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Monday, June 11, 2007

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I just got back from KC last night, and was unfortunate enough to have gone to Friday's game (left field). When the most interesting thing going on was a few clowns chanting "left, right, left, right" for every step Dobbs made (and generally tormenting him). I can't say that I'm sad to see Garcia go... If he can suck the life out of 20 thousand people, imagine what he does to his own team. The Moyer performance was unfortunate, but not unexpected based on his past performances against AL teams...

No-Hit Nunez is back like he's never been before, he's reaching all time lows. June: 3-26 for a .115 average and .322 OPS. Dating back to late May, Nuni is only 3 for his last 35. Matt Morris (a pitcher!) had 3 hits in one game against us. Where's all the Bag-of-Crap-Nuni supporters now? Does he still deserve to play every day? A bunch of you morons suggested he actually hits more when he plays regularly...B.S.!!! His flail and bail swing is not conducive to hitting.

What happened to Brian Mazone the 31-32 year old pitcher who almost pitched for Phils last year before the game was postponed. I looked at Ottawa's web page and he has started games and has a low era but hasn't started in over a month. Was he released or is he injured?

So predictable - we miss on Troy Percival but bring back Mesa. It just makes it clear how little the Phillies want to win. Gillick instead of one of the young GMs. Manual instead of Leland. Gordon instead of Wagner. Barajas instead of Estrada. Garcia instead of Schilling - on and on...

Sure is good to see guys like Mesa wasting a roster spot while Coste plays in Reading. Don't the Phillies understand that they can have 12, 13, even 14 pitchers on staff but if most of them are bums, we'll still stink...

His contract was sold to Korea.

I don't care if they rip off 10 in a row at this point - they've proven that we can't take them seriously no matter what they do.

Given the state of the bullpen, maybe it's time to hand Condrey his walking papers and take a look at Kane Davis. His numbers at Ottawa are pretty good -- not just the ERA but the strikeout rate. Yes, I know he's just another retread, but even retreads develop a hot hand every once in a while.

Davis is hurt.

Oh. Figures. Not only do we stock the minors with retreads, they're brittle retreads.

When will the insanity with this team end? Yesterday's debacle has me at an all time low with the Phillies. Why do we care? Why do we let this team break our hearts every year? Why do we support an owenrship group that cares only about making a buck?

I understand that rooting for the home team is a noble cause, but there is a fine line between loyalty and sadism. I feel like I crossed over it yesterday.

No-Hit Nunez? How bout No-Hit Ruiz? They have the same OBP. It looks like Barajas has learned how to walk.

The player they'd like to see get it together is Matt Smith, who's done okay since his demotion.

Whoa, there, big fella. Yes, it was ugly, but it counts as one (1) loss, no more, no less. Tomorrow is another day. A baseball season is a marathon. You're torturing yourself for no good reason. Nobody expected this to be a top-flight, surefire-playoffs team. Sure, it could be, and it's frustrating to see the franchise run so incompetently. But we knew that going in. You want to root for a certain winner, switch to the Red Sox.

Please, not another bandwagon Red Sox fan. They used to be the lovable losers, now I can't stand the sight of a Red Sox hat.

Any word on this guy and if he can play any position other than second?

"Class A Lakewood second baseman Kevin Howard had seven RBI in a 10-4 victory over Delmarva yesterday. He had an RBI double in the first inning, a three-run double in the fifth and a three-run triple in the ninth. He is batting .330.*"

26 year olds at Class A are not prospects.

J - curious to your thoughts on the Sopranos?

Chase likes going against the popular thought but I was very disappointed.

JB: I'm not an HBO subscriber unfortunately. I look foward to watching the reruns on A&E.

It is worth it for Entourage - best show on TV outside The Office.

From FoxSports- If J.D. Durbin or one of his peers doesn't work out, it probably means the Phillies will have to make a trade, one that possibly includes centerfielder Aaron Rowand, their most valuable trade piece and, on paper, their most replaceable. It would be a cutting coincidence if Garcia's injury leads to Rowand's departure from Philadelphia, a town that loves him and one that he loves. Rowand was one of the biggest endorsers of the Garcia acquisition; they were teammate with the White Sox.

*My take- I hope Durbin or another in-house option works out, because if we're going to try and contend this season we need Fence-Face Rowand.

The Phillies expect nothing promising from Freddy Garcia's exam with Dr. Michael Ciccotti today, which means they need a long-term solution in their starting rotation. Garcia left Friday's game against the Royals after giving up six runs in 1 2/3 innings with a shoulder strain that has troubled him all season. He landed on the 15-day disabled list, where the club expects him to stay for much, if not all, of the rest of the season.

*My take- imagine if 1 f'n win is all we get from that piece of crap Garcia. What a rip off...way to go Gillick, you've done a tremendous job once again.

*My take- good riddance!

The White Sox have tried in vain to reacquire Aaron Rowand, although they are believed to still be talking to the Phillies, who need bullpen help. "It feels like [Rowand] is still in a White Sox uniform," Guillen said. "He's a big fan of this ballclub. He played his brains out for this ballclub, for the White Sox people, he gave me a ring."

*My take- screw Ozzie Guillen!

Phillies closer Brett Myers (strained right shoulder) said he would throw off the mound for the first time tomorrow. He still believes he can return to the field by next Monday.

*My take- please come back healthy.

*My take-Phils are out of it.

I was out of town and (thankfully) missed all of the KC games. What happened yesterday? Without getting too invovled, did Moyer just not have his best stuff? Is it something we should be concerned about?

On a side note, I'm going to the game tonight and I'm excited to see Thome and, believe or not, watch Eaton throw. I'm not the biggest Eaton supporter out there, but he's been pitching well as of late and I hope it continues.

That Fox Sports stuff is actually from the Daily News. That's the first I've seen that they expect Garcia to miss the rest of the season.

This is going to be a very big callup and it's pretty vital that it works out. If it doesn't, they'll deal Rowand in some ill-advised swap for a middling starter.

This line says it all from Conlin's article about Garcia: "Due diligence was not done." The most hilarious part is that the Phils' management still insists that they were satisfied about the health of Garcia before the trade.

What a bunch of liars. If the Phils were a public company and continued to lie about the due diligence of such a a flawed M&A (trade for Garcia), I guarantee you that the shareholders or the board of directors would
demand that the present ownership be forced out.

Unfortunately, we will be stuck with Dave Montgomery and Co. for the foreseeable future. Damn shame.

thought Sopranos finale was brilliant...

I don't see how a trade for a starter works for us at all. the names teams are shopping now are guys like Tomo Ohka, Wade Miller, Josh Fogg, etc. not even the Phillies would be stupid enough to trade Rowand for one of those types plus, presumably, a minor leaguer or two. (famous last words?) the bigger names (Dontrelle, Buehrle, etc.) aren't available yet - by the time they are we'll either find out that Durbin or whoever works in the rotation or we'll be in firesale mode ourselves.

I just read Hagen's piece on Philly.com BIG BANG (for your buck) THEORY.

A reader then commented about breaking news of a Bourn for Gagne trade per Eskin - probably a joke but did anyone hear anything on this?

I hate to lose Bourn but it is hard to play at the table without any chips.

I absolutely do not want to see a desperation trade for some marginal starter. Promote Kendrick and role the dice.

Gillick screwed up '07 enough already and I don't see Rowand traded for a bag of magic beans.

P. O'Neil: Calm down, Yankee Boy, I'm not a Bosox Bandwagon jumper. I said IF you're only interesting in rooting for a winner, root for them. As Phillies fans, we obviously aren't fair-weather types.

On the question of Myers returning to the pen or the rotation: At this point a starter has 19-20 turns left. Is it more important to find a starter who will keep us in the majority of those games, or one who will close out victories?

Alby: "Sure, it could be, and it's frustrating to see the franchise run so incompetently. But we knew that going in. You want to root for a certain winner, switch to the Red Sox."

That's the thing. We've been promised "a certain winner" for too long now. We were promised it with the Thome signing, the Wagner signing, last year after grabbing Moyer and pushing ahead and more than ever, this season.

At this point, it doesn't matter that baseball is a marathon. It matters that, yes, the Mets, Dodgers, Padres, D-Backs and maybe Braves and Brewers are just flat-out better complete teams than the Phillies. We know the drill by now: They'll hang around, be close in September, but fall off in the last week. And that's best-case scenario.

I'd much rather see a complete overhaul, more than last year. Get rid of Rowand, the dead weight on the mound (plenty of it) and start using the farm system. Give some of the young A/AA guys shots - not for permanent stays (that would ruin their developments), but to see if they may be fit for the show.

It's time to change the culture here. Really. Playoff-close or not, over .500 or not, we're getting the same old team. It's time to make a big change.

it's my view that when the Phils say starting Myers is "not an option," they're being honest (something new!). so I don't think there's a choice other than promoting someone internally or making a horrendous trade.

but Malcolm, as you can see by the results of the draft just last week, management is not interested in reviving the farm system. they're fine with coming up with an All-Star every once in a while to sell tickets and filling up the rest of the minors with non-prospects and washed-up veterans.

it would be great if the choice you're talking about existed, but I just don't think it does.

Well you're right there - the organization would rather put asses in the seats than develop a winning ballclub.

But maybe if we shake up this current club, we'll have a new club that does know how to get to the playoffs. We have one of the top foundations in the game with Hamels, Howard, Utley, Rollins and Myers. We just need new guys to build around with - not has-beens like Werth, Dobbs and Mesa (not to put down Dobbs, but come on, lightning in a bottle) and could-bes like Bourn, Rosario and Hernandez.

And I haven't even gotten to Eaton or Garcia or Alfonseca, etc.

We're playing with low-quality chips. We always have. IIf this continues, there won't be a Hamels, an Utley, a Howard, etc. They'll want out of here to actually win something. Then what? We buy out A-Rod's contract when he's 37 and hitting 23 HR per season? Or we sign Ted Lilly and proclaim him the missing piece, then he goes 11-14?

like I said, I don't disagree with you. but the shakeup you're talking about needs to happen at the managerial level before anything meaningful happens on the field.

otherwise all you get are Abreu salary dumps designed to give financial flexibility to the owners, not the team; the money gets spent on guys like Eaton & Barajas; and the Phils win 80-85 games.

Oh I completely agree - the upper-level shakeup sadly won't happen; it's more likely Manuel is out sooner than later.

It's a shame really - we all know what we want and what this franchise needs, but it won't matter. The biggest problem is as high up as it gets, and they ain't budging. If only someone would tornado in here and want to buy the Phils. Where's Pat Croce?

So the question remains, if we all know that the ownership of this team will not produce a winner, why do we support them?

Is loyalty a valid excuse for allowing the owners to get rich on our misery? We the fans are their enablers. As long as Monty and his boys are running the show, we can expect this kind of season over and over again.

I have been a loyal Phillies fan all my life, but that does not mean I have to support a franchise whose MO is to sell the fans out for a tidy profit.

We argue about the shortcomings of Manuel, Gillick, Garcia, Gordon, Barajas, etc... But they are merely symptoms of the cancer that is sitting in the owners box.

Are we supposed to just bend over and take what the owners give us simply because they control the home town team? I don't think so.

Where's Joe and the other Abreu bashers? It's a long season kiddies.

Its been a long quarter century of losing...

While the White Sox are in town, we should trade piece of crap, damaged goods all along, Garcia back to the Sox for Floyd and Gio.

Pitching is not going to win us a division or WC berth. The only way to make the post season is to outslug the opposition. Give up that extra worthless bullpen roster slot held by (pick one or all:) Mesa or Condrey and give that slot to Coste, then trade Barajas for some proke down bullpen piece of slop.

Much as I'm not a fan of Rowands' fielding, I do not like the idea of trading him in mid season for a handful of beans.

Hagen piece is well done. My conclusion is this: Signing Thome was a mistake, in baseball terms. We got 2 good years of Thome and two years of Aaron Rowand for $61M. Not much for the price. But it was a brilliant move, in ownership/team terms. It created excitement, put fannies in the seats, encouraged advertisers to buy in and made the Phillies look like a top tier franchise.

"Pitching is not going to win us a division or WC berth" - huh? don't tell the Padres that. or do you mean pitching doesn't win for the Phils only, but it does for everyone else? that's still not making a lot of sense.

IMO, ownership/team terms are an underrated aspect of running a team. baseball's a business; you need to fill seats to run a competitive team.

it's completely valid to point out that Phils management has squandered the benefit (in terms of popularity, boosted attendance, etc.) they got from the Thome signing, but that's not to say that paying attention to the bottom line is intrinsically bad.

You mean the magical pitching staff that was supposed to be among the best in MLB (we had SIX starters and no plan to move any one of them when the season opened) isn't going to take this team to the promised land? Shocking. Wonder what would have happened had Lieber not cried like a girl to be moved back to the rotation months ago?

Clout, you beat me to it. The Hagen piece focused entirely on the measure of *business* success of the Thome signing, not the baseball sense. I know that end of it isn't to just be swept under the rug, but it's incredible how that constituted the *entirety* of the comments.

Meanwhile, Mike Arbuckle says of the Garcia injury: "It's a bad time for this to happen." When could there possibly have been a good time?!? Oh - you mean if that stud prospect *J.A. Happ* wasn't hurt at this particular time, all would be well with the world? Joke. Joke. Joke.

And you know that if they're desperate enough to sign Mesa - is it just in the realm of possibility, guys, that a pitcher who's likely in his mid-40s and been with five teams in five years might just be at the end of the line? - they'll be desperate enough to make a foolish trade for a has-been/never-was starter. Michael Bourn should *not* be traded for some piece of crap. Suck it up. What you have is what you have. Don't keep making it worse. I don't give a rat's ass if they back-door into the playoffs and get slaughtered in the first round this year. I want a team that can compete in the future, for years at a time. Just suck it up. I would rather that they do nothing.

Maybe we can get Gio for Rowand. right...

Alby-I'm not "P O'Neil" as in the former Yankee RFer.

Bourn shouldn't be traded for garbage, but for Gagne? I'd almost certainly go for that - the only thing hesitation I have is that he's on a one-year deal, and I'm not feeling real confident about our 2007 playoff chances. aside from that, I'd do it in a second.

If the Phils can con any team into giving up anything half decent for Bourn they should do it in a heartbeat.

"Signing Thome was a mistake, in baseball terms."

With hindsight, it's always easy to make those calls. But looking at the team in 2002, I think it was reasonable to say that the addition of Thome could be the difference maker.

I mean, you had a great young hitter in Burrell, a player getting (what I recall to be) a good amount of national Rookie of the Year hype in Marlon Byrd and Abreu was coming off of his best season yet. Add a young rotation with Myers, Wolf and a top-line starter in Kevin Millwood, and that's a playoff team. (Yes, I'm aware that Millwood was added after Thome, but you get the idea.)

And while having David Bell was a negative, I don't think anyone could have predicted what turned out to be his worst year in the majors.

My point is that based on what we know now, it was a bad signing from a baseball perspective, there really wasn't anything at the time to point in that direction.

stjoehawk: I agree. It seemed like the right decision at the time, but we now know it was a mistake, just like the David Bell signing. Some teams make more mistakes than others.

ae, I agree that would be a tougher call if in fact Gagne is actually available for someone like Bourn. It could be argued that acquiring a closer like that would merit an investment in a better future, as it'd allow them to move Myers back into the rotation next season. If they could re-sign him. But that's hypothetical on top of hypothetical.

Speaking of pitchers, I have a question.

How is Mathieson's rehab coming along? I feel like I haven't heard about him in a long, long time.

"As long as Monty and his boys are running the show, we can expect this kind of season over and over again."

McD, for you and everyone else who don't 'get it'. For the last time - IT'S NOT MONTY!!! IT'S GILES. Monty is just an extension of Giles, hence his monicker "The Puppet".

If you think otherwise, please disabuse yourself of the notion and get with reality.

stjoehawk, you are correct in saying that hindsight wasn't available at the time Thome was signed. However, remember that there was a first baseman in the minors named Ryan Howard. If this team was/is any good at really evaluating their future talent, such as the Braves are, perhaps it should have given them some caution.

The fact is, they are mediocre, at best, at the 'baseball' end of the business. Hence, a mediocre team - now, and in the foreseeable future. This is something that Gillick has no power to change, and it is not likely to improve.

Giles and Co. screwed up the minor league system after a few short years, and then fired Woody Woodward when he told them it needed an overhall. As long as Giles has ANYTHING to do with this baseball team, things aren't likely to change.

when Thome was signed before the 2003 season, Howard had just gone .280/.367/.460 with a mere 19 HR and 145 SO in 135 games as a 22 year old in Class A. this was after coming out of college as a fairly low-rated prospect, not drafted until the 5th round.

I can't say for sure, of course, but I'm pretty sure there wasn't a scout in baseball who would have suggested holding off on signing Thome because of Howard. even in a best case scenario he was several years away from the major league team. heck, even a couple years later when it became obvious that Howard was indeed a professional hitter, the Blue Jays wouldn't trade Ted Lilly for him, and IIRC the consensus at the time was not that it was a terrible decision.

they just said on 950 it will be kyle kendrick on Wed.

First off, I like pumpernickel.

Second, call up Kendrick, send him back down when Myers is healthy, put him in the starting rotation, and deal Rowand for Lidge, Otsuka, Gagne, Chad Cordero, or someone else who can close.

ae, I meant our pitching ain't gonna do it. If we expect to win anything, it's got to be clobbering time that does it. Aside from Hamels, our starters are like flipping a coin and our relivers are russian roulette with five of six chambers loaded.

You are right, ae, pitching does generally win out. We don't have it. If we want to win, we have to outslug the other team.

Just heard that comment from Manuel's post game yesterday, "You guys expect us to win'em all."

No jackass but your team lost 17-5 and lost 2 of 3 against the team with the home record in baseball. I would be fine if Manuel just stated the obvious (the team played very poorly and they have to up their level of performance the next 10 days especially with the upcoming series with the Tigers and Indians).

At least we only have another couple of months of Manuelisms.

I also agree with ae about trading Bourn for garbage. No way! Bourn makes stuff happen when he's on base, even if it is pinch running for base on balls Gimpy in the late innings.

MG, Cholly has to go.

okay LF, I'm with you on that. (both of those "thats".)

I have tickets to tonight's game and I'm praying for rainout regardless. I can only imagine how lackluster they'll be tonight after that drubbing.

i don't get why the renewed calls for cholly's ouster.

Did Cholly waive Garcia's Physical?

Did Cholly sign Mesa? and Condrey?

what did he do this weekend?

Think about this:

The Tigers, when it became apparent he had nothing left in the tank, released Mesa, absorbed the $2.5 million, and brought someone in that they thought would better help their BASEBALL team, because they are SERIOUS about winning.

The Phillies, even though it's apparent to anyone with a pair of eyes and one iota of baseball knowledge, keep players on this team who are not the best baseball option, hurt the team, and potentially stifle the development of younger talent.

Ever wonder why Detroit made the WS last year? Think the Phils ever will under this ownership group?

Joe, no Cholly didn't do those things, but he still has a whole backlog of dumb moves that have cost us games. He needs to go.

Granted he's only 1 of the problems, cholly's still gotta go.

I just finished reading the Hagen column. (Sorry, ladies and gents - I'm a little late, but enterprise becons).

The most stunning revelation to me in the whole column is the Puppet's comment:

"The reality is: It sure was in November 2002," Phillies president Dave Montgomery says. "And what I mean by that is we were still trying to establish an identity as a franchise."

That commnet alone is a clear indication of the ineptitude of these bumblers. Imagine that. This ownership group had been in place SINCE 1981, and still hadn't "established an identity as a franchise."

Mr. Montgomery, I beg to differ. You have firmly established an identity for your franchise. The problem is you're engrossed in a delusional denial as to what that identity really is.

The Garcia situation, the Mesa signing, and your handling of Chris Coste merely add to the mounting evidence. I suggest some true self-evaluation is in order.

It is hard to believe at this point of the season that there are still apolegists out there suporting Cholly.

No Big Jim tonight, as many suspected.

Rowand in the 5 hole, Burrell in the 6. Barajas catching.

Nice job by Helms right there. Probably the worst at bat of the season by any player. Congratulations, Wes.

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