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Monday, October 10, 2011


Does anybody else see the Phils look to lock up Hamels long term or try to trade him by the deadline?

Who could have predicted trading Lee for a bunch of distinctly non-magical Single-A beans would be a bad idea? I know, right? I'm as shocked as the rest of you.

Regardless, I'm not certain r00b's hour has yet arrived. Why?

(The following RP from the prior thread, as it's relevant to the topic at hand)

Assuming Halladay, Lee & Hamels begin the '12 season healthy & remain so, I believe the Phillies can do absolutely nothing & remain an 88-90 win team. Honestly, aside from trying to lock up Hamels for a few more years & bringing in a new group of awful bench players to replace the previous group of awful bench players, I think that's exactly what the Phillies should do. Polanco, Blanton, Vic & Chooch all have contracts that end w/ the close of the '12 season. Better in my opinion to get a more realistic picture of what the players who are already here truly remain capable of than go for the usual big FA signing (or trade) & distort reality w/ heightened expectations.

I think you're wrong about Aumont. Sickles recently said he could be the closer of the future. I don't think he'll fill that role in 2012, but I'd be surprised if he's not playing a big role next season.

Greg Dobbs and Wes Helms are available! Hell, just locate No-Hit, resign Rowand & Burrell to recapture the magic of the 2007 offense!

Trade Hamels? Where does that idea come from? If one is looking for the Phils to get "younger", he's a good start for that. Signing him should be priority #1 for the Phils.

Closer of the future? That's a reach.

"Trade Hamels? Where does that idea come from?"

Phillies traded Cliff Lee, a year from free agency, two years ago.

Why has no one anywhere mentioned Matt Rizzoti as Howard's early season replacement? Did the Phillies trade him recently too? If not, there's always the possibility to trade him for a three bagger.

Also, Brandon Moss would look really good in left field should Dom continue to look too green for major league action. This, of course, if Mayberry's filling in for the the Piece.

Just curious, as I don't recall, but who were the Mariners primary projectable prospects at the time of the trade, and at what positions? In other words, if not the magic beans we got, who could we have pushed for that might be in play for next year?

I'm fairly confident that an Opening Day lineup that included both Moss and Rizzotti would lead to the worst April in the Beerleaguer era.

Willard: They could have traded him to not the Mariners.

I'm hoping for more financial destabilization of the NL clubs in LA and NY, and for a fantastical swindle netting Matt Kemp.

Derek Holland has one hell of a bad, whispy mustache.

You seem to forget some of the Aprils of even the Charlie Manuel eras....

That being said, If Rizzoti is in a 1st, Mayberry is the LF. Consequently, if Brandon Moss is the LF, Mayberry is Howard's fill in.

No one wrote anything about having both green horns on the roster. Anyhow, could both be any worse than Ibanez's last coupla of Aprils?

Rizzotti - The Great White Hope (at 1B)!

""Trade Hamels? Where does that idea come from?"
Phillies traded Cliff Lee, a year from free agency, two years ago."

I'm not sure what that has to do with Cole Hamels. My assumption has always been that he's part of the future of the ball club.

The Phillies- as has been mentioned- have little area where they can get younger with this roster. The only place they really can is in the bullpen, but that seems like a risky proposition.

For me (and only because I'll mention some things I would do and open myself to ridicule) I would take the chance to get younger there and let some guys learn on the job. Let Madson walk and gather the draft picks (hopefully). Then I'd decline Lidge's option and resign him to a cheaper deal to come in and be the closer. Before you go crazy- I only bring him in as the closer with the understanding that we are figuring out who is our closer going forward. It could be Bastardo, it could be Stutes, it could be someone like DeFratus or Aumont (the latter two the organization think have closing stuff). I'd also bring back KK and make either him or Worley your long man (it would probably be KK).

That gives you a bullpen of:

Cotreras (if he is healthy)
Some two-or three-(depending on Contreras) of Herndon/DeFratus/Aumont/Savery

It certainly isn't a dominant bullpen on paper but with 3 starters who are capable of going 7+ innings every time they take the mound you just need guys to get outs. I'd bring Lidge back only because I think he'd be a good mentor for the young guys you are grooming. He has been up and down and has battled adversity in his career. Madson said Lidge was extremely helpful to him learning to be a closer and I think Lidge could help tutor some of the young guys along with Contreras.

I said it the other day as well. I'd look to bring in a guy like Nick Swisher if the Yankees decline his option. He is a high energy player. He is a good OBP guy. He's a switch hitter. He has some power, and he can play first and all three outfield positions. Get someone like him and you may be able to flip Ben Fran somewhere for a utility guy or veteran bullpen piece. Swisher could give you some insurance on Howard in the beginning of the year and then can be insurance for the outfield once Howard returns. Plus if the organization doesn't like the way brown is progressing they can move either Swisher or Mayberry to first and the other can play left.

Neither of those ideas are perfect ones and they both carry risk. However, the roster is pretty fixed at spots and tied up money wise. You may have to sacrifice one spot to get better at another.

Prospects are always a shot in the dark. The mariners top prospect at the time of the deal was Michael Saunders who has totally sucked. They never should have traded lee in the first place and then got him back for basically a draft pick. If those guys do anything it's purely a bonus.

RAJ has been justifiably criticized for getting an insufficient package in the Lee trade. A common criticism is that he should have insisted on Michael Saunders, instead of Gillies. And maybe he should have, since Gillies has been a total zero. Then again, Saunders is about to turn 25 and the word "hideous" is woefully inadequate to describe just how bad he has actually been in his 204-game major league career.

The real take-home lesson, not just from the Lee trade but from all of RAJ's major trades, plus the Domonic Brown & John Mayberry experiences, is: scouts really have no flipping idea how these guys are going to pan out. That is worth keeping in mind every time you find yourself thinking that Freddie Galvis, Domonic Brown, Joe Savery, Erik Kratz, Matt Rizzotti or any other minor league savior is the answer to the Phillies' problems. It is also worth keeping in mind the next time you think the Phillies gave up too much in the way of prospects in order to land an established major league player.

3B is the one position where they can add some real offensive firepower. i don't know who can be had, but if i had one wish for the Phils this offseason, it would be a bat first 3B. hopefully he can field a little too.

TTI - That bullpen would give Cholly an ulcer by Memorial Day.

There is no way they go that young and rely upon Lidge/Contreras to stay healthy.

In all seriousness with Rizzotti, if he has a good spring training next year & really hits again at AA/AAA, I could see him getting a callup at some point next year. Maybe even making the Opening Day roster as a backup 1B although that seems to be a real stretch.

Best comparison I can think is Brian Daubach on the Sox a decade ago. Vaughn's FA departure in the '98 offseason created a big vacancy at 1B for the Sox. Duquette did sign any big name 1B free agents that offseason instead relying upon a combo of Mike Stanley/Daubach to get above average production of 1B in '99.

- Both guys are defensive liabilities who really are limited to 1B/DH

- Both guys are slow and plodders on the base paths

- Both guys are dead fastballs hitters who struggle vs. LHP and chase offspeed stuff from LHP/RHP out of the zone

- Both guys struggled to handle pitches on the inner part of the plate

Daubach had enough power though to justify a MLB roster spot and learned to go the opposite way enough to pepper the Green Monster at times. Playing half of his games at Fenway made him a more much tolerable option.

Rizzotti is the kind of guy I could see potentially being a backup 1B/DH type who could contribute enough offensively to grab a MLB roster spot if used properly (faces a minimum of LHP, sits occasionally against a RHP who relies mainly on offspeed stuff, only plays 1B/DH).

I'm not at all sold on the idea of paying Brad Lidge $12.5 million to be a "mentor". Apparently Baez was an excellent influence, & the Phillies cut him for a lot less. Taking the $11 million net gain left after Lidge's buyout & applying it to the rising salaries of players already under contract is as close to a no-brainer as there's going to be for the Phillies this offseason.

"I said it the other day as well. I'd look to bring in a guy like Nick Swisher if the Yankees decline his option. He is a high energy player. He is a good OBP guy. He's a switch hitter. He has some power, and he can play first and all three outfield positions." - The Truth Injection

Despite his poor postseason numbers (just what the Phillies need) I agree. If they could get him cheap, I'd try to sign Swisher to a short term deal (two years max)should the Yankees fail to pick up his option. He could cover 1B till Howard gets back and would provide insurance should Brown flop in LF.

We're pissed because a best of five playoff system is a crap shoot; and we're giving Rube crap for not being good at evaluating minor league talent, an even bigger crap shoot!!?? There is no safe haven from a bruised and angered BLer.

Placido Polanco is a pretty good hitter when he's healthy, and a solid defensive 3rd baseman. I think it's entirely possible that we'll have a good answer for 3B without doing anything other than paying for his surgery and recovery.

Polanco is 36 today. Happy birthday, PP.

Now, it would be a nice addition to find a good-hitting prospect in A or AA ball who figures to develop into a 3B. Actually, another who figures to develop into a 2B wouldn't be a bad idea, either. Perhaps that's where the trade efforts need to focus.

I think it's comical that I have yet ONCE seen Ross Gload's name come out as Howard's stop-gap replacement (and yes, I realize that his contract is now up). It's just funny to me that of all of the names thrown out there to be Howard temporary replacement, none of those names are Howard's most recent temporary replacement (Mayberry aside).

Hell, Jim Thome's name was even brought up!

Old Phan is right. To get younger, signing Hamels long-term is priority #1.

Lake Fred: Are there any areas of the ball club which you believe Phillies fans might legitimately bring into question?

And for the record, I'm not "angry" at all. I was angry in '10. I think "resigned" is the best way to express my feelings RE: the Phillies right now.

WP - I would be somewhat surprised if Gload got a guaranteed MLB contract next year especially given his questionable health status after offseason surgery this year.

Hamels would seem to be the poster boy for "getting younger."

Home grown, accomplished, youthful player with plenty of veteran experience.

How is this even in debate?

Amaro need to acquire more 'SAR' players 'Scrappiness Above Replacement'

MG: Like I said, it's an imperfect thing but it is really the best place they can get young. I would best that the Phillies won't do it and will try to add a veteran or two to the pen to help compliment some of the guys like Bastardo and Stutes.

GTown: As I said in my post. I would decline Lidge's option and ask him to come back at a salary that is more friendly to the cap. If he doesn't want to do that then just cut bait and move on.

MG, oh I wholeheartedly agree. I just think it's comical that Gload is the first bat off the bench, yet when the rubber hits the road for more playing time, he isn't even a consideration. It speaks more to the overall feebleness of the bench than any shortcoming of Mr. Gload's. I wish him the best in whatever it is he's doing next year.

TTI: My apologies. I should have read your post more carefully.

Preacher: Why worry about Howard's replacement? Bowker all the way, baby!

Maybe we should be worrying about Ross Gload's replacement. Where will we find a light hitting, past his prime, probably injured/washed up, can't run the bases, no real position player that immediately receives the first left handed hitting pinch hitting opportunity?

I'm concerned that positional scarcity here may bite us in the 8ss.

Where can I buy me a Bowker Phillies jersey? The future of the organization...

TTI - I would be stunned if Amaro doesn't sign a 'proven' veteran closer if Madson becomes too expensive though.

Feel about Contreras next year like I did about Lidge this year. He's like a lottery scratch off ticket. If you even get 2 decent months from him, it's a bonus.

I wouldn't seeing Lidge back here either on a 1-year deal with decent upside potential. He is still an effective MLB reliever as long as he stays off the DL.

Considering she's roughly the size & build of a Normandy pill box, & sports a name like "Bridgette Hammers", one expected a bit more powerful rendition of 'God Bless America'.

I think this sums up beerleaguer:

I would be concerned about Swisher's attitude in the lockerroom. What happens if Pence announces he too, like Papelbon, prefers to shave dry? I am worried there will be some enormous rift on the team.

Circus, you deserve a prize.

Well if the Phils are unable to sign with some of their free agents, they ought to find themselves with a few first round picks to play with.

1b - Mayberry (may not notice difference)
2b - Utley
SS - Rollins/Free Agent
3b - Polanco
LF - Brown (ready or not)
CF - Victorino
RF - Pence
C - Ruiz

bC - someone cheap
util - Valdez
inf - someone cheap/Orr
OF - Francisco (could be LF, or Platoon?)
PH - someone cheap

SP1 - Halladay
SP2 - Lee
SP3 - Hamels
SP4 - Blanton
SP5 - Worley/Kendrick

LR - Kendrick/Worley
MR - someone cheap/Herndon
MR - someone cheap/Stutes
MR - someone cheap
MR - Conteras
SU - Bastardo
CL - Madson/Free Agent

I buyout Lidge and Oswalt due to financial reasons. (aka: they are not worth the cost) Use their money, plus Ibanez savings, towards Madson and Rollins (or their replacements) and the other pay raises.

Raul is oiling up his 1B mitt.

Old Phan and others,
I think those of us who believe trying to sign Hamels long term now or trading him away ASAP makes sense as a youth movement move in as much as he with want to get paid either way and if they realize it will be too costly and they can fill another hole either with his money or by trading him for a youngish SS and bullpen piece who could be had young and cheap than it is better to take this then gamble that we lose another protected pick again or just gambling on their crap pick selections in general.

No need to give Rizzotti or Moss,Kravitz,etc. a chance,not the Philly way.Keep the vets,dam the torpedoes,full speed ahead.

Doubt Rizzo will ever find his way to the major leagues. He went 0 for 13 in Reading's four playoff games.

We once almost traded Kendrick for Kobayashi. Maybe we should look into that deal again. Kobayashi's a few years older now but still under 30.

If I were RAJ, my primary concern for the team would be to find a manager that realizes Playoff baseball is far different than regular season baseball. In my ooinion you can't just grab the sticks and hope for the three run HR. The pitching in the playoffs is better and the Phillies need to realize how valuable a few runs can be in a playoff game. I don't believe Charlie understands this concept. I am glad we won it in 2008 but based on this team's playoff run productivity the past two years, I believe a philosphical change is needed or we can expect much of the same next season when we meet quality pitching again.

sign Pujols and move him back to 3b. Problem solved.

need speed and OBP. I am not against trading Hamels for some offense. It would require a shortstop AND a 3B however. Bring back Oswalt and you still have a top 3 rotation that would be pretty good in the playoffs.

Texas wins on a walk-off grand slam in the 11th. The Phillies would have found a way to strand all three base runners.

"sign Pujols and move him back to 3b. Problem solved."

No - put Pujols in LF, sign Fielder for 1B and Reyes for SS.

The amount of Phillies caps and shirts that fans have bought in the last few years will easily pay for those contracts - even as we eat Howard's contract.

rty - Kobayashi wasn't a real player. That was a prank played on Kendrick. And you can't make trades with Japanese teams.

A friend of mine reminded me the other day: "It took Elton Brand three years to get over an achilles tendon tear." Yike. THe $125 million albatross? Perhaps. Maybe insurance will cover some of that tab...

"A friend of mine reminded me the other day: "It took Elton Brand three years to get over an achilles tendon tear." Yike. THe $125 million albatross? Perhaps. "

Well I think basketball is much more taxing on the legs/feet than baseball. So I hope it doesn't take Howard 3 years to get better.

I hope so too Rich. And yeah, the sports are different; just trying to put it in perspective. When I saw it happen I, I remember htinking that it might be the end of the Howard we knew. It is very possible...

rty - Kobayashi wasn't a real player. That was a prank played on Kendrick. And you can't make trades with Japanese teams.

Rich needs himself a sense of humor.

Separately, Rube needs himself a time machine.

Eh, basketball is totally different from baseball. I read David Beckham bounced back very well from his achillies injury. Even without the injury I think Ryno's contract is an albatross.

I think Elton Brand's sport requires a bit more out of the achilles than Ryan Howard's chosen sport.


When we talk about the Phils' being an aging team, I think what that really means is that our core position players Howard, Utley and Rollins are getting older and injury seems to be slowing them down.

My vote is for keeping Rollins and Utley around for a while and for getting younger at other positions. It's a little early to decide what to do about Howard.

We shouldn't be worrying about the age of the OF nor the pitching rotation as long as we keep Hamels, which is a no-brainer.

How good would mike taylor look in left instead if Dom brown??????

***It's a little early to decide what to do about Howard.***

I think we should pay him $125 million over the next 5 years...because we already have to do that regardless.

Obtaining Kobayashi would be redundant. I've seen Blanton eat more between innings.

I missed this piece by David Murphy about Jimmy Rollins (from 10/7). In case anyone else wants to read it:

Dude...10 pages when each page is maybe 2 paragraphs. Good to see is desperately trying to get page clicks.

The hr call on cruz's walkoff granny was an embarrassment to broadcasters everywhere. The announcer made it sound like a 5th inning base hit to right.

NEPP: I agree. I meant to put a warning in there that there were many annoying ads taking up space in that article. It's a good article, however, worth a read.

* * *
Did others already know this about Raoul Ibanez? (from Matt Gelb's blog a few days ago):
He posted a .419 slugging percentage in 2011 and in the last 20 years, only 16 players aged 39 or older have done that. They are: Dave Winfield, George Brett, Eddie Murray, Paul Molitor, Chili Davis, Rickey Henderson, Andres Galarraga, Edgar Martinez, Rafael Palmeiro, Barry Bonds, Steve Finley, Craig Biggio, Frank Thomas, Jeff Kent, Luis Gonzalez and Chipper Jones.

conshy matt: Joe Buck.

At least I have found myself liking Francona in the booth far more than I ever liked him as a manager. Not sure if that has more to do w/ who Francona is or isn't (McCarver), however.

Rizzotti - The Great White Hope (at 1B)!

Posted by: MG | Monday, October 10, 2011 at 05:32 PM

Sounds anti-white to me.

dlhunter - Thanks for coming to my defense. Yes I was joking about acquiring Kobayashi. Obviously someone here thought I was serious LOL.

And separately while I was very upset after losing Friday nite - saying it's time to "blow up" the team, I have calmed considerably. I realized today that even with our aging and injury problems, how many teams would trade to be in the Phillies position going into 2012 even with our problems? All but maybe a few I would say.

How good would mike taylor look in left instead if Dom brown??????

Posted by: The hook | Monday, October 10, 2011 at 09:44 PM

He would look worse. How's that?

Uggh I can't even turn on the NLCS games. I know the Cardinals are pounding the Brewers tonite though. 4 straight years of making the NLCS at least kind of spoiled me.

Gtown - I guess I shouldn't b surprised then.

That game winning Nelson Cruz Grand Slam call by Joe Buck was pretty bad. It was like he didn't realize the import of the moment or something.

conshy matt: I wasn't. He is what he is. Fun game to watch, though.

Ideally sign Oswalt and trade him with Vic or Polly for a top shelf OF or 3b. If you can't get one for that package, sign Oswalt and trade Lee with Vic or Polly for a top shelf OF or 3b.

Problem solved.

Keep the Big Three pitchers on the Phillies...period.
Now after that given, the Phillies can talk any trade possibilities they want.

I like this idea of trading Hamels for David Wright.

Tim McCarver explaining baseball to fans reminds me of Ralph Bellamy explaining pork bellies to Eddie Murphy in "Trading Places."

Hamels for Wright-the 2012 version of Hamels for Upton.
Great idea to lose both Oswalt and Hamels, because why not make the 2012 team inferior to this year?

With Pence around for the entire season, and if Mayberry can continue at the clip he was at in the second half, the Phils (with the right re-signings) might actually be better next year than they were this year.

It's a shame that Mayberry, who was such a huge part of the Phils' offense in the second half, got like three ABs in the playoffs.

If we do let Madson walk I dont have a problem having a veteran mentor. However i would like to have a veteran mentor that can actually perform as well as preach. We dont need another Baez stinking it up and who know's for sure I think Lidge maybe done. They maybe a time when we would need said person to come in and actually show what it is to be a closer/setup guy. Do you want that guy to be Lidge? Anyhow it will be hard to get this team any younger as we are locked in with Utley, Albatros, Shane and Polly. We wont get much for Polly and do you really want to trade Shane and have Brown, Pence and Mayberry as the outfield. Two guys who have little MLB track record. For all we know Mayberry 2nd Half performance could be a fluke.

Sign Oswalt to trade him? Genius.

I'm definitely critical of Manuel for failing to get Mayberry a couple more at bats in the series. No guarantees but, he definitely had the potential to run into a big hit. Still, as for John Mayberry's reputation, letting him sit on the bench has made him as popular as the backup quarterback. Some even want to hand him the job in center next year.

Brown/ Mayberry, Victorino, Pence would seem to be the working model for the 2012 outfield.

Raul is oiling up his 1B mitt

I have been shuddering over this possibility. I could see them signing Raul with idea that he mans 1B and then becomes a part-time OF (who Charlie can't resist playing. "Here kid, have some matches but don't play with 'em").

I agree that signing Hamels, even over Rollins and Madson, should be priority #1. But lets say talks go nowhere and RAJ can't sign Hamels, wouldn't a trade to the Red Sox, the team that blatantly needs pitching give you the most in return? I was thinking Youkalis+1.

The hr call on cruz's walkoff granny was an embarrassment to broadcasters everywhere. The announcer made it sound like a 5th inning base hit to right.

Joe Buck hates baseball -- that's the only explanation. He always sounds bored.

Folks, the Phils have already found a winning formula based on great starting pitching. They should stick with the formula that has brought success. Success means making the playoffs every year, winning the NL East Division race for the next few years at least and striving for the best record in the league. Every so often, the team will reach the WS and occasionally win the whole thing.

The trade Hamels for David Wright you really want to see Cole Hamels with the Mets?????????? Yikes!!

I was thinking Youkalis+1.

Youk will be 33 next year.

Too many people are acting as though the Phillies broke a sacred vow. Starting to act like entitled Yankees fans. Get to the crapshoot and give it your best shot, that's what you can do.

Not to say that I wasn't deeply disappointed. Yeah, Lee's game hurt. But in the end, the Cards treated every at bat as precious while the Phils just whacked away without a plan.

Edmundo but they did have a plan. That was wait for a 3 run HR, that's what killed them. Cholly inability to change tactics and sub ineffective hurt players as well.

I have not been inclined to post of late, as the thought of Howard in a heap on the first base line is so devastating that nothing else really matters right now. However, I heard that David Beckam had a major Achilles injury and came back strong. Sure hope that Howard is just as lucky. After seeing Pujols demolish the Brewers, I’d absolutely love to see Howard find compromise with his power stroke and whatever he de-evolved into this year – at his pay grade, 2 home runs per season against LHP will never cut it.

Just one more thing. Why can clout post unsubstantiated opinions with no retribution? When he stated that everyone from the 2001 Seattle Mariners to the 1990 Oakland A’s were beaten in the playoffs by “inferior” teams, no one said a thing. For the umpteenth time, you are what your record says you are. If you are beaten in the playoffs by an “inferior team” that just happens to toss 9 shutout innings; gets timely hits and play great defense, all the while your “certifiably great team” plays as if they are waiting for a tee time, exactly who is the “great” team?

The “inferior team” who is able to play at a very high level under excruciating pressure? The “inferior team” that does not squeeze bat handles to dust? The “inferior team” who hits the ball where it’s pitched; makes smart plays in the field and on the base paths, and finds a way to shut down and neutralize the “certifiably great team’s” strengths?

Or the “certifiably great team” who continues to swing for the fences just because that’s what pleases Skip? The “certifiably great team” that is playing baseball “not to lose”, or ironically, takes desperate chances on the base paths trying to make something happen? The “certifiably great team” whose aging manager is so tied to dogma that regardless of a dithering offense, one of the hottest hitters on the team never gets a PA? The team who plays so tight that the $125mm free agent pitcher coughs up a 4-run lead? The team that plays so tight that each AB becomes a carbon copy of the last out?

Let’s face it folks. Won/loss record notwithstanding, the Philadelphia Phillies were never the best team in baseball this year. When their No. 4 was healthy, they had a fabulous starting rotation. And an offense whose statistics hid a really, really frustrating tendency to flat-out disappear when it counted. Ask Roy Halladay or Cole Hamels.

Say you trade Hamels, maybe along with Vic or Polly to get a top shelf OF or 3b.

You're still left with:

Doc, Lee, Oswalt, Worley, KK/Blanton.

That ain't a bad rotation by a long shot. It's much better than the one we had when the Phils won the WFC.

I'd rather trade Lee, however.

Luis, I guess we will have to differ in our opinions of what constitutes a "plan". :)

cut fastball -

That post was a joke, right?

Someone tell me that post from cut fastball was a joke.

I mean he couldn't possibly be serious, right?

"boorish"? as in ill-mannered and coarse and contemptible in behavior or appearance?

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