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Thursday, June 23, 2011


First Bo Diaz now Lidle? Was the Vet built on an Indian burial ground?

overrated pilot

was that necessary?

Buster Olney says no one believes the Phillies when they say they have no payroll flexibility:

Cory Lidle, RIP.

"If everyone was healthy and rested, which Phillies pitcher would you want starting Game 7 of the World Series if it was being played tonight?"

That's easy, Halladay.

Since "everyone was healthy and rested" if he didn't do well I could always go to one of the other guys if he was struggling.

Using your hypothetical. ... If EVERYONE is healthy and rested... then Cole Hamels starts (statistically, he is their best pitcher in innings 1-3 this season) and Lee and Halladay are in the bullpen, ready for a moment's notice.

Can't help remembering that Lee struck out 16 Braves in seven innings on May 6, when he was in one of his "off his game" phases.


if everyone is rested and at full strength, halladay

Did a little checking... since 1990, 3 pitchers from the same team have finished in the Top 5 in the Cy Young vote three times:

1999 NL: 2. Hampton, 4(t). Lima, 4(t). Wagner (Lima and Wagner got just 3 votes each)
1998 NL: 1. Glavine, 4(t). Maddux, 4(t). Smoltz
1990 AL: 1. Welch, 3. Stewart, 5. Eckersly (2 votes)

In 1970, the Orioles had three of their 20 games in the top 5 of the Cy Young vote:
2. McNally, 4. Cueller, 5. Palmer

Twice since 1990, a team had pitchers finishe 1-2 in the Cy Young vote. Any guesses? (Easy question.)

In 2001 and 2002, Randy Johnson won the Cy Young and Curt Schilling finished 2nd.

Apologies for the pilot line. Took it out. It's interesting that Cliff Lee hasn't gotten a single vote yet in the Game 7 debate. I'd vote for Halladay, personally, but it's a close call.

The Game 7 starter will actually depend on how the rotation sets up. Looks like a 7-game WS would look like this:

10/19-Game 1 (Halladay)
10/20-Game 2 (Lee)
Off day
10/22-Game 3 (Hamels)
10/23-Game 4 (Oswalt)
10/24-Game 5 (Halladay)
10/25-Off day
10/26-Game 6 (Lee)
10/27-Game 7 (Hamels)

It would be hard to avoid choosing Halladay, but it is pretty sweet that in all likelihood it would shake down to Cole.

So who is the Red Sox' game seven starter?

Drew: Bah... the pilot line wasn't so bad. It's okay to be snarky, but since it bothered some, not a bad idea to take it out.

CJ - Definitely, given the likely breakdown of a seven-game series it would be Lee or Hamels in Game 7. But hypothetically, which pitcher would you want to start a game for all the marbles right now?

Hamels for Game 7. He's got the most post-season experience (at least, I'm pretty sure), and that seems like a good barometer as any when the choices are that good.

I'd go for Lee Game 7 if at home, Halladay if away. Lee puts an extra hitter on your team, and in an NL park that might make the difference.

Only caught bits and pieces of Will S talking smack on Dom Brown. Anyone point out the .198 BABIP?

I'd pick Doc for Game 7. He's our best pitcher.

DiP, good point.

So....Hamels [.242/.265/.303] or Lee [.222/.243/.278] at home, Halladay [.054/.079/.054] on the road.

I don't see how you don't go with Doc for a game 7. I have no real tangible quantification, but in a big moment, I probably have the most faith that he'll provide his consistent domination.

awh, great, so the "now it counts" All Star game is going to be the determiner? Lovely...

Thanks Bud.

Halladay, but all hands on deck, man.

Just looked at the boxscore for the pitching duel in Washington and say Adam Kennedy is the 3 hole hitter for Seattle. yeesh.

Willard: I expect Halladay to through a complete game shutout in the AS Game this year, so no big deal.

Bay Slugga, we did BABIP to death in the previous thread...

I think it's a closer call than some who assume Halladay. Halladay is the best overall pitcher, but the most of his suprlus value over the other two is his efficiency and durability--meaning he simply provides more value because he consistently throws deeper into games and rarely has a bad game.

But Hamels and Lee are just as likely to throw a gem in a one-game scenario as Doc.

Preacher, just being practical.

I happen to agree with you on the ASG.

With interleague play, the team with the best record should get home field advantage.

if everyone's rested and healthy, there IS no game 7 -- we sweep.

Jack: It's absolutely a close call, no doubt about it. But I also believe Doc is a better pitcher than Cole or Cliff, so that's why I'd make that choice.

Voice, you took the electrons right out of my fingertips...

If we have a WS with everyone rested:

Game 1 Doc
Game 2 Hamels
day off
Game 3 Lee
Game 4 Doc
Gmae 5 Hamels
day off
Game 6 Lee
Game 7 Doc

You are telling me we lose 4 of those games with anything better than a little league lineup?

DIP: Especially not with Oswalt coming in relief in at least 2 of those games...

Dan - Charlie didn't pitch his starters on short rest when Blanton had to be used as the fourth starter. What makes you think he'd do it to avoid Roy Oswalt?

And my pick for the game seven starter? Any of the top three, and if Oswalt is going well, any of the top four.

At full strength?

I'd hand the ball to Valdez...

I'd go with Blanton b/c I'd be afraid to offend the other guys. He would then pitch 6 innings, give up 4 runs (3 earned).

Cosart and Valle to MLB Futures Game.

Doc (no hitter 2010), Lee (2009) and Cole (2008) all have histories of coming up big in the postseason.

For that matter, Oswalt has sparkled in the playoffs in the past.

aksmith, Charlie never had before what he has now. The biggest things stopping him from going with a 3 man rotation were:
1) Not being able to trust Hamels on short rest (in all series)
2) Not having a big difference between #3 and #4 starter (in 09)
3) Not getting to the WS (in '10)

I think if he made the WS this year with these 3 pitching at the top of their games, he'd roll the dice and let Oswalt pitch any extra inning game should it be necessary

Lee is a streaky pitcher. If he is on his game, like he is now, he would be my game 7 starter. There is 100% no chance that Cholly goes to anybody but Halladay and, well, that's just fine.

Speaking of Kentucky Joe:

There hasn't been an update on him since June 14th when

"Although there's no timetable for his return, Phillies pitching coach Rich Dubee revealed that he expects Blanton to rejoin the rotation before August."

It would be nice to have Blanton back and rip through one of those 6 or 7-week streaks where he is a really good starter. Worley/KK are adequate but a healthy Blanton is an upgrade.

MG, who is the "Joe Blanton" person you are referring to? Didn't he used to play for us a couple of years ago?

Anyone want to see Alfonso in a Phillies uni? Maybe a deal such as landed us Oswalt with the Stros paying much of his salary, we can deal with the Cubs.

Who would I want if it were tonight? Hamels.

Who would Charlie send out there? Halladay.

Another win for the Nats. Swept Seattle.

re: Soriano - Chicago would have to pay 19/20ths of his salary for the rest of his contract.

Just an idea but what do people think of bringing Joe back as a bullpen guy? Obviously he has had struggles in the first innings of some starts, but if they bring him back in the bullpen mode starting right away it could help to solidify a bullpen which is starting to show some cracks. They did it with Myers a few years ago, and while Joe doesn't have his dominant out pitch (curve), he would certainly be better than Baez, Herndon and Kendrick.

"Lee puts an extra hitter on your team, and in an NL park that might make the difference."

Same thought occurred to me yesterday. For that very reason, I was thinking maybe Lee and Hamels should start Games 1 and 2 of the first playoff series (assuming we're at home).

Roy H, Hamels, or Lee?

Isn't that a bit like asking whether or not you prefer chocolate, chocolate, or chocolate?

(I would be happy with any of them on the mound--it would mean we kept them healthy enough during the season to assist us in the post season.)

I think they had to swallow their pride enough to anoint Kendrick a $2.5M bullpen piece. I can't, for the life of me, see them also resigning themselves to putting their $8.5M "innings eater" in the 'pen, too. That's $11M of "just in case" right handed long relief. It might be the right move, but it won't happen for that reason alone.

He'll be back as a starter and/or traded.

Manuel with shocking demand!

“We could use a hitter in our lineup,” he said Wednesday afternoon at Busch Stadium. “At least one. We could definitely use a solid right-handed hitter.”

MG, the ESPN broadcast team mentioned that last night, as well. They said that we wasn't shy about his demands for the front office.

Then they went into some b.s. joke scenario about Cholly advising the Marlins to hire McKeon so he wouldn't be the oldest mgr. in baseball anymore, but I digress.

At any rate, I hope the F.O. takes him seriously, but not if it means mortgaging the future or some middling upgrade.

Just sayin' Alfonso seems to be the best right handed bat available, and he plays right field, and his strength (SLG) is the Phils' weakness. If the $$$ can work... Maybe trade Raul and a B prospect for him and the Cubs picking up some of his salary (as we did with Thome)????

Oh wait. I meant Game 1 of the WS if we're at home. In the playoffs, the pitchers hit even on the road. Duh!

He plays left field, I meant to say...

Willard Preacher: I don't get your logic there. When did they swallow their pride re: Kendrick. Kendrick was deemed a bullpen piece the day Cliff Lee was signed. He entered the season a bullpen piece. And only entered the rotation when Blanton was hurt. He's gone back and forth between starting and relieving... pitching well all the while... and now he's back in the bullpen.

And the "right move" isn't to put Blanton in the bullpen. If healthy, he's a better starter than Worley or Kendrick. Why would you put a better starter in the bullpen?

Nobody would trade for Blanton right now.

Soriano has 3 more years left on his contract. Even if Chicago ate enough salary to make it a financially palatable deal, do we really want to make a 3-year commitment to a 35-year old with declining numbers? Sounds to me like the exact same deal we gave to Ibanez, except Ibanez at 35 was actually better than Soriano at 35.

The red hot Nats just lost their manager. Riggelman resigned when he learned the Nats weren't prepared to pick up his option now.

Dan, I don't want Soriano in Philly, especially because of his contract. I'm biased I suppose because I don't really like him as a player. The 'hop catch' irritates me, the errors, and the ego are things that outweigh his sparse hot streaks.

Riggleman resigns as manager of the Nats...wanted them to commit to picking up his option, they didn't.

@Soso - this is getting a little ahead of ourselves... However, for illustrative purposes only, my guess would be

Game 1 Doc vs. Beckett
Game 2 Hamels vs. Lester
day off
Game 3 Lee vs. Buchholz
Game 4 Doc vs. Beckett
Gmae 5 Hamels vs. Lester
day off
Game 6 Lee vs. Buchholz
Game 7 Doc vs. Beckett

that would be a hell of a World Series :)

re: Riggleman- seriously? wow.

AS has slugged .500 all but 2 of his years in Chiacgo, and .498 one of those. How many guys do we currently have who can say that?

Ibanez sits again tonight. Same lineup as last night except Oswalt for Lee.

CJ: My thinking was if you are only getting Joe back as a starter for September he only would give you a handful of starts that, given the performance of Kendrick and Worley, are in capable enough hands not to lose us the division. Blanton to the pen would be strictly for the postseason roster, which ideally is even overkill because the starters throw 7 and Bastardo/A healthy Lidge or Contreras/Madson handle the rest.

Seattlephan: with Roy Oswalt, I wouldn't bother pitching everyone on short rest.

A serious question though, how badly are we jinxing the Phillies by discussing playoff rotations. A 40 game losing streak starting tonight would not surprise me.

For Game 7 I'd take Hamels or Lee, depending on the opponent.

Riggleman obviously has other options, or at least his agent told him so.

I vote Hamels, even though Halliday might seem like a more logical choice. However, if game 1 is at home I might be more inclined to use Lee, who seems to really like CBP. I'd also use Lee if the opponent happens to be the Yankees. Against them his tilt is so extreme that stuff rolls off tables.

Ultimately it probably doesn't matter since you're bound to get gems from 2 of three, which means it'd be 2-1 and then 4-2. However, if the entire offense suddenly turns into Raul Ibanez...

DIP: I don't think anyone would dispute that Soriano would help our 2011 chances. But 3 more years when he's 35 and already in decline? The Cubs would have to eat a huge portion of that contract before I would even think about entertaining the idea.

Maybe Riggleman wants to run for president. Or run in the president's race. Could go either way, really.

@jbird -- very true, was just cutting and pasting in dan in philly's previous post. i added the caveat at the beginning to avoid the jinx!

It would be nice to have Blanton back and rip through one of those 6 or 7-week streaks where he is a really good starter.

Isn't Blanton's problem the lack of physical conditioning during the off season? And that by the ASB he's usually "in shape"? If so I wouldn't expect much. I doubt he's hitting the treadmill on a daily basis during his off time, though he should, if he wants to remain gainfully employed in 2013.

Good for Riggleman. A big turnaround from when Manny Acta was skipper. The FO there should be thrilled with Riggleman and they're morons for not keeping him.

bap, all my proposals are assuming we can make the $$$s work, as in the Thome trade where we ate 1/2 his salary for 2 or 3 years.

AS is declining, but he has had a great career, and his decline is still pretty damn strong. It's not like we have a host of stud AAA OFers clamoring for a shot, we'd have to go get a FA RF next year anyway, and lock him up with a lot of $$$s, why not get a proven commodity, with a track record and a very projectable next 3 years, than gamble? Plus it helps our 2011 cause, that's all I'm saying. The more I thought about it, the more sense it all made.

Plus as far as the prima-donna thing goes, he'll be another great player on a great team, and not the best one, and with a chance to finally win a ring. I think he'd do fine.

Raul sitting is good. He looked like he needed a couple of days off.

Besides, Francisco, while not great, hit a couple of balls hard last night.

Is Beeny Fresh ready to break out?

If he's on his game there's no playoff pitcher better than Lee.

Dan in Philly: go look at how much is left on Soriano's contract. The Cubs overpaid him for a ridiculously long time and now the chickens are roosting in the ivy.

For the RH hitter: my preference is Cuddyer. Of course, Delmon Young might be available but he has failed to live up to his promise.

How many times do I have to say forget about the amount of $$$s doesn't matter! It's only what we have to pay him that matters. If we can pay him less than what we'd have to pay to get a comparable player on the FA market, plus he'd help this year, why the heck not do it? Just answer that, please.

Rizzo obviously called Riggleman's bluff.

The only thing....Riggleman wasn't bluffing.

It's a very strategic decision:

By going out on top, he's in line to get a job with another team next season....or maybe even this season.

Better that than waiting until the end of the season. If the Nats finsih under .500 and they didn't pick up his option, he could have had a tougher time finding another spot.

Nats GM Mike Rizzo said, "It disappoints me that people would put their personal goals before the team."

A real student of human nature Rizzo is -- NOT!

Is Beeny [sic] Fresh ready to break out?

Why wait? Let's just leave the gate open & maybe he'll wander off on his own.

Nats GM Mike Rizzo said, "It disappoints me that people would put their personal goals before the team."

Says the man who signed Jayson Werth away from the 4 time defending NL East Champs to the basketcase of the division for $126 Million.

I think Rizzo was probably right here. The team was 10 games under .500 not that long ago. They get hot and get one game over and then Riggleman goes in and asks to get his option picked up.

it's smart on Riggleman's end because he is trying to get it done while he has leverage. Rizzo made the right move on saying this isn't the time to make the commitment.

Are we sure that Werth wasn't banging Wriggleman's wife? I mean, has that been ruled out?

unless Riggleman already has something lined up, what owner wants to commit to a guy who walked out on his team in the middle of the season. . . in the middle of a hot streak no less.

TTI, according to reports, Riggleman has asked about his option since ST.

As I posted above: It's a strategic decision for Riggleman. He surely didn't so it without consulting his agent, and I'm sure his agent has put feelers out to gauge interest in the event his option wasn't picked up.

I wouldn't be surprised to see him get another job - even this season if another manager gets dumped.

Off-topic alert...

Anyone else surprised about the Flyers trading both Richards and Carter? I mean I don't follow hockey anywhere near as much as baseball, but it seemed to me like those two were great pieces that would be around for a long time. Maybe someone who follows the team better can say why it was the right decision to move those guys, but I don't see it.

CJ, not that it really matters, but my verbiage about the FO "swallowing their pride" to put KK in the 'pen was in reference to the fact that they signed him to the contract, presumably expecting him to truly be the 5th starter. When Lee then signed, it created the logjam and by all accounts RAJ was working to unload KY Joe then. When that didn't come to fruition, KK went to the 'pen.

Basically, what I was saying was that when they signed KK, it was not to be a bullpen piece. That's more like Plan B or even Plan C. To think that they'd move Blanton to the 'pen as well is a bit ludicrous, but I think we agree there.

2011 35 Chicago Cubs $18,000,000
2012 36 Chicago Cubs $18,000,000
2013 37 Chicago Cubs $18,000,000
2014 38 Chicago Cubs $18,000,000

Dan: How much of that do you expect the Cubs to pick up?

awh, Florida, perhaps? I can't imagine that McKeon is the long term solution there....

And do you really want to pay a 38 year old $18 million??

There's no rule on when is a good time to make a commitment like this. It's not unprecedented for a team to give a coach or manager a midyear contract extension.

Riggleman has been saying he wanted the deal done by the ASB, therefore now is the right time if you want the guy to stay.

Andy, how much of Thome's did we pick up?

awh: I haven't seen any reports on that about Riggleman. Maybe he was. I still say though- why didn't he make this specific threat about 3 weeks ago? It was strategic to wait to do it when he did but that doesn't mean Rizzo should've just caved in. Let the season play out and then decide.

Willard: You realize, don't you, that the Phils could have released Kendrick before the season and would NOT have owed him that $2.5M, right? They CHOSE to put him in the bullpen. They weren't forced into anything.

Too much.

More to the point, does the FO really think they aren't getting their $2.5 mil worth? They've got a guy who can bounce between the rotation and bullpen at a moment's notice and be acceptable in both roles. Personally I think Kendrick is a bargain.

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