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Saturday, July 25, 2009

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Nice to be able to see the Phils win big on to TV via the national feed on Fox. I watched it mostly with the sound off. I know what's going on without the chatter, thanks to BL.

Didn't see any of the game, but continuing with the 24/7 Halladay craziness, a post on Philly.com indicated the Jays made a counter offer and the Phils were trying to steer them to a package headed by Carrasco and Donald. I can't believe it would happen-but if the Phils can get Halladay without including Drabeck, Happ, Brown or Taylor, it would be a miracle.

If you believe what you read today-that the Angels tried a package led by Jeff Weaver and allegedly gave the Jays a choice of outfield or infield prospect(s)-then I'm not so sure the Phils will get this done. Admittedly, I know nothing about the Angels farm system, but Weaver is a very good pitcher and more accomplished than Happ. Problem is I suppose, is that he gets expensive a lot faster than Happ does.

I couldn't have imagined that Dick Stockton would be an even worse baseball announcer than football announcer. But, you learn something every day.

Chase Utley and Carlos Ruiz have something in common...

The only Phillies' regulars that have not hit a Grand Slam this season.

An amazing ONE HANDED catch!

Cards now .5 game up on the Cubs. When we beat the Cubs they were a lousy team (even though they've won just about every game they've played lately except vs us) so when we beat the Cards tomorrow and knock 'em into 2nd, they'll be just another lousy team we beat...

Ibanez and Howard hit slams in the Washington game.

Victorino hit a grand slam in that Marlins game where the Phillies were shutout until the 9th.

Werth hit a grand slam against the infielder in the 22-run game.

Feliz hit a salami right before the All-Star break.

Rollins hit one today.

That's six. What two am I missing?

I hadn't thought of this until just now, but what if the Phils were to throw in some cash in the Doc deal in lieu of a certain prospect, or combined with a talent downgrade? Extra five or six mil?

Since his career-worst 0-for-28 streak ended on 7/2, Jimmy Rollins is 30-for-84 (.357) with a .433 OBP.

Lauber

NEPP - Hahaha. I heard that too and said to myself "did he just say one handed catch?" They were awful today. I hate Joe Buck but at least he's a good broadcaster.

I'll take Stockton over Buck anyday, Mark.

tg082: I think Howard has 3 slams this season, although I'm not positive. I'm certain he has at least 2.

McCarver must be paid by the word.

Well, one-handed catches can be remarkable in football.

Again, clout's "Keep Taylor/Brown column":
http://www.philly.com/philly/sports/columnists/20090724_Bill_Conlin__In_baseball__I_ll_take_a_five-tooler_over_a_Cy_Young_Award_winner.html

I know I had forgotten the one GS that Howard had in St. Louis, back in early May. I can't remember another one though.

Howard has 3 slams. 2 against Washington. 1 against the cards.

Nice win.
Hey, I'm pretty sure I could've rounded up a couple of random McFadden's patrons who would have done a better job today than Stockton and McCarver. Need we cite examples? Not if you watched the broadcast. Brutal.

Joe Buck admits that he is tired of broadcasting baseball...and there is a perfect storm element when you have McCarver and Buck in the booth together, Id have to go with a brutal Stockton over that.

tg082: Yup. Howard has 3 Grand Slams this season. First vs. Washington in April, 2nd vs. St. Louis in early May, & 3rd vs. Washington in late May.

On 1210 we had to suffer with Jim "He Scores!!!" Jackson and Sarge, who still PUTS the wrong accent ON the Wrong SylABLE.

OT:

I know there are a number of 40+ year olds that frequent this site. Is there anybody else besides me, who thinks it is a travesty that Jim Rice made it to the Hall of Fame? And with that, how does Rice get all that campaigning the past 10 years, but a guy like Keith Hernandez (who was a much better player) does'nt even get considered?

Ah, thanks guys.

Boston propaganda machine/massive pity party=Rice HOF election.

So, I know it was touched on briefly, but Amaro apparently countered with a package focused around Carrasco and Donald plus some others.

Is there any chance of that even coming close??

For all of those who think that Dom Brown, Drabek and Happ is too much for Halladay, and the Jays will eventually come down: They asked for Joe Saunders, Brandon Wood, Erick Aybar, and one (other) prospect from the Angels. That is a better package to me.

it seems like ricciardi is really counting on somebody overpaying for halladay. i just hope it's not us.

Although I'm sure some posturing is going on, if Amaro truly refused to give up Drabek/Happ/Brown for Halladay, he should be dragged into the street and beaten with old Bill Conlin articles.

mikes77phillies : not that I really care much either way, but I'd like to understand why, in your opinion, Keith Hernandez was a much better player than Rice? I realize Hernandez had a great glove, was a great hitter and team leader, but Jim Rice wasn't exactly chopped chicken liver either. What gives? In my opinion, Rice is a marginal HOF'er and Hernandez doesn't belong there.

NEPP: Heyman (whose reliability I am really starting to question) said on Twitter around 2 P.M.:

"drabek, happ, brown is too much. drabek or happ should do the trick (plus brown or taylor). still like phils in derby."

I don't know if you already heard that, but that's all I've really heard.

I don't think either belongs in the HOF...but that's me.

Ricciardi is looking for legit counter-offers. He doesn't expect anyone to fall for his first offer. Haven't you guys ever haggled for a new car before? You didn't pay sticker, did you?

I'm at the point now that I'd give them Happ, Drabek and Brown if that's what they want. And for that, they'd have to throw in a reliever or righty bat off the bench. That would be a fair deal. And we get to keep Taylor, Donald and Marson. Knapp becomes our top prospect. And Carrasco? Who the heck cares.

Our starting pitching cannot match up with the Cards or Dodgers, and maybe even the Cubbies, in a short series. And Lopez showed he can get by when he doesn't have his command. I think he can take Happ's place if Halladay is eating up innings as the ace.

Phan in MD: Heernandez was better than Rice beecause he had virtually the same OPS+ as Rice, but was like a 10 time Gold Glover. He won an MVP and 2 World Series with 2 different teams.

The best defensive 1b of thee past 40 years, against a defensive butcher, with the same 128 OPS = better player.

This was a classic CBP victory for the Phils - make a struggling starter exit early by having to work alot and then hit a few bombs & so some real damage against some spotty middle relief pitching. Meanwhile, the Phils get enough pitching to pull out a victory even if it is kind of subpar.

Say 10 years ago, I would be really interested to check out the box score in a game where the Phils scored 14 runs at the Vet.

With this offense the last several years and the way the ball carries out at CBP on a warm July/August day, I frankly am just not all that phrased if this team scores in double digits even though I should be.

It is a shame though that Romero, Durbin, and Condrey all had to head to the DL at the same time. This pitching staff was just finally starting to find their stride the last 2 1/2 weeks or so including a bullpen that really didn't have a really weak link (e.g, Taschner).

Now's it back to having a bunch of marginal guys in the pen including the likes Register, Walker, and KK for at least the next 2 weeks. Guess better now than in late Sept.

If that counter-offer to the Blue Jays is true with Carrasco and Donald, then Amaro is more risk-averse than I thought.

You have to give something to get something when you have two parties who are interested in making a possible transaction but when neither party necessarily does. Basic rule of negotiating.

That means likely that the Phils have to part with 2 of the 3 (Drabek, Brown, and Happ) and that counterproposal by Amaro was pretty damn weak.

MG: which homerun today was a product of CBP?

Can't really follow you on this one...the phils didnt score 14 at the vet because they didnt have the best lineup in baseball in a home uni.

MG said, "If That means likely that the Phils have to part with 2 of the 3 (Drabek, Brown, and Happ) and that counterproposal by Amaro was pretty damn weak."

Exactly.

"It is a shame though that Romero, Durbin, and Condrey all head to the DL... Now it's back to having a bunch of marginal guys in the pen."

Condrey and Durbin are marginal too. No big loss.

mikes: The downgrade from Durbin to Walker is slight. The downgrade from Condrey & Romero to KK, Carpenter & Register is huge. The loss of all 3 at the same time, coupled with Lidge's continuing ineffectiveness, adds up to one enormous problem.

phaithful - From the highlights, none of them but I didn't say that. It just wasn't very common the Phils scored in double digits at the Vet for several reasons generally over the years. Just not surprised any more if this team scores in double digits at CBP.

mike77 - If that was Amaro's counterproposal, then I would imagine that Riccardi is picking up the phone to see what other teams are offering because that deal is frankly a waste of my time.

I still don't think Halladay gets moved at the trading deadline (it will be this offseason) and Riccardi will likely get a little less to.

Mariners lose; RedSox & Angels both win. Seattle now 7.5 out of the division lead, 6 out of the WC lead. They were supposedly going to wait until the end of the weekend before deciding whether to trade guys like Washburn and Bedard. If they do, Washburn would be a nice piece. He's not Roy Halladay, but he's having an excellent year and he shouldn't cost us the likes of Drabek or Happ.

If that's the counterproposal JP is talking to Rubes anymore. That's an embarrassing one. That deal would barely be enough to get a mediocre starter.

mikes77: agree with your points re: Hernandez vs. Rice. Both are great players in their own ways, but IMO neither is HOF quality.

When I see a guy like Jim Rice getting into the HOF I wonder why the hell Dick Allen isn't in there already. Ok, so he was an evil bastard. So what. Too bad that the HOF is nothing more than a popularity contest anymore. If I had to choose between Dick Allen and Jim Rice with a gun to my head, I'd pick Allen every time.

"The downgrade from Condrey & Romero to KK, Carpenter & Register is huge."

Condrey stinks. KK is good enough to (stink)settle into Condrey's role.

Romero is a big loss, in that they only have one Lefty. If they call up Escalona and send Register back where he belongs, you won't miss any of them over the next 2 weeks. They already said Romero will be ready in 1 week.

agreed that Amaro's counter(if true)is fruitless. If you are going to make a counter, it better be good enough to at least have Toronto evaluate it and maybe adjust their original demand.

To have the bjs to just say "no" instead of "no, but how about..." is a pretty big step in the wrong direction.

In my opinion, the asking price of Drabek Happ Brown isn't all that crazy. I admit its overpaying, but hey, thats what it takes sometime.

If they can get that to only 2 of those 3 by adding two of our nontop50 prospects like cc/marson/donald then I hope Amaro pulls the trigger.

I would wait it out, but if the clock was striking midnight on the deadline, drabek happ brown are checking the canandien exchange rate by morning.

This KK to the pen move is stupid.

He needs to be in the rotation piling up the Ws.

If Amaro wanted Carrasco in lieu of Drabek and made this as a counter offer, you think its lame? This is what you call bargaining - there may be a compromise somewhere and maybe not lose both Drabek or Happ. Why give in the first offer from Rays - Amaro is playing real coy and I think smart.

Condrey stinks? I would submit you haven't been watching his continued improvement over the last few years. He is an above league average reliever who can provide multiple innings and does not spit the bit under pressure.

If that is "stinks" then I want three or four more like him.

Wow. That counter-offer surrounding Carrasco & Donald is a slap in the face to the Jays.

If I were the Jays GM I would tell Rube to take a flying leap.

fljerry - In negotiating, the trick is not to insult the other party. Carrasco being substituted into that package is an insult.

Contrary to what people believe, in fruitful negotiations, you pretty much always end up with a close approximation of the first offer. That only changes if circumstances change. For instance, had Carrasco not stunk last evening, maybe the Jays would have made allowances on Drabek/Happ. But I've negotiated some very large contracts, and I did that by being realistic and not insulting my opposite number.

And I had the same misconceptions about negotiating that everyone else had before I ever did it. Luckily, the father of a friend took me aside and told me how the real world works. And in that world, both sides are usually happy with the deal.

fljerry - Because when you have a counterproposal from one party during a negotiation that does not meet a single criterion/demand of the other party, it generally is received very poorly. In some cases in which negotiations are difficult or tense, it will be grounds to end the negiotations.

Amaro is doing what he needs to do. The Jays overshot w/ their proposal, he's undershooting, hoping to meet in the middle.

However, if Riccardi really did turn down that offer from the Angels (Weaver + prospects), then that first proposal from Riccardi will probably hold firm.

MG
Thats not necessary true - I did not like giving up Drabek and Happ, and supposedly Amaro didn't either. Hes trying to compromise on one of the pitchers and maybe throwing in another player or 2 in addition to Carrasco - thats smart bargaining and we only lose one of our favorite pitchers. The still probably get Brown and one of the pitchers they asked for.

aksmith said, "He is an above league average reliever who can provide multiple innings and does not spit the bit under pressure"

No offense, but your wrong.

His career OPS against says he is not an ABOVE average reliever. Also, Bill James has stats that show Clay Condrey has pitched in less high leverage situations than nearly any reliever the last 2 years.

The only advantage Condrey has over Kendrick is that his splits are'nt extreme. If you put Kendrick in for multiple innings against a line-up with few LH hitters, he would put up MUCH better numbers than Condrey.

it's not just Carrasco and Donald, it's Carrasco, Donald, & others

not sure who the others are..

Another vote for "Condrey has impressed me this year." He doesn't stink, and he should not be compared to Durbin, who, frankly, does.

colton: Read Scott Lauber's blog. The counteroffer apparently is: Happ or Drabek, Taylor or Brown, Carrasco, & Donald. That isn't insulting. JP knows he's getting $.65 on the $1, best case, if he waits until the offseason.

Sorry, like in so many things, Bill James is wrong. High leverage or not, Condrey gets outs. And if you look over his entire career, you're going to include years that are no longer relevant.

It's hard to believe you have been watching the same pitcher I have. He blew a game recently when we found out he'd been pitching injured, and everyone was shocked because he'd been so reliable over the last year and a half.

You'd have the same confidence in Kendrick as Condrey in any situation? You are no longer the GM. Sorry.

If Carrasco and Donald were the headliners, it likely didn't include Brown, Drabek, or Happ.

If I am Riccardi, that is a "waste of my f@cking time" counterproposal because it didn't have one of the things that I was really interested.

That isn't a "smart" strategy by Amaro. It is a risk-averse negotiating that won't get him anywhere except spinning his wheels and burning time.

MPH
I agree thats not insulting at all - and sounds like a good compromise in throwing in Donald (and Carrasco in lieu of Happ or Drabek)

i think amaro is pretty shrewd - ( @ leat i hope so)

he won't gut the pharm, but maybe a few pieces..

maybe happ, carrasco & taylor would do the trick - throw donald in for good measure...

MPN - If that's the case, then no that is in the realm of counterproposals that would be a basis of continuing to try and hammer out a deal.

If the compromise that MPN stated is the correct one then, how can anyone say that Amaro is is n idiot or some other statements mentioned here about him.

My guess is it'll end up being Drabek, Carrasco, Brown and Donald.

Its pricey but I'd do it.

"As trade negotiations between the Phillies and Toronto continued today, the Phillies were trying to steer the Blue Jays toward a package led by pitcher Carlos Carrasco, infielder Jason Donald and others in their attempt to acquire righthander Roy Halladay"

If that is the case, then it likely wouldn't include Brown, Drabek, and possibly Happ. That isn't a smart counterproposal. It's is a time killer.

Riccardi told the Yanks that they want Phil Hughes, Joba Chamberlain AND 2 others?

He's nuts for even making these requests. Why not ask for Jeter, Rivera and 4 seats behind home plate at Yankee Stadium, while he is at it?

These GM's aren't totally stupid. They know Toronto is having money problems. They know Toronto management is basically telling everyone, that anyone making money has to go.

This Riccardi has a rep for being, uhh, "out-of-his-mind", when trying to make trades. He better come to his senses and start moving his high-priced pieces, before he loses his job.

I have a hunch it's really Carrasco & Donald + Happ/Drabek, Taylor/Brown. That should get it done.

On another note: comparing offensive production between Hernandez and Rice using solely OPS+ simply demonstrates one of the limitations of that particular stat.

Its like saying Sandy Koufax and Lee Smith were equivalent pitchers because they both had career ERA+ of 131.

My god, I feel lucky that he didn't ask for Utley and Hamels in addition to Drabek, Happ, and Brown when I see these other proposals he's making. I can see why he wants a comparable deal to the Sabathia one last year, but asking for proven young players like Aybar and Chamberlain is ridiculous.

Dom Brown is now 1 for his last 17.

Its pretty apparent, that some of these youngsters being "linked" in trade discussions are being effected by all this BS.

Plus, those that think that one below average start by Carrasco or one down week by Brown, is going to sway a club one way or the other, is not thinking clearly or rationally.

One question about Brown... I keep hearing how he is going to be some big-time power-hitter in the future and he is the #1 hitting prospect in the system. He only hit 9 HR's all of last year and only has 9 (although he missed significant time this year) dingers this year in A ball. I understand he is just 21 and that power comes later with some kids. But, you have kids in A ball and AA ball (like, Taylor, for instance) hitting double digit HR's before their All-Star break and putting up big RBI numbers.

With several days left before the deadline, I would treat every bit of "news" short of an official announcement from the Phils that they've landed Halladay or are out of the running as containing unknown (and undeterminable) levels of crap. Ricciardi is desperate to get other teams up to the table, so having some toady reported put out a blurb saying that the Phils are just screwing around might get some other team to jump into the bidding. If a few teams get in on the bidding, it could very well work to Ricciardi's advantage in trying to hammer out the most favorable deal for him at the last second. Not all the teams in the bidding have to be acting all that aggressively for that to work, either. The appearance that someone might make a strong play before you could be enough to, for example, spur Junior to fork over both Happ and Drabek.

On Brown's power, you have to look at his extra base hits and the fact that he's gone up a level and from a hitters park to a pitcher's park while increasing his slugging 100 points.

The power is there and it will continue to increase.

I wish Beerleaguer had polls. For instance, if you only had to send one of these two players, Happ and Drabek, to Toronto, which would you send? Tough call to me.

Happ. No question.

Yea, I was even thinking that Ricciardi's offers to the Angels and Yankees might be intentionally ridiculous to make Ruben feel like he should accept what he's been offered.

I assume Rube is smarter than that.

"I can see why he wants a comparable deal to the Sabathia one last year."


In the Sabathia deal, the Indians got the Brewers top prospect (LaPorta) who was playing at AA, a couple of mid-level prospects (one in AAA and one in A ball) and another A baller.

The Brewers refused to give up Gamel (3B) and Escobar (SS), who were considered their 2nd and 3rd best prospects.


So, what Riccardi is requesting is so far away from what Milwaukee and Cleveland actually did, its not even funny.

He better get back to reality or he may be out on the street when this season ends, looking for work himself.

Hernandez is HOF worthy for being Jerry Seinfeld's boyfriend.

And that's about all I know of Keith Hernandez. Some of you oldies might think that's crazy, but the truth is, my generation doesn't give a crap about the HOF or past athletes.

BTW, my Seinfeld reference puts me dangerlously close to getting booted from my own age group.

Tray: Happ.

Hernandez was a very good player. The guy you hated to play against. He was also one of the guys who were compelled to testify before the grand jury that returned the indictments in hte '80's baseball drug trials. I have a soft spot for a guy who partied his ass off during those years and ended up doing Mets games instead of the talk show circuit or a stint in Graterford.

Cliff: It's alright, us oldies can't understand why you and your age cohort like the Neo-Leif Garrett stylings of the Jonas Brothers, either.

In the Sabathia deal last year, the Indians got the #1, #14 and #18 ranked players in the Brewers system (according to John Sickles). A 4th player, was not in the top 20.

What Toronto wants (using the same Sickles rating system) or could get (if some of you were making the deal) is the #1 (Carrasco was #1 in the pre-season ratings, but Drabek is #1 now), #4 (Donald), #5 (Happ) and #6 (Brown) prospects in the Phils system.


As most MLB GM's are saying, what Toronto wants is crazy and won't happen. Just look to Milwaukee. Look to what the Mets gave up for Santana.

It doesn't add up and it won't happen for Toronto.

Plus I think Rube is wasting too much of his time playing footsy with Riccardi and Toronto anyway and is taking his eye away from the bullpen and what needs to be done there. THAT is where the true upgrade is needed. THAT is where our depth is wearing thin and our age is showing. Not the rotation.

But, we all know my stance now. No need to go into it again.

I suppose Happ if Martinez can come in and pitch full time. And if not then Drabek since I want a 5 man pitching rotation and would be great to have Happ included. My guess is Happ since Amaro expects Martinez to be able to pitch

Maybe we can get the jays to throw in a reliever as well. The entire pen can't be bad can it?

If I were ruben, i'd say, ok you can have happ, drabek and brown and donald, but you need to throw in scutaro and a reliever as well as halladay. About the haul those pieces would be worth in total. do it, and move on with season. This is starting to become a monumental distraction.

denny, Sabathia was going to be a free-agent after the season. The Indians had less leverage than the Jays do since the Jays could potentially wait until next season to obtain a Sabathia-like haul. Hence, it makes sense to ask for more than the Indians did. One also has to consider the actual value of the prospects rather than their ranking since the Brewers' system was not necessarily of the same quality as the Phils' is now (really, one has to judge the prospects on an individual basis). Those who say that Halladay's value will never be higher are probably correct - but he is as unlikely to suffer a pitching-related injury as any ace in baseball next year since his mechanics are sound, even if he declines a bit, and so he will still be expensive next year in all likelihood.

If the Jays get a Sabathia-like return for Halladay (I'm guessing Brown, Happ, and Donald or something like that), it's an absolute steal for the Phils, even if it hurts to give up Brown and Happ.

2 surprises after checking the box score, the Cards outhit us 15-14 & we had (13) 2-out RBI's.

@mm: a monumental distraction to who, really? the fans? i mean, the team has won, what, 16 of their last 20 games or something like that? i don't see anyone's performance suffering. if anything, the chatter might give greater incentive for some guys to perform.

Paco,

Yes, it makes sense for Toronto to ask for more then Cleveland did. But THAT much more? I don't think so. And most MLB GM's feel the same way.

Sure it was a "rental" for Milwaukee. But it might be a little longer "rental" for Philly too. Plus, Milwaukee was desperate just to MAKE the playoffs. That is a much different position then what the WFC are in.

Going back to Sickels ratings, I did make on error. Cleveland got the #1, #11, #14 and #18 rated players in Milwaukee's system for CC. In using a grading system, that would be a B+, C+, C+ and C level prospects.

Similarly to what the market is (right now) for Doc, there weren't many true suitors for Sabathia last summer. The Yankees weren't giving up Hughes, for example (which is the same thing this year too). That helped drive the price down, for Milwaukee.

What Riccardi wants (at least right now) is the #1, #4, #5 and #6 rated players in the Phils system. They are B, B-, B- and B- level prospects, according to Sickels. (Philly's system in 2009 is much deeper and better then Milwaukee's in 2008).

That is crazy. Which is plain to see. Sure the circumstances for each player and the teams, might be a bit different from last year to this year. But not THAT different.

BTW, just for fun, if you used the prospect ratings that netted Sabathia for Milwaukee, in this case, it would mean the Phils would trade Carrasco (#1), Drabek (#11 pre-season rating), Mike Stutes (#14) and Chance Chapman (#18) for Doc.

Somewhere between Drabek, Happ, Donald and Brown versus Drabek, Carrasco, Stutes and Chapman should be (if there indeed HAS to be a deal) the deal.

goody - 15 hits and 9 for xtra bases. 6 doubles. Scored a run in 6 of 9 innings. Lost by 8. strange game.

If Ricciardi is asking for Drabek, Happ and Brown, it seems that his goal is Drabek, Carrasco, Brown (or Taylor) and Donald.

Halladay is the guy I always wanted so I'm not objective about whether they should get him. But, I do think that it makes little sense for the Phillies to move a guy who is part of the solution this year - Happ. I think Amaro agrees and I think Ricciardi recognizes it. I think that's his play to get 4 guys instead of 3.

Hopefully Ruben countered with Carrasco out and Bastardo in. Ok, I'm done fantasizing that I know what's going to happen. Is Tony Bastard still hurt? I wish he was up instead of Kendrick.

Hugh: I think Drabek, Carrasco, Brown (or Taylor), and Donald may be the realistic outcome of all this.

I agree that moving Happ makes little sense for the Phils considering he's been their best starting pitcher. Obviously I understand why the Jays want him but I think the guys listed above will be enough to get it done.

If they're adamant about getting a guy to move into the rotation right away, the Phils could throw in a Lopez/Kendrick if the Jays come back with a Scutaro or middle reliever.

I think it's safe to admit, now that we're safely backed away from the playoff run last year, that the Phils wouldn't have won if everything hadn't have fallen into place for them.

The bullpen locked it down every game. Every game but three the SP brought it in a big way- this was helped by a rejuvenated Brett Myers coming out of nowhere to dominate down the stretch. Clutch hits all over the place (including a ridiculous performance at the plate by Myers in two of his starts) + a decent presence off the bench. Minus one of the aforementioned contributions, a championship might not have happened.

Expecting these things to happen again is unrealistic. Hamels isn't guaranteed to go 7 innings of dominant ball every game- Lidge certainly isn't a sure thing like he was last year, and Madson + the other assorted set-up men don't inspire much confidence in a one-run game. We also have ZERO RH presence off the bench.

Adding an ace- not just an ace, but one of the three best pitchers in baseball- might not solve these problems, but it certainly diminishes the amount we'd have to rely on them not blowing up in our faces. The Phils' margin for error goes way up, in a lot of areas, whereas right now the margin is slim to none.

The choice is either bite the bullet and do this deal or hope to put together a bunch of moves at the deadline to fix all of these problems. To do nothing would be assuming a similar run with tons of good fortune is a possibility this year...and that is simply not good business.

I think Rube knows this and will end up doing the deal by midweek.

Ice -

A lot of things did fall just right for the Phils - a tough Cubs team bowing out early, a mini-collapse from the Mets, a 45-foot nubber with the bases loaded and five infielders to win in a WFS walkoff, very good starting pitching, dominant relief, etc. (though I'd argue the last two were a significant strength for much of the regular season, Eaton and manic Myers excepted).

But, after all, the team was/is built to win with its lineup - if the Phils don't leave all those men on base in the WFS, they turn a competitive 4-1 series win over the Rays into a lopsided sweep.

Unikruk: you're right, I don't think it was luck. I believe ANY team needs things to fall into place to win a WFC. But in order for those things to fall into place, they need to have as little margin for error as possible.

Lidge and the bullpen cured a lot of ills for us last year, including our inability to capitalize on our RISP in games 1-3. They were, in a lot of ways, our 'magic bullet' last year that allowed us to cruise through three playoff series that on paper were coin-flips.

We have no magic bullet this year, but adding Halladay gives us the next closest thing.

Last year was last year. It proves little but that fortune smiles on the prepared. Rube needs to do some cutting and patching. Plastering Halladay onto the rotation would obscure and/or make easier the remedy for the team's other warts.

Totally agree.

I see a lot of people mentioning the players JP wants for halladay from the yankees and such, but i recall JP saying that if they were going to trade Doc in the division, the team was going to have to overpay for him b.c. they were in the division. So while they are asking for joba and or huges plus prospects from the yeankees doesnt mean they want comparable talent from a team outside of the division

I know this is like 12 hours later but, can that guy register an out? HAHAHAH, okay, back to homework.

"kids let me tell you about the time, the Phils had a huge lead and they let me mop up because Tyler Walker was too tired and Chad Durbin hurt his back twittering too much and tried to hide it from Rich Dubee."

What if another team wants our prospects (say cleveland w/Lee), and offers him for a reasonable package? Do you take it, or hold out for Doc till the last minute and chance not getting either?

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