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Wednesday, August 15, 2012


Chuck, the 2010 Phillies were 49-19 heading into the playoffs (a ridiculous .721 WP) and 52-19 heading into the NLCS (a .733 WP).

It didn't matter, as they lost 4 of 6 to the Giants.

The playoffs are very much a crapshoot. Even in the midst of that 52-19 stretch by the Phillies, they lost 4 IN A ROW to the 76 win Astros at CBP.

We kep hearing how teh playoffs are a "crapshoot". But if we go back to Beerleaguer comments during the playoffs last several years we will find tremendous criticism of CM's strategy.
We all know he has issues in that department throughout but during playoffs each mistake that is capitalized on is a door closer (unlike the regular season were a such mistakes can be overcome by highly productive hitting and pitching in the long run by a stacked team).

Think about its not just a "crapshoot".

Don't take RK's bait. Please don't do it.

I don't know how it's justifiable to have Wig, Frandsen and Luna all get more ABs than Brown, but I'm sure Cholly has his reasons.

So...has Hector Luna ever played LF before?

Also, will Chase ever get a day off again?

RK, theoretically, better teams will always have better odds of winning a series, and certainly, bad moves by the manager decrease your chances of winning any given game.

But think of it this way. The 2012 Phils had a .629 WP, which over a 7 game series, equates to 4.4 wins. The 2012 Cards had a .555 WP, which over 7 games equates to 3.9 wins. When you factor in matchups and the fact that when you divvy it down to the top 8 teams, and condense series in such a way that 5th starters and weak bullpen/bench pieces can be marginalized, the difference between the 2 over a 7 game series is probably even smaller.

Fact is, get to the dance and you have a chance.

Sorry Ice, didn't see you admonition before I posted.

-135 with this crap lineup? No thanks even if Halladay has looked like Halladay of late and has really strong results vs. Fish last few years.

Only Fish who will play today who have any kind of success against him are Reyes & Dobbs (very SSS)

Awesome...before this year, Luna's last start in LF was in 2006.

Did Pierre hang himself in the dugout after the game last night?

"For the last two seasons, the Texas Rangers, a team that had never previously been to a World Series, have been less cursed than, say, the Orioles. But in a strange way, success makes bad luck stick out. Fortune frowns on Oddibe McDowell's team and no one cares; Bill Buckner muffs a grounder and 10 people write books."

So true. Still been around since '72 though as the Rangers.

Halladay pitches a CGSO. Dom hits a 3-run HR for the only runs, after Reyes makes an error to prolong the inning. 3-0 good guys.

NEPP - Chase will have lots of days off next April, May and June before he makes his annual appearance sometime in July.

Okay, figured it out. Luna is 6 for 8 against Buehrle on his career...that's why UC is starting him today.

Wiggy is 7 for 27 with 2 HRs against him (.910 OPS)

A method to the madness apparently.

I don't even know where I stand on Chase's playing time lately. Part of me thinks "damn are they trying to wear him down?" while another part thinks "might as well see what he can take in case he tries to pull more bs next spring."

"I saw, like, on the Goggle thing, that Luner had like a lot of success against Burrelley before. So I said, hey, you know, like, let's give him a chance to do something. So like that's what we did."

An outfield of Luna, Mayberry, and Brown has to be the worst defensive OF in the league by a wide margin. Better hope Doc has his strikeout stuff.

***An outfield of Luna, Mayberry, and Brown has to be the worst defensive OF in the league by a wide margin.***

Imagine if it were Mini Mart in CF instead of Mayberry...

Why has Wiggy not been put on waivers and given away to a team that still thinks he can play? Maybe there is no such team.

Shouldn't Kratz be batting cleanup in this lineup?

I don't care what happens in the game, this is a lineup that should get Charlie fired. And one more question. This lineup is so bad, how is Martinez not in this lineup?

NEPP - That does make some sense although I am surprised Kratz is hitting #8.

ak, I asked in the previous thread why Kratz would hit 8th in a lineup with the likes of Wigginton, Luna and Mayberry.

I don't know how it's justifiable to have Wig, Frandsen and Luna all get more ABs than Brown, but I'm sure Cholly has his reasons.

Posted by: Iceman | Wednesday, August 15, 2012 at 11:03 AM

Good call Ice, I thought that was completely ridiculous as soon as I saw it. Having Luna hit 5th is ridiculous. Despite Brown's power outtage, anyone whose watched this team since Brown's been up has to admit that he's had very very good at bats consistently againts lefties and righties.

Half of today's lineup started the year in AAA...and that doesnt include Mayberry or Wigginton.

That's actually impressive in a perverse sort of way.

Ice: "Don't take RK's bait"

I am in listen moe what is wrong with my posts(s)?

I am in listen moe what is wrong with my posts(s)?

Posted by: RK | Wednesday, August 15, 2012 at 11:18 AM

Damn Google translator.

Man, I wish my sick day had been today as opposed to yesterday. I'd love to see this OF at work. The hilarity would surely be too much for me to take, though.

"Please list this under things I absolutely don't get: Charlie Manuel has no problem starting Schierholtz in CF, a position he hasn't played since high school, but starts Mayberry against Josh Johnson -- a criminal act -- instead of using Laynce Nix, who can actually play CF (albeit not well).

Can someone explain the logic behind that?"

clout, ...................ummm, no.

I love how Charlie overuses stats against a particular pitcher, but ignores players' overall splits. Someone should introduce him to the concept of sample size (I honestly think he's not familiar with it).

Roy Halladay is facing a team who hasn't scored in 3 straight games. c'monnnnn perfecto #2.

Charlie always has reasons for what he does.

Now, these reasons are often times terrible reasons, but dammit, they're reasons!

Charlie doesn't have a single CF on the roster, which is a big part of the problem. Why on earth is Jason Pridie not up instead of Luna?

If anyone wonders why our pitching has sucked this year, look no farther than the defensive alignments. Today's lineup features:

Luna, a 1B, playing LF
Mayberry, a corner OF, playing CF
Frandsen, a 2B, playing 3B
Brown in RF
Wigginton at 1B

Cholly's other options include the one-legged Ryan Howard, Juan Pierre and his popgun arm, and Mini-Mart. It's laughable, and it's murdering our pitching staff.

Ctom: DOM is playing a solid OF this year I think. Anyone disagree?

Colonel has a good point. Phils are 23rd in baseball in BAbip against. 12th in the NL. Hard to be a top flight pitching team when your defense isn't doing a great job.

He's been better than he was last time up, but Dom's not a good outfielder. I still love the guy and want him playing every day and leading off.

I just don't understand how a guy who needed almost 9 MONTHS OFF just to be able to come back and play can possibly stand to play this many days in a row and play this many innings. Does that mean that instead of 9 mths rehab next year, he will need even more since he needed more this year?

So can we just go ahead and assume that the most we will ever get from Chase Utley going for is 3 consecutive months of baseball that will slowly lessen as he gets older?

Jack was dead on the money last night with his "key to the game" on Kendrick. Hope his prediction of the Halladay CGSO is as accurate. If so, that will be what, three pretty dominant games in a row for Doc? And we may have an answer to the question about whether he might still be managing some type of injury.

Also, is anyone else wondering about the policy of moving Dom from position to position in the OF? My gut feel is you put him in one position, play him every single day at that position, and do everything possible to let him get settled in and comfortable in the lineup. Fit the other OF pieces around him.

I can only assume that they are trying to see where he is best suited to play, and maybe it's OK as a plan. The powers that be know more than I do, for sure. But I have a foreboding about him running into problems in the field, and if that happens, I think you could logically blame this "strategy" as a big part of the reason.

So following up on that, I think its fair to say that this team has 2.5 positions to fill: 1 outfield spot (at minimum), 3b and half a 2b.

I love how Charlie overuses stats against a particular pitcher, but ignores players' overall splits. Someone should introduce him to the concept of sample size (I honestly think he's not familiar with it).

Posted by: ramsey
Charlie was using stats from 10 years ago earlier this season to justify Thome pinchhitting vs. a lefty. The man has a gift.

Even if a miracle happens and they get the Wild Card, it would take a miracle to win it all, too, considering the number of holes.

Posted by: J. Weitzel | Wednesday, August 15, 2012 at 10:17 AM

What's Brad Lidge up to? Maybe we can get him to pray for the Phillies like he did in 2008.

I hope that what Utley is doing now offensively is a sign of what he can do next year.

Check out his peripherals this year vs. his career numbers:

BB%: 10.6% (9.7% career)
K%: 12.5% (14.9%)
ISO: .239 (.216)
LD%: 18.6% (20.2%)
GB%: 41.5% (37.4%)
FB%: 39.8% (42.4%)
HR/FB%: 17% (13%)

His wRC+ this year is 120 (career 132), but that may actually be lower than it ought to be, as he has a .234 BAbip this year (career .307, and as high as .288 just 2 years ago).

I think Utley has been fairly close to his old days in terms of offensive performance since his return, but just may need better fortune on balls in play.

Color me surprised Mini-Mart and Schneider aren't in the line-up. It seems to me the last few series, Charlie has been content to win the first 2 games and then send the crap-ola special line-up out for the third game. Maybe Halladay pulled him aside and gave him a stern "wtf"?

Few things would make me happier than to see Utley show up at ST next year healthy and ready for a full season (even if a "full" season means 120 games or so).

The short crisp swing and the power seem to be back, and he seems to be hitting the ball hard pretty consistently. Not so much of those popup/flyballs to left center or deep shortstop that we saw last year.

I'm not sure that Utley's knee condition is necessarily better with rest. He tried resting after last season, and it resulted in his missing the first half of this season. He then shifted his approach to aggressive rehab and muscle-building in his legs to support the knees. In other words, he might be better off playing rather than resting.

SLO - If this is the lineup you get when Halladay gives Charlie a stern WTF, then Halladay needs a sterner WTF.

Not sure Buehrle qualifies as a guy to load up RHB's on.

In over 2600 IP, RHB have a .739 OPS against while LHB have a .723 OPS against. I will concede that majority of that whopping .016 of OPS comes from his most recent few seasons, but still seems like a lot of imagination to get Hector Luna in the game as a LF'er for such a small split variance.

If you gave me this lineup in a vacuum last spring, I would have assumed it was a split-squad game.

ak - Beggers can't be choosers.

For his next start, UC is going to tie Doc's right arm behind his back and force him to throw LH.

Found this tidbit on PhuturePhillies: Darin Ruf and Cody Asche are roommates which might explain why they've kept Ruf in AA despite his ridiculous numbers so far this season. They view Asche as an actual prospect so they're keeping Ruf around.

Seems plausable to me actually.

NEPP - My guess is that you're correct. Minor league decisions are often made on this kind of thing.

My guess at this point is the Phillies will take a good look at Ruf during ST. Then they'll keep him in AAA next season. If he performs there, he'll be an injury call up.

But Ruf's best plan should be to play in a Winter league somewhere and learn as much about left field as he possibly can.

If you gave me this lineup in a vacuum last spring, I would have assumed it was a split-squad game.

Posted by: NEPP | Wednesday, August 15, 2012 at 11:59 AM

I would have assumed that half the team came down with typhoid fever.

If Ruf was in his 2nd or 3rd year in AA, I would be searching for some off the field reason, but this is his first ever season at the level, i dont see why he should be yanked around without getting a full year under his belt at each level.

For those all-around Philly fans, to hold you over until the Phils game, the Sixers website has a live press conference welcoming Bynum and Richardson to the team right now.

***i dont see why he should be yanked around without getting a full year under his belt at each level.***

Neither do I. UC would never play him if Rube added him to the 25 man. He'd sit on the very end of the bench just like Andy Tracy or Mike Cervenak did when they were added.

On Bynum...hell of a trade by the Sixers. How pissed do you think Brooklyn and Houston are (both wanted Howard badly).

Richardson is going to drown in the slobber drooled over Bynum.

The uplifting view - The Phillies are closer to a playoff spot right now (10 GB of the 2nd WC) then the Cardinals were on August 25th of last season (10.5 GB).

The pessimistic view - this lineup...

NEPP - Exactly. Cholly sits callups from AAA and doesn't play them/use them out of the pen unless he is generally forced to with no alternatives. Pretty much been a constant thing he has done since became manager here.

Then if they do perform he plays them often and perhaps too much.

On the lineup...perhaps UC felt that KK would need better offensive support than Doc and he knew he needed to rest certain guys at some point in the series?

Even if the Phillies sweep this series, we should remember they're really not going anywhere. Remember the euphoria after the Brewers sweep? All those great walk offs and comebacks? Turns out, and stop me if you've heard this one, the BREWERS REALLY SUCK HARD.

Well, here we are again, playing a team that is almost totally bereft of major league hitters. A sweep means little to nothing. And winning two out of three means the PHILLIES SUCK HARD. This is a classic lose lose. If you win, you haven't really won anything (unless Doc looks good, which makes us happy for next season), and if you lose, you lost to a little league team.

Record when Luna starts: 2-8

I took the Fish today at +125. This lineup blows. Stunned if they score more than 3 runs today.

WP: The Phillies should be measured in their GBsum, not just GB. If the Phillies play 10 games better than the 2nd WC team, that doesn't guarantee them anything, since a team like the Mets would play the same baseball the PHillies do, and clinch a spot over them.

The Phillies GBsum is 33.5

MG, even with a better lineup, you got decent value there. Though, as a general rule, I tend to stay away from "get away" games. You never quite know what kind of performance you're gonna get.

This game could be over in an hour and a half, given the way these pitchers work quickly and how miserable these lineups are. Plus a getaway day. Reminds me of the Braves game where Joe threw the 88-pitch complete game.

lorecore, not disagreeing at all. To be honest, I'm not in the camp that thinks they have any real shot at a WC run at all, no matter how you calculate it. They all but guaranteed that they have no desire to even do so with the trades they made at the deadline and by fielding lineups that look like this. I was simply throwing it out there as an interesting perspective.

Sadly, this team is built to do EXACTLY what is the "worst case scenario" - win enough games to guarantee they don't have one of the 10 worst records in baseball, but not enough to resemble anything close to a WC run.

O/U on total hits between both teams?

I'm going to set at 8.5

So pumped for Bynum.

My actual prediction: Doc gives up a run in the first, and the Phillies lose 1-0.

Today we get the ever rare game where both starters have multiple no-hitters and where each starter has a Perfect Game to their credit.

Can't wait for the first game Collins benches Bynum after 4 minutes and we see Spencer Hawes and Kwame Brown for the rest of the game.

That should be fun. I think enthusiasm needs to be tempered with the potential for a Bynum-Collins dynamic.

That Ruggiano dude's numbers are ridiculous, especially for a 30yr old nobody. Obviously coming down to Earth of late, but still.

WP - Yeah. Plus Buerle has struggled of late. He's been notably better this year at home though especially with keeping the ball in the park.

Guess I figured this lineup doesn't have much speed and AVG/OBP guys so they will struggle stringing together a couple of hits against Buerle who doesn't issue many free passes.

I fully expect Bynum to miss 40 games due to various injuries.

If Joe Maddon had chosen this lineup, I'm sure it would be because of genius-level tactics.

Well, there goes the no-no....

Jose Reyes is good at baseball.

Reyes slaps a single up the middle. Imagine if he had lead off the game with that. Much different kind of inning.

F, doc gives up a single. This game now has no reason to be paid attention to.

Reyes is averaging 1 hit per at bat in this game.

Hard to tell who has the worst lineup today. I go with the Phils only because Howard/Pierre are out and Wigginton has been useless for 2+ months now offensively.

541: I think enthusiasm has to be tempered because Bynum has played in exactly 2/3 of his team's games over the past 5 years.

That being said, we actually have a legitimate ceiling with this core that includes the phrase "championship contender". As long as that's the case, I can only quell my excitement so much.

KAS: Yeah, I just don't get it. Reyes is probably the best pure leadoff guy in baseball.

So of course the Marlins hit him third.

If Joe Maddon had chosen this lineup, I'm sure it would be because of genius-level tactics.

Posted by: Kendrick Appreciation Society | Wednesday, August 15, 2012 at 12:52 PM

Getting started early on the inane comments today, huh?

My hour and a half prediction might be too generous.

I could see a 75-minute game at this point.

"I could see a 75-minute game at this point."

Someone would have to score a run though...

Fatalotti: No sense of humor?


I'm not sure how much of those missed games where a result of Bynum not actually being able to play, or Bynum not wanting to play. (Case in point his appearance at the Playboy party around the same time as missing a playoff game).

Collins has shown a complete unwillingness to tolerate a certain type of guy, regardless of how badly the team needed him on the floor. For further info, please reference: Turner, Evan.

The uplifting view - The Phillies are closer to a playoff spot right now (10 GB of the 2nd WC) then the Cardinals were on August 25th of last season (10.5 GB).

The Cards were 9.5 GB in their division last year on that date, but were 10.5 GB of the slot they eventually won.

Otherwise, Fat, yes I am excited for this season.

The fact remains that this guy brings a skill set that this team hasn't had since... um.... well lets just say its been a while.

At the very least, it signals that this team is not going to settle for small potatoes any longer.

To be fair, Reyes has 517 PA this year...431 of them have been in the leadoff spot.

Reyes' OBP is too high to lead off.

We all know how you construct a lineup: put the power hitter 4th, your best hitter 3rd, your fastest guy with a low OBP 1st, and a crappy hitter 2nd (he's crappy, so he knows how to bunt). The catcher hits 8th, because he's slow.

Then you fill in 5-7 in descending order of hitting ability.

Why doesn't that happen every start? Is it because Schneider was the catcher last night? Is it because Halladay gave him a few tips? Is it because Charlie talked to him?

Or is it because he's a maddeningly inconsistent 5th starter, which is what 4th and 5th starters frequently are?

It could be all of the above plus a very generous strike zone, which to their credit, KK (and JJ) used to their advantage.

On OF:

"Toughest fans: Mike Cameron cites the fans in Oakland and San Francisco for being particularly adept at making his ears burn. Francoeur votes for Philadelphia, where fans take their leather-lunged reputation as a badge of honor.

"Philly is the worst -- no doubt about it," Francoeur says. "I thought it was bad when I was with the Braves. Then it got even worse when I played for the Mets and we went there. In New York, people just yell at you. In Philly, they wear you out. Even the little kids can be rough in Philly. It's way out of bounds."

Marlon Byrd, who began his major league career in Philadelphia in 2002 and moved on three years later, concurs.

"I would go on the road and people would be talking trash and I would say, 'Dude, I play in Philly. You've got to come better than that,'" Byrd says.

Can't speak on the fans at CBP but the fans in the OF at the Vet were brutal. Some of the rough stuff I ever heard at a game was in '92 or '93? when Coleman was in LF for the Mets. Got on him right away ragging his about his throwing arm in warmups, to making firework jokes, and even some racial epithets. It was pretty brutal.

Kind of stuff seemed like it happened a lot more at the Vet and they really try to do a better job of cracking down on it at CBP.

The inning stops here. With Buck.

Luna with some fantastic range out there in LF. Looks like a young Barry Bonds.

547: Bynum did have legitimate knee issues, and has twice had surgery. So, I'm not discounting those missed days in the least. But I get your point.

KAS: I have a great sense of humor, but you went off the handle yesterday when I dated praise Maddon, so my first thought was that your comment was more smarmy them funny. Sorry if I mistook it.

First team to score wins?

Or Buehrle.

I clearly Bucked that one up.

First team to 5 hits wins...

Buehrle is feeling his 3rd No-hitter here...and 2nd perfect game.

Is Buerhle just pouring in strikes? Can we see a pitch or two?

Halladay is starting to look like he is loosened up and getting better movement on his cutter/changeup this inning.

Going to be a really quick came until they get into the bullpen.

Really wish I could see this game.

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