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Monday, January 28, 2008


Thank you, Jason, for a level-headed analysis, as usual.

By the way, the rest of you might want to put the gun down for a minute and look at how they're praising the Phils for this "solid" move on metsblog.

I see Feliz as nothing more than a No-Hit Nunez with some pop...basically he sucks at hitting.

I'm glad to had solid defense at 3rd, but I hope to God "iz" brothers (Feliz and Ruiz) don't suck the offense out of our lineup.


I think i just threw up in my mouth

a lot

and it tastes like inning-ending double plays, losing and misery

what pisses me off the most is that mcpherson is still on the market, a shitload younger and with a lot more upside

1) Anybody know the price-tag?

2) Instead of a taxi to 3rd, the phils now only need a 2-door coupe. Worst comes to worst, Dobbs starts against righties.

"Praising the Phils for this "solid" move on metsblog" should only be associated for when the Phillies get Johann Santana. And they're not. Ever.

The real ball buster is when One through Six of the lineup is raking against a meatball thrower, and then Pedro gets his 643 GIDP. In an inning when the Phils should get four, they'll end up getting two.

@JW -- you seem to think this is the EVERYDAY move. I think we'll see a Dobbs/Feliz platoon.

Do the (assumed) dollars indicate otherwise???

I like the move, I mean at least they are making an effort. I think defense is most important now and no one can debate that he will bring some great defense and our infield has three gold glove caliber guys now. Granted we'll be banging our heads against a wall with all the outs he makes, but at least we'll get some power and he did also have 35 doubles one year. Looks like the Phillies will have a very real shot at setting the record for most strikeouts and least walks in a season though. Overall, Helms brought nothing to the table and was painful to watch, you improve the bench as now Dobbs can be the left handed pinch hitter he is best at and you also don't have to go through three people at 3B a game now. Mike Lowell sure would have been nice though.

The one thing that concerns me with this team is they don't have that veteran that knows how to win like Lowell. Any thought to adding Trot Nixon in that role although I don't really see where he would get playing time now.

this move doesn't hurt them. calm down people. it doesn't make them worse

Any word on how he is as a clubhouse guy? I got the impression that he was seen as a bit of a malcontent in SF, but I could be wrong.

I am revolted, for reasons that have already been rehashed ad nauseum. I will only add that all of you who have been waxing poetic about Feliz's defense are soon going to find out that this aspect of his game has been hugely overrated.

If it's a two year deal for under 10 mil, I can handle it. Hell, getting this guy at 4 mil/year actually isn't bad at all. Still not a good signing if you ask me, but I can handle it. If they paid closer to 7mil/year, then this one stinks. I guess they felt they needed the defense more. Although, the remark about his versatility is accurate. He can play the corner positions without a problem, and if they also get rid of Helms' 2.5 mil, good.

But basically we've got Nunez back, only this guy can hit the ball out. Actually, judging from his hit chart, a few more of those fly balls at AT&T will be HR now. Maybe they think he'll hit better at CPB. So that puts Dobbs in at utility for 3B, 1B, LF as a lefty bat/pinch hitter (which frankly, is where he belongs).

I'm not comfortable with this. If you've read my comments last week you'd see that by the numbers the Dobbs/Helms platoon performs better than Feliz. But, that doesn't adjust for the platoon playing half its games at CPB, and Feliz played half in a big pitchers park. He might actually get their numbers @ CPB. We'll have to see.

Nauseating in that we could have done better, if only that damn "budget" wasn't in play.

All in all, the poster above who said it doesn't make the Phils worse is about right. Anyone saying Helms is better hitter is splitting hairs. They're both pretty atrocious. At least you get some defense here. And I like how it frees up Dobbs to help out in the depleted outfield, too.

I don't buy the logic that CBP will help him hit more homers, sure its a better park, but we were projecting that Helms would hit 25 hrs by moving to CBP and look how that turned out.

lekh: Helms had one career season of 20+ HRs before moving to CBP, and only 2 other season in which he had 10 (and it was 10 exactly). Feliz has had 4 straight 20 HR seasons. That's a huge difference in projecting their HR totals.

I'm actually not disappointed here. Feliz has excellent (if not the best) defense at 3rd and horrible offense against lefties. And righties. And those deceiving t-ball stands.

Regardless, he IS an improvement over the former platoon. Plus, this frees up Dobbs a bit--which I'm all for. That flexibility is important.

Finally, now we can move Helms!!! For anyone. Someone. Please. A better LOOGY would be ideal, however, I would take anyone for him really.

Side note--does anyone think Wesley could be Uncle Cholly's actual nephew? Or, more likely, Cholly and Dubee's illegitemate love child? The resemblance is uncanny.


Was Helms was ham-fisted over at third and didn't produce much offense, either. I thought he might rebound at the plate in 08, but I don't mind erring on the side of defense with this deal.

Meanwhile, Feliz could be that classic rally killer that everyone here is moaning about, but at least he might put up 20 home runs to take some of the sting out of his horrendous on-base percentage. And even if his glove is over-rated it will still be a major upgrade.

I agree that Dobbs will still get his share of ABs.

Landing a top-of-the-rotation starter remains the Fightin's most pressing and permanent need.

Cunningham: The combination of glove and spot power is all the ammunition Cholly needs to give Feliz most of the starts. We've seen his thinking.

For those posters who have no clue, please review the stats last year: Pedro Feliz wsa the worst thirdbaseman in the NL among players with 400 ABs whose primary position was 3B.

He is an upgrade on defense. He is a downgrade on offense. If you think 3B defense is more important at CBP than offense is, then you like this signing.

Keep in mind that Manuel will bat him 7th so the bottom of the order is Feliz, Ruiz, pitcher. Th opposing pitcher won't have to work very hard and if it's a righty it will be a breeze to have Feliz in there instead of Dobbs. Feliz saw fewer pitches per AB than everyone in the NL except Estrada so he also won't make the opposing pitcher work too hard.

Folks, please stop fantasizing. Pedro Feliz, if he stays healthy, will have 550-600 plate appearances for the Phils this season.

Don't know why everyone's completely negative about this move...I keep hearing the phrase "rally-killing" but how often are you really relying/expecting your 7-8 hole hitters to start off a rally? 25 hrs and 75+ rbis out of the 7-8 hole is huge production. Also, the phillie's lineup 1-6 is full of respectable OBP guys, which should provide even more opportunities to create runs for feliz.

On defense, everything I've heard about the man is that he's a plus. This leads to the aforementioned versatility to dobbs and also to a lower staff ERA (however slightly).

If we get this guy for 5 mil a year or less, its a steal.

yes, I also have a hard time believing people think Feliz is being signed as a utility guy. if he's here, he's playing.

What a MFing waste of money... For two years nonetheless... Effin' idiots...

AP says $8.5 million for the length of the contract...sigh

ESPN's now saying that it's $8.5M over the two years with a team option for 2010.

Couple more stats, among NL thirdbasemen who had enough PAs to qualify for the batting title (10 of the 16 teams had them), Feliz was dead last in runs created per 27 outs, dead last in secondary average, dead last in pitch seen per PA, dead last in walks per PA and third from the bottom in isolated power.

He was next to dead last in extra base hits, third from the bottom in HR per AB, dead last in OPS, dead last in OPS+, dead last in SB/CS ratio, dead last in B.A.

Now that I'm past that initial reaction I can give a more measured response:


That's about it.

Hope we're all watching for that first first-pitch, inning-ending, rally-ending GIDP.

Actually, the interesting over/under might be the comparison of BBs to GIDPs.

From No-Hit Nunez to No-Hit Feliz. Guess the Phils like shelling out 2 year contracts to worthless one-dimensional infielders (both overrated with regard to that one dimension too)...

I still don't understand why two one else wanted him.

Clout- Where did Wes Helms rank in those categories?

why do I feel like David Bell just re-signed with the Phillies...???

SMorey - thats the whole point, high OBP people in front of him, they get on base, maybe we get 1 or 2 runs, Feliz comes up and there will be one of 2 outcomes, 563 double play or a strikeout swinging on 3 pitches widely out of the zone

feliz will be starting, otherwise he wouldnt have signed, simple as that. He wanted to start and had an offer for such from the giants but for less years, he wouldn't have signed for less than starting.

Wes Helms, mercifully, did not qualify for the batting title.

But how does his last season compare to Helms', clout?

Clout, also, what site are you using for your stats? I'd like to browse those myself.

When you lack depth in the farm system as the Phils do at this point, this is what you are forced into doing. It's just a shame the Phils don't have the talent in the minors to do something other than sign the Helms and Feliz' of the world. We can only hope they've begun to turn this around.

Carson beat me to it. He's going to become No Hit Black Hole Feliz, or NHBHF for short (I mean third)!

Several nickname suggestions:

Mr. 288
Barajas Jr.
I Want Nunez Back

Feliz batted .253 with 20 homers and 72 RBIs for San Francisco last season. He's an upgrade over the trio of Greg Dobbs, Wes Helms and Abraham Nunez. Philadelphia's third basemen batted .255 with 11 homers and 76 RBIs last year. Dobbs and Helms remain on the roster.

-from ap

Inquirer reporting 2 years/8.5 million

I just read about this over at the 700Level and was surprised that the reaction wasn't more negative. I thought to myself, "Surely the folks at Beerleaguer are smart enough to realize how dumb this is." Apparently, only some of you are.*

Seriously, there is absolutely no reason to like this move. None. Over the last 3 years, Feliz has hit:
2005: .250/.295/.422 (OPS+ 85)
2006: .244/.281/.428 (OPS+ 79)
2007: .253/.290/.418 (OPS+ 81)

I'd be awed if both Wes Helms and Greg Dobbs don't hit better than Feliz next year. Signing Feliz means that he'll be taking their at bats while simultaneously costing us $3-$5 million/year (guessing).

Yes, Feliz is a good defender. There are plenty of good fielding, no hit 3B-men (see: Nunez, Abraham O.) Do you think Manuel is smart enough to see past Feliz' 20 home runs and not put him in the line-up everyday? Do you think he's smart enough to bat Feliz 8th, since he's the worst hitter on the team?

It's difficult to be able to spend money and actually make your team worse, but the Phillies have managed to do it.

*As an aside, one of the reasons I've stopped reading the comments on this site is because the comments have degraded from intellectual fan to idiots espousing the same ignorant bullshit that can be obtained from any Philadelphia newspaper or radio show. Those of you with brains should consider posting on TheGoodPhight...

Aaron: Helms/Dobbs OPS was higher than Feliz.

JW - late followup to the Caravan series...Any mention of the 'fast start to the season' issue? They were emphasizing it last year, although it surely didn't happen. Just wondering if it's on the radar this year.

just saying this isn't apocalyptic... at least we get to use dobbs off bench and give helms the boot.

just terrible. thats it

We asked about Helms, clout, not the combination of the two. It's Helms he's replacing, right? In fairness, I think Helms would have hit better this year, but I don't know how much better. You think the number of hits Feliz will save us will turn out to be fewer than the number of hits and walks he'll cost, I and some others think it'll be greater, and I guess we'll just have to see.

Guess it depends who you all would rather have killing your rally, Wes Helms or Pedro Feliz? For my money, i'll take my chances with Pedro...but not that much money.

Say it again, Ben...

and the problem is next year we're stuck with another bad 3b... then we'll sign another bad 3b to replace him.... oh, the cycle continues!

In case you didn't follow Mike H's link to the Fangraphs site, Feliz outperformed Helms in every offensive category last year. That isn't saying much about Feliz offensively, everyone knows he is awful, but the larger point is that our situation at 3rd was already awful offensively. This gives us more power and better defense at the position.

Now, because we're on a limited budget, it is certainly debatable as to whether this was a good signing. Would I have rather added a couple bullpen pieces? Considering what is out there, probably not, mostly because, as I've stated many times, I believe whole-heartedly in promoting from within for the bullpen, and would rather see Mathieson and some other youngsters used in that role as opposed to overpaid veterans. If this move prevents us from signing Kyle Lohse, however, it is a bad move because I believe our need for a starting pitcher, even one as marginal as Lohse, outweighs the slight upgrade that Feliz gives you over Dobbs/Helms. That being said, let's see in March where the team is.

can't win with some fans. the phillies spend money to upgrade 3rd and all the sudden people are all about wes helms again.

Here's what that $8.5M could've bought:

One year of Jeremy Affeldt ($3M) plus one year of Matt Clement ($1.5M) plus one year of Jason Jennings ($4M).

Or, if you prefer to go all-bullpen: One year of Affeldt ($3M) one year of Matt Wise ($1.2M) and one year of Matt Herges ($2.5M) and still had enough money left over to buy the Buck brothers dinner at Le Bec Fin.

Bob: Because Feliz isn't an upgrade and the Phillies needed pitching more, which they now won't try to get. Pretty simple really.

Clout, I could not have said it any better, unless I were to slip McPherson in there on a 1 year 1 million dollar deal. Wouldn't have Affeldt, Herges, and McPherson been a better utilization of funds? I say yes.

Jack: You've been a big booster of Feliz from the get-go, but if you want to make an honest comparison (which would be a first) you need to compare the career numbers of Helms and Dobbs to the career numbers of Feliz. That's the true difference. Helms wasn't the everyday thirdbaseman last season. You can find all the stats at ESPN.

Even if you were to normalize Feliz's stats in CBP, it's still below league average. If you're going to get 500 plate appearances, at least produce at league average.

Haven't Affeldt and Wise already been signed? It's not like they were saving up the money to throw it at Feliz, I hope, they just have some philosophical aversion to spending money on relievers. Which is nuts, but it's not like this was a Feliz-or-Affeldt-and-Wise proposition. I think we just have to accept that, until Gillick retires, we're not going to have a real bullpen because apparently he doesn't believe in them.

Tray: Two points: he's NOT replacing Helms. He's replacing the Helms/Dobbs platoon; Helms had a cereer bad year last season. Do you now project that will be his numbers forever more? Or will he likely return to his career norm? As Burrell did last year much to your shock?

Agreed, Clout, but I'm going to guess management's thinking was that better 3B defense will make all the pitchers better -- after all, nobody in the bullpen but Lidge (and Gordon while he's healthy) miss many bats. I disagree, of course, but I try to look at these deals as if the self-imposed salary cap wasn't an issue. Even with all his limitations, I like Feliz better than Helms, mainly because unlike so many here, I do not assume Helms will "bounce back" in any significant way from last season's offensive disaster. A lot of players of Helms' demonstrated abilities find themselves without major league jobs at his age, and after this guaranteed season, I think he'll be out of the majors.

Unfortunately, I don't think they'll find any takers for that salary, at least not the whole thing. And you're probably right; Dobbs won't get many starts at 3B this way. On the other hand, I far prefer Dobbs as a pinch-hitter to anyone else on the club, so I view this move as strengthening the bench, too.

All that said, I'd prefer the three relief pitchers. Can we get a do-over?

As for Helms, you, clout, were the one telling us how Feliz stacked up last season to everyone. Now we have to make career comparisons. What if, just maybe, Helms's bat speed has deteriorated for good and his power's gone because he stopped taking steroids? I don't think that's totally inconceivable.

Bob's post on who else they could have signed is a good one and he makes some good points. However, I still appreciate the Phillies making somewhat of an effort to improve and I think people are overlooking the fact that we now have three gold glove caliber infielders, a gold glove caliber center fielder and solid fielders in RF and catcher. Defense wins games. Granted the lower third of the order will be concession stand time and painful, but at least there is some added pop. Dobbs back on the bench strengthens the team. No more Helms is a big plug. If this keeps them from signing Lohse then it's a mistake.


Clout, I think Helms's numbers will not return to their career norms - in fact, I think it's misleading to speak of a "career norm" with a guy who's had such an up and down career as Helms. And I was never shocked by what Burrell did; as you seem to have forgotten besides you and maybe stjoehawk I was the only person on here touting him. I didn't think, as you did, that it was perfectly predictable that he would lead baseball in OPS for a month, that that hot streak was somehow necessitated by the law of averages. But I wasn't surprised that Burrell ended up having good numbers at the end of the season.

Well, I wrote that before I saw Clout pull the "career numbers" argument out of his hat. Here's the problem for you with that, Clout: Feliz has 1000 more career at-bats than Helms mainly because his glove keeps him in the lineup. Helms, OTOH, can't stay in the lineup despite his better offense because he's a liability anywhere but 1B, and he doesn't hit enough to play at 1B regularly. If he does bounce back this season, it will be in the super-sub type role he played in Florida. He might stick around as a poor man's Jeff Conine, but I wouldn't bet on it.

That said, Feliz has bumped along at a truly pathetic offensive level for three years now. If he suffers the kind of injury that hampers his defense -- a bad back, say -- he'll be out of baseball before you can say "Rick Schu." I don't say he'll exceed Helms in OPS+ -- his OBP will prevent that. But he could easily top him in VORP, because Feliz will get more playing time.

FROM Clout: Here's what that $8.5M could've bought:

One year of Jeremy Affeldt ($3M) plus one year of Matt Clement ($1.5M) plus one year of Jason Jennings ($4M).

Or, if you prefer to go all-bullpen: One year of Affeldt ($3M) one year of Matt Wise ($1.2M) and one year of Matt Herges ($2.5M) and still had enough money left over to buy the Buck brothers dinner at Le Bec Fin.

Here's what you assume. They all would have signed here. Affeldt is going to the Reds, where he may get to start. Jennings is going to Texas, where he's guaranteed a spot. We couldn't guarantee either, anything.

plus, of course, you're not taking the two minutes to spread out feliz's contract over two years.... so, really, you only got prolly 3.5 million to spend in 08. Oops.

Couple of points:

1. Feliz signing doesn't make them worse but it doesn't make them better either. Yet another case of where this money would have been better spent on pitching.

2. Feliz is your guaranteed starter at 3B and will start at least 130 G and get 450-500 AB.

3. Still don't understand why the Phils signed Feliz to 2-yrs guaranteed. Makes zero sense. The other team that might have resigned Feliz was the Giants and I can't imagine Sabean would have given him more than a 1-year deal. If the Phils had waited another week or two, I am willing to bet they could have signed to a 1-yr deal.

4. Basically, the Phils could have taken nearly another $2 million by not signing and used to sign a LOOGY like Miller (because I don't think Zagurski is ready to make this team) for less than $1 M and taken a flyer on a couple of players including McPherson or even another veteran reliever or starting pitching.

Would this be a huge upgrade? Probably not but I don't see how Feliz improves this team in any way. Plus, the Phils are stuck with him for two years. Yet another middling FA agent sizing by Gillick.

again, just assuming miller can't wait to come to philly. he lives in the tampa bay area, has a kid who is disabled, and wants to play in tampa bay...waiting on a two-year deal from them (rays aren't biting yet)

The deal strikes me as a slight upgrade. As others have mentioned, Uncle Chollie will have more pinch hitting flexibility and a reliable glove at third, thus cutting down on his awful use of the bench.

The offense is likely to be a push.

However, I think clout is more upset by the the financial cost, assuming the Montgomery Crew now refuses to spend more on pitching as a consequence.

That I can understand.

The point isn't comparing Feliz vs. Helms. It is if the Phils would have been better off allocating that money to pitching and I say YES.

If the Phils are going to return to the playoffs, it is because their pitching will improve if even it only becomes league average. It is high unlikely that the Phils improve their offensive output.


Oh man, what a terrible, Baltimore Oriole-esque move to make.

BTW, Jason, heard you on 610 on a random drive back from NYC to DC (a philly transplant in DC I am), good stuff.

Tray: The point is the money could have been spent in a way that would better help the team (i.e. on available bullpen help). If management thinks this is a playoff caliber bullpen, then they celarly see something that is not invisible to lesser mortals.

That last phrase was supposed to read "If management thinks this is a playoff caliber bullpen, then they clearly see something that is invisible to lesser mortals."

I agree with everything Morty said.

And I'll add... Jeremy Affeldt, over the course of his career, is not good.
Matt Clement and Jason Jennings are good bets to be worthless next year.
We had no one on the team who could play third base credibly, now we have someone who can play it very well. Feliz is an awful hitter, but he's not blocking anyone who is anything more than a very marginal upgrade over him, so I'll take the huge defensive upgrade.

MG: The move may or may not make the Phillies worse, depending upon what they get for Helms. If they are planning to give Helms away -- i.e., the kind of pure salary dump in which Gillick specializes -- then the move will have made them worse, since they will have downgraded at third base without upgrading anyhwere else. If they can trade Helms for a serviceable back-of-the-bullpen reliever, the move might be a wash in the near term. However, if they hadn't signed Feliz, they could have taken that same $4M & signed a better reliver than anyone they're likely to get for Wes Helms -- thereby upgrading their pen without downgrading at third base. And, in the longer term, the deal definitely make the Phillies worse because it's another $4M they won't be able to spend on mid-season upgrades & in the 2008 FA market.

Former Giant 3B ... signed for more than he's worth, for more years than necessary ... having awful awful AWFUL flashbacks. The AnitChrist is reborn ...

Thanks, Brian G.

I read this site often, but not being as in depth as some others posters, rarely post.

That said, I just don't see the argument that Feliz is not an overall upgrade to both the defense and offense (by increasing our bench flexibility).

I do see the point that perhaps this is a mis allocation of potential pitching money.

I think this is a solid move. At least Feliz' glove doesn't have to be replaced in 8th, gives us a lefty bat on the bench (Dobbs), and hopefully ends the Wes Helms era.

Morty: Did you bother to look at the stats?

Billy Mac: So you'd say that 4 ABs by Feliz vs. RHP is better than 4 ABs by Dobbs because it allows Dobbs to have 1 AB late in the game.


For arguments sake I thought I would attempt (keyword here is attempt) to refute some of the harsher initial reactions to the Feliz signing. Here goes...

1) He is going to kill the Phils with GIDP - FACT - he GIDP 15x last season (good enough for a 6-way tie for 27th most in the NL along with Loretta, D. Lee, Helton, Jacque Jones, and Brian Schneider). His total of 15 was 12 fewer than Carlos Lee and Pujol who led the NL with 27 GIDP each.

2) His K's are going to contribute to a potentially record-shattering team K total - FACT - He K'd 70 times in 557 AB's, or 12.56% of the time. His K total is less than Howard, Burrell, Utley, Rowand, Rollins, and Werth (who had 300 fewer AB's)

3) He had 233 total bases, good enough for 8th best among 3rd basemen in the NL. Of the 3rd basemen in the top 8 in this category he had the 4th fewest plate appearances.

Admittedly, I have a tendency to be overly optimistic, but this signing is not as god-awful as some of you are making it out to be.

Clout, So when did Greg Dobbs turn into Barry Bonds ? He will get some starts against RHP, but he is back in a role where he has a better chance of success -- pinch hitting and spot starts. I don't think he is an everyday player.

Feliz is the latest in a string of awful 3B signings that will not be starting by the end of his contract, see Wes Helms and Abraham Nunez of the last two offseasons.

The possibility definitely exists that this deal could work in the Phillies' favor. It eliminates a platoon that was admittedly subpar from the start, allows for the very, very slight possibility that Helms could be moved for something remotely beneficial, and allows for an above-average glove to remain at third throughout the game, which removes the need to plop Brunlett into the game at possibly inopportune times. Also, I guess you have to throw out the argument that Feliz's power will benefit the team more than his terrible OBP will hurt it.

But clout's argument has to reign supreme - that the possible, slight upgrade it gives the team at third is in no way more worthwhile than what would be a very, very useful upgrade at the back-end of the bullpen (unless Gillick and Amaro have consulted a sports psychic and know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that Madson. Gordon and Lidge are 100% healthy now and forever). If you look at it that way, which is how a smart baseball fan should view a team with clear deficiencies, then it is a dumb decision.

Billy Mac: Pedro Feliz career OPS vs. RHP is .713. You like that better than Dobbs?

king myno: That is exactly my point. The Phillies ignored their biggest hole to fill a much smaller one in a way that barely improves them.

Question: Not that I'm concerned, but will Eric Bruntlett ever play? It seems that Dobbs would be the only player to sub for Feliz as Bruntlett brings nothing that Feliz doesn't, good defense and no offense. As such, Bruntlett would only sub at SS and 2B, but Rollins never misses an inning and Utley only does when he's hurt, and Bruntlett ain't Taguchi.

At least Feliz is happy. Howard+Burrell+Feliz=450Ks. Talk about a flawed lineup.

And Dobbs' career OPS vs RHP is .732. He's not exactly a masher.

lekh tizdayen, I agree that Bruntlett is now superfluous. If Snelling rakes in spring training, do the Phils carry 6 OFs ?

For those who say that they could of had this pitcher or that pitcher. Those pitchers that you mention are nothing. I rather have a good defensive 3B for Kendricks and Moyer and throw some of our own young guys. Our young guys and those pitchers mentioned=no difference.

Billy Mac: They still need someone to backup SS and while Dobbs could play 2B for a few innings, there is no one on the roster who can backup Rollins but Bruntlett. I can't see him not on the roster.

Billy/Lekh: Not to be too harsh, but to call Bruntlett hideous would do insult to the word "hideous." If the Feliz signing hastens Bruntlett's departure, then I suddenly like the signing a little bit more.

Clout- You are right that an upgrade of pitching would have been a better use of this money than a slight upgrade at 3rd base. We completely agree on that. That said, Affeldt wouldn't sign here because he wanted to start. You want him in the bullpen. So why do you even include him in your analysis? Do you think Matt Clement will pitch a) anywhere this year and b) better than our starters? If we got Matt Clement, would you want him to be in the starting rotation and put Brett Myers back in the bullpen? Jason Jennings?

I, too, am sorely disappointed in the Phillies' FO that they have failed to upgrade our pitching as much as we would've hoped. That said, there doesn't strike me as a whole lot out there pitching-wise that would've been a better use of money than the 4 million they are spending on Feliz this year. What would you rather have done with the 4 million this year (and since you were discussing 1-year deals with the pitchers and since we're talking about the team THIS year, its only 4 million which matters.)

Philly Rocks, our second lefty in the pen is nothing. I'd much rather have Affeldt than Feliz. Even better, Affeldt and McPherson.

Jack: The Cardinals' doctor gave Clement a clean bill of health & the Cardinals plan to have him in their starting rotation. Will he be as good as he was before his injuries? I don't think anyone can say, but it sure would have been worth $1.5M to find out.

I was actually surprised and a little to'd that this was the move that was made. Just like how everyone else is clamoring about the need for relief pitching I have to join the party. Either way it seems Feliz is signed long enough to let Adrian Cardenas takeover in 2010. Permitting Cardenas gets moved to third. I won't complain about the defensive upgrade that Feliz brings and he has some decent pop. Can he bring enough of that to warrant this signing? Another blurry signing.

They could've spent the 8.5 million on pitching weeks ago, but they didn't and now all the good relievers are off the market. Obviously some relievers were much more needed than a guy who may or may not be an improvement over what we already had at third base. But given their mysterious refusal to spend on bullpen help, and the fact that there isn't really any left for sale, I can't frame this as a Feliz/relief pitching choice. Rather, I see it as a Feliz vs. nothing choice, and whether you think it's a good move depends on whether you think Feliz is an upgrade over Helms. Again, as painful as it is to admit, Gillick seems to have some philosophical issue with paying for relief pitching in spite of the fact that the bullpen is this team's biggest weakness. I doubt we'll be a real contender until he quits.

So you give Affeldt a chance to start. That doesn't mean he ends up in that role. It wouldn't even surprise me if the Phillies ever looked back into him when he wanted 3yrs/12 mil.

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EST. 2005

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