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Thursday, March 15, 2012

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So if Nix sucks with a 104 OPS+ over the last 3 years, who would you geniuses have signed instead?

Wondering if the panic will ratchet up a notch if the Braves prevail...

Repost - Who manages split squad games? UC stays in Clearwater. Does Sandberg take the reins for the other game?

2012, the last year of "the window"

I can't remember if it was before the WFC or not, but I had thought that the window for wining the World Series would likely close after 2012 with this current core of players. (Hamels, Utley, and Howard)

It still feels like that is true, for some reason. Yes, they have greatly enhanced the rotation and added some key players. Still, there's something about it that I cannot quite put my finger on.

Last thing on Halladay:

http://www.fangraphs.com/pitchfxo.aspx?playerid=1303&position=P&pitch=FA

He routinely comes out of the gate topping at least at 92-93 MPH on his fastball even in April.

What you would need is radar gun data readings from spring training the last few years. Unforutantely that isn't availalbe.

The crappy part about Rosenthal's piece is that the injury concern abut Halladay was based on this single outing even if he did get the report from one than one scout on their radar gun yesterday.

Something you need to see the rest of spring training before making anythimg more than wild speculation though.

It really cannot be said at this point that Blanton is fat. Solidly built dude, but he looks trim.

nice play by galvis. he really made the spin move under control.

Sarge said it the other day and I agreed 100%: Galvis is already a ready solid MLB-caliber defender but he needs to learn to lay off bad pitches especially that high fastball.

Certainly makes sense having Dom DH while some guy named Clevlen plays his position.

Just a question:

Does anyone know if any of the fields in spring training are equipped with pitch f/x equipment?

Contreras threw another clean inning in a minor league game today: single and 3 groundball outs. 20 pitches, 14 strikes.

blanton looks good.

Good to see Diaz doesn't turn it off against them in spring training, either.

Podsednik did a nice job delaying the run down long enough to get Galvis into scoring position at 2nd & enable him to score on JRoll's sinker.

Wheels is right that was a smart play and something that will be critical as long as Utley/Howard are out. Podsednik has shown this spring that he is more prone to making those kind of 'smart plays' than Pierre.

Is my memory bad, or didn't Blanton start out the last couple springs getting hammered in his first couple starts because he just threw fastball after fastball trying to build some armstrength and lock in his location? Wondering if the injury caused (or allowed) him to alter his routine and he's ahead of where he normally is.

On Beerleager, the cycle goes as follows: (1) vague, unspecified report on some sketchy website; (2) ridiculous speculation on Beerleaguer; (3) backlash against ridiculous speculation; (4) backlash against the backlash to the ridiculous speculation; (5) backlash against the backlash against the backlash to the ridiculous speculation; (6) backlash against the backlash against the backlash against the backlash to the ridiculous speculation; (7) clout weighs in and calls one of the sides idiots (the posts, that is; not the posters); (8) backlash against clout; (9) backlash from clout against the backlash against clout; (10) people asking jw for new threads; (11) more backlash, and backlash to the backlash, etc.; (12) new vague, unspecified report on some sketchy website; (13) new thread, regarding vague, unspecified report on some sketchy website; (14) repeat steps 1 through 13.

Posted by: bay_area_phan | Thursday, March 15, 2012 at 12:20 PM

This is why it's so hard to post here. Regardless, one of the funniest things I've read in a while.

Come to think of it, this paragraph should be the definitive definition of "Beerleaguer" and should be the cornerstone of Beerleaguer's Wikipedia page.

Been the case with Blanton today so far that he has found too much of the strike zone today especially with his offspeed stuff.

Changeup and sinker have looked good. Just made a few mistakes pitches including a meatball (fastball) to Diaz that was out and up over the plate.

Am I missing something, or would Pods have been wiser just to stay at 3rd? With the rundown you get an out + runner on second, staying put gives you an out + runner on third.

Polly looking positively frisky.

I wonder if the Braves are going to hit the panic button about Jurrjens?

His ST ERA now sits at 9.72.

Pretty encouraging to see that Polanco at least has something left in the tank. The question is, will Cholly actually rest him periodically this year?

Jim Thome has looked good. Lots of the regulars have looked good - Rollins, Ruiz, Pence, Polanco, when he's playing, Victorino.

Awh...braves will probably wait to see what ken rosenthal digs up on him.

Sad but I'm starting to think we signed donetrelle

If anyone wonders what reversion to career norms look like, Scott Elarton is currently giving a live demonstration.

Saw that our good buddy Jim fregosi will be manager of braves. Fredi is already on probation. I know spring training don't mean squat, but after last year and the choke job they did. High alert in hot lanta!

This just in from Philly: Brian Schneider Lives!

Galvis really is that bad offensively. He is worse than Wilson Valdez in terms of a consistent infield groundball machine. Too bad, because man does he play some legit defense.

Jack, Galvis is really young. He's not JRoll with the bat, which doesn't mean he's not going to be ok, but JRoll is a very very special player.

Galvis has a couple more years to mature, and if the current offense trend continues he might end up being a more than adequate offensive SS, either for us or somewhere.

Halladay spent all off-season working with Jamie Moyer on a different approach. Nothing to worry about here.

fumphis: I think I read somewhere that Blanton's in the best shape of his life.

cut: JW should take BAP's 100% accurate description of this web site and put it up where the Bissinger quote is.

Iceman, from last thread, I think I agree. If you're going to panic about something, it makes more sense to panic about Doc's velocity being hurt than a 2-game losing streak during the season or whatever people usually panic about.

Here's one good sign for this season. My daughter bought her first car this past winter. The three letters on her state issued license plate are WFC. I think that it's an omen from God. I'm not worried about Doc's fastball, Utley's legs, Howard's Achilles injury, or Mini Mart's roster status. To me, WFC says it all.

clout - You misread. According to "Buddhism Baseball Quarterly," Blanton is in the best shape of this AND his previous five lives.

Going to be interesting to see how the Braves start the season with Hanson being a huge question mark, Hudson still working his way back from back surgery, and Jurrjens having control issues.

Going to get a chance to see just how good some of their highly-touted starting prospects are.

"cut: JW should take BAP's 100% accurate description of this web site and put it up where the Bissinger quote is."

Second the motion. To add a little panache, make it happen on clout day.

MG: Julio Teheran is going to be terrific at some point, just not sure when. Randall Delgado will be a solid #3 or #4, but again, may be not this year. They're only 21 and 22 years old.

Don't worry about Doc, clout says he will just change into Trevor Hoffman.

Hey, if the Phils lose the divison to the Braves by one game, can we file a complaint with MLB to have todays' game count?

Here's another thought:

Should we be happy that in today's game the Phillies played great small ball, or should we be upset that only 3 of their 15 hits were for extra bases?

More good news for the Pissy Pants Posse:

http://www.philly.com/philly/sports/phillies/Contreras_throws_another_scoreless_inning_in_minor_league_play.html


"Veteran right-hander Jose Contreras made his second competitive appearance since September elbow surgery, throwing a scoreless inning in a minor league game at the Carpenter Complex on Thursday afternoon.

The 40-year-old set-up man looked healthy and sharp throughout the 20-pitch appearance. He recorded three ground ball outs and one line-drive single. An unofficial tally had him throwing 14 strikes."

awh, thanks for the Contreras report. If he can come back healthy, I think that he will be a real help for the bullpen. I don't "piss in my pants" when Cholly calls his name. Some of these other bullpen guys should have the "hazardous to your health" labels sewn on the back of their uniforms. I'm sure that Brad Lidge initiated a few heart attacks for Phillies fans over the last few seasons.

Hey, if the Phils lose the divison to the Braves by one game, can we file a complaint with MLB to have todays' game count?

Posted by: awh

We'll lose the division by a game, end up as the wild card, and go on to be WFC!

/drinking a Diebels in a bar in Germany

Shouldn't "40 year-old" be in quotes in that article?

/Schweitzer

awh: I have actually continually maintained that Contreras will be healthy and effective within the first couple weeks of the season, if not on Opening Day.

Does that give me an exemption from your stupid little name club, or is that still too negative an assessment?

Rube was just on WIP. Told the story of his 2 days playing second with Ozzie Guillen at short in Venezuela and his time under hitting coach Charlie in Cleveland.

Time for the Beerleaguers folk to take some Ritalin and take a break from posting.

Hey Jack, whether it's the Sir Alden Trio, the Pissy Pants Posse, or any other "stupid little name club", you can be a member in any one of them if you so choose.

BTW, I hear Theo Epstein is looking for an assistant.

The guy has to walk behind Theo and sit behind him during meetings, etc., and whisper in his ear:

"Jack says you're a good GM and you build for the future".

Is there also an Obnoxious A-Holes club among the commentariat here?

Hugh: the OAH club IS the commentariat, comrade.

Hugh, I'm the Founding President!!! :)

(Actually, I'm a fairly agreeable guy, but I just feel it necessary to bust the chops of (that is, 'correct') posters who don't think or do their homework before they hit the keyboard. If it comes off as obnoxious, I apologize, because I do it only in the spirit of fun. This is, after all, a blog about baseball, and not nuclear proliferation, abortion, capital punishment or 2nd Amendment gun rights.)


BTW, in case anyone missed it, Juan Pierre had a decent game today on the travelling team: 2 H, 2 R, 2 RBI.

The competition between he and Podsednik seems to be heating up.

Andy, based on Hugh's post I believe the acronym should be: OA-H!

awh - There is a difference between disagreeing with someone and being a bit childish. No reason for that.

According to Gameday, the first Pierre hit was on a ground ball to CF; the 2nd was a "fly ball to 2nd base." I'm not necessarily knocking him. A hit's a hit & Pierre has made a career out of getting on base without driving the ball. Still, if a guy is going to hit only .275, with few walks, it would be nice if he could get, say, a double now and then.

I'm definitely pulling for Podsednik in this little battle.

Herndon gave up a HR but the bullpen had another strong day today. Even Willis looked better even though he walked a guy.

If you looking for positives early on in camp, it has been the bullpen.

The Sir Alden Trio recorded a few 10"'s for Blue Note and then disappeared.

Before Blanton heads out of town, please let him know he needs to clear up his tab with us. Double chocolate layer cheesecakes with chocolate sauce doesn't grow on trees

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1101051-philadelphia-phillies-all-25-players-odds-of-being-2012-all-stars

Always good for a chuckle. Really need to give a 0% to Mini Mart or Schneider? Also good to know that 8 Phils are almost certain locks for the ASG.

This one's for you, MG:

http://www.brotherlyglove.com/2012/03/15/infield-help-and-linear-thinking/

Hopefully they can grab one of either Izturis or Callaspo. The flaw in Seidman's argument is this: Callaspo was a 3.6 fWAR player last year and Izturis was a 2.0 fWAR player last year. If the Angels think fairly highly of them, it could cost a bit to grab them in trade, and a team that needs a starter might be willing to pony up more than the Phillies will for a player who isn't guaranteed to get a significant amount of PT (although likely will).

Still, if we could grab one of those players, I doubt we'd spend too much time this year complaining about our utility infielder.

Is it a safe assumption to make that any of these trades with Blanton involved, at this point (getting a real major league usable utility guy), means the Phils eat more than the advertised 2 mil?

Pierre played CF today. Any reports on that?

He lived.

MG: That article is hilarious. In expectation, 10 Phillies will make the All-Star Team (just adding up the probabilities).

Not sure which of these probabilities is craziest: 60% chance for Mayberry, 30% for Howard, 15% for Worley, 10% for Thome, or 5% for Nix and Wigginton.

Correction: the article predicts a 10% chance of an ASG appearance for Wigginton, not 5% as I posted above.

Congrats posters I think Blanton got sick of being bullied and is now at ace status. Lets get pumped for the newest of the aces!

"Before Blanton heads out of town, please let him know he needs to clear up his tab with us. Double chocolate layer cheesecakes with chocolate sauce doesn't grow on trees

Posted by: Manager of the Cheesecake Factory"
---
While that's funny, fat jokes about a guy who is without a doubt in better shape than 99% of posters on these sites (myself included) seem kind of odd.

My first post on the site I thought it would be safest to jab at Joe Blanton.

Fatalotti: I'm curious, how much value do you place on single-season WAR stats? Particularly for utility infielders? I ask this since you seem to use WAR stats in most of your posts.

hey lake fred, i like your daughters luck. i have to pay for my -08WFC- license plate. good thing virginia has no clue what that could possibly stand for.

clout- I liked your earlier post about Doc working out off season with young Jamie.

I know you were kidding, but I'm sure those two have compared notes once or twice.
Moyer does have the longevity factor that would complete Doc's mastery of his craft.

Clout, Callaspo has been more than a utility infielder. As I posted elsewhere, he's very similar to Polanco, but 7.5 years younger -- decent average, doesn’t walk or strike out, little power, very good defense (though not stellar like Polanco).

Combined 2010-2011:

Polanco .288/.337/.365, +27.5 fielding runs, 6.8 fWAR, 6.6 BB%, 8.1 K% in 1125 PAs

Callaspo .276/.332/.374, +11.7 fielding runs, 5.0 fWAR, 7.8 BB%, 7.9 K% in 1137 PAs

5.0 WAR over the past two years is somewhere between ARam (4.0) and Wright (5.9), both of whom get dinged for poor defense.

Clout, I put a good bit of value in WAR. I think it does a pretty good job of putting a figure on a player's overall value (and I think that wOBA does a better job of measuring offensive value than traditional batting metrics). During the season, I'm more wont to post multiple stats, but for the purposes of making a general point, I think it does the trick. If one year's WAR is a clear outlier, I try to make note of it. (Like how Callaspos last year was pretty much a career year).

Also, Izturis and Callaspo both had about 500 PA last year, and played in nearly 120-140 games. Decent samples for both players.

I was a booster for the Phils' bringing over either Callaspo or Maicer Izturis even before they traded Valdez.

As a short-term move, I prefer Izturis since he is a bench guy and free agent after 2012 and would cost less in trade. He's almost the perfect super-utility guy since he is a switch hitter, plays three infield positions well and has a lot of experience at short. He could get at least 80 starts in 2012 (He's also made a few trips of his own to the DL.)

Callaspo would be the better longer-term move, but he has been a starter the last three years and would be more expensive to acquire. He is also a switch hitter and has a good glove. Callaspo doesn't have a lot of experience at SS, which could be a problem if Rollins went down. Callaspo will be 29 next month, is not a free agent until after 2013, and could be the Phils' third baseman for awhile.

Schmenkman - Blanton to his credit finally got in better shape this year. Probably the best shape he has been in several years.

It was a constant issue with the A's and it used to drive Beane nuts especially in '06 when Blanton showed up to camp notably out of shape & 10-15 pounds heavier.

That was fine when he was in his mid-20s. He won't be able to get away with such a lack of conditioning though as he enters his 30s.

Angels won't trade Callaspo unless they get a great offer. Izturis is probably more obtainable but still why would the Angels be a in rush to trade a quality middle infielder who is signed at modest cost ($3M)?

Also a bunch of other teams looking for infield help who I am sure would also be quite interested if the Angels really were intent on moving Izturis.

The player I feel for a bit here is Galvis. Instead of opening the season at Lehigh as the starting SS, there is a good chance now he is thrust into the limelight as a starter at 2B if Utley isn't ready to go.

Grossly unfair to Galvis on several accounts because you are placing him at position he almost no experience at in the minor leagues, placing him in a high-profile, pressure situation, and starting him at least a year ahead of where his development would be.

Cholly and Amaro's job is to place players in a spot where they can be reasonably expected to succeed. Cholly has to use the players on his roster. This is all on Amaro if Galvis opens the season as the starter at 2B & sees alot of time there in April. Fans won't give Galvis a pass but I will.

He is being set up for nothing but failure.

I know Ty isnt a great fielder but can they put him @ 2nd then use Galvis in a defensive replacement scenario.

MG: Galvis is getting the Casey Matthews treatment (albeit that Galvis seems to have legitimate, pro level talent), if he starts at 2B this year for significant time.

Both the Eagles 2011 and Phillies 2012 have shirked the responsibility of providing sufficient talent and depth at key "middles" (linebacker and infield).

MG - I think Galvis playing second is more of a feint that the Phils are ok in the utility infielder department. Galvis will go to LV and play SS. It's not a bad idea to get some reps at 2B in spring though.

Danomyte - Rollins and Utley aren't talented starters?

MG, once again, you're overreacting. (Do I detect righteous indignation?)

Other than him getting ST reps at the position, there is no indication whatsoever that the Phillies intend to start him at 2B during the season.

Additionally, you don't have a clue as to whether the Phillies even think he can play the position well enough.

He seems to be a fine defensive player and probably can, IMHO, but that's my opinion, not the Phillies.

Set up for failure?

Well, if he can play the position defensively the only failure he might experience at this point will be in the batter's box. He'd experience that same failure regardless of the position he plays if he's not ready to handle MLB pitching.

I don't know why you're so worried about Freddy. It's not in the plans for him to be the starting SS anytime soon, and from what I've read on this board many scouts expect that he'll only be a UT anyway.

Translation: They never expect him to be able to hit above the replacement level anyway - for a middle IF.

MG - I don't think the scenario is going to play out but, I get what you're saying about Galvis - to a point. Here's where I part with you - if Galvis looks at a major league job falling in his lap and feels as sorry for himself as you do for him, there's something wrong with him. He might fail but, he should never feel wronged by being given that opportunity.

RedBurb: I wasn't commenting on Utley or Rollins, but on the overall talent of the position (i.e., depth) which has been neglected in the offseason. Of course Rollins and Utley are talented.

awh - It isn't righteous indignation. It is simply put a player in a position where it is not reasonable to expect that much success which is a basic management failure.

Orr/Frandsen/Luna aren't opening camp with this team regardless of what happens with Utley.

It wouldn't shock me if they start Wigginton at 2B either but Cholly doesn't seem inclined to that. He hasn't played Wigginton at all at 2B during spring training.

Either way, we'll know by next Friday whether or not Galvis is likely to start the season at 2B. If Utley hasn't started a game by next Friday, he's hurt.

As an aside, I find the manufactured drama of the daily "ST Utley Watch" to be quite amusing.

Before ST the team said he'd be held back the first couple of weeks so hisknee didn't get beat up, and that is exactly what they've done.

Until there is evidence that Utley can't actually play, we should probably just chill out and enjoy the weather.

I think MG is just saying something that is conventional player development wisdom: Bringing up a player before they are "ready" can be detrimental to them. Galvis has been reported to need to work on his bat more, so if he comes up now, there is - according to "baseball people" for whatever that's worth - a possibility that his confidence could be ruined. Might've been what happened to Dom Brown's fielding, who knows.

Callaspo would be perfect. He doesn't have a position if the Angels actually move Trumbo to 3rd. I don't know how that conversion is going. The rest of that infield is set, plus they have Iztauris as the utility guy.

MG, once again, you have ZERO evidence that the Phillies intend to "put {Freddy] in a position where it is not reasonable to expect that much success".

None.

awh - That was over 2 weeks ago. It wasn't unreasonable the Phils held out a bunch of their regulars the first week or are using them intermintantly at this point (Chooch/Polanco).

It is a bit unusual that Utley hasn't started a game yet. That's all. If he hasn't started one next week by this time, then Utley's hurt.

Cholly has said several times he wants him to get in 30-40 ABs this spring to be ready for the start of the season.

One a middle IF note, I probably was alone in this expectation, but I did expect a little more from Frandsen than he's shown so far.

Maybe it was just unfounded hope, but he's disappointed.

awh - "MG, once again, you have ZERO evidence that the Phillies intend to "put {Freddy] in a position where it is not reasonable to expect that much success".

Who has been getting the majority of the starts at 2B this past week with the regulars again?

Danomyte, I'm sure MG appreciates your support, so I'll ask you the same question:


What EVIDENCE do you have that the Phillies intend to BREAK CAMP with Galvis as the starting 2B?

Try this interpretation: The Phillies are giving him a look at 2B in ST - when the games don't count - in order to see if he can actually handle the position and play well with Rollins. BUT, they have every intention of sending him to LV to open the season because they knwo his stick isn't MLB ready.

Danomyte - You can't compare two teams where one has two top 10 players at their positions and the other puts zero value into the position. The comparison is a horrible one.

awh - I would feel differently if Galvis was a guy who had played a fair amount at 2B in the minors, had more than a year of deleveopment above AA/AAA, and simply didn't play that well defensively/offensively if given the chance. That would be on him. Just failed to execute.

No I don't think Galvis is some prized prospect either. He's a guy that has a MLB career ahead of him with his glove but unless he hits a much higher clip he simply a backup.

"It is a bit unusual that Utley hasn't started a game yet. "


MG, based on what I've read about the condition of his knee, I disagree that it's unusual at all.

If you were Utley and the Phillies management you'd be just as cautious, no?

awh - Why would they not play Mini Mart there instead? Wouldn't you want him to get more chances to play defensively at 2B and with JRoll during spring training? That's the more logical conclusion.

MG, they already know how mini-mart plays with JRoll.

Just go look at the lineups they fielded last season.

Question: How many games has Freddy started at 2B with Rollins at SS, and would that be enough games for YOU to make a judgement?

Galvis starts at ss today.

Today’s lineup:
1. Juan Pierre, RF
2. Scott Podsednik, CF
3. Hunter Pence, DH
4. John Mayberry Jr., 1B
5. Lou Montanez, LF
6. Pete Orr, 3B
7. Brian Schneider, C
8. Kevin Frandsen, 2B
9. Freddy Galvis, SS

awh - Sure and you wouldn't play Utley consecutive days just like they have been doing Polanco.

In fact, I don't want see Utley play consecutive days until the very end of camp. Really no reason for him to do so or even a whole game for that matter.

Just have him start a game, play 5 innings or so, get 2 ABs, and then get pulled.

I think Mini-Mart is getting the majority of reps at SS because he is the primary utility INF. Galvis could develop into a nice utility INF in the future, so why not give him the reps now in ST when it doesn't matter?

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