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Saturday, April 21, 2007

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Don't forget trading Abreu and Lidle for absolute slop. I can't stand Gillick, he is a complete waste. He's the one who should be fired!

Is it safe to assume that the team with the worst record in baseball is no longer "The team to Beat"? Does this mean that we're not making the playoffs this year?

Just want to say, I've been reading this site every day since late December. Although I don't post, I love reading this site. This site is like Alcoholics Anonymous where we all get together and tell how we've become victim to the worst team in baseball. Absolutely ridiculous that this team is THIS BAD! I'm going to announce it. I HATE the Phillies. I just hate them less than every other team in baseball. It's this darn curse of having grown up in suburban Philadelphia with a father who loved a historically crappy team. Some of you don't how tough it is to be a Phillies fan in Los Angeles, having to deal with rooting for a terrible team and trying to defend yourself. I just appreciate knowing that I'm not the only who can't understand how its possible to have this big of payroll and yet such a crappy team.

Oh, and Gillick is terrible because of his "good 'ol boy" George "the dumb one" Bush approach building a team. Just because you drafted a player once back in 1982 as GM of the Blue Jays doesn't mean that player was good, is good, or ever will be good, solely for the fact that you drafted him. It's absurd! Completely absurd. I watch Ned Colleti (did I spell that right) come into his first season as Dodgers GM and take a team to the playoffs last season who had no business having a .500 record. And yet we watch Gillick last season talk about "two years away from contention" and see him make some of the crappiest moves in baseball. Granted Colleti benefited from a deep farm system, but prospects aren't a sure thing. Colleti gets the job done, while Gillick sits here picking up crap from the waiver wire for either of two reasons: 1) he can't get around this terrible ownership and they're tying his hands or 2) he has completely lost his touch and doesn't deserve to be a GM in the MLB. I'm praying its 1) just so we don't have to fire another GM and start all over AGAIN!

Phucking Phils.

Might be time to trot out my Pat Gillick Report Card to get the debate rolling for those who need a break from yard work:

1. Acquired CF Aaron Rowand, LHP Daniel Haigwood and Gio Gonzalez for 1B Jim Thome and cash
Grade: C.
Thome had a monster season for the Sox and Rowand’s impact on the Phillies was minimal due tro injury. He is off to a nice start this year, but does anyone think he's above league average? Haigwood got Castro and Gio was part of the Garcia package.

2. Signed free agent RHP Julio Santana to a one-year contract.
Grade: F
Santana had pitched 470 IP with little success so his failure was predictable.

3. Signed free agent INF Abraham Nunez to a two-year contract.
Grade: D-
Nunez was a lifetime .240 hitter with no power and poor OB but a decent glove who had a career year with the Cardinals in ’05. Only Gillick thought it ws a breakthrough year as Nunez predictably reverted to form. His defense is overrated.

4. Signed free agent C Sal Fasano to a one-year contract.
Grade: D
He was NOT an upgrade over Todd Pratt, but Sal’s Pals were lots of fun.

5. Signed free agent RHP Tom Gordon to a three-year contract
Grade: C-
Gordon gets an A for his first half 2006 performance and an F for his second half. So far, so bad this year. Remmeber, Gillick let Billy Wags walk so we could give 3 years to a 39-year-old.

6. Acquired RHP Ricardo Rodriguez from Texas for Vicente Padilla
Grade: F
Padilla would’ve been the second best pitcher in the rotation, eliminated the Madson-Floyd fiasco and put the team into the playoffs. Rodriguez had 200 IP with bad H/IP and K/BB ratios at the time of the trade and did nothing. One of the worst trades in Phillies history.

7. Phillies non-tendered outfielder Endy Chavez, even though he was hitting .324 in Venezuelan league.
Grade: F
The Mets signed him about 10 minutes after Gillick cut him. He hit .306

8. Signed RHP Ryan Franklin to a one-year contract.
Grade: F
Another AL pitcher with a history of failure.

9. Acquired LHP Arthur Rhodes from Cleveland for OF Jason Michaels.
Grade: F
Rhodes provided almost nothing. J-Mike killed lefties, as usual. He would’ve been a big upgrade over Conine, had they kept him.

10. Signed free agent INF Alex S. Gonzalez to a one-year contract
Grade: F
A-Gonz did nothing and was gone.

11. Acquired OF David Dellucci and cash from the Texas Rangers for RHP Robinson Tejeda and OF Jake Blalock
Grade: C-
Tejeda did about as well for Texas as he did for the Phils in ’05 if you adjust for league and park factors. At 24, he still has upside. Dellucci was a key factor in the team’s August hitting surge, but he’s a liability in the field, can’t hit LHP and walked away as soon as his contract expired.

12. Acquired LHP Fabio Castro from the Texas Rangers in exchange for LHP Daniel Haigwood and cash.
Grade: B
Castro is a flamethrower and Haigwood a lefty finesse guy. Odds favor Castro, assuming he ever gains command.

13. Acquired SS C.J. Henry, LHP Matt Smith, C Jesus Sanchez and RHP Carlos Monastrios from the Yankees for OF Bobby Abreu and RHP Cory Lidle.
Grade: F-
The Yankees call it one of the best trades in team history and Abreu has at least 3 productive years left. Arguably one of the 3 worst trades in the history of the Phillies franchise (Ferguson Jenkins and Ryne Sandberg being the other two and they actually got usable players in those deals). Some Beerleaguers persist with their fantasies, based on no evidence whatsoever, that he was bad in the clubhouse etc., despite comments to the complete contrary by manager, teammates, sportwriters etc.

14. Claimed RHP Rick White off waivers from the Reds.
Grade: B+
Weird Beard ate bullpen innings and had bullpen phone fun. Gillick let him and Fultz walk and made no provisions for replacements.

15. Traded LHP Rheal Cormier to the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for RHP Justin Germano
Grade: B
The trade itself gets a B because of Germano's potential. But Gillick gets an F for losing Germano on waivers.

16. Traded RHP Ryan Franklin to Cincinnati for Zac Stott.
Grade: C+
Stott will never see the big leagues but getting organizational filler for nothing is worth a C+.

17. Acquired LHP Jamie Moyer from the Seattle Mariners in exchange for Minor League RHPs Andrew Baldwin and Andrew Barb.
Grade: B+
This becomes an A if Moyer re-signs here and the youngsters fail. Barb could be good, however.

18. Acquired INF/OF Jose Hernandez from the Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for cash.
Grade B
He was a huge upgrade over Sandoval, nice bat vs. LHP, plays 7 positions and would have more value had they re-signed him and cut Nunez.

19. Acquired OF Jeff Conine and cash from the Orioles in exchange for Angel Chavez.
Grade: B
Like Dellucci, he fueled the August hitting surge, then cooled off sharply at the end. Chavez is a mediocre prospect.

20. Signed free agent INF Wes Helms to a two-year contract.
Grade: B
I'm being generous here because it depends on Helms hitting .280 or better with at least 20 HRs. Anything less than that won't offset his bad glove.

21. Signed RHP Adam Eaton to a three-year contract.
Grade: C
Eaton is a 5 or 6 inning starter who gives up the longball. He can be a decent 4th or 5th starter if he stays healthy so this grade could rise.

22. Acquired RHP Freddy Garcia from the Chicago White Sox in exchange for RHP Gavin Floyd and Gio Gonzalez.
Grade: Incomplete.
Is Garcia healthy? Will he pitch 200 innings? This has potential to be a very good trade or a disaster. Gio and Floyd are live arms.

23. Signed OF Jayson Werth to a one-year contract.
Grade: C
Werth can be a decent platoon outfielder vs. LHP, but Manuel hasn't used him that way, starting him mostly vs. RHP. He hasn't impressed with the glove.

24. Traded OF Jeff Conine to Cincinnati in exchange for Minor League OF Javon Moran and Minor League 3B Brad Key
Grade: B
Key is worthless, but Moran has potential as possible 4th or 5th outfielder someday.

25. Signed C Rod Barajas to a one-year contract with a club option for the 2008 season.
Grade: C
In hindsight, this was a mistake, assuming Ruiz continues to play as he has. But it was for only one year. Barajas is an extreme one-dimensional mistake hitter.

26. Signed RHP Antonio Alfonseca to a one-year contract.
Grade: B+
Obviously this grade changes if he suddenly loses it, but so far this gamble on a vet has paid off.

27. Acquired RHP Francisco Rosario from Toronto in exchange for cash considerations.
Grade: B
Live arm, worth a flier, odds are probably less than 50-50 that he'll ever have command.

Summary: Gillick has made some good small personnel moves and some spectacularly bad big personnel moves. Overall, I'd say his moves rank in the bottom 20% of all GMs.

You are about a day late and a $ short. I've stated since before ST that Gillick was hired on the cheap. No Leland. Giving away Abreau. The Bench. The relief pitching. Really surprised that the so called "expets" only looked at Howard- Utley- Hamels- Myers and not the whole roster.

Great summary clout. Enjoyed reading it, though I probably should spend my time doing something more productive.

The Mets are batting David Wright in the 2 hole today. The idea of a power guy batting 2nd is intriguing. It used to be common in the 1950s and early 60s. It's a trend I wouldn't mind seeing come back.

I'm not so sure David Wright is still considered a power guy. 20-25 homers, he's probably more like an Abreu type hitter.

Nice Clout. Thanks!

I'm not the expert on the fundamentals of the field game that some of you are. I've spent 30 years as a (gasp!) management consultant. From that perspective I see it like this:

1. Gillick did say that he didn't expect to contend until 2008. I'd love to know the reasoning for that prediction. I'm sure it comes out of his experience of building a team, out of the budgetary/salary structure that he inherited, and out of what he sees coming available through the minor league system and free agency. Without the logic of it though, I'm willing to give him until next year.

2. Its the bullpen! The lack of hitting with RISP is probably a function of going to the plate thinking, "We gotta score seven runs a game to win."

3. The team is bi-polar -- subject to extreme emotional highs and lows. You don't see the consistent winners like the Braves and Yankees doing that. It seems a function of two things. First, hiring managers for their emotional make-up (fiery Bowa, laid-back Manuel) instead of for fundamental management skill (see LaRussa, Torre, Leyland, Cox). Second, the city itself is bi-polar about all of its teams - extreme highs and lows and with a generally short-term focus; fans get on the emotional roller-coaster and give it momentum.

So, Pat, what to do tomorrow? Replacing Charlie would be a nice first step if there is someone available who fits the "fundamental management skills" description and will come in with credibility, with the team believing that the guy can fix things.

Then, fix the damn bullpen.

so how long until myers is closing? I give it less than a week.

Does anyone know where one can go to find out if players have minor league options left?

I.E. could Smith, or even Madson be sent down and used daily.

Can't seem to find this info immediately on the WEB.

Thanks

I agree with Inky's cousin and Clout. As a long suffering Phillies fan living in Los Angeles it is difficult to watch the start of the season. Especially, when watching what Ned Coletti has done with the Dodgers, who I abhor.

The Phil's seem to have a nice core group of regulars but management can't find a capable GM or manager. The farm system seems to be lacking in any decent prospects above A ball and the bench players accumulated over the last few seasons are marginal at best. Can it really be that difficult to find decent major league baseball players? Other teams seem to do it with regularity.

You know that Joan Jett song "I hate myself for lovin' you!"...that sums up my feelings about the Phils right now.

Fine summary, clout. As someone who detested Ed Wade, and desperately wanted to believe in Gillick, it's painful but necessary to admit that Wade almost certainly would have done better over these last 18 months than the old man has done.

The only thing I'd add to your excellent assessment is that bad moves sometimes have consequences beyond the actual players and contracts specifically involved. To wit, I can't help but wonder if Gillick would have been able to make a plausible deal for Lieber were it not for the fact that he got positively abused in the Padilla and Abreu travesties. If you're one of the other 29 GMs, why wouldn't you hold out to make a similar fleecing?

Fine summary, clout. As someone who detested Ed Wade, and desperately wanted to believe in Gillick, it's painful but necessary to admit that Wade almost certainly would have done better over these last 18 months than the old man has done.

The only thing I'd add to your excellent assessment is that bad moves sometimes have consequences beyond the actual players and contracts specifically involved. To wit, I can't help but wonder if Gillick would have been able to make a plausible deal for Lieber were it not for the fact that he got positively abused in the Padilla and Abreu travesties. If you're one of the other 29 GMs, why wouldn't you hold out to make a similar fleecing?

Pitcher Vicente Padilla is staying with the Texas Rangers, agreeing to a $33.75 million, three-year contract Saturday that includes a $12 million club ...

2006 TEX AL 200.0 IP 206 HITS WHIP 1.380

200 BA Against Righties 306 BA Against Lefties

This Year Vincente has an ERA of 6.00

I loved Padilla, but look at these stats. The club knew from his agent what he was seeking for money. Would you have given him 12 MILLION A YEAR?

What so many miss with Padilla and Abreu are the Costs involved, as if we can sign anyone at any price. Abreu because of Ed Wade's fear of losing his job had a contract
2007 Salary: $15,600,000 -- 2008 Salary 16,000,000.

We should never ever have lost Abreu, but Wade's handling of both his and Burrells contracts handcuffed us.

Abreu's trade was really, Abreu for the ability for the next decade to sign a top 10-15 dollar a year starter if we can find one who is healthy.

Gillick in the Padilla and Abreu situations is blameless, he could not sign the first, and he made a difficult choice economically that he never should have had to have made.

Gillick has singlehandedly gotten the Phillies to a place where they will have financial flexability in the future.

Look how hard relievers are to come by these days, the Braves traded a guy with 32 homers for a middle reliever.

As for Wagner, Gillick tried to give away the store to keep him, but Wags was not biting. People forget the FAT HANGING APPLES Wags served up to his buddies of the Houston Astros in Sept 2005 that led to us losing the wild card by one game.

Yes, Smith, Madson, Gordon, (the entire bench aside from Werth), Utley and Howard are not producing, but would you trade our rotation for the Yankees, Mets, or Braves staight up?

Not me.

10-15 million dollars a year for a 1# starter.

TG COMMENTS IN CAPS

Might be time to trot out my Pat Gillick Report Card to get the debate rolling for those who need a break from yard work:

1. Acquired CF Aaron Rowand, LHP Daniel Haigwood and Gio Gonzalez for 1B Jim Thome and cash
Grade: C.
Thome had a monster season for the Sox and Rowand’s impact on the Phillies was minimal due tro injury. He is off to a nice start this year, but does anyone think he's above league average? Haigwood got Castro and Gio was part of the Garcia package. THOME OFF TO ANOTHER GOOD START HITTING .317 5 HR 9 RBI

2. Signed free agent RHP Julio Santana to a one-year contract.
Grade: F
Santana had pitched 470 IP with little success so his failure was predictable. NC

3. Signed free agent INF Abraham Nunez to a two-year contract.
Grade: D-
Nunez was a lifetime .240 hitter with no power and poor OB but a decent glove who had a career year with the Cardinals in ’05. Only Gillick thought it ws a breakthrough year as Nunez predictably reverted to form. His defense is overrated. NC

4. Signed free agent C Sal Fasano to a one-year contract.
Grade: D
He was NOT an upgrade over Todd Pratt, but Sal’s Pals were lots of fun. THEY WERE FUN FOR TWO DAYS IF THAT WHILE FASANO'S INEPTITUDE LASTED MUCH LONGER.

5. Signed free agent RHP Tom Gordon to a three-year contract
Grade: C-
Gordon gets an A for his first half 2006 performance and an F for his second half. So far, so bad this year. Remmeber, Gillick let Billy Wags walk so we could give 3 years to a 39-year-old. WAGNER WAS NEVER RE-SIGNING HERE SO THAT POINT IS MOOT. GORDON HAD A HISTORY OF ARM TROUBLES BUT NO TOP-RANKED CLOSER WAS GOING TO SIGN A ONE YEAR DEAL. GILLICK AND THE PHILLIES GAMBLED HERE AND WON FOR THE HALF A YEAR YOU MENTIONED. NOW THEY HAVE TO PAY THE PIPER.

6. Acquired RHP Ricardo Rodriguez from Texas for Vicente Padilla
Grade: F
Padilla would’ve been the second best pitcher in the rotation, eliminated the Madson-Floyd fiasco and put the team into the playoffs. Rodriguez had 200 IP with bad H/IP and K/BB ratios at the time of the trade and did nothing. One of the worst trades in Phillies history. THE ORGANIZATION HAD WRITTEN OFF PADILLA BUT THAT DIDN'T MEAN THEY HAD TO GIVE HIM AWAY, WHICH IS PRECISELY WHAT THEY DID. THAT'S THE PHILLIES WAY: BAD TALK SOMEONE TO INSURE THEIR TRADE VALUE IS DIMINISHED. WORKS EVERY TIME.

7. Phillies non-tendered outfielder Endy Chavez, even though he was hitting .324 in Venezuelan league.
Grade: F
The Mets signed him about 10 minutes after Gillick cut him. He hit .306 ENDY WAS PAINFUL TO WATCH AT THE PLATE. THE METS GOT A LUCKY YEAR OUT OF HIM AT BAT. TALK TO ME THIS JULY, BY WHICH TIME ENDY WILL HAVE REVERTED TO FORM.

8. Signed RHP Ryan Franklin to a one-year contract.
Grade: F
Another AL pitcher with a history of failure. AND "PITCHING" WAS HIS STRONG SUIT. FRANKLIN HAD OTHER, BIGGER PROBLEMS.

9. Acquired LHP Arthur Rhodes from Cleveland for OF Jason Michaels.
Grade: F
Rhodes provided almost nothing. J-Mike killed lefties, as usual. He would’ve been a big upgrade over Conine, had they kept him. RHODES WAS WASHED UP WHEN HE LEFT BALTIMORE. GILLICK DIDN'T LEARN AT TWO DIFFERENT STOPS: BALTIMORE OR SEATTLE!!

10. Signed free agent INF Alex S. Gonzalez to a one-year contract
Grade: F
A-Gonz did nothing and was gone. TALK ABOUT DOING ONE'S HOMEWORK. IT'S ONE THING FOR THE GUY TO TURN OUT TO BE A BUST AND ANOTHER ONE ALTOGETHER TO HAVE HIM QUIT THE GAME ALTOGETHER!!

11. Acquired OF David Dellucci and cash from the Texas Rangers for RHP Robinson Tejeda and OF Jake Blalock
Grade: C-
Tejeda did about as well for Texas as he did for the Phils in ’05 if you adjust for league and park factors. At 24, he still has upside. Dellucci was a key factor in the team’s August hitting surge, but he’s a liability in the field, can’t hit LHP and walked away as soon as his contract expired.DELLUCCI FELT MIS-USED FROM DAY ONE IN PHILA AND COULD NOT WAIT TO RUN, NOT WALK, AWAY.

12. Acquired LHP Fabio Castro from the Texas Rangers in exchange for LHP Daniel Haigwood and cash.
Grade: B
Castro is a flamethrower and Haigwood a lefty finesse guy. Odds favor Castro, assuming he ever gains command. SCHOOL'S STIL OUT, AS YOU SAY.

13. Acquired SS C.J. Henry, LHP Matt Smith, C Jesus Sanchez and RHP Carlos Monastrios from the Yankees for OF Bobby Abreu and RHP Cory Lidle.
Grade: F-
The Yankees call it one of the best trades in team history and Abreu has at least 3 productive years left. Arguably one of the 3 worst trades in the history of the Phillies franchise (Ferguson Jenkins and Ryne Sandberg being the other two and they actually got usable players in those deals). Some Beerleaguers persist with their fantasies, based on no evidence whatsoever, that he was bad in the clubhouse etc., despite comments to the complete contrary by manager, teammates, sportwriters etc.. GILLICK WAS GOING TO MAKE A TRADE AT THE DEADLINE SO IT WAS JUST A MATTER OF DECIDING WHO WAS GOING TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF HIM. SEE THE COMMENTS ABOVE ABOUT PADILLA (DENIGRATING A GUY BEFORE YOU TRY AND TRADE HIM). FROM SHOPPING HIM DURING THE WINTER OF 2005 TO BOOING HIM ON OPENING DAY (CAN'T BLAME GILLICK FOR THAT, I GUESS) TO MAKING ALL SORTS OF NOISES ABOUT WHAT HE'D LOST, THE PHILLIES MADE NO BONES ABOUT WANTING TO SHED THEMSELVES OF ABREU AND HIS CONTRACT. TO THROW IN LIDLE WAS JUST ADDING INSULT TO INJURY. AGREED THIS WAS ONE OF THE WORST TRADES EVER.

14. Claimed RHP Rick White off waivers from the Reds.
Grade: B+
Weird Beard ate bullpen innings and had bullpen phone fun. Gillick let him and Fultz walk and made no provisions for replacements. NC

15. Traded LHP Rheal Cormier to the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for RHP Justin Germano
Grade: B
The trade itself gets a B because of Germano's potential. But Gillick gets an F for losing Germano on waivers. NC
16. Traded RHP Ryan Franklin to Cincinnati for Zac Stott.
Grade: C+
Stott will never see the big leagues but getting organizational filler for nothing is worth a C+. NC

17. Acquired LHP Jamie Moyer from the Seattle Mariners in exchange for Minor League RHPs Andrew Baldwin and Andrew Barb.
Grade: B+
This becomes an A if Moyer re-signs here and the youngsters fail. Barb could be good, however. SO FAR SO GOOD BUT I STILL BELIEVE MOYER WILL NOT FOOL NL'ERS ALL OF THE TIME ONCE HE MAKES THE ROUNDS A FEW TIMES. (IT HAS BEEN PREVIOUSLY POINTED OUT TO ME WHEN I RAISED THIS POINT THAT HE HAS FACED A FEW NL CLUBS TWICE AND FARED DECENTLY.) EVENTUALLY, BIG LEAGUERS FIGURE OUT PITCHERS LIKE MOYER, WHO IS NO GLAVINE.

18. Acquired INF/OF Jose Hernandez from the Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for cash.
Grade B
He was a huge upgrade over Sandoval, nice bat vs. LHP, plays 7 positions and would have more value had they re-signed him and cut Nunez. NC

19. Acquired OF Jeff Conine and cash from the Orioles in exchange for Angel Chavez.
Grade: B
Like Dellucci, he fueled the August hitting surge, then cooled off sharply at the end. Chavez is a mediocre prospect. CONINE FITS INTO ANOTHER GILLICK PATTERN THAT HAS RECEIVED SCANT ATTENTION: HE LIKES PLAYERS WHO BEAT HIS TEAMS, JUST AS BOBBY CLARKE DID TO EQUALLY DISASTROUS RESULTS.

20. Signed free agent INF Wes Helms to a two-year contract.
Grade: B
I'm being generous here because it depends on Helms hitting .280 or better with at least 20 HRs. Anything less than that won't offset his bad glove. AGREED.

21. Signed RHP Adam Eaton to a three-year contract.
Grade: C
Eaton is a 5 or 6 inning starter who gives up the longball. He can be a decent 4th or 5th starter if he stays healthy so this grade could rise. TOO MUCH MONEY FOR TOO LITTLE PITCHER.

22. Acquired RHP Freddy Garcia from the Chicago White Sox in exchange for RHP Gavin Floyd and Gio Gonzalez.
Grade: Incomplete.
Is Garcia healthy? Will he pitch 200 innings? This has potential to be a very good trade or a disaster. Gio and Floyd are live arms. FREDDY COULD BE DAMAGED GOODS. SCHOOL IS STILL OUT.

23. Signed OF Jayson Werth to a one-year contract.
Grade: C
Werth can be a decent platoon outfielder vs. LHP, but Manuel hasn't used him that way, starting him mostly vs. RHP. He hasn't impressed with the glove. A GAMBLE.

24. Traded OF Jeff Conine to Cincinnati in exchange for Minor League OF Javon Moran and Minor League 3B Brad Key
Grade: B
Key is worthless, but Moran has potential as possible 4th or 5th outfielder someday. NC

25. Signed C Rod Barajas to a one-year contract with a club option for the 2008 season.
Grade: C
In hindsight, this was a mistake, assuming Ruiz continues to play as he has. But it was for only one year. Barajas is an extreme one-dimensional mistake hitter. I HAVEN'T BEEN SO IMPRESSED WITH BARAJAS THE RECEIVER EITHER.

26. Signed RHP Antonio Alfonseca to a one-year contract.
Grade: B+
Obviously this grade changes if he suddenly loses it, but so far this gamble on a vet has paid off. PENDING.

27. Acquired RHP Francisco Rosario from Toronto in exchange for cash considerations.
Grade: B
Live arm, worth a flier, odds are probably less than 50-50 that he'll ever have command. NC

Summary: Gillick has made some good small personnel moves and some spectacularly bad big personnel moves. Overall, I'd say his moves rank in the bottom 20% of all GMs. GILLICK IS PLAYING OUT THE STRING UNTIL FULL RETIREMENT, THE PHILA JOB APPARENTLY BEING HIS SEMI-RETIREMENT

#1 your rating a C - my rating an A

We could not afford the cash to Thome freeing about half of 60 million owed to him, and opened a spot for Ryan Howard.
The fact that we got anything in return is amazing, we have Rowand (who can be traded for the middle reliever we need) Castro, and Garcia (when we through in Floyd with Gio)

So this trade becomes Thome for - Ryan Howard, Garcia in 2007, Rowand or the pitcher he is traded for, and Castro a great lefty prospect in AAA.

This was an A++ trade, Thome had been injured and his trade value at the point of the trade was quite low.

Think about it, would you rather have Thome and his cost, and not have Ryan Howard, Garcia, Rowand, and Castro? If you would I would agree to disagree, while thinking you are out of your freaking mind...

Gillick's signing of his former retreads has been terrible, but he continues to try, unlike poor Ed Wade.

Clout: As usual nice summary. If I would sum up Gillick's tenure so far, it would be marked any kind of strategic vision. Gillick's major FA signings and trades have generally been failures. Even his moves involving second-tier players have been pretty much failures with the exception of the Moyer trade.

I go so as far to say that Gillick as been as bad and possibly worse than Ed Wade. Gillick supposedly had to clean up Wade's contracts but then Gillick turns around and makes some bad long-term deals himself (e.g., Eaton). Plus, Gillick is probably only here until 2008 tops. Basically someone else is going to have to clean up his mess in 2009 and beyond.

Clout, Nicely written and mostly in agreement. MG makes good point about lack of strategic direction. For example -- Signing Barajas for $2.5M and he loses his starting job 2 weeks into the season. Seeminly going for it with acquisitions of veterans Garcia, Moyer, and Helms, but failing to address back of the bullpen. I give Gillick credit for dumping David Bell last year even though I have no idea who Wilfridio Laureano is or if he is even still in the Phillies organization.

It is true that Gillick hasn't made the greatest moves and will probably continue to make similar moves in the future. Not good news for the Phils Phaithful.

Who can disagree, though, that Chollie needs to be put out of his misery? He's clearly scuffling and so is the team. We all should have turned our backs on the Phils when they hired him instead of Jim Leyland.

Many "fair weather fans" are already turning their backs on this team and will continue to do so. The only ones remaining will be the die-hards, because we can't kick the habit.

I's not a habit, Carson. It's a damn addiction. I, too, hate myself for lovin' them. Damn Phillies!!!!!!!!!!!

Billy Mac - That is my exact point about Gillick. Gillick saw this team struggle greatly at times in the first half of 2006 (especially in June), so I think he decided to blow it up at the trade deadline.

I still repute anyone that thinks that Gillick's statement about not contending until 2008 was anything more than Gillick's own opinion of this team based on their first half performance and Gillick's assessment of the talent on this team.

Contrary to some of the more foolish posts on this site, it was not some kind of master psychological tactic to motivate the Phils by taking the pressure of them. Nothing in Gillick's history as a GM suggests that he utilizes such psychological tactics.

Instead of sticking to his plan about building toward 2008, Gillick switched strategy less than a month later since the Phils played lights out in August. Gillick decided to pick up a few veterans and take a stab. Give him credit for that even if the Phils came up a bit short.

Still, it was a change in strategy and it continued through the offseason in 2007. Instead of contending in 2008 as he had stated on July 31st, Gillick decided to go for it this season. Case in point was the Garcia trade.

Again, I think you can make an argument either way about going for it this season but Gillick has not really laid out any long-term strategy to improve this team and it is highly unlikely he will be around after 2008.

It's easy to criticize Gillick if you assume he has the purse to make all the moves we want him to. Something tells me his budget is limited...

Maybe some analysis in the $$$ department will provide an explanation for the apparent insanity.

When other GM's blow up teams to go for youth and build for the future, they get actual prospects in return. Players with potential.
Anyway, I mostly agree with the grades Clout gave. I think the Dellucci trade was a little better though, as he worked out well for us. I also think the Barajas signing isn't that bad, since it's only one year and you have to sign guys like that every year just in case they have a great year and to provide depth. It's the long term contracts that kill you, not one year deals.

Just wanted to clear something up as a Mets fan. Saw a posting last night from Parker regarding GM's moves that have been as awful as Mr. Gillick. Omar did not trade Kazmir for Zambrano, that was Jim Duquette. This trade inevitably lead to the ousting of that regime. As Mets fans we reflect positively on this in a glass half full type of way in the sense that if that trade doesn't happen we still likely have Duquette and managers like Art Howe. Furthermore, to harp on how bad Duquette is, not only did he trade a solid pitcher for damaged goods in the Kazmir for Zambrano trade, he didn't learn his lesson, as he traded us John Maine and Jorge Julio (which turned into El Duque) for Kris Benson. As some of you might know, Kris Benson is out for the year having shoulder surgery.
Aside from correcting a severely poor misconception, I want to leave you with this from an outsider looking in. The quicker Gillick and Manuel are out of Philly, the quicker your organization gets back to respectability. Those two remind Mets fans of how bad we had it before Omar. They are awful and make ridiculously head scratching decisions.

Do we know these guys? Who are they? Where did this 1st inning prowess come from.

Joe, my mistake on the Kazmir deal. Regardless, that was merely an example of a larger point. The names really dont matter, the fact that those decisions were made on teams that are largely successful that is the point.

DUDE WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT?

Omar traded kris Benson for maine and julio. The traded jorge julio for Eduque.

But yes omar has done a great job so far. And there is no doubt if phillips/duquette were still running the team we would still be horrible, just like what your team is going through

You have to hit rock bottom to get any better, thats what i have learned

You know things have gotten really bad when even Mets fans are showing pity!

Joe,

"Back to respectibility". When were the Phillies ever respectable??

I haven't seen any comments on the Phillies shuffled batting order this game. What do you all think of it?

It seems reasonable, but there's no way Nunez and Barajas can start on the same night, too many automatic outs.

Alright a 2-1 lead, utley is clutch, hes bought into Cholly's program.

Anyone heat the comment that there was a 2 hour closed clubhouse meeting before the game. I dont know but they look a bit different tonight.

Ny Mets fan(s): Like I said earlier, I dont care who traded Kazmir, it is irrelevant. Also, I did not see anyone attempting to justify the Hanley Ramirez, Annibal Sanchez, and (Some pitching prospect that I cannot recall at this poin) for Beckett deal. Theo Epstien and Larry Luccino made that brilliant move, of that much I am sure. Beckett was horrible much of last season and is really justed a trumped up A.J. Burnett. By the way, the two headed genious (Luccino and Epstien also traded Andy Marte away). He has not quite turned into the next great 3B that most predicted him to be, but he has plenty of time.

Parker, understand your point completely. All teams make mistakes, however, the organizations of bigger market teams address them sooner than the Phillies have (except the NY Knicks, I'm convinced Thomas has pictures of Dolan). And my reference to Duquette screwing up a second time by trading talent for garbage is true. I understand Omar was the one that traded Benson for Maine and Julio, and that was a great trade for the Mets. Duquette on the other hand was and still is the GM of the Baltimore Orioles, the team on the other end of the deal.

You know, Hamels is more of an ace than Myers ever was or would have been.

Tray -

I agree.

Not to interrupt the naval-gazing, but Hamels is pitching his ass off.

Myers to uber-closer may turn into a very, very good move.

Wow! Triple play begun by Nunez...

Triple Play: Nunez, Utley, Helms. Nice.

WHOAAAAAAAAAAAAAA a triple Play !!!!

WHOAAAAAAAAAAAAAA a triple Play !!!!

This could be the turning point!

I wish I bought mlb.tv....

Now I've seen everything - the Phillies turning a triple play.
Must have channeled the spirit of Mickey Morandini for a second.

Uts!!!!

He's back. Glad I benched him on my fantasy team today (For Ryan Therio). Come to think of it, I had Howard on my fantasy team last year and he was sucking in April, until I benched him. Hmmm? Doesnt seem to affect Cole though.

I'm sensing an end to Burrell's hot start and the resumption of his usual 30 good swings a year quality of play.

SirAlden,

Completey agree about the Thome deal. Pretty good trade. Where was he going to play for the Phils with Howard, DH?

Terrific effort by Rowand on that Dunn line drive.

I hope they don't take Hamels out right now. We've got the lead, and his pitch count is at 75 or so.

Is there a better pitcher in baseball right now than Hamels??? I know it is early but he has absolutely dominated every game except for the Astros.

Nice steal by Barajas. Too bad it wasn't called as a steal.

I wouldnt say he dominated the Mets, he got a ND there too.So 2 of his 4 starts have been very good

If Barajas' steal was not the funniest thing I've seen all year, its close. I just wish it hadn't been so unproductive.

If Barajas was tagged on the first attempt, why would Gonzalez go back for another tag?

If he continues to pitch well, Hamels will stay in the game until his pitch count gets to 110-115 or so.

6 IP, 6H, 7K, 2 ER. That is not a bad line. Its not his fault that the bullpen sucks.

Parker, have you seen Jake Peavy's numbers? He's better. Felix of course is a lot better, unfortunately he's hurt, but still. Rich Harden... Tim Hudson seems to be back... Brad Penny, 3 starts, 0.89 ERA, Verlander - and most surprisingly, Rich Hill with the Cubs, 3 starts, 3-0, 0.41 ERA, 22 innings, 8 hits, 7 walks, 18 strikeouts. Currently being touted as the next great finesse pitcher.

The Whiff Rate is simply defined as the total number of swings and misses over the total number of swings. Assuming that the primary goal of a batter is to make contact, we can use this ratio to see who has the best "out" pitch - and to find out what it is. Assuming a minimum sample size of 200 swings for fastballs and 100 swings for anything off speed, we can see who coaxed the highest percentage of whiffs a season ago. And, as it turns out, Gillick might not be far off in his assessment. Hamels consistently delivered the most unhittable changeup in 2006, producing a Whiff Rate of .514, the leading figure by a significant margin over Colorado closer Brian Fuentes, who posted a rate of .460, and Arizona's Brandon Webb (.454). Hamels is a solid Fantasy contributor, with 18 strikeouts in his first three games.

Tray, the thing that stands out about Rich Hill is the number of hits - only 8 in three starts is quite remarkable, particularly for a young pitcher such as himself.

Maybe Colorado could give up Brian Fuentes? There are three teams in that division with a shot and they're not one.

Hamels also has 3 walks that game so 9 batters got on base in 6ip, its not a bad start but its not dominating.

Peavy: 25 IP, 21 H, 6 ER, 8 BB, 20K, 2.13 ERA, 1.14 E.R.A.

Hamels: 26 IP, 22H, 7 ER, 6 BB, 29 K, 3.32 E.R.A. (ERA not adjusted for tonight's game).

Rowand!!!!

Oops. 1.14 WHIP for Peavy. He doesnt have two ERA's.

Cholly's going to try to get Hamels a CG tonight if his pitch count doesn't get too far over 115. If at some point they need a closer, I think that person is Alfonseca tonight (I don't know if Myers is ready to pitch two nights in a row, though that's a possibility). No way we're seeing Flash tonight, if only because of his inning-plus last night.

Just heard on the radio--Myers is the closer tonight if necessary.

WTF?

YEAH!!!

Tray, you can have Peavy.
Hamels looks possessed. Absolutely Freaking dominant.

Well 2.13 is better than 3.32, wouldn't you say? And until his last start it was in the zeroes. Hamels is down to 2.67 after tonight. I mean, he's pitching great, no doubt about it.

Gut feeling: Hamels starts the 9th. Is anyone warming up in the blowpen?

32 K in 27 IP. 10.62 K/9 IP. (Hamels that is.)

For all the bandwagoners that bailed on tonights game, they missed the pitching performance of the season. (And only the 36th Ground Ball triple play since the early 80's or maybe it was the 70's.) I cant remember.

No faith in Gordon. Doesn't start the 9th, but Myers is warming.

K, K, K, K, K, K, K, K, K, K, K, K, K, K. (thats what it looks like spelled out)

Hamels looks "Super Steve-like" this evening. He is in total command out there.

1 away from the Phillies record for a lefthander.

Wow, that was the best ninth inning we've had all year.

Fantastic outing. The kind that can pick up a scuffling ball club and turn things around.

...oh, if the MLB didn't have a ban on cloning, we'd have a dominant rotation of lefty starters. What a game by Cole.

Regardless of what happens with he Phils, I am watching every time King Cole pitches. BY the way...I am now a HUGE fan of the Rod Barajas strikeout fist pump.

I missed the game of the year. Damn.

Somebody said the other day that the Orioles overpaid for their bullpen this year. Well they overpaid for the second lowest bullpen ERA in the AL thus far. Is that overpaying? Sure wish the Phils had overpaid.

A very satisfying game!......... COLE!

Could be a 1972 kind of year? It's all good!

That's true Parker, but the Orioles have the worst bench in baseball. Maybe not so much of an issue in the AL, but because they brought up so many pitchers/paid so much for them, all they've got on their bench is Freddie Bynum, Alberto Castillo, Chris Gomez, and Jay Payton. Should any of them ever get hurt, that comes back to bite them.

Some interesting stats:

Cole threw exactly 115 pitches, a mind-boggling 82 for strikes.

15 strikeouts: 3 looking, 12 swinging.

Did someone mention "Whiff Rate"?

Strange how quiet it is hear after a victory, while after a loss everyone is here piling up the comments. Maybe some discouraged fans boycotted the Phillies this weekend after the bad start to the season.

Hamels was brilliant today if you ignore his middle-of-the-plate fastball to Conine. I'm so glad I have him on a few of my fantasy teams -- I got him off waivers in one. He had great mound prescence and didn't get rattled. That's what the team needed. Oh, and Utley was 2-for-4 with 3 RBI and a homer. That was pretty nice, too.

Ace, it was not middle of the plate. It was low and middle in. Conine did a great job pulling it out, so give him some credit.

I'll give him credit: he was watching Hamels throw first-pitch fastballs to every batter in the first inning, so he was looking for one. Barajas or Hamels messed up in calling for another first-pitch fastball. However, Hamels messed up for leaving it in the middle of the plate, I don't care if it was middle-in or middle-out you don't throw a pitch down the middle to a good veteran hitter like that.

However, the rest of the game Hamels pitched was nothing short of brilliant.

Ace, brilliant except??? How do you call a complete game 5 hitter with 15 K's brilliant except??

The reason it is so quiet on here is because only a few of us watched the game, and the rest are probably just now watching ESPN News. They are all too pissed off that they missed:
1.) Hamels first Complete game.
2.) A triple play by the Phils.
3.) The return of the Uts.
4.) The new lineup.
5.) Cole Hamels again.
6.) Barajas beached whale impression on the steal attempt.
7.) Gordon, Madson, Geary, Rosario (the bullpen) not giving up a run.
8.) And um, Cole "thank you for showing up, but get the F outta here" Hamels.

This has got to be the best thread ever. Jason leads off by saying he's only spending 5 minutes on the computer. Then clout puts together a detailed analysis of all of Gillick's deals that I give an A+ to. Then the Phillies pull off a triple play. To top it off, King Cole pitches a complete game with 15 strikeouts! I can sleep happy tonight. Only 90 more days 'til we reach .500!

I'll show you how - Cole Hamels's complete game 5-hitter with 15 strikeouts was brilliant, except it wasn't a shutout. There, brilliant except.

Parker, the "new lineup" was only used for this game since Howard wasn't playing first. It's not a permanent thing:

http://www.delawareonline.com/blogs/phillies.html

To clarify my previous comment. I give the A+ to clout, not the Gillick! I give Gillick a borderline C-/D+. I don't want to be misinterpreted that badly.

You know I've been commenting on as Gillick as clout did earlier for two years now on another site. I'm fairly new to this one as you all know. As I read all of your comments, things you must rememer: 1. Leyland I believe interviewed with Wade not Gillick. 2. Gillick DOES have a proven track record, just not here. He left Baltimore because he could no longer deal with their owner , Peter Angelos. Now did everyone expect Gillick to do a better job? Absolutely! I believe however that while the game may have passed him by, (and none of us really know that for sure)Gillick is being told to hold the line on spending. The payroll I think is down a little bit this year. The Phils made a big splash in the FA market the year CBP opened because they had to. But this ownership group has NEVER been committed to winning. We all know that. Maybe Gillick does not have a free reign. If he does, then he should go because he hasn't done the job.

You also have to remember that Gillick was told to restore "financial flexiblity". In trading Abreu, the Phils got garbage becsause they insisted the Yanks pay Abreu's entire salary. If the Yanks only had to pay half, we'd have gotten more in return. The Abreu trade hurts for 3 reasons. We had to throw Lidle in, We had to pay Abreu 1.5 mill to waive the no-trade clause and here's the kicker, we STILL haven't gotten a suitable RF'der and we won't. But really we didn't have much of a chance in hell of getting Soriano, Lee or any other impact hitter no did we? And if we had gotten one what makes every think we would have gotten anything of value for Burrell provided Gillick would have been able to trade him. Lieber is another story altogether. He had no trade value and it's a good thing right now he's still with us. Yes Gillick has done a terrible job and he can't fix things. He won't fire Manuel. Management wants Cholly there (yes man). And the onwers won't let him do anything else. If Gillick knoiws this then maybe he should step down. He doesn't need this at his age.

Not even 100 posts after the best game of the season. Classic Phillies fans. I was out for the night, but I also notice two very regular (and negative) posters were absent tonight. Hmmm?

Everything from today looked great, but Nunez should not be in the everyday lineup!

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