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Friday, August 24, 2012


A five-out save? Is that even possible?

A rarity, especially on the Phils. Pap had one this year.

What record is Friend chasing?

Phillies finish 12th in the UniWatch 4 sport power rankings. Fifth among MLB teams. Pretty good showing if you ask me.

I really like the Babe Ruf nickname, I think it needs to be the official name here on Beerleaguer for all future posts.

Once I've had a little more time to revel in my Erik Kratz prediction, Darrin Ruf is going to be my next project.

Didn't think anyone beside me knew Friend even existed. Wasted and miscast at LV. Just another old guy getting kids out.

Babe Ruf and Cosart are "In the Team Picture" for BA too

Is a 5 out save possible? Is that a joke? Of course it's possible.

yes, it's a joke.

I don't understand all of the concern about a prospect's age.

Is he any less likely to be capable of contributing at the MLB level if he's a 26 year old rookie as opposed to a 22 year old rookie? Bring him up. No one's expecting a savior, but if he's not given an opportunity to see if he has anything to offer, what's the point of keeping him at all?

All that his age means to me is that he'll spend his physical prime under team control in the big leagues.

Jbird: cool to see the Flyers come in at 17, also. Always been my favorite uni in town.

@Phillies: C Brian Schneider placed on 15-day DL with left hamstring strain; contract of C Steven Lerud selected from Double-A Reading.

I guess UC can't use Schneider when Worley pitches next. Whatever will he do?

Will: It isn't about when they become a rookie. For prospects it's their age versus the age of their competition. A 20 year old holding their own in AA is much more impressive than a 26 year old crushing the ball day in and day out.

Will: I'm with you on the age issue. When a minor leaguer is young, and he can't hit, scouts bump up his prospect rating on the theory that he has time to improve. Then, when that same prospect actually does improve over time, those same scouts discount his performance on the theory that he's old for his league. It's strange and inconsistent. I'm more interested in knowing whether a minor league player is GOOD for his league than whether he's old for it.

Ryan Howard, Chase Utley, Carlos Ruiz, and Shane Victorino were all old-ish prospects when they broke out. And Erik Kratz was pounding AAA pitching for 5 straight years, while playing a position where offense is at a premium, yet he couldn't even get a look-see at the major league level because he was in his late 20s/early 30s. And this, from the same GM who habitually signs 40-something pitchers to multi-year contracts.

Dan Johnson is leading the International league with 27 homeruns and an 878 ops. Nobody cares because he's 33 years old.

via MLBTradeRumors:

The Orioles have designated left-handed reliever J.C. Romero for assignment. The 14-year veteran said he's now considering retirement.

How is Ruf's name pronounced? I thought I heard it as "rough" on TV.

The age thing is strange. While I completely understand that a 26 year old in AA ball is not a "prospect", so what? If you can get a solid year or two from a guy at his age 28 and 29 seasons, what does it matter? The thought process that "X Player can't be good because he's 33 in AAA" is fundamentally flawed. He may not have ever been a "prospect" and may never be an All Star, but it in no way means that he can't have a productive season or two. Especially if his previous MiLB seasons show solid numbers/ability.

Schweitzer: I'm similarly perplexed. I've heard Sarge and other scouts claim that if you can hit at AA, you can hit in the bigs. At the same time, Keith Law and Kevin Goldstein claim that 26 yr olds in AA are non-prospects irrespective of performance. I'm not sure how to reconcile these. Is AA pitching a reasonable proxy for MLB or not? If yes, I would think age-for-level is far less important in the upper ranks of the minors than in the lower ranks.

"A 20 year old holding their own in AA is much more impressive than a 26 year old crushing the ball day in and day out."

Of course. But that's not really what this debate is about. How about: (1) a 22-year old prospect at AAA who has a .279 OBP for the season; (2) a toolsy 23-year old prospect at AA who can run like the wind, but has only a .661 OPS for the season and .683 for his entire career; or (3) a 26-year old with an OPS above 1.000 at AA?

Prospect No. 1 is Sebastian Valle, who is sure to be among the Phillies' top 3 or 4 position prospects when the 2013 rankings are released. Prospect No. 2 is Jiwan James, an annual presence in the Phillies top 10 prospects lists. Prospect No. 3 is, of course, Darrin Ruf, who will be lucky to sniff the top 20 in BA's rankings. To me, that's utterly and completely asinine.

Corey Seidman: "Injuries have limited Brian Schneider to 384 plate appearances for the Phillies in his 3 years here. He had 384 PAs with the Mets in 2008"

Schneider to the DL. C Steven Lerud recalled.

Tonight's Lineup: Rollins (SS), Frandsen (3B), Utley (2B), Howard (1B), Brown (RF), Mayberry (CF), Nix (LF), Kratz (C), Kendrick (P).

When some of these older guys do get a shot, you sometimes see them succeed for a short period, but they usually slink back to fringy stats once the scouting reports get out. The poster boy for this would be 29 year old Bryan LaHair this year with the Cubs. Looked like an all-star for 2 months, and made the all-star team. Now, he's regressed with a .539 OPS over the last month out of a corner spot.

Schneider's done after this year, right?

BAP: I have no problem with the team giving Ruf a shot, I just think there's a reason age matters in the minors. Part of it too, though, is that a lot of these older guys who crush in AA and AAA are 1st basemen. If Ruf could play a passable 3rd base or center field, he'd probably have seen some time in Philly already.

I hope Kratz stays healthy.

Someone mentioned nicknames. I've been wondering. Was it a BL'er who coined the nickname "Mini-Mart"? Or did someone on the team come up with it? I've noticed that the beat writers use it.

jbird: No need for a 3B or a CF. r00b got us Wigginton & Nix, remember? Hell, figure in the top fielding versatility of Martinez & the Phils have too much depth already.

I'd rather have Brown in the 2-spot, to ensure he's getting as many AB's as possible, but other than that (and KK pitching) that lineup is about as good as they can field right now.

"Schneider's done after this year, right?"

From your lips to God's ears...

I had a shot at signing Lukwick and/or Willingham, but the comments about them on Bearleaguer made me hesitant to pull the trigger.

that fact that Schneider has been limited to only 384 PA in 3 years with the Phillies is a good thing right???

The Phillies open at home vs the Kansas City Royals next year.

r00b: That's a football blog, dumbass.

Ruben: Beerleaguer has loved the Hammer for years, not sure how we discouraged you from signing him.

jbird: I could point you to many good hitters who've posted a .539 OPS over a month. For the year as a whole, LaHair has a .790 OPS. I wish we got a .790 OPS from our corner outfielders this year.

Have I mentioned that I am not a fan of this expansion of interleague play? 21 games next year, up from 15 games, which was already too many. First homestand is against an AL team? Geez.

GBrett: I think that's a Beerleaguer nickname. Might have been clout. I can't remember.

BAP: fair enough. What do you suppose are the chances that he still has a .790 by the end of the year? How about next year? I'll take the under.

Will/bap/etc: you are missing the point completely on age and prospect status. Jbird nailed it, its not that they're old - its that they are playing against much less developed competition.

And for the whole "we have to call Ruf up" crowd, he's just now completing his first year in AA ball - why are we trying to throw him into the fire of MLB pitching already? Can't we let him finish his strong year, hit the winter leagues, and then tackle AAA first?

Sure, let him come in Sept, who cares - and if he doesn't? Who cares. He'll be in AAA next year, and if he can duplicate his performance, than lets start trying to find him a spot on the big league team.

Far be it for me to agree with dennyb on something (and it actually makes me re-evaluate my opinion on it a little bit), but I am on the Aumont bandwagon. His curve/slider (I thought it looked more like a slider) looks like it's out of a video game, and he looks like he throws a heavy fastball. The stuff alone is reason not to give up on him. He's 23. Give the guy a shot.

Red Sox close to deal that would send Josh Beckett, Carl Crawford, Adrian Gonzalez and Nick Punto to the Dodgers.

Woo boy...

jbird: I'll bet the over.

lore: Because he might be able to help our team next year, and I'm sick and tired of using trash like Schneider and Wigginton and Schierholtz and Mini-Mart, while we have players toiling at AAA who might well be helping our team right now.

And as for beating up on less developed competition . . . isn't that the very idea? You let these guys develop at the minors and when they've developed enough to beat up on the competition, you promote them to the next level and, ultimately, to the majors.

Of course they should "give the guy a shot." The discussion isnt about giving him a shot, it's about whether or not people expect him to succeed long-term. And unless he dramatically improves his control, it's not going to happen. That's all I've said.

Although I have to admit, like NEPP and every other Vermonter, I am biased against Québécois.

CN - I would be shocked if a deal like that worked out. Too many moving parts. Something that big is almost impossible, IMO.

If BAP lived in Philly, he'd make a great WIP caller.

BAP: I have a 10 year old son who takes Tae Kwon Do. I could kick his 8ss if I wanted to, but that doesn't mean I'm ready for Brock Lezner.

Not that I would endorse beating up little kids, but I seem to think it would be surprisingly easy.

Of course I'd take ruf over Martinez, let's not ruin this convo

Schneider to the DL. No surprise there. Going to make it tough for him now to get a guaranteed contract next year with 2 lengthy DL stints.

jbird, that unirank article was pretty cool.
I was at 90s night and was not was talking with a friend about how the Phillies haven't changed uniforms much in their history and they've all been pretty good. I like that the writer gives them props for the details, not being gimmicky and the things that stand out.

Schneider is at the end of a long catching career. 36 years old this November. He'd be lucky to get a spring training invite.

I just read that I should appreciate KK more. I'm grudgingly considering it. I don't know why it's hard for me to like him.

Hey, Aumont may never "get it". He has issues. Not saying he doesn't. Not "a believer" either. When he is bad, he is embarrassingly bad.

But he's 23 with great stuff. Lets give him a shot in the next year to figure it out or not.

Got to think LeRud was called up just a filler. With LV and Reading both in the playoff hunt, don't want to mess with their #1 catchers (Valle and Joseph).

I expect Lerud to be dumped (off the 40 man) and Valle to come up whenever the LV season ends.

100% of the putts that don't get to the hole,don't go in. 100% of those not getting a chance in the majors never succeed.

Morosi confirms the deal is close. AGon, Beckett, Crawford, Punto and Cash for Prospects. Looks to be a really big salary dump.

Crawford and Punto cleared waivers and AGon and Beckett were claimed by LA so all the moving parts appear to have locked into place.

If this deal goes down, I wonder if Jack still considers Theo Epstein to be his hero, seeing as how he completely ruined the Red Sox in his last two years as GM, and then ran out the back door leaving everyone else to clean up his mess?

LAD Get: 1B Adrian Gonzalez, OF Carl Crawford, SP Josh Beckett, INF Nick Punto, Cash

BOS Get: RHP Rubby de la Rosa, INF Ivan de Jesus, 1B/OF Jerry Sands, 1B James Loney

According to ESPN Boston.

You guys have a great evening. I'm going to avoid BL for the rest of tonight because I have to watch the Eagles game on delay. And as you know, there are certain trolls here who love to ruin the surprise. (Not you, Bullit. I know that was just a mistake.)

Lerud is up instead of Suomi? Yet another AAA player passed over, and for a guy who is hitting .235 in AA ball. He's 27 and has cracked AAA for nine games two years ago. He hit .095 there.

This guy gets onto the forty man roster, and Ruf isn't ready to get a tryout. I know he's simply going to sit on the bench until Kratz's knees start to hemorrhage, but still.

Sheesh, did the Dodgers claim everyone who was on waivers? Is the luxury tax different when you adjust it for Pacific time?

I think the Phillies should bring up Ruf and try him in left field once Reading's season is over. He's a natural hitter with power to all fields. The other guy that I am really liking is Cody Asche. Currently, he is white hot with the bat and I can see him as our everyday 3B in 2 years. Asche hit 350 in A ball and got moved up.. His average is close to 300 now in Reading and he's on a tear..

Thats got to set a record for the most amount of salary trading hands in a trade in mlb history, and likely has a better chance to withstand time than DiMaggio's 56 game hit streak.

Giving up Nick Punto is the hell is he even available?

I thought he was untouchable like Trout, Strasburg or Harper level of untouchable.

***Sheesh, did the Dodgers claim everyone who was on waivers? Is the luxury tax different when you adjust it for Pacific time? ***

They get like $200 million a year in their tv deal isnt even an issue.

NEPP - Laugh all you want, but Punto has been one of the longest lasting products of the Phillies minor league system to ever play in the majors. He has to be close to 60 years old at this point.

I was thinking 70 years old actually...its amazing he's still in the Majors.

So, the LA outfield next season will consist of Crawford, Ethier (both signed through 2017) and Kemp (signed through 2019)?

Yeah, safe to say that Vic is a free agent...

If that trade goes down wow. Outfield of Crawford, kemp, Andre e. And with A gon. That's a crazy deep first four hitters. I don't know how they have a batting order. Carl out with surgery. Maybe Shane leads off. And If they get Beckett. Not a bad sal dump to fill holes. Dodgers going big and going for it

The League might try to nix such a huge deal...unprecedented to say the least.

I think this is what's called "Boston admitting a bunch of mistakes on contract amounts/contract lenghts."

Hard to believe the Dodgers didn't want RYHow at first base instead of Agon.

Firstly, the names involved in the deal alone are enough to get fair weather LA fans to pony up for some season tix next year (especially if they make a decent postseason run this year). I can't even imagine the price increase on tix out this for next season. I bought tix to the Phils series for less than face value on Stubhub for a steal this year.

Secondly, this roster, at least on paper, is extremely formidable, especially offensively. Throw in Kershaw as an annual CY candidate, and the possibility of the 90th resurgence of Beckett, and it could be a scary staff, to boot.

Just when we were starting to think that LA was turning into "Phillies West," Boston goes ahead and trumps us.

game thread

If that trade goes through, Cherington has cleaned up a lot of the mess that ThEgo Epstein created with his wild assed spending. I wonder if our own wonder boy's successor is going to be as lucky.

If the Phillies' big CF acquisition is Vic, fans should burn CBP to the ground. Don't think that's likely, but puttin' it out there just in case.

GTown- you could not be more correct.

Back on the age of prospects, I understand that when you're doing the standard comparison, your 23 year old in AA ball trumps your 26 year old in terms of projection. But at a point when you're assessing talent with the idea of moving someone up to the big team, I don't get the issue. I recall when Maury Wills cracked the Dodgers' lineup when he was 29/30. Didn't help his career in the show to start so late but it didn't keep him from being an All Star just as it doesn't stop Erik Kratz from being effective in getting his break at 32. Ruf has played himself into the fall league and onto the 40 man off-season roster. Why not check him out in September when the AA season concludes?

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