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Thursday, November 29, 2007

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zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz...

Powder blue would have been preferable

Yawn. It's alright. I'm not rushing to the store, however.

They should change their road jersey to a dark gray emblazoned with Philadelphia across the front. As a Philadelphian living in exile, I'd buy that!

Jason - that's the only time we'll see El Pulpo in that jersey hopefully. Nice job!

Yeah, I'd rather see something from the 70s. Even if it were the old Phillies logo in red instead of burgundy.

The Phils press release quotes one of the infamous owners, David Buck. I guess this means he is still alive.

Yeah I would like to see powder blue come back.

Either the powder blue or the old school uniforms from '25.

I'm still unsure why we'd celebrate the 125 years by using a uniform that the team wore for only four years. I would have preferred to see the team celebrate the only World Champion team or (as the jersey of the 1950 Whiz Kids is similar to the ones currently worn) or, as other have suggested, seen changes to the road uniform including a spelled out "Philadelphia" for the first time in the franchise's history.

The team during that Period was trying to be known as the "Blue Jays", like the Orioles, or Cardinals, hence the Blue Hat.

The Blue Hat is awful, now the retro 70s powderblue uniform is subtle.

I cannot even begin to imagine getting the dirt and stains out of Chase's uniform. His mom is going to have her work cut out for her.

If we were gonna do retro I'd rather see the 1921 uniform. That had style, baby.

John, in the last thread mentioned Feliz.

Despite his "great glove", Feliz offensive numbers are so abysmal that he's never registered a positive win share. I'll pass on the sub .250 BA, sub .3 OBP and sub-.420 SLG.

I like the jersey and the fact that it's a lighter, breathable fabric. I would consider buying one and wearing it to games.

"The new uniforms are too tight, they've shrunk! Mattingly just split his pants!"

The '48-'49 jerseys are okay. But I think fans might have been more jazzed to see the '70s/'80s unis return as an alternate, the way the Brewers have done. A lot of people express contempt for that design, but it's funny how I see more people wearing the old-style 'P's at ballgames than the new ones, and that the concessions stands have tons of merchandise with that old logo on it.

I still contend that someone in the front office is obsessed with implementing the color blue into the scheme. For whatever reason.

Regarding Melvin Mora: I think the question is not whether he'd be an upgrade on Dobbs/Helms, but simply an upgrade over *Helms*. I think Dobbs would still get his share of playing time at 3B. Here's one thing to like about Mora: he remains a versatile player. If another infielder were to go down, he could fill in. If Burrell goes down, boom, there's your left fielder for two weeks. Jason's right: if the Phillies want him, they wouldn't have to really give up much, whereas they would with Tejada. I wouldn't be averse to them picking him up if it means not having to watch Helms stumble around the bag like a drunken groundskeeper. That position needs any improvement it can get.

Hey! Watch who yer talkin' about buddy!

Oh hey...no offense. Actually, I'm pretty certain you're a better third baseman than Helms.

RSB: I know my demographic would be jazzed to see Howard, Utley, Rollins roll with 70/80s unis because it's an era when many of us fell in love with the team. I thought the same thing.

Then I thought about it more. From the Phillies' end, it makes more sense rolling out a different throwback variation since so many people already sport the 80s look. They'll sell a ton of these. If I had a choice between a powder-blue variation, and the 40s variation, I'd take the latter, because it's something different, and it's still in keeping with the current script and colors. They're going to be wearing this uni a lot, so they probably prefered to stick with the current branding.

In other words, yesterday's style is yesterday's news, but yesterday's style from yesterday is today. That concludes this episode of Project Runway: Phillies Edition.

If the Phils sign Mora, I will be that drunken groundskeeper next year.

But, Jason, if they used the 80s version, they could print Schmidt on the back of Helms' jersey and hope for some osmosis.

Baseball card notes: Catcher Carlos Ruiz has been named to the 2007 Topps Rookie All-Star team.

Quickie quiz: Which player whose primary position was 3B finished dead last in the NL last season in OPS, even worse than the combined OPS of Dobbs/Helms?

Just got this note:

Kuroda is going to Seattle, Phillies are out of it. Fukodome may still be in the mix but the Cubs are pushing hard.

New alternative uniform is still pretty dull. Basically just a blue hat and some minor changes.

I guess at least the Phils went back into their history though and didn't come out with something truly stupid like a black uniform.

MG: Not to worry, the Phillies are far too conservative (fortunately, at least in this case) to ever come out with a uniform like that...

One word immediately comes to mind: Hideous! Why the Phils can't use their All-Red Spring Training jersies with their pinstripe pants or their All-Blue Batting Practice jersies with their grey pants in games is beyond me... Especially for an alternative look. Instead they go for something goofy (like the bastard modeling the latest threads)...

@Clout

Helms .665, followed closely by Pedro Feliz at .708?

Clout, Whoops...misread that, I'd say Feliz.

i don't think a third uniform is a great idea. i kind of think teams should have 2 only, but i like this better than the 70s/80s uniforms. the reason isn't that the 70s/80s uniforms are bad, but that they don't fit in with the regular uniforms. i like the continuity. so in a sense the three different uniforms have to go together. the 70s/80s uniform would stand out too much and have no relation to the standard home and away uniforms.

also no solid color tops! no BP shirts during games! the rockies may have swept the phils but they looked like losers doing it. those guys even dress as bad as middle america christians.

RofA: You are correct, sir! Among players with at least 400 plate appearances whose primary position was 3B, Feliz was dead last in OPS. For those who say, "yeah but he has power," you should note that he finished next to last in SLG. (.418), ahead of only injured-plagued Scott Rolen (.398).

Someone pointed out that the Phils can also roll out the 1980 jersey in 2010, the 30th Anniversary of the only WS Championship the franchise has seen.

Money.

The ugliest looking baseball uniforms in history were in the 1970s. This is because the ugliest clothes in history were worn in the 1970s.

From two posts ago... MG asked what happens if Madson and Gordon go down with injuries. Not a question of "if", but "when". And I would say you ride the hot hand until it gets cold, MG. You certainly have the bats to come back if a lead is lost. What happens if they use a $5 million/year reliever who loses his slider? He gets burned in effigy in the CBP parking lot and we all mutter "Whadda waste-a money!" And then Eskin picks fights with Charlie and Rich Dubee.

Obviously, the downside is that a coach has to know who has the hot hand and who is about to lose it. I can imagine most of you don't think Charlie and Richie are capable.

Any reactions to this? (From Lauber's blog):

"For anyone curious about the Phillies' payroll (I know it's been a topic of conversation here), Pat Gillick had this to say today: 'Our problem is not money. Our problem is talent. If we think the talent is there, we will spend the money. We're pretty flexible that way. But it's easy to spend money now, and then, a year from now, you wish you hadn't spent it. This is not a good free-agent group.'"

I agree with him.

Him who?

I'm assuming J agrees with gillick that there isnt much around to spend money on....although if thats the phillies thinking then why the hell didnt we draft porcello in the first last year?

Clout - This is getting ridiculous. I and anyone else who is advocating Pedro Feliz isnt doing it because we think its an offensive upgrade. Its an offensive wash, but a huge defensive upgrade which would then allow us to reunite Helms with Girardi in NY for any relief pitcher that theyd be willing to get rid of. If your choice was Feliz or Mora who would you really rather have?

I agree with him Jason, but it seems to me that the Eaton signing last year was clearly contradictory to the Gillick Doctrine.

I believe the comment was born out of his frustration with hearing the budget question incessantly. But Gillick needs to choose his words carefully- one could make the case that Aaron is someone where the talent is there.

ricky: I can't think of anything that a team that plays in a bandbox needs less than a good-field, no-hit thirdbaseman. We just dumped one in Nunez. We don't need another. I'd prefer Dobbs/Helms over Mora and Feliz, bad gloves and all. If you find a glove man who can actually hit, I'm all for an upgrade. But until this team moves to Petco or PacBell a good-field, no-hit thirdbaseman makes no sense at all.

I agree with him Jason, but it seems to me that the Eaton signing last year was clearly contradictory to the Gillick Doctrine.

I believe the comment was born out of his frustration with hearing the budget question incessantly. But Gillick needs to choose his words carefully- one could make the case that Aaron is someone where the talent is there.

The blue caps are too similar to the hats that opened the 1994 season. ESPN reminds us that these hats were considered bad luck and were banished forever.

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=lukas/070823

Check out Dykstra wearing the helmet version of the blue hat. Terrible.

The cream jerseys are nice. Let's stick with the hats though, ok?

If the Phils can get Mora for a minor prospect and have the O's pick up between 1/3 and 1/2 of his remaining contract, then maybe it makes sense but I doubt the O's will move Mora unless the other team takes most of his contract.

As for Feliz, that is a tough call. He probably would be David Bell redux. Good/great defense but long periods of offensive ineptitude. I saw Feliz about 10 games last year (get free tickets to Giants game occasionally) and he really can rake.

Problem is that the flaws in his swing are so numerous it is pretty astounding. Where to start - slow and long swing, tries to pull every damn pitch, no patience, fails at pitches out of the zone with regularly he has no chance of hitting, and refuses to make any kind of adjustments regardless of count. Supposedly worked on changing his swing last year in spring training and went on to go back to the same crap has supposedly has done his whole career. Mystifies me why teams even bother to challenge him with fastballs.

Basically Feliz is as unproductive as Nunez with a bat except he hits an occasional HR on a mistake pitch or grooves a fastball. Do the Phil need to sign him to a 3 yr/$15 M deal? I would rather roll the dice on a reliever or put it towards a starter.

As much as am critical of the Phils at times, at least we are debating about whether they can win the NL East again next year or make the playoffs.

What do you do if you are a Pirates fan or a Giants fan? Basically wonder what marginally talented hasbin your team will bring in or what dink trade your team will make.

I hate the color red...go blue all the way.

One interesting thing I heard today out in SF sports radio - supposedly the Mitchell report is coming out before Christmas and names will be specifically mentioned in the report including some current players.

The radio guys were wondering if that is making some teams reluctant to deal for certain players (Tejada? anyone) because they don't want to deal for a player whose name might be released.

Plus, they were wondering if any players had some kind of steroid or performance-ehnancing stipulation in their contracts that a team could use to void their contract or discipline that player.

Mitchell report almost definitely won't come out until after the winter meetings but I bet it will make some fireworks.

"After months of anticipation"

Quick poll by raise of hand... how many of us were really anticipating the alternate jersey?

Arte Moreno, the owner of the Angels, said something similar, MG. His attitude was "People aren't going to like it. Tough noogies."

We should have a Phillies uniform design contest!

MG: that might explain why the free-agent market is moving so slowly. Everyone's waiting for the list of Mitchell's Pariahs to emerge.

So what does it mean if the Mitchell report says that someone, say Mora, used 'roids 4 years ago, but does not have evidence that he's been using them since? Does he get suspended now?

Excuse me for interrupting this string on the new uni (which are so non-descript as to say "who cares?" IMHO), I want to get back to third base. I don't really like platoons, as a rule, though I can support them in some situations. But two? I think it's very inefficient to have a platoon at third AND in right. I like Werth. I loved those two stolen bases against the Muts. I love the fire he brings. Can he play 150 productive right-field-caliber games? Not sure. But I like those odds over getting much production out of Helms. I think third is a high priority this off-season.

RofA - the problem is what's available. I like the pursuit of Tejada, but who knows what they want. Probabaly two guys we do not want to lose.

At least we found out that the Phanatic, unlike Derrek Zoolander, is an ambiturner.

Zolecki is reporting on ZoZone that there is nothing to the Mora talk. I'd only be happy to see him here if it was sort of a poor man's Beckett/Lowell trade and we got Mora and an arm (Guthrie? Bradford? etc.) But that is doubtful.

Here is an ethnical/business question - Should the Phils still try to trade for Tejada if it comes out he was yet another Oriole on the juice? Might be able to get him for a relative song if that is the case.

I don't think ethics are an issue. I think production is.

I think the Gillick Doctrine is born out of the disastrous Eaton signing. Never again.

Gillick Doctrine my a$$. He didn't prevent him from signing a bunch of junk (Franklin, Nunez) or second-tier options (Gordon) during the 2005 offseason or repeating it again last year - junk (Barajas) or second-tier options (Eaton).

While we argue and bitch about Orioles, Percival is getting 2Y/$8M with the Rays and David Riske is about to get a Lineberink-like deal (4Y/$19M) with the Brewers.

Meanwhile, we got Shane Youman.

Clout, I guess we will continue to disagree based on philosophies. With Burrell in left, I think exactly what we need is a great glove at 3rd. All of the runs the Phillies give up arent on home runs. With the pitching that the Phillies have they need all of the defensive help that they can get. All those doubles down the line that could have been outs extend innings. Feliz can hit as well has Helms, and despite what MG predicted, Feliz could be had for a 1 or 2 year deal at $4 to $5 million per, which would allow the trading of helms.

I'm not saying its a great option, but there needs to be a defensive upgrade as Howard at first and Burrell in left arent going anywhere, and therefore the other fielders need to be able to make up for those extra outs and extra bases.

rickyj21, you and clout are just arguing over which poison you're going to take.

Pick one, it really won't matter much, especially if they don't improve the pitching.

Improving fielding improves pitching

How much confidence would you have as a pitcher if you look to one side and see Ryan Howard and the other side and see Wes Helms?

It would make me want to try and strike everyone out instead of throwing ground balls.

Very true, but clout's point that 81 games are played in a offensive bandbox has merit as well.

The Twinkies are reportedly also shopping Joe Nathan. Anyone interested in seeing Lidge set up for Nathan?

What percentage of runs scored against the Phillies at home last year were scored on homeruns?

The back end of the pen would be Nathan, Lidge, Romero, Gordon, Madson and a combo of Condrey/

The back end of the pen would be Nathan, Lidge, Romero, Gordon, Madson and a combo of Condrey/Durbin/Mateo/Ennis and dreck, unless they do what I would like and sign another LOOGY.

I don't know, tell me.

But don't dismiss the Phils need to score runs out of hand.

How many rallies did Nunez kill because he GIDP or hit a weak grounder or fly ball?

I don't know what to make of Feliz's strikeout totals from last year. Over the course of his career, Feliz has struck out once every 5.68 ABs (including 2007), but last year he struck out at a much lower 1:7.96 K:AB rate.

Was this a one year fluke or did he take a different approach to hitting? I suppose this can't really be answered until 2008 plays out, but I found it interesting nonetheless.

In any event, defensive stud or not, I don't want Feliz since his plate approach reminds me too much of Barajas (swing hard, swing often). A lifetime .288 OBP? *shudder*

48.7% of the runs against the Phils were scored on homers, 51.3% on everything else.

In a normal situation I wouldn't want someone with a .708 OPS regardless of defense...its just that our 3b OPS last year was .688 and included the 7th worst 3b defense in the majors (while feliz and san fran was the best)

Just saw this from Stark on ESPN.com:


"As we reported last week, the unsigned free-agent starting pitcher who had the best strikeout rate and lowest opponent batting average this season is (who else?) Randy Wolf. We're hearing Wolf has six teams chasing him. But the Phillies amped up their pursuit this week by getting nearly every one of their top executives on the phone with him personally."


Sounds like Wolfie is the starter in which they're most interested.

From Stark's column today (half of his most recent column is like Beerleaguer this week - he takes trade scenarios from fans and comments on the validity of them happening but with some actual feedback from team sources)

•"As we reported last week, the unsigned free-agent starting pitcher who had the best strikeout rate and lowest opponent batting average this season is (who else?) Randy Wolf. We're hearing Wolf has six teams chasing him. But the Phillies amped up their pursuit this week by getting nearly every one of their top executives on the phone with him personally."

Wonder if Monty got on the phone and said that he would love to Wolf to come back in order to have a "Wolf Pack" night sometime in June.

I'm hopeful that Mathieson is well enough this spring to get tried out in the the bullpen. He's gotta be a better in-house option (if healthy) than Condrey/Durbin/Ennis. Anyway, he seems to be the forgotten man for the Phils brass and here on Beerleaguer ...

Well we dont have to worry about wasting any time or resources on trades, so the winter meetings will be a good time for us to work on free agents while other teams are distracted.

ricky - I bet that Feliz does get at 3 years at $4/$5 M a year. The talent at 3B is pretty thin around the majors right now and that is not huge money in this market for a starting 3B.

Mathieson has had repeated elbow injuries that he hasn't been able to shake. I just hope that he can't get healthy althought it is almost inevitable he will start the season at Allentown as a starter if he is healthy.

Mathieson, Madson and Zagurski will be some nice young blood in the pen. Along with Romero we just need to find 2 more.

I'm still hoping the Phils sign a couple of minor league free agent relievers with a little upside as it presents a great low risk, high reward opportunity.

Gillick confirmed they are talking with Wolf's people tonight on DNL. He said Ruben had just gotten off the phone with Wolf's agent before he left for the studio. Phillies' medical staff has looked at all of Wolf's reports and believe the shoulder surgery was a minor cleanup.

He was asked about third base and repeated that it looks as though it will be Helms, Dobbs and Bruntlett defensively.

Gillick gave the impression Rowand is not entirely out of the picture, but that's been consistent with both Gillick and Ruben this winter. They've been staying in contact with his agent, Gillick says, and they also flew to California to meet with him personally about five weeks ago. He expects many of the major free agent happenings to occur a week or two before the holiday.

Generally, he believes the FA pool is mediocre and I detected a bit of buyer's remorse from last off season. Barkann and his guests actually asked very good questions, including one about the Mitchell Report, which seemed to throw Gillick back on his heels a little as to whether the impending release of names has GMs scared. Gillick sidestepped and said he's concerned the report will impact the game.

There are very few free agent 3B right now, but there are also very few teams with a desparate need for a low OPS 3rd basemen.

Rotoworld projected him getting a 1 year $3million deal. mlb4u.com projects him getting 1 year $2.5 million.

Hey Guys...stop the love for Feliz. He's not what we want here in Philly. Think out side the box.

How 'bout offering Lidge and prospects for Nathan? Nah, they won't. But that's the only way they'd have a prayer to get him.

Make sure there are no more Mora rumors and figure out a way to make me forget having to watch Wes Helms and his pathetic range and I'll never mention Feliz again...

Iguchi would still be my first choice if we could talk him into it...
Crede would be a great option if we could talk the Sox into it...
I'd absolutely love to figure out a way to get Betamit from the Yankees, but I dont think they'd flip him for Helms

Can't promise about the Mora rumors...there's something real to them. Sorry.

I know it's sacriledge, but of all the options out there, I'd love to see Chase give the hot corner another go as I believe they tried while he was on the farm, and bring back Iguchi to play 2B.

Rollins
Tad
Chase
Howard
Burrell
Werth/Dobbs
Vic
Ruiz
P

Flip Helms to NYY for Farnsworth as has been rumored and still have money for a F/A pitcher.

Hamels
Myers
Moyer
Kendrick
Wolf/Eaton/FA/Trade Fodder

Lidge
Romero
Farnsworth
Madson
Gordon
Zags/Condrey/Mathieson/FA/

The blue hats would be fine if they didnt have the red brim....something like their blue BP hats would be better. but they are better than their interleauge hats from the past few yrs..those were dreadful

The old hats from the same era had the blue cap with the red brim and Red P bordered by White ... they were just going retro all the way. I just hope they also wear the old school dark blue hose and undershirts as well or it will look ridicilous.

Don't know if you guys remember when Thome was with the phils and they wore some kind of throwback burgundy jerseys for a game, but still wore the modern Red socks .... looked like a minor league uniform.

JMARR - Tad ain't here or gonna be here. Please don't bat Vic 7th.

rickyj: What pct. of runs scored last year against the Phillies were as a result of misplays at 3B? If you can't answer that, then you are simply surmising that a good-field, no-hit (and more expensive) player like Feliz would make the team better than the platoon of Helms/Dobbs.

"I would have signed for less," said Hunter, who had five-year offers, ranging from $70 million to $75 million, from the White Sox, Rangers and Royals, and the day before the Angels offer dined with Texas Rangers owner Tom Hicks.

What if the Angels offered less than those other teams?

"I still would have taken it!" Hunter said. (via)

but of course, as we all know, it is impossible for a baseball player to be overpaid.

Ed Wade just signed Kaz Matsui for 3 year 15 mil.. wow.

How could Matsui resist playing for a team which had just signed Tomas Perez?

Like the uni.
Hate the hat.

Clout - If you know where I can find game tapes for all the home games from last year (preferably for free) I'd have happy to start watching the games and give you the percentage of runs scored because of poor play at 3rd. And that would include all the balls that they should have gotten to but didnt. I can tell you the game that truly set me off though, Sept. 29th against the Nats. 2 runs were directly correlated to starting Wes Helms at 3rd base and the fact that he cant field a ball 5 feet to his right because he is slow, flat footed, and reacts poorly to grounders.

Clout, I see your point, but asking anyone to determine that kind of information (the number of runs scored because of bad play at third) in order to make a point (And not get paid to do it), is kind of ridiculous. They give out research grants for things that would take less time. Aside from that, there is no way to objectively determine what qualifies as a run scored as a result of poor play at third. Without some method to detetmine what qualifies, it comes down to speculation. I recall, and I'm sure many others do as well, many plays where there was disagreement on this board as to whether the 3B should have made it to a ball this last season. Even if you could say objectively that the 3B should have made it to the ball, that still does not account for the likelihood that he could actually make the play once he gets to the ball. Additionally, you would at least have to break it down into a percentage chance that even if he makes it to the ball, and is able to make a throw or tag, that he will be able to do it in time to beat the runner. All of this leaves too much speculation, and I'm not sure that given all the time that you could possibly want, and unlimited resources, that you could make that determination without at least some amount of debate as to the results.

...and I detected a bit of buyer's remorse from last off season.

Jason, that's a great point. DPatrone says the Phils are too cheap to sign an impact FA. But there's really nothing exciting out there and the recent history of the Eaton signing has them very gun shy right now. Look for them to be agressive next week in Nashville in regards to the trade front.

Jason, thanks for posting the DNL chatter. Interesting stuff.

Zo's got this today:

"No more Mora talk. A team source said there was absolutely no way the Phillies would trade for Baltimore Orioles third baseman Melvin Mora."

Thank you....that cheers me up a bit

Parker: I agree and the so-called range factor calculations done by various people are all pretty flawed, for reasons discussed by several of us on this board.

My opinion is simply based on the fact that 1. The Phils play in a bandbox where offense trumps defense and 2. 3B doesn't get nearly the action on defense that important positions up the middle get. This results in my conclusion that whatever slight upgrade we get in saving runs by throwing Feliz out there every day is more than offset by the automatic out he would be on offense. In other words, while I'd love to upgrade the Helms/Dobbs platoon, I consider Feliz not an upgrade. I also think Helms is going to have a better year with the bat.

The news that Troy Percival signed with Tampa for 2 years at $4M per really gets on my nerves. Isn't this exactly the kind of signing the Phillies should've made? He's been very good in 5 of the past 6 years. He's 38 but he absolutely kills righties (.418 OPS). I'd be willing to bet he has a better season this year than Gordon. Are you telling me the Phils can't afford $4M to get that last bullpen piece? As a result look for Condrey or Durbin to fill that last spot and when Gordon goes down with an injury, for everyone else to move up a notch into jobs they aren't equipped to handle.

when the Rays are 40 games back at the break, we can trade for him...if he doesn't fall apart first

Percival was going to whichever team was going to let him close. He passed up more money elsewhere because he wanted 9th inning duties instead of being a setup guy.

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