Around the System–Bullpen, Top Half

A look at the bullpen in the upper parts of the Phils system. The final “Around the System” which looks at the bullpen in the lower levels of the system should be out Friday.

Phillies Bullpen 2012: Brad Lidge has a $12.5 million club option that the Phils will decline; could possibly be back for less; Ryan Madson is a free agent and will get closers money; Jose Contreras is signed next season with a club option for 2013; Kyle Kendrick is ARB eligible again and will more than likely see a raise from his $2.45M in 2011 into the $4-5 million range; David Herndon, Antonio Bastardo and Mike STutes are all under contract for next season.

Lehigh Valley

Michael Schwimer, 25, Phils 14th round pick in 2008 draft; 47 games; 9-1 with a 1.85 ERA; 10 saves; 68IP 51H 22BB 86K; 4 HR allowed; 0.75 GO/AO; .203 opp avg; 1.07 WHIP; 2.9BB/11.4K; .307 vs. LH, .133 vs. RISP, .167 with RISP.  Schwimer received plenty of honors at the AAA level in 2011, including being named the Lehigh Valley pitcher of the year and to Baseball America’s AAA All Star Team.  He was exceptional for the ‘Pigs.  His splits however are drastic and to have success in the bigs, he is gonna have to find a way to get lefties out. He has the intelligence and work ethic to figure it out.  2012: Battling with DeFratus and others for the last few bullpen spots in Philly.  There should be at least one, possibly two openings.

Justin DeFratus, 23, Phils 11th round pick in 2007 draft; For Reading: 4-0 with a 2.10 ERA in 23 games; 8 saves; 34.1IP 28H 14BB 43K; 1 HR allowed; 3.6BB/11.2K; 1.22 WHIP; 2.16 GO/AO; .224 opp. avg. Lehigh Valley: 2-3 with a 3.73 ERA in 28 games; 7 saves; 41IP 35H 11BB 56K; 1.12 WHIP; 2.4BB/12.2K; 1.60 GO/AO; .230 opp. avg., .254 vs LH, .213 vs. RH, .286 with RISP; 2.81 ERA with 14.6K rate since Aug 1.  DeFratus had an outstanding year figuring out AAA relatively quickly and getting the September callup to Philly.  I would be surprised if he were not in the Phillies bullpen next year. 

Phillipe Aumont, 22, Acquired from Seattle in 2009; Reading: 1-5 with a 2.32 ERA in 25 games; 4 saves; 31IP 23H 11BB 41K; 1.09 WHIP; 3.1BB/11.9K; 2.05 GO/AO; .195 opp. avg., Lehigh Valley: 1-0 with a 3.18 ERA; 18 games; 3 saves; 22.2IP 21H 14BB 37K; 1.54 WHIP; 5.5BB/14.7K; 1.00 GO/AO; .244 opp. avg., .257 vs. LH, .235 vs. RH, .276 with RISP; Aumont’s season has to be considered very successful after such a disappointing ’10.  I have rarely seen a pitcher dominate the way he does when he is on, however he is his worst enemy with some control issues cropping back up in Lehigh Valley.  2012: Lehigh Valley closer with a September callup.

Juan Perez, 33, Signed as a free agent prior to 2011 season; 0-5 with a 5.70 ERA in 36 games; 4 saves; 36.1IP 37H 25BB 53K; 1.71 WHIP; 6.1BB/13.1K; 1.26 GO/AO; .262 opp. avg., .250 vs. LH, .269 vs. RH, .429 with RISP; 17.47 ERA post all star break.  Perez was absolutely awful the second half of the season and was designated for assignment off of the 40 man roster after the ‘Pigs last game.  2012: Gone. 

Chance Chapman, 27, Phils 8th round pick in 2007; 2-2 with a 5.29 ERA in 17 games; 32.1IP 37H 10Bb 27K; 1.45 WHIP; 2.7BB/7.5K; 1.00 GO/AO; .289 opp. avg., .333 vs. LH, .260 vs. RH, .222 with RISP. Chapman was injured quite a bit and unimpressive when healthy this year. 2012 is a real question mark as to whether he is back.  He hasn’t done anything to distinguish himself.

Joe Savery, 25, Phils 1st round pick in 2007; 5-0 with a 1.50 ERA in 25 games between Reading and Lehigh Valley; 2 saves; 25IP 23H 6BB 41K; 1.58 GO/AO; .246 opp. avg., .192 vs. LH, .286 vs. RH, .240 with RISP; 2.2BB/14.7K; 1.16 WHIP. The story is an incredible one and has been well documented so I won’t go into much more detail other than to say Savery was excellent.  I can’t believe I am saying this, but he likely will start the year in the Phils bullpen unless he has an awful Spring Training.

Reading

Mike Cisco, 24, Phils 36th round pick in 2008; 8-0 with a 1.59 ERA; 29 games; 3 saves; 62.1IP 39H 29BB 51K; 0.92 GO/AO; .182 opp. avg., 4.1BB/7.3K; 1.09 WHIP; .187 vs. LH, .179 vs. RH, .135 with RISP; 3-0 with a 1.26 ERA Post All Star. Cisco is one of those guys that doesn’t get much publicity but just gets outs, in just about every appearances.  His numbers are eye opening.  He must be protected on the Phils risk losing him in the Rule 5.  I doubt he gets protected and if he doesn’t get picked up, Lehigh Valley for 2012.

Jacob Diekman, 24, Phils 30th round pick in 2007; 0-1 with a 3.05 ERA; 3 saves; 65IP; 47H 44BB 83K; 3 HR allowed; 1.40 WHIP; 6.0BB/11.4K; .099 vs. LH, .262 vs. RH, .194 with RISP; 1.60 GO/AO; .199 opp. avg., 0-1 with a 1.95 ERA in 21 post all star appearances.  I think Diekman may very well have played himself onto the 40 man roster with his performance after May.  He is a side-arming lefty who is devastating against lefties.  With the trouble the Phils have had in that area, protecting him makes sense.  His control is what needs to be worked on in Lehigh Valley next season.

Jordan Ellis, 26, Phils 28th round pick in 2008; 2-1 with a 6.49 ERA in 25 games between Clearwater and Reading; 34.2IP 38H 18BB 42K; 1.61 WHIP; 4.6BB/10.9K; 1.31 GO/AO; .275 opp. avg., Ellis looked good at Clearwater before struggling at getting hurt in Reading, missing the second half of the season.  2012: Reading

Justin Friend, 25, Acquired in the 2010 Minor League Rule 5 draft; 55 games; 3-7 with a 2.75 ERA between Clearwater and Reading; 28 saves; 59.1IP 49H 16BB 61K; 1.73 GO/AO; .224 opp. avg., 1.09 WHIP; 2.4BB/9.3K; .208 vs. LH, .288 vs. RH. Friend made the Florida State League All Star team racking up saves and continued to pitch well in Reading, although with a few bumps in the road.  2012: Reading.

Chris Kissock, 26, Phils 9th round pick in 2007; 3-7 with a 4.82 ERA; 37 games (7 starts); 102.2IP 107H 25BB 69K; 1.28 WHIP; 2.2BB/6.0K; 0.93 GO/AO; .272 opp. avg., .276 vs. RH, .267 vs. LH, .302 with RISP; Kissock was awful as a starter early in the season and was moved back to the bullpen, predominately in long relief where he did a nice job.  2012: Lehigh Valley long man.

Derrick Loop, 27, Re-signed as a free agent prior to 2011 season; Clearwater: 2-1 with a 1.13 ERA in 27 games; 3 saves; 32IP 22H 16BB 30K; 1.19WHIP; 4.5BB/8.4K; 1.32 GO/AO; .202 opp. avg., Reading: 19 games; 1-3 with a 5.29 ERA; 34Ip 34H 15BB 32K; 4.0BB/8.9K; 1.44 WHIP; 1.68 Go/AO; .258 opp. avg. Loop fell off dramatically with his callip to Reading.  If will be back if the organization needs a middle innings guy at A/AA.

BJ Rosenberg, 26, Phils 13th round pick in 2008; 39 games (14 starts) ; 5-7 with a 4.28 ERA; 2 saves; 109.1IP 114H 38BB 103K; 11HR allowed; 1.10 GO/AO; .275 opp. avg; 1.39 WHIP; 3.1BB/8.4K; .266 vs. Lh, .285 vs. RH, .269 with RISP; 1-3 with a 2.27 ERA as a reliever. The Phils have bounced Rosenberg around like a ping pong ball, changing roles often. Rosenberg has talent and seemed to settle back in as a back end of the bullpen guy at the end of the year.  A 40 man roster decision must be made on Rosenberg, who should be in lehigh Valley next year.

Les Walrond, 34, Signed as a free agent during 2011 season; 4-2 with a 1.80 ERA in 33 games between Reading and Lehigh Valley; 3 saves; 45IP 34H 22BB 47K; 1.24 WHIP; 4.4BB/9.4K; 1.30 GO/AO; .210 opp. avg., Walrond was very effective for both the RPhils and the ‘Pigs after being picked up out of the Independent League mid-season.  Walrond can be an effective part at this level but his major league chances are most likely behind him.

Clearwater

Jordan Whatcott, 26, Signed as a free agent in 2010; 45 games; 4-1 with a 2.57 ERA; 11 saves; 63IP 61H 18BB 46K; 1.93 GO/AO; .266 opp. avg., .320 vs. LH, .225 vs. RH, .203 with RISP; 1.25 WHIP; 2.5BB/6.5K; Whatcott was both very good and durable in the role given to him. 2012: Reading.

Ebelin Lugo, 21, Signed as a free agent in 2007; 41 games, 2-6 with a 4.66 ERA between Lakewood and Clearwater; 3 saves; 63.2IP 72H 13BB 51K; 10HR allowed; 1.33 WHIP; 1.8BB/7.2K; A disappointing year for Lugo who will be entering his 6th year in the organization in 2012. I would imagine that he is back in Clearwater to start 2012.

Eric Pettis, 23, Phils 35th round pick in 2010; 47 games between Lakewood and CLearwater; 2-3 with a 2.84 ERA; 5 saves; 69.2IP 59H 16BB 55K; 1.07 WHIP; 2.0BB/7.1K; 1.24 GO/AO; .230 opp. avg., .261 vs. LH, .228 vs. RH, .361 with RISP.  Pettis dominated Lakewood and then was good in Clearwater,although with very troubling numbers with RISP. He slowed significantly in the second half of the year as the innings wore on.  Still, good enough for Reading in 2012.

Andy Loomis, 25, Signed as a free agent during 2011 season; 24 games; 1-2 with a 1.14 ERA 3 saves; 31.2IP 27H 10BB 39K; 1.16 GO/AO; .231 opp. avg., 1.16 WHIP; 2.8BB/11.0K; .186 vs. LH, .278 vs. RH, .229 with RISP.  Loomis, originally a Marlins draft pick in 2008 (Purdue) pitched very well for the Threshers.  I would like to see him back, and in Reading in 2012.

Juan Sosa, 21, Signed as a free agent in 2007; 47 games between Lakewood and CLearwater; 4-2 with a 3.63 ERA; 72IP 59H 24BB 61K; 1.13 GO/AO; .228 opp. avg; 1.15 WHIP; 3.0BB/7.3K; Sosa actually threw better in Clearwater then he did for Lakewood this year.  Look for Sosa to start in Clearwater but a quick move to Reading isn’t out of the realm of possibility.

Tommy Palica, 24, Signed as a free agent during 2011 season; 1-1 with a 7.66 ERA in 14 games.  Not really much more to say.

85 thoughts on “Around the System–Bullpen, Top Half

  1. I like the overall results that Schwimer has achieved this season, but boy does his GO/AO ratio look bad compared to just about every reliever on this list. That doesn’t translate well to CBP. I suspect that he needs to make an adjustment to address this. This and the issue of getting lefties out make him a long shot to start the season in the Phillies pen. Just about everything else about his stats, from the Ks to the oba looks very good.

    Quite a number of interesting relievers in the upper reaches of the farm. Hopefully they will get a shot at holding down multiple bullpen spots next season, so that RA can spend a chunk of his normal BP budget on a 3B.

    1. Another year of Polanco – no 3B will be signed. They’ll sign a lefty hitting bench guy and a closer, if not Madson.

  2. A really nice summary.

    I like the overall results that Schwimer has achieved this season, but boy does his GO/AO ratio look bad compared to just about every reliever on this list. That doesn’t translate well to CBP. I suspect that he needs to make an adjustment to address this. This and the issue of getting lefties out make him a long shot to start the season in the Phillies pen. Just about everything else about his stats, from the Ks to the oba looks very good.

    Quite a number of interesting relievers in the upper reaches of the farm. Hopefully they will get a shot at holding down multiple bullpen spots next season, so that RA can spend a chunk of his normal BP budget on a 3B.

    1. There’s more important things to worry about than signing a Third Baseman. The ones that are out there aren’t great.

      Besides there isn’t any money if they sign Jimmy… unless Galvis takes over for him.

      1. Well … I tend to agree about available third basemen. And I also think that the kind of money they would save on the back end of the bull pen by promoting from with the system, as opposed to a typical non-closer FA reliever, won’t buy us a decent third baseman. So basically you’re right and Allentown is wrong.

        But that said, if they don’t sign Madson or a FA closer, that would likely leave them with about 10 million spare payroll that could be spent on a third baseman. But I don’t think they will do that – especially given Bastardo’s late season issues – and if they did, I’m not sure there is anyone out there who would be worth signing. (Wow, I checked, the FA class is even worse than I thought.)

        1. I see them Bringing Lidge back on a cheap Danys Baez/Jose Contreras type deal. Can’t hurt to have a veteran arm in the back end.

          I think Madson/Papelbon would be the best fits at the back end.

          I see the bullpen shaking out this way:
          Closer (Madson/Papelbon/other)
          Set Up (Lidge (who I see coming back on a cheap 1 year deal) and Bastardo)
          Middle Reliever (Defratus, Stutes, Worley/Blanton, Savery)

          Starting Rotation
          Roy Halladay
          Cliff Lee
          Cole Hamels
          Roy Oswalt (I think signs a cheap 2 year deal ala Chris Carpenter)
          Worley/Blanton (I think is a competition out of Spring Training).

          I think Kendrick gets non-tendered to free up money. He could get a significant raise this year in arbitration.

          1. I also think Oswalt will sign a cheap free agent deal… but it will be with the Cardinals.
            When was the last time a team declined a players’ option, paid them 2 million, then offered arbitration, then worked out a deal for a fraction of what the player would get in arbitration? It’s not going to happen.

            1. The last time that happened? Chris Carpenter this year.

              What you’re saying makes no sense… The Phillies wouldn’t offer Oswalt arbitration… They’d end up paying him at least $18 million dollars because he’d accept the offer.

              Oswalt wants to pitch in Philadelphia on this staff.

            2. I think he was referring to the Chris Carpenter deal where Carpenter had one option year remaining on his contract, signed an extension for a second year with a lower salary for the first year but gets more money over the two years than he would have just finishing up the contract. In Oswalts case, he has one option year at $16M. If he decides he would like to pitch more than next year or he’s not sure but wants to help out the club by essentially restructuring his contract for say $10M next year with another option year at $12M with a $6M buyout. At the end of next season, he will pocket the same amount of money if he decides to walk away. If he decides to pitch one more year, he gets $6M for his trouble.

          2. You forgot Contreras, who is under contract, which would make Lidge somewhat redundant. I could, honestly, see the Bullpen with Contreras as “Closer” with Bastardo, Stutes, Schwimer, Savery, Carpenter (as long man).

            I think it’s unlikely Oswalt doesn’t retire (especially if there is a title this year), which would put both Blanton and Worley in the Rotation. I agree on KK.

            1. Contreras is still hurt, needs surgery probably and is very old. There is a zero % chance they go into next season with him as the closer. Carpenter is in another organization and wouldn’t make the team if he was here. As it relates to the minor leaguers, I think DeFratus has a real shot to make the team with a good ST and Aumont will get a long look as well. Savery is the miracle story but everyonre will be looking to see how hard he throws in ST since he hasn’t thrown this hard in some time. I don’t think he’ll make the club initially but he could be an early call up. I actually think Cisco is a guy that could surprise next year. He’s born to be a major league middle inning guy who throws stikes and knows how to pitch. Its also not impossible that Tyler Cloyd could find himself in a major league bullpen next year at some point. I don’t know if he has enough to be a starter in the big leagues but he’s another strike thrower who knows how to pitch.

            2. Oswalt has said he doesn’t want to retire.

              Jose Contreras is under contract but he may not be healthy enough to contribute. If he does come back, I think he’d get the nod over DeFratus.

          3. The disrespect for Kendrick on the part of so many Phillies fans is downright startling–and depressing. Not to mention more than a touch disgusting.

            The guy is only 26. He has been a consistent winner. He is coming off an excellent year, performing in an exceedingly difficult role as a long/middle reliever and an occasional starter (and in this role he has a quality start on almost every appearance). He had an ERA barely over three runs a game; in relief he allowed few inherited base runners to score; and he even got a number of meaningful hits (my guess is that his BA was better than Schneider, Martinez, Orr, maybe Francisco or Valdez or close).

            You want an eye-opener. Check his won-lost record against that of the highly touted Clay Buchholz of the Red Sox, who came up to the majors at the same time.

            Kendrick isn’t going anywhere. Thankfully Amaro knows his ball club better than the fans who think sabremetrics is some kind of a bible, rather than some/mostly useful statistical generalizations that need always to be considered within the context of the specific performance of the player being compared to the generalities.

            Not really at all sorry to be scornful of those who babble endlessly about peripherals and either haven’t bothered to examine or can’t grasp the improvement over the years (but expecially this season) of Kendrick against LH hitters, Ks in key moments, etc.

            1. I feel your pain…..KK is eveything you say and more…..but he will command $4/5M per, and he will want at least 3 yrs. It will be hard for RAJ to justify paying that much money for guy who will be a long relief/occasional starter. This year the rain canx were above the normal, with the need for more doubleheaders, thus he was exceptional in that role..

            2. Touting his batting success is kind of silly. He had 5 hits this year, one of which came in a run producing effort. Not to belittle that, but no one is going to take Kendrick’s .208 batting average either for or against him. It’s largely irrelevant.

              Pitchers like Kendrick with low K rates are always walking a tightrope. They survive by throwing strikes, keeping the ball down and depending on good defense. But they frequently bomb, as we have seen with Chien Ming Wang and Carlos Silva, among others. Perhaps Kendrick can continue to buck the odds, but the ultimate upside for his type is Kirk Reuter. Nice pitcher to have if you need innings, but hardly someone you’re going to put on the team billboard.

            3. …yes realize he is only ‘entitled’ to the one year tendering…..but Ruben has proved on occasions in the past to ‘take care’ of his good soldiers. And have to admit….KK has been a good soldier from the beginning. But he still could command $4/5M per, which you may feel is not entirely large amount, but you still have Hamels amd Madson to deal with next. The starting pitching staff alone, without Oswalt, or KK in the mix—i.e RoyH, CliffL, ColeH, JoeB. —could exact a salary committment of at least $65M.

            4. His Win/Loss record is the result of high run support. Swap Him and Cole Hamels’s run support since 2008 and it’s a different story.

              I’m a Kyle Kendrick fan. I like him as a swingman 6th/7th starter type. I think he’s done a great job.

            5. No question that Kendrick has gotten the job done this year. The question is, will he be worth the likely 4 million plus he will get in arbitration next year? If he repeated his success this year, then yes. I don’t think he will. I won’t get into all of the reasons why, as I’m not going to convince someone who apparently rejects out of hand the many useful insights that modern statistical analysis has given us.

              But I will say this: it’s pretty much impossible for a pitcher whose career K/9 is a low as Kendrick’s to have any kind of long term success. You have to go back more than 20 years, when K rates overall were lower, to find a pitcher with long term success with a K rate that low.

              That said, Kendrick has legitimately improved a bit this season. Among other things, his K/9 is up to 4.59. That’s still low, but if he can sustain that, he will have a decent career as a long man/spot starter. And he may well manage that – certainly he deserves a shot at it. But he won’t sustain an ERA under 4.00, and IMO he won’t be worth what he will likely get in arbitration. There is a real irony in that statistical analysis is in accord with what one might call conventional baseball wisdom here. There has always been a very justified preference for hard throwers. There have been some exceptions to this – especially for extreme ground ball pitchers. But Kendrick isn’t that, either.

              Now all THAT said, I think the Phillies will offer him arbitration and I’m okay with that. He has improved, he isn’t horrible. He will likely fill his current role with an ERA a little over 4.00, maybe a little higher. At the end of the day, spending (say) 4 million on a guy like that, with a payroll over 160 million, is … not ideal, but hardly a mistake of major proportions.

            6. And of the things that you think statistically inclined people ignore:

              (1) The improvement against LH hitters is real, and not something that statistically minded observers would ignore. We might quibble a little about sample size., but he does seem legitimately better against LH hitters.

              (2) Strike outs in key situations – his overall K rate is up, which may be sustainable and, if so, as I said will sustain a major league career for him. But situational pitching … is not a “skill” that a pitcher has or develops and is not sustainable year to year. The evidence on this point is overwelming. The fact that his ERA success this year was built (in part) on unstatainable success with runner on base is one of the reasons why his ERA will regress to his career norms.

              (3) Win-loss % – one of the areas (like recognition of the importance of OBP) where the modern statistical revolution has become the conventional baseball wisdom because of overwelming evidence. Kendrick’s W/L % is mainly a function of run support, wih some good fortune thrown in.

              (4) Your comments about his hitting have been refuted; you are REALLY reaching on that one.

              (5) His ERA this year was quite good. Say what you will about relying on peripherals, but the evidence is overwelming that, for most pitchers, peripherals are much better predictors of future ERA than is ERA itself. There ARE a few pitchers who can sustain an ERA below that predicted by their peripherals, but (a) Kendrick has not, before this year, been one of those pitchers, and (b) the pitchers who do this tend to be pitchers who have high GB rates and/or high IF fly ball rates. Kendrick is about average in both respects.

              None of which makes him a useless pitcher. It makes him someone who is likely to be somewhat overpaid in arbitration.

            7. Everyone’s really said it all above. But, his improved K rate would make him useful at something just shy of $3MM, probably. I used to joke that the Phils better hope he didn’t sign his name that day or he’d already used up his 3 K’s, if he can maintain 5 K’s he’d be useful, but let’s not get carried away and pretend he’s a legitimate #4 starter or something. Not for a playoff team, anyway.

        2. Aramis Ramirez is the most interesting of the FA class at 3B, and a significant drop off after him. Cuddyer is a name I like but he couldn’t be more than a stopgap at 3b.

          I wouldn’t say that there is a right or a wrong here, but I would agree that we need a back of the bullpen type guy. Boras might prove otherwise, but Madson should be able to be had for well less than 10mm per

          1. I think we have to think young at 3rd if we are going to spend prospects. FAs suck since they can become bad apples you can’t get rid of.

        3. I’m not so sure of that. We are paying Lidge $11.5 mill this year and Madson $4.5 mill. I don’t think adding kids to the pen is an issue of filling out the rear seats. The question is, whether they bring a closer and/or setup guy, who can close. To bring in a guy like Contreras was $2.5 mill, and that is the low end of cost for a vet. On the other hand, if they jettison Lidge, bring back Madson to close at say $9 mill, then they save $7 mill this year. Stutes and Bastardo get to be your 7th/8th inning guys and the kids, fill out the pen. The Phillies could go all out and let Stutes and Bastardo, along with a possibly healthy Contreras, compete to close. Then Herndon, Aumont, Schwimer, DeFratus, Savery, Kendrick compete to fill out the pen. You’ve then saved $16 mill in bullpen costs, which can go toward a 3B or SS, either a FA or via trade. Might even be a ready-to-go Japanese or Cuban pro.

  3. I would have liked to see Phillipe Aumount to get an audition as he has the highest potential of all the young relievers.

    1. I would’ve given him a shot over Schwimer. Aumont may be raw but he has the stuff to just blow people away. I think he could have been solid, but the Phillies know a lot more than me. (not being sarcastic, they do).

    2. Why start his clock and use an option? As Handzus says, he is the rawest of the AAA bullpen guys they could have called up, so I don’t see much benefit in adding him to the 40 man this season.

      1. Are you sure a player uses an option when ge is called up in September? I don’t believe that is correct.

        1. You’re right. Brain fart for me there.

          I still wouldn’t have called him up, as I’d like to see him get his control on track before calling him up. I would like to see him get work in AFL instead where he could get regular innings instead of the big club where he’d probably just get a couple innings.

        2. Players do not use an option when they are called up. They use an option when they are not on the 25-man roster. Only 1 option is used in a season and it is used any time a guy on the 40-man roster is not on the 25-man roster any time during the course of the season, except for injury rehab.

  4. Aumont still has time. And considering he’s still got some rawness to his game I think they did the right thing by keeping him in AAA. He’s on track to make his debut sometime next year.

  5. As impressive as Aumont’s strikeouts are at the AAA level (14.7 per nine innings), 5.5 walks per 9 innings is too much. I agree that he needs more seasoning to get better command of his pitches.

    1. Stutes walked guys last year, without the amount of strikeouts Aumont had, and he almost made the team out if spring training. Aumont has to be protected this year on the 40 man, if he shows anything in spring training he will be on the team by June, if not right out of spring.

  6. Understand, Notre Dame Fightin Irish 24-year old Jeremy Barnes, underwent surgery last week to repair an abdominal tear and a tear in his left groin. Barnes will be ready for baseball action in time for the start of spring training next year. He spent the majority of last off-season in the Philadelphia area training locally at Power Train Sports Institute, with Raul Ibanez..

    1. Good info. I like him for a solid utility guy who gets base hits and doubles, a few dingers per year, sure-handed fielding at 2B/3B. It’ll be good to see him healthy next year. Do you know when he got injured?

  7. I really really really really hope Justin Friend makes the majors for some team, some day, if only for the incredible Biz Markie parodies.

    1. The Phillies have told Savery, DeFrantus, and Brown that they are not on the post-season roster however they are sending them to Clearwater in case something comes up.

      1. Those are decent options in the event of injury. I liked the demeanor and stuff of both Savery and DeFratus in their outings.

  8. Lets hope Bastardo recovers his form. But the lastest Phillies BS is that he might be tipping his pitches, It is almost clear that his troubles started on Sept 3 pitching his third game in a row.
    I am more than slightly POed that the Phillies ALWAYS excuse their own STUPID mistakes and put it on the player.
    Swimmer seems to be getting it lately. His KO of Prince Fielder (Sept 11) was a thing of beauty and showed he can retire LHB in the future.

    1. Only 1 thing I don’t understand though? Why didn’t the three games he pitched in a row on May 23-25th, or on June 9-11th, or July 30-Aug 1st, or Aug 17-19th cause the same problem?

      1. dead arm perhaps…..60plus games…most he has ever appeared in. Innings at 55plus is pretty normal for a reliever of his ilk.

        1. I doubt it’s a dead arm seeing as Bastardo was a SP for longer than he’s been a RP and he has twice thrown over 90+ innings in a season.

      2. Because it didn’t. We are not dealing with machine. If you want to be a smart ass they me why it was necessary for AB to pitch in that game. Or do you believe that was the day they started stealing signs. Baseball management has been covering their asses with BS forever AND YOU KNOW IT

        1. This is more than a little extreme. This happens on every team and, yes, generally, management does not take the blame. Welcome to corporate America. Nonetheless, the team seems generally to be self-effacing when they mess up and, for instance, took the blame for jerking Dom Brown around. By and large, however, you get the overall sense that the team tries to be fair to its players and the players are generally loyal in return. The team also does not ruin arms they way it once did when Francona and Fregosi would ride their starting pitchers until their arms’ fell off.

          1. If you want to see how a team can rally blow out arms, take a look at what the Braves have done with their three bullpen arms.

            1. I agree, Gonzalez has abused both Venters and Kimbrel. Even some fans on their sites have been grumbling about it.

              It will be interesting to see how then perform over the next couple of years.

        2. Maybe because he was available? The problem nowheels is that you act as if the Phillies are doing something different than every other team in the league. Part of being in the bullpen means that a pitcher’s work is going to be sporatic. They may not pitch for several days followed by pitching in 3 straight. That’s how it works for ever team in the league.

          Instead you make up all of these conspiracy theories of how the team is trying to hurt this guy, doesn’t want Happ or Worley to succeed, etc. That is what is the BS my friend.

          As for the tipping of pitches, I doubt he’s tipping pitches. From what I’ve seen, Bastardo has been struggling with his control and he’s rolling over his breaking ball. Maybe that’s because of the number of innings he’s thrown this year (which isn’t excessive) or maybe he’s just going through a dead-arm period that most pitchers get during a long season.

          I’m guessing Dubee is throwing that out there as a ploy to give Bastardo some confidence that things will be back to normal once they ‘fix’ it. Since they have no other options this late in the season, they’ve got little choice but to hope he figures it out quickly.

          Truth is, the Phillies have no need to cover their asses since no one other than a few internet posters are accusing them of anything “to” Bastardo but they do have every reason to do everything in their power to help him succeed. Not every situation can be explained by claiming “the man” is trying to get one over of the little guy.

          1. “tipping pitches’—Ricky Bo said that is bull…..they all knew what he was going to throw….good located pitches ovrercome the tipping aspect. He thinks that is an overblown subject…….interestying.

            1. have to disagree with Ricky Bo on that one and not sure I’d use his career as an example of how it doesn’t matter if a hitter know’s it coming. Now if his name was Mariano rather than Ricky Bo, he might have a point.

              But in general, if a ML hitter know’s a particular pitch is coming, they will be much more likely to hit it. Otherwise, teams wouldn’y waste so much time giving signals, stealing signs, etc.

  9. I’m not sure how De Fratus’ year can be described as “outstanding”, while Aumont’s performance is described as being his own worst enemy . Aumont clearly outperformed De Fratus this year. ERA, Ks, GO/A/O. De Fratus’ 3.72 ERA for a AAA Closer isn’t good, and shouldn’t make him a front runner for a bullpen spot next year.

    1. DeFratus struggled at first but was lights out at the end of the year. And aumont had a lot of walks and wild pitches which is why he is his own worst enemy

    2. DeFratus is by far the more advanced pitcher. All u need to do is look at the situations DeFratus was used in by RYne Sandberg during the years last month. DeFratus was the closer and Aumont was the set up man, who struggled with his command a good deal of the time.

  10. Gregg, thanks for the write-up and all the things you do for this site. I especially love the little typo on Ellis: “Ellis looked good at Clearwater before struggling at getting hurt in Reading, missing the second half of the season. ” There are so many players who don’t have to struggle at all to get hurt. Had a nice laugh on that.

    I think there are going to be a lot of prospects vying for those last bullpen spots. It will be fun seeing some of these guys, that we’ve watched for years in the minors, get their shot.

  11. Preliminary Prospect Lists:

    RIGHT HANDED RELIEVERS
    1. Phillippe Aumont
    2. Justin DeFratus
    3. Michael Schwimer
    4. J.C. Ramirez
    5. Scott Mathieson

    LEFT HANDED RELIEVERS
    1. Joe Savery
    2. Bryan Morgado
    3. Jacob Diekman
    4. Austin Brough
    5. Jay Johnson

    1. I like Alan. But would lean towards De Fratus for the no. 1 righty. Some exciting BP arms already in the mix for 2012. Can’t wait to see how it plays out

      1. Agree. Alan has a good list, but I’d swap Aumont and DeFratus. For this coming ST, JD has a much better chance of bringing very good stuff and command to the mound in the majors. Aumont may have a slight edge in stuff. I say slight because I think JD’s stuff turned a half-notch down this year. Could come back to his electric 2010 stuff next spring, who knows. But his stuff has still been very good and I can visualize him coming in with his plus control and controlling the AB. It’s much easier to see Aumont losing his command and possibly composure. Not saying he can’t overcome it, just that it could take time and there is more risk there.

    2. Mathieson’s days of being a prospect are long done.

      The Phillies would be doing him a favor by releasing him so that he could get a AAA job elsewhere with an organization that will use him properly and give him an actual chance at a major league job in a defined role.

  12. I’ve been impressed by Joe Savery. He’s shown a nice 89-92 mph fastball, a decent breaking ball, the ability to throw strikes. He should have at the least a solid career as the #2 lefty behind Bastardo.

  13. RH:
    1. Aumont
    2. De Fratus
    3. Ramirez
    4. Schwimer
    5. Sosa

    Re LH’s: Rooting for the Canadian guy, Johnson. Think that Morgado and Austin Wright were drafted to be relievers, so I would put Austin Wright above Savery.

      1. You are right. I shouldn’t assume Austin Wright as a reliever until he is actually relieving, especially at this early level. He has time to improve his command and develope a 3rd pitch, to stay as a starter.
        It is seems a pretty safe bet that Ramirez will be a reliever when/if he makes it though. Two pitches, can’t maintain command on his breaking pitch, but good stuff in short stints.

        1. Early scouting report on Wright, circa 2010:
          ……..’6’4 lefty, low 90s, good spin on CB, maintains velocity, good arm action, 93 in Cincy, outstanding at Aflac and PG WWBA Jupiter’

    1. If A,.Wright was drafted as a reliever, why did they start him in 14 of 15 games right out of the shoot in WLM and LKW! He started in his last college season also. He may end up as a reliever, but it will only be after if he fails to become the starter he began his professional career at.

        1. That’s common practice. Keep a couple players around in case of debilitating injuries on the main roster. Marson and Golson worked out with the Phillies in 2008 even though they weren’t candidates for the roster.

  14. Joe Savery’s story has been great this year. He is looking confident out there. Do have to agree with MattWinks regarding Bastardo. His slider was having a little more break but the key right now is his fastball. He was throwing it around 95 a couple time and on the hands.

  15. Savory needs to be on the playoff roster. No need for Worely/Kendrick/Herndon. Great outing tonight. He’s our LOOGY.

  16. Why no love for Frenchie? He will be on Phils roster opening day next year…

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