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Tuesday, June 25, 2013


Working on draft choices, I guess.

Simple explanation: not enough 'production.'

Well that game was a kick in the teeth.

Papelbon is a hate the face kinda guy. I was really hoping he would have some good trade value, but he's picking the best time to fail.

It's a good thing no one saw this game.

"Well that game was a kick in the teeth."

I was thinking farther south...

Ashame. Lee would've been 10-2.

About trades....

So in short sell big or buy small (MR, SU, OF) don't do anything in the middle.

Lee only would've been 10-2 if there were relievers available that could hold at 3 run lead. Not so sure there were any.

I really wanted the Tigers trade to work out:

Nick Castellanos for Papelbon.

Blowing 4 saves in a week will make the Tigers think twice about giving up a fantastic outfield prospect.

...what I really want is the Phillies to trade half the team for Stanton.

Is there any person alive that still thinks there's any point for Lee to be on this team?

Trade the guy. For him. For all of us. Let the sell off begin, and don't half-ass it.

I am never ever starting Ryan Howard in FBB again. I haven't started him for 4 weeks during his hot streak and I finally gave in and put him in the starting lineup this week only to wake up to see he was scratched with knee pain.

Damn you, Ryan!!!

I lost cable/internet to a t-storm last night so I didnt get to watch the game but it appears I saved myself 3 hrs of sleep. WTF is up with Papelbon? Is he determined to destroy any trade value he has left? Is this just a fluke, Is he injured? WTF???

For some reason, I went to bed when Lee was pulled. I figured the ending was a formality (Phils win), and if it wasn't, I didn't want to waste any more sleep seeing it play out.

If you are one of the people giving Papelbon a pass this morning, you are a dolt. My hatred for this guy could not run any deeper.

Good thing Nuke called out his teammates and everyone has responded to raise their overall level of play. Those last 2 innings were a brutal microcrosm of the season so far.

All of Boston is currently laughing at the Phillies and Jonathan Papelbon...there's a reason they had no problems letting him walk without even a contract offer despite being one of the "elite closers" in baseball.

It's past time to send Mr. Amaro on a permanent vacation to Fiji and then begin work on a fire sale that would make Connie Mack blush.

I am unclear though- am I allowed to blame pitching for this loss?

Wait, now Boston is laughing at the Phils? Like 3 days ago they were allegedly desperate for a closer.

Umm, trade Lee so they can get another Aumont, Gilles and Ramirez?? Riiiiight, good plan. You know who the GM is, right?

See, Mr. Jeltz gets it.

The first step is to put Mr. Amaro in a hot air balloon with no ballast in a tornado. Let the munchkins deal with him.

Franco .524. Trade places with Cody.
No,wait with MYoung.

Well, on the positive side we now know something we possibly didn't know a few days ago.

That being, of course, that nobody in our bullpen can be counted on in any given situation.

Bring on the CGSOs!

I am getting furious reading the trade Lee for prospects posts from Icebrain and on the Inky site.
One dope was glad that Cliff pitched well last night because it "increases his trade value."
Let me state the obvious-- since Cliff Lee is the only player worth watching and you can't trust Amaro to get anything more than crap why do it??
I was young at the time but this team reminds me of the 1964 collapse.
Some of the worst games I have seen in 48 years as a fan in the same season.
Amaro may fire Charlie on this road trip but then what?

season=over. decade=over.


My theory is the "trade Lee posters" are closet Mets fans who are relishing the Mets passing the Phils at some point this season and for the foreseeable future. They want to speed up the process.
If you have any good players who are producing KEEP THEM and trade the rest.

Honestly, I can't blame that loss much on Charlie. Lee had been cruising, and Papelbon had blown 3 saves in 4 opportunities in the past week. His hand was forced, and then Chooch ends up with a PB.

After that, we might as well forfeit unless we score half a dozen in the top of the 10th, because the bullpen is beyond useless.

Also, my suspicions about Sandberg being a... Let's say sub-optimal replacement are growing. Between the poor decisions on when to hold and when to send, and the 100% standard defensive positioning, he's raising some questions.

Jimmy says things are cool in the clubhouse and there are still a lot of games to play on CSN. Glad he is comfortable.

I wouldn't use the inevitable base runners out at the plate or stranded by a third base coach as the barometer of a good manager.
They happen to everyone and are magnified when a team is as inept offensively as the phils. You have to send guys you wouldn't because you know nothing else it going to happen.
Bowa was a tremendous 3rd base coach than he was a manager.
Imagine if Charlie had been 3rd base coach instead of hanging around with a vague job description before he replaced Bowa?
He never would have gotten the job.

Monty: I am willing to wager that no team has more runners thrown out at the plate this year than the Phillies. In my mind being stranded at third is by far the lesser of the sins, since we have a bunch of pretty slow guys.

And you also completely glossed over the defensive positioning (also the 3rd-base coach's job, or so we're told). How many times in the past couple of weeks alone have we heard even TMac and Wheels comment on how strange it was that the outfield wasn't shifting at all on guys who have been pulling balls to the same spots their whole careers?

I'm not saying Sandberg would be a bad manager, but he's raised some questions, and there could be a reason no other team wanted him for the job.


Keep the good players and trade the rest.

Yes, that will bring a big haul of talent. So next year, we will have a team consisting of the same good players surrounded by another crop of crap with zero young talent ready to step up. Exactly the situation we are in now.

The organization needs a reboot - you've got Hamels locked up long term (for what its worth since I am admittedly not a huge Hamels fan), you have some promising young arms in the system. Add to that by moving Lee, Utley, Papelbon, get players that can imnprove the future.

Because right now, neither the present nor the future is adequate. I'd rather suffer right now since I'm suffering already and actually have something to look forward to.

Mr. Montgomery, Fire this Amaro guy.

Hey Ted- if you liked 1964, then you'll love the next 4-5 years for this team if they don't cash in every single one of their assets at the deadline, including Lee.

TTI- it's never acceptable to blame the pitching. You should know that by now. Especially on a night where they didn't score the magical number of runs (4) that would leave the offense blameless.

A 3-0 lead might is basically as good as a tie game. No margin for error for the bullpen/Papelbon.

'buster - I think the third base thing is a lot more nuanced. It can also depend on what the chances are of the next person getting them home versus the chance of a weak, off-line, or downright errant throw. It's probably a better rule of thumb to send them. If there's two outs, it's not even a question. Mostly, though, it's not a big deal. This collection of talent, as much as we berate them, is better than they're playing. Which gets to:

Sal: Of course Jimmy is comfortable. He stopped by Costco and got hisself a whole roll of them forever stamps. He can mail it in until the cows come home.

When Cliff Lee ends up with 19 wins, he can blame DB Paps for not winning 20.

Listen: I despise the offensive production of this team. But last night's game rests squarely on the arrogant back of Jonathan "Baked the Poodle Again" Papelbon. His girlfriend must be running out of dogs.

Reason for optimism when you're feeling crappy today: Maikel Franco had three more hits last night raising his Double-A slash line to .524/.545/.952, which comes out to a 1.498 OPS. Unfortunately, RAJ will trade him at the deadline for an 8th inning guy to replace Adams .

Or Alex Rios to replace Yak

"Jimmy, how do you sleep at night?"

"On top of a pile of money with many beautiful ladies"

"Just askin, yeesh!"

He'll trade Franco and then talk up Cody Asche and mention how he's closer to the Majors anyway...He'll also mention how there are several other 3B prospects in Low A ball.

Phillibuster- did it ever occur to you that many of the Phillies base runners are getting thrown out at home because they are slow?
Iceman how would cashing in assets for multitude of Rubens single A prospects insure that the next 4-5 years do not resemble 1964? You have faith in Rube to acquire prospects better than the productive players they are trading? It doesnt seem as personal when you call them assets.
Fans will keep their assets at home rather than pay to go see Ruben's handiwork play out over the next couple of years.

Get used to it: Jonathan Papelbon is a Phillie for life. You can paint a pig and put a pretty hat on it, but it's still a pig. He is now untradeable.

The truth is this: If the Phillies had even one competent arm in the pen, that is a win. Just one. But Rube has managed to amass a group of throwers who can't quite manage competency. I am very sad for DeFratus, a guy who used to have a big arm. What does the Phillies minor league and major league pitching coaches do to relievers that makes them suck? Serious question.

NEPP: "All of Boston is currently laughing at the Phillies and Jonathan Papelbon...there's a reason they had no problems letting him walk"

Oh yea, they are laughing it up alright. So much that they've been scouting Papelbon and other closers as they attempt to trade for one.

Philadelphia sports fans must have an inferiority complex if they enjoy watching their best players traded every year to contenders for prospects you never hear from again.
We aren't a farm team for Boston, San Fran St Louis and the other contenders to take our only good players each July.

For whoever reads the BL header, please don't think the Lee "coasted" through all 8 innings. He coasted innings 1-6 with ease, but was hit around a bit in the 7th and 8th.

Not only did Charlie go with Lee for the 9th, he also allowed Lee to bat with a RISP in the bottom of the 8th as well.

Earl, we enjoy having a future. Right now we don't.

You must have a stupidity complex if you are willing to accept this level of mediocrity.

Andy: Except we're not just talking with 2 outs and trying to score from 2nd on a single. How many times have we sent someone from third with 0 or 1 outs on a weak grounder up the third-base line? Or a comebacker to the pitcher? How about trying to score a guy from first on a play that only turned into a double because the throw went to the plate?

Sandberg was over-aggressive all ST so that he could learn how fast the guys could make it home. One would think, that being his primary job in the offensive half-innings, that he would use that knowledge to make informed decisions about when to hold/send.

Monty: We know they're slow. Management knows they're slow. They know they're slow. If left to their own devices, they'd likely stop at third unless they were completely sure they could make it home (excepting 2-out situations with the pitcher coming to the plate next).

How does sending them even though they are slow mean that Sandberg is doing a good job?

NEPP: Howard had "knee soreness" huh... funny how that popped up when a LHP was starting.

rich :"If you have any good players who are producing KEEP THEM and trade the rest."

Good idea, lets trade away bad players for good ones.

If Rube isn't open for business already, he should be. And while I would usually play the "untouchable" game, I'm pretty sure I'd listen on everyone right now.

Hovering at or below .500 for years with an older core and little up and coming young talent to build around is preferable to blowing it up and hoping to get back to the mountain top in a few years?

I've lived through long-term mediocrity, and I've lived through pathetic baseball with a light at the end of the tunnel...having a light at the end of the tunnel is much better than hoping to win a few more times a season when you've got no chance at the playoffs either way.

Lore: Hasn't Howard been doing ok against lefties for the past couple of weeks? Not that I mind him sitting when he's not going to be effective, but I had thought he was hitting/walking against just about all pitching since his hot streak began.

I love the irony of people simultaneously whining that they can't go on without being able to cheer for Lee in a Phillie uniform, and also whining that the team sucks.

There's only one way to cure the second thing, and it's unfortunately to get rid of the first thing. Sorry. Lee isn't going to win a title in Philadelphia. Let that sink in, then come back to reality. There is no Phillie fan alive that would rather root for Clff Lee on a 75-win team than root for a team that actually has a chance of being competitive.

I didn't want to trade Lee, but that was before every other tradeable player we have sucked/got hurt. Now he's our only hope to get good enough talent back.

Trade me, please! I want to win a WFC!

Iceman: I think the bigger issue is that people don't think trading him will lead to the team being competitive.

I can kind of understand that mindset if the presumed options are:

A: Root for Lee as a great pitcher on a poor team.

B: Root for a poor team without a great pitcher like Lee.

Of course, if the thought process is that Lee can win a WS here in the next year... Then yeah, that's a contradictory mindset.

Maikel Franco ranked #42 prospect in all of baseball by Baseball Prospectus Midseason Top 50.

Biddle and Tocci on the 'just miss' list.

Franco is starting to get exciting as a prospect.

Lee on the roster next year will most likely be much the same as having Schilling on the roster in the late'll give us something to root for every 5th day while not increasing their chances of making the playoffs.

PB- I can understand that point from the perspective that these trades (aces for prospects) almost never work out for the team giving away the ace.

But they do sometimes. And there's no light at the end of the tunnel, or alternative that leads to 'competitive' in the near future, except for that 'sometimes. They have to do this, or they're dooming themselves to mediocrity by choice.

I know that Amaro will get blamed for it here anyway, but if he deals Lee for 2 top 50s + a top 100 and all of them flop, should he be blamed? No. At least he'd have tried. Now obviously, he should still be fired for everything that transpired the last two years (specifically the last 9 months), but I personally would not blame him for cashing in Lee in the slightest, no matter how it turns out.

The only crime here would be not trying, and I fear that's what's going to happen in July (it will be some half-assed fire sale with Rollins, Utley and MYoung).

Still not sure what that look that Lee had on his face in the 10th inning. Kind of a look of disgust (with himself and his team) and disillusionment.

I imagine that look was something like this...

some text

If rube trades anyone of those boys. I the king will personally take care of him like I did with cholly. L core thanks for the minor updates. That is what we can hang our fur coats on anymore.

It is funny how Charlie uses Paps.
He can go 2 weeks with 2 appearances. Now he is tossed out there 5 times in 7 days.

aksmith: " I am very sad for DeFratus, a guy who used to have a big arm. What does the Phillies minor league and major league pitching coaches do to relievers that makes them suck?"

DeFratus still has a big arm and a good future. He battles with his control in the bigs so far, but that's not really a longterm concern for him (yet), he has always showed good control throughout his pro career.

Iceman: I sort of agree there. Nothing within the realm of predictability is going to make the Phillies (as currently constructed) win this year or next. Sure, anything can happen, yadda yadda, but we can't plan for it.

However, Lee's on the books for another 2-3 years (depending on option), and while our farm won't produce anything for next year, the odds of getting something for the last 1+ years of Lee's deal increase. Especially since our 2014 draft pick looks to be pretty high, at this rate.

Also, the odds of being able to pick up at least one piece of value over the course of 3 FA classes - especially with the new TV deal - are much higher than just this coming off-season.

The problem is the odds aren't good either way.

not giving papelbon a full pass, but there has been some dreadful defense in his last three blown saves.

1. galvis throws a ball at his ankles and the tying run gets on base.

2. david wright scores on a SINGLE FROM FIRST BASE after revere bobbles the ball and throws it like a woman back to the infield

3. pass ball from ruiz lets in tying run.

this bad stretch of his has just as much to do with the incompetence of his teammates.

Rich: I am in the "trade Lee" camp and am most definitely not a Mets fan. Here's why I say trade him.

As currently constructed this team does not look like it is going anywhere. What you have then are a lot of high priced guys surrounded by less than adequate complimentary pieces. The Phillies on top of that have a less than stellar farm system (although it does seem to be improving). So what we have is a team that does not have the guns it needs at the majors level, limited guns to help out in the minors, and the way the system is working- free agency is not the way to build your team anymore as impact bats are snapped up by their current teams early in their careers for long contracts.

The Phillies have tradeable assets: Rollins, Utley, Ruiz, MYoung, Papelbon, and Lee. They won't all get a bonanza in return but clearly the biggest prize they have from that group is Lee. Trading him to a contender this year gives him a chance to win a title and probably gives you a nice return. If I were Amaro I'd be looking to trade everyone on that list except for Ruiz because the catching in the farm system is not ready yet. That should improve the farm system and help you get some good bench pieces going forward. The Phillies have Hernandez and Galvis who can step in at middle infield positions. Brown looks like he can be an integral part of the team. Hamels and Brown are your tentpoles. It's time to rebuild the team in a different style because the style now isn't working.

Forgot to add- if you want to see what the Phillies look like with a stud pitcher and relatively nothing else...look on eBay, I'm sure you can find a late 90's video yearbook.

Amazing how quickly this has crumbled over not even 2 calendar years. I tried to hang with Amaro and was ok with getting Lee back, trading for Oswalt/Pence, etc. You know the farm would take a hit, but the fact there are so few MLB replacements for this core is inexcusable.

I am not typically a fan of a full firesale but there is no choice. Problem is Rube will be doing it.

I think we should keep all our good players and trade all the declining players for top 50 prospects. Also, now that he's hitting .280, there are lots of teams out there that need a 1st baseman and would gladly take on Howard's contract and maybe give us a top prospect in return. And, as some guy posted the other day, we should trade Galvis for a power-hitting corner outfielder. A good candidate would be that Puig guy in L.A., as he is just what we need & the Dodgers need a long-term shortstop. We can throw in Delmon Young, Laynce Nix, and Jake Diekman if necessary.

That's funny BAP like the Dodgers are going to give up their new star? What if the Phils tried to trade Howard when he first came on?

I thought Papelbon would have a bad year, and I've been dead wrong. You want to blame HIM for last night???

A bloop single, then a DP ball, then a terrible passed ball that ties the game, then a flyout.

There's virtually zero chance they lose if he starts the inning.

I'm in the Rollins camp. There is a lot of season left.

Maybe the whole season is like one of those games where the offense looks absolutely lifeless and abysmal for innings 1-6, showing no signs that would make any rational person think they could ever score. They get behind by 3-4 runs, but then somehow come to life and take the lead in the late innings.

I mean, not a perfect example, cause the bullpen then probably blows the game anyway, but maybe it goes to extras and in the metaphor that's actually the playoffs.

bittel-- you forgot the HBP which put the tying run in scoring position.

I've noticed a lot of seemingly new handles show up to dig/dance on the Phillies' grave.

Just an observation.

Smartest thing I did yesterday: go to bed with a 3-0 lead and Lee on the mound. I figured we had a better than even chance of winning.

"We must be the dumbest team in America in terms of playing the game."

"I'm highly critical because of the way we give games away. We give them away, period."

I did forget that, my bad. He still gets out of the inning if he starts it though.

Larger point is this team has almost no good options late in games, whether holding a lead or needing to score a run. The easiest change is a better game manager who can at least squeeze a few more wins out of a sub-mediocre bunch by discarding all sentiment and just trying to win.

Looks to me like another loss of the defense. Hate to see Ruiz playing down to the level of his teammates.

Hey, Eskin, did you get the flowers I sent?

The Chooch passed ball and those other misplays Benny mentioned make part of me think the baseball gods just don't like us right now. (shhh "Or the D just sucks" People, Galvis and Ruiz don't suck)

It's such a strange stretch that the optimist in me feels there could/is going to be a stretch where everything breaks right, much like it seems everything is breaking wrong right now.

I just hope that, if that comes, they can take advantage for as long as it lasts and rattle off 7, 8, 9, 10+ wins.

I know this is irrational.

bittel: Pap retired 2 of the 5 batters he faced.


gidp was actually after the HBP. tying run made it to 3rd on the DP.

And I think Chooch catches that ball 99 times out of 100.

Bad juju.

cyclic: agreed, can't believe he let it go. my first reaction was that they got crossed up, because I couldnt comprehend chooch not catching it - i dont even think it hit the dirt.

Rollins with 7 SB / 4 CS approaching the halfway mark of the season.

He was 30 of 35 attempts just last year.


Jimmy's running days are over, like so much else with this team.

The personal attacks on Papelbon are pathetic. The guy has a bad week and half and somehow it cancels out the last year and a half.

"All of Boston is currently laughing at the Phillies and Jonathan Papelbon."

Really? Were they laughing two weeks ago? Last year?

I dont use the Eagles organization as a model for anything but two things I do like about the NFL--
No guaranteed contracts (Hellllo Ryan and Papelbum)
and teams that are out of playoff contention don't trade their top 2-3 players to the contending teams every year.
They rebuild around the good players not the lousy ones.

Here's the Lee might bring in building blocks for a future team, or it might be a complete bust and the prospects will flame out. Both scenarios are quite possible, and the second is much more likely than the first.

But not trading Lee DEFINITELY won't bring in any young franchise players, and this team isn't going anywhere. So what's the point of keeping him? Just to have something to look forward to once every 5 days? Sorry, that's incredibly short-sighted.

Yeah, with bums like Kendrick and Hamels, it's definitely not worth keeping Lee just to have good pitching once every 5 days.

Rich: That's because the NFL draft has players who will end up as starters in the same year that they're drafted.

In MLB, even the "can't-miss, once in a lifetime" prospects spend 2-3 years in the minors before they impact the team.

Also, football is team-oriented on every play, so really good players can make up for mediocre players on every down. In baseball, the mediocre players drag the better players down, because only one guy hits at a time, and only one guy pitches at a time.

Why are the baseball gods mad at the phillies? There has been a lot more than the usual bad luck and bad calls this season. Beside the bad baseball every nigh there are seem to be some very angry gods out there.
Did someone sell their soul for 2008 or is it just a perfect storm of aging and mediocre players, bad team chemistry and terrible player decisions.
There were two huge crowds the past two home games but I got to believe the bad baseball and high prices are going to affect attendance at some point soon.

Cyclic - How's that working out for you so far this year?

Do you honestly believe this team, as currently constructed, has a shot at competing for the title?

"They rebuild around the good players not the lousy ones."

Great idea. Let's rebuild around a 35-year old starting pitcher who's owed $62 to $77M over the next 3 years.

Who should Eskin send flowers to when the Phillies lose the next three games?

Wondering if Eskin will bait Zambrano...

Where did this notion come from that Lee will bring a haul of top prospects? He might bring A top prospect (if you trust Rube to know what a top prospect looks like) if he had a team friendly contract for his age or if the Phils were willing to eat a large chunk of the contract. Neither of these things is true. When he's traded there are going to be a lot of fans disappointed with the return.

The notion comes from national sports writers. I tend to agree the actual return may not be as exciting as we hope (is it ever?), but there's reason for hope at least.

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