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Tuesday, August 14, 2012


Does it make me a pessimist that I think Kendrick is going to lose?

Or does it make me a pessimist that I don't think there's enough optimism in the world?

aksmith, it makes you a realist.

Does it make me a pessimist that the very mention of Larry Bowa's name knee-jerked me into a snarky mindset about all these second rate comparisons to Galvis?

Schneidered and Kendricked! Ooof.

9.82? That's it?

Here's the thing about tonight. Throughout his career, Kendrick has managed to pull one good start out of his rear end whenever he's needed it. Multiple times in the last few years, he's been basically one bad start away from being pulled from the rotation or demoted for good. And he's usually thrown a good start in that game.

The only major exception I can think of is the 2008 start against the Marlins where he was pulled in the second inning after giving up 7 runs and was subsequently pulled from the rotation for the rest of the stretch run.

Given how frustrated Charlie and Dubee were with KK after last start, you have to think that if he bombs one tonight, he's out for the rest of the season and they will go with Cloyd or someone else. Be interesting to see what he does.

Oh, and congrats to JRoll. He gets a lot of flak on here, some deserved. However, this golden age of Phils baseball we just lived through wouldn't have been possible without him. His comments and confidence, as well as his play, helped change the culture of losing that permeated all things Phillie.

Jack: Sound like the case. If Kendrick has a bad start (which I would, of course, describe as a combination of bad luck, bad umpiring and bad defense), his time in the rotation should come to an end. Let's see what we've got in AAA.

Jack, great point. I read somewhere that Charlie and KK had a little powwow earlier this week, as well. I suspect they discussed that very dynamic (i.e. "screw up again and you're in the 'pen").

Agreed on congrats to J-Roll. For all the flaws in his game that are commonly recognized, he is a pretty damn valuable player. He's been a rock-steady player at the most important position on the field for the last decade for this team. It's hard to overstate how important that is.

He was never the best player on the team (Chase Utley) nor the most celebrated (Ryan Howard) nor the best-loved (?). But for me, and for I'm guessing most fans as this era turns from the present into the past, Rollins will be the one player you most associate with this amazing run of success.

Hats off to Jimmy for cementing his status as the best shortstop in franchise history.

well said jack. i think rollins holds a special place with die hards who really believed in the almost years of 2001-2006.

KAS, this will be my last post on the subject of Maddon. I respect the hell out of the man. Players all over the league laud the way he uses advanced stats and as much information as possible to give his players a leg up on the competition.

Am I saying that every single good thing that's happened to that team since 2008 is solely because of him? Of course not. He's needed good players, as every manager does. I don't care where you put Ty Wigginton on the field, he's a sh!tty defender. Maximizing your defensive alignment doesn't turn a bad defensive player into a good one. But it can turn a good one into a great one.

I think he's innovative and gets the most out of his teams. You obviously disagree, but what's weird is that you seemed offended by the very notion that some would think he's a good manager. I guess you just can't praise a member of another team on here without getting some flak.

I don't know what this means, but I was looking through the Rays record vs. their Pyth W/L record since 2008. The only year they outperformed their Pyth W/L was 2008. Here's how it breaks down:

2008: 97-65 (Pyth: 92-70)
2009: 84-78 (Pyth: 86-76)
2010: 96-66 (Pyth: 96-66)
2011: 91-71 (Pyth: 91-71)
2012: 63-52 (Pyth: 63-52)

I don't know what it says, but it's eerie that they are literally two games off their Pythagorean W/L record since the beginning of 2009, and are completely in sync since the beginning of 2010.

KK overhead in the meeting with Cholly:

"It ain't the way I wanted it! I can strike out guys! I'm a starter! Not like everybody says... like a marginal starter or reliever... I'm a MLB starting pitcher and I want respect!"

Bowa had the advantage of playing on carpet. He rarely got a bad hop. Jimmy has been a better defensive shortstop. And overall, he's been a better offense player in almost every possible.

He's not exactly tearing the cover off the ball this season. But his legs appear to have held up, and that was a major question mark entering his new contract. Nice to see.

I am not a fan of his small ball skills. But I will never denigrate him for not running out everything like a madman, as his legs are too important to be abused. Rollins upright is better than Rollins on the DL.

KK overhead in the meeting with Cholly:

"It ain't the way I wanted it! I can strike out guys! I'm a starter! Not like everybody says... like a marginal starter or reliever... I'm a MLB starting pitcher and I want respect!"

Posted by: MG | Tuesday, August 14, 2012 at 06:46 PM


I've always believed that great teams need great shortstops. We've been lucky to have Jimmy in the fold since 1996, as he's been a top 5 NL shortstop for pretty much most of the decade.

I move that when Jimmy Rollins goes up on the wall of fame, Juan Samuel must come down.

aksmith,is it ok for all the phillies to jog to first base or just Jimmy? He definitely has skills,but he also has faults.

I like that idea and I'll go one step further. From now on anytime a player goes on he has to take someone down. Any player of his choice. Then the removed player is put back into the voting pool the next season. If elected he gets to take someone down but each player gets five years of protection before he can be taken down or something like that. We can work out the details later.

I am glad someone else (aksmith) actually realizes why Jimmy doesn't bust it down to first on incredibly routine plays. He's even talked about learning to preserve his legs as he's gotten older. Has nothing to do with him dogging it.

He's started to take it easy on his body the last few years and it's shown in his ability to stay on the field. If the result of jogging some plays out is Rollins on the field 150 games per year, he can walk to first for all I care.


sorry iceman, I may sound harsh, but thats how I was taught to play the game. And congrats to Jimmy on the homerun

JRoll makes this day even more impressive.

Classic Jimmy.

Sir whiffs alot

Sorry, but the pissing and moaning of a player when a fan perceives the player of not hustling is ridiculous.

Are we taking bets on whether or not KK surrenders that lead in the first inning?

Cool: Dude, what is your issue? Jimmy himself has explained why he does that. Was Westbrook a fairy cause he'd run out of bounds to avoid hits? Everybody wants Vick to slide to preserve himself. Yet Rollins is a dog cause he sometimes doesn't run full speed on routine plays? Everybody lauded Eric Byrnes and his style of play, yet he basically ran himself out of the league. Another example is Jimmy's double play partner. Chase is known as a full speed ahead guy, not saying his knee condition is because of his style of play, but it certainly doesn't help.

I checked Howard's Fangraphs page today, because I had a hunch. My hunch was that in his season so far, he was more of a three true outcomes player; that is to say, he was walking more, striking out more, and hitting more home runs. On the whole, that would be a good thing for Howard--the increased walk rate and power would more than offset the strikeouts. Frankly I was thinking I could write a post about how I was cautiously optimistic about Howard going forward.

As it turns out, though, his walk rate and ISO power are right in line or just below his recent career rates. His strikeout rate, however, is significantly higher, at a whopping 35%. That rate would lead the league if we were eligible.

Anyone seen GTown_Dave around anywhere? Seems like he'd provide an alternative viewpoint on JRoll's accomplishments and hustle.

Given how many easily booted balls are called "hits" these days, it seems sort of ridiculous for that to go as an error against Utley.

norbertods, routine plays can be muffed,popups and fly balls can be misplayed or dropped. If every player loafed on routine plays, opportunities would be lost. Also, by loafing, it makes the defender relax and make the play,knowing the opposing player won't hustle

Utley making an error due to his arm is not all that surprising, but that play was legitimately just rotten luck.

I have no problem with the way Jimmy plays the game these days. Just like I don't generally want catchers blindly blocking the plate, or outfielders running into the wall, I'm generally quite fin with a 30+ year old SS (who has no viable backup) with a history of leg problems not legging out every routine grounder. I want my players to play safely, and if they don't marginally increase the odds on a play here and there, but the payoff is that they stay on the field much longer, so be it.

With that said, I understand that some fans expect baseball players, who are supposed to be the best baseball players in the world, to play the game the "right" way, and hustle and give themselves the best chance of getting a hit whenever they can.

I hope that someday soon, those batting practice moonshots that Brown is purportedly launching translates over to the actual game.

You know, where he's supposed to be displaying such power.

Hitting the ball to Dobbs is probably the only chance Mayberry had of getting on base against Johnson.

if you hustle, a bobbled ball can become a hit. If you don't you will still be out

I like Greg Dobbs, but I'm glad he's not making errors for us anymore. Although with Wiggy & Fontenot having made so many, we have nothing to brag about at 3B when Polly's not playing - and nothing to brag about offensively when he is.

I'll be honest, I had pretty much forgotten that Schneider was on this team.

GBrett, we have nothing to brag about when it comes to 3B at all, and that appears to be the case for the far foreseeable future.

Who would you least like to see up at a critical junction of a game? Mini Mart or Schneider? As much as it surprises me to say, I think I'd go with Schneider. He flat out sucks.

I love when advertisers are literally years behind when they come up with slogans or themes. Peanut Chews use of the phrase "old school", which was extremely popular about 5 years ago, is just the most recent example.

SLO Phan, I'd rather have myself up at the plate in a critical juncture than Mini-Mart.

Please don't post such crazy stuff anymore.

Fat - Sorry. I know, but I can't help but think of things like this in a year like this.

One last comment about Jimmy. His plusses far outnumber his minuses. His minuses keep him a star, but hold him back from being a superstar. Overall, he is one of the best in the game today

The morning grain report on WCTR in Chestertown, MD is more interesting than listening to the Marlins broadcast.

First time through the order KK looks pretty good. He said with his fingers crossed.

See that Jimmy has 14 HRs this season. He may get to 20.

Got me thinking about where he ranks in terms of shortstops since he came into the league in 200 for HRs.

He's 4th on the list behind A-Red, Miguel Tejada and Derek Jeter with 183 HR. Not bad at all.

In terms of fWAR, he's 3rd on the list behind A-Rod and Jeter. Jeter basically edges him completely in offense. Jeter's Fld mark is -102.4, whereas Jimmy's is 41.5 and Jeter BsR mark is 19.3, whereas Jimmy's is 35.3. If not for injures, there's a good case to be made that Jimmy's been the best pure shortstop in baseball since 2000.

Jack- what are your expectations of Howard after one month of game action, coming off two leg surgeries in the last nine months?

On another note, you look like you nailed this Kendrick performance.

I cannot believe I am saying this (ducks) but now that it is impossible for Tbag and Wheels to spin the fantasy of a playoff run, they are actually more tolerable. This is especially true for away games when they are not gushing over Phanatic hats.

Although they still yap too much, I am kind of enjoying their insight.

And I say because of injury, because Jeter has 164 more games than J-Roll and 753 more PA. Jimmy wouldn't have accrued the requisite 9.1 fWAR to close the gap with Jeter, even if he equaled him in games (only 1 season's difference), but if Jimmy had just 5-6 more fWAR, the two would nearly indistinguishable in terms of value since 2000.

Kind of puts into perspective just how much the injury issues from 2009 to 2011 have really hurt Rollins' HoF candidacy. For my money, if you can lay claim to being the best (or a close 2nd) in the sport at the toughest position in baseball for over a decade, you have a legitimate HoF case.

Yeah jackstrodamus. Nice job.

"The morning grain report on WCTR in Chestertown, MD is more interesting than listening to the Marlins broadcast."

Yet I'd still rather listen to either of them, while hog-tied in an abandoned basement in a pool of molasses than have to sit through a full TBag/Wheels broadcast.

Unless Brown comes all the way home by way of error, this is all just delaying the inevitable with Mayberry at the plate.

can_of_corn- I will probably be slammed for saying this, but Wheels can be quite insightful at times (with the exception of his 'Keys to the Game' which are a joke). He is a decent color guy. I have come to appreciate him more after Harry's passing.

It's T-Bag and Sarge that are intolerable. Sarge adds absolutely nothing to the broadcast and T-Bag is a used car salesman with microphone. Not that I'd advocate dumping LA, but I think Franzke and Wheels would be one of the better broadcast teams in baseball if it happened.

williard- you're right. and the amazingly simple minded chick they have in the stands is alot better looking than Gregg Murphy.

did I just see something positive said about wheels? Yikes

Wow! Did Schneider just throw out Reyes?

always love to see Reyes screw up

No one has really said it yet, so I guess I will...

As Jack predicted, Kendrick is actually looking pretty decent tonight. At least "5th starter" competent anyway. 3K's, and 36 of his 55 pitches for strikes.

KK is battling tonight at least.

While T-Mac and Wheels are nauseatingly obsequious, and Sarge is totally lacking in insights, they're still far better than these bozos for the Marlins, who are barely even engaged in the game. And it's not just the announcers. It's the whole production. I can't put my finger on it exactly, but there's a certain frequency or hum to a major league tv broadcast & it's completely lacking when I watch the Marlins game. It sounds like a high school broadcast.

Fish/Phils usually been a combination for baseball buffoonery the last few years. Defensive lapses, poor baserunning decisions, and generally not very pretty baseball with their being some notable exceptions (Halladay no-hitter).

Iceman...agree on Wheels. I appreciate his insight and knowledge of the game's history, especially in when he isn't hyping hats or promotions. When he takes his mid-game break, the dialogue becomes intolerable.

And Radio Wheels is much better than Television Wheels. While I wouldn't trade Franzke and L.A. for the world, when Wheels fills in he is actually interesting, and his style seems to be more suited for the lack of visuals on radio.

Halladay threw a perfect game against the Marlins, no-no in the playoffs vs. the Reds.

I guess was a no-hitter...

Sarge on Josh Johnson: "I've always thought this guy was a pretty good pitcher [...] I can see why teams would want to trade for him."

Soak it up folks, you won't get this kind of insight anywhere else.

no solid contact since the homerun. I wish they could sustain the offense more often

When Sarge actually cares to comment on the game and what is happening in the batter's box, he isn't bad.

Just don't often do that and is lack of preparation is glaring. Pretty obvious he doesn't pick up a stat sheet or read much on how the opposing team is doing recently.

WP- yeah, Kendrick is looking more than decent. All his pitches are sharp. Jack nailed this one.

Of course by his own standards, Kyle could give up a five spot at any time and it would be acceptable because he 'kept his team in the game.' So he must feel like Walter Johnson out there right now.

no solid contact since the homerun. I wish they could sustain the offense more often

Posted by: coolhandluke | Tuesday, August 14, 2012 at 08:22 PM

Kind of the nature of facing a top flight pitcher. Usually don't chain together many hits, and have to hope for a random long ball (and hopefully have some players on base).

Disclaimer: not sure that Johnson is pitching like a "top-flight pitcher" this year, but I still think he is.

Somebody is actually defending Rollins for not running hard to 1st base?

Yes, its really taxing on your body having to run those 90 feet 4 times a night. What a drag that must be physically!!!

Get a friggin' clue. It takes no talent to run out a groundball. When you are being paid a king's ransom and the fans in the stands are a big reason you are getting paid what you are getting, I don't think running hard is asking much. And anyone who defends loafing and dogging it has no idea what they are talking about.

Didnt Rollins tear his hamstring running out a grounder a couple years ago?

NEPP, against Boston, I remember him having just returned from the DL, and he came up limp running out a groundball. Returned back to the DL that night.

looks like chollie's little palaver with kendrick has worked.

NEPP - His calf. But it takes no effort running to first according to denny so he must've been faking it.

"And anyone who defends loafing and dogging it has no idea what they are talking about."

I'm convinced!

Aren't the chronic hamstring issues he had that reason a big part of why he doesnt bust it down the line all the time?

I'll be extremely happy with 7 good innings from KK

That's right...his calf, not the hamstring.

Glad you could figure it out, Ice.

I think Howard ought to just swing and if its not a HR, walk over to the dugout. Gotta preserve his body, you know.

Running hard for 30 yards, 4 times a night take ZERO physically out of you. Unless you a fatass or you are 80 years old.

If a professional athlete is not expected to be able to at least "fake" effort 4 times a night, then why even watch?

WTF Chase?!? POS could at least run that grounder out.

***Running hard for 30 yards, 4 times a night take ZERO physically out of you. Unless you a fatass or you are 80 years old.***

You are aware, of course, that once a muscle is torn to the severity Rollins tore his, it is never 100% again. Its always susceptible to future tears.

I'd like to get Pete Rose's opinion on hustling ground balls out.

Utley shoulda faked a better effort there.

denny: Aren't you the guy who spent the last 2 or 3 seasons blasting Cholly for not giving his starting 8 sufficient rest?

When Johnson is painting like he is tonight (and appearing, at least with this bizarre camera angle, to be getting a generous portion of the outside of the plate), he is absolutely a top flight guy.

I don't understand why some people have a hard time distinguishing when a pitcher is dominant (Johnson tonight, Westbrook to a lesser degree the other night), and when the offense is simply mailing it in. Johnson is dealing right now. Just fortunate Kendrick is also pitching well, and that we got that early HR from slackin' Jimmy.

Classic case of denny b using ridiculous hyperbole to make his point. Running 90 feet at full speed from an awkward position (after having swung a bat) is not just simply running hard. I agree, that if he had no history of leg issues, and weren't of paramount importance to our infield defense, I'd expect him to hustle out of every play.

But you're conveniently ignoring this information to make your argument.

I don't Jimmy "loafs" it as much as some might make out, if he and the coaches feel that going all out for every routine ground ball is deleterious to his healthy, then so be it. The guy has played 112 games this year, and is on pace for a 4 fWAR season. I'd rather have him do that for the life of this contract, then have another 2010 where he only played in 88 games and had a 2.5 fWAR, even if it means that he doesn't get those two extra hits this year because he didn't run out every groundball.

Marlins' announcers: "Schneider is not the same catcher he was in his glory days."

Who knew that Brian Schneider had glory days?

I wish all players jogged down the line like Carlos Lee does. That shows the fans how much a guy really cares, when he cadillac's it down the line. Its why Hanley Ramirez was so beloved in Miami too.

Hustle and playing the game the right way is overrated. Its all about self-preservation and looking cool.

dennyb,I like your comment about if Howard swings and it's not a homerun, he should just walk to the dugout. Well he does that a lot because he strikes out all the time.

Juan Pierre and Tim Tebow share a birthday. Good guys.


No, I blasted Chuckles for not getting his bench guys sufficient AB's and playing time.

Has nothing to with "rest". Its baseball. Not a real physically taxing game to play. Mentally, no question. But physically? Nope.

BAP - Glory days? Schneider used to be a Phillie killer. Sort of still is.

And as for Johnson, he's getting 3-6 inches off the outside corner and it's impossible to hit that pitch for a lefty hitter.

dennyb- please quit while you are ahead on this.

I admit I am an over-the-top Rollins apologist and there are absolutely things he should be criticized for. Preserving his body is not one of them.

You obviously have no concept of what kind of injuries he went through a couple years back. The fact that he has been able to stay on the field consistently the last two seasons is really a testament to him and whoever is training him and preparing him for a 162-game season.

Pete Roses opinion on running out groundballs, "Did I bet the over or the under?" and "It's only worth it if I can tell everyone how much I hustled."

Everyone here knows I am not an apologist. And Rollins gets a pass on this. It's not a lack of hustle. It's keeping his balky legs healthy enough to play the games. And I can't remember the last time he could have actually run out a hit that he didn't because he wasn't moving fast enough out of the box.

denny: I don't feel like searching through the archives, but I am absolutely positive that you believed our starters were going to wear out because they didn't get enough rest. In fact, you were nearly apoplectic about it.

"You are aware, of course, that once a muscle is torn to the severity Rollins tore his, it is never 100% again. Its always susceptible to future tears."

Sure. Pitchers who have torn labrums in their shoulder or need TJ Surgeries on their elbow are suscepitable to further injury too.

Its not asking a player much to run out a groundball a few times a night. Especially when you see him and others (not picking on Rollins here) running hard on triples or plays at the plate.

No denny b, it's about maximizing your value to the team. Let's say Jimmy hustled every single play. Do you think his fWAR year would jump from 2.9 (where it currently sits) to something in the high 3s? Do you think his average would gain 20 points? Absolutely not.

Hustling gets you on first base randomly every once in a blue moon. I want players to do it, but is such a nominal increase in odds of getting on base really worth risking further injury and missing copious amounts of games?

The coaching staff must not think so, because Rollins has been benched for loafing in the past, but not in the past couple years. They must think he hustles when he ought to, and I don't know about you, but I see him hustle down the first base line plenty of times when it's necessary (double play balls, grounders in the hole, high choppers), and he hustled his a$$ off from 1st to home, and routinely gains extra bases that other players wouldn't.

I think you're way off base here. You can feel that he ought to hustle more, but you went way over the top when you claimed that none of us have a "friggin clue" what we're talking about.

Again I say, I will refer to Pete Rose on all issues concerning hustle

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