Oh Man. We're less than 16 hours away from the NLDS. Oh Man.
And because we haven't inundated the front page with enough articles yet, I have yet another one for you.
1. Who has been the biggest surprise for you on a team that's been relatively stable in terms of personnel for the past few years?
Probably Jimmy Rollins. Even though he had a much better second half (.642 OPS pre-ASB; .801 OPS post-ASB), he was shockingly, eye-wateringly awful for the first three months of the season. We're fortunate that the lineup is so deep and powerful, and that Raul Ibanez spent the first two months of the year hitting like Albert Pujols, otherwise the team would have really struggled to score runs with Rollins struggling.
2. Madson or Lidge?
Madson. Look, he's not a dead-solid lock the way Brad Lidge was last year, but with Ryan Madson, you can reasonably hope for a clean inning. With Lidge, all season, it's been nearly hopeless. He isn't perfect, but Madson is the best we've got.
3. What name, event, or concept do you anticipate being the most sick of hearing about come the end of this series?
"In this park, NO lead is safe!" -- apply liberally to Coors Field and Citizens Bank Park. I'm sick of opposing announcers giving the impression that CBP is somehow not legitimate. Well, guess what, two straight NL champs, two hitters' parks. Shove that up your Turner Field. Particularly frustrating because both the Phillies and the Rockies are solid pitching clubs.
4. Which Phillies player needs to step up for them to defeat the Rockies?
Cliff Lee. Something in between the Unhittable Pitching Robot of his first five Phillies starts, and the Hittable Pitching Machine of most of his recent outings, ought to get the job done. Lee is on track to start two games in the Series. If the Phillies can win those starts, they probably win the Series.
5. Which Rockies player worries you the most in a short series?
Todd Helton, a Phillie-destroying beast. 1.143 career OPS vs. Philadelphia in 335 plate appearances, so we have an appreciable sample. The only saving grace here for the Phillies is a pronounced platoon split (.986/.741) in 2009, but all it takes is one grooved fastball from some righty jerk in the bullpen to make it all for naught.
6. Series outcome prediction.
Phillies in 4. Phillies claim the first two in Philadelphia, then win Game Four behind lefty J.A. Happ.
Wow! What an interview! Thanks for your time, Peter, and here's to absolutely embarrassing your purchased ace Cliff Lee, and here's to hoping that he singlehandedly extinguishes the whole "WELL HE'S GOING TO THE NATIONAL LEAGUE THAT MEANS HE'LL BE BETTER" myth!
Because really, isn't that the more important thing? The furthering of NL awesomeness?