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Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Comments

Well one thing we don't have to worry about is possibility of trading for Dontrelle Willis and Miguel Cabrera.

Both are bound for Detroit in a huge deal just reported on ESPN.com

RE: Guillen from this morning.

To correct your frequent errors in perpetuating the argument with me. I agree Jenkins/Werth is probably cheaper and better. But more fragile and more roster space is used and less upside. PS Jenkins had a bad year vs RHP so his .800 line isn't exactly slam dunk that he'll be the stud lefty platoon mate.
And for the 3rd time I said given a Dobbs/Werth/Snelling platoon, everyone by june will have taken Guillen on that kind of deal.


I doubt Guillen is below league Avg vs RHP with his numbers adjusted to playing @ CBP. As well if you're going purely on last year's numbers than yes he was below average. But he's had above average years as well so he's not strictly a lefty masher.

He isn't old and for a 3 yr deal he has the best contract for an OF i've seen in 2 years aside from Alou maybe. Guillen isn't worth 2 million more than Pierre or Matthews Jr? and 6 million per less than Hunter? Shorter terms than all those teams and while I would've liked him @ 10mm even more 12 seems still like a fair deal.

I think everyone should realize the Marlins will be weaker this year and next maybe. But they also just insured themselves of having for the following 4 years, a dynamic hitter and a pitcher that was as good as D-train when he was good plus prospects.

Have a hunch Iguchi will do OK at third. He probably took thousands and thousands of mind-numbing practice reps in Japan.

What would be the damage? Two-years, $8 million with a club option? Something in that neighborhood?

I'd be open to Iguchi returning at 3B but if he flops horribly (defensively) we really going to be stuck with him for at least 3 years? Probably 5-6 MM I'd say. Will he sit there as a PH?

If Iguchi could actually pull it off at third base - and I would tend to believe he'd at least be smoother than either Dobbs or Helms, the question being the strength of his arm - I agree that it would be a very nice fit. Iguchi's a quality ballplayer, and I was really impressed by how he plays the game.

As reposted from the previous thread - I also tend to agree with clout and Jason that McLouth might very well be a better and cheaper option than someone like Jenkins for a RF platoon. I like the fact that he can steal bases and I think he has good potential to develop more power as he moves into his later 20s. I imagine Pittsburgh would want at least one of the Phillies' better prospects in any deal for him, but it might be worth it.

J-
I would love to get Iguchi back at 3rd. True, nobody knows exactly how he would fare defensively, however I think everyone would agree that he couldn't be any worse defensively that Dobbs or Helms.
I do know this about Gooch - he was instrumental in keeping this team afloat during Utley's stint on the DL. Phils fans fell in love with the guy for good reason, based on the fact that he hit extremely well and played with a contagious passion that ignited this team through the dog days of August and down the stretch.
You also make a good point in that he hit lefties pretty well after coming over from Chicago. I think back to that at-bat he had against Billy Wagner in that 4th game of the 4-game series in Philly in late August, when he fouled off a couple pitches, and eventually fought off a base hit to score the tying run in what was arguably the most important win of the year for the ballclub.

If the Phillies have any chance of locking him up for, say a 3 year deal, I say jump on that opportunity.

I think i maybe the only one thinking this, but i believe werth's injurys should be past him by now, and he can provide at least league avg production for a corner outfielder and definately for a centerfielder. His athleticism shows up in his power flashes and his fielding. furthermore, his arm is not horrible and he is deceptively fast as his SB numbers indicate.

Castillo signed for 4/25 and he's 32 and playing 2B. I don't think you get a discount for playing a new position.

And if COL or SD or whomever is bidding I doubt it's that short or cheap unless he loved his time here. Didn't love it enough to open his mouth and say this mid playoff push though did he?

Mclouth in RF I don't know. Pittsburgh seems kind of poorly run so if it weren't a real prospect than yes sure. But i'd rather spend the money than any prospect we have.
10 HRs in August+ Sept last year.(170 ABs)
15 Career other HRs in 539 other career ABs.

thrillhouse: Thanks for bringing up Castillo's deal. I suppose it would be more like 2/$10-11?

Maybe Iguchi likes the idea of hitting home runs, or maybe he likes playing in Philadelphia. He received as much applause as Utley did when he was announced before the NLDS.

but if we sign iguchi we can therefore move dobbs into RF to platoon with werth, solving to holes

Like everyone else on this board, I like Iguchi. He doesn't do anything great but he does a lot of things pretty well. He's a great guy to have on your bench and he's a more than capable starter at 2nd base.

Still I'm a little dubious that he'd be a significant upgrade at third base. He isn't terribly likely to hit .304 again, as he did for us last year. .275 is a lot more realistic. And his career OPS isn't any better than Dobbs or Helms' OPS against opposite handed pitchers. And, of course, his defense is a total unknown. It wouldn't take much to be a defensive upgrade over Helms and Dobbs, but we really have no basis for believing tha Iguchi would meet even this low threshold.

I hate to be a party pooper because I know he's a popular player. But I don't really see Iguchi as much of a solution.

How's this for pure speculation:

If Gooch is signed to play 3B, does that enhance the Phils' chances to sign Kuroda?

Does having a fellow countryman one can talk to make a difference to Kuroda and Gooch, or, is, as Jason implied, he just trying to enhance his value and negotiating leverage?

Did he go home and take a bunch of grounder at 3rd to make sure he could field the position before he got back to the Phils? As we know, Japanese players have a great deal of pride and integrity; remember Matsui's "apology" to NY fans when he broke his wrist?

Does Gooch know something we don't, that maybe Kuroda is leaning toward the Phils' offer and would sign here if there were another Japanese player on board?

Rank speculation, I know, but it would be nice to see the Phils sign both Kuroda and Gooch to improve the team. It wouldn't hurt their marketing efforts in Japan either.

Never mind....the Phils don't think that far ahead.

I have probably been the board's biggest skeptic about Gooch having the arm to play 3B. I watched him pretty closely, though only a couple of times at CBP, and I never saw evidence of arm strength; he threw rainbows even from 2B, and while he turned the DP well enough, he wasn't firing bullets over there. He has never been the same since arm surgery -- remember, he was a good SS before that, and he clearly doesn't have the arm for SS anymore.

I think he'd be better afield than Helms/Dobbs in that he wouldn't make as many errors, but if the arm is as weak as I think, there would be plays he couldn't make. The offense would be a statistical wash, but the situational hitting ability might make up for it. Plus, in this park, he showed some pop.

Good point, Thrillhouse. By then, will the Marlins be the Charlotte Knights, Las Vegas Stars, Portland Beavers, or the Tijuana Taxis? Sorry that I don't see them filling Dolphin Stadium with Dan Uggla leading the charge... ever.

Iguchi made $3.25M last year. That two year deal figure looks right.

Doesn't Manual speak Japanese?? I know he has trouble with English but that should help in the efforts to get Kuroda as well.

Iguchi reminds me of Polanco a little bit - too bad he slipped away.

yes, manuel is fluent in japanese from his playing time overseas

thrillhouse: We just disagree about the quality of Guillen. But I DO agree with you on your analysis of the Marlins-Tigers trade. Great deal short-term for Detroit. Even better deal long-term for Florida.

Maybin is a 5-tool player and if he cuts down on his strikeouts will be an All-Star someday. Miller was the best college pitcher in the 2006 draft, a power lefty who gets groundballs and held his own in the Midwest League at age 21. He'll move to AA this coming season and if he passes that test, should see action with the Marlins in late 2009. He's at least a #2 starter.

The Marlins continue to stockpile tremendous young talent.

I seriously doubt there is a connection between Iguchi and Kuroda. Kuroda is getting a lot of advice from Shigetoshi Hasegawa, who pitched for the Angels in the late 90s and the Mariners in the 2000s. I could not find any evidence of a relationship between Gillick and Hasegawa.

Kuroda's agent, Katsuhito Osaka, has a lot of ties to the Dodgers organization.

clout, the Fish can stockpile all the talent they want, but until Luria gets his new stadium they'll just keep trading it off before it gets too expensive, and in the case of Cabrera, before he reaches his full potential and peak years.

Miller is gong to be good, though; UNC product, good makeup.

Has Utley ever played third?

erich: from my knowledge, he played a little but he didn't do well

And while we're at it, didn't Burell play third in the minors?

Clout- Didn't Miller start some games for the Tigers this year? I believe he did, but I'm not sure. If he did, then wouldn't we expect to see him in that Marlins rotation before early 2009? (I know we have had some battles before so I should preface this by saying I'm not being contentious or anything here). Correct me if I'm wrong, or if you have any reason for thinking he won't be up until next season, but I was assuming he would be plugged in pretty soon there.

I don't think Burrell ever played third, but Rollins did for a little bit.

The interesting thing about the Cabrera/Willis trade is that because of revenue sharing the Marlins have the highest operating income of any baseball team, according to Forbes.

I guess they don't keep their talent by choice.

Jack Miller did start for Detroit and did pretty well if I remember. Definately did well for a rookie starter at his age.

I'm surprised that no one has mentioned that we'll now be playing a seriously diminished Marlins team a whopping 19 times in 2008.

Of course, so will the Mets and Braves but I think this does greatly increase the chance that the Wild Card also comes out of the East thanks to win inflation -- a nice insurance policy.

Jack: Miller hasn't started any games above A ball.

Parker: Who's Jack Miller?

Any interest/chance of the phillies going after Brian Barton in the Rule 5 draft. Worst case scenario, if he's hurt, we can put him on the DL and then have him rehab in the minors without him being exposed to waivers.

or mabye, even more far fetched, the Phils are brining him back to play 2B, move Utley to 1B and move Howard for Santana or Haren?

clout, Andrew Miller started 13 games for the Tigers (MLB) this year, including (I believe) one against the phillies.

Jack, Parker: oops, I misunderstood your question. Yes, ANDREW Miller did see some action with the big club, but has only pitched 36 innings above A ball. He ought to be in AA or AAA this season, unless the Marlins force feed him (or if he masters the higher level in the first half of the season). But early success could certainly get him into the rotation in 2008.

Will - They'll still find a way to bang out 6 or 7 cheap wins against the Phils, four of them against Adam Eaton.

I don't believe that there's any way that the A's or Twins could afford Big 6's future contract.

What would it take for the Phillies to get Luke Scott from the Astros?

Miller also got a cup of coffee in 2006, so Detroit clearly thought he was precocious. Clout, I think a good spring might put him in Florida's plans for 2008. They're going to have to replace Willis with somebody, right? Does Anibel Sanchez come back this season?

Will, the Fish might not be as bad as you think. They have a lot of good young pitching. I agree, though, that two weak teams in the East might help pad the win totals of the other 3.

And the Twins are not moving Justin Morenau.

Padres would give two minor leaguers, but not their top two, for Scott.

Lekh: maybe Tom Gordon and Clay Condrey...no, they really would need at least one more mediocre veteran reliever to deal with Wade.

Doesn't even matter about Santana. Red Sox are getting him for John Lester, Justin Masterson, and Ryan Kalish. Say buh-bye, Yankees.

http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=6970

Going to law school out in Michigan I got the chance to see Miller. He seemed very hittable and going to have to really improve the changeup to become a top end of the rotation pitcher. Not saying he won't wind up there, but they brought him expecting big things last year and it was kind of deflating to a lot of people. They seemed to be willing to deal Miller a lot this offseason, so I get the feeling they cashed in on Miller when his trade value was at the highest point. I think the Marlins will keep him in the majors. I don't know why he'd go back to A or AA at this point.

I'm pretty sure A. Miller was penciled into the Tigers Rotation with Verlander Bonderman Robertson Rogers.

Maybin could use the AAA time more than Miller in my opinion but they also have a glaring need in CF and they said Hanley Ramirez needed another year in AAA but they just let him learn on the job.

Tigers lineup is awfully RH heavy with Cabrera Mags Sheff Pudge Renteria Polanco. Hopefully we don't try to call for Inge. He makes Feliz look good

I would love to see Iguchi back with the Phils in '08. Third base or not he is a good addition. Considering his ability at second he ought to handle third. Anyway, very interesting rumor.

The funniest remark I've heard from Tigers fans about Maybin...

"I love him as a prospect, but hey, if he turns out to be the next great ballplayer, the Tigers can just trade for him in 3 years after the Marlins develop him to our satisfaction."

iguchi is overrated, especially by phillies fans. in a given year, there is no reason to think he'd be much better than wes helms. the guy got off to a good start with us, then was very average down the stretch.

bringing him back is a waste of money. the phillies are not going to improve by bringing back the gooch or signing some pitcher whose era was 6 last year, or was hurt.

we needed some impact players, and we're not getting them. no schilling, no lowell, no atkins, no crede, no santana, no cabrera, no bedard, no haren.

so far we've essentially traded bourn, geary, lohse, and rowand for lidge, bruntlett, and that stiff from the pirates.

right now we're an 85-win team at best.

I love the Tigers stepping up and trading two top prospect and a bunch of other stuff for arguably one of the top hitters in the league. The fact that he and Maggie are working out together means he is growing up. Willis doesn't need to be the man and that might help him. I sure wish the Phils would step up and trade top prospects and get bonafide major leaguers but it looks like Gillick is afraid to make a blockbuster.

Elliott, I agree! But, I think the feeling is that he is an upgrade over Helms who is likely to be traded so the increase in Salary isn't bad at Third. I still don't see why Tejada isn't our number one target for a player who know one knows if he can play third.

Slocs and Elliot:

What "blockbuster" do you propse we make? If you had any understanding of the available players we have, then you would realize a "blockbuster" trade just isn't possible. We managed to pry a top-5 closer and insert a legitimate #2 pitcher into our rotation.

Maybe Tejada is your idea of a blockbuster, but I can tell you your not going to get him for Wes Helms and prospects.

John D - I would trade trade a combination of Kedrick, Madson, Victorino all young, relatively cheap major leaguers along with top prospects like Drabek, Carasco, Outman, Donald, Cardenas, Edgar Garcia, etc.

And I'd be willing to take on salary from the Orioles. We could take Mora's, Payton's or Huff's salary.

If you compare a pitcher heavy package with accepting some salary which what has been offered to the Orioles, we can put together a good package.

Both Madson and Kendrick finished the year with ERAs in the 3's pitching in Citizen's Bank Park.

Take all of John's points, plus I don't know how you square that we need "impact players" with two consecutive MVPs who are in the prime of their careers. Every team that has had two different MVPs on the same team has had that team participate in the World Series either in that year or the year after.

It is embarrassing that MLB allows the Marlins to be one of the most profitable teams in MLB by reducing their payroll to a ludicrous level and receiving massive subsidies through the luxury tax. The owners should be put in a sometime of minimum salary spending requirement floor or fold teams. Since the later part will never happen, I can hold out hope that the former part will.

Iguchi can't be signed before May 15th without a special exception by the MLB, see http://philadelphia.comcastsportsnet.com/view_content_0p.asp?ID=59492

MG - Any guess on who the highest paid Marlin is still on the payroll? Kevin Gregg, $2.5M.
Just curious - do you not agree with moving a team?

As for the special exemption, you don't think Uncle Bill Giles can work something out? That's the one bit of value he can actually deliver!

Mike H - Move them where though? There just aren't any real attractive markets in the U.S. right now for a MLB team right now. Maybe a team in Portland or Nashville works but I doubt it.

If MLB was serious about moving a team and was forward-thinking, they would have to seriously consider moving them to a different country.

With the Tigers-Marlins deal and the Angels' activities this offseason, it looks like the five best teams in baseball (Red Sox, Yanks, Tigers, Angels, Indians) are in the AL. Phils are lucky they play in the NL because they wouldn't even sniff the playoffs in the AL next year.

Charlotte, Portland, Las Vegas, Sacramento, and maybe Salt Lake would be my choices. But given the economy, now is a terrible time. You also get the whole currency thing with other countries.

Mike H. - good points. I love the addition of Lidge but I'm still not happy with the rotation even with Myers back and losing Rowand's bat hurts. I believe overpaying for Kuroda or Lohse probably would be enough, a consistent 6 innings to get to the bullpen. But if we can pry Bedard from the O's we would have a great rotation and wouldn't have to worry about who is going on Day 5

Scout.com figures we'll lose Zack Segovia in the Rule 5. Didn't we spend lots of time a year ago talking about how good he was going to be. Funny how quickly prospects change. He's still only 24.

Why does no one ever talk about Vancouver as a potential place to move a team? Canada's down to one lonely team. It would almost certainly work out better than Montreal.

This whole Iguchi thing, the more I read about it, seems like so much desperation. First you have this oddball rule to try to dance around, and then you have Gillick talking about his 'best guess' and being 'somewhat comfortable' with the idea of Iguchi playing third base. I sure hope these guys have a lot better idea of what they're trying to do here than it appears from following things in the papers.

By the way, I just loved Gillick's harrumphing that Wolf was 'the only one' who ever said anything about the ballpark being bad for pitchers. Yeah, he just got that out of thin air, Pat. I wonder if Wolf also tried to break the news to him (unsuccessfully, I'm sure) that San Diego and Los Angeles have much better pitchers' parks. Oh, right - he just doesn't want to be here. Gotcha.

Considering what is out there, I am willing to take the risk and try out iguchi at third, if he is willing to do it. Worst Case Scenario: We deal him later on in the season to play 2nd for someone. There's not too much better out there on the market(with the exception of taking a gamble on Crede, and to a lesser degree, Blalock.)

Hoops to jump through with the league: I dunno. I think that if Iguchi wants to play in Philly, and the Phillies want to have him play, i don't see the league pushing it through and giving them an exception.

I mean't not say: I don't see the league not pushing it through and giving everyone an exception.

If we sign gooch, it makes no having rowand alot easier to swallow as we can than go

Rollins
Vic
Utley
Howard
Burrell
Gooch
Werth/Dobbs
Ruiz
P

Keep Bruntlett, Trade Helms, Take A Chance on a young Outfielder whose struggled but has a high ceiling to replace burrell(a mid-season trade with the Nats maybe?).

Also: Wouldn't mind taking a chance on Benson as the Phils have been thinking. Why Not? Unless we pull of a trade for someone better, I'd say its worth a shot. I'd still like them to pickup one more good righty reliever. I'd like to DL Gordon and Eaton just to do it, and if Madson gets hurt, I don't want Gordon to be the best righty out of the pen other than lidge.

"Yes, ANDREW Miller did see some action with the big club, but has only pitched 36 innings above A ball. He ought to be in AA or AAA this season, unless the Marlins force feed him (or if he masters the higher level in the first half of the season). But early success could certainly get him into the rotation in 2008."

Clout, not sure where you're getting your info from. Miller pitched 10 innings in the minors his rookie year, and then followed that up with 43 innings in high A, 30 innings in AA, 6 innings in AAA, and 64 innings in the majors last year.

Walks have been his biggest overall problem, but I see absolutely no way that he does spend at least half of 2008 in the Marlins rotation. My guess is that both him and Maybin (Maybin really does need some time in the high minors) will both start the year with the big club.

Sorry, that should say "10 innings in the majors his rookie year"

Why wouldn't they start the year with the Marlins. The Marlins are a AAA Team. They're just a AAA team with some of the best young players in baseball.

Unfortunatley, for all the talent, they are all still too green to put anything together. No leadership. Whose the Team Leader, whoever is over 25 by default?

I was beginning to get frustrated watching the Phillies sit idly by while the Mets turn over every leaf to try to acquire Dan Haren or Eric Bedard, and while teams like the Dodgers and Angels aggressively pursue literally every big-name player who is on the market. So I was heartened to see that the Phillies might become big players in the Julian Tavarez sweepstakes.

The paper mentioned the Phillies may be willing to do a three-year deal for Iguchi. If outside interest is as lukewarm as it sounds, it would be advisable to keep this to a two-year deal with an option year. I like Iguchi as much as the next guy, but we don't know whether he can play there yet and he's no spring chicken.

It certainly sounds like this is a serious option being considered by both sides, with Iguchi preparing for third in Japan. That's nice to know, but preparation will only get him so far. It will not, for example, give him a stronger arm at age 33.

Have to wonder whether a three-year deal is the best course of action and if there isn't something better out there.

Tom Verducci, at si.com, made this comment about the Cabrera/Willis trade:

"So the cycle continues. The AL keeps getting stronger because of this survival-of-the-fittest competition. NL teams can excuse their flaws by thinking, "Hey, we might be able to win 88 games, and that might be good enough to get in the playoffs.""


It describes the Phillies mentality perfectly.


One stud pitcher and 3 MVP calibre players in the lineup - if this team really tried they might be able to achive sustained greatness.


But, this is Bill Giles and Dave Montgomery...so forget it.

MM, not being scarcastic or anything, but what makes Crede a bigger risk than Blaylock? If anything I would probably reverse those two on the risk-o-meter. Crede is having back trouble, but it is his first big injury. Blaylock, on the other hand seems like the last hit he had was against Mike Hampton (not really, but he has missed significant time over the last few years).

Another thing that concerns me about Blaylock is his recent decline in power. Crede, although he may have some back issues, still was hitting for good power, whereas Blaylock has pretty much turned into a low 20's HR hitter.

For the past couple days I've been compiling a list of all the rumors circulating about the Phils. I put them in my post today, but there's so many that I probably still missed some.

I love what Gooch did for us in Utley's absence, but the man has never played an inning at 3rd base before...huge risk if signed to do so. But it might be a worthwhile risk.

Crede, Blalock, and Inge may all be availabe via trade- I hope Gillick explores these avenues too.

"yes, manuel is fluent in japanese from his playing time overseas"

yet it still amazes me he isn't fluent in English!

The Braves designated Willie Harris for assignment- not sure why, he was quite good for them last season. Wonder if he'd fit in the Phils plans at all.

AWH is correct. With the core players and 2 studs(Myers and Hamels) on the mound the Phils can be contenders for the next 5 years at least if they make the right moves to correct their shortcomings. Staying competitive isn't good enough anymore. That's why we get so excited when the sale rumors are created.

If we signed Iguchi for three years at a reasonable price I could live with the likely scenario in which he's a valueable bat off the bench in 2010, assuming he starts at third the first two years.

"Seems odd that the Cards are pursuing guys like the above but are willing to deal Anthony Reyes. As we learned yesterday, the Indians and Padres like the young hurler. The Phillies have coveted him for a while as well."

Does the front office know something that I don't that would make it a good idea to bring a fly ball pitcher into our park? I like Reyes as a pitcher as much as anyone, and I think he has a great upside, but he'd give up a lot of cheap homers in CBP.

While I'm ecstatic that Willis and Cabrera are no longer on the Marlins, thats the selfish Phillies fan in me talking, and I'm glad either didn't end up on the Mets. But is anyone else concerned that ANOTHER American League team just got significantly better. And that the overall talent level in the NL just decreased some. And since the Phillies were 9-9 against the Marlins last year, this helps Jimmy Rollins 100 win scenario!

I'm tired of reading about how the NL is more like the AAAA and how superior the AL is. Because if we are about to begin a nice playoff run over the next few years, I don't want to be all for naught because the American League have corralled all of the best NL talent.

John D: By what measure is Lidge "a top 5 closer"? Based on what?

Mike C.: I thought the same thing. I think a lot of the deterioration in NL competitiveness can be traced to Ted Turner's departure from the Braves, removing them from the ranks of the big-spending teams, the Dodgers' and Cubs' perennial inability to get value for all the money they spend, and the Phillies' refusal to spend like a large-market team. That leaves only the Mets as a big-market team that spends anything close to wisely.

ricky: High A counts as A ball. He has 36 minor league innings above A ball, which is what I said. His major league performance suggests he needs more minor league time.

Slocs: If you read my posts last spring, you'd know Segovia was never anything special.

"yet it still amazes me he isn't fluent in English!" Great line, Carson!

I'm for signing up Iguchi for 3B. Why do we have to wait until May 15th? MLB has some dumb rules.

If I were the MLB Commish, I'd negate the Tigers-Marlins deal. You shouldn't be allowed to trade two bonafide stars for six players with potential. It stinks. The AL looks with disdain at the NL.

Damn you Iguchi. Do you know how many times I came on here over the summer, just to tell people to stop talking about you going to 3B? You're the one who said you couldn't do it in the first place! YOU LIED TO ME!!

Jerk.

Clout, you never said minor league innings in your original post, but I'm sure it was just a typo. Anyways, on Miller, I don't disagree that he could use a little more minor league time if he was on another team, but on the Marlins he'll essentially just get to work on his 3rd and 4th pitches in the bigs instead of in the minors. Its relatively amazing what he was able to do at the major league level as a starter last year throwing only 2 pitches.

Alby: The Marlins had 3 quality young pitchers go down with arm injuries last year: Anibal Sanchez, Josh Johnson and Ricky Nolasco.

Sanchez had labrum surgery (like Freddy G) and is unlikely to pitch before September, if then. Johnson had Tommy John surgery and will miss the entire season. Nolasco missed nearly the entire season with elbow pain, but avoided surgery and is rehabbing in the Arizona Fall League.

Heading into the season the Marlins rotation looks like: Olsen, Nolasco, Mitre, VandenHurk and Barone. Looking at that list, I'm forced to change my mind: I think Miller has an excellent chance to beat out either of those last 2 with a decent spring training. I also wouldn't be surprised to see the Marlins add a starting pitcher, either in another deal or a cheap free agent.

One thing is for sure: They won't finish ahead of the Nats next season.

ricky: After looking at the Marlins roster, I changed my mind. I think he will start the season with them unless he's awful in spring training. The Marlins are super-thin in starting pitchers due to injuries.

MLBTR has us interested in Joe Blaton. 230 innings last year and only 16 HRs but in a big stadium. Still, he would look awfully good in our rotation. Any thoughts on what kind of package it would take?

It actually wouldnt surprise me if they dealt olsen this offseason either, he had some problems on and off the field.

I wonder what it would take to get Miller away from the Marlins, cause I would quickly offer up just about anything to get a groundball inducing power lefty.

I'd ship Carrasco and his lousy GB% and K% out there in a heartbeat along with another minor leaguer. Seems like we should be able to trade Carrasco (I truly believe this is the highest his value will ever be) along with Cardenas (2b is blocked forever) for a good starting pitcher.

All this talk about Feliz had me wondering what subjective ideals were making me feel like I would vomit if he were the 3B, but kinda okay about Encarnacion and, even, Crede. I figured out it's something like:

If there's a runner on second and two out, and the Phils are behind by one run in the seventh inning, how do I feel about this guy coming up to bat?

Feliz - vomit.
Encarnacion - we got a shot, here.
Iguchi - let's go Gooch!
Utley, Rollins - tie game; book it.

I am wondering, however, if Colorado offers him 2B and we have to jump through hoops for him, why Iguchi wouldn't just sign with the Rox.

I agree with RickyJ21, our top two prospects (that are close to the majors) don't have particularly high ceilings. While it's always good to have minor league depth these guys (Carrasco and Cardenas) are years away from contributing for the phillies but could net us a nice player and help us win now. While we'll likely still be competetive in 3-4 years when Carrasco and Cardenas COULD be impact players, we have sufficient depth in the lower minors such that we should be okay without them. To me, it seems that both Carrasco and Cardenas are in an awkward place in the organization as they're close but not close enough to help a contending team in the near future and not good enough to build around. In my opinion they are the quintessential trade chips and should do everything to can to leverage them to help this team win now, before the window closes.

I don't claim to know nearly as much about our minor league system as some on this board, but I've always thought/heard that Carrasco is a projected #1 or #2 starter in the majors. Has this changed?

Posted by: JB | Tuesday, December 04, 2007 at 10:03 PM

"yes, manuel is fluent in japanese from his playing time overseas"

That is a strong statement since Charlie isn't even fluent speaking english.

"Lauber says Pat Gillick indicated for the first time that he'd be willing to trade prospects for pitching. Lauber names Carlos Carrasco, Joe Savery, Josh Outman, and Adrian Cardenas as possibilities to go."

If true, I like the "Win Now" attitude being put forth by P.G.

Projecting Carrasco as a #1 or #2 is overly optimistic. As far as I'm concerned he's overrated and a #3. A low k rate combined with a low gb% is bad news. One could argue that it was because he was young for the level, but if thats the argument then it means he's at least 2 years away from even starting to contribute, and most likely 3 years away from anything meaningful. Apparently Gillick is agreeing with me though, as he said that our prospects are tradable.


RSB -

Did you see where Gillick said that Howard's contract negotiations were "not on the agenda"?

Agenda or priority, they keep telling this guy some scary things.

why should Howard contract negotiations be on the agenda? he's in his first year of arb. I wouldn't even consider signing a long-term contract until next season at the earliest.

ae: Exactly right. Contract negotiations with Howard should not be on the agenda at the Winter Meetings, but Howard reportedly has his entire team there and Gillick is meeting with Casey Close today, a meeting arranged by Close.

I realize things need to get done with Howard, but the Winter Meetings are not the time and place for it. Gillick should be using the time to talk turkey with other clubs and free agents, not players who are already under contract.

I played third base through high school and college and then played some second base once I turned 30. I can say with authority that the two positions could not be more different. 3rd base is pure reflex and reaction. You actually have time to think at 2nd and footwork is much more important. A smart player with lesser tools can excel at second, a dumb player with good tools can excel at third. I peg Iguchi as a smart player with less physical tools.

This is nothing more than an attempt to get one more team interested in him so he can drive up his price.

ricky: Carrasco is a potential #1 starter, has been young for his leagues (age 20 in AA last year) and will go as far as his command will carry him since his stuff is well above average.

There was nothing wrong with his K rate at lower levels and you'll see a sharp jump when he returns to AA this year. And, yes, he is at least 2 years away from pitching in the bigs. While he has #1 potential, if his command doesn't improve we're probably looking at a 3#. Either way, he'll be a big league starter.

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