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Saturday, July 14, 2012


If a team is actually interested in Polanco and willing to give up a legitimate prospect for him, then you have to do that. I mean, how is that even a question?

Posted by: Jack | Saturday, July 14, 2012 at 10:41 AM

It's not to anyone except Rube, apparently

Going to see the Iron Pigs play the Tides tonight instead of watching the game. I don't think that I'll be missing it too much. Last night was especially disappointing since I was really looking forward to coming off the break, and now I just want to close my eyes when they play awful teams like the Rockies.

At this point I have to think that Rube's definition of a "top prospect" is completely different from everyone else's. How can you ask for 1-2 "top prospects" for Polanco and not expect to get laughed off the phone?

It didn't take long for Howard & Utley to lose their optimism, I guess. I fell asleep and missed the huddle around Schwimer, but I can well imagine it.

Let's face it: It's hard to expect a win when our BP gets into the game with us behind already! And the offense got off to a weak 2nd half, too.

I'm still hoping that Doc's return will provide some spark. I've said repeatedly that I just want to enjoy some games again, which means winning at least half of them, or at not feeling doomed to continual losses.

"Game 2 begins tonight at 8:10. Discuss it here."

Do I have to?

Careful Jason, you're treading on thin ground indeed when you reference facial expressions and emotional trappings. Let's talk WAR wins!

RSB: I know, right.

Long overdue new playlist.

Sweet, Def Leppard and Baroness. Good choices.

Now we're ready to get out of the hot stove and play some baseball for real.

Ring,ring,ring.......rube teams are calling. Start making deals. Funny Colorado brings up AA players and we keep em till 26? No wonder y the last guys have left front office.

Have the Phillies permanently demoted Dom to the GCL?

Bad game last night by what is increasingly a bad team- THIS SEASON! I felt the need to emphasize that last part because I don't think this is something that carries over into 2013.

Come on here to read the game thread and really it is the same old same old. Charlie is the problem, Lee takes relatively little criticism for not being good at a key spot in the game, and MG doesn't like listening to TMac and Sarge in the middle 3 innings. You know that cause he mentions it every single game.

The disgusting part of the game for me were the throws by Pence and Mayberry in the 6th. The Mayberry throw especially. How did he not gun that guy at home plate by like 15 steps?


An appropriate choice, as the team's full of 'em.

The air of resignation and the ease with which they seemnmlgy give up after falling behind are the toughest parts of this to for me to take. Even the really bad clubs of the late 1990's had more fire in them.

In other words, there's no magic pill for this team-wide virus.

I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

Even the really bad clubs of the late 1990's had more fire in them.

Not to my recollection, they didn't. But it is more disgusting having to watch a club w/ several talented players roll over & die than it was to watch those w/ hardly any do the same.

Even the really bad clubs of the late 1990's had more fire in them.


That is simply not true

That totally is true.


An appropriate choice, as the team's full of 'em.

Posted by: GTown_Dave | Saturday, July 14, 2012 at 12:18 PM

Yeah, Mike Fontenot alone has four or five of them.

Ok, let's say that the Phillies re-sign Hamels. I think it's a fair (but not guaranteed) assumption to say that the starting pitching would be better next year, with Hamels, Lee and Halladay all returning. They've gotten mediocre performance from those 3, and you would expect better.

But you can't really expect the offense to be better, can you? Ruiz won't match what he's done this year. Utley and Howard are NOT what they used to be--people are in denial about this, but it's just true. Howard, even if he gets back to 100% of what he was in 2011, is still only a decently above-average hitter--he's not an MVP-type offensive player. Utley, well, it sort of goes without saying that he isn't what he used to be. Rollins is another year older. Victorino will be gone, and if you sign Hamels you have no money to replace him with a good external option. Who plays 3B? Who plays LF?

I just increasingly don't see this claim that the Phillies can bounce back and be very good again next year.

I swear Jack wrote this exact same paragraph last year.

The team is built on pitching. The pitching all around has not been good. Therefore, blow up the team.

That's how many posts on here read. I think they're pretty knee jerk.
Bullpen needs to improve. Doc needs to come back. Cole and Lee need to pitch better. That's it - that's the difference in 2012.

The rest - Polly, Pence, Utley, and Pierre are just details on a team built on pitching.

3r0ck: So you think this team can win based on Halladay, Lee and Hamels, regardless of how bad the rest of the team is?

Needless to say, I disagree.

I don't see Sweet anywhere on that playlist.

Maybe the list should include this:

Since it contains the Phillies-appropriate final track "Thorns on My Grave."

I never invested much hope in the return of Howie and Utley. And now that return just sort of feels like the death rattle of a dying team.

The Iron Pigs also used to have many of the physical and emotional trappings of a last-place team. Then Ryne Sandberg became the manager.

Just sayin....


The Lehigh Valley IronPigs hit the 2012 Triple-A All-Star break perched atop the International League North standings with a 52-39 record - 1 ½ games clear of Pawtucket and four ahead of Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

A quick look at Sunday's game two lineup - a 7-1 win in the final game before the break - and a look at the league statistics and outsiders might have a difficult time understanding how this team owns the second best record in the entire 14-team IL.

But to fans that have been following all season, they know the IronPigs have been great at one thing: FINDING WAYS TO WIN, no matter who is in the lineup.

Read more at:

Pretty epic Pigs team providing silver lining while we turn into the Cubs.

The Yankees missed the playoffs once and went out and signed 3 marquee free agents. Then they won the World Series. Does anyone think the Phillies will do that?

I don't, and a big part of the problem is that after resigning Hamels, which essentially makes us the same team next year, we will basically be tapped out with so much money tied up to the current roster.

Don't cry because it's because it happened. -Dr. Seuss

Jack- nice to see you have bailed on signing Hamels. What happened in the last 24 hours that changed your mind?

For a team built around pitching, it has been horrendous the last 6 weeks. Even if the Phils had the best offense, they would struggle to win most nights.

Need to score at least 5 runs since then in order to have a good shot to win. Any team in MLB would have a .sub 500 record with that caveat.

No more excuses for this team. Maybe when Howard and Utley return they'll turn things around, not happening. Maybe the All Star Break, not happening. Maybe by Labor Day, and so on and so on.... This team is over for the 2012 season. Say goodbye to the consecutive sell outs at CBP. Rather pathetic, second highest payroll in baseball and this is how they perform??

While not totally inconceivable, this idea that the Phillies will bounce back next year, when everyone is healthy & returns to previous levels, is not really an idea which has much support in precedent. The 1979/1980 Phillies were the exception, not the norm. More often than not, when a run of division titles comes to an end, it gets much worse before it gets better.

The best recent model for the Phillies would probably be the 2007 Cardinals who fell to 78-84, after having had dominant 100-win seasons in 2004 & 2005, & a "last hurrah" World Series win in 2006. Unlike the current Phillies team, that 2007 Cardinal team had three young centerpieces to build on: a 27-year old Pujols, a 24-year old Yadier Molina, and a 25-year old Adam Wainwright. Otherwise, it was a really old team.

The next year, they bounced back to 86-76 (still out of the playoffs), thanks to a shrewed FA signing (Troy Glaus) & big seasons from guys you'd never have expected to have big seasons (Ryan Ludwick, Skip Schumaker, Rick Ankiel, Kyle Lohse). The next year, Glaus was gone, but they traded for Matt Holliday & were back in the playoffs.

Unfortunately, I don't see any young Pujols, Molina, or Wainwright on the Phillies' roster. Maybe they're there, but we just don't know it yet. If not, it's going to be hard to make the kind of quick, 2-year turnaround that the Cardinals made. Most of the Phillies' money is being spent on guys who are likely to be worse next year, instead of better.

So if Charlie's only positive is that he is a clubhouse guy, the players coach...what good is he when he completely lost touch with the entire team?

A phrase one often hears as relates to starting pitchers is "keeping [their] team in the game". However, it's also important to have relievers who can "keep their team in the game", & an offense that can "keep its team in the game". Witness last night, for example, where even if Lee had allowed no runs the Phillies still set a pace to lose, 3-2. Or even if Lee had pitched as he did, & the bullpen had been perfect, the Phillies still set a pace to lose, 3-2.

Fans & FO alike appear to be waiting around for the rotation to equal their performance from '11, which is an entirely unreasonable expectation. The great starters were all great, the not-so-great starters were better than expected & the SPs as a whole largely escaped injury, particularly amongst the Top 3.

The reality is that such a perfect confluence of favorable events rarely occurs. Injuries happen. Lesser players play like such. It's all well & good to value starting pitching, but not at the expense of the rest of the team. The Phillies have an imbalanced roster, & require a stronger whole as opposed to blind focus on one exceptionally strong area.

Unfortunately, I only see two ways in which that will be possible: (a) trade Hamels & fill holes, or (b) retain Hamels & commit to spending Yankees-type money across the board. I fear, however, the Phillies will go w/ option (c), which consists of doing whatever it takes to sign Hamels, continuing to cut corners & ignore gaping holes elsewhere, & praying starting pitching alone will carry the team to a parade. The odds aren't favorable.

No way they can ignore the BP. I suppose they can consider that Stutes & Herndon will be back (How excited does that make you?)and that the young guys with no control will have this year's experience to carry forward, hopefully improving upon their command and performance. But the loss of Conteras and the disappointment of Bastardo can't be ignored.

A rotation of Halladay, Lee, Worley, KK (ugh) and ?? can work if ?? is better than Blanton (or like Blanton in '08).

Very hard for me to give up Hamels, however.

If we're talking $$, I'd rather give up Utley, but I know that's not possible. Love him, but I don't see him being worth the cost with his health problems. And he's still cheaper than Hamels will be.

I might be wrong but I think that they have zero shutouts this year. In years past they always had someone throw up 9 zeros. OK, Lee did in SF in a loss but I can't remember any others. Maybe they over-worked their starters last year but its hard to believe that this staff hasn't thrown 5-6 complete game shutouts.

That Hagen piece on Sarge smacks of being a PR planted piece.

I am sure Sarge is a good guy buy as a color analyst he stinks. Talks endlessly often about things that have nothing to do with the game, does basically zero prep, and only occasionally actually decides to bring some insight into game & talking about a particular hitting situation.

Even then, he often belabors a point and make it endlessly (e.g., Mayberry needs to stop crouching so much or looking at first-pitch fastballs)

Basically shows up for 3 innings a night, clowns around, and goes home. Great gig and an easy way to make a decent paycheck.

"In other words, there's no magic pill for this team-wide virus."

Sure there is. Look for Dr Kevorkian, I'm pretty sure he's listed in the phone book...

I have said it a million times but I still get a strong impression that TMac hates working with Sarge. Not nearly as it ease as he is with Wheels later in the game.

As much as TMac gets ripped, his style does translate over better to the radio. He also isn't a bad college basketball broadcaster when I have heard him do play-by-play. Speed of the game seems to suit him broadcasting style better & he generally seems to have a better feel for the game.

3r0ck: So you think this team can win based on Halladay, Lee and Hamels, regardless of how bad the rest of the team is?
Needless to say, I disagree.
Posted by: Jack | Saturday, July 14, 2012 at 01:29 PM

Nope I don't think that, but I also don't think blowing up the whole team will get us closer to a WS next year.

enough already
they all look just like losers
trade them; trade them all

If the Phils '12 were a virus, the proper thing to do would be to treat them like an infect TB patient and order them into strict quarantine until they are no longer contagious.

Wheels occasionally moves over to radio (paired w/ Franzke), & on those occasions I find I don't mind him at all. However, I tried to listen to TMac on radio a short while back, & he was as ignorant & intolerable as ever. Decided to watch the game on TV w/ no sound.

TTI: Wait, you don't remmeber that '96 team led by fiery Ricky Otero and Gregg Jefferies? Of those those 90s teams played with more intensity and fire!


My favorite "fiery" Phillies player of the late 1990s was Desi Relaford. Oh, how I wished to see him catch fire. Literally.

BAP: The comparison to the Cardinals is instructive. The Phils are in a bind because they did not get much out of their drafts in the mid-2000s.

BA always does a "projected lineup" 3 or 4 years out based on a team's top prospects. Here are the players BA projected in 2008 and 2009 would be everyday players for the Phillies by 2012: Lou Marson, Moose Mattair, Adrian Cardenas, Michael Taylor, Dom Brown and Jason Donald. In the rotation: Kyle Drabek, Carlos Carrasco, Josh Outman and Joe Savery.

That list today is a big laugh.

Even if 3 or 4 of those guys had fulfilled their potential, the Phillies wouldn't be in nearly a tough spot as they are today.

Maybe it's just me, but did anyone here ever get the sense that Gregg Jefferies cared? Anyone?

Zachary Levine: "Update: Astros SS prospect Jonathan Villar broke his hand punching a door between innings. Out 6 weeks."


He must've thought he was still on the Phillies.

Tonight's Lineup: Rollins (Pop Out), Vic (Ground Out), Utley (Fly Out), Howard (Strike Out), Ruiz (Double), Pence (Strike Out), Pierre (Bloop Hit, CS), Fontenot (Single), Worley (5 IP, 106 Pitches).

Did someone feed bread to the ducks on Marple Newtown pond like I asked? TOmmy-Boy has his BVD's all in a flutter worrying about the canards. Me, I just got in from an all-night troll through the Mile-High City. Who knows, with RAJ cleaning house soon it may have been my last glory. Check out my outfit and the pre-game tonight and let me know what you think:")

I know its just posturing right now, but if we don't trade our players because we held out for huge hauls in return I'll be so pist

clout - No and it is why (along with several other reasons) he was a favorite of the boo-birds at the Vet.

"I might be wrong but I think that they have zero shutouts this year. In years past they always had someone throw up 9 zeros. OK, Lee did in SF in a loss but I can't remember any others. Maybe they over-worked their starters last year but its hard to believe that this staff hasn't thrown 5-6 complete game shutouts."

I know it's almost impossible to fathom, but our boy KK pitched a complete game SO in St. Louis on that fateful Saturday night before Doc threw his last meaningful (and painful) pitches the next day......

Pierre this year: 20 SB, 3 CS. It's true.

And probably even more astonishing, Kentucky Joe threw that masterpiece at the Braves the day AFTER Doc's meltdown in Atlanta in April. Team's only CGSO's by Blanton and K. Hard to believe, Harry......

Iceman: Pierre's actually exceeded my expectations in that area, but it's feeling like one of those nights.

Jeffries never looked or acted like he gave a crap about anything. Sadly, his Phillies slash line would seem a pretty good addition to this year's club. Yes, we're that bad.

I winder what they're searching for. Whatever it is they haven't found it.

Wonder- Sorry.

"Even if 3 or 4 of those guys had fulfilled their potential, the Phillies wouldn't be in nearly a tough spot as they are today."

Not sure about that since, of the 10 guys on your list, the only 2 we didn't trade away were the 2 who never even showed enough signs of life to acquire any trade value (Savery & Mattair). But I agree with your larger point that we haven't done a very good job developing our toolsy prospects. Whether the problem is with our scouting/drafting philosophy, our implementation of that philosophy, our coaching and development of our toolsy prospects, or just plain old bad luck is open to debate. I would guess it's some combination of all 4.

What the Phillies need is a new game song. Everyone opens up to Freak Nasty Da' Dip.

In a season with little good Phillies news, I guess this "sort of" counts. In today's game between the Venezuelan Summer League Phillies & the VSL Rays, the Rays' 1st batter reached first base on an error. After that, the VSL Phillies' pitcher, a 19-year old named Douglas Parada, retired the next 27 hitters in order, with 14 Ks and no walks. He is now 7-0 with a 0.69 ERA, including 5 starts in a row without allowing an earned run.

That said, the VSL caliber of play is about the equivalent of an American high school league, and 19 is about 2 years too old for the league. So I wouldn't get too excited. Still, I always like to see prospects with eye-popping numbers, no matter what the circumstances.

Venezuelan Summer League? Who knew? BAP, don't you have a spouse, girl/boy friend, dog, rabbit, something?

curt: Well, when you go check the minor league box scores, the league is right there to be clicked on. So I figured, "What the hell."

bap - I kid, I kid. Of course, at the rate the Phillie system signs and burps forth actual major leaguers, the chance of someone on one of these remote farm teams ever surfacing in Phila. is right up there with an alien invasion.

Is there a link somewhere about the O's & polly. If I'm RAJ I drive him to Camden Yards myself. Maybe I'd bring back a bag of baseballs.

If the O's want to give the Phils a prospect, the deal should be made already.

The O's have bullpen arms.

I get more baseball satisfaction looking at the minor scores. At least I can see who and what happened. Unlike the slop that trots out there every night. . I don't have to watch games and still can somewhat predict what happens. A lot of good things are happening on all levels. Just that they are all lower and can't help. Oh wait Colorado and other teams promote AA prospects. Ring ring ring pick up rube. Texas calling "when are you going tO let Cole go and come to a team that scores, and shows heart. Call me back

Orioles interested in Polanco, Blanton and Pierre. Also, Phillies aren't trading Lee to make room for Hamels.

Imagine if you were an Oriole fan, and you picked up the morning paper to see the headline: "Orioles Trade Prospects for Polanco, Blanton & Pierre." It would be one of those headlines that gets progressively worse and worse with each new word that you read.

Victorino has an extra-base hit. Hallelujah. Praise the lord.

Imagine if you were an Oriole fan ...

Sorry. You lost me.

Victorino has an extra-base hit. Hallelujah.

3r0ck: Yeah, I agree.

I guess my point is that I don't see a WS for this team in 2013 no matter what they do. So it would be about re-building for the next possible WS team.

What I fear is that we're looking at an 85-win best-case scenario next year and pushing a real rebuilding even further into the future.

Whoops. Posted twice. D'oh.

The Phillies took the lead. Uh, I didn't know such a thing existed. What is a lead? I've heard of them, but I've never seen the Phillies have one before.


Of course, if Chooch keeps hitting like Mike Piazza, then maybe we could get to 87 wins next year.

Chooooch! Nice job in the 1st inning, Phillies' offense!

Dare we hope this is a sign that today is THE turnaround?

A 4-0 1st inning lead can only mean one thing: this will be a bullpen loss.

It's sad that I can see Amaro thinking he can get one of Machado or Bundy for a package of Polanco, Blanton and Pierre.

And it's about time the Phillies put up something like a crooked number. How long has it been?

This is one of those nightmare innings, only we're on the good side of the nightmare for a change.

I'm sure this is all the scoring we'll do all game, while the Rockies chip away at the lead until our BP enters the picture and gives them the lead.

There is no "turnaround" this season. 2012 is now the walking dead.

I mean, I think those are the rules for Phillies baseball 2012.

"I'm sure this is all the scoring we'll do all game, while the Rockies chip away at the lead until our BP enters the picture and gives them the lead."

That post could have been written by me.

Phils score 2 in the 8th and 2 in the 9th, lose 13-8.

Oh well. Even a turnaround for one inning is better than nothing.

I was about write a post saying that if the Phillies won 17 out of their next 20, then maybe I could consider them as being back to a contender this season.

And then I realized that 17 out of 20 would only get them to .500, which would still have them significantly behind in the wild-card race.

It ain't happening, folks.

I wonder how they will lose this game...

That's just sad and pathetic, Jack. Winning 17 of 20 gets us only to .500? Of course, we could win 17 of 20, lose 1, win the next 3, lose 2, win 8 of 10, etc., etc. But not with this BP.

You gotta be more positive than that, Jack...20 out of 20 would put us 3 games over .500.

Tack on another 15 of 20 streak and we'd be right back in it.

Baby steps.

Meanwhile, the Union were denied a clear PK.

If the Phillies go 65-9 the rest of the way they'll be a 102 win team again!

"The Phillies took the lead. Uh, I didn't know such a thing existed. What is a lead? I've heard of them, but I've never seen the Phillies have one before."

The phils have had tons of leads this season, I would even venture to say that they've had leads in well over 50% of their games this season - which makes their pitiful record even more pitiful.

Franzke & LA are laughing at Worley stumbling over 1B. It was pretty funny to watch.

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