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Wednesday, April 22, 2009

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Prospect Updates:
*Iron Pig Carlos Carrasco has started 3 games this season, pitching 19 inning with 20 k's, a 2.37 era, and only 15 baserunners allowed.

*Single A pitcher Jason Knapp strukout 14 batters yesterday over 7 shutout innings. Now with 30 k's ove 18.1 ip with a 1.96 era.

*Everyone's favorite bastard Antonio Bastard is pitching in relief this year and has a win, 2 saves, and a 1.23 era.

*Kyle Drabek is now 3-0 on the year with 26 k's over 18.2 ip with a 0.96 era.

The Phils have some serious pitching talent on the way.

I think the most impressive is Drabek's line.

GM-Carson - do you mean that we have serious bait for Toronto on the way?

no opinion on newhan, is there any?

as for the game last night, I was finally victim of not having CN8 because of my crappy apt complex's dish network service. I had the flyers last night and it was only april baseball, but i have a feeling I will be burned much more in the future, not looking forward to that.

Although Parra pitched bad anyway, it is nice to see Werth as our RH Power be the one to deliver the big blow vs the LHP. Pedro also chipped in nicely. They would have won either way with the quality of the Brewers pitching all night, but over the first few innings it was utley/ibanez working walks or looping in singles while the righties drove the runs in - a forumla that is exactly what they should be looking for vs LHP.

Player coach would be fantastic if he could man the 3B coach's box, only to have someone spell him when his AB comes due, like in Little Leagues.

TNA: I'd love to deal for Roy Halladay. Best pitcher in baseball other than Santana.

I'm not dealing any of that young talent for Halladay.

I would clear house for Halladay if they could get his services for the next 4 years or so.

I know this is a Phillies blog primarily but our NL East rivals the Nationals have quickly become the worst franchise in all of pro sports. The Clippers and Lions can rest easy now knowing they have been bumped from that spot. Two instances lately- one is a few days old but I don’t remember seeing it on Beerleaguer.

1.) They spelled the name of their team wrong on the front of their jerseys the other day. The team had to take the field with jerseys that read, “Natinals.” How does that get past someone, and why does the manager or GM let the team take the field like that? It’s just completely embarrassing and makes them look silly.

2.) Elijah Dukes was at a Little League event on Saturday to talk to the kids and parents about the importance of little league and reminding them to have fun and everything. After the event he stayed around to personally shake hands with all the kids and parents who attended. This made him 30 minutes late for reporting time on Saturday. The team decided to fine him 500 dollars for not showing up. So the Little League organization announced they are going to raise the money to pay for the fine because Dukes did a good thing for them. So reporters pick up on the story and press the Nats about it. Manny Acta’s response was, “We don’t care where the money comes from, as long as the fine is paid.” I get the fact that the guy was late, but there is a difference between a guy being late for doing something dumb and being late while trying to be a good guy. Dukes is not known for being a good guy in the business but in this instance he was trying to do something positive and gets dinged for it. Not to mention he was building some really good community support for a team that needs it badly. The Nats should’ve pulled him aside and said, “Look you were late, but we get why. Next time just call us and let us know.” I hope the Nats feel good about taking money from a bake sale or however the people raise the money.

I hope the Nats set the new MLB record for futility this year after these events

Also, if you'd like a nice morning laugh head over to metsblog.com and look at some comments. You would think its September 30th.

By Mid May, here is what Reading's starting rotation could look like:

Savery
Stutes
Worley
Brummett
Drabek

Not too shabby.

Albert: Drabek is untouchable as far as I'm concerned. I would part with Carrasco in the right deal but he could replace Myers in the rotation next year. As far as Knapp, hes a top prospect too (#3 pitcher in the org) so you should be careful how far you go to get a pitcher who has logged 200 IP in 5 of 7 years and is 31.

I wouldn't label a prospect untouchable, though Drabek is the a guy I'd be upset with parting with.

I'm with you sneed. I think Carraco is a good prospect, but doesn't have ace potential, so I'd be fine to part with him in the right deal.

As a DC Phan, I don't hate Dibble as an announcer. A major part of the Nats' announcers job is to talk up the team, but since they have a lot of garbage, it's hard to make John Lannan sound interesting.

Well Zeez, sha la la.

I want Halladay too I just think we've been gifted quality pitching prospect depth for the first time in our recent history so we best not blow it. Halladay is 32 years old and is approaching 2000 IP. Considering he's a power pitcher he's no sure thing himself.

Further, we have major league ready talent like Donald and Marson that are blocked to a certain extent at the major league level. I would include both in the trade before I included any one of the aforementioned young pitchers.

However, if we have to make a deal to prevent the Mets from getting him I'm in.

See if they want Joe Bisenius.

TI: Acta is pretty clearly feeling the heat.

Really encouraging that Drabek is finally starting to make some noise.

My opinion on Newhan is, what ever happened to Chris Snelling?

Snelling is hitting .364 in the Mexican League.

Surprised he isn't on the DL yet.

I would deal Donald, Marson and Knapp to the Jays for Halladay. That may not seem like a lot for the Jays, but if you look at deals recently, the amount/quality of prospects has been declining. Look at what the Twins got for Santana and what the Brewers got for Sabathia. The best prospect in both deals was Matt Laporta, a slugger without a position.

I agree Drabek is untouchable at this point, ahead of Carrasco.

I think you take a shot at Halladay because the core of this team is at its peak right now, and there's not a lot in the way of position prospects that makes you feel like we have a new set to come in and keep this thing going. You gotta try and get another title now with the Howard/Rollins/Utley core.

Nationals are a joke, and their announcers do suck, although Dibble is a slight upgrade from Don Sutton, who was just miserable to listen to.

Carrasco should get a few MLB starts before he' traded.

The other thing is that Halladay is really the only option for this team to dramatically improve its pitching. Jake Peavy is signed through 2013 at pretty big money, and we all know this team's philosophy about long-term deals to pitchers. Halladay is only signed through next year, meaning you get a year and a half of him in his prime, and then let him go at age 33. Gives you two chances at a WS and doesn't hamper your long-term flexibility, other than the loss in prospects.

Acta: We dont care where the money comes from, as long as its paid"

Wow, TruthI, thanks for posting that. How could a MLB franchise say that they'd rather take $500 from a community Little League than waive the fine or just have the player pay it himself?!

That might be the worst answer to that question possible. You have "rules or rules", "Dukes is repsonsbile for his own actions", "We'll look into it.." Anything but - just give us our $500, even if kids need to fund raise it!!

I would trade Drabek to the Yokohama BayStars for Les Walrond.


Jack, I'm with you on all of that. I prefer Halladay to Peavy as well and I would love for the Phils to add a SP of quality and go for it now. I just would caution against throwing the kitchen sink at one player because we won the WS with this pitching staff already; not to suggest it is close to a certainty that it can be done twice, but stranger things have happened. When you have good young arms that you can control it makes it easier to build a team around.

Imagine if Billy Beane had an extra $60 million to play with every year?

Jack: very good point on comparing CC/Santana trades. Both ended up getting more quantity than quality. I believe with our peices we could match those type of packages. I'm sure the BlueJays are looking for a better package of course, but the Phils could definitely reason that they could offer MLB Ready propsects along with younger higher ceiling types - which is exactly what the twins and indians ended up with.

Zeez: I'd wanna deal Marson just cause while he would probably be an upgrade from Ruiz offensively, we don't know about his defense, and he's not enough of an upgrade offensively (no power) to make him untouchable. Also, Ruiz is "only" 30 and in his 3rd year, so he has, presumably, a few more years in him at this level. I think if another team values Marson, you can afford to deal him.

Quick vid that I took of the "High Hopes" tribute on the big screen at Tuesday's game.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4tPlKYSgDLE

Note to Beer Leaguers:

The Blue Jays are 10-5 and leading their division, primarily because their pitching is one allowing 4.2 RPG.

While they are certainly not the favorite in the AL East, this is baseball - anything can happen.

To wit, how many BLrs predicted the Rays winning the AL East and going to the WS?

So, basically what I'm saying is, trade talk 15 games into the season is more than a bit premature. If they stay in contention Halladay isn't going anywhere.
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If you need topics to discuss, here are a couple:

Chris Coste's two 2B, RBI night after JW pronounced him being on life support, and the BL vultures started picking at his carcass.

The offense is averaging 5.8 RPG, even with their two tablesetters, Vic and JRoll, struggling at the plate. If they keep this up and the pitching comes around, how many games do they win?

Speaking of the pitching, they are allowing 6.5 RPG.

While Raul Ibanez has gotten a lot of ink and attention, Chase Utley has "quietly" gotten off to an impressive start as well, .372 .491 .674. Is this finally the year he breaks through in the MVP race?

Blanton faces off against Braden Looper tonight, both pitchers coming off 6 IP quality starts in their last turn.
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P.S. (Oh, and I would trade for Halladay in a heartbeat. On this roster, while there are no guarantees, he would instantly make the Phils favorites to repeat.)

Santana

Carlos Gomez is the starting CF - and a poor leadoff man so far.
Kevin Mulvey is #7 on their prospest list
Phil Humber, Deolis Guerra outside top 20

Sabathia

Matt LaPorta is a top prospect
Rob Bryson is ranked #17 in their system
Taylor Green and Zach Johnson outside top 20.

I didnt do indpeth research about the prospects, but i feel like a deal with 2 out of Carrasco/Donald/Marson and a younger talent is just as good as any of those deals above.

Zeez - "Good to Great"

The incremental return of having a viable hitter in the 7-8th spot in the lineup, especially as a backup, will not make that big of a difference in overall offensive production.

I think a deal like Donald, Carassco, Knapp, and one other could get Halladay here. Does this make sense on both sides? I'm not sure who the one other would be...

Humber was released, I think.

Carlos Gomez is a tremendous defensive CF, but he pretty much sucks at the plate. He's only 23, but his minor league stats give little reason to believe he's going to ever be a plus offensive player.

Humber was just DFA'd, but has been so bad that no one wanted him & now he's back in their minor league system.

Mulvey projects as a back-end starter in the best case scenario.

The Twins generally do a good job at talent evaluation, but they badly overplayed their hand with Santana, and ended up trading him from a position of weakness. The verdict on the deal won't be in for about 3 more years, but it looks to me like they got completely fleeced. If there's one thing the Mets excel at, it's over-hyping their own prospects. It helps that ESPN is close to NY, and practically serves as the Mets' own private public relations department.

Agreed BAP, that Twins got fleeced and making the argument of "well look what Santana went for" wont hold much water in trade talks for Halladay.

But him and CC are the last big aces to get dealt because their team couldn't resign and was wasting their talent. So its pretty natural to look at those deals and figure that the Phils could easily match those types of packages, and then some.

And if Toronto is looking for a HanRam return as the Marlins did for Beckett, then they need to understand that there aren't any HanRam's out there anywhere anymore - one of kind.

The Indians' haul for Sabathia looks a lot better. LaPorta is a top prospect. Bryson could one day be a solid reliever, maybe even a closer. Green is one of those Jeremy Slayden types who doesn't get the scouts excited but looks like a good hitter. Considering the Indians were never really in contention last year, and that the Brewers were only getting Sabathia for 3 months, I think the Indians did pretty well in this deal -- though, again, time will tell. For the 3 months that he was there, Sabathia definitely gave the Brewers what they paid for.

BAP: Could not agree with you more. I live and work in NYC and I work closely with two stinkin Mets fans. They actually concede to me that their farm system is overrated by the NY PR machine and by ESPN.

Fernando Martinez is the next stiff. And he is their top prospect. AND he is on the table for Halladay.

I thinking building up your prospects is a good thing, as long as their egos stay intact and the team doesn't start believing their own propoganda, like the Yankees seem to do with Kennedy.

We may not be WFCs every year, but this club is going to be exciting for a long time.

bap- agreed. the Twins badly overplayed their hand in the Santana negotiations, but let us not forget that the Santana deal was never really about prospects, it was about the contract he wanted after he was dealt... neither the Yankees nor the Red Sox were willing to give up premium prospects AND a 7 year contract, so the price (in prospects) dropped precipitously to where the Mets, who were despite for a personnel makeover after the Great Choke of 2007 no matter the cost, could afford him.
and the Sabathia deal was a free agent dump. the Indians didn't get a killing for him (in prospects) because he only had a half season left on his contract.
i'm saying this because i think its short-sighted to compare the packages for those two deals to what the Blue Jays would accept for a year and a half of (arguably) the best pitcher in baseball, signed to a reasonable contract.

Myers: That's all true but, at a minimum, the team that traded for Santana was going to have him for a full season. There was no rule that you had to give him a long-term contract on top of that. Basically, the Twins were trading one year of Santana, while the Indians were trading 1/2 year of Sabathia. Given the circumstances, the Indians appear to have done better.

I also agree about Fernando Martinez being vastly overrated. The Mets' minor league system is pretty threadbare. In the near future, I don't see any way that they could ever pull off another trade for an established star. Then again, I didn't think they had the prospects to get Santana either.

What people might not realize about the Dukes story is that he was paid for his appearance at the Little League thing. So it wasn't entirely a charity event.

Plus, he knew when he was supposed to be at practice, correct? And was late? So why wouldn't he be to blame?

If I were Elijah Dukes, I'd be embarrassed that a LL was scraping up the money to pay his fine, an amount he earns in the time it takes to sneeze. He should be refusing that money and paying his tiny (to him) fine.

The Halladay fantasies are cool. But do we know for a fact Toronto won't try to extend his contract? He's an FA after 2010 so it wouldn't take much to get him for a one year rental. Unless, of course, Toronto plans to extend him.

bap- agreed that the Mets farm system is utterly threadbare. i'd wager that FMart ends up as no more than the second coming of Endy Chavez... a really great 4th outfielder for everybody but Philadelphia.

anyway, i can't check the accuracy of this recollection because i'm at work and all of the baseball news sources are bloced administratively, but if you go back in the archives, i'm pretty sure that Santana had some sort of no-trade clause. i distinctly remember that the Mets had 48 hours to reach a new contract with him after the deal was made. in fact, they failed to reach a deal within those first 48 hours and the window actually had to be extended. i remember that part well because i thought, as a Phils fan, for a moment the deal might fall through... so i think Santana had the negotiating power to negate a trade, so in fact the trading team DID have to give him his 6 or 7 year deal... and that's why the price in prospects dropped to where the Mets and their (even at that point) barren system could afford him.

Is the Mets org depth even highly regarded? Ranked 28th by BP in 08 and 18th in 09.

BAP - IIRC, the deal for Santana would have been nexed had he and the Mets not agreed to an extension. I recall an extension of the deadline for negotiations, etc.. There was a 72-hour window. I believe this was the case because Santana had a no trade clause which he'd only waive if a deal was reached.

Dan: The point is he actually was late for a good reason. He wasn’t doing something stupid or purposefully neglectful that made him late. He was trying to be a good guy and meet with everyone who had showed up. It’s especially noteworthy considering Dukes has a bad reputation in the business. There were some people saying Dukes has been trying to clean up his image and this showed that maturity. Then he gets hammered for trying to be a good guy. I’m not advocating him being late. I’m just saying the Nats should look at the situation and say,“Just call us next time.” The cavalier attitude about taking the money that is going to be raised by the Little League is particularly callous

Although it's hard to wade through a mound of rumors, it does seem like the Twins were bent on sending Santana to the NL. At times, both the RedSox and Yankees had put together better packages than what they ended up getting from the Mets.

Sophist/Myers: Ah, yes. I had forgotten about that detail.

But I also seem to remember that the Santana trade happened pretty late in the off-season and that, earlier in the off-season, the Twins had rejected packages that -- at least at the time -- seemed superior to what the Mets ultimately gave away.

What is Phillies farm ranked currently?

"UPDATE, 1-29-08 at 4:22: Ken Rosenthal says the 72-hour window to sign Santana is now open.

UPDATE, 1-29-08 at 3:15pm: Bob Nightengale of USA Today says an agreement to trade Santana to the Mets has been reached. They'll send Carlos Gomez, Philip Humber, Deolis Guerra, and Kevin Mulvey to the Twins. The Mets still have to work out a six or seven year extension for Santana, according to Nightengale. If this baby reaches its true conclusion we'll sit down and analyze.

UPDATE, 1-29-08 at 2:55pm: More from Olney. His sources say the Mets have the best offer, the Red Sox also made offers, and the Yanks are out. Santana apparently asked the Twins to make a decision, wrap this thing up. Wrap it up! Olney is not sure whether F-Mart is part of the Mets' offer.

UPDATE, 1-29-08 at 2:06pm: SI.com's Jon Heyman weighs in. He sees the Mets as the frontrunner, the Red Sox on the fringes, and the Yankees as nearly out of the running. The Mets are offering Gomez/Humber/Mulvey/Guerra but not Fernando Martinez. If they get Santana, the Mets will commit to only five years but with a high average annual value of $22-25MM.

UPDATE, 1-29-08 at 1:11pm: WFAN's Mike Francesa believes the Twins upped their offer to five years, $100MM for Santana, but he rejected it"

http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2008/01/johan-santana-7.html

BAP - Your memory about earlier offers seems confirmed at least initially by this post:

http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2008/01/thoughts-on-the.html

"If Smith had taken the Yankees' best offer, he'd have an MLB-ready pitcher who was very recently regarded as the game's best pitching prospect (Phil Hughes). He'd also have a solid regular center fielder in Melky Cabrera. And the Twins would've gotten a couple of upside players on top of that.

Boston's top offer was better as well. The Twins could've filled center field, shortstop, and closer needs immediately with Jacoby Ellsbury, Jed Lowrie, and Justin Masterson.

But that's just my take."

Just look through here if you're interested. I need to stop letting myself be distracted by something I have no stake in:

http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/johan_santana/page/5/

If the Phillies can trade for Halladay AND either overcome their fear of long-term pitching contracts/work out a shorter and richer extension with him, they HAVE to do it. With so much coming off the books next year, if a big chunk of that can go towards him, you are doing all you possibly can to maximize this apparent three-year window they're giving themselves to repeat/win again.

No idea if the Jays would make the move, but I'd hope we'd put almost every single resource we had towards it if they would.

how much exactly is coming off the books? again, still at work and without the resources for research... my only fear about a hypothetical Halladay acquisition would be the sacrifice of the cheap young talent the Phillies would give up. you have to figure that the payroll is at its apex right now with the profits from merchandise, gate receipts, adverstising rates and concessions from a sold out ballpark following in the wake of the WFC. so if we traded for Halladay and assumed his salary, would it handcuff the roster fiancially? would the Phils be stuck with a scrub at third base because they can't afford to pay even for Feliz? how much longer would we have to stick with Ruiz's offense and rising paycheck behind the plate before D'Arnaud is (hopefully) ready? what about the rest of the pitching staff? while Halladay is absolutely dominating, we should have learned from the Mets that one star pitcher does not guarantee success...
just a thought as i continue to day dream about baseball at work...

also, sophist, thanks for the research on the Santana deal. much appreciated.

Newham still might be a better hitter than Cairo . . .

start here, Myers: http://mlbcontracts.blogspot.com/2005/01/philadelphia-phillies_18.html

From a quick glance, the biggest figures are Myers and Feliz and Jenkins.

Santana trade saga was the classical case of one party setting a high asking price, waffling about what they wanted in return, getting too greedy, and in the end making a transaction for less than desirable results because of uncertainty/greed.

"Newham still might be a better hitter than Cairo . . ."

I think so. Remember when he got called up five years ago with Baltimore and was hitting .400 for over a month? (Then again, remember Cairo in the 2002 playoffs? He was so hot that Tim McCarver coined some bizarre euphemism about the "River Cairo.")

Myers: I think you have it backwards on the Santana deal. The Mets(or whoever traded for him) weren't going to go forward with the deal unless they could sign Santana long term. If they were only getting him for a year they didn't want to give up the prospects. It had nothing to do with a Santana demand to only be traded if he could be signed long term.

Myers: Salary is not the issue with Halladay near-term. He's a free agent after 2010.

off-season report:

Greg Golson .895 OPS .342 BA .395 OBP
John Mayberry Jr .747 OPS .211 BA .302 OBP

Raul Ibanez 1.246 OPS .375 BA 5 HR
Pat Burrell .695 OPS .250 BA 1 HR

That's Pat being Pat. I think we'll continue to see the value in Ibanez over Burrell for the length of his contract.

yo, new thread.

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