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Tuesday, May 24, 2011



It's even more fun to say.

That was fun to watch. Whatever was ailing Arroyo last night, I hope he passes it on to Cueto.

Ross Gload's BA-OBP-SLG = .294 in 34 PAs. When will this man walk or get an extra base hit?

The thrill of victory and the agony of reading about ... Ross Gload?


haha @ Hugh. If Ross Gload hits around .300 as a pinch hitter I'm not going to complain.

I think we all need to face the grim fact that last night Chase Utley lowered the OPS of all Phillies 2-hole hitters for the season.

Won't be too long that we'll be remembering the good old days of Valdez and Mini Mart in the 2-hole.

Boy that Ross Gload sure...oh wait, you mean there was a game last night?

Last night was indeed fun to watch. Unfortunately, such uncharacteristic outbursts of Offensive aptitude are inevitably followed by 2 weeks or so of struggling to score more than a single Run/Game.

Last night was indeed fun to watch. Unfortunately, such uncharacteristic outbursts of Offensive aptitude are inevitably followed by 2 weeks or so of struggling to score more than a single Run/Game. struggling to score more than a single Run/Game. Posted by: GTown_Dave

LOL does this post suprise anybody?

Last night was one of the most memorable games I've ever been to. The stadium was electric to put it mildly. Hopefully this sparks the offense for the rest of the year

From the previous thread:

I don't understand all the advocacy of trading Brown and Cosart, etc. for Hunter Pence, or trading Brown, Cosart and a few more prospects for Justin Upton.

Pence is 28, will be an FA and become expensive.

Upton is the same age as Brown, and is locked into a contract that is far more money that what Brown will make in the next few years.

Why not wait and see what Brown can deliver, and let the prospects percolate up?

A trade for Pence would be a desperation move to try to juice the offense in 2011, for a team that is built around pitching and defense.

The entire lineup has not been healthy and together yet this season. Why not wait until Victorino is back and the lineup consists of


in whatever order you think works?

We still don't know how good the lineup is/can be because a key piece (Vic) is still DL'd.

I'd prefer to wait until everyone is healthy and playing together before I make a trade for another OF.

Raul seems to have his stroke back, at least for now, and Howie seems to bee hitting the ball hard again too. Chooch and Jimmy both had 2 hits last night as well. With Chase back this lineup could put some runs up, so I don't see any reason to trade for another OF at this point. Besides, if Charlie gets religion and platoons RFD/Raul/Dom/Benny with a healthy Vic in CF, IMHO this offense can be plenty productive.

Couple that with the pitching....

Finally a new thread, I'd be embarassed to have to admit I participated in last nite's game thread - I feel sorry for all involved.

Arroyo couldn't throw his slop for strikes, which means he was in a for long(well, short) night. If I were him, I'd think I woudl rather just keep tossing slop and and live with the walks, and hope players still try to swing through it like they do with all other junkballers. Instead he tried to come back with his fastball and 2seamer to get strikes - not a good idea.

Great to see Ibanez go deep off of another lefty, most of his HR have all been plenty deep and out in basically any park.

I saw in the boxscore that Hamels BA is .250. Maybe Cholly ought to use Hamels as a PH because his BA beats all of these mainstays of the Phillies Lineup:
Howard - .249
Ibanez - .239
Chooch - .241
Valdez - .234
RFD - .232

Lake Fred: closet francisco fan?

He's the lowest fo thme all @ .216

When Hamels pitches, Charlie actually puts out the optimal batting order, because he has a better hitter in the 9th spot than in the 8th. Sly old fox.

Yeah Francisco has really struggled but he still has a semi-respectable .329 OBP.

Ibanez is struggling at .297 and Valdez is at just .261 OBP. Can you say automatic out?

I liked Charlie's lineup yesterday. Hope he does it again.

Ibanez, Francisco - neck and neck at 5 HR.

At least in May Ibanez hasn't been an automatic out, far from it. Valdez is always an automatic out, pretty much forever.

Guaranteed Cholly keeps the same lineup for at least few games. Just a question of how many consecutive day he willing to play Utley.

Gload still has the strangest line on the year at .294/.294/.294. I wonder how long that lasts.

lorecore, sorry, I was only looking at the batting averages of players in last night's boxscore. Francisco was where he belongs, out of the lineup, so I didn't see his lowly BA. Please don't mistake me as being a closet Ben Fran Fan. No way, Jose!

It is a sure sign that Utley is a hall of famer that he can go 0 for 5 and ignite a ten run night. Very few players can do that.

MG - a .261 OBP is not an automatic out. It is an out 73.9% of the time - which is miserable and embarrassing to be sure but - not quite automatic. An automatic out is when you "sacrifice" bunt.

I agree with Sanz that last night line-up felt hopeful. It would be nice to see it again, but I suspect that, especially against lefties, it will not be "automatically" be forthcoming.

@Lake Fred: Yes, but Hamels is 0-1 as a pinch hitter on the season. Clearly, he wilts under that pressure while at the plate.

Been nice to see Howard start to string some hits together the last few games after being in an awful funk this month. 5-12 the last 3 nights after this 0-23 hitless streak.

Still just at .195/.287/.390 (.677 OPS) in May but he likely might avoid having the worst month of his career now.

Jack, Cole should be complimented for working on his hitting to get it to this point. He's talked about the competition between the pitchers enough that it's pretty clear he takes it seriously.

LF, Valdez is a backup, so I don't really expect much from him. Mayberry too, or at least a platoon player (lifetime he's got an .808 OPS against RHP and .880 against RH SP).

The other guys on you list all seem to be collectively coming out of bad slumps (Chooch's may have been related to injury).

If Raul stays warm - just warm - and Howie, Chooch, and JRoll start to hit again (Polly too) then the lineup will be fine.

I'll say this much about last night (and I alluded to it at the time):

It was nice to watch a Phillies SP give up 3 runs and have the team still WIN.

lorecore - i too participated in that game thread. funniest part - the return of MVPtommyd. after a few choice posts, he brought up a topic - worst trades in phillies history. while we were thumping the reds. yeah, welcome back.

In the minors, incidently, Hewitt is on one of his early season tears. How long until he starts striking out every other AB - one week? Two? Three?

Valdez has been freaking awful this year. His .551 OPS ranks almost dead last among MLB players with 100 PAs. His defense at 2B hasn't been anything to write about home either.

This is a big series though for the Phils. Cared much more about them winning this series than the one with the Rangers.

Oops, talk about a brain cramp!

Please change "RHP" and "RH SP" in the post above to mean "LHP" and "LH SP".


Hamels has a nice swing. Doesn't look like he's hacking like the others. Halladays seems to be the worst. But he is the best pitcher in the I'll give him a break.

Fred: hah nice - make sure to get yourself on AWH's log to make it official.

I didn't think we'd ever see a regular as bad in a month as Ibanez in April, but francsico is pretty much there already with another 5-6 games left in the month.

Ibanez - .161/.247/.218 // .466
Francsico - .266/.346/.447 // .793

Ibanez - .333/.360/.583 // .943
Francsico - .111/.298/.178 // .476

MG: I'll grant you Exxon's hitting has sucked out loud, but I don't think his fielding has been all that bad.

I've been impressed by Worley so far this year and really like his stuff. He definitely belongs in the majors right now.

But I'm not counting on him being able to shut down the Reds' lineup. If he does, I'll be a believer.

Raul's march/april OPS: .466
May OPS: .943

Oh Raul you so streaky!

Iceman: Agreed. Mainly I'd just like to see Vance "keep the Phils in the game", & hope against hope Charlie's new lineup can stretch their Offensive competence streak to two consecutive games.

Iceman, it will be interesting to see what Worley can do, especially against LHH like Votto and Bruce.

His 2 wins have come against the Mets and Nats, both of whom are below average in scoring in the NL, though the Mets (above the median at 8th) are putting up 4.04 RPG vs. a league average of 4.09. The Nats are 12th at 3.85 RPG, right behind the Phillies who have averaged 3.96 RPG this season.

If I had told you at the beginning of the season that nearing the end of May the Mets would be scoring more RPG than the Phillies what would you have said in return?

About Raul:

Wasn't one of the big selling points when he was signed - at least by some who advocated bringing him in instead of re-signing Burrell - that he was consistent and not streaky?

IIRC his advocates said he would bring more consistency to the lineup that did Burrell.

"than did Burrell".

It was smarty of the Phils to give Ben Fran the shot he probably deserved to get to be an everyday player. Its possible we could've caught lighting in a bottle. Unfortunately, he's failed miserably at said task, so it's time to let Dom brown, whom has a much brighter future, learn on the job, as opposed to the 4th outfielder Fransisco.

@MG: Curious as to why this series is so important? Is it because the Reds have lost 6 straight and the Phils can make up soem ground oin the Fish/Bravos or is it because it might be a good series for the offense to get off the snide?

Tim - Chance to make up a little ground at home possibly and a chance to beat a likely WC contender up in the process.

Tim, it's "Off the Schneid".

My guess is it entered the baseball vernacular because of all the card games in teh locker room and on road trips.

Iceman: i was about to post the same thing - agreed 100%.

He's started against the Marlins(5IP/2ER), Braves(5IP/0ER), Mets(6IP/0ER), Nats(6IP/1ER) in his career.

If he does anything close to what he has done in othse starts to the Reds lineup - I'm a believer as well.

If the Phils can find a way to win tonight, they would be set up extremely nicely to finish this 20 game stretch with a .500 or better record. It would put them at 9-9 during the stretch, and with Doc and Lee starting the final 2 games, you have to like their chances to win at least one of those games.

Why is it so unreasonable to suggest a platoon of Ibanez/Mayberry in LF and Brown/Francisco in RF?

It won't happen with Cholly as the manager but it would generally be a potentially good thing for several reasons (rest Ibanez occasionally, let Mayberry face mostly LHP, still gives Brown plenty of ABs, et).

Hey, I just found out Antonio Bastardo is considered a "Zurdo".

MG - A double platoon in the corners might make the most sense overall, but wouldn't that require the Phils to carry 6 OFs? Not sure if that's the best makeup for your roster.

That would leave Valdez as the only real backup IF, I believe...when Chase is supposed to be playing only 2 out of 3 games for the next month or two.

The Phillies Team OPS+ went from 86 to 89 just from last night's effort.

MG, were I Charlie I would abosolutely platoon, especially for the reasons you mention.

Also, the added benefit is with RFD in LF it gives the defense a boost and would allow Vic to shade a little to RF to help out over there.

Chris points out the only harm I can think of.

I would platoon the two worst fielders in LF: Francisco and Ibanez, not Mayberry.

mm - don't let AT and Will S see your post. You are liable to get a stern lecture about how Brown has no future with the team and needs to be traded for Michael Young.

Contreras pitched 2 scoreless innings this morning. Why do they make 1 inning guys pitch 2 innings in rehab?

Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, and Cole Hamels currently rank 1st, 2nd, and 6th in the NL in stikeouts and have 226 combined. That's only 38 fewer than the entire Minnesota Twins pitching staff.

Mayberry is currently a .691 OPS hitter...I dont think that buys him required starts at this point.

@awh: Schneid, got it!

Ibanez hitting lefties better this year, and 2 of 3 previous years too...

Year vs. L vs. R diff
2008 .866 .824 .042
2009 .998 .859 .139
2010 .728 .822 -.094
2011 .854 .616 .238

The Phillies pitching staff as a whole has the most K's (387) and least walks (125) in MLB. That fan-freakin-tastic!

***Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, and Cole Hamels currently rank 1st, 2nd, and 6th in the NL in stikeouts and have 226 combined. That's only 38 fewer than the entire Minnesota Twins pitching staff.***

That's simply amazing...its even more impressive if you look at their respective BB rates. None of them really walk guys either. They're 1st, 2nd, 3rd in the NL in SO/BB right now...just pure domination.

Best top 3 in baseball by a good margin.

As long as Gload HAS to be on the roster, I don't see any real way to double-platoon the corner OF spots. Gload apparently can't play defense ANYWHERE, even though he's technically an "outfielder." So they would have a starting lineup of:
And a bench of Valdez, Gload, Mayberry, Francisco, Sardinha

Not much flexibility there.

EFF: Look at BenFran's splits this year. He's not hitting LHP at all - .600 OPS! And his BABIP is in the .220s too.

He's definitely due for some bounce back, and I think using him as a platoon is the best way to start getting him on right track.

It's incredibly impressive to have both the most strikeouts AND the least walks. Usually those two don't run tandem.

This is one fantastic pitching staff. It's telling of how good this staff is that an outing of 6 IP and 3 ER by Hamels last night left you a little wanting.

I'm definitely spoiled!

When does Podsednik arrive and take Benny's bench spot?

GM-Carson praising Hamels?? Now I've seen everything. Glad you came around sir.

2011 FIP (MLB Rank)

Halladay: 1.68 (1st)
Lee: 2.30 (5th)
Hamels: 2.61 (12th)

Even Viceroy is pretty respectable with a 3.19 FIP (32nd).

Our top 4 pitchers are all in the Top 30 or so of MLB pitchers...basically each is a legitimate #1 guy for a team. They're basically doing exactly what we hoped they would do in the off-season.

It'd make more sense to replace Mini-Mart wiht Podsednik as we're using Mini-Mart as a backup CF now instead of 2B.

More sense would be to bring back Orr so he can back up 3B and 2B as we have Valdez as the backup SS and we dont need Mini Mart period.

Does BenFran have an option remaining? If so, why not send him down to AAA to figure things out with Pods up on the MLB club?

Doc, Cliff, and Cole also rank 1,3,4 in xFIP and 1, 2, 3 in SIERA.

Yeah, they're pretty good.

Dom Brown last night:

First AB: Doubles on an 81 mph splitter that was down but caught a good bit of the outside part of the plate.

Second AB: Only AB is which the pitcher tried to bust him in on his hands, on 1st 2 pitches. He took the first (fastball) for a ball and fouled off the second (slider). The third pitch was high and inside (fastball) and he fouled it back. The 4th pitch was a sinker that hung up on the outside part of the plate and he drove it hard to LF, where it was caught by Lewis.

Third AB: Popped up on 1st pitch, a high fastball on the outside part of the plate.

Fourth AB: Struck out on 82 mph splitter on the outside corner.

Conclusion: Did just fine on his first 2 ABs and only looked bad against Arredondo's breaking stuff. The Reds mostly threw him breaking stuff on the outside part of the plate, with only Arroyo trying to bust him in on the hands and that in just 1 AB. It also looks like he's holding the bat a tad lower than he did last summer.

So far, so good.

NEPP - Keeping Martinez on the roster out of ST didn't make any sense, either, but he's managed to stay in the majors for a month and a half. I'm not sure if Rube is bound and determined to find his Rule 5 gem (like Wade did with Vic), but it sure seems like it.

In all seriousness, the Phillies should consider an 11 man rotation and a 6 man bench...especially with interleague play in the offing. With our Big 3, we dont need a 12th reliever and with our platoon issues, we could really use that extra roster spot. This is especially true if we're intent on carrying that worthless POS Mini Mart all season. Between Mini-Mart and Sardinha, UC is playing with a 3 man bench.

Why do people want to get rid of Francisco for Podsednik? Podsednik easily could be a washed up stiff who hits .250 with absolutely no power and is shabby in the field.

MG: No doubt Valdez is a bad hitter. Last year was an aberration, but what factual evidence do you have for this: "His defense at 2B hasn't been anything to write about home either"??

NEPP - I would go with the 11 man pitching staff as well, but that likely means Stutes is the odd man out and we may see a little more Baez than we'd all like.

clout - the pitch Dom struck out on had a lot of break and just hit the corner of the plate. My feeling is the pitcher made him look bad with a nasty pitch.

mg-i agree,we have no idea what pods has left in the tank,benny has not been that bad this year!

NEPP: After you just pointed out how Mayberry hasnt really earned his lineup spot much yet - I'm surprised you'd consider taking francisco down instead of RFD who definitely has options remaining.

"Does BenFran have an option remaining? If so, why not send him down to AAA to figure things out"

What is he going to figure out?

it seems like someone on this blog has a dom brown hands fetish. not naming names...

I agree Chris. I know they'll never get rid of Mini Mart but it makes so much sense to do so.

MG: With Ransom gone and Amaro refusing to unleash Rizzotti, clearly, Podsednik is "The Solution" for 2011 Beerleaguer posters.

My personal opinion? He's now a below average defensive player, which really cuts his value, since his OPS for the past 5 years is .713.

***I would go with the 11 man pitching staff as well, but that likely means Stutes is the odd man out and we may see a little more Baez than we'd all like.***

Baez is a sunk cost at this point. It makes so much more sense to just release him in that scenario. Granted, its the Phillies and they want to get some return on that investment.

On Mayberry over BenFran, Mayberry is at least a decent defender.

BenFran has been extremely unlucky on balls in play so far. His peripherals are pretty much the same from his career numbers but his BABIP is something like 70 points lower. Odds are the balls start to fall in at some point.

From what I saw last night it looked like Brown was able to handle the inside pitches. Only one game but we will see.

Little Ollie: That was my impression as well. I thought Arredondo's junk made several Phillies look bad.

Clout, he's still a decent defensive LF...better than Raul by a good margin. If healthy, he's still fairly fast too. As far as 5th OFs go, he'd be a good player...IF HEALTHY.

johnny: I'm not talking about "inside pitches."

I'm talking about pitches in on his hands. Not high inside (which is hard for any LH to hit and which he doesn't do well on either) or low inside (which he drives.) Just pitches in on his hands, belt high, which he will have to learn to turn on. That's where he had problems last season.

If you backup utility infielder is hitting a lick, he is supposed to be a slick fielder.

Just don't think Valdez has been that at 2nd. Yeah he has a strong arm on relay throws but he doesn't turn a clean pivot on DPs as a 2B. Also haven't been impressed with his ability to field balls that he has had to charge his year.

He hasn't been bad defensively. Just average and when are aren't hitting that isn't acceptable. He will play because he is better than Mini Mart but Valdez has been a zero this year.

He turned pretty well on a couple last night...he was just a tad early so they went foul.

NEPP: Pods' UZR150 for past 3 seasons is negative. I would not call that a "decent defensive outfielder."

"MG: I'll grant you Exxon's hitting has sucked out loud, but I don't think his fielding has been all that bad."

Does this qualify as the most optimistic post ever by Gtown? I believe it does. Who are you and what have you done with Gtown Dave?

I like the 11 pitchers idea. I don't think Charlie or Rube will go for it though. Tough roster decisions loom with the possible return of Lidgey-poo.

'Dutch' Day on June 1st

Yeah you could meet Daulton but the "Also on this day, fans can enjoy a special “Turn Back the Clock to the Darren Daulton 1983 R-Phils”, with 1983 prices on tickets, food and beer, courtesy of 830 AM WEEU. Fans can get a ticket to the game for the price it cost in 1983.

Ticket prices are as follows: Child/Senior GA - $1.50, Adult GA - $3.50, and Green Reserved Seat - $4.50 (Yellow and Blue Box are regular price). Fans can also enjoy $1 concession menu items, as well as a special $2 Happy Hour on beer, plus $3 Yuengling drafts all game!"

NEPP: I thought he did too, but those were breaking pitches. I want to see him turn on a belt-high 92 mph fastball on the inside corner and hit a linedrive.

Lidge won't be back for a month. Deal with that potential issue when it comes up.

MG: I've seen Valdez make some pretty good plays at 2B this season, his range has been good, his arm is above average. He may not look the smoothest on the DP, but he gets the job done. He's an above average defensive player at 2B.

Is that enough to offset the horrid offense? Well, I know many Beerleaguers think 3B is a far more important defensive position and were quite happy with Feliz's offense because of that, so maybe.

Ibanez has been the best hitter on the team for almost half the games played so far. Why are we still talking about a full platoon?

Valdez is exposed the minute he becomes even a semi-regular player. It's the same as the Gnome and about 75% of all utility players. They have a use. But just like garbage they start to stink after a few days.

quincy, b/c he's old and needs a few days off, like, all the time.

fwiw (admittedly not a ton, given the tiny samples in play), clout, UZR hasn't liked Valdez at all in the early going... to my eyes, his range and positioning (to the extent you can discern that) has seemed fairly poor, though his arm remains strong.

EFF: Contreras threw just 7 pitches in the first inning. Everyone wanted to see more.

Valdez has a bad UZR so far this season... which only means so much considering the small sample size and UZR's obvious flaws.

The Phils are also among the worst in baseball in converting ground balls into outs. There's some suggestion that changing Valdez to Utley will help change that.

I can't remember where I read that.

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