I did a radio spot on 610 WIP in Philadelphia this morning. I’m not in Philly so I don’t listen to that station, obviously, but they’re always really fun when I stop by and I enjoy chatting with them. It was particularly enjoyable today when HardballTalk was described as “a subsidiary of ProFootballTalk” which was a new one for me. But, hey, as long as Florio’s monster traffic keeps paying the bills they can call me his butler for all I care. I digress.
The last question they hit me with was “gun to your head: assuming for the sake of argument that all three were fresh and available for Game Seven of the World Series, who would you start if you were managing the Phillies: Halladay, Hamels or Oswalt?”
I think I let one ten millionth of a microsecond pass, but then I said “Roy Halladay. No doubt about it. I wouldn’t even blink.” The response from the host: “Sorry, but the answer is Cole Hamels! Thanks for playing!”
Hurm. I can’t decide if they were just messing with me or if they really think that Hamels should get the start in a critical game over an equally-rested Roy Halladay.
This has been bothering me for the past two hours, in fact. They were messing with me, right?
Houston made one unexpected change to the roster for the ALDS, leaving off veteran reliever Chad Qualls.
Qualls warmed up but never appeared in the Wild Card game win over the Yankees and during the regular season the 36-year-old right-hander logged 49 innings with a 4.38 ERA and 46/9 K/BB ratio. Qualls was on the Astros’ last playoff team in 2005.
Utility man Jonathan Villar has been bumped off the roster in favor of outfielder Preston Tucker, as the Astros opted for a good left-handed bat off the bench versus the Royals rather than Villar’s speed.
It’s been a tough season for the mythology of Jonny Gomes‘ veteran clubhouse savior reputation.
First he signed with the rebuilding Braves and performed poorly while Atlanta fell apart after a surprisingly decent start. Then he was traded to the Royals, for whom he played just 12 games and hit .167. And now Kansas City has left Gomes off the ALDS roster.
It makes sense, though. Gomes’ only real use to the Royals would be as a pinch-hitter versus left-handed pitching, but manager Ned Yost rarely pinch-hits and will no doubt be more willing to use 25th man Terrance Gore as a pinch-runner in the late innings.
Beyond that, not many surprises on the Royals’ roster for their series against the Astros. They went with 11 pitchers, which means both Chris Young and Kris Medlen are on the roster. Jeremy Guthrie is not.