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Monday, May 19, 2008

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I found this statement from MG very strange: "When (Feliz) cools off, Dobbs needs to be starting at 3B a few times a week."

Feliz is 5 for his last 27 (.185). How cool would you like him to get?


Phillie killer Tim Redding tonight.

Not facing Halladay as a starter didn't mean much yesterday when he threw almost 3 innings of key relief. Considering we faced their 3 best pitchers in the same game we did fairly well.

I really have no problem with seeing what Werth can do against 3 mediocre righties: Redding, Bergmann and Hill. If he performs as he has throughout his career against righties, say 3 for 12 with no extra base hits, then I'd probably drop this little experiment and put Vic back in CF and Werth in RF, where they belong.

Phillie killer Bret Myers tonight, also.

I've been pleasantly surprised by Charlie Manuel's decision so far this season, but naming Werth the starter is CF is just plain dumb. I love Werth for what he is, which is a great platoon outfielder or league's best 4th outfielder...not a full-time player though.

I'm not entirely sure that looking as the situation of having "3 very good 4th outfielders" is a good thing. I'd prefer sound 2nd and 3rd outfielders (especially when Burrell begins slumping).

This is not the smart thing naming Werth the starting CF. Werth kills lefties (.321/1.107 this year, .290/.902 career), but not so much against righties (.236/.734 this year, .248/.748 career) which he'll mostly be facing. Bad Charlie, bad.

Too much is being made about Werth's failings against right-handers. His OPS against right-handers is better than either Jenkins' or Victorino's. If Werth continues to struggle against right-handers, it would certainly be a significant factor in determining his role for 2009. But, for 2008, the Phillies have no better alternative.

BAP: So you've given up on Vic and Jenkins for the year?

I'm scratching my head wondering why, if Cholly insists that Werth should start, he needs to play center field? Where is it written that he can't play RF as a starter?

Werth's Nos. against right-handers (the guys he can't hit):

.236/.317/.417 (.734 OPS)

Jenkins's Nos. against right-handers (the guys he supposedly hits well):

.279/.315/.375 (.690 OPS)

Not to mention that Werth steals bases, plays much better defense, and does not have to be removed from the game as soon as the opposing manager brings in a left-hander.

mw217 had a good post on the last thread about some of the good performances at Reading. I'd love to see them move Jason Donald to 3B. He doesn't have the range to play SS at the big league level and there's, um, a guy kinda blocking him there anyway. (He's also made 6 errors in 31 games, which projects to 30+ Es for a full season.)

If they shifted him to 3B (he's got the arm to play there) and he could maintain his .409 OB for a full season of AA, he would be a very intriguing option next season.

Werth looked bad yesterday, so kind of a strange day to make that proclamation. And I agree with WP, if you're making him a starter I prefer the idea making him the starting RF with Vic getting more playing time than Jenkins.

Vic has shown signs of coming around in the last week. I think he needs more consistent playing time.

That number on Myers is the most alarming stat I've seen in a while. Really worried about tonight's matchup, with Redding on the hill, who for some reason always seems to mystify the Phils.

clout: If Vic or Jenkins starts hitting, then we can talk about more playing time. In the meantime, I'm totally on board with a Jenkins/Victorino platoon (though Vic should certainly play CF on the days that he plays).

I fail to understand all the hang-wringing about how Werth shouldn't play against right-handers, when Jenkins is doing even worse.

BAP: Jenkins and Vic are off to slow starts, no doubt. The question is whether they revert to career norms. You apparently don't think so. But if they do (and odds say they will) here's the comparison:

Jenkins career OPS vs. RHP: .877
Werth career OPS vs. RHP: .748
Victorino career OPS vs. RHP: .728

Not much diff between Vic & Werth but huge gap with Jenkins.

Redding mystified the Mets last week, too.

BAP: And just to be clear, I DO favor starting Werth against these next 3 righties and sitting Vic so you and I are agreed on that. And, if he has success, I'd keep playing him. But I think the odds are against it.

The guy who writes PhuturePhillies.com did a write-up on Donald about a week or two ago. He also felt that Donald should be moved to third. One of the posters asked him if Donald had enough offense to play third and the guy responded, more or less, by saying that he couldn't possibly be worse than the third baseman the Phillies have now.

I do think Vic will revert to something along the lines of his career norms. I'm less certain about Jenkins, considering that he is nearly 34 and seems to be on a clear downward plane. I don't expect him to slug .350 all year, but I question whether his overall offensive output agains right-handers will be better than Werth's. But if he starts to hit, I'll be all in favor of giving him more playing time.

BAP: Donald would be a perfect compliment to the offense. He doesn't have Feliz's 1 HR/per 28 AB power but an OB near .400 at the top of the order is something this team has needed for a long time. I'd like to see him cut back on his Ks, however. He walks a lot, but strikes out way too much for a non-power guy.

I'm anxious to see if Jenkins, who hasn't had much of a chance to get into a true rhythm, can get something going this series. The next three games will go a long way in showing what Jenkins can contribute to this team. This is the time of year players must start doing it. They also get Oswalt in the Houston series, so it's another big test. Dobbs should be given opportunites as well.

Still smarting after the Barajas pasting we took in the last two games. Tonight we face the gNats, who we should beat every time we face them, but don't. We start Adam Eaton II tonight with Bret Myers. The negadelphia in me fully expects a third straight loss. When will we see Happ?

With the pitching in somewhat disarray, one wonders if a roster move could be upcoming. Josh Outman is on a roll. No walks, no runs and nine strikeouts in his last five appearances, 7 IP, out of a lights-out R-Phils bullpen. I wonder if it’s time to begin some on-the-job training, especially with long-inning guys like Durbin a little gassed.

Clout - Feliz is cooling off a bit from earlier this month but he looked decent at the plate yesterday. None of his usual horrendous swings and misses trying to pull pitches.

I wouldn't mind seeing Dobbs though get a start or two this week at 3B against the RHP the Phils will face. He is locked in at the plate.

I like seeing Vic and Werth in the lineup together with Vic in CF. Does Cholly have personal issues with Vic?

I'm a big advocate of a phantom injury DL stint for 1 or 2 guys to get a look at Happ in the rotation and/or Outman in the pen.

I'm thinking if Myers lays another stinkbomb tonight, you can put him on the 15 day for something brain-fart related. Of course, Eaton is a perennial contender for being stashed away for a couple weeks as well.

At some point, Gordon is going to need a mini-rest too. I'd maybe do it around the All Star break so he doesn't actually have to miss too many games and give Outman a quick look.

I like Werth but only in a platoon roll. Victorino or Jenkins should be starting against RHP. I think Burrell can use a night off too.

JD,

I think, at least, anecdotally, Cholly isn't the biggest Vic phan.

Jenkins has been a real dud this year from an offensive perspective. Hitting at a respectable average but that is concealing a ton of issues including:

- Ridiculously low OBP because of a walk rate that is below even his below-average career numbers.

- Anemic SLG due to 6 XHB. 2 HR is a disappointment but the lack of doubles due to a ridiculously high percentage of balls he is hitting on the ground. Phils didn't sign this guy to be a singles hitter who plays decent defense on the corner.

- Don't believe in "clutch" hitting but Jenkins is probably one of the last guys I want to see up there right now in a key spot. Maybe slightly over a guy like Ruiz.

On Werth in CF:

- Werth had a great play yesterday tracking that ball down in the gap in the 4th and even Victorino wouldn't have nabbed Stewart's double in the 6th to the gap in right CF.

However, he misjudged two balls off the bat and turned what should have been routine plays into more adventuresome outs. Also, Dad and I noticed that his positioning was a little odds at time given the indication of some of the guys up there. Tough to say though if that was a managerial move or just Werth.

Been saying this for weeks but Werth is not a natural CF and it is kind of foolish to make him learn on the job during the middle of the season. Something that should have been explored more in spring training.

I can see starting Werth more in CF with Victorino's offensive struggles. It makes no sense though to start Werth in CF though when Victorino is in RF.

MG: What did you see from Seanez yesterday? Seanez was a good veteran signing, but to me, he's been smoke and mirrors.

Last two points:

- Pitching has been in a bit of disarray to the starters. Team ERA is up nearly a full run this month and due to some poor starts by Myers and Eaton. Phils really could have used the 6+ innings that Kendrick might have given them yesterday.

- Phils have been careful about using Seanez (really trying to avoid using him on consecutive days which is wise given his age) but he get hit really hard yesterday. Even his outs in the 6th were hit pretty hard. Wonder if the slightly increased workload is starting to catch up with him a bit. Wouldn't be shocked if Seanez remains somewhat effective for the 1st half of the season but hits a wall in July. Happened last year in LA and wouldn't be surprised it happens in Philly once it gets warm/muggy.

JW - Seanez was still throwing at a pretty decent clip (fastball was around 92) but missing with his offspeed and getting behind early in the count to a bunch of hitters. Still a useful guy to have in the bullpen because he throws hard but the fastball gets smoked when he has to throw it when he is behind in the count.

That's what I could see, too, with Seanez. That's how it went down with Alfonseca last season, although he had a foot injury or something.

I feel like Jason Donald is only getting this much attention due to the lack of other minor league talent in the Phillies System, especailly infielders.

His minor league stats up to double A look strikingly similar (or worse!) than Greg Dobbs':

Dobbs A and AA: .289 avg Hr every 34.5 AB's

Donald A and AA: .292 avg Hr every 53.6 AB's

Also believe it or not SB's from their time in A and AA is more or less a push.

I don't think Donald is really worth this much hype.

Niefy: You are correct, and it speaks to the sorry state of the minor leagues in terms of position talent. You could actually make a case that Donald is the best position prospect in the system right now, although I would say it's Marson at this point. Donald is old for Reading, doesn't have great power, but looks like he could be - exactly who you said - a middle infield version of Greg Dobbs.

On a related note, the team released Juan Tejeda, a veteran who's been playing first base for Reading for a couple seasons. When you talk about the weakest position in the organization, look no further than first base. It's atrocious.

Niefy: Besides the fact that Donald is a couple years younger than Dobbs was when he posted those AA stats, how is it a negative that Donald's minor league numbers look similar to Dobbs'? If Dobbs could field, there would be little debate that he's a much better third baseman than Feliz.

Donald strikes me as sort of the offensive equivalent of what Chone Figgins was before last season -- only without Figgins' speed. He should hit for pretty high average (.280 to .290-ish), & draw his fair share of walks. The Phillies' lineup could use a few guys like that.

Whether he can play third base is questionable, however.

BB, considering Cholly's comments, it would seem that you're right.
"Right now, [Werth is] definitely one of our starters," Manuel said. "Why shouldn't he be? We're trying to win."
Is Cholly saying that if Vic plays, that implies the Phils are trying to lose? Strange..

A guy like Donald falls under the trade bait category.

Good Q&A on BP.com with Outman. Smart guy, that Outman.

http://baseballprospectus.com/
article.php?articleid=7537

Not a negative per se, bay area. Just, to be blunt and concise: nothing special.

Anyone else as worried about tonight's game, and this entire series for that matter, as I am?

It's getting obvious to me in my opinion that Manuel doesn't like Victorino. He sticks with Howard and Burrell through long horribly bad slumps (although they don't have another option really but still) and sits Victorino instantly when he's hitting around .230 and he missed 2 weeks to a calf injury. Plus Werth has 2 errors on the season already, other plays that aren't errors but were misplayed, Vic has no errors and has taken away base hits in CF. Plus Victorino has had 2 seasons of .280/.350 (avg/obp) baseball with the phillies already. Home runs seem to come in bunches or be streaky with lots of players, is Werth really going to end the year with 38 home runs and Jenkins with 8 home runs?

Manuel is all about going with the 'hot hand' which only makes sense to a point. And furthermore, outside of Werth's mammoth game Friday, he has *not* been particularly hot.

I completely agree with those who say the Phillies should be breaking out a new CF/RF alignment every night according to recent performance and the opposing pitcher. There is no reason to lock into a pattern here. Werth has the best numbers by far over Victorino and Jenkins, but Victorino outshines either on defense by plenty. If you're going to sit anyone, sit Jenkins. He gives you the least out of the three of them. His one asset is power, and he has a measly 2 homeruns this year. It wouldn't take long for Victorino to match that total.

Victorino's also been a disappointment at the plate this year, no question, and I'm sure Manuel's fed up with all his wasted ABs, but two facts are being ignore here in the present alignment vs. RHP: one, Werth *cannot* hit hard stiff from a righty. Cannot. How can Manuel not see this? Two, Victorino, even as flawed as he is, gives you so much more than Jenkins, it isn't even funny. I've got to think Jenkins is getting the nod here because of the contract he signed. It *does* work that way. Look at the Dodgers, being forced to hurt themselves by continuing to run Andruw Jones out there when there's at least two better options. You do not bench a free-agent signing before the all-star break.

What's the most games the Phillies have won in a row this year, 3? This win two-lose one, win one-lose two mediocrity has been going on all month. One does detect a sense of complacency. Time to start showing a more unified team effort. Getting Myers in gear would be a great start towards that end.

My first thoughts when reading the article: Big mistake by UC. Vic is a better defensive CF than Werth and its not even that close. Vic will also start hitting at some point...he's a career .280 hitter afterall. His range in CF compensated for Burrell's lack of range in LF. Werth is pretty good in center but Vic is better. I would rather have heard that Werth is now the starting RF but i guess Charlie really has something against Vic.

On Donald: He's good but he still doesn't project as a star. He also doesn't have a position to play as both 2B and SS are blocked. They should try him at 3B in Reading to see if he can handle it because he has no future in Philly otherwise. (barring a trade of Howard and moving Utley over to 1B).

You gotta think that the Phillie are desperately shopping for a starting pitcher.

Today’s number: 24.5. The percentage of fly balls allowed by Brett Myers that have sailed over the fence.

~shudders~

Vic can't compete with that 0-7 with 7 LOB on line that Werth put up against righties 2 days in a row.

I like Werth, and think he should be starting the majority of games in rightfield, with Vic in center. Jenkins is clearly the fourth best outfielder right now.

Cholly on Durbin in the 5th

“He was pitching good, so we were going to stay with him,” manager Charlie Manuel said. “He got two outs (in the fifth), and he went 1-2 on Scutaro. He was doing good.”

Cholly reminds me of the crazy guy who tries to see just how far his gas gauge can get towards "E" without actually running out of gas.

His comment completely ignores the fact that Durbin wasn't hitting his spots well in the 5th and he missed badly on 3 straight balls on Scutaro. Cholly should have been ready to counter the PH move with Overbay which anyone with half a brain saw coming for the pitcher.

Instead Cholly was a step behind because he had nobody warming in the pen and Overbay hit a bomb on a meatball.

Donald does seem like trade bait, as does Vic. I can see Donald as being one of those guys you trade away, for a stopgap pitcher, only to develop into a nice player somewhere else.

I agree with RSB in that there's no real good reason to designate Werth, Vic, or Jenkins as a "starter." I'd keep playing who's hot and/or go with the best matchups.

I think it's a bad idea for managers in situations like this to label some guys "starters" and imply the others are now lowly bench players when all 3 are important to the team's success. There's really no reason to do that. Except that I agree with those that have the impression that Cholly simply doesn't like Vic all that much.

There's a chance the Phils could miss Oswalt in Houston. Hip problem.

Maybe he's using "tough love" with Vic to get him to start playing hard...or maybe he really just doesn't like him for some reason.

Vic, Donald, another B-level prospect legit starter...

Just do not see Donald in the Phils future plans unless he is a Bruntlett type utility guy but he has never played any other position than SS and he has limited range there. He is only 21st in hitting in the EL. Right now three players are hitting higher than him just on the Reading roster: Moran 20th, Marson 7th and Golson 3rd in the league in hitting. I could even see in two years Rollins moved to 3rd to make way for Galvis at SS.

He also missed a few weeks with a hand injury.

I suspect that Cholly is getting fed up with all of Vic's bone-headed plays on the base paths. Seems like the last straw may have been the play the other day, where he tried to steal second base even though Rollins was already there.

I don't really see Galvis as a legit prospect anymore...he hasn't done crap offensively yet.

The term "baseball IQ" gets thrown around a lot regarding Vic and lacking any. The episode BAP references is a prime example.

I would have to think Ruiz also qualifies as potential trade bait. Marson is really hitting at AA and is said to be at least as good defensively as Ruiz is. Given the shortage of good catchers out there, Ruiz might be fairly attractive to someone.

Teams don't usually trade big-league catchers when they're trying to make the playoffs. Marson isn't ready for the majors yet and getting rid of Ruiz puts alot of pressure on a 35 year-old Coste.

Niefy: You left out the most important stat: OBP. Donald is over .400. That's his strength. Dobbs minor league OBP was .360.

BAP: Donald has the arm to play 3B. His problem is range. And too many errors at SS.

Jason: Trade bait is fine with me if they get something of value in return, always a huge IF with this team.

Addendum: Ruiz is definitely trade-bait come the off-season if Marson continues to progress at Reading.

Funny you should bring that up BAP, I was thinking about the possibility of including Ruiz in an in-season trade, as well. Do you think a Coste-Jaramillo-Marson(like better than Jaramillo) could get it done. PERHAPS another vet backup type guy could be found, but if someone offers you a solid #2-3 starting pitcher for Vic/Ruiz, do you do it?

NE: If Marson is still hitting well by late July, when trades are made, I'd say he may well be ready for the majors. Plenty of guys make the jump from AA to the majors.

To be sure, Marson could probably benefit from a full year in the minors. And I'm certainly not dying to trade Ruiz, who is at least an average catcher, with the potential to be more. But if Ruiz could help yield us a good starting pitcher at the trading deadline, I'd take my chances with Marson.

Victorino will never be accused of not playing hard. Whatever problem there is with him, that will never be one.

Conlin's column came with headline 'Manuel needs to learn how to juggle', which I thought would either be about precisely the OF topic we've been discussing, or about him finding work as a circus acrobat. But it turned out to be strictly about the bullpen situation yesterday. The thing is, it's what this all comes down to, the ability to effectively juggle. Manuel has no fewer than four positions on this team which are not clear-cut on any given day: catcher, third base, center field, and right field. These aren't even straight platoon scenarios. Manuel needs to really be able to renew his thinking about these options on a game-to-game basis, not week-to-week or month-to-month. But you know he's not going to. It's a situation which calls for intelligent planning and creative improvisation, and I don't believe Manuel possesses either of these capabilities. And it's going to cost this team.

Pitching is just too hard to come by these days I don't see anybody offering a solid 2-3 for Vic/Ruiz, especially when everyone in the league will wonder why Charlie never plays either one.

I don't think Vic or Ruiz (and especially both) will be traded in season. You lose too much depth.

If Vic goes, So becomes your 4th outfielder so if anyone gets hurt out there we're screwed.

If Ruiz goes, you're relying on Coste and 2 guys who have no major league experiencd.

I can definitely see scenarios though where either or both goes in the offseason. The guy who may go as part of a package during the season is Jamarillo if they want to clear a path to the majors for Marson.

True, but so are too major league starters who are young(ish) and not making a lot of $. Some teams are already, or will be, out of contention.

BB: Hard to answer that question in the abstract, without naming names. Trading Vic would be a little risky because Jenkins sure isn't an everyday player, & Werth might not be either. Again, though, I would look to Reading, where Jeremy Slayden appears as if he can be a good hitter. But I'm not sure about the wisdom of putting 2 key roles in the hands of rookies, when you're trying to make a run at the playoffs.

Last time we faced Redding it was a one hit shutout wasn't it? They better crush him this time to make up for it.

Blanton would be the one chip out there that we might be able to afford but it would clear what little minor-league depth we have. Besides, he's not much better than what we have anyway...outside of Oakland, he's a 4/5 guy.

Wolfie would probably be available too but again Is he better than Eaton/Kendrick to the point of giving up prospects?

Marson MIGHT be able to make the jump but likely the Phillies would go with Coste/Jaromillo instead (stupid but hey its the Phillies). Jaromillo is a legit big-league backup despite his dismal early season at AAA and he could fill in as Coste's relief. The problem is that Ruiz is a better defensive catcher than Coste and apparently he calls a better game (his cERA is about .4 runs lower than Costes) so I don't know how that would affect an already shaky rotation.

Who else is out there to trade for?

Galvis does put the ball in play. He has struck out only 16 times in 144 at bats. Not bad for an 18 year old. About the same strike out ratio as Bowa when he was in low A ball but Larry was several years older at the same level and hit .300.

See that the Real Deal was just sent to Reading. Hard to believe that this guy pitched a 5 hit complete game shutout last year in San Diego. Can Lakewood be next? Also hard to believe that the AAA active pitching roster now has 7 lefties and 5 righties now that Blackley has been activated. When was the last time that happened?

BAP - Reading guys are always an option if we're thinking about depth replacements in the OF. There's always a vet out there, with playoff experience, who had an .818 OPS last year and has played in the city before.

****I would look to Reading, where Jeremy Slayden appears as if he can be a good hitter****

I've heard he's somewhat below average in the field.

I could see them trading Ruiz or Vic but not both. I doubt personally that they'll trade either with Werth's injury concerns and the lack of an available OF other than Golson in the minors.

Umm...wasn't Lofton considered a cancer last time he was here?

I shouldn't say he'll *always* be available, though, since he'll probably sign somewhere at some point this season.

Not that I'm all for trading Vic - just pointing out an option.

RSB - I agree that Cholly just seems to prefer to settle in a routine when possible. I call in Cholly's "stubbornness." Just sticks with something a little too long at times when more flexibility is needed. Less of an issue where the lineup where Cholly generally utilizes almost everyone on a nightly basis. Seems to be more of an issue with the bullpen where Cholly sticks with something too long and isn't ready with an alternative when needed.

I really Conlin's piece today. Wasted 700 words to say the Myers and Kendrick should be switched in the rotation order and Kendrick should pitch on his off-day on Wed. I did it in less than 30 words. Conlin is a very knowledgeable source but he badly needs some editorial oversight instead of his rambling columns.

The club probably also sees Dobbs and Bruntlett on the OF depth chart.

Again, not that I'm for trading Vic. Don't know what options are out there. Happ would be an option before any trade, though, I'd think (and hope.)

Both have played the corner spots before so that wouldn't be unheard of. Didn't Dobbs log some innings in LF last year...how bad/good was he out there? His range at 3B is brutal so hopefully he's a little more graceful in the outfield.


On Conlin: At this point I dont think his pieces get edited...at least that how it feels when reading them. Take that how you will.

Clout: I am fine including OBP, but you used numbers from Dobb's entire minor league career compared to Donald's first two months in Reading.

If you compare Dobbs' OBP from his time in A and AA ball to Donald's OBP from his time in A and AA ball, again, it looks pretty similar:

Dobbs OBP from A and AA: .388

Donald OBP from A and AA: .383

Dull:Galvis does put the ball in play. He has struck out only 16 times in 144 at bats. Not bad for an 18 year old. About the same strike out ratio as Bowa when he was in low A ball but Larry was several years older at the same level and hit .300.


Yeah but he has no power (.229 Slugging) and he's batting .188. Granted he's young but he hasn't really done anything yet to be considered a real prospect. He's great with the glove but that's about it.

The real reason Vic was benched wasn't because Charlie thought Werth was better. He needed Vic for the most important role on the team - Burrell's 7th inning replacement. Taguchi obviously wasn't getting the job done. With Vic in there instead, we may squeeze out an additional run all season just via pinch-running alone!

One thing to be thankful for:

- The Braves and Mets still have holes in their last 2 rotation spots. Pelfrey hasn't pitched that well (his ERA covers up the fact that a lot of his peripheral stats including his WHIP and K/BB suck) and I will be surprised if Vargas is much of an upgrade over Figueroa.

Braves have Bennett (a guy who makes an ok long reliever but should get exposed as a starter) and Reyes (another young pitcher that is largely overrated since he is the Braves' system).

As long as these two teams continue to have issues with the back-ends of their rotations, it is going to make it hard for either one of them to play at a higher level over a couple of weeks.

Dave X, love that theory.

Dave X: With Vic in there instead, we may squeeze out an additional run all season just via pinch-running alone!


LOL!!! Good analysis..

Just a thought if they for some reason did trade an OF like Vic or Werth (its possible).

Golson is absolutely killing the ball this year (.331/.374/.877 avg/obp/ops) and has been on fire this month (.349 avg) so far. He's also starting to get a handle on his K-rate but he hasn't really raised his walk rate yet. He could probably fill in as a 4th OF'er right now if worst case one of the 3 starters went down with a serious injury.

Except we may have already seen management's preference for TJ Bohn. Who?

Bohn was brought up more because it was a short-term thing where he wouldn't be expected to play much and Golson has just started doing well at Reading. If there was a major injury in the July/August range and either Vic or Werth were gone via trade, I could definitely see Golson with the big club.

I hope Golson gets the next call, short term or long.

If he keeps up his work at Reading, he'll likely be competing for an OF spot in Camp next Spring. He still needs to learn to take a ball though...just 11 BBs in 163 ABs. Its the one weak spot in his game right now...that and striking out.

Carson, I, too, am worried about tonight's game. I have zero faith in Myers. I feel better about the entire series as Hamels and Moyer take the mound.

I work in Houston during the week and am taking my wife and daughter to the Thursday game in Minute Maid Park. I checked the projected match-ups and see that we'll have Eaton Crap on the mound against their best in Oswalt. I'm going to buy tickets in the cheap seats, so I don't waste a bunch of money seeing Eaton Crap.

I still think Vic in center and Werth in right makes the most sense. There's a pretty big defensive gap between Vic and Werth, and Jenkins isn't really hitting. I also think Dobbs needs to start the next two games.

Dobbs is now hitting .351. It's past time that he start getting more starts.

The problem is that he's terrible in the field. If he was even an average defensive 3B he'd probably start almost every day. Unfortunately he's much more of a 1B than a 3B. They should try to find him some more ABs somehow though.

Besides can you imagine having Feliz pinch-hit in the later innings? The phillies would be better off just forfeiting the AB.

His D is definitely a problem, but somehow they need to find a way to get him more ABs.

I wouldn't mind a start in LF one game this week. When is the last time Burrell had a day off? He's not exactly tearing it up lately, so a night off might not be the worst thing for him.

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