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Friday, March 26, 2010

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That rotation doesn't scare me at all, McCann as cleanup is a joke, and Glaus is washed-up. I'm thinking second place, 8/9 games out, for them.

Luckily Larry and Glaus are not what they once were. If everything clicks, they will be strong, but there are still a lot of question marks in the lineup and rotation.

The Braves scare me a ton. That rotation if healthy is awesome, and Saito/Wagner at the backend of the bullpen is very solid. The lineup is deeper than it has been in years, so I'm worried. I'm picking Atlanta to take the Wild Card.

Larry and Troy will barely see 600 ABs combined, let alone by themselves.

Saito and Wagner might be the other most fragile duo on the team.

But i'm sure McCann, Prado and Diaz will kill the Phils throughout their head to heads to keep 'em in contention for the majority fo the year.

NL Wild Card winner gets a World's Tallest Midget trophy this year.

Who would you rather have as your closer this year...Brad Lidge or Billy Wagner?

If Heyward turns out as advertise the Braves have their new and improved Chipper Jones of the new millenium. Heck he's probably better than Chipper Jones in his prime. Have a feeling those Bravos are going to give the Phils the most fits this year and not the Mets.

I think the lineup is pretty weak. Pitching will keep them in contention. I don't think Phils are runaway favorites. This will be a tough year in the NL. Hope the phils can bring it!.... Heyward is going to have a lot of hype to live up to, Im betting on a torrid start and then a fall back to earth as teams get a book on him. Maybe similiar to Jay Bruce. We'll see

Kendrick in 2010!

"Who would you rather have as your closer this year...Brad Lidge or Billy Wagner?"


C.


I wouldn't trust Billy Wagner in a big game to get a save, especially at his age with that many miles on that arm.

The Braves scare me quite a bit. They've gotten much better during the off-season. I don't think they can be written off this year. I know it's a big "if," but if Glaus and Chipper can avoid too many DL stints, they are going to give the Phils a fight until the season comes to an end.

i'll take Lidge.
you have to remember that Wagner is a helluva pitcher, unless he is pitching against a team he once played for... i expect the Phils and Mets to spoil him at least a couple of times each this season. and that dosen't bode well for Atlanta's division chances. plus, he's still a rat.

Oh yeah...just a little hype for Heyward. But in the few innings I saw him play this spring, he looks pretty damn good.

The Braves will be good this year.

The Braves will contend this year.

The Phillies better be ready because it's going to be a dogfight. Everyone who has picked them to win 98 games this year (Carson, Conlin) has done so because the Phils are certainly better.

But the competition is going to be better too.

I'd say the braves definitely have the best up and down lineup besides the Phils in the east at this point. Gonna be a dogfight this year.

Not too worried as the Wild card will likely come out of the east if the braves live up to expectations.(The central is a joke outside of the STL and the dodgers rotation is garbarge). At the same time, that's a drastically different braves team so it may take some time for the chemistry to gel. Maybe more scared next year than this year. And their bullpen is nothing speical.

Can't wait to watch the NL East 3 years from now, with Jason Hayward, the young Albert Pujols, going up against Antonio Bastardo, the young Johan Santana. Should be fun!

Tim from Williamsport: You have a call. It's a Mr. Clout. He sounds angry.

That is not a weak line-up. McLouth is good at the leadoff spot and Prado has murdered the Phillies.

McCann is no Ryan Howard but he is fine as a clean-up hitter. Heyward feels like the real deal and Melky can be pesky if he is in the 8 spot.

What I question though is- everyone talks about the health of our bullpen, what about the health of the Braves back-end? Wagner will be 40 in July and is coming off a major surgery still. He only through like 17 innings last year and there will still be some rust. Saito is up there in age too. Wagner and Saito are great if they stay healthy, but two guys in their 40's are not what I would bet on to stay healthy all year long.

So much 'Chipper is unhealthy' talk here.

Over the past 3 seasons, he's stayed pretty healthy. Never in his career has he been placed on the 60-day DL. He played in the most games by any Brave last year. Had a rough year trying to carry the offense.

It can be argued that the Braves offense outproduced the Phillies in the 2nd half of 09 when Frenchy was shipped out and Prado took over the 2B job. Now the team has a full year of a few upgrades

Glaus> Kotchman
McLouth> Schafer
Heyward> Frenchy
Prado> Johnson
Melky/Diaz> Anderson

Pretty much the same staff, just replaced Vazquez with Hudson(who seems to be healthy).

The back-end of the pen is a question mark, sure. But if they can stay healthy, both are two of the best at their job.

Health is the biggest concern, but I'm not worried about Glaus. He's moving to a position that will put much less strain on his right shoulder.

I think Chipper will bounce back(but hey, they almost made the playoffs last year with him hitting around .210 in the 2nd half, so a similar year to 09 won't kill the team). He's got a bit more protection in the lineup and finally some depth at 3rd to give him much needed rest.

I have confidence in Heyward to make an immediate impact. He's got plenty of plate discipline and is a line-drive hitter. I don't expect 30 bombs, but those line drives are going to start amounting to quite a few HR down the road.

I can see them winning the WC. Still don't think they have enough to overtake the Phils.

Undo: Braves are the only team that scares me, but you know those damn Marlins will be pesky as usual. They have a fine rotation, but will have their fielding/defense issues and questions in the BP.

I think the Braves will have enough to hang with the Phils and if Frenchy's dreams do come true, injuries to the Phils could help the Braves to a title. I hope not. I rather like this view and would like to know how it feels to be a Braves' fan for their 14 year run. I know we'll never duplicate that, but it's doubtful any team will again in this new era.

The Mets will be competitive, but I don't like their rotation or BP. The Nats will be better. The NL East is going to be a dogfight this year.

Mccann is a great hitting catcher but is not a fine clean up guy...middle o the road at best

McCann won't be the clean-up hitter, Glaus will be...

The lineup will most likely be:

McLouth
Prado
Chipper
Glaus
McCann
Escobar
Heyward
Diaz/Melky

@doubleh...

It felt great not having to worry about their chances in the division for so long. I just wish they could've won more than one ring...

And I don't think 14 straight will ever be done in any professional sport, actually.

Escobar hitting 7th is impressive, but to me 5 of the first six spots are question marks. McLouth has been declining, Prado could be a one-year wonder, Chipper was pretty bad last year, Glaus is a few years removed from being a force in the middle of a lineup, and Heyward is a rookie. They are scary because of potential if everything goes right, but how often does that happen? And having your best hitter at catcher is not necessarily a good thing, since they need days off once a week or so.

Undo: It's just not possible in the salary capped world of most sports. In baseball, there's a different dynamic in play, but it's still cost-related. Every team not named the Yankees can't hold on to their best players at every position. Decisions, and tough ones, have to be made with an eye toward the current and future budget. With a lot of teams now moving toward corporate ownership, it becomes even more evident. The Braves lost a lot when Turner sold them.

I pray the Phils are never owned by Comcast. Look what's happened to my beloved Flyers and the formerly held in high regard NBA team here. Disgraceful.

Undocorkscrew - You really expect Glaus and Jones to bounce back and have big years? I would like a piece against that.

I do think the Braves have a better overall rotation than the Phils even with Halladay and I would take Wagner in a heartbeat over Lidge at this point.

More and more, it seems like the Phils made a Faustian bargain with Lidge. He would be lights out in '08 & big a huge part of their championship run, get signed to one of the most expensive contracts for a closer in the league, and then possibly proceed to stink it up/cost the Phils another shot at really repeating last year or this year.

I had Heyward all cued up to pick in my fantasy team and I accidentally took Chapman instead. :(

Whether he's the real deal or not, the Braves are a minor threat. I'm almost as worried about DC as I am Atlanta.

Undodcorkscrew - Maybe it is me but I have always had nearly as much dislike for the Braves as the Mets. In fact, I usually rooted for the Mets' teams earlier this decade against the Braves simply because of two reasons: Bobby Cox and the lousy Atlanta fans.

I hope that the grumpy, old curmudgeon comes up just short again this year in his final year. It would be fitting after a career of generally just coming up a bit short almost every year with the Braves.

Maybe my dislike of Cox is partly irrational because I am a Phils' fans but I haven't disliked a manager in baseball as much since Lasorda retired.

Will Schweitzer's last comment leave Undocorkscrew seeing red? I predict at least a bit of dischord.

MG: I am with you. Who can forget some of the more infamous Braves like Rocker and Justice? They make Myers look like a teddy bear by comparison.

Bobby Cox is a fossil and the rumors are that he's being pushed out more than retiring. Do you think there's any validity to them?

@mg...

No, I don't expect 'big' years from either. Like I said, the Braves almost made the playoffs last year with Chipper hitting around .210 in the 2nd half.

Glaus, if healthy enough(which I think will happen), will put up 25-28 HR. Considering what we had out there last year......I'd take that in a heart beat. That was the only thing missing from the lineup last year, a RH power threat.

@Schweitzer...

Meh, can't say I believe that you really feel that way. I mean, it's the Nationals...

@mg...

Being a Braves fan, I respect Bobby Cox. Having said that, he's over-the-hill. I've always questioned his pitching changes and refusal to have a running game year in and year out. I welcome the managerial change with open arms.

@doubleh...

Yeah, Rocker and Justice were complete idiots. But every team has had their share of twats.

doubleh - I kind of wondered the same thing. It is always incredibly problematic to outright fire a manager that has achieved so much prior success and had a long tenure. Much easier if they just 'retire' and go away quietly like what happened with Sparky Anderson and Whitey Herzog.

The Nationals are a bigger threat this season than people realize. I think they have a legitimate shot at the Wild Card, or at least as much of a shot as Atlanta.

Undocorkscrew - I respect Cox. I just can't stand him. Never seems to give the other obligatory 'tip of the cap' to other teams. Instead drones and complains.

Like clockwork, Cox will inevitably complain at least once or twice this year about CBP "being a bandbox" when the Braves lose a game here or two where the Phils hit 2-3 HRs.

@William...

No, the Nats are improved. When Jason Marquis is your ace.....you're not making a playoff run. Now, if Wang can bounce back(unlikely) and Strasburg is the real deal, they may break .500. But as it stands......a potent offense that K's too much, a terrible defense, a joke of a bullpen, and a below-average rotation. Doesn't exactly sound like a contending team...

Comparing Heyward to Pujols is one of the silliest things I've ever read. It's as silly as comparing Bastardo to Santana, something that would never happen on Beerleaguer.

Yes, the comparison is silly. But if I remember correctly, Leland was the only one that made the comparison and he was only talking about his maturity at such a young age and his plate discipline.

But having said that, Heyward is as automatic as a prospect can be.

Changing the subject, how many people feel that Domonic will play a lot in LF this year? Show of hands? I say he gets more ABs than Ibanez...

If Ibanez goes down, maybe. Seems like that's the only thing that could get him some PA's before September.

Dan in Philly: I'd be shocked if Brown appeared in an MLB game before September. Might not even make it in a game then.

Clout: I know you hate Bastardo, but even you have to admit the Santana comparison is legitimate. The bar there is pretty low. I think he's Santana at a minimum, with the upside of Steve Carlton. Since Heyward bats lefty, I think the appropriate comparison is Barry Bonds, not Pujols.

I just think that Raul isn't going to play much this year, not that Brown is going to light it up. Hope he proves me wrong, of course, but between age and injury, I forsee a long season for him.

Jack: LOL

I am down playing the Braves a bit more than I should, but I can't reason why Schwietzer would think the Nats are a better team/bigger threat.

I do agree, by the way, that there's a strong possibility Raul has a disappointing year. He's 38 and did not look good at all the 2nd half of last year. But Raul will have a long leash, performance-wise, judging by Charlie's managing in the past, and if he misses time due to injury, Francisco will become the everyday player, not Brown.

Francisco is more than an adequate fill-in for Ibanez--he's much better defensively, and brings a decent bat from the right side to balance the lineup. I imagine he'd bat 7th, with Victorino pushed up to 6th, in case of an Ibanez injury.

thephaithful: "Larry and Troy will barely see 600 ABs combined, let alone by themselves."

You're off by 100 ABs (they'll see 700), but your point is a good one. The Braves success this season rests on how much those 2 have left in the tank. That is a risky proposition.

The pitching, OTOH, is solid.

Bill James projection for Ibanez:

.270/26/86 .340 OB

Looks reasonable to me, assuming no injuries.

Glaus and Chipper (nice name for an adult) will break down at times. Billy the Rat? No worries.
Dom Brown will be next year's Heyward.

@clout...

Yeah, those are key positions in the lineup. But like I said earlier, the Braves almost made the postseason last year with Chipper hitting around .210 in the 2nd half and McLouth hitting around .225. With an improved offense from last year, Chipper won't have the amount of pressure he did. Glaus is moving to a position that puts a lot less strain on his shoulder. I'm not really worried about those two, to be honest. I think the biggest blow would be if Hudson went down.

And btw, Chipper had 600 PA's last season. Glaus had around 640 PA's in 2008. Yes, he injured his shoulder last year and was out almost the entire year, but like I said....he won't be putting as much strain on that shoulder.

600 PA's combined is a slightly ridiculous statement. It's possible, but unlikely.

Undo: Chipper's been a hoss, no doubt. But he is entering his age 38 season and I am betting he doesn't get more than 400 ABs.

Nats are an interesting team, but their defense is still poor and the pitching has improved from hideously bad to mediocre.

Clout: But the Nats have Zimmerman at 3rd, which we all know is the single-most important defensive position in the field.

In all truth, though, switching Dunn to 1st, having Nyjer Morgan for a full year, replacing Guzman with Desmond at SS, and obviously having Zimmerman at 3rd, the Nats' defense should at least be better than last year, when it was awful. The pitching is still very, very bad, at least until Strasburg and Wang get there.

"Cox will inevitably complain at least once or twice this year about CBP "being a bandbox" "

Unless, of course, it's the Braves who are the beneficiaries of the HRs.

"I do agree, by the way, that there's a strong possibility Raul has a disappointing year. He's 38 and did not look good at all the 2nd half of last year."


Jack, I agree that because of age and the fact that he's coming off of surgery there is a risk that Raul will not put up the numbers that he did in 2009.


But.....for the life of me, I cannot understand why you and others on this board point to the second half of last season as though it's some sort of valid indicator as to what can be expected from him.

Note to you and the rest: HE WAS INJURED....an injury bad enough to require offseason surgery.

Do you think that maybe, just maybe, that had something to do with his second half performance in 2009?

Is it within the realm of possibility that his dropoff in '09 was injury and not age related?

And, if so, what's the utility of using the second half of last season as any sort of reference point?

The Nats for Wild Card?!?!? Absolutely nuts...i mean nats.

Does anyone on here really think that Lidge is a better option this season than Wagner? I was secretly hoping that Wagner would return here this offseason even if the chance of that actually happening was very nonexistent.

clout, how accurate has Bill James been in the past, and have his predictions for players' performances generally erred on the low side or the high side?

"I wouldn't trust Billy Wagner in a big game to get a save, especially at his age with that many miles on that arm."

But you would trust him in a lot of little games, which of course is what matters. Whereas Lidge can't exactly be trusted in a big or small game right now (though of course, he might bounce back).

Has anyone else noticed that the theme of hte past few posts is:

Chipper at 38 is a threat, but Raul at 38 will falter and be yanked for Brown.

I guess that's the eternal pessimism that comes with being a Phillie fan.

To add a little perspective, here are a couple of Ibanez factoids:


Through June 17, 2009:

285 PA, 22 HR.....1 HR every 12.72 PA


From July 11 - Oct 4 (when injured):

280 PA, 12 HR.....1 HR every 23.75 PA


From 2004 - 2008 in Seattle:

3256 PA, 113 HR.....1 HR every 28.84 PA


So, the real question is how many PA does one expect Ibanez to get in 2010, and at what rate per PA does one think he'll hit a HR?


So taking Bill James as gospel:

.270/26/86 .340 OB

if Raul's power numbers are the same as when he was injured last season he needs 617 PA to hit 26 HR.

If he performs as he did before he got hurt he'll only need 331 PA to get to 26.

OTOH, if he regresses to his rate when he was in Seattle, he'll nedd 750 PA to hit those same 26 HR.

It's going to be really interesting to watch him this season.

It is funny how people mention Wagner's injury and yet kind of just dismiss the fact that Lidge has had 3 major procedures on his right knee in the past 2+ years and had major offseason surgery. If anyone is in the "Walking Wounded" category is is Lidge especially with that bulky right knee.

awh - One of the things I do think drops a bit this year are the HR numbers for the Phils in part because they get ~15 less HRs from LF/RF and the drop off in power at 3B with Polanco.

I bet they still hit right around 200 HRs but it will be their lowest HR total as a team since '05 when they hit 167 HRs.

awh: James tends to fall a bit on the high side, but is IMHO more accurate than CHONE or PECOTA and way more accurate than the silly ZiPS.

It would be nice to see a study of all of them to see who comes closest in most cases.

MG: "One of the things I do think drops a bit this year are the HR numbers for the Phils in part because they get ~15 less HRs from LF/RF and the drop off in power at 3B with Polanco."

2009 Feliz HR: 12
2009 Polanco HR: 10

Drop off? More like a baby-step off.

Kutztown Fan: Chipper is a far better hitter than Raul. That's why there's a difference. Great players are more likely to age well than other players, and because of Chipper's great plate discipline, he's more likely to be able to contribute by simply getting on base even as his hitting skills decline than Raul will.

To put that part in perspective, Raul's career high in walks is 71. Chipper has drawn more than 71 walks every single season of his career except for one (and he only played 110 games that year).

Jack: I agree that Francisco would be the replacement for Ibanez if injury occurred, but you posted

"Francisco is more than an adequate fill-in for Ibanez--he's much better defensively..."

Is that much better than Ibanez, or much better than Brown? Most reports are that Brown does take the best angles to the ball yet, but think his quickness and arm are both ++ in the field.

*does NOT take the best angles

Jack: Thanks. Good point. Even though I could argue that Mickey Mantle didn't really age that well. But he's the exception that makes the rule, I guess.

What really impresses me is the walk comparison between Raul and Chipper. Wow. (Even more impressive is that you thought to make this comparison and did the research to support your theory)

phaithful: It was referring to Ibanez.

I can only imagine Francisco is better than Brown right now. From the scouting reports I've read, Brown absolutely has the potential to be a good or very good defensive outfielder, but I highly doubt he would be this year, for the reasons you mention: he needs to work on his route-running, and simply get more reps in the OF at a high level.

I do think the potential exists for Brown to be a sort of LH version of Jayson Werth, with better average and maybe a little less power. A good defensive RF with power and speed and the ability to get on base at a good rate.

Kutztown Fan: Thanks for the kind words.

Interestingly, Mantle didn't age as badly as you might think he did. He retired after age 36, it's true, and obviously his knees were shot at that point, but check out his numbers. He got on base at a .385 clip at age 36 in 1968--the best season for pitching in modern history. That was good for a 142 OPS+. He stopped hitting for power, and again, he couldn't run, so it's understandable he retired, but it seems plausible based on his numbers that he could've at least continued to get on base and contribute in that way.

"Drop off? More like a baby-step off. "


clout, Comerica Park (Detroit) has a slightly lower "Power Ranking" according to ESPN.

So, it may very well be that it winds up being a wash.

Undocorkscrew -- You've pointed out twice that the Braves 'almost' made the playoffs last year. I don't think I'd agree with that statement. Finishing 7 games Back of the division, and 6 back of the WC isn't really that close. I do agree with you in that the Braves are the Phils biggest threat this year in the NL East. Their offense is improved, however I don't think Glaus hits more than 25 HRs with that ballpark in Atlanta like you stated.

I think their pitching is worse than last year. Losing Vasquez hurts, I think that Jurrijens will likely regress a bit, for much of the same reason people think Happ with regress. I think Hanson is going to be a very good pitcher this year and in the future. I think that Lowe, Hudson, and Kawakami could regress just due to their ages (37,34,35) plus the back end of the bullpen is also very old (like almost Moyer old...). They could be ok, but there is a lot of potential pain there too.

On another note, I appreciate your position and demeanor, being a Braves fan and coming to a Phils blog and not being a d!ck

Gotta say, I didn't expect a reasonable discussion regarding the Braves. I've been to other blogs of rival teams and anytime a fan post is made by a fan of a rival team he's called every name in the book.

And nice to see a rival blog posting happenings on rival teams.

@clout.....People have been saying that about Chipper for the past 3 years. Yes, he's a year older.....but judging by the past 3 year, I see no reason to genuinely think he'll get less than 400 PA's.

But the thing is, he doesn't have to carry the team anymore. His production will definitely help, but it's still a good club with Chipper only playing in 110 or so games.

So what does the Braves lineup look like if Heyward isn't the second coming (this year) and Chipper and Glaus both spend time on the DL?

Was surfing ESPN.

My, oh my, has the game changed since I was a kid.

espn has a list of players that it calls "MLB Baseball Lifers" - players that have played for only 1 team, and who have played for at least 10 seasons.

There are only 12 such players.

Jimmy rollins is one of them.

http://espn.go.com/mlb/features/lifers

MadMax: Last year was Happ's first full season in the major leagues and there are statistical (and historic) reasons to expect a regression.

Last year was Jurrjens SECOND full season in the majors and while I don't expect a 2.60 ERA again, I sure could see a 3.20 ERA with 14-16 wins.

Depends on how much time they spend on the DL. If it's just a 15-day stint for each, then it still looks pretty good.

But if both miss 60 or so games, then it's not looking good at all. But like I said, I'm not all that worried about them. Chipper knows his body and knows when to take a day off. He's been relatively healthy over the past 3 seasons.

McCann, Escobar, and Heyward I'm not worried about in the slightest. I don't expect 30 bombs from Heyward, but I've seen this kid play a lot and he's a monster. With his advanced plate discipline, I have no reason to believe he won't be a solid contributer in his rookie year.

I promise to be a bad weather fan with Rollins because of his seniority.

@MadMax....

I say 'almost' because they were either 1.5 or 2 games back with 6 to play. The ended up losing all 6 of those, but I think being 2 games back with 6 to go is close enough to warrant an 'almost'

Sorry, 2 back with 8 to play.

Almost only counts in Horseshoes and hand grenades... Oh and quoits too.

Clout -- I have heard discussions, I believe even on this site however I am not going to go back and look, about Happ's very low BABIP. I thought it was discussed that since his 2009 BABIP was around .270, which according to the SABR community is unsustainably low, that he was due to regress to the more normal level approx .300.

Jurrijens 2009 BAPIP is almost exactly the same as Happ's 2009 BAPIP. Therefore, one could argue that there should be some regression there. I think your estimates for his performance in 2010 are very reasonable.

Clout - Polanco had 18 HRs/1198 ABs last 2 seasons and Feliz had 26 HRs/1005 ABs last 2 seasons.

Polanco also had 10 HRs last year which was the most he had since 2004. More likely to hit in high single digits.

It won't be a big dropoff by any stretch but it will be a little less power. Say 4-5 HRs.

Proposition: If Ibanez either spends most of the season on the DL, or is ineffective, then the Phils will resign Werth. If Ibanez has a good season, Werth is gone.

Thoughts?

so last two years, Polly 1.5% HR Rate and Feliz 2.6% HR Rate?

Clout, that is a EXTRAORINDARY HUMUNGOUSLY OVERWHELMING dropoff in HR power....ya know since Dobb's 2.8% is a HUGE upgrade from Gload's 1.9%.

Chipper not unhealthy? Seriously?

Year - Games - PAs
2009 - 143 - 596
2008 - 128 - 534
2007 - 134 - 600
2006 - 110 - 477
2005 - 109 - 432
2004 - 137 - 567

He's had some good years in there, but he's not exactly an everyday player, and the 60-day DL argument is hogwash. In the year Utley played only 132 games, we thought the world was going to end.

Discount Raul's HR numbers in Seattle for once and for all.

thephaithful: A dropoff from 12 HRs to 10 HRs for an everyday player who gets 550 ABs isn't as big a dropoff as 2-3 HRs for a PH who gets 50 ABs.

But you can continue to fantasize that Gload has more power than Dobbs if that's what floats your boat.

MG: Feliz hit 12 HRs last year. If Polly hits 7 this year that would indeed be a dropoff of 5 HRs.

Does that alarm you? And would it be offset by an increase in hits and walks from that position?

clout, you're making sense again.

That is too much for some here to handle.

STOP IT!

clout, I just figured it out.

What really has these guys upset is that Polly will not be able to duplicate that unflukey stellar .336 AVG with RISP that Feliz had last season and for the several seasons before that.

oh, wait...

clout - An increase in walks?

Polanco - 5.6% and 5.3% BB/PA last 2 years.

Feliz - 7.1% and 5.6% BB/PA last 2 years.

Nope. Likely even a couple less.

As for Polanco's SLG, even it does kind of alarm me because it has been declining for 2 straight years and his ISO sucks compared to the league average. Feliz SLG was nothing to write home about either the last 2 years. In fact, was even worse than Polanco last year.

I am just not all that excited about Polanco unless he hits better than .300 and hit a few HR than I am expecting. It is very possible he could hit a pretty empty .285 because he doesn't walk, doesn't have much speed, and his power (you always mention how 3B is a power position it generally is compared to 2B/SS) might be minimal.

Yeah while a .285 with 8 HRs doesn't seem bad it could ring pretty hollow if the XHB (SLG) and OBP are pretty low. Especially hitting 2nd in the lineup.

Polanco does not walk. That's a myth. He has a good enough OBP when he hits .300+, but that's almost all average-driven. He's one of the least patient hitters in the bigs. He was 17th in all of MLB in fewest P/PA last year (of course Feliz was 3rd).

Almost all of Polanco's offensive value is based in how he hits for average. If he hits .300+ (which he seems to do every other year)he'll be a very nice offensive contributor. If he gets unlucky on balls in play and hits .280 or below, he won't be very good offensively at all

For the record, my post is not in any way a defense of Feliz, as I'm sure it will be construed by some. It is merely an assessment of Polanco as an offensive player.

And I don't think there will be a significant drop-off in power at all from Feliz to Polanco. In case people weren't paying attention last year, Feliz only slugged .386. At age 35, it wouldn't surprise me at all if his power was gone and not coming back. So we won't be getting power from 3rd and neither will the Astros.

I just realized how badly we need the season to start.

We have reached the level of absurdity that we are debating the relative power potential.............not of Jason Werth vs. Andre Ethier........not of Ryan Howard vs. Prince Fielder.....but of Placido Polanco vs. Pedro Feliz.

SEASON, PLEASE START NOW!

It's interesting to have observed the change in awh while I was away from BL. When I was posting last season, awh & clout used to tangle non-stop. Somewhere along the line, awh seems to have grown tired of all the fighting, so he transformed himself into clout's No. 1 brown-noser.

"thephaithful: A dropoff from 12 HRs to 10 HRs for an everyday player who gets 550 ABs isn't as big a dropoff as 2-3 HRs for a PH who gets 50 ABs.

But you can continue to fantasize that Gload has more power than Dobbs if that's what floats your boat."

Wow, what an idiotic statement. The dropoff from Polly's to Feliz's HR/AB rate in absolute terms is 1.1% and in relative terms is 42%. The dropoff from Gload to Dobbs in absolute terms is 0.9% and in relative terms is 32%. In other words, no matter how you measure it, the Polly to Feliz drop off is greater than the Gload to Dobbs dropoff.

Layer on top of that the fact that Polly will get 400 more ABs than pinch hitters, and that just muliplies the impact. Yet in Clout's clouded mind, the drop-off for HRs in each case is 2-3 HRs for the season? Um, really?

Can the season just start already???

Oh, and welcome back BAP.

"SEASON, PLEASE START NOW!"

Amen to that!

This is a legit Yankees lineup Moyer is shutting down. Pretty impressive, at least from the box score.

Moyer had some help with GG Polanco at third.

Moyer's final line:

6.2 IP, 6 K (paying attention Kyle?), 1 H, 0 BB, 0 ER, 0 R


Jamie is the 5th starter.

Polanco did make a few great plays, but I'm still impressed that Gramps kicked some Yankee butt. Not that the Phillies offense was doing much, either, but still...

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EST. 2005

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