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Monday, January 21, 2013


Quick. Trade Gillies. His value will never be higher.

Who cares the problem Is this team Is way behind the Nats what they need is a new front office.

MG- in the last thread you said that it shouldn't be a surprised that the ERA for Phils starters was a half run higher than the SIERA in the first half because they should expect to give up their fair share of HRs.

I'm still not understanding what you're talking about. Are you saying that, for their careers, they all pitch to that type of a split, or that they all pitched basically to their HR/9 norms? Because neither of those facts are really true.

Either way, I was not saying that the difference was surprising. I said the bullpen's split was shocking. The starters' split isn't surprising because anyone with two eyes could see that they were pitching into crummy luck, including giving up a lot of HRs.

They (relievers/starters) both allowed a bunch of HRs in the first half last year. That's all.

Just to be clear, the Nationals are 2013 NL East Champs already, right?

MG- ok. We agree. I was just confused.

or trade Revere, sign Michael Bourn for 1 year and keep Gillies as our future cf

Astros made a really nice minor league signing in Bedard. Glad the Phils signed two stiffs in Cook (a guy who has no business in MLB baseball anymore) and Lopez (a guy who should be pitching in the Mexican League this year).

Bedard probably signed with the Astros because he has a decent shot to break as their Opening Day roster.

I wish Amaro would made a strong push to sign Bedard on a minor league deal by telling him that would have been given an equal opportunity to compete for the 5th spot with Lannan.

Even as much as Bedard struggled after May for the Pirates last year, there is still a chance Bedard has some upside potential left in him.

At worst, Bedard could have won the 5th starter's spot and Lannan could have been the long man out of the pen to start the year. It would have given the Phils some starting depth (they have none right now) and given them 2 guys in middle relief that can throw 1+ IP in Lannan and Horst.

In fact, looking out there are a bunch of veteran starters who are still looking for a MLB deal including:

J. Sanchez

Add Marcum and Saunders but it is hard to see those 2 guys not getting a MLB deal.

Add Vasquez and C. Young to that list too if he doesn't retire.

I got some flak for criticizing the Cook/Lopez signings but I bet Cook is a 6th right now on the organizational depth chart for starters.

You know Amaro thinks more highly of Cook than Lopez (Cook got a biggercontract if he makes the Opening Day roster at $1.5M vs $1M for Lopez).

I also think Amaro would promote Cook to fill a roster spot early in the year (or Opening Day) if there is an injury over someone like Cloyd or Pettibone too.

"Astros made a really nice minor league signing in Bedard."

MG, yes they did.

Your post seems to heap scorn on the Phils FO for not bringing in Bedard or other guys with higher upside than Lannan.

Frankly, I'm sure the Phils would love to stock as many high-upside guys in AAA as possible, but the guy (pitcher) on the other end of the transaction has to say "yes".

It may be that Lannan was signed because he was the only one who would say "yes" at the time to a contract with which the FO was comfortable.

Bedard may not have been willing to accept a MiL deal at the time, and who know what were his contract demands.

I do not think that Amaro and the front office will have any reservations in dumping the minor league vets if they do not perform or do not fit in.

I was still surprised how quickly they let Pieniro go last year, when most people expected him to get a major league deal as possibly a 4th starter somewhere.

I think the difference between $1M and $1.6M is insignificant and just was enough to get each to sign. Since they were offered contracts at least the Phillies saw something in them worth paying for.

MG, you made the same mistake with Wolf that I made with Oviedo on the last thread:

He had TJ surgery and will not pitch in 2013.

rolo - It really comes down to Cook/Lopez. Lannan's a credible MLB starter even if he has very limited upside.

Cook's been a terrible pitcher for 3 years and Lopez hasn't been effective at the MLB level since '07 as a starter for a prolonged stretch.

MG, here's what I don't get: You mention that you got flak for criticizing the Cook/Lopez signings. What about MiL signings is worthy of criticism?

I can understand criticizing a MLB contract, especially if there is someone else you'd prefer. But, by definition, MiL signings are of the 'dime-a-dozen' variety and don't obligate the team to anything.

I'm in favor of them signing as many guys as they can to those kinds of deals - those who will actually agree to them.

rolo - Simply because there are better starters on that list above who I bet also get minor league deals and Cook is probably the 6th guy on the organizational depth chart right now for starters.

MG, I get that and I AGREE with you.

And I'm sure the Phils FO is aware that there is better talent available.

Let me put it in question form:

do you know for sure that the Phillies HAVEN'T tried to sign the guys we'd prefer?

You don't know with 100% certainty but they were never linked to Bedard this entire offseason.

I am sure Amaro was looking after the Revere deal to sign 1-2 veteran starters to minor league deals since they had to fill out at least one starting spot at Lehigh.

Lopez struck me a deal the Phils made because they were fairly familiar with him. What you don't know is what other starters the Phils talked to before they decided on signing Cook last week.

The only thing that is apparent is that Amaro wasn't willing to wait & wanted to get those minor league deals for veteran starters finished ASAP.

At least MG is consistent. He criticizes Amaro's minor league moves with the same ferocity that he does the major league ones.

anyone ever try to comprehend SIERA? Some crazy stuff.

Well, I had a self-indulgent, lengthly post in response to MG which apparently got swallowed twice, so I'll try doing it in sections:

MG, I agree with you. However, there’s no evidence other than your own supposition that Amaro wasn't/isn't willing to wait.

It's quite possible that Bedard and whoever else to whom they may have talked have told RAJ that there is no interest in signing with the Phillies because the Phils' rotation seems to be set with KK and Lannan at the back end.

And if you are one of those pitchers and viewing the opportunity in Philadelphia, you have to look at the injury history of the five guys ahead of you. If I were one of them, what that would tell me is that while there may be some chance I'd get to ply my wares at the MLB level and possibly get a decent contract in 2014, there's also a pretty good chance that all five of the Phils starters stay relatively healthy and give them 1000 IP.

From the list you posted above, my personal favorite is Zambrano because I think he has more potential upside than the rest, especially out of the 'pen.

Part II:

And I understand the Lannan signing: yes, they wanted someone who wasn't too expensive, but after all the injuries last season they probably wanted someone at the back end who was reliable and had very little injury history. Lannan fits that bill. If he's the John Lannan we've come to know and love he's going to give them 180+ IP with an ERA between 3.50 - 4.00. The last 5 years, including his MiL time, he's averaged 187 IP.

Even in his worst year, 2010, he had a 4.65 ERA and missed the month of July when he got sent down to Syracuse to get straightened out. He had 3 starts against the Phils that season and had a 6.90 ERA against them, and a 4.40 ERA against the rest of the teams he faced.

He'll probably never pitch a shutout, but he is capable of good stretches. When he came back from being sent down in 2010, he had a 3.42 ERA in August and September (11 GS, 68.7 IP), and had a 3.12 ERA in the 9 starts that were not against the Phillies.

But to get back to your point, sure, I would like to see a couple of more MiL signings from the list above - and I'm sure RAJ would also.

The real question is: Will those pitchers sign with the Phillies? If you were one of them, would you take your chances that the Phillies starters - all of whom have pretty good track records - are going to break down?

Great article over at fangraphs on pitcher's pace, and how slow Pap works. It also analyzes MLB's fastest working hitter - Bourn - against baseball's slowest working pitcher - Pap. Video included:

rolo - Lannan is going to have an ERA between 3.50-4.00? No way. If he gives them an ERA near 4, I would be satisfied.

Your support for Lannan though is kind of baffling. His best attribute far and away has been his durability and the variety of stuff he throws (5 pitches). Not exactly a ringing endorsement.

Lannan was an okay value signing too given the FA market this offseason.

At best, he is a guy who has around a ~4 ERA, goes .500, and works a bit deeper into games like he did in '09 and '10.

Worst-case scenario is that he struggles with an ERA over 4.50, is a sub .500 pitcher, and chews up the bullpen often in his starts averaging around 5 1/3 IP/GS.

So connections to Delmon Young now? Do not want.

rolo - No at this point it isn't that likely a veteran starter would be that inclined to sign a deal with the Phils now that they signed Lopez & Cook.

If the Phils did tell some of the remaining FA starters though that the 5th spot was up for grabs in spring training, they probably could attract a higher-caliber pitcher than Cook and Lopez who have both been awful for years now as starters.

I understand that a team is going to get veterans coming off good seasons/healthy guys on a minor league deal. Even by minor league deals signings though, Cook and Lopez kind of suck. Both guys have been terrible at the MLB level for at least the past 3 years.

Frankly, if the Phils do have an injury in their rotation early on I would rather see Pettibone get thrown into the mix than relying upon a bum like Cook to fill that spot for even 4-5 starts.

Yeah Cook had a few decent outings early on with the Red Sox last year but overall he's been awful the past 3 years. In this case, I would prefer the unknown quantity which might have some positive upside over a very short duration vs the known quantity that has been very underwhelming the past few years.

Delmon Young? Talk about sucking the algae at the bottom of the aquarium. Why not just post Milton Bradley's bail & give him a Spring Training invite?

As for Cook and Lopez, they will keep at least one of them and possibly both of them depending upon who starts the year at Lehigh.

Cloyd, Pettibone, and Hyatt appears to be pretty much locks in the Lehigh rotation at this point to start the year. After that though, it kind of a crapshoot with the possibility the Phils promote someone from Reading.

I am also not sure of the status of Cochran and if the Phils resigned him this offseason as a minor league FA. If they did, they might add him as another starter at Lehigh.

With RAJ being jewish, I cannot believe he would consider Delmon Young after is anti-semetic tirade. Hard to fathom RAJ signing him.

If Phils sign Delmon Young, that means Ruf starts at AAA, right?

***With RAJ being jewish, I cannot believe he would consider Delmon Young after is anti-semetic tirade. Hard to fathom RAJ signing him.***

Maybe he's a self-hater...or maybe he's a businessman who doesnt let personal feelings interfere.

Either way, unless its a ST invite only, I haev zero interest in Delmon.

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