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Monday, March 05, 2012

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An extension of the last thread:

Which feat is more impressive?

1. Eric Bruntlett taking David Price deep in the 2008 playoffs.

2. Raul Ibanez pulling a 103 mph Aroldis Chapman fastball to RF in the 2010 playoffs.

NEPP, since I'm pretty certain that Raul started swinging before Chapman even took his sign from the catcher, meaning that if he made contact, he was most definitely going to pull it, I'm going with the Bruntlett HR off Price, which to this day, still makes no sense.

Good Q, I'm gonna go with Bruntlett. I think we all know that Ibanez started his swing before Chapman even kicked his leg up.

"Rollins, Polanco, Victorino, Thome, Pence, Wigginton, Brown, Schneider, Frandsen."

Even with Brown in there, the average age of today's lineup is like 38.

Anyone know who else pitches today?

If Blanton remains healthy, who has the better chance at pitching Game 4 of the 2012 NLCS - Blanton or Worley?

One is coming off his worst year ever while the other is coming off what many say will be his best - so who 'reverts to the norm' and who doesnt?

I'd probably pick Worley right now, but i think a case could be made for Blanton's chances.

Iorecore: I vote Halladay.

From the last thread, re: Bruntlett.

Clearly you guys are missing the only stat that matters here: BAP-E (BAP's expectations).

I'd ask BAP what specific times Bruntlett's ABs in place of Burrell late in the game cost the team a win, but I'm fairly sure he's kept a log book of every such occasion.

And I second Jack's vote for Halladay. Hindsight being 20/20 and all, it's what should've happened the last two postseasons.

Vote based on what Charlie will do, not what should happen.

I'm with you, Doc on three days rest probably guarantees you a NLDS victory over STL.

Doc pitching LH on 0 days rest is a better option than either.

At one time Blanton would have been considered our ace.

I hope Halladay pitches for the Phils until he retires.

I hope Dom can have a healthy productive year and show the amazing talent that he has.

lorecore: in that case, based on the seasons I think they'll have, we're probably looking at Worley in Game 4. If Blanton shows anything, I think he will be moved mid-season.

If Worley doesn't pan out, I think it will be Oswalt.

4.43 ERA over 4 seasons sounds waaay too mediocre for this club. It's like going back to the '06-'08 rotation without the counterpart of a lineup that mashes. I think I remember hearing that the Phils had to score 6-8 runs per game in order to win in those years.

Iceman: You're pretty humorless.

I have never seen Frandsen play.

Does he stink defensively?

He has fairly impressive MiL numbers, and put up better OPS numbers than mini-mart at the MLB level, except for one season where he barely got 50 PA.

Is he so bad defensively that he can't bump mini-mart?

awh: He's below average defensively, but he can play all 4 defensive positions in a pinch. Hey, that kind of sounds like Mini-Mart except Frandsen is a better hitter -- at least he was before he got caught juicing.

Jack,

Elarton, Hyatt and Herndon are scheduled to toe the slab today.

I love that we have 16 relief pitchers vying for 7 BP positions...I think Rube honestly forgot some of the guys he signed in Nov/early Dec and just kept signing relievers. That or he's a hoarder of mediocre, fringe relief pitchers.

Frandsen got caught juicing?

Forgot about that - last May.

But Ritalin?

Is that really a PED like 'roids?

He hit .303/.356/.412 in 322 PA at LV last season.

Some of that must have been after he returned.

Frandsen is human scum and should be expelled from the game forever.

For non ADD/ADHD people, Ritalin basically acts in much the same way as greenies do...thus it is banned unless you have a medical exemption like Vic does.

Though the number of ADD/ADHD ballplayers is surprisingly much higher than the average percentage of the general population.

Blanton is one of the few guys I am actually interested in watching live when I get a chance during spring training to see how he looks.

He's a stunk cost at this point. If he can give the Phils at least 25 GS, win 10-11 games, and have an ERA a tad over 4.00, it would be great.

"Though the number of ADD/ADHD ballplayers is surprisingly much higher than the average percentage of the general population."

Shocking how this happens.

Just checked the LV site.

Frandsen was 15 for his last 39 to finish the season, after he came back form his suspension, and he mashed lefties - .352/.383/.511 - in 88 PA (SSS).

Assuming they play to their historical norms, if Charlie even wants a semblance of "hittin' season" from his bench, mini-mart needs to be stashed in the minors.

I love that we have 16 relief pitchers vying for 7 BP positions...I think Rube honestly forgot some of the guys he signed in Nov/early Dec and just kept signing relievers. That or he's a hoarder of mediocre, fringe relief pitchers.

And when did Ed Wade return to the Phils?

mini-mart needs to be stashed in the minors released.

FTFY.

"He's a stunk cost at this point." Sometimes, MG's typos are unwittingly hilarious.

I am anxious to see how Blanton looks this Spring, too. This is in stark contrast to my usual antipathy about watching him pitch as he's generally hard on the eyes. I'll not be near a TV today. If it's on, I'd personally welcome any commentary on how he looks in terms of velocity, pitch selection and location

Didn't know what the drug was, but Ritalin doesn't really strike me as a PED.

At one time, Frandsen was actually one of the Giants' better-regarded prospects. Of course, that was back in the day when their system was pretty devoid of everyday prospects. Still, he did have a decent sophomore season n 2007, only to have his career completely derailed by a ruptured achilles tendon in spring training 2008. Fill in your own punch lines . . .

Ritalin is widely abused by kids and college students, often as a more effective alternative to caffeine pills for college exams. I would be shocked if baseball players didn't have similar habits.

>Didn't know what the drug was, but Ritalin
>doesn't really strike me as a PED.

It's outlawed in NCAA sports as well. Ritalin is a low-grade-cheap methamphtamine analog. Surprised that everyone isn't on adderral...

BAP- when it comes to you disparaging World Series hero Eric Bruntlett, you're right, I don't find it funny at all.

***Ritalin is a low-grade-cheap methamphtamine analog.***

That's ridiculous. This is the Major Leagues...our players should have open access to the very best in high-grade-expensive methamphetamines. Cant we give them the same stuff the Air Force gives to bomber pilots on long-range missions?

they should either legalize stimulants or shorten the season.

Edmundo, while I appreciate your sentiment, for a team that lacks middle infield depth, they're probably better off stashing mini-mart at LV or Reading in case of an EXTREME emergency.

I love what Eric Bruntlett did for the Phillies in the 2008 World Series (and the 2009 NLCS game 4 game tying run), and if I ever crossed him (and his beard) on the street, I'd be like a giddy child, asking him to regail me with the stories of those moments.

That said, he still stunk to the high-heavens. There's a reason he hasn't played a lick since 2009. I mean, he had a SLG% of .297 in 2008 that actually DROPPED to .238 in 2009.

Two.
Thirty.
Eight.

Slugging.

Are we still of the impression that Thome might get an occasional spot start at 1B during the season, or have we abandoned hope of that happening? I thought I read that he could get a game a week there, or whatever.

If he's still in the plan, even occasionally, wouldn't it make sense to get him some work there in Spring Training?

"Sometimes, MG's typos are unwittingly hilarious."


Hugh M, judging by where the "t" and the "u" are placed on the keyboard, I'm not so sure it was a typo.

awh, as long as you capitalize extreme, I have no argument with you.

Did Iceman really just write the words: "World Series hero Eric Bruntlett?"

Can we get Polly some Ritalin?

Phillies announcers: "Polanco is the ideal #2 hitter."

Polanco: *hits perfect double play ball*

Fatti, if I saw Eric Bruntlett I would buy the drinks, and thank him for his contribution to ending the years of agony. He deserves that, at least.

I still, however, wouldn't want him back on the team.

Nothing like low-life Air Force pilots on PED's. Protect my freedom cleanly, or don't do it at all!

anyone with a radio feed, preferably the Florida State guy? Annoying that radio app for 1210/94.1 dont give you Phillies broadcast.

Hi, I played on 2 WS teams, scored winning runs in 2 WS games, and made $2,407,500 in a 5 year Major League Baseball career.


HAHAHAHA, you idiots can criticize me all you want, because I'm laughing all the way to the bank.

thome could use some lessons from ibanez on cheating.

Olney tweets: Most likely to be with Phillies in 2014:

1. Pence
2. Vic
3. Hamels

"if I saw Eric Bruntlett I would buy the drinks."

Whenever I watched Eric Bruntlett play, I would buy the drinks -- except I was buying them for myself. It still wasn't nearly enough to dull the pain of watching him play.

AUGGHH! Not again! Visceral pain.

blanton feels like he's 12 again after missing most of last season. he looked pretty good today.

Clearly, this Spring has shown us that RAJ's only real move is to option Mini-Mart to Florida State and bring up "the Florida State Radio Guy."

Signing Oswalt would be a plus, too.

We may not win any games this year, but damn all our guys in great shape. All of them, according to Wheels and Tommy.

I think even Cholly is in the best shape of his life.

rollins walks and steals 2. polly hits one off an infielder's foot to score jimmy. that's some small ball.

scott elarten looks sharp and composed. 6 up, 6 down.

Thome with a blast of a double off the top of the fence. Not sure if he can play 1B, but he can still hit.

Dom has roped 2 balls the other way, but both went right at fielders. A pretty impressive 0-2, which I'm sure a hitting guy like Charlie will recognize.

Blanton - Sunk cost/stunk cost. If he's healthy, he will be a useful asset for this team but you could say the same for several guys on this team.

I am sure even the Phils have no idea how many GS they will get out of Blanton and his creaky elbow this year. 10? 15? 20? 25? I am sure they would be thrilled with anything over 20.

All these hit batsmen in the last few games and not one of them is name "Nick Swisher." I'm disappointed.

"If he's healthy, he will be a useful asset for this team but you could say the same for several guys on this team. "

Isn't that true for....everyone (except Martinez)?

Today's broadcast has been the Dom Brown Lovefest. If I hear about his "tools" one more time, I might have to switch to the radio feed.

Another misplay/miscue by Brown in left.

BB, Wiggy and Nix have posted negative WAR before, as did Schneider last year. I could see one, if not all of them, repeating that feat again.

My money's on Schneider.

This early in spring training, the pitchers are always ahead of the hitters -- except in the case of Austin Hyatt, Phillippe Aumont, the Yankees' pitchers, and the Phillies' hitters.

Brown completely butchered that ball in LF. That should have been a routine flyball that turned into a 3B (and then a little league HR, when the Phils threw the ball away at 3B).

How can a guy spend that many years in a system and still be so terrible fielding his position? He is one of the worst OF's I have ever seen at the big league level.

Hyatt does have a very good changeup. That's a major league pitch. Like the way he moves the ball in and out. He doesn't mind throwing inside. He threw better then the line might indicate.

Why does Juan Pierre even bother running any more? He gets thrown out the most of anyone in the league. I think he will actually hurt our team if he makes it because he still thinks he's an elite basestealer.

denny b - Luckily the bar isn't very high for Phils LFs with Burrell and then Ibanez occupying the position over the past 10 years.

wtf DOM, theres been so many crappy defensive LF'ers in this league for so many years with fractions of the speed/arm you possess. So frustrating. Hurry up and learn how to just to be 'passable' in LF, thats really all the Phils are asking at this point.

JRoll has his 2nd SB already this spring and looks fit & quick.

Wonder if he tries to get back to the guy who used to try to steal ~40 SBs. Wouldn't mind seeing that at all. Ditto Vic getting back to 30+ SBs too. No reason the Phils can't get back over 100+ SBs this year.

Anytime you have guys who are SBs are an 80% or higher rate, it generally is beneficial from an expected run perspective they take the extra bag.

Given the decreasing trend of home runs & runs scored in general the last several years, you are also starting to see a slight renaissance in the running game.

NL Team Averages (Attempted/SBs)

2011: 145/105
2010: 128/91
2009: 126/89
2008: 127/93
2007: 130/98
2006: 133/95
2005: 119/84
2004: 117/84
2003: 118/81
2002: 139/95
2001: 137/91
2000: 148/102

It should be noted that AL teams have been running more than NL teams the last 3 years. Average AL club attempted 158 SBs in '11, 147 in '10, and 149 in '09. I would imagine the difference is due to certain manager preferences and player personnel.

My bet is that you see a continued increase in both leagues again this year. Average of about ~155 attempts sounds about right in the NL thsi year. I also think you see Bourn run likely crazy down in Atlanta. Push even 85-90 SB attempts and end up stealing around 70-75 SBs.

Not the Rickey or Coleman heydey steal totals but still a notable number.

I know the saber guys generally frown on the SB because most runners don't execute at a clip where it is favorable from an expected run value standpoint but it is much better for the game overall when you have more SBs.

Double steal of 2B/home is one of the single most executing plays in baseball. It is my 2nd favorite after the suicide squeeze.

Burrell and Ibanez are gold glovers compared to Dom.

I don't think I ever saw Burrell or Rauuuuul ever drop a routine flyball (like yesterday) or take a route to the ball as bad as today's, ever with the Phils.

Erik Kratz up with the bases full. This is like a dream come true . . .

Erik Kratz, you are the man!

You obviously never watched enough Phils when those guys were out there then. Many of Raul's attempts and routes were terrible. Ditto Burrell however his strong arm made up for his lack of fielding prowess. I'm in no way defending what Brown has been doing, however it's laughable that people are worried about defense in LF after Ibanez and Burrell.

Burrell and Ibanez were sound in there routes to the ball. They just had painfully slow starts and didn't accelerate well.

Brown just can't judge balls off the bat. That's a huge problem even if he is in LF. Been an issue though since even he was at Reading in '08. If he hasn't really improved on such a basic skill in several years in the minor league at the corner OF position, he isn't going to improve that much going ahead forward.

RedBurb - Ibanez wasn't that bad at routes. I would say he was generally average. What annoyed me about him defensively was his tendency to dive for balls he had no business diving for especially on balls he was coming in on. Just play it on a hop and prevent the runners from advancing.

Thera no statistical way that I jknow of to prove it, but to my eye Brown is worse than Ibanez and Burrell. Ibanez was like a statue and had a noodle for an arm, but at least he caught what he got to. Dom, not so much.

NEPP - Just logged on so it's a late answer. Even though Raul began his swing on his way to the box from the on deck circle, the Gnome's shot was actually aided by some swallows that he called in from Neverland using his "magic gnome whistle."

So I'm going with Raul. After all, usually you'd expect him to think he could pull even Aroldis even if he was wielding Dick Allen's bark sided, 48 ounce bat.

beat writer tweeted that they play "Everybody 'Kratz' your hands, kratz kratz kratz kratz" when he comes to the plate. Solid.

MG: nice work on SB numbers. SABR agree that as Run Environments drop, the value of SBs go up.

It would be a crying shame for a guy with as much offensive potential and as athletic as DOM to be done in simply because he can't field LF, the, arguably, least important defenseive position on the field.

Let's hope he can at least achieve a level of passable defense, even if he never becomes a good defender.

Is it just me or does Gillies look like he's wearing Barry Bonds' helmet?

MG - Ok I'll say he was average at best. I also thought that throughout his time here, his range was diminished to the point that Victorino was getting to many of the balls in left center that should have been Raul's.

Burrell also played one of the deepest leftfields I can remember. That helped to cover up the fact that he wasn't quick. Maybe they should do that with Brown. Hide his deficiencies by backing him up in the OF.

Gillies is quick. Wow. He almost ran over Fransden on the double.

Take some Ritalin Beerleaguers. Dom Brown is fine he is just fielding with his eyes closed, so he can train his fielding instincts....Chill on...

Moving deeper allows a fielder to cheat on angles to make up for lack of range/quickness - which isn't DOM's problem. He seemingly just flat out doesnt know where the ball is going, whether its he's deep or shallow.

I still think he can overcome, but g'damn its frustrating. Please let his upcoming stint in Lehigh's LF solve some of this.

Lore, it might help a bit because it takes away a direction for Dom to be concerned about. I've seen him a lot of times back up, then start running forward.

I agree that's not his primary problem but i dunno that it wouldn't help at all.

To be honest, the Phils acknowledged that Brown stinks defensively by moving him back full-time to LF.

He's going to make his living with his bat and his speed. Teams will tolerate near utter buffoonery in LF (see Manny Ramirez who is by far the worst LF I have seen play a lot on TV/person) if the the guy can hit.

lorecore - I'm just saying that backing him up may give him mroe time to judge the ball and where it is going. Gotta try everything to get him to become comfortable.

Just for historical perspective, the '85 Cards were probably the best team in history at running there way to a title.

Stole a ridiculous 314 SBs on 410 attempts (77% success rate). Only hit 87 HRs and had a ridiculous 59 triples.

Loved growing up and seeing Cards-Phils games at the Vet when the Cards in the 80s would sometimes attempt to steal several bases in a single game and execute a ton of hit & runs/runs & hits/sacs. It is a must more exciting brand of baseball. One of the few things I agreed 100% with Joe Morgan.

Manny Ramirez is also one of the best hitters of his generation, and by the numbers alone, a borderline HoFer.

I mean, yeah, if Brown starts hitting like Manny his defense is fine, but that's an awfully high bar.

If Brown hits a more realistic .270/.350/.500 I don't know if godawful defense cuts the mustard.

2-HR by Mini Mart. Probably one of the few times I have actively rooted against a player to not succeed in spring training since I don't want to see him make the Opening Day roster.

Oh brother. The one Phillie I want to see fail and he does that . . .

Anyone catch Sarge saying that left field is the toughest of the outfield positions? Is that man as stupid as he sounds? Because I didn't think that was possible.

Heather - Manny was historically awful in LF though. He actually got pretty good at playing the caroms off the Green Monster in Fenway but he was 'little league' bad on the road in the a Red Sox uniform.

He had a play one time in KC at Kauffman Stadium where he slid several feet sort of the bal, the ball bounced over his head, and it ended up going for a triple only because Damon tracked it.

***Anyone catch Sarge saying that left field is the toughest of the outfield positions?***

I dont know about toughest but I'd definitely say its in the top 3 for OF positions in difficulty.

"Anyone catch Sarge saying that left field is the toughest of the outfield positions? Is that man as stupid as he sounds? Because I didn't think that was possible."

Stupid no but intellectually lazy with almost zero game preparation. Absolutely.

Heather: Manny was one of the greatest hitters ever. It's just so unfortunate he was never able to conceive the baby he so desperately wanted. Though, he did play leftfield like a pregnant woman.

"Teams will tolerate near utter buffoonery in LF if the the guy can hit."

Even in LF, you can't be averaging one egregious misplay per game. Besides, LF buffoonery is judged on a sliding scale. The more you hit, the greater the degree of buffoonery that will be tolerated. I'm not sure how well Dom will eventually hit but, to date, his hitting to outfield buffoonery ratio has been heinous.

Heather, what's the average OPS for a MLB LF?

The answer should give you and idea of whether an .850 OPS will cut it.

Mini Mart hit a HR off a guy who will be bagging groceries in a month...no worries.

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