Part of CSNPhilly.com


« Game chat: Phillies try to put it together at Petco | Main | Game chat: Hamels, Schneider pair as Chooch sits »

Friday, April 20, 2012

Comments

"DomP, you reference the trades they made.

OK, which players that were traded away are currently tearing it up at the MLB level?

Which players that were traded away who are still in the minors would/could be helping the Phillies right now?"

AWH~ I didn't say there was anybody down there who can help. You still don't get it. There wasn't anyone then and there isn't anyone now.

But if you look at some of the FA's we COULD have signed (Beltran, Cuddyer), they're doing well. One one them would've helped. I had this offense pegged form the moment Howard went down. I keep saying what he didn't do will come back to haunt them and it will, whether they make the playoffs or not. So, stop debating with me and look at the reality of the situation. I'm tired of explaining it. We lost a lot more pop the last two years than we've gotten back. They're aging, hurt, and the offense isn't very good. It may get better. But it is not good enough. Our GM dosen't see it. I do. All you gotta do is look at the losses to date. Examine the numbers. You'll see.

When I saw the headline on SportsCenter "Howard to undergo surgery, done for the season" I was very sad.

I predict when we get Utley and Howard back we'll see an offense at least average in the NL, which will be quite ok given our pitching staff. Now if Mayberry can just start hitting...

Baseball activities = card shows, Subway commercials, pulling downed trees around behind your tractor, taking grounders perched atop a stepstool or lawn chair and of course, attending MMA events with a certain Hawaiian.

I liked the appearance of "lance" late in the game thread. We need some good 'Braves are gonna kill us' hysteria around here. I mean, they pummeled the "red hot Diamondbacks" yesterday. You know, the team that's missing 2/3 of their outfield and just dropped 2 of 3 to hte Pirates at home and 2 of 3 in Colorado. Red hot.

If/when Howard comes back, can you imagine the pressure he's going to be under to produce runs? And regardless of how he does, he will be unfairly criticized as per usual.

But if you look at some of the FA's we COULD have signed (Beltran, Cuddyer), they're doing well. One one them would've helped. I had this offense pegged form the moment Howard went down. I keep saying what he didn't do will come back to haunt them and it will, whether they make the playoffs or not. So, stop debating with me and look at the reality of the situation. I'm tired of explaining it. We lost a lot more pop the last two years than we've gotten back. They're aging, hurt, and the offense isn't very good. It may get better. But it is not good enough. Our GM doesn't see it. I do. All you gotta do is look at the losses to date. Examine the numbers. You'll see.

Posted by: DPatrone | Friday, April 20, 2012 at 08:27 AM

Give up, DPatrone. This team is unwatchable right now (unless you crave an unrelenting string of pitcher's duels) and Cuddyer -- an easy acquisition for less money than we gave Papelbon -- sits at .370/.396/.696.

It's an easy argument to make that a championship team must have a reliable closer. Except said Phillies closer cooled his heals 2x this year when an inning from him would have (however temporarily) staved off a loss in tie games on the road. And the said Phillies closer is useless unless the team has a lead in the 9th. Which has not happened enough.

One of these years the Braves will combine their sluggers and bullpen for a monster season. Every AB I see by Freddie Freeman just depresses me -- why don't we grow Freddie Freeman's in our minor league system? Yes, I know Ryan Howard came up through the Phillies minor leagues, but dang, that was 7 years ago. Geesh.

Ah the Cuddyer train is picking up steam again. I love these circular arguments.


cut - The Phils have traded away minor leaguers to get Cliff Lee, Roy Halladay, Roy Oswalt and Hunter Pence. I would say that the farm system did just fine developing players.

I'm really looking forward to 4 years of NEPP and BAP fretting over the velocity of every Papelbon fastball while he racks up saves.

“As many predicted, Mayberry was going to be very important for the early season lineup. Well...
Rest of the offense was 'hope' that Nix or Wigginton would get hot or at least hit a few homers. Thome has not helped in his limited time either.
Is there a stat that tracks if a batter drives in a run from 3rd with less than two out.”

PhxPhilly, in 2012 the Hils are .133/.105/.200 with less than 2 outs.


I was one of those who felt that Mayberry's performance early on would be critical, and had hoped he was up to the task. IIRC, he's been up at least 3 times so far in what I would call 'high-leverage' situations. A couple of times with the bases loaded and two nights ago in SanFran with Chooch on 3B.

In two of the three situations his failure (I hate typing that word) to come through potentially cost the Phillies the game.

If he had been able to come through in just one of them this team would be 7 - 6, and/or they would have coasted to a win behind a very good Vance Worley last night.

But Mayberry is not the only one. There are others who have failed in high-leverage situations.


And that is essentially the problem with this lineup without Utley and Howie:

When the Phillies offense was clicking in the '07 - '11 period, this is how many bases-loaded, PA they had every season, and the team’s performance in those situations:

Year--- times loaded -- times/game--- Slash Line -----Runs ------R/PA ----- R/G

2007: -------- 218 ----- 1.35 ------- .253/.303/.360 ----- 142 --------- .651 ----- .877
2008: -------- 152 ------ .938 ------ .248/.284/.350 ------ 90 ---------- .592 ----- .556
2009: -------- 192 ----- 1.19 ------- .248/.307/.491 ----- 145 --------- .755 ----- .895
2010: -------- 195 ----- 1.20 ------- .297/.328/.455 ----- 146 --------- .749 ----- .901
2011: -------- 191 ----- 1.18 ------- .289/.319/.410 ----- 123 --------- .643 ----- .759

As you can see, only in the last two seasons could one characterize the team’s performance with the bases loaded as outstanding. Yet, they still scored a lot of runs in those years when the lineup was fully healthy. Why? Because of the total number of chances they had with the sacks loaded.

2012: --------- 8 ------- .615 ------- .333/.375/.667 ------- 7 ---------- .875 ----- .538

In 2012, the high-leverage situations, at least with the bases loaded, are fewer and far between, and thus, they become magnified during the course of a game. DESPITE the significantly better performance in 2012 with the sacks loaded (SSS) they’re still scoring less runs per game because the chances are fewer.

Baseball is a game of failure, and fewer chances to fail results in fewer runs.

awh - If only the Phils would've signed Cuddyer and Theriot. Offense = unstoppable.

Anybody who thinks Wigg, Thome or Nix is a better option than Cuddyer, is smoking the sticky icky icky.

And again that's not the issue. The issue is you are paying a combined $5 million this year to those three while Cuddyer would've cost $31 million over 3 years. Stop it.

PhxPhilly and awh are right on with Mayberry. He is essentially being counted on to replace Howard's production, and given that he has basically been the worst hitter on the team so far, you can probably put him at the top of the list of reasons the offense has looked so putrid.

Vance Worley currently leads the team in SOs. Anyone expect that?

"AWH~ I didn't say there was anybody down there who can help. You still don't get it. There wasn't anyone then and there isn't anyone now.

But if you look at some of the FA's we COULD have signed (Beltran, Cuddyer), they're doing well."


Dom, YOU are the one who brought up the players they shipped out during trades - not me. All I asked is whether or not any of those players would be significant help this season. Te only one I could come up with was Taylor, and he's in the PCL which is a hitter's paradise.

If you are going to post a comment like that - which was essentially lamenting the fact that no one on the farm could help - it's incumbent upon YOU to provide the evidence that those players would make the difference. Otherwise, it's just an ignorant comment. do some homework - for once.

As to the FAs who were or weren't signed, they could just as easily be crapping the bed if they were on the Phillies because they could easily be pitched around.

Also, when Beltran first got traded to the Gianats, he did this in his in his first 46 PA: .244/.261/.356.

What makes you thinks that Beltran would be doing any better than that if he were on the Phillies.

Frankly, your assumption that either Beltran or Cuddyer would be doing the SAME THING if they were in the Phillies lineup just shoes your ignorance of the game.

NEPP, to me, anyway, Worley seems to be throwing harder than he did last season.

Maybe I just remember the end of the season when he wore down, but IIRC he was only tossing about 90mph last season and I've seen him hit 93mph this season on several occasions.

Could that be the difference?

I thought that was probably the best I've ever seen Worley look from start to finish, including the CGs he threw last year.

Any coincidence that it was Ruiz doing the catching last night?

PHXPhilly: "Is there a stat that tracks if a batter drives in a run from 3rd with less than two out."

Yes, there are a few ways to do check this.

#1. You can do to a players b-ref page and click on Splits - which includes a block of hitting with RISP, bases empty, 3rd lt 2out, etc.

#2. On the same splits page, they now include all possible 24 base out states, so you can check individually how they did in each situation.

#3. My recommendation for the 3rd lt 2out stat, click on "More Stats" on the a players main b-ref page:
http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/m/maybejo02-bat.shtml
A box labeled situational hitting includes "Advances" on the far right. You will see that Maybyerry has had 5 PA with 3rd lt 2 outs and has resulted in the runner on 3rd scoring 0 times, for a 0% conversion, while underneath it shows the league average to be 51%.

an add on, there is a stat called "productive outs" that includes a pitcher moving a runner with 1 out, a position player advancing a runner with 0 outs, or any player advancing a man home on an out.

The league average of productive outs in those above situations is 32%. Mayberry is 0-6 in 2012, and a mere 10% career.

Right now this looks bad, but if he was slugging like last year it really wouldn't matter.

I don't understand all the doom and gloom. During spring training I envisioned the season going like this:
1)Offense would be below league average - so far it is.
2)Pitching would be stellar - so far it has been.
3)The team would hover around .500 until Utley/Howard returns. Still hovering.

As of right now it appears as if everything is going as planned. EXCEPT that Utley/Howard may not be returning as soon as expected (if ever for Utley).

Mayberry looked awful last night. Just awful. His bat speed is slow and he can't hit a 90+MPH fastball, and he can't reach a breaking ball on the outer half of the plate. I thought Galvis looked bad at the plate, but Mayberry looks much, much worse than last year.

If I were Manuel, I'd give himself another week of experimenting with his lineup, then settle on a bunch of guys for a month. Assuming nothing changes, I'd put Pierre in LF full time and Thome/Wigginton at first full time (with Nix starting on days when Thome needs rest), and late inning substitutions of Nix, Thome, and Mayberry as necessary.

"Assuming nothing changes, I'd put Pierre in LF full time"

Why? Why? Why?

Red,
That is the point. First you dont mention the money, then you mention the money.
You sarcastically say that Cuddyer and Theriot would be "unstoppable" and I bring up the fact that Cuddyer, at least, would be better than Nix, Wiggy or Thome. Then you bring up the money he costs.
I guess you can say, a 1990 Buick runs better than a 2011 Mercedes....,if you only have $2500 to spend. One point doesn't make another.

Pierre did get a triple last night...

My favorite part of UCs usage of Pierre:

vs LHP: 2 PA
vs RHP: 32 PA

That's the strictest platoon I've ever seen UC use...and hes using with a guy who has reverse splits.

Insanity.

RG - I never made the argument that the current bench is better than Cuddyer. But the incessant pining over him from a few posters is childish.

The issue has always been the money involved. I've had this discussion with the same posters over and over and over again. They refuse to admit that money is the issue and that he should've been signed despite the luxury tax.

No love for Worley? He took that team and carried them on his back last night. Thought it was interesting that Chooch had him using his slider so much last night with good results on it including a couple swings & misses.

Also tip of the cap to the defense. Galvis with just another routine night where he turns a nice DP & makes 5 POs. Just been tremendous defensively. Incredible range, strong arm, and turns the DP much more quickly and smoothly than Utley ever did. Don't miss Utley there defensively one bit.

Polanco made a really nice play at 3B. Off to another great start defensively. JRoll/Chooch also saved the game on the heads up DP they helped turn.

Offense on this team is just going to be pitiful most nights. Its a bad lineup. They have one legit hitter in the lineup with above average power (Pence) and most nights at least 3-4 guys who have real issues hitting the ball with any kind of authority.

Just have to hope there starter gives up 3 or less runs, that they can scrap together a few runs, and that the bullpen/Cholly don't blow things late.

Worley was definitely on last night. I'm not sure the Phils OF recorded a single put out.

Galvis is very smooth at second, with great range. That DP, though, it looked to me that he received the ball about 3' away from the bag. Even umps that always call an out on the proximity play might not give you that big a cushion against the take out slide.

There have only been 14 games played, yet All-Star voting is beginning??

And I find most of the Phillies' names on there to be laughable.

* * * * * * *
(From phillies.com)

Eight Phillies landed on the All-Star ballot released on Thursday, including two who could make their first trip to the Midsummer Classic.

First baseman Ryan Howard, second baseman Chase Utley, shortstop Jimmy Rollins, third baseman Placido Polanco, catcher Carlos Ruiz and outfielders John Mayberry Jr., Hunter Pence and Shane Victorino are the Phillies on the All-Star ballot.

Howard and Utley are on the ballot, though they're on the disabled list. Ruiz and Mayberry have never been All-Stars in their careers.

Godfather: Not easy for me to say this after last night, but you can't give up on Mayberry for at least another month, and even that would be hasty and only necessary if team was just struggling too much with him in it. And if you go back to this offseason, i was one of the strongest pessimist about RFD.

The flash he showed in 2011 has forced the Phils to include him in thoughts of the future. You know exactly what you have with Wigginton/Pierre/Nix, they are platoon/semi-regulars that aren't changing their game. The Phils as a franchise need to find out what Mayberry is at the risk of him hurting the team early in 2012, with Vic and Pence upcoming FA in next two years and your original top young OF in AAA.

If you brush away Mayberry after a couple weeks just because the rest of your team is a piece of sht and can't score a couple g'damn runs without him, then you've got major decisions to make which outweigh the minutiae of how much better a guy like Juan Pierre can be than Mayberry for a month.


I am still a 'Free Nix!' guy but given the way Pierre is hitting right now Cholly has almost no choice but to keep playing him.

In this park where it is incredibly difficult to hit a HR and you have two lineups that are 'power-challenged' to say the least (Phils have 2 road HRs now in 7 games; Padres have 4 HRs in 8 home games), there is a place where you can get away with the pop-gun approach & starting Pierre in LF.

Something to consider about the offense:

In terms of scoring runs at home, they're not awful. They're #11 in total runs in the NL, and 6 teams have played more games at home with only the Pirates playing fewer.

And so far they've played on the road in the best pitchers park in the NL (SF) the second best pitchers park in the NL (SD) and Pittsburgh, which was the 8th best NL park for offense (these are all based on 2011).

The Pirates so far have the 3rd best ERA in the NL somehow, and not all their games were against the Phils.

I still don't understand why Schneider didn't start last night.

You had a RH rookie on the mound who Schneider might have been able to drive a ball against, Worley is starting, and Chooch hasn't had an off-day since Sat & they just played an extra innings game the night before.

Cholly still doesn't start him. He must really think Schneider is utterly useless. Only reason I can think why he didn't start him last night & he has a tendency to pull him late in off-days while putting Chooch in.

Hey, the Phils are second in the league in stolen bases. That's a good thing!

Mayberry's a real mess right now. I would try to get him going by reducing his chances against righties and making sure he gets every chance to bat against a lefty. It's not like he's hitting either but, let him work it out in situations where he's historically more comfortable. Right now, it seems he is backing up when the pitch comes in and then completely opening up on the swing. I don't expect anyone to hit a ball with all that moving going on. He's making Hunter Pence look stationary.

EFF - Average NL team has played 6 games at home and scored 27 runs. Phils have scored 22 runs at CBP in 6 games.

I get what you are saying but this is a bad offense with little margin for improvement as currently constituted.

Really, the only thing I could see improving a bit is that Polanco isn't this bad offensively & you get a bit more power from JRoll/Vic who are well below their career norms.

Mayberry faced LHP 41% of his PA in 2011 - he is currently at 42% this year.

What are the chances these 2 teams play a 4-games series and neither hits a single HR?

I would be curious to see in NL history how man times that has happened in a 4-game series. I can't imagine it has happened more than 5% of the time and probably even less than that. Probably closer to 1%.

Even Sarge was getting on Mayberry's AB where he was really late on that 90 MPH fastball.

When Sarge starts getting negative, you know a guy is really lost up there.

All I'm saying is that the Phils offense may stink, but the schedule hasn't helped it seem any less stinky.

Always seems worse to play bad teams early in the season too...teams are usually healthier in the beginning of the season (right side of our infield excepted) and it's later on when the bad teams' lack of depth is challenged they seem easier to beat.

2 things about Cuddyer:

1. He's playing in Coors Field. His numbers are going to be hugely inflated.

2. The pining for him seems to rest on the premise that he could play 3rd base. But his starts this year have come in RF, plus one game at 1st base. He plays 3rd base the way Ty Wigginton plays 3rd base -- and you saw how that worked out 2 nights ago.

The Phillies were never going to pay 3 years, $30M for an outfielder when they have Mayberry & Dom, nor were they ever going to pay that kind of money for a temporary replacement at 1st base.

If you want to criticize the Phillies for inadequately replacing Howard, that's more than fair. But the poster child for that criticism would not be Cuddyer, but Derek Lee. His 2011 OPS+ was 24 points higher than Wigginton's and he is still out there on the FA market. I have no idea what he would have cost, but I assure you he could have been had on a 1-year deal for less than Cuddyer is making this year. So, to me, it makes more sense to bitch about not signing Derek Lee than to bitch about not signing Cuddyer.

The thing about Mayberry is that even at his worst projection over at fangraphs he's not supposed to be THIS bad.

He'll come out of the funk. I just hope there are guys on base when he does it.

MG pining to see Schneider in a game- priceless.

Best comparison I can think to in recent Phils' memory to Schneider is Steve Lake.

Schneider though was a good catcher earlier in his career though. Lake was always a backup catcher.

Both were on the tail-end of their careers when they got here, were supposed to be good defensive catchers whose skills atrophied badly during their end of their tenure here, and yet somehow stuck around for 3-4 seasons as the backup catcher.

Lake arrived here via FA in the '88 offseason and was the Phils backup catcher from '88-'92.

Put up a line of .242/.272/.307 (64 OPS+) across 4 seasons and was -0.8 WAR.

Schneider arrived here in '09 offseason. So far his line here is .203/.291/.313 (63 OPS+) across 2+ seasons and has a -0.4 WAR.

BAP's post just highlights the fact that many posters who complain about not signing position players to generate offense simply just don't know what they are talking about. They latch onto a name and then when another team signs that player they get all upset and constantly nag about how great that player would be. Instead of sitting down and looking at the situation and going through it with real options like BAP did.


The only things I can say about Derrek Lee and why he hasn't been signed is that either he is hurt or he is going through Jermaine Dye syndrome. Otherwise, he would be a welcome addition to this club and the anemic offense.

"MG pining to see Schneider in a game- priceless."

Maybe because he looked gassed at the plate last night lunging at pitches.

Cholly also has him on a pace to play 162 G too. Even his off-day last Sat. Chooch came in to PH and stayed in a 4-0 game late.

Apparently Cholly wants to see how many IP that Chooch an catch before he gets hurt/wears down.

Schneider may be a terrible player but you still have to play him at times and last night as a good night as any to do it.

I admit I wanted Cuddyer, but that was before we got Papelbon (which I also admittedly was upset about at the time). And seeing what we're replacing Howard with, I'm still not thinking it would've been the worst idea to sign him.

Still, citing 12 games worth of stats of a guy playing half his games in Coors Field as the basis for your "I told you so" argument seems a bit over the top.

So perhaps bringing back a backup catcher that the team's manager clearly despised using was a bad idea for Rube...even if it "saved" $300K in salary over the other backup options?

Chooch looks like he will end up starting 140ish games and coming into the other 22.

***The only things I can say about Derrek Lee and why he hasn't been signed is that either he is hurt or he is going through Jermaine Dye syndrome. Otherwise, he would be a welcome addition to this club and the anemic offense.***

we've talked about Lee before over the off-season. The rumor was that he wanted a lot of money ($5-6 million minimum) and a guaranteed starting job...otherwise he was content to retire.

Since we've got Cholly on record now as saying that he knows of Pierre's reverse platoon splits and doesn't give a crap, I'm now firmly on BAP's anti-Pierre bandwagon.

It's great that he hit a triple last night. Really exciting stuff. And he even drew a walk, which was equally as shocking.

But the offense's biggest problem right now is the inability to get extra-base hits. And Pierre, in his prime, was pretty much strictly a singles hitter. Having him in the lineup is basically embracing your problem and making it worse.

And what you're seeing from Pierre now is basically the best it's gonna get. You think he's going to hit .333 the whole season? That's coupled with diminishing speed and a rag arm in LF.

I'm with MG- put Nix in there if for no other reason than he's got some pop in his bat. Right now opposing pitchers are just pounding the strike zone with impunity, because what's the worst that could happen if they make a mistake? Pierre, Galvis or Polanco pokes it into CF for a single?

bap, good point about Derek Lee.

But, would Lee have taken a deal to be Howard's temporary replacement?

Word is he was looking for a full-time job.

NEPP/awh: Yeah, I heard those rumors about Lee too. Maybe he didn't want to be a part-timer or temporary replacement. Then again, he's still out there on the FA market. I suspect, at this point, he would probably accept a few million bucks to play baseball this year, even in a backup role.

In any event, I'm not really criticizing the Phillies for not signing Lee. I can see plenty of good reasons why they wouldn't have. For one thing, whatever his cost, it would be a lot of money to pay for a guy whom you hope is on the bench by May. For another, they already had Thome & I doubt any 5-man bench can afford to have 2 first-base only players. All I'm saying is: at least Derek Lee sort of met the criteria for our short-term needs. Cuddyer did not. He was either a long-term fix for a short-term problem (1st base), or a long-term fix for an area that, hopefully, needs no long-term fix (LF).

LOL. So raul's grandpa who bashes Howard and his contract every day, criticizes another poster for mentioning Cuddyer's contract.

Too funny.

I enjoy that the beerleaguer consensus is to bench the guy who is currently the second best hitter on the team.

Starting Pierre in a pitcher's park makes a lot of sense in this series.

Not so much especially at CBP when it is warmer. CBP is an above-average HR park overall since it has opened and this pop-gun offense is going to be hard pressed to keep up even with their stellar pitching.

What's the over/under on Greg Gross getting fired?

"The only things I can say about Derrek Lee and why he hasn't been signed is that either he is hurt or he is going through Jermaine Dye syndrome."

It appears to be the latter. Widely reported that the Pirates, who have underspent their budget a few years running due to free agents that won't sign with them, offered Lee $10 million to start this year and he said no. They were desperate to get him and he wouldn't take it. There doesn't appear to be any reasonable scenario under which he would have signed in Philly to keep 1B warm until Howard returned.

Clout,
Nope, got no problem with Cuddyer or his contract. I said I wanted here.

As a matter of fact, clout, I will take Cuddyer and you take Howard. Whoever has the best season stays here, whoever has the loser leaves Beerleaguer. How does that sound?

@ Lorecore

All excellent points. The problem is, if the team is buried at the bottom of the division by early May, they will be forced to bench him. It's one thing if the Phils are hovering at .500, but if their record is, say, 13-17, they can't afford to wait on Mayberry. The window on this team to win as presently constituted effectively closes in 2013 regardless of who is in the outfield. That takes precedence over seeing what Mayberry's got.

Secondly, as for the moaning and groaning over Pierre, the man's hitting .333 right now and he is, quite literally, the best option off their bench in terms of getting on base and he never strikes out. Fine, he's got no power, but you're not gonna address that by putting Nix or Wigginton in the lineup in Pierre's place, not really.

Pierre's a .680-.690 OPS hitter with an OBP of .330-.340 right now. Nix and Wigginton are OBP .300-.310 guys. They make up for it by slugging .400-.420, and that's why their OPS is better than Pierre's. On base matters a lot more than slugging for an offense, it's a statistical fact. You put 9 Juan Pierre's in the lineup (OBP 340 SLG 360)you get 4.274 runs per game. You put 9 Laynce Nix's in the lineup (OBP 290 SLG 430) you get 4.102 runs per game. That's about 35 runs over the course of a year, and that's giving Nix a 20 point OPS edge.

Moreover, both of those guys strike out 100-120 times over a 162 game span, Pierre strikes out 30-40 times over the same stretch. The lineup isn't going to have power no matter who you put into the field. So go with the guy who doesn't strike out, gets on base the best, and puts the ball in play the most.

What would it take to pry Chase Headley off the padres hands? Would Dom Brown and Trevor May get it done?

Godfather
Just curious, how are you calculating runs per game based on the slash lines? Is that online somewhere?

While Pierre isn't hitting with any power or drawing walks, people are really killing him regardless of his performance. It looks like people object to him on principle. I don't know if it's because he killed us as a Marlin or because people just don't agree with his style of play. I don't get it. He isn't the problem but people have been dwelling on him since day one. When he hits people are upset because "Now he'll just play more." If he's hitting shouldn't he play more?
Someone please explain.

***What would it take to pry Chase Headley off the padres hands? Would Dom Brown and Trevor May get it done?***

Toss in a guy like Valle and it probably happens.

Headley is an above average 3B both offensively and defensively who is under team control for 2 more full seasons after this one.

His offensive numbers look somewhat pedestrian until you see his home/road split (.818 road OPS for his career and a .300+ hitter).

"You put 9 Juan Pierre's in the lineup (OBP 340 SLG 360)you get 4.274 runs per game."

These kinds of projections assume that all of the dozens of other variables would remain the same if you had a lineup of 9 Juan Pierre's. That assumption is not merely dubious; it is preposterous.

While sabermetrics can be very useful, they are subject to abuse when taken as absolute truths. I am quite confident that a lineup of 9 Juan Pierres would not score 4.274 runs per game. But it would probably set an all-time major league record for most times being caught stealing in a season.

@Phatti

http://www.baseballmusings.com/cgi-bin/LineupAnalysis.py

Using their career stats too (rounded off). Nix is a career 717 OPS (OPB 288 SLG 429) so he'd actually be a bit lower, Pierre is a 708 career OPS (OPB 345 SLG 363) so I actually rounded down a bit for him. A lot of people are going to kick and scream that Pierre isn't going to get an OPB of 340 this year but he had OBP's of .341 and .329 with CHW for the 2010 and 2011 seasons.

"As a matter of fact, clout, I will take Cuddyer and you take Howard. Whoever has the best season stays here, whoever has the loser leaves Beerleaguer. How does that sound?"

that's incredibly stupid.

My problem isn't Juan Pierre, its UCs absolute refusal to properly use him and Nix in spots where they will most help the club. Putting Pierre in only against RHP and putting Nix at 1B is just stupid.

@ BAP

And I strongly doubt a Lineup of Laynce Nix's would be any better. If anything, it would be noticeably worse.

Pierre OBP vs RHP:

2011: .296
2010: .324

If UC continues to use Pierre the way he's currently utilizing him, Pierre will most definitely not have a .340 OBP.

Mayberry should change his approach. Extra batting practice isn't working. Move him ahead of Pence in the lineup so he doesn't need to watch his gyrations before he bats. Have him bat 2nd, crowd the plate, fill the strike zone with his knees and shoulders and take a couple for the team.

gobay: I get that it's kind of misdirected to be ranting about one of the few guys who has actually performed up to this point. But, if we rant about, say, Mayberry or Nix or Polanco or Thome, we are immediately reminded about the phenomenon of sample size error. And sample size error works both ways. If we can't criticize Thome because it's a SSS, then it follows that we shouldn't be praising Pierre either.

The reality is that a .657 OPS over two straight seasons tells us that Pierre is a .657 OPS player. That would be ok with me if he were some sort of on-base machine, but he isn't. He still has plus speed, but it's not nearly what it once was. And, while it can still be an asset, that asset is largely offset by his poor decision-making.

Dickie Thong - If the Phils' offense continues to scuffle this badly all season, you can bet Gross gets canned as a scape goat. Just a question of whether they do it in August or wait until the offseason.

I imagine they wait until the offseason.

Godfather, Why would one use Pierre's or Nix's career slash lines when trying to project this year's performance?

The past 3 years Pierre has had one year with an OPS > his career (and the past 2 have been about 0.050 less).

Nix, on the other hand,has been above his career avg each of the last 3 years to the tune of about 0.050 on avg.

I think they should ride Pierre out when the opportunity is right (like the examples that MG provided), but don't minimize the OPS difference by using career averages. Laynce Nix would provided some needed power to this lineup right now if he can hit close to what he has been for the past 3 years).

And I think NEPP is exactly right about the problem being how Pierre and Nix are being used...why not play Nix in LF vs. righties and Pierre there vs. lefties?

"And I strongly doubt a Lineup of Laynce Nix's would be any better. If anything, it would be noticeably worse."

I wouldn't want a lineup full of either of them. But my point is: it's just a dumb "statistic" and a dumb argument. A basketball team with 5 Shaquille O'Neals wouldn't be able to get the ball past half court without having it stolen. But, would anyone claim that Rajon Rondo is a better player than Shaquille O'Neal was because a team of 5 Rajon Rondos would probably beat a team of 5 Shaquille O'Neals?

***And I think NEPP is exactly right about the problem being how Pierre and Nix are being used...why not play Nix in LF vs. righties and Pierre there vs. lefties?***

I would do that and due the same with Wigginton/Mayberry at 1B with Thome taking 1 start a week vs RHP. Yeah, it negates Mayberry's glove at LF but its the best we've got with our current options.

I'd also drive Brian Schneider off into the Pine Barrens and just drop him off and hope he cant find his way back to Philly.

That platoon makes sense. Plus, Mayberry can complete the gold glove infield.

***But, would anyone claim that Rajon Rondo is a better player than Shaquille O'Neal was because a team of 5 Rajon Rondos would probably beat a team of 5 Shaquille O'Neals?***

Just stack the box and force them to make perimeter shots...you'd get every single rebound and probably be able to drive on them. I'd take the O'Neal team.

The Greg Gross comment reminded me - did anyone else catch the in-game interview with Mackanin last week (while still at home, can't remember which game). Just a bunch of fluff questions about the team, but much of it centered on how "into the games" Ryan Howard has been on the bench, etc.

I got to thinking, aside from being the interim HC when Charlie gets run, is Mackanin's real job to just make sure guys are "into the game" on the bench, cheering on their teammates, etc.? If so, how do I get that job? Hell, Juan Samuel handles OF alignment, etc.

I guess my question is, what exactly does Mackanin do everyday? Seems like a great guy. Just curious.

BAP - That's all true, but you DO criticize struggling players despite small sample size and continue to criticize hot players because of SSS, so your objections come off a bit disingenuous.

I say play Pierre at #2 between Jimmy and Vic and keep Polly at #7...

I thought it was pretty cool when JP hit his triple last night, but my immediate first thought was "I wonder if someone should introduce Pierre to Juan Samuel?"

Although I don't always agree with their ideas, there are some good posters here at BL. I enjoy reading their comments.

There are other posters here at BL who sound like 12-year olds. It is their right to post, but I try to ignore them. That's my right.

To each his own.

"but you DO criticize struggling players despite small sample size and continue to criticize hot players because of SSS, so your objections come off a bit disingenuous."

If a guy is stinking it up, it's more than fair for fans to say he's stinking it up. Do I have to qualify every criticism with the disclaimer, "But let's wait until he has 400 PAs in the books before I pass judgment on his overall worth as a player?" If so, please deem this post as said disclaimer for all future criticisms of all Phillies players.

RedBurb -- If RAJ had done proper due diligence on Utley, and erred on the side of caution with regards to Ryan Howard's return, Cuddyer could have, and should have been guaranteed 550 ABs as a Philadelphia Phillie. The LF/1st base argument is spurious; we will not see a healthy Ryan Howard this year, and Mayberry was a fairly crazy gamble in LF.

I realize that the horse has left the barn and is 7 States due west, so this is my last Cuddyer post. However, it's nuts to sign a $50mm reliever when your #3 and #4 line-up guys are out indefinitely. What's more important -- a guy who might appear in 60 games, or one who plays every day, and could lift your lineup for the next several years?

If Pierre hit his share of doubles/triples or was good defensively, he would be much more appealing as a full-starter in LF.

Then again, if he did either one of those aforementioned things he wouldn't have had to sign a minor league deal this offseason

The small population of hte stat sheet gives you some real swings with minimal success or failure. For instance, with his triple last night, Juan Pierre now has a higher slugging pct. than Shane Victorino.

For all the agony of the hitless Phils, let's take a moment and remember the Phils' starters have now gone 17 consecutive innings without allowing a run. As a team, they have allowed more than 5 runs a game exactly once. The lead the Majors in ERA and lead the NL in quality starts.

Piching: better than advertised. I'm really enjoying watching them every night.

A "crazy gamble" to give the job to a 28-year old who plays great defense, possesses plus speed, posted a .513 slugging percentage and .854 OPS over nearly 300 PAs last year, and costs virtually nothing? Mayberry may or may not work out, but I'd gladly take that "crazy gamble" over the expensive major league veteran on just about every position on the field.

b_a_p - don't forget that the Mayberry "gamble" is backed by a major hitting prospect playing LF at AAA.

Likely to provoke a "Yo, new thread" comment and apropos of nothing (actually, apropos of Wiggy's misplay in the 11th inning Wednesday night and his poor fielding in general)...

I've always wondered why a lousy glove man is referred to as a "butcher" in the field? Is it because a butcher makes a mess of things?

Don't get me wrong: I think the phrase just sounds great, especially when you say it with equal parts spittle and heavy disdain, but I think in reality a butcher should be pretty sure-handed, unless he wants to lose appendages...no?

I can see why you might not want to use a different tradesman: "He's a stone mason in the field" doesn't have the same character; but I always wondered about the origin of that particular idiom.

Speaking of our LF prospect, I check into the Iron Pigs site periodically, to look at stats and noticed that Brown does have an error this season (though certainly nothing compared to Luna's FOUR!).

Anyone know the nature of the error? Dropped ball? Throwing error? How egregious?

Just curious, more than anything.

Hugh: Yep. And hedged by the acquisition of a guy who has posted around a .780 OPS against RHP over the last 3 seasons (even if I wasn't terribly enamored of the hedge).

cut - Again you are arguing with yourself. I never advocated the Papelbon deal. The problem with signing Cuddyer was the fact that he was looking for a 3 year deal (which he got from the Rockies).

Cuddyer does not play 2B or LF. As as pointed out, he has played primarily RF this year, which is a position that is filled by Pence. The Phils at the time expected Howard back in mid-May or early June at the earliest. So he would've gotten two months of starts at 1B. So basically you would have regulated Cuddyer to be a $10 million bench guy. How would that have been a good allocation of resources?

A lot of factors pointing to a potential gem from Hamels tonight. You know he'll want to show up after the outings by Lee and Worley. Throw in that he's a San Diego native in a contract year, and all the motivation in the world is there. History is on his side (3-1 record with a 1.23 ERA in five career starts at Petco Park), and the Padres lineup flat out stinks. He's been commanding and locating his pitches well and I hope he continues tonight (selfishly because I'll be there).

That said, the Phils have a long track record of defying conventional wisdom.

BAP - Of course you don't have to qualify negative observations : for example, Mayberry is playing like steaming crap right now. Period.

At the same time, no one should feel the need to qualify positive observations: for example, Pierre is in the minority of batters helping this team at the moment and should be playing as long as that's the case.

"we will not see a healthy Ryan Howard this year"

Of this you're certain?

Volquez has better numbers vs Phil's than Hamels does vs Padres (SSS alert). The only guy who needs to be in the lineup tonight is Wigginton (3-6 with a double and two homers).

Raul grandpa: "As a matter of fact, clout, I will take Cuddyer and you take Howard. Whoever has the best season stays here, whoever has the loser leaves Beerleaguer. How does that sound?"

I've never rooted for a 'push' more than I am right now.

"If Pierre hit his share of doubles/triples or was good defensively, he would be much more appealing as a full-starter in LF.

Then again, if he did either one of those aforementioned things he wouldn't have had to sign a minor league deal this offseason"


Ahhh, finally some clarity.

Pierre has his uses. He's just not good enough to ba a full-time player anymore. If Mayberry starts hitting he'll be where he belongs: on the bench.

The comments to this entry are closed.

EST. 2005

Top Stories

HardballTalk

Rotoworld News

Follow on Twitter

Follow on Facebook

Contact Weitzel

CSG