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Sunday, December 18, 2011


If only concerns about the long-term health and productivity of the Phils’ 1st, 2nd and 3rd basemen could be resolved as easily as the signing of Mr. James Calvin Rollins.

"Sherrill signs for $1.1m, dtrain was a bad move. BAP: further evidence that you aren't as 'knowledgeable' as you think."

I didn't claim to be "knowledgeable" about contract issues. I made what I thought was an educated guess. My educated guess was that he'd get considerably more than $1.1M + incentives. I may have been wrong, but I don't think we can declare that until we find out what those incentives are, and how easily attainable they are.

Galvis will most certainly get flipped now at some trade deadline as part of a package for a player that will be billed as the "missing piece". And the Phil's will be right back in the same position a few years from now.

Speaking of incentives, I find myself very curious to find out about the terms of Rollins' vesting option. So far, all we've read is that it's "easily attained," but that phrase is subject to different interpretations. Does it mean that it's easily attained, so long as he manages to stay on the field as the starting SS? Easily attained even if he's hitting .220 and backing up Freddie Galvis (or someone else) by Year 3? Or is it easily attained even if he misses substantial time with injury, or has been relegated to backup duty by Year 3? If it's either of the latter 2 scenarios, then it's basically a 4-year contract dressed up as a 3-year deal. If it's the first, then it at least protects the Phillies from having to pay $11M for a backup or injury-ravaged player in 2015.

By same position do you mean coming off a 102 win season or odds on favorite to win the division again?

BAP - Willis got $850k as a base and with $400k potential in incentive money (per Cot's Contracts). Sherill got $1.1M as a base and incentive money I am sure that will be added soon.

awh turned out to be right. Amaro is gambling on an unknown commodity as a reliever who had really intriguing numbers last year vs. LH bats & has better strike out potential.

With the contract that Sherill got, he's the much safer bet to perform at a higher level.

If the Phils really were trying to pinch pennies here, I would have rather seen them sign Duke and convert him to a full-time LHP reliever.

Good possibility he only get a minor league deal at this point and if he had made the team the veteran minimum league salary next year which I think is set to be $480k next year according the new labor agreement.

What are the odds that Dontrelle starts a game next season? I'll bet they are better than J.C.Romero winning the Silver Slugger.

I guess Freddy will stay playing with Zulia. All he wants is to play baseball. He can work on his strength training at home pushing and pulling trucks out of the mud.

BAP - I am really wondering too what the terms of the vesting option for the 4th year too. It was the whole reason JRoll wasn't resigned a month ago. He wanted that 4th guaranteed year or something damn close to it.

Amaro and JRoll's agent were likely hammering out the terms of the vesting option the past week after JRoll's leverage completely collapsed with the Cards signing Furcal this past Monday.

The '5 years' was just JRoll talking every on this offseason but it was easy to see he wouldn't get 5 guaranteed year from anyone.

It is a big deal too because like you said you don't want to be stuck paying what is really a backup SS $11M in 2015.

Meyer - I would bet Dave Bush if he makes the Lehigh roster on Opening Day is a better bet to start a game than Willis in a scratch emergency start.

Left handers vs Willis have this slash line:


Left handers vs Duke have this slash line:


MG: Saving money is one thing. But if you are going to save money you should probably get the guy who has considerably better career numbers against the people he will need to get out when he enters games.

TTI - Those are small sample size and Duke has much better command/control than Willis as a situational reliever. Duke may give up a hit but it's pretty unlikely he will BB a guy let alone 2 guys before getting pulled.

Watching Willis come into games this season is going to be fascinating.

It wouldn't surprise me too if the Willis signing was in part due to Dubee's input. Former coach & Dubee has a clear preference for guys who throw hard out of the pen and sacrifice a bit of command if necessary.

Those are career numbers. I meant both guys have small splits as situational relievers and I hate using career numbers from say a decade ago when evaluating a player.

Willis has better stuff than Duke and is much more likely to get a K. Just gives up a lot of command/control.

"..a sizable constituency said in October it was time to let Rollins walk."
-Jason. W

That feeling was based on a five year, $100 Million dollar deal. A three year deal at roughly half that rate with an option year is much more palatable. That's why there is support for this deal.

Duke may give up a hit but it's pretty unlikely he will BB a guy let alone 2 guys before getting pulled.


This is hilarious. So Duke may let more guys on base but it's okay because they are hits and not walks.

In their careers left handers have 887 plate appearances against Willis and 847 against Duke. Willis has 262 strikeouts and 73 walks for a 3.59 K/BB ratio. Duke has 150 strikeouts and 51 walks for a 2.94 K/BB ratio.

but okay- you don't want to use career numbers because you're argument falls apart and you think it is better to use more recent numbers to evaluate a player.

In 2011: left handers against Willis had a slash of: .127/.169/.200/.369 in 60 plate appearances.

left handers against Duke in 2011: .225./.247/.324/.571 in 74 plate appearances.

Is that recent enough for you? Do you want to put anymore restrictions on the criteria. Maybe we can look at numbers when they pitched on full moons. Study and find something that will prove your point.

Willis has never pitched as a reliever. Duke has and has a slash line of: .296/.346/.408/.754 in 107 plate appearances.

Again, saving money is one thing but saving money to bring in a guy who we know is not very good is a bad move by all accounts.

I think the only thing worse than a reliever who yields walks by the bushel is a reliever who yields hits by the bushel. That would be Zach Duke.

fooman - Define "a few years from now"

The Phils drafted 4 shortstops this year, three are fairly highly regarded (though one of those is more likely, I think in the end, a CF). By the time Mr. Rollins is done with his contract, one of those guys will likely be at AAA, or at least at AA. Whether he is any good, of course, is a crap shoot, but so is Freddy Galvis.

From last thread:
Anyone know if Dontrelle has ever considered taking balls at third?

It may seem unusual, but if you can be a very good fielder as a pitcher, and Willis is, why can't you be a good fielder when given up to 30 more feet for the ball to get to you? And of course, you're not in your follow through and making adjustments to catch a ball at third base. We know he has the arm.

Posted by: aksmith

Um...I know he's kinda tall. But that arm you mention? It's on the LEFT SIDE.

Willis career numbers BB & K are next to meaningless at this point though.

Almost as if he is a completely different pitcher pre/post anxiety disorder (publicly disclosed earlier in 2009) with the 2003-07 (3.0 BB/9, 2.2 K/BB) being a completely different pitcher from the Willis of 2008-11 (7.3 BB/9, 0.9 K/BB).

His numbers though in the minors from 2008-11 are better especially at 4 stops at AAA (3.7 BB/9, 2.0 K/BB).

Last year was the first year that Willis was able to show any kind of semblance of enough command/control to be effective at the MLB level since '07 to stick around.

Is Willis able to keep his anxiety in check at the MLB level to be effective over an entire season as a situational reliever? I have no idea but it will be fascinating to find out.

Liked the Willis signing by Amaro instead of bringing in guy like Wheeler or Grasbow. Sherill though is the 'safer bet' and Duke has shown that if you use him situationally he can be very effective vs. LH bats. Willis was just dominant last year but there is a lot more uncertainty with him too.

Not 'very effective' but effective enough. There is no upside though to Duke like there is with Willis.

Andy - Quite right. Didn't think that one through at all.

I do, however, see the ability for Willis to slide into the outfield between facing lefthanded batters as a pitcher. His bat wouldn't exactly be a problem if he were forced to the plate between innings in the field/pitching.

If Rube can find a righty reliever who can also hit, wouldn't it be interesting to keep exchanging two pitchers/outfielders?

And just for the heck of it, wouldn't it be nice to have a real third catcher for a change? I really wanted to see Rube pick up Ryan Doumit as a third string cathcer/first baseman/outfielder. Wouldn't that have been interesting?

i think they should try to trade may,brown,polanco/blanton for a wright or hernandez

MG: Define "effective" in relation to Zach Duke. Again- his career numbers against lefties are: .280/.333/.418/.750

In strictly his appearances as a reliever his numbers are: .296/.346/.408/.754 in 107 plate appearances.

Do those numbers strike you as effective?

"A few years from now" meaning I want this transition phase with the Phillies to be gradual, not a gutting. I want one or two young position players each season to take shape. Not just a complete flip of players where we have to go through the rebuilding process. So holding on to a player like Galvis who is indeed a crapshoot, but more of a defined player than the shortstops that we're just drafted is not a bad thing. I guess I just want that blend of up and comers mixed with veterans. I am really just going to have a difficult time when this ride is over. I like the Jimmy signing but I do want them to hold on to Galvis.

Sherrill signs for $1.1m, dtrain was a bad move. ..."

Posted by: lorecore

lorecore, do you know for a fact that RAJ DIDN'T make a similar offer.

Sherrill started out with the Mariners, and maybe he wanted to go back. Maybe he wants to live on the West Coast?

Maybe RAJ made the same offer to Sherrill and Willis and Willis said "yes" first?

Maybe Sherrill can't stand a couple of the Phillies' players.?

My point is that these things don't happen in a vaccum, and you cannot assume that RAJ sisn't try to sign him, or that RAJ didn't make the exact same financial offer.

Other factors come into play too.

"awh turned out to be right."

MG, don't hold your breath until the next time. You'll suffocate yourself.

Didn't Rollins rake in the NLDS? Why the negative October feedback?

Scotch Man, probably because of the size of the contract he wanted.

MG: Duke is a soft tossing lefty who relies on hitting his spots and outsmarting batters to get his outs.

Like most lefty finesse guys, he is not a lefty killer like most southpaws(for the ideal version of this type see Tom Glavine.)

Duke's split is a bit misleading because he's been so horrible vs. RH, but his career .750 OPS vs. LH hitters is not what you look for in a LOOGY.

The Willis signing is going to go down as pure genius. He has his buddy J-roll now and all the leadership on this team to help with the anxiety. I want excitement when I pay for a ticket. The idea of D-train rolling in to overpower a lefty followed by Paps rock star entrance and intense stare after Roy/Lee/Hamels fires away 7-8 great innings is going to be awesome to watch. This doesn't even include The Vanimal. Start printing some tee shirts now.

The contract to Willis isn't even guaranteed. Maybe that should be kept in mind before the T-shirts start being printed.

"The Willis signing is going to go down as pure genius."--Len39

I wouldn't go that far, but I do agree that a team with some "personality" or "personalities" is much more fun to watch. It's one of the reasons fans liked the 93 Phillies team so much.

I concur. I would be willing to wager neither D-Train nor JC Romero in Baseball Heaven will be pitching for their respective teams by June. Somebody record this.

This was a great signing. I foresee D-Train making a slow and calculated remake of his career in Philadelphia. I believe the current players and coaches are a perfect match and they will be patient with him. He'll make the team but I can't see him as a bullpen guy for too long. This guy is designed for starting.

You guys are wrong. Rollins has always been a bad lead-off hitter. He doesn't know how to play small ball and get on base. He swings at too many pitches and swings for the fences. Jimmy is about Jimmy. He had one MVP year, and the rest have been average, and he's often hurt. As long as Jimmy is leading off, it will be tough for the Phillies to win it all. This is a bad signing. We needed to let Jimmy walk and sign a true lead off hitter. I'm very disappointed in Amaro.

eisbchri, who is this magical, mythical leadoff hitter just sitting out there, unsigned? What position does he play? If it isn't SS, who IS your SS? How is his defense? How much are we paying for him? Does he come with a special October guarantee?

I wonder if Galvis can possibly learn to play another pos say maybe 2B. Then at one point he can possibly replace Valdez/Mini-mart on the roster depth.

They should have gone hard after Reyes and let Jimmy walk. Victorino is a far better lead off hitter. He knows how to play small ball and get on base. What I mean by "Jimmy is about Jimmy" - is that last year he was moved to the 5 or 6 spot in the order (where he should be if he must be a Phillie) a few times, but he was unhappy there and complained to Manuel. And Manuel being a players coach eventually moved him back. Jimmy said to the Philly public at that time that he is a lead off hitter and that's where he wants to be. In other words, he won't do what's best for the team. But we Philly fans that watch him everyday know that while he has decent career numbers, he just doesn't try to hit like a lead off guy. He's anxious and swings for the fences too often. Look at his OBP. It is not good.

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