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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Comments

I wonder how his numbers would look if UC was more of a "Captain Hook" rather than his current status as "Leave 'em in until everyone knows that I've left 'em in too long" guy.

Jason- Agree KK has pitched well enough to be considered a solid component to the rotation. Now if Myers / Happ work out for the second half we may have a fall season to keep us interested.
As far as Chollie keeping his starters in too long- I think he needs to keep the BP fromm burn out. So far we have lost our set up man.

From the last thread, I think it was BB who said the Phillies like Blanton because he's an "inning eater." From the looks of him, innings are not the only things he likes to eat. Every time I hear a pitcher described as an inning eater, I cringe because that's exactly how the Phillies described Joe Cowley, when they traded for him 20 years ago. He immediately turned into the worst pitcher in Phillies history, and was banished to the minors after 4 starts, 11 innings and 17 walks. His control problems continued in the minors and his career was over at 29.

While the Phillies were looking at all those innings that Blanton was eating, maybe they should take a look at his home-away splits which have been horrendous since 2005. This is so prototypical Phillies. We flirt with Sabathia, Burnett, and Bedard, then -- as our playoff rivals are getting Sabathia and Harden -- we trade for Joe Blanton. If they make this trade, it's time for football season to start.

I feel like it's getting to the point where if we can't get a stud pitcher than screw it... Happ and Carasco can probably hold thier own, and deffinately better than Eaton has been.

Wish there was a site I knew about that had a stat of how many inherited runners were allowed to score from the viewpoint of the pitcher who put em on.

Feels like every time Kendrick leaves a game with some runners on, they always score. Here are some examples:

4/9 vs NY, leaves in 3rd with runners on 2nd and 3rd, both score

5/2 vs SF, leaves in 7th with runners on 1st and 2nd, both score

5/22 vs Hou, leaves in 6th with runner on 2nd, he scores

5/27 vs Col, leaves in 8th with runner on 1st, he scores.

6/2 vs Cin, leaves in 6th with runners on 1st and 2nd, both score

7/1 vs Atl, leaves in 7th inning with runner on 2nd, he scores

7/11 vs Arz, leaves in 7th with runner on 3rd, he scores

Some rare occasions where they don't:

4/4 vs Cin, leaves in 6th with runner on 1st, doesn't score

4/26 vs Pgh, leaves in 8th with runner on 1st, doesn't score

6/7 vs Atl, leaves in 6th with runners on 1st and 2nd, neither scores

So, in what may be a complete look at those inherited runners, looks like:

Kendrick has been removed with 14 runners on. Ten have scored. What's the normal rate for inherited runners?

BAP:

Blanton certainly screams Phillies' move, doesn't he? Don't we already have a staff full of pitchers whose upside is as an "inning eater"?

As for double K, he's not the most exciting pitcher to watch, but his bulldog determination to get out of jams, and do enough to win are extremely satisfying. For me, he's like Moyer that way.

Do we have "innings eaters", besides Hamels? I think we have guys Cholly let's pitch longer b/c our offense has/used to put up a lot of runs affording Cholly the opportunity to let some guys go deeper in the game.

That said, I'm not in the "get Blanton" category.

A general response to The Dude's post from last thread:

You dont seem to understand how revenue sharing works. I didn't see that part of the Costas show, but I feel safe in saying that not every team makes back 40-60 million in revenue sharing. In order for teams to receive money, someone else has to put money in. The Yankees, Mets, etc. all PAY a good amount of money. As of 2006 (the last data I could find), the Phillies were about even on revenue sharing, receiving 6 million dollars (2nd lowest among teams receiving money). Since then, they have been more successful, winning the division and making playoff revenues last year, meaning that most likely, they received no revenue sharing this offseason or even had to pay in some.

Also, a general comment: 105 million dollars is not a cheap payroll. It is higher than the majority of teams in the league ( I believe we're 13th out of 30). Now, I know we're in a larger media market than 13th, and I'm not making excuses for ownership- they're awful, worst in the city, and among the worst in sports. I pray every day they sell the team. But some of those teams ahead of us in the payroll own their own media networks (Yankees, Mets, Red Sox), which makes them vastly more profitable. It's a huge difference, and can't even really be compared. My point is that complaining about the amount of money spent is stupid; 105 million dollars is more than enough to win with. Complain about HOW the money is being spent.

BB:

I interpret "innings eater" as a pitcher who will hardly be spectacular, but can keep the team in the game by going 6 and 3/4 or 7 and 4/5. Basically, a +/- 4.50 ERA. For this year at least, Moyer, Eaton, Kendrick and Myers, with varying degrees of success, seem to be that type of pitcher at best.

Now, if only there were a huge media company that already owned local networks and had an interest in the city's sports teams that could buy the Phillies....

EastFallowfield - Baseball-reference.com keeps track, in their game logs, of the reliever who inherited the runners and how many scored.

10/14 is well above average. 3-5/14 would be closer to league average last I checked.

-----

Blanton. Ug! He had a great rookie season (in 05). Since then the only thing to say about him is that he eats innings. He also allows 1 run more, on average, away than at home (3.79 vs. 4.78.)

OTOH, Blanton's career v. NYM (2 Games): 15 IP, 0.00 ERA, .157/.173/.176 against.

Sophist:

Right. Innings eater is a sort of backhanded compliment for a pitcher who isn't that good, but not bad enough to get pulled early from games, and we have a staff full of those guys. Even Eaton, for the better part of the 1st half, was an innings eater.

East: Good post. I had the same feeling about Kendrick. He is pitching better than his ERA, but is being hurt because Cholly habitually leaves him in the game for an inning too long. When Kendrick takes the mound in the 7th, there should be a guy in the bullpen ready to go, and he should come into the game the second KK yields a hard hit ball.

As for your question, I have no idea what the going rate is for allowing inherited runners to score. It would obviously depend on how many outs there are in the inning. But this is clearly an area where the Phillies' bullpen has been less than stellar. Still, if Cholly would recognize when to remove his starter, the bullpen would not have to be put in so many situations where it enters the game with 2 men on base and fewer than 2 outs.

Blanton. Ick. That would be a senseless waste of prospects for a marginal upgrade over Eaton.

Regarding using Carasco and Happ, Keith law yesterday (who is really one of the better analysts out there imho) had this to say:

"Carrasco's velo wasn't great at the Futures Game, his secondary stuff still wasn't good, and he's thrown 3 innings all month. He's not the answer in Philly. I'm also not a Happ believer. They need to look externally. "

I think a lot of us fall into the trap that because Eaton is SOOOO bad, we assume anything else would have to be better. That is probably not the case. It is begining to look like the Phills might not have the cards to get AJ. I don't know what we do then, but anything like Blanton or worse would be pointless I think.

Regarding Kendrik- I hope he keeps this up, but I am a skeptic. I just don't think he can keep walking the tightrope like this all season.

I read most of Law's stuff, and I agree he is pretty good, but he is consistently down on pretty much everyone related to the Phillies. Baseball Prospectus and Baseball America both had more complimentary things to say about Carrasco after the Futures Game.

Will Carroll of Baseball Prospectus recently speculated whether the Pirates would consider trading Ian Snell. If there's even a remote possibility of that being true, Gillick should be talking to the Pirates GM right now. If the Bucs make Snell available, he'd be the best option on the market, especially over the long-term. Snell's had a bad year and spent time on the DL, but otherwise, he wouldn't be available.

Ian Snell is 26 years old and his contract runs through 2012. His stuff is up there with Burnett's and Bedard's.

From Will Carroll's 7/16/08 blog on Baseball Prospectus: Ian Snell is a name that hasn’t been discussed much, but could bring a huge return for the Pirates. He’s durable, solid, and seems the type that would relish being in a pennant chase. The Pirates would have to be overwhelmed, but one FOT I spoke with suggested that Snell is the equal of Rich Harden in talent. I didn’t buy it, but they have similar body types, two pitch repertoires with similar velocity and movement, and some questions about durability.

I don't buy the Harden comparison either, but Snell's stuff is comparable to AJ Burnett's: nice curveball and mid 90s fastball with a lot of movement. Both Snell and Burnett walk too many batters.

Snell has a reputation as a fierce competitor, who pitches better as the game goes on. In this sense, he's Bedard's opposite.

I wouldn't mind giving up a lot for Snell; he's young, talented and signed long-term. Snell could be the true #2 the Phillies so sorely need. Plus he's a local kid- from Delaware.

Sounds like Law was being honest on Carrasco, though. I haven't noticed an inherent bias against the Phils in Law's stuff.

I'm all for Happ getting more chances, but for example, have you ever heard Happ's name in trade rumors? There's a reason for that.

It's a shame Kendrick can't just be the #5 guy and not have any pressure at this stage of his career.

Eaton is not an innings eater. He's *never* thrown over 200 IP in his ~8 year career. Blanton threw 230 innings last year to Eaton's 161.2 IP. He's thrown 127 IP this year to Eaton's 104 IP.

Blanton's average IP/Season in the last three years is 209.1 IP.

Eaton's is 119 IP.

"Carrasco's velo wasn't great at the Futures Game, his secondary stuff still wasn't good, and he's thrown 3 innings all month. He's not the answer in Philly. I'm also not a Happ believer. They need to look externally. "

Ummm...maybe his velocity was down and his secondary stuff wasn't that great BECAUSE he only pitched three innings the past month due to a sore shoulder. Basing an opinion on a player from a few innings in an exhibition game after that player had just been shut down for a few weeks due to injury, seems a little silly.

what if the plan from the FO is to acquire Joe "the innings eater" Blanton for relatively little and then focus on upgrading the bullpen with a truly solid pitcher, like Marte of the Pirates or Sherril of the O's?
from where i'm sitting, the market for a #2 starting pitcher is studded with red flags over health concerns, contract concerns and composition concerns. it might actually be more prudent given those options to go get a guy that keeps you in a ballgame (unlike Eaton) and to supplement that acquisition with a shutdown reliever to add to our already stellar bullpen. if the Phils can continue to shorten the games, they've proven they can win them late...
what if that's the plan?

Blanton sure hasn't been an "inning eater" away from McAfee Coliseum. Over the last 2 1/2 years, he has made 39 starts away from McAfee Coliseum, and only 19 of those have been quality starts. I mean, this is basic stuff. Even a casual fan knows that the A's play in one of the game's most pitcher-friendly parks. Does it not occur to the Phillies to look at the guy's home-away splits? Or do they just not care? I imagine they've probably already written their press release for the day they acquire Blanton: No doubt it includes something about all the innings he has pitched in the last 3 years, and no dobut it mentions that he has won between 12 and 16 games 3 years in a row. I often think that the Phillies target players based upon the press release they'll be able to write up, after the acquisition.

and to Baxter, here here. i find the prospect of Ian Snell's availability very intriguing. here's a guy with similar stuff to Bedard/Burnett that is just languishing in the baseball purgatory that is Pittsburgh. he's been mostly overlooked in this season's edition of trade rumors because of an early DL stint and some ineffectiveness, but his competitive nature makes him an ideal "change of scenery" candidate. something tells me that his numbers would change in a hurry given the competitive nature of an NL East pennant race...

61 starts at home with 408.1 IP, 3.79 ERA, .258/.304/.386 against.

57 starts away with 352.1 IP, 4.78 ERA, .290/.337/.438 against.

So 4 fewer starts and 56 fewer IP. He'd pitch about 30 IP fewer than his home rate if you extended his away starts to 61.

He's allowed pretty much the same # of 2B and HR away as on the road. The same number of total hits even. He's just had 159 more PA faced at home.

"Ummm...maybe his velocity was down and his secondary stuff wasn't that great BECAUSE he only pitched three innings the past month due to a sore shoulder. Basing an opinion on a player from a few innings in an exhibition game after that player had just been shut down for a few weeks due to injury, seems a little silly."

I think his point is just that-he's only pitched a few innings this month, b/c of injury, and didn't do all that great(and not that bad) in the Futures Game, so he's not the answer THIS year.

Snell's middle name is DANTE. Welcome to the Inferno...or...abandon all hope?

baxter: I like Snell, but I find it interesting that Carroll makes contradictory statements in that piece.

"He’s durable, solid, and seems the type that would relish being in a pennant chase."

Then,

"Snell is the equal of Rich Harden in talent. I didn’t buy it, but they have similar body types, two pitch repertoires with similar velocity and movement, and some questions about durability."

Well, which is it? Durable or not? Just nitpicking.

Considering that baxter wants us to trade Jimmy Rollins, I'm hardly shocked that he's ga-ga over a pitcher who has had one good season in his entire career (if you consider a 9-12 record with a sub-4.00 ERA good), who has a career WHIP of 1.51 and who has been been far, far worse than Adeam Eaton this year. I am surprised, however, that he actually found another Aye vote for this crazy idea.

Snell has good stuff. So do a lot of lousy pitchers, including our own reclamation project, Brett Myers. Are we trying to stash away good stuff/lousy command pitchers who might eventually turn into good pitchers, or are we trying to make a playoff run in 2008?

Wes- Yeah I really don't think Law was saying that Carrasco was a bad prospect, just that he would not be a viable call up this year due to the sore shoulder and limited experience this season. Hence the Phills should look outside the organization.

I would love to get Ian Snell. It sounds like pie in the sky though. Will Carroll's report is confusing though. He calls Snell durable and then questions his durability in the same paragraph. Is he durable or not? Love his stuff and age though. On Blanton; Definitely an upgrade over Eaton (backhanded compliment if ever I heard one), but it almost sounds like a deal just to make a deal. He was terrific against the Phils a few weeks ago, but it doesn't look like he's a good fit for CBP. I say don't open the vault for this guy. The other day I predicted a Lohsian type move. I think this would qualify except we will be giving up a lot as opposed to what we gave up for Lohse. I don't even remember what we gave up for Lohse so I guess it wasn't too much. Of course Blanton would not be just a short term rental. On Kendrick; I predicted after he won 10 games last year, he wouldn't win 10 more games in his career. I am thrilled to have been proven wrong. Still it shows a lack of confidence in Kendrick that I think a lot of Phillie fans have. He is just not impressive. His control has to be pin point. When its not he's a souvenir waiting to happen.

Sophist: Yeah, I know that they keep track of relievers and inherited runners but I wanted to look at how often Kendrick's runners he passed onto the next guys scored. ("Willed runners" or "Heirloom runners"?)

Considering our bullpen's current reputation, you'd think more than once in a while they'd help Kendrick out.

My old idea of ERA would help-leave a runner on 1st for the next guy and he scores-you get charged with 1/4 of a run, he gets charged with 3/4 of a run.

Sure, it's not absolutely fair, but it's fairer than the current system.

Wish we'd score 10 of 14 runners of any type when we're batting.

Blanton would definitely be "a deal just to make a deal", as donc said. And it would be frustrating bc he'd be a guy they feel they HAVE to keep in the rotation for the next couple years, bc he's under contract for a decent amount, and that would keep us from bringing up a young guy who deserves a shot. If this is the best they can do then just give Happ a shot.

This Ian Snell and Pirates talk reminded me that Ed Wade almost traded Ryan Howard to the Buccos for Kip Wells. I think if that had happened Ed Wade never would've lived to see the day he got choked by Shawn Chacon.

there is espn insider info on "blanton and phils talks heat up" or something but i dont have espn insider... anyone had a chance to check it out?

TK: Ryan Howard for Kip Wells? Chilling.

Cipper: Haven't seen that but I did hear Buster Olney on with Jody Mac this morning. He made it sound as if the deal has been laid out and it's just a matter of if the A's will bite. He didn't have any info on who the prospects are.

Hypothetical Situation:

"Phillies trade pitching prospect Carlos Carrasco, OF Greg Golson, and C Jason Jaramillo to Oakland for innings-eater Joe Blanton! GM Pat Gillick to speak at 4:30PM press conference"

~NEPhilliesPhan hurdles laptop at 97 MPH into living room wall~

TK: Gillick offered Howard to the Pirates for Zach Duke.. and they said no.

At the time, the Pirates were worried about Howard's prodigious K rates in the minors...for some reason. Howard was a clear case of the benefit of not trading a long shot prospect.

NEPP: 97 MPH for a laptop? The hell with Joe Blanton. Do you have an off speed pitch?

Dang, it really does seem the Blanton to Phils possibility is gaining steam. So not exciting. The only way it could make sense to me is if they're able to save some prospects getting Blanton and using them to score a lefty reliever or bat off the bench.

In reality, the hardest I've ever thrown is low to mid-80's...so it would be a Jamie Moyer esque laptop into the wall.

So we think you throw 97 but you really only throw mid 80's. Sounds like you're born to be acquired by the Phillies. You'd probably fetch Carrasco and one of the catchers at least.

Am I the only one here that can't wait for the trade deadline to come & all these rumours to dry up, So much speculation. So little real information.
PLAY BALL! already

clipper: not much to it

Blanton talks heating up with Phils

Joe Blanton | Athletics | Interested: Phillies, Phillies

Talks between the Phillies and the A's about right-hander Joe Blanton are accelerating, reports ESPN The Magazine's Buster Olney.

Blanton, 27, has struggled this season with a 5-12 record and a 4.96 ERA, but the Phillies could use a pitcher like Blanton who can eat up innings and hopefully give the Phillies quality starts in the second half.

Blanton has "Phillies blown out in Game 2 of the NLDS" written all over him.

Unfortunately, Game 2 of the NLDS may be a lofty goal, though I remain optomistic.

Blanton would be a great FA pickup, in addition to getting a front line starter. If Gillick thinks this will equalize the pitching situation in the NL East, he is on crack.

Mets play tonight. No guarantee that we come out of the AS break with sole control of first in the East. Go Reds!!!

Unfortunately, Game 2 of the NLDS may be a lofty goal, though I remain optomistic.

The Matt Cain rumor that Randy Miller has at PhillyBurbs is very tantalizing. I'm sure it would take at least every top position prospect in our system plus Carrasco. Maybe Victorino or Werth plus Outman or Happ could get it done. If there's anything to this (doubt it), I'd say, throw the farm at them.

http://www.phillyburbs.com/pb-dyn/news/102-07162008-1563646.html

Anyone else on the A's roster, that *realistically* could be added to a Blanton deal?

Lets be clear here- I'm not in favor of trading Jimmy Rollins, I'm against losing Pat Burrell. I do like proposing futile, cost cutting ideas that draw attention to the ownership's greed, because its the root of all the Phillies troubles. The Burrell situation is directly related to potential trades for a starting pitcher, so you can't realistically discuss those trades without considering the Phillies budget and future. We're all aware of the financial limitations imposed on the Phillies front office, so why act like Mets fans, who don't have these problems?

I also think the loss of Pat Burrell is being underestimated. Since PtB likes Philadelphia, he might settle for an extension of his current contract. The Phillies would be foolish not to retain a player of Burrell's caliber at a hometown discount.

Replacing Burrell's production would likely cost more than resigning him, because he's hitting better than players who earn twice as much. Those who think PtB would be "easy to replace" simply don't realize how good he is. Since the 2007 All-Star break, Burrell has been one of the best offensive players in the game.

OPS over the past 365 days(All-Star break to All-Star break)

Matt Holliday 1.022
Pat Burrell .986
Manny Ramirez .912
Carlos Lee .908
Alfonso Soriano .899
Carlos Beltran .898
Vladimir Guerrero .878

Over the past 162 games, Burrell has outperformed all outfielders except for Matt Holliday.

What about Daniel Cabrera from Baltimore in a trade. He seems similar to Snell.

I read two reports this morning about the Phils taking a look at Jarrod Washburn.

baxter - No one has said Burrell is easy to replace, and no one has undervalued him.

From what I've read on BL, most think his loss (without adequate replacement or better SP) will close the window on this team.

The argument most people have been making re: replacements is that Rollins is simply harder to replace because of his value at his position, his defense, and his speed. That isn't to say that Burrell is easy to replace. He's certainly not, especially when you consider the actual field of *available* players and not all players.

Baxter- Yes you make a very good case for why Burrell is so key. It is going to be VERY hard to sign an OF of his production, of similar age or younger.

On the other hand how hard would it be to find a SS who routinely OPS between .750 and .800 in CBP? Rollins offensively is the definition of league average. That is not hard to replace. Whereas Burrell is currently the best offensive force in LF in either league.

I know this is heresay, but Rollins is very much overrated. That is why trading him makes so much sense. Buy low, sell high. Rollins is still a sell high guy. I bet we could get back major league ready prospects for him right now, and our window would increase by a couple of years.

"On the other hand how hard would it be to find a SS who routinely OPS between .750 and .800 in CBP?"

Rollins OPS since 2004

04: .803
05: .769
06: .812
07: .875

Throw his base-stealing ability in there and he is not the definition of league average. Even this year, Rollins' OPS is above average at his position (5th highest in all of MLB.)

PhillR: This has already been gone over, but let me know how many shortstops in the entire major leagues are both rock solid defensively as well as good as Rollins offensively (even in a down year)? The list begins and ends with Jose Reyes. But yeah, let's get rid of him.

Not sure if anyone got this from last thread or if it is just to ridiculous or already discussed.

What about Chris Young from SD? Just made a rehab start, I think next year is 2nd year of arbitration, SD is god awful.

Has his name been rumored at all?

Anyone care to shoot this one down for me?

Check out this 'sabermetrics' table from yahoo.

http://sports.yahoo.com/fantasy/mlb/news?slug=ys-sabertable_pitchers_071508

Blanton's opponents have a .434 slugging...Myers HR per nine innings is hilarious.

Wow, and check out Jarrod Washburn's last 10 starts:

http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/players/5995

"Cupcake" + Schmitter = oh no.
The A's could use both Donald and Cardenas to fill Crosby and Ellis positions long-term. I'm not sure what we could get back in return, but I hope it's not just Blanton and his vaunted "cost-controlled" contract. In fact, if we're dealing with the A's, I hope we get Duke, Street, and Ellis. I'd probably give up some decent prospects like Donald and Cardenas for that haul.

Washburn looks okay. His K/9 is the highest it's been since 2001; his BB/9 is the lowest it's been since 04; his HR/9 is the lowest it's been since 05.

His LD% is way up this year, though. 4% higher than 06 and 07, and his BABIP is 30 points higher than those years. His GB/FB is pretty low, as well. Cole Hamels territory. Hamels HF/FB is 11.4% while Washburn's is 8.6%.

This is more a reflection on my own stupidity than anything else, but I spent a good minute trying to figure out how that might have been "hearsay," until I realized it was intended to be heresy.

In any case, the Blanton rumors are the first to actually feel like a move the Phillies would do. As Seth Everett commented on 610 this afternoon, I wouldn't want to try to explain to the A's fanbase if they win a few out of the break why they traded Blanton in addition to Harden.

Brian G - I'd throw Furcal in there as well.

Jack: I think your defense of this ownership's approach to spending could get a pretty good fight going. We've heard all the excuses before. You say $105M is a perfectly reasonable budget, but without knowing what their revs and profits are, it's hard to make that judgment. The Phillies are in the largest single-team market in the country.

Based on Olney's report, the Phillies are waiting on the A's. But I'm sitting here wondering who the Phils could have possibly offered for Blanton. And it's making me nervous.

You want to talk about worrisome GB/FB ratios for CBP, go no further than Matt Cain

05: .56
06: .75
07: .89
08: .66

Yikes. Highest FB% in the league. We certainly wouldn't want to be dealing Vic in that trade since both he, and CBP fans in the OF, would be getting a lot more opportunities.

How do you change mindset from outrage that Burrell is not an All Star to waiving him around as trade bait?
Keep your best players - Howard , Utley, Rollins, Burrell & King Cole out of any trades .

What do you guys think about Donald and Werth for Blanton and Street? Personally, Donald is not really a "prospect" for me because of his age.

Bob: The idea works if Donald can play everyday SS at the major league level and Cardenas can play 2B. They can't.

Sophist: Agreed on Furcal. I'd say he's about Rollins equivalent overall, and he is coming off a contract that paid him $13 mil/yr.If he wasn't injured he'd def be getting a raise on that this offseason, probably to 15/16 mil... which is TWICE what we are paying Rollins for each of the next 4 years.

I wouldn't discount Donald b/c of his age, he ain't that old and he's hit at every level. Will he be a "star" in the bigs-probably not, but to use Eskinesque language, he looks like a "nice little player". I'm not sure we know what we have in him just yet. I'm definitely willing to move him, but he's one that makes me a little nervous.

There is an Internet rumor circulating - not sure if it carries any weight - that Gillick packaged Carrasco for Joe Blanton...

"The Phillies are in the largest single-team market in the country."

Excellent point, clout.

Where is this "internet rumor" circulating PB, on the "World Wide Web"?

Morty: But in context, all of those two team cities have at least twice as many people as Philly, and the only single market teams with higher payrolls (other than Boston, which is a different case) but lower populations are Detroit and Seattle. We could probably spend more, I don't know, but it's not like the lack of spending is egregious.

where is Boston in terms of single team markets? #2?

Baseball markets are different than just metropolitan areas, though. The Phillies market is basically just parts, not even all, of Eastern PA and Southern NJ. Whereas Boston, with a smaller metropolitan population, has all of New England minus Connecticut and Atlanta has most of the South.

Don't leave DE out of the Philly market. All 72 of us.

Brian G:

What Dave X said, basically. The Phila. metro area is the 5th largest in the nation. Dallas, Phila. and Houston are the 3 largest single team areas, in that order from 5.2-61 mil population. Phila. is 5.8 mil.

Let the Giants raid our system if they want to foolish rid themselves of Matt Cain.

Personally, I think I will vomit repeatedly at the word of a Joe Blanton trade being legit. I can hear it on ESPN now. Brewers get CC, Cubs get Harden, and the Phils now *howling laughter in the background* pick up Joe Blanton. Forget Philadelphia, we are off to Flushing, NY to get the Mut player reactions. The laughter continues...

While I doubt that the Giants are going to make him available, if the rumors are true I would love the Phillies to trade for Matt Cain. I think he is a better option than Burnett or Bedard, and certainly Better than Oswalt or Blanton. As for Snell, he is young, has a lot of upside, and wouldn't be a rental, but has been pretty bad this season. He would be a better option than Oswalt or Blanton though.

Bob: Donald is 23 and major league ready. How young do you want these guys? Personally, I think trading Donald for anything other than a top pitcher would be a mistake. Like it or not, Burrell ain't gonna be here next year and it's not far-fetched to think that Donald would be a better offensive player than any replacement the Phillies could find at the price they're wiling to pay.

I'd way rather trade Golson than Donald.

*foolishly

Excuse me, Houston is 5.6, Phila. 5.8 and Dallas 6.1 mil. Chicago is 9.5, LA is 12.8 and NY is 18.8 mil.

The Phillies should also try to get lefty John Grabow for the bullpen. He fulfills a need, and would be cheaper than Marte, Fuentes, or Mahay.

Please don't put Oswalt in the same category as Blanton...

PLus Boston owns their own network.

Plus we have owners who are cheap to a point. They spend enough money to field a winning team. They don't spend enough money to field a World Series caliber team

Does anyone else feel like Rollins's defense has declined significantly in the past year? I don't know if its physical or mental, but he's not reacting as quickly as he used to. Since he's pushing 30 and not pulling the ball well this year, I'm sorry to say the decline could be physical. His range just isn't as great as it was last year- he's no longer making those spectacular plays he once made routinely.

Hopefully its just temporary, but regression begins to occur at his age. I think J-Roll can continue to be very good shortstop for 6-8 years, but his superstar days are likely behind him. 2006 and 2007 were probably his peak seasons, and he came back to earth in 2008. He'll probably keep hitting .275 with 15 homers and 40 steals for many years, just as he did 2000-2006.

I think J-Don can match J-Roll's current offensive production, so defense is the question. J-Roll is probably a better shortstop, but Donald is six years younger. If J-Roll's regresses to above-average defensively and Donald plays average defense, with offensive production being similar, the drop-off wouldn't be enormous. It certainly wouldn't be as big as the offensive drop from Burrell to Golson.

Also, Donald and Burrell are patient hitters, while Golson and Rollins are not. Golson, Rollins and Feliz in the same lineup would give us three players with .330 OBP. Again- I'm not advocating trading Rollins, but Burrell has become an offensive force the Phillies can't afford to lose.

I don't even hate Golson, but he's not a corner outfielder. I think he has the defense, speed and hitting to be an everyday center fielder; not a star, but an average major leaguer. I think Golson's better than Marlon Byrd or Doug Glanville, and they both spent a long time in the Major Leagues. Even if Golson never walks and strikes out a lot, he might hit .280 with 15 homers and 40 steals. Golson might be capable of replacing Victorino in CF, but he definitely can't replace one of the best power hitting outfielders in baseball in Pat Burrell.

Replacing Pat Burrell with Greg Golson is like replacing Manny Ramirez with Coco Crisp.

sophist: I'm not as concerned about Cain's GO/FO ratio as you are. He may allow fly balls, but the number of homeruns he allows is paltry, both at home and on the road. His BAA is also consistently low. He may allow fly balls but he doesn't allow line drives.

All else being equal, of course I'd prefer to have a ground ball pitcher. But all else is never equal. I'd rather have a fly ball pitcher who is a top-notch pitcher than a ground ball pitcher like Blanton who is the very epitome of mediocrity.

Also, to throw another metric into the mix, Phila. is the 4th largest media market in the nation, and thus the largest single team media market.

Carrasco in a deal for Blanton when they wouldn't use him to get Sabathia? Sounds fishy. There ain't a drug strong enough to make that trade make sense. Plus, wasn't Olney saying the deal wouldn't cost the phillies all that much. Beane has a knack for targeting off the path prospects and finding gold. I'd be looking at the Michael Taylor, Dominic Brown, Freddy Galvis, Edgar Garcia types. Happ might be part of it as well.

Baseball Media Markets :

http://us.i1.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/sp/tools/med/2006/06/ipt/1150742098.jpg

Phils aren't exactly the biggest...

Someone said it earleir but if the Phillies could get back Blanton along with either Dallas Braden or Alan Embree for the pen that would be ok depending on the pieces you give up

I'd rather get Washburn than Blanton.

Washburn would give you about the same production as Blanton, at a much lower cost. We'd have to give up prospects to get Blanton and virtually nothing to get Washburn.

PhilR: I do not want to pick another argument with you. But if you want to engage in an intellectually honest debate where there's a chance that people might actually take you seriously, quit using Rollins' career OPS as an index of his ability. Rollins is in his 8th major league season. In first four seasons, his OPS was between .686 and .743. In his last four, his OPS has been .803, .770, .811, and .875. His career OPS is about as valid a measure of his present ability as Randy Johnson's career ERA.

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EST. 2005

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