World Series Game 5: Rays @ Phils

Trenton takes home MiLBY Award
Russo continues to rake

The 2008 baseball season may come to an end tonight. It sucks, I know, but there’s nothing we can do about it. The only people capable of keeping the baseball season alive are the Rays, who (putting it bluntly) have played like shit the last two games. When your 3-4-5 hitters are a combined 4 for 44 with 16 strikeouts in the series, you don’t deserve to win.

Scott Kazmir will take to the mound for the biggest start of his life and biggest game in team history. The youngest member of the Rays rotation and winningest pitcher in franchise history will be relied on to keep Philly’s suddenly surging offense in check long enough for their sluggish offense to do some damage. A tall order for the Kazmanian Devil, but he’s up to it.

As if a 3-1 series lead wasn’t enough, Philly is sending their ace to the mound tonight, Colbert Richard Hamels, the kid so awesome that Jeff Lebowski refers to him as “The Dude.” Allowing only 21 hits & 8 earned runs in 35.2 postseason innings, Hamels appears to have entered the realm of “Big Game Pitcher” this year, and would cement that status with a W tonight. He’ll have to deal with a slightly revamped Tampa lineup tonight, but it might be too little too late for Joe Maddon’s boys.

My prediction that the Rays would win the series in 6 (losing only the games Hamels starts) is obviously not coming true, but I hope Tampa manages to extend the series tonight. I’m not ready for baseball to go away just yet.

Tampa Bay
1. Akinori Iwamura, 2B
2. Carl Crawford, LF
3. BJ Upton, CF
4. Carlos Pena, 1B
5. Evan Longoria, 3B
6. Dioner Navarro, C
7. Rocco Baldelli, RF
8. Jason Bartlett, SS
9. Scott Kazmir, P (12-8, 3.49)

Philadelphia
1. Jimmy Rollins, SS
2. Jayson Werth, RF
3. Chase Utley, 2B
4. Ryan Howard, 1B
5. Pat Burrell, LF
6. Shane Victorino, CF
7. Pedro Feliz, 3B
8. Carlos Ruiz, C
9. Cole Hamels, P (14-10, 3.09)

Weatherman says we might be in for a little rain tonight, but it shouldn’t be enough to postpone the game. I’m sure MLB is ecstatic about another World Series game ended after 1am.

Oh, and remember that kinda weird out-of-place “FISHY FISHY FISHY” song that played during the Game Three pregame ceremonies? The creator of the song left a comment on the game thread. How cool is that?

Update (11:35pm): It’s official, they’ll resume the game tomorrow night in Philly.

Trenton takes home MiLBY Award
Russo continues to rake
  • Alex

    So is Stevie of Sandie and Stevie fame now the most famous person to comment in a RAB game thread?

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      It’s a toss up, either Stevie of said Sandie & Stevie fame, or Tim Lincecum’s dad. I’d vote for Old Man Lincecum, personally.

      • Kevin

        Link?

        • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

          Scroll down a bit.

        • Kevin

          Nevermind

      • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Mr. Snarky Irrelevant Non Sequitur Jones

        What about Peter Gammons from ESPN’s Diamond Cutters? He’s on here commenting all the time…

  • E-ROC

    Michael Clayton was a great movie.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      That it was. Can I ask what prompted that? That’s kinda random.

      • E-ROC

        I am Shiva. The God of Death.

        There was a line in the movie that was very similar to that said by Tom Wilkinson.

        • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

          Ah ok. I don’t remember it.

      • E-ROC

        Michael Clayton: You are the senior litigating partner of one of the largest, most respected law firms in the world. You are a legend.

        Arthur Edens: I’m an accomplice!

        Michael Clayton: You’re a manic-depressive!

        Arthur Edens: I am Shiva, the god of death.

        Here is where the quote happens. I think the scene takes at a mental ward where Arthur Edens is kept. The scene happens in the beginning of the film.

        • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

          Yep, I remember the scene, just not the exact quote. I only saw the movie once, back when it was in theatres.

    • Ivan

      I might go watch that movie.

    • Alex

      Fantastic movie, I dont understand what exactly Tilda Swinton won an academy award for though. Timmy’s dad definitely wins. Where is that post? Did he talk about teaching the Sand Koufax mechanics that are actually just Tim Lincecum mechanics?

  • Steve H

    Beckett was 6-2 coming into this season and was teh greatest postseason pitcher of all time. If Hamels goes 5-0 in one postseason, doesn’t that make him better than Beckett? 5-0 is better than 6-2 right?

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      It would have to be, right? Hamels wasn’t even close to losing one of the first 4 wins either.

    • Ivan

      Nah Hamels will have throw a perfect game to even be in that discussion. Maybe 2.

      • Steve H

        Or throw on a Sox uniform for the ESPN crew.

  • E-ROC

    Did the Phillies yield anything worth noting in the trades for Lidge and Blanton?

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      For Lidge, no, not at all. Michael Bourn sucks, Mike Costanzo was turned around and traded for Miggy Tejada, and Geoff Geary is a nothing special middle reliever.

      They gave up more for Blanton. Adrian Cardenas is a top 100 prospect as a middle infielder, and Josh Outman was in Oakland’s rotation at the end of the year. Dunno anything about Matt Spencer.

      • E-ROC

        Ok cool. I just wanted to know how they acquired those players with the current state of their farm system.

      • A.D.

        they pretty much bought low on lidge, expecially since the ‘Stros signed Valverde

  • Brett

    I prefer that the Rays starter be referred to as the media calls him “Former Met Scott Kazmir”

  • Ivan

    When was the last time we saw a good WS? 02, maybe 03?

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      2002 I think. At least that series was competitive, both teams were playing well and no one was dominating the other.

      Robb Nen basically sacrificed his career for the title that year, too bad he didn’t win it.

      • Ivan

        And Chris Russo didn’t either?

        Nevertheless, the last couple WS have been downright brutal.

  • E-ROC

    Thank God for John Oates.

  • Ivan

    Man I am so fuckin hyped for the NBA season and the first two games on TNT are some must watches.

  • Ivan

    Yo guys when the Yanks lost the WS in 01, how ya guys react or feel? I was super depress for like 2 weeks after that lost. That shit hit me hard, really hard.

    03 was different. I was dissapointed no doubt but it never that hard and I accepted it pretty well.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      ’01 was tough, but I got over it quick. ’03 just made me angry.

      • Ivan

        Game 4 and 5 tick me the fuck off. I was more stun than angry when Beckett threw the shutout.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    Oh good, nice gigantic strike zone tonight.

  • E-ROC

    That profile of Hamels seemed to be a bit lazy to me. I may be nitpicking.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      The Phillies’ “Key to the Game” was “Finish them off.” We really should start expecting less from our baseball broadcasts.

  • E-ROC

    Too quick of an inning, if I’m the Rays. Strikezone didn’t help either.

  • Ivan

    Donovan F. McNabb in the house.

  • mustang

    The Angel of Death is coming for those oh so cute you just have to love them Tampa Bay Rays

  • Ivan

    And Kazmir is not gettin the calls.

    • mustang

      it’s the first inning can we give it a little more time

  • Bill N.

    If the Phillies close this out the city is going to be crazy, and unfortuantly I cannot partake b/c I was in the hospital the past 2 days with this intestinal infection

  • mustang

    Oh yes Kazmir has pin point control it’s the umpires fault that he hit him.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      They should have traded him for Johan Santana when they had the chance.

      • mustang

        No. Lets Just remember that that AFL stat. don’t account for anything.

        • mustang

          When they suck that is.
          LOL

  • Steve

    The Flyin Hawaiian!!!

  • Ivan

    Hawaiian Punch.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    Inning should have been over a batter ago.

    • mustang

      But it’s not don’t just love those Rays

  • Bill N.

    Uh oh

  • Ivan

    Nice Inning by Kazmir.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    Ugh. Why the hell is Pena bunting. Stupid.

  • Ivan

    Holy crap Evan Longoria is 0/17 in the WS. That’s A-Rodesque.

    • Steve

      Soriano-esque.

      Slider, low and away.

    • mustang

      LMAO

  • Steve

    Thats was a brilliant idea by Pena.

    We should get A-Rod to bunt more often.

    • mustang

      Hey that an idea it couldn’t hurt.
      LOL

  • mustang

    “the only games that philly will win are the games Hamels starts, the other games wont even be close”

    Lets now remove the words philly and Hamels and replace them with Rays and Shields.

    • mustang

      HEEEEEEEEE

  • E-ROC

    How about taking some damn pitches, RAYS! One of the team’s homerun leaders is bunting while the stud that is Evan is swinging at the first.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    I wasn’t paying attention, and I just glanced at the screen and said “oh good, Kazmir struck someone out.” Then I realized it was the pitcher.

  • Steve

    Mike, I’m warming up to you Joe P’s love of Ben Sheets. Assuming we don’t get CC, of course. A guy with his ability on a short term deal could be an excellent Plan B.

    So he’s injury prone. Is that really so bad given the depth we have in starting pitching? I really wouldn’t even care much what he did during the regular season, I would just want to do everything possible to make sure he’s healthy for the playoffs. If I went into the playoffs with a rotation of Sheets/Wang/Joba/ with Pettitte or Hughes also available I’d feel pretty confident.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      Only a short term deal though. If he wants 4 yrs or so, forget it.

      2 yrs, maybe 3 if the price is right.

      • Ivan

        Do you think he accepts a short term deal? For me at best is 3-years at 45M. He accepts that?

        • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

          I’d try 2/30. I’d rather overpay in dollars than years. 3/45 would be an absolute max.

          • Steve

            If he stayed healthy, he’d be an absolute steal.

        • Steve

          Sure, if its the best offer on the table.

          A better question would be “Who will offer him more than 3-45?” That I cant answer. No idea.

          • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

            I can see the Astros going that high.

            • Steve

              OK, if the offers were the same then the question would be which team does he want to play for. Again, no idea.

          • Ivan

            Astros, also maybe Texas.

            • Steve

              Yeah, when you think about some of the crazy contracts given to lousy pitchers recently, I guess somebody will pay him.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    There are actually fewer current Phillies with WS experience than there are Rays. Who’d a thunk it.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      Wait, nevermind. I thought Bradford was on the ’04 Sox. Same number of players then.

  • dan

    Mike– check your email

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      Already replied.

      • dan

        wow that was quick. thanks a bunch.

        • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

          No problem. Good luck meeting your deadline.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    Pena should have bunted. Dumbass. How dare he swing away.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    Signs of life.

  • E-ROC

    This ump should fired for that strike. My goodness. That was terrible.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      I can’t wait for the day that balls and strikes are called by some intricate laser prism triangulation GPS system.

  • Steve

    The Yanks seemed to have dropped Sheets off their radar since the elbow injury. Do they know something we don’t? I dunno, but Sheets is attractive when compared to the other available FAs.

    Sheets>Burnett-Not by much, but he’s a better pitcher when healthy. Walks fewer guys.
    Sheets>Lowe-Not even close
    Sheets/Peavey-I’d call that one a wash, but Peavey’s health history is much better.

    And most of the injuries had nothing to do with his arm, he had some weird inner ear thing in 2005, a hamstring in 2007. He did have shoulder tendinitis in 2006, but most pitchers get that at some point and its usually not serious unless they ignore it.

    2 year guaranteed deal with reachable incentives for a 3rd and/or even 4th year sounds about right. Just give me 20+ starts and 140-150 IP and be ready for the playoffs. He’s done that every year except 2007, and just missed 200IP this year.

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/s/sheetbe01.shtml

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      He’ll certainly have to pass a physical before the deal could be made official.

      • Steve

        Check this out-Past 5 years IP

        Sheets-839 total
        Burnett-831 total

        How can the Yanks argue that Sheets is too injury prone, but BURNETT isn’t?

        • Steve

          and again, Sheets is a better pitcher.

          You’ll give 5 years 80-95 mil to Burnett but won’t give 45 mil to Sheets?

    • Ivan

      Well if they miss the boat on CC, Burnett would be their next target. I just have a feeling that Burnett is gonna be a yankee. Hopefully Im wrong on that.

      Sheets will definitely have to prove he’s 100 healthy to at least get the attention of the yanks. Nevertheless, compare to Burnett and Lowe, he might come cheaper and he’s younger and his stuff translate well in the AL East.

      • Steve

        I’m hoping they take another look at Sheets if they lose out on either CC or Burnett and when Peavey gets traded elsewhere. Maybe when all the smoke clears, he’ll look more attractive.

    • Steve H

      How is Sheets better than Lowe, and it’s not even close? Lowe has been better in the NL, is healthier and more reliable. He also knows pitching in the AL East, in a huge market, in the playoffs. While Sheets may have more upside, he has not been a better pitcher, never mind by a wide margin.

      • Steve

        Because Lowe was awful the last 2 years he was in the AL East, and that was when he was 4 years younger.

        To be fair, Sheets obviously hasn’t pitched in the AL East. But its a known negative against an unknown with more upside. That’s an easy choice for me if I’m a GM.

        • Steve H

          I would prefer Sheets, but only for upside. Lowe has simply been a better pitcher. The next time Sheets goes into Yankee Stadium to pitch Game 7 on 2 days rest and throws 6 innings of 1 hit ball will be the first.

        • Steve H

          And he only sucked in his last year in the Al East. He was slightly above average his 2nd to last year, threw over 200 innings and won 17 games. I know wins are overrated, but on a team with a good offense, pitching 200 innings and being better than league average isn’t awful. Much better than Pettitte was this year.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    Maybe Philly will win the World Series when the game is called due to rain after the top of the 5th. That would be fun.

    • AndrewYF

      I can’t imagine that would ever, ever happen.

      Although it would be pretty awesome.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    Man, that’s the LAST thing you wanted to happen to Hamels.

    • E-ROC

      What? I was putting kids to bed. Did I miss anything?

      • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

        Hamels squared up to the bunt, he missed, and the pitch caught him in the fingers on his left hand. He was shaking them and still is.

        • E-ROC

          Damn. Can anything else go wrong in this game?!

    • Pedro

      Hank is right. Baseball needs to move on and drop the ‘pitchers hitting’ thing. Imagine if Hamels breaks a finger trying to bunt?

      • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

        Seriously. Just make everyone use the DH. It makes the game so much more fun to watch.

        • Pedro

          I’m still pissed CMW got injured because of this ‘baseball tradition”.

  • E-ROC

    I’m surprise that last pitch to Rollins wasn’t a strike. Has this ump seen the light?

  • Ivan

    I was just thinking this, which poor sucker is gonna sign Oliver Perez to a huge contract of 4-years+ with 60M+.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      Minaya. How could he let Perez leave?

      • Ivan

        probably right.

    • E-ROC

      Mets. I don’t see anyone else offering anything close to that, and who are that desperate for pitching. Ok, maybe the Tigers. Still I see the Mets re-signing him. Detroit already have a bad contract on the books with Willis. No need for another one, especially since Oliver is erratic.

      • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

        Oliver Perez in the AL would be pretty scary. For the team that signs him.

      • Ivan

        How did Detroit shot themselves on the foot with Willis. The guy sucked in the NL in 07, and at least see what he can do in the AL before thinking of giving him a contract.

  • Ivan

    GS here.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    This is all strategic. Kazmir is trying to “ice” Hamels by leaving him out on the bases all inning. Smart man. ;)

  • E-ROC

    Might the Rays make the mistake of going to Balfor instead of Price next inning? I hope not. Though I want the Phillies to win, let’s try to keep the game competitive.

  • Ivan

    Wow, mother nature hit by Badelli.

  • E-ROC

    OMG. Now mother nature is putting her stamp on the game.

  • giselle

    is someone in the phillies coaching staff named rich doobie? haha

  • Ivan

    Good play by Utley.

  • E-ROC

    Grant Balfour is a good pitcher, but he doesn’t match up well with the Phillies. He is pretty much a fastball pitcher and that works well with the Phillies.

  • E-ROC

    WTF is up with this umpire!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Ivan

    OMG this ump sucks. Doesn’t help Kaz control sucks as well.

  • giselle

    holy smokes ball 4 looked like strike 3 to me.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      So did ball 3.

  • Ivan

    This Ump is just dreadful. My goodness, helen Keller would of known those were strikes.

  • Alex

    PItch was definitely a strike.

    Scott Kazmir only throws 91!!!!!! OMFG, kids a bust losing 2-1 in the world series.

    • Steve H

      Clearly. Why is he even in the big leagues? Funny thing is, he throws harder than half the rest of the staff, but according to some, Hughes can’t succeed at 91. And oh yeah, he throws harder than 91, but we’ll leave facts out.

  • E-ROC

    This umpire’s strike zone….there aren’t enough words to describe that piece of crap. Kazmir might as well physically walk each and every pitch up to the plate so that the umpire can clearly see that it’s a strike.

  • Ivan

    This inning has the potential to be ugly. Balfour control+bad ump+him being righthanded with one pitch=potential yikes.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      Bottom of the order, so I’m hopefully Balfour wiggles out of it.

  • Ivan

    Why bunt with Victorino?

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      Apparently some people are under the impression that giving away outs in the middle innings is the key to success.

  • Ivan

    Feliz sucks.

  • Ivan

    Balfour got of it.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    Nice job by Balfour. I really hope this game isn’t decided on a play the weather effects – an outfielder slipping or something.

  • http://img.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2008/02_01/burressDM0402_468x305.jpg Nady Nation

    Not sure if this was talked about yet on the site, but did everyone hear about the Phils fans throwing open mustard packets at Joe Maddon’s 7 year old granddaughter? I mean seriously, are there bigger scumbag fans in sports than Philadelphia fans?

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      Best fans in sports, as ESPN and FOX said earlier in the series.

      • http://img.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2008/02_01/burressDM0402_468x305.jpg Nady Nation

        Unbelievable. The stark contrast between Pennsylvania fan bases is remarkable. I just got back from Pittsburgh, me and a couple of buddies road tripped it for the Giants game (which was fucking awesome), and the Steeler fans were some of the nicest, most genuinely friendly fans I’ve ever encountered. We literally got shit from 2 guys the whole game, and both times handfuls of other Steeler fans apologized for said douchebag fans and told us they’re not a fair representation of the fan base. Meanwhile, down the turnpike, you have fans who cheer for the opposition’s paralysis.

        • LiveFromNewYork

          Steeler fans are intense and the whole city is one big Steeler maniac fan but Pittsburgh is a great city and the people are so nice (and LOTS of Yankee fans there).

          I once went to a Raiders game in Oakland. There is a place you do not wear opposing colors.

    • http://www.new.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/profile.php?id=594331910&ref=name Jamal G.
  • LiveFromNewYork

    Could we stop with all the shots of the rain? WE GET IT.

  • E-ROC

    *shakes head* after Iwamura K.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    Wow. So Hamels gets that call, but Kazmir doesn’t get those calls against Burrell? Bullshit.

  • LiveFromNewYork

    This is the worst officiating ever.

  • Ivan

    Did the Phils pay off the home plate ump or something?

  • LiveFromNewYork

    1. I don’t really care who wins this series.
    2. It would have been nice to see the Phillies win in their park.
    3. I don’t want the Rays to be robbed and the calls that have gone against them are really starting to add up.

  • E-ROC

    Buck and McCarver, the weather surely affected Upton’s stolen base.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    This is terrible. They can’t keep playing in this.

    • giselle

      but it’s so gritty of them to keep at it.

      • LiveFromNewYork

        They’re pretending they’re football players. Gritty football players not mamby pamby dome football players.

    • LiveFromNewYork

      I’ve been wondering what they should do here if they stop the game. I’m sure they all want to get it in.

      • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

        Stop the game, and if you can’t get the rest in tonight, finish it up tomorrow during the off day. Easy fix.

  • giselle

    yea, CP!

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    UUUUUUGE hit by Pena. I was terrified that Upton was going to slip making the turn there.

  • E-ROC

    Tie game.

  • Ivan

    This has been a classic.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    Suspended game in the WS? It’s A-Rod fault.

  • E-ROC

    That is all folks. They’ll probably play Wednesday because tomorrow looks like a pile of ass.

  • dkidd

    can you believe they would have ended the world series if pena didn’t tie it and the game was called? is there a worse commissioner in the history of professional sports than bud selig?

    go rays!

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      I’m sure FOX was pressuring them to keep going.

  • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

    Phils lose Hamels now.

  • John

    Hey quick question for you guys that run RiverAveBlues? How did you all get into this? Are you all buddies that know each other or roommate or what? When did it start?

    Also, I’m currently a college student- any advice for somebody that might want to do that?

    Do you guys have a regular jobs as well, or just riveraveblues? sorry for so many questions. If you don’t want the info on the blog publicly, I’d appreciate it if you e-mail me, just cause I’m a college student trying to become a sports blogger trying to figure out how to do it successfully, and there was a workshop today at the school paper explaining a bit about it, but they really did a terrible job.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      We all knew each other before this, and were blogging individually at various spots on the interweb. One day we decided to start a site together, so here it is.

      We all have regular jobs, well Ben’s still in school, so that counts as his job. The site creates barely enough revenue to cover the hosting costs, we see very little profit.

      There’s really not much too it, we started blogging one day and got lucky that it became so popular.

      FYI – I deleted your email from the comment so you don’t get spammed to no end.

  • Lanny

    How bad has the home plate umps balls and strikes been this WS?

    Kazmir got squeezed like no ones business. He must be steaming right now. Cost him 2 runs and about 40 pitches.

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