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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

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Rollins' numbers suddenly look very good (for him).

I'm sure if he played for the Mets, we would accuse him of being a contract-year, me-only player like Reyes, right?

Wow, that was quick!

Vance Worley is having A Moment. That was some performance.

And I could not be more happy to see Jimmy Rollins playing like this.

From last thread: Jack, the Phils had a -260 series price while the Giants were +200. I didn't invent the spread. The objective of setting the line is to make it so that half the bettors take one side while the other half takes the other side.

Do you think it is so absurd that the Phillies were expected to win the series 70% of the time?

Worley might just be injecting himself into the NL Rookie of the Year discussion.

Anybody see the report that the Braves are near getting Willingham?

Hmm...

Willingham doesn't seem like that much of a game-changer, in my opinion. Let them get him. Where does Prado go?

"I'm sure if he played for the Mets, we would accuse him of being a contract-year, me-only player like Reyes, right?"

Some people would. Those people are dopes.

I *heart* Old Phan.


Anybody see the report that the Braves are near getting Willingham?

Hmm...

Posted by: TNA | Wednesday, July 20, 2011 at 05:21 PM

MLBTR says they may be close to a deal, but doesn't say who. Lists about 8 names.

"Anybody see the report that the Braves are near getting Willingham?"

Since there's no chance they'll reacquire Frenchy, this is about the best we can hope for.

Didn't see the game, but considering the intense heat and the high winds blowing straight out, that was one of the best pitching performances of the season for the Phils.

The Cubs stink, but that was really impressive.

That was a strong all-around team successful road trip. Just about everyone pitched in and did a good job. Well done.


Phillies have won 12 of their last 13 series, and since losing 4 in a row from May 31-June 4, are 27-12.

Haven't lost back to back games since June 3-4.

Wow.

Where does Prado go?

3rd base.

Jack: Why would people say that? They've been saying for awhile that 2009 was a bad year and 2010 was affected by injuries. Looks like they may have been right. You're the one who insisted that the last two years represent the player Jimmy Rollins really is.

"Great effort from Vance today. The kid has made Blanton completely irrelevant."

Who is this Blanton you speak of?

Old Phan - That would be Joseph McGillicudy Blanton, the Wally Pip of fifth starters.

I know I'm not breaking any news here, but the league-wide drop off in offense really is fascinating. http://www.baseball-reference.com/leagues/NL/bat.shtml has the league-wide stats. From a .761 OPS in 2006 to .703 this year. We are moving back into a Mike Schmidt/Dale Murphy kind of world. Neat to watch those trends. The big jumps really came in 93 (expansion?) and 94 (juiced ball?).

I seem to remember Letterman dropping 93 balls and 94 balls off his studio roof and showing a significant difference in bounce. Has anyone done that for the last couple of years? A conspiracy theorist might say that MLB in an attempt to distance itself from steroid type talk softened the balls back up.

RE: Rollins ... or he was hurt and he's just playing to his baseball card. Are his numbers that OUT of line with his career numbers? They are certainly not even close to his MVP numbers. And certainly not even close to the jump in numbers that Reyes has (to be fair injury could play a part in Reyes the last two years)

Reposted from the ent of the last thread: Fat, we all knew in our hearts that Bastardo was going to be good at some point. We're glad it finally happened this year. He's a delight.

Worley, was he even on the radar? He's the definite surprise. He's 6 and 1 which could be attributable to being lucky and on a good team, but you don't get a 2.02 ERA with smoke, mirrors and luck.

I love day games when the Phillies win. My wife likes it, too. It frees up my evenings to do other things.

Didn't get to watch the game today. Anyone know if this Michael Martinez is the Michael Martinez who used to be discussed on BL as the worst player ever?

I'm wondering if this is some player with the same name. Because that other guy could never play in the major leagues.

.236/.278/.321 - Greatest middle utilty infielder ever!

Jack: "I'm sure if he played for the Mets, we would accuse him of being a contract-year, me-only player like Reyes, right?"

I doubt many on this blog would.

But only you (and your carping buddies BAP and Heather) would be a big enough jerk to ascribe it to Rollins as a Phillie.

MG, you will never give the guy any credit. What are MMs numbers in the last month?

Worley isn't this good but this was impressive. He just threw strikes, got ahead of hitters all day, and was able to locate almost all day. Few very mistakes.

I'm envisioning Worley walking back to the dugout after pitching the 8th and the players gathered round congratulating him on "popping his cherry" Ala good fellas when ray liotta as a kid get his first court hearing. LOL

@MG: Isn't that all it takes to be a good pitcher?

Old Phan - He has done a really nice of filling in for Polanco.

Someone said yesterday that the Phils are a terrible team to watch. I just don't get that.

Just for comparison's sake:

.238/.304/.286 and this guy has been back and forth on a shuttle to Lehigh all season.

Choosing a Phillies Rookie of the Year should be easy this season.

So, you are Rube....do you deal Worley, the once and future 4th or 5th pitcher, now at his highest value?

Whitey, Vegas doesn't set spreads based on the likelihood of one team winning over the other. They make spreads based on what team people are most likely to bet on, and adjust the spread until they get to a point where the have 50/50 action. Big difference. That's why you'd be smart to take the underdog in the playoffs when Vegas puts out odds that so heavily favor one team.

If Vance Worley is your fourth or fifth starter, you're doing very well.

And, MG, when are you going to give MM any credit at all? Since he's been starting at third, he's playing defense equal to Polanco and hitting well over his weight. He's not hitting for power? He's not walking enough?

And he's also not protecting the downtrodden and inventing plentiful free energy. What else is new?

But I could swear that I read on BL that if MM is ever your starting third baseman for any length of time, you are in big trouble. I don't necessarily agree with that assessment. Third base in the NL is a wasteland this year. And since MM has been starting there, he's been more than holding his own. Wouldn't you say?

what tragic flaw does worley have that will keep him from being good?

Whitey: You're right the objective is to make the spread so that half the bets are one side. Meaning they are not set to reflect reality.

Everyone was betting the Phillies because of the hype. Those lines did NOT reflect the reality, which was that the Phils were at best 60/40 favorites. Were I an objective gambler (I never bet for/against the Phillies), I would have jumped on the Giants big-time. And I would've won.

Great job Worley.

Blanton to the pen.

"So, you are Rube....do you deal Worley, the once and future 4th or 5th pitcher, now at his highest value?"

No, no and hell no.

Rube should have dealt Blanton in February, when he could have.

I think you'll get a much better return in the off-season on worley then you will right now(assuming his #'s stay around the same level). I mean, i don't expect him to finish 6-1 with 2.01 era. But if he finishes below 4 close to a .500 w-l record i think you have a pretty nice trade chip on your hands. It's not as if it's completley out of left field, he was a 3rd round pick. But right now with two hurt pitchers, I don't think it's very wise to trade him. At this point, we'd all rather watch worley then kendrick right?

It's amazing how some would rather root against a player on their own team rather than admit they were wrong about him. You're missing the whole point behind being a fan. Mini mart's recent success is awesome to see.

I agree that it would be unlike the Phils to pay a high price in prospects for 2 months of Beltran, but is it possible RAJ would pre-negotiate an extension. I think it's been done before, would it be a good idea?
We know Cholly won't bench Raul, so Dom would probably go to LV for Aug. to play regular, and work on his defense.
Next year the OF would be Dom, Vic, and Beltran.

Michael Martinez has been great for the last 2 weeks, and his glove looks good at 3rd, but why don't people wait more than 2 weeks before doing the "everyone was wrong about him but me" act?

His .297/.357/.459 in July has really helped the team, but not enough to forget the .188/.221/.234 from the first 3 months.

Does Bastardo still qualify as a rookie?

The Phillies have not lost a series since the Seattle away series in June. In a sense, that might be more impressive than Texas' 13 winning streak. Sometimes, I get so caught up in a particular turn of events in a particular game that I forget to step back and enjoy all of this. The team needs some twealomg. A reliever o replace Contreras would be nice; so would a right handed bat. But this is the most impressive stretch that OI can remember since the late season winning streak in 1977.

His .297/.357/.459 in July has really helped the team, but not enough to forget the .188/.221/.234 from the first 3 months.

Did that .188/.221/.234 the first 3 months hurt the team? Not really. He didn't play enough to make a difference.

We all thought Martinez had no business on this team. He's helped them win 3 games since the all star break. That's all im saying

Mini-Mart's been hot, no doubt about it. But before flipper and aksmith declare victory let's see where he is at season's end. Don't forget the issue: They said he'd hit .250 and be as good as the average utility INF.

They may end up being right. But they aren't there yet.

I've seen MG give Martinez credit. He has said a couple times in the last few days that his glove has looked good and he's made some nice adjustments to breaking balls.

He just didn't genuflect before rookie-of-the-year candidate Michael Martinez over 40 good ABs.

DH, in theory I agree with you. In fact, I'd rather wait a season or two before declaring anything about a player. But since people were dismissing the guy after 5 minutes, it's fair to bring up the fact that since he's been getting some real playing time, he's been very good.

Happ got us Oswalt, lets see what the Vanimal can do.

denny b--

Your post in the thread header is a little incongruous. On one hand you say acquiring a RH bat is unimportant. On the other you say that breaking up the LH bats in the lineup is "imperative" (which I agree with).

So what do you suggest Charlie break up the LH bats with if not a RH bat? As there is not a qualified RH bat on the bench or in the minors, the team would have to acquire one. So acquiring a RH bat IS rather important.

I said Cholly needs to balance the lineup up, when everyone is healthy. Just to combat the Braves, who you know are going to bring 3 lefty's at you in the 6th/7th/8th innings.

You can do this, with the team you have.

Rollins (S)
Utley (L)
Polanco (R)
Howard (L)
Vic (S)
Ibanez (L)
Ruiz (R)
Brown (L)


That's how you do it. That's what I mean.

You don't need a RH bat to do that. Just a brain.

Wilson Betemit for traded to the Tigers for what Jayson Stark calls two 2nd tier prospects. He would have been a nice replacement for Wilson Valdez, no?

Unless you want a team payroll of 250 million soon, you better hold onto as many effective low-cost guys you can.

Worley isn't going anywhere and shouldn't.

He's been the best starter we have for the last month.

They're not trading Vance, and they damn well shouldn't. Vance may end up as nothing more than a good 5th starter, but on a team with no players in AAA ready to come up and start, and with 2 starting pitchers approaching their mid-30s due $20 M plus the next few years, and another starter who may not be here after next season, trading away a cost controlled pitcher who has shown that he may have what it takss to stick at this level...that'd be foolish.

Worley will be on this team for a while, I'd imagine. As it should be.

Old Phan: It's definitely fair to say how good he's been getting starts at 3rd - he's been very good, I agree.

I just think it's a little early for the "I was told by everyone here that he wasn't a major league player" routine.

If Mini Mart can prove he can hit enough and that means making adjustments to offspeed pitching, he will be in the thick of things next year as a backup utility infielder.

Guess the reason I have been so down on him is because he swings at a ton of stuff, doesn't have the skills you typically would want out of a utility INF, and at 29 (in Sept) is as good as he will get. Even last night I heard that term 'upside' used when the postgame guys were talking about him.

There is no 'upside' to a 29-year old rookie. This is as good as he will be.

wes: Every one of Worley's pitches is major league average. But his command at the MLB level has been near-perfect. The icing on the cake is that he's fearless, will throw any pitch in any situation, and is very smart about his location.

If he maintains near-perfect command throughout his major league career he will be one of the biggest stars in the game.

Chances of that happening: Very small. And that's why scouts have always projected him as a back-ender.

But right now he's caught the perfect wave. Just ride that baby as long as it lasts.

Exactly, Old Phan. MM has gone from someone who clearly "doesn't belong in the majors" to someone who just might belong in the majors.

He's getting close to what I thought he might be at his best. Don't know what the stolen bases looked like today because I didn't see the game. But if this kid could work some bunting and base stealing into his game, he could be exactly what I hoped he might become.

All predictions that he would stink or be good were based on a few pre season at bats and nothing more because NONE OF US HAD EVER SEEN THE KID PLAY BEFORE. And that's the only real point I was making with predictions. Seeing a few pre season at bats tells you less than nothing.

He's not Rollins. And he's not Bruntlett. He appears to be something in between. And he's got a good infield glove that we've seen at both short and third. I'll take that in a utility guy. Especially because we've seen Valdez's glove seem to suffer at third and second this season.

Imagine Worley will be counted on to be a starter next year because there is a good chance that Oswalt walks and that KK might not be back given his bumped up salary to $4-$5M.

MLBTR says Braves are interested in Jonny Gomes.

wes: BTW, my condolences on your recent death. Had Frank Thomas not gotten hurt and if Mauch had given you another 100 ABs, the Phillies would've won the pennant in '64.

Glad to see they let you continue to post from the other side.

MG, what "utility man" skills does Martinez not have? In fact, what are "utility man" skills, other than being able to field multiple positions?

The Mets are continuing to screw the pooch with their horrible front office decisions. The way the market for Beltran is shrinking, they're going to end up paying his entire salary and only getting a low grade B prospect.

And it makes me very happy. Hopefully it will be us that pays that pittance, would make me even happier.

There have been a lot of late bloomers, including Valdez, Ruiz, and Werth. To say that Martinez can't improve when he's spent no time in the major leagues prior to this season seems a little short sighted.

why dont we look at Gomes? He is great against lefties

Spitz - Bunt, Good Contact Hitter, Good Baserunning.

Mini Mart has shown some nice baserunning the past few days and even swiped a few bags.

AFish - Werth was a late bloomer strictly due to injury. Valdez never really got a shot and I wouldn't say he has 'improved' that much. He's always been a marginal bat with last year being the exception. Ruiz is probably the best example (didn't get much PT until 28 at MLB level and did improve offensively)

Ugh... Phils-Royals exchange names on Melky Cabrera. Color me unimpressed. Hopefully the name we exchanged is Scott Mathieson.

Buster_ESPN Buster Olney
Sources: HOU shows willingness to trade Pence; rival executives expect he will move. Braves have prospects to make deal happen; we'll see.

AFish: "There have been a lot of late bloomers, including Valdez, Ruiz, and Werth."

Which of the latter 3 was never considered a prospect? Which of the latter 3 never made the major leagues until age 29?

'Carlos Beltran Lite' is a pretty apt description to compare Melky Cabrera but I was thinking more along the lines of a crappy light beer like Miller Lite.

meanwhile braves want pence

Wow, the Royals took two very marginal prospects for Betemit. I'm not a huge Betemit fan, but he would be better than Valdez and quite possibly Martinez (before the juicing of the last week or so.)

If they'll cough up Melky for two similar Phillies prospects (not in the Phillies' top 30 prospects) I'll carry his bags from the airport. Also not a huge Melky fan, but he's better than Benny Fran.

Best part of the article that slocs just posted:

"Philadelphia officials have spoken with the Royals about acquiring Melky Cabrera, a fellow switch-hitting outfielder whose 2011 numbers aren’t too far behind Beltran’s. Cabrera entered Wednesday with a .793 OPS, compared to .911 for Beltran."

Since when is .793 "not far behind" .911?

Cabrera has a 121 OPS+, which is good, but Beltran has a 153 OPS+, which is elite. Ridiculous to even compare the two.

Also, I'm not sure that Cabrera is worth propect(s) and sacrificing Brown's development for the benefits of 20 extra points in OPS+. Melky is posting a 121 OPS+ this year, but has never posted higher than a 95 OPS+ before in his career and is a career 90 OPS+ hitter. He is only 26, so maybe he's finally figured it out, but I don't think it's worth the risk to find out.

The Braves could get Pence? Sheesh. If Pence is really available, I'd much rather Rube Jr. jump all over that. Pence is the real deal and would give the Phillies a solid outfield for a long time. Vic in center, Pence in right, Brown in left, Mayberry as fourth outfielder? That's a pretty good outfield.

I'd give Houston a couple of good prospects at the least for Pence, considering he's not going to be cost controlled for long.

http://www.thegoodphight.com/2011/7/19/2280448/hunter-pence-probably-isnt-that-good-at-baseball

GOod article on Pence. Maybe some (including myself) might have overrated him. Good player, but probably not quite as good as he's been this year.

damn, Dodgers beat Giants today 1-0. Duel between Lincecum and Kershaw. Must've been fun as hell to watch.

The folks who were skeptical of Mini-Mart were skeptical because the scouting reports on him weren't very good.

They said his best attributes were speed and versatility. His fielding was just average, but he could play the INF corners and all 3 OF spots. He could play SS in a pinch, but wasn't very good there.

It took him 3 1/2 years to graduate from A ball, his K rate was high for someone with no power and his 6 season OPS was .683. plus he turns 29 this season.

So, yeah, there were a TON of reasons to think this guy could not be an MLB-average utility INF.

MM plays 1B?

I would figure that whatever OF Amaro does get... That OF will start next year. doubt he does a rental like Beltran. And certainly once that would include Brown.

Would rather get in on this Pence deal just so the Braves don't get him. Although hearing Beltran to the Giants too.

If that happens and we end up with just Cabrera, I would think there would be a lot of unhappy beerleaguers.

I didn't know any Rule 5 guy was expected to have good scouting reports. Similarly, I didn't realize that the 25th man on a roster was expected to have good scouting reports. I'm sure the Giants would love Mini-mart for someone like Emmanuel Burriss. You guys need to have more realistic expectations.


hib to the jib

Clout - We've seen him play a few game at short and third now, and they certainly seem to be his best positions. He looks to play above average at both in the limited sample available. He has good infield actions on the left side of the infield, not as good at second base. All limited samples, but fielding is not like hitting. You don't need a large sample to tell if someone can field a position. The only thing we can't assess is consistency. I'd say that either he's developed some as a fielder or those reports were wrong. I'm guessing they were wrong.

Minor league infields are notoriously poor quality. And I think errors are actually assigned more frequently (more correctly) in the minors than in the majors these days. But he's got reasonable range to the naked eye at short and a good strong arm. And he's got pretty good reaction time at third (maybe a hair below a healthy Polanco) and plenty of arm for the position.

Let us never forget these years...from ESPN...

At the top of the food chain, where such concerns do not exist, the superpowers lurk as the trade deadline nears: The Red Sox (who already have everything), Yankees and Phillies all seem ready to assume their rightful places in the October lineup as the leaves begin to change...

what is Cabrera's defense like? righty/lefty splits?

Unsubstantiated report on NYC Spanish sports radio says Melky called some former NYC teammates excited about coming back to East Coast. so much for narrowing things down.

I want Pence. Everything about his situation, age, bat, glove, controlability, hustle. He is the the one available player that I would empty the cupboard for. Having him the rest of this season and into the future would be great. I believe he would fit the Philly atmosphere quite well.

We don't need anything. Fact.

I am ready to close! Time to trade Maddog away.

bless you, clout. thomas wasn't much of a fighter, was he? having drinks with mauch and callison tonight. they send regards.

Good to see that the bandwagon is fixed and that all those riders who got off last night before the 8th inning are now back on. Please keep your hands inside the car.

Is Melky really that much of an improvement over what the team already has?

BL has bandwagoners?

Wes,
You guys always ignore me and Andy Seminick.

"I'm wondering if this is some player with the same name. Because that other guy could never play in the major leagues."

Almost as enjoyable as watching MM's recent good play is watching the long line of BL expert keyboard scouts start to walk back their constant refrain about how MM's presence on the team proves the FOs incompetence - because, clearly, he doesn't belong on a major-league roster.

How many threads were dominated by posts about how BLers were absolutely certain that MM had no role on this team other than batboy for their AAA franchise?

The jury's still out - but even the possibility that the BL carp coalition was wrong about MM has them breaking out in a cold sweat as they walk backwards at world record speed.

I bet throwing Melky's name out there is a ploy by Ruben to try to get the Astros and the Mets to get a little tight and lower the price on Pence and Beltran. I love how the Phils are linked to every outfielder out there - Ruben took some negotiations classes at Stanford!

Projections

If the Fightins play:
Final 65 Finish
.710 46-19 107-55

.650 42-23 103-59

.600 39-26 100-62

.550 36-29 97-65

.500 32-33 93-69

.450 29-36 90-72

.400 26-39 87-75

.350 84-78

Now...do we actully get worse AFTER the deadline?

I think the real question from this point forward is an over under line of 100.5...who's over?

Count me as one of the guys who said Mini Mart doesn't belong on a ML roster. He's proven his worth since the AS break as he was a major contributor to 3 wins.

So now I guess he does belong on a ML roster. I still don't think he's all that but he does belong. I'd say he's an upgrade over Eric Bruntlett...at least he can run and put the bat on the ball.

Dave / Jack: the Phils line on the Reds series was even higher. Since it was so high, was it obvious that the Reds were the better bet? The Cowboys, Yankees and Notre Dame football get hype points but hype accounts for very little in the line. The Phillies do not get the same hype in Vegas.

The Phillies were coming off a WS victory, NL championship, best record in baseball, sweep of the Reds in the WC round, the NL Cy Young award winner and a top offense. They were the better team. In a 7 game series, they were significant favorites but a 70% favorite will lose 30% of the time. That is why they called it a huge upset.

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