Hamels Dominates, Howard Stays Hot in 10-5 Win

Cole Hamels struck out five in three innings, scattering an unearned run in a 10-5 win over the Atlanta Braves behind big offensive days from Ryan Howard, Chase Utley, and Ben Revere.

The Good

Hamels again looked great and has yet to allow an earned run this Spring. Mike Adams made his first appearance of the Spring, striking out one with great movement on his pitches. The offense, led by two-hit days by Howard, Utley, and Revere put up 10 runs on 13 hits. Howard continued his scorching hot start with a 2-3 day with a double and a homer.

John Mayberry also homered, hoping to keep pressure on Dom Brown and Darin Ruf for playing time in the outfield. Brown  went 1-3 with a walk, looking very comfortable at the plate again while Ruf collected his first two hits of the Spring, going 2-3.

Jake Diekman pitched a scoreless fifth and prospect Ethan Martin pitched a scoreless 8th and 9th with a strikeout.

Areas of Oportunity

The only Phillie that really struggled with Jonathan Pettibone. Pettibone gave up two home runs, allowing the Braves to score four earned in two innings.

The Phillies will play the Yankees tomorrow at 1:05 PM at George Steinbrenner Stadium in Tampa, FL.


Hahahahahah Sixers on National Television

Whoops. Every year there’s one team who gets a couple too many games on National TV due to some projected off-season storyline that doesn’t end up panning out, and it looks like this year, that’s the Sixers or possibly the Timberwolves, playing after in the late game. The Liberty Ballers will be facing off against the Chicago Bulls tonight in Chi-Town, and yes, you can watch it bore Ernie, Chuck, Kenny and Shaq to tears tonight on TNT. We’re sorry, Americawe’d rather you didn’t have to watch our crappy team, either.

Don’t miss a thing: Follow the Flyers Twitter conversation on our handy, updated page


For the last few years, we’ve had a Twitter list that’s compiled all the essential people covering and discussing the Philadelphia Flyers. We’ve had it published here on the site for at least two years, but honestly, I didn’t think that many people used it. I use it on a daily basis, but I didn’t think anybody else a) knew it was there or b) thought it was useful.

Then, last night, in the middle of the game against the Capitals, I accidentally deleted the list. “Oh, that sucks,” I told myself. “I guess I’ll get around to fixing it at some point.”

This morning I woke up to six emails and a comment here on the site asking what happened to the page. So, out of curiosity, I went and looked at the traffic the page has compiled, and tens of thousands of you have clicked it since January 1, 2012. Talk about being oblivious…

So, since there’s clearly interest, we’ve updated the page. I re-created the list and completely revamped it, removing sources who should no longer be on there and updating with many more who belong.

You can find the page right here.

Bookmark it, love it, suggest to us how we can make it better. It’s also on the “Library” tab at the top of the site.

The new list is fully updated with up-to-date sources, but it’s even more in-depth than it used to be. We’ve included every Flyers player on Twitter (and will be adding prospects and more minor leaguers from the organization soon), we’ve added those who cover the Phantoms and Titans as well.

The best part is that the new list updates automatically without refreshing the page. You can just leave it in a browser tab all day long and peek in periodically so you never miss a thing. You can even respond to a tweet or retweet something directly from that page.

Better yet, though, you don’t need to be logged in to Twitter (or even need a Twitter account) to stay up-to-date with the vital news and conversation that happens first on the social network.

We want this list to be as comprehensive as possible, so if you cover the team and don’t see yourself on the list, please let us know. Or, if you notice somebody missing who deserves to be listed, also let us know.

Happy 40th Birthday, Eric Lindros

The Big E is over the hill. In honor of the occasion, here’s eight pictures of him casually lounging around and one video of him messing up Adreas Dackell’s entire day.

This ‘Carlos Ruiz: The Heart of Philly’ Screen Print Is Fantastic

Longtime Level readers have surely seen us post about the unique and hand-crafted artwork of Chris Speakman in the past Four Aces, Utley, Hamels, etc. Yesterday he unveiled one of our favorite pieces yet. Sure, the subject matter is close to all Phillies fans’ hearts, but the execution is well done — Chooch: the Heart of Philly.

Harry Zolnierczyk Hits Someone in Hockey, People Freak Out

The Flyers took it to the Washington Capitals in just about every possible way on Wednesday night, and they werent about to let up just because their opponent did. With less than 30 seconds to go, Harry Zolnierczyk picked up a five-minute kneeing major and game misconduct for a big collision with Mathieu Perreault near center ice.

Is This the Reason Arnett Moultrie Isn’t Playing?

Coming out of the All-Star Break, the chief complaint hurled at Sixers coach Doug Collins among the many has been his refusal to play 2012 draft pick Arnett Moultrie. So what gives? CSNPhilly’s John Finger slipped this line into a section of his story from Wednesday afternoon…

Michael Leighton, Tom Sestito placed on waivers by Flyers


The Flyers have placed Tom Sestito and Michael Leighton on waivers, according to TSN. We’d expect both players to clear waivers and report to the Adirondack Phantoms.

Sestito and Leighton were both injured for a time, and the fact that they’ve been placed on waivers indicates that they are healthy, since you can’t move a player that’s injured. Sestito suffered a really painful charley horse in his leg a week ago when playing with the Phantoms what the team called a rehab assignment — the game was played in Philadelphia, so it was really convenient — and Leighton’s been out for a few weeks and was placed on IR with an upper-body injury.

If they both clear waivers and play in the AHL, neither will count against the Flyers’ salary cap because they each earn less than $900,000. It’s a tough break for both players, who have spent time on the NHL roster this year and have played in games — Sestito played better than expected in his time, too — but it’s a great break for Brian Boucher, who will likely get to remain in the NHL as the backup to Ilya Bryzgalov.

A Handful of Philly Players Crack Top 50 List of Biggest Athlete Style Fails

Andre Bynum hasn’t played a single minute for the Philadelphia 76ers, yet his presence has still landed him right near the top of Complex’s 50 Biggest Athlete Style Fails. I suppose that makes sense though, what with having to wear street clothes so frequently, an athlete is bound to choose something awful eventually. A handful of other Philly athletes earned the dubious distinction as well.

Spring Training Gameday 2013: Phillies v. Braves

http://wrcb.images.worldnow.com/images/259547_G.gifAtlanta Braves at Philadelphia Phillies

Time: 1:05 pm

Brighthouse FieldClearwater, FL

Weather: 72, Partly Cloudy

TV: The Comcast Network

Follow Phillies Nation on Twitter

Cole Hamels will get the first crack at division rivals Atlanta today in Clearwater. Ethan Martin, Jonathan Pettibone, and Jake Diekman are scheduled to follow.

Line-up notes: Ben Revere is again leading off, this time with Jimmy Rollins also in the line-up, Chase Utley returns after not traveling with the team to Fort Myers, and Ryan Howard is starting his fifth consecutive Spring game. Domonic Brown is hitting sixth while Darin Ruf will rejoin the line-up after sitting out two games in the seven hole. This line-up, excluding the DH, is probably very close to what you will see on Opening Day in Atlanta  barring any surprises.


1. Revere– CF

2. Rollins– SS

3. Utley – 2B

4. Howard – 1B

5. M. Young – 3B

6. Brown– RF

7. Ruf- LF

8. Nix- DH

9. Kratz– C

Go Phillies!

Is This the Worst Sixers Season of the Post-Iverson Era? Comparing ’12-’13 to ’09-’10

You know this Sixers team has hit its low point when their badness is getting national media attention. Zach Lowe of Grantland had an excellent column yesterday calling out the hypocrisy of Coach Collins’ recent throwing of his team under the bus in his conference after the Orlando drubbing, pointing out how unreasonable it was to complain about personnel moves and on-court execution when, in fact, Collins has had a large and some would say final say in just about all roster decisions made by the Sixers in the last few years, and his inefficient offensive gameplan puts his players in a very poor position to have any kind of sustained success. To which, just about every Sixers writer on the internet responded: “THAT’S WHAT WE’VE BEEN SAYING FOR THE LAST TWO YEARS!!”

Prospect Nation 2013: #6 RHP Jonathan Pettibone

Righty hurler Jonathan Pettibone, a third round selection in the 2008 amateur draft, has stood out as an increasingly promising prospect over the past few years for the Phillies. After putting himself on the map, Pettibone now resides among the team’s best options to debut on the big league roster in the very near future.

Pettibone signed with the Phils in 2008 after committing to the University of Southern California on a baseball scholarship. The son of former Twins pitcher Jay Pettibone states that his dad was an influence on him, during his youth, but dad backed off and let the younger Pettibone learn from his coaches as well as on his own, once he reached high school playing age.

The 6-foot-6 225-pounder made his pro debut with the Gulf Coast League Phillies in 2008, recording an inning of work. The following season, the Esperanza High School (California) product joined the starting rotation for the Class A short-season Williamsport Crosscutters of the New York-Penn League. In nine games, Pettibone posted a 2-4 record with a 5.35 ERA and a .261 batting average against.  His season was shortened by injury that year.

In 2010 with the Class A Lakewood BlueClaws, Pettibone improved his velocity and effectiveness by working closely with pitching coach Steve Schrenk to adjust his mechanics and extension. Pettibone’s results on the mound became increasingly solid as his remarkable campaign progressed. After posting a 5.04 ERA in 12 games through the end of June, Pettibone tallied a 2.37 ERA over his final 12 appearances of the regular season. Those outstanding efforts down the stretch helped the club win its second straight South Atlantic League championship. Overall, Pettibone recorded an 8-6 record and finished among the league leaders in ERA with a 3.49 mark.

As a member of the Class A Advanced Clearwater Threshers staff in 2011, Pettibone became an All-Star while sporting the fifth best ERA in the Florida State League at 2.96 and also notched a 10-11 record with a .248 batting average against in a league leading 161 innings pitched.

The 22-year-old had a strong 2012 campaign, following a troubling start to the season that saw him post a 1-3 record and a 4.78 ERA in his first six outings. In the 13 starts which followed that difficult stretch, Pettibone tallied an 8-4 record with a 2.74 ERA. He was then promoted to Triple-A Lehigh Valley in July, where he went 4-1 with a 2.55 ERA in seven starts for the IronPigs.

A contact pitcher, Pettibone thrives on getting ground ball outs, but is able to supplement that with some fair strike out totals as well, averaging 6.40 K/9 in 2012 and 6.41 K/9 overall in his minor league career to date. The California native attacks the strike zone with a repertoire that features a two-seam fastball with movement that ranges 91-93 MPH, an improving slider and a solid change up.

Pettibone, who grew up as an Angels fan idolizing innings eater John Lackey, is very durable and is described by coaches as still having gas left in the tank at the end of his outings.

Look for Pettibone to begin the upcoming season in the Lehigh Valley rotation. While the organization feels Pettibone’s future is as a starter, any vacancy or opening with the big league Phillies this year may result in a void that the youngster could potentially be suited to fill.

Phillies All-Time Team: Left Field

Man or machine?

It’s up to you to tell us who should be part of the Phillies All-Time team. During the winter, we’ll unveil one position at a time for you to vote on. After all the votes are tallied, and all the position filled, we’ll release the results. Make your vote count!

  • Ed Delahanty (13 seasons): .348 avg, .942 OPS, 101 HR, 1466 RBI, 455 SB, 58.2 WAR
  • Del Ennis (11 season, 3x All-Star): .286 avg, .823 OPS, 259 HR, 1124 RBI, 30.6 WAR
  • Greg Luzinski (11 seasons, 4x All-Star, 1x WS Champ): .281 avg, .852 OPS, 223 HR, 811 RBI, 17.3 WAR
  • Pat Burrell: (9 seasons, 1x WS Champ): .257 avg, .852 OPS, 251 HR, 827 RBI, 14.8 WAR

Who we’re voting for:

-Ryan Dinger: For over 100 years now, no Phillies leftfielder has served the position quite as well as turn-of-the-century superstar Ed Delahanty, who is my pick for the best left fielder in team history. Sporting a career OPS of .916 and an OPS+ of 152, Delahanty, a Hall of Famer, serves as both a perfect fit for the Phillies all time greatest leftfielder, and as a testament to the decades and decades of futility this team has in its long history.

-Ian Riccaboni: Del Ennis was the key offensive contributor on the 1950 Whiz Kids and a World War II hero, serving in the Pacific. This and more is why Ennis gets my vote for best left fielder in Phillies history. Ennis was an MVP contender for nearly all 11 seasons he spent with the Phils, with a .286/.344/.479 triple-slash and 259 HRs as a Phil. This one is probably the closest vote and was tough to decide between Ennis, Ed Delahanty, and Sherry Magee.

-Jay Floyd: Ed Delahanty is easily your top left fielder in team history.  This Hall of Famer is the all-time Phillies leader in doubles as well as triples and is among the team leaders in hits, RBI, stolen bases, runs and batting average.

-Corey Seidman: It is literally a tossup between Greg Luzinski and Pat Burrell, who had an identical .852 OPS as the Phillies’ leftfielder. They both played on teams that won the World Series. I vote Luzinski because he makes better pulled pork sandwiches.
-Pat Gallen: The Bull and Pat the Bat are in a tight race here. Both won a World Series, both hit many home runs. Luzinski was a four-time All-Star and did so in an era when offense was not quite as prominent, especially in terms of runs scored by the Phillies. I’ll give the nod to The Bull, but it’s very close.
Note: There is a poll embedded within this post, please visit the site to participate in this post’s poll.

Thursday Morning Fly By: Gagne’s successful return


* Simon Gagne’s return went pretty well as the Flyers walked all over the Caps. (BSH) (Flyers Faithful) {Meltzer) (Inquirer) (CSN) (Japers’ Rink)

* Gagne spoke after the game: “I feel like I never left.” (CSN)

* Erik Gustafsson suffered a lower body injury after blocking a shot, though. (CSN)

* Mike Milbury was all over Alex Ovechkin for his performance last night. (SBNation.com)

* The Danny Briere trade rumors are flying; the latest has him going to St. Louis. (BSH)

* Matt Read skated yesterday morning, which is great news. (CSN Philly)

* Brandon Prust wanted to fight. He dropped a glove. Dion Phaneuf just skated away, and the GIF is hilarious. (SBNation.com)

* Eddie Olczyk made a huge deal about Nail Yakupov ducking to avoid a Dan Carcillo hit the other day. He has a point? (Backhand Shelf)

* This NHL realignment scheme has somehow gotten worse. I think we all knew that would happen. (BSH)

* A hockey dad in British Columbia was just sentenced to fifteen days in jail for tripping a teenaged player. (CBC)

* Cam Ward absolutely robs Joel Ward, and it is pretty. (Puck Daddy)

Milbury on Ovechkin: act like a man

NBC Sports Mike Milbury took Alex Ovechkin to task during the Rivalry Night broadcast, questioning the two-time Most Valuable Players effort, while comparing his decision making to that of eight year old.