Part of

« Phils add to pitching inventory; winter league update | Main | Report: Phillies offer Hamilton three-year contract »

Monday, December 10, 2012


I like Zolecki's predicted opening day lineups...

vs. RHP
Jimmy Rollins, SS
Michael Young, 3B
Chase Utley, 2B
Ryan Howard, 1B
Laynce Nix, LF
Domonic Brown, RF
Erik Kratz, C
Ben Revere, CF

vs. LHP
Jimmy Rollins, SS
Michael Young, 3B
Chase Utley, 2B
Ryan Howard, 1B
John Mayberry Jr., RF
Darin Ruf, LF
Erik Kratz, C
Ben Revere, CF

>> "Right now tcans oils win maybe 84-85 games. Need another bat, & pitching help."

Ya, but they're set in the field, having long been known for their slick infield defense.

Unikruk: No worries. Having an "elite" CF makes up for all defensive deficiencies at all other positions.

Phils will face RHP James Shields on Opening Day.

Tcans oil > Mini Mart

Awesome story, the Dodgers are looking to extend they basically have unlimited money if that's the case.

Phils will face RHP James Shields on Opening Day.


NEPP: you were still doubting that before the Kershaw news? Hamels getting the nod or are we going with Doc because he's the "Ace" of the squad?

***you were still doubting that before the Kershaw news?***

Well, they had floated that $220 Million number...signing Kershaw (assuming he gets an AAV in the $20-25 million range like he's probably worth) would put them around $235 Million. Hamels getting the nod or are we going with Doc because he's the "Ace" of the squad?

Ah, the difference between losing 3-2 or 6-2.

I like how Roy Halladay has now become an object of ridicule. Seriously, the guy sucks and is a total a$$hole, I hear. Plus he sucks and is washed up. Like this whole team. Sucky washed up sucksters. You SUCK Halladay!!!!

So, if Greinke gets $24+ million AAV, does Clayton Kershaw get $30 million?

ERA+ 2010-2012:
Kershaw: 148
Greinke: 106

WHIP 2010-2012:
Kershaw: 1.055
Greinke: 1.215

ERA 2010-2012:
Kershaw: 2.56
Greinke: 3.83

Granted its an extension instead of a FA deal but Kershaw is 25 and basically the best pitcher in baseball. And he's not even in his peak yet.

If the Dodgers keep this up, the Yankees will soon be complaining about teams trying to buy championships.

Its not ridicule to say a younger Cole Hamels might be a better option to Halladay at this point.

air quote "Ace" signifies ridicule in my book. And my book is hollowed out to store weed that makes me smarter than everyone here.

And my comment was meant to be more of a cut on the lack of offense than on Halladay's newfound tendency to melt down like a Russian nuclear device when the sun comes out.

Then you're an idiot and you should probably work on that.

why don't "you" work on it, Ace.

I've tried. Living in Philly keeps me stoopid.

I'm not the idiot...or the troll.

Wasn't talking to you, GTown.

I know. Trying to lighten the mood. Failing.

Doc will start Opening Day and hopefully his shoulder is 100% after a full winter of rest. Even at Age 36, he should still be a solid option.

I really hope we dont get a BS story in Spring Training again about his velocity if there are issues.

I construed NEPP's use of the word "ace" to be a term of mild ridicule, but I understood Cholly, not Halladay, to be the object of that ridicule.

Well bap, that's because you actually post here regularly and know that was my intent.

The Phillies, by the way, open the season against Atlanta, not KC. They face the Royals in their 2nd series.

That's true, that KC game is our 4th game in 5 days, its probable that Kyle Kendrick will start the Home Opener.

Or mystery pitcher that Rube signs if its actually a 3/4 starter instead.

The Phillies, by the way, open the season against Atlanta, not KC. They face the Royals in their 2nd series.


and a decent pitching prospect in Bonilla


a decent "fungible reliever" pitching prospect in Bonilla

'Tools' summed up his negativity a lot more coherently than GTown and the rest of the BL doomsday toolshed ever have.

"Obligatory "awh thinks Michael Young = Hank Aaron" post"

No, Cyclic, just pointing out that even HOF players have bad years late in their careers, so why would we expect it from someone like Young.

You needn't be a douche, you know.

Jack- you'll probably rip me for this, but I've got Young and Revere giving us 1.5-2 WAR more, combined, than what we got from the pu pu platter at third and Vic/Mayberry, etc in CF. We'll see how it shakes out.

Either way, even the best case scenario is only an incremental gain over what we had at those positions to begin with- I don't think anyone would argue otherwise. That's sort of the reason it was so cheap to make the moves. Instead of shooting the salary cap wad on Upton/Youk, and cheaping out on corner OF/bullpen, Amaro clearly feels that gains can be made elsewhere that would be a smarter use of available assets. Two of the places that could have the biggest increase in production- Halladay and Howard- are already on the team. The other two are corner OF and bullpen. Those additions have yet to be made. So it's kind of foolish to judge the incremental moves now before the other shoe(s) drop, because that's supposedly what the money is being saved for and where production can be increased the most through FA. But you're going to believe what you want to believe.

The amazing thing to me, looking at the cumulative production position by position, was looking at how good the Phils were at 2B. Felt like Utley was out 3/4 of the year, and he still had them in the top 5-10 in production at the position. Amazing.

I know people are being sarcastic and/or stupid, but the truth is that Halladay does have a moderate form of heat illness and that simply doesn't disappear. They're going to have to be wary of pitching him in day games when the heat and humidity are high. It should become standard procedure to move him back a day to avoid those conditions.

Re: The Royals trade. People are calling Wade Davis a reliever because he was in the bullpen last season. In fact, the Royals will use him as a starter and he's not a bad #4. So they get two MLB starters for 4 prospects, two of whom are longshots.

The best prospect in the deal is Wil Myers, the most highly touted Royals hitting prospect since Alex Gordon. But it took Gordon 5 years to become the player scouts projected. How long will it take 22-year-old Myers?

While this deal smells of desperation and I nwouldn't have done it, I don't think it's quite the lopsided disaster it's being portrayed as.

Last year the Phillies were in the playoff hunt into mid September and then finished 7 out of the playoff spot.

That despite: having Utley for only 83 games, Howard for 71, Victorino having a down year, and losing Lee for a little, Halladay being a shell of himself after April, a bullpen that imploded regularly, and guys in Mayberry and Wigginton that saw 441 and 315 at bats a piece and combined for an OPS just above .300

Is it really that far fetched that people believe if Howard and Utley play more and Halladay returns to form that this team wins more games? Why is that a crazy thought?

TTI, you forgot Worley's trip to the DL and him pitching to a 4.75 ERA until he got shut down for surgery.

There were other things too.

Point: Just about everything that could have gone wrong for the Phillies last season went wrong.

"Last year the Phillies were in the playoff hunt into mid September and then finished 7 out of the playoff spot. "

That must be incorrect, I read , right here on BL, season=over every day from July 4th on.

TTI- all that will be canceled out by Ruiz missing 25 games, and other guys getting hurt and stuff.

Besides, it's not like their record improved in the second half of the season or anything.

Iceman, yep!

Surely you jest, Bubba, as the season had been declared over on this site since at least the previous Winter Meetings.

Unikruk- I stand corrected.

If guys like Correia are getting $5/year and that is the floor apparently for a 4th/5th starter, the Phila are looking at table scraps if they are only going to spend $2-3m on a base of a 'low-risk' high reward starter as Amaro described.

Where did Amaro say they are only spending $2-3 million?

MG, surprised you didn't say anything about your boy Grilli. What do you think of his deal?

Personally I can't believe he got more than Uehara in years and guaranteed money. Uehara must've really wanted to pitch in Boston.

Season = over last year at the ASB. As well as the Phils played through Memorial Day at a few games above .500 and after the ASB, they collapsed for 6 weeks starting in early June.

Basically what could go wrong though did last year. Why I am cautiously optimistic about this team next year although the Nats are the clear favorites right now and probably will be regardless of what the Phils do for the remainder of the offseason.

Iceman - glad for grilli and wasn't surprised he turned down a bit more money supposedly to stay in Pittsburgh instead of heading to Toronto or Chicago (Cubs).

What did he sign for?

I'm surprised Uehara wanted to head to Boston given that he has no apparent ties there & it's hard to see them being a playoff contender.

Zolecki has Nix batting 5th against RHP? Now excuse me if I don't adhere to traditional thinking, but I don't give a hoot about handedness if it means Nix is getting the majority of the at bats in left. I'd much rather just throw Ruf and Brown out there every day in left and right respectively, and see if they can keep up rather than throw a scrub like Nix out there. Of course this is all moot if Ruben picks up another outfielder like everyone expects. But still, given this current team, do people agree with Zolecki and having Nix bat 5th against RHers?

Grilli's deal is a really nice singing for the Pirates. Got a discount and a setup caliber reliever for less than $3.5m/year when others have already gotten $6.

I have a feeling that Nix' number of Ab's are probably more dependent on Ruf and/or Brown not hitting than on his own performance.

Grilli was actually amazingly good last year and quite good in 2011, as well. But he's 36, the quintessential journeyman, and has struggled with his control throughout his career. He strikes me as the classic case of the "fungible" good stuff/erratic command reliever who managed to harness his command long enough to put together a couple of really nice years, but who will likely come crashing back to earth pretty hard next year.

If I'm buying insurance that will help me if one or the other of the Howard/Utley tandem fails to come through, I'm buying "Hamilton Mutual." Think about it, who else is out there that would be a difference-maker who would get us into the postseason should Howard or Utley or Halladay, for that matter, fail to return to normal. The only guy is Josh Hamilton. Spend the money, Ruben!

Where did Amaro say they are only spending $2-3 million?


He didn't. MG is just making things up again. I am starting to think he might be DPat's source.

norbertods was right on the money. If there ever was a BL meet-up, Iceman and TTI would just be hovering around MG, waiting for him to say anything, and then jumping all over him.

Hopefully MG knows we're just messing around with him. He's one of the most knowledgeable posters on BL. Sometimes he says some weird stuff.

Apparently the Phils were discussing Worley for Asdrubal Cabrera "and prospects." Ugh.

Yeah I mean clearly I made a joke about it with the DPat stuff.

I contacted MG and wrote an article with him so I have some level of affinity for his thoughts. I think sometimes he goes overboard in what he says and sometimes think he fires up his complaint meter based off something he thinks might happen. And those were things I said when I talked with him over the phone too so it is not as if I haven't said it to him personally.

MG does have some good posts, but frankly, a lot of what he types is pure speculation on his part, the "2-3 MM" being one example thereof.

Apparently the Phils were discussing Worley for Asdrubal Cabrera "and prospects." Ugh.

Ugh? Carbrera's nice player. Or were you saying "Ugh, we could have had Cabrera instead of Young and Revere".

Oh, I know that MG puts some weird stuff out there. I've called him out on a thing or two myself. It just seems that every time I hop on BL, there's a "battle" between MG and TTI/Iceman.

Not that that's a bad thing. Every site needs its hook. Just like clockwork these days.

"Or were you saying "Ugh, we could have had Cabrera instead of Young and Revere".

Yeah, that's what I was thinking.

Iceman, where did you here that?

I would have done that trade too. My guess is that it's CLE that wouldn't pull the trigger. Maybe they thought they had a better offer elsewhere?

awh: I saw it on buster olney's twitter link. I must say, I second iceman's ugh.


"In a separate piece, Gelb writes that the Phillies figure to sign one of Cody Ross, Nick Swisher and Josh Hamilton to fill a corner vacancy. They've long coveted Ross, but aren't as big on Swisher, perhaps due to his price tag. Gelb notes that the Phillies could offer Hamilton a shorter-term deal with a high annual value if his demands decrease."

So they're OK to sign Hamitlon at big dollars, but not Swisher, who's been marginally less valuable over the last two years than Hamilton, and comes with significantly less injury and "other" question marks. I'd rather spend $15 M on Swisher any day of the week than $25 on Hamilton. That's not even question.

And unless Ross is coming here for basically nothing, I'd rather spend the money on Swisher. It just baffles me that the Phillies would be this sour on Swisher (if they actually are).

What does "figure" to sign mean?

Fatalotti: Thanks for the post. I really, really, REALLY hope the Phils do not sign Ross. I think that would be a huge mistake, even if he signs for peanuts. I think Swisher is the better fit. Of course, Hamilton is far and away the best player of the three -- but at what cost?

I'm good with Swisher. Ok with Hamilton. 100% against Ross.

So, look for the Phils to sign Cody Ross to 4/$55M in the next day or two. Asdrubal Cabrera.....the article that Olney links says the Phil's offered Worley and two prospects. Didn't say who they were. The Indians asked them to sweeten the deal and they declined. Said they wanted Cabrera to play 3rd.

What does "figure" to sign mean?

Jethro Bodine called it "cipherin'"?

Swisher is the best option, but I'll slowly warm to Ross provided they don't pay close to what Swisher would have cost and then fail to use any savings to upgrade the lost rotation spot.

I was thinking again how Soriano was a good low risk option. 3-year averages.

Soriano (37): .255/.312/.489 -- 113 OPS+ -- average 145 games, 27 HR

Ross (32): .260/.324/.434 -- 105 OPS+ -- average 135 games, 17 HR

Swisher (32): .274/.366/.478 -- 125 OPS+ -- average 149, 25 HR

The difference between Ross and Soriano may be closer than that, and Ross can play all OF positions. And Soriano turns 37 in a month. Swisher just seems to be far and away the best player unless Ross builds on 2012 (where he had enormous home/road splits -- he OPSed under .700 away from Fenway).

I'd honestly prefer Soriano to Ross.

Yeah, Sophist, I was wondering that myself. Weird terminology.

I think he means logically they'll sign one of those guys, but there's no real information he has to back any of those specific players (with the exception of the Phils 'coveting Ross' for whatever reason).

Put me on the 1) Swisher, 2) Hamilton, 3) Anyone other than Ross bandwagon. I'd probably be equally pleased with the two, because the ceiling for Hamilton is much higher- but I admit the smarter signing is Swisher.

I liked Ross as a complimentary signing- not as the sole significant offensive upgrade at corner OF. I don't think Ross would be a disaster, but I fail to see why the FO is so enamored with him.

I think that any free agent starting pitcher needs to be on a 1 year deal. Everyone keeps forgetting that we have a bunch of pitching prospects that deserve a shot. Pettibone has been solid and he should get a shot, as well as Martin and Morgan are just on the doorstep. I think that adding one or two vets on minor league deals (Harden, Pavano, Millwood, Matsuzaka, Wang) with invites and letting them battle Pettibone, Martin and Cloyd. If we decide to spend some money I would like to see them go after Pelfrey.

Edmundo with the score!

I was under the impression that Amaro just threw prospects into deals fairly recklessly. Cabrera would have been a great fit at 3B.

If they "covet" Ross it's because they're taking the cheapest route to stay under the luxury tax. Swisher is a much better player and the same age. Of course he is going to cost more.

Sophist, maybe the Fo is looking at this:

.271/.323/.542, with 8 HR and 16 RBI, which is what Ross has done in 127 PA at the 'Zen.

I'd prefer a higher OB, but can find little fault with the other #s.

(P.S. I still hate the guy after 2010.)

But the impression so far that FO wants a low cost SP option would make the Ross signing pretty much a downer.

I guess you don't have to go into the season with a complete lineup -- you can wait and see what shakes out by June/July -- but they'd be well under the luxury tax and gambling on good first halves from a bunch of players who had down 2012s. Don't want to fall out early in the season again.

"Phillies figure to sign one of Cody Ross, Nick Swisher and Josh Hamilton" - that's a fairly wide spectrum of players from a sometimes starter to a sometimes all-star to a HoF talent (career will be too short to actually make it). Why not just write, "Phillies will sign an power hitting corner outfielder"?

awh - 127 PA? The chances CBP turns Ross into Carlos Gonzalez are slim to none.

But awh spent last offseason touting the sample size creation that was JMJ Jr. so it shouldn't be surprising.

Is there a prospect that the Phillies shouldn't have been willing to part with for Asdrubel Cabrera? Including presumed top prospect Biddle wouldn't have been an overpay in my mind.

Also, maybe RAJ's judgement is clouded by the "personal scouting" on which the Phillies say they like to rely.

Swish has never had a PA at the 'Zen, but has done this in 27 PA against Phils pitching:


Hey, maybe the sample size is big enough the convince the FO that Swish is the lesser player?

Soriano, OTOH, has done this in 109 PA at the 'Zen:

.314/.358/.520, 11 XBH (5 HR), 10 RBI.

How can anyone have "long coveted" Cody Ross?

Sophist, I didn't say I agreed with the conclusion, just that maybe the FO is looking at it, and that personally I would prefer a higher OB - but, then again, I'd prefer that in any circumstance.

The problem with Soriano is that he pushes the winner of the Ruf/Brown competition to right field. If Soriano's in Left and Ruf's in Right, I hope Revere is as fast as everyone says he is.

"How can anyone have "long coveted" Cody Ross?"

It's funny you should ask that, because I was going to ask literally the exact same question.

awh - Scouts travel. They don't just wait for a player to come to CBP. They also have televisions and friends. I can't imagine the Phils make decisions based on 27 PA. Do you really think that's what they would do?

Sophist, go back and look at my posts and show me where I stated that JMJ's sample sizes were meaningful in any way, other than they confirmed (as do minor league splits of his I posted) that he mashes LHP.

"IF" was always the most important word in those posts, and I frequently capitalized it.

"I can't imagine the Phils make decisions based on 27 PA. Do you really think that's what they would do?"

I wouldn't think so, Sophist, but nothing in MLB surprises me anymore.

Even the people who aren't particularly fond of this front office wouldn't think they make decisions based on 27 plate appearances.

I mean, that's just unimaginable, isn't it?

awh - Complete speculation, but FO is dumber than even Gtown thinks they are if they're basing these decisions on 127 and 27 PA samples, although I guess they could have good support (backed by further analysis) to believe that Ross' bat is particular suited to CBP for some reason with that 127 sample (with most PA from a few years ago anyway) as added support.

I could see them looking at $$, and HR, BA, SO, defense, and, to a lesser extent, RBI to make a decision. But I can't imagine they give, say, Swisher's performance against them that much weight. I don't know. Seems crazy.

If the team does end up signing Ross instead of Swisher (who'd be a much better fit), I think it'll show that they were really intent on keeping that draft pick.

For the record, even I don't think the FO bases this sort of decision on a 27 PA appearance sample.

Considering this is the Phillies we're discussing, I'd say it's far more likely they want to sign the least expensive player, & avoid losing a draft pick.

So I guess I'd say that this appears to be more of a case of Cheap than Stupid, although one might rightfully speculate as to where in the big picture those two points intersect.

I can also see them making some BS statement at the press conference like: he's got great numbers at CBP / against us.

I'm with Gtown. I think it would be a decision about the value of Swisher vs Ross (contract and draft picks), and possibly based on looking at the wrong numbers / input from scouts (who I imagine have seen Swisher bat plenty of times against all kinds of pitchers).

Cody better be reeeally a bargain price.

I don't know. I can't stand the guy and I don't know why they're looking for savings, but I do think Phils fans undervalue Ross a bit.

... I do think Phils fans undervalue Ross a bit.

In all fairness, I do agree w/ this statement. However, Ross is a downgrade from Pence, & (as has been discussed) a lesser player than others available. I don't have half the angst of many (most?) Phillies fans over what Ross did in the '10 NLCS, but I would still be incredibly disappointed if he turns out to be the club's "big move".

I do not accept the premise that the Phils have only $20 million to spend. If that be true, the team is not trying very hard to win.

Cody Ross isn't a bad player. He's a league average corner OF. He has decent power, slightly below average OB skills, and seems to have a decent glove.

But I don't see him commanding so much less than Swisher as to make the choice of Ross one that is defensible.

Ross only makes sense if he costs considerably less than Swisher. Like, 3yr/$18M vs. 5yr/$60M difference.

But if it's anything like 3/25 vs. 5/50, then just pay the premium to get Swisher.

Fatalotti: I guess the Phillies really value that draft pick, then.

(And yes, that's still indefensible)

The comments to this entry are closed.

EST. 2005

Top Stories


Rotoworld News

Follow on Twitter

Follow on Facebook

Contact Weitzel