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Friday, December 14, 2012


To be fair, Earwigg was good for a .771 OPS against lefties last year (weird to only give BA...) but that was in 150 PA and *certainly* doesn't merit a 2-year deal. We can only presume he's a dab hand at karaoke.

In the last thread, BAP looks like he's making headway in his 'Ross is garbage' argument.

I just hope everyone realizes that, as usual, he's completely off the reservation. Ross is certainly not worth the money he'll command, and he is not as good as Hunter Pence, but he would help the team at least a little bit. He's better than John Mayberry without question.

If Ross's acquisition means that they're going to platoon Brown with Ruf/Mayberry, then that improves two positions. It would at least be an upgrade, though not the one we all want. He is certainly not useless like BAP would have you believe (I think he's making this argument mostly because it means his boy Ruf will be out of the equation to start).

It's not that I think Mayberry is a better all-around player than Ross (he isn't). It's that I think Dom & Ruf, with occasional starts from Mayberry & Nix, have a good chance of being at least as good as Ross, if not better. If my forecast turns out to be wrong, then we can go find another outfielder. If we sign Cody Ross & we're wrong about him, then we're stuck with that mistake for 3 years.

Of course, it goes without saying that I think Swisher is better than all of the above.

Posted by: bay_area_phan

Good stuff.

The most ridiculous part of the Pigginton deal is not the fact that it's 2 years- it's that an NL team signed him and he has to play defense. He is an abomination in the field at every position he plays.

People make fun of Mini's 'versatility,' but the biggest exaggeration on 'versatility' I've ever seen was it being used to describe Pigginton in some of these articles. I can't even come up with an analogy to compare that to. It's hilarious and devastating at the same time.

"If my forecast turns out to be wrong, then we can go find another outfielder."

Who? When? If it's so easy to just 'find another OF,' they'd have done it by now.

And it's not a given Ross is getting 3 years- and even if he did, it's not the most ridiculous 3-year signing I've ever seen a team make. Or even this team.

Somehow, though, since its the Cards, this deal will work out.

"It's that I think Dom & Ruf, with occasional starts from Mayberry & Nix, have a good chance of being at least as good as Ross, if not better"

At this point, it would be Dom/Ruf AND Mayberry/Nix at both corner OF spots. There are no other OFs in the mix. So I'm not sure I get the logic here. You're banking on them BOTH being better than Ross?

If Ross ends up getting something like 3/30, Getting rid of Pence to "save" money starts to look pretty silly.

Iceman: If its not a given that Ross gets a 3 year deal, than its not a given Swisher will get more than 4.

The only way Ross is a good choice is if Swisher ends up with a 6 year deal over $15M AAA and Ross can be had at a Ryan Ludwick type deal(2yr/$15M).

I actually still hate Ross on that deal, but I would concede that it makes more sense to do that and address setup/starter more agressively.

Iceman-- If those 4 play according to L/R splits for the most part, I don't see how Ross would be much more of an upgrade over that.

If Ross ends up getting something like 3/30, Getting rid of Pence to "save" money [signing with the Phils, this entire off-season] starts to look pretty silly.

Fixed that for you, NEPP.

Well the opening day lineup is shaping up to be the most feeble in many years. I sure do miss all that chatter about how Rube was busy dumping salary so that he could blow through the salary cap this year.

Wow you'd think the Phillies were trying to win the World Series with a sure thing claim like this!

curt: that's why speculation is purely speculative. Rose-colored glasses and whatnot, I suppose.

IF Robles' can maintain that walk rate he'll fit right in with most of the pen.

There are really people that think signing Mike Adams (which I think I would support, given a reasonable two-year deal) would do more for the team's chances of winning this year than signing Nick Swisher?

Ross at 2/15 would actually work decently assuming it comes with moves on the rotation and bullpen.

The state of the rotation is an underdiscussed issue right now. There's no real indication that Cloyd is even going to be replacement level--and just as importantly, where is the depth?

RBil: Or Ross-colored classes, for some people.

Good Phight had a pretty good article here. Forgive me for the long quote.

"Take the money, put it into the rotation, and go with the youth movement. And from an asses in the seats perspective? From a cable deal perspective? Do you think the WIP crowd would rather see Nick Swisher, Cody Ross, Alfonso Soriano or Darin freakin' Ruf?

Exactly. And you know what? I think I'd rather see it too. You know what else I'd like to see? Underdogs. For the first time in years the Phillies won't be "The team to beat" in the National League preseason. Hell, they won't even be the team to beat in the division.

They'll be underdogs.

Which team would you rather see? The one coming off the 2011 season that broke down and crushed you because there were guaranteed givens and certainty about playoff berths, or THE TEAM with the fairly unproven outfield, that develops under your eyes into something special?

Look at that opening day roster from 2008 again.

Then dream a little.

I know my answer.

That teams big ticket acquisition that offseason if I recall was Pedro Feliz.

And the team that won the World Series last year?

Their big free agent acquisition was Ryan Theriot.

If you have to spend, Take the Swisher money, go out and get Mike Adams and a starting pitcher, and let the kids play!.

It's the safe route, its the unspectacular route, and it might just be the best route to the postseason for years to come."

R.Billingsly - Yeah, it's almost like Rube was dumping salary in order to make a bigger profit. How weird is that?

Jack- of course, nobody said that.

If Swisher and Adams could be had for equal contracts, it's a no-brainer. But the team needs a set-up man, and Adams could be had for probably 2 years/10 million at the most. Swisher is going to command exponentially more than that.

Halladay bouncing back, in combination with an Adams signing, would make this a playoff team. That's all I said. And I'm not sure anyone else implied even close to what you're saying, either.

"And from an a**es in the seats perspective? From a cable deal perspective? Do you think the WIP crowd would rather see Nick Swisher, Cody Ross, Alfonso Soriano or Darin freakin' Ruf?"

Hmm... pretty sure the correct answer is "a winning team."

Cyclic- I think it was Fatalotti who said it, and it's correct, that the more platoons your team has, the weaker it is. Relying on two platoons in the corner OF is relying on four players to play to their career norms- and two of those players are Laynce Nix (bum) and Darin Ruf (50 career ABs above AA).

I don't know about you, but I'd rather take my chances on Ross than all four of those particular players succeeding and excelling in part-time roles.

I was just taking a stab at what BAP meant by this--

"It's that I think Dom & Ruf, with occasional starts from Mayberry & Nix, have a good chance of being at least as good as Ross, if not better"

--I understand that 2 platoons weakens the team overall.

My pipe dream is that Brown and/or Ruf are able to win an everyday job outright through above-average to stellar play. Thus, you could put up with one platoon and not be stuck with Ross for 3 years.

I'm not necessarily advocating to go w/ platoons in both corner OFs, but doing so wouldn't automatically make your team weaker. In fact, doing so implies playing to your strengths.

In the Phils' current situation, would it be risky? Absolutely. But don't write it off by default either.

If this team doesn't get help offensively, it won't matter who the set-up man is or the closer is for that matter.

If you sign Ross for like 10 million a year that doesn't mean it was silly to get rid of Pence to save money. Hypothetically Ross and whatever else you sign to equal up to Pence's contract would be what getting rid of Pence got you.

Cyclic: That's my pipe dream too. I don't like platoons and wasn't referring to a true platoon. I just meant that Mayberry & Nix would get some starts against opposite-handed pitchers.

Iceman: Regarding your question about where we'd find that outfielder . . . maybe we find one in a mid-season trade, maybe it happens next off-season, or maybe someone comes out of nowhere in our minor league system (as happens from time to time).

My working premise is: it is highly unlikely that Cody Ross would be the difference between contending or not contending in 2013. So why lock ourselves into 3 years with such a guy? Better to see what our younger guys can give us. If they stink it up, we can fix it when the first opportunity arises -- which I trust will happen sometime sooner than 3 years from now.

This stuff about 'what the WIP crowd would like vs other fans' is almost completely made up nonsense.

Fans will show up in Sept if the team is winning and solidly in the playoff hunt/lead. Nothing new there.

The real areas that teams are struggling to implement in baseball is dynamic ticket pricing for both season ticket and tickets during the year along with how to deal with ticket set too high on ticket reseller websites that it causes too many no shows.

'Doing Nothing' strategy at this point is simply a very foolish strategy both from a business perspective, competitive one, and an organizational one for next year.

That's one that Amaro won't follow though and I am glad he won't.

No one is advocating "Doing Nothing", right?

That said, Doing Nothing > 3 years of Cody Ross

Blue Jays said to be likely to acquire RA Dickey. Gose and dArnuad are among the group of prospects that the Mets are targeting in return.

Cards have had a very quiet and odd offseason (3-year deal to Choate and 2-year to Wigginton) but I understand why they have quiet.

They don't have many apparent holes, loaded with tons of young talent in the field and on their pitching staff, and just need better luck on the injury front to win at least 90 games next year. In fact, I like them more right now than any team in the NL.

NL is pretty loaded when you look at it. You have several teams right now including the Nats, Braves, Reds, Cards, Giants, and Dodgers who I could easily see winning at least 88-90 games next year.

Don't see this Phils team in that first-tier echelon right now. Put them in the next tier down with the DBacks with teams I expect to finish no worse than .500 but no in the playoffs either.

Good thing for the Phils is that I don't any real 'dark horse' team besides maybe the Padres right now. Mets will be .500 at best, Fish will chase 100 losses, Cubs will be also-rans this year, Brewers will take a step back, Pirates don't enough starting pitching or offense, and Rockies are a mess with thin pitching.

Here's why waiting until next year is a mistake to sign an FA outfielder:

Read this:

There are 4 names, total, on that list who MIGHT be an upgrade over Ross. In no particular order
1) Jacoby Ellsbury
2) Mike Morse
3) Hunter Pence
4) Nelson Cruz
5) Corey Hart

Ellsbury is an injury liability. And he'll want more money. Pence we know about, he'll also want Nick Swisher money given what he's making in arbitration. Morse is the best hitter if he can stay on the field, but he's a defensive disaster. And Cruz's offensive numbers lately aren't much better than Ross'. Hart's the best, offensively, and middle of the road defensively, but that also means you're looking at giving him Swisher money for the same amount of time (he's the biggest name on the list).

Ellsbury and Hart are the only clear upgrades. I don't see that with anyone else on the entire list. And you'd probably have to pay each of them 3 years for 25-30 million to get them in a contract next year.

Looks like Toronto has inside track to Dickey. Could be Gose and a catching prospect (they have a few). If it's Gose and D'Arnaud, that means the difference between Dickey and Halladay is Kyle Drabek!

Control these guns, babe.

Godfather: Your Cody Ross love is causing blindness.


are all better than Ross too.


Beltran will be 37. 'Nuff said. I don't care if it's Babe Ruth, I'm not signing any player over 36 to a deal longer than 2 years.

Granderson is a lefty bat who's stats are inflated because of the extremely short LF porch in Yankee Stadium. In fact his OBP in Yankee Stadium is comparable to Ross' career numbers, he just hits more homeruns (and his career splits are identical to Ross' just from the other half of the plate). He's also much more expensive and older but he bats from the wrong side.

Prado has much less power and the same career OPS, actually. Plus he's more valuable as a middle infielder or 3B, which is where he'd be put in 2014 if I had my way. That's something the Phils ought to do when Young's contract is up: sign Prado to play 3B. Covers for Asche if he isn't ready or flames out, and if he is ready, move him to the OF or 2nd to backup Utley.

As for Choo, lefty again. With same big splits (.694OPS against lefties).

If you're sensing a pattern, it's this: because of the need for an RH power bat, I;m automatically excluding any outfielder who's a lefty. The exception is Hamilton, because he has an above average OPS against lefties (over 800), but everyone else on that list, nope. I don't care if he's a 30HR guy like Granderson on average, he's a lefty. We need that from the right side.

Swisher and Ross is about it. For the next two years.

And Jason Kubel. And David Murphy. And probably others in the trade market. Or maybe someone will come along who is already on our roster or in our minor league system which will render the issue moot. Stuff happens, and it happens a lot more often than people are willing to acknowledge. At the time they were signed, who would have thought that Vic or Werth would turn out to be big-time players for us? When we threw loads of money at Thome, who would have ever believed that an even better option would emerge out of our minor league system only 2 years later? If you bring in Cody Ross to be our right fielder for the next 3 years, you're eliminating the "stuff happens" option. That's fine if you're getting a genuine plus player like Swisher. But for Cody Ross? I'd rather stick with the status quo & hope that stuff happens over the next year. And if stuff doesn't happen, then there are plenty of other names to choose from on the 2014 FA list.

Slight amendment to the last post -- because I know someone like Iceman will call me on it. I guess you wouldn't really be "eliminating" the "stuff happens" option if you signed Ross. But you would certainly be complicating it.


Kubel is worse defensively, has similar career stats, and also has the same OPS splits against hitters from the same side.

Same for David Murphy as well.

But guess what? Both LEFTIES!

To reiterate, any LEFTHANDED OUTFIELDER IS AUTOMATICALLY ELIMINATED FROM MY CONSIDERATION. We're talking about a righthanded outfield power bat here. Not anything else. Unless they bat well against lefties, like Ellsbury or Hamilton, you can forget about it. We need right handed power.

"We need right handed power."

Actually, I'm with you on that -- although we disagree about Darrin Ruf's ability to contribute immediately. Until he proves that he can't, I'll believe that he can. Lots of players successfully make the leap from AA to the majors, and very few of them had the AA numbers that he did.


More likely, much more likely because he's a prospect in fact, he won't. That's why you start him in AAA first. If he really can make it, he'll do fine. If not, he flames out there, instead of at the MLB level where his lack of performance hurts the big club. In the mean time you give Brown a full time shot, and if he flames out, Ruf gets his chance.

In the mean time Ross gives you a steady hand in the OF, not spectacular, but he's a good defender with 20HR power. Proven major leaguer. And if you're smart and front load the contract (say 10 million to start, then 15 the rest of the way), he's also an instant trade chip in 2014 and 2015. That's much more attractive for teams at the trading deadline than Swisher at 5-6 years, 15-16 million a year (which is what he's gonna cost, if I have to beat all of your brains out to understand this about Swisher I will do it, forget about any delusions otherwise).

The thought of possibly seeing D'arnaud in a Mets uniform would make me ill..

This is as high of a draft pick as they're likely to get for quite a while. It would be arguable to see Swisher as good enough to justify his contract at all, let alone his contract + a draft pick.

Ross + pitching + extra money for a trade deadline pickup > Swisher.

And say what you will, but Brown for anything of value is a deal worth doing. If they can skip Ross altogether and trade Brown for Soriano + cash, I'd make the trade in a minute. 10 million bucks for two years of a right handed bat with 30HR/100+RBI potential is EXACTLY what this team needs. He fills the gap to 2015 (when the television rights money rolls in) for very little money and commitment, and at the cost of a guy who looks like he's every bit as likely to have a Mayberry ceiling as he is to become an everyday player. Considering the circumstances, they'd be damn fools not to pull the trigger.

Bourn and Revere Cholly will turn them into HR machines youll all see......A 12 yo school girl can hit HomeRuns under Uncle C tutelage. PS...I wouldnt offer Ross anymore than 3/27. Anymore and they should of just resigned Shane...

" If they can skip Ross altogether and trade Brown for Soriano + cash, I'd make the trade in a minute."

Wow. Just wow!

I wouldn't mind Soriano if he only cost 5-6MM/yr, so I agree with that part of the equation, but because it would be a pure salary dump by the Cubs, saving them 6MM is significant enough that I wouldn't include Brown in a trade.

Maybe one or two of the lesser prospects on the Phils list, but that's about it.

The risk that Soriano goes into decline at teh age of 36 is too great to give up Brown, who I'm not that high on anyway, but not for Soriano.

In the Phillies position, I would only let Brown go for a pitcher, not someone considerably older who plays the same position.

To finish up my last thought:

What's the point of trading Brown and getting older, especially at a position where you have a young kid who's developing?

Isn't one of the big criticisms of this team that they have an aging core?

So why get older on purpose?

this little item from mlbtr caught my interest:

"•A source says that the Indians' four-player return for Shin-Soo Choo and Jason Donald won't deter them from moving right-hander Justin Masterson, shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera, or closer Chris Perez in the right deal, Rival teams say the Tribe insisted upon major leaguers/major league ready pieces for Choo and they would presumably seek the same in return for their other veterans."


I would be very interested in Perez as a setup man, and he's under control for 2 more years.

I would also be interested in Masterson. Hasn't been great, but he has averaged 201 IP the last 3 seasons, is only 28 and under control for 2 more years, has plus stuff (though he issues a little too many BB), and he'd probably be able to take the ball every 5 days and give them league averaage outings.

Plus, you never know what he migh tlearn by being around HLH.

"The Yankees luxury tax penalty for 2012 will come in at $18.9MM, according to the Associated Press. The Bombers have run up a luxury tax bill of $224.2MM over the past ten years, with the fee increasing from $13.9MM last year."


And one WS win to show for it.

We finished $8 million under the cap for 2012... Odd, rube said we were right up against it even after the trades

if im on the mound ill throw Perfect games every 5 days.

That is odd, NEPP.

What astounds me about that Yankees number is that one could have fielded and entire team for two full seasons with that kind of money.

No wonder Young Steinbrenner wants to get under the luxury tax threshold. The data don't support consistently paying it.

Braves are after Trumbo.

Do they have enough to trade to get it done?

The braves could acquire basically anyone in baseball outside trout and harper, that's what makes them so damn annoying year after year.

could the phils go for Trumbo?

MikeB- Good news, if it's confirmed.

Can we get the Cards to trade for Nix, he a Wigginton are a matched set and shouldn't be broken up.

I read a good stat - if the Adams signing is true, Amaro was to able tho get Young, Adams and Revere for 80% of BJ upton's salary. Nice moves!

if that mike adams report is true why is espn and csn lacking to report themselves?

Blood is thicker than watered down scotch on a Friday night.

Yeah, I don't see any reason to trust those articles about Adams.

Sequence of events: real whiskey at the family celebration. Broken promise. Technology changing the game.

In a normal off-season, I'd probably find it troubling that we're paying $6M per year for a setup man and giving a 3-year contract to a 34-year old reliever whose decline may have already started. But he is certainly the best non-closer left on the market. If we're not gonna spend money on the offense, we might as well spend it on someone who can help us.

I agree with Mike B...getting Adams, Young and Revere for less than the cost of Upton - decent value IMO.

I think I would rather see them sign Marcum first, and then get someone like Hairston to throw in the OF mix. Having upgraded the defense, rotation and 8th inning, I am fine with seeing if either Brown or Ruf take the next step towards being a player - while keeping Hairston in the mix if either of them falls on their face.

Love the Adams signing if its true. If Bastardo can get consistent then we have a really good bullpen. This still leaves about $14-$15 million to spend too.

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