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Sunday, March 20, 2011


Just call him Lights Out Baez!

Some thoughts on Clout Day...

The OF looks better than I thought it would considering 1) Jayson Werth is gone, 2) Dom Brown performed poorly in spring and got hurt, 3) we signed no real althernative, and 4) Raul is a year older.

Is it ideal to have a 4 man rotation in RF and LF, Raul/Jr. and Benny/Gload? Of course not. Is it the worst case scenario? Nope.

I'm very happy with the performance from Mayberry Jr. and Francisco so far. The next 10 days will tell us an awful lot about how much of a role they'll play in the near term.

Thought #2...

Barfield is sketchy at 2nd. Yesterday was a bad day for him. Each of his miscues lead to runs. That's the kind of thing that will weigh heavily in any decision because these starters deserve the best defense we can put behind them.

We're no longer a team that needs to put as many runs on the board as possible to support performances from guys like Kendrick and Moyer.

Martinez, Barfield and Young will all get long looks at 2nd over the next couple weeks. I have a feeling the most competent glove gets first shot at the job.

Ideally, Polanco is healthy, Valdez (who's looked strong since last season ended) plays second and we're only talking about needing a utility guy until Utley returns in May. But the ideal rarely happens...

My Opening Day Roster:

Position Players: Ruiz,Howard,Valdez,Polanco, Rollins, Francisco, Gload, Victorino, Ibanez, Mayberry, Schneider, Young, Martinez

Pitchers: Halladay, Lee, Hamels, Oswalt, Blanton, Kendrick, Lidge, Madson, Romero, Baez, Contreras, Bastardo

1) Simon Chamberlain - OF
2) The Asian Joo - SS
3) Costa Rica Phil - OF
4) Iron Joe Kellogg - 3B
5) Quick Cat Henderson - C
6) Quake - 1B
7) The Fire Ant - 2B
8) Guy Habib (Intl Hockey superstar) - OF
9) Ron "3D" Bradley - SP

That is a solid last place finish right there.


clout will come on here and tell us that clout day actually marks the first day any spring stats can be evaluated. That means stats moving forward. In other words, what's happened so far doesn't matter.

That's right... and wrong...

What's happened so far means very little to veterans. Many of them have been working on things that may affect the numbers. Pitchers, in particular. But for those players fighting for a roster spot (Martinez, Young, Barfield, Mayberry Jr., Bastardo, Baez, Zagurski, etc.)... what's happened so far has mattered a great deal.

Scotch Man: That seems to be the prevailing wisdom right now. I don't think Zagurski displaces Bastardo. I also think Martinez is given the first shot over Barfield.

However... don't discount the possibility of a final week move by Amaro.

Opening Day lineup:

Bench: Francisco, Mayberry Jr, Young, Martinez, Schneider

Remaining Rotation: Lee, Oswalt, Hamels, Blanton

Baez-Middle relief
Kendrick-Long man

Opening Day lineup vs. Myers

SS Rollins
3B Polanco
LF Ibanez
1B Howard
RF Francisco
CF Victorino
C Ruiz
2B Valdez
P Halladay

Really don't see any great mysteries here as the pitching staff is a lock (Baez has pitched well enough to keep the 'Release-O-Meter' down to 2%, KK is the long-man to start, and Bastardo is the 2nd lefty) and the last roster spot comes down to Barfield/Martinez unfortunately.

Like you have run out of Coke/Pepsi and are left to choose between RC Cola and Generic Store Brand X.

I only care a bit if someone like JRoll has struggled a bit in spring training. Don't care at all about the spring training numbers that a Lee/Hamels post.

CJ - It would be interesting to see if the Phils start Gload in RF for his bat. An OF defense of Ibanez/Vic/Gload has almost no range. Vic better bring his track shoes because he will be running as much as Rasmus on Opening Day.

MG: Agreed... Charlie is certainly suggesting Gload has earned time in the OF. Will he do that with Halladay? I'm not sure he will. He may want a better defensive OF. On the other hand, Charlie seems to feel that Benny isn't a great glove out there either.

Also, Halladay has a reputation with some for being a GB pitcher, but his GB/FB ratio the last two years has been about 1:1.

Maybe Mayberry Jr. gets the Opening Day start?

I think Ibanez is fine in the outfield. Gload in right would mean Vic would probably have to shade more to right field though.

I wouldn't worry about Vic's track shoes though. He can flat out fly.


Official clout day 25-man roster prediction (assuming Utley starts on the DL):

Starting lineup:
SS Rollins
3B Polanco
LF Ibanez
1B Howard
CF Victorino
RF Francisco
C Ruiz
2B Valdez


#1 Halladay
#2 Lee
#3 Oswalt
#4 Hamels
#5 Blanton

Kendrick-long man

* - Young is currently hitting an empty .298. He has big league experience and has the ability to play both IF and OF. He's not much better than Barfield, Orr, and Martinez, but he is better.

** - I still feel like this last bench spot will be someone we don't have right now. Based on who we have now, Martinez gets the nod over Barfield due to defensive versatility. Also maybe Washington declines to pay the 25K to take him back and we can put him in AAA.

Other thoughts...
Based on his spring, Mayberry has been one of the biggest surprises and has opened eyes. He's leading the team in HR, RBI, SLG, and he's even tied with Vic for most BB. Is he "Mr. March" as some have called him, or did the light finally come on? He's the guy on the roster with the largest range of possible outcomes. Hopefully he can translate some of his spring training success.

I would start this lineup every day, and not platoon unless performance dictates a change. The exception is I would try to sit Ibanez for Mayberry about once a week or against a tough lefty. If Francisco struggles or Mayberry is hot, give Mayberry some of Francisco's starts in RF.

With Francisco starting, Mayberry becomes the primary RH PH option, with Gload the primary LH option.

When Utley comes back, Martinez would go. When Brown comes back, I think the decision who will go depends on performance. If Mayberry is struggling, I probably send him down. Otherwise it would be Young.

On the pitching front, I give KK the long man job and first crack at the rotation in the event of a Blanton trade or injury in the rotation. Worley is the first callup for a starter, with no obvious second choice (Stutes? Carpenter?). If there's a bullpen injury, Mathieson gets the call with Herndon second on the list.

TTI - Ibanez fine in the OF? He been's below average/really below average 3 of the last 4 years including last year when he had some of the worst defensive numbers in LF in the NL. He hustles and take proper balls but just doesn't get to much either & has a below average arm.

Technically he's sound. Hits the cut-off man, doesn't dive unnecessarily, etc. Just isn't an average OF anymore and hasn't been for a couple of years.

CJ - Yeah I agree with Cholly that Francisco isn't a good option in RF. He has the natural range to play RF but he just takes some terrible routes/judgements on balls. Actually heard LA talking this spring that Francisco actually might be a better CF or at least what the Indians thought when they had him.

If Charlie is really going to give Gload starts in RF, it should be with Halladay and Oswalt on the mound only (who give up the least fly balls).

MG: Stop being a Debbie Downer. Ibanez is a great defensive OF!

Seriously, though, if they actually put an OF of Ibanez-Vic-Gload behind a flyball pitcher like Hamels, Blanton or Lee, that's a pretty poor allocation of resources.

The fact that we don't have the sort of positional talent that we had the last few years (because of losing players to FA and injuries) means Charlie is going to have to do his best job yet. He has to platoon properly, put the right defensive lineups behind the right pitchers, etc. This will be really interesting to see.

"Yeah I agree with Cholly that Francisco isn't a good option in RF. He has the natural range to play RF but he just takes some terrible routes/judgements on balls"

Won't that get somewhat better if he plays RF on a daily basis?

Heather - Possibly but Francisco should really be a LF. I can see why Cholly is reluctant to play Francisco a majority of the time and ideally would like a left-handed bat who was solid defensively to platoon with him out there.

I hope that Cholly actually platoons/give a breather to Ibanez this year once a week or so against LHP. Yeah he's in great shape, probably wants to play everyday, and Cholly wants his bat in there. Don't think it is wise to try to see if a 39-year old LF can start 150-155 games in LF though. Ideally that numbers be would around 125-130 instead and saving him as a PH hitter/late inning sub.

Jack: Yeah cause that's exactly what I said.

MG: So let me get this straight: According to you Ibanez "hustles and take proper balls but just doesn't get to much either & has a below average arm.

Technically he's sound. Hits the cut-off man, doesn't dive unnecessarily, etc."

Perhaps you decided that by me using the word "fine" I was making that synonymous with good or great. I wasn't. He is average despite what you want to say. Compared to other qualified outfielders last year he was either in the middle of the pack or behind the pack. So at best- he's average defensively.

Now just so you don't flash your lack of reading comprehension skills again or jump to some ridiculously stupid conclusion I'll spell this out simply for you.

Raul Ibanez, IMO, is at best an average defender in left. I would equate that with "fine". He is not in the top of the pack as far as outfielders go, but he is not "terrible" as you say.

Congratulations clout on having a day named after you!

The last roster projected above is totally the one I feel the Phillies will open the season with.

I don't think the Phils brass will be looking forward to informing Scott Mathieson that he will be sent down once again to the minors because at the age of 27 and battling back from three arm surgeries, I think he was really counting on pitching in the bigs now as he never knows if something else will happen to his arm and permanently derail his dream.

Since Brown didn't work out, Rube is working overtime to find a RF who won't cost him a top prospect. I'd say a trade is at least a 50/50 likelihood.

Wow. clout day is a real happening. Regardless, two things keep me from rolling out a starting 8:

* I believe Utley is cooked for the '11 season
* Based on the Phils FO downplaying practically every injury that comes down the pike, I also think Polanco's "hyperextension" is potential code-speak for something horrible (Tommy John? shoulder damage?)

Heck, I'm panicking about Polanco, but he's 35 years old. Regardless, with 2B and 3B so uncertain, I really wonder what the infield will look like on opening day.

Curt: 2B will be addressed before RF. I expect a new 2nd baseman. I expect the RF position to be manned by players currently on the roster.

Jack - perhaps, but not if it's up to Cholly.

Clout day is as good a day as any to repost the Phillies bets thing. I apparently didn't add clout's post about the Nats from about a week ago. IIRC it was the Nats would win more than 69 games, and the starters would have an ERA of less than 4.31

So here are the discussions, and dates- with some minor analysis.

- On what date will people start posting "season=over"?

[Tricky one to call as it really depends how we jump out of the gate. Last year we were pretty good in April. I'll assume we will be again and think that July 3rd will be the date as we are finishing up a series in Toronto. The Pirates are early June in Pittsburgh and I think that's too early.]

- How long will it take before Howard is declared a bust of a contract?

[I think Jack won't be able to help himself early in the season. Plus Howard has a little bit of a stigma remaining from the end of the NLCS last year. I'll call April 24th]

- How long will it take before MG fires off a missive about the Reading Phillies promotion of the team this year?

[They have not announced anything yet this year but once they do it will take about 30 minutes for MG to fire off some post expressing his lack of understanding about marketing. Let's say March 30th.]

BONUS: What will be the record MG establishes for most complaints about an announce team during a game this year?

(I'm saying 11. He's got an image to keep up.)

- How long until we get a flurry of posts about Charlie's handling of the bullpen?

[May 14th. He usually get a little bit of a pass early as it's the beginning of the season. But the vultures will circle early here. Only outlier is how well the rotation does through this point.]

- What date will Jimmy Rollins be determined to be finished?

[Career wise his worst month is June in many ways. But people forget that and regardless of how he starts it will wear off quick. I'll live dangerously and call it June 9th.]

- On what date will some poster suggest that we need to sign Pedro Martinez because he'll fix everything?

[Have to give Blanton/Kendrick a few starts here. I'll say May 22nd.]

- On what date will a poster suggest that Josh Barfield, Matt Rizzotti, Scott Mathieson or some other LV starter is "the solution" to the latest setback?

[This will get closer to the All Star Break. I'm saying June 25th.]

- How long will people give Dom Brown until they start posting, "This guy is clearly not going to be anything as a player in the major leagues"?

[He won't get much past April 15th if he starts slow. UPDATE- This one has to be on hold for now as he'll start the season on the DL. If he comes back to the main club immediately, I'll say 24 days from the time he joins the club, provided he is a starter.]

- How long until someone complains the the Phillies FO/ownership is cheap?

[This has to come around the trade deadline as we may need to add a piece. I'll say July 24th. You could also probably parlay this bet by adding in the Howard bet, and the Barfield, Rizzotti bet as people will advocate saving the cash and calling up someone like that from Triple A.]

TTI - If you look the last 2 years only, you actually right if you look at the numbers whether conventional or more saber-baser stuff. He is 'average' if you look at qualified players in LF which there are only 12.

If you look over the last 3 or 4 years though, it is pretty clear that Ibanez is one of the worst LFs defensively. Only Burrell is generally worse on most measures.

Besides this point outing the yearly variation in the defensive numbers and that there is probably some ways to go yet on measuring defense, the numbers clearly show that Ibanez has been a below average OF the past 3 or 4 years.

His overall numbers the past 2 years aren't as poor because of his above average 2009 numbers.

My bet is something like this - he had to cover less ground in CBP and actually played strong defensively in the 1st half of 2009. I remember being really surprised at his defensive range early in the season. He seemed to slip though later in the year after he came off the DL. Last year, he didn't have even an average defensive year. Maybe it was some of the lingering effects of the offseason surgery he had but lots of stuff seemed to drop especially in front of him last year.

I think you would be hard pressed to find anyone who thought Ibanez was going to have even an 'average' year defensively in LF though at 39. He's just doesn't have the first step anymore.

TTI - I am still waiting for the inevitable story with a comment by Chuck LaMar/Benny Looper that the R-Phils roster is 'loaded' or some other synonym. Its due in about a week or so.

Hey, pencil me in fellas.

How much does Baez need to be stretched out for his jersey to fit you right, JW?

MG: The point though is that it's really only fair to grade him out for this year based off where he'll be playing a majority of his games. If we played in Coors Field with their vast gaps it would be a different story. He would clearly be a defensive liability and would be closer to the bottom. CBP does not have as much area to cover in left field and Ibanez is helped out quite a bit by that. That makes him fine, based off where he is playing.

Also, I didn't say he was going to be average this year. That's you putting words in my mouth. I said at best he would be average. He'll probably fall somewhere south of that but I don't think he'll be one of the worst. Probably somewhere in that space between.

When the Phillies signed him the general consensus was that he was going to be terrible and as bad as Burrell in left. That hasn't been the case necessarily.

All these line-ups with Exxon batting after Chooch. Y'all have never seen Chollie fill out a line-up card, have ya?

Reading Phillies are great at marketing. Hell, they are probably one of the best teams at self-promoting & getting people who are at best marginally interested in baseball to come out for the experience in minor league baseball.

Actually kind of curious to see what the renovations/upgrades to the stadium look like. Sure I will get there at some point by June given how often I am up in Reading.

Their fireworks' displays are actually quite underrated & a great bank for a buck. Just wonder if they cut back a bit this year due to the cost of renovating the stadium.

TTI - In 2009, he wasn't. In 2010, he was. Curious to see what Ibanez gives them defensively but my bet is that it is closer to his '10 numbers.

Yeah being technically sound does matter. It is frustrating to see Vic still dive unnecessarily (Francisco does that alot and sure this sticks in Cholly's mind regarding Francisco's defensive ability in RF) and frequently bypass the cutoff man in spots where he would be better off relying it to JRoll.

TTI - You're late on that "solution" from LV thing. With the injury to Utley, unless the 2B replacement crushes the ball starting April 1, there will be someone calling for each of those who get sent down - "we shoulda kept {fill in: Barfield, Young, Orr, etc), along with someone saying that we shoulda picked up Castillo and someone else (probably Patrone or Schweitzer) saying we shoulda traded some dudes for Young.

By April 10th.

Andy, look at where Valdez hit when he started. He hit 8th much more than any other spot.


NEPP Day, the day when regular season statistics start to matter, is June 20th.

RPhils ticket prices:

$8 for a child/sr ticket and $10 for a really good adult ticket with no parking fees.

If you are foolish enough to not feed your kids before the game, then yeah it can get pretty expensive.

Just select one of the 30 'Post-Game' Fireworks display games and you really can't beat the price out for an evening with a couple of kids.

Opening Day:

SS Rollins
3B Polanco
LF Ibanez
1B Howard
CF Victorino
RF Francisco
C Ruiz
2B Valdez
SP Halladay

Mayberry Jr
D. Young


jimmy had a look of determination about him. resulting in a nice pete rose-style slap hit getting howard to the plate.

Interesting. Lidge said his downward angle is more important than his velocity or location his fastball. Just working on his mechanics with the fastball.

Vintage Blanton. Hanging fastballs on the inside corner that aren't inside enough & too high that get belted out.

Kentucky Joe just gave up back-to-back dingers to A-Rod and Tex

I consider this a pre-clout day outing for Blanton since he's had one less appearance than the other starters. I'll start judging our starters tomorrow.

That said... I'm not worried much about our staff as long as they're healthy no matter what happens the rest of Spring Training.

JRoll is 2 for 2 on Clout Day

Jimmy knows when to turn it on...clearly, hes an avid BLer.

Mayberry just missed another home run. Jumped out a little bit on a curveball. It;'s going to be interesting to watch how he starts to see those pitches if he gets more playing time.

I concur on Nepp's opening day roster

Opening Day:

SS Rollins
3B Polanco
LF Ibanez
1B Howard
CF Victorino
RF Francisco
C Ruiz
2B Valdez
SP Halladay

Mayberry Jr
D. Young


With the caveats of the FO not bringing Martinez up, and getting a veteran INF, Catillo or otherwise. And, that no-one can accurately predict Cholly's opening day lineup and/or order...But the spots seem to be locked

Great play in the hole by Young James. Maybe he really does know when Clout Day is!

David Murphy reports the Phils aren't real serious about Castillo. I think that's good news.

I wonder what non-roster middle infielder we are interested in then.

Wilson Valdez is batting .450 this Spring. Gotta love Spring Training.

Anybody got dibs on 9/20?

Is 9/20 when we can safely predict the playoffs?

Rollins goes deep. He's 3-for-3 with some sparkling defense.

It would be great if Mayberry could be like Nellie Cruz. could happen.

Young James now 3-3 with a home run

If Mayberry could give us the classic Age 27 career year offensively, that would be huge. Defensively, he's solid at all 3 OF positions.

Young James gunning for a contract extension in 2011. God knows someone needs to step up with Utley out.

Howard follows Rollins with a double, then a single by Francisco, but Howard is easily thrown out at home.

Blanton goes 6.1 IP, allows 8 hits (although the last was a bad hop double, tough break) and 3 runs (responsible for man on 2nd). The good news is that he didn't walk anyone, but only struck out 2.

So he basically had the typical Joe Blanton quality game?

NEPP - Yeah but he pitched pretty well. Just made a few mistakes. I just wonder how many games this year where the Phils' starter is going to make a quality start and yet end up on the losing end/no-decision.

NEPP: The term "typical Joe Blanton game" is being retired.

That type of outing now must be termed the "We need to trade this bum immediately" game.

Well, it's 4 ER for Blanton as Bastardo comes in and gives up a double and a single to allow the inherited runner to score and then allow another. 5-1 Yanks.

Joe Blanton is a solid pitcher. He'll likely make his 200th MLB start this year (he's at 190 right now). You dont get to make 200 starts in the Majors without some ability.

Not to mention he's due for a good year as he tends to alternate good & bad years

2005: 124
2006: 92
2007: 108
2008: 90
2009: 104
2010: 84

Based on that, I expect an ERA+ around 100-105 this year along with 190 innings +/- 10 and 30 starts +/- 2.

NEPP: That's a well thought out, rational argument.

It will be shouted down numerous times by shallow minded posters continuously this season. I'm just preparing you.

Sharp start for Contreras, but after getting a K on Tex and a weak grounder, he misses his spot and a ball that tailed inside was drilled to the wall for a double, followed by an inside-out single for Swisher and a 6-1 lead. A strike out ends the inning.

I blame these bullpen runs on Jason, who wrote, "The good news is that almost the entire projected bullpen has pitched well."

***NEPP: That's a well thought out, rational argument.***

Which part? I was more kidding about the good/bad thing as a predictor. I was dead serious on the other part (200 MLB starts and all)

The first part more than the second part.

That's where I was actually being serious. The second part is just an odd coincidence more than anything.

If you have been given the opportunity to start 200 MLB games, you're probably a decent pitcher.

Can someone explain to me why right field is considered a more difficult defensive position than left field? I've never understood that.

I understand that you need a better arm in RF to make throws to third base, but I never understood why you would need to be a better fielder. If anything, I would think a left fielder would have to be better, because more hitters are RH, so more balls are hit to left.

Does anyone know the answer to this?

The good news for Bastardo? The Big Z has sucked even more. Getting rocked in his inning of work. Already given up 2 runs and a couple of deep doubles.

CJ: Valdez didn't do him any favors by botching the ball hit to him at third.

Clout Day doesn't make any sense if it's about taking performances after March 20 seriously.

Last year, after March 20, Halladay made 2 official ST starts, going 8 innings combined, giving up 11 hits, 7 earned runs, and striking out only 5 while walking 2.

He then started the year 4-0 with a 0.82 ERA.

Jack: Maybe try reading what JW wrote in the header again.

If Polanco is out, this team really doesn't have another play you can play 3B.

Yikes, Jack. I thought you'd been around long enough to know what Clout Day is.

TTI: Actually, it was based on Clout saying previously that what March 20 really signified was when players' performances meant something going forward.

I agree with JW's take on it. Actually, I disagree with both takes--ST performance is irrelevant entirely outside of injuries. But if I had to choose, I would agree with JW's interpretation.

Clout's interpretation, though, unless I've misunderstood him, is that the games and performances actually mean something after March 20. Which just doesn't make any sense.

DH Phils: It's just the arm. There's no reason at all to need more range in RF than LF. Carl Crawford, for example, provides tons of range in LF, and thus a lot of defensive value.

Jack: I believe that clout's point (and I certainly don't speak for him) is that after MArch 20th you are pretty much seeing the team as it will be going into the season and are not going to have long stretches of games with the scrubs and back-ups. There are absolutely exceptions and obviously there are some outliers on performances, but I generally think you can start to firm up some opinions by seeing the team as it will be constructed on opening day.

The vast majority of our roster was set before Spring Training even started... and for many of them, none of their Spring Training performance before or after Clout Day means a thing. The only consideration for those players is health.

Irrelevant Spring Training: Halladay, Lee, Oswalt, Hamels, Blanton, Madson, Contreras, Howard, Ruiz, Victorino, Ibanez, Gload, Schneider

Health questions (new injury or coming off injury): Utley, Lidge, Romero, Polanco, Rollins

Minor Spring Considerations (just need to show competence): Kendrick, Baez, Francisco, Gload, Valdez

Spring *REALLY* Matters: Brown, Mayberry Jr., Young, Martinez, Orr, Barfield, Bastardo, Zagurski, Mathieson

Did I miss anyone?

CJ: IIRC, when clout coined the term there was way too much credence being given to some of the roster filler guys who were in camp and raking. I want to say this was the 2008 season, but I may be off.

Cholly sees things the rest of us mere mortals do not see. Whether guys are raking in ST or not doesn't matter. You must Trust The Gut®.

The throw from RF to 3B is why.

It's a shame Dobbs completely lost the ability to hit, because we could really use the 2007-08 version of him on this team.

Maybe D. Young will end up being the 07-08 version of Dobbs.

Tommy Hanson has some back issues... will be pushed back a few days.

Cue awh...

Gelb: Charlie when asked about Ross Gload's defense in RF: "We won a World Series with Pat Burrell." Well played.

MLB Trade Rumors links up some speculation about the Angels, namely former top prospect Brandon Wood:

"Eight years ago, Brandon Wood was a first-round pick (23rd overall) by the Angels. Five years ago, Baseball America dubbed him the third-best prospect in the game. He ranked 8th and 16th on that same list the following two seasons. Now, the 26-year-old Wood may be an organizational afterthought."

Wood has struggled at the major league level, but is a former top prospect and can play 1B, SS and 3B.

There's some suggestion that the Angels may try to deal utility IF Alberto Callaspo to keep Wood. Callaspo is making $2M this year, which seems like a lot for a stopgap utility guy (assuming Utley is back sooner rather than later). But he is a career .278 hitter and can play those positions competently.

Wood's worth a shot if the price is cheap.

I'd rather have Callaspo personally.

KK for Callaspo to even out the cost?

Charlie's in mid-season form with that quote.

NEPP: Not sure the Angels are looking for a guy like KK. Their rotation is pretty set and that's an expensive long man.

Yeah, probably not but I can hope, can't I?

I assume they'd want at least a decent throw-in level prospect for Wood and a B-level prospect for Callaspo.

Tigers haven't gotten mentioned but I wonder if Amaro hasn't placed a call to them regarding a guy like Don Kelly or Clete Thomas (both left-handed OF bats who are batting to make the Tigers roster).


- Love to see him hear for several reasons and he would be a huge pickup. Its going to take alot more than just a B-level prospect though at this point in the season. AL West looks wide open, Callaspo isn't making much, and Angels would be kind of wacky to move him and anoint Wood the full-time starter at 3B.

Why is $2M alot for utility infielder who can play multiple positions including 2B, 3B, and OF? Angels aren't some cash-strapped team that would need to pocket an extra $1M.

TTI, it is shallow minded to not an advocate of Joe Blanton? If so, color me shallow.

MG: Maicer Izturis is the starter at third for the Angels. Erick Aybar is the starter at SS. If Callaspo gets moved, Wood becomes the top backup at each position.

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