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Thursday, June 23, 2011

Comments

Fatalotti: Yeah, that's the typical counter-argument. I must be rooting for him to fail because I'm dying to be right.

Some guys have what it takes to move to the next level. Worley does. Stutes does. I think that Mayberry does, if it's in a platoon or a 4th outfielder.

Some guys are one-dimensional, have issues that have yet to be addressed (LHP) and need more time to work on specific holes in their game. When those guys are highly talented, blue chip prospects, having consistent starts and AB and coaching from a hall-of-fame Ryne Sandberg could do this kid a world of good...to give him the opportunity to come to Clearwater next Spring ready to contribute. Instead, we get to watch him flail away at major league pitching looking completely lost and in over his head, and we get to hope that somehow he'll figure it all out.

No, I don't want to be right. I wish he was ready. God knows we need him, but we need him at his full potential, not an unfinished product. Does he figure this all out and right the ship, or does this experience get into his head and set him back further? Do we give him time to develop in AAA, or do we eventually see him turn into a Gavin Floyd change-of-scenery prospect who flourishes elsewhere?

You (and most BL) want Brown up for the sake of having Brown up, ignoring what is obvious to anyone who watches the game - he is not ready for Major League Baseball. You can cite all the Reading stats you want and the 39 games that he raked in Lehigh Valley, but this kid is not major league ready.

Please put Oswalt on the DL and let him get his stuff together.

Will, most players, for decades now, have had to learn at the major league level. Most struggle early on in their careers. Not everyone one comes up like Howard or Heyward and just starts raking immediately. And even those players eventually hit a wall where the league figures them out and they have to make adjustments to get better.

Chase Utley had a 91 OPS+ over his first two seasons in the majors (about 500 PAs). His third season, he had a 132 OPS+. I don't feel like doing it, but I'm sure I could find several more players who've had good careers who were mediocre when they first arrived.

Players eventually need to work out the kinks at the major league level, and given our terrible corner outfield situation right now, Brown is simply the best option to man RF for the majority of ABs for the remainder of the season.

Lastly, let's say Brown truly has nothing to off the team this year, and we all know that Ben Fran isn't the option, and Ibanez is going in the wrong direction at 39: isn't it better that the Phillies know this before the trade deadline as opposed to letting Ben Fran suck out in RF until mid August, then, in desperation calling up Brown, and finding out he's not going to be a meaningful contributor this year, and now, the trade deadline is passed and nothing can be done about it?

I would allow Dom to reach his full potential by allowing him to work through his issues in Lehigh Valley for the remainder of the season.

I would start Francisco and hope that he reverts to his modest career norms and promote Mayberry. Thinking outside the box, I'd see if Polanco could move to LF (I have no idea if he has the arm for such a move; just throwing out ideas), Mayberry in RF and Valdez at 3B. While we're at roster moves, I'd take my chances that the Nats won't want Martinez back and swap him out for Pete Orr.

I would also attempt to add a RH corner outfielder via trade.

I'm not saying that you're absolutely wrong. He may work out the kinks at the major league level, however, I'm saying that he may not, and that it's possible that this stint in Philly may have the opposite effect. And it's just not necessary.

You have a blue chip prospect whose underperforming and a hall of famer managing your AAA club. I believe in making the most of your resources.

I think the Phils will have to do something to not have Worley and Kendrick back-to-back in the rotation.

With the off-day on Monday, I would expect the rotation for Boston to be this:

TUES- Lee
WED- Kendrick
THURS- Hamels (moves up a slot; on regular rest)


I'd look for Doc to move up a slot to start the first game in Toronto. With Worley on Saturday and Lee to follow on Sunday.

Then your 5 man rotation for the forseeable future will be this order:

Halladay
Worley
Lee
Kendrick
Hamels

Look for more then a couple of roster moves in the next 24 hours. Schneider will be activated. Daner will head back to be the backup catcher in AAA. Oswalt will be DL'd. I think either Carpenter or Mathieson come up (likely Carpenter). And we'll finally get to see what they do with Romero (either outright release or a trade with someone).

Actually, you could put Worley in the start on Wednesday on regular rest against Boston.

So for Boston, it would be Lee, Worley and Hamels.

Then Doc moves up and pitches on Friday, with Kendrick and Lee to follow in Toronto.

It would also help the bullpen if they do it this way, as you could have Kendrick available in the pen on Saturday and Sunday this weekend.

Will, you want to take a LF who is a below average power hitter and replace him with a LF who would be a below average power hitter for the SS position? LF is a place where you stick mediocre defensive players who can rake (Matt Holliday), not average 3B who don't rake. Also, Polanco has zero speed, and would be as much a butcher at getting to balls as Raul...maybe worse.

DFA Baez and bring up Michael Schwimer?

"LF is a place where you stick mediocre defensive players who can rake (Matt Holliday), not average 3B who don't rake."

I did say that it was thinking outside of the box on that one, but I don't think he'd be any worse defensively than Raul. Besides, we don't have a mediocre defensive player who can rake, so it's a moot point.

It's definitely not something I'm seriously arguing that they should do.

Wow, the David Murphy write up on the Oswalt situation is a bit scary. Oswalt's back sounds like it's in pretty terrible shape. Surgery might be an option, and that would mean we'd lose him for the season. Yikes.

I can't remember who said it, but someone on MLB Network said that Oswalt has back pain just from daily life activities (walking and sleeping).

Looks like Worley's up for good this time.

Carpenter would be the logical call-up except that he pitched 2 innings tonight. With Worley going tomorrow, and Kendrick having pitched several innings tonight, I think you need to have someone at the ready for tomorrow's game who's able to come in & pitch multiple innings. The only option I see is Mathieson. I'm not terribly excited by that option but, hopefully, you won't have to use him. Then, after a day or two, you can replace him with Carpenter who, realistically, probably isn't much better -- although he HAS pitched quite well in relief at AAA.

Wow what a horrible game. I think we need Blanton back actually any word of his arrival. RAJ needs to make some moves we need that extra(RH?) hitter an a bullpen piece. Baez just blows we need help.

I like Mathieson but seems he gets lit up in the Majors.

Luis: They don't really have many choices. They've got a guy going tomorrow who hasn't made it past 5 innings in any of his last 3 starts. KK threw 59 pitches tonight & Baez threw 33. They need a long man and they need it by tomorrow's game. The choices are Carpenter or Mathieson, & Carpenter threw 39 pitches tonight.

Of course, if they follow the usual script, they won't DL Oswalt right away & they'll play tomorrow's game completely short-handed. That's actually what I expect them to do, though it would be asinine.

Got you bayarea.

I think i would send Brown back for the time been. The Phils have to get another outfielder is simple as that. Possibly call up Brown later down the road. At this point and im not a huge fan(yet) at the moment Mayberry might be slightly more ready than Brown.

Hard to blame the bats when the pitching staff gives up 12. Sucks about Oswalt. Hard to believe a guy with those kind of resources and a recent history of back problems couldn't have flown in a couple of out of work construction guys to run his tractors and cleanup his property. Would have been good PR to boot.

Are we really still arguing about Brown? And the solution proposed is to get Valdez more at bats. brilliant!

"Ready for the major leagues" John Mayberry: .682 OPS

"Needs more seasoning" Domonic Brown: .670 OPS

I predict that soon, fielders stop turning 81% of Brown's batted balls into outs, and everyone attributes his success to "figuring it out" or "getting comfortable."

I loves me some Dom, but if he can't get his act together, he will be down in LHV sooner rather than later.

Raul is done.

I'll say it again: Soriano is available, and we don't have any better options over the next 3 years.

I was told that Oswalt was the most durable pitcher in baseball and that you'd have to be a real debbie downer to express any concern about him, and that the fact that he was throwing 89 MPH and not striking anyone out wasn't an issue at all. What happened?

Also, we need to add a bat. Right now, we have 3 aces, two 5th starters, an average offense, and not a deep bullpen.

The aces are great. That isn't enough, though, on its own, to be the team we expected to be, and need to be to win a title.

Can anyone explain the actual significance of "BABIP"? How is it possible that a ball hit by Ryan Howard is theoretically as likely to be fielded for a putout as a ball hit by Dane Sardinha? If you're a pop-gun like Martinez, or really scuffling (like Dom Brown) isn't it the most logical thing in the world to presume you're not making solid contact, and any fielder has a great shot at a putout?

Based on this discussion, maybe Dom Brown needs to learn a shorter, more controlled stroke in Lehigh Valley. Let him go down, and don’t bring him back until he gets it. I’ve always advocated letting him get his AB’s this year in AAA; bring up Mayberry who has a plus arm, fielding and speed and great power if he gets his arms extended.

Here’s a challenge to b_a_p: How do we lose a lick of offense if we send down Dom Brown and bring up Mayberry; and hold the proverbial gun to Charlie’s head to platoon Ibanez, Francisco, Mayberry? Or is this entire conversation moot because Francisco is being “showcased” (good luck with that!).

Just one more thing. RAJ/FO likely knew about Oswalt’s back for some time now. Hence the recasting of Worley as a starter in LV. I just wish they gave KK his props and stopped flipping his role. At some point the “good soldier” attitude does not carry the day, and you lose focus. I’m not at all concerned with Halladay, Hamels, Lee, Worley and Kendrick. That’s a really fine rotation when you consider that you're replacing an out-of-shape Blantion and creaky old Oswalt with 2 hungry young arms. I can’t see how we can count on KY Joe this year; let’s give my new starting 5 a whirl.

Oswalt's comments: “You throw as long as you can and when you can’t throw anymore you don’t. Hopefully it’s not to the point where I can’t throw anymore. If it’s at that point, you just have to accept it.”

Sounds like a guy who is just done with the rigors of the game. I've gotten the sense that his heart just isn't in it this year and won't be shocked when he retires after the season.

Dan in Philly: there are definitely better options than Soriano. Beltran would be a better choice, for instance.

As for Oswalt, he should have been on the DL weeks ago if his back is really as bad as it seems. There's no reason that he should be out there if he can't even walk without pain and might need surgery. The FO needs to stop trusting the players to take themselves out when they're hurt and do it for them. No player wants to remove himself from the game, ever. The inability to tell a player he's sitting on the DL until he's healthy is really mind-boggling.

Chris, I was not aware that Beltran would be available, while I am fairly sure AS would be.

How much dough is left on Soriano's contract and how much would the Cubs eat?

Scotch man: there's about $63 million ($18m per) over the next 3.5 years left on Soriano for his age 35-38 seasons. Considering Soriano's decline, I would think the cubs would need to eat at least, at least $12m of that per year. At that point, is it worth it for them.

Soriano is a bum, who is stealing money from the Cubs. Plus he is the worst defensive OF in the history of baseball.

Beltran will get hurt stepping off the tarmac and is also making way too much money.

Pass on both.

Steve - i thought the same thing when i heard that quote from Oswalt. sounds like a guy ready to retire. shame.

If Soriano were a free agent he'd be signing Jim Thome style 1 year deals for between $3m and $6m to be a DH. Philly fans would hate him.

With Contreras down and out until at least August, Oswalt ???, and Kentucky Joe out until at least late July, this staff is going to be a bit shorthanded.

Braves suddenly just got back in this race. If their offense ever starts to perk up to an above-average group, they will erase that 4-game lead in a heartbeat.

hopefully the Oswalt situation prompts the front office into acquiring that "expensive, veteran RH bat" the rumors keep connecting to the team. I'm actually not that worried about the pitching staff with or without Oswalt. The Cliff Lee signing continues to look smarter and smarter every day.

I guess if you're gonna win the division anyway and you win the first two of a three game series you get to mail in the third one. Right?

Rube will make a trade for either a solid right-handed bat or a right-handed reliever. Not both.

Where things get interesting is the bullpen especially if they don't make a trade in the near future. Normally, I try not to be a knee-jerk reaction guy on a veteran after a bad outing but Baez's implosion last night was just a really bad outing in a string of bad outings now the last 2 months.

Since May 1st, he has pitched in 16 games. He has give up at least 1 run in 9 of those appearances. Given up more than 1+ runs in 5 of them.

His has a 7.26 ERA since then and even without last night's meltdown, he had a 5.06 ERA. It isn't just bad luck either. He's only throw strikes at at 59% rate (poor), walk/HBP nearly as many hitters as he has Ks (11 to 14), and is getting hit really hard (22% LD which is above his career norm).

Hard to believe that at this point that Schwimer or Grilli wouldn't be a better option than Baez. Baez has been given an ample enough opportunity to prove he could help the Phils in low leverage spots and just not passed the test.

There's no doubt we can find a dozen better pitchers than Baez in a heartbeat. Everyone knows he's lasted this long because of the size of his paycheck. He's not even needed to translate for Contreras anymore.

Given the volatile nature of relief pitching, I'd rather see him go for a bat than a RP. There are three guys at LV who might be able to pitch a few innings (Schwimer, DeFratus, Aumont), and while they're each likely to get lit up, at least one of them might do better than Danys "The Wonder Baez" Baez.

If there were $5 millionish available it might be worth renting a half year of Mike Cuddyer. Aside from being a reliable RH bat, he can set his stake into the ground at 3B and 2B, meaning he's "flexible."

bad back and all, oswalt was hitting 93 mph on the gun last night. how is that even possible? if my back hurts i can barely get out of bed. just amazing.

Jack: "The aces are great. That isn't enough, though, on its own, to be the team we expected to be, and need to be to win a title."

The Phils are 2-7 in Oswalt's last 9 starts, and yet they are still 18 games over, 4 games up, and have the best record in baseball.

You're saying the team won't be what it we expected it to be, even though you and I have observed that Oswalt has not been an ace for 3/4 of the year. If I remember, you expected them to barely make the playoffs. So you're on record saying without Oswalt, they won't make the playoffs?

I'm not saying we should sign Soriano, but everyone seems to forget how freaking good he is. All I hear is how much money he makes, and not enough about how he's actually been as good as his contract to date, and even with a decline, he's going to be a very productive outfielder for the next 3 or 4 years.

I'm not suprised to see most people don't want him, but I am suprised that no one is even intrigued by the idea. I promise you that if RAJ announced tomorrow we had traded Raul + prospect B for Sorianco + cash (making our $$ spent for him reasonable), there would be quite a bit of excitement as everyone remembered what a productive player he really is.

Oh, I missed this one: MG declared the Braves are BACK!! Everyone to the bomb shelter!

No reason Aumont should be called up right now. Ditto De Fratus. You can make a pretty good argument for Schwimer and even Grilli though. Baez has been that crappy the last ~2 months and it isn't just 1 or 2 bad outings. It is several of them.

Ibanez isn't going anywhere. NTC.

I'm still dreaming about a Beltran deal. Mets will want a really good minor league arm to pick up the bulk of his contract but, he's the best rent-a-player out there and he can solve teh problem at either corner and, make this lineup suddenly complete.

Oswalt sounds like his back is held together with duct tape and chicken wire. I don't blame them for bringing him back up - a bad back is a bad back and the DL ain't likely to 'make it better', short term. I'll wait for the MRI results to pronounce him done but, it sounds like he's playing on borrowed time with 2 degenerative disks.

Dan: You mean how good Soriano WAS? He was terrible in 2009, ok in 2010, and has a .303 obp so far this year. And, he's bad in the field. even if the cubs ate $12m per year, would you really want to be on the hook for $6m for his age 38 season?

not a Soriano fan at all, but i agree with DIP that his .358 wOBA and over .500 SLG would look awfully nice over our current corner OF's. and as bad as his defense is, would he really be a defensive downgrade to Raul?

he wouldn't be my first option, but if Rube brought him in i wouldn't be complaining.

Through 76 games the Phils have given up 252 runs- that's after giving up 12 runs last night.

Before the year, MG said (in what turned out to be a really extensive argument) that the pitching staff would only account for around a 15 run decrease in runs allowed because it just wasn't possible to improve upon a staff last year that was already very good.

So far, the Phils (252 RA) of 2011 have outperformed the Phils of 2010 (321) by 69 runs. And we're not even halfway through the series.

MG, did you make a bet on this?

I, fortunately, fell asleep right as Baez entered the game but, I'm all for seeing Schwimmer, Carpenter and/ or another AAA guy get a shot in the pen if Kendrick goes in the rotation for a while.

As for Brown just needing to 'normalize his BABIP' or whatever non-sense is being spun about that stat, his BABIP will normalize hwen he stops hitting so many soft flies to left and 3 hoppers to 2B. He's not making good contact with any regularity and he's not driving hte ball.

FWIW, Fangraphs says Soriano is a plus defensive OF, with a UZR/150 of 6.9 (http://www.fangraphs.com/statss.aspx?playerid=847&position=2B/OF#fieldingadvanced). According to this, he's been an good and sometimes great defender. Not seeing him every day, I cannot comment on how accurate that is.

Compare this to Raul's UZR of -33/150 (http://www.fangraphs.com/statss.aspx?playerid=607&position=OF#fieldingadvanced) which is worse than typical, but he's usually rated poor anyway.

According to Fangraphs, Soriano would be a defensive upgrade of approximately 40 runs (10 runs = 1 win), so....

I'm sure that if the Phils traded for Soriano, within a year you would hear the same crowd who complains about Ibanez complaining about Soriano.

redburb - at least we'd have something NEW to complain about. sounds like a win.

DIP: Did you like the 3-year contract to Ibanez when he was 35? Because that's the exact same commitment you'd be making to Soriano -- who, unlike Ibanez at 35, is already starting to decline.

Obviously, Soriano would be an upgrade but the Cubs would have to eat an awful lot of salary to make it worthwhile.

I'd rather see Cuddyer or Pence...or Kemp! I won't b8tch if Soriano comes in. But if the Cubs don't cover 75% of the remaining contract, I don't really see it happening.

I'm not sure what is worse - Oswalt sounding like a man defeated by his body breaking down or the return of Schweitzer on his anti-Brown crusade.

Just how likely is it that the Cubs will pay Soriano a big chunk of his salary for the next 3 seasons to play somewhere else? Remote, at best.

This Phillies team is an enigma. Look at the pitching staff. We have great pitchers in Lee, Doc, Cole, Mad Dog and Bastardo, and Junior Future Great Stutes. Then we have (or had in Romero) the truly terrible in Baez, Herdon and probably now, Contreras and this new guy, Juan Perez. There's no middle ground on this team. You are either great or you suck. You can slide from the great to the suck column pretty easily. Lidge, Ibanez and Contreras have all made these column shifts pretty quickly.

I was looking at Baez' career stats, when was he any good? What did Rube see in him that was worth over $2 Million a year? I don't see it. Must be goat pictures.

bap, Ibanez is worthless this year, but last year he was valuable and 2009 he was extremely valuable. We did overpay for him (according to Fangraphs, 2009 + 2010 he was worth about 23MM, we paid $30), but you can't say it's been a washout.

In my opinion, there is currently a real market undervalue of aging players, especially ones who are carrying longer term contracts. Only a few teams can afford them, and since they break down more easily a lot of teams will avoid them even if they can afford them. For this reason, the market the Cubs will find for AS will be rather limited, and they will have to eat a lot of his contract no matter who the deal him to.

He's slated for #18MM/year for the next 3 years, and he'll probably be worth something like $15 MM this year (at current productin level), and he was worth about $12 last year. If the Cubs eat 1/2 his salary, he'll be worth it, and I think there's a chance that will happen.

""Ready for the major leagues" John Mayberry: .682 OPS

"Needs more seasoning" Domonic Brown: .670 OPS"

I see your point, but I don't think it's really a valid comparison. First, Mayberry's value is largely in his speed and defense. His bat most certainly is NOT ready for the major leagues and never will be. Second, I think the only reason there has been such a clamor for Mayberry is because his would-be roster spot is currently being occupied by the worst player in the major leagues. I don't think any rational poster wants to see Mayberry called up to become the full-time right-fielder. Undoubtedly, there are a few irrational ones who do, though.

Curt Schilling made a new stat: PDF(pitching dominance factor)

Sounds kind of along the lines as ERA+ (individual vs league wide per year) but I think it factors in baserunners per 9 and ERA.

http://38pitches.wordpress.com/

DIP: I enjoy the Fangraphs site, but their estimates about players' monetary worth are the single most worthless piece of baseball commentary on the entire Internet (although clout would probably say that my posts are the single most worthless piece of baseball commentary . . . )

BAP: Mayberry is ready for the major leagues as a 4th outfielder, late inning defensive replacement, pinch hitter/runner, possible corner OF platoon and because he can give Howard a break at 1B once in a while.

I don't think that plugging Brown into that role would allow him to reach his full potential.

Dom's issues aren't in AAA, they are in the majors. He has to work them out in the majors. As long as he's getting regular playing time I don't see the issue.

bap :) I agree on several fronts with your assessment, mostly because the value of a player can vary depending on the team employing him, among other factors.

Put it this way:
1) To win a WS, we will have to get better in both RF and LF, and I don't see both happening without a trade.
2) I don't see anyone out there better that AS we can get this year in a trade
3) After this year, even assuming Brown can play everyday, we will have to sign a RF to replace whoever we have this year, and we're unlikely to get anyone much better that AS on the free agent market that we can afford.
Therefore: If we can get the cubs to swallow 1/2 of his salary, AS will be a good option for us to win it all this year, and gong forward.

Follow up consideration: How likely is it the Cubs will eat his salary? In my mind, if we include a couple of prospects, even not top tier ones, the Cubs can figure between what they'll save not paying 1/2 of AS's salary, and what they'll save by paying the prospects the minimum for a few years, it will be easily worth it to them.

DIP: I dunno. The more I look at Soriano's numbers, the more they tell the story of a guy who's in pretty steep decline. Even though the rental options aren't the greatest, I'd still rather find a 3-month rental than put myself on the hook for 3 more years with an aging, already-declining player. I mean, we've been down that road with Ibanez and we're already going down the same road with Polanco. The result is that, in year 3 (if not sooner), you're stuck with a useless player, who hampers your trading flexibility and whom Cholly is practically forced to keep starting.

I'll take soriano if they throw in Chris Carpenter(not that chris carpenter). Cubs just called him up on wed, was throwing 98 with control and nasty movement out of the bullpen.

Iceman - Gentleman's wager. That's it. This month has really been a pitching dominant month for the Phils. Even after last night's pitching debacle, the Phils have a 2.75 ERA this month.

April - 3.38 R/G
May - 3.58 R/G
June - 2.86 R/G

It is hard to see the pitching staff being better than they have been so far especially with some of the injuries that have begun to mount up.

That said, even if they average what they did in May they will only end up giving ~580 runs. They gave up 640 runs last year and 594 ER. On pace to shatter both.

Soriano:

No thanks. His power numbers have been lifted due to his inflated HR/FB. My bet is that he finishes with just over 20 HRs. That is his best attribute.

He basically is another 'fastball/mistake' hitter who is horrible defensively & a station-to-station guy.

If he was a 1-year rental, it would be worth taking a run at him but he would have a lot of suitors in this market. Not with 3-yr left.

Who knows what will happen in the next 5-6 weeks until the deadline, but I think the Twins are no longer in selling mode (Cuddyer).

"Rube will make a trade for either a solid right-handed bat or a right-handed reliever. Not both."

I'm not sure about this, but i hope the emphasis is on a Right handed hitter not named "Soriano".

If Oswalt goes on the DL, don't be surprised if there is a Redding siteing.
Anything Mini can do Orr can do better. WAKE UP RAJ!

Soria-NO.

Mathieson has become a starter again and they're in the process of stretching him out, so Carpenter (who has been terrific as a reliever at LV), Grilli or Schwimmer are your bullpen callup options. The new guys from Reading have been getting knocked around so far.

Soriano is owed $18M the next 3 years after this year and has a full no-trade. He is going to be next to impossible to move at the trading deadline.

Cubs should be able to move A. Ramirez but they will likely have to move some cash for Zambrano or get nothing in return. Owed $18M next year.

Cubs have more bad contracts in baseball right now than anybody. Will take them another year or so to dig out from them.

Once again I will step up for the good of Phillies Nation. If Rube needs extra cash for a signing or two, I agree to buy a hat and 2 extra beers at every game I attend for the rest of the season. Who's with me? BTW, my willingness to do this last year was most certainly the reason we were able to sign Cliffy this offseason. At least that's how I see it.

BB - They might fill both but if they do my bet is one of them is a waiver wire deal in August for a secondary player.

Soriano has a lifetime OBP of .325 and his BA has been on a steady decline for years so you can expect the OBP to be worse than .325 going forward. Also, he has only averaged 127 games played since signing with the Cubs in 2007, so he has proven not to be durable.

Early in his career, he was valuable because he hit for power, had good base stealing ability, and he played a defensively valuable position. He has since gone from 35/40-HR power to 25-HR power, the stolen bases are dried up, and he shifted to LF. There is still some power there, but he's nowhere near as valuable as he used to be.

His contract rivals Barry Zito and Vernon Wells as the worst in baseball right now. To think that this guy, who would be worth about 6 million on a 1 year deal, is still owed over 60 million and another 3 years is just awful.

Unless we get the Cubs to fork over like $40-45 million, there's no way in hell it would be worth it. The only thing he would add to the lineup over Ibanez is that he bats right handed. The marginal increase in power does not justify the enormous contract and three year commitment.

Popping in to say love Oswalt, his pride in wanting to do well, his desire not to be sub-par pitching hurt, his thinking of team. He's realistic & yet a gamer. Hope he heals soon, well enough to come back.

I think A. Ramirez said he wouldn't accept a trade.

I wonder what people think now about picking up Oswalt's option for next year. Looks like that train has sailed, as predicted.

So much goodwill yesterday... naturally lead to last night's disaster.

And now dire predictions of falling into 2nd place because a pitcher who wasn't winning won't be pitching for us for awhile.

Yep, only on Beerleaguer.

Taking on one of the Cubs' onerous contracts seems a real bad idea.

Jack wants everyone's admiration for his amazing powers of prediction. He knew before everyone else that Oswalt had a bad back. He's a genius with perceptive powers no one else has. He can read that MRI before they even take it. Happy now, Jack?

Christ Jack, give it a rest.

I think Oswalt's injury can be directly correlated with beerleaguer's discussion of playoff rotations.

Jbird: you may be right. Clearly, Oswalt is being selfish since he is faking injury b/c he wasn't picked by anyone on Bl to be the Game 7 starter.

PLEASE . . . . . . ABB ( anybody but Baez ) ! ! ! PLEASE send him to the same place as Romero . . . . . DFA and pick up some extra balls for BP. Much more useful ? ? ?

I'm sure Jack's having a party now that Roy's back has flared up again. He's probably telling all his friends and family how right he was and how wrong the rest of Beerleaguer was. He's also happy his favorite team now has a better chance of catching the Phils.

Valle and Cosart selected to the Futures Game.

It seems like the Redding signing means the team know more about Oswalt's back issues. I went to the doctor for my bad and was told to get some rest and avoid operating heavy equipment - does that include a tractor? So, do we think both Oswalt and Blanton will be done for the year? Add that to Lidge on the shelf and Raul flailing and that is a lot of wasted money.

"I wonder what people think now about picking up Oswalt's option for next year. Looks like that train has sailed, as predicted. "

Is there a deadline to pick up his option, or can they simply do it anytime before free agency starts?

If its the latter, then why should Oswalt's stiff back in June be a deciding factor?

I don't think the Phils will go to great lengths to break up Doc, Cole and Cliff. Most teams have a rotation set up with their best starter down to their worst. Seems they have a couple ways to go...

Fri: Worley vs. Oak
Sat: Hamels vs. Oak
Sun: Halladay vs. Oak
Mon: Off day
Tue: Lee vs. Bos
Wed: 1. Kendrick or 2. Worley vs. Bos
Thu: 1. Worley or 2. Hamels vs. Bos
Fri: 1. Hamels or 2. Halladay at Tor
Sat: 1. Halladay or 2. Kendrick at Tor
Sun: 1. Lee at Tor
Mon: 1. Kendrick or 2. Worley at Fla
Tue: 1. Worley or 2. Hamels at Fla
Wed: 1. Hamels or 2. Halladay at Fla
Thu: Off day
Fri: 1. Halladay or 2. Kendrick or 3. Lee vs. Atl
Sat: 1. Lee or 2. Lee or 3. Worley vs. Atl
Sun: 1. Kendrick or 2. Worley or 3. Hamels vs. Atl
Mon: All Star Break

No matter what, you can't really work it so that Doc or Cliff get more than 3 starts before the break. You can make it so that Cole gets an extra start and you can limit KK to just one start. I go with option 2 starting the 2nd Boston game and option 3 starting the first Atlanta game.

OT:

saw this post on the b-ref blog from awhile back - longest streak of +6IP starts to start a career(as of 2007):

http://www.baseball-reference.com/blog/archives/115

A list with Padilla, Duckworth, Wolf, AND Kendrick? Hah never thought you'd find those 4 among any kind of leaderboard together.

lore: They don't have to pick it up until after the season. But don't you think that his ongoing back problems, and soon-to-be two stints on the DL, will weigh heavily in the Phillies' decision? For $16M, I think it's fair to say the Phillies want someone who's got a good chance of making 30+ starts.

If he comes back and pitches lights out in the 2nd half, he could certainly make the Phillies' decision more difficult. But $16M for a guy with ongoing back problems, who went on the DL twice in the previous season? It's hard for me to imagine his pitching well enough to make that a judicious use of money.

Wonder how close to a return Joe Blanton is?

Listed as July, but I haven't seen much on his progress. With our rotation now including two #6's to go with our three remaining Aces, Blanton's return has so potential for positive impact.

Wait for the news on Roy O.-- but I bet we see big Joe back before little Roy.

Gosh, Bubba. How much of a pessimist do you need to label Kendrick and Worley both as #6s? Have you not seen some of the dreck that other teams trot out every fifth day? (Granted the troglodytes on other teams' rosters all look like Christy Mathewson facing the Phils, but that's a different matter.)

ergg...."need to be to label"

andy: so is kendrick a #7 or #8?

J.A.Happ has an ERA+ of 69. Javy Vasquez is at 62. McDonald for the Bucs and Ted Lilly are at 77. Westbrook, the "rich man's" Kendrick is at 70.

I would say that both Worley (114) and Kyle (120) are legit #5s right now.

Um. At least.

Kyle Kendrick has a 3.91 ERA and a 1.174 WHIP as a starter. Yeah, I think he's been a bit better than a #6 starter this year. He's obviously no ace... and probably isn't much better than a #5, but let's not pretend he's a disaster.

Andy- At the beginning of the season KK and
Vance were not in our rotation hence for us they are , in my mind, #6's . Glad to have both of them available to step in, you always need 6 or 7 pitchers to keep your 5 rotation spots filled .
On other teams they could well be regular starters and it looks like they will be for for the interim.
Not being pessimistic, that's just wher we are right now.

b_a_p -- your wry, dry sense of humor and irony has charmed me to this point. However, in your words:

I don't think any rational poster wants to see Mayberry called up to become the full-time right-fielder. Undoubtedly, there are a few irrational ones who do, though.

I'll take the bait. A while ago, you wisely stated nothing can get done until the deadline. That's 5 weeks away. Until then do you want to continue to run out Brown, Ibanez and Francisco as your corner outfielders, allowing Mayberry's plus speed and defense to rot in AAA? How is that "rational"? Remember, speed and defense never "slump" or "revert to the mean".

At this point I'd love to see Mayberry get 400 PAs in the bigs. If he sucks, DFA him for the purposes of his unconditional release. However, I don't have the reference handy, but someone posted that scouting reports at LV are becoming more favorable for RFD; the word "upside" comes to mind. More than you can say for Ibanez and Francisco. Geesh.

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EST. 2005

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