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Monday, November 04, 2013

Comments

I've stated all along Chooch will get at least a 2-year deal with an option for a third. I've also stated that there might be a team out there desperate enough to offer him 3 guaranteed years.

There has been a dearth of quality catching in MLB for years, and this development is unsurprising.

Salisbury's report has Chooch thinking he wants his 2013 salary of $5MM doubled in his next contract.

I don't know if he'll get that, but is some GM crazy enough to go 3/21?

And he should go out and try to get paid if he wants that. The Phillies should not necessarily match it though.

TTI~ You don't think Stanton is a game changer for the Phils? I wouldn't include Franco in a package for him. But alas I don't know what it would take.

But to me what out there and what it would cost in dollars doesn't make sense to me. I mean if they didn't sign Beltran who had 2 solid years for the Cards @ age 34, why even try to sign him @ 36? Cruz is 33, and I think coming off a PED suspension. Mike Morse. I liked him with Washington, but he's been hurt and hasn't approached same power numbers lately as he had there.

Stanton's only 24. But I do agree however that IF he were to be put on the block, too many other teams could out-bid the Phils for him.

No I don't. The Phillies are not one player away from competing for anything.

Also, trading for Lee, Halladay, Oswalt, Pence- left the cupboard bare in the minor leagues. We actually made some headway this year in building the system back up a little so I don't advocate gutting the farm system to make a splashy move that guarantees nothing. Because not only will we not win, but then we will also have to start over again farm system wise.

Look- to win you need to build from within AND make smart free agent choices. Neither option by itself gets it done.

A guy like Stanton though would probably require your best pitching and hitting prospect and that is too steep a price to pay for a guy whose value soon will not be as low as it is now.

Pure speculation:

Is it possible that Franco could become just as deadly a bat at the MLB level as Stanton?

If so, why trade him FOR Stanton?


Stanton, ages 19 & @0 at AA:

.263/.365/.562, 581 PA, 28 2B, 4 3B, 37 HR, 105 RBI, 75 BB, 152 K (caveat: Stanton was much better at age 20 than at age 19)


Franco, age 20 at AA:

.339/.363/.563, 292 PA, 13 2B, 2 3B, 15 HR, 51 RBI, 10 BB, 31 K

Also, Stanton hasn't played a day in AAA. Not that Franco = Stanton, but I'm just illustrating that if a guy is ready for MLB, playing in AAA isn't necessary unless the org wants to delay his service clock.

From last thread:

"Also no reason to rush Franco. I'd guess the earliest we'd see Franco (barring injury) is late next year."


KAS, you misconstrue.

It's not about "rushing Franco". It's about Franco making it impossible (or nearly so) to send him down.

Posted by: awh™ | Monday, November 04, 2013 at 02:15 PM

Listen, Franco could hit 1.000 with 15 homers in ST and Asche could up Mini Mart #'s and injure himself and the Phillies wouldn't let Franco start the season as the starting third baseman. It's just not the type of thing this organization does. Then again, Amaro's a** is on the line and he knows it, so you never know.

I think watching this off-season is going to be like me watching the end of the Temple-Rutgers game on Saturday. As a huge Temple fan, I knew darn well how that game was going to end. It was a train wreck waiting to happen. That's how I feel waiting for the shoes to drop this off-season. Amaro is going to f it up, I just hope the damage is minimal to the future.

Unlike most people here, I actually don't think this team is that far from sniffing the playoffs. Problem is, I have zero confidence in Amaro's ability to devise and execute an effective plan that will get us there. If Gillick was running this team or some other competent GM, I'd feel OK about our chances. Right now, I feel like I just left the 7-11 trying after buying a $350M Powerball ticket. I know for sure I'm not going to win, but you shrug and go, "so, you say there's a chance...?"

This site desperately needs an "edit" function for posts. Ugh.

TTI~ I agree with you, but I will say that IF stanton were made available, he'd undoubtedly be would the most sought after bat including free agents. He is a game- changer, but the Phils wouldn't get him anyway.

Most if not all posters here are more familiar with the players in the pharm system than I am. The only time I'd get to see any of ourminor league players would be if I went see the Giants AA team play Reading here in Richmond. I would not under any circumstances trade Franco and his bat. Waht are his defensive skills like. If he can play 3rd well enough, could he do it now? If so, then I'd make Asche available. He can play defensively but is LH & hit only .235. Again, I do agree they're not even close to competing for the playoffs, but RAJ's gotta start somewhere. If he doesn't get us there or close to it, he won't be here long enough to make another run at it. I can't say I'd be disappointed with that, But I can't see his sucessor being given the freedom to do what it would take to get us there with this ownership.

I know RAJ is a very smart man. My biggest complaint with him was that he knew what hed needed to do and didn't do it.

d pat - did you just evaluate Asche on half a season in the bigs?

We're going to see just how much a priority Chooch is to RAJ.

Considering that there's starting to become a rather universal proclaim that we'll need more than just 1 or 2 big moves to be competitive this year, the smart move may be to "pass" on Ruiz (unless RAJ is going to get uber aggressive, which may improve our 2014 chances, but is more likely to decimate our chances in subsequent years).

Investing in a guy who will have more value next year than the following years likely doesn't make the most amount of sense, and we do have some decent prospects at the position.

This FA off season is going to be fascinating as we have a GM in the hot seat, and a team more situated for a "long term" plan; two dynamics that do not mesh well.

As much as I hate to even think about it, I almost thing that RAJ's best move is to publicly indicate that he's building for past 2014, which may actually get him some more rope (and, gulp, even an extension...). If he does so, however, a non-move on Chooch would be the likely outcome.

Save money at catcher and sign a Navaro type? As well as a NR catcher to burn some fire under kratz and rupp.

DPat: You are beyond bizarre. You say a million things to cover all your bases. You say Stanton is a game changer. We're not close to the playoffs but you gotta start somewhere.

Stanton is a game changer if you are in the right spot. You admit the Phillies are not but still want them to do it. You need to take a posting break for a little.

" and we do have some decent prospects at the position."


WP, who?

Rupp? No one thinks he'll be any more than a backup.

Valle? Took a MAJOR step back last season.

Joseph? Concussion issues may make him a non-prospect because his bat may not play anywhere else.

Anyone else is likely 2 - 3 years away, which is probably the length of any deal for Ruiz. AAMOF, Valle and Joseph may be 2 - 3 years away, even if they do pan out.


awh, my argument is that the rest of the team is in such a need of help that you use this time to find out what exactly you do have (i.e. to either debunk whether or not any of the 3 you mentioned are good enough).

The time to invest in your young guys is when you're in the midst of rebuilding. Let them either fish or cut bait. Paying a premium for a very good player in the interim doesn't make a lot of sense if he's not going to help you become competitive enough. It just feels like we're in the midst of really taking stock of what we have versus what we need (and I'm talking for past just next season). In that case, I'd prefer to try out all of the options you mention above.

" debunk whether or not any of the 3 you mentioned are good enough). "

WP, right now the answer is "No".

As I mentioned above, the catching position is very thin in MLB - maybe the thinnest position in the game. There are probably less really good players at the position than any other, given the physical and mental aspects of the position.

That's why Chooch is in demand, even going into his age 35 season.

If they don't bring Chooch back, they may have to overpay for another catcher in the next year or two who isn't as good.

Better the devil you know...

They massively overpaid Howard at 1B.

Catcher is a MUCH MORE IMPORTANT position. WTF would a team skimp there?

Well, a shortsighted one would.

awh, I get what you're saying, but I guess I'm entrenched in thinking that the "Better the devil you know..." mindset is precisely why the Phillies are in the current situation that they're in now (older players on the downswing of their careers tying up $'s and roster spots).

I definitely agree that C is a premium spot where's there's not a ton of guaranteed success in the pipeline. However, take yourself back several years and Chooch wasn't exactly a "sure thing" himself, either.

Anyway, I guess what I'm saying is that I'm glad that we're finally recognizing that we're coming to a fork in the road with this roster. I just want to take the road that we haven't seen this FO take time and time again... I feel like there's a reason that the BoSox can easily but bait with their own "devils they know" (Ellsbury, Drew, and even Youkilis last year). All these guys have demonstrated track records, yet were allowed to walk so that Boston could use those $'s to invest in a more sustainable pipeline of players.

Chris Branch ‏@ChrisBranchTNJ 15m
It's 5:03 and the #Phillies did not extend any qualifying offers. Halladay, Chooch on the open market tomorrow.

@awh exactly my point. Is Chooch back at 1 year/$14M the worse money they will spend this off season? I doubt it, by a long shot.

Ruiz will get a 2 or 3 year contract from some team. No chance he'll have to settle for a one year deal.

It's interesting that Saltalamchia wasn't tendered by the Red Sox and if we spend big we could go with a younger option. Also, if you guys are gonna talk about Nelson Cruz then why not Mike Morse or Corey Hart on one year incentive laden deals with options.

Stanton is overrated.

Doesn't hit for average, strikes out a ton and is a terrible fielder.

He's "hyped" because of some of the epic bombs he's hit in his career. But as a actual ball player? Not worth anything close to what the Marlins would try and hijack a team for.

Just shocking that Carlos Beltran and Nellie Cruz would be "targets" for the worst GM in baseball. More older players is exactly what a 4th place team needs to help rebuild. Hopefully the guy who takes over for Roob after 2014 is given time to wipe up the mess that will be left in his lap.

Do you realize you just called Stanton a terrible fielder in front of a fan base that had to watch Delmon Young, Dom Brown, and Darin Ruf patrol the OF last year? And Michael Young and Ryan Howard?

Stanton is overrated but that power threat would sure make me feel better about the lineup.

Whoo Hooo!: Giancarlo Stanton has an OPS+ of 138 after 4 years in MLB at age 23.

How many other players in MLB history had played 4 years in MLB at age 23 and carried an OPS+ of 138 at that point in their careers?

Corey Seidman ‏@CoreySeidman

The guys at MLB Trade Rumors predict the Phillies end up with Nelson Cruz, Ricky Nolasco, Carlos Ruiz and Edward Mujica.
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This is essentially the crux of my "why not just let every younger prospect get some familiarity at the MLB level" line of thinking.

Stanton's no great shakes in the OF, but UZR thinks he has been an above average right fielder over his career.

UZR has never seen Giancarlo play right field.

I think interest in Ruiz from the Rockies makes it much easier to move over to Saltalamacchia and offer him a deal. I know his splits against lefties are not great but he is a guy that is on the right side of 30 and at the beginning of his prime.

"UZR has never seen Giancarlo play right field."

As I recall, that was exactly my reaction when I had this same conversation with Fatalotti about a year ago. But, if Fatalotti were here, he'd point out that it's also quite possible (I dare say, even probable) that UZR has actually seen a lot more of Stanton's RF play than we have, and that our opinion of his defensive prowess is unduly influenced by a few egregiously bad plays that we saw him make against the Phillies a couple years back.

TTI: Problem with Salty is that his splits are a lot worse than "not great." They're heinously bad.

If Chooch leaves, I'd go after Dioner Navarro & hope like hell that's last year's 266-PA sample size represented a legitimate break-through as opposed to a complete fluke. Unfortunately, the odds are pretty strong in favor of "complete fluke." But the other FA catching options simply aren't very appealing.

Love the stanton talk. Makes me laugh, and that people really think we could get him. Sign Cruz hart or morse. Then you sign a 3/4 starter. Or a bottom guy that could have upside with a change of scenery. Fill out bullpen and roll the dice. This yr draft really go hard with pitchers. System barring any stupid rube trades. Will be rising to say 15 in all of baseball.

Like Morse as a bounce back guy. Hart will stay in Milwaukee.

Chooch at 2 years, $6-8m aav is the kind of "Red Sox/Cherington" good value buy that we should be looking for. Several guys with shorter contracts coming off down years. The only way the Phillies compete next year is if they get lucky with a number of guys and have good depth all around the diamond. Saltalamacchia is going to get a long and expensive contract. McCann will lose a 2nd round pick. No thanks. Rather overpay Ruiz per year to get a 2 year deal than go to 3.

You know, I thought Stanton's numbers would be far more impressive but then I went and looked them up for clout's post of a 138 OPS+ through Age 23...here's where he stacks up among qualifying hitters through Age 23:

wOBA: .379 (72nd all-time...Rolen is 73rd)
ISO: .270 (5th all-time)
HR: 117 (10th all-time)
fWAR: 13.5 (57th all-time)
SLG: .535 (19th all-time)

So historically great power for a young hitter...his wOBA is lower than I thought it would be though obviously still impressive. Still, the ISO tells you what type of player he is and can be if he stays healthy.

Mind you, I'm not saying he hasn't been a very very good young hitter...I was just thinking he'd be inner circle for some reason and he falls somewhat out of that outside of his ISO and HR/SLG

glanville: I'd be almost willing to bet Ruiz gets more than 6-8 million AAV.

BAP: I understand the concerns with Salty. It feels like he took a step forward though this year in some aspects of his game. He still needs to hit left handers better to really get a big time contract. I wonder if he would get something similar to what Ruiz gets. I saw a prediction of 4/36 on MLBTR with the possibility of it going up if he doesn't get a QO. Perhaps he might get 11 a year now. That makes me less excited about a deal for him. But at 8-9 million, maybe.

Would not bet the farm on Stanton big mistake too many building blocks not in place he could be slugging away at Phillie all by himself and the team will still finish out of the money --a total waste.
But unfortunately the kind of stupid move RAJ could make.

If I was going to rebuild, I think I might like to start out with a 23 yr. old slugging outfielder to build around. If I was going to play for next year, I think I might like to start out with a slugging outfielder who happens to be only 23. Either way, I make a bid for Stanton.

Since Chooch got a late start on his major-league career, he has not made much money so far. A two-year deal at $7 million would double his career earnings.

Chooch might welcome such an offer from the Phillies.

Dragon - I don't see how the Phillies can get him, but I agree with you that Stanton is one of the most valuable players in baseball. There is one caveat, though: he has missed 97 games in three full seasons, which you might expect from mid-fielding veteran, but not from a 23-year old.

NEPP - I think Stanton's numbers fall a little short because of all the games he's missed. A healthy Stanton would probably have hit another 20 HRs, which would have placed him behind only Mel Ott, Eddie Matthews and ARod on the list of most career homers by a 23-year-old. Without the missed games, Stanton probably would also be 20 notches higher in career WAR for a 23-year-old.

NEPP - Re Stanton's wOBA, I think he ranks "only" 72d in career wOBA because his OBP of .354 is not great for a top slugger. He's only 157th in OBP.

Also, since we're looking across eras, it's probably better to use wRC+ rather than wOBA. Stanton ranks 32d in career wRC+ for a 23-year-old, just a hair ahead of Frank Robinson and Miggie Cabrera.

the obvious needs stating: Mccann, sallty, chooch, pierzynski and maybe navarro.

unless one of those guys is signed, r00b will be signaling that they really don't plan to be competitive in 2014.

I would of if possible re-upped Ruiz while he was struggling. Unlike most beerleaguers i knew he would bounce back later in the season.

derek, I agree on those points about Stanton completely and I didn't want to come off like I was bashing Stanton at all. I was just a bit surprised. The time off is something of a concern because his inability to stay healthy even at that age is worrisome...just like its worrisome with Dom having the same health issues. He's a great young player overall though.

***Also, since we're looking across eras, it's probably better to use wRC+ rather than wOBA. Stanton ranks 32d in career wRC+ for a 23-year-old, just a hair ahead of Frank Robinson and Miggie Cabrera. ***

Yeah, I thought about that after I posted his numbers...and I agree.

clout: if you have a problem with 'short attention spans', go cry to BA and other outlets who move prospects on/off their top 10 lists every year, not the posters who comment on it.

I've always had concerns about Stanton vis a vis his ability to stay on the field.

Monster when he's healthy - no more useful than mini mart when he's on the DL.

If Stanton could be gotten for cash and without emptying what was left on the farm OK but that is not possible. So what's the point. There are too many pieces that are missing even brining Chooch back at age 35 is not fixing anything but merely a spot holder for the next catcher.
The Phils are simply not ready to make the move.

This is just about the least interesting offseason in recent memory.

For the Phillies, I should clarify.

I beg to differ. This offseason should be interesting as far as seeing what direction RAJ really sees this team going/worried about his job. He may actually start having to get a little creative.

Ruiz may still be back, but the fact they haven't re-signed him already, and will leave them with another spot to fill is another interesting offseason angle.

I guess, but is it really that interesting whether Ruiz will be back or not? You're either bringing back a 35-year old catcher to a 70-win team or you're not.

I guess my point is that I don't find the offseason very interesting because they're pretty set where they are right now--it's a bad team. They can go certain directions or others, but there's not a whole lot they can do to change that fact. Now, it would get interesting if they suddenly dealt Lee and/or Utley or others, but I see the chance of that happening as about 0.01%.

Well hopefully then you leave for the winter and spare us your apathetic commentary.

"[b]Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg, who had piloted Triple-A Lehigh Valley most of the season[/b], replaced Manuel, at first on an interim basis and then on a three-year contract, for his first big league managerial job."

No wonder his judgment calls vis-a-vis sending runners home were so poor. It must have been tough deciding fast enough from Allentown!

... Darn you, UBB code and BL's not using it.

The off-season should at least be more interesting than the season itself was.

TTI~ Just to clarify, I'm not saying the Phils would, should or could go after Stanton. I said that IF he were available, he'd be the best RH hitter on the market.

You say he's not a game changer on this team, and you're right. But if I had to pick one guy if avalable, I'd pick him over any of the prviously discussed players. He's cost-controlled and not even close to 30.

And if he were Phils property he'd be on the Major League roster right now and no one would be having this discussion.

You make very valid points about the current state of the team and there's no arguement here. What you fail to realize is the current GM helped put the team in this position and he's the one that'll have to get them out of it. No matter what he does, it won't be enough. Agreed. But he's gotta start somewhere. That is all.

"What you fail to realize is the current GM helped put the team in this position and he's the one that'll have to get them out of it. "

____________________________________________

DPat, of course it was Amaro who got us into this spot. When did I ever say he didn't? My contention is that he has a chance to get us out of it and I think there is a way out of it. I'm interested to see what he has in mind.

I'm not going to set ridiculous goal posts though like JTroll or just wait to see how this year's crop of free agents do performance wise and begin posting a year from now saying, "If only everyone had listened to me..."

I'll judge him based off the moves he makes, instead of trying to predict the future.

What scares me about this off-season is Roob's preference for making a big splash and creating headlines, whether or not it makes sense strategically for the organization short or long-term.

I am really curious to see the approach the Phils take. My bet is they try to make one big signing (and yeah even N. Cruz would fall into that bucket) and then take a middling approach with a couple of short-term, moderate level FA signings ($6M or less).

As for Chooch, 2 yr/$15M with an option ($1M buyout) sounds about right.

I would bet that Chooch gets better offers from other clubs than 2/15 with an option.

Good piece by Dave Murphy:

http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/phillies/Heres-why-the-Phillies-should-be-looking-to-upgrade-over-Ben-Revere.html


In a nutshell: Assuming better numbers, as compared with 2013, from Ruiz at C and Howard at 1B; and adding Beltran in RF with the assumption that he provide us what he provided the Cardinals in 2013; the Phillies will pull themselves to a league-average offense. Still not as good as last year's Pirates, who were the lowest scoring of the playoff teams. And so he recommends adding a CF for more offense.

(Better to read the article, obvioiusly.)

I imagine he will too. However, there may be a comfort/loyalty factor involved... Although that likely would have been higher if Dubee and Manuel were still on the payroll.

There's zero chance that Chooch, Howard and Beltran would see a decline in numbers in 2014...as players in their mid to late 30s never get worse from year to year.

GBrett: It's an interesting read, but he sort of discounts Revere's SB advantage (even while mentioning him as a "dangerous late-game pinch-runner"), as well as the fact that the reason Revere's season numbers were so low is really just because of April. I don't think Revere finishes out the year posting the .784 OPS he did from 5/1-7/13, but I think he could have easily finished out the string posting a .715 OPS the rest of the way (say another 300 ABs, so he ends up with a .702 OPS, plus around 45 SBs).

Obviously, Granderson would be a better bat overall in the short term, but if finances are limited, I'd rather shunt the balance into pitching than divert more of it into the outfield than a power corner bat would already cost.

Also, Granderson's career UZR/150 in CF is pretty uninspiring. Both his and Revere's numbers there are being bolstered by older seasons, but Revere's is 2011 while Granderson's is 2009... And it's been since '07 that he posted a number near Revere's 2011.

Randomn internet report from someone on Phuture Phillies that Roman Quinn tore his Achilles and is out all next season. Unconfirmed

NEPP - I think Murphy grants that he's making an optimistic assumption (which he at least tries to temper by not assuming that Chooch and Howard would go back to their best numbers).

What struck me is that even with better numbers from three positions, we'd still only be league average.

Phillibuster - Perhaps that fact right there (that even adding and assuming a still-productive Beltran, plus an improved Howard and Chooch, we'd still only be league average for offense) is a reason to do as you suggest and put the money into pitching instead of offense.


How did we end up having so very many areas of need? Ugh.

"I would bet that Chooch gets better offers from other clubs than 2/15 with an option."


NEPP, I wouldn't take that bet.

I posted at the time of the Molina (STL) extension that it raised the price - both in years and AAV - for Chooch.

Chooch is older and not as good as Molina, but the Molina contract serves as a reference point for the valuation of the catching position. And remember, this wasn't one of the big market teams handing out that contract.

Based on the fact that at the MLB level good, quality catchers are in short supply, I think it's a lock that Chooch will get 2 years with an option (or vesting option) for a third year, and there may be a team desperate enough to guarantee three years, and a team crazy and desperate enough to guarantee three with a 4th year vesting option. Just look at some of the contracts that have been offered in the past several years.

3 years, $18 - 21 MM is not out of the realm of possibility for Chooch.

Look at the teams that need catching:

NYY
BOS
PHI all big spenders,

then there's

TOR
CHW
TEX
TBR

and Chooch is better than the catchers who are on some of the teams that made the playoffs last season, don't necessarily have a "need", but may want an upgrade

CIN
LAD

And the Rockies are interested.

He'll get at least two years with a 3rd year option, and might even get a 3rd year guaranteed.

I hope RAJ reads the market right.

I would doubt Chooch gets 3 years guaranteed but yeah it wouldn't surprise me if he gets a bit more than $15M.

TTI~ If I put words in your mouth, sorry didn't mean to. I like you, will judge him for what he does. But I've also judged him for what he's done, good & bad. I think the consensus is no matter what he does, if it's good it won't be enough. Like you, to me, that's a given. And if's it bad, he'll get killed.

We all know that his go for it now approach didn't work and when his core players got hurt, he used stop-gap measures which didn't work either. So it's going to be interesting indeed to see how it all shakes out. And we won't know that until the end. The best I'm hoping for is an improvement in the W-L record, but nothing more than that.

As much as I hate to say it, based on the players available, I really can't get too excited about it like I have been in recent years.

***Randomn internet report from someone on Phuture Phillies that Roman Quinn tore his Achilles and is out all next season. Unconfirmed ***

Cross him off then. His one calling card was his game-changing speed. Without that, he's not a prospect.

On Chooch, I could easily see some team giving him 2/18 or 2/20 with a 3rd year option. The catching market is really thin and he's still one of the better options out there. Not many clubs will want to pay Salty what he's expected to make.

MG, catching is very thin. Teams get desperate.

Chooch is a good catcher.

He will get paid.

Let me ask you:

Did you see the following contracts coming?:

Werth
Crawford (Carl)
Zito
Pujols
Fielder
Lohse


Point: There is a team out there that may think that Chooch, with his handling of pitchers, OBP and modest SLG could be enough of a difference (and handling pitchers doesn't show in WAR) that they'll mortgage the last year to get the first two.

Stranger contracts have happened.

TTI: "I'm not going to set ridiculous goal posts though like JTroll or just wait to see how this year's crop of free agents do performance wise and begin posting a year from now saying, "If only everyone had listened to me..." "

Yeah, you're right. It's only clear in hindsight that Delmon Young, Chad Durbin and Michael Young weren't going to transform this into a playoff team.

No one could possibly have seen that coming.

The Phils have their work cut out for them, obviously, but I disagree that there's little they can do to have a shot in 2014.

For starters, they gave 230 innings to Doc, Lannan, Martin, and Cloyd. A typical Ricky Nolasco type season would be a significant improvement there. Gonzaez is a wild card at 3, but they have good depth for once in Kendrick and Pettibone at 5/6.

If Howard can give even a little more than he gave last year and/or Ruf gets some PAs vs. lefties, we have a good chance to beat last year's 1B tally. I think Asche/Franco and Revere/Hernandez are good bets to beat last year's tallies there. But the place they could really make some headway is in a corner OF (or CF, with Revere moving to a corner and Ruf getting more PAs there) vs. the poo poo platter we saw in RF last year.

Can use another reliable arm in the pen and for the young guys to step forward -- we're seriously due for a good break or two out there. Middle relief was almost comically awful for most of the year.

And finally the bench. JMJ and Nix and to a lesser degree Bernadina and Wells and Mini Mart were just awful last year. Even Frandsen was disappointing at nearly 300 PAs. With a full-time outfielder in a corner or CF the bench will at least be needed less, but I think it has a shot to produce more as well.

By all means sign Ruiz. This talk about getting younger is not for RAJ. Keep him till he is 40 at least

Today KYW's Harry Donahue referred to Chooch as "Chico Ruiz". The man is getting senile.

I forgot to mention that 120 games of the typical Ruiz would outpace what we got from C last year, even with the risk of decline

I would think the odds are high that Ruiz can probably only be counted on for about 105-110 games/year, going forward. That's still nothing to sneeze at, and I suppose KK could go back to getting his own personal catcher (a la 2012 Kratz) without too much harm, but he should probably be getting every 5th day or-so off.

JTroll: Like always you missed the point. Seriously, just go the fvck away into your hole and stop providing us your "analysis"

That's fair, Philibuster. And Ruiz would be a nice late-inning bench bat. Howard has been great at that throughout his career as well

As far as Saltalamacchia not being tendered, the guys on the radio were saying a QO for Salty would have been $14M. For a catcher who hits well, but whose defense (and game calling) is questionable. No way, Jose.

Now that the Rays re-signed DeJesus, I wonder if Matt Joyce could be had? He'd be a nice platoon partner with Ruf if the Phils can't make a bigger OF splash.

Cardinals outright Brock Peterson. 29-year-old RH sort-of-LF who averaged an .817 OPS in 11 MiLB seasons (1.3 of which were in the PCL). Wouldn't mind taking a shot at him, although it looks like 1B is more his home than the outfield.

New MLBTR post with projected arb numbers.

Looks pretty reasonable for the Phils, even if they do go there with KK. Especially if they drop JMJ, Frandsen, or both.

Do we even keep JMJ? Ruf should take his spot.

The other thing working against JMJ would be if Hernandez is in fact out of options. Having an even half-decent CF on the bench reduce's Mayberry's value.

Especially if Frandsen returns (1B, righty bench bat). But his value is less, too, with Asche playing almost every day, Galvis backing up 3B, and Franco looming.

Check out the latest tailgaters comic strip in today's Inky.

Ruf takes his spot on the bench, but he doesn't take his spot in the depth chart. Ruf can't play CF or RF well enough that you could consider him a valid backup.

I think that Hernandez takes backup CF/2B, making Frandsen superfluous (Galvis has backup SS/3B, in the short-term, long-term we need someone else), Ruf takes backup 1B/LF (in emergencies)... But we still need a backup corner OF.

Them JMJ fills that bill.

Terrible news with Quinn. I suspect he'll be moved to CF once he returns, and we just need to hope against hope that the achillies doesn't sap his elite speed.

Have the Phils made a QO to Mini Mart yet? :)

Anyone able to confirm the Quinn injury?

I don't know what will happen this offseason, but I'm pretty sure that the 2014 Phillies yearbook will be a picture of Amaro plowing CBP and sowing salt into the soil.

I see no confirmation on Quinn injury. I do see what appears to be his twitter account making a comment about 3 minutes ago "Another OG," which isn't what I'd expect from a dude who just lost his next season.

The only question now is how many years they spend in the wilderness. Rube can't screw much else up this winter unless he trades one of the 2 or 3 guys on the farm who might prove to be game changers, or starts handing out long term contracts.

Lorecore: My point isn't about the fickleness of prospects lists. It's about posters like you who don't understand that and act like the prospects have been abandoned.

MG: "I would doubt Chooch gets 3 years guaranteed but yeah it wouldn't surprise me if he gets a bit more than $15M."

I think there's a better than 50-50 chance that he gets 3 years guaranteed and it's a slam dunk that he gets two years.

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