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Saturday, May 03, 2014

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Well, clout can bash the BL consensus all he wants about certain things, but if there was one consensus on this site before the season, it was that all were concerned about the bullpen, from Papelbon all the way down.

Looks like the BL consensus was right (for once).

The season hinges on Phillippe Aumont learning to throw strikes at LV.

And don't forget the complete makeover of the cool dealing Luis Garcia.

Good bullpens have different guys stepping up to meet the challenge. Bad ones have different guys blowing it. The Phils are obviously of the latter type.

This guy we're facing tonight has a 4.04 ERA and 1.30 WHIP in more than 667 minor league innings. Only 2 years ago, he was 6-17, with a 4.39 ERA at AAA. Yet, he has somehow gone 9-1 with a 1.98 ERA in his major league career. With good peripherals too, so it hasn't entirely been a fluke. I doubt very seriously he'll sustain it, but I do expect him to sustain it for at least tonight.

I think that's a given, BAP.

I only saw Werth's fly out, but 3 fly outs in the 1st makes me think that the Nats will end up hitting some out of the park tonight.

bap, he throws strikes.

Would have been a good opportunity to move Ruiz up in the order, but of course Gwynn must but in the CFs slot.

" 3 fly outs in the 1st makes me think that the Nats will end up hitting some out of the park tonight."

3 deep fly outs, for that matter -- and none of them seemed particularly hard hit when they left the bat. The ball seems to be carrying tonight. Of course, there's a strange weather phenomenon in CB Park, whereby the ball usually stops carrying when the Phillies are up. Meteorologists are flummoxed as to the explanation.

Maybe that meteorological phenomenon is changing. That didn't really look like a homerun off the bat either.

Big Piece!!!

Think I just saw this movie. Hope this one has a better ending.

Now that Howard's given us a 3-run lead, we need to win tonight. Tomorrow, with Hamels sick, Hernandez will be pitching...so we know that the BP will be in the game for at least 3 inning and probably 4. And who knows what the score will be when they enter the game.

What a beautiful classic Ryan Howard HR that was.

Jimmy looks really good on the bases too...vintage SB for him.

Now if the Phillies can just score about 11 more runs over the next 5 or 6 innings, I'm confident that the bullpen will be able to nail this one down for us.

Two walks to start the inning? this can't end well.

Burnett needs to settle in here.

Zero feel for the curve so far...come on AJ, figure it out.

Is Asche kidding?

I think he lost place of where he was on the field.

Burnett seems to have found his command, although his pitch count is a bit high for my taste. But with our shutdown bullpen, I guess I needn't worry.

Or it could end just fine. Nice job, AJ.

BAP's right, though. We need more runs.

Good work, AJ.

cody-san !!!

Cody is liking hitting a CBP.

Looks like Asche is finding his groove finally...right on schedule after his typical super slow start.

Ryno looking sharp all around tonight.

Really wish Lidge would've taken the booth job. He'd be really good at it.

Gotta say though, I respect his decision to go back for his Masters in Archaeology. That's probably something he's wanted to do for years and something he put on hold to play baseball instead.

And of course to spend more time with his wife and kids.

ditto, Iceman. he is very easy to understand.

It must be a b*tch to catch Burnett. The action on his off-speed stuff is ridiculous.

He's seemed much more free and easy since his hernia diagnosis. Whatever they told him to change is probably something he should've done a long time ago.

Watching Byrd flail at strike three (again) while TMac banters with a guy in a mascot suit that can't answer his questions is definitely the low point of my weekend.

TMac bantering with anyone is pretty much always brutal.

Iceman - Yeah me too. I think would have been an upgrade over Moyer/Stairs.

Ruiz has to be mved ahead of Brown, at minimum.

Nice. Phils' offense went to sleep last night vs Strasburg after the 1st and that was desperately the kind of game they need to win if they want to legitimately contend.

I missed Asche's. But I just saw Dom's double and Chooch's double, as well. I may be behind, because when I saw that Lidge was in the booth, I had to rewind. He's one of my favorites. How fun was it to hear him reminisce, with Stairs, about '08? (Too bad Moyer wasn't there, too.) And how fun to watch the final out with Harry the K's voice calling it? Never gets old.

Asche has made a couple of nice plays deep in the hole the last 2 nights including that one. He made 2 last night.

Maybe he's finally setting in.

Byrd on a 116 RBI pace for what it is worth.

approaching BP-proof territory.

Make that 123 RBI pace. That would easily be the most since Howard in '09 with 141 RBIs.

Byrd continues to make hits happen.

Good on Byrd for putting up another knock when it's needed. Even better after that disgusting three-pitch strikeout from Howard, which had the feel of a rally-killer.

If Byrd cracks 100 RBI, Amaro will have an offer for a three-year contract extension hand-delivered by the new analytics guy on the final day of the season.

1.066 OPS with RISP for Byrd.

please have a rain delay so i can watch the white house correspondants dinner live on c-span.

LaRoche hits some freaking majestic HRs.

Bandnoxious.

Game's back on!

Fun facts:

Corey Seidman ‏@CoreySeidman 1m

Since 2012, Cliff Lee has 30 quality starts where he hasn't won, most in the majors.

Cole Hamels has 27, second-most in the majors.

I'm not sure a 6 run-lead - - oh, make that 5 run lead, now - is enough for 3 innings of our BP. It could be an adventure!

An actually fun fact:

Todd Zolecki ‏@ToddZolecki 2m
A.J. Burnett has a 0.98 ERA (three earned runs in 27 2/3 innings) with 25 strikeouts and five walks in his last four starts.


Quite impressive!

howard/byrd/brown could be a murderer's row if brown blooms in may again.

And Chooch. Don't forget Chooch since he usually bats after Brown.

That would be great, wouldn't it?

Was at work so I couldn't watch much, but even just half an inning listening to Santangelo is about 2 innings too many.

I don't mind the Baltimore media market most of the time, but being stuck watching the Nats' broadcast every time they play the Phillies is simply terrible.

Also, I'm confused why it's Hernandez going tomorrow and not KK. Shouldn't he be the one higher up in the rotation?

Ugh. Even Carpenter is terrible. "Bahhh-stardo."

In other words: All you folks complaining about TMac and Stairs are getting by far the superior broadcast tonight.

OK if Rube is expecting to to extract every bit of juice out of the the fab four core and wants to compete he is going to have to bring in another BPen piece. This has to be done. This is it for the geezer crew....

GBf: indeed. i should have included chooch. even though he should be batting second or third.

Actually- clout & certain others have all along been saying that the biggest weakness is the bullpen. The moronocracy has been blaming the offense.

Good BP tonight, a very refreshing change.

Maybe we need Lidge in the TV booth to set the tone.

Stairs, Moyer with the occasional dose of Schmidt and Lidge , make for a good antidote to T-Mac.

Im available and i can fix any electronics or do other things in the club....

The Nats gave up a top-30 pitching prospect and paid $15 million for Span & LaRoche to get them 3.1 bWAR in 2013. This year they're paying them almost $19 million combined.

Both transactions were hailed on BL as genius moves that would make Washington a juggernaut.

Why did Ryno use both 8th inning guys with a 5-run lead and a day game tomorrow? And a starter going who usually has trouble giving you 6 innings.

Cole has the flu...I think im going to kick everyone in the groin especially our Bullpen..It appears that is the key to good pitching...

I come here to learn. Tonite I learned from the header that 7 of 78 = 5.5% I'll never understand sabermetrics.

Um...what point are you trying to make there, Iceman?

So far, they've been worth 1.9 bWAR and that would put them on pace for 10.2 bWAR on the full season...even with Span scuffling to stumbling out of the gate. How exactly is 10 Wins for $19 million a "bad" investment?

Granted, they could have found some other 1B and given him $25 million a season to produce a 0 or even negative bWAR but I suppose only really forward thinking franchises do that.

CT: That is perplexing. I should probably reevaluate my understanding of MLB statistics as well.

Does it seem every time Howard hits a HR (or has a good game) some journalist/blogger writes a article with the same Headline, "Howard looking to regain his form.

NEPP: That is incorrect. They've been worth 1.4 bWAR thus far this year (1.0 for LaRoche, and 0.4 for Span). Over a full season, that translates out to 7.56 bWAR.

fWAR isn't so kind to LaRoche, giving them a combined 0.9, for a season-long 4.86 fWAR.

For 2 regulars, costing $19MM, and a pretty expensive prospect hit for the privilege of paying them that, it's not looking spectacular thus far this season.

My apologies, I thought I read 0.9 for Span.

Our 1B is making $25 million and is worth -0.1 bWAR (0.1 fWAR) so far (before tonight). I think we should all just keep quiet and not throw stones in this pretty glass house our GM built.

Still, most would say even the reduced 7.5 Win total for $19 million is pretty solid given today's FA costs. Even the very low 4.86 Win is still a positive investment along those lines.

Howard has been worth -0.1 bWAR thus far, although it's not including his 1-for-4 with a 3R HR performance today.

fWAR has incorporated it, and rates him a 0.1.

I didnt realize Fangraphs updated so quickly...good for them.

Doesnt really help anything though. Howard is basically on pace to just barely surpass his 0.4 fWAR season from last year. And he's been worth 1.9 fWAR from 2010 - Present...while making $83.3 Million (2014 salary prorated based on 28 games played so far).

A sound investment most definitely.

NEPP- who was comparing Howard's contract with anything the Nats have done? Howard's contract is arguably the worst in the league. No one argues with that.

Most on BL thought Rizzo was a genius for those two moves last offseason and so far, they have unsurprisingly been proven incorrect. It has nothing to do with Howard or Amaro.

I dont see how the LaRoche at 2/24 would be considered a bad deal and I dont see why it would be lumped in with the Span trade which anyone would acknowledge was an overpay (assuming Meyer actually pans out that is).

They gave LaRoche pretty much market value coming off his 2012 season and they didnt have to give up a draft pick to do it.

Seems odd to bash it or lump it in like that.

NEPP: If they were both FAs who had been obtained strictly for that sum, there'd be no argument.

However, Span cost them the #1 pitching prospect in their system, a guy who's got a 2.88 career ERA in the minors - including a 2.70 ERA through 5 starts (about 5.1 IP/start) in his first year at AAA, at 24 years old.

Add in the fact that Span is still in his pre-FA years (this would have been his last), and that LaRoche's recent (and career, actually) numbers would seem to indicate the odds of him keeping up an .892 OPS are exceedingly low, and I can understand why both moves merit a reexamination.

Another funny story:

2013 bWAR
Revere: 0.5
Span: 2.2

***If they were both FAs who had been obtained strictly for that sum, there'd be no argument***

LaRoche was essentially a FA...and he has nothing to do with Span.

Something tells me LaRoche won't finish the year with a .900 OPS and will go through one of his epic slumps that will throw that 'projection' off quite a bit.

If somehow LaRoche continues at that torrid pace, that will have to be considered a good deal at the end of the day. The Span deal will have been a disaster, as he hasn't been a very good player for almost two full seasons now.

Both moves were made in the 2012 offseason and lauded by BL. You brought up Howard as part of the argument out of nowhere. You seriously can't understand the difference here?

NEPP: I believe the point was to include the two "big" moves that the Nationals made after the 2012 season. I do recall more than a little bit of knob-slobbery exaggerated praise for both moves.

Also, are you really going to compare a half-season-due-to-fluke-injury to a guy who played all year (and posted barely-above "replacement-level" value in that time)?

Even if I didn't dislike WAR, that'd be going more than a bit far.

Something tells me Span won't finish the year with a 70 OPS+ too. Its almost as if making condemning statements like that are a bit silly in early May.

He had a crappy April last year too and still finished as a 2 Win player. He's always been a 2nd half player for his career.

I think you're both just trying to find something to b!tch about and feel superior about for no reason whatsoever. I tend to think you both hang out with clout way too much in that regard and its a big part of why this site sucks arse now and nobody posts here.

But that's just me.

Pretty much every point any of you make (or "reality" or and of the other stupid handles used of late) goes along those lines and its just pathetic.

Personally, I think you tend to bitch about just about everything in regards to the Philies so that you can get out ahead of the curve in the event that things go downhill, just so you can toss in an "I toldja so" if things do go bad.

Personally, I'd rather be cautiously optimistic about my own team even if I don't think things will go great, since I can't really see the appeal in trying to be the resident killjoy.

To each his own, I guess.

"Most on BL thought Rizzo was a genius for those two moves last offseason and so far, they have unsurprisingly been proven incorrect. It has nothing to do with Howard or Amaro. "


Rizzo's "genius" so far is thoroughly based on overspending for Werth and having a team that sucked so bad he was able to draft Harper and Strasberg.

Rizzo signed me..genius yes..Compared to Rube...Mastermind..

I'll be the first to admit that I was optimistic about our bullpen and pessimistic about our offense, and I was wrong on both accounts.

I'm not sure what they can realistically do about it. I see all the calls for this Giles kid, but even if he is the phenom we all hope that he is, he's just one man.

I do like that Sandberg tossed Mike Adams right back into the fire the day after blowing it. Seems to be his way of doing things, and I'm ok with that. I'm not as convinced as others that his goose is cooked, but on the same token, I wouldn't want him back in 2015 for anything other than $1m/1yr.

Adams scam contribute yet and he at leasts throws strikes consistently. Problem is he is very hittable at this point and a guy you don't want pitching a ton of high-leverage innings in the 7th and 8th.

Rizzo traded Ronnie Belliard for Victor Garate and Ironpigs elite closer Luis Garcia - The Barber of the Hill -

Where are all the posters? BL sucks

Any time someone makes the assertion that "Beerleaguer," the entity, was in love with a move, an actual fact-check will usually show that maybe 1 or 2 posters really liked the move.

Was at the game Friday night and what really shocked me was when they listed players' birthdates on the scoreboard LaRoche is actually 5 months YOUNGER than Werth! Seems like he's been around forever and that awful beard doesn't help his youthful look. Favorite stat from that ugly game: Lee gives up 4 hits in seven innings and Adams/Diekman give up hits to first 5 batters faced in 8th....

These legends about "Beerleaguer loved such and such," usually have the following chronology:

1. Nats make move
2. BL poster No. 1 says it's a "solid move."
3. BL poster No. 2 disagrees
4. BL poster No. 1 follows up by explaining why he thinks it's a nice move
5. BL poster No. 2 counters with his own post
6. BL poster No. 1 reaffirms why he thinks it was a "solid move
7. A year passes.
8. BL poster No. 1's view that the move in question was "solid" becomes, in Beerleaguer lore, "Beerleaguer was in love with that trade at the time."

If you go back & read the Denard Span trade thread, that's pretty much exactly what happened. A few posters (Joe D., Jack, lorecore) said it was a nice move. A few others said it was a sh*t move (namely, yours truly). Jack then explained his reasoning, a discussion ensued, and, two years later, Jack's view that it was a "solid move" has changed to, "Beeleaguer loved the move."

Ironically enough, Iceman himself called the Denard Span acquisition "a great pick-up for the Nats over the long-term."

Rally/cut: We're migrating over to TGP. As more of our regualrs get used to the format we'll probably abandon the site entirely.

Why stay?

The downcast, errr, I mean comcast guys are way too "busy" to update threads here and the site is dying.

Plus, a lot of the threads here are just REGURGITATED content from csnphilly, and most of csn content is just plain vanilla because the csn blog weenies over there apparently don't want to offend the club (can't upset contractual relationships, you know). (So much for journalistic integrity.)

At TGP there tend to be more optimistic than the old BL crew, but at least they'll post thread headers that are critical of the team - and OFTEN ENOUGH SO THAT THEY REMAIN CURRENT.

bap, so true.

Well, at least Sandberg sat one of Howard or Brown today - both of whom have sucked against Gio (SSS):

1. Ben Revere, CF
2. Jimmy Rollins, SS
3. Chase Utley, 2B
4. Marlon Byrd, RF
5. Ryan Howard, 1B
6. Carlos Ruiz, C
7. John Mayberry, LF
8. Laynce Nix, 3B
9. Roberto Hernandez, P

awh™ - Accept no substitutes, and please don't feed the troll! I'm Typepad-registered "Rally Red '67" here and you'll recognize me instantly on the other site.

I copied the above lineup from the CSN Philly post on the upper right.

Notice who is playing 3B?

Asche finally hits & Sandberg sits him for Nix. Sigh.

awh: Maybe CSN is just pining for the enthusiasm fans had going into the 2012 season?

I admit I thought the bullpen would be slightly better (basically average/slightly below average) due to some sheer luck to reversion to mean for some of the younger guys.

Only good thing is that they can't be any worse than they have been so far for the first month.

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