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Tuesday, September 30, 2008


from last thread: Another reason to keep Marson at arms reach is, if a catcher goes down, you don't have to pull him from Arizona or Florida. I believe the new rules for the playoffs allow you to replace an injured player DURING the series, however it has to be position for position, which is different than the injury replacement between series.

It would be really interesting if the selection of Happ vs Seanez was the deciding factor in whether the Phils beat the Brewers.

I, for one, think there are much more important factors.

clout: We certainly had fewer walks by total and percentage, but you are incorrect that we had more PA this year. That would be pretty much impossibly with how many fewer runs we scored. So it's not AS drastic a reduction.

The biggest difference in both areas is really Ryan Howard. He walked dramatically less this year, but at the same time, his greatly reduced K rate in the last month of the season caused the team to have an overall reduction for the year.

Where So goes, champagne flows.

Jason: I'm now on board with the Taguchi over Golson move as well. Golson has shown he doesn't have the instincts or composure to play defense in the big leagues yet. And Taguchi could give you a productive at bat, whereas Golson stands no chance to. And finally, we will take a hit at pinch running speed, but Golson doesn't inspire a ton of confidence in me not to be a deer in the headlights on the basepaths come playoff time either.

AWH: Agreed.

Happ is the right decision. Seanez has experience, but if we need him in a jam we're already screwed any way, so why not go with the young lefty that can go multiple innings. Taguchi is a far better pick than Golson because Taguchi can make contact, it's doubtful Golson ever will.

Rumored starting lineup for the Beer Makers-
Game 1 starting lineup
25 - Cameron, cf
2 - Hall, 3b
8 - Braun, lf
28 - Fielder, 1b
7 - Hardy, ss
1 - Hart, rf
23 - Weeks, 2b
18 - Kendall, c
49 - Gallardo, p

Brian G: You're right, I got that backwards. Way more PAs in 2007. You're also correct in attributing much of the walk and BA dropoff to Howard.

AWH: Good point. I don't believe this series will come down to Taguhi vs. Golson or Happ vs. Seanez.

Wow clout, does he make it rain, too?

If ever a stat line spoke to a player's skill set, it is Golson's. 6 ABs, 0 hits, 0 walks, 4 strikeouts, 1 SB, 2 runs scored.

Maybe Golson can end up having a career like Herb Washington did for Charlie Finley's A's. Washington's career stats:

105 games played
0 ABs
31 steals
33 runs scored

Interestingly enough, Washington -- the only designated runner in baseball history (that I know of) -- was actually a fairly crappy base stealer. In addition to his 31 career steals, he was caught stealing 17 times.

Hey bap, maybe Finley was on to something. His team did win thre straight WS, after all! :)

"Where So goes, champagne flows."

clout, if this winds u being true you should get the BL Prognosticator of the Year Award!

Newsflash: Pat Burrell left batting practice early with tightness in his back per DNL.

MPN: He makes it rain champagne!

b-a-p: I'm livid with you w/r/t Happ vs. Seanez. How dare you call up Chollie and promise him dozens of burritos, pupusas, or whatever else fattening they make in Northern CA these days just so you could be right about the post-season pitching staff. Amazing gall onj your part.

In the meantime, send me a plate of pupusas.

hh - Scary thought. The way Chollie plays platoon splits, we could end up with Bruntlett starting against Sabathia.

Slump or no slump you lose a lot without Burrell in the lineup. I hope he recovers very quickly. You know he's going to want to play.

Andy: You found me out. I did indeed send Cholly a box of pupusas with a note asking him to keep Happ over Seanez, so all my Beerleaguer friends would think I was prescient. Cholly sent me back a very nice letter, telling me he enjoyed the pupusas, and asking me where one finds such food. When I told him they were from Peru, he asked me what state Peru was in.

I don't see the Twins Chi Sox game in the TV listings.

Is it being broadcast locall tonight?

Yeah, Burrell's back problem made ESPN's main stories. That can't be good.

re: burrell... maybe greg golson makes the team after all.

hope the bat's okay

i like Sveum's comments about his team, "after what this teams been thru the last week.... tomorrow wil be a cakewalk"

seriously? is that what the manager says to his team before the playoffs?

The last time we faced Gallardo, we only scored one run against him on a solo HR. Who hit the HR? Burrell.

Come on, Bat, load up on the muscle relaxers and get in the game tomorrow. It's your walk year, yo.

Yeah, redbeard, I just heard that snippet, too. Cakewalk, really? The Phillies and the bright lights of October are easier than playing the Pirates and Padres, apparently.

I certainly hope the Phillies aren't taking the Brewers as lightly.

ill bet dollars to donuts burrell plays

I bet Prince Fielder would take those donuts.

The Twins-White Sox game is on TBS.

Hopefully Machine is alright because the prospect of seeing Jenkins or Stairs out in LF to start Game 1 isn't too appealing.

I think Burrell will play too, but how will the bad back affect his swing, that is the question.

BAP: Indiana

MG: I'd go with Stairs. There's always some obscure guy who has a great post-season. He's my pick.

Beerleaguer today: Playoff roster discussions

Metsblog today: Trading Luis Castillo for Eric Byrnes

I look forward to So Taguchi becoming a post-season hero here so when he returns to Philadelphia - similar to him returning to St. Louis this season - he can receive a standing ovation and erase the painful memories of being over-matched at the plate and misplaying balls in the outfield.

Now why on earth would the Dbacks want to trade for even less offense than they have now?

Objectively Stairs is the better choice I think. But Jenkins is a better defender, and finally gets a taste of the playoffs, ironically against the team he spent his whole career playing for, so maybe give him a chance. So that's the case for him.

Although I highly doubt Burrell doesn't play.

AWH (and others):
The Twins/Sox game will be on TBS tonight at 7:30

You can tell Sveum is a new manager...there's no way Fielder and Sabathia can concentrate now that he's gone and said "cake".

They LOVED Taguchi in Saint Louis, and those fans are no dopes... they know their baseball. He is experienced, can be utilized in a few different capacities, and he sure as hell is "due." Good choice.

By the way, those of you who do not see the Philadelphia Inquirer missed a terrific Tony Auth Phillies cartoon today (Editorial Page). You can probably view it on their site -- it's definitely worth a look, and I promise it'll put a smile on the face of anyone not living under a bridge.

And Carson, that's a very righty-centric (is that a word?) lineup you have for the potential Brewers starting 9, with good reason. The Brewers, like the Cubs, match up very well with left-handed pitchers due to the construction of their lineup. Against Hamels and Moyer, the only lefty hitter should be Fielder, and against Myers and Blanton (if he pitches) we should see Counsell at 3rd and Ray Durham at 2nd.

I'm not necessarily worried about Hamels facing all those righties, as I believe left-handed hitters actually fare better against him than righties due to his devastating change. I do like it when Myers and Blanton will be pitching, however - call me crazy to be nervous about two .230 hitters, but Rickie Weeks and Bill Hall scare the crap out of me with their speed and power, respectively. It's going to be nice to see Counsell and Durham in their places in the starting lineups when a righty is starting.

Haddon Heights Harv: Here is the cartoon.

Jenkins potential revenge factor against his former team - an interesting twist potentially.

Taguchi is washed up. No way I want to see him getting a key PH AB this series.

Say it's the bottom of the 10th inning on Thursday evening, tie game, pitcher's spot coming up. Phils bring up Matt Stairs to pinch-hit (assuming Dobbs and Jenkins have already been used) but Sveum counters by bringing Brian Shouse in out of the pen (with nobody else warming in the pen).

What do you do if you're Cholly? Leave Stairs in to face a tough lefty for the inevitable strikeout? Or do you let So take a crack at this lefty and see what he's made of in the post-season?

I'll agree completely - he was god-awful in the regular season and in no way would I want him up in a big spot in the playoffs. Still, the way Manuel constructs this lineup doesn't yield a lot of choices for a pinch-hitter from the right side of the plate. Assuming Pedro starts at 3rd and the remainder of the roster is what is expected, that leaves Jenkins, Stairs, Dobbs, Coste, Bruntlett, and Taguchi on the bench. Is there a better option? Because if the lineup is utilized this way, I don't think so...

Burrell's back is nothing a steroid injection can't fix. Barry Bonds never had a back problem.

One thing I don't understand at all - the praise being directed towards the job Torre did in LA this season. A sub .500 club until the Manny trade and even then they barely finished over .500. Basically won the NL West because of the crappy competition.

MG: Agreed. It really is just silly. Has anyone on that team other than Ethier done better than they were expected to? They didn't outplay their run differential. They were a mediocre team and just happened to get lucky that they were in a crappy division and that Manny Ramirez was motivated for the first time in years.

MG: Yeah, but it makes for a good story: Torre leaves, guides his new team to the playoffs, and the Yankees miss the playoffs for the first time in 8 zillion years.

A better story, however, would be if, after the Santana trade, the Twins win the division and the Mets spend October watching on tv. In a game to which I'm otherwise indifferent, that story line has motivated me to root for the Twins tonight.

BAP: It'll be even better if Gomez gets the game winning hit.

Although, I still love Thome, so it's hard for me to root against him.

And hey, don't forget that Nicky Punto when watching the game tonight.. He's a former Phil and really, really fun to watch

Does TBS have the commentators listed anywhere for the divisional series?

joe: I saw on the Broadcast info for the series.

Television: TBS with Brian Anderson, Joe Simpson and John Smoltz.

Radio: WPHT 1210 AM: Pregame coverage hosted by Jim Jackson has been expanded to one hour; Scott Franzke, Harry Kalas, Larry Andersen and Chris Wheeler will be behind the radio microphones; WUBA 1480 AM: Spanish Beisbol Network with hosts Bill Kulik and Danny Martinez.

John Smoltz? Aught to be interesting.

I think Brian Anderson is a local Brewers commentator.

Over/under on the amount of times Smoltz mentions the size of our ballpark or calls it a bandbox?

So we got Smoltz who hates CBP and Brian Anderson a Brewers broadcaster, that should be fun to watch and listen to.

Random place to stick this, but, I haven't been posting recently--teaching college freshman is actually quite a bit of work.

Anyway, congrats to you guys and the Phillies. I'd have liked to see the Mets get there instead, but I'd be happy with any team from the NL winning the WS. So good luck. You'll need it.

Griffey with the hose from short-center to keep the game scoreless. A play a CF should make most of the time, but I think the Twins were right to try and force something there.

Low scoring game, gotta test his arm.

@wally - what are you teaching?

16 hours away. I can not wait guys. I wish i didn't have to work so i could go. I have hgad 3 offeres to go to games 1 and 2 but i can not. I am just worried because afternoon games + espn scoreboard = lose

clout: Good one. If he does anything to ensure a Phillies victory in the NLDS or beyond I will buy a Taguchi j-shirt and start a Taguchi blog at

Maybe this game will go 15 innings and Mauer will go 0 for 7. If that happens, he loses his batting title and Pedroia wins it.

This game is setting up for a Tampa win in 4

I too have work issues and will have to tape tomorrow's game and watch it after-the-fact. That means I won't be around to offer my incisive commentary on Beerleaguer. The overall level of optimism on Beerleaguer will probably increase by about 50% in my absence.

is there any real precedent for stats of a 163rd game counting? i think it odd that they would count.

How crazy would it be to ee a boston tampa ALCS and us to make it against the cubs. knock on wood

king: Yes, today's game counts in the stats. It is considered a regular season game.

KOP: 1-game playoff stats have always counted toward regular season totals. I initially learned this when the Reds and Mets ('98 maybe?) had a one game playoff for the wild card and everyone in my fantasy league scrambled to pick up their guys to grab some extra points.

I kind of brushed off the whole "John Smoltz is a commentator for the game tomorrow thing" until, after a few seconds, I realized he's still playing. Doesn't that strike anyone else as a little skeevy? I can't put my finger on why, but it just doesn't sit right with me.

Also, Thome with a clutch home-run. I didn't know it was possible.

TBS needs to move the mic away from the moaning drunks

i was actually also wondering what people here on BL thought about 163 game stats counting.

As one of the TBS guys mentioned, Morneau could take the RBI crown from Hamilton tonight, or at least tie it. Is that unfair to Hamilton? Should it matter? yadda yadda yadda

Eh, it's probably not really fair especially in terms of counting stats like RBIs. On the other hand it's one of those quirky baseball things I kind of like.

It would be interesting to see the reaction if someone broke the single-season HR record in game 164.

I meant 163...although I guess you could get to 164 if you had a division playoff followed by a wild card playoff the next day.

Yeah, if I remember correctly, didn't Matt Holliday overtake Ryan Howard for RBI crown last year b/c of the play-in game?

Great catch in center has the Twins making tee times.

Gentleman Jim with the game winner. Go figure.

I'm kind of glad to see the White Sox win – I'm always happy to see good things happen to Jim Thome. The guy has always been such a class act, and really did nothing but good things in Philly. I was very sorry to see him go, though I obviously understand the reason why.

Anyone hear anything new on Burrell?

Not to mention Griffey, even if he is just a hired gun at this point.

The Phillies should feel some level of pride in the White Sox victory tonight. They traded Thome for 30-cents on the dollar and Floyd for 0 cents on the dollar and the Sox would never have made the playoffs without them.

Jack: Murphy said on his blog that we wouldn't hear anything until tomorrow on Burrell.

Kenny Williams is a helluva GM. Looking over the Sox roster, nearly all their key guys were acquired in trades.

Someone mentioned Nick Punto above. Punto, who somehow managed a 97 OPS+ this season was traded to the Twins with Carlos Silva for Eric Milton. Milton had one OK year for the Phils and then left for free agency. Punto has been a super-sub for the Twins and Silva was a pretty good back-of-rotation innings eater for the Twins for 4 years, winning 47 games before leaving for free agency. Pretty good trade for the Twins.

The thing is by Twins standards, that's probably a mediocre trade.

People talk about how the Phils should "break slot" in the draft. Where I think they should "break slot" is to hire away scouting and personnel people from teams like the Twins and Marlins. Then they wouldn't have to worry about over-spending on the draft.

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