Mickey Moniak Set to Begin His Rehab Assignment

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By Michael Lipinski, Sports Talk Philly Editor

Mickey Moniak had a Spring Training to remember, the first overall pick in the 2016 MLB Amateur Draft slashed .378/.378/.973 with 6 HRs, 4 2Bs, a stolen base, and 11 RBIs.  It looked like he was finally going to live up to the #1 overall pick pressure but life threw him another curveball.  

Moniak was set to make the big league roster and then broke his hand in a pointless Grapefruit League game at Tropicana Field. The injury put a stop to his red hot Spring and sent the 22-year old outfielder to the DL for the foreseeable future.  Now, Moniak is set to begin his road back to the big leagues with a rehab assignment in Clearwater, the Phillies announced on Friday afternoon. 

 

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How Dave Dombrowski Will Structure the Bullpen

Dave Dombrowski
Photo: Arturo Pardavilla III/Wikimedia Commons/Fair Use

The Phillies bullpen will always be a polarizing topic and for good reason. Corey Knebel and Jeurys Familia helped blow a two-run lead on Sunday against the Dodgers. 

There’s also the infamous Thursday night where James Norwood was a disaster against the Mets leading to a clearly not-ready Knebel, eventually blowing a six-run ninth-inning lead.  

However, there are a couple of clear themes the bullpen is going to have under President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski’s watch and not all of them are bad. 

Here are three important themes we can identify about how the Dombrowski is going to structure the bullpen. 

Velocity is Everything

Dombrowski has made it very clear through his actions that he loves power pitching. Even if he will trade for Ian Kennedy and sign Brad Hand every once in a while, most of his acquisitions have been to acquire power pitching. 

In December of 2020, Dombrowski traded for José Alvarado, one of the hardest-throwing lefties in the sport. 

To begin 2021 he acquires Sam Coonrod, another upper 90s arm. This off-season he added Jeurys Familia, Nick Nelson, and James Norwood who all throw more than 95 miles per hour. 

Phillies as an entire pen rank fourth in fastball velocity, only behind known power pitching teams like the Yankees, White Sox, and Royals. 

While they have sprinkled in a few guys with less velocity, Dombrowski wants to give his bullpen as much upside as possible. 

Since they haven’t shown a willingness to pay big money for a top closer, they will have to try and mold one themselves. Acquiring pitchers with velocity and hoping they mold into strike throwers isn’t a bad strategy at all. 

If none of the names I mentioned work out, he and the front office is probably going to try and find more high-velocity replacements.

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Take Advantage! Mets’ Ace Max Scherzer out 6-8 Weeks

Max Scherzer
Photo: All Pro Reels/Wikimedia Commons/Fair Use

By Michael Lipinski, Sports Talk Philly Editor

Now would be the ideal time for the Philadelphia Phillies to go on a run and make up ground in the National League East race.  The Mets, who have a 6-½ game lead over the Phillies, have announced pitcher Max Scherzer will be on the DL for the next month-and-a-half or so due to an oblique injury.  

The Mets have been bitten by the injury bug as of late.  In addition to Scherzer, pitchers Jacob deGrom (stress fracture) and Phillies killer Tylor Megill (biceps) are also on the DL.  The Mets have been forced to roll out Taijuan Walker, David Peterson, Chris Bassitt, and former Phillies farmhand Carlos Carrasco.  

That’s not exactly a lights out rotation.  Again, it would be the perfect time for the Phillies to take advantage of the Mets misery.  Lookin' at you Kyle Schwarber and J.T. Realmuto!  

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The Gift of Gettleman Keeps on Giving for the Philadelphia Eagles

7AD49B3A-55D3-45ED-8860-A45A30D2E187Dave Gettleman (R) at his “retirement. Photo: Joe Glorioso/All Pro Reels/Wikimedia Commons

 

By Michael Lipinski, Sports Talk Philly Editor

The Philadelphia Eagles added to their retooled defense on Wednesday afternoon, officially inking cornerback James Bradberry to a 1-year, $10 million contract.

I say officially because New York Giants fans expected the signing when it became clear that New York couldn’t keep the former Pro Bowler. 

I reached out to a Giants fan to gauge his reaction to the Bradberry signing. The longtime Giants’ season ticket holder requested anonymity for fear of embarrassment.

Anonymity granted.

“I told you before the Eagles win the division. Now they go 13-4 to do it,” the anonymous Giants fan said angrily. Not angry at me or the Eagles but rather his beloved team. 

“F**k Dave Gettleman,” he added. “The ‘Putz of East Rutherford’ strikes again! The gift of Gettleman keeps on giving. Use that as your headline.” 

A little harsh but oh so true.  Former New York general manager Dave Gettleman is the gift that keeps on giving.  The now “retired” executive has left the Giants in cap and draft hell which benefits the Philadelphia Eagles greatly. 

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Rivers Set to Remain Sixers Head Coach, for Now. Was it the Right Call to Bring Him Back?

By Matt Gregan, Sports Talk Philly Staff Writer

Many Philadelphia 76ers fans remain frustrated after yet another unceremonious second-round exit from the playoffs. The Sixers were ousted from the playoffs by the Miami Heat after putting together two lifeless efforts in Games 5 and 6. They were outworked by Miami, and by the end of the series it was clear who the better team was.

A lot of the players brought up a lack of mental toughness in the days following the end of their season. It was evident the Sixers lacked the requisite emotion, intensity and effort throughout Games 5 and 6. This resulted in, among other things, calls from the fanbase for Doc Rivers' tenure as the team's head coach to come to an end.

President of basketball operations Daryl Morey came out during his end-of-season press conference last Friday and, with Rivers seated next to him, seemingly put all the noise to rest with a simple "Yes" when asked if Rivers would remain the team's head coach next season.

However, Morey's public endorsement of Rivers failed to quell the noise and rumors regarding the Sixers potentially parting ways with Rivers. Ramona Shelburne and Adrian Wojnarowski, both from ESPN, added some more information about Rivers and the Sixers. Shelburne, on "NBA Today" last Friday, mentioned how the money (Rivers has three years remaining on his five-year, $40 million contract) is key and it is important they came out and presented a united front.

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James Bradberry Headed To Philadelphia

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By Paul Bowman, Sports Talk Philly Editor

Fans may have been disappointed with the Eagles free agency period last month, when they landed Hasson Reddick as the only star and were outbid on other players, particularly at defensive back and receiver.

While the acquisition of AJ Brown has certainly helped to calm the latter issue, the Eagles are hoping to do the same with the former following today's signing.

The Eagles announced on Wednesday that they had agreed to a one-year deal with James Bradberry.

Bradberry was perhaps the Giants top defender, but he was also set to make over $13 million this year and $21 million next year, neither of which were doable for the Giants in their current cap situation.

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Trotz a ‘Top Candidate’ for Flyers, Interviews to Start Soon

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

As the Stanley Cup Playoffs continue for the rest of the NHL, the Flyers are in the midst of a crucial decision that will set the tone for their entire offseason. The next head coaching hire needs to be made in the relatively near future, so the Flyers can start to establish a game plan for how they want to look on the ice in the upcoming season.

Last week, the hockey world was rattled by the firing of Barry Trotz by the New York Islanders. As the Flyers coaching search continues, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reported in his 32 Thoughts column that Trotz is a “top candidate” of the Flyers.

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Philadelphia Eagles, Miami Dolphins Will Hold Joint Practices During Training Camp

Eagles Training CampPhoto: NFeld/Wikimedia Commons/Fair Use

By Michael Lipinski, Sports Talk Philly Editor

Breaking News! Breaking News! Breaking News! 

The Philadelphia Eagles and Miami Dolphins will practice together before their preseason finale at Lincoln Financial Field on August 27.  That means half of the University of Alabama offense from a few years ago–Jalen Hurts, Tua Tagovailoa, DeVonta Smith, and Jaylen Waddle– will be on the same field, at the same time!  

Like Nick Saban needed any more recruiting help.

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2022 Flyers Offseason Preview: NHL Draft

By Jeff Quake, Sports Talk Philly staff writer 

It could be worse, the Philadelphia Flyers will pick fifth overall in the 2022 NHL Draft. Last Tuesday night, the Montreal Canadians won the Draft Lottery, however the reason Philadelphia dropped one spot is because the New Jersey Devils jumped three spots to second overall after having the fifth-best odds to win the first overall pick.

The Flyers had entered the night with the fourth-best odds of receiving the first overall pick at 9.5 percent, a 9.8 percent chance of receiving the second overall pick, a 15.4 percent chance of receiving the fourth overall pick, a 44.9 percent chance of receiving the fifth overall pick, and a 20.5 percent chance of receiving the sixth overall pick.

This is the first time in franchise history that Philadelphia will select fifth overall.

Now that the Orange and Black know where they are picking in the upcoming draft on July 7, let’s take a look below at some of the top prospects that could be available at fifth overall, and why they could be an important asset to add. (Disclaimer: Each comparison is based on what parts of these prospects’ game I see in current NHL players.)

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Bryce Harper is Your National League Player of the Week

Bryce HarperPhoto: Ian D'Andrea/Wikimedia Commons

By Michael Lipinski, Sports Talk Philly Editor

Major League Baseball has bestowed its National League Player of the Week award to Phillies’ designated hitter Bryce Harper.  This is Harper’s seventh career NL Player of the Week award but his first since joining the Phillies.  

Just how good was Harper last week?  The stats are mind boggling.  

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