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Tuesday, November 13, 2007

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Nice recap JW of the BA list and the chat. Why Beerleaguer is a great site.

Hopefully, a few of the young arms pan out but I don't see anyone on that list who will help the Phils in any kind of substantial way in '08.

Manuel must feel like a commander who requests for additional reinforcements and instead is told by Gillick and Co. at HQ that is "on his own" and "has to hold out."

Since the Phils seem pretty desperate to get a 5th starter, I think they pretty much have written off a guy like Happ.

i dont know, MG...outman appears to be on the fast-track a la chamberlain and some other college kids..savery as well..would not be surprised if these guys got a shot mid season instead of the segovia/zagurski's in the system

Hot rumor overheard on WIP just now: Rollins for Santana ...

Jason.
Really?

And Bruntlett at short?

Or maybe Helms is a better 6 than 5?

Jason, can you expand on that??? Is Eskin hearing things???

I wonder if Gillick knows the Muts will make a serious run and just wants to put feelers out there in hopes of driving up the price...who the hell would play short??

They would need to trade for someone. Maybe Tejada.

Rollins for Santana only makes sense if an contract extension can be had, and even then I have several problems with it.

A caller proposed it and Eskin confirmed he's heard a rumor about it. Could be crap, but it's interesting.

Maybe Eskin reads Beerleaguer, and since someone floated that theory yesterday, he's "heard a rumor" here.

(Hi, Howard. We know you're lurking!)

Dan, who the hell would stir the drink?

Andy, Eskin has too much of a misplaced ego to ever admit that.

Are we serious? The league MVP for Johan Santana? I just don't buy it.

Jimmy Rollins is as much the face and heart of this team as anyone we've got. Only one player said we were the team to beat and refused to back down... and then went out and delivered every single day of the season.

I don't like it. I don't want it.

A caller mentioned the Rollins/Santana deal this morning on the 950 morning show, and another poster mentioned it in another thread. Probably BS.

they would definitely need to extend him and the cost would be astronomical...Hamels/Santana on the front end, Lidge/Myers in the back...now that would be nice...but this will not happen...and i would miss J Roll...

AWH...Nuni could come back and stir it up


Dan, it's possible that the Twins called to see if Rollins could be the centerpiece in a Santana deal, but I doubt the Phils initiated that phone call.

Besides, if you were the Twins, and you WERE going to trade Santana, doesn't it benefit you to have a rumor out there like that to drive the price up?

It isn't just the Phils who benefit if the Muts have to pony up more. Maybe the Muts balked at including Reyes in a deal and the Twins floated the rumor to put pressure on them.

Just a thought.

AWH: Certainly a possibility. The rumor would come from three sources:

1) Someone attached to the Phillies or Rollins (UNLIKELY)
2) Someone attached to the Twins or Santana (Possible, but not probable)
3) Random sports writer or fan with no knowledge of actual trade talks (Extremely likely)

It's obvious guys - after we flip Rollins for Santana, then we sign A-Rod to play short, Lowell to play 3B and Rivera to close ...

Vic
Utley
A-Rod
Howard
Lowell
Burrell
Werth/Dobbs
Helms/Dobbs
Ruiz

Santana
Myers
Hamels
Kendrick
Moyer

Madson
Gordon
Romero
Lidge
Rivera

End of Story

Gillick DID say that Santana would be traded....

lets talk more realistic trade options...they will probably sign a FA starter...whether its Silva, Kuroda (prob not) or a more inexpensive option like Wolf or Livan..(his contract would have to limit his weekly intake of Bulls BBQ)..

JMARR, got milk?


Errrr, I mean $200,000,000.

lovin it JMARR...think they could make it work if they do away with dollar dog days and college night??????????????????????????

A man can dream right?

AWH ... just having some fun ... I had to stop the insanity.

J-Roll
Uts
Howard
Hamels

They are going nowhere for no one.

JMARR, LMAO!

On another note, John Donovan at SI.com has an article in which the PHILLIES are blamed for blowing the FA pitching market out last winter.

Whoda thunk?

Link here:

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2007/writers/john_donovan/11/13/market.setters/index.html

Any reason the Phils don't ask Iguchi to play 3B and resign him?

they already did that and he wants to start at 2B and will get paid to do so

Amaro: Payroll over $100 million last season, will likely be the same this year or just north. Says the current commitments are already in the 90s.

... said on DNL this evening. Danced around Rowand, but certainly sounds like he's gone.

so he is standing by Gillick's 8-12 mill left comment...i think they sign another starter and maybe mike lamb for 3B..or acquire a 3B like blalock, crede in a trade...i dont buy them saying 3B is not high on their priorities list...spending on pitching is great, but if rowand walks there seem to be two gaping holes instead of one

I'll say this about all the comments from Amaro, et al...

1. It makes a lot more sense from so many angles to undersell what we might do than oversell.

2. GM's have no incentive to be truthful to reporters.

I still have a feeling that Gillick is keeping his cards close as far as the payroll. I dunno maybe I'm just hoping that. If they want to team to get better they are gonna have to shell out a few more bucks.

too bad Sir Arden doesn't post any more. He'd be livid that D'Arby Myers and Jason Donald aren't listed. Maybe p o'neil and curt can take up the cause.

I think I would pull the trigger on that deal. With all respect to Jimmy's inspirational season, he's probably only the third most valuable position player on the team. Though he has been improving as a hitter for some time now, last year was a career year and one that you're not likely to see repeated next season. You won't see 30 home runs again, and you probably won't see him bat .296 next year either. With Santana, who knows how good he would be in the National League. I would expect Jake Peavy-like numbers, even with CBP. With him in the fold, you could put Myers back in the bullpen, or you could have a potentially dominant starting rotation. Back to reality, why not sign Eric Gagne? His value's way down after those couple months in Boston, but he pitched very well in Texas and I think he'd make a fine set-up man in the National League.

Same old crap with the Phils. They talk about how much money they spend but closer examination gives a much different story.

http://www.forbes.com/lists/2007/33/07mlb_Philadelphia-Phillies_335119.html

Basically, if you look at the Phils' player expenses they have been flat since 2005. This is particularly galling considering the fact that the Phils have substantially increased ticket prices for 2007 & the upcoming season (by the way the Phils have had one the most average ticket prices according to TMQ since the Phils moved into CBP). Additionally, they have had an increase of revenues of at least $20 million a year since 2005.

If the Phils were a publicly-traded company, equity analysts and pension fund managers would have called Montgomery on this bull$hit a long time ago.

Sorry TMR is the firm that tracks average ticket prices. Still, Phils have been in the top 7 since moving into CBP in '04.

THe Dude - we miss you! I cried all night wishing you would post about the Phils desires to obtain Fukudome as our RF this season.

Jason Donald was rated in the Top 10 minor league SSs. That's pretty good in my book. Since they put Golson in the top 10, I'm surprised you give that list any credibility Clout.

Tray- if I stipulated to Jimmy being the third most valuable position player on the team, you could still make the argument that with Rowand's departure, Jimmy's club house leadership makes him even more valuable to this team. We all love Rowand's "Beer Pong Champion" wristbands, his remote controlled cars, laser tag games and trips to bowling alleys and praise him for being a leader- From what we've all seen, Jimmy does the same. The team will need someone to fill that void which Aaron's impending departure leaves. Additionally, isn't Jimmy signed through 2011?

As for JRol for Santana, I would make that trade if the Phils were willing to bump their payroll a bit to lock up Santana long-term.

A rotation headed by Santana and Hamels would be as strong as anybody in the league and this team would be well-positioned to be a serious World Series contender.

My favorite line from the Fortune article has always been this:

"The Phillies latest questionable move was to sign second baseman Chase Utley, a .290 hitter who strikes out a lot, to an $85 million, seven-year deal before this season."

Rollins for Santana...you're talking about an MVP for a Cy Young. Ultimately, it's pointless.

I wouldn't say Coste 'stumbled' last year. A little quiet at the end, but he again put up solid numbers for his proportion of playing time. However, I agree that Jaramillo will probably be one of the last cuts in Spring Training and should be considered a primary plan B.

Kyle Drabek, meanwhile, seems to be on the brink...as in Brad Brink...

clout - isn't there anyone to sing the praises of Quintin Berry or Julian Sampson?

Travis D'Arnaud?


Moose Mattair??

anyone? anyone??

RSB - Drabek is a stretch. At this point. But since we took him over Kennedy and Chambelain he will be touted by ownership for years, no matter what he does.

errrr, ChambeRlain. You know who I meant.

ESPN announced that Santana probably wouldn't be traded. If traded would be for for 2or 3 TOP prospects and chances were not before July 31.Let's get real!

Rollins isn't your average MVP, RSB. A couple years ago he was a league-average hitter. I'm not sure he deserves MVP this year, I'd give that to Wright, but even so, you're talking about a one-time MVP vs. a guy who's a Cy Young candidate every year. It's not like trading Utley for Santana. And, phila fan in dc, I don't know how many wins Rowand's laser tag games and trips to the bowling alley translate into. Really, as long as you have a lot of high-effort guys who don't hate each other I think you should be alright as far as intangibles.

Baseball America's ratings are a useful tool but they need to be taken with a grain of salt. BA tends to emphasize tools over actual performance. That's why Golson is on the list, while Donald & Happ aren't.

Based on performance, plus success at a relatively high rung of the minor leagues, you'd have to say Happ remains one of the top 5 prospects in the Phillies' organization. Remember, Happ's issues last year were injury-related.

If the Phillies have anything on the ball (which is doubtful), maybe they can parlay those BA ratings into a trade of Golson, Drabek, & Jaramillo for some half-way decent major league outfielder.

o'Neil: Except for Golson, I like the BA list. I remember that top 10 SS list and that was the one I wasn't impressed with.

Donald is OK, but he's 23 and has yet to get a single AB in AA. I wouldn't put him on the list.

"If the Phillies have anything on the ball (which is doubtful), maybe they can parlay those BA ratings into a trade of Golson, Drabek, & Jaramillo for some half-way decent major league outfielder."

Bay area fan .... don't mistake Phillies Top 10 prospects for ACTUAL prospects .... that's like saying she's the 8th hottest girl in the bar (out of 8 girls ...)

Some of those guys on that list will never play any significant time at the ML Level.

BAP: I agree with you on Happ. I thought it was the one glaring ommission. I would've had him on the list, instead of Golson. If Happ is healhty and his former command returns, he'll be a useful back-end starter.

One thing I read about Carrasco is that he was rushed through the system too fast.

The opposite might be Outman, who's 23. Can anyone explain why he needed 45 starts between low and high class A? It was pretty clear early on this season that he had mastered Class-A hitting, yet they kept him in Clearwater for 18 starts. What's the point of that?

It would be nice to have a clearer picture of Outman, and a more complete season in AA would have given us one. So far, Outman has been solid, solid, solid every step of the way. If he shows he can stay consistent for 10-15 more tries at Reading, I'd make him next season's Kyle Kendrick if Eaton can't do it and they acquire no one else ... Outman, by the way, is very good with groundballs and doesn't give up the long ball.

Outman virtually is learning how to pitch all over again after abandoning his Father's very "bizzarre" pitching motion that he came up with.

They are/were trying to get Outman's mechanics to the point where he can repeat his delivery over and over and over ... it's a process for sure - but he's got the arm to pitch in the show no doubt about that.

JMARR: I read the same thing. He was considered pretty raw for a college pitcher and his mechanics were poor. But Jason is right, he needs to be at Reading next season.

JMARR: I'm from the Bay Area, where the 8th hottest girl in the bar is most likely a guy in drag. Even still, I'd probably think more of his/her hotness than I do of Greg Golson's prospects at a major league future.

Clout - you bet (And Jason as well) - I do think he needs to be at Reading .... I think they were just a little leary of him not having success right away with such a drastic change in approach.

BAF ... that is classic. I'm in Austin, TX where the 8th hottest girl in the bar is actually usually smokin' hot.

Huh. Didn't know that about Outman. Thanks for the info, JMARR.

Jason - no problem .... I owe you about 10,000 more and we'll be even.

I haven't followed Cardenas that closely, but is there any change he can be taught to play 3rd now that Mike "The Opposite" Costanzo is gone?

Of is he the shortstop now that we're trading Rollins for Santana?

Chance, not change...

attywood - they moved him to second from short because of a weak arm.

Actually, the shortstop they would move up to replace Rollins mught be that Jesus Merchan guy - you know - if they hadn't traded him for that pitcher Mateo that they forgot to use.

I heard Jody Mac on 950 last week mention the Rollins for Santana deal. It was more musing than anything. He didn't note a source or anything. I wonder if the Eskin thing is based on Jody Mac thinking aloud.

The rollins for santana "rumor" is so ridiculous its not even worth discussing. Its clearly just a ploy to drive up the price of santana for the mets.

We might as well debate the likelihood of the Yankees trading Mickey Mantles failed liver for Chone Figgins.

mm: You think the Angels would take Wheels' bad toupee instead?

Thanks for the Outman article, JMARR. That's some pretty interesting stuff. Was he ever allowed to use his motion in the minors, or did the Phillies forbid it?

I read that article about a week ago, I am curious what his orginal motion was. Maybe he was better with it?

MG, nice post!

The part about player expenses being flat since 2005 is something I have been posting about here for awhile. I didn't realize revenues had gone from $115 MM to $183 MM the last four years.

That's a big jump in 4 seasons. BIG.

Phillies ownership has a huge (historic for them, as they won't be around long enough to have another) opportunity to leverage the 2007 season - to show the fans that they really care about winning - to show the community that '07 wasn't an aberration like 1993, not lightning in a bottle - that they actually are competent at what they do.

They have the opportunity to turn the brand into a regional powerhouse, something that would make even the hardcore fans forget about the bumbling, the 13 losing seasons in 14 years, punctuated by several with 90 losses.

Alas, "Something is rotten in the state of Denmark" [Hamlet, scene iv], or, that is, in the state of Zen.

They risk turning the brand once again into "a foul and pestilent congregation of vapours" a "quintessence of dust" [Hamlet].

If they fail to make the playoffs for the next several years, especially with the young core that they have, the will blow it again, and rather than turn on them like a pack of dogs, the fans will simply turn their backs on them.

Great thread - November was never this interesting.

In the BA article it mentions that Kendrick gave up a scholarship to Washington State to play QB and was a pretty good 3 sport-athlete.

You might underestimate him due to appearance with his boyish farmboy face and slim build.

Knowing this now reinforces my opinion his strengths as a competitor and ability to effectively manage a game.

He also turns it up a notch when it looks like his back is against the wall.

I think alot of people are still underestimating and I like his chances.

Perhaps we should just deal with Eaton being the #5 pitcher until one of the three savery, carrasco, or outman is ready to go, perhaps midseason?

Then we can use the mystery cash ($10-12mm) to sign lowell or rowand.

virtually no chance Savery or Carrasco is ready to contribute next year.

also no chance Lowell/Rowand sign for $10-12M per year.

JB: I was a Kenrick backer on this blog from before he was brought up. I agree 100% that his makeup and demeanor in adverse conditions are his great strengths. I also agree he might be a bit underestimated.

Having said that, I'd feel a lot more confident about his chances if he could figure out a way to tame lefties a bit. That .922 OPS was brutal.

Quick question... could we sign someone like Mike Lowell for a 4 year/$52 million deal, but give him just $10 million this year... so we can fit him in the budget? What's stopping the Phils from doing something like that?

Gotta love it.

On their MLB page CBS Sportsline has a countdown to the MLB salary arb deadline.

17 days and counting.

CJ -
The plus side is that after this year we wouldn't be paying Thome any more. That might free up the additional salary.

The minus side is that Howard will be getting more in 2009 than 2008 and will need some of the "Thome Dividend." (Others, too.)

It still becomes a question of the ownership's philosophy regarding the salary structure of the team.

Hi guys - sorry I was out for awhile. Apparently the situation with Outman was he felt like he would have an easier time being drafted and moving through the minors with a more conventional delivery.

Apparently at every level he had to prove to the coaches that his way of throwing would actually work etc ....

From what I've gleaned from a few articles - his stuff was good with the old motion and obviously very deceptive --- but he felt/feels like his best chance to succeed at the ML level is with a more conventional motion.

His BB/IP ratio should continue to improve with repetition as he simply has not thrown as many innings with his new delivery.

Interesting guy to watch for sure --- I'm definitely rooting for him. If anyone is going to be a "late-bloomer" you'd have to think it would be Outman.

Just a note. Clearwater had many players that had not only won a chapionship at Lakewood and again for the Threshers! It seams some of thse guys like Donald, Harris, Slayden, Urick and Marson are or maybe under the radar. Urick and Harris platooned, unfasionably, but productively. Heck they called them the "two headed monster!" I think they combined for 21 hr's and over 100 rbi. Many of the guys should have been moved up? Maybe it had something to do with AAA Ottawa having a one year stint so far away from Pilly? I think there is many a talent in that Clearwater group, and we'll see many soon at the higher levels, while being more productive.

It occurs to me, as we bang our heads against the $105MM budget, that there are two winning philosophies that teams can take.

1) They can go "all-in" at a major league level, being willing to pay top dollar (or even establish new top dollar amounts) to fill out their roster with proven talent, not worrying so much about the salary line. They do well anyway, because people come to watch the stars and buy their licensed products. This approach requires a major market, of course, and, while it will get you many years of winning records, is still no guarantee of a championship.

2) They can pour money into scouting and development, building an extremely good minor league system. They have to be willing to pay above slot and offer large bonuses to draftees that other teams might pass on because of signability. They also have to use every tool at their disposal (including statistical evaluations) to make sure they are getting the best talent, because once the players become arb eligible there's no guarantee they'll be able to sign them. Trades are used to bring in more prospects while sending off players who are no longer affordable.

3) The Phils use a mish mash of both, doing neither thing particularly well, and have been very fortunate that 5 draft picks over the past 10 years have performed extremely well - maybe even beyond expectation (along with a rule 5er who truly has excedded expectation).

My point is that the Phil's ownership and upper management need to decide who they
are, and go with it. If they're gonna be a successful small market team, they will need a whole new cast of characters, drafting and developing with a more modern philosophy and a recklessness about paying above slot that they've not shown. It's not a realistic way forward for them for the immediate future, however, if they want to win.

Which means that they may, if they're serious about fielding a winner, need to spend a little of the cash they've accumulated in profits over the past couple years, understanding that their investment can only grow. If they want to be a big market team, they need to be willing to go $140 - 150MM. (Think what we could with that.)

Anyway. I'm done rambling. (Feel free to shoot me down.)

Offseason rumors get ridiculous. The Phils are now linked to the camera lovin' Kenny Rogers and another ancient lefty in Tom Glavine. Neither are likely scenarios, and would probably cost 10 mil each.

Tray, how do you give the MVP to a player who was an active participant in the greatest regular season collapse in baseball history (David Wright). He hit well at the end of the season for the most part, but made some huge errors that cost the Muts. He was as much a part of their collapse as anyone. I don't know your subjective criteria for judging the MVP, but that alone would take him out of the running in my book. If it came down to a decision of Wright or Rollins (Which I don't think it does) then J-Roll is the clear pick. If it is between Rollins and Holliday (I think the more likely scenario) then I would still go with J-Roll based on Holldiays stats away from Coors. Either way, Wright is no higher than 3rd in my opinion, and possibly out of the top 5.

Andy

After this year I believe (correct me if I am wrong)we lose:

Burrell $14m
Moyer $5.5m
Gordon $5.5m
Helms $2.1m
Thome $6m

That is $33m, a big chunk of the payroll. Of course how do we replace Burrells production without resigning him. So maybe next winter is the time for big upgrades?

Parker - I agree on Wright. I think the voters will like Holliday's fresh face and HRs (despite the away from Coors thing). They'll probably pick him even though he still hasn't touched...well, you know.

jobbers,
what is all that in pounds?

The Reds are looking for another starting pitcher and they are apparently dangling Griffey and Dunn. I wonder if we get could get Griffey from Reds (he'd look nice in RF for us) in exchange for Eaton, Madson, and Golson?

You don't think Reds GM Krivsky is dumb enough to fall for that, do you?

I know Griffey's another lefty, but man he would like nice in the Phillies lineup hitting 6th after Burrell.

Too many pounds in the case of Howard and Myers, hahaha I excel myself

I think we have a better chance at getting the 8th best looking gal in the Austin, TX bar than getting any of the following: Santana, Lowell, A-Rod, Tejada, Rowand or Lohse.

Maybe I'm out of my mind and overly optimistic, but I think the Phillies should go after Chin Hui Tsao. He just officially declined his assignment to AAA and became a free agent. His upside is as high as most of the pitchers in the free agent market, but his price would be pennies. Obviously he comes with an injury concern, but to me the rewards would easily outweigh the risks. At this point I honestly like his stuff more than Gordons, so why not throw $500,000 at him.

Slacker, you would have a better chance with Madson + Golson, and even that wouldn't come close.

I don't see why Rogers at a 1/10 deal is so bad, excpet that it means Eaton is an $8M DL player or longman. The Phillies need at least one place holder until one or two young players are ready for '09.

A switch to the NL could help Rogers, and he has been quite good at preventing HRs over his career (even in Texas).

CBP might be a tough place for him at first, but I think getting out of the tough AL central would help.

Glavine I would be very worried about.

I’ve been a long time Beerleaguer reader and I’ve seen a few treads dedicated to the options for ’08 outfield in the event that Rowand walks. Most of them involve moving Vic to CF and a platoon situation in RF involving Werth and guys like Wilkerson and Geoff Jenkins. I like the idea of moving Vic to CF if we don’t have the $$$ to go after one of the big name CF’s but has anyone proposed going after Jose Guillen as more of an every day option in RF? His numbers last year were comparable with Rowand:

Guillen - .290/ .353/ .460 23HR 99RBI
Rowand - .309/ .374 / .515 27HR 89RBI

Rowand has a better career line:

Guillen - .274/ .325/ .447
Rowand - .283/ .343/ .462

But it seems like Guillen’s numbers are a little more consistent – especially power. Guillen has a history of injuries, but we’re comparing him to Aaron Rowand… He also has a good glove and a great arm. Rowand would clearly be missed, but it seems like Guillen would be an adequate replacement for a good portion of Rowand’s production.

Finding a platoon partner for Werth would be easier if we weren't looking for a RF. A lot of the FAs who are part-time outfielders might work in LF, but not RF.

Frankly, if the team is taking in $183M but restricting payroll to $105M, I'm afraid RSB is right -- the long-range plan is to hang around the fringes of contention, not win a championship. If the payroll were, say, $120M, they could address many of their current holes. If not, they're essentially screwed. We'll be playing replacement-level players at 3B, RF and most of the bullpen. It doesn't much matter what your front-line stars do if there's no ML supporting cast.

Consistent due to steroids?

reports are that Los Mets offered Yorvit Torrealba, he of the .255 8HR 3/15 mill....rockies wont match, it looks like and why would they? Lo Duca really must have rubbed them the wrong way...not that he is that great, but he was supposed to be one of their leaders and is one of three guys on that team that play with intensity...

also, interesting piece by Conlin today about the Phillies part owner, John S. Middleton...needless to say, the guy is loaded
http://www.philly.com/philly/sports/columnists/20071114_Bill_Conlin___Phils_part-owner_has_money_to_burn.html

I, for one, would be thrilled to see Eaton as an $8MM Dl player or longman. He's that bad that you still don't pitch him, even though he's raping the team for that salary.

Kevin - Guillen was just reported as using PEDs from at least 2002-2005. he's also a major defensive liability, doesn't take walks, and was looking at a contract for possibly more than $10M per year (at least before the steroid story came out).

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