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Wednesday, May 08, 2013



I think Charlie gets a bad reputation re: platoons and lineups. For the better part of his run as Phillies manager the right move was to start the regulars as many days as possible against any and all pitchers. Getting 155-162 out of Utley, Rollins, Howard and even Abreu, Thome and the like was the move to make. He worked the Rowand, Victorino, Werth trio well and even did a decent job with Werth and Jenkins. The only glaring misstep was playing Bell at third instead of Polanco but Charlie has said on record numerous times that he was ordered from above to play Bell. That all changed last year when when some people imagined that there was a right way to juggle Nix-ington, Mayberry, Orr, Galvis, Frandsen and Polanco. In reality you can could have shuffled those stiffs any way you wanted and still lost. Now Charlie has some more workable parts and is doing a credible job with it.

Gargano saying Howard should be in the lineup everyday. He doesn't care what lefty is on the mound. Ugh. This guy gets paid to talk about sports. He gets money for it.

Repost as well:

I'm not sure why everybody has already decided he's done. Ever since he stunk in Spring training, people were acting like Doc was suddenly 45 years old, and not taking the simplest explanation--he's pitching hurt.

It feels like the same people who were arguing Doc was simply suddenly too old (who were proven wrong) have now folded the injury into this 'Doc's too old' narrative and convinced themselves that Doc's got a career-ending injury.

We'll find out soon enough, I guess, but I wager that Doc's got a normal enough injury and will be back towards mid-season.

If they can somehow pull off the sweep today, that will be quite an accomplishment. They will have completed a 180 degree turn from where they were Sunday when they quit against the worst team in the league.

Not sure what they served on the flight (or what Ruben has done with the real Manuel who would never make these fluid lineup changes), but get some more of it on hand. And make sure to get some Adderall and give it to Chooch.

I'm saying he's done so I can be pleasantly surprised if he isn't.

It's not a great lineup, but I'd feel better about it if they switched Mayberry and Delmon Young.

Got a good feeling about JMJ today.

However, if Halladay fails to win a ring in Philly, he'll join a long line of Philly's best athletes--Iverson, McNabb, Barkley, etc. Would sort of be fitting.

Revere should try hitting righthanded today. He might have better success.

This will very likely end up as one of those murky "rest and rehab" -- with no specific timetable -- situations. I'll even make that a prediction, since the phrase "could easily be" is apparently banned on Beerleaguer.

Gargano is talking some legit garbage right now. He makes no sense. He's holding against Howard that he isn't in the lineup today. Howard is going to have to sit at some point. Why not day after night against a lefty?

That said, I'm not celebrating this lineup like some people. It is a pretty weak showing.

Maybe Halladay needs to see Utley's guy and have all his bones realigned?

I dunno, the lineup is relatively strong from #3 to #4.

Where might I watch the press conference live online?

I'm certainly not going to criticize Cholly for doing something he should have done 2 years ago & benching Howard against a LHP. But I wouldn't have benched him today. He has been swinging the bat well lately & it's not like Kevin Frandsen's bat is a huge boost to the lineup.

Benching Dom, on the other hand: good move. Aside from about one good week in late April, he has had a slot-machine kind of season: a majestic homerun every 20 or so ABs, and a whole lot of wretchedly bad ABs in between.

gobay: agreed, day after night and vs a lefty SP - a garbage one at that. That will only happen what, ~10 times all year? Sounds like a good time for Howard to catch a breather.

Gargano was bringing up Bonds and why Howard should be in every lineup. Um dude, Barry Bonds did a thing called walking. Not sure Howard is familiar with that anymore.

*garbage thrower

+140 for Pettibone today? Nope.

Howard sitting today against a soft-tossing LHP who he is 1-10 against in a day game after a night game with no day off tomorrow? Absolutely.

Sitting Howard today seems to be as big of a no-brainer as there could be.

He's a guy with injury history the last two years who should get some regular rest days. To avoid facing a LHP with whom he's had difficult ly in the past also seems like a good reason. Plus it's a day game after a night game AND we play in Arizona tomorrow night?

What's not to like about this off day? says it will have Halladay presser streaming online.

This might just be shuffling deck chairs, but would Mayberry at 1B and Galvis in LF be a better alternative?

Young will never leave 3B regardless of how much him at 1B, Frandsen 3B would make sense.

Charlie & Co already have him pegged. Just like Delmon Young will never see LF or CF

I'm rooting for Doc. But unless there's surgery involved, this is beginning to sound like what happened last year. If you park a well-traveled car in the garage for three months, those miles are still on the odometer when you bring you bring it back out.

I think I'd play Brown over Frandsen and start Mayberry at first.

zudok - What he throws pitches backwards?

Ben Revere went 2 for 4 yesterday and was 1 for 3 with 2 BB on Sunday. He may actually be coming out of his funk. (Knocking wood now.)

I usually don't have issues with Gargano but he's killing me today. Now he's gushing about Matt Harvey. He's good. We get but listen to yourself, man. You sound like a moron.

Really, the rational thing is to hope for surgery, or at the least a very specific diagnosis with a very specific treatment. I don't think anyone would bet on a few more months' "rest" solving anything.

Id play Brown in LF, Mayberry at 1B, Galvis at SS.

timr, Halladay, at 35 last year, was injured and a complete shell of himself all season, missing significant time on the DL.

He has the entire offseason to heal, comes into camp looking good for a couple starts, and then suddenly the wheels fall off during spring training. he again misses time.

He returns later in ST, and pitches like garbage. He opens the season with 2 atrocious starts in which he can't make it past 4 innings, and gets clobbered with HRs in both starts.

He rebounds over his next 3 starts to pitch reasonably well, but his control problems were still apparent even in those game, and then follows those games up with probably the worst 2 start stretch of his entire career, in which he surrenders 17 runs in 6 inning of work.

It is later revealed that he is still, or again, injured.

And he's 36.

I don't get why people would possibly think there's a chance he's finished.

I just don't get it.

Interesting mid-season BP acquisition candidate: Jordan Norberto.

A's just released him, as he's on the DL with an elbow strain, but last year he had a pretty darn fine run in Oakland.

I mean, if the price is right, why not replace Horst?

I would gush about Harvey. He was hitting whatever spot he wanted to last night at 96-97 consistently.

Doc speaks.

cleaning up bone spur on doc's rotator cuff and labrum

Right about now is when it sucks to be working in a library, and being unable to turn on the sound on my computer.

David Murphy ‏@HighCheese 48s

Hallady will have surgery to clean up labrum and bone spurs. If surgery reveals same as scan, he has a good chance to pitch this year

Mildly evasive surgery is the plan. Bone spur in shoulder, minor labrum issues. They'll open things up and if they see what they expect to see then they'll do the minor surgery and he could very well pitch again this year.

buster-- yeah I'm working too. updates are appreciated.

Wow...turn back the clock 2-3 years?!!?

But I thought Roy only had "normal fraying"....

Why didn't they clean this up if it showed in an MRI last year?

Back this year.

Turn back the clock 2-3 years.

Will of course be careful and no timetable right now.

(This is good stuff)

By the way, Roy sounds more upbeat than he has in a long while.

Rube has just extended Halladay on a 7 year, $161 million deal.

What is this clock turning stuff?

Anyone reading between the lines? Are they lying/stretching the truth?

Steve: I imagine the spur didn't stick out because it was small, and nestled amongst the other boney and fibrous protuberances common in a human shoulder.

I wonder if Ciccotti missed it on his scans last year.

Maybe they should find a new team doctor.

Did they give a date for the surgery?

The doctor says the pain hasn't been intense because the other areas of the arm/shoulder are so strong. Rotator cuff "partial tear" is the terminology.
Doctor says not uncommon; feels as if it is cleaned up--especially bone spur--can increase range of motion and consistency.

I feel like they sent Doc out there to sugar-coat things.

He has mentioned "bone spur", "frayed labrum", and "partial tear of rotator cuff" in one sentence.

If r00b or the doctor said that people would be jumping off a bridge.

He really does sound way more upbeat right now. He is an even keel type of guy but he seems really confident in the news he was given.

Cyclic: Hard to say. Once they get inside, they may find something more serious.

It's very possible that the bone spur and labrum fraying are the things that are seriously affecting his performance. Those can ABSOLUTELY affect his arm slot.

I thought his arm slot, and inability to repeat his motion, were the biggest causes of his poor performance. It makes sense that a medical issue would have caused this.

It's a shame they didn't figure this out in the offseason.

Great news Doc will have the surgery and get rehabbing...

He should be in great shape for his new team next year.

Phils decision to not just shut him down last year and see specialists then was a bad one.

Doc liked the doctor and is quite confident. Decision regarding next steps pending.

Well something to be cautiously optimistic about in 60-90 days and if the Phils are sticking around. Hope he can rebound for his sake and pile on some wins, get a shot somewhere for a championship.

Paraphrasing: "The rest of my arm is so strong that I didn't even feel the pain from the bone spur."

That's awesome.

Halladay said that pain never really resulted because the muscles around the shoulder were so strong. The issue was that the tear prevented his arm from ever reaching the proper slot. This first resulted in poor command and then velocity issues.
That explains a good deal of the mystery. I don't think Doc was being a hard-8ss about things. It sounds like it just didn't hurt and he couldn't figure out why he couldn't put the ball where he wanted to anymore.
I could see this surgery bring Doc much closer to what he was before or more likely giving him the opportunity to adjust how he pitches and give him the chance to re-invent himself.

NEPP: Are you implying that Cicotti and his staff should be...

(Wait for it)

So cuttered?

"Mildly evasive surgery."

I don't know if this was an intentional misdescription, but I think it probably fits the bill better than "mildly invasive."

"Turn back the clock 2-3 years", huh?

I'll believe it when I see it.

Question: Would Doc come back at cut rate next year?

Doc: Want to see if I can help us this year. No decisions now about down the road. I love playing here, but there is a lot to be determined. I want to be effective and not a hindrance

Maybe he comes back on a team-friendly deal in 2014.

I doubt it though as he probably wants to go where he has a shot at a WS...assuming he actually recovers from the surgery and is an effective pitcher.

Yeah, definitely makes you question last year's handling of Halladay for sure.

The biggest positive I will take from all of this is that Doc doesn't sound anywhere near as defeated as he has for most of this season. I sense a feeling of hope. And for now that's all we can look for and hang our hats on.

Season = not over?

Yeah, the fact that I've heard "labrum," "rotator cuff" and "bone spur" doesn't exactly make me feel optimistic.

If he comes back and gives this team anything, or even comes back and is productive for us or someone else next year, great.

But I'll be pleasantly surprised. I'm not counting on it.

Any chance we can get Howard, Rollins, Chooch and Michael Young a surgery that will turn back their clocks 2-3 years?

Maybe this is the re-building plan.

Doc is probably upbeat because (a) it's nothing major from the sound of it, and (b) the mystery is solved. He feels like he has options and a possible way forward now. If the exam revealed nothing, he'd be left with his results so far and no clue as to how to make things work. Now he sees some way forward.

Well yeah no one should be counting on a return to form. Set the bar low and be surprised if you get more. That's how I go through life.

I know we discussed this previously, but as I listen more, I'll repeat-- Doc's demeanor is even more encouraging than the news: This is the most upbeat, articulate, and confident I have heard him in a long while.

He wants to undergo surgery (sometime next week, if he has to guess!) as soon as possible.

WP: But if you turn back Young 2 years he'll be a Ranger!

I literally have the same exact issue with my shoulder and what Halladay says makes perfect sense right now. Whether I know it or not, I simply do things differently b/c I know it's there. If I tweak it in the right spot, it hurts, but otherwise it isn't overly painful - it just limits my range of motion or makes me do certain things a bit differently or inconsistently.

And my doctors have told me that, yes, the surgical options are "minimally invasive" but not necessarily a quick fix. Still could have ongoing issues due to any tearing in the rotator cuff.

If I may add a minor caveat: I am not a major league pitcher.

I have to admit I've written off Halladay after the news today. The only question is if he comes back in Sept for a handful of starts and how that impacts his impending FA.

You can probably argue either way - he has a strong incentive to come back to prove potential suitors he can indeed pitch next year or he potentially hurts himself by rushing back too early.

Turn clock back 2-3 years, maybe he is getting the Bartolo Colon special surgery in Cuba

I don't know very much about injuries and health and medicine.

But I do agree that this raises some questions about why it wasn't discovered last season or over the offseason. Doesn't sound like it just popped up.

I don't know that the Phillies handled this poorly, but I also don't know that they did things right here. There are at least valid questions.

***Yeah, the fact that I've heard "labrum," "rotator cuff" and "bone spur" doesn't exactly make me feel optimistic. ***

Dont worry, the shoulder surgery comes with free frogurt.

"WP: But if you turn back Young 2 years he'll be a Ranger!"

I think that's the idea.

Sure, Doc should be happy, given the situation. He's going to have a plan of attack on how to get this issue resolved.

But pitching in the Major Leagues is a really hard thing to do, and it's just hard to believe that he'll rebound from this and be an above average pitcher.

I really, really hope he does, though.

Fat, I agree. Give Doc a thread of hope, even if the chances are 1 in 100, he'll run with it. He knows he defies odds in all he does, so why not now?

Book it, Halladay in postseason for us this year throwing 95mph.

How is that for optimistic

If we could turn back the clock on Howard by 3 years and 12 days, it would wipe out his $125M contract.

Doc with some laughs about his 2010 pulled groin.

johnny, does it matter if that 95mph fastball is consistently flying 3 feet over Chooch's head?

So, if it's all do cut and dry, and the MRI was pretty straightforward (to the point that they're using it as the basis for this optimism about pitching this year), why in the hell did it take them over night to come to this conclusion?

Before people get in a huff over the medical handling of this, may want to get the timelines straight. Sounds like the damage has been increasing, so it's greater now than last year. His rehab over the offseason hid the injury.

That's a wrap.

See you in three months, dude

I still blame Ciccotti and think they need to get a new team doctor.

I look forward to late July when the Phillies reactivate Doc, and put him back in the starting rotation, after three straight 2-inning, 8-run performances in his rehab stint at Single A.

Willard, are you upset that the Phillies didn't hold this press conference yesterday? Why?

Nothing about this sounds "minor." He has a torn rotator cuff...the only good news is it isn't a complete year, but anyone talking about coming back from a torn rotator cuff has a long way to go.

Doc turns 36 in less than a week. He's been one of the greatest pitchers of his generation. I find it hard to believe he's "done."

Tim Hudson turned 36 during the 2011 season. In 2012 and 2013, he's 20-8 with a 3.66 ERA.

Hiroki Kuroda turned 36 before the 2011 seasons. Since then he's 33-29 with a 3.13 ERA.

Those are just a couple active pitchers I came across around the same age... and neither were the pitcher Doc was.

He needs to get healthy. And if he does, I have little doubt he's got more success in him.

Any ways, not to be callous, but as much as I simply adore Halladay, Halladay being healthy and pitching well isn't so much an inherent good to which we look forward, but a means to an end, namely a winning Philadelphia Phillies baseball team.

So even if this "turn back the clocks" stuff is right on the money, the fact remains that he's going to miss the vast majority of the season, and as such, cannot realistically help this team make the playoffs this year.

So, basically, this team is screwed.

*complete tear

As far as the news we could have heard today, this was minor. Either they found nothing, which means Doc's just left with being a bad pitcher now, or he would need major surgery and rehab (12-18 months). 3 months is pretty minor on that scale. This was the only news that would provide any hope at all really for him.

Fata, havvvvveeee ya met Kyle?

Sophist, I think that's correct. It's possible that it's not even related to last year's issues. Sometimes 36yo guys just get bone spurs. I would say, though, that unless this popped very quickly (I don't know how rapidly a bone spur could appear) I'm surprised that it wasn't noticed earlier. I think an x-ray can pick it up.

gobay, Chris in VT's comments do a pretty good job of explaining my frustration. I think today's presser (and maybe even some of what's being communicated to Doc directly) is a bit optimistic for a 36 y/o pitcher with a busted a$$ rotator cuff.

I hope it heals perfectly, I'm just dubious about the time line (and hence, the potential that it's even with the Phillies). Feels like a bit of "spin" to me. Sorry if I'm a bit dubious after the FO/med staff's handling of previous injuries, and the Andrew Bynum "progress" versus promised time lines.

If they held a press conference with RAJ and a doctor, and the words "frayed labrum" and "partially torn rotator cuff" were mentioned, people would be freaking out.

I understand what Sophist is saying about the timeline, but I think it's very valid to question why this wasn't found before. Doc has had issues dating back to last May.

It seems that any success he's had in the last year has been due more to sheer will than any improvement in health.

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