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Thursday, March 27, 2014


To be more precise, they could have used Abreu's knack for not swinging at things.

Also, there was no way he was HBP there.

Does this mean RAJ learned from last year's experience with Delmon Young (and Michael Young and Jim Thome, for that matter)?

Jim Thome turned out to be a fairly solid acquisition, if only because of how much he cost and what we flipped him for.

Burnett with 2 nice Ks in a row.

I'm pretty glad he's on the team this year, actually, but Burnett's face is still so punchable.

Nothing really unexpected here, except perhaps that Montgomery admitted to feeling uncertain about the team's chances - - or is that me reading into his remarks?

4th pitch was probably high, but it looked pretty good too. Was a coin flip over whether ump gave it a K or a BB.

Should read "final," not 4th.

"could have used Abreu's bat."

That's what she said!

3 punch outs, 3 runners, no runs.

Walkin' the tightrope, but I'll take that if it works.

Predictable Mayberry AB against a RHP.

Revere swung at something he probably shouldn't have, but his eye looks like it's a little better than last year.

A question for BL.

The Phillies brought Abreu in on a minor league contract and gave him 38 at bats this spring. Perhaps predictably, he got on base at a good clip and was below average in the field. In the end, he suffered an injury and won’t be making the team. Was bringing in Abreu:
A) Still a good risk to take, even though it didn’t work out , as it was a minor league deal and the team won’t have to pay him,
B) A bad risk to take, because this ending was easy to predict and the team could have given those 38 at bats to someone else (a younger prospect, perhaps)
C) Inconsequential, since the team didn’t have any MLB-ready younger prospects to give those 38 at bats to anyway

Bautista laces mild single up the middle. Burnett's curve starting to bite a bit more, but his sinker's not dipping as much as I'd like.

WSJ: I would say that A and C on your list are not mutually exclusive.

In the end, I don't know who else we could have given those PAs to that would have done enough with them to change the final decision, and thus it was a good risk to take because he could have provided us with a bench bat - especially with Ruf injured.

By the same token, because of the result, you could argue that it's inconsequential, because he didn't turn out to be able to do what we'd need him to do, and when Ruf returns his role would essentially vanish.

A and C.

Solid AB by Jimmy. Drew some pitches, then arced a single into LF.

Shift is on for Chase. Pretty big one, actually - I'm rather surprised they don't think he can beat that with a bunt down the 3B line.

As it was, he hit a lazy FB/LD right to the CF.

Howard hits another FB to CF. I haven't been watching every game, but I've seen him seem to hit into the shift less often this spring.

It still happens, but it's less frequent.

Batted ball spread charts be damned, Chase seems like one of the last people I'd want to play a heavy shift against: you know he'd be willing & able to lay down the bunt, if for no other reason than just out of spite.

Jimmy swipes 2nd. Would have been closer, but the throw was on the wrong side of the bag. He'd barely beaten the tag on a throw-over immediately before.

Byrd ends his (not short) AB with a mid-range pop-up to the RF.

The shift was so big, the 3rd baseman was playing closer to 2nd than 3rd and he was the only guy on the left side of the infield.

Phils have made their major player switches earlier than I'd have thought.

Also: Burnett robbed on the 2-1 pitch.

Batter skied it on the next one though, so turned out ok.

Pettibone sighting in the BP.

Jim Salisbury ‏@JSalisburyCSN 27m
Birth of a nickname: Cole Hamels called teammate Roberto Hernandez "Robbie Fausto" today.

Pettibone... hmmm

Chooch robbed of a single/double by a great diving catch in CF.

Why? He seemed to play well.

Asche eating a lot of pitches, but he's fouling off some stuff he should be squaring up, and some other things he should be letting go.

Mayberry draws a solidly-long walk on a full count. Thought the last pitch could have gone either way, though. If he'd flinched just a little more he'd have been out.

Foul ball from Gwynn knocked the number plate off an unoccupied chair. Fan found the plate, but lost the ball.

Gwynn struck out on the same slop at the ankles that Asche eventually also got himself out trying to golf.

Pettibone in to start the 6th.

To Amaro and Co., anyone who gets on base a lot, who draws walks and wears the opposing pitcher out, who keeps a rally going with a walk rather than swinging out of his shoes and killing the rally with a strikeout is simply not "productive." If this braintrust put even a little value on OBP and OPS+ they'd be dangerous.

I still maintain that no matter where in MLB he ends up, Abreu will have a higher 2014 OBP than anyone on the Phillies (min 50 PA)

Shocked that Abreu was cut since Jack kept telling us he was destined to see major time for the 2014 Phillies.

Cyclic: That's a pretty safe bet. I understand the decision. You really can't play him in the field anymore. But, yes, the bats on the Phillies bench will suck, except for Cesar Hernandez.

Abreu is one of the better moves in Phillies history. They got him for Kevin Stocker, whose glove wasn't quite enough to make up for a bad bat.

Phillies bats working on two days of death.....

Defratus brought in with two runners on and let's them score on a double. He's trying to not make said baseball team.

Hamels' news:

Hamels experienced some shoulder fatigue in early March, but is fully back on track now.

He proved that Thursday afternoon, throwing 30 pitches, 20 strikes, against a Pittsburgh Pirates’ minor-league club. Hamels allowed two infield hits. He did not walk a batter and struck out one.

“I felt great out there,” he said.

Hamels expects to continue to pitch in minor-league games in Florida every fifth day.

“I’m really pleased,” he said. “I feel like I can truly get spring training in now. I feel healthy now and I have the strength to go out and get my reps in and build my pitch count up.”


A bit more pertinent info for Hamels:
5 more minor-league starts, join the team in late April.

How about mike Taylor if and when As put him on waivers

Ryan Roberts (formerly of the Cubs) looks like another Frandsen, except that he can actually play 3rd a little bit, and his bat's a little better (although he's 2 years older).

Also, Raul Valdes DFA'd by the Astros.

From what I have seen of ST this year, there is no difference between Rosenberg/De Fratus really just like there wasn't at the end of last season.

Both guys throw fairly hard but not enough to get by on pure fastball velocity, have command issues at times, and don't have a worthwhile secondary pitch.

MLBTradeRumors has just posted the following, which is either a typo or Twilight Zone nightmare:


As expected, the Phillies have added lefty John Lannan to the 40-man roster, Newsday's Marc Carig tweets. The longtime starter is expected to work out of the pen for the first time in his career after serving exclusively as a starter for 148 games between 2007-13.

Will - Almost certainly the Mets and it was a typo.

I'm keeping an eye on everything.

Don't know how many of you heard this on KYW radio today but here is Cliff Lee's bold expectation for 2014. Positive thinking can't hurt!

Pettibone was optioned to the Iron Pigs.

'In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king'

I'm king!

@Will: It was a typo. It now says Mets.

So Manship, Buchanan, Pettibone start in LHV?

Whoever has the best 2 starts gets the call up to be the 5th starter?

Are we assuming Hollands is the long-man out of the 'pen? And if so, are we assuming he doesn't get the starter duty, with one of the others called up to take his spot?

I don't know how well his stuff would play after the first time through the order, but he's allegedly been making a case for himself, and he'd also be the only LHSP not named Cliff to join the rotation (since both Buchanan and Manship are RHP).

In only-mildly-related news, the Sixers are poised to tie the NBA losing streak record tonight.

In a couple of days, they will have the opportunity to stand unchallenged in that category.

Doug Fister leaves his game early with a lat strain, expected to miss at least first start, possibly more.

10/300 for Miggy Cabrera.

Another huge commitment to a 30+ year old 1b. When will teams learn?

What an utterly stupid contract. The smart move would have been to just let him play out his Age 31 and 32 seasons and then walk.

Rube looks less idiotic by the day with these recent contracts.

See. Nothing wrong with extending your star first baseman two years early. Plus, I only gave Howard a five year extension.

I wouldn't give Ty Cobb a 10 year/$300 million deal after the age of 30.

I'd have given Miggy a 20 year, $1 billion contract.

The problem with Abreu (besides defense) is that you almost certainly have to burn a pinch runner for him every time he gets on base. If he offered more pop, like a Stairs or Thome, it would be a lesser issue, but he didn't hit any homers this spring, so his power is suspect. And seeing how you only have one bench player whose speed is above average, you'd be screwed if you needed to pinch run for Howard AND Abreu in a single go.

if you use Josh Hamilton as a "rule of thumb" - Hamilton's really scuffled in 2013 since he signed the long-term deal - perhaps it wasn't the smartest move with Miguel Cabrera (taken into custody in October 2009; now reported "clean and sober").

On the other hand, Hamilton's killing it this spring. Cheers.

Raul Ibanez looks as if he's got a job this year, too (.242/.306/.487; 29 HRs in 2013). Geesh, the guy's absolutely ageless.

How good could it have been around here if Victorino and Ibanez stuck around?

I expected the tigers to at least try to do something with Miggy. But 30 per for 10 years? Good god that's dumb.

Howard's deal is an awful albatross, but at least he was only signed for 5 years. Signing these guys to 10 year deals is just insane.

I'm sure Cabrera will become a workout warrior and age gracefully with a slight decline in production over time.

I could see Cliff Lee winning a World Series...when he's traded to a real contender mid-season.

Clone Cliff.

No comments on the 9th inning today? Pap pitched wearing Chooch's jersey, then 2 phils batted back-to-back wearing #24.

Chooch is the Spiritual Master. Cabrera is the earthly ticket?

"What an utterly stupid contract. The smart move would have been to just let him play out his Age 31 and 32 seasons and then walk."

Especially for a team that just managed to shed itself of the albatross Fielder deal. No reason to do this now. Just nuts.

Phils seem committed to having better OF defense. Abreu might have made the team if he could play a little D, or if he were a bit younger, or if he could run, or if he had popped a few in ST. His relatively high OBP wasn't quite enough to overcome the lack of these other things. In the end, Gwynn Jr seemed more valuable to the Phils than him.

Perhaps this is Detroit's way of say "EFF YOU" to Scherzer after he declined the 6 year, 140 million deal? It'd be a bit spiteful though for anyone not named Ruben.

jackamac, it's not an "eff you" to Max. The offer to Scherzer had to be limited to that amount BECAUSE they knew this Miggy extension was on the way.

Scherzer's agent is Boras and he rarely doesn't test free agency.

Just business. The Tigers will pay when they win it all this year. I'm thinking like Boras. 7 years $185 million next year. Good luck Matt.

Jeez, that's just... Crazy.

Frandsen was crazy too, eh.

Nah, that was just dumb. Although he lucked out pretty well at the end.

But 10/300+ for a 31-year-old player, even Cabrera? Nah, that's crazy.

Cyclops, are you still around?

In all fairness, Cabrera is in a completely different class compared to Ryan Howard. It's not even remotely an apples to apples comparison. Now, is it still a massive risk:yes.

Baseball contracts are obscene.

NO starting pitcher, who only plays in 30-35 games a year, should be paid 20 million dollars a year.

NO starting pitcher is worth anything close to that. Not Kershaw. Not Scherzer. Not Halladay in his prime. Nobody.

If it came down to losing a starting pitcher (like Scherzer) or paying Cabrera, you pay the position player who plays everyday for you. That being said, Cabrera's contract length is friggin ridiculous too. Maybe he and Pujols can buy a baseball team 6 years from now with the money they'll still be owed from their dumbass organizations.

Except a position player like Cabrera gets maybe 4 PAs per game. He further gets maybe 5-8 chances in the field (more if he's at first, I guess, but that's mostly receiving put-outs).

Meanwhile, the pitcher has a hand in literally every outcome of the game on defense, as well as 2-3 PAs in that game (if in the NL).

Overall, an SP has as much, if not significantly more, of an effect on the team's record as any position player.

Insanity contract.

Put another way, Matt Scherzer - who had a great but not awesome season in 2013 (214 IP, 2.90 ERA) - faced 836 PAs.

Cabrera has never had 700 PAs in a season.

"NO starting pitcher, who only plays in 30-35 games a year, should be paid 20 million dollars a year."

Bill? Bill Giles?! Is that really you?!!

Someone might of already mentioned it.. Kratz has been cut..

buster: you are too high on your chances per game. The average SS/2B are usually 5 fielding chances a game, CF/3B/1B are around 3, RF/LF/C around 2, P around 1.

Average game has about 26 of 38 PA result in a ball in play.

*omits 1B 'put-outs'.

When the fielder loves his record
More than victory for his team
Doubtful chances miss his glances
For his caution is extreme.
Going after every grounder
Means a slip-up here and there,
And in terror of an error
He will choose the chances fair.
Spotless records are enticing
In a ball game as in life,
And the cunning pick their running
To avoid the stony strife.
Many a mortal swaggers slowly
Down the years in proud parade,
Boasting to the meek and lowly
Of the slips he never made.
Well it is that wise commanders,
When they call for sterling men,
Place the workers o’er the shirkers
Though they err and err again.
Men who try and fall when trying
Try again and win at last,
Never brooding, never sighing
O’er the errors of the past.
-William Kirk

denny b would rather see millions or billions of dollars go into the pockets of the owners than to the players.

Is that Capt. Kirk?
Do they have baseball in the 26th century?

Is anybody else hoping the Phils snag Michael Taylor off waivers? I'd much rather watch him back up this outfield then Mayberry or Gwynn

Dennyb is back with a typically stupid riff on why baseball players make too much money.

Even though he botches the argument, it's true that it's very debatable what a player is 'worth' in terms of wins. But unless the country changed overnight, your 'worth' is what someone will pay you for your services. To be bitter about that is pretty pathetic.

Congratulations to Miguel Cabrera for setting himself and his family up for life.

Lore: Yeah, I figured that was high, but I was trying to give the benefit of the doubt.

I can understand why people would think that position players might matter more to an overall team record than a SP (the ability to impact more than 35 games is definitely an issue), but I can't understand why people would think it's not even close.

Aside from the much greater drop-off from "great" to "above average" in SPs, the number of opportunities a position player has to influence games is so much smaller that it just doesn't make sense for someone to claim it not to be a contest.

Iceman: The question is, will new PED tests turn up something with him in 6 years, allowing the Tigers to ARod his salary away for a while?

If Cabrera can get 10/292 at 31, what is Trout worth? Good lord that deal is going to be outrageous. If I were him I would refuse any extension that are up FA years and hit the market at 25/26 looking for 10/400.

Yeah, I'd like if they tried to grab MTaylor. Would prefer him over Mayberry, though probably a toss-up w/ Gwynn.

Although, I'd rather Ruf over both Taylor and Mayberry, so...

Can we just stipulate that we agree that all players are wildly overpaid as they approach FA, that owners are idiots and that this has been the case in baseball for at least a decade now?

This would help rid the site of the thousands of posts by the same posters harping over and over again on the same topic, year after year.

Thanks in advance.

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