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Monday, April 14, 2008

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Relevant to our earlier discussion about pinch-running Taguchi for Burrell, Francona just pinch-ran Ellsbery for Ortiz with two out in a tied top of the 9th. Of course, Manny hit the next pitch out (off our buddy Borowski,) so Francona won't be questioned in late innings on that one.

From Last Thread...

Gee Sophist, don't get so uptight. We are all aware of the offer that the Phillies made to Lohse. I just like to post the numbers occasionally. If I knew it would offend you, I certainly would have shown more constraint. I wasn't aware of your FO loyalty. Oh and by the way, 'Lighten up Francis'.

Good to get the monkey off their back for the time being. It would have begun to have gotten really ugly if they had reached 0-14 or 0-15.

No loyalty here.

"We are all aware of the offer that the Phillies made to Lohse."

I'm not - anyone care to give me the info.

btw - Howard needed to move his ass off the bag on that throw yesterday. butcher.

Still the 0-11 start speaks volume about the talent level at the end of the Phils' 40 man roster right now which is as marginal as any team in MLB. Phils' only have 35 players right now on their 40-man roster and you could certainly narrow that down quite easily to 30 or 31 or so (Bohn, Bisenius, Rosario, and Happ likely wouldn't get claimed if they were unprotected).

"Losing Pitcher" Mulcahy was perhaps the Kyle Lohse of his generation...

sophist: We did offer Lohse $21M for 3 years and he rejected it -- but that's only part of the story. The complete story is that, after he rejected the Phillies' 3-year offer, he found no takers, & became so desperate that he lowered his asking price to the one-year, $4 to $5M range. He ultimately signed for 1 year, $4.25M.

The Phillies can't be criticized for offering 3 years, $21M, nor can they be criticized for failing to go any higher than that. But they can certainly be criticized for remaining on the sidelines after he lowered his demand to something far, far lower than they had offered before. But I guess they felt it was more important to spend that $4.25M on Pedro Feliz.

"Phils' only have 35 players right now on their 40-man roster and you could certainly narrow that down quite easily to 30 or 31 or so (Bohn, Bisenius, Rosario, and Happ likely wouldn't get claimed if they were unprotected)."

I'd guess about 20 teams would try and claim Happ. He still has upside, if he can harness his control. Plus, he is 6'6'' and left-handed. He will probably pitch until he is 40, if he wants to.

denny B - 20 teams claiming Happ, living in a fantasy world. He's nowhere near the stud we thought he would be spring 2007. Now the stud to watch is Savery who has nor started 3 games in Clearwater, thrown 20 innings and has an era of 0.90, look for him to be at Readying by Memorial Day, if not May 1. The other guy who seems to have figured things out is Golson who is having a great start at Reading.

You might find a nibble on someone like Rosario, too. Don't underestimate how diluted relief pitching is across the board in all of MLB. I think he could add some value to the Phils, too (more than Condrey, anyway).

Slocs: Really? You can tell from 10 games that Golson has "figured things out"? Damn, you're good.

Sorry, Slocs; I was about to address your issue in a kinder, gentler way. But clout got to you first.

Some of Golson's numbers are, indeed, encouraging. He still is showing a pretty bad K/BB ratio, however. We're not sure, yet, the degree to which his improvement will carry through the rest of the season. It could be that, in a larger sample, he's not really seen the light. (His current numbers, for instance, to new pitchers seeing him for the first time.)

Mulcahy:
in a simple way: during the winter the Phils offered Lohse 3 years at $21MM. At the insistence of his very wise agent (Scott Boras) he turned that deal down. No other team offered him anything close to that. He kept having to downgrade his asking. Closing in on Spring Training his asking was down in the $4MM/year range. The Phils easily could have picked him up for that amount. But they repeatedly made statements along the line of "That train has left the station."

Now, he's been killer and some people believe he should have been killer for us.

The true catch in that belief, however, is that it fails to take into account the work of Dave Duncan, which some in the wider community believe has had a significant impact of Lohse. If it has, our signing him would not necessarily been such a bargain. he might have been more the 2006 Lohse than the "first three games of 2008" Lohse.

But, hey, it's nice to dream.

It is also important to remember the relevance of sample size. To this point in the season Lohse may have a 1.whatever ERA, but Adam Eaton's is under 4.

Sophist -- While Ortiz is more likely to park one, I'd have to agree with Francona's decision here... at least while the big guy is slumping. Though this really shouldn't have to be a decision anyway since Ellsbury should be playing everyday and Papi will hit better than .104 this year.

Jack had very sound analysis of some of the top prospects in the prior thread, worth repeating here (and I'll throw in my two cents):
"Joe Savery was mentioned in Baseball Prospectus' prospect report today. He went 8 shutout innings on Saturday, striking out 4 and getting 14 groundballs. The BP author mentioned that Savery, being a lefty and a GB-heavy pitcher, could end up passing Carrasco as the Phils top pitching prospect by the end of the year. Since Savery is already 22, I'd like to see him in Double A within a couple months, and competing for Moyer's presumably vacant rotation spot next spring."
Clout: Absolutely agree. Savery is a college pitcher who needs to be pushed. There are injury worries about him, but he's got 3 strong pitches and it all boils down to command. He should be moved up to Reading ASAP where his command will be tested. Once promoted, watch his K/9 rate. If he maintains it, he's the real deal and healthy.

"Speaking of Carrasco, he's off to a good start as well. Struck out 7 yesterday in 7 innings and walked 2. Gave up 2 solo homers. If he keeps up a high level against Double A competition, he's gonna make a real push for at least a bullpen appearance with the club this summer, if not a shot at a real role with the team next year."
Clout: Here again, command is everything. If he keeps this up, he should be moved to AAA by June 1 and, if he maintains that K/BB ratio, to Phila. by Sept. 1.

"Hitting-wise, Greg Golson has been off to a big start, hitting .350, albeit with limited OBP, which has been his weakness all along. He has shown the power/speed combo that makes him so appealing, with 4 doubles and a homer so far, and 6 stolen bases, but if he doesn't cut the K's and up the walks, it's tough to see him really developing into a star. Still, I think most people had somewhat given up on him after his 49/2 K/BB ratio last year, and this start is promsing. He might not be the Phils centerfielder of the future, but he could at least be a very solid 4th outfielder/ speed bench guy."
Clout: Despite the hot start his current K/BB is 2/12. That suggests his numbers will come down. I used to think he'd never make it. Now I think he could grow up to be Corey Patterson, but not for a couple more years.

"Also, Lou Marson has been hitting well. I think it's safe to say that he is a much more intriguing catching prospect than Jason Jaramillo, who is like 26 and at Triple A. Ruiz is set as our starting catcher, but Coste is 34 and a young talented catcher is certainly a good asset to have in your system."
Clout: Once again, I totally agree. At age 21, I think he needs a full season at Reading to work on his defense mostly, which is spotty. If he fixes that, he's got the bat to challenge Ruiz down the line.

Thanks Andy. I knew Boras was shopping him for something like 4 years and $32mm. I must have been off-line when the 3 year offer was reported. I had been wondering why they weren't making a run at him late in spring training when his true value was coming clear. I don't expect him to be stellar, but I think he'll put up respectable numbers, and would have been a valuable insurance policy against the doubtful durability and performance of Eaton, Moyer and Kendrick.

Thanks Andy. I knew Boras was shopping him for something like 4 years and $32mm. I must have been off-line when the 3 year offer was reported. I had been wondering why they weren't making a run at him late in spring training when his true value was coming clear. I don't expect him to be stellar, but I think he'll put up respectable numbers, and would have been a valuable insurance policy against the doubtful durability and performance of Eaton, Moyer and Kendrick.

With a loser name like the Iron Pigs, how can any self repecting player play to his best when subconsciously his mind is telling him how much it sucks to be an Iron Pig. A better name would produce a better record. If they were the Destroyers, they'd be at least 2-10!

It's about time. This is no way to start out a franchise.

Hopefully later in the year some guys with major league talent projection will show up, but until then, we'll just have to admire our new park and have some beers at the brew works.

joe l: I've been watching Jaramillo and I am disappointed in his defense thus far. He has throw balls away, let pitches past him, and failed to stop base runners. (Part of that is the pitchers not holding guys on well enough. )If he keeps up this performance he'll get passed by Moran.

I meant Lou Marson, not moran. duh.

Lake Fred, How is the name Iron Pigs a loser name? It isn't any worse than the Mud Hens, Sand Gnats, BayBears, etc. Just go to http://web.minorleaguebaseball.com/index.jsp?cid=milb and use the team pull down menu. You'll see some good ones.

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