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Monday, December 08, 2008

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i'm kind of torn... i want the Mets to overpay out the wazoo for a overhyped closer, but egardless of how much they overpay, he'll still make them a better team.

thephaithful: The closer market will likely ensure that the Mets don't have to overpay for a closer. In fact, Lidge's deal earlier in the season may be the biggest closer deal all year. There's a chance K-Rod will only sign for 3 years with plans to go back on the market when the economy, perhaps, is better.

They're looking into John Garland too...

Let them burn $20 million on the closer position in 09...they have plenty of other holes to fill anyway.

NEPP: I'm praying the sign John Garland thinking he'll be their #2 starter. After Santana, they have Pelfrey (who closed strong, but is probably a #3 at best) and John Maine who is a HUGE question mark. Their #5 starter right now is Jon Niese who has 3 career starts.

As much as their bullpen is a huge mess (they need a set up man and a closer), their rotation ain't much better.

yup, me too. Garland isn't exactly a "dominating" pitcher.

According to D. Murphy, Moyer is pushing for a 2 or 3 year deal. If that is what he really really wants, I hope the Phillies are smart enough to NOT give it to him.

NEPP: Yeah, I got no sentimentality for a 45 year old pitcher looking for a multi-year deal.

Take the $7M and be happy to have a rotation spot on the defending World F-in Champions.

Oh, to those that are into such things, BP's PECOTA projection for Evan Longoria is eerily close to his actual stats. Its within a couple points on avg and obp as well as nailing his RBIs and 2Bs exactly. And off on HRs by only 2. Sometimes they really nail a projection on the head.

It is interesting that the same people rooting for the Mets to spend money and maybe make some mistakes are perfectly happy with John Mayberry as the extent of the Phils offseason acquisitions. It will be intersting to see how long their happiness lasts next season.

NEPP: I smell a condescending post from Clout coming. If I recall, he's not a big fan of PECOTA.

I saw on MLBTradeRumors that a requirement of Garland signing with the Mets is that he has to change his name from John Garland to Juan Garlando...

clout: Who is perfectly happy with John Mayberry as the extent of the Phils offseason acquisitions?

Although I agree that K-Rod is a little over-hyped and could have arm issues in the near future, he is a top-flight closer and IMO the best FA closer on the market. K-Rod makes the Mets much better. The status quo will not be enough if the Phils plan to compete in '09, especially if this is just the beginning of a Mets bullpen overhaul. By signing K-Rod, the Mets will have adequately addressed their biggest off-season issue. Let's hope that the Phils address theirs before Opening Day.

Jack: PECOTA, like a blind squirrel, sometimes nails it.

I dont think PECOTA is anymore innacurate than any other "projection". Its fun to read if nothing else...especially on your lunchbreak at work. I like going back to read the "experts" picks for division winners and WS winners at the end of the year. Those guys (ESPN, CNNSI or Foxsports) are usually no more accurate than any of us would be at making the same picks.

Lidge would have been the best closer on the market but we locked him up mid-season. The Mets in 09 will have just as many holes as us...the same as in 08 and 07. It'll be a fun ride no matter what.

Probably too bad we wont have Burrel to launch K Rods 92 mph fastball into the warm starry night sky over CBP.

CJ: I am far less interested in who the Mets or anyone else buys than with what the Phillies do to replace Pat Burrell and, perhaps, Jamie Moyer. Numerous posters here have said they are happy with letting those two walk without replacements if the money is applied to long-term contracts and arbitration for those remaining. I do not share that view.

Clout - Thank you for summarizing my feelings regarding the off-season; it's amazing how you're able to read minds. I can't believe every single free agent has signed and the only move the Phillies made was trading Golson for Mayberry.

Phanatic's brother: Nope, we have Utley and Howard to take care of that. And they will.

Wouldn’t it be hilarious if Krod signed with the Mets and then needed TJ surgery by mid-April? Would that not be the ultimate FU to the Mets from the Baseball gods?

Who cares how much the Mutts spend? They've got the cash but not the chemistry to win. Does anybody know how to purchase Daily News headlines that have been printed onto coffee mugs?

R. Bill -

Same story as last year with the Santana signing. The Mets have a lot of issues, not just finding a closer and John Garland.

We'll see come April.

Unless they sign Manny Ramirez, I agree with the "who cares how the Mets spend?" sentiment.

JMARR:

I understand that. And I don't care what the Mets spend per se, but if the Mets are upgrading their team, shouldn't we do our best to do the same? Remember, the Phils only won the division by three games. If the Mets had a better 'pen, I can't be sure they would have done so.

I don't want to have to count on a major collapse ('07) or an inept bullpen ('08) to allow the Phils to get to the post season again. I'd rather just fill the holes and put together another great team. Losing Burrell and Moyer and adding nothing doesn't do it for me.

My point is that if other teams in the division are adding players to get better, the status quo may not be enough.

Peter Gammons says the Astros would like to move Carlos Lee. He'd be more than an ample replacement for Burrell in LF. Maybe Ed Wade can be ripped off again.

How much money and years do they still owe Lee? And would we have to pay for his cow farm to be moved up to PA?

Clout~

From everything that we've all read and from what Amaro's been saying, don't expect the Phils to do ANYTHING major. They just won't be big-time players here. The Lowe thing? That was just a ploy to get Moyer back to the negotiating table that's all.

I believe no one will be happy with what they do while the Mets and Braves will be better.

Let's face it, it's great that we won the WS. But this team has holes to fill. And a platoon of Jenkins, Stairs etc. doesn't excite me at all.

clout: The Phils don't exist in a vacuum. What the Mets do or don't do is just as important as what the Phils do or don't do. The margin of error is slim. And bad moves (signing Eaton, for example) are just as relevant as good ones (trading for Lidge). I don't believe there are many on here who are content with the roster as it exists right now.

R. Billingsly: Well, as long as you believe the Phils success can only be predicated upon Mets failure... you'll never be happy with what the Phillies do. The Phils won the WFC. The Mets had little to do with that. We won the division by three games... it's not like we squeaked in. And the Mets bullpen didn't exactly hurt the Brewers/Dodgers/Rays.

"By signing K-Rod, the Mets will have adequately addressed their biggest off-season issue."

True, but whatever closer the Mets sign just brings them back to where they were before Wagner got hurt (though Wagner wasn't having much of a season before it ended early). So they have a closer -- swell. That was far from the only problem in their pen.

Jack: Yes, Utley and Howard should do fine against a RH like K-Rod. But with Burrell gone, who besides Werth is going to hit them against LH with any regularity?

"Wouldn’t it be hilarious if Krod signed with the Mets and then needed TJ surgery by mid-April?"

No, actually, it wouldn't. Just MHO.

"Peter Gammons says the Astros would like to move Carlos Lee. He'd be more than an ample replacement for Burrell in LF."

Lee had his best season ever in '08 at age 32. It's unlikely he'll maintain an OPS+ of 144. The two years before that, it was 126, 126, almost identical to Burrell's past four seasons. The only major difference is that Lee hits .300 but seldom walks, while Burrell walks a lot but won't hit .300. Their OBPs are very similar; Lee slugs a little higher. Lee might be slightly faster than Burrell, but you're looking at basically the same player -- and it's a player who makes $18.5 million for each of the next four years.

If you won't give that money to Burrell, why would you give it to Lee?

The Mets will get a top quality closer at the price they want to pay, most likely K-Rod. It is a bad year to be a closer on the market. Lidge has to feel really good about his contract now, but at the same time it was a great move by the Phillies to sign him as that is one less major headache this offseason.

K-Rod is the perfect fit for the Mets. He fits right in with their losing culture there. The Angels never won anything with him and only disappointed in the playoffs. The Mets as a team are chokers. The Mets won't win it all until they radically shake up their core of Wright, Reyes, Beltran, Delgado, etc....

I hope they sign Garland too. He doesn't scare me at all. Once again the Mets will look good on paper, compete all year and then choke at the end unless they change the losing culture of that team. K-Rod isn't going to change it, but rather add to it.

CLee is owed 4 years @ $18.5M per year.
Can rake. Doesn't strikeout much. Doesn't walk much. Doesn't play defense much. Doesn't eat salads much.

Never had injuries until this year. So, I am fearful that he, as an out-of-shape, financially secure 32-yr-old, will be injury-prone going forward.

Too high risk for the money.

"We won the division by three games... it's not like we squeaked in."

How many days were left in the season when the Phils clinched -- one, wasn't it? Do they have to win on the final day for the verb "squeaked" to work for you?

"K-Rod is the perfect fit for the Mets. He fits right in with their losing culture there. The Angels never won anything with him and only disappointed in the playoffs. The Mets as a team are chokers."

Nice analysis there. In line with that, I believe, also, that their pitchers are belly-itchers and their catchers are belly-scratchers.

Alby: There's a reason there are 162 games in the season. Besides, the Phillies lead the division for 79 days this season... the Mets for just 39. I can't imagine how anyone can argue it was the Mets ineptitude that lead to a Phillies playoff spot. That's revisionist history... and it's just not true.

Len39: The Angels didn't win the WS with K-Rod in 2002? What planet were you referring to?

From MLBTR-
According to Ken Rosenthal, free agent southpaw Randy Wolf is open to all teams. He won't limit himself to the West Coast. Wolf first revealed this info on September 26th. Rosenthal wonders if a return to the Phillies could be in order if they don't re-sign Jamie Moyer.

*Return of the Wolf Pack?

Bonehead: How much of that money do you think Wade will have to swallow before somebody takes Lee's age 33-36 seasons off his hands? I think it's BS anyway. Without Lee, their punch is down to Berkman, Tejada and hoping Pence bounces back to his rookie form.

CJ: What's any of that got to do with it? The race wasn't over until the next-to-last day of the season. Sorry, but if that's not squeaking in, it's the next-closest thing. I agree that the teams are pretty evenly matched. I'm just taking exception to your choice of words, because it makes the Phillies sound clearly superior, and I don't think they were over those first 150 games. It was the last two weeks that showed the difference -- a team that comes from behind well gets battle-hardened, one that blows leads get battle-shy. I don't think those things carry over as much as some people here do.

Jack: 2002 is a long time ago. How have the Angels done the last couple of times they made the playoffs? Not good. Ask Manny about how tough K-Rod is in the playoffs.

re: El Cabayo

I think Lee is a better player than Pat Burrell and deserves more money than him. He's had 100+RBIs in 5 of his past 6 seasons (99 in 2004) while hitting .300+ in his past three seasons. Last year was his first year since 2002 without double digit steals, so although he's not fast, he's not exactly a base clogger either.

But you would have to trade to get Lee, and then pay the remaining salary as well, so I don't think that would be a good move on the Phils part.

Of course it'd be worth inquiring on from Amaro, to see what they wanted in return and if there is any possible salary relief on his remaining contract - but I doubt the answers he'd get would be good enough to actually go ahead with such a deal.

Stark is reporting that the Phillies and Moyer are haggling over money and Amaro has called negotiations "disappointing."

Len39: If Manny crushing the ball off of you means your not a good pitcher.... i dont think anyone would be playing in the majors.

Alby: Perhaps you should go back to the beginning of the discussion... unless you agree that the Phils success is predicated only upon Mets failure.

From Stark- The Phillies' difficulties in re-signing Jamie Moyer have reached the stage where Moyer has re-enlisted his former agent, Jim Bronner, to begin calling other clubs to see how much interest they would have in the 46-year-old left-hander. Sources indicate that while there continues to be mutual interest in having Moyer remain a Phillie, the two sides continue to haggle purely over dollars.

Two years ago, Moyer took a below-market, two-year, $9.5 million deal to remain with the Phillies, with a low $3.5 million guarantee in the second year. But after leading the World Series champs in wins, he's looking for a significant raise. Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr. told ESPN.com the difficult negotiations have been "a little disappointing."

"We'd like to bring him back," Amaro said. "Hopefully, we can still have a meeting of the minds."

Tribune could file for bankruptcy: WSJ

http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/tribune-could-file-bankruptcy-wsj/story.aspx?guid={71F8BA18-2283-4844-8818-6269BB00CF08}&dist=TNMostRead#comments

Cubs parent company is in HUGE financial trouble. Cubs are for sale and my bet is the Zell is desperate to raise the cash from a Cubs' sale to save the rest of the sinking ship that is the Tribune Co.

I hear the Cubs keep getting mentioned as big players this offseason I just don't see it. Teams up for sale almost never substantially increase payroll. In fact, this might just force the Cubs to make a move to clear a little payroll.

That's a pretty good sign that moyer won't be back...If he really is sticking on 2 or 3 years sorry but don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out Jamie.

Burrell is gone and I am willing to give less than 50/50 odds that Moyer is back either.

Not opposed to letting either player walk but the issue is that the Phils don't get any compensation if they sign elsewhere. Yeah both guys might have accepted arbitration here for a year but savvy teams get something they get rid of their better players.

I go agree with Clout that they will replace but guys but both will be lower-cost alternatives unless you think this team's payroll is going north of $120M+ and I am willing to make a bet with anyone on here that the Opening Day payroll is no where near that amount. Say something around $110-$115M.

It'll be at least $125M....Please Ruben...have it be at least that much.

Given the way the closer's market has become saturated, Mets might just get KRod for a real deal. Maybe even less that the extension the Phils signed Lidge for. If they did and sign another bullpen arm like Cruz, they are addressed their primary need this offseason.

As for anybody who thinks the Phils will be better if Burrell and Moyer walk and are replaced by lower-cost alternatives such as Rivera and Wolf, they are delusional. With the injury questions concerning Utley and Feliz, this team is clearly weaker.

I was willing to give Amaro until Christmas to see what the roster looks like but at this point all signs point to a roster that is filled with lower-cost alternatives and likely inferior.

Apologies for a post with little relevance, but I am facing a conundrum. I am purchasing my girlfriend a jersey for the holidays, and being a career catcher, I am leaning heavily toward a Marson jersey. Mistake?

More along the topic... Stark's comments regarding the negotiations with Moyer are not surprising. It's not hard to understand that Amaro would be skeptical of making his first significant investment a 40+ pitcher.

Marson hasn't even played in a MLB game yet. Little premature to be investing in a Marson jersey don't ya think?

MG: "I was willing to give Amaro until Christmas to see what the roster looks like but at this point all signs point to a roster that is filled with lower-cost alternatives and likely inferior."

What made you give up 17 days earlier? Have all the free agents dried up?

CJ:

Since you directed your comment of 1:02 at me, I will respond. I think the Phillies are a great team. They were last year. They will be again this year. My point was that if teams in the division are striving to get better, the Phils should as well. Having the same team in 2009 will not work if the Mets get build a bullpen that doesn't blow twenty-some-odd games. That goes for every team in the division, not just the Mets. If they are improving, we should do the same. That was my only point. Why should we be content with the current roster? Don't you think we should try to improve?

Having followed Lee here in Houston, he would be a big banger in a Phillies uniform. Wade would probably take some Lakewood back benchers in a trade. He'd be stupid to trade Lee. The Astros fans would be clamoring for Wade's ouster if he sent Lee packing for Philly.

http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/chicago-cubs-not-included-tribunes/story.aspx?guid={09E479FC-FA34-4B91-ABA1-B0F12B5688BC}&dist=morenews

Tribune Co. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in Delaware 30 minutes ago. Good luck in this market getting access to capital/credit.

"Tribune Co. said Monday it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection but its Chicago Cubs franchise, including Wrigley Field, is not included in the filing. "Efforts to monetize the Cubs and its related assets will continue," the company said in a statement.re going to rip them apart."

Basically Wrigley has a huge "For Sale" in front of it and I bet that Zell and the board at Tribune Co. are going to pressure Selig and the buys to accept whatever buyer comes along with the best offer.

Personally I would love to see Mark Cuban buy the Cubs, down the Bleacher Creatures, get drunk, take off his shirt, and make Selig very uncomfortable next summer.

Deutsche Phan, get her an Utley jersey. My three daughter's love the Chase man!

R.Billingsly: Have the Phils missed out on improving their team on Dec. 8th? Is there anyone at all suggesting the Phils don't try to improve? Will any of the improvements matter if, as you suggest, the Phils don't benefit from another Mets failure next year?

Phaithful: Bottom line is Angles flopped the last few years with K-Rod. He adds to the losing culture of the Mets organization. The Mets need to shake up the intangibles on that team.

CJ - Not at all. Still plenty of time but just call it a gut feeling. I said in the beginning of the offseason though that if the Phils do make a bigger move it will through a trade and not via FA. My bet is they only tinker through FA for players to round out their roster. Rivera falls into that group.

dutchfan: you're getting a phillies jersey to the GF for christmas? I dont need PECOTA to predict that you wont be kissing that same girl on NewYearsEve - unless thats just your 'B' gift.

"B" gift... behind getting her a season ticket. I see it as a risky, but potentially prophetic/ humorous investment if he manages to break in and have any type of role on the team.

"Ask Manny about how tough K-Rod is in the playoffs."

How about we ask him how tough Cole Hamels is in the playoffs? I mean, Manny has more post-season plate appearances against Hamels, and has a higher AVG, OBP & SLG than he did against K-Rod.

Or perhaps this is more of a reflection on the hitter than the pitcher...

Carlos Lee will not be a Phillie. Period.

IMO, K-Rod is the best closer option for the Mets to sign - from a Phillies' perspective. A RH closer does't neuter Utley and Howard, the way Fuentes might.

The Phillies either need to improve the SP significantly MORE than resigning Moyer (he's not an upgrade over '08), or replace Burrell's bat. Doing neither means, IMO, second place - and not necessarily to the Mets.

Carson, IMO, Wolf, if healthy all year, is an upgrade over Moyer - at least the '09 Moyer we're likely to see.

Why do yo think Moyer wants a 2-3 yr deal NOW? Simple.......because it's probably his last chance to get a multi-year contract. If Moyer '07 shows up in '09 (and isn't that more likely than the '08 version of Moyer showing up), I doubt there is any team that would give him more than one year.

Len39, while Garland isn't an intimidating pitcher, is does represent and upgrade to the Mets rotation. Any improved Mets pitching becomes problematic, because they did score as many runs as the Phillies last season.

Lastly, NEPP, Texans refer to them as "cattle ranches" not "cow farms". Farms with only cows on them usually produce only dairy products (except when they sell the old girls off for hamburger meat after they can't produce milk well enough anymore), and are therefore referred to as "dairy farms".

AWH - I don't know if signing Garland to replace Perez is really an upgrade for the Mets. Basically a status quo and Garland's raw stuff isn't as good as Perez. If the Mets new park plays as a more hitters' friendly park and the ball carries more, then Garland would be an average pitcher at best.

dutchfan: my girl loves the phils, but i'd be in for a rude awakening if her christmas presents were strictly related to them. Thats what she should be getting you.

Just something i'd think about if I were you. Can't hurt to throw in some sentimental jewlery or some crap along those lines instead of a Marson jersey. This holds true for about 99% of the straight female population, so good luck to you if you think you're in that 1% area.

MG: Exactly... and Garland has some disturbing stat trends that suggest his best days are well behind him. At least Perez is still young.

CJ: "Is there anyone at all suggesting the Phils don't try to improve?" As a matter of fact, yes. I don't feel like going through all of the post on Beerleaguer or other articles/blogs I read, but there are plenty of people saying that the Phils should simply sign Burrell, Moyer and all the arb guys and be done with it. After all, they are WFC, so they should be fine. I guess I was making a commentary to those who feel that they should only worry about bringing back the same group and not attempt to bring anyone else in. I feel that the Phils didn't exactly win the division by a landslide and if they simply bring back the same team in '09 it will be more difficult to make the playoffs if other teams in the division are improving.

I don't think the Phillies success is predicate on the Mets. The Mets' collapse and bullpen issues I referenced in earlier posts were just an illustration. It is my fault for not making that clear.

I hope that clears it up. I think it is a relatively simple observation, but I must not have stated it clearly.

Deutsche Phan: I would go with Cole. Marson is way premature. Or do Catchers hate pitchers? If so, I would go with Victorino.

But if you really want to take a risk go with Burrell. Could sace you a few bucks too.

A season ticket and a jersey. If your girl accepts that, please marry her.

I can't talk though, I am getting my wife (got married in november) a Justin Tuck Jersey. I almost threw up typing that. My wife is a Giants and Yankees fan. At least she is into sports I guess.

Hagan is reporting that the Phils and Twins are talking Donald and Young. I also read earlier today that the Rays want no part of Young again. I was an advocate of Young, but I'm getting a little concerned that two teams in two years are giving up on him despite his talent. That has to be a red flag.

AWH: I agree with MG, subbing out Oliver Perez with Jon Garland is not an upgrade in my eyes either, especially from the Phils point of view. Perez baffled our lineup time and time again. The only times we ever got to him was when he was walking 4 batters an inning - and even then we hardly capitalized.

my work comp is screwing up but i'm sure if you checked the stats, the Phils lineup has dreadful career numbers vs him.

Hey, if Moyer can get a multi-year deal worth a good amount of money, good for him. He should be out there trying to do what's best for him and his family. However, it won't particularly bother me all that much if the Phillies aren't willing to give him that big deal. I love the guy, and love him as a Phillie, but I think he's only worth bringing back on a 1-year deal with a vesting option.

I know people will scream that the 09 Phillies won't be able to replace Moyer, but a couple things: One, 2009 Moyer probably won't replicate 2008 Moyer. Two, if we sacrifice some success in 2009 in order to gain development time in the rotation for guys like Happ, Carrasco, and even Kendrick, that's ok with me. As I've said multiple times, winning the title in 08 to me buys the team some time to develop their young guys and try and position themselves for long-term success.

R.Billingsley: Ah, I thought you were suggesting there were people who were fine with the team not improving from where it stands right now.

I happen to think that if they did bring back Burrell and Moyer that they'd be a World Series contender again next year. You seem to ignore the fact that Blanton already gives us an upgrade over what we got from Eaton most of last year and there's a good possibility that Happ will be an improvement over Kendrick.

Hamels, Myers, Blanton, Moyer, Happ should be good for a few more wins than Hamels, Myers, Moyer, Eaton, Kendrick. Add to that the fact that Madson has finally learned how to pitch in the 8th inning and an offense that actually underperformed for parts of last year... and I would be fine with this team coming back the same.

The fear is that Moyer and Burrell are gone and won't be adequately replaced.

In fact, I would love to see the Mets ink Garland to a 3 yr/30M+ plus deal. Not likely it would an Adam Eaton type but I could easily see Garland giving the Mets an ERA north of 4 and plenty of mediocrity to boot for the next few seasons.

Plus, let's not forget that Perez has basically owned the Phils the last 2 seasons. Highly doubt that Garland replicates that type of performance.

That said, I wouldn't mind seeing the Mets overpay to resign Perez either although from what I have read they have soured on him and his demands for at least 4 yrs and probably around $13M-$15M per year.

Jack: That's a very good way to look at it.

Len39: Yes, there was also the bit in one of the reports that the Rays would "never" take him back... Still, if anyone could mentor a young player with past attitude issues I'd imagine that Rollins, Howard, and their World Series rings could. Young is still young.

Jack is the first poster to say he doesn't care if the Phils don't comepete next season.

Interesting.

clout:

How many fewer wins do you think a rotation of this:
Hamels, Myers, Blanton, Happ, Carrasco

Would have than this:
Hamels, Myers, Blanton, Moyer, Happ

Obviously we don't know what we have in Carrasco right now. But I'm just curious.

I was researching the Rakuten Golden Eagles (from the last thread) and saw a link to an article about Arbuckle. It said that he took a position "as a senior adviser to general manager Dayton Moore" of the Kansas City Royal. If that's not going from the penthouse to the outhouse, I don't know what is. This happened mid November. Where was I? I don't remember this. The article said he's from Missouri.

On the Rakuten Golden Eagles, my boss' son plays for them as a relief pitcher. My boss says that the Golden Eagles already have signed their four allowed "foreign" players. Could you see MLB having such a stupid racist protectionist rule? Looks like a righthanded reliever pitcher logjam on that club.

CJ - You are making some assumptions that might be bogus:

Kendrick (pre-ASB last year):
15 GS, 8-3, 4.47 ERA, 104 2/3 IP, 121 H, 12 HR, 32 BB, 47 K

Eaton (pre-ASB last year):
19 GS, 3-8, 5.71 ERA, 104 IP, 124 H, 13 HR, 43 BB, 56 K

I agree with you that just about anyone the Phils use would be an upgrade over Eaton and frankly if he manages to make this roster this spring it will be nothing short of a crime.

Kendrick on the other hand wasn't horrible last year in the 1st half. It was only until he wasn't able to throw strikes in August that he started to get lite up on a nightly basis. Do I think that Happ is likely to duplicate Kendrick's pre-ASB numbers from last year?

Maybe but Kendrick wasn't the issue in the 1st half. It was Eaton and Myers.

You are also assuming the bullpen will be just as dominant and that is an unlikely assumption. Durbin has red-flags everywhere and likely that a couple of guys including Lidge & Romero see more of a reversion to the mean with their career numbers. Still good but not nearly as dominant.

You are also assuming that a pitching staff that largely went through an entire season with minimal injuries will enjoy the same kind of health. While the Phils may have some alternatives in the starting rotation if they bring in another decent starter, there pitching depth in the minors is still incredibly thin. Not much talent that will be ready at all to step in during 2009 to help the big league club unless rushed.

Clout: So, hypothetically, if Moyer wants a 2 year, 18-20 million deal with an option for a 3rd year, you'd do it? Because otherwise, we wouldn't have his production from last year, and there's no way we could compete, right?

Clout - Agreed. The Philly fans will piss and moan if this team gets out of the gate slow yet again in April under Cholly. That is 100% guaranteed.

As for developing their young players, say what? The idea should be to maximize the value of this current core while it is still here and intact. That is going to change after the 2010 season as they likely have to make a decision on Howard and Rollins. Not to mention the gradual age as this isn't an incredibly young team packed with players who likely have future growth/upside.

Jack: I'd be curious to know, given your concern for the Phillies budget, who you think will be replacing Burrell and Moyer next season? Answer me that and I'll tell you whether I think they can compete.

CJ: Yes, more to the point. Sorry for the confusion. I agree with your post of 2:42 and I didn't ignore the observations you made. My comments were more general in nature.

MG: If we're going to start assuming injuries and some players doing worse then I don't know what to tell you. I'll just say that any player you want to sign as a free agent is likely to get injured. How can we have a rational conversation based on that?

Kyle Kendrick finished the season with an ERA+ of 80 last year. Adam Eaton with an ERA+ of 75. I find it hard to believe that Blanton and Happ can't significantly improve upon that.

Yo, new thread... it's Moyer-tastic.

CJ - You miss the point. The Phils' pitching staff enjoyed a run of nearly perfect health last year except Gordon (big shock). That isn't likely to happen again and will expose depth issues.

My point is this - even if the Phils resign Moyer. They are likely to have a pitching staff that does not duplicate their numbers from last year even if they have a full year of Blanton in the rotation and Eyre in the bullpen.

If they acquire another solid bullpen arm (and no Russ Springer doesn't meet this criteria) and upgrade from Moyer, then I am willing to bet the pitching staff will be possibly better. So far these two things haven't happened.

Clout: This wasn't about Burrell. I'd love to re-sign him, and support it just like you do, but I don't think we will. I think that ship has sailed. I imagine we'll get a Dobbs and Jenkins/FA RH or Mayberry platoon, which will be terrible.

As far as Moyer goes, I think we'd either sign a veteran guy like Randy Wolf or Jon Garland to a 1-year deal, or let Carrasco and Kendrick battle for the spot. Personally, I would like to see Carrasco given a shot after half a season at Triple A, presuming he is reasonably successful there.

Again, I ask you the question: Would you sign Moyer to a 2-year, 18-20 million dollar deal with an option for a 3rd year? Do you think Moyer will give you another 16-7 season with a 3.71 ERA? If not, then we won't compete anyway, according to you, since we won't be getting 2008 Jamie Moyer.

Jack: We have Hamels entering his prime and Rollins, Utley, Howard, Victorino, Werth all in their primes. This isn't time to sacrifice for the future, especially since this frugal ownership will not keep this nucleaus together. A team like this is rare.

MPN: I have the same hope as you that Rollins, Howard and Chase could turn Young around. He's still young with plenty of time to mature, but again it has to be a red flag that two teams in two years are giving up on him.

Also the Mets have officially made a three year offer to K-Rod.

Yes, I am unemployed so I have nothing better to do than post all the latest news here.

"Bottom line is Angles flopped the last few years with K-Rod. He adds to the losing culture of the Mets organization. The Mets need to shake up the intangibles on that team."

I'm not trying to troll here (I'll admite being a met fan), but, how exactly does 2 years of a lack of success define a losing culture? How does a guy with a ring contribute to that and what right does a fan of the losingest franchise in American Pro Sports history have to say another team (that has as many titles as the Phillies in 1/3 of their existence) have to say another team has a losing culture?

2 years doesn't define a franchise. I'm not saying the Mets have a winning formula, clearly something's not right there, but, it's not a losing culture...it's just a bad bullpen.

Len39, the Angels never won anything? How about the World Series in 2002?? And they've made the playoffs basically every year. K-Rod has been a very good closer for 6 years now, in a big market. Lidge had an amazing season, but it was just one, and wasn't in as big a market. They got the same contract (3/37). That's a good deal for the Mets. Lidge in CBP still, even after this last year, makes me nervous. He's a flyball pitcher, he got lucky that he only gave up 2 homers. Don't expect nearly as good a season from Lidge again, it will be a mistake to expect it. He'll still be good, but he won't be amazing.

I agree with jlwells.

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