Saturday, October 23, 2010
Friday, October 22, 2010
The Rangers have defeated the Yanks 6-1 in Game 6 of the ALCS and advance to their first ever World Series.
This means that Phillies/Giants Game 6 of the NLCS will begin Saturday night at 7:57pm.
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The Phillies scratched out a huge 4-2 win in Game 5 against Tim Lincecum. They will now come home and try to complete a big time come-back with 2 games in Philly Saturday and Sunday...
Roy Halladay labored through Game 5 managing 6 innings and the bullpen came in and slammed the door. Good game offensively from Polanco who got the big hit in the 3rd and nice job by Jayson Werth with the homer in the 9th to give a little more cushion for Lidge.
This was the one the Phillies needed to find a way to get it done. Besides that the season would be over if they lost, they had to somehow beat Lincecum and get this back to Philly. They did!
Game 6 is in Philly on Saturday. Pitching match-up is Roy Oswalt vs Jonathan Sanchez. Game is on Fox starting at 3:30 with first pitch at 3:57pm. If the Rangers beat the Yankees tonight, then the Phillies will be the night game Saturday starting at 7:57pm.
Thursday, October 21, 2010
I said last night and I'll say it again, not starting Halladay in Game 4 will cost the Phillies the series...
I know the offense is absolutely the biggest dog to call out but they scored 5 runs tonight and I bet Halladay wouldn't have allowed more than 4...
Tonight's game was as painful of a game to watch as I can remember in a long while. The Phillies went down early behind Blanton who couldn't reach the plate in the first inning. The Phillies O finally woke up in the 4th and scored 4 runs with some timely hitting by Victorino and Polanco. Blanton and the bullpen quickly came out and coughed up some more runs and the Giants led again 5-4.
The Phillies scratched out a run to tie it in the 8th on back-to-back doubles from Howard and Werth. They left the go-ahead run on 2nd base with nobody out and it would prove deadly. Nice job by Jimmy Rollins not bunting there as well...
Roy Oswalt came in to pitch the 9th because he was due for a bullpen session today and wanted to help. The Giants promptly got a runner on, got them to third and sac flied him in for a 6-5 win in Game 4...
I'm done talking about this back-breaking loss besides one final point. I love Charlie but this was his worst managed game in a long while...
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
I'm surprised Charlie actually did it...
Ben Francisco will start in place of Raul Ibanez in LF tonight.
Charlie should go the extra step and start Halladay tonight and throw Blanton tomorrow.
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* First and foremost, Andy Reid has just announced Kevin Kolb will start Sunday vs Titans...
* Looks like Joe Blanton will start tonight in Game 4.
* DeSean Jackson will not play Sunday vs Titans. (big surprise)
* Brodrick Bunkley and Jason Peters will not practice and most likely will not play Sunday.
* Kevin Kolb has been named NFC Offensive Player of the Week.
* Dunta Robinson has been fined 50K for his helmet-to-helmet hit on DeSean Jackson last Sunday.
* Andy Reid says DeSean Jackson is mentally sharp but has not passed concussion tests.
* Flyers D-man Matt Walker will have hip surgery today and will be out 10-12 weeks.
* The Rangers thumped the Yanks again last night 10-3 taking a 3-1 strangle-hold in the ALCS.
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Tuesday, October 19, 2010
This was the worst offensive playoff performance by the Phillies in the last 4 years... What an awful game by the Phillies offense.
I said in the preview that the Phillies bats would decide this series... And they certainly are, just the wrong direction. This offense looks like they did in August when they had their worst offensive funk since this group was assembled. The Phillies have smoked Giants starter Matt Cain every time they faced him until today. He was 0-5 against the Phils before Game 3 this afternoon... He made them look worse then Lincecum did in Game 1.
Ibanez and Werth have been horrific so far in the post-season; just miserable AB's. Rollins, Howard and Utley aren't doing much better. Seriously this may have been Utley's worse game as a Phillie. Two costly plays in the field and lifeless AB's, twice with RISP...
I feel bad for Hamels and Halladay. To think they both have lost in the NLCS when they only allowed 3 and 4 runs. The Phils O can't expect the starters to throw shut-outs ever time out. Speaking of starters, Charlie says he is still going with Joe Blanton tomorrow which I think is a colossal mistake. I know if the O doesn't score, it doesn't matter but Blanton hasn't starting in 20 days and always has tough first innings. All season Blanton got into trouble in the first inning and if he does that tomorrow putting the Phillies down early, it could be disastrous.
The Phillies have made a living at coming back when they are down on the mat so I still believe they can win this series. I still believe... But I will be honest, this is the first time I'm truly concerned they might not be able to recover. Great pitching doesn't matter if you can't score any runs...
So get ready for the most important game of 2010. Game 4 is tomorrow night with coverage beginning at 7:30pm, first pitch at 7:57pm (est). Pitching match-up for now is Joe Blanton vs Madison Bumgarner.
Monday, October 18, 2010
Bad news out of the Eagles via Jay Glazer: You may have heard it on the Phillies Fox broadcast but DeSean Jackson has a severe concussion and suffered memory loss. Not good at all... May be out for a while.
If you want to feel better, the Phillies and Eagles both won and the Cowgirls are 1-4!!!!!!!!
Sunday, October 17, 2010
In a must-win game tonight, Roy Oswalt showed why the Phils coveted him at the trade dead-line. He is a gamer...
The Phillies won Game 2 of the NLCS convincingly 6-1 behind Oswalt who was absolutely stellar going 8 strong innings allowing just 1 run, 3 hits and 3 walks. He struck out 9 over 111 pitches and scored a run through a stop sign! Big game from O of H2O...
The Phillies offense was up to their usual business leaving RISP and letting pitchers off the hook. The one difference was the Phillies were very patient at the plate with Jonathan Sanchez driving his pitch count up early. The Phillies finally busted the game open in the 7th when the Giants bullpen intentionally loaded the bases for Jimmy Rollins. Rollins has had an awful playoff at the plate so far but came through with a bases clearing double that put the game well in-hand for the Phillies.
I was starting to get very nervous with the Phillies offense because they had 3 golden opportunities against Sanchez before Rollins broke the game open and didn't come through. It's rare you get that many chances... Thankfully Rollins came through in the clutch, yet again in post-season play, and put Game 2 out of reach. Hopefully this gets Jimmy on a roll.
*There were two great moves tonight by Charlie Manuel. First, he switched Polanco and Utley which broke up the left-handed Phillies batters against lefty Jonathan Sanchez. Second, he made a real smart move leaving Oswalt out to finish the 8th which juiced up the fans and the Phillies.
* Shane Victorino was phenomenal in center field tonight. Several huge plays!
* Ryan Howard looks like he may be breaking out of his slump.
* Nice bit of small ball from Utley and Polanco to get that second run across in the 5th.
The Phillies and Giants will fly to San Francisco tonight and will relax with a light work out tomorrow for the off-day. Game 3 will be Tuesday afternoon at 4pm (est), first pitch is 4:18pm. Pitching match-up is Cole Hamels vs Matt Cain which really favors the Phillies. Hamels has been fantastic this season coming off an awesome start in the NLDS and the Phillies offense smokes Cain.
Well the Eagles sure showed me today... Actually it's more of what the Falcons showed me - nothing! I should have went with my gut feeling in the preview, not the sensible one...
Let the QB controversy begin! Again...
I'm still stunned that the Eagles man-handled the more talented Falcons team today 31-17. The Eagles beat them up-and-down the field in every area. The Eagles right from jump showed they came to play today, and it was the best 60-minute effort of the season for the Eagles. It really helped them to strike early and get a lead on the Falcons which quelled the Falcons run game. Again, I still can't believe how awful the Falcons were today...
Kevin Kolb may have silenced his critics with a stellar performance today. His final stat line was 23 of 29 for 326 yards, 3 TD's and 1 pick. That is Kolb's third time in five total starts he threw for over 300 yards. He went down-field the most he has all season and looked great doing it. He found Jeremy Maclin on two nice TD strikes and finally connected with DeSean Jackson for a deep TD bomb.
Speaking of DeSean Jackson, he was involved in one of the nastiness collisions I have seen. He definitely has a concussion and I would expect he is out till at least after the bye. That's his second concussion in as many years... It's a shame to, because Andy Reid must have read the LPS Preview, because they took my advice and got Jackson involved by design early. It paid of with a nice end-around for 31 yards to the house for Jackson. If he didn't get hurt I think he was well on his way to a great game.
The Eagles D was better today but still can't shut down TE's giving up 2 TD's to Gonzo today. Trent Cole continues his strong play with 2 sacks today and Antonio Dixon and Trevor Laws did a good job in place of injured starter Brodrick Bunkley. Asante Samuel was jumping routes everywhere on the field today and had quality success.
LPS Player of the Game: Jeremy Maclin (Congrats, you win a mention on this website!) I went with Maclin because he had a career day with 2 TD's an 159 yards receiving. He also gets bonus points because he stepped up after DeSean Jackson went out of the game.
* King Dunlap surprised everyone with a fantastic game against Jon Abraham. Kudos to Andy Reid for learning from the Justice/Giants debacle and helping the kid off-and-on throughout the day.
* That DeSean Jackson/Dunta Robinson car wreck collision was one of the most brutal I have ever seen in today's NFL. Dunta will be opening his wallet for this one... He lead with his helmet. We will not see Jackson till after the bye I bet.
* Jeremy Maclin stepped up with a great game today with 2 TD's and 159 yards receiving.
* Kevin Kolb had a phenomenal game today with 3 TD's and went down-field a lot! He also had over 300 yards for the 3rd time in 5 starts... Nice day from the kid.
* A rare miserable day from David Akers. He missed 3 of 4 field goals. Wind was playing tricks on him.
* Matt Ryan was awful against the Birds today.
* Asante Samuel had a good game and was a thorn in the side of Ryan.
* Antonio Dixon looked good in his first extended action.
* I'm still stunned at how bad the Falcons played today.
* It was nice to see the Eagles run the ball in the 4th quarter utilizing battering-ram Eldra Buckley.
* The TE's are still killing the Eagles.
* It's amazing that every team in the NFC has at least 2 losses.
The Eagles are coming off an ugly, yet impressive road victory over the 49ers last Sunday night. The 49ers were a very dangerous 0-4 team and the Eagles stuck with their offensive game-plan and it got them the win. The victory was not without consequence and concern.
Let's look at the consequences first, the Eagles lost Jason Peters to a knee injury early in the game which later we found out was a torn meniscus. The injury will keep him out for at least a few weeks. Brodrick Bunkley sustained an elbow injury but thankfully isn't bad enough to end his season. He will try and play through the pain but who knows how effective he will be
With Peters out, that means King Dunlap will be the starting LT... He got beat like a drum by the 49ers and now he will have to deal with Falcons DE Jon Abraham. It could be a very long day for the King... You would hope that Andy Reid would help the kid out, but remember the Winston Justice vs Giants debacle?? We'll see if history repeats itself...
This is a real tough spot for the Eagles O because you have to help Dunlap (again we hope Reid has learned from the Justice debacle), but they will have to sacrifice production from Brent Celek because that's who will be the help. I still think the Eagles should start Herremans at LT. That way Celek wouldn't have to stay in that much and you have Nick Cole and Max Jean-Gilles that can play guard. Max Jean isn't the best option either but at least he has experience as opposed to Dunlap who will have to protect Kolb's blindside.
Now the main concerns from last week; the Eagles D is really struggling and DeSean Jackson isn't close to the same page with Kevin Kolb. I'm amazed at how little chemistry there is between these two. Hopefully the timing will be worked out and soon. This one is on Kolb. Jackson is open and Kolb isn't seeing him. It doesn't help the O-line gives him no time but Kolb needs to make a point to get the ball to the best player on this team. Reid and Morningweg should design a few plays early to help this chemistry issue.
As far as the Eagles D, they constantly let the 49ers back in the game. The 49ers would have won if it wasn't for Alex Smith handing them the game on more than one occasion. The one bright spot is the D stopped the run rather well, but they allowed the passing game to run it up. It's worth noting that the Eagles D was without Asante Samuel the whole game, Bunkley left in the first series and Trent Cole missed a few quarters with leg issues. Even still, they just looked bad...
All of this above makes this Falcons game today a very tall task for the Eagles to win. To boot, I just saw that Brodrick Bunkley will not play today. At least Asante Samuel will which should help the secondary. The Falcons are one of the best teams in the NFC right now and like the 49ers, have a great running game with Michael Turner and Jason Snelling and an awesome TE in Tony Gonzalez. Difference is they also have Matt Ryan who is one of the better QB's in the league. The Falcons also have a bit of extra juice from last year when they were publicly pissed off at how much the Eagles showed off Michael Vick. They haven't forgotten... With Matt Ryan healthy this time, the Falcons are looking for pay back.
* Let's see if King Dunlap can survive against Jon Abraham and if the Eagles will help him.
* Watch the DT position and see how the backups like Antonio Dixon play in place of Bunkley.
* This is a real litmus test for the Eagles D. This Falcons team is the best offense they will face since the Packers in Week 1 and the Falcons have a better running game.
LPS Fun Fact: The Eagles are 7-1 (includes playoffs) in the last 8 meetings with Falcons. They are also 3-0 in the last 3 games. The only game the Falcons won in this decade was that Monday Night opening game in 2005 when Trotter got tossed for starting a fight in pre-game warm-ups.
This is the most difficult game to date this year to predict. After looking at the numbers and situation, there is no reason to give the Eagles a shot today. However I just have a gut feeling that the Eagles will hang in the game today. Could the Eagles really lose 3 straight home games to start this season off??
I'm going to ignore my gut feeling today and go with the sensible approach...
The Falcons had this game circled on their calendar since the end of last season's game when they were furious about the Michael Vick highlight show. They have a very good offense that should have a field day against the Eagles D. Though I think the Eagles offense will score some points, it will not be enough in the end. Get ready for a high-scoring shoot-out...
San Diego over RAMS: The Rams will keep it close, but San Diego has more firepower.
Ravens over PATRIOTS: I originally had the Pats picked at home. I usually want to reverse at least one pick after my first draft. This week I've opted to give the Ravens the nod on the road. They seem like a more balanced team.
STEELERS over Browns: Colt McCoy readies his cape and leotards. . .
Chiefs over TEXANS: I don't like betting against the home team when the matchup is close, and I'm probably giving the KC secondary more credit than I should.
NY GIANTS over Lions: This one is a blowout. On paper anyways.
Falcons over EAGLES: I am rooting for Kolb but the swirling winds at the Linc may not be so kind. The 4-1 Falcons seem poised to win on the road.
BEARS over Seahawks: If this game was being played in Seattle, I'd be a lot more hesitant to take the Bears. But the game is in Chicago and the Seaguls suck on the road.
Saints over BUCS: Because I default to Brees.
Jets over BRONCOS: The Jets are a better team, and the Broncos are banged up. It isn't always easy to get a win in Mile High, but like I said, the Jets are that much better.
NINERS over Raiders: Because Jason Campbell is starting, and because of the law of averages.
Cowboys over VIKINGS: Brett Favre is doing his best Keith Richards "ledge beyond the edge" impersonation...and Brett keeps landing on it.
COLTS over Redskins: Manning will throw for lots of touchdowns. McNabb will throw for lots of yards.
Titans over JAGUARS: Chris Johnson/Vince Young > David Garrard/MJD. The Titans also have the better defense.
"If you fail to plan than you plan to fail"
LPS Fantasy Must-plays:
Tony Gonzalez vs Eagles: If there is one thing the Eagles D really sucks at it's covering the TE. Gonzo should have an absolute field day against this struggling Eagles D. I would not be surprised if he had 10 receptions...
Jets Offensive Players vs Broncos: The Broncos D has struggled mightily this season giving up a ton of points. If you have Sanchez, LT, Edwards, Cotchery or Holmes start them. It's a very favorable match-up. Champ Bailey can't cover everyone...
Vince Young/Kenny Britt vs Jags: If you are looking for a good spot start at QB or WR, Young and Britt would be two guys to look at. They are going up against a horrific Jags D with a terrible secondary.
LPS Fantasy Stay-aways:
DeSean Jackson vs Falcons: If your deep at WR, I'd think about sitting Jackson. He and Kolb have no chemistry and the Falcons D is decent. I do think the Eagles will put some points up but until Kolb and Jackson can connect, i would hold off on starting him. The Eagles put up 27 points last week and Jackson had only 2 catches for 24 yards, no TD's. In the games Kolb has played this season, Jackson has no TD's and hasn't had over 3 catches in a game...
Any Cowboys vs Vikings: The Cowboys are really floundering at 1-3 and the Vikings are looking to unload on someone after a brutal loss to the Jets. If you have any other quality options at defense, QB, TE, etc then start them. Miles Austin is the only Cowboy I'd start if it was my team. It's just to dangerous to risk points on whether or not the Cowboys decide to show up. Oh, let's not forget the Viks D is pretty damn good.
Ravens D vs Pats: It's very tough to sit a good defense but without Ed Reed going against the lethal Pats O, I wouldn't take the chance if you don't have to.
Steelers over Browns: Just like last week I'd go with a good team over a bad team. Don't care that it's a divisional match-up, the Steelers are going to cream the Browns in Pittsburgh.
Titans over Jags: Same as Steelers/ Browns. Jags are miserable and the Titans will run all over them. Jags are home but that's just a shame for their fans. Not a lot of thinking for this one either, it's that obvious.
Saints over Bucs: Once again, a good team over a bad team. This week has 3 really easy options! Saints are coming off a tough loss last week to the Cardinals and will probably go off for 35 points or more...
Lions (+10): The Lions are in NY tomorrow to play the Giants. The Lions have surprisingly scored a lot of points and have been in most games this season. The Giants have been up and down all year so to cover 10 points against a team that can score points is a lot to expect.
Saints (-4.5): The Saints are coming off a tough, ugly loss last week to the Cardinals and are raring to lay a whipping on someone. The Bucs will be the unlucky receipt of this wrath. Look for the Saints to win here by at least 2 scores.
Titans (-3): I'm very surprised at this spread. The Jags are home and it's a divisional game but they are brutal. The Jags D has been especially dreadful and their secondary is the poster-child for that. The Titans could easily run up a big number on the Jags and quickly. I think this is another game that will be at least a 2-score victory in favor of the Titans.