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Monday, April 09, 2012


Lack of offense is hurting the team. Defense is not a strong.
Jimmy Rollins must be moved down to the 7 hole behind Ruiz. Unless he's on a hot streak, he's near-worthless with the bat.
Play Pierre almost every day in left, bat leadoff. Hit Victorio third. I like Galvis but he's overmatched.
I have my doubts Charlie knows how and when to play smallball.

Someone on previous thread asked abt bastardo taking awhile

He was doing that to disrupt mccutchen at first. Didnt want to give away his move

I feel like this team plays small ball for the first couple innings and then go back to swinging for the fences.

A primer for Chollie:
It doesn't take a Batushanskyian intellect, they have to play some variety of small ball which doesn't require pinpoint bunts and 8 speedy base runners. Get a walk, then smash one off the wall or fly out near the fence. Please, no bunting with a slugger or safety squeezes. We got three fleet of foot guys and another ten who move like Herman Muenster.

Pitch the bullpen guys who aren't scared or injured. If you have a guy who looks at batters and they cry, pitch him if need be.

Good Morning.

I hope communication in the outfield improves soon.

I think Stutes has some kind of Samson thing going on- he pitched better when his hair was wackier.

Interesting article in The New Yorker (locked or I would link it) about the Marlins this week. Ozzie Guillen basically says the manager has no influence on the outcome of a season. Yeah, I know he's a nutter, and a self-serving one considering his record, but it's an interesting thought. I don't think the manager has no effect, but it is probably less than is commonly thought, especially in these parts...

Somebody made a comment on another thread about there being a better chance of Galvis leading the league in HR's than Chollie getting fired this season. That has to be the dumbest statements on here in a while. If for some reason this team is floundering in a few months- under .500 with more managerial blunders- who do you think would feel the most pressure? Not the manager, but the guy responsible for putting the team together and RAJ will want someone to blame. Remember this series of teams since 2008 is a group that nearly everyone agreed would win one or more multiple WFC's. Injuries or not, if Chollie keeps managing this way, he'd better be looking over his shoulder-in the direction of Allentown.

Other than that, hey, enjoy opening day! I'm leaving shortly!

Follow up, I fully realize the Galvis comparison was hyperbole, just saying Chollie could absolutely get canned this year. And yes, I voted for him in the poll.

I also voted for Chuck. Bring back Francona (tm).

Did Bastardo really mean to throw that meatball to McCutchen, or was it just a bad pitch? Either way, the ball shouldn't have been anywhere near the plate.

It didn't take this team long to confirm that Rube had the worst winter of any GM ever. We have 6 or 8 guys who don't belong on a ML roster, and a few more who are vastly overpaid.

how on earth is 'The Offense" tracking under 50% in this poll?

Really there just is no replacing Chase and Ryan in the lineup. The team is in limbo with their #3 & #4 hole hitters. Can't spend the capital (in $ or prospects) on proper replacements unless you know the incumbents are done and retiring (which is unlikely, I hope) and stopgap replacements are going to be just that, stopgaps with guys who wouldn't be able to start for most teams, but are hopefully ok backups. which usually means they have deficiencies in their game somewhere that can be exploited.

I still expect the team to win the division, but it might get ugly at times until (unless?) Ryan & Chase come back as reasonable versions of their former selves. But we went through this last year too.

bring up dom brown (tm).

So good starting pitching doesn't always overcome a bad offense, bad bullpen, and a manager who is weak on tactics?

People mocked the scout who said of the Phillies in Spring Training "other than the 3 starters, that isn't a very good baseball team." But he was right.

actually Brown is 1-9 with 6ks and 2 walks. Brutal.

The love among dumb analysts/announcers with small ball. Here's someone not dumb talking about it:

Jack: people mocked him, myself included, because it was a silly statement. Put 2 all stars on the DL and then take 3 more all stars off a roster for arbitrary reasons, and of course the team isn't that good. you can play that game with any team. Tigers: put Prince & Miggy on the DL and other than Verlander, Avila, & Peralta; boy, that team's not all that good. It's silly.

Small ball cannot fail; small ball can only be failed.

Jack: Yep- 3 games proves him right.

Charlie Manuel slightly edges out the bullpen. The offense is what we thought it was.

And Jbird is right about the 3-4 hitters. In case nobody noticed, they are not on our roster right now. That sort of makes a difference.

I agree with the posts from RSB and aksmith in the last thread. Using Kyle Kendrick after the 6th inning is definitely the problem with this team. He just doesn't strike anyone out.

John Sickles on future (mid-season?) trade bait (Callaspo only got 3 at bats this week for the Angels):

**Looking for a sleeper prospect? Check out Philadelphia Phillies right-hander Tyler Cloyd, who threw six shutout, no-hit innings last night for Triple-A Lehigh Valley. He didn't give up any walks, either, while fanning eight. Cloyd is a 6-3, 190 pound right-hander, 24 years old, drafted in the 18th round in 2008 from the University of Nebraska-Omaha. He posted a 2.78 ERA with a 99/15 K/BB in 106 innings last year for Double-A Reading, so this success is not out of context with his career. His fastball isn't especially fast for a right-hander at 87-90, topping out at 92, but he changes speeds well, throws strikes, and will certainly get a major league look at some point if he keeps pitching like this.

"Play Pierre almost every day in left, bat leadoff."

Jimmie J wins the prize as first poster to declare that Juan Pierre is the answer.

Bullpen edges Cholly in a big way especially if Qualls is out. Herndon and Stutes are both marginal MLB relievers.

Baffles me what Dubee and Cholly see in Stutes though especially to use him in high leverage spots. A guy who throws a straight 92-93 MPH fastball with modest control, a below-average slider, and no other off speed pitch.

I thought BAP had a good analysis of Bastardo in the last thread: It's not so much his velocity is down, it's that 1. his control is off and 2. his pitches show no life or movement.

The question is why: Dead arm phase? Mechanics off? Hiding an injury?

Ty Wigginton dropping the throw from Schneider to allow 2 unearned runs... THAT made me more sick than anything. Pathetic.

I'm a Charlie basher, but voted for the offense in this poll. They just didn't hit. The starters were outstanding. The 'pen was two errors away from being pretty good. The defense was ok, I suppose (other than the aforementioned errors). They need to hit the ball.

All in all, though, this series didn't bother me that much. For one reason or another, they flat-out suck in Pittsburgh. There's no reason for it, so I stopped looking for an explanation. At least the trip to Pittsburgh wasn't in the middle of the season where it could possibly slow down a winning streak or something like that.

But the questions remains: Why on Earth do you pitch to McCutchen there? Watching Clint Hurdle and Charlie Manuel manage a game at the same time made my head hurt. Two of the worst in baseball.

I didn't want Juan Pierre on this team, let alone almost start everyday and lead-off.

"...let alone start almost everyday..."

Jbird: Interesting about Cloyd. He sits at 87-90 and finesse righties get no respect at all from scouts. Tools-and-heat loving BA didn't even list him among the Top 30 Phils prospects (although they drooled over Anthony Hewitt a couple years ago.)

Of course, there's a reason for that. Most finesse righties get eaten alive at the MLB level. But there re enough exceptions (Jake Westbrook comes to mind) to give this guy a chance.

clout: that was my initial thought. Tough for a righthander with a below average heater and no pedigree to get an opportunity much less really stick in the bigs. He didn't really start pitching well until last season. Don't know enough nor really care to do the research to compare him to Kendrick in the monors. But maybe he could slot into a backend starter-swingman role for someone. If the Phils can include him in a package for reliever or 3b at mid-season I'll be happy.

JW should include Ruben Amaro Jr on the poll for building a team that includes Laynce Nix and Ty Wigginton

Bottom line: When small ball is the recipe, every mistake is magnified. The margin of error is very small when you can't be bailed out by the big bats.

You can NOT afford to fail when there is a runner on third and two outs (did it multiple times this weekend).

You can NOT commit careless errors that lead to runs (i.e. wild pitch with a runner on third or a dropped catch at first on a dropped third strike).

You can NOT walk batters in late inning relief appearances, particularly lead off hitters.

This is a team that will need to rely on fundamentals until (if?) the big bats return. The margin of error is razor thin once you get past our sterling starting pitching.

R.Billingsly: Weird time to complain about Pierre considering he got the only clutch hit of the weekend.

I'm not saying he's my first choice, either, but I'll probably wait until he hits his inevitable 0-fer streak before I complain.

Well, those hoping for Pierre to play everyday have gotten their wish. He's starting in LF and leading off today, against a RHP.

On another note, he's our only natural LH hitter in the lineup against a righty today, and he isn't good against righties. Otherwise, it's all RH hitters and switch-hitters. Remember when this lineup was lefty-heavy?

Hope Hamels has a shutout in him today.

I don't understand how it could be anything but the manager in this poll.

The offense is not good as currently constructed, but it does have some weapons. But yet, one of those weapons (Victorino) was ordered to bunt with NO outs and a speedy runner on 2nd. Another weapon (to a degree) is Nix against a right handed pitcher, and again he was asked to bunt. The offense isn't good right now, and Manuel can't do much to make them better, but he certainly can (and did) do a good deal to make them worse this weekend.

And the bullpen, outside of Papelbon, is suspect. We should all get and expect that. Once again, though, Manuel made moves this weekend that made them demonstrably worse, chief among them: not using Papelbon in two straight games that went to the bottom of the 9th tied. Also, allowing Herndon to pitch to McCutchen, when he could have walked both McCutchen and Walker, forced the Pirates to either bat Hanrahan or pinch hit with Barajas. He could have then brought in Papelbon to get Barajas, and had his offense going into extra inning against a now Hanrahan-less Pirates 'pen, and should still have been able to bring Papelbon back.

But, since this is all tactical thinking, and something Manuel doesn't possess, why should we expect any different?

Here's an interesting question. Who does the fanbase turn on first, Amaro or Charlie?

Here's a good rule of thumb. Victorino should NEVER sacrifice bunt, unless it's first and second with no outs in the bottom of the 9th inning of a tie game.

Shane is no longer a role player in this lineup. He's the centerpiece of it, along with Pence. He can't be sac bunting, ever.

I'm not saying he's my first choice, either, but I'll probably wait until he hits his inevitable 0-fer streak before I complain.

Posted by: CJ | Monday, April 09, 2012 at 09:44 AM

This is specious reasoning. We don't need to wait for the inevitable 0-fer to know for a fact that one is coming, and more importantly, to know for a fact that Pierre is a poor offensive player and a poor defensive player with no arm. Just because he hit a single yesterday doesn't change that fact one bit.

I agree with Steve. Rube put together this bench of C- players that can't field, run or hit. He should be a choice in the poll. This is his team. He can't blame it on Gillick.

It might be the calendar jinx. I got this Phillies calendar for Christmas. It hangs on my office wall. Last month's player photo was Ryan Madson. He pops something and needs Tommy John surgery in his calendar month. This month's jinx rest on Cholly. I have to look at his mug all month. This means he'll be making bonehead decisions all month. Next month is no better with Dom Brown's photo featured. His jinx already occurred. July scares me as Doc Halladay is the featured player.

The Phillies coaching staff seems to think that the only way to play small ball is to bunt. This is inconceivably stupid. Small ball, although terrible in my opinion, is moving runners along while giving up outs. It doesn't have to happen at the expense of a bunt. Sac flies and hitting behind the runner are examples of "small ball."

Why the coaching staff only considers bunting to be the small ball they are employing shows either arrogance or stupidity. I'm not sure which.

Calling for40mph wind gusts, any idea In or out?

Oh, this article is bad. Just really bad. Apparently, clout giving the prize to Jimmie J for claiming Pierre is the answer was premature, because Jack McCaffery of the Delco Times doesnt just claim it, but he writes an entire article about it.

Oh boy...

Laynce Nix was acquired to provide some pop against righty pitchers, not to sacrifice bunt. And yet Charlie sac bunts him. That's a combination of both bad tactics (small ball) and bad personnel management (using a power hitter to bunt).

Those things simply have to be better with a team of this talent level.

Pierre needs to play against Lefties, and only against lefties.

Past 3 years' splits:

vs. RHP: .274/.318/.336 (.655 OPS)
vs. LHP: .314/.411/.342 (.752 OPS)

I see a bit of Rollins bashing out there.
I thought he actually hit well this series. He hit it hard several times, Just didn't find grass

I think my favorite "small ball" moment of the weekend was when Cholly calls for Nix to sac bunt with Pence on first, he fails to execute, and Pence then just steals second on the first pitch of the next AB anyway.

Again, this doesn't even have anything to do with my opinion that bunting with a position player is stupid 99% of the time. If you've got a guy on first who can steal and you're even thinking about stealing with him, just steal the damn base instead of conceding an out. Not only is the idea of 'small ball' a questionable one, but this coaching staff has made clear in the early going that they don't even know how to employ it correctly.

Offense (lack of it)

Offense across the board in the NL was terrible Opening Weekend.

Average NL team is hitting just .229 and as bad as the Phils .204 AVG is right now it is 11th in the NL.

They will improve on that and the woeful 4-21 with RISP. 1 more key hit in either the games on Sat./Sun. and they win either one.

The issue with this lineup is the almost complete lack of power. Isn't another 20+ HR guy in the lineup besides Pence. No one is going to even hit 25. Even with the diminished offense/power numbers, that's still a pretty pitiful power production note.

Issue for this team is that they have a bunch of guys who can't hit and a couple of 'Punch and Judy' hitters like Polanco & Chooch who have no power or limited power.

3 XBHs the Phils had this weekend puts them dead last in the NL right now. That's going to be the issue with this offense. Not only the HRs but the lack of extra XBHs. Going to need to string together at least a few hits in order to even score a run.

Sean- the Rollins bashing is endless on BL. The people who dislike him will bash him forever, no matter what he does.

The bottom line is, though, that he's never been a #3 hitter, and he certainly isn't at this point in his career.

Look as a regular CM/RAJ basher even I know they are not going away BUT as long as we have this site we can make suggestions that may actually be implemented:

1. For starters Brown should be recalled right now and installed in left and Mayberry should man first. Why?
Because Brown's offesnive capability will overshadow his fieldign gaffs. In the process at least two oldsters will be out of the lineup.
Both Brown and Mayberry need to play with the klnowledge that they are here to stay. Yes they need coaching but not replacement with the likes of Thome, Nix,Pierre and Wyg.

2. I also believe that Galvis will eventually hit. He is no Utley but we previously had two light weights who couldn't hit when they came up but learned to hit--Bowa and Taylor. If we could get Galvis to get ehre then Utley will be fine at 2nd with Galvis spelling him.

JRoll had some poor ABs this weekend with RISP. Its 3 games.

The issue as Iceman said is that he was never #3 hitter. Miscast at this point as a leadoff guy too. Ideally, he would hit #6.

Harping on him is missing the point. The problem with the lineup isn't 1-4. It is 5-8 and when they trotted out Schneider-Galvis-pitcher yesterday that is the worst 1-2-3 due up in an inning in MLB right now.

I don't blame Manuel at all for the series loss. He's missing some 50-60HR from his 3-4 hitters (Utley/Howard) and his only power threats are Victorino and Pence (neither of whom are 30HR mashers). When you're missing the heart of your lineup, you're not gonna score runs.

Hey, did Jim Thome fall apart last night after starting a game? Any word on whether his body disintegrated in the clubhouse afterwards?

"bigmyc, beside the explanation I offered above, run expectancy matrices, which are based upon decades of baseball data, show that you have a run expectancy of 1.057 with a runner on 2nd base and no outs, whereas you have a run expectancy of 0.928 when you have a runner on 3rd base with 1 out."

I don't know how to look this up or I would: does the fact that the runner from home has 3 outs to score account for the higher run expectancy? In other words, assuming the intention is to score one run (only the runner on second with no outs or from third with one out) rather than the possibility of two, does the bunt make more sense?

johnnyd - Bastardo didn't pitch to McCutchen

Speaking of Thome... the ovation he received IN PITTSBURGH for his first AB back with the Phillies was tremendous. One of the coolest moments I've been a part of in a live sports setting. I really wish he'd have come through...

Yo, newer thread

I've been saying this for quite a while, but the Phillies biggest problem has been the inability to draft and obtain offensively talented position players.

I wrote about this yesterday and it's worth repeating: When your offense can't score, you can't be giving away outs and/or mismanaging the one part of your team that is elite (pitching.

Charlie is over-thinking things here (which I didn't think he was capable of doing) and I'd guess he'll ease off the small ball nonsense soon.

Was kann man neben Milben beim Hund handeln
kennenlernen ebendiese An dieser Stelle mehr
Milben beim Hund

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