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Wednesday, December 19, 2012


Sorry for the re-post:

Did anyone go to the season ticket holders' luncheon last Friday? Apparently, Rube said some interesting things -- most notably about Charlie. He was apparently very open and seemingly honest.

A friend of mine was there and told me about it, but I want to get another perspective. It's possible that he misheard or misinterpreted things.

*And if what my friend told me was 100% accurate, I have new found respect for Ruben.

Vernon Wells?

We have plenty of water so we don't need to dig a deep well.

What did he say RBill?

How is any of that optimistic?

"keeps his joints going."

It's good to see that the crack Phillies medical staff is all jiggy with the latest medical terminology.


Obviously, his account will not accurately translate into print because I won’t be able to express tone, body language and the like. But here are two things that I found interesting.

He was asked if Michael Young would hit between Utley and Howard. Rube said that he has been "telling Charlie for years" to split up Utley and Howard, but "he won't do it." He also said that he told Charlie to rest them more often, but "he won't do it." While still answering the same question, he started to talk about the OF (in terms of platoons) and stopped himself and said "...Charlie and I don't agree on a lot of things." Apparently, he was getting a little angry and Tom McCarthy jumped in and jokingly said “well, Charlie has a lot of nice things to say about you too, Rube.” Supposedly, McCarthy was very taken aback by Rube's comments about Charlie, so he interrupted and made that little joke to segue to another topic. In response to a later question, Rube spoke very highly of Ryne Sandberg and was happy he was with the big club. So take that for what it’s worth. I was told that it was “obvious” that Rube does not want Charlie to be the manager of this team (my friend’s opinion, of course).

He also admitted that Wigginton and Fontenot were "disasters" that cost the Phils "a lot of games." But, he also admitted that it was his fault because "[he] brought those guys in here."

These are obviously not revelations, but it's interesting to see the GM be that open and honest. There were tons of other interesting tidbits and other stories (one hilarious story about when he was a bat boy and his first interaction with Sarge). I can't recall all of them, but the two above stood out to me.

He was supposedly very personable, charming and very accommodating with the crowd. He answered every question that he was asked -- other than when he could not address things (ie a question about who they are currently targeting for pitching help (this was just before Adams/Lannan)), and appeared to be completely honest.

Howard is working out over his honeymoon? Yeah right.

Amaro did go out of way in early Nov (Nov 5th) to state that Howard had lost "a significant amount of weight" during his offseason conditioning program.

How do you lose a significant amount of weight over a month though all the while having a broken toe which left him on crutches?

What Amaro is saying regarding Howard doesn't add up.

*And to clarify, this luncheon only had about 40 people (10 of whom were ticket reps).

RBill - That's really interesting. Sounds like Amaro thinks Cholly was the wrong guy to manage this team last year.

Cholly is a lame duck this year & if the Phils get out to a poor start again in the 1st half it wouldn't completely shock me if Cholly is canned.

Somehow I have difficulty reconciling the statement that "there is a reason to be optimistic" about Howard & Halladay with the fact that Howard won't be ready for the start of spring training, and Halladay hasn't even thrown from the mound for the entire off-season.

"How is any of that optimistic?"

Well, if you had any doubt, they are all still alive and desirous of playing professional baseball next year.

Instead of looking for another COF, RAJ should get another SP just in case Doc has seen his best days. There is bound to be SP injuries during the year.It will be pitching and not runs scored that will decide who finishes 1-2-3. Right now the Phillies are #3

That was my take too, MG.

What struck me most was Rube in general. From what I was told, it sounds like he is a guy who really knows what he's doing, very passionate about his job and really open. He seemed quite the opposite of the Rube we "know" from seeing/hearing him answer questions from the media. It was really refreshing to hear that side of it.

The phrase "won't be ready for the start of spring training, but getting closer" immediately evokes images of Chase Utley & Brad Lidge, who both ended up missing half the season after the team declared them not ready for the start of spring training, but "getting closer every day."

Perhaps I'm misinterpreting, but those injury updates strike me as being only ever-so-slightly better than "Utley, Howard & Doc are near death" on the optimism scale.

Also, if the Phillies tank again this season both Charlie AND r00b should go.

And, of course, Howard will come back in July, proceed to hit .220 with a .720 OPS & a negative WAR, and the Beerleaguer consensus will be that it was all because of the toe injury. Then we'll head into 2014 talking about how everything will be hunky-dory if only Howard can stay healthy & put up the kind of numbers he used to put up before his 2 lost injury seasons.

Ken Rosenthal ‏@Ken_Rosenthal
Source: Free-agent OF Cody Ross visited #Rangers yesterday. Had dinner with team officials, including Washington and Daniels, last night.

You can see this as a good thing or a bad thing, I personally would prefer that he sign elsewhere but I wouldn't be angry if the Phils signed him either.

I mean, I know that Gtown, BAP, and I are not exactly the most optimist posters in the BL universe.

But the post basically boils down to "yeah, we have no clue if any of them can play this Spring, but here's hoping!" How on earth could that be considered optimistic?

Ah, I love when the season is over in December.


Agree...nothing optimistic here at all. I believe Chase has felt good the last two Decembers, also.

The only platitude that is missing from RAJ's off-season update is that Domonic Brown is going through an off-season conditioning program and is in the best shape of his life.

Yeah, all that stuff is the least you'd imagine they'd be able to say about Howard, Utley, and Halladay. Throwing long toss? Fielding ground balls sometimes? Working out? Wow!

I'll believe it, especially concerning Utley, when I see it.

Maybe I am more optimistic then others because I took those reports from RAJ to be good news. The fact that Halladay is working out daily I take as a good sign, the same goes for Utley if he is taking ground balls every other day. He couldn't do that last year until May.
I also believe that Howard is a motivated man and will do everything he can to ready to play on April 1st. He will be over a year removed from the surgery and should be close to 100%, so I expect a big year from the Big Piece.

Expecting Doc, Utley and Howard to be tip top this season is hoping for a miracle. I don't believe in miracles.

And pardon me, but if your cornerstone second baseman is in the shape Utley has been in the last few seasons, does it seem a bit odd that someone from your medical staff has only seen him once during the offseason?

And Doc is long tossing? I'm thinking this means both his legs and one arm were broken in a hunting accident and he's bouncing a ball off his hospital room wall.

Yeah, Rube has seemed a little more humble and personable with the media this offseason. What does that tell me? It tells me that he knows he's not on top of the situation once again and he doesn't, for once, feel like big-timing everyone asking him questions. Because that makes him look like a compete douche when we find out he was either lying or uninformed.

Excellent scoop by RBillingsley. Don't think we've ever heard comments like that from RAJ. If they're true, I think Charlie should now be considered a strong candidate for a midseason sack if this year has any whiff of 2012 about it.

I feel pretty good about Utley, pretty good about Howard, and pretty queasy about Doc. Utley seems like he's figured out how to manage his condition, and he was a pleasant surprise last year when he was on the field. However, this is a make-or-break year; if he misses another half-season, it's hard to see how he doesn't retire.

For Howard, it really doesn't seem like a similar situation to Utley circa 2011-12--it's not an injury, just conditioning. As long as he doesn't miss much time, it doesn't seem like a big deal. His production is another issue, just by virtue of his aging and the holes in his game. Probably good for an .850 OPS with 30 HR as a moderately optimistic projection.

RAJ's Doc comments are pretty apocalyptic, unless he meant something other than what he said.

I think with the doubts about Doc, the offseason would have been more complete if they'd picked up both Lannan and Marcum. If Doc comes back healthyish, then you could always move KK to the pen or DFA Lannan and it won't cost much.

Looks like a lack of planning to me. But this year there has been some planning at other positions. Should Utley be out, Frandsen is a competent (although, not Utleyesque)second baseman. And Ruf can fill in at first. That puts you back to the usual suspects in the outfield, but at least it's not Wiggy or MM backing up anyone. And should Rollins go down, Galvis won't hit like him, but he is a great fielder.

Why wouldnt Howard be ready? How long does a broken toe take to heal?

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