2014 at 6:21 pm

        Here’s mine — call me crazy, it’s ok:

        Braves – 93
        Phils – 86
        Nats – 85
        Mets – 78
        Marlins – 68

      • wbramh

        March 26, 2014 at 6:35 pm

        You’re not crazy Schmenk.
        You’re right on the money with the Marlins’ win total.

      • ASK

        March 26, 2014 at 7:53 pm

        Nats 90
        Braves 84
        Phillies 77
        Mets 73
        Fish 70

      • wbramh

        March 26, 2014 at 9:06 pm

        I think I’ll take a screen shot or two of these predictions and repost them in October.
        I’ll buy the winner a beer.

        So far I’m rooting, no – make that chanting and praying against myself and pulling for Schmenk (“Phils – 86 wins”) for whom I fear the equatorial Sun has struck today.

      • Lefty

        March 26, 2014 at 9:23 pm

        They won 73 games last year with ranking 24 out of 30 in OPS, and 27th in ERA. Just a slight up-tick in either (hopefully both) of those departments puts them back at .500

        Here’s to slight up-ticks!

        Nats 97
        Braves 82
        Phils 81
        Mets 77
        Marlins 77

      • wbramh

        March 26, 2014 at 11:35 pm

        What scares me is what I see as a greater potential to drop a notch or two in both OPS and ERA. The last place Marlins were #30 in OPS last year but #11 in ERA. Granted, the Marlins have not improved much if at all on the hitting side but they have good young rotation that will likely be even more cohesive this year. A young team with no expectations or particular pressure could easily overachieve.

        The Phils appear to be weaker in pitching (especially with their set up man and closer throwing fastballs in the 80s) and hitting remains questionable everywhere other than a probable upgrade in right and Chooch remaining Chooch. Same story with fielding. Right is stronger but when will Galvis return if needed? And where’s the improvement on the bench now that Ruf is out for at least 6 weeks, Frandsen is in Washington and Abreu turned out to be a (hash) pipe dream. Spring training hasn’t even supplied the usual preseason hitting sensation and it appears no young stud is going to be heading north with the team this April. And do the Phils have the legs to survive a long Summer with a starting lineup boasting an average player age of 32? Plus, 4 of their 8 regular starters are coming off of recent and lengthy injuries (2 of them younger guys). I’ve included Utley in that group due to his always vulnerable knees even though he he hit well last year. Of course, his defense was another story since his knees are still an issue on defense. We don’t know whether Revere is back top form and he’s not counted among of the RBI men they need to stay healthy.

        So I’m worried.
        Ever hopeful, but worried.

      • schmenkman

        March 27, 2014 at 12:12 am

        The “hitting sensations” of the spring are usually mirages: Yuni Betancourt, Greg Dobbs, Ben Francisco (twice), and even Michael Martinez.

        Assuming Howard and Utley each play 140 games:

        Pos: 2014 vs. 2013
        1B: Howard > Howard/Frandsen/Ruf
        2B: Utley = Utley
        SS: Rollins = Rollins (at a minimum; positive regression possible)
        3B: Asche > MYoung (tough to be worse)
        LF: Brown = Brown
        CF: Revere > Revere/Hernandez/Mayberry
        RF: Byrd > DYoung (by a wide margin)
        C: Ruiz/Adderall > Ruiz/Kratz

        With Burnett, and no injured Halladay, I expect the pitching to be at least as good, assuming Hamels returns in May.

  3. Vinnie

    March 26, 2014 at 1:18 pm

    Big upgrade over Delmon Young.

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