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Sunday, March 02, 2014


An ultrasound of Asche's hand? What's next, an artist's rendering of game tape, like those court pictures when camera's aren't allowed? Maybe an ice sculpture of a replay for the umps to review?

This team's medical staff is the most confounding thing I've seen in over thirty years of being a doctor. It's like other teams have a symphony orchestra medical staff and the Phillies have a jug band.

aksmith: Ruben said the Phils have the most state of the art medical staff in the entire league.

Guys...sometimes anatomy is just anatomy.

since I'm not a doctor... explain why you would not use an ultrasound to diagnose a hand injury. wouldn't this allow you to detect tendon issues or fluid around joints that an x-ray wouldn't? or are you suggesting an MRI??? It's not like they put leeches on him.

HammRadio - Yeah, there is just about zero utility to an ultrasound of the hand. Yes, the dreaded MRI would be better.

I thought ultrasounds were mainly for organs (heart/kidneys) besides fetus?

X-ray to see if anything broken and then an MRI if you want to look at tissue damage (mainly blood vessel/ligament/tendon) in hand.

Broken the knuckle joint in my right right finger a few times and that was standard diagnosis even a few years ago when I last had it happen.

I'm guessing since its spring training they might not have access to X-ray at their stadium but they can do ultrasounds. Either way, I'm assuming they will use a better diagnostic tool on Monday.

Ultrasound is widely use to diagnose fractures when X-ray is not available.

Asche has a new focus for a couple days. This is good as he probably was pressing a bit anyway. Franco sees a few more innings at 3rd and maybe starts banging some balls. Sunny weather in the mid-70's tomorrow. Wish the game was televised.

Found a few sources to support ultrasound and fractures. It was news to me but guess it's not weird.

CS - Yes, it's weird. Ultrasound is good for a lot of things. But that is pretty low on the list. And I'm very sure the Phillies have Xray facilities even in their Spring Training facility. There is no end to the weird with this team.

If they do have access to X-ray at their facility, then its a strange decision to use ultrasound. I've only seen it used in the case where X-ray was not available. Mostly in emergency situations.

aksmith is, unsurprisingly, full of crap on being 'very sure' they have X-ray at the facilities. He has no clue whether or not they have it, and because he's already jumped on his high horse about how incompetent the doctors are in this case, he has no choice but to say he's 'very sure.'

In fact, every hit I've found searching for x-rays being done at Bright House have had the player leaving the facilities for x-rays. Specifically here, on Dom's hand injury in 2011:

"In the next half inning, John Mayberry Jr. took over in right field. Brown then emerged from the dugout with Phillies head athletic trainer Scott Sheridan, and they jogged back to the clubhouse. Brown left the ballpark shortly after for X-rays."

Asche got his diagnosis very quickly probably because the injury looked so bad that they wanted to know immediately how they should proceed. So they used the technology at their disposal to see, broadly, how urgent the situation was- instead of driving to the hospital and prolonging the diagnosis.

All of this to say, as usual, aksmith is the master of writing a bunch of words that, when put together, hold no basis in fact- other than in his own mind, which is usually the only source for his warped opinions.

Iceman - Why do you have to be so controversial when you post on here anymore?

It is a bit unusual that they would have an only have an ultrasound unit at Clearwater and not a portable X-ray unit too.

Basically seems like the Phils used what was on hand to diagnosis if there was a fracture and went from there. No big deal either way.


Lots of facilities use ultrasounds to determine breaks and they are safer than x-rays. So Aksmithis as good a medical expert as he is a grandad.

Now cue the homophobe posting. Here under a different handl than his normal one

a) AJ says he will only play for the Pirates or retire.

b)Pirates not interested.

c) AJ signs with Phils.

d) AJ hits 2 Pirates in 2 innings, they hit 4 Phils.

Am I reading something into this that no one else is?

Regular season -you're probably right.

Early ST- I'm guessing pitchers don't have good control.

The Phils-Pirates see a lot of each other in ST, we'll see if it gets ugly.

we play the pirates 5 more times. funny that they are the only NL team we face. i guess it's geography.

Well they did say Asche will go undergo further testing so that could include a x-ray or other medical assessments. I was a little befuddled myself when i heard a ultrasound.

Burnett always had a wild streak in him. The Pirates were auditioning for his replacement?

moyer really liked diekman. especially his changeup. and the fact that he could be effectively wild. a long conversation ensued about diekman pitching from the 3rd base side of the rubber and how that impacts batters from either side. matt said he thinks it results in even RH batters feeling crowded.

Honestly it would make sense to get an MRI. Sometimes an MRI will pick up a small, hairline/stress type of fracture that an X-ray won't. I can't really comment re:ultrasounds, but with all the small bones in the hand/wrist, an MRI would certainly make sense.

Like every other single injury of this sort on earth...they will likely reassess it in a couple days as the swelling goes down.

Getting mad at them doing an ultrasound seems like a reach to me. If they had said "well, we had him ice it and we'll look at it in a few days", that'd been weird.

I could totally see them having a small ultrasound unit at Brighthouse field but not having an x-ray machine.

Anyone else been following some headlines/reports out of the Sloan Sports Analytics Conference?

pretty mind blowing stuff. Can hardly even grasp some of it they're talking about.

Oh and the Sixers, Flyers, and Eagles all sent personnel to attend. The Phillies did not.

Seems like they're scrapping Field f/x for a different, probably even better system. It'd be awesome if they ever decide to release that information to the public like they did with pitch f/x.

Conway Twitty: "AJ hits 2 Pirates in 2 innings, they hit 4 Phils.

Am I reading something into this that no one else is?"

yes. Burnett hit Alvarez in the back foot and Mercer in the back with curves. Not purpose pitches. The 4 HBP by Pittsburgh were all minor leaguers.

Wow. ESPN has moved in force on the Sloan Sports Analytics Conference.

All of the big strategy consulting firms there too include McKinsey, PwC, and Deloitte.

Rube's love of versatility may have some merit although I would love to read the paper more. Timothy Chan and Douglas Fearing won the award for best research paper this year.

"Alpha Award for Best Research Paper Presented by SAP – The Value of Flexibility in Baseball Roster Construction (Timothy Chan, Douglas Fearing)"

Key words in that article are that versatility is important because it "allows a team to field a good line-up even if some players are injured."

Mini-Mart's ability to play 6 positions, and Freddy Galvis's ability to play a corner OF position, do not enhance the team's ability to field a good lineup. In fact, if you start Freddy Galvis in LF instead of your usual backup leftfielder, or if you start Mini-Mart at any position instead of the usual backup, there's about a 99.99% chance that you've just made your lineup substantially weaker than it needed to be.

that was from last year's conference, but yeah, Versatility has a multiplier affect on a player's value.

So if the player has little to no value, the multiplier barely helps if any. And in bap's example of MiniMart it even makes it worse.

So, if Mini-Mart has negative value to begin with, does his versatility multiply that negative value?

I love man anatomy.

"if Mini-Mart has negative value to begin with, does his versatility multiply that negative value?"

It actually does. It gives the manager more pretexts for injecting his negative value into the lineup.

I posted something about this last week, and I was surprised the Phillies did not send someone. At this point Amaro and Co. are like the kid who is in the corner holding his breath with his arms crossed, shaking is head back and forth and refusing to acknowledge, let alone embrace, modernity. It's embarassing and they are reaping what they are sowing right now, and deservedly so, at that.

Seriously the value in the conference like this is almost never the panels/paper presentations although there were a few interesting ones.

It is the side bars and picking up business cards/conversations afterwards to follow up on interesting ideas or business services/products to arrange a demo.

The simple fact the Phils didn't send anyone (if verified) speaks volumes about their perception and how basically little/nothing has changed.

yes because if you are negative value, your "versatility" just allows you to be negative in more ways.

Of course versatility is a good thing. All things being equal at the plate, comparing two players, one who can only field one position, and one who can field multiple positions, you take the guy who can field multiple positions any day.

RAJ's problem is that he thinks if a player can stand at a position, he can therefore field the position. Of course, that isn't the case, as we've learned the hard way. He also gives zero credence to the fact that a player, even if able to field multiple positions, needs to bring even the slightest bit of value at the plate.

I suppose all this talk about ultrasounds and xrays and mri's has obscured what is surely the biggest story of the Spring. Asche looks like a little leaguer out there so far. I think he's trying to prove once and for all that he is emphatically not the next Chase Utley.

Since there is only 8 nonpitcher positions on the field at once, the true "value" of versatility is pretty subjective to the surrounding team.

I think the article MG referenced tried to equalize the situation and came up with a 15% value on versatility. So if you are a 3 Win player based on what you did in the field/plate, the flexibility given to the team would actually give you 3.5 WAR rating.

TMac: "One of the advantages John Mayberry has is that he can play all 3 outfield positions as well as 1B"

Since when could he play CF?

Versatility is a means to an end. The end is to get a better lineup onto the field by moving the versatile guy to a position where your team would otherwise be weakest -- the way the D-Backs do with Martin Prado or the Rays do with Ben Zobrist.

Sometimes I think that RAJ and Cholly view versatility (at least among bench players) as an end in and of itself, kind of like speed or power or a strong throwing arm. They think that, if you put Mini-Mart in LF instead of Darrin Ruf, you lose something in offense but you gain in versatility.

Good Versatility: Ben Zobrist, Craig Biggio
Bad Versatility: Michael Martinez, John Mayberry

Yeah, thank God we have Mayberry to fill in at 1st base if anything should happen to Howard. Otherwise we might have to use Darrin Ruf.

I have no problem with versatility. It is just the simple fact the Phils have had his foolish insistence on playing players at positions at the MLB level during the regular season they have never placed before professionally. Only thing I wasn't too sure on was how much was that a Cholly-thing vs FO insistence.

Part of it has been injury-related, part of it has been the lack of younger positional prospect talent, and part of it has Amaro's incompetence in building a quality bench in the offseason.

Can we read anything into the spring training lineups? Am I allowed to be encouraged seeing Ruiz batting 2nd?

NEPP: tmac even said that jmj played CF very well.

is there any reason that rollins is not playing 2 days in a row?

I dont think I've ever heard TMac be critical of any Phillies player.

13 MLB teams sent teams to the metric convention: ATL, BOS, CLE, COL, LAD, HOU, MIL, LAA, NYM, PIT, SD, TB, TOR.

"NEPP: tmac even said that jmj played CF very well."

These kind of complete BS positive-spin statements are part of the reason why the fan base on the whole isn't supportive of TMac.

Don't expect him to be critical of Mayberry but to say he played it well is ridiculous.

Tmac yesterday were talking about how Ruiz being able to hit #2 is a big help because it allows the lineup to still be effective on games when rollins has a day off.

Its just dumbass TMac, but unfortunately he's probably as "tied in" to the way this team operates more than most - so i think Rollins is a lock to hit #2.

Just incredibly terrible idea. #2 hitter has been found to be best lineup spot for the team's best hitter, and Rollins is likely the worst 2014 hitter on the team.

I think Chooch in the 2-hole is a good idea, but that still doesn't excuse T-Mac's obsequious drivel. If Sandberg drew up a lineup card with Wil Nieves or Freddy Galvis in the 2-hole, T-Mac would say the exact same thing.

Whoa, there, LorecorE. Rollins may not be too good anymore, but that's a long way from saying he's likely the worst hitter on this team. Have you seen this team? He may be in the discussion, but there's a lot of ways to hit badly and the Phils seem to have all of them covered.

How about:


Hitting JRoll-Utley-Howard is literally the worst you can do strategy for the middle innings when it makes an opposing manager's choice of using a LHP reliever much easier including Revere.

It is the kind of move I would have expected from Cholly but would have hoped that Sandberg would have changed especially the 'Utley-Howard' combo.

Well I was surprised when I didn't see Galvis hitting #2. I thought whoever you're replacing, that's where you hit in the lineup. I swear that's a rule...

aksmith: i was speaking in terms of starting lineup. Rollins was the worst hitting starter in 2013.

Who in 2014, who do you think will be worse than him?

Revere and Asche are about the only options. I think both will be better hitters.

NEPP - I think I'd flip Brown and Byrd to split the lefties a bit more, but your lineup would be better than what we're likely to actually see.

Just like shifting on defense would be better than what we're likely to see.

I think bringing in Bowa as his bench coach, which is the position that traditionally positions the defense, is a promise that we will see nothing innovative, or even turn of the most recent century when it comes to defensive positioning. Maybe Larry learned something as a broadcaster, but from his broadcasting, I saw no evidence of it.

NEPP - Or even flip-flop Byrd/Brown.

JRoll can't hit LHP anymore and Utley isn't the quality hitter vs LHP either.

I could see both Revere and Asche being worse than Rollins. And as most of the team is a year older, who knows which player will be in the "worst season of his career" barrel next? There are a handful of candidates.

I thought about that but I think that Brown is the better hitter going forward and that the loss of PA by dropping him hurts us more than potential LOOGY issues in the later innings (especially if we have Ruf as a PH option on the bench).

I just couldn't justify batting Byrd 5th over Brown. If they both hit like they did last year, it would make plenty of sense to hit them that way.

That's not a guarantee that either Asche or Revere will be worse than Rollins. I'm just saying it's not beyond the realm of possibility. Much more likely in Asche's case than Revere's, though.

It's nice having a AAA player like Blanco who is able to hit in the No. 2 spot. That way, the lineup can still be effective if we have to call him up and play him. Granted, he is an absolutely terrible hitter. But he is able to hit in the No. 2 spot. I just saw him do it, so that proves it.

He knows what it's like to bat #2

OK fine, the Phillies are batting the 'possible 6th, 7th, or 8th' worst hitting starter on the team in the #2 hole. Still terrible.

Blanco once batted #2 on the last day of the season before.

Any true Phillies fan should be rooting against Mayberry here.

Jason Aldean's "Burn It Down Tour 2014" just went on sale at CBP and the Phils sent out a text message about tickets going on sale this week.

Man I hope I don't have to attend this schlock fest due to my significant other's interest in pop-country genre.

Rather watch 3 hours of CSPN subcommittee hearings.

The fake reality is a d1ckhead and the idiotic writers populating the place with garbage ought to get rid of him.

Homophobic posters are childish

Rollins isn't playing because he has the flu. I saw that news in a Tweet from one of the beat reporters earlier today. I think the words used were "he's battling flu-like symptoms".

Versatility is a means to an end. The end is to get a better lineup onto the field by moving the versatile guy to a position where your team would otherwise be weakest -- the way the D-Backs do with Martin Prado or the Rays do with Ben Zobrist.

Sometimes I think that RAJ and Cholly view versatility (at least among bench players) as an end in and of itself, kind of like speed or power or a strong throwing arm. They think that, if you put Mini-Mart in LF instead of Darrin Ruf, you lose something in offense but you gain in versatility.

Posted by: bay_area_phan | Monday, March 03, 2014 at 12:31 PM

* * *

Good Versatility: Ben Zobrist, Craig Biggio
Bad Versatility: Michael Martinez, John Mayberry

Posted by: NEPP | Monday, March 03, 2014 at 12:34 PM

* * *


Reality - I may viscerally disagree with you but on that point we are in 100% agreement.

I love sucking cock.

Dom's not gonna impress any Phillies higher-ups if he keeps walking like that

Manship is still impressing people.

The Phillies' offense sure does suck. It's a good thing they have a bunch of strong pitchers like Lee, Hamels, Burnett, and Manship.


"Freddy Galvis (ankle) and Ronny Cedeno (back) removed for "precautionary reasons," Phillies said."- Gelb

Gelb also seems impressed by Hernandez...

"Roberto Hernandez allowed one hit in three innings. Fanned three. Sat 90-91 m.p.h. Fifth starter."

While listening to the Rays' radio feed via, it sounded like Ruf just made a heck of a play to save a run and was cheated out of it by even better Rays' baserunning.

Stutes showing why he belongs (in AAA)

I suppose it's karma, Cyclic. The Artist Formerly Known as Fausto came out and was unexpectedly good, so it's only fitting that Stutes comes out and is unexpectedly bad.

Put me in coach - I'm ready to play today. Look at me, I can be Centerfield.

13 MLB teams sent teams to the metric convention: ATL, BOS, CLE, COL, LAD, HOU, MIL, LAA, NYM, PIT, SD, TB, TOR.

Posted by: Reality

The metric system is the tool of the devil! My car gets 40 rods to the hogshead and that's the way I likes it.!

That reminds me of a joke a limey friend passed along: How did Britain take over the world? It invented a measurement system that only Englishmen could understand.

And Ruf continues to be an Unproductive™ bum, finishing the day with a single and a walk in 4 PA. If he keeps getting on-base and keeping the ball in the yard, he's never going to make the team!

With the injuries to Cedeno and Galvis, we could see Hernandez at SS sooner than later

Being outscored and having a lousy record is to be expected. The Phils will do fine once they get out of the Grapefruit and back to the Eastern League.

cyclic: no we wont.

It does feel as if the ready-made "if only we could stay healthy" excuse is rearing it's ugly head earlier than usual this year...

Just came across this in a Rotowire writeup about Franco:

"The Phillies believe he can stick at 3B, but they also had him take some reps at 1B late last season as they look to increase his versatility a bit."

So they couldn't move Dom to RF b/c they didn't want to mess w/ him, but they can move their top prospect from their biggest need to a position blocked by 2 other players. All in the name of "Versatility." Ugh.

"With the injuries to Cedeno and Galvis, we could see Hernandez at SS sooner than later."

I don't think we're anywhere near that point yet. If there's one area where the Phillies are deep, it's in the area of light-hitting guys who can play SS.

Best players 25 and under(both mlb and milb):

Nats #2 Braves #3, Marlins #5, Mets #12, Phillies #29.

Only the Brewers(Segura and no top 100 prospects) are worse than the Phils.

Pre-order my new book - "How to run a baseball organization into the ground in 1946 days"

Well I thought they said Hernandez would be getting reps at SS and 3B even before the injuries.

I have no problem with Cesar getting some time at 3rd and SS. I doubt he has the arm for either position but he might be good enough to at least fake it over a short period, like Frandsen did in 2012. It's not like the Phillies' other 3rd base options have set a high defensive bar.

Another bad outing like for Stutes and he won't make the first roster cuts in 2 weeks.

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