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Thursday, June 20, 2013


"...just be smart enough to not get yourself out."

TTI: I think that would be a step up in the opinions of most here.

I agree about the lineup.

I agree about needing this sweep.

Make up for it by sweeping the Mets (likely impossible with Harvey going sunday).

I wanted them to finish this homestand 5-1. 4-2 looks like best case right now.

West coast trip could be rough.

Since everyone has lately seemed to feel it important to mention what posts they dislike reading, I'll throw mine out there:

Posts that try to blame 1 single aspect of the Phillies for losses.

12th in NL in runs
14th in NL in ERA

Add that to their manager and front office and they all suck together. Finger pointing is useless.

The main thing this line-up needs is more stamps. Or maybe a Pitney-Bowes machine. So they don't have to keep walking all the way to the mail room to mail it in.

If this team were better, they would be better. I think we can all agree on that.

Isn't it funny how teams that are over .500 and/or leading their divisions care more than other teams and mail it in less? They also seem to have better team chemistry and a more fun atmosphere in the clubhouse.

I'm not a big Papelbon fan but, I agree with his comments on losing being a team effort. The team is operating on a wire thin margin for error yet, they are consistently hurting themselves by screwing up the fundamentals in just about every aspect of the game.

Hugh-- Maybe they're just pressing.

Papelbon should remember that old pitching fundamental . . . . . first strike of the at bat -- first out of the inning. . . . etc ! !

***Jonathan Papelbon, who blew his second save of the series, criticized the Phillies' fundamentals, seemingly calling out Ryan Howard for his positioning on Denard Span's leadoff infield single. These are the things that happen when a team with great expectations flounders around .500 and can't put together any sort of momentum.***

Billy Wagner would be proud.

"This team has horrible fundamentals", says the closer who walked the tying run into scoring position.

lore: He was also slow to get to 1st on the Galvis play, & could have caught the throw even though it was low.

Brown needs time off.

He is 4th overall in games played. Believe he was top 3 in games played during spring training.

It is time to give the guy a day or two off to clear his head.

Will it happen? No. Charlie will just make him hit out of his slump like he has in years past with vets.


Corn: he's off today.


The Papelbon remark could be the turning point of the season. It could spark behind the scenes discussions that unifies the team and gets them playing better, or it could be a destructive comment that puts the final dissension nail in the team coffin and directs the team toward a 90+ loss season. It's up to Cholly to right this floundering ship.

Lake: If Papelbon's comments spark behind-the-scenes discussions which unify the team, then they'll be a unified team with crappy hitting, pitching, defense, and coaching.

The ship is sunk as long as Yak and Mini are on board.No need to give any of those AAA lifers a chance.

Well. Howard is terrible defensively, so, sure.

But the closer who is asked to perform in 2% of the Phillies total innings is on thin ice calling out any everyday player. He should just be happy he's getting paid $13 million to do just about nothing.

If we're lucky, he'll be on another team by August 1.

Say what you want about Papelbon's comments, but was he wrong? I dislike him greatly, but I actually agree with most things he has said this year. He's got to do a better job in that situation, for sure. But when you get a ground ball to the right side, you expect to get an out.

The problem I suspect most have is that he should just keep his mouth shut and spout the usual rhetoric. To that, I agree. But he ain't wrong.

Lake Fred: I agree up to your last sentence - it's up to the leaders of the team to right the ship: Rollins, Howard, Utley, Chooch, Lee, Hamels.
Cholly himself has basically admitted to not having the answer, so if the remaining core still cares and actually wants to make one final run, now is the time for someone of that group to pull the team together. If they don't step up, then it won't matter who the last 5 guys on the bench are.

Last year's most coveted prospect Mike Olt at Round Rock of the PCL -
.199/.290/.412/.702 in 155 PAs for the year.

Thats the thing nok none of them can or havent been carrying the team. I read some where a good catchphrase. Something like this..While Utley, Rollins and Chooch can lift the team only one person can carry it...That been Ryan Howard....

Redburb same as Youklis..I remember B'Lers had a hard on for both...

PLM: that phrase sounds about right, and since Howard is either incable or unwilling to get healthy and carry the team, it seems they're probably doomed...unless DOM makes adjustments and catches fire again (unlikely.)

The other solution is to change the approach, use these mediocre pieces properly, and win games 4-3, 3-2...but that would require firing Cholly (also unlikely.)

Re: Youks

I had argued for him in the offseason simply b/c he was the best 3B available, though I was concerned about his health. Once they acquired MYoung, I liked that better than all other suggestions (though still not ideal.)

Overall, MYoung's been ok: a complimentary piece that can help win if other stars are carrying the team. Alas, that's not happening (see above)

rbill: If howard came out and said the team has a bad bullpen after losing that game, I would agree with the statement, but he'd be a complete dbag for saying it.

Pedro: "Redburb same as Youklis..I remember B'Lers had a hard on for both..."

A lot of people, including me, thought that the Phillies should have traded garbage for Youkilis in June 2012.

The whitesox did, and he had a .771 OPS with 15 HR the rest of season. Oh silly "BL'ers", what do they know?

Hey guys..

I wanna take back my Beerleaguer Bankruptcy on Antonio Bastardo. If he were our closer we would have won.

Relievers are fungible don't ya know.

Why should Howard play defense? It's his job to get all the important RBIs?

The main difference between them is that it really appears to bug Papelbon to lose. I do not get the sense that Howard is all that upset about it.

I guess Papelbon has yet to figure out that he gets his money whether he wins or loses. Just like the rest of them.

thanks, GBF. you always post great links.

I never thought Revere was going to be anything more than a piece but I had big dreams for M Young. I guess I felt the same way about Pence before he got here. M Young just seemed like a steady solid guy who this team needed over old man Polanco.
As for Delmon, I hated the idea of the guy being on the team. Nobody else wanted him and since his bigot incident was not something bigger, you usually assume somebody else would have competed for his services if anybody thought he was any good.
I am just pissed off.
Don't get me started on Paps. Too much money for too little use. I like committee bullpens when they work. Or maybe I just like decent bullpens without Horst and anybody named Durbin.

Agree on GBF's links. They're always well worth a read.

Regarding Papelbon's trade value- I highly doubt they're able to get a package like Garcia/Rondon/+ for a reliever. Getting Garcia alone would be a rousing success. But I believe Wilson Ramos was in the 50s when he was traded for Matt Capps- a decidedly lesser pitcher than Papelbon. So Amaro would be right to shoot for the stars on this one. While moving Papelbon is a must, he has to hold firm and get a team to overpay for him. Because at least one team will end up being willing to do it.

Regarding what Papelbon said, I can't believe anyone would defend him. This guy just blew two saves in three games, including one where he grooved an 0-2 fastball to a .154 hitter. Not only that, but you're part of a freaking team. I don't care how dumb you are, you don't trash your teammates, period.

Papelbon is probably the most unlikeable player in the last ten years of Phillies baseball, and the day he's dealt away will be a great day for Phillies fans everywhere.

does diekman have closer stuff, if we can trade pap?

I just think Lidge (between his perfect season and general demeanor) was a rare non-douchey closer. The others who didnt suck in the last 20 years were just assholey par for the course.

Am I the only Phillies fan who thinks that, apart from one incredible game, Jesse Biddle's 2013 season has been far more troubling than encouraging?

Looking through his game logs, "far more troubling" was perhaps a bit much. He has had more than one good game, & his overall numbers are certainly good. His walk rate has been awful though, & it has led to quite a few middling starts, including today's. There are very few successful major league starters who can get away with the kind of walk rate that he has.

bullit: Diekman doesn't even have the command to be a LOOGY, let alone a closer. As bad as he has been this year, Bastardo is the obvious closer if we trade Papelbon. A closer needs to get both RH and LH hitters out equally well & Bastardo (when he isn't walking the leadoff hitter) can do that. You just have to cross your fingers and hope that he can stop walking so many hitters. Not that it's going to matter much if he stinks it up as closer. It's not like the Phillies are going to be playing meaningful games in August & September.

BAP: I think Biddle is having a season where there is more positive than negative and that is what you want from prospects...stuff to build on from year to year. He'll be remembered for the 16 strikeout performance but overall I think there is enough to like this year so far.

Ruf has been getting hot like I said he would a few days ago. One or two hits every night with an RBI.

bap: I think Adams would be the closer is Papelbon was moved, but I agree, it doesn't really matter.

Also I would assume that if they trade every pending FA as they should, they'll end up with a late inning arm in return from one of the deals.

Iceman, I think you've forgotten someone...

I can see the Z Squad (Zagurski and Zambrano) handling the closing. Putting the 9th inning to rest. Please send all future promotional checks here.

"There are very few successful major league starters who can get away with the kind of walk rate that he has."

You can carry a 4 BB/9 successfully if you are striking out at least twice that amount.

Since 2012, the only pitchers in the last 20 years with a +4 BB/9 and at least a 8 K/9 who didn't have an ERA+ 100 or above are:

2012 Edison Volquez
2012 Tim Lincecum
2005 Jason Schmidt
2004 Cliff Lee
2000 Hideo Nomo
1999 Chan Ho Park

There are 46 other qualifying seasons all with ERA+ of 100 or higher.

I'm actually pretty encouraged looking at Biddle's game logs. He's had two stink bombs, three so-so starts, and 8 good-to-very good starts in AA at age 21. He's generating a good amount of swing and misses. Keeping his line drives down, meaning he is staying out of the middle of the plate. Lefties are OPSing .289 against him (righties .605). 4 HR in 74 innings.

Only problem is walks, obviously (4.38 per 9), but the stuff is there (over 10K per 9) and more often than not it is translating into quality performances. This all with the caveat that I've never seen him pitch.

Iceman said in more words my thoughts on Biddle. He has to reign in the walks but I wonder if some of that is the fact of him being still relatively young.

If Papelbon is traded it will be Bastardo that closes unless we get a closer back.

Braves lose. Phillies 7.5 back.

Papelbon is technically right and this team has played alot of crappy fundamental baseball especially on the basepaths and their share of defensive lapses.

Just don't throw your teammates especially ones who are playing hurt like Howard under the bus publicly. I don't dislike Papelbon like I did Myers but he needs to insert his foot his mouth. Hurts this team doesn't have a vocal leader in the clubhouse that would tell Papelbon to STFU behind closed doors and not trash your teammates publicly.

good comparison, i def hate myers more than papelbon, but thats probably because papelbon is a ton better on the field.

if we don't trade him this deadline, he might cross into myers territory tho.

that's about as close as they will get. Nats win 6.0 GB. Harper and Rendon will boast the poor offense the second half. Way too much pitching and they have another stud pitcher in Harrisburg. Huran will soon lose his spot.

Myers had the horrendous domestic abuse incident, had issues staying in shape, and made his share of excuses at times. Papelbon hasn't done any of that.

Myers is one of the few Phils too that I genuinely don't like and there have only been a handful of those since I have starting rooting for the Phils.

Great BL posts by Ice @ 7:45 and MG @10:30.

A closer with 2 blown saves in 3 games has no right to publicly call out his team mates.

I hope he is trying to p*ss off the front office in an effort to get traded and that he succeeds.

dons: are you talking about Karns, the 25 yr old whose dead straight fastball got hit around in AA, and now has given up 5 long balls in only 12 innings as the Nats emergency starter?

If thats the Nats' savior than they will be battling the Phillies a lot more than the Braves.

That's a good point on Myers. I guess I give him a free pass for '08 even though I shouldn't.

Anyone see that Amaro got the dreaded 'vote of confidence' from Monty today? I consider that a landmark occasion. Unless I missed something, it's the first time I've heard his job performance discussed by the 'inner circle' in the media.

When a GM or coach's job is talked about or 'defended' in a public forum, it is almost always a dog whistle that his performance is being scrutinized internally. I hope ownership is starting to think twice about his ability to evaluate talent.

What the hell does this quote even mean from David Montgomery?

"The reality is that when things don't go well, people look to find, well, whose fault is it?" Montgomery said. "I believe in situations like this that when times are good there's enough credit to go around. It's all of us. Ruben is not making independent decisions. He's going with a pretty good group of eyes who are looking out there at players and making determinations. God knows we're all trying to bat 1.000 on decision making. The reality is, I think we do better than the .300 standard in baseball."

About the only thing you learn from this article is that Gillick isn't mentioned in any capacity (he's a semi-retired advisor who is drawing a nice consulting gig salry to do essentially very little) and that the Phils have a lot of cooks in the FO kitchen.

Oh and WTF is Dallas Green still doing making key decisions about this team? He's been up in Reading at least twice this year already so he just isn't some old codger who is lurking around the big league club.


I don't questions Papelbon's desire to win or his willingness to admit when he blows it. He did do that year in a couple of tough losses (Mets game he blew in July still stands out in my mine).

If Papelbon had come up and been a member of the '08 team, he would be incredibly popular here. Instead his schtick just doesn't go over well on a mediocre team.

The Nats are a mediocre offensive team at their absolute best.

Because of their pitching, they could absolutely catch fire down the stretch. But I wouldn't count on Harper (and certainly not Rendon) saving them on the other side of the ball. And their bullpen isn't great, either.

Great $25 million investment on Soriano & Haren this year. Really took them to another level as a team.

MG: Myers also had the 2008 season where he was sent to the minors, went down, did his work, and came back up and was great through the tail end of the season and the playoffs. Not defending the guy but list the good with the bad.

On another Papelbon note: The Red Sox Andrew Bailey blew a save tonight and after the game Farrell said there would be a change at closer most likely. The Phillies are having this set up perfectly to trade Papelbon because suitors are most likely going to be there.

don't forget $126M to Werth, whose totaled ~3 WAR since joining the Nats.

    ...Just don't throw your teammates especially ones who are playing hurt like Howard under the bus publicly. I don't dislike Papelbon like I did Myers but he needs to insert his foot his mouth. Hurts this team doesn't have a vocal leader in the clubhouse that would tell Papelbon to STFU behind closed doors and not trash your teammates publicly.

    Posted by: MG | Thursday, June 20, 2013 at 10:30 PM

Nice post, MG. Paaabillbohhwwnn is a hor8sh8t teammate as documented by his comments.

Dump that sorry a88h8le at the deadline, or sooner. After Uts clocks him in the clubhouse for his general POS attitude.

Then fire r00b. Immediately.

TTI - He did and the Phils don't get to the playoffs in '08 when Myers was one of the best pitchers in MLB.

Still doesn't change the kind of player he was overall during his tenure here though.

It's about time that somebody associated with this team does something other than blow sunshine up Ryan Howard's ass.

Will -- This time you're dead effin' wrong. No player can rip a teammate publicly. r00b has to get control of the clubhouse - Chas won't touch that s8it -- and set priorities.

Jonathan Papelbon ain't one of those "priorities". Just Google "clubhouse cancer".

lore- the Werth signing can't be measured in dollars- rather in what it signified as the Nats becoming a franchise to reckon with.

It's all part of Rizzo The Wizard's master plan, and if you're not smart enough to figure that out, tough sh*t.

cut: "this" time?

lore core - whatever.

"lore core" = "lorecore". My (autocorrect) bad.

speaking of Werth, went Golden Sombrero tonight.

Reasons to ship out Papelbon first:
1-This team is not a playoff team
2-His high salary
3-His atty-tude
4-He has trade value to a contender
5-Can no longer stand to look at his unblinking, blow-fish face

Biddle looks like a mid-rotation starter, nice, but nothing to be too excited about.

Jayson Werth since he left Philly:

.257/.346/.410 (.756) with 32 HRS in 1159 PAs

Maligned 'AAAberry'

.256/.315/.440 (.755) with 34 HRs in 943 PAs

And Delmon Young is starting over him in RF. Kill me.

lorecore Taylor Jordan 6-0 0.93 era IP 49 H 29 K 42.

Kill me.

Amaro has done a ton wrong or that can be second-guessed but not resigning Werth isn't one of them. That was a no-brainer.

High price they paid for pence and taking $.60 on the dollar for him last summer because they wanted to dump his salary were 2 terrible set of transactions.

If Amaro had traded for Bourn instead of Pence and they have moved Vic over to RF as a result, still think the '11 NLCS might have turned out differently & they would have been better off without the Pence trades.

Franco good start at AA.Don't look over your shoulder Ashce.

dons: I don't know anything about Taylor Jordan, other than half of his stats are from A+ as a 24 yr old.

wonder if Asche can play 2nd base. Bat might profile better there anyway. Not that he needs to move yet, just spitballing best case scenario, (Asche and Franco both become regulars).

Since Werth went to WSH (2011), Howard and Werth have had about the same amount of PA:

Howard: 1207 PA, 117 OPS+, .5 bWAR, 1.0 fWAR
Werth: 1163 PA, 107 OPS+, 2.1 bWAR, 2.9 fWAR

After this year, Howard is owed $85M for his 34-36 age season. Werth is owed $83M for his 35-38 age season. Nats get one extra year, and about .67 extra WAR from Werth.

And in 2013, Howard is actually ahead of Werth in both bWAR/fWAR by about .5 WAR

jbird: I can't recall where i heard this, or if i am remembering correctly, but Asche was moved from 2B to 3B because he lacked the footwork to project long term at second.

I like the prospect of as a possible high avg/obp platoon of Asche/Frandsen, while admittedly losing some defense whether its at 3B or 2B.

Last 3 games. 2 complete game SO. Last game he did give up 1 run but still won. He is 24 but has a power arm. Mid 90's. I am going to watch his next start @ city island

***wonder if Asche can play 2nd base. Bat might profile better there anyway.***

He can' lorecore said, they already tried him there and it was an utter failure.

That must suck for Huran that he will lose his spot with the Nats soon.

Pedro Ciriaco, a bum backup SS, went 3-4 with a HR last night, after being acquired by the Padres for cash considerations.

He's 27 and a career .292/.321/.413 hitter. The Phillies instead elected to call up Michael Martinez as their backup something or other.

lorecore: I acquired some pistachios this morning for cash considerations. Pistachios would be a better addition to the club than Mini Mart.

I think the Phils should trade Galvis for a 30 HR corner outfielder.

So now the FO sucks for not scooping Pedro Ciriaco off the scrap heap?

TTI: the FO sucks for continuing to put Mini Mart on the roster.

tti: its just an example of how terrible Martinez is and how stupid the FO is for keeping him on the team. There are journeyman backup SS who are both younger and better than him, floating around the market, and the Phillies instead allow him to stay on the roster.

I'm not going to say the Phillies are better against lefties than they appear, although Gio and Detwiler are pretty solid lefties, because I don't think they necessarily are.

However, wasn't there just an article mentioning how few outings the Phillies have had against LHSPs this year? Something like lowest in baseball, and some teams have as many as 8 more?

That "14th in NL, 27th in MLB" stat would seem to be suffering from an unequal sample size (and, in their case, SSS), as a result.

buster: the 14th/27th stats are rate stats, its not affected by the lower amount of PA.

But the need for Mini-Mart's versatility outweighs the harm done by his bad bat. Since being called up, Mini-Mart has come up to the plate in critical situations only twice. On the other hand, I can't even count the number of times that we've needed a 3rd string shortstop/3rd baseman/corner outfielder. (Of course, the reason I can't count them is because they don't exist, but never mind that minor detail)

Lorecore: Yes, they're rate stats, but the idea that they're not affected by reduced number of PA isn't strictly true.

Any given player's BA/OBP/SLG/OPS are rate stats as well, but we don't give them much credence until the sample size gets above a threshold - and we know that the stats tend to get more reliable with increased numbers of PAs. With all of 14 starts against LHSPs (assume 20-ish PAs/LHSP, so 280 PAs altogether), 3-5 hits could make a pretty solid difference.

Obviously not enough to move them out of the bottom half of the league, but the drastically-different rate of lefties seen - and some of the lefties we've seen have been pretty high quality - can lead to skewed ratios that can't really be used as effective direct comparisons.

tti: its just an example of how terrible Martinez is and how stupid the FO is for keeping him on the team. There are journeyman backup SS who are both younger and better than him, floating around the market, and the Phillies instead allow him to stay on the roster.

More importantly, they have Galvis on the freakin' roster, and both Frandsen and Young have played enough SS to be viable in a double-switch if absolutely necessary. Having those guys on the roster means you don't have to carry a(nother) no-hit infielder like Mini-Mart, so you could carry another viable pinch-hitter like Ruf, Fields, or Mitchell. Once again, RAJ squanders an opportunity with poor roster construction.

you don't have to assume anything, they are all readily available stats.

And Corey used LD% and K/BB numbers, things that normalize quicker than your slash line numbers.

Yeah but when you have a chance to give Mini Mart playing time, you have to take it.

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