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    World Series Preview: Tampa Bay Rays vs. Philadelphia Phillies

    World Series Preview – Tampa Bay Rays vs. Philadelphia Phillies - Cybsball20

    Wednesday, 10/22 @ Tampa Bay 7:00 pm
    TB- Kazmir PHI – Hamels

    Thursday, 10/23 @ Tampa Bay 7:00 pm
    TB – Shields PHI – Myers

    Saturday, 10/25 @ Philadelphia 7:00 pm
    PHI – Moyer TB – Garza

    Sunday, 10/26 @ Philadelphia 7:00 pm
    PHI – Blanton TB – Sonnanstine

    Monday, 10/27 @ Philadelphia 7:00 pm
    PHI – Hamels TB – Kazmir

    Wednesday, 10/29 @ Tampa Bay 7:00 pm
    TB – Shields PHI – Myers

    Thursday, 10/30 @ Tampa Bay 7:00 pm
    TB – Garza PHI – Moyer

    About the Rays

    The Rays Cinderella story continued as they completed their Wire to Wire run through the American League, defeating the Red Sox in a dramatic game seven. The Rays have seen about every single team and individual team record fall during this magical season, obliterating the team record with 97 regular season games. Nobody could have expected the Rays to reach the series when spring training started in March, but you could see the fire in this young team in a couple of skirmishes with the Yankees in camp. The Rays were making a statement that they were no longer going to be pushed around and ready to play. You could almost see this coming, building like a tidal wave. The “Devil Rays” were a constant bottom feeder, and seemed to always have the first pick in the draft. While other teams were investing on the field, the Rays were drafting the best available players and signing them, not the player they knew they could sign.

    No player greater exemplifies the Rays scout and sign philosophy than David Price. The first pick in the 2007 draft flew through the minors to join the team in September. An injury allowed Price to joined the postseason roster where he flashed his dominant fastball-slider combo to a win and save against the Red Sox. Former second pick (2002) BJ Upton, not to be outdone has also joined in the action. Bossman Junior slugged seven home runs and fifteen home runs in the postseason to lead the Rays offensive attack. Former third overall pick(2006), Evan Longoria, slammed 6 home runs with 11 RBI’s throughout the playoffs. ALCS MVP Matt Garza was heavily scouted by the Rays but selected by the Minnesota Twins with their first round pick in 2005 but was traded to the Rays for former first pick Delwyn Young (2003).

    Probably Rays lineup

    Iwamura (.277, HR, 3b, 3 2b)
    Upton (.304, 7 HR, 15 RBI)
    Pena (.333, 3 SB, 8 RBI)
    Longoria (.262, 6 HR, 3 2b)
    Crawford (.302, 6 SB, 6 RBI)
    Aybar (.421, 2 HR, 1.210 OPS)
    Navarro (.268, 3 2b, 5 RBI)
    Baldelli (.214. HR)
    Bartlett (.243, HR, 3b)

    About the Phillies

    The Phillies have had some time to collect themselves while waiting for the American League to sort things out. After making short work of the Dodgers, the Phillies have been able to set their rotation and their focus for the World Series. The Fightin Phils are still waiting for Chase Utley and Ryan Howard to wake up, but have ridden outstanding pitching and timely hitting through the National League portion of the playoffs. Cole Hamels, the NLCS MVP has been outstanding, only allowing only three runs in 22 innings. The inconsistent Brett Myers has also been good enough to get by, allowing 7 runs in 12 innings. If the Phillies can get anything positive out of Joe Blanton (1-0, 3.27) or Jamie Moyer (0-2, 13.50) it will be a huge boost. All Charlie Manuel needs is 5-6 good innings out of his starters to turn it over to the bullpen, especially with the rest days for travel.

    The Phillies bullpen has been the story all year and hasn’t disappointed in the playoffs. In 28 2/3 innings they have only allowed 6 earned runs, while striking out 27. The majority of the praise goes to closer Brad Lidge. Yet to blow a save this year, Lidge has continued his dominance in the postseason, saving 5 of the 7 Phillies wins. There is some cause for concern with Lidge though. Once again Lidge is falling in love with his slider, throwing it 21 times out of 14 pitches in a game 4 win. If Lidge continues to rely on only the slider, the gutsy Tampa hitters could wait on it and pound it. Lidge hasn’t been the only highlight out of the pen though. Ryan Madson, JA Happ, and JC Romero have all been near unhittable. A lot has been said about who will DH for the Phillies. It appears that backup catcher Chris Coaste will DH in game one against the Lefty Kazmir. The rest of the game in Tampa will probably be split between Matt Stairs and Gregg Dobbs but my money is on Stairs because of Dobbs’ versatility in the field and as a pinch hitter.

    Dodger pitchers should face a lineup something like this…
    Rollins (.243, 2 HR, 3 SB)
    Victorino (.281, 2 HR, 11 RBI)
    Utley (.250, HR, 8 BB)
    Howard (.258, 2 2b, 8 BB)
    Burrell (.300, 3 HR, 7 RBI)
    Werth (.243, HR, 3b)
    Feliz (.192, 2b)
    Coste (1-1, single) Stairs (1-3, 2r HR)
    Ruiz (.200, 2b)


    Key Players and Pitchers

    Tampa Bay Rays
    Key Pitcher – Scott Kazmir – The Rays need to come out and set the tone. The young lefty will be facing a lineup full of left handers and switch hitters and the weaker of the three lineups the Phils will throw out. If Kazmir can tone down the adrenaline and harness his stuff he should be able to handle the Phillie lineup. He is also facing off against the Phillies ace, taking a win or two from Hamels would put a lot of pressure on the rest of the Philadelphia lineup.

    Key Player – Aki Iwamura – If Aki can get on base it will force the Phillies pitchers to take notice. Both Hamels and Moyer are very good at holding runners but it will still divert their attention away from potent hitters like Upton and Longoria. You want to get your run producers as many at bats as possible and that starts at the top.

    Philadelphia Phillies
    Key Pitcher – Jamie Moyer – Moyer has to feel terrible about the very poor effort he has put forth so far this postseason. The veteran is in a position to pitch in a deciding game seven and the Phillies need a solid effort out of him in game three to have any chance of reaching that game seven.

    Key Player – Chase Utley – Same as the NLCS. The Phillies are going to need Chase Utley to break out of his slump, especially if Jimmy Rollins and Shane Victorino keep tearing up the bases. Sure, a run here and there is nice, but to keep the Rays away the Phillies will need sustained rallies and that means Utley needs to step up.


    Game Preview and Predictions
    Game One – Kazmir vs. Hamels in Tampa Bay 7:35 PM
    Kazmir was the winning pitcher in the All Star game, sealing up home field for the Rays, so he knows big games. Hamels has been nothing short of outstanding this postseason. Hamels is a little sharper and the Phillies capture game one 5-2.

    Game Two – Shields vs. Myers in Tampa Bay 7:35 PM
    The Bats come out in game two, with multiple home runs on both sides. In a battle of the bullpens, the Rays pull this game out thanks to a huge effort from JP Howell and the rookie senstation David Price seals it. Rays win 8-6.

    Game Three – Moyer vs. Garza in Philadelphia 7:35 Pm
    Moyer struggles again and Garza is razor sharp in chilly Philadelphia. The Rays get a late rally to pull away and the Phillies have to use the whole pen. Rays win 8-3.

    Game Four – Blanton vs. Sonnanstine in Philadelphia 7:35 PM
    Sonnanstine continues to dazzle and is helped by the cool Philadelphia air. Blanton is impressive but gets knocked out in the 6th. Rays take a 3-1 series lead by pecking away at the Phillies and win 5-2.


    Game Five – Hamels vs. Kazmir in Philadelphia 7:35 PM
    Hamels once again shows the stuff that earned him the NLCS MVP. Utley, Victorino, and Werth lead the offense, as Howard can’t figure out the Rays lefty. The Phillies send this one back to Tampa with a 5-1 win.

    Game Six – Shields vs. Myers in Tampa Bay 7:35 PM
    Shields is solid and Myers buckles under the pressure. The Rays pile it on early and don’t let up. Myers doesn’t see the 4th and the Rays win big to bring another series title to Florida 8-2.




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    Re: World Series Preview: Tampa Bay Rays vs. Philadelphia Phillies

    I think this should be a very fun series to watch!! I really like the way that Tampa's rotation stacks up to the Philly line up! And with so many young stars in this one, should be interesting to c who ends up being the hero



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    Re: World Series Preview: Tampa Bay Rays vs. Philadelphia Phillies

    Alot of Phillies fans there...



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