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Sunday, March 04, 2007


I've thought all along that Rowand had stumpy arms. Any chance his short arms explain why his arm isn't that great?

I've also felt all off-season long that PG didn't do enough to upgrade the Outfield or 'pen. I also thought they over-valued Lieber. Both look to be true, and seeing Werth's at-bats has solidified my point (in my mind at least).

I'd like to see Roberson or even Bourn make the bench over Werthless. Imagine how embarassed Gillick must be after seeing this game.

So far, the entire infield has looked excellent offensively. Pat Burrell was a surprise. Dobbs is better than I expected. Victorino's more buff. Eaton, Alfonseca, Hamels, and even Myers have looked pretty good. I like what I see out of Myers especially (with regard to his weight). He knows a lot is riding on his arm, and is now contractually happy and looks ready to take over as ace of this team for as long as he's around.

However, to say I'm greatly disappointed in the 5-Ring Circus that is Jim Ed Warren, Karim Garcia, Jason Werth[less], Anderson Garcia, and Brian Sanches would be an understatement.

In that first paragraph, I meant to say:
any chance his short arms explain why his throws from the OF aren't anything special?

Werth may turn out to be a decent aquisition, but if so, he really looked like he needs a couple of months to get rid of the rust.

Jason, I didn't notice any additional muscle on Howard, just more girth around the midsection. Don't be so 'dismissive' and make excuses for the guy. He doesn't look to be in good shape.

Contrast him with Utley, who is definitely larger, but looks just as fit. Victorino too. And please spare me the "body type" argument. He looked sloppy, period.

For what it's worth, Howard's gut was *noticeable* today. I mean, I wasn't even looking for it, but there it was. While I wouldn't say it's a concern now, it could be if it's left unchecked. If Howard expects the big payout next year, he's not the only one who might need to go the 'extra mile'. He needs to show the Phillies he's more responsible about his conditioning. Prestigious homerun totals or not, I would not necessarily blame the Phillies for hesitating to extend the contract very far if a guy just keeps putting on weight like Howard has. As he gets older, that's something which will inevitably catch up to him and his overall performance.

Meanwhile, it's interesting to consider that in all the bench-warmer debates, Werth is a guy who has been presumed all along will be on the team. But with the competition going on around him and his obvious rustiness, that suddenly is far less than a foregone conclusion. It's important to remember that Gillick is not tethered to his acquisitions, no matter how recent. I think we can be fairly confident that the best 25-man roster will go north.

Who is this Sarge?

i shudder to think that we face a season listening to chris wheeler saying barajas 50 times a game.

i guess i will have to watch every game at the bar with the sound off.

Fellas. Relax on Howard's weight. There are exactly 58 good reasons why no one should be concerned about his midsection in early March. I don't like seeing out-of-shape athletes either, but let's cut the guy some slack.

Howard is the man, whether it's extra muscle, fat, or a combo...he'll be fine.

I did not know Condrey was out of options. I think he's a perfect long man or 6th inning guy when needed. I hope he shows he belongs and the Phils keep him.

I agree with the analysis of Jim Ed Warden, he doesn't belong in the majors.

Sarge just sounds dumb in the booth. I'm sure he's probably baseball intelligent, he just doesn't sound that way...sorta like Manuel.

To quote Billy Beane, "we aren't selling jeans here people."

I am by no means a nutritionist (J can tell you, I added one cheesesteak and two Lagers in about 7 innings to my 5'8" "frame") but it seems to me that no matter what Howard does, he will always have a little bit of a pudge, it's just his genes.

Look, there are 457 things you need to worry about in the Phillies before you get to Howard's waist size.

457 Tom G?...I could only come up with 319.

I havent seen Howard yet this ST, but I dont think that it would be possible to mistake putting on muscle and putting on fat. Unless he has done such intense ab workouts that his abs are bulging into the shape of a gut. Once again I have not seen him, but it is interesting. It's not like baseball players lose a lot of weight during the season, so when he is expected to trim down is a mystery to me. That said, we have had other prodictive 1B who were not in the greatest shape (Kruk) and that turned out good. Maybe Howard, Utley, Barajas, Werth, Burrell, and Rowand all just need to grow mullets and we would forget about the guts. These strategies work, team unity is important. I think the mullet is the ultimate personal sacrifice for the sake of team unity.

The Mullet that needs no introduction: Hamels (Donning the sportiest Mullet already) calling 20 wins is a bit troubling. I did not see the actual coment, but if he said, unconditionally, "I am going to win 20 games," that is outrageous. Not that I dont think he can do it, and if he does, I will call him the badass of the year. This just puts more of a bullseye on the Phils. First, Rollins acts like we have won this division for the past 14 years, and then you have a second year guy proclaiming 20 wins for the crown of Hamels. Carlos Zambrano said he would win the Cy Young and the Cubs would win the WS, but I give him a pass becasue I dont think he speaks English that well. He may have meant to say "Who is Cy Young?, and the Cubs will win the World Series of Poker."

"... calling 20 wins is a bit troubling."

What is going on today? Officials and players agree unanimously that Hamels' confidence and polish is the picture of perfection.

re: Hamel's comments, Salisbury said in his column "He'd like to win 20 games, be in the running for the Cy Young Award, and help his team get to the playoffs." that's pretty much exactly what I would expect a young star pitcher like Hamels to say he wants to do. no problems here...

ae, thanks for the specifics. THe only thing I heard about it was Eric Kusilius on ESPN radio. He was making it sound as if he said "I'm going to win 20 games this year." The quote you provided indicates that it is a goal, and a commendable one at that. I certiany have no problem with a 20 win goal, I would only have a problem with brash statements of winning 20 games and calling playoff berths. I have to admit, when I heard Kusilius recount what was said, I immediately thought that Hamels would not say something like that. Shame on Eric Kusilius for misrepresenting actual quotes. I need to read the Zambrano quote. Maybe it is Kusilius who needs to learn the rules of English, not Zambrano.

This is Buster Olney's on Hamels:
In print, the words seem jarring: Cole Hamels, a veteran of 23 years and 23 major league starts, said Sunday he expects to win 20 games this season. For Hamels, he said, the expectations are "20 [victories] every year."
But maybe you had to be in the room to know he wasn't bragging, that this was really all about goal-setting and about currying belief in what he can achieve, if he applies himself correctly. And Hamels appears to be doing everything he can to achieve those 20 victories: early arrivals at the park in Clearwater, Fla., 90 minutes to two hours every day in cardio work, a dip into an ice tub to help treat his aching back.

He is 6-foot-4 and seems to have the lean angular strength of a mountain climber, and on Sunday, he completely controlled the Yankees over three scoreless innings. He looks absolutely prepared to be a difference-maker in the NL East this year.
I first heard about the comments on NY sports radio and they made it sound as if he thinks he is the best pitcher ever.

"I think we can be fairly confident that the best 25-man roster will go north."

Why in the world would you be confident in this?

Last year, Coste was clearly a better player than Gonzalez, but was sent to AAA. The year before, Offerman somehow made the team despite having only one position and being about two years removed from even an average season.

I'm almost certain this team will have at least two players who don't deserve to be there on April 2nd.

one will be Werth, there's no way he doesn't make the team, regardless of play.

The problem with Coste making the team, is that he's got options left... If we have to carry a Werth until his play forces achange, Coste will take the bullet...

I like the cocky attitude Hamels and Rollins long as they back it up, and I expect them to do just that.

I'm not sure that Howard actually put on weight. This is going to sound stupid but... the spring training uni's are pullover and don't have buttons down the front so I think we're getting a better look at the gut that has always been there. The guy that does the uniform blog for Page 2 actually points this out at:
(scroll down to the 9th point)

Jason Werths carrer stats look like he is a strikeout machine with average power. Can someone tell me why there is any hope that this guy can be a solid contributor? His stats look like he is a fringe major leaguer. (Low BA, high strikeouts, with some speed). Sounds like he is just athletic enough to keep him within the olfactory senses of GM's, but doesnt have enough true baseball ability to make it as a regular contributor.

The first look at Big Jim Ed was not impressive. So far, IMO, the mop-up job is Condrey's to lose.

Parker- by the way, you didn't mis-quote/paraphrase me yesterday in regards to the incentives sweat bro.

It may take all spring and early season for Jayson Werth to get his timing back. If that's the case, I suggest sending him to Ottawa for early season seasoning. I know it's premature and only spring, but it is reasonable to speculate his getting reacquainted period will take longer than just March.

I saw a pic of the Black Bull on and it was a side view and uh, he looked a bit fat, but then again not that much fatter than before.

Another great Jason blog header designed to get a lively discussion going.

I believe Ryan Howard will always have an ample gut. Big fat guys usually have a lot of strength. I'm willing to let Howard be a bit big on the waistline.

Joe disturbed me with the comment about the team keeping Werth over Coste just based on options.

I'm also in Hamels corner no matter what manner he actually said he was going to win 20 games. When he has 13 or 14 victories at the All Star break, his critics will shut up.

Interesting observation about "Stub Arms" Rowands. That would explain his wimp throws from the outfield...small wheelhouse!

I'm listening to the game online and there are no comercial breaks so inbetween innings you hear the background noise. The stadium was playing the theme to Cheers and I thought of all of you.

Rollins steals second and the next pitch Victorino gets a hit and scores Rollins. I just hope that this is just a sign of things to come. Spring Training always brings out the optimist in me.

you mentioned condrey being out of options. could you do an article on all players that still have options and those that do not? it also plays a very important role in trade possibilities (blue jays ,pods ). thanks dcmay

very interesting.
i'm adding in RSS Reader

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