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Friday, July 26, 2013


Isn't that "1 scout says...#3 starter"?

Still stunned.

When Jack said Amaro was willing to do big things, I don't think he had this in mind.

The reports I've read about his upside are all over the map. Some say relief pitcher; some say a potential No. 2 starter.

my comments about hating the Phils for never spending on intl FA is well documented. I gladly take my hat usually tipped towards no name pitchers after they embarrass our offense, and instead tip it toward Amaro and the FO.

They'll basically have no idea until he pitches a while in the minors. 2 years of limited baseball activity, etc etc.

Good on the FO to roll the dice on him though.

""He's like a classic Cuban guy in that he toys with all [his pitches]. He throws a curve that's bigger, he makes it go wide, he throws it straight down . . . it's like 10 different pitches. And he throws them all over the plate.""

Just told my wife 'Sorry, not tonight' after reading that paragraph.

I'm not sure why this portends a trade of anyone. MAG will make less than Halladay and slot nicely in the 3/4 slot with Kendrick. Depending on how KK does in arbitration they can keep everyone and see their rotation cost go from around $70m to around $65m*.

* - assuming Kendrick makes about $8m next year and using MAG's rough AAV w/ bonuses.

Color me confused. Does this mean the end of Cliff Lee? Will the rebuilding process begin with this international signing? So many questions.

8M is a lot for a 4th starter when you have the oldest and quite possibly worst everyday lineup on the NL. How will that be upgraded?

Wow. I need some time.

I know this whole "Yankees want Michael Young but the Phillies won't make him available" thing is just the Yankees offering nothing at all - but is drives me bonkers thinking that they might actually offer something of substance and Amaro legitimately doesn't want to part ways.

2 years of limited bb activity means he has less mileage on him. that's a good thing.

I think I'm generally good with this. Guy in his mid-20s, mid rotation guy, for $8 million a year. That's generally good, regardless of whether you are buying or selling.

No idea where they plan on getting any offense from next year, though. And I hope this doesn't foreclose them from selling anyone for the right offer.

"8M is a lot for a 4th starter"

Not at all. $8M on the open market buys you potential-less inning eaters.

Jeremy Guthrie signed for 3yr/$21M
Joe Blanton signed for 2yr/$15M
Joe Saunders signed for 1yr/$7M
Edwin Jackson signed for 4yr/$52M
Brandon McCarthy signed for 2yr/$15M

$8m is not a lot for a 4th starter when your offense will still be dreadful.

Ruin Tomorrow bit and the Red Sox front office passed on Gonzalez. 'Nuf said.

Hold your breath for an Aumont/Gillies/Ramirez-like return when Ruin deals Cliff Lee to the Sox.

Positive news about the Phillies .

My BL trained instincts have me looking for the * and the footnote explaining it away.

Most teams don't buy free agents as #4 starters. It's a place to have cheap guys the org can develop.

Red Sox didn't pass on Gonzalez. The Phillies outbid them.

Halladays $20 million is off the books this winter and we need another's a great FA signing.

Depending on what moves are made in the next few days, so subject to a giant caveat, I will go ahead and say I'm on board with this.

A starter in his 20s making 8 million a year. And you only had to pay cash for him, not give up prospects. That's the key. When people say "we're a high payroll team," this is exactly the kind of move you want them to do. Not throw away money at aging and declining players, but taking calculated risks that only cost money (and not prospects) on players who have genuine upside and can help your team for years going forward.

From the last thread, I was at the Maikel Franco show tonight at First Energy Stadium in my hometown of Reading. We were sitting in the left field bleachers just behind third base, so I saw his fielding chances up close. He seems to field and throw effortlessly. He looks like a very dangerous hitter. Went 3 for 4 tonight with two bombs and 5 RBI's. Just seems to have an enormous amount of natural baseball talent. A very, very exciting player. He upped his BA from .358 to .370 tonight and has 8 HR and 25 RBI in only 31 games and 127 AB's at Reading. Although only 20 years old, it's like watching a man playing against boys. Current slash line is .370/.389/.588./988. Has only struck out 11 times at Reading and also has 3 walks. Has 6 errors at third. That's a lot for 31 games, but he had only 5 at Clearwater in 65 games for a total of 11 errors in 97 games. Asche also has 11 errors in 100 games at AAA.

Franco has 24 HR's and 77 RBI's in 97 minor league games this year. Asche has 12 HR's and 60 RBi's, again in 100 games. Franco would seem to have more upside and quite possibly will be your third baseman of the future. The guy is very, very young, only one month shy of his 21st birthday. (8/26/92) He's brought a lot of excitement to the organization, the city and the team itself. The Reading club is going to be bummed when he gets the inevitable promotion. Everyone that can should try to get up to Reading and see this guy for themselves.


    ...I'd imagine any move by Middleton to buy a controlling share would mean Monty is gone so its probably not in his self-interest to agree to it...unless Middleton makes him an offer he can't refuse.
    That'd be awesome if it happens.

    Posted by: NEPP | Friday, July 26, 2013 at 10:42 PM

NEPP - I disagree. If Middleton could have made a difference, he'd have blown away the limited partnership immediately after acquiring his cigar fortune. No. one. budged.

Limited partnerships are evil. They breed indifference and guys like Amaro ("yes" men). Pat Gillick was a fvuckin' miracle.

Having said that, good job, Phils. Probem is, we really have no use for another pitcher - even when they deal Clifton.

Where's the next Jose Alberto Pujols?

Red Sox didn't pass on Gonzalez. The Phillies outbid them.

Posted by: RedBurb | Friday, July 26, 2013 at 11:41 PM

Exactly the point. The outbidding was done by Ruin Tomorrow.

Andy MacFail - What?

As plenty of people on Twitter have noted, this shows how ridiculous MLB's draft rules are and how much they screw over American players.

Stephen Strasburg, at 21 and featuring the best stuff in decades, got signed for less than a third of what the Phillies just paid for a 26-year old mid-rotation starter.

Baseball better pray it never loses its antitrust exemption, because the draft is nothing more than blatant collusion to keep labor costs low.

What does this say about what's in the system? Ugh. Pitchers are like me.

Shocking development on Gonzalez.
Not so shocking that Phillies lost by only scoring one run for Hamels. Had a chance to get to Benoit, force the blown save, and get Paps in to shut the door which certainly could have helped there trade options.

On Gonzalez I do suppose this means that Halladay will not be brought back. I did want to see Halladay retire as a Phillie with hopefully a HOF career.

Of course, the expected negativity is that the Phillies give this large contract to the worst Cuban defector of the recent bunch: Cependes = All-Star, Puig = superstar, Soler = Top100, Gonzalez = albatross contract for middle reliever.
After all these excellent players that the Phillies we 'in on' we end up getting the most expensive and least useful.

I guess this is a good signing. I also again believe bye bye Lee. Don't know what this means for Doc. I guess if he pitches again this year and does well, coming back will probably be up to him.

It's very telling they went for the pitcher again instead of, you know, the outfielders they clearly needed.

Nine games behind the Braves, and tied with the Nats and Mets in the loss column. Rube has 5 days left to get some work done for the future.

What are first takes on nicknames? There's already been a MAG, I'm assuming someone will come in with a Gonzo. We're not going M-Gon, right? Right?

I don't think this is goodbye to Doc at all. If he pitches well at the end of the year they can give him an incentive-laden deal, which I would definitely be in favor of, and bump Pettibone out of the rotation. I think this is a definite goodbye for Lannan, and a probable goodbye for Lee (just a hunch).

Nobody here is comfortable with the idea of Pettibone in the rotation next year (if they want the team to compete), and my guess is the FO isn't either. Halladay would give them much greater upside.

Phx, that was my thoughts exactly. I love the move for what it says about their willingness to spend internationally, and I hope it works out both for the teams success and to encourage them to continue moves like this. But I feel like RAJ is basically chasing after what the other Cubans have done recently and trying to make up for where he really missed out (i.e. Cespedes who was really such a perfect fit to finally fill Werths shoes).

Chapman is the big name you missed and I'd throw Darvish in there too.

BTW, this deal means that Rube is nowhere the end of his leash with ownership. He presumably has a plan and they just bought in. He's here indefinitely.

The posters who look at this as a pitcher and not as the Phillies doing something they've never done before are truly astounding. They plunged themselves into the international market. This is a good thing! But no, let's bitch about it being a pitcher.

Burb: What has changed with the Phils' front office since the other Cubans signed? If they're splurging now, why wasn't the money available in 2012 for Cespedes?

I'm pretty confident the Phillies wouldn't be forking out $50M sight unseen if they believed that his upside was back-end starter. They clearly think it's higher than that. If they're wrong, it'll probably be the last time they ever make this kind of signing in any of our lifetimes.

You don't know what the Phillies offered Cespedes. He took less years to sign with the A's. However, This is a good thing that the Phillies are making a shift into the international market. But I wouldn't expect some of the posters to understand that.

BAP: Right. They clearly think the guy has 2-3 stuff, not backend rotation or middle reliever.

Now, they may be wrong. We all know they're not exactly batting 1.000 when it comes to talent evaluation. But they took a calculated risk in signing a front end starter, and I'm good with it.

Wow. I am truly surprised. In fact, there are a couple other talented Cubans out there and nothing holding Ruben back except for a pen and a checkbook. Get to it.

I have no idea how good this guy is. But I'm really glad the Phillies finally stepped up. And enough of this being the most expensive signing ever. Didn't Texas have to pony up a salary-doubling fee to Japan for Darvish? Or was that only for Disuke?

I agree with you on both points - we don't know what was offered to him, and it is a good thing that the Phils are shifting their eyes abroad, if this is indeed a sign of things to come.

I assume Cespedes wanted to start right away, and the Phils may have wanted him to prove himself a bit first. Otherwise, why would he take fewer years and less money to play for Oakland instead of a team coming off a 102-win season? One that decided to start Juan Pierre in LF. That has to have been a money/luxury tax issue.

This isn't a move to solve an immediate need, but a high stakes investment in a young player who may turn out to be a good pitcher.

We need to rebuild with young players and we took a step in that direction w/o giving up established players or prospects

Looks like a good move, hope it turns out that way.

Unikruk - All indications at the time were that the Marlins had the inside track on Cespedes. They offered him the most money, but he chose the A's instead. Who knows what kind of conversations happened between Cespedes and other teams and why he decided to sign with the A's.

Perhaps it was Ruben's halitosis.

Ice~ I agree Doc is a better option than either Lannan or Pettibone. Again I do think this spells the end of Lee. If they get a good return for him and use his dollars wisely elsewhere it's a win- win. If he stays that's fine too. I have absolute no problem with the Gonzo signing. I am however concerned over the team current offensive structure. Cole gives up 2 runs and loses. They need to find and offensive player somehow. Does Lee get you that?

One other thing. Some have posted that KK might go. I don't think so. He's still relatively inexpensive but more than that, I just don't think he's that much trade value.

The homerun derby theatrics sort of obscured the fact that Cespedes is having a horrible year. He's got an average in the .220s and an OPS that is lower than Delmon Young's (though with a slightly higher OPS+). I have no doubt that he'll be a good player going forward. But it's hard to believe that the Phillies' 2013 season would be going any differently if we had signed Yoenis Cespedes.

Did someone say Cespedes would have turned around this season?

Makes sense, trade Lee offer Doc a 1 year team friendly deal. Look for a cheap 4th starter on the market next year.

Unik: Not exactly. But there's been some suggestions that he's exactly what the Phillies need. Which is true if you're talking about last year's version of Yoenis Cespedes. But not this year's.

I'm only thinking of his (and Puig's, etc.) signing in its time, without knowledge of the performance that was to come. And even with the knowledge of the offensive dip, I'd still take him over the motley crew we've been running out there since the Victorino/Pence trades.

More generally, I'm wondering if Gonzalez is the first international free agent they decided to throw this kind of money at, or if he's just the first they were able to convince to sign. If this is a sign of increased activity on the international market, or if they had their sea change a few years ago and have just been failing valiantly.

It's only money. No loss of players major or minor. No long wait to see if he can help the team. Helps to make a very weak minor league system a little better. Bout time you got us a Cuban, Ruben!

Whoa. I think I'm impressed.

But what does this do for, you know, getting more Phillies tiptoeing daintily across home plate?

Hot Stove is in high gear for Phillies now...

Where are all these commentors mentioning 'it is only money' when discussing Howard's contract? Player paid a bunch of money are likely going to get lots of playing time, deserved or not.

Smart job by Gonzalez's agent to accept bids right at the trade deadline. Is the major overhaul of Phillies coming?

There is no "hot stove" in July...

Also Howard is very much a known commodity. He and his $25M/yr albatross of a contract will be around for years and years and years to come... Gonzalez's contract doesn't even begin to compare.

Love this move. All it costs is money, and you potentially have your #2 starter locked up for the next 6 years.

And just as an aside, he was not signed "sight unseen." The Phils did watch him pitch in a showcase last month and he was pitching open bullpen sessions for scouts twice a week since April. He' also pitched in international conpetition as well. The Phils scouts haven't had the best track record for the last few years, but they have definitely had their chances to see what he can do.

A good risk to take. The Phillies have to get younger and the price of pitching is climbing. If this guy can be a starter better than Joe Blanton, which not a high bar to exceed, it's a reasonable contract. If he's a low leverage reliever, we overpaid but you gotta roll the dice.

One thing you can say about our Rube, he likes to surprise you. Let's hope he's got some more surprises this week that will make us younger and more athletic.

Great move by Amaro..gotta give the guy credit here.

It overshadows the fact that Hamels pitched decent again last night and took the hard luck loss. I know for some it is "he isn't a bulldog," but that is a silly opinion.

Also- I guess some team wanted Quintero.

A couple of good points in this thread and I will throw in a few that haven't been made:

- Good sign the Phils will 'Rage, rage against the dying of the light' and not merely stuff their pockets with cash and that they have seen how much money this franchise can produce when they are very good.

- The only one I will add is that there is no way in hell that Amaro was able to do this without Monty's green light

- Everyone talks about Lee being gone but to me this is a much bigger indication that KK's future here is much more uncertain. Making $4.5M this year but I bet he will ask for at least $7-8M this offseason. KK has improved but he isn't a guy you want to give a 3 yr/$27-30M deal either.

Amaro doesn't get enough credit for signing KK to a 2 yr/$7.5M deal which was roundly mocked at the time and KK has easily that and more the past 2 years)

Quintero for all of the cr@p he got on here did a capable job as a backup catcher this year.

He actually was ok defensively and hit enough to be an acceptable backup catcher. Rather had his performance than what the Phils got out of Schneider the past 2 years.

"Quintero for all of the cr@p he got on here did a capable job as a backup catcher this year."

You gave him like 99% of the crap! This comment blew my mind.

It's a six year deal, but I guess this year is the first one, right? So it is more like a five-year deal. That makes it a little less appealing.

I read Q is now backup C for the Mariners

So is Brian Wilson and a Padre OF next?

- Also a hedge with Halladay. Given Amaro's bulldog determination over a year and half to acquire him, I can't imagine that he is going to just let him walk this offseason especially if Halladay shows something in Sept in a few starts.

Amaro will almost certainly offer him an incentive-laden deal either way I bet though although the price goes up with a few good starts by Halladay in Sept.

- Rotation built around Hamels-Lee next year with Gonzalez displaying KK, Pettibone displacing Lannan, and an incentive-laden Halladay.

This year the Phils spent $72.5M on their projected Opening Day rotation with Lannan set to boost that by another $1-2M depending on how many IP/GS he pitched.

Next year Lee ($25M), Hamels ($23.5M), Gonzalez ($7-8M?), Halladay ($5M base, say maybe double that incentive money) Pettibone ($400k)

Let's say a ball park of $60M with some flex spending up to $65M. Allows them to free up some cash to address other areas.

Killers are $25M to Howard but the not-often mentioned $20M to Papelbon/Adams next year.

Iceman - Leaving him on the roster for a week when he can't play another position made zero sense.

He's not a good player but for a fill-in while Kratz was out he was sufficient. That's all.

If the deal was that long, I bet that Gonzalez's salary will be a lot less than $7M next year and the Phils backloaded his deal.

Basically a move to help resign Utley, not resign KK long-term and quite possibly let him walk this offseason, and gives the Phils a projected controlled young starter for several years.

Since the phillies are loaded with super rich owners, I want them to do this kind of stuff even if they fail doing it. So good stuff. Hopefully the guy is good.

"Killers are $25M to Howard but the not-often mentioned $20M to Papelbon/Adams next year."

Sorry MG, but the contract of papelbon is mentioned in basically every thread. It does get old how often Ice and TTI jump down your throat over every post of your's, but you do give them plenty of ammo.

D Pat should be along any minute to talk about how the Phil's are cheap and won't spend money on offense. I think the bigger flaw is that Amaro wants to continue to build around pitching and defense, but has forgotten about the defense part. Fact remains, we are still 2 quality Bullpen arms and two bats away from contending in 2014. Hopefully we find a way to get that done. It won't be easy (or cheap).

Super rich owners has nothing to do with it. They won't invest a nickel of their own cash to cover operating expenses. No owner would unless things got desperate.

norbertods - Fair enough and that does get mentioned all the time.

I would bet too given Amaro's strong insistence on having a traditional closer and that Papelbon is his guy that he is going nowhere either anytime soon even if the Phils could move his contract with little in return.

MG - I don't disagree that Amaro will try to bring back Halladay at all, but I highly doubt the floor for that deal will be only $5M. I think it is closer to 8-10M guaranteed with escalators up to $15M. I'm not advocating that type of contract, especially since we haven't seen Roy in a few appearances after his rehab, but I think that is what it will take.

This tells me the Phillies have every intention of continuing to be a top 5 payroll. That means the pressure will be on Ruben to win, especially when Charlie goes. This is a much better scenario than the rebuild where he gets three years to bury the organization.

MG: Agreed on Pap. I don't think he's going anywhere. Does he get paid too much? Yes, of course. This team's problem isn't who is gonna close out the game, but rather getting into a situation where that is a need. On the other hand, considering that the bullpen is a weakness, getting rid of your top arm isn't the best recipe for success in that department. Considering the move for gonzalez(!), its pretty obvious that Amaro is gonna try and retool rather than rebuild.

It sounds like 3 or 4 teams want M Young (including that semi-believable Texas wanting him back story), why can this just be done already?
When Rube tries to hold out at the last second it always appears that the organization can handle more than one task by the deadline.

Can't handle is what I mean.

norbertods - If Papelbon was what he was doing his prime in Boston, he might be worth the $13M but he isn't. If anything, he continues his 3-year trend of having declining fastball velocity which for a guy who really depends on that pitch a lot is a huge issue.

Trading Papelbon to move his salary and better allocate that $13M (especially for a guy who is a decent bet to decline even further the next year of the following year) is what Amaro should try to do if possible.

Giving Papelbon the dollars wasn't as much as problem as it was the 4 years and the vesting option. Ditto Adams. Even if the Phils had paid Adams $8 or $9M this year with a decent buyout amount for an option for next year (say $2M), it wouldn't have been as dumb as the 2nd guaranteed year.

MG is told that he beats the Papelbon thing into the ground. He agrees. Less than an hour later he writes 600 words on the Papelbon contract like people need convincing that it's horrible.

I just...yeah.

I don't remember anyone really against the Adams signing at the time. The only thing was the price tag. The years, no one had a problem with. 2 year deals aren't killers. That's what we've been told for years around here.

I still don't mind the Adams contract knowing what we know now, when not putting it into context with the Uehara deal. They needed an 8th inning guy.

When you look at Uehara getting 4 million for 1 year, yeah, it looks terrible.

    ...It overshadows the fact that Hamels pitched decent again last night and took the hard luck loss. I know for some it is "he isn't a bulldog," but that is a silly opinion.

    Posted by: The Truth Injection | Saturday, July 27, 2013 at 08:05 AM

TTI -- if you promise never to engineer another insult or goofy nickname based on a completely obscure and archaic feminine hygiene practice, I will:

Declare Beerleaguer bankruptcy on the Cole/Shih Tzu reference. Hamels pitched his heart out last night. To lose after only giving up 2 runs - time after time - is clearly disgraceful.

This team is bereft of offensive talent. I wish to heavens that's where r00b spent his "Cuban" money. Instead, another pitcher. Geesh.

Apparently some teams had questions about Gonzalez's elbow?

I understand the offensive woes this team has but the constant criticism of signing Gonzalez because he is a pitcher is so extremely shortsighted. But then again, this is BL.

Olney is the first one to report elbow questions. There was no mention of this last night.

Shouldn't it read "Gonzalez, 26(?), is a right-hander..."

I kid. :)

RedBurb - Wake up! How many times has this team been shut out this year?

As an associated issue, how many "back-breaking" runs have been scored by the opposition, jettisoning effort after effort of what was once a pretty good starting rotation?

The offense (and horrific defense) is a critical issue. To get "meat in the seats" r00b should have sat on his cash until he could acquire offense and defensive help. I'd start with Michael Young; he88, it's inconceivable how his "production" has zeroed out his defensive woes.

I just don't have a clue where to find a good young 3rd baseman. Actually, many teams would have already started the clock on Maikel Franco, but this is the Phillies. Give him another 4 years and let him grow bitter and disillusioned, then bring him up. That should work.

Maikel Franco has 100 ABs above A ball and is 20. Rushing him to the majors would be idiotic, and you'd be one of the people calling him a bust when he struggled and was yo-yo'd between the majors and minors for years like Dom.

Are you really suggesting the Phils shouldn't sign the best available international FA because he's a pitcher and should instead spend that money on...who???????

cut - What in heavens name are you talking about? Which teams exactly would have started the clock on a 20 YO third baseman who could have serious issues with his swing? The Marlins? You want the Phillies to emulate the Marlins?

I've already mentioned above the Phillies have offensive issues. You obviously skipped over that. The signing of Gonzalez doesn't preclude the team from acquiring offensive talent. How can you make the argument that is will?

You can't build a team around pitching when you regularly run out a lineup that includes 3 DHs (Howard, Young and Young). They're lucky Gonzalez hasn't seen the team he's joining.

Here the relievers who have got multi-year deals the last 6 years:

Burnett (2 yr/$8M)
Soria (2 yr/$8M)
Broxton (3 yr/$21M)
Fujikawa (2 yr/$8M)
Soria (2 yr/$28M)
Peralta (2 yr/$6M)
Grilli (2 yr/$6.75M)
Gorzelanny (2 yr/$5.75M)
Choate (3 yr/$7.5M)
Affeldt (3 yr/$18M)

League was resigned before FA began.

Bell (3 yr/$27M)
Francisco (2 yr/$12M)
Nathan (2 yr/$14.5M)
Papelbon (4 yr/$50M)

Belfour (2 yr/$8.1M)
Benoit (3 yr/$16.5M)
Choate (2 yr/$2.5M)
Carrasco (2 yr/$2.5M)
Contreras (2 yr/$5.5M)
Crain (3 yr/$13M)
Downs (3 yr/$15M)
Feliciano (2 yr/$8M)
Fuentes (2 yr/$10.5M)
Gregg (2 yr/$10M)
Guerrier (3 yr/$12M)
Jenks (2 yr/$12M)
Ohman (2 yr/$4M)
Putz (2 yr/$10M
Rivera (2 yr/$30M)
Soriano (3 yr/$35M)
Takahashi (2 yr/$8M)

Baez (2 yr/$5.25M)
Betancourt (2 yr/$7.5M)
Chapman (6 yr/$30.25M)
M. Gonzalez (2 yr/$12M)
Grabow (2 yr/$7.5M)
Hawkins (2 yr/$7.5M)
Igarashi (2 yr/$3M)
Lyon (3 yr/$15M)
Rodney (2 yr/$11M)
Velarde (2 yr/$14M)

Affledt (2 yr/$8M)
J. Cruz (2 yr/$6M)
Farnsworth (2 yr/$9.25M)
Fuentes (2 yr/$17.5M)
Lincoln (2 yr/$4M)
Marte (3 yr/$12M)
Reyes (2 yr/$3M)
Rhodes (2 yr/$4M)
KRod (3 yr/$37M)
Uehara (2 yr/$10M)
Wood (2 yr/$20.5M)

Cordero (4 yr/$46M)
Dotel (2 yr/$11M)
Kobayashi (2 yr/$6.5M)
Linebrink (4 yr/$19M)
Mahay (2 yr/$8M)
Percival (2 yr/$8M)
Riske (3 yr/$13M)
Rivera (3 yr/$45M)
Vizcaino (2 yr/$7.5M)

Weathers (2 yr/$6M)
Speier (4 yr/$18M)
M. Stanton (2 yr/$5.5M)
Walker (3 yr/$12M)
Schoeneweis (3 yr/$10.8M)
Mota (2 yr/$5.5M)
Kline (2 yr/$3.5M)
Embree (2 yr/$5.5M)
Bradford (3 yr/$10.5M)
Baez (3 yr/$19M)

- Japanese relievers have been a pretty mixed bag overall and tended to disappoint.

- Reds (under Jocketty since he became GM in '08) have been very active players in FA in the reliever market; ditto the Phils under RAJ and the Mets especially under Minaya.

- The Angels under DiPoto or Reagins and White Sox under Kenny Williams have been active but in the middle reliever market.

- Mega deals to closers have definitely declined and Papelbon's deal looks like an a key outlier

- Yanks have stopped being active in FA and focused more on internal efforts

- Rays aren't adverse to dabbling in FA but only for 2-yr deals for moderate amounts

- 3-yr deals to middle relievers or setup men have thankfully gone out of vogue too; 2 2-year deals are quite common though

Chris/RedBurb -- The Marlins model works more often than the Phillies "model". The Phillies have 2 rings in over 120 years of existence.

The Marlins? The same number. In a somewhat lesser amount of time. And they don't look like dopes for spending millions on a team struggling to play .500 ball.

Also, guess who's only 6 back of the Phils in the loss column? Outrageous.

Of course, you could make a strong case that Jeffrey Loria duped the City of Miami, but that's a separate issue.

Actually the first Marlins title was bought in free agency. Of course I wouldn't expect you to know that, because you don't understand facts.

The Marlins model is based around the team making the most profit. I would rather see a team like the Phillies who try to win with having a high payroll than be a fan of the Marlins who are only out for their ownership group.

Also, please make the case for bringing up Franco. I'm really interested in hearing why the team should start the clock on a 20 year old 3B who scouts have major questions about his swing.

Why bring up Franco when the Phils should trade M. Young and give Asche a 2-month trial to see if a Asche/Frandsen combo might be a serviceable and more importantly cheap option at 3B next year?

Phils are going to have to go cheap at a few positions next year with 3B likely among them.

Cmon' RedBurb - "facts" on Beerleaguer? That's precious. Franco's "swing" is a major liability. Sure it is. Check out limoguy's summary - stats and "eyes". Sure sounds suspect to me. Oh yea, BTW, how's Michael Young's defense work for you?

At first glance, Franco looks like he deserves a September call up. And since this season is circling the bowl, I'd love to see a soon-to-be 21 YO with a resume play for at least a couple of weeks. What in heavens name does this God-forsaken team have to lose?

What in heavens name does this God-forsaken team have to lose?

Posted by: cut_fastball | Saturday, July 27, 2013 at 11:56 AM

I'm sure you were one of the people clamoring for Brown's call-up in 2010, and then screaming that he was a bust when he struggled and yo-yo'd between the majors and minors for years.

Maybe you might want to consider that?

As for the Marlins, would you really trade places with one of their fans? REALLY? If so, you know next to nothing about baseball.

MG -- Cody Asche works for me, too. However, in a lost season, why not get a bag of balls for Michael Young (just don't keep his salary) and call either Asche or Franco up at some point?

Something has to change. With an extremely motivated Halladay in the wings; KK pitching for his next contract, and Pettibone remaining serviceable, I just can't see how starting pitching is a concern right now.

Of course, Roy Halladay is a huge wild card, and will likely seek employment with a contender. However, if there's no takers, who knows what it might take to sign Doc in '14?

Uh oh .... Cliff Lee has been scratched from tonight's start with alleged sore neck. Is something up on the trade front? Is this another "sign a pitcher for lots of money and then trade Cliff Lee" scenario? If it is, this will not be popular with me and my bros.

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