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Tuesday, October 17, 2006

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Sheffield makes sense, although you're never crazy about acquiring stopgaps...yes, he'd be a poor defensive right fielder, even worse than ol' whats-his-face, *but* (said with my best Peter Gammons impersonation) he would absolutely provide suitable protection for Howard and be a presence the Phillies need in the lineup. I prefer him to Soriano because he's a better *hitter*, one less prone to lengthy slumps and clusters of strikeouts. This team needs more contact and less whiffing.

shef would probably go back to leftfield, but i worry about his injury potential. 3rd base seems like a complicated situation...has there been any inquiries into aquiring a good 2nd baseman and moving utley to the hot corner?? or is that too drastic?

RSB, not sure if you were saying that Soriano is more consistent than Sheffield or just generally a consistent hitter, but I'm not so sure that's the case. Soriano's atrocious September (.641 OPS) is pretty much the definition of a lengthy slump, and he wasn't much better in June (.698 OPS). he's also pretty much a strikeout machine. even in August when he was hitting the cover off the ball, he struck out 31 times in 112 ABs, and when he fell off a cliff in September he was even worse (34 SO/108 AB).

I'm not big on Sheffield either because of his age and position...a 38 year old baseball player is an enormous risk, and moving Burrell is simply not a tenable position because we cannot get even his level of production at a reasonable price if we're paying somebody else $5/7/whatever million to take him.

Sheffied is a terrible idea. Too much money spent on a guy who is clearly on the downslope of his career, and who has increasingly is losing playing time due to injuries. Absolutely terrible idea. A stop-gap when the last thing this team needs is to spend money on temporary solutions. Did I mention it was a terrible idea?

ae, I think you misread what I wrote, I was arguing against Soriano.

Sheffield may be a stopgap, but he's still a damn good hitter. You wouldn't see Howard standing there tossing the bat away game after game if you had Shef behind him.

all things considered we are better off keeping Burrell than signing Sheff. I know it is fun to talk about, but realize we have no chance at Sheff, Soriano or Aramis Ramirez as long as we have to pay even one cent of Burrell's salary.

I'd rather keep Burrell than take Sheffield.

I'll take the all-star yankee scum, but I'm completely opposed to taking over-the-hill and average yankee scum.

Is Randy Miller a penname for Ed Wade? This smells of a Wade deal more than a Gillick deal.

RSB - you're right, I misread your post. sorry!

It's pretty surprising how open the Phillies are about their intent to trade Burrell. It's all over the place today. It's up on the Phillies Web site now. I guess they're hoping Pat takes the hint.

In other news, Gavin Floyd got bombed again in the AFL. Meanwhile, Zach Segovia is pitching great and hasn't allowed a hit in his two appearances. Keep your eye on Segovia. He seems like a pretty steady horse; Good control and keeps the ball in the yard. 16 combined wins between Clearwater and Reading. Potential No. 5 material.

Poor poor Gavin Floyd. With each outing his value drops. At present he cannot be rated higher than a throw-in. He needs a new organization desperately though I doubt even that will help him now. I cannot help feeling one or two more decent outings with the big club might have helped his confidence. Now, it appears to be completely shot if even the AFL batters are teeing off on him.

Why would he take a hint now? If there's anyone in the big club who needs a change of scenery, it's Burrell.

I think Segovia's material might be a bit better than #5, but either way, he's pitching well enough to play with the big club.

While Sheffield has had a very good career, I am leery of bringing in another aging veteran. The wheels are starting to fall off of the Tom Gordon bus and I don't like the idea of having a 38 year old everyday player in the outfield, especially coming off an injury-plagued year.

Soriano has holes in his game too, but I think he is a better bet with only being 30. I know he K's a lot, but he also should provide a legit bat behind Howard. His lifetime batting average is 20 points higher than Burrell's, plus he has stolen 210 bases in his career (41 last year alone). I wouldn't even rule out Soriano hitting third, Utley 5th, and Howard in between.

Best case scenario is pulling off a trade for A-Ram or Rolen this off-season. That would fill the biggest hole offensively on this team and provide Howard with some much needed protection.

Something tells me that maybe all this talk is a smokescreen for somebody whom Gillick has yet to mention coming here via trade or free agency.

I cannot believe people are saying here that they would rather keep Burrell than go after Sheffield. We need to look at the numbers and accept the fact that Pat Burrell will never be what he was supposed to be. Gary Sheffield may be 38 but he will hit 50 points higher and 5 - 10 more homeruns than Pat Burrell. And more importantly, he will be feared when Pat Burrell is welcomed.

dukes, accurately predicting the performance of a 38-year-old player is impossible. there is basically no guarantee that Sheffield can play 30 games, let alone hit 30 HR.

and besides, he hits 40 points higher than Burrell at best and had a worse HR rate than 2006 Burrell both this year and last.

Sheffield is not worth it at all. I'd rather have Burrell who has better potential then Sheff. Also I would rather give Bourne or Roberson playing time over him as well. It sounds like an Ed Wade signing. Soriano makes more sense but more likely a pipe dream financially.

I'm not necessarily saying Sheffield is the answer. What I'm saying is that we need to get rid of Burrell because he won't get the job done. I'd rather see Sheffield than Burrell. But of course I'd rather see Soriano than Sheffield.

jon, did i read you right? did you just say the phils' best move is to trade for scott rolen?

anyone looking to simply dump burrell for the sake of dumping him shoudl read this post: http://thegoodphight.com/story/2006/10/16/0374/0202

i dislike burrell as much as the next guy, but dumping him just to get rid of him is going to present more challenges than its going to solve. you're not going to get anything for him and, please, you want a starting outfield with jeff conine and gary sheffield in it? c'mon.

Yeah Gr that is part of what I said. I know he is hated by some, but I would welcome Rolen back. Insane? Possibly, but so is the thought of having Nunez man the hot corner next year. Of course, A-Ram is a pretty damn good option too if it could be pulled off.

i actually think sheffield makes sense because he can be signed for a year or two. gillick is not trying to build a dynasty here, he's trying to win in the next two or three years.

i'll eat my shorts if ramirez comes here, i actually think arod landing here is more probable (and i put that happening at about 1%) chicago will not lose ramirez.

soriano is going to sign a long term deal for moronic money and it will not be here.

sign juan pierre, move jimmy to 5, and find next years kenny rogers. that's the way to get to the playoffs.

last note - i want glavine to drill pujols. thou shalt not disrespect future hall members after they own you, no matter how good you are.

I'm assuming that that "sign Juan Pierre" line was a joke...

When you have an opportunity to solve a problem long term, I always believe you should do so. For the Phillies, 3B is a problem that needs a longer term solution. There is no 3B waiting in the minor leagues to step in.
That would mean that Phillies should not pursue someone like Gary Sheffield, at best a stopgap, at worst an expensive disaster, but should focus their attention on Ramirez, Crede, or Beltre. Each has their strengths and weaknesses.
I’m not as high on Ramirez as most on this blog seem to be. First, he will be expensive, and there will be several teams in the bidding if he decides to leave the Cubs. Second, he is a defensive downgrade. Third, you must be careful about anyone who has big numbers playing at Wrigley Field. That said, he will provide protection for Ryan Howard and could have big years here in Philly. I don’t know enough about his personality to comment on how he would fit here.
Joe Crede is relatively cheap, has some real pop, and is a much better defensive 3B than Ramirez. It also appears that he might be available from Chicago for the right offer, but the price would probably be one of the current starters (Rowand?). In that case, you might be plugging one hole while creating another. He could provide a solid and economical solution at 3B.
Beltre of course has the large contract, but he is a solid defensive player and has enough power to protect Howard. Even if he performed at his Seattle level, you are talking about 25 HRs minimum. I would think he could surpass that in a new environment and a hitter’s park. The one thing I like about Beltre is that of the 3 options here, he is the only one with any speed, and I think the Phillies need to upgrade their lineup in that area. Finally, I have never heard anything to suggest that he let the obvious pressure from his bad 2005 season get to him. That’s a big plus in a town like Philly.
So if the Phillies want to control spending, you go with Joe Crede in my view. Otherwise, I like Beltre, especially if you can move a contract like Burrell’s to free up some $$.

In no way, shape, or form should the Phillies even think about signing Soriano.

As for Pat Burrell, does he really want to stay with the Phillies? Why? Or has he given Gillick a short list of acceptable trade destinations?
There is nothing I would like to see more than a healthy Burrell on a mission: to show the fans here that he can be a difference maker and to win them over. But I’m not sure that’s realistic or that’s Burrell’s style. Gillick has already made deals in which he got nothing of value in return, so I expect he will move Burrell even if he takes $0.50 on the dollar in return value.

Gerorge S., you are dead on with your long term assessment position of third base. The Phils don't have much there in the minors (or majors for that matter) and need to focus on that position as a major priority this off-season. I forgot about Joe Crede. He would be a fine addition to this line-up, but he really didn't put things together until last season. His averages the three years before his breakout year were only .252, .239. and .261 respectively. That being said, he may have turned the page with his banner season last year. Ramirez has been very steady on some bad Cubs teams. The last three years he has hit .318, .302, and .291 with 36, 31, and 38 HRs to go with 103, 92, and 119 RBIs while on some declining Cubs teams. Rolen during his last three non-injury years has hit .286, .314, and .296 with 28, 34, and 22 HRs, to go with 104, 124, and 95 RBIs.

A-Ram is the obvious blue chip 3rd baseman that might be available. But honestly, almost anything is better than the Bell/Nunez crapfest that we suffered through last season.

Sheffield is a good player, but he's now old and unreliable health-wise. I know this isn't popular, but I want to keep Burrell too, because his production is about as good if not better than most free agents out there for outfield. I know people hate him, and I understand why, but to discount his production is a bit silly.

interesting post on mlbtraderumors about Japanese 3B Akinori Iwamura - http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2006/10/akinori_iwamura.html

Iwamura turns 28 in February. he posted a .931 OPS this year and a .946 last year, with OBPs just under .400 and slugging percentages in the mid-.500s, although he appears to strike out a lot. he's also won three Gold Glove equivalents.

i think that's the left hander that stuck out 130 times in 110 games (aproximations).

and no ae - i think pierre is still a good lead off hitter, and definately the best fa this year. if he lets the phil's make better use of jroll i'd go for it.

Tim - Pierre is a mediocre, overrated player. I don't think I can come up with anyone I would less like to see in a Phils uniform. he can't take a walk, he has absolutely zero power, and his batting average is plummeting. he's posted a park-adjusted OPS+ over 100 (i.e., better than average) exactly once in his entire career and been over 90 exactly twice. true - he's still excellent stealing bases. but if he's getting on base less than a third of the time, it doesn't matter. Pierre plays 162 games every year and is consistently among the leaders in outs, at bats, etc. - and yet he has never been in the top 10 in runs scored.

plus, he's at a terrible age for a player like that. go look up Willie Wilson, Vince Coleman, Omar Moreno...these kind of players are virtually worthless when they get into their thirties because they can't take walks and their batting averages keep dropping.

...and this is all assuming I agree with you that Rolllins hitting fifth is "better use," which is debatable at best.

I hate to come back on post on this again, but I really dislike Pierre. so one more point: what on earth would make anybody think the Phillies need *more* outfielders? by my count, we already have Burrell, Rowand, Victorino, Conine, and Bourn, with Dellucci as a possibility. yes, please, let's add another mediocre hitter to that list.

I agree with DQ about Sheffield and Burrell. I don't want to waste more time and money on an old injury prone former star on the downside. I'm leaning towards the keep Burrell camp. I don't want Conine as a starter, either.

I always liked you Lake Fred!

Jon, I'd love to see Rolen back here too, but it's unfortunately not the least bit realistic. As Rolen said, he has a complete no-trade clause, and do you really think he'd even begin to consider waiving that to come back to Philadelphia? I know, if Dick Allen could come back to Philly, it seems anyone could - but I think it's still a zillion to one shot at best.

I can understand why you wouldn't come here if you're a pitcher, but I generally think Philadelphia gets a bad reputation as a place no player of sound mind wants to play. Jimmy signed long-term deal last season that will keep him here for most of his career. Lieberthal wants to come back. Wolf is already talking about coming back. Moyer liked coming here, as did the other late-season acquisitions. And the icing on the cake is Pat Burrell, who doesn't want to leave, either.

geez ae - are you sure you don't like pierre?

i'm not talking 10 years 150 million. i'm talking 2 years 10 million. bourne and delluci are nonfactors to me and obviously if rowand and burrell are here we don't need another outfielder. i personally think they are going to move burrell, and instead of giving a huge contract to a free agent (which i think pg will not do) pierre is someone they can fill in to center and move rowand over to left. they then move jroll 5. runs are not an issue for this team, we're not getting arod, aram, soriano or anybody else huge like that. the pierre thing is me thinking of how to realistically make this team better.

i'm not arguing these are the moves to make the best team in the world. i'm saying it's a realistic way to make a team that scores a ton of runs maintain that characteristic and still have resources for some pitching. it also fits gillicks m.o. of going after leadoff hitters and athletes in the outfield.

Juan Pierre's negatives- horrible arm, plays far too deep for a CF, not very good at getting on base, and absolutely no power.

Positive- speed...that's it.

He is not a good fit for Philly...plain and simple!

Although I agree Sheffield will not return to the Yanks, I think the Yanks will probably pick up Sheffield's option. At $13M with only a 1 year commitment, Sheffield would become a very tradeable commodity. Compare this to the mega million, multi year deal that it would take to acquire Soriano or even Carlos Lee. Yanks could probably get two AA players for Sheff. I would have no problem trading grade B or C prospects for Sheffield -- knowing that there is a commitment for only 1 season and $13M. Of course this is assuming you move Burrell.

If we're contemplating getting Sheffield, what's wrong with keeping Burrell?

Burrell in LF, Victorino in CF, and Sheffield in RF...that's pretty good if you ask me.

I agree Jason, but in Rolen's case he must have an extremely sour taste in his mouth about how things went down in Philly, something that is only reinforced every time he comes back and gets roundly booed there. It will never happen.

RSB, I know Rolen would be a long shot to return, but I really do think he would at least consider it since Bowa is no longer around. He was always fond of Montgomery and has a soft spot for Kalas. Those two things wouldn't be enough to get him back here, but maybe having more players who give their all (Utley, Victorino, etc. - like he is known for doing) could possibly seal a deal. He has seen their new stadium, the removal of Wade & Bowa, and the fact that they have started to spend some money over the past few years. Of course he has a no-trade clause, but some part of me says he would come back to Philly before some other teams within MLB, especially if things are really that bad with LaRussa.

Regarding Pierre, I'd sure take him. He'd be an ideal no. 2 hitter, he puts the ball in play, and sorry, a guy who comes up with 200 hits in a season is *not* a bad offensive player. His arm might be weak, but he gets to a lot in CF; obviously he gives you a big weapon with his speed on the bases, and he can move runners with contact and bunts. Nothing over-rated about any of those skills.

Jon, Rolen strikes me a grudge-holder, and even if he can somehow forgive the fans for turning *hard* against him, I seriously doubt he'd ever forgive the organization for (in his eyes) doing the same thing. Wade and Bowa might not be around, but the structure of the organization essentially is the same as it was in 2002. I don't think Harry Kalas is going to woo his mind away from those realities.

You are most likely right RSB. I wonder how it could have turned out. Oh well. On to the next third baseman.

Why already have our version of Juan Pierre without the stolen bases- Shane Victorino, and he very well may go back to his theiving days like he did in the minors. But Vic is better defensively all-around and has a bit more more, and potential to grow.

I'm actually a Juan Pierre fan, because of watching him constantly be a nemisis agains the Phils. But I do NOT want him on this team, because his offensive/defensive skills are just not a good fit.

Besides all of that, would the Phils even really want Rolen if he didn't have the past he has with them? It seems like his back and shoulder problems are chronic and it's always one or the other keeping him from playing at full strength. He's aged quickly.

Valid point, RSB. It would depend on how they could or could not upgrade the position. What options do they truly have? I still think Rolen will be a fairly productive player, but perhaps sights should be set elsewhere.

save the ten million on rolen and put it into jason schmidt. nunez is fine as the 8 hitter.

Tim- I don't care if Nunez was the 9 hole hitter, that absolute lack of production in unacceptable.

if you had ten mil to spend would you get a pitcher or a thirdbaseman?

Tim- I would probably go with the pitcher. But honestly I don't see anyone outside of Zito or Schmidt that would be "worth" that kind of money, and getting them is a long shot. Therefore, I choose to focus on upgrading the 3rd base position, thinking we can keep the rotation we had last year (if possible).

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