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Game 114 Open Thread -- August 3, 2008

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myers

wellemeyer

4-9, 5.46

8-4, 4.13

Brett Myers has made two starts since returning from the minors. His first, against the Mets, wasn’t very good – 5 BB and 3 ER in 5 IP. His more recent start, however, against the Nationals was quite a bit better – 1 BB and 1 unearned run in 7 IP. Until last year, this guy was one of the best up-and-coming starters in the NL and is, unquestionably, a key to the Phillies’ run at the NL East title.

The travails of Wellemeyer were chronicled quite well by LB Monday. As I’ve discovered, his strike rate is unchanged from the beginning of the season. However, LB found that Wellemeyer’s slider has been particularly shaky of late. Recently, sometimes his slider has had a lot of horizontal movement and at other times it’s had very little horizontal movement. Consequently, though he’s throwing strikes at the same rate as when he was the NL’s pitcher of the month, he’s become much more hittable. In the month of July, Wellemeyer gave up 43 hits in 33.2 IP – a far cry from May when he gave up just 28 hits in 37 IP. He walked 12 batters each month.

So what to watch for tonight? It’s gotta be his slider. Is his velocity consistent? Is he able to throw it for strikes w/o leaving it over the middle of the plate? Is he able to get swing-and-misses by throwing it just off the outside corner? If we’re going to compete w/ the Brewers, Cubs, and other NL clubs in the Wild Card race, we’re going to need Wellemeyer to pitch well. We don’t know what we’re going to get from Carp and we don’t even know if Tony’s going to allow Wainwright to start, much less how well he’s going to pitch. We need good starts, consistently, from Todd Wellemeyer and it would be nice to get one tonight.

Overflow thread goes up around 8:30 and probably another around 9:30. Hopefully there’ll be a lot of good news to share.