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« Game 130: Halladay returns | Main | Phillies hit the road after wild 10-game homestand »

Sunday, August 25, 2013

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Good game today. It was nice to see Doc back and doing a decent job. I know he'll work to improve, and it remains to be seen how much he can/will.


This is an interesting story about the staff, some of whom you never think about, and their short break between the marathon game last night and today's game.

http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20130825&content_id=58347974&notebook_id=58347678&vkey=notebook_phi&c_id=phi

It was so good to see Doc not labor. I still am not sure he will be a .500 pitcher without a mid 90's heater. Best of luck Roy

Watching Doc pitch again was a pleasure. I'm not sure what to make of what I saw. Looked like his location was still spotty, but he still had good movement on his pitches. If he can remain healthy, and maintain some modicum of command, he could still be a decent start.

And I'd love nothing more than to see him extend his career a couple more years. One of the most enjoyable sports athletes I've ever watched. Very happy to see him get the Phils a win today.

MG- last thread you said Halladay wouldn't leave any money on the table to go to a contender next year.

You understand how much money he left on the table to sign a extension here, right? Why would he quibble over a few million at the end of his career, with a chance at finally getting a ring on the line?

Doc is back...full steam ahead!!!

Doc said if he could play for a contender, he would pay them.

Obviously, he's not being literal, but I think he'd certainly leave money on the table to have a chance at a ring.

And I have nothing against players who would rather maximize their earnings then maximize their chance to win a ring. Just because I (and most fans) have made the championship ring the holy grail, doesn't mean that athletes must share our ambitions.

But, it is refreshing to see a player like Doc who knows he's made more money then he'll likely ever need, and just wants to give it one more go for a ring. I really hope things break right for him, and he gets that ring.

Suck on that all you arm chair quarterbacking Halladay haters.

Iceman - I didn't say that. Just that I didn't buy Halladay's hyperbole but 'paying a contender to pitch.'

He is still making $20M this year and it would be a huge hit to his ego to say making only $8-9M guaranteed and a lot of incentive upside. I just wonder if Halladay would be willing to leave $3-4M on the table between 2 contenders.

I just don't see Amaro giving up easily on letting Halladay walk away to another team and overpaying in the process. Possibly even forcing a KK sign and trade too.

Halladay would probably take a pay cut to play for a WS favorite...even in a 4/5 starter role. I highly doubt he'd play for the minimum or anything like that obviously.

Its called hyperbole.

If he wants to play for a winner, he won't be back here next year and I can't blame him.

Well yeah, MG, if the Red Sox and Rangers are both courting Halladay this offseason, of course he'll go to the place where the combination and money and location appeal to him, and money could be a deciding factor.

But do you think that if the Rangers offered him $7 M next year, and the Phillies offered him $10 M, that he'd really play with the Phillies and guarantee another lost year for $3 M?

He's made $138 M in his career. He'd go to the contender.

Also, I know that the last two years with Halladay have sucked, but I still love the deal the Phillies got him to sign. 3 year/$60 M, and only paid $9.75 M in 2010.

That means the Phils will have a paid a grand total of $69.75 M for Doc. At the time of the deal, the going rate for WAR was about $4.5 M.

Since 2010, Halladay has compiled 16.1 fWAR and 17 bWAR, meaning he's been worth 72.45 or 76.5 WAR, respectively.

Obviously, none of this is an exact science, but I still think the Phillies got their money's worth out of Doc simply because of how insanely great he was in 2010 and 2011.

And for those two years, I'll always consider the Halladay trade a success, especially considering the bupkis that the players traded for him have done.

Speaking of the Halladay trade, Travis d'Arnaud hit his first MLB HR today.

He's 2 for 18 on the season so far since his callup from AAA.

I could see Doc going to a team like the Cardinals next year...or possibly the Dodgers. Teams that could toss him $10 million and not expect him to be more than a 4/5 but where he'd have a good shot at a ring.

There really isn't a good comp to a pitcher like Halladay the last several years in FA (former ace coming off shoulder surgery & 2 subpar seasons in his late 30s with a ton of miles on his arm)

2012
1 yr/$13M Haren
1 yr/$12M Petitte
1 yr/$3M Colon

2011
1 yr/$10M Kuroda
1 yr/$4.5M Bedard
1 yr/$4M F. Garcia

2010
1 yr/$7M J. Vazquez
1 yr/$3M Webb
2 yr/$16.5M Westbrook (not really a good comp)

2009
1 yr/$7.5M Harden
1 yr/$11.75M Petitte
1 yr/$10M Sheets

2008
1 yr/$8M R. Johnson
2 yr/$13M Moyer
1 yr/$5M Petitte
1 yr/$5M Wolf
1 yr/$5M Smoltz

Petitte is an outlier for a couple of reasons most notably he was a FA in name only who only was going to resign with the Yanks.

If Halladay pitches well and continues to show progressive improvement especially on his control, a base of $10-$12M is probably around the ball park with some incentive-laden upside if it is towards the lower end.

A lot of this depends though on his last several starts. If he flounders and gives up his share of gopher balls (Bernadina saved him today on that multi-run jack), it is going to knock down that base a decent margin I bet to say $8-$10M.

6 innings and 2 runs, not bad for someone not ready to pitch against MLB batters.

Doc wants to win. So does Cliff. Unfortunately for them, our GM was playing with House money, and he gambled and lost. Both would probably leave money on the table for a shot at a WS ring.

One last point on Halladay:

He had a 6:10 ratio of ground balls-fly balls and didn't miss many bats today (6 swing & miss or a little over 6%)

Dramatic switch from even '10-'11. CBP is still a hitters' park and a good place to hit HRs:

A rate higher than 1.000 favors the hitter. Below 1.000 favors the pitcher.

Year: Park Factor (MLB rank out of 30 teams)

2013: 1.502 (1st)
2012: 1.087 (11th)
2011: 0.950 (16th)
2010: 1.125 (10th)
2009: 1.005 (16th)
2008: 1.022 (11th)
2007: 1.418 (1st)
2006: 1.201 (6th)
2005: 1.297 (3rd)
2004: 1.134 (5th)

Phils moved in the fences after the '05 season.

Not exactly the correct way mathematically to do this but this is a quick and dirty calculation:

2004-13: 1.174 (8th)
2006-13: 1.164 (9th)

Bandbox no but that sure is looks like a place I would like to play half my games especially if I was a power hitter because it is a HR-friendly park.

Conversely if Halladay is now going to be a flyball pitcher should the Phils really invest big dollars in him given that he appears to be a flyball pitcher now & has given up HRs at a very healthy clip since the start of '11?

I mean moved out the fences after the '05 season in LF.

The differences between 04-13 and 06-13 show a negligible effect of less than 1%.

The point is that CBP is a HR-friendly park despite posts you have read elsewhere the last year or so that had some very egregious cherry-picking of their data sample and moving out the fences in LF after '05 apparently didn't change all that much.

Really hurt a guy like Blanton who gave had a 1.39 HR/9 in 52 G (50 GS) at CBP.

HR friendly but overall fairly neutral as an offensive park as its is harder to hit 2B and 3B there.

But yeah, a rough park for a heavy FB pitcher. Still, its hard to make any judgments at all on 1 start where the guy pitching was supposed to be in AA rehabbing but got an emergency callup.

NEPP - That's true. I calculated the figures this offseason and using this same quick approach it was either 11th/12th for run scoring for CBP. Slightly better than average but a tougher park for flyball pitchers.

Prediction: the Phils become winners again in 2018. That's the year that they sign life-long Phillies' fan and 26-year-old CF Mike Trout to a 10-year, $400 million deal.

I doubt low-balling Trout like that will get them anywhere.

What a strange weekend! Who would've predicted an 18 inning night game, followed by a premature MLB rehab assignment victory from Doc. Wow!

GBrett@5:58: Thanks for the article about the lesser known, but still important, Phillies' personnel. I always wonder about all of the pieces that help games come together at home and on the road. I wonder what it is like to wash all the uniforms, or rush to gwt that afternoon's call-up in the program (or get a new major league uniform on time), or pack the boxes for road trips, or order the gum and sunflower seeds.

You're welcome, can_of_corn. I felt bad for the guy who puts video together, going home after 2AM only to get an early call from Doc asking if his video would be ready for him.

And I thought it was amusing that the bat boys just slept there at CBP!

If Trout produces like he is into free agency, would you pay $35-40 million a year for his 27-36 season?

I would.

For a five year deal, without hesitation.

For a five-plus year deal? Lots of hesitation.

Bernadina bringing that ball back over the fence made me wish Mayberry would've been out there. He wouldn't have caught it but he would've run into the fence and knocked himself out probably.

Although he never runs into the fence and it is pure speculation to some.

I was at Doc's last start when he hit the DL, and thought to myself that it might be the last time I ever see him in a Phillies uni. Very glad that I got to see him again in person.

Trout's got this going:

.328/.425/.571

This is his age 22 season. If he's putting up a continuous 160 OPS+, maybe we have something.

However, some guy named Willie Howard Mays did this - after military service!! (starting age 23 season):
* .345/.411/.667 1.078 OPS!!! 41 HRs!!
* .319/.400/.659 1.059 OPS!!! 51 HRs!!

Willie did some pretty special things after these storied seasons, too. How 'bout '65:

.317/.398 ./645 1.043 OPS; 52 HRs

I'm pretty sure Mr. Trout does not have this kind of pop in his bat. Regardless, before we anoint the Millville Masher as a sure-fire HOF god, let's see how he stacks up beyond the age of 22.

Geesh.


Its hard to comment on what I think the Phils should do with Doc because of the weird absence of any information on Alfredo.

My gut feeling is that the Phils/Halladay should part ways, as they're not in the position to be taking on such risks with so many other question marks on their roster.

"Therefore, if a decision needs to be made as an extra outfielder, it would probably be a choice between Mayberry and Wells."


Yes, that will take about 2 seconds to make that decision.

The Cesar Hernandez CF experiment seems to have ended at AAA.

He's back where he belongs at 2B.

I would love to squash out the idea many posters share that if you are an average enough player in your position, i.e. back up OF, platoon 3B, catcher, etc. - then that player is a good piece to have.

Thats true if you are trying to be the 8th best team in the league, but not if you'r trying to win a championship.

Screw mediocre players. You settle for them at last resort, not advocate their right to be on the team just because there are other worse players in the league.

Nothing like TTI wishing for a Phillies player to knock himself out. Classy!

lorecore - It's fine to have a bunch of mediocre players on your roster especially if they are young and cheap.

The issue for the Phils is they have a lot of areas where they don't close to league average (especially in the bullpen) and their 2 best everyday players at this point are only above average/good players (Utley, Brown).

Lorecore: I actually disagree with you. Having above-average or average players throughout your lineup is really the best way to consistently be good.

Most teams don't win because of a couple superstars. They win because of depth of solid, good players.

The fact that Sandberg continues to bat Bernadina leadoff is not a very good sign.

Is it really that hard to find a manager who understands that hitting a bad hitter leadoff is a bad idea, no matter how fast that guy is?

Watching baseball tonight and it is amazing how similar the Angels and Phillies are right now:

- Meddlesome owner (Moreno and Montgomery) who plays too active of a role in player personnel decisions along with alot of people involved in sr. management decisions besides the GM

- Younger, homegrown ace who was signed to a long-term deal to large dollars (Weavers @ 5 yr/$85M and Hamels @ 6 yrs/144) who has struggled a bit this year

- Huge, long-term contract to a 1B who is clearly in decline, has had health-concerns, and put up similar numbers this year (Pujols, Hamels).

Pujols looks like the crappier deal though since Howard is only signed through '16. Pujols' deal runs though '21 although the Angels can as least DH him.

- A long-term manager who run a WS for the club who was either fired already (Cholly) or I bet will be fired after this offseason (Sciosia)

- Another veteran FA starter in his mid-30s being paid big dollars (Lee through '15 and CJ Wilson through '16) on a team headed nowhere

- A lot of question marks about their rotation after the top 2 starters next year

- A couple of younger players who are nice complementary pieces (Trumbo, Bourjos & Revere, Brown, Ruf?) but not nearly enough to make a difference.

Yeah I know the Angels have Trout and he is the best overall player in the game today.

- A mediocre baseball player turned GM (Dipoto and Amaro) who both emphasize and prefer traditional scouting over analytics.

Both are also incredibly unpopular right now among their fan base with a decent chance that Dipoto gets fired this offseason while Amaro at least another year.

- Below-average farm systems with a lack of MLB-ready talent at the upper levels. Phils have been rated a bit higher at the middle of 2013 but neither has a lot of talent at AA or below.

- Declining payrolls due to declines in attendance even though the Angels signed a huge TV deal in Dec 2011 and the Phils are expected to signed a huge deal in the next 12-18 months.

Not sure who is in worse shape at this point or going ahead forward. The Phils don't have to contend with another huge team in their market for advertising dollars like the Angels do but it is hard to see a rosy picture for either club next year or even in '15 (better than .500) as they are laden with veteran contracts and a lack of younger MLB-ready talent.

Serious question for the Mayberry people: what slash line would a backup outfielder have to post to be acceptable to you?

Related question: how many NL teams have 4 OF with 100 PA with an OPS higher than John Mayberry's? In other words, on how many NL teams would he be an offensive step down from the incumbent 4th outfielder?

With regards to Bernadina's game tonight, I had almost forgotten what a major-league center fielder looks like. Thank you, Roger.

"Most teams don't win because of a couple superstars. They win because of depth of solid, good players."

Agreed, but I think lorecore's point was: being an average 4th outfielder or an average 5th starter does not make someone a "solid, good player" or even an average player. Being an average 4th outfielder, or average 5th starter, still makes you a decidedly below average player.

Unfortunately, given the scarcity of good players & the realities of operating within a budget, it's difficult to find 4th outfielders & 5th starters who are average players at their position. I get that. What I don't really get are fans who act like Mayberry & Kendrick & Lannan & even total stiffs like Wells and Bernadina are some kind of scarce and valuable commodity, simply because it's possible to do worse.

I went to Fangraphs and queried outfielders with 200+ PAs by WAR. This is pretty crude, obviously, but in a rational and injury-free world, the best 4th outfielder should be ranked 91st; the worst should be ranked 120th. Mayberry ranks 111th in 2013, with a -0.5 WAR. Interestingly, he also ranked 111th in 2012, at 0.2.

I agree, Dragon. Great overall play and two really great plays by Bernadina on Sunday. A joy to watch. Asche plays a nice third base as well. It's good to see a little sparkle out there on defense. This is the major leagues, correct? The players are supposed to be good imo.

Last point: Those WAR rankings are probably a bit unfair to Mayberry because a lot of the 4th outfielders who rank higher than him cannot play CF.

Basically, Mayberry's only real value is that he can play CF (badly but passably), and can hit somewhat better than your garden variety backup centerfielder. If the 2014 Phillies were to use one of their backup OF spots on a true centerfielder, it would eliminate most of Mayberry's value. In that scenario, they would be better off using their other backup OF spot on a slow-footed corner OF type who can hit a little bit.

I remember looking up something similar on Mayberry and thanks to the defensive metrics, WAR doesn't rank him well.

The only argument I've read in his favor (at least here) is his career OPS+, which is very much augmented by his torrid 2011 second half. The last two years have not lived up to that OPS+.

He has two uses: he can play all three OF positions without embarrassing himself and he can hit LHP for power. He's useful if used only, as clout has said many times, against LHP. Injuries have forced him into a starting role where he is basically not useful 70% of the time.

I think he's the perfect example, actually, of what is being talked about here. On a good team, that is healthy, Mayberry can be utilized correctly and is a fine player to have in a reserve role. When surrounded by players like him- one dimensional guys that are overexposed when used regularly- he is forced to a more prominent role and the team suffers from his presence as a result.

It's more an indictment on the team than anything. From 2009-2011, they had a lot of players that were better than Mayberry. Now they don't. That isn't really his fault.

If you want an elite team, you need to have stars - not at every position, but four or five stars plus solid regulars at the other positions.

For those wondering Jack is the guy who said Mayberry has never run into the wall.

Please keep that in mind when he tries to discuss topics with you in the future.

Also, the Mayberry thing was a joke you humorless a$$hat.

Speaking of WAR...here's a fun career bWAR comparison:

Mike Trout: 19.2
Ryan Howard: 18.9

Insane.

Ruf is going to take Niese and Daisuke long this series. Book it.

Also, if you love quirky, weird stats...Miguel Cabrera currently has a 30 pt lead in AVG, a 10 RBI lead in RBIs and is just 4 HRs back of Chris Davis in HRs for the AL. No player in MLB history has ever had consecutive Triple Crowns and he has a very solid shot at it right now. Only two players in history have ever had multiple Triple Crowns period...some bums named Rogers Hornsby and Ted Williams.

I like the idea of keeping Mayberry and Bernadina. It gives you options from both sides of the plate that can play all three outfield positions.

The 2014 starting outfield (IMO, RUFBENDOM) isn't exactly a defensive juggernaut. Having those cheap options (with some speed and defense) on the bench is not the worst thing in the world. Combined, those two won't make more than $3.5 million. Leaves plenty of money to get get a catcher, SP, and a couple relievers.

The Phillies have 3-4 stars: Brown, Lee, Hamels, Utley.

Their problem has not been stars. It's been Rube's failure to find good players to put around the stars and fill in for them when they get injured.

If Beinfest becomes available I'd love to see the Phils find a spot for him in the FO.

Brown isn't a star. He's a player who's broken out of his shell this year, but he's still posting a .321 OBP, and before this year, his bat was decidedly below average. He's been above average this year, but not a star.

Utley is not a star anymore, either. He's still a top 10 2B, but because of the lack of PAs and declining defense, he's not a star.

Lee and Hamels are the only guys who might be considered stars. The Phils bench is not why it sucks this year, and Mayberry is not the disease or the cure. The 2009 Phils bench was awful (highest OPS+ out of that group was 94), and they still went to the WS. In fact, JMJ was on that bench.

Brown is a very solid complimentary player...kinda like Vic and Werth on the 2008-2011 teams.

Another decent outing from Doc and he could be gone by the end of the month.
Or Raj could sign him to a multi-year deal.

Some one please convince me Miguel Cabrera and Chris Davis aren't juicing. Miguel Cabrera, maybe not, but who the !@#$ was Chris Davis before this year?

I really don't understand the instant evolution of the epic HR season.

***Chris Davis aren't juicing. Miguel Cabrera, maybe not, but who the !@#$ was Chris Davis before this year***

If it helps you, Chris Davis wasn't actually born with the name "Chris Davis". Per birth records, his name was originally Brady Anderson Jr.

Also, I love people who want to sh!t on how good Trout has been by saying, "Let's see how he does the rest of his career!". Trout could never play another day of baseball in his life, and he'd still hold a place in baseball history, given how good his first two seasons through his age 21 season have been.

If you go to Fangraphs, and filter ages through age 21, and as far back as 1871 (as far as it will go back), no player in MLB history has had more WAR through their age 21 season than Trout (tied with Mel Ott). Yeah, yeah, WAR isn't completely descriptive for players from generations bygone, but the point is, look at the players in this list:

Ty Cobb, Rogers Hornsby, Al Kaline, Ken Griffey, Jr., Jimmie Foxx, Ted Williams, Mickey Mantle, Alex Rodriguez...all Hall of Famers, future Hall of Famers, or Alex Rodriguez (who most assuredly has the numbers and talent to be a first ballot HoF).

Point is, Mike Trout has started his career in a way that may never have been seen in the past in baseball history. Instead of crapping on how great he is, and claiming that he hasn't done anything yet, why not just enjoy what looks to be a once in a generation player? I mean, he posted a slash line of .326/.399/.564 last year, and everyone in the world was expecting him to regress, except that he's actually gotten better this year: .330/.427/.571

The kid is incredibly special. In fact, it's crazy, but he's 10th in the majors in WAR since 2010. Funny thing? He didn't play at all in 2010, and had all of 135 PA/.7 WAR in 2011. That is how good the kid has been. And there's no reason to expect him to regress.

NEPP, Davis did hit about 1 HR per 18 PAs in the minors. I know that's not a 55-60 HR pace but it's very good for the MiL. He struggled with the Majors quite a bit and was seen as a huge disappointment. He did hit 33 last year and at age 27 is having a career year.

No reason not be suspicious, but this isn't Brady Anderson/Luis Gonzalez type breakout -- the big time power potential was always there.

My last post should have been addressed to cut fastball

I'm really pulling for Miggy to win back-to-back Triple Crowns. What an historic event.

Jack: "Most teams don't win because of a couple superstars. They win because of depth of solid, good players."

Do Mayberry/Wells/Bernidina qualify as "solid, good players" to you?

Chris Davis has always had big power.

I see y'all (yous guys) mentioned it Saturday, but I thought it was worth repeating: Franco moved over to 1st base. Some quotes:

"It's just to give him another position he could go to," assistant general manager Benny Looper said, per The Philadelphia Inquirer. "His bat is coming quick, it looks like. He's probably going to be limited to third or first. He's never played first, so we wanted to break him in and see if that's a possibility."

"It's surprising how good he is [at third], because he can't run," Looper said. "But there have been a lot of third basemen who could not run. Brooks Robinson was one. He has a great arm. His range is less than adequate. He's pretty good on slow rollers. I think he could be a major-league third baseman."

So should this be read as a vote of confidence in Asche or a vote of no confidence in Howard?

1.) No one in here was saying anything related to "Let's see how Trout does the rest of his career."

2.) If Trout were a Phillie, Fatalotti would be predicting a huge regression every year until he was right and then would be thumping his chest saying, "See, I told you."

3.) He must be sore from all the Fangraphs viewing he's been doing this morning.

"Sure, Trout has stolen 700 bases and hit 600 HRs in the past 18 years but he's prime for regression this year. 3800 hits? He's going downhill fast."

jbird: I just take it as some useful experience for a yong prospect to have. Don't think it has anything to do with Asche/Howard/etc. Hopefully just a little due diligence on our minor league's part to make a player better well rounded.

If it stretches anything beyond the end of this milb season, then I'd read more into it tho.

Just sayin...:

1) "I'm pretty sure Mr. Trout does not have this kind of pop in his bat. Regardless, before we anoint the Millville Masher as a sure-fire HOF god, let's see how he stacks up beyond the age of 22."

2) Based on what are you substantiating this?

3) Huh?

#1: "cutfastball: before we anoint the Millville Masher as a sure-fire HOF god, let's see how he stacks up beyond the age of 22.

Geesh."

#2. So you insult Fatal for worshipping a guy based on his stats you are now insulting him for saying he would talk smack on him if he was a phillie?

#3. Looking up stats is neither hard nor painful for anyone capable.

"If he's putting up a continuous 160 OPS+, maybe we have something."

Yeah, in Trout maybe the Angels have something. Of course, we know he's juicing, as prior to the development of PEDs, no player had had a good season or one that was statistically an outlier.

TTI: "For those wondering Jack is the guy who said Mayberry has never run into the wall."

Huh?

i like all 3 of rufbendom, but there is no way in hell I would go into a season I try to contend without a serious alternative option.

And thats part of why i like all 3 of them - their close to minimum salary allows a team to pay a premium for their backups.

jbird: "So should this be read as a vote of confidence in Asche or a vote of no confidence in Howard?"

It should be read as an honest assessment of Maikel Franco.

Trout's first two full seasons so far:

169 OPS+
182 OPS+

Sure, its possible he'll revert to just a 160 OPS+ but why would we assume that. If anything, his power numbers will improve a bit once he physically matures. He turned 22 on the 7th...he's barely an adult.

What's weird about the TTI post about Mayberry was that it was actually funny, but he just couldn't help himself but to append a blanket insult to the end of the post.

***He has a great arm. His range is less than adequate***

So he'll replace Michael Young at 3B with no issues thten?

The obsession with Roger Bernadina because he made a great catch yesterday, and because he's not John Mayberry, is confusing.

I've heard now that the Phillies like Bernadina and are evaluating him as though he'll be part of the team moving forward. Might I question the purpose of having a 30-year old light-hitting, fast-running, plus defensive backup CF when you just traded for a 25-year old light-hitting, fast-running, plus defensive CF to be your starter?

Bernadina is a decent enough player. But he should be non-tendered over the offseason. If he's back here next year, it's a good sign that the roster still sucks.

NEPP, what's crazy about those offensive numbers is the usually a player who does that early in his career (think Pujols/Thomas), usually are 1B or statuesque corner OF, but Trout is a guy who is a plus-plus baserunner, who can give you 30-50 SB in a given season (with a good success rate), and who can also play a good/great OF at any position.

He's truly a special, special player.

TTI : humor :: phillies : versatility

Cody Asche very quietly has a 7 game hitting streak going.

Good to see him warming up.

First 57 PA (before streak): .580 OPS
Last 28 PA (during streak): .854 OPS


It'd be really, really cool if he followed his previous pattern of absolutely sucking in his first 50 PA at a level and then starts mashing like he has everywhere else.

Will it happen? Who knows, we have zero data at this point and 87 PA is absolutely meaningless.

***He's truly a special, special player.***

His closest comps so far are Mantle, Mays and Ott. Pretty impressive. Cobb is another name that comes to mind. Funny thing is that he's been better than all of them at their respective ages so far...other than maybe Ott who he's equaled but Ott was a freak of nature who played well at Age 18...kinda like Feller did as a pitcher. That simply doesn't happen anymore.

Dugan in AA: 5/48 BB/K I'll give him a pass this year, and focus on all the good he's done, but that certainly needs to change next year in AA if he wants to see his stock continue to rise.

Phils first-round pick J.P. Crawford so far this year, split between Gulf Coast League and Low-A Lakewood:

.341/.440/.447, 30 BB / 30 K, 14 SBs. And he's a plus defender at SS by all reports.

Not a bad start.

Oh, and of course, I should probably mention that he's 18.

I'd let Quinn go SS one more season. If he struggles again, and crawford repeats his success in lakewood, then it'll be time to move back to CF.

I don't know if I can get truly excited about this J.P Crawford until I know what J.P. stands for.

It's clear that Asche's gotten more comfortable in the batter's box, NEPP, and it's also clear that we've avoided the worst case scenario with regard to him adapting to MLB pitching. "Worst case scenario" being something like .100/.150/.200 in his first 50 PA, that could've given encouragement to benching him or sending him back down.

I still maintain this season will be a success for him if he can put up the .720 OPS this year that the MiLB Equivalency Calculator spat out based on his AAA numbers. As to do that, he'd have to hit at a rather more impressive clip for the rest of the season to make up for his lackluster first 57 PA. (Or first 85 PA, for that matter, as he's currently sitting at just a .238/.282/.388 line.)

Phils top prospects this offseason will likely be Biddle, Franco, and Crawford, in some order.

Anyone else in the system project to be an average or above big league regular? I don't see it.

JP stands for John Paul...I can only assume that his family is devoutly Catholic.

Also, he seems like the best 1st rounder we've had for the better part of a decade so far.

Good to see.

Ruf in his last 15 games: 6 HRs, 10 RBIs, only 3 BBs.

Amaro thinks he's finally starting to get the hang of it.

Late season promotions to Lakewood:

JP Crawford
Gabriel Lino
Jiandido Tromp

Rumor has it that Amaro was reviewing those exact figures, Jack. As he saw the HR and RBI, his eyes lit up, as he welled up with pride.

When he saw the 3 BB, he allegedly rattled off a string of obscenities and threw his coffee mug at his 60 inch television.

Fatalotti: But that walk rate is declining for Ruf. His first 26 games of the season he had 13 walks, which is an unacceptably high rate. I think Amaro sees it as progress.

I've seen Franco several times at Reading. The thing that impresses me besides his obvious skills is he seems unflappable. Seems to know what he's doing, very business-like and consistent in his approach. Seems mature beyond his years, in other words.

Bernadina sounds like the name of Italian food products. I can see it now....

Wife: Fred! Come to the table and eat your dinner. We're having Bernadina pasta covered with Bernadina red sauce with meat. It is a well aged sauce that takes forever to get out of the can, but if it ever gets into the the pot, it cooks up fast, unlike other brands.

Lake Fred: Great! I can't wait to see if its any good.

Wife: Yeh, Trudy Amaro recommended it to me. She says Rube really likes it.

Lake Fred: (spitting out the food) It looks and tastes like crap to me!

Since Trout plays on the Angels who look they will be a mediocre/bad team and on the West Coast, he doesn't get the spotlight he deserves.

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EST. 2005

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