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Monday, April 30, 2012

Comments

***Yeah, maybe on a bad team like the Astros, especially since they're moving to the AL and will need a DH.***

He's actually splitting time in LF and 1B for them and is destroying AA pitching. Its not unreasonable to expect him to make the majors at Age 21 given that scenario.

That Pence trade could turn out to be a huge point in RAJ's tenure as a GM. If Pence can become an anchor for years for this team and put up the kinds of numbers he did last year, the trade will be ok. If he continues to be what he has always been, a good complimentary piece who goes on hot streaks, the trade will be a massive failure.

Trading prospects is always a dicey proposition. When you get a player like Roy Halladay or Cliff Lee, pitchers who have put up HOF numbers, the trade usually looks good in hindsight. Also the production of those players should outweigh what those prospects will provide. When you get players like Pence, who played well over his head last year, it could be a huge detriment for your farm system.

This statement will get ripped apart but I tend to think the Halladay Trade/Lee Trade after the 2009 season will be seen as Rube's turning point as GM. Looking back with 20/20 hindsight, it would have probably made more sense to keep Lee and extend him and use our resources to shore up other areas of the club rather than go all in for Doc. Sure, Doc is the best pitcher on earth and has been since he put on a Phillies uniform but we proved in 2008 that you dont need the best pitcher on earth win it all. Hell, we would have won in 2009 if Hamels wasn't having the year from hell. Lee & Hamels easily could have anchored a rotation and allowed Rube (or a competent GM) to build a more complete team offensively and defensively. We also lost a ton of prospect depth with those two trades as well as the Oswalt trade that year which was made to shore up the rotation thanks to giving up Lee that off-season. Those pieces could have been used far more wisely. Mind you, this is also the time period where Rube thought it would be brilliant to extend Howard on a massive extension over 2 years before he had to do so. However, Rube wanted his white whale and he got him...which caused him to flip Lee the same day for crap prospects which caused him to need more SP that mid-season causing him to flip more prospects for Oswalt, etc etc.

Or we could win a WS in the next year or so with our "greatest rotation on earth" and Rube will be seen as a genius for assembling it. Either is a possibility at this point.

I can deal with a bad April but it has to do with how you lose. As I recall in '07 and '08, the offense was hitting the ball at least. The record doesn't concern me at all right now. It's the quality of the game they are playing and calling it piss poor is being nice, save for the pitching. Even when Howard and Utley come back, how much do they contribute? Surely they are sitting AT LEAST once a week for a while. I don't know, it just doesn't look good. But lots of teams were dead and buried and then came back to win it all. It's foolish to count them out, but it's not much smarter to count them in right now either.

To me the turning point could be the Pence trade. Desperation is a stinky cologne and the whole league saw his desperation over not having a RH power bat. The Astros took advantage of that even though the Phillies were by far the best team in the league. The chances that they made the playoffs didn't increase with Pence. Heck, the chances of winning the WS hardly increased after that trade. It was a moment when the GM panicked instead of sitting on what he had and playing out the string with the game's best team.

NEPP: gutsy post!

Look at the big win RAJ had when he lost Halladay, but then turned around and got Lee for less. He could've quite while he was ahead*.


*I'm thrilled they got Lee & halladay.

Wait, Brown had another error yesterday? I'd say it's a big deal but Hunter Pence must need lasik. My man can't read a flyball to save his life either. That's it, I'm on board the "bring Dom back up" train. I don't care how awful he is in the field anymore because this team is awful defensively anyway. This lineup needs a life infusion. Do I think Brown will do it? Eh, possibly. But at least we'd be failing in a different way.

I won't ever post during night games or on the weekend because I'm sick of computers outside of the 45 work hours I endure each week so I'm sorry if this was addressed (sure it was already ad nauseum but deal with it) but..

Did little Jimmy cry his way back into the leadoff spot? Is this now a permanent change? I assume so since Pierre was 2 yesterday. I was for bringing Jimmy back because I felt like his glove and "leadership" were irreplaceable but his general moodiness and sackless approach to hitting 3 has turned me completely around. Seriously dude? You want to see how leading is done and playing the game at a high level check out Derek Jeter lately. Rollins is 33 right? Not 3?

If you look at what we gave up for Pence and what the Braves gave up for Bourn, its ridiculous. It was a bad trade before the Braves made their move. The fact that they paid 50 cents on the dollar for Bourn (a better fit for our lineup last year and this year) makes it look that much worse.

We basically have Michael Bourn already. His name is Shane Victorino. Last year when the Pence deal was made they needed a righthanded bat and they did well to get one who was under control for a few years. Now he's hurting them in the field and his incredibly high BABIP last year was not sustainable. And now we have what we're seeing. He's had some nasty slumps in the past though and he's rebounded. Let's hope that can happen.

"This statement will get ripped apart but I tend to think the Halladay Trade/Lee Trade after the 2009 season will be seen as Rube's turning point as GM. Looking back with 20/20 hindsight, it would have probably made more sense to keep Lee and extend him and use our resources to shore up other areas of the club rather than go all in for Doc."

Rather than ripping it apart, a simple "you're wrong" suffices.

The Pence trade was ghastly at the time, and nobody (including me) wanted to admit it because we wanted to see more offense. That one is going to end up looking pretty bad in the end.

Re Chase Headley . . . I like the guy too and he would definitely help the Phillies, or just about any team. But May + Brown would be a monumental overpay. I wouldn't even give up one of them for Headley, let alone both.

We're talking about a guy who has never hit higher than .289, never slugged even .400 (.400!) over a full season, and never had an OPS higher than .773. I understand that his stats would likely improve in a different park. I also understand that he's young, under team control through 2015, draws a lot of walks, and plays a position where it has become difficult to find good offense. I don't disagree that it would take a significant package to get him. I'm just saying: if he even comes available, let some other team be the one that is stupid enough to meet the Padres' asking price.

Headley's a pretty good player, but he's the very definition of a complementary piece. I can't believe that anyone would seriously consider giving up either Brown or May to get him.

***We basically have Michael Bourn already. His name is Shane Victorino***

Yes because Vic is an elite leadoff hitter who can steal bases at will...oh wait.

***Rather than ripping it apart, a simple "you're wrong" suffices. ***

LOL...yeah, we'll see. Afterall, it was that elite pitching staff of Hamels, Moyer, Myers and Blanton that carried us in 08.

While I still consider myself a believer in D. Brown, he appears to be so awful at defense it's hard to justify him as a major league player. If he and a Pettibone could get Headley, I'd move him in a heartbeat.

***We're talking about a guy who has never hit higher than .289, never slugged even .400 (.400!) over a full season, and never had an OPS higher than .773. I understand that his stats would likely improve in a different park.***

I agree...though he is an .800 OPS hitter on the road who is also a good defender.

***Headley's a pretty good player, but he's the very definition of a complementary piece. I can't believe that anyone would seriously consider giving up either Brown or May to get him.***

I wouldn't but that is likely what he would cost given the dearth of available 3B and his team control status.

@bap re: Headley

I think I agree with you. I think what has most people clamoring for Headley at the cost of Brown and May is that people are starving to see something change with this lineup and really don't care what/who it takes. I'm one of those people with regard to just calling Brown up. This team is so complacent right now and you have Charlie trying to work things back to the old ways because that's all he knows. Could Jimmy provide a temporary and slight lift out of the leadoff spot again? Maybe. Is it likely? No. I'm so tired of seeing the same also-ran bs with this offense.

Brown has a .673 OPS in AAA right now...why does anyone assume he would help us offensively right now?

"wouldn't but that is likely what he would cost given the dearth of available 3B and his team control status."

I don't doubt that for a moment. San Diego has no reason to trade him so, if they do decide to trade him, they can demand a King's ransom. But we are allowed to say no -- which is something RAJ sometimes fails to understand.

"Yeah but it was much smarter to massively overpay for Pence instead of giving up 3 non-top 100 prospects and Jordan Fvcking Schaffer for Michael Bourn. That would have been crazy talk."

Call me crazy then because I wanted Bourn last year rather than Pence. I wanted to move Vic back over to RF, install Bourn in CF (imagine that OF coverage), and put Bourn in the leadoff spot & finally move JRoll out of it.

Interesting argument to make if this team would be better off with Bourn than Pence this year. I would argue 'yes' and it would have given Amaro another $4M to play with this offseason.

@NEPP re: Yes because Vic is an elite leadoff hitter who can steal bases at will...oh wait.

Well clearly the OBP of Bourn and his success rate on the basepaths would be big and he is better than Shane in that respect. The bigger point is that they need someone who can drive the ball and Bourn isn't that guy. The lack of XBHs on this team is disgusting.

And I guess I realize how badly I'm talking out of both sides of my mouth on this Bourn/Rollins stuff. So yeah I would welcome Bourn if it meant Jimmy never so much as sniffed the leadoff spot again.

I love the massaging of facts and figures here. The majority of beerleaguers massage, fondle even take the figures out for IHOP the next morning.

I think a greater portion of us here felt the utter reliance on Mayberry would be either a sign of something terribly wrong with the offense or at best, a chance for him to show what he is in a larger sample size. I wil readily admit I thought he was going to be great, I suspect that will be a bad prediction. I still think Brown will never play OF regularly for the big team. Nix has never been more than mediocre.
Wiggington has always been the "versatile" (just slightly) guy with a tiny bit of pop. He has surprised me but I suspect he will not be able to add much to Howard's production.
I am ready for panic mode. I am prepared to watch Law and Order in its various incarnations and flip back and forth when the Phils are behind in the 3rd through 6th.

Another problem is that this team hasn't developed a third basemen since Rolen. I wonder what Mike Costanzo is doing these days as he bags groceries at your local Wegmans.

***The bigger point is that they need someone who can drive the ball and Bourn isn't that guy. The lack of XBHs on this team is disgusting.***

The money they saved on Bourn over Pence could have gone to a better corner OF option than what we have right now. It would have also allowed us to keep Singleton...a player we are likely going to massively regret giving up.

If the Barves and the Phils were after Bourn, would he still have been traded for "nothing"?

*** wonder what Mike Costanzo is doing these days as he bags groceries at your local Wegmans***

I doubt he's lucky enough to work at a store as high-quality as Wegmans...he's probably behind the counter at his local Hardees.

NEPP - What was Mayberry hitting before he was called up last year? I don't know how much weight you can really put into AAA stats.

The main concern is his defense, although Pence hasn't looked very good in right this year at all.

@NEPP...very true on the coin saved on Bourn getting an actual power bat for the OF.

I didn't feel that bad about the Pence trade until I saw the crap sandwhich the Braves gave up for Bourn. Singleton is going to be missed, but he was supposedly blocked by both Howard & Dom Brown. . . . oh well.

I'm just saying that it might be a bit much to call up Brown and expect him to be the savior of the offense. So far, he's shown a startling lack of ability to deal with big expectations.

Pence has stunk it up so far this year, but I think there's a little revisionist history taking place among those who are pining for Michael Bourn.

The problem with our lineup last year was that, with Utley, Howard, Brown, and Ibanez, it was massively left-handed heavy. Not a single one of those guys can hit LHP to save his life and Mayberry had not yet established himself as a viable RH bat at the time of the Pence trade. Bourn is a fine player but he can't hit LHP at all. He would not have addressed what was the team's major weakness last year; in fact, he would have exacerbated it.

***Pence has stunk it up so far this year, but I think there's a little revisionist history taking place among those who are pining for Michael Bourn.***

To be fair, I was pushing for a Bourn trade for most of last year...well before we even looked at Pence. I thought we needed a true leadoff hitter more than RH bat.

I'm not counting on Brown to be the savior, not in the least. Just for my own sanity and for striking out on a new path I'd like to see him up.

***I'm not counting on Brown to be the savior, not in the least. Just for my own sanity and for striking out on a new path I'd like to see him up***

You might not be but if they called him up right now, that's what the average fan would be hoping for.

"To be fair, I was pushing for a Bourn trade for most of last year...well before we even looked at Pence. I thought we needed a true leadoff hitter more than RH bat."

Fair enough. But I'll stand by my view that, because of his inability to hit LHP, Bourn would have been an ill-conceived addition to an already ill-conceived lineup.

The following is expressed without notation or opinion:

First 22 games of 2012 Regular Season: 10-12
Last 22 games 2011 Regular Season: 10-12

The Pence trade was ghastly at the time, and nobody (including me) wanted to admit it because we wanted to see more offense. That one is going to end up looking pretty bad in the end.

Posted by: Iceman | Monday, April 30, 2012 at 01:06 PM

I wasn't afraid to admit it. I thought it was a huge overpay before it even happened. I also got chided big time for suggesting that the Phillies not overreact, and that they should hang on to Worley and Brown, as this team will need young, cost-controlled players in the near future.

Pence is a nice player, of this there is no doubt. But that trade was a bad one, and I would say this even if Pence turned into Matt Kemp going forward.

"Afterall, it was that elite pitching staff of Hamels, Moyer, Myers and Blanton that carried us in 08."

Yeah, that's the model every good GM should follow. Cobble together a pitching staff and hope for an incredible amount of good fortune. No need to go get the best pitcher on the planet.

2011 splits:

vs LHP: .701 OPS
vs RHP: .723 OPS

It really wasnt a massive split last year. Having a true leadoff hitter would have helped us by moving Rollins down and defensively in the OF at 2 spots (RF and CF) if they bumped Vic to RF.

At worst, it was probably close to a wash compared to Pence and given the long-term salary/prospect implications, it was probably the right move.

***No need to go get the best pitcher on the planet. ***

And promptly trade away a Top 5 pitcher in baseball who was also a Cy Young winner.

How much did that really gain us in 2010? We got Doc....WOOHOO...and we traded Lee...WTF?!?

The net gain wasnt that great.

Caught a rerun of Lost In Space over the weekend on MeTV: Dr. Smith whining over and over again, "Oh, the pain...the pain." THAT's what most of these games have been like to watch.

Wigginton has a head like the Amazing Colossal Man and looks like he could be playing beer league softball in a few years (but playing it well, in fairness). Juan Pierre looks like a Cosby Kid out there. Uniform just doesn't look right on him somehow...noodle arm...popgun bat. Maybe he could hide his bad baserunning instincts back in the day when he had wheels, but that Tony Campana kid is putting on a true baserunning clinic with his speed (and some smarts as well). Of course, even the creaky old Pierre would probably be more successful running against the likes of Schneider, but I digress. Would rather see Mayberry used more (and Pierre relegated) to see what you've got there, as most of you have said. Sit RFD against a tough righty once in a while, but otherwise let him try to hit his way back to late-2011 form if possible.

The fact that those two guys (Wiggy and Juan) have been two of our better hitters this month speaks volumes about swagger and attitude -- and "jam" as Laviolette would say -- lost.

We're where we are purely on merit, with nowhere to go but up. But it's only the past 5 years of well-earned respect that is keeping the rest of the league from looking at our offense and thinking "laughingstock."

Maybe getting fired up for good divisional competition can help us get on a bit of a roll -- with some contagious outrage at those younger rivals who would usurp our NL East throne. One thing's for sure: there aren't too many Randy Wells-ish junkballers in our near future. Gonna' need plenty of smart at-bats. Ohh, the pain...

NEPP - I still maintain that trading Lee away was mandated by the Phillies owners. Monty said that he didn't want the fans to think that having two pitchers of Doc and Lee's caliber would be the norm. Also didn't want to pay them each down the road. Sometime after 2010 that idealogy changed.

NEPP is punching a sacred cow by criticizing the Halladay trade. But he's got a point. Of course, the sequence of events would look a lot better if Aumont, Gillies and Ramirez were anywhere close to the equal of Taylor, Drabek, and D'Arnaud.

***NEPP - I still maintain that trading Lee away was mandated by the Phillies owners. ***

If that was the case (which I tend to think it was), Rube should have just stuck with extending Lee. Lee and a crappy Hamels almost won us a WS in 2009. Lee and 2010 Hamels along with enough offense could have won it all.

"But that trade was a bad one, and I would say this even if Pence turned into Matt Kemp going forward."

Well, then you would be wrong.

"I still maintain that trading Lee away was mandated by the Phillies owners."

I am quite sure you're right. But I think what NEPP is saying is: if those are the marching orders, then just keep Lee. And Taylor, and Drabek and D'Arnaud.

Trading for Halladay, and getting him to basically lock himself up with us for 5 years at $89.5 M was BY FAR the best trade of Rube's tenure. It's not even a contest. $89.5 for 5 years of the best pitcher in the world is legendary.

If he HAD to trade Lee away (I don't agree, but for arguments sake), he HAD TO get better prospects in return. Remember, too, at that time, Michael Pineda was in the Mariners system. That end of the deal is the terrible end. Trading for Halladay was a terrific move.

Remember, the two moves were functionally independent.

***NEPP is punching a sacred cow by criticizing the Halladay trade. But he's got a point. ***

Sadly, I absolutely love Doc and love that he's on the Phillies but looking back, it probably wasn't a necessary move given the circumstances. Had we been able to keep Lee, it would have made a lot more sense.

***Remember, the two moves were functionally independent.***

No, they really werent. That's why Rube didnt even shop Lee around...he dealt with the Mariners and only the Mariners because he had to get a deal done fast and our FO was most familiar with their minor leagues...which netted us future all-stars like Gillies and JC Ramirez.

"But that trade was a bad one, and I would say this even if Pence turned into Matt Kemp going forward."

Well, then you would be wrong.

Posted by: Bedrosian's Beard | Monday, April 30, 2012 at 01:48 PM

Nope. Because NO ONE could have predicted that Pence would turn into Kemp. You make deals based on what you know at the time, and you shouldn't judge trades in hindsight. If Halladay turned into a pumpkin after his first start with the Phillies in 2010, would you call that trade a bad one? Of course not, because at the time, Doc was the best pitcher in the planet, and projected to stay that way for at least 3-5 years. Pence projected to be a 115 OPS+ hitter with average (at best) defense in LF, and very little in the way of baserunning chops.

Massive overpay at the time. If he then went on to outperform EVERY projection of him going forward, doesn't make the trade better. It makes it incredibly lucky, but not a good trade.

The following is expressed without notation or opinion:
First 22 games of 2012 Regular Season: 10-12
Last 22 games 2011 Regular Season: 10-12
Posted by: HammRadio | Monday, April 30, 2012 at 01:37 PM

Thank goodness none of this matters. I assume the Phils will just start winning like they are supposed to, just like they did last year...oops.

NEPP, you're speculating that Rube HAD to get a deal done. Even if I believed that, it's still speculation. They were functionally independent. Rube could have gotten a lot more than he did for Lee, and if he didn't because he was in a rush because he HAD to trade him away (by FO command), that's still a black mark on his and the FO's record. Lee could have netted us much more, even from WITHIN the Mariners system.

These points on Doc are definitely interesting and thought provoking especially when my brother and I were talking about dealing him last night in hopes of a prospect haul. I said that as long as the haul is better than what the Phillies got for Lee then I'm on board. That Lee deal is so damn ugly.

***you're speculating that Rube HAD to get a deal done. Even if I believed that, it's still speculation.***

I'm giving him the benefit of the doubt that Ownership insisted he get a deal done ASAP. Otherwise, I have to make the logical conclusion that Ruben Amaro is functionally retarded.

It's funny how often people get criticized on here for juding things in hindsight, but everyone seems to love judging trades in hindsight. The Doc deal was a massive steal, and any GM in baseball would have given up those prospects forDoc at $89.5 M for 5 years, and they all would have been right to do so.

*** The Doc deal was a massive steal, and any GM in baseball would have given up those prospects forDoc at $89.5 M for 5 years, and they all would have been right to do so.***

I completely agree. Its the logical consequence of that deal (trading Lee) that is the problem and one that has snowballed over the last few years. Its like leaping to make a game winning catch in a huge game knowing full well that the landing will destroy your knee and you'll never be the same player again. It was still a great catch but was it worth it?

Of course, in reality, its all Hamels fault because had he not had a crap year in 2009, Rube wouldn't have felt the need to get another Ace pitcher and we'd have back-to-back WS wins. So, like everything else, we should blame Cole Hamels.

Pence since he ran into the brick wall at AT&T to make that great catch on Apr. 16:

.182/.217/.341 (.558 OPS) with 2 HRs and 5 RBIs in 44 ABs over 11 G

Before that:

.333/.381/.462 (.842 OPS) with 1 HRs and 6 RBI in 39 ABs over 10 G

Maybe it is just a 2-week slump and he is really pressing. He has been striking out at an alarming rate over the past 2 weeks (15 Ks in 44 ABs with just 1 BB).

I still don't think his shoulder is 100% or that he magically healed overnight as he would lead you to believe after the negative MRI result despite the report he had trouble lifting his arm over his head.

His % swing/miss (14.6% this year vs career rate of 11.0%) and his rate of chasing pitches out of the zone (40.0% this year vs. career rate of 31.5%) are dramatically up.

My bet it is a combination of the two. Pence's right shoulder isn't 100% (playing hurt to some degre), he is trying to do much, and in the progress he is swinging at a ton of crap and striking out a lot.

The thing is NEPP, I can't find any fault in the Doc deal because even if the FO felt that they definitely had to deal Lee and had to do it quickly, before making sure they optimized their return, they were wrong to feel that way. That's bad business. If you're currying to the whims of your fanbase by trading away a very good commodity for a poor return, you are doing business the wrong way.

The Doc deal was fantastic. The Lee deal was terrible. They may be linked, but they needn't be inextricably linked, as the FO signed Doc in December, and had plenty of time to see what the market is for Lee.

And considering that Seattle probaly got a better haul for Lee later on in July, it means the FO more than sold themselves short on a position of great leverage.

In general Pence doesn't walk. He is a hacker on a team full of hackers. That is the problem with this team. You want to watch good baseball you have to check out other teams in the league. It's amazing to watch good hitting teams work counts and get their pitch in their count.

***And considering that Seattle probaly got a better haul for Lee later on in July, it means the FO more than sold themselves short on a position of great leverage***

And other teams like the Yankees stated after the fact that they didnt even know Lee was available until after the trade...not exactly smart business there.

"I think a greater portion of us here felt the utter reliance on Mayberry would be either a sign of something terribly wrong with the offense or at best, a chance for him to show what he is in a larger sample size. I wil readily admit I thought he was going to be great, I suspect that will be a bad prediction."


grandpa, the problem is that, except for a short 5 game stretch, he hasn't really gotten a chance, and the 20 PA in that stretch can't be considered uch of a chance either.

I though he could put up an OPS of .800.

I still think he can. But if he doesn't get regular playing time we may never find out.

If** the Pence deal backfires on Rube, its not his fault, its the players. Not going into the WS last year was such an epic failure, and will make the trade bare no fruit if they do so again this year.

Pence's pathetic, awful 2011 NLDS was as much blame as anyones.

** Singleton and Cosart are no locks to do a damn thing to make this a bad trade even if Pence goes 0for his career from here on out.

1st Lee trade:

Gillies is off to a so-so start, Aumont's been erratic & is hurt, and JC Ramirez as a reliever has been horrible.

Really good chance at this point the Phils get nothing out of his trade in years to come. JC Ramirez is well on his way to washing out of the organizations, Gillies will be 24 this year and really has to show something this year offensively to still be considered a prospect, and Aumont has great stuff but inconsistent mechanics & he's a mental midget on the mound who really doesn't have good composure when he gets in a jam.

Surprised how little Dubee thought of Aumont this spring including his composure and mound presence.

That trade can be directly traced back to Looper & Gillick's ties to the Mariners. Looper knew that system well from his previous gig & recommended those guys.

"And other teams like the Yankees stated after the fact that they didnt even know Lee was available until after the trade...not exactly smart business there."

But, didn't Rosenthal, the guy who broke the news the Phils were getting Doc and trading Lee, say the Phils did talk to the Yankees, and asked for Montero+? This was the same Yankees that had beaten the Phillies in the World Series a month earlier. The same WS that cemented(created?) Lee's folk hero status with the Phans.

I think Brown is going to see a sports psychologist before he sees time in the majors again. Seems like he got all messed up from his apparently premature callup.

lorecore, whether Cosart and Singleton do a damn thing in the majors has little bearing on the evaluation of the Pence trade. Singleton and Cosart had great value last year, and that value was not optimized in trading for a guy like Pierre. That makes it a bad trade. They were the best hitting and pitching prospects in our system, and we got a 3-4 win player for BOTH of them.

Meant Pence, not Pierre. Ooops.

Pence since he ran into the brick wall at AT&T to make that great catch on Apr. 16:

.182/.217/.341 (.558 OPS) with 2 HRs and 5 RBIs in 44 ABs over 11 G

Before that:

.333/.381/.462 (.842 OPS) with 1 HRs and 6 RBI in 39 ABs over 10 G

So Pence was a BA-heavy Bobby Abreu until he crashed into a wall? Maybe Abreu was right after all!

Fatal: Disagree. Singleton and Cosart's future performance is 100% in the equation of evaluating this trade. There is no magical currency of a prospects value, they're worth whatever they get traded for.

If they have 0 success in the MLB, then it behooved the Phillies to flip them for a better player. And Pence was arguably the best available position player at the trade deadline.

Edmundo: Wait, so Pence has had 6 RBI in 10 G after the injury and only 5 in the previous 11 G? That makes that run in with the wall as the most valuable event to this phillies team that Phlipper has ever seen.

The Doc trade looks even better in hindsight than it did at the time, since Taylor and Drabek look like busts.

The 2010 and 2011 teams underperformed in the playoffs. I think it's a big assumption to say that a more balanced team would have been better off in the playoffs than those pitching-heavy teams.

I suppose you could argue that trading for Halladay eventually necessitated overpaying for Pence, which hurts because we lost Singleton. In that case, I think it's simpler to just criticize the Pence trade.

NEPP- your logic is so twisted on this Doc thing that it's pointless even arguing with you. Essentially, you hate the Lee trade so much (understandably) that you're letting that snowball into an opinion that is just stupid ('We shouldn't have bothered trading for the best pitcher in the league at a discounted rate').

Hating the Lee trade is fine, because the return was a joke. But like Fata said, they are two independent moves.

Taylor is up with the A's now I think

Also, in the last thread, BAP asked what constituted 'giving up' on the season as a fan.

I would submit that NEPP giving the post-mortem on a GM that has won the division every year of his tenure constitutes giving up.

Did the Phillies traded away the "right" outfielder in the Halladay trade?


Michael Taylor, his shoulder apparently healthy, is doing this at AAA Sacramento:


.360/.387/.558, 13 XBH, 18 RBI, 11 K, 4 BB, 5 SB, 1 CS, 93 PA.

***Hating the Lee trade is fine, because the return was a joke. But like Fata said, they are two independent moves. ***

Yes, keep telling yourself that. In a vacuum, Lee was traded. It had absolutely nothing at all to do with Halladay.

lorecore, you're basically saying that we should judge the trade in hindsight. Singleton and Cosart had a value last year. That value was based upon what they are projected to be and likelihood they get there. You don't give up your best hitting/pitching prospect for a 3-4 wni player. That's just bad baseball management.

Based on your logic, they could have given up Singleton and Cosart for just about anybody, and as long as Singleton/Cosart crap out, good trade!! That's just incredibly wrong.

***I would submit that NEPP giving the post-mortem on a GM that has won the division every year of his tenure constitutes giving up. ***

I would call it analyzing that GM's moves over the last few years.

***Taylor is up with the A's now I think ***

He is. He was called up a few days ago but hasnt gotten any ABs yet.

On that day, the Phillies, in net, traded Lee, Drabek, d'Arnaud, and Taylor for Halladay, Aumont, Gillies, and Ramirez. It's not really clear to me how that led us to this point.

I think that day was a net positive for Amaro, both at the time and in hindsight.

Since we are putting Ruben under the microscope let me ask you guys this....

Now that this team is heading for a rebuild (yes, they are most likely) would you rather have Arbuckle at the helm or are you confident in Ruben's ability to restock the system through trades and the draft?

Taylor has 2.5 years of AAA under his belt. I'll need to see more than 90 good PA to be convinced he's not a bust. (Disclaimer: I was saying the same thing about Mayberry before last year)

Blow it up. It's over. It's over. Trade. Trade. Trade. That is the only hope of keeping up with the good young Nationals, Braves and next year the Mets. If they go in to 2012 with this pathetic offense it is 4th place for sure. Wise up RAJ. Your old folks are going down in flames while you keep looking at the Wigginton, Nix, Thome, Pierre,Polanco,Orr, etc. If you do not want to be bold, step aside and let a good young GM guide this franchise.

Fatal: Pence was the best available player at the trade deadline.

I think the phillies overpaid when that trade was made, i mean we're not even talking about Domingo Santana, one of my favorite prospects!

But if Pence gets you 4 wins these next two seasons and those prospects don't pan out - it was absolutely a good trade for the phils. And remember, Singleton and Cosart weren't can't miss prospects - just because they were the Phillies best ones didnt mean they were coveted all over the league.

Singleton is arguably the best hitter in the Texas League (AA)...as well as nearly the youngest.

Lore, he was the best available (maybe), but we didn't need him last year. We won the division by 13 friggin games.

Fatal: And dude wtf? Of course you evaluate trades in hindsight, what other method is there?

"Yes, keep telling yourself that. In a vacuum, Lee was traded. It had absolutely nothing at all to do with Halladay."

I can't believe I'm continuing this discussion because you are literally the only person on earth that thinks obtaining Halladay, a better pitcher than Cliff Lee and probably the best pitcher on the planet, for a discount was a dumb idea.

But I'll play along. If Rube had gotten a decent/good return for Lee, would it change your opinion on acquiring Halladay?

Lore, you judge it based on what was known at the time. That's the ONLY way to judge any decision.

Anything can look good or bad in hindsight. Sing/Cos had a specific value last year, and they were the best pieces in our system. Pence was a career 3.5 win player, and given his stats last year being inflated by an unsustainably high BAbip was not giving any reason to think he was going to turn into much more than that. He was also already 27, and is a player with poor fundamentals who should not age gracefully.

Given that criteria, and the fact that we were the best team in baseball BEFORE we traded for him, it was a bad trade.

If Sing/Cos never do a thing in the majors, that doesn't change the above facts in late July, 2011. And since Rube can't know what they'll do years down the road, he can only go by what they're projected to be, that's why you can't judge the trade in hindsight.

Did the Phillies traded away the "right" outfielder in the Halladay trade?

Michael Taylor, his shoulder apparently healthy, is doing this at AAA Sacramento:

.360/.387/.558, 13 XBH, 18 RBI, 11 K, 4 BB, 5 SB, 1 CS, 93 PA.

I'll have my sample in small, please.

13 XBH is somewhat misleading since it translates to 11 2Bs and 2 HRs.

Teammate Brandon Moss is out-OPSing Taylor by 60 points.

I won't get too up in arms yet.


***I can't believe I'm continuing this discussion because you are literally the only person on earth that thinks obtaining Halladay, a better pitcher than Cliff Lee and probably the best pitcher on the planet, for a discount was a dumb idea. ***

Like I've said probably 8 billion times since that trade was made. The trade for Halladay was brilliant. It was a fantastic move. However, if he made it knowing that he had to give up Lee and then he gave him up for peanuts, it was probably a mistake. If we kept Lee or traded him for a real return (preferably near-MLB level talent), its a brilliant move. However, when you give away an Ace pitcher after trading for another one, the original move falls into question. When you decisively admit your mistake 6 months later by making another trade for an Ace pitcher in Roy Oswalt, you prove that mistake. As a result of that trade and its consequences (Both foreseen in giving up Lee and unseen in needing Oswalt), we emptied out our Farm System. Top $$ teams should definitely leverage their farm systems into MLB ready talent. That is not in dispute. However, it needs to be done in an efficient manner. Rube did not do so and he compounded the issue by making a 2nd trade for an Ace pitcher within six months rather than just keeping Lee.

That's why the original move was questionable, not because of the move itself. Look, like you, I absolutely love Doc Halladay and I am ecstatic that we get to watch him play on our team every 5th day. That doesnt make the move start to look questionable a few years down the line when you see the consequences play out.

A similar argument on consequences could be illustrated by history (gets to use degree for a moment). 110 years ago, the British decided to revolutionize their navy with an all-big gun battleship. This was a brilliant move on their part as it tripled the strength of each of their ships and even saved them money on their budget (1 ship is cheaper to operate than 3). However, many historians look at the decision to build Dreadnaught as a major spark that led Europe down the path to WWI.

Fatalotti and lorecore: I think you both have valid points and are talking past each other.

Suppose the Phillies traded, say, Domonic Brown to Pittsburgh for Jose Bautista during the 2008 season. That would be a ridiculously stupid trade in the sense that they would have paid way over market value, but a ridiculously good trade in terms of realized value. A trade can be both good and bad, depending on your definition (and the two of you are obviously using different definitions).

In lieu of the two people who can/suppose(Utley/Howard) to carry the team to whom does that tite fall to. I dont think at this point in the career it isnt Polly or Rollins. Ruiz was never suppose to carry this team. I never really considered Shane to be that person. It has to fall to Pence. Even without Howard/Utley there is enough talent on paper for this team to do better. Unfortunately that isnt this case to due to struggles, injuries and old age. If you could close your eyes and go back 2 years a line up which includes, Rollins, Pence, Victorino, Polanco and Ruiz doesnt sound shabby. PS....I to found it odd that Pence couldnt lift his arms up then the next day he was magically healed...

Speaking of bad trades made by contending teams...how about Casey Blake for Carlos Santana. How much do you think the Dodgers would love to have Santana back right now?

NEPP's kinda right about the Halladay-Lee trades. I was irrationally apoplectic in those threads for the same reason. Love Halladay, and the pieces we sent to Toronto will most likely never produce what Halladay's produced here. But the Lee trade was so bad and such a terrible misuse of resources that it rained on the parade for me.

Getting Pence was worth it though. Nobody would be complaining right now if he was hitting like he has over the past few years. He'll regress (progress?) to his mean and then everyone will be happy with the trade again.

DH, I judge decisions two ways: justified/unjustified and fortunate/unfortunate.

Trading for Bautista in 2008 by giving away Brown would have been unjustified given the information available at the time.

It would have been fortunate as hell, but totally unjustified. Nobody saw Bautista turning into Sammy Sosa, and Brown was our best long-term prospect.

***He'll regress (progress?) to his mean and then everyone will be happy with the trade again.***

Question for the group: What is Pence's mean?

Is he the 138 OPS+ player he was in his Age 28 season last year or the 111 OPS+ guy he was in the 3 years prior to that? If I had to bet, I would bet that the 3 years prior are a more accurate forecast for what we can expect from him going forward. If that is the case, is he really worth the $10 million he's getting this year and probable $15 million he'll make next year in arbitration? That's a lot for a 111 OPS+ outfield with just average defense.

NEPP: If they don't make the Halladay/Lee companion trades, they have a rotation of Lee, Hamels, Kendrick, Blanton, and Happ in July. Instead, they had a rotation of Halladay, Hamels, Kendrick, Blanton, and Happ, but with a worse farm system. I think they still would have traded for Oswalt under the former situation: their rotation would be worse than the one they had in the realized situation, when they did trade for Oswalt.

Also, the Oswalt trade was a steal. I don't think the Phillies do, or should, regret trading what they did for Oswalt.

The scenario you would like is the one where they traded for Halladay, kept Lee, and did not trade Oswalt. In that situation, they would have Happ, Drabek, Taylor, d'Arnaud, Gose, and Villar instead of Aumont, Gillies, and Ramirez. There isn't really a valid criticism of the Halladay trade. You're just criticizing the Lee trade, and everyone agrees that was terrible.

Fat: I think there's a big difference between judging a manager's moves in hindsight and judging a GM's moves in hindsight.

You can't judge a manager's move in hindsight because: (a) you can't know how the alternative would have played out; and (b) just because the move played out a certain way does not mean it was particularly likely to play out that way.

A GM, however, is paid to judge talent and a key part of that job entails an ability to assess the potential for improvement. And, unlike in-game tactical decisions, where we can call up a player's splits & assess the various probabilities, we really can't do that when it comes to personnel moves (particularly those involving prospects). Also, unlike in-game decisions, we do have the ability to evaluate a GM's moves in hindsight.

If a GM keeps trading away guys who turn into superstars, he's going to get canned -- no matter how his trades may have looked at the time. And if RAJ gave up a huge haul of prospects to get Hunter Pence, and Hunter Pence subsequently turned into Matt Kemp, I would say that RAJ would be more than entitled to take the credit.

Personally, my own assessment of trades/acquisitions is sort of a combination of how the trade looked at the time, and how it actually played out. The latter consideration is more important to me but, at the same time, I'm not really willing to crucify a GM for making a trade that looked good at the time, but subsequently turned sour.

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