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Friday, August 28, 2009


"Instead of bringing up Cairo to fill space in the dugout, they should have brought up Anthony Gose from Lakewood to be the designated pinch-runner."

I know this post was made in jest, but a better idea would have been to bring up Andy Tracy and see what he can do as a pinch hitter. I know . . . he's a minor league journeymen and nothing more. But he consistently puts up good offensive numbers at AAA and, with our main left-handed pinch hitter on the DL, and the other one 1 for his last 2 months, it would be worth taking a look-see to see what he can do.

I honestly don't know if Stairs is finished or not. It's hard for me to declare a guy finished after what really amounts to just a 30-AB slump. Still, he's 41 years old, his bat looks really slow right now, & I tend to think there's a pretty big difference between a 30-AB slump over 10 days and a 30-AB slump over 2 months. Maybe he'll snap out of it in the next 30 days but, if he doesn't, I want an alternative option for the post-season. The only way that Tracy could be an alternative option is if we call him up before 9-1. Considering that Cairo adds nothing to the team, I'm not sure why we wouldn't just call up someone who actually has some offensive upside.

BAP: That makes sense except that Andy Tracy wouldn't get an at-bat either. They think Stairs needs to see live pitching and they think Dobbs will be healthy and on the playoff roster.

J.R.: Considering I've been drinking wine all night, I'm actually surprised to see you write, "That makes sense."

It may well be that Stairs will come around if he sees more live pitching. But maybe not. He is, after all, well past the average life expectancy of a major league player. And 1 for the last 2 months is pretty astonishingly horrible, no matter how few ABs he has had in that time. Fact is, Stairs' job, by its very nature, calls for sporadic playing time. So, in a sense it's not really an excuse. We need someone who can hit despite sporadic opportunities to do so.

Basically, I think the Phillies need a fallback option in case Stairs DOESN'T come around in the next 30 days. If the playoffs arrive, and Matt Stairs is hitting .175, do we really want him on our post-season roster? Tracy may not be any better but he seems to be the best left-handed bat in our system. So he's worth a shot -- particularly considering that the present alternative is Miguel Cairo, who gives us nothing.

Tough night for Dominic Brown: 0 for 7 in a 13-inning loss.

BAP: It's 1:30 am on this coast, so I'll say just about anything "makes sense."

As for Matt Stairs, I think everyone knows he will be on the post-season roster, regardless of his average. My only hope is that live pitching will speed up his bat a bit. Tonight you have to raise your glass to Matt Capps, though. He altered his delivery -- pausing longer than normal -- causing Stairs to lower his hands. Then he quick-pitched before Stairs could get the bat head around. A nice job.

Finally, I'd argue that Stairs still has some value, despite his .202 batting average. He has a good eye and can work a walk (.362 OBP). That's why I wish they had someone to pinch run for him rather than Bruntlett. Maybe Anthony Gose. That makes sense.

One more thing: I'm not anti-Andy Tracy (especially given the fact that Charlie never uses Cairo anyway), but it's tough to say he has "good offensive numbers at AAA." After all, so does Miguel Cairo.

So what is our magic number? 30?

Where have you gone, Raul Ibanez?

Matt Stairs is painful to watch right now. I guess it was too much to ask for a third straight game with a late inning flip flop of scores, anyway. Still, the g0ddam Pirates came up with a huge hit in the late innings on 3 consecutive nights. Say what you will about hte current caliber of their team, they came to play and didn't back down. This series will probably be the pinnacle of the season at PNC. Ten thousand Phillies fans in the park each night and the home fans get to watch them get stunned repeatedly. I saw Manuel's comments about Happ being the clear cut ROY and he's probably right. McCutcheon isn't bad either. I didn't hear anyone talk about Garret Jones. The guy has piled up quite a few HRs in a short time. I think everyone assumes he'll be a flash in the pan but, he doesn't seem to think so.

That PGH series proves definitively that the Phils peaked too soon.

Agreed - I'm going to change my vote.

Seriously, better to slump now than later.

I will say this about the Pirates- they arer from the most talented team but they continued to play hard (although not necessarily making the best decisions especially in Game 1) all three games. That attitude/focus helped them to take 2 of 3.

Contrast that to the DBacks this year who it looks at times have literally rolled over a few times against the Phils.

BAP: The fact you're seriously suggesting that the Phillies use a 35-year-old lifetime .228 hitter as the answer on the bench suggest either:
1. You've lost your mind.

2. The Phils bench is so bad you really do think it would be an improvement.

There are way, way better options out there, on the waiver wire and in the minors.

That McCutchen looks like the real deal -- the ball just jumps off his bat. And he isn't filled out yet.

"That PGH series proves definitively that the Phils peaked too soon."

Based on what? If we are talking W-L. The Phillies are 7-3 in their last 10. 14-10 on the month. And 25-14 since the ASB. I have DOUBTS that they have peaked just because they lost a series to the Pirates.

Still waiting for hittin' season. Could be worse--Bucs could be in the NL East and host the Phils 9 times.
Remember when the lack of a right-handed bat off the bench was the topic of discussion?

Two words on this series:

Cy Pittsburgh

Seriously. You'd think we were playing these guys this past weekend.

I have asked this before but didn't get an answer. Does anyone know anything about Bowers in Lehigh valley? In 47 games he has 59.2 IP with a 1.96 ERA and 1.39 WHIP. Another Lefty out of the pen maybe???


I know Weitzel will appreciate this...
Walking into the game at PNC last night my buddy and I passed Dave Hollins. My buddy wasn't really paying attention and only saw the back of his head and didn't really believe it was him. Then we're sitting at our seats around the homeplate area and down walks Dave Hollins to sit and scout the game. We didn't say anything to him at that time because he was talking to the other scouts and getting ready for the game. After the game we're at our car ready to leave and Dave Hollins walks right by us, so I say, "Hey Dave". He says, "What's up?" and we proceed to have a short conversation about the game and what he's doing from there. We also got our picture taken with him, which will be posted sometime today or tomorrow on the blog. By the way, he's a scout for the Baltimore Orioles.

I am dissapointed for Happ who pitched another tremendous game last night. We've discussed it here, but he once again proved that he can get out of jams with less than 2 outs.

The runs will come. We do rely a bit much on the home run, but that's a big park, especially in left and center field where we tend to hit dinky homers at CBP. Howard and Ibanez hit the ball pretty well the opposite way a few times this series and came up short. It is always frustrating to lose 2 of 3 to a bad team like Pittsburgh, but I'll generally take a 4-3 road trip.

This is a big series starting tonight. Winning 2 of 3 will greatly decrease Atlanta's chances of catching us with no more head to head matchups.

sneed: We play Atlanta for 3 more September 18-20 @ ATL.

Noodle - beautiful link.

Everyone look at that one, please.

To lose the Division saying the Phillies go 19-18 the rest of the way.

Braves and Marlins would need to go 26-9.

Just to put some perspective to it. If the Phillies go 27-10, they will win 100 games.

Not gonna happen guys. Can we please stop talking division and get ready for the postseason?

tommy - Bowers has been wild throughout his (long) minor league career - off-setting good k/9 numbers with atrochious {sp/} bb/9 numbers. When COL game him a big league audition last year he got absolutely hammered. I do not see him as a solution to any of our problems.

MVPTommy- shut up.

McCutchen looks like an interesting player although I was less than impressed with his intangibles (made a couple of baserunning blunders this series) and his natural defense abilities in CF (clearly fighting himself out there yet to judge balls).

With Alvarez coming along quite well, the Pirates will have a couple of positional players to build around. They still need a couple of guys like Young and Jones though to become legit starters and just not flashes in the pan. Signing a veteran guy or two this offseason for 1-year deals wouldn't hurt to just provide a little depth and leadership on the team.

The problem is their pitching staff. The MLB roster is pretty thin on pitching talent and their minor league system is still thin on pitching prospects that will really might make an impact at the MLB level.

I know some hate Joe Kerrigan from his days here in Philly but the man knows pitching/can improve those who are willing to listen to his somewhat boorish and arrogant comments from time-to-time.

I won't want to be in Huntingdon shoes but he deserves at least until the end of the 2011 season before really judging him. If the Pirates are still perennial doormats in another 2 years, then Huntingdon will have had 4 seasons and done nothing to alter the 90-loss seasons.

With less than $20M in guaranteed salary next year, there isn't any reason why the Pirates can sign at least 2-3 veteran to low-dollar, short-term contrcts for some depth on the bench and bullpen guys to round out what is a pretty weak bullpen.

MVPTommy- I apologize, I shouldn't have typed that, but seriously, it's not in the bag yet, so don't act like it.

The Pirates I think could be a pretty decent littel team if some of their young players develop like they hope. The pitching staff is getting better and they really held onto guys. A few of thier offensive guys are decent but I really like McCutchen.

High motor guy, who plays really good in center and seems to have some fairly good plate discipline. Sorta reminds me of a (brace yourselves) Kenny Lofton type. Quick swing that produces a ton of line drives and can go to all fields. Pesky at the top of the order too as he sees pitches and knows how to work walks.

I do appreciate a good Dave Hollins yarn. Thanks for the post. Did you by any chance refer to him as "Head"?

Ah, ok. Well, it's still darn important.

A few years ago I just wanted 1 division title, let alone 3 straight...It's amazing. I guess Pat Gillick knows a thing or two about building a baseball club, statistician on hand or not.

MVP: As a former high level player I would have thought that you would be a little more superstitious then to talk about the playoffs this early

With 9 games against the Phils yet (including 3 this series) are really the only team in the NL East that has any realistic shot of catching the Phils.

Unless the Braves go 7-2 or better, they really don't have a shot and taking 2 of 3 pretty much means the Braves would almost have to sweep the 2 series in Sept. to have a legit shot at the NL East title.

Just remember, Gillick teams are always decimated by the time he leaves.

(written in the same spirit as my previous 'peaked too soon' one)

Weitzel- I didn't refer to him as "Head", although I know that's what Kruk nicknamed him. He's still quite built, looks like he hits the gym regularly.

Craig Counsell clears waivers. Any interest there?

The reason why Cairo was a good addition was Bruntlett. At the time Miguel "I Stinko at Battingo" Cairo was brought up to replace Dobbs, Bruntlett had not had his 3 hit game followed by his one hit game and UTP. It was reasonable to expect that he was going to Stinko worso than Miguelo. By bringing Cairo up before September, it gave the Phils of DFAing Gnome when Dobbs returns and keeping Cairo as the last man on the bench for the play-offs. Not the best UT out there, but a definite improvement over the pre-Mets Series Gnome.

"...gave Phils the option of DFAing..."

JW - In re: Counsel
Yes. Yes. Very yes. For all the reasons I said bringing up Cairo was a good idea and more. Craig Counsel would be a far far better option than we've seen all season.

(To finish that allusion: It was the best of times (for the team); it was the worst of times (for the bench)..." etc)

"...he hits the gym..."

And the gym's still standing?

I feel better taking the loss than having to accept the fact that Paul Bako delivered the game winning run. Ah the luxury of a 7 game lead in the division.

Counsell wouldn't be a bad pickup although do the Phillies really need another lefty bat on the bench who is pretty useless against southpaw pitchers (but he can hit righty pitchers at a good clip, something that only dobbs seems to be able to do somewhat inconsistently off the bench at the moment)? This would be an attempt to upgrade the defense as Counsell can spell Feliz, JRoll and Utley. That said, Bruntlett provides a bit more flexibility with his ability to play outfield.

Tough call.

I wonder if Dave Hollins is pissed that Utley broke his hit-by-pitch record. If I were him, I'd be pissed.

Anyone have any idea, or read any comments from the postgame, as to why Happ was throwing Jones fastballs ahead of the count? Jones is a dead-red hitter, he had the left-hander set up for a slider or curve outside. I'd be willing to bet just about anything that he strikes him out with a slider away.

Once again, I think pitch selection did us in at the end of a game.

Would you rather have a bench of:
A. Francisco (R), Dobbs (L), Stairs (L), Bruntlett (doesn't matter), Bako (L)


B. Francisco (R), Dobbs (L), Stairs (L), Counsell (L), Bako (L)

MG: Not sure I agree with you on the Pirates pitching. I did a quick look at all the trades (plus a Rule 5 pick) they've made since mid-season last year and here's a list of pitching prospects they've acquired: Morton, Karstens, Ohlendorf, Hart, Hansen, Ascanio, Hanrahan, Veal, Jackson, Bootcheck, McCutcheon, Adcock, Prbanic, Stickland, Hacker, Morris.

Eight of them have already pitched in the bigs and project as solid (if not ace) rotation guys or bullpen help. The rest (except Hacker) were on BA Top 30 prospect lists for their respective teams.

Add to that the young talent they've developed themselves like Duke, Maholm, Meek and their high draft picks this year and next and the Pirates have a pretty nice stockpile of pitching prospects.

Frankly, I think their biggest problem going forward is lack of middle INF prospects.

saw on the wire that Moyer is likely slated to draw starts in each of the doubleheaders next month.

The Pirates have been stockpiling pitching in the minors through this latest purge. Brad Lincoln is a notable omission from clout's list. Morton looked shaky last night and has been going hot and cold. When he's cold, he's really cold. I htink the feeling is that he'll have a tough time making the rotation next Spring based on current performance. As for the Pirates signing a few mid-level free agent vets next year? Ain't gonna happen. That is how they did it for hte last ten years. Never works. Exhibit A? They let Wilson and Sanchez go rather than secure the middle infield with 'veteran leadership.'

Hollins was also nicknamed Mikey (his middle name) due to the way he used to get so amped up before games. The clubhouse phone would ring for him and they'd answer "Dave's not here right now. Mikey's in."

clout: Well, like I said . . . I had my fair share of wine last night. And, for some reason, I was under the impression that Tracy's current AAA average was .280 or .290 when, in fact, it's .247.

I do agree there must surely be better options out there. Stairs may yet come around but, then again, what if he doesn't? If he goes 0 for September, are we really going to go into the playoffs with a bench in which 3/5 of the players are hitting under .200 and 1 of the guys has had but 1 hit since the All Star break? I'd like the Phillies to have another option.

All this talk about bench made me curious. Since we replaced Coste with Bako and Coste become the back-up for HOU a strange phenomenon has occurred:


Seriously. Compare their b-ref pages. They are eerily similar, with Coste having a better BA, but Bako showing more power.

Serious Question here for everyone. Why are people interested in Craig Counsell? There are 3 MAJOR reasons to be against getting him.

1.) he bats left handed
2.) His playoff numbers overall aren't good.
3.) Is he really that much better than Bruntlett??

Why not Counsell?

After the records of players who used performance-enhancing drugs are carefully removed, statistics provided by the Elias Sports Bureau indicate that lifetime .255 hitter Craig Counsell was the best player of the past 15 years."If you judge them on the basis of pure physical ability, you're left with Craig Counsell,"

Plus Cliff Lee praised Bako's play behind the plate. I'm not a Bako guy, but that's gotta count for something.

If I am Rube, I call back up our old friends in Cleveland and ask for Jamey Carroll. He bats right, can hit, play 2nd, 3rd, left and right fields. Is a FA after this year.

Just a thought and is definitely a better option than Counsell.

Did Bako call that changeup Madson threw to Moss the other night? Or did Madson shake off a fastball?

Chipper (and other Braves) on the Phillies (courtesy of SportingNews):

"They do what championship ballclubs should do. They beat teams that they should beat. They take care of business. Teams that they should beat, they sweep. A lot of people point to the fact that pitching may be their weak point, but I think their pitching is very, very underrated. Their bullpen has struggled this year, and that's where you have to beat Philly.
"They put up so many runs a game. They have a great offensive ballclub. They have a lot of speed at the top. They steal bases. They run the bases well. They have the well documented power throughout the middle of the lineup. Very rarely do they beat themselves. They have a very fundamentally sound ballclub that pitches and plays good defense, and they have a monstrous offense. When you have solid pitching and solid D, you are going to beat a lot of people."

In re: Craig Counsell

This link actually gives a pretty compelling argument for Counsell.

clout: You mean MG misread a team's prospects? I'm shocked.

Again following his normal M.O. he slammed the GM of the Pirates for selling off parts this season and now is just hitting that vein well past the point of needing to find a new site. I do admire the persistent nature of the argument to some degree though.

BB - I like where your head's at.

tommy - I concur on Carroll as a UT. Maybe they'd trade him to us for, like, Mayberry.

Andy: Rube wouldn't do that deal. I am thinking for a couple of very low level prospects. Carroll will be a late 30's FA next year. He isn't worth a Mayberry type player.

I'm of the opinion that McCutchen is a future all-star for a lot of seasons. I think the kid has all the talent in the world. He's 22 and in his first 3 months playing major-league CF, so you can excuse him for misreading a fly ball every now and then. As a rookie he has a 126 OPS+, and his current power/speed stats project to 20 HRs and 34 SBs over 162 games. Add in the tools to play plus defense in CF, and that's a really good player. Think Victorino with more power and better plate discipline.

Fundamentals???? As Kenny Powers said: "Fundamentals are a crutch for the talentless."

What's a Mayberry type player? Someone who is overmatched and can't hit well?

And don't forget: Since someone on the Pirates has to be an All-Star, McCutchen could get there by default.

Bed's Beard: A poor man's Ben Francisco.

Jack: Be careful. There was a little CFer in Florida last year that posted a high OPS+ between last year and early this year before he fizzled out. I am not comparing him to Cameron Maybin. Just pointing out to wait before such lofty expectations are announced.

Tommy: Maybin posted great numbers in 8 games last year. And was awful early this year. McCutchen has played 72. Little bit of difference.

Maybin also had/has serious strikeout issues that McCutchen does not. I still think Maybin can be a solid MLB player, but he still has some work to do.

Jack: Again, not comparing them. Just pointing out that the Marlins thought he would be an All-Star early and he has fizzled so far. I don't think after 72 games you can judge his future.

They've been holding McCutchen back for a couple years. He's the biggest prospect to come through their minor leagues since Bonds (no comparison intended as Bonds was good enough to play in the majors immediately). From what I've seen of this kid, he's going to have a long career.

"I don't think after 72 games you can judge his future."

I thought all you needed was 40 at-bats to judge a player. My bad.

loqiel: I think his point was that I can't judge players after 72 games. He, having played college baseball (and been a huge 3rd baseman), can judge players after any period of time. It's a key distinction.

Truth - I did rip Huntingdon for trading guys and getting quantity more than quality.

Plus, he was supposedly looking to move guys that just last offseason were the keys to their rebuilding process including McLouth (whom they do move) and Maholm. Maybe he was pressured to do so by the front office but there payroll is supposedly going to be around $40M next year and it is going to be really tough for Huntingdon to do much this offseason even with less than $20M committed to salaries next year.

As for the pitching, yeah they have plenty of "prospects" and they will benefit from playing in a pitcher's park. The question is do they have a guy who will develop into a clear frontline starter, will they actually be able to develop some starting pitching (don't know about the changes the Pirates made to the minor league system), and will they pony up the money to pay guys like Duke/Maholm when they need to 2 years down the road.

Basically the Pirates have become so bad for so long that the people in Pittsburgh have become apathetic. In order to draw (which represents an important share of their overall revenue pie), the Pirates have to win and sustain that for at least 2-3 years. It also requires that the cheapskate ownership (who have one of the healthier operating margins if you believe the Forbes annual number) eventually reinvest some of the profits back into the annual payroll of the MLB team.

A huge 3rd baseman. Wow

MG: Right now they should be reinvesting profits back into the player development system, signing high-talent guys and spending money to develop them. They should not be spending money on mid-level veteran FAs. That has been proven to be the absolute worst use of resources in baseball.

In order to win and sustain that for 2-3 years or more, if you're not the Yankees, you have to do it through player development. That's what they should be focusing on, and I believe they are.

Sneed: Tommy was an All-American 3rd baseman because he was 6'8 and 275 and could catch any ball within 30 feet of him. Check out his stats sometime.

Shaquille O'Neil = Best Third Baseman EVER

Cipper: Please provide proof to this statement:

Shaquille O'Neil = Best Third Baseman EVER

he's 7'1" 320 lbs.

Way taller and heavier than ANY 3rd baseman in the league, ever.

Tommy: I don't know how you can compared Craig Counsell and Eric Bruntlett. Counsell's batting average is .115 points higher, and his OPS is exactly .300 points higher. And you have a tendency to get fixated on small sample stats that don't matter like his career playoff numbers. Wasn't Craig Counsell the MVP of the 2001 NLCS? How can that be if he can't hit in the playoffs? All that said, I agree with you about his left-handedness being a deal killer & I agree with you that Jamey Carroll would be a better option. One word of caution, though: Carroll is only 5'9".

Jack/Truth: It's pretty difficult not to be cynical when it comes to the Pirates. Viewed in a vacuum, perhaps they made some good trades this year & perhaps they were right to sell all their decent major league players for prospects. But, when they've been going through this same cycle for 15 or 20 years, you can't view their actions in a vacuum. The problem with the Pirates is that there seems to be no end game in their plans. If McCutchen and some of their other decent prospects turn into good major leaguers, they'll be traded away 3 years from now for more prospects.

MG: I think McCutcheon has a much brighter future than McClouth. There is a right way to do rebuilding. It's get rid of everyone and bulk your farm system. They finally did that this year and keep what is a fairly talented core of pitchers together. Wilson, Sanchez, and McClouth didn't factor in going forward so they were dumped. It's good for them they didn't half-ass it this time and went full bore.

Great logic Tommy-

Executive #1: Who do we have in the minors ready to play?
GM: Well there is this one kid who has a pretty decent bat.
Executive #2: Is he any good?
GM: No, he 's horrible.
Exec #1: Bring him up anyway.

Time will tell if hte Pirates can do it, period. Certainly a long step backward. I don't think they set out to trade McLouth. I think they targeted Morton and Gorkys Hernandez and that was the price demanded. McCutchen made it easier to do it. His ceiling remains to be found. McLouth is probably at or near his. Now about those Phillies . . . I gotta believe Rube and his men are scouring the waiver wire right through the weekend for some help off the bench.

"Great logic Tommy-

Executive #1: Who do we have in the minors ready to play?
GM: Well there is this one kid who has a pretty decent bat.
Executive #2: Is he any good?
GM: No, he 's horrible.
Exec #1: Bring him up anyway."

TI: What did I say that had anything remotely close to that scenario???

BAP: The reason the Pirates have sucked for so long is pretty simple: Their GMs for the past 25 years. Dave Littlefield is arguably the worst GM in baseball history, perhaps topped only by Cam Bonifay, whose personnel decisions made him a laughingstock. Those two somehow were allowed to guide the team from 1983 to 2007. Chuck LaMar is a genius compared to those two.

clout: Where are you on the all-time GM list?

sneed: I rank 45th all time (on a pct. basis) for my guidance of the 1915 St. Louis Terriers in the Federal League.

Bonifay and Littlefield were quite a one-two combination. I think Littlefield wins the title by virtue of the Matt Morris trade. Some guys have golden parachutes on the way out; Littlefield rang the doorbell and ran away, leaving behind a flaming bag of sh!t.

Well played.

clout - It is a bit more than that. Yeah Littlefield was terrible but at what point are the owners going to willing to make some real substantial investments over the long-term?

The new owners did build that $5M facility in the Dominican Republic and invest another $2M in their spring training facility but it is very easy to see them being right back in the same boat in another 2 years when they have to start to pay some of the talent they do have on the club right now.

They also need to put at least a competitive product on the field for a few years in order to really boost up attendance & ticket sales. Hard to see them doing that with a sustained boost in payroll down the road in a few years.

Pittsburgh has a basic problem - it is a ML franchise stuck in a city that was once a ML city but is now a relatively small town. Small attendance/small fanbase = little $$. Under existing baseball economics it is destined to remain a 2nd tier feeder team for the big boys.

curt - Yeah that is what I am driving at I guess. Pirates are one of the lowest revenue teams in the MLB and ticket revenues are an important part of their overall revenue streams. Problem is their attendance sucks, general fan is very apathetic after nearly 20 years of consecutive losing seasons, and the greater metro Pittsburgh area really has undergone a huge population decrease. Basically the Pittsburgh MSA has lost about 20% of its population since the steel mills and other heavy industries began to close in the mid-70s through the early 80s.

It's a shame Pittsburgh is such a bad sports town...oh wait.

BB - Being a "good sports town" doesn't necessary translate into sounds team economics. Plus, football economics are completely different from something like hockey or baseball for several reasons including the TV/radio revenue sharing in the NFL.

Pirates are at where the Phils were in the late 90s in terms of attendance and general fan interest. They play in a much better park but every sports economist has debunked the quality of stadium as having any kind of real effect on attendance after the "rainbow effect" for the first 1 or 2.

Pirates did need to start over but at what point do you keep turning over talent to bring in younger and cheaper "prospects"?

Oh-No. BLer will be sure to show Rube hatred for not picking for Mahey.

Twins picked up the lefty reliever earlier this afternoon from Royals.

Would he have been worth paying the remaining 740K to add to our pen? I don't think so, IMO.

clout: I am significantly downgrading you for not signing Benny Kauff, who was readily available at the time.

Giants claimed Trevor Hoffman, unlikely to be traded anyway. So those dreams can die, if anyone was still harboring them.

Here's the picture of me with Dave Hollins, a Jason Weitzel favorite.

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