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Sunday, July 25, 2010

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Can we talk about the Astros scouting J.C. Ramirez?

Not without bringing up CLIFF LEE!

I'm not in favor of moving Werth to land either Oswalt or Haren. I'm just not sure what would happen with the lineup being so LH, assuming Dom Brown gets called up.

Besides, based of the 'Lee to Seattle" trade, I'm not sure any prospects the Phils get will be any better than the 1st round draft picks they're likely to get if Werth walks after the season.

Now, if the prospects are used to land a Oswalt or Haren, I'm back to being uncomfortable with the lineup.

It would be fun to watch Dom Brown, though.

The trade deadline is a make or break for Amaro from a PR perspective and a great opportunity to improve the team for several years. If he can flip Ramirez, Happ, and whatever prospects we might get for Werth for a guy like Oswalt, I could live with that.

People might see the Lee deal in a different light, at least until Ramirez wins a Cy Young, of course.

If Amaro can flip Werth and acquire Haren or Oswalt without having to further empty our farm, I'll be impressed.

If not, same old sh*t from the same old sh*t farmer.

I'm guessing Happ/Ramierez are part of a package to land Oswalt or Haren. The reason Happ isn't scratched is because the teams want to see his healthy again and ready to step right in their rotation.

They won't need to do any deals if they keep hitting like this.

Hasn't one of the posters here been saying, "Somebody is going to pay."?

If they are coming out their funk, it would be all too fitting that Ryno led the way.

This is a guy you want to go to war with. He truly is "the big piece."

Those who want the Phils to acquire a starter are saying "Can you imagine the Phillies current lineup in the post-season?"

My answer is yes, I can.

The Phillies won the WFC in 2008 with a starting rotation of Hamels, Myers, and Blanton. Hamels won MVP for the World Series and the NLDS.

This year's roster would headline Halladay, Hamels (who is pitching now like he did in 2008,) and either Blanton or Happ. It's a much better slate than we had before.

If the team is hitting like it's capable of hitting, the Phillies' pitching is more than adequate. Phillies pitching this year has been unexpectedly good, and has kept the team in the running through a horrible, team-wide hitting slump, throwing an unusual number of scoreless innings.

I'm not a huge Jayson Werth fan, but if you take him out of the lineup, pitchers start walking Ryan Howard. Who bats 5th? Ibanez? He's just starting to hit in the 3 hole. Vic? Don't be silly. Dom Brown? We don't even know if he can hit major league pitching yet.

I think standing pat is the right move right now. We'll perhaps need to acquire a decent outfielder in the off-season, plus a long reliever and a leftie reliever.

Oswalt has a home and a restaurant in Mississippi, and his parents live there as well, so I can't blame him for preferring to go to St. Louis.

I'd rather not trade Werth, and while I'd like them to get another starter, I not sure they need someone the caliber of Oswalt or Haren. But since Amaro seems hellbent on acquiring one of the two, I just hope he doesn't overpay.

How about Dom brown + a pitcher (happ or kendrick) for Zach Grienke?

I thought all we got back from the M's were "Magic beans", you mean another team(s) also likes Ramirez?

MLBTR reported the Tigers, Pirates, Sox, and others had scouts at the park last night. Think the Tigers might make a push for Raul, now that Ordonez is out? Who would the Pirates be interested in moving?

"The reason Happ isn't scratched is because the teams want to see his healthy again and ready to step right in their rotation."

Or the fact that the Phils actually needed a starting pitcher today to pitch in a major league game.

Happ won't be moved. If the Phils make a deal, they will use a few of their assets in AA and A. Guys like Singleton, Ramirez, DeFratus. Those type of guys.

The Phils need Happ for THEIR team. Not someone else's.

What would folks be happy with today from Jay? I'd say 6 IP, with 3 runs or less would be sufficient for me. I am not expecting a miracle start, first time out. This is a team that Happ has pitched well against though.

Just give them a solid 6 innings and stay away from the big inning.

Beard, the Pirates could be there because they have an upcoming series against Colorado.

It's very simple phans, if we hit, we win. I've said this before. There have been times this year, yesterday for example, where we see what the lineup can do. We've also seen what happens when it doesn't produce. We usually have been getting decent starting pitching. KK was amazing yesterday.

If Amaro thinks we need pitching, it's his job to bring some here. True, if Lee were here, we'd be talking about relievers only, but he's not. No team is going to help you just to help you. The price will be high. Can RAJ pull it off? Don't know. That's why he sits in the GM's chair.

Now I did read about Ramirez being scratched today, but I haven't read anying about a deal being close or whom may be involved. Has anyone else?

@wynk That's what i'm saying. Why would you trade an all-star right handed left fielder and call up a rookie left handed hitter. WHERE'S THE PROTECTION FOR HOWARD. That's too much too expect from a rookie 2/3 of the way into the season. Not to mention our entire lineup would be LH, which has been an issue since Pat left.

Not to mention we don't need starting pitching, we need a RH bat in the infield, hello. Uggla, Cantu, wake up RAJ

The Pirates have any number of players they'd move. The question is, who would they be scouting on Philly's roster? Worley or Kendrick maybe, but, not likely. Sophist's guess is probably better but, you hope they guys who report this stuff no the difference b/w a team's advance scouts and its special assignment guys who go to look at trade prospects.

Tigers would be interested in werth or Victorino before Raul while Kendrick could be part if a trade for a pitcher. I think it makes sense to trade Werth and spend the money on a Number 2/3 that is currently a number 1. We need pitching to take us to the playoffs.

The thing is if we can package enough to Houston they'll cover some of Oswald's salary. I look for Matthew Rizzotti as one of the pieces in a trade with houston, especially with this or 2011 being Berkman's last year. If we go after Haren, my guess is Ramirez, Singleton and more would be involved. I'm guessing Cosart, Matthieson, Gose and/or Garcia could be part of a big package. I actually prefer Haren vs Oswalt. Holliday, King Cole, Haren, Happ, Blanton would be an awesome rotation

The best would be to get Upton from Tampa bay and he could play 2nd until Chase gets back and then Outfield/bench after Chase. If we can use mostly prospects and happ/kendrick to get Haren/Oswalt then we are stringer for the playoof/

I love how we're going to trade the one prospect from the Lee deal that actually looks promising right now.

And honestly, I'd prefer not to move Werth. He's heating up again, and despite the failures to hit with RISP during the last couple months, he's been our 2nd best position player this season overall, behind Howard. Trading him to get a starting pitcher, even the type of Haren or Oswalt, would be a lateral move at best for this season.

Also, just ignore the "team A had scouts at team B's game" crap. Every team scouts every other team. Trying to figure out "who" they're scouting is a pointless endeavor. Every team does due diligence on lots of players from lots of teams. And obviously even more so during the month of July. It's beat writers and other rumor-gatherers who need to produce a lot of copy this time of year who write those stories. They rarely mean anything at all.

Protection is a myth.

With Utley back, lineup would be Rollins, Polanco, Utley, Howard, Ibanez, Victorino, Brown, Ruiz

I'm not saying I want to move Werth, but I'm not opposed to it for the right deal.

@CJ so you think Utley is going to have surgery, miss over a month, and just step into the lineup and rake in september

you're dillusional, have you seen how long it's taking Rollins to find a rhythm

I think the Tigers would probably go for Raul b/c he wouldn't cost as much regarding prospects.

I don't think Cosart gets moved.

Unless RAJ is blown away by a deal, he should be careful with Werth. As much as he's been frustrating this year, he's a big RH back, and he seems to be heating up a bit. Raul may be on a hot streak at the right time.

After missing a month in 2007, Chase Utley put up an OPS of 916 over his last 32 games. In his first 4 games back, he had an OPS of 1.190.

I'm not making an assumption on the quality of his play. I'm fairly certain it will exceed whatever we're getting right now.

For the record, my preference is to deal to Raul to the White Sox or Tigers and promote Dom to platoon with Benny Frank.

Jack, if it's a lateral move, they should do it because it makes the team better from 2011-2013.

HAPP IS BACK!!!!!!!!

I'm fairly indifferent to a move at this point. As indifferent as you could be I guess. I'm not against one in the abstract (I have no problem making this team slightly worse - a possibility - to make next year's team better). It would depend entirely on the package.

By the way, are we allowed to declare Ryan Howard worthless against lefties anymore? I mean, I know he's better suited as a platoon player, obviously... but he currently has an OPS vs. lefties of .832, his best since his monster season of 2006. Howard has a better OPS vs. LHP this season than Jayson Werth (Chase Utley actually has an OPS over 1.000 vs LHP while he has an OPS under .800 vs. RHP... go figure).

"@wynk That's what i'm saying. Why would you trade an all-star right handed left fielder and call up a rookie left handed hitter. WHERE'S THE PROTECTION FOR HOWARD. That's too much too expect from a rookie 2/3 of the way into the season. Not to mention our entire lineup would be LH, which has been an issue since Pat left."

Possible Answer: batting order and "protection" is overrated as a concern; Howard helps Ibanez, but when RH is going good he doesn't need Werth's protection. He's proved that. Platoon Brown and Francisco. How about this?--bat Utley first, when he returns, PP second, RI third, Howard fourth, Rollins 5th, Vic 6th, Brown/Francisco seventh, Ruiz and the pitcher. If CU and RH are hitting, they'll pull the rest of them along with them.

Ryan Howard currently has a higher batting average than David Wright. Go figure.

@RR and you don't think that will have any impact on players' performance. have you seen how Rollins phones it in unless he's in the leadoff spot. and how can you expect Utley to return from surgery and a month out and instantly rake. and without a RH bat behind Howard pitchers will start intentionally walking him again and managers can just parade lefties to the mound against a LH lineup...

Rumor Maggie O for Raul Ibanez in a salary dump for Tigers this year and a dump next year for Phillies

@slocs ordonez just broke his ankle

phillies still trying to get Ross from Marlins so we could see Ross and Haren/Oswalt while waving goodbye to both Werth and Ibanez. I'm not sure but I think it makes us better long-term

Schmitty's Stache: As I pointed out earlier, Chase Utley returned from injury in 2007 and instantly raked.

And why would the handedness of the batter behind Howard determine whether or not he gets walked? Werth has been DREADFUL for a month and no one has been walking Howard.

And who cares if they parade lefties... Utley hammers lefties this year, Howard has a strong OPS of 832 vs. lefties and it's actually better against lefty relievers. In his career, Ibanez has had a pretty even split, although it hasn't happened this year.

Final point: No one knows how Brown will hit anyone, let alone lefties.

All these proclamations are nothing more than guesses.

MG: Regarding your bashing of KK on the last thread, that stuff has already been accepted in a consent decree by Beerleaguer. Any positive performance by KK will be explained as a fluke or luck, as you did in 4 posts on the last thread. Negative performance will be explained, as you always do, as KK's true self.

No need to keep repeating, it is already an established fact on Beerleaguer.

Question for the board: If you had to guess which player will have better numbers from here on out, Dominic Brown (if recalled) or Jayson Werth, which would you choose?

I've long been an advocate of recalling Brown, but I'm not stupid. Trading Werth will NOT help the offense under any scenario that's been proposed.

By "here on out" I meant the rest of the season.

limoguy: "This is a guy you want to go to war with. He truly is "the big piece."

You may want to go to war with him, but you definitely do NOT want to go to WAR with him.

Check out these two players:

Player A: 254/336/406, 8 HR, 46 RBI
Player B: 262/350/407, 6 HR, 47 RBI

Neither are known for their defense. The first has $11.5M left on his contract for next year. The second has at least $51M left over the next three years.

I wonder what the Mets are thinking about Jason Bay right now. (The other, obviously, is Raul.)

Schmitty's Stache--I think you're right about Rollins, but he likes to drive in runs too. Without having a firm grasp of his clutch statistics, my sense is they're pretty good. Nonetheless, I acknowledge that the psychological element is problematic. Vic has been caught up in the "twilight zone" of his mind all year. My point is that batting order, especially among good hitters, is generally overrated. If Ibanez is heading into his annual hot streak, then he might be able to hit 5th. At any rate, I have no problem with acquiring Oswalt and moving Werth to do it. But then, I wonder if Oswalt is up for the Phillies, Philadelphia, and all the expectations that go with that.

Something just struck me...

Raul Ibanez has a FULL NO TRADE CLAUSE. Wow... haven't been able to pull out the FNTC since the days of Pat Burrell.

"but I'm not stupid"

Clout - Glad you said it. It's important to keep a good self image.

@RR I just think moving Werth for STARTING pitching is a mistake. Bullpen, yeah. Closer, yeah. INF RH, PLEASE. What indication has the FO gotten that Werth won't sign after this year. RAJ put together ARGUABLY the best lineup in Phillies history and they've only seen the field for 8 games. We're currently 6 games out of the east and in the wild card chase and all we've heard about for weeks is trade, trade, trade. I say give the team we put together a chance to play together before you start mortgaging the franchise for players whom you have no idea how they will perform in Philadelphia/Playoff chase...

Hugh: I suspect the Pirates would deal Andy LaRoche for a middling prospect like Worley.

He's an above average fielder and below average hitter, but would be an upgrade from Valdez & Dobbs. He's also young enough to improve wih the bat although he'll never be the star that BA and others projected. In 2007, he was the 18th best prospect in baseball per BA.

To be honest, Ibanez for Ordonez wouldn't be totally irrational. The Tigers get their offensive replacement for Ordonez. The Phillies free up a spot for Domonic Brown and get a right-handed replacement for Jayson Werth in 2011. Ordonez has a team option for $15M.

Ordonez is a couple years younger than Ibanez and can still hit. Doesn't mean he'll still be able to hit next year but, given his age & 2010 numbers, he's a better bet than Ibanez, plus he's right-handed.

This isn't to say I'd necessarily make the trade, but I can cerainly understand the rationale behind it. If you make this trade, you can't trade Werth, though.

yes, i know Ordenaz broke his ankle which is why Tigers need an outfielder. The story is Phillies would pay an extra $3+ mill this year on Maggie who is due back, mid to late September but won't need to pick - up his $18 mill 2011 option since he won't have the required ABs while tigers pay Raul's salary in 2011. It frees up $12 mill next year. Maggie has no trade protection but Ibanez has full no trade clause. It is only a rumor out of a Detroit. Didn't say it would happen, just passing it along

If anyone trades for Ordonez, then exercises the option, they'd have to be out of their mind.

The only reason to trade for Ordonez is to dump salary then cut him loose after the season. 15 mil is too much to pay when you're already bumping up against a salary cap.

aksmith: Thanks. I just wanted to underline the point that Dom Brown is no guarantee of anything this year, whereas we have a pretty good idea of what we'll get from Werth.

bap: Even if that deal was made (and the chances are pretty slim), I doubt the Phils pick up the Ordonez $15M option next year. Just a guess. The only good news for the Tigers or anyone who dealt for Ordonez is that the option won't vest thanks to the injury.

clout - I've been advocating that they pick up LaRoche since before the season started. He would be a nice backup and, if Polanco falters in a couple years, he might push for the job at 3B. He doesnt' have a job in Pittsburgh and it's been obvious since they drafted Alvarez (who is a butcher at 3B, btw). I actually like his potential with the bat more than his glove. He's not shown it in the majors but, he was fairly high OPS guy at AA and AAA, if I recall.

"Question for the board: If you had to guess which player will have better numbers from here on out, Dominic Brown (if recalled) or Jayson Werth, which would you choose?

I've long been an advocate of recalling Brown, but I'm not stupid. Trading Werth will NOT help the offense under any scenario that's been proposed."

It sucks to be RAJ. He traded a CYA winner on the eve of "The Year of the Pitcher," assuming the Phillies offense would stay healthy and continue to perform at an elite level. Pundits picked the Phils to repeat as division winners and generally club the opposition. Maybe RAJ even imagined being in such control come July that he could move Werth for a relief pitcher or other needed player. But none of this has worked out. Now, with the trade deadline looming and all but Utley on the field, the lineup shows some life (albeit after Milt's martyrdom and against a sagging COL team). Will Brown or Brown/Francisco perform as well as Werth? I think he's asking this: will DB/BF and the new starter add more wins than Werth and no new starter brings? I'd take the chance, particularly with Utley returning.


Clout: Agreed on Werth/Brown. I've been arguing for Brown's promotion since June, but at the expense of Ibanez, not Werth. I'm fairly confident Brown will NOT provide the same level of production as Werth.

At this point, Raul at least looks to be starting to hit against righties the way he normally does. Again, his recent surge in production has been because of the platoon, not in spite of it--he's only facing righties, and is doing what's expected of him against them. I hope he continues it, but I also hope that Charlie has the guts to stick to the platoon. I doubt it though given his penchant for loyalty to his guys above all else--we'll see if Raul is in the lineup today against the lefty Francis.

"Protection is a myth."

I think not. Pitchers can and do pitch differently depending on who's up next. Otherwise, for example, why walk a Brian Schneider (as occurred in the 2nd inning last night) to load the bases, unless the next hitter is Kyle Kendrick? Do you think he would have given Schneider something to hit if the next batter were, say, Jimmy Rollins?

"Chase Utley actually has an OPS over 1.000 vs LHP while he has an OPS under .800 vs. RHP... go figure"

I think it's that compact swing of his. I'm supposing that left-handed batters usually do better against right-handed pitchers (and the converse with right-handed batters) because of the different angle for pitches close in, and also for the difference in the direction balls curve. Utley seems better equipped to handle pitches close to his body than most hitters.

Then again, I know little enough of hardball hitting that I'm open to someone with more experience stepping in and correcting my impression.

clout: There's no question that Werth is a much more known quantity that what we'd get from Dom. But for me, that's not enough to completely rule out trading him.

I think we can all agree that Werth isn't going to be with this team next year. If the right deal comes along, we shouldn't ignore it.

Will this team be better without Werth? Not likely. Would this team be better with Haren and without Werth? Possibly. Would I rather deal Ibanez? Absolutely.

My biggest hope? Ibanez and Werth both heat up and the Phils figure out how to deal for Haren anyway.

One thought is if Phillies can unload Ibanez they can probably drive up the price of Werth or maybe Phillies decide to go with him for rest of year, he is still likely to net 2 draft picks unless he signs with Yankees and they also sign Lee.

I never thought there was a chance to unload Ibanez for anything so if the Phillies could pull off something like this which sounds more like a NBA trade getting a guy who might never play a game and you don't resign would be an amazing way to get out from under Ibanez huge cap hit in 2011.

philwynk: That your example was Schneider/Kendrick tells you all you need to know.

The vast majority of IBBs in baseball happen with the 8-hole hitter. Apart from Pujols (24) and A. Gonzalez (17), not a single player in the NL has been IBBed more than 9 times.

A player gets treated the a certain way by the opposing team because of the way he's performing, not because of who's behind him.

Ah, I remember Utley's first game back after the John Lannan injury, blasting a home run into the ivy to start that fateful Mets series.

Hugh: You exactly right about LaRoche in the minors, where he posted a 6-season OPS of .900. His K/BB was superb and he even hit 30 HRs one year.

His K/BB has remained solid in the big leagues, but his power and BA evaporated. In his defense, he's been bothered by injuries in 3 of his 4 seasons, but at this point, at age 26 and 1,000 ABs, you wonder how much upside is left. For whatever reason, the hitting prowess never crossed over to The Show.

I love all the trade speculation on this site.

I get absolute chills reading about all of the various trade situations that could occur. Why, all of the baseball experts on this site just amamze me as they are able to predict with certainty the eventual MLB performance or failure of who are now prospects. Or rather, are able to predict better than the professionals who actually do the job on a day to day basis.

This was an interesting quote from today's INKY:

"____ ____ hit .257 in his first professional season at single-A Clearwater, and _________ went 7-10 with a 4.58 ERA in his first season at triple-A Syracuse."

I wonder what the BL experts would have said about those two guys when viewing that type of performance?


So, speculate all you want. It really doesn't matter. If this team has proven anything to you this season it's that DomPatrone was right up above when he typed:

"It's very simple phans, if we hit, we win."


If this team, built for Citizen's Bank Park, doesn't hit, it's not going to matter whether they trade for Oswalt, Haren or the reincarnation of Walter Johnson.

philwynk: "Protection is a myth" does not refer to the pitcher's spot coming up next. Obviously an 8-hitter is going to be pitched a lot differently if the pitcher is on deck as opposed to a pinch-hitter, or Jimmy Rollins.

The more pressing issue is whether it matters whether Jayson Werth or Ben Francisco or Raul Ibanez hits behind Howard. A TON of research indicates that whoever hits behind Howard (assuming, of course, it's not a pitcher) has no overall effect on Howard's production. Even if Howard gets pitched differently, and walks more instead of putting more balls in play, this largely has no overall effect on run-scoring because his driving in runs is replaced with his being on base more, which ultimately will end up in more runs which offsets the loss of runs from him not being given the chance to hit. This has been studied lots of times, and all evidence points to there being NO noticeable effect of lineup protection.

Obviously, it makes intuitive sense that it would; this is why the myth has been propagated and persists. I know someone will respond with "do you even watch the games? Of course protection matter, Howard gets pitched differently." But this is a case where intuition is actually wrong. It's not clear that, in the aggregate, guys do get pitched all that differently based on who hits behind them, and it's certainly not clear that it has any effect on overall team scoring, except for the basic loss of production you would get simply from having a guy like Francisco in the lineup instead of Werth.

Why do posters on this site use the term "recalling" when referencing Domonic Brown?

Note to posters: The term to use is "call up" or any variation or tense thereof.

To be "recalled" he would have already have to have been on the Big Club and sent down. As far as I know that hasn't happened, so, please, in your future posts, use the correct term.

Thank you in advance!

I would argue that Charlie is loyal until the playoff push. Look at how he used Lidge last year, started sitting Lieberthal and Burrell in previous years and such. If a platoon is working he'll do it.

And just look this year he jettisoned the newly sainted Milt Thompson. Amazing what can happen when Phillies hitters start taking a few pitches - Victorino still doesn't get it and Rollins seems to forget for aperios od games.

Werth would likely to outperform Brown if Brown were called up August 1st. The question to me is: what are the chances Brown performs well enough to offset enough of the offensive loss to make the defensive gains of Oswalt/Haren at least a lateral move? In a 60-60 game span, enough of the regulars can get hot to keep the offense moving, and you'd have Doc/Hamels/Haswalt/Blanton/Hendrick.

It would undeniably make this team better in 2011-2013. Given the Braves chances of winning the East, and the 5 team race for the WC, I think such a move is a not bad idea at worst.

I think Ordonez's option is $15M, not $18M. In a theoretical market, Magglio Ordonez is absolutely not worth $15M. In the real world, he's far & away the best available right-handed outfielder other than Werth. If the Phillies aren't willing to pay for one of the two players, it's highly likely they're going to wind up with a massive downgrade at the position next year.

You'd basically be paying an extra $2.5M to convert an overpriced player who is creating big roster-math problems into an overpriced player who is precisely what the team needs for next year.

"KK's performance today:

I thought he was behind hitters today alot and that was the case.

He threw 1-pitch strikes to hitters only 10/26 (38%).

Every time other time year he has had a strong outing, this number has been better:

4/20 vs. Braves (8 IP, 0 ER) - 12/28 or 42%
5/5 vs Cards (7 IP, 0 ER) - 14/27 or 52%
5/17 vs. Pirates (8 IP, 2 ER) - 19/30 or 63%
6/2 vs. Braves (7 IP, 1 R) - 18/25 or 72%
6/17 vs. Yanks (7 IP, 0 ER) - 14/27 or 52%
7/2 vs. Pirates (9 IP, 3 ER) - 26/37 or 70%
7/8 vs. Reds (6 2/3 IP, 1 ER) - 13/22 or 59%

Obviously there is alot more to a pitcher's performance than first-strike pitches but I was surprised that KK turned in such a strong performance with such a mediocre number."

Yeah I do think KK will generally struggle to post such a strong outing (7 IP, 1 ER) when he is generally working behind hitters early in the count.

BTY - His first strike pct is 59.7% and this year it 59.8%. He needs to throw a first-pitch strike to most hitters to succeed.

He didn't do that yesterday and I would be willing to bet that when he has struggled in throw a first-pitch strike under 40% that he has generally either posted mediocre/poor results in those starts.

I should add this: if the plan is NOT to exercise Ordonez's 2011 option, this trade would make no sense whatsoever except as a pure salary dump.

Sophist: Yeah, a trade for Haren would most likely make our team better for 2011-2013. But there just seems something odd about making a big deadline move in a season in which you're competing to make the playoffs and it being a lateral move at best.

And I'm not convinced Oswalt is a great move for the future, if the option has to be exercised. That's a lot of money for a pitcher, who in the two seasons before this one had been declining (the two lowest ERA+s of his career were in 2008 and 2009) and is in his mid-30s. And he'd be coming to a team with already a lot of money tied up the next couple of years in big contracts to older guys, and not a lot of MLB-ready prospects to come up on the cheap and contribute, and possibly with less revenue coming in if we miss the playoffs--you just wonder if Oswalt's salary would prevent us from upgrading other spots, especially if ownership decides to cut some spending in places.

I don't know though; Oswalt would probably still make the team better, I'm just not sure if it's by as much as people might think, once you adjust for how much resource space he would be consuming and the opportunity cost that represents. Like I said, I don't really know, I'm just not convinced it's a slam-dunk great move. I would be much more in favor of it, as I've stated before, if the Phillies could retain control of the club option for 2012.

According to Cots it is $18 mill next year or $3 mill buyout so The net savings is $6 mill. and yes it would be a pure salary dump, which allows you to keep Werth for the playoff push. I think we all agree we would rather have Werth's righthanded bat every day and go Dom/Francisco for a platoon. This would have the potential of improving our offense and would make our defense better. Like I said this was told to me by family in Detroit - who knows how real it is but with Maggie out, they are panicking

Is Ryan Howard, who typically heats up in August and September, one very good hot streak away from being a threat to win the NL Triple Crown?

1st in RBI
5th in HR (3 behind league leader)
11th in BA (.025 behind league leader)

Slocs - I would really doubt if Cholly was in any way pleased with Milt's firing. That was a move that was imposed the FO. If anything in Cholly's tenure here, the FO has imposed a number of coaching staff changes on him that usually have worked out for the better.

The only guy I can't remember Cholly really defending when he was let go was Steve Smith who was replaced by Sam Perlozzo after '08. Get the impression that Smith was viewed as a bumbler by both Cholly and the FO during his 2-year stint as the 3rd base coach because the INF defense was poor the first month of the season each year and he made a series of comically bad choices to send runners in '08.

I also get the feeling that Cholly didn't like crotchety Jimy Williams either since he was imposed on after '06 season by the FO either. My bet is that Jimy didn't care if he got another coaching job so he freely voiced his opinion to Cholly. Doubt Cholly was sad to see Jimy go after the '08 season.

Clout~ Agree on Werth/Brown. Werth is proven at this level. Question is: Would you take the picks we'd get if Werth walks (they probably don't help for 3-4 years) or do you trade Werth for a pitcher wo will help for 2 years and bring up Brown?

Best-case scenario for RAJ would be to move Raul to Detroit for prospects and the Tigers paying Raul(although I can't Detroit ding that), use the prospects and maybe Happ for Haren or Oswalt (or someone else), then bring up Brown.

But I don't see that happening either. RAJ is looking to upgrade, but I think any offer for anyone that does not include Brown (which I would not do) gets beat by another team.

awh - No way simply because of the AVG. I could see him though definitely winning the HR & RBI title especially with Polanco back and if JRoll actually starts to hit/get on base a bit more.

AWH~ Thank you. At last, another voice of reason.

"@RR I just think moving Werth for STARTING pitching is a mistake. Bullpen, yeah. Closer, yeah. INF RH, PLEASE. What indication has the FO gotten that Werth won't sign after this year. RAJ put together ARGUABLY the best lineup in Phillies history and they've only seen the field for 8 games. We're currently 6 games out of the east and in the wild card chase and all we've heard about for weeks is trade, trade, trade. I say give the team we put together a chance to play together before you start mortgaging the franchise for players whom you have no idea how they will perform in Philadelphia/Playoff chase..."

I agree about the lineup's potential, but that plan and the assumptions that went with it have not worked. Waiting until Utley returns to give that plan a chance might be too late for this season, so it's difficult to argue with the upgrades you suggest. But Werth's and Brown's future would have to be considered whether the team was ahead or behind by 6 games. Not that long ago it was fairly clear that the Phils could not afford JW beyond 2010. RAJ reputedly made an offer to JW, who hasn't formally responded. At any rate, as they're behind, it seems logical RAJ would try to improve this year's chances and help set up 2011 by moving the one guy who likely doesn't figure in their plans next year. RAJ's modus operandi is to solve more than one problem at a time, if possible. I'm not advocating exercising Oswalt's 2012 option--he's indicated restructuring is possible (for STL)--but if JW can bring prospects that can be used to acquire someone who is a run better than Kendrick for 2010 and 2011, particularly with Brown waiting in the wings, then why not? The original assumption holds true, that is, the bullpen is adequate with this lineup and starting corps, the exception being DB/BF would have to do as well as JW for two months. Or at least not be a disaster. Truth be told, I think RAJ does not mortgage the future for Oswalt, who doesn't seem that jazzed by the Phillies, and probably has to stand pat. No doubt he'll surprise us.

Jack, Oswalt's peripherals suggest that his ERA declines in 08-09 aren't as troublesome as they appear. His K9 in 08 was over 7 (first time since 04) and his K9 in 09 was as high as it was in 05; his walk rates were at normal levels. His xFIP in 08 as 3.55 (early/mid-2000s level -- it was 3.61 in 04 when he went 20-10 with a 3.49 ERA) and in 09 it was 3.88. It is 3.45 this year. He's three months younger than Doc.

I agree that his AAV is not cheap (probably better than market rate though, see Lackey's deal), but the duration can't really be beat. I'd obviously rather have Haren, but Oswalt is a good deal too.

Jack - Oswalt said he could work the money out, maybe they extend him and defer some salary. He has had back issues in 2008 and 2009 so there is a risk. But he is a no-nonsense, hard-working Phillies type of guy. That helps - anyone think Kendrick would have a 4.6 ERA this year if the other Roy wasn't around.

But can Ed wade pull off a trade at the deadline? I have serious doubts

By the way a BS and loss by wagner in last 4 games. remeber that houston series and Wagner choking for Phillies...

Why is anyone considering a Dom/Righty platoon? Domonic Brown is not likely to be a platoon player in the majors. If they bring him up, it has to be to play just about every day. He handles lefties just fine so far. I'd worry more about his baserunning and outfield play, which are not quite as refined as they'll become eventually. But as far as hitting, I don't worry about him hitting lefties.

Today's Cholly Lineup:

Rollins
Vic
Polly
Howard
Werth
Trade Bait Ben
Ransom
Ruiz
Happ

bap: Why doesn't it make sense as a salary dump? I think it gives us a chance to be better next year. If you believe Raul is likely to only perform at a league-average or worse performance next year, it's entirely likely that you could get equal production (preferably RH) or better for cheaper from another source, thus freeing up resources to be used to upgrade the bullpen or other area.

In addition, it's possible Magglio would understand his value is a lot lower on the open market, and decide that it's in his best interest to restructure his deal. He's not getting $18 mill. It's possible that he could agree to something like $10 mill for next year, which would be basically equivalent to him getting $3 mill buyout plus a $7 mill deal on the open market, which frankly given his age and injury question seems about right. So we'd get a better player than Raul, plus a right-handed hitter, for $2 million less.

awh - What would Howard have to bat in order to end up at .340? If he did that, I wouldn't call it a hot streak. It would be the best second half in the history of baseball.

The kickers with Oswalt is the option for $16M in '12 and that his full-no trade would still be in effect. Otherwise, he is much more palpable.

Since Ordonez is out for 6 weeks, nobody is going to be trading for him. So the argument is moot.

I think the Tigers are going to go after Werth hard. The Red Sox and Devil Rays will too.

" It's not clear that, in the aggregate,"


Jack - just because something is true "in aggregate" or "on average" does not mean that it is true in any particular circumstance. The quality and/or handedness of the players behind Howard absolutely can affect how pitchers approach him.

If Howard is on a hot streak for an extended period of time and is followed in the order by a poorly performing BenFran/Ibanez, Vic, and Valdez, he will, simply, get less to hit. If that results in increased walks, and the hitters behind him continue to perform badly, the overall run production would be decreased beyond what could simply be predicted by comparing Werth to the players replacing him.

You can't always take statistical analysis that is effectively predictive of average results and apply them to specific contexts.

how many times has this team been shutout

how may one runs games has this team lost

WE DONT NEED STARTING PITCHING, YOU PEOPLE ARE SHEEP

I'm a little shocked today. I figured Charlie would ride the hot Ibanez hand and leave him in against the lefty. Instead, it looks like a real platoon is in place.

Howard would need to hit almost exactly .400 to finish the year at .340

simple projections had him going 620 ABs by end of year, and would need to finish 95/236.

MG - Please don't mention smith - I'll start having nightmares again. Awful - should have been canned after his first 30 games

DPatrone - Dom doesn't have to be part of a trade for it to happen because whatever they want to say, money is still an issue. The cards want Houston to pay a big chunk. Minnesota doesn't want the salary and doesn't trade its prospects easily, the tigers need to trade for an OF too, Oswalt doesn't want to go to Yankees. I'm thinking if the Phillies can bundle enough bodies and 1 or 2 Wade draftees and they pick up most of the salary - they have him. Haren is different since the D-bachs gave up 5-6 of their top ten prospects. It is a salary dump but his salary is reasonable. There will be more required but Arizona may take lower level prospects like Singleton, Cosart, Hyatt...

My guess is after seeing Sheets hit the disabled list - Arizona wants Haren gone by Tuesday and Houston will want to move Oswalt before his next start, but still Ed wade - I could see him thinking he'll get more value in the off season which might be true. Say if Texas can't resign Lee.

WE DONT NEED STARTING PITCHING, YOU PEOPLE ARE SHEEP

BAAAAAHHHH! Halladay, Hamels, Greinke wouldn't be sweet for the stretch run, playoffs, and the next few years?

If Rube wants to make up for Cliff Lee, then go fleece the Royals (if they are dumb enough to trade Greinke) before the Yankees do.

CJ: sundays are pretty well known for lesser platoon mates to get starts.

Further, you gotta believe that TAJ that he had a deal for Oswalt earlier this week and Wade backed out.

Like the lineup again today. No Valdez and his automatic 4 outs. Vic slides up to No. 2 since he has killed LHP this year and Francisco in RF. Francis has really good career numbers vs. left-handed hitters. Don't mind seeing Dobbs & Ibanez sit.

I have a feeling they are going to need a really key AB from Ransom today to win this game. Just a hunch.

phlipper: How much protection has Howard had in the last month?

Since June 26th-July 22nd (24 games)
Howard: 1.096 OPS

From June 26th-July 22nd (23 games)
Werth: .612

That's A LOT of protection he's been getting!

Slocs - I do bet Amaro thought he had a deal for Oswalt but that Oswalt is the one who backed out after second consideration.

If I were Oswalt, I would rather go to Atlanta or St. Louis instead too especially if they pick up my option. Easier places to play from a potential criticism standpoint and both are slightly more friendly pitcher parks than CBP.

Plus, if the Cards get Oswalt they have a great shot to make and possibly win the WS this year.

Greinke - oh I would love it and I would empty the cupboard and include Dom. Then we can turn Savery into an outfielder

This team as built, when playing to their potential, can kick the ass of any team in the NL, period. I'm with those who are agnostic about making a major deal, especially for pitching. You want a little bench help? I'm all for it.

CJ -

You're also misapplying statistics. Just because Howard has performed well with a struggling Werth behind him, you cannot conclude that there has been no "protection" effect. If he had a weak-hitting lefty behind him instead of a struggling RH batter who has demonstrated excellent power, he might well have had less to hit. Similarly, you have no way of knowing if Howard might have performed even better than he has if Werth had been hot.

You cannot look at Howard's performance and make a conclusion about whether or not the hitter behind him has had any effect.

"how many times has this team been shutout

how may one runs games has this team lost

WE DONT NEED STARTING PITCHING, YOU PEOPLE ARE SHEEP"

Better starters make better and rested relievers. Besides, who are the quality closers on the market? Which infielders of the available infielders would make a greater difference than one of the available starters? And Werth is as responsible for the offensive funk as anyone on the team. RAJ could wait and the lineup could start hitting, fulfilling the original plan, that is, it scores enough runs to make up for the likes of KK, JB, DB and BL. But in the Year of the Pitcher, that lineup won't be whole until Utley returns. This team has to overtake ATL by winning and by beating ATL head to head, which requires superior pitching, not by a combination of winning and ATL collapsing, as happened in 2007 with the Mets. I'm not sure they get there in September with fringe ungrades or standing pat; and then they still lose Werth after the season.

That Ordonez salary dump rumors sounds like WIP listeners in action. This is not the NBA.

phlipper: So... let me get this straight.

Study after study shows that protection is a myth, but you say the aggregate doesn't really prove anything. So I show you a very specific example of Ryan Howard performing BETTER than he had the rest of the season despite having no protection, and that doesn't count either.

Me thinks you want to believe what you want to believe, evidence be damned. Fair enough.

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