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Sunday, July 27, 2008

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A good game by Blanton would go along way to calm the fears about him/the trade.

Two quick notes:

No way the Phillies would ever take on Ramirez. They don't deal with problem players, period. Manuel couldn't convince them if he tried.

Speaking of problem players. Jimmy Rollins' attitude has never been anything but exemplary until recent weeks. But after reading Ford's column, I'm about out of defenses for him. He's being a sulky infant and he needs to get over his damn self already.

I agree with others who think there's no way the Phils pick up Ramirez for a rental. It's hard to turn down his bat, but we'd have the worst defensive outfielders in the league, which would kill us with many of our pitchers. How many nice catches did Werth make yesterday? None of them webgems, but all real tests of his range and glove. Manny makes none of those catches in RF.

Thanks for pointing me to the Harry's HR call over at The Fightins'. Welcome back HK, indeed.

"But that's the least of it. Since being benched for getting to Shea Stadium late on Thursday, Rollins has made a point of showing up just in time to beat the manager's arrival deadline, and he affects a body language that indicates he doesn't much care what anyone thinks of it."

Let me see if I got this right. Now (after two games) the problem isn't that Rollins is showing up late, but that he isn't showing up far enough in advance of the deadline as Ford thinks is appropriate?

Oh yeah, and Ford doesn't like Rollins' "body language" also.

Well. Now that I've read that, I say trade Rollins for a bag o' balls

Manny is batting .966 against RHP this year. Hmm. I can't say I'd prefer Brian Giles, but he'd be cheaper and a more balanced player (.379 OBP against RHP this year with Petco.)

People seem to forget that when JRoll and Bowa used to clash because JRoll "didn't do the little things" out of the leadoff spot that would drive Bowa nuts. JRoll was very insistent and stubborn to a fault about staying there though. It was only until after his first 3-4 seasons that JRoll finally started to walk at a higher rate and become a bit more selective. I am surprised that some many people have seemed to forget this fact.

Reposted from the previous thread:

mb, the question isn't whether the Mets have the money for Ramirez. The question is whether they can put together the best package of talent for him.


Thinking ahead, and I've speculated on the topic before on this board, if Manny Ramirez is not in a Red Sox uniform in 2009, there is a very strong possibility that Pat Burrell will be in LF at Fenway.

He's not quite Manny as a hitter, but he would fir nicely into that lineup.

I also thought there was a possibility that PB would wind up (GULP) in LF at Citi Field next season. The Muts won't bring Alou back, and signing Burrell (they have the money) would be a great statement to the fans moving into a new venue.

It would also have the added benefit of taking the best RH bat and chief Met killer from their biggest division rival.

Forget Manny. If Feliz has been "playing hurt" for weeks now as Amaro claims, the Phils biggest need might be a right-handed bat at 3B. A platoon of Bruntlett/Dobbs would arguably be the Phils' weakest position.

As for Blake, yeah the Dodgers may have overpaid but if the Phils actually spent some damn money on signing foreign players, they would had the talent to make that trade. The "can't miss prospect" the Dodgers sent over was only in Single-A and the only guy has a really live arm with sporadic control at best supposedly.

phlipper - It's like that guy at your office who sits in his car out in the parking lot until precisely 9:00AM. Technically he's not doing anything wrong, but he's acting like a douche, or at the very least, pouting like a child. I didn't pin Rollins on being the passive aggressive type.

I know I am going to get vilified for suggesting this but more and more it seems like JRoll's attitude is going to be an issue down the entire stretch. The Phils upper management approach of "see no evil, hear no evil" approach isn't likely to change things either.

If I was Gillick, I would strongly call around and see what teams would be willing to offer up for JRoll. If they would be willing to give me that starting pitcher or something else attractive, I would think long and hard about that deal. Only issue is that JRoll's value has probably down a bit right and trading JRoll for "an attitude" while getting .70 cents on the dollar/pu pu package platter makes no sense.

Lineups

Campillo is a RHP who fares better against left handed batters. Thus Werth and Bruntlett getting starts. Expect lots of sliders, curves, and change ups from the soft tossing Campillo. Utley back in 3 hole. Coste rewarded with his 3 hit effort yesterday with a start today. No Chipper again.

Phils
1. J Rollins, SS
2. S Victorino, CF
3. C Utley, 2B
4. R Howard, 1B
5. P Burrell, LF
6. J Werth, RF
7. E Bruntlett, 3B
8. C Coste, C
9. J Blanton,P

Braves
1. G Blanco, LF
2. Y Escobar, SS
3. M Teixeira, 1B
4. B McCann, C
5. M Kotsay, CF
6. J Francoeur, RF
7. K Johnson, 2B
8. O Infante, 3B
9. J Campillo, P

The sportstwriter who speculated about Ramirez to the Phillies is obviously not familiar with the Phillies' minor league system or the way their management operates. What's the trade gonna be? Greg Golson for a 2-month rental of Manny Ramirez? And where exactly would Ramirez play? Is he going to play LF, with Burrell moving back to third base, where he played in college?

Also, I can't see the RedSox trading Ramirez for the usual package of minor league prospects. The RedSox are built to win now, and they're going to want a player who can help them do that.

Not that it will ever happen, but the only way a Manny Ramirez to the Phillies trade is even plausible -- from either team's perspective -- is if it includes Pat Burrell. Considering both players are FAs at the end of this year, the question is: who would you rather have for the next 2 months? Personally, I'd rather have Burrell, who is 4 years younger, a better defensive player, having a considerably better season, and doesn't come with any sideshow theatrics.

Crazy thing is the Phils are 11-10 so far this month but poor performances since the All-Star make it seem much worse.

If I had money to bet if the Phils come up short against the Mets, it will be because they went 2-5 against the Mets this month (which increasingly looks like the Mets' dominance against the Phils this year might be the deciding factor in the NL East race).

I'd definitely rather have Burrell.

Mets have Santana on the mound today. They're facing Lohse, though, who is 3-0 in his last 5 starts: 36 IP, just 7 BB, 24 SO, 1.75 ERA.

With Feliz injured, the Phillies are paying the price for their bizarre decision to keep Jason Donald at SS, rather than teaching him to play third base. This team was already offensively challenged. Adding Eric Brutnlett to the lineup is not exactly what we need.

Call me nuts but I bet Lohse trades spade for spade today with Santana and the Cards emerge with a win/series victory.

joe l:

Look, I just think that Rollins is being judged on way to subjective a basis. The implication of all these judgments is that Rollins has a lackadaisical attitude. Well, no one has a year like he had last year if being a slacker is a characteristic aspect of their personality. Rollins has always generally given me the impression that he's a gamer - despite the fact that he's never adopted his game to the leadoff spot.

No matter, I think that pinning the Phillies woes on Rollins' attitude is insane. There are two primary reasons for the Phillies problems - the first is that a number of players have underperformed; Myers leads the list, but marginally better performances from any combination of him, Feliz, Taguchi, Jenkins, Howard, Rollins, Ruiz, and yes, even Utely, and this team would have a sizable lead in the NL East.

The second main reason is a total failure by management to take necessary steps. Just the minor step of releasing Eaton and putting Myers in the pen 0 both no-brainers that wouldn't require significant additional spending would make a difference. To top that off, the Dodgers, Yankees, Cubs, and Brewers have all made moves to enhance their teams while the Phils traded for Blanton. 'nuff said.

>> Crazy thing is the Phils are 11-10 so far this month but poor performances since the All-Star make it seem much worse.

Also, they started the month 4-0 with sweep of Braves in ATL and win against the Mets. They are 7-10 since then. All of the wins were close games including a few dramatic comebacks. They are not playing well and are fortunate to be only 1 back.

Three huge games today in the NL East. First and foremost, I hope blanton puts on a impressive showing just to get his first win as a Phillie and get himself in a groove. Also, I hope "Hitting Season" continues today. For the Mets this is huge because Santana is on the mound and after his last start against us it will be interesting how he pitches and how far if he is dominating. Finally we have the pesky fish playing the cubbies and hopefully Chi-town can bounce back after a Marlin come from behind win in extra yesterday.

Hate to say it but as of now will not be watching the Soul game today for their championship because frankly I think a game at the end of July for the Phillies is more important.

Let me see if I got this right, Sophist and BAP. You'd rather have Burrell than, arguably, one of the top 3 or 4 hitters in the game?

Today's game has all the makings of one of the Phillies' patented 5-hit specials. A day game. A dramatic win the previous day. A good pitcher, and de factor left-hander, on the mound for Atlanta. Eric Bruntlett in the starting lineup. Odds of the Phillies looking inept on offense today: 99.99%.

Bruntlett was in the starting lineup yesterday and they played well.too bad fro him he went 0-3 and was the only position player not to get a hit.

I agree on the day games, we never play well in the day.

He's not one of the top 4 hitters in the game anymore.

"I agree on the day games, we never play well in the day."

No comment. Kumbaya.

Phillies' collective careers numbers against Campillo (granted only 63 PA)

.368 BA / .419 OB / .579 SLG

Prediction today -- HRs from Howard ,Utley, and Coste in high scoring win.

Billy Mac - Yeah not saying the Phils are playing well by any stretch. Frankly, they are lucky to have won yesterday and rallied against the Mets in the 9th. Only game they really blew was Hamels' outing against the Fish. That would put them at 1-6 or 2-5 since the break which is pretty poor baseball.

flipper - Burrell is 31 and has been one on of the best power hitters in the game since last summer (151 OPS+.) If the Phils are smart, they hold on to him all year and re-sign him for a 3-4 year deal.

Manny is 36 and has a 140 OPS+ this year. Last two seasons, Burrell has been better than Manny and Burrell is considerably younger. Manny, somehow, is worse in the field and probably in the clubhouse. Imagine how Parker would react if Manny is punching people in the clubhouse (he's done this at least twice this year) and SO intentionally at the end of games.

Not one of the best 4 hitters in the game anymore?

2006: .321 .439 .619 1.058
2007: .296 .388 .493 .881
2008: .298 .398 .524 .922

Phils pounded Hampton yesterday and got some timely hits in the same inning against some mediocre middle relievers. Have to agree with BAP that this has the makings of a Sunday letdown where the Phils only score 3-4 runs and lose 6-4 or 6-3.

MG and Mac - It does go both ways though. 7 of their losses this month were by 2 runs or less. And then there's games like Friday's were it was close, should have been a Phils lead, until Lidge broke down in the 9th.

The Phils look bad, no question, but they aren't getting laughed off the field. Their pitching has kept them in most games. Their offense has been terrible.

Over a period of 4 or 5 years, I'd rather have Burrell. Slight improvement in the field, likely to remain productive after Manny deteriorates.

But re: the next two months, I'd rather have Manny. JW would probably have to ban Parker, but personally, I'd find the entertainment value of watching Manny to be an added bonus to having his stick in the lineup.

MG- You are saying that because the comeback fashion in which they went on to win those two games, they don't count as wins? The is the most nonsensical thing i have heard. This team considering their talent are highly underachieving. But to say that those 2 comeback wins in the past week wouldn't happen alot if at all normally so we just won't count them as wins doesn't make sense.

This team in the past 2 years has a winning percentage of 60% in the second half of the season and you know this team that whether it is they start the season on a bad record or after the ASB, it takes a couple of weeks to get back in the groove. Hopefully yesterday was just that game to get their offensive funk over.

I just read Ford's column. I

Again, typical BeerLeaguer overreaction.

"douche"? "pouting like a child"? Trade him??????


Now, I've been one here who has said Jimmy ought to be called J-Stroll (just to needle) for the time being, so I don't get the idea that I'm an unwavering Rollins supporter.

But I also understand that he's an important part of the team and lineup.

What would you rather do or have: Trade him (and rest assured the "oxymoron" would get fair value for him - just like Abreu), or have Jimmy get over it and get "back 2 good"?


And before you start ripping Rollins based on one columnist's uncorroborated 'evidence', and drawing the conclusion that it displays an 'attitude problem', why not find out what time all of the other players arrived the last two days.

If other players have arrived on or about the same time, then aren't you singling Jimmy out?

And before you give me the stock answer of "he's a leader, he should arrive early", I didn't see any of you complaining about his arrival time last season.

From what I've read, he was often one of the last to arrive last year, but no one complained when he was producing an MVP season.

Manny / Burrell trade doesn't make any sense for either team. They are essentially the same player -- RH power bats with good on base skills and fair/poor defense. Both are free agents. I would argue Manny is better in the field at Fenway (with his experience playing the LF monster) and Burrell everywhere else.

Manny wants any team that picks him up to at least pick up his $20M option for '09 at the bare minimum. Chances the Phils would trade for Manny - 0.000005%. Hell, the reason they got Blanton is because he was only another $1.5M out of their pocket this year and will be at a reasonable dollar next year too.

If the Manny didn't have the no-trade option because he is a "5 and 10" guy, then I am willing to bet the Sox would seriously consider moving him at the deadline. Unlike the Phils' risk-adverse front office, the Sox have shown they are willing to shake up things if it makes sense even in midseason.

Yeah, see the .881 and .922 in the two last seasons? Not one of the 4 best hitters in the game anymore. That .922 is good for 18th in MLB in OPS; the .881, 32nd place. Of course if you average over the past two seasons, he'd rank over some guys who had a great season this year or last but bombed the other year (like Carlos Pena). I don't know how to do that, but he's not top 4 anymore.

flipper - again, Burrell is better than Manny this year and is 5 years younger. That alone is reason enough to choose him, and there are many others. Manny is still a great hitter, but he's old.

AWH - If he is indeed waiting until just before Manuel's deadline, then yes, he is acting like a child. That has nothing to do with trading him to berating his performance on the field. It is a comment on his lack of communication skills. Put it in words, J-Roll, not by putting on an act.

** If the column is actually true. I'll gladly shut up on this matter as it's most likely the media trying to make a story out of it.

mvp - Yeah the Phils rallied in both of those games but the point it was almost a mathematical uncertainty that they wouldn't. Yeah, a team might have a handful of those victories in a season but more than 95% of the time they are going to lose.

Just go to FanGraphs for each game and see what I am talking about.

Brett Favre doesn't report to Packers camp.

Its been speculated that he is playing RF for the Philadelphia Phillies today against the Braves. There are also rumors that he may be the starting pitcher for the Houston Astros against the Brewers on Sunday.

phlipper, who do you tink the Red Sox would rather have in LF the next 4-5 years - Ramirez (5yrs/$90MM) or Burrell(5yrs/75MM)?

Over the last three years:

Manny: 305.00 408.33 545.33 953.67
Burrell: 264.00 396.67 528.67 925.33


That's incredibly close, but ssuming we're talking about two months, despite his defensive liabilities, I'd still rather have Manny. Assuming that we'd resign either, I'd probably rather have Burrell.

But please, there is no chance in hell getting Manny is a realistic possibility anyway.

Sorry about those decimal places - getting down to the hundreth of one percent of a BA probably isn't necessary.

From Scott Lauber's blog:

"How essential is Jimmy Rollins to the Phils? They're 24-8 when he scores a run, 31-41 (.431) when he doesn't. Last year, they were 67-34 when he scored, and in his career, they're 403-195."


Any questions?

Over the last two years, Burrell's better. In both seasons.

AWH - Any questions would depend on the context given by those numbers for any other team's leadoff guy.

Phlipper: This is 2008, not 2006 through 2008. Manny's still an excellent hitter but he's in decline -- a decline that started last season. Burrell was the better player last year and he's the much better player this year. It isn't even close.

flipper - Manny 2006 =/= Manny 2008 and it's even less likely Manny 2009 will be as good as Manny 2008.

Why not both Pat the Bat and Manny playing both corner outfield spots with Vic in Center. Werth off the bench. Yea defense would be shaky, but boy that lineup would be awesome.

Blanton line today:
7ip, 6 h, 2 runs, 4k, 2bb - W
Rollins: 2-4, hr, 2uns, sb

I haven't seen other numbers, but the Mets also have a very impressive record when Jose Reyes scores. I think that suggests more about what it means to get some early runs (since Jose only leads off 1-2 times a game) rather than the intangible awesome-itude that Rollins or Reyes bring to the game.

The awesome-itute Reyes brings is downright palpable.

Feels so good to hear Harry's voice. It was like a calm washing over me.

Lets go Jug Blanton!

I've got a good/bad feeling about this game, and the wind is blowing from the south/north.

NJ - That defense would be terrible. And it's not like we have a staff of SO pitchers. Everyone but Hamels and Myers puts the ball in play. Myers is either walking people, SO people, or they're putting it out of play in another way.

In 2007, Burrell was slightly better in OBP/SLG. Somewhat better in OPS (which reflects and magnifies being slightly better OBP and SLG). Significantly lower in BA. Burrell had a lot more homers, also, but I'm not sure I'd agree that "Burrell was better" last year.

This year, so far, Burrell's numbers are a good bit better - particularly slugging although again his BA is again lower. But I think it's likely that Burrell won't sustain his performance so far throughout the entire year.

I don't think Manny's deteriorated significantly just yet, although it seems very likely that he will within the next two years or so. Again, if we’re talking 4 or 5 years, no argument. If we’re talking the end of this season only, I’d rather have Manny.

I've already beat this one into the ground. I get your reasoning.

Not normally one to quote my own posts but it's a good segue into this post: "Burrell was the better player last year and he's the much better player this year. It isn't even close."

Sadly, that is the very reason why I could actually see this deal happening, if the RedSox would kick in some of the extra salary. The RedSox are a smart, well-run team which would surely recognize that, just because Manny has a lofty reputation, he's no longer as productive a player as Burrell. And the Phillies are a PR-driven team, run by a GM who's living in the past. They would reason, "We're getting Manny Ramirez. This is a great trade." Not to mention that, with PG on the verge of retirement, he probably would love to pull one more blockbuster trade, just for the sake of doing it. This isn't to say that I believe this deal will happen. But the elements are present which would make it plausible. It would be a terrible trade.

Has anyone looked at the radar map? Why does MLB insist on starting these games with rain IMMINENT?

From BP.com:

That's not to say that Blanton isn't an upgrade over Adam Eaton—he had some poor luck in Oakland that pushed his ERA higher than it should be, as his 4.36 FIP shows—though part of his problem this year has been walking hitters from the stretch. His Isolated Patience against with runners on is .064, against his .034 mark with the bases empty, and it's contributed to his below-average 65.7 percent strand rate. That's something that a new pitching coach may be able to help work on though, and even without that Blanton is still useful. It's just that more is expected out of him, as he's something of a name pitcher thanks to his successful run in Oakland, even if that was based mostly on his home park context.

Blanton continues to impress.

This trade looks better and better all the time.

I'm pretty sure Happ couldn't be doing any better than this...

What's that? 7 innings of no hit baseball with 12 K's in AAA. Oh...

I can think of a left fielder who is even better than Manny, would be cheaper, and rated better in the field than both Manny and Burrell in 2007. And he's a FA.

great start, fat ass

Good God, this guy is even worse than the most pessimistic projections.

oh boy, here we go

phlipper: "I don't think Manny's deteriorated significantly just yet."

Well, the numbers say otherwise. This is 2 straight years in which his numbers have been way off his previous career norms. When a guy is 36 years old, how else can this be interpreted except as the beginning of a decline? But I agree with you that we've about beaten this subject into the ground.

Good thing for Blanton that Francoeur sucks.

Oh brother.

Rollins and a non Marson/Carrascao minor leaguer for Manny and Julio Lugo.

That could work. Massive upgrade offensively. Definitely a win now approach though. Julio comes off the DL in a couple days. Julio Lugo's .725 OPS would probably go up to .780 or so in CBP and the NL.

this might go down as one of the worst trades in a long time.

I take no joy in saying, "I told you so." But I told you so.

In regards to the rain...

I'm near Lancaster and we had cloudiness and some rain/thunder just a bit ago, but now the sun is shining so I don't think it should be that big of a problem for the game.

Thank you, Francoeur. Kept that one manageable.

Maybe beating a dead horse, but can a Blanton stalwart explain how his early baserunners/runs are better than Eaton's early baserunners/runs? So far the two look exactly the same, which is what Beerleaguer's in-house scouting report told us would happen.

But then again, I'm not a meteorologist and don't pretend to be, so let's just hope I'm right.

No, PhillR. Would much rather keep Rollins and pay less for Giles.

It's raining here in NW Philly.

Blanton's stuff looks good, but its all over the place.

BTW: I love how I'm getting bashed for my takes on Rollins. I said I would stop talking about him until he did something else, which apparently he has. Either way, this is about the 5th or 6th incident with Rollins this season. It is not overreaction based on one incident, but the final straw. I maintain that if Eric Bruntlett were acting like this, he would either be immediately DFA'd or being bashed unmercifully on this board.

Just say no to Julio Lugo, man.

swinging for the fences again

Those clouds are very ominous. It figures that the one time I can see part of a game, it will probably be in a rain delay until I get to work and then I'll be stuck watching most of it on Gameday again.

My life is awesome.

I don't see why Lugo's stats would go up in CBP considering Fenway is a bigger hitters park. (Per baseball-reference)

why they even started this game is retarded.

In D.C. and it started storming about 10 minutes ago. Weather is supposed to be awful until tonight. I'd be surprised if this game gets completed. Fine by me, seeing how Blanton is going. He sucks.

It's currently raining and thundering out near Villanova. Been doing so for about half an hour.

mb: "this might go down as one of the worst trades in a long time."

Totally agree. There are 2 kinds of terrible trades. There's the kind that looks ok at the time it was made, but turns out to be terrible (i.e., Pedro Liriano & Joe Nathan for AJ Pierzynski). And then there's the kind that is just terrible on its face, and turns out just as terribly. The latter kinds are far less excusable, and that's the category the Blanton trade falls into.

Lugo had a 65 OPS+ last year and an 86 OPS+ this year. I can't believe the guy who rips Rollins 100+ OPS+ career for being thoroughly mediocre has any interest in this guy, when the payoff is so low and our OF would become a nightmare for most of our contact staff.

Manny's OPS in CBP would be godly. Lugo would be a very slight downgrade offensively, about be equal defensively.

Probably be about .120 OPS better then Giles just acquiring Giles, however cost a lot more money.

Utley wasn't going hard enough, Smith.

"I maintain that if Eric Bruntlett were acting like this, he would either be immediately DFA'd."

Um . . . no kidding. Should we DFA Rollins?

I HATE STEVE SMITH! What the hell? He hadn't even rounded third when the ball was in glove. Good Lord get rid of this guy. He blows.

Great job Steve Smith. Why the hell is he there?

With Burrell coming up, was that a stupid gamble?

What are Burrell's numbers against Capillo?

hmm good decision there

To people watching the game: Was that play close? Should Utley have been sent?

that was terrible.

howard swings at ball four, then gets a base hit and smith gets him thrown out at home.

garbage.

What the **** was Smith thinking? And with Burrell on deck.

Steve Smith leads all 3B coaches in PO at home, by the way.

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