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Monday, August 22, 2011

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Jimmy 8. They could win it all without Jimmy but the lineup is much shorter without all of the regulars in it. If you replace Polanco, Jimmy or Utley with an offensive liability like Valdez or Martinez the lineup goes from formidable to almost passable.

Cole 3. He'll be cool. He's becoming a man.

Toni B 1. He looked good until he threw that one pitch.

Lidge 6. I don't think he pitches a meaningful inning in the postseason.

Not worried about Bastardo, Madson or Hamels.If something more develops on any of these guys going forward that's another thing altogether.
Lidge, I think circumstances put him in a key spot yesterday more than a CM decision.
I hope they continue to use use him as they were earlier and see what he's got left. And that's OK .
Rollins we should know later today if the MRI showed anything .
If Polly comes back healthy and Rollins only misses a couple of games - no big deal.
If we are fielding both Valdez and Martinez for a long period then we can worry.

So maybe a 4 on your scale on Rollins and a 1 on the others.

My concern scale is almost identical to Drew's.

Not worried about Madson or Bastardo at all (1s for each). I'll be moderately concerned about Cole (about a 5) until I see him come back & look like his normal self. I'm more than moderately concerned about Rollins (8), given his history of similar injuries & the stubborn nature of these types of injuries. Lidge is a mess (9). Do you really want to count on a guy who is walking or hitting 1 batter for every inning he pitches, and allowing almost all of those batters to reach 2nd base?

BAP: Originally I had Lidge as a 9 too, but then I started thinking about how, as bad as Lidge is, I'm still more concerned with Rollins at the moment. And if you gave me a choice of Lidge being effective or Rollins being healthy in the postseason, I'd choose Rollins in a second.

I'm not concerned at all about Lidge because I've come to terms with the fact that he has nothing and shouldn't pitch important innings. I rate Lidge a 1.

Now Charlie's use of Lidge is an 8 or 9...

And Jimmy's health is an 8 or 9 too. Did anyone else notice that on the first play of the game he was making funny motions with his leg after jogging to 1st base. It was obvious on TV that he wasn't 100%. I had no idea why T-Mac thought he twisted his ankle on spin...

I think Charlie looked at his bullpen (his options were either Stutes or Lidge) and decided it was time to kick the tires on lidge and see what he had.

Now he has his answer.

BAP, I started reading your post agreeing with Drew and I'm nodding in agreement; then, I read your assessment of "Load 'em Up" Lidge. Now, I'm agreeing with you. I'd put Lidge out on the waiver wire and get rid of his sorry @$$.

If J-Roll is out for any length of time, I'll be shocked and amazed if Mini-Mart starts at SS.

The scouting reports on him said he couldn't play the position. His career FA there is .926 and it hasn't been his dominant position since 2007 in the Sally League.

JimmyRollins11 Jimmy Rollins
Soooooo this is what we got...mild grade 2 strain. DL

This is rough. As much as some people think Jroll stinks, he is one of the most important guys on the team. The only larger regular to back-up gap on the team is Utley to Valdez/Martinez. Think of him as having the second highest reality based WAR.
New stat RBWAR!

Honestly, it was only a matter of time before Jimmy had to spend time on the DL. This is who he is now. You have to consider his injuries before any contract proposals.

Is age catching up with the team at the wrong time?

I'm worried the Phillies may be starting to leak some oil... http://jstolnis.wordpress.com/2011/08/22/are-the-phillies-leaking-some-oil/

Jack: You've been a big advocate of not re-signing Jimmy except at a discount. Since that won't happen, who do you think they should get to play SS?

Rollins - 6

His Defense will be sorely missed, but his Offense has been Hot & Cold, as usual. J-Roll is also not much of a threat on the base paths anymore, as he hardly ever attempts a steal, & has gotten caught a full 25% of the time when doing so. Besides which -- & people always seem to forget this -- Rollins is an ABYSMAL Postseason hitter. Worry about how many years the Phillies re-sign him for, not about how much his absence might hurt the team.

Hamels - 7

Is anyone else waiting for another shoe to drop here? If Cole doesn't come back healthy & able to do what he's been doing, it will be FAR worse than losing Rollins. We've all been kind of ho-humming his injury, because there's no reason to think it's serious ... right up until the point at which it's serious. I won't feel comfortable until I once again see him pitching as he has been.

Madson - 5

The numbers don't bear it out, but Madson has looked kinda off for a little while now. Not enough to make me worried about it, but enough to make me worried as to whether I ought to be worried about it. Madson is right up there w/ the Starting Pitching as a piece the Phillies cannot afford to lose.

Bastardo - 2

If anyone in the bullpen deserves a pass, it's this guy. He blew away the first two batters, but sh*t happened w/ the third. One blown save bomb isn't even a coincidence, let alone a trend.

Lidge - 1

He stinks, & isn't going to improve. Lidge is a complete non-issue going forward. Unless ...

Manuel - 9

Charlie had a terrible week even by his own notoriously bad standards. It doesn't take much imagination to see him "going w/ the gut" & bringing Lidge into a situation in which he's bound to fail, even in the Postseason.

Phillies trying to catch up with the Giants on the injury front.

10's, everywhere from the lineup to the hotdog vendors...

This message brought to you by the National Association for Sarcasm Awareness (NASA)

GTown_Dave remains absolutely the most hilarious poster on BL.

Well done.

The good news is, come playoff time, Vance Worley becomes a bullpen piece, and I'm thinking he automatically becomes that 7th inning guy, if not later.

Well, that sucks in a big way. Felipe Lopez is sounding pretty good now.

Injuries forcing Manuel to give players more rest than just the once every two/tree weeks deal he gives them now.

Jimmy's the worry, especially if Polanco is sub-par.

So G-Town Dave is fine with Wilson Valdez at SS into the postseason. Good to know.

Gtown_Dave's panic rankings should be park adjusted at the level of pre-humidor Coors Field since 'Y2K will end the world' still ranks as a 5 to him.

Gtown - Yeah, Madson hasn't had an LG since he got off the DL..

Yeah, I'm not sold that Polly shouldn't be a concern, as well. Anytime surgery is even discussed as an option, I'm a bit leery until I see some sustained results. He played hurt at the end of last year and sucked.

Just as one of Mini Mart/Valdez should be headed back to their rightful spot on the pine with Polly coming back, Jimmy goes down, and we can look forward to replacement level production for at least the next 15 days or so. I'm praying Polly is at least semi-productive, to prevent the alternative need for BOTH Mini Mart and Valdez on a daily basis.

Clout: If I were going to sign an injury-prone SS, I would go for Furcal on a cheap one-year deal instead of Rollins if he required a 4-year deal.

I'd love to sign Rollins to a good deal for the team. But a big-time long-term deal has a good chance of being a disaster, and the team should be wary of it.

Lidge is definitely a 7 or and 8. His fastball is now a high 80's flat pitch. Very little zip. And he's got command problems with the fastball and slider. Guy's now a straight up middle reliever.

Madson and Bastardo I both rate as 1's. Every bullpen has blowups during the course of the year. Couple that with heavy use prior to this series and you have the makings of one or several blown saves. Even Mariano Rivera has never been perfect. That's why Lidge's 2008 campaign was so remarkable. And never to be repeated.

Rollins is a 5 or 6. Concerned, but not overly. It's a strain right now.

Hamels is a 3. Betcha if they'd done the MRI 3 days after the start instead of 1 there would have been no inflammation.

Brad Lidge is a question mark for the postseason roster, and even if he makes the roster he's a middle relief guy that we'll likely hardly ever see. Stop bashing him over one bad outing.

TK: He's not as good Defensively as J-Roll, but he's not an outright liability, either. And aside from a single series ('08 NLDS), Rollins has been a total bomb at the plate in the Postseason.

As I posted a week or so ago, I don't think there's any room for Lidge on the postseason roster, as it stands. I just pray that Cholly/Rube feel the same way.

Not too worried about Bastardo, and I'm in the "let's see Cole's next start" camp before I'm too concerned there.

In the same vein, waaaaaaay back when Madson was deemed to "not have closer mentality" it was because he got into his own head and the struggles compounded themselves. Lidge is notorious for this (Pujols HR anyone?), as well. So, I'm not yet concerned about Mad Dog, until I see him in his next close/tight save situation. If he comes up short then, I'll be concerned.

What can we realistically expect for Rollins' recovery time? Will he really only take 2 weeks to recover, or is 1 month more realistic - or not even long enough? Is this one of those things where he won't truly feel back to normal until sometime during the offseason?

I agree, Polanco should be on the list, too. To think of going into the postseason without either of them, or with them each playing at 1/2 strength...

And if Cole is also at 1/2 strength...*shudders*

TK on Lidge: "Stop bashing him over one bad outing."

You mean one bad outing in the last 3 days, right?

Dave: I seem to remember a legendary game winning triple J-Roll hit in '09. I would be shocked if Valdez ever did something like that. He'd get completely undressed by playoff-caliber pitching.

Get well soon, J-Roll.

The thing about playoff stats is a big hit undoes it all. Rollins has gotten those. That's why Beane said "my sh*t doesn't work in the playoffs."
Also G-town and Jack's opinions regarding Jroll shouldn't be taken seriously.

I can handle Valdez playing shortstop & batting 8th for the next few weeks. What I can't handle would be Valdez playing shortstop & Mini-Mart playing 3rd. So, if Polanco's going to be out awhile longer, the Phillies need to figure something out. I'd rather call up Freddie Galvis than have Mini-Mart seeing regular playing time.

i think polanco is coming back today unless something happened

"i think polanco is coming back today unless something happened"

Does something ever NOT happen with him?

The "big hit" argument is nonsense, esp. when it has been all of ONE "big hit" in 9 Postseason Series. Should we also be terrified that the Phillies cannot win w/out Matt Stairs ("Big Hit", '08 NLCS) or Pedro Feliz (Series Clinching "Big Hit", '08 WS)?

Face it, Rollins has had an OBP of less than .300 in 5 of 9 Postseason series, & has only cleared the .345 mark once.

Jimmy Rollins Postseason Batting | B-R

Unless you think that Defense at SS will be the deciding factor in a Postseason Series, it's beyond me how Rollins' presence or absence would be that big of a deal ... besides which, he hasn't even been declared done for the Regular Season yet, let alone the Postseason.

I'll say it again: worry about Hamels, or Madson, or Halladay tripping on a curb & wrenching his ankle or something. Rollins is nowhere near the key that he might have been in '07 or '08.

well it does but usually when he plays games. not when he does nothing

Didn't Valdez start Halladay's no hitter in Game 1 of the NLDS last year?

I assume all of his starts will go similarly this postseason.

Season's over.

Willard: Right. He's a fringe-bullpen guy. He'd be probably the fourth or fifth option, if he even made it? Save the outrage for someone else.

Dave: the 'big hit' argument is just as much nonsense as assuming past postseason performance means he'd suck again (based on 41 games). But if you still want to compare, J-Roll's .635 OPS in the playoffs still trumps Wilson's .610 CAREER OPS. And we're not even taking into account J-Roll's far superior defense and how that could rear it's ugly head in a key moment.

I played SS and 3rd in kindergarten. Hook me up. One dinger every 20 AB.

As I posted a few weeks back, I see the postseason bullpen pecking order shaking out as such (assuming Doc/Cole/Cliff/Roy are starters and excluding Contreras and Blanton):
Madson
Bastardo
Worley
Kendrick
Herndon
Stutes
Lidge

Basically, Lidge only even makes the roster if the Phils elect to carry 7 'pen pitchers.

With the rash of position player injuries, I'd prefer that they use that spot for another bench bat.

TK: As long as Lidge is here, and Cholly's managing, Lidge is going to be a Top 3 bullpen option. In Cholly's defense, yesterday was actually the first time this year that Lidge's wildness has really hurt him. He has been making things difficult on himself with all his walks, but he hasn't really been ineffective. And if he can get the walks under control, Lidge is still a much better option than anyone in our pen except Bastardo & Madson. I'm as concerned as everyone else about his wildness, but I don't really understand the calls to release him or keep him off the post-season roster. Let's see how he's pitching in late September before we make roster decisions about him.

TK: Those are all valid points, I simply disagree as to how much of an impact those things are likely to have. This isn't a #1 or #2 starter, or a key relief pitcher. Jimmy's not even in the top 3 or 4 most important Offensive players on the team. As I stated previously, unless you think Defense at SS will be the deciding factor -- again, possible, but extremely unlikely -- in a Postseason Series, rating the potential loss of Rollins as an 8 or 9 is ridiculously out of proportion to the impact his presence or absence is likely to make.

Did Cole strain his shoulder putting his Hello Kitty backpack on? He'll be okay. I hope.
I also believe Bastardo will be fine.

Every time, Mad Dog has a performance like that Rube can shear a cool $125,000 off the contract offer. He will shape up.

As for the rest, Polly is going to be as fragile as a grandma from here on out. We should not count on him.

J-Roll is severely hampered by this injury and I would not count on him to be ready or even 85% for a few months. It looks like we will be seeing plenty o' Mini Martinez and Valdez.

Lidge should be sent to work on scraping and painting Rube's boat with Baez. He is utterly untrustworthy at this point. I would only use him if you had a monster lead.

Rube, start wheeling and dealing.

BAP, I'm surprised you're taking the "let's wait and see" approach with Lidge. You usually play Devil's Advocate so readily.

At any rate, I'm using the premise that Lidge is what Lidge has been recently. Though, I suppose you're right that a strong September could go a long way to change that.

But when his m.o. is walking guys and giving up hits, and his complete inability to hold a runner (thereby giving a RISP before you even blink), he's got a pretty big detriment to figure out how to overcome.

Lidge is a polarizing player, like KK. I look forward to the postseason roster discussions in the next month or so.

The J-Roll injury is obviously not good. But with the way people like BAP are so willing to cast aside J-Roll for a scrub like Jason Bartlett after this season, I'm surprised anyone is concerned at all that he'll be out. J-Roll is tied with Howard and Lidge for the most BL hatred (although Lidge might be pulling ahead). He's bashed even when he does well.

At least G-Town is consistent in thinking it's not a big deal. My guess is he's one of the Mensa members who argued that Valdez was/is as valuable as Rollins as a player.

The Phils need to get Contreras back in September.

People might be forgetting how good he was in April and May. Literally gave up nothing.

He'd be a nice piece to get back, if he has his health.

What this injury to Rollins does is two things...

1. It means Polanco has to stay healthy now. If he doesn't you are rolling out a starting infield of Valdez and Mini Mart on the left-side. If Polanco can play, then only one of those guys has to play at once (which has been the case for parts of the year).

2. It virtually ensures that Galvis is recalled in September. Not sure he would have been if Rollins is healthy. Now, he just about has to.

Galvis actually could do a couple of things for this team in September. First, he is a natural SS. Second, he is a great bunter. Third, he has speed (pinch-runner). So he has some value as a late-season recall.

Prediction on Thome....

He has a full no-trade clause. He'll reject any trade (waiver claim) until Philly claims him. He only wants to go one place right now.

Then the Phils will claim him and he'll accept a trade to Philly.

Outside of this coming Thursday, the Phils have a long slog of games, with a double header thrown into the mix, too.

Going to be tough for anyone who is playing partially hurt to get any real rest.

Basically, let's just hope that Polly has been eating his Wheaties.

Official. Rollins to the 15 Day DL; Polanco Activated.

Cripes. And Polanco is fully healthy?

Wait, Pete Orr can play short, right?

Iceman: Rollins has missed significant time in something like 3 of 4 seasons now. If that has hurt the Phillies in any appreciable way, I've yet to notice. Much as some folks are overly negative toward, say, Ryan Howard, others are high on Rollins far past his actual value.

Iceman - Yeah losing JRoll is a huge loss because there is a huge offensive failoff (and a slightly lesser defensive) failoff.

If this was a routine muscle pull, it would be less of a concern but this is an injury that is easy to re-aggravate. Hobbled JRoll last year in the playoffs really struggled offensively.

I'd guess Cholly rolls this lineup out there tonight:

Vic
Polly
Utley
Howard
Pence
Rauuuuuul
Ruiz
Valdez
Lee

Zolecki (via Twitter): "Tonight's Lineup vs. NYM: Victorino CF, Polanco 3B, Utley 2B, Howard 1B, Pence RF, Ibañez LF, Ruiz C, Valdez SS, Lee P."

For those of you who dismiss as ridiculous the idea that Charlie will put Lidge on the Pistseason Roster, let alone allow him to pitch in meaningful situations, please note the continued presence of Raul Ibañez in Charlie's Starting Lineup. And remember, if anyone is more "Charlie's Boy" than Raul, it's Brad Lidge.

GTown, not disagreeing, but if Lidge is on the roster, who is off? Stutes? KK/Worley?

Preacher: Depends on if they carry 7 relief pitchers or not. Assuming Contreras remains a no-go for launch, I'd take 6 & drop Lidge or Herndon.

WP: The days of Brad Lidge entering the game, & my feeling confident about it, are long since over. But it's not like Stutes and Herndon inspire confidence either. Lidge is still better than any reliever we have, save Madson & Bastardo, at striking people out & preventing them from getting hits. I'm not crazy about his wildness but he has always been wild; it's a matter of keeping the walks to an acceptable level. 7.9 walks per 9 innings is not acceptable, but I expect that rate to come down to something like 5 batters per 9 innings. If he can do that, I think he can be effective more often than not. Not effective enough for me to be confident when he enters the game, and not so effective that he won't have the occasional meltdown. But effective enough to be better than Stutes, Herndon & maybe even Worley.

Re: Contreras - I don't expect to see him come back this season, denny. Do others?

I wonder how Utley's been feeling. I'm not suprised he hasn't complained, but given that we were told his injury is chronic, I wonder if he's been getting enough rest.

Curious to see how Polanco does, too. Hopefully he's feeling really good.

I know he's not even in the lineup, but does anyone else think it would be interesting to try Mayberry at leadoff?

How hard would it be to teach Mayberry how to play SS?

Buster Olney is stating unequivocally that there is no chance of Jim Thome coming to the Phillies. As such, I believe we should begin organizing "Welcome Back to Philly, Jim!" festivities ASAP.

Mayberry now in the lineup tonight in LF.

Buster Olney needs to realize that with Thome's full no-trade, he holds all the cards. Which is why its not crazy to think he'll get to the Phils, if he wants to.

GTown, too bad Steve Phillips isn't still around to corroborate Buster's statement. I'd buy a Thome jersey ASAP.

Just out of total curiosity, does anyone know if Thome is even capable of playing the field anymore?

Ibanez's groin is now sore too.

Ruiz has a nutsack contusion, and now Rollins and Ibanez with sore groins.

Tough week for that region.

To be honest with you, Ibanez's injury is about a 1 on the concern level. I can't imagine one of Mayberry or even Brown isn't equal or better than what Ibanez has produced on average.

Heather: I believe Thome is happily married.

"I believe Thome is happily married."

Actually, I was talking about first ba...

Nevermind.

Heather: Touché. In all honesty, I don't know. However, Thome has to be at least as "mobile" as Ross Gload, & he's most definitely more capable of getting an XBH.

denny: Problem is, Thome would have to pass through waivers in order for the Phillies to trade for him. He won't. Some team will make a claim, at which point the Twins will pull him back & either trade him to that team (if Thome permits) or, more likely, just keep him.

Jim Salisbury (via Twitter): "Pitching coach Rich Dubee reports that Jose Contreras did not feel good in pen today. Will see doctor again."

The Phillies should do the humane thing & put him down already.

Valdez at ss. Valdez's ability to play a decent ss, as we shall see over the next couple of weeks is of great value to the phils. But damn...when it rains it pours.

What's more important...top seed or making the playoffs healthy?

b_a_p: I don't disagree w/ you RE: the waivers obstacle, but why wouldn't the Twins try to find someplace -- anyplace -- Thome might want to go? He's a FA after this season, he's already gotten his 600th HR & the Twins are buried 13 GB in their Division & 22 GB in the AL Wild Card standings. If I were Minnesota I'd try to find a deal.

Dave - Somewhere there has to be an 'Old Yeller' joke in there.

As Al Michaels would say Ibanez and JRoll are out due to a 'groin.'

MG: Found it --

Zolecki (via Twitter): "Contreras had his bullpen session cut short because his shoulder was "barking". He will see the doctor again."

So, the earliest Jimmie will be back is Labor Day? Just in time for the Atlanta series.

GTown: Correct me if there's something I don't understand about how waivers work. But my understanding is that, before making an August trade, the team has to put the trade candidate on waivers, where the other 29 teams -- in reverse order of record -- can put in a claim. In Thome's case, some team will put in a claim. At that point, the Twins have 3 choices. They can let the other team have him; they can pull him back & keep him; or they can work out a trade to the team that just claimed him. They do not have the option of trading Thome wherever he wants to go.

Well, my hopes for Contreras might be gone for the year.

Too bad.

Age-related injuries all over the place today. What's a guy to do?

Ibanez's injury is a -1. Meaning we're actually better off with him not in the lineup.

Jack,
How many games has Chase Utley missed due to injury over the past two years? Would you ever describe his last contract extension as a potential disaster because of growing concerns about his durability?

Or would doing so require you to unpucker your lips from the Chase Utley poster hanging above your bed, while you dream about new ways to slander Rollins and Howard?

Jack- it's called either hgh or placenta injections.

JJG: Rollins is one of my favorite all-time Phillies. You know nothing.

And yes, of course Utley is injury-prone. If he were about to be a FA, I would have serious concerns about signing him to a long-term deal as well.

b_a_p: Correct. What I'm saying is the Twins ought to ask Thome where, if anywhere, he'd be willing to go & then, if one of those teams claims him via wavers, work a deal. I don't see the up side in Minnesota simply sitting idle & keeping him. Their season is over.

Jack,
I must have missed your appreciation for Rollins during your critique of his every at bat this season and last and promise of the Apocalypse if we resign him until his performance was even strong enough to even render you mute.

Now you are back to your previous form.

Are we supposed to be happy that we can now sign Rollins to a lesser figure?

Yo, new thread.

I'd put rain delays at 10.

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