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Sunday, May 17, 2009

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Maybe the Phillies can trade Tashners' salary to the Nationals. He has the most fraudulent sub-4 ERA in baseball. He's not a Loogy. The Phillies need some RH relievers, so they don't overexpose Durbin and the luckiest man on earth, Clay Condrey.

Who will be the first to chime in that Park should get/deserves X amount of starts to see what he's got?

It seems as though at some point this season, the Phils will have to bite the bullet and call up Koplove, Walker, and/or Majewski.

Their lack of options exposes them to waivers but Durbin and Everyday's arms are going to fall off at some point.

Park deserves zero more starts but I bet he gets at least one.


Man, I have tickets for the game at Yankee Stadium next Saturday and guess whose turn it is in the rotation?...Park.

Nomo Park.

For the record, Lidge threw an inside fastball before getting the GIDP. Interestingly, the TV folks put up a stat showing Lidge was 0 for 12 in GIDP opportunities just before the pitch.

BedBeard: You still don't read so good. The issue has always been what he WILL get, not what he should get.

Earl: You might come close to getting your money's worth on the ticket, but I would hate to see your bar bill.

Are we encouraged by Lidge's weekend or nonplussed? If confidence is a big part of it, then two fairly easy saves should help in that department.

clout: Not quite.

"But of all the poor performances seen this series ... none reeked worse than Park's embarrassing effort today. If this wasn't enough to yank him from the rotation, I don't know what is. Then again, a half-decade of failure as a starting pitcher wasn't enough to deter them, either."

That about says it all. Time to see if the Phils can salvage something from Rube's continued bout w/ idiocy by moving Park to the pen. Even if that doesn't end up working out, at least Chan will be closer to where he belongs: outside of a major league ballpark.

Also, add 9 HBP to the 55 R & 42 BB ... all of that, & 4 full innings remained unplayed due to the rain. :-S

Right. Park was/is terrible. At least Moyer has wining ways to which he might actually return. Park to the pen, Happ to the rotation.
Speaking of Happ, a tip o' the cap to Charlie Manuel for using Happ Friday night. Do you think for a minute that Taschner would have gotten out Johnson, Zimmerman, and Dunn? Easy to forget now, but the Phillies needed that win after blowing the lead and losing Thursday to the Dodgers.

any chance Park or Blatton agree to some time in the minors in an effort to get some confidence back?

It is one thing to have one or two starters who struggle a bit but the Phils have 3 of the worst starter statistically right now in all of baseball (Blanton, Moyer, Park) and the reality is that there aren't any many answers except to pull the plug on the Park experiment and insert Happ into the rotation.

Moyer is the one who deserves to be pulled from the rotation, but he has the 2 year contract that needs to be justified. At least Park has had 2 good outings. Moyer has only had one. I think Blanton will get it together. I'm not confident Moyer will.

It is kind of amazing that this team is somehow 4 games above .500 considering that this has staff has been so terrible including much worse to date than the 2007 squad to date. This team honestly might equal the '07 offense squads run totals but I don't know if even that will be enough to offset pitching this bad.

BTY - Trashner isn't great but he has been that terrrible as his role as mop-up guy so far. Basically a guy who will eat up innings and give you an ERA somewhere around 4.50 or so. Every team has at least one guy like him in their pen and he frankly has been one of the lesser concerns in the bullpen.

MG: He has? Aside from Lidge, Trashner has by far the worst numbers of any Phils reliever. It has been almost impossible for him to enter a game, regardless of the situation, & pitch w/out giving up runs. Honestly, an ERA of 4.50? Is that what you want from a middle-long relief guy? Because let's face it, chances for mop-up duty w/ the starting staff the Phils have been fielding are few & far between. I'd much rather give Park, who has shown an ability to pitch well from time-to-time, a shot in the pen than continue to suffer Trashner's ineptitude.

taschner's ERA is only that low because of luck, too. i don't have the stats in front of me, but i feel like his WHIP has to be like 3.0 with all the baserunners he allows. his ERA will catch up if the phillies give him enough chances.

14 more games and then Romero is back.

Prior to today, Taschner had a 6.09 FIP, and a lucky BABIP of .274. He definitely needs to go by June 3rd, if not sooner.

bathtubhippo: Coming into today his WHIP was 1.750, which is third worst on the team (behind only Lidge & Moyer).

Knoblauch! That was it, thanks to all who reminded me (previous thread).

G-Town Dave-I would much rather see Park out of the pen (where he was generally effective last year for the Dodgers) and yeah I didn't realize that Trashner's peripherals are so weak. Pretty apparent he will be off this roster in one way or another in about two weeks when Romero returns.

The big difference between this season and last year so far is that every move that Gillick made last season came up in his favor bigtime on the pitching side. So far almost nothing that Amaro did has panned though Eyre has been effective in his role as a lefty specialist.

Park, Moyer, and Trashner haven't done much to help the team win and none of the relievers that Amaro signed this offseason to provide better depth have contributed anything so far.

Given how Cincy plays like a bandbox and so has the new Yankee Stadium (plus the Yanks are finally starting to really hit again), I wouldn't be surprised to see another really ugly week for the pitching staff.

G-Town: First of all, if your worst reliever has a 4.50 ERA, I would venture to guess you probably have one of the best bullpens in baseball. Second, Taschner's ERA is not 4.50. It is 3.86. That is the 4th best ERA on the team.

You (and others) make it sound as though Taschner is killing the team. In fact, he has basically had 2 very bad games, 2 so-so ones, and 8 good ones. Sometimes a reliever can have a low ERA, which disguises the fact that he has allowed a ton of inherited runners to score. Not so with Taschner. He has inherited 6 runners this year, and the 1 which scored today was the only 1 which scored all year.

I'm no great fan of Taschner. I wasn't fond of the trade that brought him here and I still sort of cringe when he comes into the game. His WHIP is pretty terrible, which doesn't bode well for his future success. If he's the odd man out when Romero returns, I won't shed any tears. Still, with all the vitriol that is directed at the guy on Beerleaguer, you would think he must be pitching like Adam Eaton. You would never, in a million years, guess that he has allowed 0 runs in 8 out of his 12 outings, and has an ERA under 4.00.

One really positive thing though from this weekend (besides the obvious sweep)- JRoll finally put together a few really solid games at the plate.

The only way this team is going to continue to win right now is to score 5-6 runs a night. In order to do that, this team needs JRoll to start to really hit and someone to continue to get hot in the middle of this lineup for spurts whether it be Utley/Howard/Werth/Ibanez.

b_a_p: I hear what you're saying, but Jackie Boy benefited greatly from the miraculous gift of a Feliz-initiated double play, right after he had entered the game & plunked in a run w/ the bases loaded. The fact that he's actually pitching *better* than his lifetime numbers suggest he should also concerns me. It's not so much that Trashner couldn't be worse, it's that I think the Phils could do better w/ someone else taking his place.

BAP - That was kind of getting at my point. Trashner has been mediocre but certainly hasn't been a real sore spot on this pitching roster as the 12th/13th man on the staff. Basically a fill guy who has been adequate in his role more often than not which is to be used when the Phils are up or down big.

The reality of the situation is this:

Park is responsible for the worst performance by a Phillies SP in 2009 (tonight).

Park is also responsible for the best performance by a Phillies SP in 2009 (vs Santana).

Does that mean that Park should be shipped off to the bullpen? Perhaps, but not before Jamie Moyer. I like my chances with a highly inconsistent washed up SP over a consistantly poor and 15 year older SP whose career as an effective starter has clearly come to it's final chapter.

Solution? Apart from shipping a few prospects out in a trade (possible) or spending money on Sheets or Martinez and hoping for the best (unlikely), using Moyer and Park out of the bullpen and inserting into the rotation J.A. Happ and Carasco/Kendrick (take your pick, both have been less than stellar, but no worse than those who they'd replace). It's not much of a solution, but the status quo is just plain frightening.

I brought this up more than a few times: Our rotation is extremely weak and with a thin crop of FA starters in the off season, it's likely to get much worse in 2010. Changes have to be made to ensure that this team can win a game in which they score under five runs, and they have to be made as soon as possible.

One thing, it was nice to see Park get pulled out early.

It seems like Charlie's been reluctant to pull people before they gave up 5-6 runs. I think it sends a good message that the leash is now much shorter.

I wonder why Happ wasn't used today. He had a day of rest with an off day tomorrow and this game would've been a game he normally would have pitched in. I am curious whether they are saving him to be ready on Wednesday for Moyer's next start. They might be planning to have him ready to pitch a full 4 or 5 innings if Moyer doesn't bring anything to pitch with again.

I really hope that either Moyer, Park, and Blanton can turn things around. We are really lucky to have a winning record at this point in the season. Against any other team in the league, we might have come out of this series losing 3 of 4. I have never been so pessimistic after a 4 game sweep.

I would venture to guess that Happ wasn't used to day because Moyer is scheduled to start Tuesday @ Cincy.

Mets lose! Phils are .5 back.

This blog is astounding. Besides the top-notch posts and graphics, almost all of the comments are perceptive & non-idiotic.

What's your secret, jw?

I'd like to see Happ take Moyer's spot in the rotation in Cincinnati. Let Jamie rest an extra couple of days and go for his 250th at home in Philly and take it from there.

Man, that Mets/Giants game was a debacle. I have nothing against a 2-0 game, but usually they're pitcher's duels. This game was more like an offensive ineptitude duel. The Mets even managed to not score w/ bases loaded, no outs & bases loaded, 1 out. At least NY lost, or I'd probably feel stupid for having sat through it.

Doohicky: See my post at end of last thread.

Amaro on the hiring of Bryan Price:

"That's not why we hired him," general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said, "but if we thought it would help, we might. We hired Bryan because he has an outstanding reputation, and anytime we can bring outstanding people into the organization and utilize them in some capacity, we'd like to do that.

What wasn't said: About what exactly Price's role will be but as a former MLB pitching coach Dubee has to be looking over his shoulder. There have been several subtle things since the start of last offseason that make me really wonder what Amaro thinks of Dubee and his long term prospects here.

While it would be really surprising to see the pitching coach on a defending WFC dimissed mid-season the following year, it is not out of the realm of possibilities if this team's pitching staff continues to struggle so much and if this team is sputtering along at .500 around July 4th largely due to an inept pitching staff.

MG: How is Manuel's relationship w/ Dubee? I'd be really surprised to see Rube make a move like that if Charlie didn't support it as well.

G-Town: No doubt that DP was pure luck and, though I have no stats to back up this up, it has seemed like Taschner has been the beneficiary of quite a few lucky breaks or great defensive plays this year. If I rated the Phillies' relievers in order of the guy I'd most like to see in the game (Madson) to the guy I'd least like to see, I would certainly agree with the consensus view that Taschner ranks last.

Still, it seems kind misplaced to be bitching at a guy who has the 4th best ERA on our staff. Seems to me that the bitching should be directed at the guys who are stinking it up on the field up to this point -- i.e., Park, Moyer, Blanton, Rollins, Victorino, Bruntlett, Cairo, Dobbs. And, just for old times sake, we can bitch about Feliz, as well.

Next Saturday I get to go to Yankee stadium. I'll get to watch Chan Ho on the mound and Eric Bruntlett at DH. I'll have something to complain about in the top and bottom of the inning.

Yeah, but the Phils have so many awful starting pitchers & offensive underperformers to bitch about, it sometimes gets tiring. We need new targets for our bitching! ;-)

In all seriousness, though, if Gnome -- frightened into productivity, perhaps, by what happened to Cairo -- hadn't defied all expectations & come through in the clutch yesterday, no doubt we'd all be bitching about him, & Trashner would've escaped to be bitched about another day.

J.R.: If the Phillies brain trust actually has any of the former, you'll be watching Happ, not Chan HoMe Run ... I shudder to think what monstrous dimensions his ERA might acquire in New Yankee Small Park. And who knows, depending on the Yankees pitcher, maybe Charlie will let Dobbs DH. Sure, he's struggled so far, but he *does* have the whole "I'm not Eric Bruntlett" thing going for him. Keep the Phaith, my friend ...

"And, just for old times sake, we can bitch about Feliz, as well."

I for one miss the 20 posts a day, every day, all season long, calling for Dobbs to start at 3B.

I hope that the Philllies can find a real right handed bat for the bench. Then I would dump Taschner and let Escalona stay in the bullpen until Romero comes back.

"It seems like Charlie's been reluctant to pull people before they gave up 5-6 runs. I think it sends a good message that the leash is now much shorter."

...if Charlie had been pulling pitchers before giving up 5-6 runs, I suspect all of our relief pitchers would have collapsed by now.

"Yes! Yes! And thank God! I was just waiting for the score to hold, and I got the ball right there. I never forget this day!"
Phillies reliever Sergio Escalona, after getting the win in Sunday's game. It was his first Major League appearance.

Two months ago, this esteemed blog of baseball experts was, mouths stained red with WS kool-aid, flying in the face of 3000 years of baseball wisdom and going on about how this team was all about offense and pitching doesn't matter. I wondered then how long it would take for that to blow up. I wonder no more.

Charlie sounds like he's about to give up on Park as a SP in the AM papers.

Clarification on the worst pitched games by a Phillies starter this year:

1. Hamels v. COL(his first game): 3.2 IP, 7 ER, 11 hits
2. Moyer v. Mets : 2.1 IP, 7 ER, 7 hits, 3 HRs
3. Park v. Mets: 4.2 IP, 7 ER, 6 BB
4. Moyer v. Dodgers: 4.1 IP, 7 ER, 8 hits
5. Blanton v. Braves: 4 IP, 7 ER, 9 hits
6. Park v. Nats: 1.1 IP, 5 ER, 4 BB
7. Blanton v. Nats: 4.1 IP, 6 ER, 8 hits

and now the best games:
1. Park v. Mets: 6 IP, 0 ER, 1 hit
2. Myers v. Nats: 7 IP, 2 ER, 3 hits
3. Hamels v. Dodgers: 7 IP, 1 ER, 3 hits
4. Hamels v. Braves: 6 IP, 2 ER, 3 hits
5. Blanton v. Cards: 6 IP, 1 ER, 4 hits
6. Myers v. Braves: 6 IP, 1 ER, 5 hits
7. Moyer v. Marlins: 6 IP, 1 ER, 7 hits

Using game scores, the number of above avg (NL avg is 49) and below avg performances:
Above avg:
Hamels - 4
Myers - 4
Blanton - 1
Moyer - 1
Park - 3

Below avg:
Hamels - 2
Myers - 4
Blanton - 6
Moyer - 6
Park - 4
Carpenter - 1

2 of Blanton's games were just slight below average.

can one of the journalists please ask Manuel today what he and Dubee think about the perceived "new" strike zone and whether this affects their decision about Park, Moyer and Happ?

My feeling is that Moyer won't be able to adapt. If you look at the games pitch by pitch, Moyer adapts and throws into the new strike zone, but then gets hammered.

Park, on the other hand, is stubborn in that he doesn't adapt, gets flustered, and starts issuing walks like crazy. However, when he does have confidence (and capacity) and does hit the strike zone, he gets good results.

Bottom line: replace Moyer with Happ. Send Park to one of those two-week yoga/meditation camps.

But it's pretty clear that Manuel and Dubee have their mind set on replacing Park with Happ.

TNA, if that were the case, why not put Happ in the game yesterday and let him go at least 3-4 innings? He was pretty fresh and could have just slid into the rotation with no issues.

It's not a good sign that we spend time discussing which of our starting pitchers is the right one to pull in favor of the rookie.

After a Moyer start it's him. After a Park start it's him. (Clearly, the only possible answer of course is to just get another rookie.)

These are not good times for the Nibblers of the Nation. Which suggests another solution - maybe the manufacturers of homeplates can widen the black stripe around them - adding even half an inch to each side might actually do more for the length of Moyer's career than Park's equal ineffectiveness.

NEPP -
i have little insight into the machinations of Dubee's (and Manuel's) use of relievers. maybe Happ wasn't up to it yesterday? were they even thinking about future rotation issues during yesterday's game? who knows.

maybe the decision to replace Park with Happ isn't that clear-cut or set in stone. but from the comments Manuel made yesterday after the game, it sure seemed like that that was about to happen. Manuel isn't apt at keeping things under wraps (ie. using Jenkins to start off game 5, pt. 2), and his comments yesterday didn't leave too much to the imagination.

I think Park gets one more start with a very very short leash...

Who knows what they can do with Jamie if he doesn't figure it out. He's not the ideal bullpen pitcher and we don't have another pitcher not named KK that can just toss in the rotation right now.

For the record, Dubee thinks Moyer will figure it out.

That means that if they are going to make changes, Park is the one to go.

btw, anybody think Atkins can/should be picked up on the cheap? if he turns it around, which is a decent risk, he could be an awesome threat off the bench.

My inner cynic, who has seen more than 46 years, says it's a whole lot easier to "figure something out" at this age than to "make it happen."

My issues are not with Moyer's savvy, moxie, or worthiness. I just wonder if(especially given the propensity of umpiring staff (for whatever reason) to issue more walks this year), his physical ability to meet the challenge of major league pitching still exists. (Against any team which doesn't smell like flounder.)

The Rockies benched Atkins, but they won't give him up for cheap.

I don't think there's anything to do about Moyer right now. I'm cautiously optimistic that he can get back on the horse for a few months. But, he's going to hit the end of the road at some point. Just have to let it play out. Watching an old pitcher play past his expiration date is sad. Obviously, he drove a hard bargain to get another 2 year contract so he doesn't lack for confidence or determination that he can still play with men half his age.

JR - if they have success with Atkins on the bench, i think he becomes more expendable on their end and his market value will be lower because this is not the first time he's been hopelessly terrible for a long period of time. but you're probably right in that they'll still ask for a lot given recent demands for their players in general.

are there a lot of double plays not induced by one pitch? just sayin.

Phillies site has TBA as probable pitcher for Wednesday. Maybe that's JA Happ. Would be plenty of rest after 2 innings Saturday.

I thought they were moving Moyer to Wednesday so that he'd miss the Yankees and pitch against FLA next week.

Yo new thread. Top 10 Phillies homers in history.

Phillies.com has Moyer Wednesday. Park will get removed from the rotation well before Moyer will.

Charlie and Dubee think Moyer will turn it around. I would agree with them whole heartedly except for the small strike zone around the majors this year.

TNA: Atkins will be back in the Rockies starting line-up in a few days. It's nice to dream of a guy like him on the Phils bench, but it's not going to happen. The Rockies didn't pay him $7 million this year to pinch hit.

With the day off today, the Phils can skip Park's next turn.

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