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Friday, October 26, 2007

Comments

To put things in perspective- keeping JC Romero does not solve out problem of having an abysmal bullpen. Keeping him helps render the situation, but paying big bucks for 3 very good months is unwise.

I am not super-enamored with Romero but I do pretty much regard him as a pretty high priority.

The Phils have "zero" viable internal candidates are ready to take his roster spot as the primary lefty out of the pen. Plus, Romero is capable of pitching to right-handed batters too.

So what if Romero wants 3 yrs/$10 million. At some point, the Phils are going to have to pony up some money or be left with dregs and longshots to round out their bullpen again.

I am going to be pissed if the Phils make some BS offer like 2 yrs/$5-$6 million, Romero signs with another team, and the Phils complain about how expensive the market is.

I want one poster on here to tell me what the Phils should do if they don't resign Romero. If you suggest using Zagurski or Castro as the primary lefty out of the pen to start the season, I won't take you seriously.

MG: ae and I kicked around some ideas in the previous thread.

See I don't think the Phils would match up that bad in an AL park. Howard as DH, Utley at 1B and Iguchi at 2B, or when Moyer pitches, have Dobbs at 1B and Nunez at 3B.
Nunez in the 9 spot is about as bad as Lugo for the Sox. Colorado matches up poorly because of their shallow bench depth.

I think the Sox are in trouble in the field in Colorado. Manny in that left field, Ortiz or Youk, both praised above, will sit. Meanwhile futility remains for the Sox at SS, with Lugo still in the line-up at the 8 spot. Batting line-ups for both teams match up more evenly 1-8 with Youk or Ortiz out than with both in 1-9.

Some more fun from the "work" of LaMar. While he was scouting director for the Braves, here are the top picks (this information comes from a poster Alex C at Baseball Primer):

"1991: Mike Kelly (#2 overall, Bust)
1992: Jamie Arnold (100 career IP, ERA+ of 76)
1993: Andre King (never made MLB)
1994: Jacob Shumate (never made MLB)
1995: Chad Hutchinson (didn't even sign)

Not just that, but from each of years, the first ten rounds were pretty much worthless. The only average big leaguer from them was Jason Schmidt."

I guess it's a minority view but, if it takes $10M for 3 years to resign Romero, I think they should pony up the money. I don't really share the view that his performance with the Phillies was an anomaly & that he has been a mediocre pitcher througout his career. He has, for the most part, been a very effective reliever since 2002 -- the anomaly being in 2006 when he had a horrible year.

Left-handed relievers are hard to find, as we saw at the beginning of 2007. Guys like Ray King & Ron Mahay are considerably older than Romero, & Jeremy Affeldt absolutely does NOT have Romero's track record. Plus, with 29 other teams out there, there's no guarantee we can sign any of these guys. Our bullpen was horrible last year & the last thing we need to do is to start off 2008 by subtracting one of our few good arms.

The bullpen, more than anything, is the reason why we lost the series with the Rockies. And since our minor league system isn't producing good relief pitchers, the only way we can solve the problem is to spend money on it. We're not going to improve our bullpen on the cheap -- as we learned last year.

Will: Phillies are an exception.

Playing Ortiz would be a mistake. Ortiz is hurt and Francona would be asking him to do something he's not used to doing in a big game against a fast team. Youk is a hot hitter who can field. Stick with Youk.

Damn, it's good to read the crackling tinder of hot stove discussion.

Romero at 3/10 would be a big mistake, unless one of my scouts or pitching coaches told me that something had definitely changed in his delivery.

"He has, for the most part, been a very effective reliever since 2002 -- the anomaly being in 2006 when he had a horrible year."

Bap, this is a very hard statement to defend.

In 2003, his WHIP was 1.7 and his ERA 5.
In 2005, his WHIP was 1.56
His *career* WHIP is 1.499.

He has one great year (2002) and one great stretch (2007 with the Phils).

However, over his career he appears to be a streaky journeyman more or less indecipherable from any other LOOGY.

I don't think Mahay, King, or Affeldt are much better, but I think they all have about equal chances of being good.

Chad Hutchinson? Didn't he quarterback the Cowboys during their awful late-90s, early 00s debacle?

Yep, something about Cowboy's QB's and bad baseball players (well, who knows, Hutchinson might have been good).

It's really amazing how much the Braves focused on high school player during that era. They were able to build up a dynasty that most people attirubte to scouting and drafting, but the early nineties were brutal. Even the quality selections (Millwood, Dye) were late round picks, and basically luck.

We're not going to improve our bullpen on the cheap -- as we learned last year.

yes, b_a_p, I agree. but there's a big difference between the cheapskate, rule 5, summer league-trawling method Gillick used last year and throwing big money at mediocre pitchers like Romero based on just a few months of performance.

King is two years older than Romero and Trever Miller is three; I wouldn't call that "considerably." I don't know who mentioned Affeldt; I certainly didn't, but even him I'd probably rather have than Romero at 3/$10.

I'm bewildered that you can call Romero universally "effective" since 2002 - besides 2006 he was terrible in 2003, and terrible for Boston in 2007 (I don't care what his ERA was; if you think 39 baserunners in 20 IP is good, you need to reconsider). he's been riding on that 2002 season for his entire career, and there is no doubt in my mind that NL hitters would figure him out just like AL hitters did.

also worth noting is that Romero was completely uncharacteristically effective against RHB in 2007, holding them to a .198/.350/.328 line compared to a career .270/.372/.433 line. once that fluke performance returns to normal, you're left with one of the most expensive LOOGYs in baseball for the next three years. that's not how you build an effective bullpen.

via MLBTR, "(Re-signing Lowell is) a priority for the offseason, and I’m sure we’ll be able to get something done. We have a desire to keep him here a long time. He’s a core member of the organization." Epstein on Lowell.

he could just be blowing smoke, but that's a pretty strong statement.

True enough - with Drew Henson and Chad Hutchinson...and I'm pretty sure Quincy Carter was in the Cubs system as well.

kdon: I said "mostly effective." He was bad in 2003 and bad in 2006. Other than that, he has been quite good. WHIP is not a very meaningful statistic with Romero. He is given to wildness, so the "W" part of his WHIP is always going to be high. I'd focus on opponents batting average, which isolates the "H" part of the WHIP equation. Romero's opponents BAs have generally been good. He puts too many people on base with walks, but he generally gets himself out of his jams - which is what we saw last year.

I'm not saying JC Romero has been a model of consistency over the years, but few relievers have. His track record is at least as good, if not better, than the other available lefty relievers, who there's no guarantee we can sign. Besides, who's to say that guys like Mahay & King are going to be any cheaper than Romero?

Romero- 31 years old, 4.30 era, 1.50 whip
Mahay- 36 years old, 3.87 era, 1.41 whip
King- 33 years old, 3.43 era, 1.34 whip
Hendrickson- 33 years old, 5.01 era, 1.45 whip
Kennedy- 28 years old, 4.79 era, 1.47 whip
Miller- 34 years old, 4.46 era, 1.52 whip
Affeldt- 28 years old, 4.74 era, 1.50 whip

*Romero probably had the best '07. I will say King and Mahay in my opinion are solid alternatives to re-signing JC, and will probably be cheaper with less guaranteed years needed. I want Romero back, but if he starts wanting more than 3 years and 10 million that's a risk the Phils shouldn't take, and even 3 yrs./10 mil is risky for a reliever that's been somewhat inconsistent and erratic in the past.

ae - He's not going to say 'Nah, we don't care about him.' while he's still playing for them in the World Series.

well, stjoe, obviously not. maybe I'm reading too much into his statement, but I thought it was pretty emphatic.

I think an important question is if those pushing to sign Romero believe he's a real, all-around setup guy, or a LOOGY. if you believe he's the kind of guy who you send up in the 7th or 8th, then he's worth 3/$10, but if you believe he's just a specialist, he's not.

I really don't think there's any evidence that Romero can be consistently successful against RHB (as I said, his career line is .270/.372/.433), so I can't justify paying him to be more than a LOOGY.

Ae: I never said Romero has been "universally" effective since 2002. I said he has "for the most part" been effective. That's pretty much the definition of an above average reliever. Only a tiny handful of relivers have been "universally" effective over the last 6 years.

You say you'd rather have King or Miller or Affeldt at unnamed prices than Romero for 3 years, $10M. Exactly how much do you think it would cost to get King or Miller or Affeldt? My guess is pretty much around the same price as it would cost to resign Romero. And how do you know we can just go out & sign these guys, when about 26 or 27 other teams have the same need as we do? If we can lock up Romero before he hits free agency, we should do it.

Bap, he was not "quite good" in 2005. He allowed 80 base runners in 57 innings. For a LOOGY, ERA isn't a very reliable guide.

Again, in his last 6 years, he has had 2 1/2 awful seasons, one poor season, one average season and 1/2 dominant seasons.

Giving him the benifit of the doubt, over three years that would translate to: one great season, one awful season, and one slightly below average season.

b_a_p, I would imagine that they would sign contracts like the ones LaTroy Hawkins signed last year - 1 year for $3.5M w/an option. the only reason Romero can demand 3/$10 is his high-profile success for the Phillies. Mahay or King or Miller cannot do that.

obviously this is an assumption on my part. if it turns out that every single slightly above average reliever is demanding 3+ years at $3+ M per, then that's what you have to pay. I don't think that's the case, but I could be wrong.

and I'd really like to know if, as I ask above, you believe Romero is an all-batter reliever or a LOOGY.

I like Romero as a LOOGY overall, but that doesn't mean he can't face righties sometimes. He doesn't have to be a solely left-handed specialist. He can be a mixture of the 2.

And you can't just discount walks and focus on hits allowed; it's all part of the package.

It seems logical that a player with a high walk rate and and low batting average against would be prone to a lot of streakiness. From what I can tell, Romero is a slightly below average pitcher overall who performed at the absolute height of his abilities for the Phillies last year against a league that never saw him before.

And I seriously doubt King, Mahay, or Affeldt will get anywhere near 3 years/ 10M. The market has changed, but not that much.

In '05 King signed for 2 years/4.6M after 5 consecutive excellent seasons. Mahay has never made more than 1.2M.

Carson, given the numbers that ae posted above, why do you think Romero can be used against right-handers.

JW-
There's no way Francona can sit Ortiz. Their lineup is much different and much less powerful without either Manny or Papi. Youk is too hot to sit though. The first 8 in their order can be the same if they get a little creative. This is a crazy idea especially for the WS. How about sitting Lugo (because he is awful) while putting Papi at first. Then sliding pedroia over to short and putting youk at second. Pedroia has played short in the minors and Youk has played a little(very little) second base. I think its worth a thought at least.

Lugo's 3/7 this series, and the Rockies are throwing out Fogg and Cook in Coors. I'd leave him in rather than try any kind of craziness. maybe start Ortiz and use Youkilis as a PH/double switch sub (at first or at third) in the midgame.

ae:
That's probably what Francona's going to do and it's probably best for the team right now. Their offense should be enough to win even without Youk. But if Terry gets desperate, you never know.

Ae: I have no problem sending Romero in to pitch in the 7th or 8th inning.

Apparently where I differ with some of you is in my view of how a good year for a reliever is defined. I look at Romeros numbers & I don't see a guy who has had just one good half year since 2002. I see a guy who has kept opponents averages under .235 in 4 of his last 6 seasons. That's a lot better than Ray King or Jeremy Affeldt.

When they let Aaron Fultz go last year, I thought it was a mistake. Not because Fultz was great but because he was pretty good & pretty good lefty relievers -- or even pretty good relievers in general -- are in short supply. The Phillies let him go and, lo and behold, they found themselves completely unable to replace him until mid-season. Now they're getting ready to make the same mistake with Romero. We have no idea what these other 3 lefties will cost & whether or not we can sign them.

Money is for spending and, if the PHillies plan to finally fix their bullpen in 2008, then letting their best reliever go would not be a good start.

What type of trade could we make to get Saul Rivera in here from Washington? He's the type of reliever we need. Would it take Bourn? Victorino? How far would we go to get one of Washington's arms? They really need someone for center field.

Saul Rivera is a stud. Reminds me of Scott Shields, for some reason. WAS definitely has an OF need, which is something we currently have plenty of, but it would change the dynamic of any potential Rowand talks and give him more pull.

I'm not so much concerned with the $3.33MM per year, so much as the 3 year deal with Romero. I think that 3 years for a guy who will shake out to be a LOOGY is a long time. The Phils don't have a history of signing 'pen guys to more than a couple of years for guys they haven't home grown, for some reason.

Great discussion on Romero. People have made some very valid points about viable alternatvies and I agree that 3 yrs/$10 million might be a bit steep.

Still, I am willing to bet that Miller, Mahay, and Affeldt will all be seeking similiar-type deals to Romero. Basically, the first one of these guys to sign is going to get the going market-rate but I bet is will be around $3 million/year.

I like Miller and Mahay (particuarly if you can give him only 2 years) but I am less sold on Affeldt. Still, I am willing to bet that some team is going to be willing to give Affeldt big money because he is young and throws hard.

Only guy I don't like is King. His numbers are trending downward. More seriously though is that he looks like he is going to literally eat himself out of the league. Saw it happen with Rich Garces in Boston. Wouldn't surprise me if King becomes so large that he just isn't effective anymore.

If the Phils insist on keeping Myers in the pen, they need to at a bear minimum bring in a legit LHP and another hard-throwing RHP.

I would love to see Rivera or Rauch in a Phils' uniform next year but I don't it happens.

Bowden has a long-standing reputation of being pretty heavy-handed in what he demands in return for a trade. I doubt he deals one of these guys for anything less than Victorino and a pitching prospect. Seems like a pretty high price to pay.

If mediocre lefty middle relievers are going for $3MM this year, why is it a bad idea to pay Romero $10MM/3 yrs? Don' t we expect that next year they'll be at $3.5MM and the year after at $4MM? If we sign a guy at $3.5 for 1 year and have to get someone else for each of the next two years, won't we pay more? And since J.C. IS a lefty reliever, someone will probably be interested in him at the deadline, even if he's been stinking it up for us in the first half.

I understand he over-performed this year and is capable of true meltdowns. But he would at least be a LOOGY in a bullpen without. Why create one more hole by being overly selective?

Affeldt, meanwhile, does much better on the sheets as a true LOOGY, for a variety of reasons. (He has had, incidently, some abominable seasons; BUT...)
1) He does much better (than normal) the fewer times batter have seen him. All his hitting against numbers went up each year; and when he was a starter he did aweful the second and third times through the line-ups.
The NL East has not seen him much yet. He would be of value for a year or two.

2) His leveraged splits are very good. Lefties do indeed have trouble against him.

3) He tosses groundballs. Wouldn't that be nice?

That being said, Rauch would be better. So would Rivera or F. Cordero. So would Riske. And hey, I bet even Johann Santana would be better.

Incidently, add to the lefties who are not the answer this year: Matt Smith.

I am amazed at the pretty high level of discourse on this blog in general. For whatever reason, this blog seems to attract a bunch of highly-intelligent people who have good insights/interestin feedback.

ae's quote regarding Lowell reminded me of something I wanted to put out here.

We've talked about the "what happens if so and so signs A-Rod and such and such signs Lowell" scenarios. There's one more of importance. What happens if Lowell and A-Rod stay put. That makes the bleak 3B FA market into Lamb and Feliz. (yecccch) Suddenly the options are trading or standing pat. And teams with 5s to burn will know it and want a lot.

Maybe Dobbs needs to go on a massive fielding and LHP training program post-haste.

came across an interesting scouting report of the likely Japanese FA pitchers this offseason here (via MLBTR, again).

you would really hope that Gillick could push the organization to get more involved in scouting the NPB, with his history in Seattle.

ae: Thanks for the link. I'd been looking for something on Saito, who I'd really like to see the Phillies go after, assuming he's posted.

As I see it, the Phillies can either overpay for a veteran LOOGY or go with Smith & Castro. We know from last season how the latter choice works out.

It's interesting that the phillies have about $14 million invested in the 8th and 9th innings for next year...but are hesitant to put $3 towards the 7th.

there is no good reason not to sign romero. yes, at three years, there is some risk involved. but it's not an adam eaton risk...its $3 mil. a year or so...unless he completely falls apart, there is always someone willing to give a lefty another chance.

Clout: My feelings exactly. Ae: completely agree about tapping the Asian market.

Re third base, I would love to see us get Lowell. But if we can't, I don't see the point of signing a guy like Pedro Feliz or Mike Lamb just because they're there. Lamb = Wes Helms in a normal year, and Feliz is another high-strikeout, low OBP guy with middling power. I'd rather just stick with a Helms-Dobbs platoon.

BAP - Exactly. If you it comes down it, I would much rather see the Phils invest that $7 million toward their bullpen than signing a marginal upgrade like Feliz at 3B.

Feliz isn't an upgrade at all if Charlie learns how to manage. He'd just be an expensive PR move.

The best expenditure of money would either be in a good OF, Schilling, or a Cordero/Rivera. Leftover money should be directed towards various relief upgrades, although relief pitching is really a crapshoot.

If Lowell disappears from the market, I'm in favor of a strict righty-lefty platoon with Dobbs and Helms... without the maddening tendency to replace the bat with a glove every time we reach the 7th inning.

I suppose there's a chance we'll get burned with the glove every now and then, but I'd take that over a marginal signing like Lamb or Feliz who may not be an upgrade, but cost us more money.

I'll put it this way...

Sign Lowell to play third then go with Burrell/Vic/Platoon (Werth/Dobbs), or sign and OF (Rowand or a corner) and go with Dobbs/Helms at third and an OF of Burrell/Vic (or Rowand)/FA (or Vic).

And for goodness sake, spend the rest of the money on pitching!!!!!!!!! If we make more than one splash signing of a position player at the expense of pitching, I may go crazy.

They probably do need to replace Aaron Rowand's offensive production somehow. I think we can afford to have a weak link at 3rd base or one OF spot, but not both. So, if we can't get Lowell, I think we should try to sign an outfielder with a good bat. I doubt our owners would fork out the money for Torii Hunter, & I'm not so sure he's worth the Alfonso Soriano money that he's probably going to get. Even though he's coming off a horrible year, I wouldn't mind taking a flier on Andruw Jones. He is way too young to be washed up.

BAP: We're almost on the same page... if they re-sign Rowand, I'm not sure they have to go after any other position player. If they don't, I'd like either Lowell for third or a corner OF.

However, I do not want Andruw Jones. His all or nothing bat from last year doesn't compliment our lineup. His speed also isn't much of a weapon. He hasn't attempted more than 12 steals in a season since 2001.

I suppose he could come back and give us an average season (30-35 HR, 100-110 RBI, .850 OPS)... but saying he's "too young" to be washed up ignores the fact that he just finished his 11th full season and 12th overall in the pros.

Rowand is just a few months younger than Jones, but has played in less than half the number of games and has 3800 fewer at bats. That's gonna catch up with Jones eventually.

I agree with Dave X. Feliz is an upgrade defensively but not much of one on offense. He was dead last among everyday thirdbasemen in offense in the NL last season.

I also agree with CJ that if the decent 3B FAs are re-signed by their teams then we might as well stick with Helms/Dobbs than sign garbage like Feliz or Lamb. I mean, can Helms be more awful than last season? I think not.

BAP: Except for 2006, Andruw really has never been dominant offensively. Having said that, I would love to see how many runs he could save in CF for us. Rowand is good, not great out there. Andruw is great.

Andy: I am emotionally attached to Bourn. I love guys who can bunt for base hits AND have a good plate eye. But I'd part with him for Rauch.

The Romero debate has been interesting, but unlike clout and I, many of you are living in the past, along with Phillies management.

clout, you seem to understand, but even you are stuck. To wit:

"As I see it, the Phillies can either overpay for a veteran LOOGY or go with Smith & Castro. We know from last season how the latter choice works out."

ae said in the last thread:

yes, it could take a lot to sign Romero (at least right now), and the Phils would actually be smart not to overpay him. I have no problem with them letting him walk if he's asking for 3/$10 or something.

if somebody else wants to pay that, good for him; otherwise he's welcome back when he's ready to accept a reasonable contract."


I guess my point is with MLB revenues doubling in the last seven years, and set to increase more with new stadiums coming on line and new TV packages, you both need to define what you mean by "overpay".

Ans ae, what is your definition of a "reasonable contract"?

It may be that in this market, 3/$10 for Romero IS a reasonable contract.


Revenues are going up ladies and gentlemen, and while you may not like it these players are going to be making more, even pitchers who have had limited success. You see, the key term is "limited" verses "none".

Teams will be willing to take the risk on releivers that have at least had some success.

"According to the New York Post, the Yankees decided at their first offseason baseball operations meeting that they will pick up the $16 million contract option on Bobby Abreu."

Yeah, that was a great trade for the Phillies. Look, we got C.J. Henry, who was a FIRST-ROUND DRAFT PICK, and Matt Smith, right? Tremendous deal just as RSB and curt said it was.

Ans ae, what is your definition of a "reasonable contract"?

AWH, I answered that question above by pointing to the contract LaTroy Hawkins signed with Colorado. I don't see any reason why we should pay more for mediocrity simply because a guy's coming off a hot streak. there's simply no evidence that Romero is going to be any better next year than a half-dozen or more other guys.

and again, as I also posted above (did you read the whole thread, or just cherry-pick a couple quotes?), if the going rate for mediocre relievers is 3+ years at $3+ M per, then that's what you have to pay. I don't believe that that is the going rate, so I don't believe that's the kind of contract the Phillies should be handing out at this point.

let me quote an impartial observer: "Any team that gives a three-year deal to any of these types [i.e. the FA LHP relievers] probably doesn't know what it's doing or has too much money to spend." (I hate to link the guy again, but MLBTR)

ae, the market is CHANGING because the sport is awash with money, and that is by definition, going to CHANGE what it mwans to "overpay".

Because decent lefties are difficult to acquire, some team is going to pay those guys, whether you, or Phillies' management like it or not.

Now, I'm not advocating blowing the wallet on marginal reliever the way Baltimore did last offseason, but if the Phillies don't want to wind up in the same position they were in last season, they are going to have to take a shot on a couple of guys.

As far as Romero or any other FA RP are concerned, what type of free agent are they going to be designated, or do they receive any designation at all?

What are the rules for relievers, and does that affect who you sign?

Personally, and I've posted this before, my preference is for Ray King. Except for 2007, he had a decent ERA+ for his whole career.

The report that the Phillies and Romero would be so 'far apart' in contract discussions is disheartening. Not so much because they might stand to lose Romero, but because it signifies that they have not learned from last year's conservative approach. It signifies that they are undervaluing the need to obtain quality relief pitching, and are not willing to do what it takes to secure it. With Romero, there is a built-in advantage because he has pitched in Philadelphia and has a desire to return. The same can't be said for the others mentioned in this thread. The quality relievers on the market were snatched up *quickly* last year while savvy ol' Gillick munched on his toothpick and waited for a bargain-basement deal to fall into his lap. The early indication here is that the Phillies haven't learned from their mistakes. Perhaps they're afraid of another Rheal Cormier contract. Well, you know, it happens. Relievers aren't all that dependable or predictable from one year to the next. But that's no damn excuse to just sit back and refrain from bidding altogether.

Clout: I agree that Andruw Jones hasn't generally been a dominant offensive player. But I don't think we need a dominant offensive player. A guy who hits .260 with 60 to 70 walks, & 30 homeruns would do just fine -- and that's what Jones has done pretty consistently, except for last year.

CJ: I don't buy the idea that playing a lot of baseball games has some sort of deleterious long-term effect on a guy's body. We're not talking about an NFL RB, who absorbs hits on every carry. There are literaly dozens of guys who have had a lot more career ABs than Andruw Jones and who can still hit. The odds that Jones just had a bad year are far greater than the odds that he is completely washed up at the age of 30. It's not unheard of for a good player to have one bad season in the middle of his career. Just look at Mike Lowell's 2005 season or, closer to home, Burrell's 2003 season.

RSB, I agree. They don't seem to be learning, or at least don't want to be the ones who set the market.

Followers not leaders;

they've been that way for the entire tenure of this ownership group.

Maybe that's why they've were looking up in the standings every year until 2007.


clout, the Yankees have determined Bobby Abreu is worth $16MM/yr. That made me think of a previous discussion we had.

The last three years Abreu has averaged an OPS+ of 122. Pat Burrell has averaged 126.

I wonder, if he has another year where his OPS is over .900, what kinf of contract Burrell will get offered the next offseason?

NO! There should be a filter on the world Abreu.

the Phillies set the market for starters when they signed Eaton. getting ahead of the trend generally doesn't work unless you're signing someone who's actually worth it.

look, there is clearly a middle ground between blowing every other team out of the water by offering long-term contracts to any guy who can throw a fastball over the plate and doing nothing all season and hoping somebody falls into your lap in rule 5. waiting until spring training and signing next year's Alfonseca is crazy; giving Romero whatever he wants on October 26 is almost as bad.

and please don't just keep telling me how much I don't understand the economics of baseball or whatever. thanks, I got it.

But that's no damn excuse to just sit back and refrain from bidding altogether.

IT'S OCTOBER. the World Series hasn't even gotten to Colorado yet. I think we can show a little patience before we start flipping out about how Gillick hasn't done anything yet.

Glad you finally got it. It took a while.

And NO ONE, NO ONE has said that the Phillies should rush to sign anyone. We're merely trying to help the special people understand that more money means higher salaries.

The Phillies or anyone's resistance to that trend won't change it.

Yeah, ae. It's October. My point was, the Phillies already are showing signs of being reluctant to fork over market value contracts to quality relief pitchers. The writing is on the wall. And if the Phillies don't give Romero what he wants, another team happily will. And maybe the Phillies look smart if Romero goes to a new team and gets released in June. And maybe they look like fools if he registers another solid season. No one knows what the hell these guys are going to do from this vantage point. This year's Romero is next year's Arthur Rhodes. But in the absence of viable in-house options, you bloody well take chances with overpaying established relievers.

Romero puts a lot of guys on base.. The fact that a lot of them didn't score is either attributable to nicely timed double play balls, defense in general, or just dumb luck.. Romero is nothing more than an average pitcher who had a nice stretch of the factors above. He just as easily could have had an ERA of 4.5 or higher..That being said, the lack of stellar alternatives nakes him a guy to sign.. Not what I would term a priority though.. Just another guy in the mix, based on asking (market) price.

As good as Romero's ERA was this past season and as good as his September was, I think we can afford to let him go - IF AND ONLY IF we sign another, BETTER Left Handed Reliever.

Romero's ERA this year was a FLUKE. He had a 24% Hit rate which is way below average. His 6.4 BB/9IP is a very bad number. His 6.7K/9IP is pretty good, but not elite by any means.

Affeldt is would be slight upgrade from Romero, in my opinion. Somewhat better control and somewhat better K-rate.

The guy I like best is Ron Mahay. I would target him as his skills have been consistent over the last 5 years. Even though he's 36, I'd take a chance on him on a 2 year contract.

Blue jays claimed Gosling off waivers. Another LHP gone.Guess their turn was before Phils anyway.You never know about these rp. Just look at what Jc did this year.When you can get a guy for nothing,why not look at him.

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EST. 2005

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