The Ultimate Phillies-Killer Lineup
This is how Phillies announcer Scott Franzke recently expressed his chagrin over the team’s inability to get New York Met Scott Hairston out—when he thought the broadcast had gone to commercial: “Somebody figure out how to fucking get Scott Hairston out! He stinks! Jesus Christ!”
That feeling isn’t new for Phillies fans. For years, an elite(?) group of men have proven themselves to be bonafide Phillies-Killers, regardless of their inability to produce against other organizations. Last August, Ryan Zimmerman stepped to the plate in the bottom of the ninth inning with the bases loaded and the score square and everyone—especially Phillies fans—knew exactly what would happen next.
So, in an effort to commiserate and complain and gripe, ladies and gentlemen, here’s the Ultimate Phillies-Killing lineup.
Chris Carpenter: The guy is 7-2 lifetime against the Phils. And, though I’m sure you don’t need a reminder, he tossed a complete-game, three-hit shutout against the good guys in Game 5 of last year’s NLDS. This is going to be a long exercise, so please excuse me while I go fix myself a drink or three.
Rod Barajas: Barajas was basically worthless during his hot second with the Phillies. They brought him in as insurance because Chooch was young and inexperienced. Ruiz ended up securing his role as the team’s guy with just six homers and a .259 average because Barajas batted .230 and botched tags at the plate. Against the Phils, though? Barajas has batted .280 and has hit nine homers in 35 games—including two, two-HR games (once as a Blue Jay and once as a Met).
Todd Helton: He’s posted .360/.463/.634 in 87 games through 14 full seasons and change. Just. Retire. Already.
Danny Espinosa: This guy has been in the Bigs for only one full season. In 268 games, he’s hit 34 home runs. Eight of those have been in his 30 games against the Phillies. Oh, and—as if the prospect of pitching to Ryan Zimmerman and Bryce Harper isn’t bad enough—Espinosa hits .287 against Philadelphia, but .195 against the rest of the league. This Washington thing isn’t going to go away, huh?
Chipper Jones: It may feel like Ryan Zimmerman is the go-to Phillies-killer for the hot corner, but that’s actually a misconception—most of his career numbers are slightly worse against the Phils. Chipper, however, has been murdering the franchise for what seems like an eternity. Not that he’s below average against other teams, but he hits .334 against Philly and has accumulated 47 homers and a season and a half’s worth of hits against the club. Jones played so well at the Mets’ former home, Shea Stadium, that he named his son after the ballpark. His numbers at both Veterans Stadium and Citizens Bank Park are better.
Patrik Elias: Yeah, I’m aware he’s a hockey player. But, the man simply kills the Flyers. He hasn’t scored more game-winning goals against any other team. Anyone assembling a team of people that crush the hopes and dreams of Philly’s faithful would be wise to take a chance on him. Could he be much worse at the plate than the litany of offense liabilities that NL teams have trotted out at shortstop over the past decade or two? I’m looking at you, Rey Ordóñez and Khalil Green and Clint Barmes.
Scott Hairston: This man is a lifetime .244 hitter who has never hit more than 17 home runs in a season. He’s played in 11 games against the Phillies in 2012 (he only started in eight of them). Five home runs and eight RBIs with a .324 average. No matter how long you ponder those numbers, they’ll never make sense. I’m with Scott Franzke, except my tirade probably wouldn’t be as appropriate to listen to at your office.
Matt Diaz: His average against the Phils is 34 points higher than his lifetime mark, and he’s hit more home runs off the Phillies than all but one of the other teams in baseball. Six of his last 22 home runs have been off of the Phils. In 2012, neither of his home runs were against the Phillies. But, they were off of Jamie Moyer and Randy Wolf respectively—both former Phils.
Vladimir Guerrero, OF: The man’s a first-ballot Hall of Famer, but he’s hit more home runs off of the Phils than he has any other team. His OBP and SLG against Philly—.465 and .739 respectively—are also his highest marks against any opponent. The .371 average in 91 games isn’t bad either. We realize he’s not playing in 2012, but we’d still quiver at the prospect of his return to the visitor’s dugout.