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Friday, February 27, 2009

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This blog is the best. I rarely post, but every morning I come here before I go to philly.com to read about the Phils. Keep up the good work J-Dub.

I feel many of the established sports blogs will remain, especially those that dedicate themselves to a particular team (ie- BeerLeaguer). Why? Because we watch nearly every game, follow every transaction, over analyze every player in the majors and minors, and usually have a good sense of humor to it affords us the creativity to be mostly origional. Of course doing game recaps will most lead to something similar across the Internet and papers, but being blogs we have the liberty to speak our true feelings and put our spin on the story rather than just sticking to "the facts". Blogs are here to stay, and they will rule the day.

Damn, should have proof read that...oh well.

Carson, here comes my racist comment of the day:

You are not "well written".

Proofreading is overrated.

Jason - you have a very loyal following here& I don't think that will change any time soon.

Don't worry Jason, you'll always have the MSP Phillies Annual. Just received my copy in the mail. Great job.

JW, this blog offords most of us the forum to learn and express ourselves. It will survive.

You hit the nail on the head above: It's about debt. The newspaper business is past the point of being able to carry huge debt loads. Restructuring will only offer a temporary reprieve.

The publications that have the least amount of debt will be the ones that survive.

Tierney said that Phila Newspaper LLC is operationally profitable. So, if they can raise enough equity to take out the debt, or convert the debt to equity, they'll make it.

There are many businesses that historically have not lent themselves to large debt loads.

It seems the present/future business model of the print media is becoming one such business.

Those with the capital to invest stand to do well. (MOTO)

not too shy away from the phils, but i jsut saw that Manny turned down a $45mil deal that gave him $25 up front and a player option for $20, meaning he could take $20 or still go to free agency for more if he wanted!

I am having a hard time seeing anyone ponying up a better offer than that. Think he will end up with more or eventually settle?

thephaithful: I think Boras and Colletti are in stare-down contest, but unless another team jumps in -- unlikely -- it is a contest Boras cannot win.

My prediction: Manny accepts the Dodgers offer during the last week of spring training.

phaithful, part of it, I think, is that Manny doesn't want to come to camp. he reportedly doesn't like ST.

Now, as to the offer, I don't know how he thinks he can do better, but maybe Boras has a magic offer up his sleeve.

Who knows?

There are two other parts of it: One, greed - Manny really does want more money; two, saving face - I don't know what the conversations between Boras and Manny have been, but it seems to me that one, or both, of them don't want to accept an offer like that because it's less than half of what they've been asking for.

Maybe they feel there's some serious crow to eat if they do.

In any event, they can always backtrack and accept the offer.

But, they have nothing to lose by stalling.

It seems clear from McCourt's statement, that the Dodgers are unlikely to raise their offer unless serious competition develops.

I'll leave you to assess how likely that is.

Adam Eaton finally released.

RE: Manny. There's always a 3d option that has him sitting out a chunk of hte season. I doubt that happens. The comments out of LA indicate that they've now made 4 offers and Ramirez/ Borass haven't made a counteroffer. It's elementary that the counter has to be made before a deal can get done.

I pray to the gods that someone takes a flier on Eaton and he gets in a game against us at CBP this year.

Thank god the Adam Eaton era is finally over. Hope to see him again, serving up BP fastballs to the Phils.

If we can have "clout day" and "b-a-p day," I think we ought to officially designate 2/27, from now on, as Eaton the Contract Day, a day for cutting losses, recognizing sunk costs, and tossing the green and fuzzy leftovers from the back of the refrigerator. In honor of the release of Mr. Eaton,I make the following proposal:

The fruitcake you got three years ago and is using up space on the top shelf? Into the trash.

That lamp/stereo/dvd player/tv/other piece of broken electronics you were "going to fix some day?" Cart it to the proper recycling venue.

The magazines you stupidly subscribed (subscribe?) to but never actually get around to reading (because beerleaguer is better of course)? Cancel the subscription, bundle them up and kick em to the curb.

Just, basically, metaphorically: that green witch with the flying monkeys (whatever it is ion your case0? Pour on a bucket of Schuykill River water and watch the shrew melt into oblivion and sing:

Ding Dong A. Eaton's gone!

Andy: From day one the Eaton signing seemed a bit strange. I remembering posting that day about how his IP per start were among the lowest of every active major league pitcher with more than 100 career starts and his career numbers were just plain ordinary. Still, he'd been a pretty reliable backend starter on the Padres and Gillick assumed a bounceback from his bad year in Texas. In hindsight, it shows they were desperate for a SP. Of course, Gillick's next move was the Freddy Garcia trade.

Might suggest "Taps" for Eaton but a whoopy cushion would probably be more appropriate especially given how he just came up & collected his $8.5M and buyout money.

Hey, maybe we should stop signing so-so pitchers who pitch in pitcher friendly parks. (Chan-Ho Eaton)

Great thread header. Let's hope the Reading paper stays solvent for Beerleaguer's sake.

A great day...Eaton the Contract Day!!!! Yay!!!

MG made the greatest uncommented about (until now) typo in the last thread when he wrote:

"Nah. It should have something to do more with obscure or off-beat Phils' players/moves get disgusted or mentioned here. That is really what Beerleaguer is about."

Damn right, we get disgusted at times on BL! Winning the WFC has made us less disgusted than normal, but we still get disgusted enough to trash Junior from time to time. Many get disgusted from the comments of clout, too; though, not me.

My tongue was firmly in my cheek when I wrote about "well spoken" being racist code words. Its my droll sense of humor. We need to take Clint Eastwood's advice and get off the PC train before it drives us all off a cliff. Please feel free to describe my comments as being "well written", I will not be offended!

I work in Houston and today is "Go Texan" Day. As I took a shortcut through a shopping center parking lot on my way to work where I saw about ten covered wagons complete with horses. I think they take to the streets and pull the wagons to some downtown park. Definitely an odd sight to see for this WFC Phillies fan born and raised in south Jersey eating cheesesteaks and tastykakes! The office complex where I work are having a two hour "Go Texan Day Celebration" in the parking lot at lunch time, complete with a band! I think I'll pass on that one.

Let's make "Eaton Day" Feb. 29th. Maybe it will be funny by then.

Picture this:

AWH sitting at his computer.

Goes back over to BL to check out the comments.

Sees that Eaton has been released.

Immediately, George Friedrich Handel's Halleluia Chorus starts playing in his head.

Watch him pitch under a 4 ERA for another team this year. I think Phillies fans would actually hunt the man down.

Good news, not least of all for Eaton. I'm pleased but not enthused; Eaton at this point is pretty harmless, aside from his salary. Besides, to my mind he wasn't the worst long term acquisition sitting on the Phillies books.

AWH, I hear Crosby, Stills and Nash singing "Its been a long time coming, it'll be a long time gone."

Not a bad deal for Eaton, 8 million bucks to sit on his ass. I hope guilt compels him to donate some of that money to charity.

As for the Philly Inquirer, it is one of the newspapers that is among the walking dead. Yeah they are operationally profitable but my money is that the traditional print version is losing money or very barely profitable.

Most newspaper have had decreases of 30% or more of their advertising revenues due to the cutbacks in real estate, housing, and job placement. Not one of those 3 are going to begin turning around until likely late 2010/early 2011 at this point. Plus, I can't imagine that circulation will remain strong in this environment either. At best it remain status quo.

If the owners hadn't financed their acquisition by loading up the Inquirer's ledger sheet with huge loads of debt the would have a fighting chance. Now (as always) the bond holders have the power and in this environment only companies that have cash in hand or more robust revenues in the near future are going to get a pass in bankruptcy court.

Inquirer has neither right now. My bet is that they are unfortunately going to have go through some incredibly painful medicine in the near future including shutting down their daily print version in the very near future (say within the next 3-6 months). Maybe a Sunday only version but they might have to scrap the entire paper version.

I will miss the ability to pick up an Inquirer on a daily basis but the people (market) are speaking. Some of it effects may be unpleasant but one thing that traumatic retractions of credit in this country (1837, 1873, 1929, 2008) have produced is some profound changes in the economy and society as a whole. Generally tends to accelerate (hyperaccelerate) changes that were already underway and begin new one that will become more clear in say another 18-24 months.

So did anyone get picked for opening day tickets?

I normally don't feelgood about anyone losing their job but with a 9 million dollar severance package I don't think we need to feel too bad for Mr Eaton.
I have a feeling he may only get lukewarm references from his previous employer.

MG: yes.

Only quibble: in newspapering, the market is the advertisers. The product are the people.

MG: I don't know what business you are in, but how long would your business last if you gave the product away for free or allowed others to take it for free and then re-sell it?

Hey, according to Business Week, phargo and Chris Coste live in the biggest Boomtown in their state.

Take a look

It's just so damn cold up there.

Adam Eaton: recession-proof.

ZT: not yet, do you know if they made anyone aware yet - win or lose?

Nope. They said it would be Thursday that they let people know. I didn't get anything win or lose. I'm crossing my fingers that they just didnt get to it yet.

AWH- I skimmed right past that- I can't believe we made Business Week! North Dakota actually does have a budget surplus of about $500 million.

I guess I should have said: Me and Adam Eaton: recession-proof. Only difference is, I can throw. Just ask my dog.

Current Fargo temperature: 12 degrees below zero. But it's sunny!

phargo: ooooo, go outside and enjoy the nice day!

JW - Just got the annual yesterday. Very well done. I am reading the piece on Cole right now and it is much more informative than the SI article (save the aids baby adoption).

phargo - How far can you throw your dog?

AWH- funny you mention "Hallelujah", because that's a quick post I did on my site as soon as I saw that Eaton was outta here.

i'm missing adam eaton already.

Carson, it's another indication that great minds think alike.

zp, add an "i" to the middle of your handle, and then add an "it".

Thant's what you should do about the sentiment you just expressed>

(I know you were kidding.)

Beerleaguer has:

- Great original artwork
- Discussion of all-things Phils (good or bad)
- Diverse and pretty intelligent group of posters although we still are Philly fans at times and get transfixed on some flashpoint topics like Feliz, Kendrick, and Abreu.
- Unique recap of games through posters' comments

Pretty good offering. Anything missing?
Anything missing?

MG - You forgot to mention "More Abreu"

Oh, and "More Feliz"

On a more serious note: the beerleaguer game chats most closely duplicate the feeling of sitting in a section of fans that you know mainly, or solely, from sitting in that section. Forget HDTV. Beerleaguer captures the community aspect of being in the stadium better than anything.

Oh, and outbursts from a certain unnamed poster (ahem, GM-Carson) when things get ugly.

Re: Opening day.
Did they send out the emails yet? If so, I didn't get one. Does that mean I failed?

The news that Eaton was outright released means, IMHO, this (though some of it is rehashing of what we already know):

He is not a team player, that became abundantly apparent as he pissed off the FO when he wouldn't go to Clearwater last Fall.

He does not assume personal responsibility, nor does he seem to care much about how he performs.

The last 2 seasons have demonstrated that he has a bad attitude. I would not be surprised if he's uncoachable.

They tried to move him this offseason and had no takers.

Being the team player that he is, his public refusal to accept a minor league assignment killed any hope they had of getting even a bag of balls in return.

He wasn't in the mix, has a bad attitude, so why keep him around and let him use the club's reaources, including even the toilets? He was just using up oxygen, laundry facilities for his uni', wearing out grass, taking up space, and taking up a parking space.

I suspect this wasn't done in a vaccum. I'll wager some of the other players said something to Chollie and Rube, and on a WFC team that is trying to repeat, they didn't want the distraction or the presence of any drama queens.

This isn't the Bronx, after all.

I'm not Eaton fan, but I don't blame Eaton for not wanting to show up. He wasn't invited to be in the WS parade, was told he's not going to get the starting job, almost 100% likely he won't be in the 'pen, doesn't want to play in the minors and they couldn't find a trade partner. Would you want to show up at Spring Training?

But, ya know, AWH, if Eaton had Burgess Meredith in his corner, I bet he could make a come back.

This probably should be Larry Anderson but here goes…

Harry Kalas: [Eaton is coming out to pitch] So, here is Adam Eaton, the one they call the "Wild Thing". So, he sets and deals.
[Eaton throws a wild pitch]

Harry Kalas: Just a bit outside, he tried for the corner and missed.
[Eaton throws another wild pitch]

Harry Kalas: Ball 4.
[Eaton throws another wild pitch]

Harry Kalas: Ball 8.
[Eaton throws another wild pitch]

Harry Kalas: Low, and he walks the bases loaded on 12 straight pitches. How can these guys lay off pitches that close?

BedBeard, I blame Eaton for causing the whole situation.

He was, by his own admission, given the choice last Fall of going to Clearwater to stay in shape in case the team needed him (KK did it, as well as a couple of others - and they were invited into the dugout during the WS and to the parade thereafter) or of going home.

He chose to go home. Period. Players who want to be part of a team do not make that decision.

Then, he hurts any trade value he might have had (I'm not saying there was any, but he didn't help) by publicy declaring that other teams should just wait until he was released.

The petulant ingratitude he displays to a team that has made him independently wealthy, and gave him every chance to practice his craft is puzzling.

Is he so arrogant that he thinks another team is going to want him in their locker room? Does he even pay attention to the market?

Pedro, Byrd and El Duque are all still unsigned. Odalis Perez, another attitude problem, is also still out there. Ben Sheets, Schilling and Mulder may be available later in the season.

Does he really think he's going to be offered a job with the poor performance and crappy attitude he has displayed?

Sometimes I think these guys just get outright delusional.

AWH: "Tierney said that Phila Newspaper LLC is operationally profitable. So, if they can raise enough equity to take out the debt, or convert the debt to equity, they'll make it." I'd hope so as between the Daily News and Inky they have a monopoly on the generalist daily newspapers in the city.

The idea that the Inky would shut down because it's "just barely" profitable strikes me as unlikely. Bankruptcy allows for renegotiation of union contracts, meaning many of the functions now bound up by union rules could be loosened, increasing profitability. Paring down the payroll also would help. Even if they entered Chapter 7, somebody would get a good deal on the press, allowing them to restart the enterprise without the heavy debt load.

A lot more water will flow under the dam (or is it over the bridge?) before any American city loses its last remaining dead-tree edition.

clout: I work in an industry where we give away our product for free. Television news. Not only do we give it away for free on air... but we give it away for free on line.

And we've been giving it away for free for a long, long time.

Newspapers are dying because technology has made them irrelevant. Not because it was being "given away for free."

Alby - "Through the levies."

Basically, I'm picturing no major difference this season except more original posts, good artwork and less generic regurgitation of headlines. I think the addition of Zolecki to Phillies.com is going to have a significant impact this season. It's going to be very hard for reporters to beat him to the punch; many thought he was getting the inside scoop from the Phils even before the shift to MLB.com. He's posting about twice the content Mandel did and isn't bound to the deadlines of a newspaper. There's no personal satisfaction or benefit to the reader to repeat what he reports. And I don't have time for it.

The way you beat him down is to bring something completely different to the mix, which I'm equipped to do.

Jason - In re: Carpenter
You know how we often state that AA separates the prospects from the filler? Carpenter pretty much indicated which category he belongs in last year; unless he has a dramatically better 2009, he is chaff to Carrasco's wheat.

Thanks BedBeard, you understand my situation. I worked hard for the Phillies and they disrespected me. I will take my talent elsewhere thank you very much.

Now if this punk kid from texas would give the domain name of my name back, I would be much happier

CJ: You work in TV? Then maybe you've noticed that TV ad revenues and viewership have been plunging. There was something in the Business Journal, as I recall, about Channel 6 (the leading station in Philly) being off 30% over the past year and was down the previous year as well. Since this trend dates back before the economic recession, why do you suppose this is happening?

AWH: Do you REALLY think the Phils asked him to go to Clearwater to stay in shape "in case the team needed him" in the Fall? He didn't even pitch in September. It's not like they were resting him to pitch when it really mattered.

I think the Phils did the right thing by asking him to go to Clearwater (and cutting him), but they asked him to go there to get the H away from the team, not to "stay in shape".

Adam Eaton: Phils didn't disrespect you-you're just a terrible pitcher.

Alby - You are probably correct especially if they eventually enter Chapter 7 and are forced to liquidate. Having a monopoly (even a gradually diminished one) still has some valuable.

I wonder if any team will pick up Eaton.
We were talking the other day about how bad the Nats rotation is.
Still a lot of pitchers w/o a home, but off of waivers all a team would need to pay is league minimum.
We shall see.

Any lineups yet?

clout: It's happening because there are more choices now than ever for television viewers. However, those that are better adapting to the new technology are finding ways to survive and, in some cases, thrive.

My station hit 118% of its budget for 2008. We likely won't do as well this year because the recession is significantly affecting our advertisers, but we're finding ways to make it.

Newspapers have ignored the writing on the wall for years. And that's why they're dying. Many stations have ignored the writing on the wall, and that's why they are hurting.

The smart ones adapted. The smart ones understand that you have to win on air, on line and on mobile devices.

CF Shane Victorino
3B Jason Donald
LF Raul Ibanez
DH Matt Stairs
1B Greg Dobbs
RF Geoff Jenkins
2B Pablo Ozuna
SS Ozzie Chavez
C Lou Marson
RHP Drew Carpenter

Victorino added to TeamUSA. Grady Sizemore backed out.

Wow... our lineup today sure is stretching the requirement of 5 regulars for a paid game. Are the regulars Victorino, Ibanez, Dobbs, Jenkins and (Donald, Stairs, Marson?).

No Werth for a 3rd straight day? If he doesn't play at all by Monday there are going to start to be alot of attention (and negative) on this issue.

MG: Charlie says he'll play this weekend against Tampa.

BedBeard, take a look at Scott Lauber's blog. The link is on the left.

He did an exit interview with Eaton.

Now Eaton is saying he needed shoulder surgery last offseason!

Sheesh.

CJ -
I agree. I count two regulars.

MG: good point. Werth is not just a role player anymore, he is our premier right handed power, which will generate much more attention when he has days off from the team.

Well, that was a successful start for Carpenter. No one retired, 4 runs. He doesn't quite intrigue me.

If he had a hammer, he'd get hammered in the morning.

CJ,

Don't forget the impact of DVR's and Tivo's for TV advertising. Consumers can easily record the shows they like and then fast forward through the commercials. It makes advertisers a bit leary of tv advertising.

Get Eaton back quick. We are going to run out of arms.

Lynsk, we do that.

Another technique is hit the MUTE button when the commercials hit the screen.

What really annoys the most is the volume of commercials. They seem to be much louder than the progamming.

As a result, I don't even listen to them.

Besides, commercial breaks nowadays are much longer than they used to be.

Who in her right mind sits through them?

Freddy Garcia didn't fare to well today.

Garcia 0.2IP 2hits, 4runs, 2 ER, 3 walks, 0Ks, 27.00ERA

Can't say it's a horrible thing of if one of the Inquirer or Daily News goes down(I see them letting the inquirer fail and saving the DN)That city has needed an alternative P.O.V from Print Media for a LONG time and their editorial board is much closer to something like the NY Post, than say, the NY times, which is why i think they'll keep the DN, just make it a litle bigger, and blend it more with the straight(or classier if you will) reportage you'd find in the inquirer. I see the end result being something like the Chicago Sun-Times, an even split between polished and trashy with an overtly conservative bent.

At least a 2nd paper would provide,

TiVo is awesome, being able to create your own replays while watching sports is one of those things i can't imagine living without.

The only bad part is that it runs on that slight delay like HD does, so if you have someone else in the other room or live in a apt. complex, it can spoil the moment.

Nice to see Ribz get another RBI today.

Thats what Rbizy does, baby! Drive 'em in. Even out of the 3 hole.

Bed Beard: Yeah, Freddy looked cooked today and Redding still can't pitch because of a shoulder issue. Fifth starter job for Mets may come down to Jon Niese or Livan Hernandez.

Ozuna going yard, haha nice.

Also, kind of forgot that JC isn't banned from the team or anything, just cant play in the first 50 reg season games.

I believe you are supposed to play 3 regulars. Blue Jays didn't play 3 yesterday at Clearwater yesterday either and that is only a 15 minute bus ride.

Lauber reported that Manuel said that Werth will play Saturday.

JC with 2 pickoffs.....wonder if he worked on a new move in the offseason.

I know it's not Clout Day yet, and even if it were I know we can't jump to any conclusions based off of one spring training game, but I think Andrew Carpenter needs to be moved to the bullpen if he's ever going to succeed at the major league level. His raw stuff just isn't good enough to last the 6+ innings you need from a starter. Look at his FIP by inning last year across all three minor league stops...

1st inning: 2.40
2nd inning: 2.51
3rd inning: 5.83
4th inning: 4.43
5th inning: 5.03

Etc., etc. Go ahead and send him to the bullpen, where hopefully his average stuff will play up a bit in short bursts, and maybe you'll eventually have yourself a capable 6th/7th inning reliever, Geoff Geary style.

Romero always had a good pickoff move.

As for Carpenter, unless he has a really good season he is looking like a non-prospect. I guess he will start at AA again. As somebody said earlier, it appears that he is one of those players who does well in the low minors but struggles with the jump to AA.

Bastardo did pretty well, he had 2 strikeouts in his 2 innings. He only gave up 1 run, a solo shot to Votto. Votto is a lefty but he is a good young major leaguer. That said I don't think Bastardo or Escalona will make the 25 man roster out of camp but if they do well in spring training and at AA/AAA and the last man in the pen struggles before Romero can come back it wouldn't surprise me if one of them gets called up.

Good post, Friar.

By the way, Manny Ramirez is a horrible person. I know its common knowledge, but I was really struck by it after reading another daily dose of terrible economic news, then hopping over to SI.com and reading how Manny turned down $42 million but is willing to take 45. Quibbling over 3 million out of a 40+ million dollar contract while the economy crumbles... if we end up in some kind of Mad Max post-apocalypse, Manny is gonna be the first person that me and my gang of nuclear mutants attack.

Friar: Carpenter is a finesse righty. He has 5 pitches, none above average. He lives and dies by his command. The bullpen won't help him with that, but simply due to his lack of stuff that may be the best place for him as a Chad Durbin type, a guy who can give you middle inning relief as well as fill-in starts. But, again, all of this is moot if he can't improve his command. Guys like this have ZERO margin for error on location.

Clout - much like Kendrick, but replace the 5 pitches with 2 1/2 (the half being the changeup at this point.

timr: you do realize that Manny is the poor one in these talks dont you? He is a millionaire while the owners are billionairs.

Andy - Agreed on the personal and communal cleansing that should be associated with "Eaton Day".

Should be synonymous with rubbish removal in the highest regard.

Mine will include cleaning up the mounds in my back yard left by the family dog (hopefully more than yearly!).

Kind of like a resolution day, now that I think of it.

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