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Rival Staffs (Part 4 of 7): Philadelphia Phillies

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Mood Music - Long Time by Boston

You know when Part 3 of this series came out? June 23rd.  If I was the type to post those "demotivational" type posters with the catchy sarcastic captions, now would be the time (OK, I am the type, click here and here).  But, getting into the Philadelphia Phillies staff, I am going to divide this post into three sections, as follows:

Zeus, God of Thunder

Roy Halladay - Dude's ridiculous.  The numbers speak for themselves, so I'm not going to waste much of your time with analysis:

2.28 ERA, 2.87 FIP, 2.97 xFIP, 1.11 BB/9, 0.72 HR/9, 7 complete games in 21 starts, over 7.2 IP per start.

Oh, and his record stands at 11-8 because the Phillies have scored 3 runs or less in 14 of his 21 starts.  Just another reason to take a pitcher's win-loss record and toss it straight out the window.

Bar none, there is no one I would rather have on my staff than Roy Halladay.  He is the best, most consistent, dominant, work horse in the game.

/Man crush

I talk about mortals after the jump.

Mortals

Cole Hamels, J.A. Happ, Kyle Kendrick, and Joe Blanton round out a somewhat top heavy rotation.  Now, for a quick rundown and a few words of analysis:

Hollywood Hamels has enjoyed some better results this year after his somewhat disappointing 2009 campaign, lowering his ERA from 4.32 to 3.40; however, a 4.23 FIP and an 82.2% strand rate are a tad troubling.  But, his 8.50 K/9 is his highest total since 2007, and he is throwing his fastball faster than any point in his career, which points to some improved stuff.  It is quite possible that his subpar 2009 was a result of the 227.1 IP (plus the playoffs) that he pitched in 2008 (far more than any point in his career).  This is why you limit a young arm, but it does appear that Cole has righted the ship so far this year.

J.A. Happ has logged only 15.1 innings so far this year (3 starts), having missed considerable time with a left elbow strain and is 1-0 with a 1.76 ERA.   Happ, who was a 26 year old rookie last season (when he posted a 2.93 ERA in 166 innings), is a bit old for a "prospect" but I feel like the best is still very much to come for him.

The problem with the Phillies rotation is in Joe Blanton and Kyle Kendrick, and their 5.85 and 4.60 ERAs respectively, backed up by 4.85 and 5.15 FIPs.  No matter how disgusting Doc is, 2 out of every 5 games are started by pitchers who have combined for 0.9 WAR, and it's hard to put together winning streaks with 40% of your games being started by replacement level pitchers.

People Who Broke Into the Majors 4 Years Before I Was Born

Jamie Moyer.  For teh lulz.