Phillies Trade Vance Worley and Trevor May to Twins for CF Ben Revere

The Phillies have found their center fielder and they have paid quite the price to get him.

Ben Revere (24) is a former first round pick, he has had a very good contact rate each stop in the minors and after a down year in his full season major league debut in 2011, he posted a .294 batting average.  Overall Revere is a Juan Pierre starter kit with slightly better CF defense.  Revere has 20 power and has yet to hit a HR in the major leagues (when he does it will likely be an inside the park HR) and his arm is below average but not a liability in center.  Revere has plus speed and knows how to use it and can steal bases at a successful clip.

Vance Worley was 3rd round pick in 2008 by the Phillies.  Worley has average stuff but he does throw strikes including a two seamer that generates a large quantity of strikes looking.  After a good rookie year in 2011 Worley regressed in 2012, as injuries took their toll. Despite his good rookie year Worley profiles as a #4 starter at best.

Trevor May was the Phillies Top Prospect in 2011 but regressed in AA in 2012.  May has a mid to low 90s fastball that has good sink but he has a tendency to leave it up in the zone making him homer prone.  His curveball has flashed plus but his delivery can tip the pitch to hitters, additionally his change up is inconsistent flashing plus and also below average, and he has a two seam fastball that is a work in progress.  May’s delivery has not been consistent and he might never have average command and control.  If he puts it all together he could be a mid rotation starer but it has become increasingly likely that May’s likely ceiling is as a back of the bullpen reliever.

About Matt Winkelman

Matt is originally from Mt. Holly, NJ, but after a 4 year side track to Cleveland for college he now resides in Madison, WI. His work has previously appeared on Phuture Phillies and The Good Phight. You can read his work at Phillies Minor Thoughts

255 thoughts on “Phillies Trade Vance Worley and Trevor May to Twins for CF Ben Revere

  1. The thing that bugs me about this, aside from Revere’s anemic power, is that I’m not sure he walks enough to be more than a 7 or 8 hole hitter. Worley for him straight up I get, but May too? It’s not the most heinous overpay of Ruben’s tenure but it strikes me as a bit much.

  2. I noted in another thread that I like this move. To sum up, Revere is a plus-plus fielder with a career .383 OBP in the minors. With the insane prices even mediocre starting position players are getting on the free market, I think giving up a fourth starter and prospect is more than fair.

      1. Worley and May are very replaceable pieces. I can go get Vance Worley production on the free agent market for 1 or 2 years at a price much cheaper than I can get Ben Revere. I’d be willing to bet the next 4 years of Ben Revere will be more productive than the next 4 years of Victorino or Pagan, and at a much lower price. Now I can go spend away on a corner OF, third baseman, and 4th starter. Watch this boys……

        1. Revere seems to be about 85% + of Bourn’s playing ability and tools – which are relatively identical – sans 5 or 6 homers. Which would you rather do…pad Boras pockets for 15 -18 million per year for even 4 years or pay this player $.500 – 1.5 mill for the next 2 /3 years. If Bourn is the only CF left, Ruben did about all he could do. Moreover with the loss of Victorino (even for 1/2 year )+ Pierre the team’s stolen bases almost disappeared – they had to get a fielder firt and a base stealer before anything else. I think the price was high but still like the controllability.

          1. Vance Worley has exactly the same controllability. The free agent market is better for pitchers than CF though. Plus, the Phils have quite a few starting pitching prospects in AA and AAA. I think the deal is fair and will help both sides. If he is healthy, Worley is the Twins best pitcher right now. I see him as a likely #3 type starter in his career. But, since he’s yet to pitch over 135 innings in the majors he is still unproven, which is why May had to be part of the deal. Unlike young pitchers, who typically are at their peaks when they enter the majors, young hitters typically improve and peak between the ages 25-29. I expect Revere to continue to improve as a hitter and have a career 305/350/370 slash line. But his real value is his defense. In 2011 he led all qualifying AL center-fielders in range factor per game (2nd per 9inn). He followed that up in 2012 by leading AL right-fielders in RF/9IP.

            1. I think thats a bit of an optimistic career triple slash there. I think more likely that may be able to peak around a .300/.350/.370 triple slash, but I just don’t see his career numbers ending there.

    1. On Revere — first, I don’t think you can be a truly plus-plus defender with an inadequate arm, secondly he hasn’t approached that .383 obp in either of his two major league seasons. If I thought he was a .380 obp guy, I’d be giddy about this trade, but he seems to be a .330 or so obp guy who doesn’t walk anywhere near to enough for an OF with zero power.

      I think it is stupid to trade both Worley and May when they are coming off down years. That is selling low. Especially when Worley was suffering from an easily correctable injury and Jordan is commenting on how May is now more coachable than at any time since we signed him. He certainly has a strong arm, not that a strong and wild arm is especially rare.

      Revere is a guy who improved his OPS last season, by just increasing his BABIP. He didn’t hit more line drives and is a ground ball machine. We may well have bought high on him and will be very disappointed when his BABIP declines in 2013. He is a guy whose offense is pretty much 100% about batting average. That’s why I’m a little irked that the summary for this thread described him by his batting average. He has an extremely empty batting average.

  3. I posted this in the other thread.
    Revere – 2.4 WAR (and for some reason his dWAR is really surpressed)
    BJ Upton – 2.6 WAR

    Phillies save 14million and can fill other needs, this is a new age move not an old school move, the trade really comes down to your opinion of Trevor May.

    1. Ok, sure, interesting comparison: but what Braves paid for in Upton, among other things, was the power potential, which he has demonstrated in past seasons.

      1. Question of what needs each team is trying to fill. Braves are replacing Chipper Jones and the loss of a middle of the order hitter. Phillies need a defensive center fielder and to add some young legs to the team.

        Both teams addressed their specific need.

        1. Phillies could use a middle of the order right handed bat too. That being said I don’t think Upton was the answer. .298 OBP does not scream middle of the order bat to me.

          1. That was my biggest concern with Upton. Adding his low OBP and K rate with what they already have in the line-up isn’t a good fit.

  4. I think the key is that he is cheap and controllable. This will give them more flexibility to do other things. How does his OBP compare to Jimmy’s (who has been hitting at the top of the order forever) In Revere I see a CF who can cover a lot of ground, get on base and steal bases at an affordable rate for the next 5 years.

    I loved Worley’s competitiveness but 4th starters are easy to find. 2011 was great for him but most believed he couldn’t duplicate it. We really never really found out last year because of his elbow. Everyone hated when JA Happ was dealt and look at his career. Doubt anyone misses him. Same goes for Drebek. (although injuries have slowed him) May took a step back last year and may or may not be able to take the necessary steps forward. I would have ranked him 4th behind Biddle, Pettibone and Martin.

    If your only other centerfield options were overpay for Bourn, stick with Mayberry or pass off Ross as a CF, I would choose Revere and this deal any day of the week.

  5. I like it. While the Phils gave up a lot if you believe in May’s upside, Worley is easier to replace than it would have been to fill the CF hole without committing long-term and big money to someone over 30 or trading for a veteran on the downside of his career. Even if Revere is not an all-star, he improves our defense, speed, and quite importantly, he is nowhere near 30.

  6. Think the Phillies sold high on Worley and low on May but overall, not a bad deal. For those who were going nuts over Span going to Washington, Revere seems to be about the same type of player but he is younger and team controlled for 4-years.

    The Philles gave up more than Washington but they got a better return.

    1. I don’t know if they gave up more. Washington gave up more upside, I think Meyer is better than May. I would say the haul was similar with the Nats giving up a better piece and the Phils giving two smaller pieces

      1. I agree that Meyer is better than May but disagree that the combination of May/Worley isn’t more valuable. I’m not all that high on Worley long-term but he is a starting ML pitcher who is still reasonably cost controlled.

        1. Thanks. I was going to post the same thing. Phillies probably offered this deal for Span and were told no. I think they should have been able to give up less for Revere.
          With absolutely no power Revere will not get on base much as pitchers will just throw him strikes. He is useless at any other position and the Phillies have Gillies and Collier on the door step.

          Given this trade, I’d almost rather given up Biddle for Span, but I really like Biddle though I think he we just be a #3 starter.

          1. I actually like Revere more than I did Span, who has slightly more power but otherwise, is a very similar player who’s older and has a higher salary. Neither guy is someone who’s going to be anything more than a secondary player on a playoff team but I think the Phillies gave up more for Revere because he’s the better value.

        2. I think people are way under-valuing Worley. It is a common problem. Ask a player to play through injury for the good of the team and he ends up judged and valued based on that year’s injury-eroded performance. On the other hand, I look at what Worley did when healthy in 2011: 3.01 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, 8.1 K/9, 3.1 BB/9, 11W- 3L. On most teams, that is a number 2 starter.

          1. That was first time through the league and he has a very fluky strikeout rate. He generates a ton of Ks looking in the zone with the two seamer and it seems that players were no longer fooled by that. He is a high volume starter who will never be a work horse because of high pitch counts. His velocity dropped last year and his fastball is now average to below average. Worley works on the margins and it was beginning to show he did not have a lot of room to work with.

            1. I agree his FB velocity dropped last year, but do really think that it will not go back up again in 2013 now that his elbow has been cleaned out? You are assuming he had a whole season of once-around-the-league in 2011 and declined in 2012 as the opposing hitters figured him out. As we know he was pitching with bone chips in his elbow, I think a more likely explanation was the injury. That is an injury with a very high rate of surgical success. There is nothing flukey about called third strikes. If anything, rookie pitchers get few breaks from the umps on called strikes. The called strikes are a measure of deception and pitch movement. I count them as highly as swings and misses. Lots of successful pitchers live on the margins. Worley’s relatively poor performance last year (I say injury caused) resulted in him getting less close calls from the umps. I think his pitch count efficiency improves with a return to health. So should his endurance. We can argue back and forth — both positions are reasonable and the 2013 season will decide which of us is right.

    2. I don’t know if the Phillies necessarily gave up more than Washington. I think Meyer has a higher ceiling than May and is much farther along. I would take one really good prospect over two borderline good prospects any day.

  7. I’m just relieved RAJ didn’t knuckle under to the tag team of Manuel and Scott Boras to overpay for Michael Bourn. Gives them some flexibility and frankly I dont think Worley and May is that high of a price.

  8. Getting Martin probably made May expendable. But still don’t like giving him up.

    Worley is a right handed Happ. Throws too many pitches and kills your bullpen. He was was worth giving up.

  9. I am not too upset by this trade as it does fill a whole. Worley was a great guy but always gave off a J.A. Happ vibe (actually so does Pettibone and Cloyd) and May was just one of many pitchers that profiled similarly (with Martin and Morgan). So the Phillies filled a need from a surplus. That is not a bad move. In the end I just see Revere keeping a Centerfield occupied until/if one of Gillies, Collier, Tocci, or Quinn are ready) for a price much cheaper than Bourn while still maintaining the #16 pick.

    As to the Young trade, I don’t even know what we gave up but it is still pretty unforgivable.

    1. Why do say that? Michael Young is an experienced player keeping 3B warm for Cody Asche for 2013 and then he is probably gone.

      1. Because MY is not very good anymore and if we’re trading for him it means we’re giving up a prospect(s).

            1. Depends on if you thing Young’s 2012 season was a down year or an age related trend. Can’t say I’m big on him becoming the option at 3b but 2012 was the first season he’s been a negative offensive WAR player since 2002.

              Maybe he bounces back, maybe not but judgement on the deal will depend on who gets moved and how much $$ the Phillies take on in exchange. Young for 1 year at ~$5m isn’t the worst move that the Phillies could make.

              Certainly doesn’t equate to trading Gio Gonzalez and paying $10m for Freddie Gonzalez.

            2. No it wouldn’t be Gonzalez and Floyd for Garcia bad or Bowa and Sandberg for Dejesus bad but it would still be bad. Man we have made some bad trades in our tme.

            3. The BEST CASE scenario for Young is that he doesn’t help or hurt the team in 2013, but hurts the team after that because of the prospects we will have to trade for him. That makes a few a implausible assumptions: it assumes that both Galvis and Fransen would be complete washouts as hitters, it assumes that Young will rebound significantly as a hitter, and it assumes that Young’s salary won’t prevent the Phillies from signing a useful player at another position.

              That’s the BEST case. The worst case is that the team is about 5 wins WORSE – 2 wins on defense, 2 wins for the opportunity cost of his salary, and one win from hitting. Now, I’ll admit that the worst case is also unlikely – but I’d say the most likely outcome is that the team is about 2 1/2 games worse in 2013 if they add Young.

              Look, there are four kind of trades. Good trades, trades that were bad in retrospect, trades that looked bad at the time but at least had an “upside” rationale (e.g., the horrible Pence trade, which at least COULD have helped bring the team a championship in 2011. And finally, trades that look horrible when made that don’t have have a possible upside. A trade for Young, aka, the worst player in the majors, would fit in the last category.

            4. Sorry, but you’re dislike for the deal is skewing your “best-case” scenario. Best case is that Young rebounds to his career norm and becomes a 2-3 war player.

            5. I don’t have a PhD in Larry Speak but I feel like that’s part of his point. Like The best case scenario is that he is a 2-3 WAR player which is what he believes Galvis/Frandsen can at least give you.

            6. I don’t think a return to a 2-3 WAR player is likely because of the deterioration of his third base defense is marked. Say a 2 WAR player upside. Galvis is likely that on defense alone, even if he doesn’t hit.

            7. Galvis’s value is going to based solely on his defensive abilities because he’s not a + war player on offense. But I’m not trying to defend trading for Young because I’m not in favor of the move. Just making the case that it isn’t necessarily the disaster you’re portraying it to be, especially if they don’t give up much of a prospect and the Rangers eat a significant chunk of Young’s contract.

            8. Also, if his defensive is truly terrible, then they still have Galvis and Frandson to take over the role and Young becomes an expensive pinch-hitter.

            9. 3up3kk,

              Not sure how that constitutes disagreement with me, except to the extent that you’re saying that the team would bench Young before living with the worst case. Which might be true. Then again, Ibanez 2011.

              Now, I’ll admit that, while trading for Young has no upside, the downside is probably limited by the fact that they (I hope) won’t be giving up much of a prospect. In that sense, it won’t necessarily go down as one of the five worst Phillies’ trades ever. Kind of like the Lee deal; for all the whining, we just gave up one year of him. But it’s not JUST the deal itself, though I think it really would hurt the team’s chances in 2013. It would confirm what many of us suspect, which is that, when it comes to position players, the talent judgment of the front office is quite poor.

            10. Don’t think we disagree, I just find the level of angst over the possibility of trading for Young to be way over the top. It’s a bad move, not a disaster and I don’t think it shows anything about the Phillies ability to judge position players. If anything, I think it shows that their evaluation of Fransden/Galvis to be much more pessimistic than yours.

            11. Miles behind as it being questionable if he can even play 3B at this point in his career. I’d expect him to be far below adequate defensively at 3B. He is pretty much a LF/DH now. I think RA is kidding himself if he is expecting even barely adequate 3B D from Young.

          1. Debatable. Last year fangraphs had him at -1.4 WAR. BBRef was less kind at -2.4. Even if he is a little better than what we’ve got there now, that doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to give something up for him. I mean, it would depend on who it is we trade, but it shouldn’t be very much.

    2. I see Gillies going, possibly by July’s trade deadline, if he improves his value by staying on the field. Revere is here for 5/6 years.

      1. If Gillies stays on the field and shows the same progress he did last year than Revere is now your 4th OF. The reason to get Revere is because that’s such a big if for Gillies. If he reaches his potential Gillies would be a much better player.

        1. Gillies potential!!!!! For one, Revere is 5 months older..both born in 1988… and already has approx two years MLB experience. Secondly, the only asset Gillies has in natural skills over Revere is his arm. Get real…Amaro will move Gilies as soon as he gets the best offer.

          1. Gillies has better on base skills, more power, better arm, and is just as good in the field. Again it’s all about time missed with Gillies. IF he stays on the field and IF he continues to improve, he’s your CF of the future….not Juan Pierre-lite. Get over your biases of the guy.

            1. We’re comparing apples to oranges (major league versus minor league) to some extent, but I’d dispute 2 of your 4 points at least (and I LIKE Gillies), and of course Revere also has beter speed, maybe a LOT better speed since we haven’t seen much of that from Gillies since the hamstring problems started:

              (1) On base skills – Revere has better contact skills and his speed advantage means more infield hits. I would call BB skills a wash at this point, adjusting Gillies’ BB skills for context. Overall I think Revere has the edge here, maybe a significant one.

              (2) Setting the arm aside, Revere is a plus plus fielder. A lot of people seem to assume Gillies is a heck of a fielder, but I haven’t read scouting accounts that really back this up. Revere has the edge, maybe a big one.

              Gillies has a power edge (who doesn’t?) I’ll assume for the sake of argument an edge in his arm as well, though we’re kind of taking that on faith. But I think with Gillies people are basically wishing upon 2009. That was 3 years ago in A ball in a high offense context. People respond to that by pointing to his career minor league stats, but that one season represents over 40% of his minor league PA and disproportionately influences it. As a Phillies minor leaguer in AA he is a mediocre.286/.347/.420. And no, those stats do not translate one for one to the major league level.

              It’s interesting to think about what Gillies could have been, but what he is after essentially 3 lost years of development is a guy who, if he can remain healthy, has a shot of a career as a major league bench guy.

            2. I appreciate the analysis Larry. I suppose I have higher hopes for him. To my own views, I’m not wishing on 2009, rather what we saw last year. Yes, he again missed time (collision in the OF, temper tantrum) but when on the field we saw a patient hitter with gap power who could swipe bags.

              We also saw a guy who could cover a lot of ground in center. It might be an assumption but he was playing there when Jiwan James is supposedly the best defensive OF in the system.

              There are way to many if’s with Gillies to count on anything, but I also don’t see a .280-.290 slap hitter as the CF of the future too. With my rose colored glasses on I see Gillies as another Victorino.

        1. Revere will be a Super 2 after the 2013 season. His free-agency season is no earlier than 2018. If they choose, the Phils have him for the next five seasons.

  10. I’m starting to like this trade more. My initial reaction was: Overpay but now I’m starting to think it’s fair.

    Really comes down to whether or not you think Trevor May is a starter or a reliever.

    Some tidbits:

    Michael Bourn age 24: .278/.348/.378 (playing in Philly)
    Juan Pierre age 24: .287/.332/.343
    Denard Span age 24 .294/.387/.432
    Ben Revere age 24 .294/.333/.342

    all of them developed into fine players and the only one who considerably out performed Revere is Span. His stats are almost identical to what Juan Pierre was doing at that age.

    1. It also shows that Revere isn’t as good as Bourn or Span were at the same age- Bourn had a better line and a much better arm in CF. Revere does have the edge over Pierre though, since he’s better defensively. Hopefully he’s got some growth left in his on-base skills.

      1. It shows that he didn’t have as good a statistical season at the age of 24. Shows nothing about which player was/is better base on future development.

        1. Well we don’t know Revere’s future development, so this is all we really have to go on. I think it’s reasonable to say he probably won’t turn out to be as good as Bourn.

          1. No, the statistics above are skewed to make Bourn look better. The season cited above was based on Bourn’s age 24 season with only 119 at bats – statistically, much too small of a sample size. As a 25 year old, Bourn’s statistics were much worse in a full season – .229/.288/.300. Revere is young and is very well built – it wouldn’t surprise me at all if he developed a little power and he has very good contact skills. But even if he stays a 3.5 WAR player, he’s well worth it for the Phillies. Put it this way, Revere is probably not “the answer” but he’s definitely part of a long-term solution.

            1. Yeah I didn’t think about it until I posted it. It wasn’t my intent to skew the stats in one way or another.

          2. But I believe Revere will be a better value than Bourn over the next four years. Now value doesn’t win the WS but I don’t think Bourn was the player to put us over the top either. It depends on where we put those millions in savings.

    2. Defense should also be taken into consideration which I would rank as Bourn as the best and Pierre as the worst. I would rate Revere slightly above Span for range but behind in arm.

    3. I am a twins fan, and in all honesty I didn’t like seeing Revere go!!!! Span…take him, overrated!!! Has had head issues the last two seasons (missed a lot of games)….bat is slowing down….doesn’t steal bases and is not a great CF!!!!

      1. Understand Revere ‘clocked’ as a top ten speedster in MLB, with highlight reel CF play. I’m not from Missouri, but still want to see come April..

  11. Hey Guys,

    Long time reader but don’t post too often. I enjoy most of the analysis from my fellow fans. I just wanted to share my thoughts on this Trade. I do like this trade from the stand point that we receive a young, PLUS fielding CF. My only real issue is that Revere is left handed (same reason I really didn’t want Bourn) In order for this to truly work out RAJ is going to have to get a significant RH bat. For me the only bat that really makes sense at this point (FA wise) Is Swisher. I think it’s unlikely you land a Willingham (given the fact that if he was a target they may have tried to make this a larger trade with him included in the deal) or an Upton. Michael Young is now an average to below average player -a nice stop gap only if we give up Schwimmer straight up. I hope RAJ has another trick up his sleeve, because I don’t see an OF of Ruf, Revere, Brown getting it done.

    1. The concern on the lineup as a whole is valid. I wouldn’t worry about Revere, he does show splits and players of his type tend to be less prone to platoon splits. The balancing bat was never going to come from CF unless it was Upton. I think the RH bats might be Ruf and Mayberry and if platooned right they could help negate the left handedness of the line up

      1. What would a good platoon look like now? Is Dom Brown playing everyday or should he be platooned with Mayberry/Ruf. Nix isn’t a very exciting option even as part of a platoon.

  12. I like this trade. The Phillies are getting 2008 Michael Bourne type, for a #4-5 starter (Worely) and a future reliever (May). Neither player is a difference maker IMO. Believing you can get anything better for Worely and May is over valuing their worth.
    Meanwhile, you fill a hole from a position of strength.
    They also clear a space on the 40 man roster.

  13. As someone who ahs seen Revere play, I think this is a good deal. Matt listed the B-R Wins above replacement, the FanGraphs WAR is even higher coming in at 3.4, with much of the difference coming from the defense. This guy profiles as a classic leadoff hitter, and has hit .347 away from Target field (small sample size still applies) with plus speed and defense. He has no power at all, but could really develop as a player. With the market for outfielders looking to be very over-priced, I like this trade for both teams. Vanimal is a decent cost controller player, and May still has upside, but thsi could be the proverbial trade that helps both sides

  14. Great trade. Phil’s just solidified CF with a young cheap player under team control for years. 40 steals and a success rate over 80% is exciting stuff. There are plenty of 4th starters of Vanimals ability.

    Speed kills.

  15. Uehata to Red Sox. Phil’s desperately need a setup man of his ability. 13 leads lost in the 8th that lead to losses. Win 10 of those and the Phil’s were a 91 win team with all those injuries.

    1. Agreed. I hate to overpay for Adams but it is looking kind of thin out there now. Someone had mentioned Coffey and Farnsworth before but to me those two have Baez and Qualls written all over them.

        1. I forgot about Grilli. I do worry about his age, though and would want to give him too long of a contract. I also hate giving out a big contract for after a career year for someone we gave up on just two years ago (though I always thought they should have promoted him then.

          1. Personally I think our BP issues are overblown and I wouldn’t mind going with what we have already. But if we are going to sign someone, Grilli is at least a viable option.

            1. The statistics from last year and how many late inning leads we blew would say the BP issue is not over blown.

            2. There’s four problems with that, summarized briefly as: (1) The number of blown leads was higher than you would like to see, but not really above average. Even the best bullpens blow leads. (2) injuries hit hard last year, (3) they have a ton of good young arms, and (4) given the inherent year to year variability of relief arms, spending a ton on them is foolish (and by the same token, last year’s performance had an element of bad luck, unlikely to be repeated).

              Should they pick up a relief arm if they can get one for a couple million dollars? Sure. It is a lower priority than center field was, lower than corner outfield is, and lower than a fourth starter now that Worley has been traded. And would be a lower priority than third base if the pickings there weren’t so slim.

            3. I would rather be near the top of the league in fewest blown leads than the middle of the pack. Even when healthy the one the Phillies went into the season as their setup man (Bastardo) was aweful. Year-to-year variability is a problem which is why I think you need to go with someone that has done it year-in year-out not someone who is coming off of a career year.

              At this point it I thin the bullpen is a priority (with a number 5 starter) because there is still some choice out there. The pickings for corner outfield and thirdbase are pretty slim. I know you really want Swisher but for reasons I have illuminated in the past (bad defense, aweful post-season performance) I do not think he is worth the contract he get and the #16 draft pick. And as you said internal options seem to be as good as signing Ross

            4. The only relievers that do it consistently year in and year out are the elite closers. And even they have off years occasionally. And Bastardo was awful? Really? I’ll give you that his HR rate was a bit worrisome, but he can’t control a 12.5% HR/FB rate. You could also say a 4.5 BB/9 is bad, but it’s not so bad when it’s paired with a 14.02 (read that again) K/9 (good for a 3.12 K/BB if you don’t want to do the math). In addition, his IFFB rate is very high and seems to be a skill rather than a fluke at this point. All in all, he posted a 3.34 FIP and 3.18 xFIP. I’ll take that any day of the week.

            5. Swisher’s defense really isn’t that bad. I put essentially zero weight on the post season, in fact it’s a plus in the sense that it may drive his price down. It comes down to price. He is looking for 9 figures which is crazy. Dave Cameron at one point suggested 5/90 which is still way too high. Really I don’t know what the market for him is now. I might go 4/60.

            6. His defense is not Josh Willingham aweful but it is bad. I wouldn’t give credence to one bad post season but in 6 post seasons he has hit .169 with 46 SO and 47 TB. Some players always have bad Aprils, some have great Augusts, some are aweful in the post season. Swisher is the later. To give him more money than they bid on Upton is just absurd. And to lock that much money and that many years on him will hasten the 90 loss seasons you desire.

            7. Name a reliever, other than one of the elite closers (of whom we have one), that is consistently good from year to year. What we have in our ‘pen is a ton of strike-out potential and youth, at a very low cost (Papelbon is the exception, but he strikes out a lot, too). We don’t give up a particularly high amount of homeruns,The walks could be a concern, but a lot of the young guys walked more people than their career numbers suggest, so that could just as easily come back down. I see nothing to indicate that last year will happen again this year. What I do see is six (SIX) relievers who pitched at least 23 innings (Lindblom with the fewest) and had a K/9 over 10. None of those are Aumont or JDF, either, who will probably see a spike in the K/9 over time. In addition, the only pitchers with a 4+ FIP are Qualls (gone), Savery (can send him to AAA), Lindblom (the only one that needs serious consideration about what to do with him), Rosenberg (AAA), Kendrick (just barely above, and in rotation), Sanches (AAA/gone), and Blanton (gone). That’s 7 out of 19, and 3 (Kendrick, Sanches, Blanton) of them saw next to no time. Of the four remaining, one is gone, two will probably be in AAA, and Lindblom… well, who knows about him. But that leaves us with Paps, Bastardo, Aumont, JDF, Horst, Diekman, Schwimer (the worst of this group at 3.71), and Valdes. That’s 8 pitchers with a sub-4 FIP, 7 with sub-3.54, and that doesn’t even count Stutes.

              So yeah, I think it is a bit overblown. Maybe if Cholly didn’t give Qualls and Lindblom a combined 54.2 innings (that’s more than any of our relievers except Paps, by the way), our results wouldn’t have been so bad.

            8. “Name a reliever, other than one of the elite closers…that is consistently good from year to year.”

              Mike Adams

              Uehara and Lopez whom the Phillies also looked at would be on this list. We went with the kiddie crew last year and it didn’t work. Yes there were injuries. There will always be injuries. Don’t get me wrong I love the young relievers. I think if he can improve his command Amounte can become an excellent set-up man and eventual closer. JDF could become an excellent set-up man too However, I think it will be good to give them another year or more. We just saved $15 mil/year on CF that is only worthwhile if we invest it other places. And with what is left on the market set-up man is one of the best options to invest part of it.

            9. JDF needs literally no more time in the minors. Aumont might be able to use some, but only to work on control. Even if we send Aumont down, we are still left with 7 well-above average relievers and Lindblom.

              As for Adams, he is certainly a good pitcher. H’s semi-consistent in that he puts up nice ERAs on a regular basis. But he is a 34 year old relief pitcher who saw his K/9 dip, his BB/9 rise, and pretty much every other stat trend in the wrong direction last year. Plus he might be looking to be a closer finally. Now will I take him for the right price? Sure, absolutely. But you’re suggesting that just because we have “extra” money that we can and should overpay a relief pitcher? Nah, no thanks. I’d rather have a cheap and effective BP in addition to CF to compound the savings and maybe help us pick up an actual impact player. Not necessarily this year, either. A multi-year deal for Adams means we have less to spend on FA’s next year and the year after that, remember.

            1. What he wants and what he gets are not likely to be the same thing. I didn’t explicitly state it because I say it all the time, but I meant at the right cost/years. Grilli on a 1 or 2 year deal at less than 5M/year, for example, would be a pretty good deal for us.

  16. Let’s realize that we just got a pretty good major league centerfielder w/o paying him a lot. Thus, the extra prospect for the control. We are where we are b/c we have overpaid just a bit on guys and committed to them for too long the past few years. This is a good piece.
    Now, three things need to happen:
    1. Get Young as your super utility guy. Some ab’s at 3b, ss, 2b, and of.
    2. Sign a pitcher to take the #4 spot. There are a lot of those available.
    3. Sign an 8th inning guy.

    Is Schwimmer the bullpen guy they are referring to for young?

    1. I still want an impact bat. Hamilton/Swisher seem like the only options for that. While I hate to say it, Ross would help, too, at a much lower cost. Maybe if they decide Hamilton and Swish aren’t worth the sticker price they’ll sign Ross on the (relatively) cheap and compensate by going after a higher-end starter than we need.

  17. I would love for them to hit Revere Lead Off and Rollins second. I think Rollins pop would do more in the two hole. He is also a switch hitter so you can break up the lefties. I supposed Rollins will cry about it though

    1. I am not sure about that, everyone keeps putting a lot of the lineup construction on Rollins ego, think about it from a pure routine standpoint. Yes he is a professional but there is a lot of routine and superstition to the way baseball players are. Also the research says line up construction means next to nothing, at most a win a year.

  18. Look, this is the last I’ll post in the trade-hating vein, but I just want to say to all of you throwing around the “cheaper, younger Bourn” or “young Juan Pierre” comparisons … that is based on the rosiest kind of projection for him. Look at the players listed as comparables for Revere through their age 24 season on his Baseball Reference page. Numbers 1 and 2 on the list are guys who played in the dead ball era, which is never a good sign. There’s a couple of scrubby type outfielders I recall vaguely from the 1980s: Jerry Mumphrey and Joe Orsulak. The closest semi-active comparison is Willy Taveras, which is truly sobering.

    Look, I’m not saying that these Baseball Reference comparisons are always valid. I’m just saying, it takes an awful lot of wishful thinking to call Ben Revere a “young Michael Bourn.”

      1. Wow, I must be missing out on the Michael Bourn love. .272 lifetime hitter who averages no more than 30 something XBH and has never scored 100 runs with his great offensive impact ability. And strikes out 150+ per year. Quite frankly, I hope Revere becomes better than Bourn.

    1. I’m more positive about the trade than you are, but if you want to see a negative take on the trade look at Fangraphs.

      I don’t really endorse their take (or yours), but the Span trade presents an interesting contrast. I think there’s a pretty strong case that Washington got a significantly better player for less. Balancing that to some extent is salary, but it’s not as if Span would have put much of a dent in the payroll either.

        1. I gave a short review in the other thread. The short answer is I think it’s a good – not great, but god – deal for the Phillies, but only if they use the payroll saved by not signing a FA center fielder to acquire a big corner outfield bat.

          IMO there are two questions about Revere. The first is, just how good a defender is he as a center fielder? I think he is a plus defender there, but is he a gold glove caliber defender? We don’t know at this point.

          The second question is his hitting of course. I don’t think he’s a guy who is going to develop any power at all. Is 2012 his ceiling as a hitter? I don’t know. If it is, I think Phillies fans are going to be disappointed. I made it clear that I wasn’t endorsing Dave’s take in fangraphs, but one decent point that he makes is that even his mediocre 2012 hitting performance was based in part on a possibly unsustainable .325 BABIP (though he does get a lot of IF hits because of his speed, so he may be able to sustain that).

          The good news is that even his “floor” is decent – not great, but decent – a light hitting, good fielding, good base running center fielder has value. And of course team controlled for a low salary. May I see as a reliever, and Worley as replaceable. Again, it depends upon what else the Phillies do with their lineup this year and in the future. The current lineup is pretty anemic.

          That said, I wish they got Span.

      1. FWIW, Dave’s review on FanGraphs is getting ripped in the comments section. Full of simple errors and he calls May the Phils best prospect.

      2. There is no doubt a healthy span is better than revere, but I still like the trade. You have to give to get and revere is a legitimate everyday cf, just hope the pieces around him are good enough. Bourn is not 60 million better than this kid, he strikes out less so the handful of occasional hr bourn hits means nothing to me. I certainly would rather have him over Worley who is a number 5 and May who is still a minor leaguer. Opinions are what they are but I think the trade works for both clubs

    2. FWIW:
      Scott (NJ)

      Is Revere a younger version of Juan Pierre? Great speed, no power, weak arm, lots of range in the outfield, doesn’t strikeout but doesn’t walk much either. My gut reaction says including May was a mistake, but based on what I hear, he’ll never be more than a number 3, and the Phillies have a bunch of those types in the system.

      Klaw (1:14 PM)

      Much better defender in CF than Pierre. Otherwise pretty similar, but that’s a large difference to me.

      1. Yeah offensively the Pierre comp makes sense until you look at defense This isn’t the steroid era so a guy like Revere has more value than Pierre would with the slap hit routine. They both have bad arms though.

  19. The best thing about this is that not only is Revere cheaper, but I’d much rather have a 20 something aging into his late 20s playing CF over the next 4 years rather than a 30 year old aging into his mid 30s.

  20. Longtime Reader here. I just wanted to point out how I truely appreciate this site and the excellent commentary. Its funny reading the reactions from people from different websites to every move the Phils make. If you just went to Beerleaguer for info on this trade, you d think all of Philly wants to castrate Rube and somehow connect this trade to “horrible” Howards contract. Here, the followers see true value with this trade and are a lot less hesitant to declare Vanimal as an ace. I really like the trade. Cant wait to see what happens next.

  21. I think a lot of people here are seriously underrating Revere’s defense. Twins fans online unilaterally talk about what amazing defender he is and UZR loves him. There’s a chance he has a higher WAR over the next four years than BJ Upton based on his vastly better glove. I don’t know how you can’t like this trade given the amount of flexibility it provides tor other movies.

    1. The flexibility only helps if there are moves to be made. This year there’s not much that we can do to shore up our areas of weakness. Although that flexibility will probably come in very handy down the road when we’re still paying pennies for our CF.

  22. Mr. Young , if you are reading this, please do not waive your rights to veto the trade. Fans in Texas love you and won’t care that you suck. Fans in Philadelphia are vicious a$$holes like myself and will make your life a living hell if you agree to be traded to Philadelphia.

  23. I don’t mind this trade too much. Hopefully Revere can tick up a little in power or patience as he ages a bit (the former being less likely). He’s obviously got the speed and defensive ability, and obviously young and cheap. I think I prefer this to Dexter Fowler even though Fowler might be further along at this point. 19 XBH isn’t cutting it though. He’s going to have to get that to at least 25-30 as he progresses.

    1. Leadoff singles with him are as good as doubles. I only care about his OBP and SB% along with great defense. If he can OBP .350 I don’t even care if he bunts for all his hits.

      1. Yeah the question is will he be leading off? Also I could definitely live with a .350 OBP that’s why I said he has to improve either his patience or his power

  24. I think the more worrying part of this trade is how do we fill the rotation hole left by Worley.He may not be spectacular but he’s a pretty good player to have at the back end of the rotation when healthy. If we’re going to fill the empty spot with Cloyd/Pettibone that gets me a little worried. I’m very skeptical about either of those guys at the major league level.

    1. They will get a guy like Edwin Jackson or Kyle Lohse. Worley is a nibbler who relies on the umpire for strikeouts. Doesnt go deep into games and already has arm troubles.

    2. Joe Saunders type guy. Maybe roll the dice with Jair Jurrjins. I have always liked Ryan Dempster but he may command too much money.

    3. I will always worry about the backend of the rotation, that’s why it’s the backend of the roatation. I worried about Worley, I will worry about Kendrick, I even worried about oswalt! 4’s and 5’s cause worry

  25. Was listening to wip,and they had on a minnesota announcer, forget his name. he said revere was a great centerfielder, makes plays that you just dont think, anyone can make, has weak arm,but has learned to charge the ball and make the field shorter.said you will see how good a fielder this kid is,he isnt a walk guy, because he saw a lot of fastball strikes hitting in front of the guys minnesota had, they rather give revere a pitch then, the other guys in lineup. so we get a speedy, basestealing centerfielder, for a number 4 starter in worley, and a prospect in may, time will tell if we overpaid. but according to the people who have seen this kid, fields better than a lot of centerfielders,

  26. Phillies trade for Revere and earlier select Ender Inciarte in the Rule 5….proto-typical type players! What is the logic?

  27. So first time long time- but I like this deal. You have to assume the Phils will have Ruf, Mayberry, and Brown in the outfield mix, and they needed to get better defensively. Assuming you put Revere in a solid outfield platoon with Mayberry/Brown/Ruf/Nix, you have you can play Brown and Nix against righties, and Ruf and Mayberry against lefties. Overall, better defense with Revere than Victorino, and if someone emerges to get everyday time corner OF time out of Ruf/Brown/Mayberry, you can still play Revere in center full time (interestingly his OPS is virtually identical for left/right) . Plus he’s a solid pinch runner option (much better than mini-mart). And you still have the possible joker in Gillies who could surprise out of spring training.
    Vance is a loss, but expendible. I think Kendrick has the higher upside. Plus now you can get Young and a better 4/5 starter.

    1. Phils could go with an all lefty outfield against righties and mix in Mayberry and Ruf (or unforseen new addition) against lefties or ride the hot hand. They have options. What’s puzzling is they took on someone from the Rule 5 draft who is an outfielder. Where do they fit in when we already have 5 OFers? Is Ruf or Brown part of a deal RAJ has in place? Or would they just cut Nix to make room for the Rule 5 guy?

      1. They will give him a shot in Spring Training. He’s a no risk shot in the dark. If they need the roster space he’ll get cut.

  28. There usually are several pitchers available–via free agency–to fill a #4 or #5 slot. But Blanton just signed for 3 yrs @ $18 mil?? High price. But this indicates that the FO is impressed by Kendrick’s season, especially the last half, to anoint him their intended # 4.

    The latter season possibilities include Pettibone, Martin , and Morgan. A possible outside chance for Biddle. With those near-future fillings, it seems unlikely that the team will spend very much for a guy who could be needed seriously for only a half season.

    The CF question now having been answered, that #5 pitcher and a significant righty OFer with some pop: Ross for not too much. Ross is AC-DC (L/R).

    Now let’s not lose that 16th draft choice with any moves. That position would allow the Phils to get the 7th or 8th best pitcher in the country…since several position players would be taken earlier. Time to have, keep, and use their best positioned #1 draft choice in many years.

  29. I am not a fan of a Ross signing, at all, nor to the various veteran corner OF trade targets that people have been discussing excite me much.

    If you can get Swisher for a relative bargain price he is the one corner outfielder who is worth signing (I’m not counting Hamilton for obvious reasons). He would be worth losing the 16th pick, again assuming a reasonable contract.

    Despite what I said in discussing Revere, I’d rather go with who we have rather than Ross. I don’t think Ross is overall an upgrade over a Mayberry/Nix platoon, and Brown should get his shot at the other corner. (To be clear, 2012 Ross might be a half win better than a Mayberry/Nix platoon, 2011 Ross would be worse.)

    1. It’s interesting to look at Ross’ 2012 line – as a hitter, just about what I projected (a little optimistically) for Mayberry/Nix platoon, and a little above average defensively.

      But of course 2012 was his best year since 2008. Don’t get me wrong, he is (unlike Young) a player with some real value, and probably would even help the team a little (as he would push Mayberry & Nix into reserve roles & they would contribute there; also, he’s a back up plan if Brown doesn’t turn the corner.) Just not enough to justify his likely salary.

      Art, though I’m a little curious why you are touting Ross? Aren’t you a Ruf fan? Ross would consign Ruf to AAA.

  30. I agree that it would be mistake to block Ruf next year. He deserves a serious look and could well be the power RH bat they are looking for.

    1. I’m a Ruf skeptic, and even I partially agree with this, in the sense that I don’t want to bring in a Cody Ross quality player, mainly for other reasons but also because one advantage of a Mayberry/Nix platoon is that it would allow for Ruf to get at chance in the (IMO unlikely) event that he looks like an adequate corner outfielder next spring..

      I still think Swisher would be a good addition at the right price, and wouldn’t worry too much about Ruf getting blocked it he was signed. The “right price” is the issue. I wouldn’t give him more than 3 years. AAV is a tougher question. There seems to be an assumption he will get close to 20 million in AAV, which seems pricey to me. 3/45 would IMO be a steal, though I am probably dreaming.

          1. You don’t know how deep it is at this point, regardless of strength you are going to get a really good player at #16 (15 if the Mariners sign Hamilton). It is way too early to do draft speculation on anything more than the college side which is comparable to last year.

  31. This is a really overpriced players market this year, imo. great year to be a mediocre player.i still cant believe victorino got 13 for 3 years. coming off the year he had.amazing.

  32. This goes to LarryM or really anyone else… We have 3 choices at this point… Pick 1

    1. Trade for youngish (<28) high OBP + power hitting 3B/RF/LF (would cost 3 of our top prospects, plus another 1 or 2 ranked in the middle of the top 30)
    2. Sign Hamilton at 4 years 100 million plus a 1 year team option at 20 million with a 10 million dollar buyout. This also costs a #1 draft pick.
    3. Stick with what we have this year (or sign a over priced under performing player).

    Given the above, use the following assumptions (YES I KNOW THEY'RE ASSUMPTIONS YOU MAY NOT AGREE WITH):

    If we do options 1 or 2, we will compete for the division and have a better then 60% chance of making the playoffs in some form.

    If we do option 3, we likely miss the playoffs again, with an outside shot at a wild card.

    ————

    My person choices, option 3. And I choose that becuase I think this team as it's presently constructed has reached it's end. We are 1 year removed from a 100+ win season, but the rest of the division has gotten much better, and with RH possibly not being an ace anymore, Howard's continued decline and Chase's degenerative knees I genuinely believe it's time to blow it up.

    I build the roster around the players under 29…
    We have 1 ace and a bunch of unproven youngin's and role players. None of the position players we have in the minors currently projects as a star with the exception perhaps of Franco and his flame-out rate is sky high due to age and distance from Majors.

    The future is dim. (though I am happy with picking up Ben Revere, I think he could be a decent CF option on a contending team).

    1. If we blow it up, we might as well trade away everyone over the age of 25, to be honest. Blowing it up means we’re not competing again for at least 3 years (probably longer because we, as you said, don’t exactly have superstars waiting in the wings), so we’d get more value out of trading our players in their prime than letting them rot on a team destined for nothing.

      1. You’re absolutely right. With the exception of Hamels, I might go down to 25 or 26, and we wouldnt compete for 4-5 years. Though after thinking about it, I like RG’s comment below, maybe giving them one more go and if they’re not in contention at the break you sell while absorbing millions in existing contracts to get some top prospects. The other possibility is the phillies attempt to spend their way out of this. I’m just not confident this is the Yankees with a New York budget. We need a superstar position player or two and I just don’t see how they’re going to find one in the next two years. Maybe they’re content to sit in a position where they’re barely competitive until they sign this TV deal…

      2. Blowing up the team is not an option. It’s the polar equivalent to saying let’s trade for Verlander, Votto and Wright. As close to blowing up the team is what Ruben did at the trade deadline last year and that was relinquishing 4 guys who weren’t going to lift the Phils into the playoffs for some salary space and some prospects that hardly restored the farm system.

        The salaries that encumber the Phils the most are the hardest to move and offer the least in return. That’s why virtually every proposal to trade Howard and Utley sounds laughable in the light of day.
        It’s not about putting together a list of 3 choices. It’s realizing that each choice involves a series of steps that not only involves the Phils but other teams as well. The older guys the Phils would part with in scenario 3 have to offer something that other teams can’t otherwise acquire through free agency. Ask that question regarding the over 29 year old players: Howard, Utley, Ruiz, Rollins, Halladay, Lee, Papelbon, Lee, etc. Realize that discussion about trading many of these guys involves the Phils earting salaries which means that you’re spending budget not just for new guys but for old guys wearing other teams’ uniforms.

        1. Ethan Martin, Lino Martinez,, Kyle Simon, Seth Rosin and Tommy Joseph are not upgrades to our farm system? Also, Halladay, Ruiz and Utley contracts expire this year which will free up payroll.

        2. I actually don’t think the prospect of trading Utley is laughable in the light of day. If he recovers reasonably well, and the Phillies are out of contention at the trade deadline, I could see them doing a deadline deal to a contender. Nearly every team in baseball could use a healthy Chase Utley at 2B, and he’s going into a contract year.

    2. I see option 4, sign Swisher and a Lohse/Jackson/McCarthy/Dempster type. If, and its a big if, a combo of Halladay, Howard, and Utley rebound and/or Ruf/Brown figure it out, the window might be extended.

      1. Also, if it isn’t working out by midseason, the firesale can start with Halladay, Utley, Chooch, and Papelbon.

      2. With that signing I don’t think they compete for the division without Howard, Utley and RH, combining for a 12 WAR. Do you? I think 7-9 is a more realistic combined number, and it could be much much worse. (Howard negitive, Chase doesn’t play, RH as a middle of the rotation player)

        1. Yes. I don’t go by WAR. For example, just saw that the Royals staff had a higher WAR than the Giants. Sometimes funny things happen in baseball. Like Oakland winning their division.

          1. In fairness to WAR, the Giants’ staff really wasn’t all that great last year. Certainly not as good as the reputation they had built up.

    3. Well I pick 4, sign Swisher. :)

      I’m not a fan of #2. I’d go 4/80 probably, with reservations, but I don’t thank that will get it done.

      As for #1, it would depend upon who it was. It would have to be someone really good with at least 3 cost controlled years. I’d do that on the theory that it would help us now & in the future (prospects are almost never a sure thing & none of ours are). But I don’t think we have the prospects to snag that kind of player. (Other than J. Upton, are there even any on the market?)

      Which I guess leaves #3, not that I’m thrilled with it.

      1. They could do 2 (say for Upton) than back up the Brinks truck to convince Greinke. Rumor is LA is out, because he doesn’t want to pitch there.

        Or they could sign Ross and pursue Greinke and attempt to win with pitching.

        I say option 4 is the best and still within the realm of possibility.

        1. I think they got really lucky this past year with the production provided by Ruiz. Additional pitching only works to a point in a division where it’s going to take 95 (or MORE!!) wins to get the division. And the WC is a crap shoot 1 game. Realistically, it’s all about Howard chase and Roy.

          1. I don’t necessarily disagree, but Shane and Pence had pretty miserable all around seasons. And Worley wasn’t a world beater. Improve on them, plus in LF and a more consistent ‘pen and its feasible.

    4. Rather than Hamilton, I opt for Greinke. Even if Doc doesn’t bounce back all the way, a Greinke signing means the Phils clearly have baseball’s best rotation in 2013. By adding a defensive player like Revere, the Phils can win again despite middling offense.

      Signing Greinke enables the Phils to continue to compete at a high level during their transition period of the next three years. He is young and will not cost the Phils their No. 1 draft pick. The signing will also help the team negotiate a max TV deal, which is far more important financially than luxury-tax concerns, particularly if the Phils can fall below the 2014 threshold by dropping Utley after 2013.

      1. I should have written, “By maintaining a strong rotation and adding defensive players like Revere, the Phils can win again …”

  33. OKAY/ they got lucky with chooch, but how about all the injuries, that doesnt count, if doc comes back, how is this team not a contender. three great starters with a solid defense, with revere in center, and a better bullpen, stutes and defratus are back, with aumont, paplebon, isnt that bad.

  34. dunno if it counts as a prospect, but I would be glad if Phils management gave Hiroyuki Nakajima a look. He can play ss and 3b and has some poer. Only looking for 5 mill per for 3yrs.

  35. I love this trade. I think we sold high on both May and Worley. If either of those guys have a similar season this year to last year their value drops considerably. Worley has real health issues. Don’t believe for a second they are “fixed”. And May can’t find the zone. That is not an easy thing to fix. I actually don’t think May will ever play in the majors. I like Revere a lot. Great defense, base stealing threat. Doesn’t strike out. Top of the order center fielder who is basically free (salary wise). Closes a hole on the team without eating any salary. Big win for RAJ. And much better option than signing big contract (and losing first round pick) for upton and Bourne. Only fly in the ointment is he is left handed. But I expect brown to be traded.

    1. I like the trade too, but you cannot say that after down years for both of them, Ruben sold high on them. Both of them would have yielded better returns if traded a year ago.

      1. I like the Trade. May would have yielded more a year ago, but if he has another down year this year his value will be almost all gone. Worley I don’t think would ever have enough value alone to be able to get his true worth in return. I think thy paid what would be expected to get a starting player like Revere. Hopefully he improves and makes the Phils brass look good.

        1. Revere if progresses, and starts well in April/May/June, is here for 5/6 years…and Tyson Gillies, if he plays without injury, may be gone as a chip by July trade deadline.

  36. More than anything else I think we need to get lucky on some of the young guys otherwise this team MLB and farm is caught between a rock and a hard place. You have to get lucky with Ruf, in much the same way we got lucky with Howard back in 06-07-08.

    Howard and Utley brought everything else together. They moved Abreu on a salary dump Victorinio a rule 5 seized his opportunity as did Werth and the rest as they say is history. I don’t much care what Ruben says publicly but if he is going to lie to himself and believe Utley/Howard in the the 3/4 is good enough to get it done then we’re in trouble.

    Young players are the life blood. They’re generally more hungry. Yes they have to have some talent. But let’s face it. It’s always a gamble to go with a young player. Sometimes they surprise you.

    I think all their energy (Scouts and GM) needs to focus now and through the deadline on a few key players that can be those guys and how can we get them here.

    1. I completely agree. This year will be huge for both Ruf and, yes, Dom Brown. If Dom Brown in a full season in the majors can come anywhere near the potential everyone once saw in him, and if Ruf can duplicate what he did this past year in the minors, the Phils will be ok, and the future may be bright after all. I’m actually ok going into the season with an outfield of Brown, Revere, and Ruf/Nix (with Mayberry as a fourth/fifth OF) and seeing what they can do.

      The two areas that still need to be addressed in my eyes are 3B and bullpen. I’m ok with adding Young as a super sub to spell Utley and Howard and play occasional 3B. But I’d love to see them get an everyday 3B, even if they think Asche will be ready next year.

    2. I think that the fact that the Philies got two great players off the scrap heap (IVic, Werth) and 3 players that they developed over performed their minor league numbers (Utley, Howard, Ruiz) makes Phillies fans significantly over-estimate the frequency that young players “surprise you.”

      Looking at position players in the upper minors … Joseph is a real prospect who needs more time but hopefully can replace Ruiz in 2014 or 2015. Asche should get a chance at some point, should be decent at least, and might “surprise.” Ruf … if his fielding has improved to the extent that he can adequately field in a corner OF spot (I’ll beleive it when I see it), he should get his chance.

      But … none of these guys, with the possible exception of Joseph, even assuming they “surprise” to an absurdly positive extent, are going to be the next round of all star position players. Expecting or even hoping otherwise is the kind of thinking that builds 90 loss teams. And beyond them, there’s nobody. Oh, a couple guys who could become bench players of below average regulars for a non contender. But Really right now the Phillies are one of the most poorly positioned teams in the majors to go with the “young guys.” Down the road it may be different. You have probably a half dozen position players in the lower minors with star upsides (though if 2 of them reach that upside the Phillies will be lucky. Still, you can build around 2 star level position players.)

      Given the state of the organization, unless you’re just willing to write off the next three seasons, the team has to use ALL of its resources to bridge the gap to (hopefully) the next group of young stars. Will that mean going with some young guys? Yes. It will also have to mean smart free agent pick ups, smart trades for players young and old, smart decisions about which veteran players to resign, and attempts to pick up decent players (young and old) off the scap heap. It won’t be easy. Honestly I don’t think Amaro is up to it.

      But if “go with the young guys” is your primary strategy, you’re looking at 3 seasons with 85 to 95 losses.

      1. Also, if going with the young guys equates to rushing them to the majors, there’s a chance you significantly disrupt their development.

  37. Right now I like the trade a lot even though May is one of my favorite prospects, however it cannot be really evaluated until a few years from now. We know Worley will be a solid #4, but it really depends on how good May becomes. If he becomes a #2 and Revere does not progress then the Twins probably win this, but if May becomes a mid rotation pitcher or ends up in the BP and Revere improves his walk rate and averages 50 sb a year then I say we win this trade. Just my thoughts on this, feel free to agree or criticize.

    1. I’m not a guy that hopes a traded prospect does not go on to have a good career. I actually hope that he does. I think the onus now falls on Biddle, Morgan Martin to asert themselves as legit starters.

      Gillies should be very motivated to get healthy. Damn if I am him I am PO’d that they went out and took a Rule V OF. So my message to Tyson “dude get with a hamstring specialist and make sure you are right for Spring Training.

      Some times I wonder if these kids understand they are not just playing for the org they are with but for 29 other clubs as well.

    2. I do not see Revere getting any better. He has no power and I doubt he every develops it. WIthout it there is not reason for pitchers to no throw him strikes. So his entire value will be his batting average. Even if he wins batting titles he will have a low OPS. The speed is real and certainly increasing his value as a singles hitter. WAR seems to like him more than his OPS suggests but he needs to be awesome on defense IMO to become an above avg CF.

      May is wildcard that will make this deal seems like an overpay or not. I think it is an overpay and I realistically think May ends up a reliever.

      1. I think he gets a little better here. He said in a couple of interviews he’s just missed hitting a few home runs out of target field which should be bombs here.

  38. A lot of people are making the Revere/Pierre comparison, so I thought I add my perspective:

    (1) If you buy the comp, that’s probably good news. Pierre had an early decline phase and even in his prime was kind of looked down on by modern stat guys, but his age 25 to 28 seasons – mirroring the period where the Phillies will control Revere – were in retrospect pretty darn good. The Phillies will be thrilled if Revere produces as well as Pierre did during his age 25-28 seasons.

    (2) Should we buy the comp? Yes to an extent. Revere is better in a couple of respects – defense in particular and to a lesser extent plate discipline. Pierre, though, has (and had) better contact skills, and more power. Yes, the first time in history that the words “more power” were paired in a sentence with Juan Pierre. Also, while Revere is fast, Pierre in his prime was probably a little faster.

    (3) The bottom line is that it would be a surprise if Revere was as productive a hitter as Pierre was in his prime, though he should contribute significantly more defensively.

    1. As Keith Law put it in his chat, the difference in defensive value (even if they both have noodle arms) is enough to really swing in Revere’s favor. On defensive ability alone Revere should provide good value (for what he is paid vs the open market) if he provides value with the bat and speed it is just an added bonus.

      Yeah Pierre does have some double power, it is weird to think that someone has less power than Pierre but it is true.

      1. Revere looks to be a pretty strong guy and a great physical specimen, but I can’t recall watching him play that much (when he played the Phillies, I was impressed, but did not pay careful attention to his skill set). Is there any thougt that he might develop even marginal power? I keep thinking of Kirby Puckett, who hit no homers, 4 homers, and then 31 homers in successive seasons. Now he’s a crazy outlier, but young, athletic players do often develop some power. Revere doesn’t have to improve a lot on offense to be a borderline star – if he had played 155 games this year, he would have been around a 4 WAR player wtihout any improvement. He’s a really good player.

        1. A lot of the problem is in his swing which has no loft at all to it and actually has a tendancy to drive the ball into the ground. He should be strong enough to at least have doubles power (he is never going to be a home run hitter), maybe the Phils tweek the swing a little bit but that his a dangerous thing to do especially based on their lack of success with Brown.

        2. This is based upon the numbers, not personal observation, but here goes: it may be as much about his swing as about raw power. He is an extreme ground ball hitter.

          The problem with revising his swing – apart from the fact that ANY swing change is risky and requires an adjustment period – is that he benefits from the ground ball approach. His infield hit percentage, for example is quite high. Would adding a few HR and double per year be worth a big drop in batting average? probably not.

    2. One more thing about that comp: Pierre had the speed, but wasn’t a particularly good base stealer. Revere doesn’t seem to have that problem.

  39. I do not mind trade Worley, who I also think will not get any better than his career stats say. He is still super cheap though. Not sure why May had to be included instead of lower level prospect. I think May ends up a relief pitcher but there is still hope he stays a starter. He has real upside but small chance to reach it. Would have preferred them sending Cloyd instead.

    With May in the package I was hoping the Phillies could have gotten more. That’s why I am not a huge fan of this trade. However, I have no idea if Bourjos, for example, was available for this trade value. Maybe if Phillies threw in another reliever prospect like Schwimer/Stutes/Lindblomb?

    I still think Phillies look to make a trade for 8th inning guy rather than sign Adams. Not sure why Phillies did not beat out deals given to Uehara (2ys $8M) or rumored offers to Youkilis (2yr $20M)..

  40. You know, just spitballing here, but is it possible the Phillies could come out of nowhere with a bid for Greinke, the way they did with Cliff Lee? Here’s my thinking: Ruben Amaro recognizes that the options to upgrade the offense via trade and free agency involve a lot of expensive gambles (Upton) and players entering their decline phase (Hamilton, Swisher). So, double down on the team’s strength, starting pitching, and assemble acquire a CF that assures strong defense up the middle. In Greinke, you get the best talent on the market, a pitcher in his prime, and reassemble the “four aces” concept that worked so well (at least in the regular season) during 2010.

    Ok, so–beyond the money, the Phillies’ reluctance to give extra years to pitchers (which seems to be a rule they break when they want), Greinke’s perceived unwillingness to play in a tough market and the fact that no one in authority seems to actually be suggesting this idea, where am I going wrong here?

    1. It’s tough to look “beyond the money”. ODo the Phillies really want to have 4 20M+ pitchers this season? Next year Utley and Ruiz need to be either re-signed or have their production replaced somewhere i nthe , neither of which will be cheap.

      I think you may see a 5th starter signed on a 2-year deal plus a bullpen piece added. whther they get another bat not named Young is the major ? for me right now.

      1. See my more general reply below, but Ruiz will not be getting a huge multiyear contract from the Phillies in the twilight of his career, not with Joseph waiting in the wings, and assuming that Utley will be a viable baseball player, let alone one worth $15 million a year, for many years after this contract expires definitely requires some magical thinking.

        1. I’m not assuming Utley will be a 15m player. But if he bounces back this year what do do? Even if he goes, that production will need to be replaces. Ruiz will cost more than you think

          1. With a PEDs cloud hanging over him….one year deal. MLB execs and FOs are hesitating, to almost the point of collusion, in giving multi-year deals to players coming directly off a PEDs suspension. MLBPA and player’s agent’s hands are tied when it comes to players long-term contracts , since PED is such a hot and sensitive subject.

    2. I think the Greinke option is their best path back to a playoff spot. Combine that with a Cody Ross or Hairston signing for OF depth and they could contend.

    3. No, the Phils have 4 pitchers who will be ready within 1 1/2 years for a starter’s spot. there will be spots for some of them.

      1. They will also probably have Halladay coming off the books after next year, barring an enormous bounceback season (in which case they will happily exercise his option even though he has little chance of hitting the innings trigger). Kendrick’s contract also expires after 2013. So, that’s two slots for young starters, and I think it’s optimistic to believe that two of Petttibone/Martin/Biddle/Morgan will be good enough to start for a contending team come 2013. And I do hope this will still be a contending team.

        As for money, two things: 1)it’s not my money, so the only downside to their spending more comes in how it affects their ability spend going into the future; 2)there’s a good chance Halladay is coming off the books next year, and Utley, barring a miracle rejuvenation, is probably not going to be a $15-20 million a year player going forward, even assuming he remains in Philly. Then, there’s the upcoming TV deal, which will provide greater resources in the later years of the contract, when the luxury tax limit will also be rising.

        1. Sorry, mistyped there, I meant to say it was optimistic to think that two prospects would be in the rotation come 2014.

        2. 2014 is going to be REALLY challenging. They will need to resign or replace Halladay, Utley, and Ruiz, not to mention lesser lights such as Kendrick.

          They’ll have plenty of money to do it. But internal options are limited. I won’t repeat your correct observations about the starting pitching. At catcher obviously the hope is that Joseph is ready. That may be optimistic. At second base there is nothing. No, I don’t think Galvis is an option. If he becomes a regular on a contender it will be at shortstop.

          Let’s look very specifically at that 2014 lineup without Utley and Ruiz. You have Rollins and Howard 2 years older, a weak hitting center fielder (yes, defensive value, i said I like the trade, but a weak hitter) and … what? Asche a rookie at third. Maybe Joseph a rookie at catcher. Brown, hopefully, finally turning things around. A lot of people think Ruf in left; as stated, I am still a skeptic. If they don’t dip into the FA market (this year or next), that could be the weakest Phillies lineup since … 1989 maybe, with the immortal Ricky Jordan holding down first base?

          Of course they WILL dip into the FA market. And likely pay more than some people around here would like to pay. But they will be a better team for it.

          1. I will say this: assuming even reasonable health by Utley – say, 120 plus games played in 2013 – he is IMO highly likely to be back in 2014.

            Ruiz being resigned is almost entirely a function of Joseph’s development and whether Ruiz thinks that the FA market will be kind to a catcher in his mid 30s. IMO if Joseph does not look ready, look for Ruiz to resign for 2/20 or thereabouts.

            1. I agree, I think Utley will be back in 2014. I don’t think it’s a foregone conclusion–if the Phillies don’t end up contending this season, he’ll be an attractive trade deadline target–but acknowledging that the future is unknowable, I see a scenario where he comes back on a Rollins-esque contract: a modest overpay in terms of AAV for a limited number of years. I think those knees are going to scare any team off from handing him a contract of more than a year or two.

              Beyond that, though, it looks bleak, which is why I wonder if signing the best available free agent isn’t their best course of action. I definitely don’t think the answer is throwing years and dollars at the likes of Cody Ross–I’d rather have one stud pitcher making $20 million a year than two Ross-types at $10 million (and I don’t think $10 million would do it).

          2. But they will over pay going into 2014 with much more information than they have currently. For example, they will have a better idea of what they have with Galvis, Ruf, Brown, Utley’s health and, to a lesser extent, Asche, Joseph and the young pitchers. That’s a lot of questions, but a few of which might have happy answers in the end. So, although overpaying is always distasteful, it certainly may be necessary for 2014. But I think it would be even more distasteful to do so now before they have a bit more answers to those questions.

            1. Well I’m not really advocating overpaying. Youk would not be an over pay, Swisher in my scenario would not be an over pay. And of course Youk would get a short contract. As I’ve said, I really don’t get the objection to the Youk signing at all. Swisher at least I understand – I think it has a lot to do with people being optimistic about Ruf. I’m not – mainly because I don’t think he will handle the defensive demands of left field.

              Moot point IMO. Phillies look to be going in other directions. Can’t say I’m thrilled about those directions. Especially at third, where the team seems to think that Young is a more valuable player than Youk. It’s one thing to relay on Galvis/Frandsen, which until recently even I have reluctantly advocated. Preferring Young to Youk raises serious questions about the team’s talent evaluation.

            2. “It’s one thing to relay on Galvis/Frandsen, which until recently even I have reluctantly advocated. Preferring Young to Youk raises serious questions about the team’s talent evaluation.”

              Well, we certainly are in total agreement there.

            3. You two seem to fail to account for his veteran aura, which will act as a natural supplement, making everyone else on the team see better, swing harder and run faster*

              *If you experience an aura for more than five hours, please call a doctor, this could be the sign of a serious medical condition.

            4. Look, I think you’re making a reasonable point–I was just throwing out the Greinke thing as a hypothetical. It certainly seems like it’s not going to happen. But is there any chance that one of our prospect pitchers turns into Halladay circa 2010? Almost certainly not. We don’t need more data to know that.

            5. I agree that it is very unliley that one of the youngsters can be a solid #3 by 2014. But it is possible that Halladay is healthy and returns to form to the point where you exercise his option or even extend him two years.

              I just think that Amaro, rightly or wrongly, is loathe to enter into big long term deals this year when there are possibly quality, low cost alternatives on the roster. Now I have advocated the Swisher signing, but if Ruf goes .270/20/70 (unlikley I know, but not impossible) this year while playing an average LF, you pretty much have a younger, far cheaper, Swisher-light on your hands. Same with Brown.

              Again, not to say he is right or wrong, but I think amaro wants to use this year to see what he has first.

  41. I like the REVERE trade but the Phillies wasted their rule 5 pick by picking Inciarte a 22 yr old speed type defensive CF . Apparantely , they didn’t know the Revere trade was getting done when they made their pick . Lack of communication ?

    1. I wouldn’t say they wasted their pick, there was no one selected that would have fit on the team better, their pick was a hedge that they wouldn’t get a defensive CF. Frankly I didn’t think they could carry someone anyway, with Ruf, Galvis, and the collection of relievers there was no one available outside of Fields that I would have preferred to the options already on the roster.

      1. I tend to agree. Defensive CF would have been my pick if Revere deal was not through. (Phillies would not be sure if Jiwan James would be chosen, since he fills a similar role.)
        I could have seen a 3B option but Marte is another lefty killer (redundant to Frandsen) but would at least be another body at 3B to check on.
        I liked the C guy (Hagerty) because there is a definite need for the first 25 games at least. Not a fan of the Humberto and I figure Valle would be traded. Phillies might have been able to float him on the roster as a PH option with Kratz. I do not want to divert converstaion even further but I still think Phillies should have seriously looked at Ruiz for 3B to get him into another 30+ games for his bat.

    2. Maybe the Ender Inciarte rule 5 pick made the Twins realize the Phillies would actually walk away rather than up the ante for Revere. Besides, they now have cheap insurance in case Revere is injured in Spring Training. Unless they swing a deal for Ender to stash him in the minors he probably won’t stay on the roster long. But even if greasing the rails for the Revere trade is all Ender Inciarte ever does for us then it was a rule 5 pick well spent. Good pick.

      By the way, I think this was a good trade, too. I had to stew on it a while but I think Revere has some untapped upside so I’m optimistic. Look over his minor league stats and ask yourself how you would feel about him if he had come up in our system. He’d be getting a lot more love on here, that’s for sure. If Worley and May become mid-rotation staples then the trade will look bad in hindsight. Then again, if Worley and May both flame out, you’re looking at two bullpen guys at best for a starting CF and the Phillies would be clear winners in the deal. Both sides took a risk to fill a need from a position of strength. Good trade.

    3. Perhaps, this is a signal…..if Inciarte is kept, DLd or offered back without D-Backs taking him, then Gillies will be eventually moved. Revere is here to stay and Inciarte could be his back-up, leaving Tyson out there.

  42. In my opinion there is no way Inciarte makes the club now that they got Revere . He is a 22 yr old that has never played above A ball . His skills are speed and defense . If they didn’t get Revere he may have had a shot , but knowing they were going after Revere this pick was wasted .

    1. Not really sure how you can say a Rule 5 pick is “wasted” – unless you really wanted one of the guys who were selected after him…nothing stopping anyone from taking multiple Rule 5 picks if they wanted to, so unless you think spending the $50k is “wasting” a pick, I don’t really see how it hurts or not.

      1. and they get $25K back when they return the guy. Its only a $25K investment which is peanuts to these guys.

  43. I personally would drive Lee to the airport in exchange for 1) Ellsbury + tidbits 2) Payroll flexibility to go after Greinke, for example.

    http://www.csnphilly.com/baseball-philadelphia-phillies/phillies-talk/Friday-Phillies-fodder-Young-Revere-pote?blockID=811105&feedID=704

    According to multiple sources, the Red Sox approached the Phillies about a Jacoby Ellsbury for Cliff Lee deal and were told that Lee was not available. The Phils won’t break up their Lee-Cole Hamels-Roy Halladay trio. (Check back in July if the team is not in contention.)

    1. Why trade Lee for a one year rental on an injury prone CF. You also realize that Grienke will pass Lee on the size of his contract. The only thing Grienke has on Lee is age, otherwise Lee is a better pitcher. The thing people keep forgetting is Lee is not overpaid, he isn’t a bargain but he is one big money pitcher who has actually been worth exactly what was paid for him. If you want premium players they don’t come as bargains because they provide all of their value through one roster spot unlike spreading the money around to different bargains.

      1. Age would appear to be a big discrepancy, not that I am advocating getting Greinke. Lee at 35-age season coming up is definitely in the twilight of his career and at any point he could fall off the ‘cliff’, npi.

        1. His profile and skills suggest a pitcher who if healthy (which I would argue is almost as great a risk with any pitcher) will age gracefully because he has an 80 grade change and 80 command so even if his fastball loses some he will become a good #2/#3 starter even with diminished stuff. The question is, is Grienke even as good as Lee to begin with, Lee’s 4.2 WAR in 2012 was his lowest since 2008 (he posted an 8.3 in 2011), the highest WAR posted by Grienke since his 2009 Cy Young season has been 3.3 in 2012.

          1. You could probably count on one hand all the lefty pitchers in MLB history who have won more then 15 games in a season once they reach the age of 35. I think of two off the top of my head, Warren Spahn and Jamie Moyer, maybe there are a lot more. But, nevertheless, Cliff Lee’s stuff as well as it is graded has to remain at that level for him to be successful.

            1. How quickly we forget. Steve Carlton won 23 games at age 37. He won 15 at age 38 and should have won more, based upon performance. Both years he led the league in IP.

      2. Correct me if I am wrong, but I would describe Lee as having a similar amount of injury issues as JE. Lee’s performance, when healthy, is very good. I don’t think Lee is overpaid. I am not down on him. I believe this is a solid opportunity to use him to fill holes and gain a solid substitute. If not OF then 3b or prospects. In fact, if Texas missed out on Grienke, I would strongly push the Rangers in trade negotiations for Lee.

        Greinke would be a palatable substitute. Over the next few years, I would bet that Greinke’s performance will be comparable or better than Lee’s. I do have concerns about Lee’s age.

        Regarding Ellsbury, my belief is if you don’t sign him to an extension, he would likely provide enough performance in a contract year to merit a compensatory pick. I think he’s also a better alternative for one year than other options in the outfield. I also would believe you could receive other pieces from the Sox.

  44. So many times we have talked about ruf and his age, I was just looking up michael morse , he played very little until he was 29 then bloomed. i am finding more and more guys, who have taken longer to make it in majors. so i have more hope for ruf. now then before.ryan ludwick is another 28 before he had a shot and 29 was his first good season.

    1. it isn’t that players don’t establish themselves later in age (there are quite a few example). They are often players who were once good prospects, failed on their first trip and lived in the AAAA label before breaking out and becoming regulars. There is no precedence for a player to reach AA as late as Ruf did and become a major league regular. It just hasn’t happened

      1. However, if you look at years in minor league service per level he is right on time. It was no fault of his that he was drafted six weeks shy of his 23rd birthday.

        1. What it means is that he doesn’t have time to make adjustments, outside of the best of the best prospects there is usually 2-3 years of adjustment at the major league level, Ruf starts to make those adjustments at age 26 with limited athleticism (less athleticism means less success in making physical adjustments). Regardless of fairness, he is much older which comes with its own set of limitations.

        2. Of course it was his fault. That’s the situation you put yourself into when you don’t sign as a college jurnior. The road to the majors of a college senior is extremely difficult. Really, nobody who is serious about becoming a professional baseball player should go back to school for his senior year. If you go back, you have to realize that you have stacked the deck against yourself — you will get a much smaller signing bonus, you will never be age-appropriate in your minor league, and because of this the numbers you post will always be viewed with great skepticism. That skepticism is with reason. The number of college seniors who put up great numbers in the low minors and never make it to the majors are legion. To excel at AA is less common, but still fairly common. These tend to be not very athletic guys with good bats. Ruf’s performance last season set him above the norm, but he still doesn’t have long odds at success. I think the Phillies need to go into ST assuming Ruf is the starting LF, because it is really important to the team’s future that he succeed. We just have too many holes, too little spare cash, too depleted a farm, and too old a team to keep trying to fill in with aging vets. So Ruf deserves a chance. Let’s just not forget that his problem is a lot of his own making. In every profession there is a normal career path leading up to it and aspirants deviate from that path at their own peril. The path can appear silly — I knew pre-Meds who had to take a lot of freshmen courses that the could easily advance place out of with 4/5 scores on the advanced placement tests, they retook the material they had studied in HS. They were bored, but they really had no choice — many Med schools required specific freshman courses, because that’s what they based their admissions comparisons on. My classmates could have cried silly and taken an upper level English and math course instead, but they knew the career damage they would be inflicting upon themselves. Truly serious baseball players forego their senior year of college.

        3. It was his fault that his first 370 ABs at Clearwater were nothing special. As a college 1B you’re expected to move fast to be considered a real prospect- one level at a time doesn’t cut it with that profile. He was promoted to Clearwater in 2010 and didn’t show much, so he had to start there again the next year. With a more successful showing he would have had the chance to arrive in a majors a year sooner.

          1. Ruf’s Collegiate Stats:

            Year AVG GP-GS OBP% SLG% AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO TB HBP SF SH SB-ATT E FLD%

            2006 .291 52-52 .346 .392 189 25 55 7 0 4 41 15 27 74 3 4 9 0-0 3 .994

            2007 .374 61-61 .463 .587 230 53 86 19 3 8 57 35 36 135 9 7 2 1-2 2 .997

            2008 .347 58-58 .483 .545 202 43 70 17 1 7 52 51 23 110 7 5 3 2-3 2 .997

            2009 .303 56-56 .409 .493 211 38 64 14 1 8 51 34 32 104 8 6 1 0-2 2 .997

            Total .331 227-227 .430 .508 832 159 275 57 5 27 201 135 118 423 27 22 15 3-7 9 .996

          2. Ruf’s HS Synopsis: Did have athletic abilities at one time.
            High School: Won a baseball state championship at Westside High School as a sophomore and was runner-up as a senior … Won a summer state championship
            following his junior season in 2004 … Lettered three years in baseball and football, and two in basketball … Earned all-state honors in both football and
            baseball as a senior … All-conference and all-area honoree in football and basketball after his junior and senior seasons … Tied the school record for home
            runs in a season (7) and career (15), and holds the record for most walks in a season … Was a team captain in both football and basketball … Played in the
            Collin-Orcutt All-Star Game.

      2. Can’t we give Darin Ruf the chance to win the job? We know he is a RH power bat,can hit and if he can play an acceptable LF he can help the Phillies greatly at a low cost. As far as your last statement, is there not always a first time for something to happen?

        1. It could happen, it is very long odds. People just need to be realistic, yes Ruf could do it but realize there are many reasons why it has not happened to this point.

          1. Every time someone says, something can’t happen or has never happened before or is highly unlikely, that’s when it happens. No one has ever come back frm a 3 – 0 deficit in a playoff series. Bam! Red Sox do it agaist the Yankees and they have to beat Mariano (twice). None will ever beat the Babe’s homerun record. Bam! Bam! All you need is a bucket full of steroids. Ruf has defied the odds so far. Let’s get him in and give him a chance. He won’t hit .300 or 50 HRs. Oops, I just said he won’t do something. Now he’ll prove me wrong!! Hope springs eternal.

            1. I understand the sentiment but you can’t count on luck. I have no problem with giving Ruf a chance, but you have to acknowledge the fact that it is more likely that he is not going to exceed expectations and will end up being a good bench bat, something that is well beyond what anyone expected for him, The team needs at least a back up plan for that contingency, otherwise it will be a repeat of last year where you have no depth to deal with injuries forcing players like Wigginton into your everyday line up.

            2. This is the sort of attitude that causes the team a lot of problems. You simply can’t have a backup in place in case Ruf doesn’t make it, any more than you could have a backup for Brown or Mayberry. With Manuel as our manager, the veteran backup will always play and the kid will ride the pine. You can bring in an ancient like Ichiro for OF or Young for 3B and say we will platoon or they will spell the kid and jump in if needed, but we know from day one that they will be the starter. Mayberry was just killing the ball in the second half of 2011 and the whole time Cholly was yelling that he needed a right-handed OF bat. Mayberry had a bad week and was replaced by Ibanez, who had had a bad year, but was a vet. Werth had to wait until Jenkins had totally and utterly bombed with no hint of a possible redemption, before he got his chance.

          2. Matt, I agree with your statement that the chances are not high for Ruf, when considered statistically across all similar cases. However, I wonder how many cases can match or even come close to Ruf’s closely. A few consistent year’s where he was a top hitter in the organization, always respected as a middle of the the order bat in lo and hi A, and then en explosion when he hits the high minors against better pitching (albeit a good ballpark for him, but so is CItizen’s Bank). He dominated at times, at three levels, including the majors. It did not seem he was phased by MLB pitching on the whole. He seemed to have the plate approach to not be completely buried by smart pitching, as Howard often is, although that remains to be determined in the longer run (SSS), So how many hitters found a zone/swing/confidence/approach/etc. that enabled them to dominate a league in such historical fashion? I would think it has been quite rare.

            I am saying that your statement is correct, but if you mean he has an extremely low chance (less than 10% ?) to be a good MLB power hitter, I might disagree. Such dramatic improvement and historical performance has to be considered and I have to give him a higher possibility of reaching a reasonable level as an MLB power hitter, more in the 40-60% range.

            That said, Ruf seems a really good guy, but I question his maturity in a way. If he does not come into ST carved from stone this year, to me that is unforgivable. He should be hitting weights and using a trainer to make his core like a tree trunk right now, as we speak. There is a HUGE difference in trying to learn the OF with a big gut and a double chin vs. maximizing the athleticism you have been given. He looks like he has a reasonable body type if he shapes it up. The difference in his fielding could be quite visible, as it was when Howard nd Rizzotti got in shape and made visible improvements.

            1. My biggest issue and one that will likely appear prominently when I do my Top 30 write up on him is going to be his ability to adjust to major league pitchers once they have scouted him and found his weaknesses. In small sample sizes between his brief time in the majors and his trip to winter ball he has morphed from a guy who was hitting for power and average into a three true outcomes hitter and I am not sure he will have the plate discipline to deal with major league breaking balls. Ruf by all accounts is not athletic, which is going to hurt him when he has to make permanent adjustments to deal with premium velocity inside and sliders away. Essentially can he handle what has happened to Ryan Howard with less power, Howard’s hitting is already bordering on replacement, can Ruf even beat that trend.

            2. Hitters joining a new league usually improve more after they’ve seen the pitchers a few times than pitchers improve after they’e seen then hitters a few times. Sure those are just trends and the opposites happen too, but I am bullish on Ruff as a hitter after leading professional baseball with 52 HR at all levels in 2012 including a limited amount of great success in September in Philadelphia. It’s very hard to predict what he’ll do, but I expect around 275/350/500 with margins of error about 25/50/100 (upside 300/400/600, downside 250/300/400). I wonder more if he can handle LF than if he can hit in the majors. If 1B is his only position then I would like to see Howard traded in a 2012/2013 version of the Rowand/Gonzalez/Haigwood package that Gillick got for the oft-injured Jim Thome.

            3. Wow that is really optimistic, if you are going small sample size on the success I will point out that Ruf also was on pace to strike out over 200 times if given a full season of ABs. Give how pitchers attack hitters it would be optimistic say Ruf hits more than .260 in a full season (also your margin of error essentially covers all possible outcomes so what is the point of having them)

        2. A Phillies rookie cannot win a job in ST. The only way he can land a starting job is to be awarded it over the winter (possibly with the phrasing that he must hold it in ST) or by injury. A rookie winning a job goes against both the reality of a FA signing (these established major leaguers have a choice and won’t sign without the promise that they have the starting job) and the propensity of Charlie Manuel to rely on vets, no matter how poor the stats they are putting up. A vet has to really stink it up for about half a season, as Jenkins did, to lose the job. If we sign Ichiro, he will automatically become one of our three starting OF. He’s not going to sign to be platooned or to fight it out with a kid for a job in ST. Young is not going to waive his NT for the right to compete with Frandsen in ST. For Ruf to win the job in LF, RA has to consider that the job is his, he doesn’t have a hole in the OF, so he isn’t going to sign someone to fill it. As soon as RA signs another FA OF, we are left with Nix and 3 kids competing for one starting position. Cholly will give a heavy lean towards Nix in that situation.

      3. Brian Daubach and Brandon Moss are the first 2 late blooming first-basemen that came to my mind, but they both had AAA experience at a younger age then Ruf. But it seems that Ruf is unique. It was only in August 2012 that he showed he can be a prolific slugger, so including “winter” ball, he’s only had 3 months of eye-popping HR numbers. But no matter how fluky his 52 home runs were, he seems to have harnessed tremendous power that cannot be ignored.

  45. Instead of overpaying for RH power, sign Ichiro for RF (1 year) and an 8th inning reliever – i.e. model Gillick’s 2001 Mariners. Speed and defense, plus healthy Howard, Utley, Ruf/Brown, Ruiz/Kratz, Young, Rollins to get you 168 HRs.

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