Category Archives: Weekly Discussion

Open Discussion: Week of August 3rd

Here’s an open discussion thread so the minor league posts don’t get cluttered with Phillies’ talk and other topics.

  • Jonathan Papelbon, Colbert Hamels, and Ben Revere were traded by the Phillies for eight players.
  • CF Jordan Danks was promoted to the Phillies.
  • The Phillies keep winning.  Their lead over Miami for the first pick in the draft is down to 2.5 games.
  • Several Phillies will pass through revocable waivers for some possible August trades.  Look for the Phillies to try and sneak anyone not named Ken Giles, Maikel Franco, or Aaron Nola through waivers.

Open Discussion: Week of July 27th

Here’s an open discussion thread so the minor league posts don’t get cluttered with Phillies’ talk and other topics.

Of primary interest at his point in the season is that the Phillies haven’t moved any of their veterans, yet.  A deal for Hamels seems imminent, certainly by the end of the week.  The Cueto deal shouldn’t negatively affect the Phillies since the Royals were never in the picture and Cueto is one less attractive rental available for Hamels’ suitors.  Papelbon’s market seems to be shrinking.  But has Francoeur become a possible addition for a team looking for a right-handed bat off the bench?

The Phillies continue to struggle as they leave the All Star break in their wake.  They went into the break with a 5-game losing streak.  They had completed a 1-6 West Coast trip and 2-8 road trip.  They had gone 3-15 since reaching a 26-47 record after taking the first two games in a series against the Yankees on June 23rd.  Their 29-62 record at the break gave them a seemingly insurmountable 9.5 game lead over Milwaukee.

The Phillies 8-1 start after the break has not only allowed the streaking Marlins to pull within 5.5 games, but has allowed other teams to creep back into the race.  The #1 pick that so many fans were counting on to justify the season they are suffering through is now in doubt.

 

 

 

 

Open Discussion: Week of July 20th

Here’s an open discussion thread so the minor league posts don’t get cluttered with Phillies’ talk and other topics.

The Phillies returned from the All Star break and swept the Miami Marlins.  The Phillies lead for the #1 draft pick was whittled down from 9.5 GB to 7.0 GB, in just three games.  Let’s get Utley off the DL and back in the three-hole.

Aaron Nola makes his MLB debut Tuesday night at home against the Tampa Rays.  Might be one of the largest crowds of the season.

I’m sure expectations are high.  I would hope that we all rein in these expectations.  I found these reports on Nola –

  • MLB – FB 60, SL 50, CH 60, Control 60, Overall 55.  Nola has tremendous command of his three-pitch arsenal. He spots his low-90s fastball to both sides of the plate, and his three-quarters arm slot adds plenty of action to the pitch. His changeup is a plus offering at times, and his slider has improved to give him a third quality offering.  While Nola lacks the ideal size for a right-hander, he has all the necessary tools to succeed as a big league starter.
  • FanGraphs – FB 55/60, CU 50/60, CH 50/60, Command 45/55, FV 55.  Nola creates above average life on his fastball and changeup with the spin he puts on the ball from the low slot. One of the concerns is that his low 3/4 slinging slot allows left-handed hitters seeing the ball too clearly, but Nola’s plus changeup does the heavy lifting here; his above average command and aggressive approach also help keep hitters off balance.  55 FV translates to above average, #3/#4 starter, 2.5 WAR.
  • BA – Grade 60, Risk Medium.  No. 3 Starter (comp, Orioles Chris Tillman) needed some work, fairly polished.

While we all hope he becomes a #2 starter in the rotation, it appears that may be just slightly above his ceiling.  (Note: Cole Hamels is their comp for a #2 starter.)

 

 

 

Open Discussion: Week of July 13th

Here’s an open discussion thread so the minor league posts don’t get cluttered with Phillies’ talk and other topics.

In honor of the All Star break, and just for fun, here are the records (by winning percentage) of every team in the organization.

  1. GCL Phillies                                   14-4     .778   (1st place in NW)
  2. Williamsport Crosscutters      17-5     .773   (1st place in Pinckney Division)
  3. Clearwater Threshers               50-38   .568   (1st place in North Division)
  4. DSL Phillies                                   21-16   .568   (4.0 GB in 2nd place in SD North)
  5. Reading Fightin’ Phils              48-42   .533   (1.5 GB in 2nd place in Eastern Division)
  6. Lakewood BlueClaws               43-43   .500   (3.0 GB in 2nd place in Northern Division)
  7. Lehigh Valley IronPigs              40-51   .440   (9.0 GB in 4th place in North Division)
  8. VSL Phillies                                    20-28   .417   (11.0 GB in 4th place (of 4))
  9. Philadelphia Phillies                 29-62   .319   (21.0 GB in 5th place in NL East)

The major league Phillies have opened up a 9.5 game lead over Milwaukee and 10.0 game lead over Miami in the race for the #1 pick.

On Sunday, J.P. Crawford started at shortstop and batted second in the Futures Game.  When they weren’t blathering on about other stuff, the announcers actually had some nice comments about Crawford.  But they also droned on about some other topic during J.P.’s third at bat until he struck out.  Crawford played very well defensively.  By my count, he had 3 assists, 2 put outs, and started 2 double plays.  Offensively, he went 1-3 with a single in his second at bat.  It was a nice, defensive swing while behind in the count, and he poked the ball through the middle into center field.  He drove in his team’s first run to tie the game.  He scored on a double by Kyle Schwarber later in the inning.  They went on to win 10-1.  Aaron Nola did not play.

 

Open Discussion: Week of July 6th

Here’s an open discussion thread so the minor league posts don’t get cluttered with Phillies’ talk and other topics.

In the past week, the Phillies have –

  • Announced the hiring of Andy MacPhail to succeed Pat Gillick as club President.
  • Announced interim mgr. Pete Mackanin will be remain thru the end of the season.
  • Announced the signing of international free agents Jhailyn Ortiz & Rafael Marchan.
  • Opened up a 7.5 game lead over Miami. Colorado & Milwaukee are a half game back.
  • Released Yoel Mecias (Prospect rank: #19 MLB, #10 PP Top 30, #6 Fangraphs, #12 BA, #14 Sickels, #4 BP, #4 MinorThoughts, unranked by Law)
  • Announced the trading of Future Considerations, RHP Chris Oliver and LHP Josh Taylor to Arizona for Future Considerations.

The two pitchers represent one-third of Lakewood’s starting rotation.  Shane Watson replaced Yoel Mecias (released) who replaced Ricardo Pinto (promoted to Clearwater).  Taylor’s spot comes up tomorrow.  Oliver’s on Thursday.  Their rotation looks like this over the next 6 days – Not Taylor, Viza, Casimiro, Not Oliver, Garcia, Watson.  Fill in the blanks!

Continue reading Open Discussion: Week of July 6th

Open Discussion: Week of June 29th

Here’s an open discussion thread so the minor league posts don’t get cluttered with Phillies’ talk and other topics.

We now know the bonuses of the top 10 picks.  The 2015 Draft Tracker has been updated.

Some random stuff to light a fire –

  • Andy McPhail
  • Ryne Sandberg
  • The Phillies begin a crucial 4-game series at home against Milwaukee.  You know why it’s crucial.
  • Maikel Franco is leading the Phillies with his .304 BA.  He is second in HR and RBI with 10 and 32 to Ryan Howard’s 13 and 36.  He has a mere 25 K in 172 PA (14.5%).  He has only walked 9 times (5.2%).  That should maybe go up when pitchers stop challanging him.  Sound about right?

Open Discussion: Week of June 22nd

Here’s an open discussion thread so the minor league posts don’t get cluttered with Phillies’ talk and other topics.

The 2015 Draft Tracker is pinned at the top of the site.  It has also been added with other 2015 draft stuff under the pull-down menu titled “The Draft”.  The Tracker includes bonus information that I have been able to confirm and all signing to date.  I added Luke Williams as signed.  His Twitter account indicates he is a member of the Philadelphai Phillies and an article from a home town paper indicates he signed, probably for slot.

Some random stuff to light a fire –

  • I’ve seen a few bloggers go bonkers over the Phillies selecting SS high in the draft.  One questioned whether Crawford was draft fodder after the Randolph pick.  After the Williams pick, Canelo’s future was questioned.  Comments like these tend to support the contention that some people don’t understand the process.  This is not an indictment of anyone who comments here.  But more of an observation of all the bloggers, twitter accounts, and media I follow.  I understand the level of dislike people have for the current management team.  But, criticism for the sake of criticism gets old.  When the critic displays a lack of understanding, it renders the criticism moot.
  • Drafting the best player available vs. drafting for need.  This is an interesting topic.  Baseball is different from football or basketball where a player can be drafted and immediately be inserted into a first string position.  I’ve only been following the minors for a few years now, so I don’t have a firm position on this.  Since a draft pick is a few years away from contributing at the major league level, I guess I can see taking the best player available with your higher picks.
  • For a really good article on the draft check out the article James posted on June 9th, if you missed it.
  • Sorry, I haven’t been following the Phillies close enough to offer up a subject.  Unless you want to talk about Sandberg and his handling of the bullpen.  I was one who really looked forward to the day when Sandberg would take over as manager.  However, I don’t think I want to see Nola, Biddle, Eflin, et al move up to the majors while Sandberg and McClure are still there.

Open Discussion: Week of June 15th

Here’s an open discussion thread so the minor league posts don’t get cluttered with Phillies’ talk and other topics.

Draft Tracker is pinned at the top of the site.  No signings official, but a few kids are reporting to Clearwater tomorrow.

Some random stuff to light a fire –

  • If Freddie Galvis can’t make a routine throw … never mind.
  • They finally promoted Nola to LHV.
  • Well, he should have been promoted to Philadelphia.
  • Or, they should have left him in Reading.
  • Does Chase Utley have any options left?
  • The Phillies now have the worst record in baseball.
  • Who’s going to last in Philly longer, Giles or Sandberg/McClure/Bowa?  My first thought when I saw the clip was, “Really?  They’re going to get in the face of the guy who actually has a future in Philadelphia?”

Open Discussion: Week of June 8th

Here’s an open discussion thread so the minor league posts don’t get cluttered with Phillies’ talk and other topics.

The First Year Player Draft starts Monday night.  There will be separate threads for that.

Some random stuff to light a fire –

  • Freddy Galvis got a hit today to end an 0-31 drought.
  • Maikel Franco’s 6 HR are enough to be second on the team.
  • Chase Utley is back under .200.
  • Papelbon is still earning his salary.
  • With Seve Gonzalez back to LHV, who’s #5?
  • Or, with an off day on the 11th, they just don’t need him until the 16th?
  • And since the draft is tomorrow, there’s this.  The Phillies are one of 3 teams with sub-.400 winning percentages – Oakland .390; Philadelphia .379; and Milwaukee .351

Open Discussion: Week of June 1st

Here’s an open discussion thread so the minor league posts don’t get cluttered with Phillies’ talk and other topics.

Okay, I’m tired of tracking Jonathan Papelbon’s games finished.  It’s not funny to me any more.  I think it’s unlikely he gets traded unless a closer for a contender gets hurt.  They all seem to be functional so far.  Paps will vest, he’ll deserve it if he does.

Some other random stuff to light the fire –

  • I’ve grown tired of tracking Utley’s road to the Mendoza line, the guys with fewer HRs than Billingsley, the Phillies pathetic offense, their middling pitching, and their position for next year’s draft.  Maybe later.
  • How about this.  Nola’s not ready to jump to the Phillies.  He is not a 1 or even a 2 who could be an impact pitcher at the major league level.  His OFP (or FV) is a 55, that puts him in the 3/4 range.  He has thrown 10 games this year in a 5-man rotation.  You want to promote him?  Move him up to LHV where he can face better hitters before moving up to the Majors.  Remember, not all organizations stock their AAA teams with AAAA guys.  Some actually have prospects .Let him cut his teeth a little longer, bring him up in September if he earns it.