General Discussion – Week of December 3 “Why Are They Called The Winter Meetings When It’s Still Fall” Edition

Here is your weekly general discussion.  I think Matt has a Rule 5 preview coming up, also, but here’s a fresh thread for the Winter Meetings conversation and beyond.

564 thoughts on “General Discussion – Week of December 3 “Why Are They Called The Winter Meetings When It’s Still Fall” Edition

    1. Um, you know what’s more infuriating? Vance Worley and Trevor May for Ben f$%@!& Revere

    1. I think they would be looking at him as a bench bat, a possible alternative to Nix if they are willing to part with that salary. I think Amaro has a good working relationship with Ibanez and touched base. If they do sign him, file it under the Jim Thome slot in the line up.

      1. I think its just the agent using the Phls’ name trying to help Ibanez get a better deal from someone else. The Phils owe Ibanez for their handshake deal last year that got the Phils a draft pick when he turned down their arb offer. He won’t be back…

  1. Jayson Stark was on with Mikey Miss today. Some highlights:

    He says the Phillies are “resigned” to the fact they have to trade for a Center Fielder he mentions:

    Peter Bourjos (would love a Worley + for Bourjos deal) (Stark believes he IS available)
    Dexter Fowler (I’m a fan, most of you aren’t) – not available for what the Phillies have to trade

    They’ve shown a willingness to include Tommy Joseph or Sebastian Valle (Valle is preferred) and their young starters.

    They’ve talked to the agents to mid tier pitchers and have talked about adding a starter if they traded Worley.

    Less than 30% chance they sign Bourn, less than 10% chance they sign Hamilton, they’re “AWFULLY wary of Hamilton’s baggage.

    They’re coveting infield defense at third base (so no Mark Reynolds).

    Believes odds of trading Jacoby Ellsbury are low but the Red Sox would take a call from the Phillies. Believes the Yankees are shopping Curtis Granderson.

    Cody Ross is an easier fit for the Phillies. Asking price is 3 years $21 million, Phillies are interested.

    The Phillies/Diamondbacks Upton/Lee was discussed in some capacity but never got far enough to be a legit rumor. Have NO intentions of trading Cliff Lee.

    1. “Have NO intentions of trading Cliff Lee.” Which is exactly what I wanted to hear.

      If we can get Bourjos for a package centered around Worley, pull the trigger. Ideally we’d get Anibal or Greinke to take his spot, but realistically we could just roll with Cloyd/Pettibone, or sign any of a number of starters to a short-term deal.

      As for Joseph being available… I don’t like that. I’d tell everyone that he’s untouchable just so teams wouldn’t be demanding him instead of Valle.

  2. So Bourn < 30%, Hamilton < 10%. Wonder what he would handicap the percentage for Youkilis, Ross and Swisher.

  3. It is meteorolgical winter already. It may come down to Bourn. From the report, it sounds like Stark expects Bourjos.

    1. In a baseball calendar anytime after the World Series and up to the reporting of Pitchers and Catchers in February is considered winter. A true Chekhov winter; a winter bleak and dark and bereft of hope. But when P&Cs start up in February, then Spring is sprung. Summer starts with Opening Day in April. The baseball calendar is like no other.

  4. According to several sites, Angels are about to sign Blanton. I wonder if that closes the door on a potential Worley+ for Bourjos deal.

    1. That ain’t good news. Hope Rube can pull the trigger soon. Salisbury says Pettibone could be looked at as a replacement for Worley if Worley is indeed traded.

    2. $15 million over two years for a truly replacement level player – it is good that we have stockpiled young starters in the minors.

  5. I’m a big fan of a Worley, May + for Josh Willingham. The Twins front office is absolutely delusional though when it comes to the thought of rebuilding so who knows if he’s available or not.

    Apparently Revere’s available but I don’t know if he’s a fit. He’s a good young player but he his power’s non-existant, even less than Juan Pierre possibly.

    1. Now that the Red Sox have filled their outfield, I think the Phils should sign Cody Ross for the same money Willingham is making and keep Worley and May. Ross gives you a backup in center field whereas Wilingham is pretty much a left fielder only and therefore blocks Ruf.

      The Dodgers are not only spending money like sailors on shore leave but filling up their 40 man roster. Two names of interest are outfielders Yasiel Puig and Alex Cabrera, both good young right hand bats. The Dodgers may need one until Crawford is cleared
      to go but that leaves one. Cabrera is further along in development terms but Puig is the guy I would love to see in candy stripes. Problem is the Dodgers paid $6 M to sign the guy but maybe that just means cash from the petty cash drawer the way they’re fixed these days.

      1. I’d trade Ruf at that point. Maybe include him in a deal for a back end starter if they have to trade Worley (Houston needs a DH).

      2. To be clear, Cody Ross can’t hit like Willingham. He’s a little better defensively but doesn’t match up offensively and it would be 2 years vs 3. I’d probably go with Ross and keeping the prospects also though.

        1. I agree that Ross isn’t the hitter that Willingham is but he is a much better fielder. Not that Ross is a great fielder but Willingham is bad. Ross also provides positional flexibility which is great. If we get Willingham Ruf gets no shot, which maybe fine since WIllingham is a much better at this point but I’d rather go Ross and keep the prospects as well.

  6. We need a CF more than anything else. We can get by at the start of the season with what we have at the corners and see where that goes. It is far easier to get a corner than CF.

  7. At some point I hope the Phils realize that strengthing the pen is the #1 action item this offseason, the way the game is played today the pen is as important as the starting staff. I like the young arms in the pen and believe signing an established set up man e.g., Adams would be terrific. IMO we make the playoffs last year despite all the other issues if the pen was good, must have cost us 20-25 games. I know it is not as sexy as a CF/3B/COF but…

  8. I’m not sure I buy those odds for Bourn. I think they’re a lot more interested in him than what’s been being reported to the media. Ruben’s talking to Boras about price right now so that’s something that could develop quickly. I’d doubt he wants to play in Seattle unless he gets overpaid.

    I could easily see Bourn playing Center Field for us next year if Scott Boras comes off his $90+ million contract for Bourn… which is going to happen at some point.

    1. Not to mention Charlie Manuel’s pretty much come out and said he wants Ruben to sign Bourn.

    2. I agree, its all about negotiating rhetoric at this point. Does Bourn really want to play in Seattle? no way…

  9. Ichiro’s apparently told the Phillies he can play Center Field and is confident in his ability to do so. I wouldn’t be upset if that happened and they used their resources to sure up Left Field and Third Base with Youkilis and Willingham/Ross.

    1. From Jim Salisbury’s latest Winter Meetings Report. He also says they’ve targeted Willingham and they’d like to sign Kevin Youkilis (in the related video, he says they’d like to stick to a 1-2 year deal).

      Now that’s a solid veteran line up

      Mayberry/Brown/Ruf/Nix rotation in Right

      on opening day. Shift Brown/Mayberry to the 8th spot in the line up when Ruiz gets back, I like the look of that offense. Maybe flip flop Rollins and Ichiro although I like Ichiro as a guy who can pull a ball through the hole in right.

      1. With the age of this lineup, what would be the over/under on the number of games this entire lineup played together? You can substitute Chooch with Kratz too. I would guess less than 50…

  10. I would rather not pursue Willingham or Cuddyer. Both are really awful defensive OFs who are entering their mid-30s. Maybe if they were free agents but why give up anything of value for them, especially when you have Ruf, who’ll be making the minimum next year? They seem like the type of players we should be avoiding.

  11. I don’t know why we’re not in on Ludwick. Sounded like he’s fine with a 2 year deal. Could be a nice bargain.

    1. I don’t know if people are excited, but he’s probably the best of a poor group at 3B. He’s going to be relatively cheap. You’re paying for last year’s production, but there’s a chance he rebounds to his 2008-2010 levels and then you’ve got a very valuable player. Most likely he hits like he did in 2011 and spends misses about 30 games, which makes him a modest bargain.

    2. where would that .336 OBP rank for the Phillies starters? I doubt he hits .235 again. But guarantee he will not play 150+ games though. I really like risk option for Youkilis and Phillies have to be closer to the playoff than the Indians right?

    3. No excited per se but he at least brngs fire and knows how to take a pitch and take a walk which are all qualities this team could use. He wants to win.

  12. Pettibone’s from the Anaheim area so he could be what the Angels would prefer. Especially if they fill up their rotation with the Hansons and Blantons. He could start the year in AAA as insurance for the inevitable injury or underperformance. I’d actually hate to lose him as I think he’s going to be much better than people seem to believe.

    If the market shrinks on Bourn enough, I wonder if the Phillies could get him on a shorter term deal, as long as they beat the average annual salary of Upton. That way Boras could claim it as a victory of sorts. Something along the lines of 3 years at 50 mil. I know he’ll probably find some sucker to overpay, but for a guy in his 30’s who makes his living with his legs, has no power and doesn’t have that great an OBP, I don’t think that’s an unreasonable deal.

  13. Boujos appears very similar to Bourn. Great D, no walks, lots of Ks. He has less speed and more power. I definitely do not want to give up too much for him, especially with Gillies and Collier in the wings.
    Willingham had much better OBP than Ross. In retrospect, he would have been a better choice than Pence. Only reason I would not like him is that he will block Ruf (who I think is really a bench guy anyway).

  14. What about Jacoby Ellsbury? Something along the line of letting red sox pick 3 of these 4 players.
    Worley, May, Valle, and Gillies and 1 of these 4 players JC Ramirez, BJ Rosenberg, Michael Schwimer, Tyler Cloud. I think that can get it done.

    1. I don’t like including Gillies on a Ellsbury deal. We would only have one year of control of Ellsbury and then you would have to resign him for a contract similar to what Bourn is going to get (and he’d be the same age as Bourn is this year), replace him (with Gillies if he’s ready) or go through this whole CF drama next year. Plus if you resigned Ellsbury to the four years that Bourn is likely to get this year you block guys like Collier, Tocci (I have high hopes for him and hope the Phillies fast track him) or Quinn (if he is forced to move to CF) for an extra year. I’d rather sign Bourne this year. and save the prospects.

  15. The Michael Young rumors are going strong. That’s just rank stupidity. Paying money for a player who costs you wins. Someone should give the Phils front office the web addresses for Fangraphs and baseball reference. This makes me irate.

      1. What’s infuriating is that sucking at baseball is not something that should require sabermetrics to detect. If you can’t tell that someone is terrible without looking at advanced stats, fire your scouts.

      2. Actually Amaro said last year they do review metrics…part of the overall decision making process.

        1. He said that but he said he goes with what the scouts see more often than not. Advanced Metrics are used to gauge other team’s perceptions of players.

  16. Ok, so this morning it looks like Michael Young could be a real possibility. Ben Revere could be another. Cody Ross another.


    Not to bad, even without Ross, play Ruiz 6th, Ruf 7, Brown 8?

    1. Actually this is a very uninspired Line-Up…sorry! Not to mention Revere is a true lead off hitter why would they hit him 2nd.

      1. Because Rollins is a baby and will pout if he isn’t hitting leadoff.

        I prefer a better 5 hole hitter than Young but it doesn’t sound as if that is going to happen. (I like Swisher) Anyway, I think that lineup is pretty solid.

  17. My question on michael young is at his age, can he field the position?? is he a upgrade over galvis and fransen? havent seen a lot of young, dont watch american league. cause i hate the dh rule.

    1. Okay, let’s put this in perspective. Last year, IN THE FIELD ALONE, Young cost his team between 2 and 3 games. That’s almost unheard of. So, if you get Young and put him at third, you are going to be paying him a lot of money for the privilege of having him LOSE games for you. The team should have signed Chavez or Youkilis if they were going in this direction and would be far, far better off just going with Frandsen and Galvis at third. Much cheaper and much better. When your front office can’t distinguish *hit from shinola, you’ve got a serious problem.

      1. And, by the way, for good measure, he also cost his team a game at the plate. I can see the Phillies saying that they expect him to bounce back, but the problem with that is that he is old and, at least as far as defense is concerned, I don’t see how you get faster, quicker or any better with age. I realize this is a one year move if it’s made, but it is truly among the most stupid things Amaro will have done, primarily because it deprives the team of money needed to make other moves and it takes playing time away from more productive players, which is saying something when the alternatives are Frandesen and Galvis. Dumb, dumb, dumb.

        1. Michael Young may be the best short term option until Cody Asche probably starts for us at 3B next year.

      2. I guess you don’t believe in bounce backs? Scutaro cost the Colardo Rockies wins and then helped the Giants win a WS.

        It’s a one year deal. One year. Scutaro and Keppinger (similar players) cost teams 3 years on a new deal.


        1. As DMAR notes, Young is owed $16 million by the Rangers. And despite any hitting stats Young has almost always been terrible in the field.

          1. Supposedly, Rangers will pick up at least half of Young’s salary. Of course, that shows how badly they want him out of there.

        2. If Young was an acceptable defensive player then this might make some sense. But his main problems are on defense and his consistently bad defensive scores and age suggest that there is almost no way he can be even passable on defense. Even if he has a legitimate “bounce back” year, you are talking about a replacement level player. Why would you pay $8 million for a player whose likely upside is a replacement level player? It is stupid.

          1. Catch…RAJ has made his share of bone head moves but I’m finding it hard to believe there isn’t more to this rumor….

            Suppose the Rangers are trying to land Upton and we are trying to land a CF (Leonys Martin) Yeah I am dreaming I know. But one of our cohorts here suggested it yesterday that a way to Martin might be by taking Young off their hands.

            I guess what I’m saying is that I find it hard to believe we’re making a straight up deal for Young for all the reasons you mention.

            1. If it’s part of another move that puts a young (no pun intended) player with ability on the Phillies’ roster then we’d have to reassess this move, but, as it stands now, we are being told that the Phils would pay half of Young’s salary AND would trade at least two prospects – a high level minor league reliever (I am guessing someone like Schwimer or Savery) and a low level prospect. That’s what I’m using to evaluate the trade until I hear differently.

            2. The DeFratus part doesn’t bother me a ton – I like him a lot less than a lot of others on this site. The salary question is more interesting. The issue is, at what point would Young’s salary be low enough that it would be worth the risk to take a flier on him on the off chance that he can bounce back enough on offense to make up for his horrendous fielding. I’d say it’s probalby in the neighborhood of $2-3 million – I wouldn’t like $4 million but, given that it’s a one year deal and the Phillies are likely going to bust through the luxury tax limit this year anyway (with the intention of staying under in future years), it’s not the end of the world PROVIDED THAT CHARLIE PLAYS THE BEST PLAYER AT THIRD AND NOT THE BEST CLUBHOUSE GUY OR THE MOST EXPENSIVE GUY.

          2. He’s also a year removed from being a top 10 mvp candidate in the AL. Would you rather they give 3 years to Kep or Scutaro? Or how about a broken down Youk for 2 years who would be in and out of the lineup?

            1. Just because I don’t want Michael Young at $ 8 million doesn’t mean I want Keppinger (who is a back-up who had a career year) or Scutaro (who has been one of the most underrated players in baseball over the last 5 years and who had a momentary downturn with Colorado – that said, I still wouldn’t sign him for 3 years at that age). As for Youkilis, is he a risk? Sure he is, but I think he is a better risk because he is two years younger than Young, is a far better defensive third baseman, and has better offensive skills including superior plate discipline. If you are asking me whether I’d rather spend $ 8 million for one year on Young or $20 million over two years for Youk, it’s an easy call for me – I’d go with Youk.

            2. Youk’s age is 2 years younger but I doubt his body is. Everyone ages differently. Youk may get 12 for 1 year or a multi-year deal. That’s a lot for the greek god of walks.

            3. If he’s a 2 WAR player it’s a fair deal – if he’s a 3 WAR or better player, it’s a great deal. As far as aging, body type is not the only indicator. If it were, David Ortiz would have been out of the league years ago and other more fit guys would still be playing. It’ an inexact science at best.

  18. Sorry one other point about michael bourn. i love him. but not at anything past 3 years. 39 million, which i know he wont take. still have hope for gillies, or even collier, to improve, why tie up a lot of years and dollars in a player,whos whole game is based on speed, and is over 30, makes no sense to me.

    1. See, here’s rocom proving my point from yesterday. Sure, he doesn’t come out and say explicitly that he doesn’t want the Phillies to participate in the FA market, but he just doesn’t think they should pay the market price for any free agents, which amounts to the same thing. 3/39 is ludacriously low for Bourn. The only “defense” one could make for rocom’s position is if one believes that this season’s FA market is somehow anm aberation. But it isn’t. Next year’s class looks even thinner, and with more TV money available, likely will be even more inflated. Welcome to the new normal.

      Of course it’s a moot point because we have the worst GM in the game, but if anything that makes it even more imperative that the Phillies use their one asset – a big payroll.

      That said, I am now in favor of tearing the team down and starting over, since (a) there’s no point in trying to win with the village idiot as GM, and (b) maybe tearing the team apart and losing 90 plus games will get the village idiot fired.

  19. Young is owed $16 Million. Is it possible we are getting them to Pay $8 Million and we are getting someone in addition to Young in the deal?

    1. My guess is the deal for Young is Lindblom and Texas pays $8M and I’m not thrilled about Young at all. The Phils are probably waiting on Youk’s decision first. I know the Phils made him an offer and its probably only a one year offer. The other advantage of helping Texas is that it would free up money for them to sign Greinke and Upton which would move Hamilton to Seattle and possibly Bourn to us. There is a serious musical chairs game going on. Texas wants Upton over Hamilton and they want Upton plus Greinke which will take lots of money. An awful lot of discussion with no result…. Ross for 3 years vs Willingham, minues prospects, for 2 years? If Worley is traded, do they sign a Correa type or let Cloyd and Pettibone fight it out?

  20. Looks like Hamilton to Seattle when (if) the Upton deal goes through. Michael Bourn’s price seems to be going way down.

  21. I also wonder if the Phillies are waiting on the results of the Rule 5 draft to finish the details of any trade with Texas. I have been looking at the profiles and stats of many of the picks and agree that this may be the best Rule 5 draft in recent memory. I could see the Phillies picking a player and trading for another player – there’s that much talent out there this year.

  22. Catch. rule 5 is a crap shoot. can’t see teams relying on that, for every werth there are hundreds of stiffs. wip had de fratus going in young trade. my favorite young player is defratus. if young waives his no trade. my god 16 million and he tells you if he wants to leave or not. god bless america, most of us live paycheck to paycheck. I really as i get older hate no trades and guanteed long contracts. they can ruin your team.

    1. Yeah, it a crap shoot but in the high stakes poker game that is major league baseball, it’s a relatively cheap $25,000 per player option – not bad at all.

  23. Anyone excited that they are interested in Ben Revere? I’d love to see him at the top of the lineup. Lots of base runners for Howard and Utley.

      1. Revere is a very nice player. He’d be a fine pick-up for the Phillies. Minnesota sold a little low on Span – I wonder if they’d take something like Worley, Collier and Lindblom. It actually wouldn’t be a bad trade for the Twins and it would help us an awful lot – especially if Brown and Ruf are roaming around on the corners.

        1. Not that he’s the final word, but Keith Law in no way felt Minnesota sold low on Span. Meyers (sp?) supposedly has big upside.

          1. However, most other sources, including Fangraphs and others on ESPN agreed that it was a coup for Washington.

    1. Depends what we would have to give up to acquire him. He seems like a younger less expensive option than Bourn without the defense.

  24. While Young is more of a one year stop gap, I would easily pay $6-8 mil in exchange for schwimmer. It also leaves the possibility of Hamilton, Bourn, Revere, and even Borjous as well as a reliable reliever such as mike adams.

  25. I suggested a Leonys Martin for Valle trade a long while back. Valle is Mexican, which might be good for the Texas market, and they certainly need a catcher in the wings. I would hope there would be other names involved if we’re going to take Young. But my number one hope is that we’re in on Chase Headley or Jed Gyorko. Especially Headley. I am less worried about our right handed hitting than I am losing our long held left handed hitting advantage when/if Utley retires after next year and Howard continues to regress. We saw what happened to the offense without them. He also plays good d. I’m not worried about blocking Asche and his questionable defense and power. Move him to left or include him in the trade. When Franco is ready, move Headley to left. I would offer Worley, May, and some combination of Asche and/or Ceasar Hernandez. I’d even talk Dom Brown. If something like that doesn’t get it done, I’d offer less of a package for Gyorko – maybe take out May and not discuss Brown. Both Headley and Gyorko are cheap, and would allow them to spend elsewhere.

    1. 1. Rangers would never take Valle for Martin – it would take waaaaay more than that to get it done.

      2. Headley won’t be cheap in terms of prospects or salary – he is due a big payday soon in arbitration and an even bigger pay day after the 2014 season.

      3. Gyorko is interesting – probably worth kicking the tires on that one. It would make the Phillies crazy deep at 3b, but that’s not such a bad thing.

      1. The Phils believe Asche will be a major league player. Therefore, they will not be trading for a young 3B which would cost them a lot to do. It won’t happen. Trading for a young OF is another story of course. I just don’t think Texas has any reason to trade Martin unless it nets them an Upton or an ace pitcher. That’s all they need. They could have had Upton already if they’d trade Andrus but they don’t want to trade him so yes they’d easily include Martin in a deal to get Upton. But the Phils don’t have either of those types of pieces so that won’t happen. The only shot would be if they agreed to take Young without requiring any money from Texas just to have Martin in the deal. That would in essence be the Phils paying $8M for Martin. Could that happen? Only if Texas needed that money right now to make the Greinke and Hamilton deals work, assuming Upton falls through (he’s much cheaper).

    2. While I’d love either one, I also don’t think we have the pieces to get either. Not even if it was Worley, Brown, Biddle, and May. You are going to need a top 10 guy and we maybe have a top 50.

  26. From Knobler/Zolecki/Heyman

    Phillies interested in Ben Revere/Gillick and Amaro both met with Terry Ryan today/The Phillies are talking to the Twins about Revere.

    1. Good young player but, like I said, he has no power. I guess he’d have to lead off or bat 7th or 8th in the line up.

      He’s a good young, cheap, stolen base threat though.

      1. I’ve wanted Willingham since the 2011 trade deadline. There’s questions as to whether or not he’s available.

        I wouldn’t mind a Revere/Willingham for Worley, May, Valle +

          1. Would leave them with plenty of money to sign a Starter and a Reliever (Brett Myers and Mike Adams?)

  27. I’m stunned and not in a good way.

    I’ve criticized Amaro but also defended him. Yesterday I said that the Phillies’ front office was mediocre, which was taken by some as criticism. As today dawns and it looks like the Phillies are going to give up real assets for a basically worthless player with a horrible contract, it’s clear that mediocre was laughably generous. Small strengths in scouting and player development are not nearly enough to outweigh the fact that we have the worst general manager in the major leagues.

    Here’s a prediction for you: this Phillies team doesn’t make the post season again until 5 years after Amaro is gone. And another prediction: by 2015 they will be a 90 loss team. If not sooner. For the next couple years they probably have enough pitching to keep them hovering near .500, but after that it will get really ugly.

    Lately the comments section of this site has been taken over by WIP morons who don’t know the first thing about building a succesful baseballl team. But I’m starting to think that even some of them would do a better job than Amaro.

    An F- grade for Amaro for the off season is not premature. By the time it is over, we’re going to start asking what grade is lower than an F-.

      1. Yes. I mean, how is this trade defensible on any level? Even if you assume a return to form as a hitter – a generous assumption IMO – his defense at thrid base is so poor at this stage of his career than he will be a raplacement level player. Either Fransen or Galvis would be better, and those guys are just stop gaps at best.

          1. Michael Young has negative value. He was the worst player in baseball last year and there is no reason to think this year will be any different.

    1. And what qualifies you as anything other than a WIP moron who doesn’t know the first thing about building a successful baseball team? Get off your high horse, Larry.

        1. Sorry, I don’t. I have nothing better to do than e-stalk you. Nobody’s comments are as ridiculous as yours, so it’s hard not to take notice.

            1. Yes, seriously.

              I’ve been on my best behavior lately, yet have somehow acquired 3 stalkers. I want to make this site as unpleasant as possible for them, so I will be enaging in an escalating program of invective to try to drive them from the site.

            2. Bullshlt. And you know it. You’ve been making a nasty serious of personal attacks directeda at me over the past couple of days, along with mischaracterizing my posts. From now on, everything you post on this site will be met by escalating nastiness until you leave or apologize and stop stalking me.

              Die painfully in a fire a$$hole.

            3. Not bullshit. I’ve made no personal attacks, other than questioning your scouting experience. lol. Maybe re-read my posts. You’re full of nonsense.

            4. Not bullsh1t. I’ve made no personal attacks, other than questioning your scouting experience. lol. Maybe re-read my posts. You’re full of nonsense. You want me to apologize? That’s laughable.

            5. And seriously, what makes you think that your opinions are any more valuable than anyone else’s on this site? Look in a mirror, buddy.

    2. While I don’t agree with Larry’s tone I do agree with his assessment of Young. He is dead weight only worth the risk for a team with a DH. I so hope he does not waive his no trade clause.

    3. Larry clealry has a long and distinguished record of building successful baseball teams. Along with name calling anyone who disagrees with him.

      And adding BJ Upton would have completely reversed Larry’s prediction.

    4. Larry, it is tragically funny how anyone who disagrees with you or does not make your suggested moves with you is either a WIP moron and incompetent. What qualifications do you have that are superior to RAJ’s? Lastly, did you think that maybe Michael Young can play all infield positions and can be a safety net for Utley or Howard?

  28. And Revere is a player who might have made sense if they did something else to upgrade their offense. But they haven’t and apparently won’t. Adding the worst player in baseball (based on 2012 performance) does not count.

    1. If Young refuses to waive his no trade, and they sign a decent starter to replace Worley plus Swisher (the best available remaining corner outfielder), this off season might still be salvaged. Despite, not because of, Amaro.

      1. I like revere a lot. Solid defense, good pedigree, low cost, etc.

        Swisher in rf, a platoon of ruf/brown in left (or brown/Mayberry with ruf in AAA) plus a set up guy and I’d be okay with them starting one of the prospects in lieu of signing another starter.

        The michael young thing completely baffles me.

  29. Ben Revere seems like a good pick up, coming up he was known as a plus defender in center field, he is limited to LF when not in center because of his arm. I am really down on Worley and don’t think he is more than a #4 starter if that. Even if the Phillies don’t acquire a back of the rotation starter, Pettibone could step in and provide most of what the Phillies would get from Worley. I really hope the other player is not one of the AA guys.

    Revere doesn’t put this team over the top at all but it costs them no money and Worley was only really cheap for another year before he starts to get paid properly to overpaid in arbitration (remember who Kendrick suddenly became unreasonably paid)

    1. Revere hit 326 in the minors, never under 300. Collier and Gillies should be so good…. He has zero power so he’s liek a Juan Pierre who has the ability to play CF. Controllable young player who can hit 300 with a decent sense of the strike zone. You have to like this move. I feel like we’re selling high on Worley too. If he has another fair season, his value will be down. As far as May, unfortunately, he’s all potential at this point. A guy with that home run tendacy wouldn’t play well at CBP either. I think another corner OF move is coming. My guess is it could be Cody Ross because I don’t thnk they’ll make two trades. If so, I don’t expect the rule 5 kid to stick around. I expect they’ll try to sign a cheap starter now, and hopefully be able to go after Adams. I’ve had my eye on Correa but we’ll see who they come up with. Kazmir has apparently been opeing eyes in the winter league.

  30. The second pitcher is Trevor May. Ouch, I thought he would have a bounce back year in 2013 but for the most part the reports have been that he is destined for the bullpen. His value was inflated last offseason because he was the Phillies top prospect in a weak system but this seems like a precipitous fall.

    1. I am as down on May as you are Worley (though I am down on Worley too).

      I like the trade personally. I think it shows what the Phillies think of some of the other young arms in the upper system.

  31. I like the Revere trade. Starting position players are going for insane money on the free market. The Phillies will get more value from a center fielder than a 4th starter. And Trevor May is enough of a risk that I won’t lose sleep on that one.

    1. I agree with this. Although I like May, I think the Phillies decided that they liked Martin more in the long run and that they needed Pettibone now, so May was the odd man out. This will only hurt if May becomes a top of the rotation pitcher but odds are that he never becomes much more than a 3 or a 4 and it may take 3 or 4 years for him to even get that good as he struggles with command and his self confidence. I’m okay with this move – Revere has a ton of value and is very cheap for the next several years. Now they need to do what Larry suggested and sign Swisher or make a real trade, not a trade for Michael Young – good God, he’s horrible.

      1. I had May down to our #9 prospect. The bloom was off that rose…. Cody Ross over Swisher and we get to keep the #16 pick.

      1. And I should add, we still have money to spend that was budgetd for Upton/Bourne on either a set-up man and corner OF or starting pitcher.

  32. With Inciarte and Revere the outfield just became really crowded today. I am guessing that means our outfield is set and while I like Revere it looks like the outfield of a team that is rebuilding. Additionally, Ruf seems to be the odd man out without a chance to prove himself. (Revere, Brown, Mayberry, Nix, Inciarte). Maybe Mayberry becomes the odd man out or Inciarte is offered back if Ruf does have a really strong spring.

    1. Looks like the guarantee of spots to players not guaranteed to warrant as much.

      Like the prospects for Inciarte, but not a lock, and the plan might be as a defensive replacement for Ruf at times and backing up Revere. Corner OF not set at all, I believe.

      Boston said they look for a back-up 1B who can also play other positions. Laynce Nix for the Red Sox, sounds like a winner. He can play all 3 OF positions.

      It all might roll back to the first great trade suggestion of this offseason. Domonic Brown for Corey Hart. You leave Ruf in Left, C. Hart in RF, Young at 3B (those theoretical statistical flaws not grounded in real world events) Kratz and later Ruiz. All those right handed (and supposed power expected hitters) can balance out Utley and the major return of Howard..

      So , it looks like the light at the end of the tunnel.

    1. That is my gut reaction. He hasn’t made the adjustments to be a good starting pitcher. It could come back to bite the Phillies if he puts it together but he was likely behind Biddle, Morgan, Martin, and Pettibone in the upper minors depth chart.

  33. Just because the Phillies just made a trade, I don’t want my hatred of Michael Schwimer to be lost.

    If I ever see him, I might come after him with a pair of clippers and shave that ridiculous afro as well. Stop being edgy – you grew up in one of the richest parts of America with no real hardships. Hopefully you fail, and fail hard.

    1. Did he steal your girlfriend or something? For crying out loud, move on – he has done some questionable things in terms of being sent down and protesting but he’s not Barry Bonds or Michael Vick. This is ridiculous.

      1. Nah – I think I’ll let everyone know it. I won’t rest until he’s out of town!

        Down with Schwimer? Fear the Fro? Give me a freaking break. Nobody’s afraid of anything about this guy.

      2. If this were the ’60’s, he’d be a hippy complaining about how the “man” is keeping him down instead of looking at his mediocre stuff and realizing that he is nothing more than a 11th man on a pitching staff. He’ll talk verbosely about “Schwimlocity” (spelling might be off on that) like he’s Cy Young and invented the game of pitching.

        No – I’m not finished by a long shot with this clown. And he’s going to know about it!!!

  34. Wow, talking about no power. 13 doubles 6 triples in 511 at bats. He makes Freddy G look like a slugger. I guess he is a younger Juan Pierre without the triples? I hope he is a great fielding center fielder so that if Ruff can manage in Left, he could help compensate. At this point, Ruff is the only possible source of power influx. That is a lot to ask of this guy.

    Don’t they have to get a corner outfielder with pop? Neither Revere nor Young, if obtained, fill the power void.

    Still holding onto that 16th pick, lol.

  35. Trading Trevor May and worley for a cheap michael bourn like center field without surrending a top pick, is a great move. I don’t get the trevor may love, he hasn’t posted an #1 or #2 since A ball in 2010. He has SERIOUS control issues and at best would’ve been a number 3. Worley is a bit of question mark due to injury concerns and could very well be the next JA Happ, who as we all know was an overacheiver as a Phillie. This is a great trade for the phillies and allows them to pursue an outfield bat, maybe Hamilton? Also this move allows Babe Ruff to “rome” left field.

  36. I don’t know what you guys are talking about. Trading a #4 starter, plus arguably our top pitching prospect–a guy who had a down year, to be sure, but showed flashes of brilliance when he could control his stuff–for Ben Revere is a horrible move in my mind. Revere is fast, but he struck out almost twice as much as he walked last year and his career OBP of .319 is quite a bit lower than that of Jimmy Rollins, who gets on base too little to be a traditional leadoff man but makes up for it by doing a lot of other things well, including hitting for power. Revere has ZERO power: five home runs in his entire professional career, all in the minors. The statistically minded fans on this board spent all of last season poking holes in the Phillies’ love affair with Juan Pierre. Well, even in his worst years, Juan Pierre had an OBP within a few points of Ben Revere in last year, his best year.

    That doesn’t mean that he won’t get better–he’s still young. But the best case scenario for him is a Juan Pierre-type career. The BEST case. And the Phillies just traded their only decent pre-arb pitcher and their best pitching prospect for that level of production. And in doing so, they have not addressed many of the glaring weaknesses we all saw in last year’s team: the lack of power, lack of on-base skills, their lineup’s heavy skew toward the left side. I’m really flabbergasted. But please, everyone convince me of why I’m wrong.

    1. Let’s face it we were dreaming on May and Worley is as replacement level as they come. Now I do think you are correct on Revere’s ceiling as Juan Pierre type much better fielder tho.

      Let’s see if Charlie has the balls to bat him lead off….

      1. I wondered the same thing.. haha I’ll bet Revere bats second. He has perfect splits by the way so righty/lefty has no bearing. Btw, he was hitting well over 300 until he tired in August, he’s a smallish guy. He hit 326 in his minor league career so this guy can hit. I never really knew anything about him but he looks pretty good on paper. A corner OF move is coming… bet the ranch…

      2. We can debate whether Worley will ever be more than replacement level, perhaps, but he’s making close the minimum. The Phillies will now have to plug his spot with Tyler Cloyd–and his mid-80s fastball–a free agent pitcher from outside the organization, which will cost them a large amount of money (I’d say Blanton’s deal would be a good starting point), or they will have to hope to catch lightning in a bottle with one of the young guys like Morgan or Pettibone or some journeyman castoff. Even so, maybe I could see making that deal if it were Revere for Worley straight up. But adding May … no. I’m sorry, this is madness. And from reading Twitter it seems like most of the Phillies beat writers are reacting similarly. David Murphy just wrote: “I’m speechless.”

        1. Since it is a close trade I am going to go with the Phillies front office on this one. When it comes to evaluating pitchers they have been pretty good at selling high on guys that aren’t going to make it. (Carrasco, Drabeck, Knapp, Happ, and even Cosart to an extent)

        2. Well, the Phillies’ beat writers are hardly geniuses when it comes to player acquisition – they were leading the entire “you have to get Hunter Pence at any price” brigade and they are loving the Michael Young pursuit, so pay attention to what they think at your peril.

          And, no, the Phillies are not so stupid as to rely on Tyler Cloyd. My guess is that they are going to acquire another pitcher (don’t be surprised if it’s somebody good, like R.A. Dickey – if not there should be some decent one year rentals out there – I think Edwin Jackson is most likely to sign another one-year contract) to fill the 4th slot and, if not, Pettibone would probably get the nod ahead of Cloyd; he is superior to Cloyd as a pitching prospect and the Phillies know that.

      3. Not sure how Worley is “as replacement level as they come” since he’s got 4.6 fWAR in two partial seasons, while dealing with an injury. I believe there are plenty of guys who are more replacement level than that.

    2. Revere had a .383 OBP in the minors. He was rushed to the majors in 2011 and I think it’s quite probable that his true ability is somewhere above his .319 career MLB OBP thus far. As far as a Juan Pierre comparison, Pierre’s lack of power was problematic because he was limited to left field. Revere is a true center fielder and provides far more value on defense than Pierre was capable of.

    3. May is NOT their best pitching prospect. Their best pitching prospect is Jesse Biddle, after that there are about 4 guys who were bunched together – Morgan, Pettibone, May and Martin. Many people, including me, favor Morgan and Martin above May and Pettibone is closer to the big leagues and could easily end up being a better major league pitcher than May.

      Revere is an outstanding young defender with slightly above average offensive skills. But he is young and his contact skills are excellent. If he turns into a 2 WAR offensive player, which is highly conceivable, he becomes a border star. He is cheap and he has 5 more years under team control. Right now he is a 3.4 fWAR player having played only 3/4 of his team’s games. This is a very good young player. More importantly, because of his range, it makes it easier to put offense-first players in the other corner slots (Brown and Ruf right now). On top of this, the team was able to retain Tyson Gillies, so if he develops over the next year or two, the team will have further flexibility in centerfield.

      This was a very good trade. Thank you Pat Gillick.

      1. I’m not sure where you’re getting the outstanding defender part, but David Murphy just wrote on Twitter that his arm is “awful.” So, it’s not like he’s the second coming of Gary Maddox or something out there. Look, my point isn’t that Worley’s success is sustainable, or that May is our best pitching prospect (I said “arguably”, meaning it could be argued, based on the fact that he was ranked that way by many in the recent past). It’s that the guy doesn’t get in base, doesn’t hit for power, doesn’t throw well. He’s a two tool player at the moment, and anything else we project is just a hope at this point.

        1. This MIGHT be either (a) a product of SSS, or (b) an indictment of fielding metrics, but he actually grades out much better in RF than CF or LF, though is a plus fielder in all 3.

          His throwing arm, again by those metrics, is not bad. A little below average overall, though oddly (again, I’m not saying I buy this) best when playing RF. He was primarily a right fielder last year, FWIW.

          As for outstanding defender, his range is plus plus, and that is the most important factor for an outfielder. His defense overall is outstanding, though I think there’s some room to wonder if he is “only” a plus fielder overall in center field, as opposed to a gold glove type fielder.

          1. When it comes to stuff like range and throwing arm, I’m still inclined to weigh heavily the judgements of scouts, reporters and others who actually watch the guys play. The fielding metrics are still in their infancy, and are themselves based on firsthand observation and charting, and so in a way they’re no less subjective than Murphy passing along the judgment that Revere has a “noodle arm.” (His words, I believe.)

            Also, there’s this, from a national baseball writer:

            @JeffPassan Early verdict: Twins got monster return for Ben Revere. Executive sees Trevor May as at least No. 3 starter, Worley as solid back-end guy.

            1. Here is the Law Quote

              Chris (Phila Pa)

              Did the Phillies give up too much for Revere? Is he an extra player, ave regular, or all-star? Ceiling for Worley and May?
              Klaw (1:04 PM)

              I just filed a blog post on this, but the short version is I like it for both sides but think the Twins get the edge in the long run.

              The Twins might have gotten the better deal but this was a good move for both teams.

            2. I don’t necessarily disagree with weighing scouting over fielding metrics, but (a) range is more important than arm, especially in center field, and (b) I haven’t heard any scouts question the fact that Revere as above average to exceptional range. You reference Murphy, a reporter not a scout of course; I couldn’t find the “noodle arm” quote, but his article which analyzes the trade (he sees it pretty much exactly as I do, FWIW) characterizes his defense overall as “stellar.”

      2. Can’t you give me any credit for learning from Pat Gillick? This was our idea as a management team but I just can’t win in this city.

    4. Here is my take.

      Worley has one more season before arbitration where his counting numbers will provide him with a number that is likely above his actual skill production.
      May might not be Top 10 in the system right now, pitching wise he has to be behind Biddle, Morgan, Martin, Pettibone, and Watson, he has potential but he has some serious flaws in his approach and in his mechanics. There is a well above 50% chance here that he is merely a reliever.

      I am not really that high on Revere and he is a Juan Pierre starter kit (with better instincts on the bases and in the field) but here is a nice WAR comparison:
      Revere – 2.4 WAR
      BJ Upton – 2.6 WAR
      We save on the order of 14.5million

      1. I said “arguably,” but you’re right, that was hyperbole. I should have said “one of our best pitching prospects.” I realize he had a down year last year, but I wasn’t ready to give up on him, and I certainly had him in my Top 10. He probably had the highest upside of any of our young guys except Martin.

  37. I’ll now take a flier on Brandon McCarthy Please. he may take a 1 year deal high AAv to see if he can re-establish his value

        1. Can we release him to take his spot? That might be the better route, as it will not guarantee Schwimer (my arch enemy) a spot on a MLB team next year.

          Anything that will lead him homeless and penniless would be much appreciated. I’m all ears.

  38. Hopefully means they’re in on a power bat in Right Field.

    Young (?)

    still isn’t good enough yet, especially with the defense that’s being lost at third with Young.

      1. Get off the Schwim thing, I am just to ask for some board moderation. But luckily for you unless Schwim has an amazing spring he is unlikely to make the team and is a couple of slots down on the call up list.

        1. Whew, I was worried there for a second. Just the thought of watching him pitch is quite nauseating. Thanks for clearing that up.

      2. Matt – we’ve established that you hate Mike Schwimer. You are acting like a 5 year-old. Stop it already.

      1. Revere has no splits issue, he hits lefties just as well as righties. He sounds like a very smart slap hitter (Juan Pierre junior). I still think there’s a good chance that we get Youk, especially since we don’t have to save money for Bourn. I don’t want to trade any more prospects though so I’m looking for Cody Ross to be signed next. That would retain the #16 pick. Put Ross and Youk into that lineup with Dom and I’m feeling good. Sign Adams and a decent 5th starter also and I’m feeling great.

        1. I’m not trying to be a Smart A$$ Murray but Youk does nothing for you today or in the future and neither does Ross.

          If you want to win a WS or just get to one next year you need a flat out MVP caliber Middle of the Line-up player. Adding old role players to our already old role players does nothing to progress this teams hope of contending and unseating the Nats.

          The market is like a pendulum swing and right now its on the other side of where the Phillies are operating. They need to excercise patience and allow it to swing back to them.

          1. I don’t disagree with your main point. However, the only way the Phils can win is for Utley and Howard to hit and their 3 aces pitch. The guys making the money have to perform like it. That’s reality. Ross and Youk would be solid short term veterans if the stars do their job. If their stars don’t do well, they have no shot to win. However, if they do well, Ross and Youk would fit in very well. As you might know from previous writings, I’m very high on Asche but he’s not ready yet. In addition we still don’t know what to expect from Dom and whether Ruf can handle LF. Ross is a decent, only relatively expensive, seat holder.

  39. Law, on his chat, just said he liked the deal for both teams, but a little more for the Twins in the long run.

    1. Makes sense, the Twins made the move from a rebuilding mind set for a system that a week ago was devoid of pitching. If you were going to judge this trade on who improved their organization as a whole more I would go with the Twins because they built on nothing and the Phillies did not make that large an improvement. If you are going off of pure player value I think it is close enough and each team got what they wanted.

    2. Naturally, look what KL said about Trevor May back in June…not as flattering…but take him out of Philly pinstripes and wallah…he is again a legitimate top prospect. Boy oh boy!

  40. I’m not as high on the Revere deal as some, but on balance I like it, and if his hitting continues to make strides (plausible), it would turn out to be a very good deal.

    But if they don’t turn around and use their spare payroll to add a signficant bat, I will be less enthused. At this point, Hamilton aside (and I have m reservations about him) that pretty much leaves Swisher.

    All this assumes that the albatross M. Young declines the trade. If not, adding him, aside from making a Swisher deal less likely, substractrs wins from the team.

    1. I agree that the deal makes more sense if they add a corner OF bat like Swisher. But all indications are that they are not very enamored of Swisher. I guess he walks too much? And any move that paves the way for a big, payroll-busting Hamilton contract is a bad one in my opinion. The guy’s second half nosedive was scary.

    2. Swisher’s lack of defense and repeated October disappearance act make it hard for me to think it is a good idea to give him a big contract and lose the #16 draft pick.

        1. Same here. The thought leaves a bad taste in my mouth. But hitting a game-winning homerun FOR us would probably help alleviate that.

  41. Here’s an honest question, is there anyway we can trade a big time player that is valuable (I’m thinking Hamels) AND Schwimer to a rival GM for a run of the mill prospect.

    In exchange for that, they would have a handshake agreement to basically ruin Schwimer’s career. Send him back to A ball, make him start on consecutive days, make him drive the team bus, make him be the mascot on off days – stuff like that. Really demoralizing stuff.

    Do you think this is possible?

    1. Sigh, I didn’t want it to have to come to this. MattWinks, is there anyway to moderate these boards so that we can get rid of the nusance posts and namecalling posts that don’t contribute to the conversation. I know you have been busy with all the action lately but man these posts are really starting to bother me.

        1. No need to delete – I will cease and desist immediately.

          My hatred of Schwimer will be internalized it appears – maybe for the best.

          1. I thank you, though yours were not the only posts I was referring to. I am hoping the others cease and desist too. No need to make MattWinks do more work. I’d rather he consentrate on the other things he has done so well on this site.

            1. And I am sorry that Larry thinks I am stalking him. I will make it a point not to respond to his posts anymore.

    2. Not Necessary. I think Schwimmer is perfectly OK with ruinning his career with his pitching ability.

  42. As for starting pitching, I saw the reference to McCarthy, that’s an interesting name. I mentioned Correa as a possible. Another name I just thought of is John Lannan. Boy would he love to beat the Nats…. They might try to sign someone to a 2 yr deal.

      1. He’d probably hit a catcher (Chooch after he’s back?) in the face when he’s talking to the ump with his mask off.

    1. Carlos Villanueva is also a name to keep an eye on. We don’t need a top of the rotation starter, just a 4th or 5th. Then again, I wouldn’t say no to Greinke or Sanchez, still. I can dream, can’t I?

  43. It is hard to understand why any team would acquire Ender Inciarte and Ben Revere virtually at the same time. Both are speedy outfielders, both bat left-handed and both have virtually no power. That being said, the Phillies gave up a has-been and a never-was and spent virtually nothing while solving the center field problem. Hopefully, the money that was saved can be used to acquire a replacement starter, a set-up man, and a couple of power hitter types. At least one should be right-handed.

    1. Obviously, they didn’t know they could work out a deal for Revere when they made the rule 5 selection. Timing….. It only costs $25K if they offer him back.

    2. I think part of the thinking with Inciarte is that he can be a defensive replacement late in games for Ruf so that he isn’t completely a waste of a roster spot. If he sticks they will have to get rid of one of the OFs.

  44. Actually based on what where the Phillies are going with position players, I see them making a run at the next tier of starters. Something in the Lohse, Edwin Jackson, Dempster, McCarthy range

    1. I’d hate to see them give too much money or too many years for a back-end guy with Pettibone, Martin, and Morgan not too far away, but the Blanton deal gives me very little hope they can get someone on the cheap.

    1. where did you see this? are they starters? I assume the Phils need to replace May in the AAA rotation.

  45. Don’t be surprised if BJ Rosenberg competes for a spot in the rotation or starts the season as the Phillies’ long man and then does well enough in spot starts to earn himself an audition. Rosenberg has a cannon for an arm (I was at a game where he hit 98, much to my amazement) and he can maintain velocity for at least 5 or 6 innings. He throws a slider that it is okay. If he can develop a third “show me” pitch he may be a really intriguing option for the Phillies.

  46. Salisbury is saying the Phils’ cost on Young, if he accepts, is only $5.5M plus Lindblom and another minor league player lower down in the system. I have a hunch I won’t like losing the throw in… I know Young has no range but I’m hoping he at least still has some arm left and he should still have decent hands. I’m not a big fan of Young’s but I’m not a big fan of Youkilis either so options aren’t aplenty. I am however a big fan of Asche and expect him to start in 2014 so I don’t want to spend money for more than a 1 yr deal on anyone. If people were prepared to go with Frandsen/Galvis then adding Young to the mix shouldn’t bother them and there really is the chance he has one last good year and hits around 300. Filling CF for only $600K allows for additional moves. Hopefully, it will help us get a decent starting pitcher and one more bat for the OF. I personally don’t want to lose the 16th pick for Swisher and would be very happy to add Ross. I’ve read people’s opinions of him but he would be a nice addition to the team if they could get him for a reasonable amount. They might also sign Hairston who I’d also be ok with. The weird thing is though, if Texas gets Upton, who they really want, does Hamilton really end up in Seattle? I can’t see that happening. If not, where would he go? Crazy thought but the Phils probably won’t sign any OF until the Hamilton situation plays itself out, just in case….

    1. I wonder if Young is also a safety net if Utley cant go a full season. Amaro took a lot of heat for not having adequate back ups last season.

      1. Galvis would play 2B but Utley’s situation is certainly another reason they don’t want to just have Frandsen and Galvis.

    2. ;another minor league player lower down in the system. I have a hunch I won’t like losing the throw in…;…please not Roman.

      1. It won’t be Roman. I could see it being someone we had high hopes for who hasn’t progressed as expected — e.g., Garner, Musser, Walter, Eldemire, etc.

        1. I think it is going to be somebody at the back end of the Top 30, I like Altherr more than most but it could be someone like him. Since it is not going to be a top prospect (this trade for Texas is all about clearing some money and the PR situation), the person I would be worried about is Kelly Dugan is poised for a huge breakout

          1. I’d be ok with losing Altherr, since they have so many players exactly like him right now. I agree that Dugan would sting a bit, but I think they like him and wouldn’t trade him that easily.

      2. A player in the most recent draft class is not generally eligible to be traded, I do not believe they would be able to insist on such a player. The player must give permission and it could be arranged that they don’t.

        1. Can’t be traded within a year of signing, but that’s what PTBNLs are for. But Quinn was drafted in 2011, so this is not an issue. (Though I would be shocked if it was Quinn.)

          1. OK, time flies. But, I say since Philly is doing Texas a favor by absorbing some of the contract of Michael Young, promising players should not even be considered and the Rangers should be given the players of Philly’s choosing (providing aligning with some MLB or minor league positional fit.

      1. It actually could be Martinez they (Rangers) originally drafted him out of HS but he did not sign.

        unfortunately the question on HMART coming out proved to be true. he doesn’t generate enough bat speed to be effective.

    1. Quinn and Dugan are prospects with very different value. Dugan is a grade C- prospect where as Quinn is a B or B+ prospect, with a chance to become a grade A prospect. Don’t get me wrong, I like Dugan, but he’s not all that valuable right now.

      1. I still wouldn’t want to give him up for Young. Even though I like Dugan, that statement is more of a reflection on Michael Young at this point. I can only hope that the prospect is a reliever in Clearwater or Lakewood but with RAJ I doubt it.

          1. I wouldn’t mind either because it seems to be such a position of depth for the Phillies and there are so many guys I’d rather hold on to. I’m just concerned about that prospect.

  47. I still would prefer Youkilis way way more than Young. Youkilis provides that middle of the order bat (when he plays). Also $10M per year is less destructive than the Free Agent OFs. Young is worse defensively (maybe a lot worse) and would be lucky to be league average as a hitter at 3B. I’d much rather spend extra on Youkilis.

    Plus, if they get Youkilis, he bats 3rd and then Phillies can go with their young OF: NixBerry, Revere, Brown (and Ruf in LF instead of Mayberry). None of the Phillies minor leaguers near the majors profile a middle order bats (Gillies, Asche, Galvis, Hernandez) but Phillies have many 4th OF types (Mayberry, Castro, James) so maybe one of them has a decent run.

    Not a fan of losing the 16th pick, so not a fan of Swisher. Hamilton is too risky for the huge price tag. Bourn will not happen. Willingham likely unavailable.
    How about Lance Berkman? He might not come cheap, but he was quite good for Cards, and maybe he takes less than $10M. True, he is bad against lefties but he is a quality middle order bat.

    I think Phillies need to spend FA money on a starter. Halladay may be gone next year. If I am Halladay I do not sign an extension since I’d have no confidence Phillies could compete this year nor near future.
    For 2014:
    Ruiz will either be much more costly or gone. I hope Joseph is ready.
    Utley is the true wildcard. I think they offer him arbitration and see what the market seeks then hope to match. There is no player that can replace him.

    1. Obviously don’t agree with some of this, but let me focus upon what I do agree with, much to my own surprise: Youk.

      He has downside risk, but with no pick to lose, and money to spend in a market where the number of decent FA options are rapidly decreasing, a two year deal for Youk is starting to look mighty attractive. Certainly infinitely more so that trading for the worst player in baseball. (If you are reading this Mr. Young, just want to remind you that Phillies’ fans are a$$holes who will boo you unmercifully.)

      1. Neither player excites me but if Young only costs $5.5M plus Lindblom, and an Altherr let’s say, vs $12M or possibly $18M for two years of Youkilis, its a no brainer that Young is a better fit. Youk can’t bat 3rd, he hits 240 and can’t run a lick. And I don’t believe his defense is any better than Young. What he does is work a count and get walks and he plays with fire. These are very good things that we could use but not at this price difference.

        1. I’ve been trying to find ways to cheer myself up about Michael Young. It’s possible things work out okay – not great, but okay. If you look at his hitting statistics, last year was a real aberration – we have no idea if it’s just a down year or he’s done, but he sure is old now. if he can bounce back consistent with his historic numbers and can bounce back a little in the field (his years at third base have not been quite as bad as his years as a middle infielder), MAYBE he brings positive value next year. . . . . But I wouldn’t want to place a bet on it.

        2. I’ve beaten this topic to death, so I’ll keep it uncharacteristically short: unless you think that the Phillies are poised to make two other impact FA signings this season, the relative prices of the two players makes no difference at all. Pay Youk the difference or have the owners pocket it.

          1. And you’re selling Youk short in a variety of ways IMO, but I’ll just say this: ina down year for Youk, he was still 3 WAR better than Young last year. Again, WAR isn’t gospel, but IMO in this case gets it right. And Youk IMO is at least as likely to have a rebound year.

            No, go with Galvis/Frandsen if you must, but Young is negative wins. Heck, I’d sooner go with Asche, and you guys KNOW what I think of that option for 2013.

      2. Agreed – I’ve predicted a two year deal between $18-20 million for some time and those predications seem to be accurate. He’s a very good gamble because he solves a whole lot of problems. He solves problems in that he plays third, plays it adequately, hits right-handed, has power, has excellent plate judgment, can play first base if Howard goes down or there is a tough lefty on the mound, won’t cost too much money given the team’s payroll, requires a short commitment and should have residual trade value if he’s not horrible. This deal is so obvious.

      3. LarryM…why is M.Y. the worst in baseball? He is a consumate team player, a good trooper who play anywhere needed by management. He only needs 200/300 more hits to reach the 2500 Hit Club. Why the hatred for the man?

        1. anon1,

          You know how little weight I place on “intangibles” – at least those which don’t eventually manifest themselves tangibly. His positional flexibility doesn’t help the 2013 Phillies as far as I can see.

          Young was the worst player in baseball last year by WAR. I am not a slave to WAR, but in this case I think they nailed it. One of the worst hitters in baseball last year who played mainly 1B and DH and who was worse than average defensively and as a base runner. Who was worse?

          Now, going forward, one can make an argument that he is unlikely to be THAT bad in 2013, and I do sort of buy that. But, at the risk of repeating myself, at this stage of his career he’s a guy who:

          (1) Is a bad defensive third baseman at best – perhaps much worse than that;
          (2) As a hitter, his ISO and BB% have declined for three straight years. Even a rebound from his atrocious 2012 would not likely make him even an average major league hitter.

          Let me put it this way: Wiggington was roasted, just roasted on this site last year, and for good reason. I think Young at this stage of his career is basically Wiggington. Atrocious third base defense, some positional flexibility but best suited defensively to first base at this stage of his career, and a well below average hitter. Young still has significantly better contact skills, but, at this stage of his career, has less power and BB skills than Wigginton.

          You know who had a substantially better ISO than Young last year? Well, a LOT of players, but one of them was Freddie Galvis. Kevin Frandsen had a better ISO. Young was closer to Michael Martinez in ISO than he was to Galvis.

          You know, a lot of people around here are down on acquiring veteran players, and sometimes that prejudice drives me crazy. But Young is the epitome of the kind of older player you avoid.

  48. Depending upon whether and how far over the luxury tax threshold the Phillies are willing to go:

    With Revere a cheap center field option, they still have somewhere between 25 and 40 million to spend. Obviously future years need to be taken into account, but payroll obligations fall dramatically after 2013 (granted there are spots to fill).

    This really gets back to what I said about payroll efficiency – OF COURSE it’s important, but there’s no bonus points for banking an extra 30 to 40 million. Some people on this board don’t seem to want to see the Phillies spend that money. At the risk of repeating myself, that strategy makes sense only if you believe that future season’s FA market will be better – either in the sense of talent available, or the market price for free agents. Both are dubious expectations.

    This Phillies team , even assuming good health, is not a 90 win team. If they get a little lucky, they could snag a wild card sort. Adding a quality FA or 3 – and they have the money to do it – could add 5 wins and put them well into the wild card race at least.

    Now, they still have to be smart signs; I don’t want to pay Swisher 5/100 and cripple the team’s payroll for the next few years. But there are still players out there who could help. Even Hamilton at the right price.

    1. I’m one of those people who says its waste of money to get the Youks and the Swishers and the Ross’s in here. I’d be willing to gamble that Brown gives you everything that Swisher would. Frandesen/Galvis a more consistent line over the whole season. Granted Youks peaks would probably be higher than that tandem at certain points but overall he most likely will break down. At the end his line will look much like it did last year. I don’t think its smart to spend $12 Mil for .236/336/745 when Frandsen gave you 338/383/845. Now I’ll be the first to say Frandsen is not going to ever put up that line again but I’ll bet you your favorite cheese steak its better or as good as 236/336/745

      Ross-nice player but not the caliber of player to get me off my own home grown talent. I’ll gamble on Ruf hitting more HR’s and putting up a much higher OPS and live with the defense.

      So no they don’t get points for carrying 30-40 million but I havent seen you acknowldege having that financial flexibility leaves room for a big trade mid season. And the more money you can absorb the less you need to give up. Or maybe somebody wants Howard and the more you can pay the more you get back.

      There are all kinds of players out there that could move if you’re in the race. Are you at all optimistic that

      Halladay is back to normal
      Howard is back to normal
      Utley is back to normal

      I’m not and this is just my opinion but you’re pissing into the wind with these names. they are nice players for a team with a bonified 3/4 hitter but without a waste of cold hard $.

      You might be better served to sure up your rotation with a Lohse or a Jackson on a 3 year deal because they could become trade assets at the deadline if you’re out of it again. Hamilton is a different story but I don’t think its realistic to have both he and Howard in the same line-up.

    2. With good health this team absolutely could be a 90 win team. I’m not sure they’ll be totally healthy, in fact i have serious doubts about hallday but if you told he was healthy and Utley was healthy, I’ll take our chances with a few more pieces. I’d be happy with Young at 3B, Ross in the OF, Correa or Lannan in the rotation, and Adams in the pen. With good health and those pieces and I’ll take my chances. They’ll also still have some money left for a mid season trade which I expect they’d want to do. As I expected, now that Hamilton might go cheap to somebody, the Yanks and Red sox have jumped in. If nothing else, they’ll both make sure he doesn’t do cheap to the other. Swisher is definitely better than Ross but Ross will come cheaper and not cost the pick which I want to retain.

    3. I obviously disagree with many of the specifics of the responses (e.g., Young at third base will probably cost us 2 wins compared to Galvis/Frandsen and 3 to 4 wins compared to Youk, but I think you guys are missing my larger point. Setting aside the pick for Swisher, there just is no downside to these moves. Certainly for this year, probably down the road. The payroll situation is in flux, but unless you believe that the FA market is going to get better in future years, a dubious assumption, shying away from these guys is more about aesthetics than anything else. The money is and will be there. Yes Swisher blocks Ruf – not Brown who will get his chance regardless – but I don’t buy Ruf as being adequate defensively anyway.

      A Youk contract especially has zero downside, Why NOT sign him at this point for a reasonably priced 2 year deal? IT’S NOT YOUR MONEY. I’m not the biggest fan, but he is SO much better than Young, and as a practical matter cheaper in a meaningful sense – sure the contract is higher, but not to the point of foreclosing other moves, and he won’t cost us a prospect. I can’t stress this enough – given the current payroll situation, from a competitive perspective, unless they surprise up with a Hamilton or Greinke signing, Youk is effectively FREE – that money won’t be spent elsewhere, it’s just more money in the owner’s pockets.

      1. Swisher is a somewhat different story. If you really think Ruf is the real deal, or place a tremendous value on the pick we would lose, I can understand why you would be against the deal. And he won’t come as cheaply as Youk.

        But the thing is, Swisher is REALLY GOOD. He would instantly become easily the second best Phillies position player behind Utley, ahead of Rollins. The current line up is a sea of mediocrity once you get past Utley and Rollins and maybe Ruiz. The team as currently constituted is going to score runs at a below average rate, maybe significantly below average.

        And while Swisher would place some constraints on payroll in future years (not 2013 where there is money to burn), if we get him at a decent value then it’s worth it. I wouldn’t pay 5/100 or anything like it, but I’m getting a sense that Swisher might just be the guy this year that ends up waiting too long to sign and settles for a real bargain, maybe 3/50. Perhaps Ia m kidding myself, but if I’m right, I want the Phillies to be the team to snap him up.

        1. Only one downfall on Swish….his season ends on 30 Sep. He has not hit the Mendoza line yet in the playoffs. But he will get you there throughout the season.

      2. LOL Because I would rather watch and see what Ruf can do, I’d rather watch Galvis over a washed up Youk.

        Correct me if I’m wrong but we are a prospect forum right?

        1. DMAR, that is at one level a fine response, but as I said – and you have just confirmed 🙂 – it’s more about aesthetics than winning. I love following prospects too, but ultimately care more about winning than watching our prospects in the major league. I think Swisher/Youk versus Ruf/Galvis probably is an extra 4 wins. That’s the bottom line for me.

          1. In fairness, and this applies to LF rather than third base, because no one claims that Frandsen or Galvis is the long term option there, I can understand the preference for Ruf from a long term winning perspective if you really think he can become an adequate fielder in left field.

          2. ‘I think Swisher/Youk versus Ruf/Galvis probably is an extra 4 wins’ –thats only 2 1/2 %. Could be a bit more then that.

    4. There are times your posts make me scratch my head. You’ve advocated in the last days for blowing up the team and then rail against people who want to hold back 30-40 M in salary. Various times you’ve concurred with those who note this is a mediocre free agent market and I believe you’ve acknowledged next year figures to be no better. How do you square all these thoughts, these pieces that don’t fit together?

  49. Jim Bowden, former GM, of says Swisher can get 4 years at 60 million , which is what B. J. Upton got with one less year. 3/50 as above is even higher. Plus the 16th pick in Rule 4 draft goes up in smoke. No B. J. Upton for 5 years , why Swisher for same annual rate or higher?

    1. (1) Because Swisher is probably a bit better than Upton.
      (2) Because 3 or 4 years carries less risk than 5 years.
      (3) Because the Upton deal was not a bad deal.

      I think Swisher’s price is falling by the day and he will be the FA bargain of the year. Add the facts that (I can’t stress this enough) the money otherwise likely will stay in the owner’s pockets, and that Swisher is the one impact bat left besides Hamilton, and it is a no brainer. 6/60, 5/50, anything in that range is an easy, easy call.

      Swisher has been worth about 75 million over the past 4 years. He will suffer some age related decline, so I’m not saying that he’ll be a bargain at those prices. But while bargains are great, the nature of the FA market is such that, especially for big market teams, signing a borderline star level player without overpaying is a good deal. And even more so for the Phillies this year, given needs/available players/budget.

      1. I didn’t peg you to be that guy harping on ownership about spending $. Cheese and Crackers they have been one of the highest spending teams the past 4 seasons.

        1. I harp on it when it is relevant. In past seasons it hasn’t been as the team has been quite aggressive in terms of payroll. Assume that the Phillies add Young and no one else. Their payroll will be over 20 million less than last year.

          But it isn’t a matter of the team being “cheap” – it’s simply a matter of the money being THERE, so why not spend it if it helps the team?

  50. Dave Cameron is on sort of a negative roll IMO on fangraphs lately, He follows up his post trashing the Revere trade with a post advocating the Young trade. (Of course the latter may prove the really DOES hate the Phillies. :))

    But his justification for the trade is more revealing than he realizes. He pegs Young as likely to rebound to roughly a 1 WAR player. Maybe so. But, while neither Frandsen or Galvis are long term solutions, I think between them 1 WAR is if anything a conservative estimate.

    Of course Youk would be better also IMO, but I can understand the desire to put a young guy in there (well, Galvis is young anyway). But Young? Sorry, the best arguments for him just solidify my distaste. I mean, if the BEST case you can make for Young is that he is a one WAR player …

  51. Swisher is a really good player that is not my contention. He would have helped us 09-10-11. I think the 13 team has to many questions in the players they rely on but let’s say Halladay Utley and Howard all bounce back but Ruf and or Brown fail miserably.

    Having payroll allows you to go out and get a high priced replacement to make the final run. Think back to when the Yankee’s took Abreu off our hands they assumed all the money he was owed and we got nothing in return in terms of prospects.

    Those opportunities exist in almost every season.

    1. And the team would have to give up young talent, something you especially would be against I would think.

      DMAR, you believe in Ruf to a much greater extent than I do. That’s reason enough to be against signing Swisher. Unless he ends up costing a lot more than predicted, that seems to me to be the only really good argument against the signing.

  52. Watching franchen last year, he blew two games with his glove in september alone.just dont trust this guy as a everyday third basemen.

    1. It is hard to believe that he was a starting SS before he tore his achilles. His hands don’t seem smooth enough. You have to remember though that he hadn’t played any 3B last year in the minors so he was figuring it out as he went. He’ll be better there next year after practicing there in ST.

  53. What would be so bad about RufNix in LF and BrownBerry in RF? Everyone keeps saying those platoons are no good. Whats so bad about 260 22/80 in left in and 260 18/70 in right? People are acting like the Phils have to have a lineup like 2008. Who even has that anymore? Tex and maybe the Gnats? What else are the Phils gonna do?

    I think the only thing fans can do is dream about getting Headley, Beltre, or Ramirez somehow. There is nothing else this team can do. It’s probably best to hope for a midseason trade for an OF and get a vet BP arm in FA. The Phils hands are tied it seems. At best, they make it as a WC next season and they absolutely have to start thinking about the future even more now. What a tough offseason.

    1. I think your point about corner outfield platoons is a good one, and may be what we see next year. But the problem is the lack of production in other positions. The team obviously won’t see the same production in CF, 2B, or 1B that we had in 2008. Is the pitching good enough to get by? That’s why if they go the platoon route, I’d really like to see them add another starter and a solid BP piece, and I think they will, Halladay’s return to form is important obviously

      1. CF production…..let it play out. Revere’s OBP keeps getting better….even from his MiLB days. His runs scored could be better then you think.

      2. That’s what I was saying about lack of production at other positions. It doesn’t make sense to me to get anybody unless its one of the top tier 3rd basemen now that they got a decent CF. Maybe Ramirez would end up being available at the trade deadline?

        I can’t believe they want MYoung so bad. I like the point from above that Frandsen/ Galvis is pretty much the same if not better. Does anyone know if MYoung is a good baserunner? It would be nice to see one of his 315/360 years in the 2 hole if hes a good baserunner. I highly doubt it though at his age.

  54. If Youk is supposedly better than Young and Swisher is so much better than Ross, then what stats are you assuming to conclude this? To me, Swisher is 28/90 and Ross is 22/80, and Youk is 230/15/60 and Young could be 290/10/60. Swisher wants big money and years and Ross will take less and Youk wants two years while Young is one. The reality is that Youk would only come here if he’s willing to do a one year deal and the Yanks offered him $12M for a year already. Youk knows the Phils want Asche to start the following year and he already lived through that with the Red Sox. My guess is that Young won’t accept the trade anyway. Btw to say that Young is 4 wins less than Galvis just didn’t ring true to me. One can’t hit and one can’t field… I’ll trust the professionals to make the right decision…

  55. Ludwick resigned with the Reds but there was a mystery team in on him at the end. I’ll bet it was the Phils.

  56. It looks like Michael Young will be accepting the move to Philly today. I am not sure I like the move, but I don’t hate it (I might hate it depending on the other player moving). I think Lindblom is expendable and despite some people really disliking him, I think Schwimmer is a better pitcher than him (if you have a problem with his DL complaint I don’t believe you, because you would all do the same thing). As for Young, he is going to be terrible defensively but he should rebound a bit offensively. The thing I do like, is unlike last year the bench has legitimate positional flexibility (despite the fact that young is Wigginton defensively), as Galvis could likely play anything but catcher (I have no doubt he would be superb in center) and Frandsen can at least fake shortstop and second in addition to third. In the OF you may not like to play them there but Brown, Mayberry, and Nix can run around in center without killing you.

    Overall Charlie will have to actually manage this team, but it should be less disastrous on offense if there is an injury or double switch/pinch hit

    1. Matt, Michael Schwimmer has had several opportunities to stay with the Phillies but he has not done well especially with LH batters. Many of the other relievers this year have passed him by just like Trevor May. Also, he has run ins with the Phillies and has not listened to Rich Dubee about developing a pitch for LH hitters. Perhaps a change of scenery can help him.

  57. My crystal ball fired up this morning without my having to turn it on. Here’s what it reported:

    The Rangers are moving towards a Zack Greinke signing and a Justin Upton trade. At times perception becomes reality and the perception approaching reality is that Hamilton takes a back seat to the Greinke situation in the minds of the Rangers. Hard to argue otherwise. The only way that Hamilton returns to Texas is if the Dodgers come in with a late better offer on Greinke. Here’s what you can expect.

    1. Greinke signs in Texas
    2. Rangers trade Andrus to the Dbacks for Upton in a deal with additional players moving in each direction.
    3. Mariners renew offer on Hamilton.
    4. Big market team (Yankees, Red Sox, Phils in that order of likelihood) comes out of the woodwork and signs Hamilton to a 4-year deal with a fifth year option.
    5. Mariners up offer to Swisher and sign him for 4-5 years.
    6. Either Angels or Dodgers trade for Dickey.

    Watch for it! (Remember the term “consolation prize” in connection with this off-season).

  58. Looks like Young is all but on his way to Philly. We’ve now filled holes in center and third base though at the expense of a hole in the rotation.

    Revere is a nice pickup and while I think we gave up a lot to acquire him, the loss is truly minimal. Young is a considerable offensive upgrade in spite of a down year last season. And while he leaves something to be desired defensively, he’s no worse than Frandsen and will likely be targeted for a late-inning defensive replacement in the form of Galvis. To say Young is the worst player in the majors is downright ludicrous. The worst “third baseman” last season? Debatable.

    I’d contend that an upgrade in the rotation (really liking E.Jackson) when coupled with the Revere and Young acquisitions would give me some promise. Big caveat here, without an experienced big arm reliever to fill the 8th inning role, I’d look at this off-season as a colossal failure. It could be argued that there is no greater need than an 8th inning arm out of the pen; or at least I would make that argument. Bring on Mike Adams

  59. Well, as somebody said above, looks like Michael Young is coming aboard. All of the naysaying can be mitigated by the fact that I don’t believe he will be kept in there come Hell or High Water, but they will, in fact, augment Young with Frandsen and Galvis, in a sort of three-headed-monster configuration. Like in the NFL when the Los Angeles Rams first started the shotgun offense, they had a “quarterback” – one strictly for running- one strictly for passing- and a 3rd guy who did a little bit of both. Then they rotated them alot. I believe this can work in exactly the same way.

    Some say Young could bounce back offensively. Even the guy on Fangraphs believes it. Just read the article.. And I want to believe the defensive deficiencies are overblown. Much like a parlor game where a message is whispered into someone’s ear and passed around the room. It gets worse as it goes along. And- another Wigginton? Did Ty Wigginton begin his career as a starting ShortStop ? I don’t think so.

  60. And, I might add, as far as I am concerned , maybe even in reality, this can ring the curtain down on offensive additions to next season’s Phillies roster. My estimate at the start of the offseason was that 38 million was available. Scratch off the supposed 6 million for Young and a 1/2 million for Revere, that takes it to 31 1/2. I neglected to X out the 10 million or so in benefits, so that take it to 21 1/2. Given the arguable need for a starter, and, I say, 2 middle relievers. I say add 3 prospective starters at around 7 million per year average for each of them, or if they can go less overall and they might be able to, do so. Then it can be set up, and announce this right off, that the one who shows most in ST can be the starter and the other 2 can be middle relief. Preferred would be starters who have been relievers before. My choices would be, Carlos Villenueva, Brett Myers , and Derek Lowe. Then the 1/2 million or more left over can go to Dave $ Montgomery.

  61. What ludwick got to sign with his number. is a nice cheap option for any team. why wouldnt the phillies go after someone like him. even three years 22 would have been okay.a lot less than victorino and imo, at this stage a better player.

      1. I would argue that he’s a slow runner but he’s a smart base runner. This is a guy who had multiple 200 hit seasons. He would be a nice addition. So would Youk but Young will be much cheaper and only one year. Galvis will be a late defensive sub for him as long as Utley is playing.

        1. Let’s hope he can still hit because if not he’s a waste of space. Here’s to hoping last year wasn’t a fluke

          1. What a worthless trade. The only place in the lineup he might be valuable is the 2 hole and it’s hard to see his value there if he can’t run the bases.

            The only hope is that he compares well to Polanco (what they thought they were getting). I’m thinking Polanco wasn’t the greatest baserunner either. Maybe it works?

            1. If the Phillies are smart he bats 7th with Kratz and 8th with Ruiz, he can single in the guys in the middle, he doesn’t have the on-base ability to hit near the top, especially since he is a baseclogger around some good runners in Rollins, Revere, and Utley.

    1. Evan Grant says Young will approve pending financial issues clearing up (maybe he wants a little extra due to now having to pay state income tax). Says players believed to be Josh Lindblom and Lisalverto Bonilla.

  62. A one year rental and we give up a nice prospect, plus a veteran relief pitcher, comeon ruben, you just love to give up young prospects, and over paid.

    1. roccom….in Nov 2013…if we offer the $13.3M and he declines, and signs elsewhere, Phillies get draft compensation.

        1. Duh….’gentlemen agreement’, ala Raul Ibanez last year, its the latest fad to circumvent to CBA restrictions and not gaining a draft pick. Lots of teams are doing it these days. M.Y. will not take it and he moves on and Phillies get the draft pick. Everybody is happy.

          1. Except that was under the old CBA where signing Ibanez wouldn’t cost a team a pick and just net the Phillies a pick. The only way a player declines a qualifying offer right now is if they are looking for a multi-year deal.

  63. I don’t like Bonilla in this deal, the Phillies have mishandled him to this point and he still is a good prospect. He is a player that I could see the Rangers reconverting to starter where he has #3 upside with his collection of pitches. I really don’t understand this trade at all. A real panic move unless they know something that nobody else does about Michael Young

    1. If they are including Bonilla, as reported in Dallas, it looks like an overpay. But we don’t know what the Phillies and the rest of baseball knows. Last year, Lindblom was considered a better prospect than Bonilla, but we don’t care about losing him after watching him for a month.
      Also do not agree that Bonilla is a potential #3 starting pitcher. He has the potential to be a decent reliever. His size is a strike against his ability to stay healthy as a starter. He also does not control his fastball yet. His plus-plus change-up gives him a chance though. He is nothing to sweat though.
      Ruben hasn’t given up one player yet, that has done anything in MLB, so I am not as quick to criticize when he trades prospects (especially minor league relief pitchers). I just wish they were trading for someone better than Michael Young.

    2. Matt, I have to disagree with you on your post as Bonilla has talent but has had injury and durability issues. As you have said before the Phillies have to field a contending team to maximize their cable payoff next year. This trade fills a hole and allows the team to keep cash for FA signings of 1-2 eighth inning relievers and a back end starter. This was not a panic move but the best reallocation of resources available.

      1. Well said philabaltfan. There seems to be a cultish movement on this site whereby “last” season’s WAR becomes an absolute predictor of “next” season’s level of contribution. It has really become quite odd. WAR is a tool, it’s not to be placed in the top drawer of your nightstand. And to use last season’s stats as the lone predictor, particularly for players who have been in the league for 3, 5, or 10 years, is a practice in willful blindness

        1. Most people on here would agree with you that last years WAR is just a tool. And if Young was 26 years old and still developing it would mean a lot less than it does when he is 36 and in decline. Heck a great comparison would be Justin Upton. Two of the last three years his WAR has been well below his potential but there is still the belief that he can reach that potential.

          Young’s power which has always been below average has been on decline for three years his defense has been on decline for 4 years. He has never drawn a lot of walks. We are not just looking at last years WAR and making a judgement on him. We are looking at all the data and making a judgement on all of it. And the data trends and sands of time do not bode well for Michael Young.

          1. Aron…you forget one important thing..he will now have Philly cheesesteaks in his diet…his power numbers will surge.

  64. Losing Bonilla is disappointing, but like the Revere deal, Phillies are trading from a position of strength here. There are are a lot of good young arms in the upper levels of the minors, and Bonilla got a lot of good buzz while only pitching a few innings above A-ball. We often complain about selling low on prospects, so, here’s RAJ selling high.

    Lindblom is a flyball pitcher whose repertoire made no sense at CBP. Won’t miss him.

    1. I dont mind trading Bonilla, but not for a bag of bones that we hope can squeeze out one more replacement level season.

      1. That is my opinion, it isn’t that Bonilla is an amazing prospect, but you aren’t getting a great return in this case for a guy with good potential.

        1. As long as the reports we’ve heard on Bonilla are accurate (about his stuff) he’s a potential future closer/set-up guy. As a starter he seemed to have mid-rotation potential. Why the heck we’d be giving that up when we’re already doing the Rangers a favor by taking Young off their hands is beyond me. Any worthwhile prospect (in addition to Lindblom) would be too much, but a guy arguably in our top 15? Ridiculous.

    2. Except the kicker here is the Phillies needed Revere. They didn’t need Young. He could quite possibly be a below average player now giving up any legit prospects when you’re doing the other team a huge favor is a joke. Bonilla has some pretty devastating stuff and is certainly not someone I’d give up for Young. Maybe 5 years ago…

      1. I disagree. Frandsen and Galvis aren’t big league regulars. Young is, or was. He might be done, but six million and a prospect is worth the chance to find out if he isn’t. It’s rare for me to cite Dave Cameron, but I think he nailed the risk assessment in this deal.

        1. Or you know they could have just signed someone else that wouldn’t have cost a prospect. Polanco was worth more than Young last year.

          1. Chris, how were going to fill our other two needs if we spend 13-15 million on Kevin Youkilis? I agree that Michael Young is not quite what he was but he is half the price of Youkilis and allows the Phillies to sign a Free Agent Setup Reliever(s) and a #5 FA pitcher. I don’t see them signing a RH outfielder unless Darin Ruf has a bad Spring Training. This trade benefits both teams even thouh Bonilla could be a help to Texas.

        2. I think Galvis could be. Lots of all-glove middle infield types learn to hit at an acceptable level as they mature.

          1. Absolutely. I look forward to watching Galvis develop over the next several years. But this is a move for 2013, the last season before Chase Utley and Roy Halladay become free agents, before Charlie Manuel’s contract ends, and before Cliff Lee and Ryan Howard are another year into their thirties. Like it or not, this is a veteran team trying to win a World Series. Starting Freddy Galvis all year and hoping he turns into an acceptable hitter is not the path to doing so.

            1. Hoping on Galvis is sillier than hoping on 1 war from Michael Young. Galvis couldn’t hit wheile he was on PEDs. He isn’t going to be any better next year.

            2. We don’t need Galvis to hit to be able to have value though. Galvis in 58 games was worth .6 WAR. MY over a full season was worth like -2. If he can’t hit he’s going to be in the negatives. He has no secondary skills.

  65. MLBTR implies the financial hold-up may be he wants a payoff for waiving the no-trade clause.
    I guess 16 million isn’t enough for him for next season. If the deal any extra money from Philly they should pull out. Texas, which gets all the financial benefits if they want to kick in, that’s on them. Or maybe this is an elaborate ruse in order to seem like he wants to play as a regular while still effectively turning down the deal.

  66. Also what is this BS about him wanting financial compensation. That sure as heck better not be costing the Phillies any extra. Just don’t trade for the guy.

  67. Or, on the other hand, MLBTR says the deal is now done and Young got 1.2 million in extra benefits, from who, I don’t know.

    1. I understand the $1.2 M compensates for the higher taxes he incurs in Pennsylvania so it preserves the money in his old offer and doesn’t represent a windfall to Young. It’s not a basis to gripe aside from whether you like the trade.

      1. It’s a basis for me to gripe, because most of the other states have state income tax and some have no choice but to pay it , and at an income of less than 16 million per season. Just because some cow punchers and hillbillies don’t have it there is no reason for other states to take up and make up the difference in any situation. However, as I read more, I see that Texas paid it, so I don’t care.

  68. The Phillies have acquired Michael Young from the Rangers according to Bob Nightengale of USA Today (Twitter links). Young will receive $1.2MM in benefits in exchange for waiving his no-trade clause, but Nightengale says (on Twitter) he told the Phillies he did not want an extension.

    1. So dumb. Not only could he actually be a starter he’s got pretty great stuff even if he ends up just a reliever. He could be a pretty solid guy. Who is going to produce more WAR for the rest of his career than Young will give the Phillies. The arm should have been like Tim Kennely.

  69. This is like the equivalent of Signing Kwame Brown to a 2-year deal or Spencer Hawes despite neither of them being all that great.

  70. With cheap solutions at 3B and CF, there is PLENTY of money to go upgrade the corners. I’m guessing this is our lineup after making this trade…..

    1 Rollins SS
    2 Utley 2B
    3 Hamilton LF
    4 Young 3B
    5 Howard 1B
    6 Ruiz C
    7 Revere CF
    8 Brown RF
    9 Hamels P

    1. Michael Young batting 4th is a joke. He had a sub .700 OPS last year and lacks power at this point in his career

    2. Now, with the 6 million going to Young, I still figure that they got 21 1/2 million to play around with. Hamilton would take that alone. I still prefer 3 moderately priced Starter/Middle relievers and then it is finished.

  71. The lineup right now has young batting second, with revere leading off, rollins hitting fifth if they dont get corner outfielder, young doesnt want a extension, who said ruben would have given him one? the guy was not imo. getting another year from us. he is a one year rental. now if he helps them win a pennant that is different. then we talk about another year or two. man right now if they sign a hamilton i love there potential lineup. but i am dreaming. i like revere, he is a near 300 hitter with speed. love that at top of lineup.

    1. roccom…again you failed to clear this with Charlie and JRoll. They are not going to be very happy.

  72. This outrage over losing Lisa Bonilla is silly. There is nobody here who even has him ranked in the Organization top 10.
    Why on earth would the Rangers pay 10 million dollars of the guy’s salary, if the Phillies were going to give back players we think have zero value? For a pitcher like Schwimer, maybe they only pay 5 million. For a pitcher like Pettibone, maybe they pay all 16m of his salary. The other team has to get something in a trade. Why is this so hard to understand, everytime the Phillies get rid of a minor leaguer? Who is going to trade for a minor leaguer with NO value or upside?

    1. They already got Lindblom. He had value. The Phillies are taking salary off the Rangers hands- that’s more value. Michael Young has very little value, based on his performance last year.

      1. If Lindblom had value, there would be complaining about losing him… but there isn’t any. If the Phillies only offer Lindblom, Texas does not pay the guys salary. If Texas wanted to get nothing in return, they could have just worked out a buyout, and cut the guy. Bonilla was basically sold for 10 million.
        Amaro can’t trade a minor leaguer, unless the guy is an abject failure, without getting blasted. Even guys who aren’t top10-15 are considered untouchable.

        1. Agree VOR. Young fills a need if even for only one year. He wasn’t going to be had for nothing and the more salary the Rangers took on, the more they should expect in return as far as prospects are concerned. There were limited options for the Phils at 3b and they managed to fill a need with very little in terms of lost prospects. I love Bonilla but we’re talking about a relief pitcher who hasn’t pitched an inning above AA.

          I wouldn’t say that I’m thrilled with Young but I’d like to think he’d be reinvigorated somewhat after a tumultuous last couple of seasons in Texas. Cross another item off our off-season ‘to do’ list. Now go get an 8th inning arm

    2. “Why on earth would the Rangers pay 10 million dollars of the guy’s salary, if the Phillies were going to give back players we think have zero value?”

      There’s an easy answer to that – because last year the Rangers paid $16 million for a player that COST THEM more than two games and they don’t want to do it again. Also, they need to free up payroll to make big cost acquisitions, so they Phillies are taking a $10 million potential liability of their hands which frees up cash. The fact that they are getting prospect is a big bonus, but this trade is not primarily about prospects.

    3. VOR, I guess some people forget what the purpose of a farm/minor league system is for. It does not help the Phillies when they struggle and the minor league teams thrive. For the Phillies not to tap their farm system to improve when they can is silly.

  73. Looks to me like Phils are done with the lineup and they are valuing obp highly. Last years team obp was 317. Did I find something here? You could project a 330 obp somewhat easily this year I think. Hopefully some of the players drive in more runs than they are normally capable of. The everyday lineup only projects to 600 rbi.

    Revere, Young, Utley, Howard, Rollins, Ruiz, Brown, Ruf.

    I don’t like Young at all if he’s not a good baserunner and a horrible defender. He should hit well at least. He hits very well from the 2 hole. People look at his numbers from last year and don’t realize the rangers used him in the 5 and 6 hole a lot.

  74. Earlier today, the Phillies finalized their trade for Michael Young, solving their third base problem in an offseason where there were few options on the open market. One baseball source believes that the Phillies aren’t done yet and are still primed to do something “big”, which could be anything from pursuing Josh Hamilton to a late Zack Greinke run to a trade for an outfielder, tweets Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports.

  75. The Royals just traded Wil Myers, Jake Odorizzi, Mike Montgomery, and Patrick Leonard for James Shields and Wade Davis. For all of you that think Amaro is bad this proves there are worse GMs in the world. You don’t overpay for non-elite talent and the Royals just blew up their one hope at being relevant.

    1. I just… I don’t… I… What? I understand wanting Shields (I actually thought it would have been a good acquisition instead of Oswalt, not that I’m complaining about Oswalt). But… really? Why are the Rays so good at… well, everything?

      1. They had what people wanted and someone overpaid. They are really good at trades, the good news for everyone else is that they have been horrendous at drafting since 2008 (only team in baseball to not have a player from their 2008 or later draft to make the major leagues)

        1. That’s interesting. It really is tougher to draft impact players when you’re not always in the top 5, innit?

          1. Yeah, I think the same thing when I look at the Nationals, it is really easy to build when you have the #1 overall picks in the Strasburg and Harper drafts.

            1. Really highlights just how bad the Pirates have been from top to bottom in their organization. After 20 years of being under .500 you would think they would at least have produced a few superstar players besides McCutchen

        2. Really…..they haven’t had a lottery pick in 5 years or so..its no wonder. They are now drafting at the mid- to- end of the first round, big difference.

          1. Plus the last super high pick they made is still in the minors. What’s the outlook on Beckham at this point anyway? Seems like he took a step back at the plate last year, but he’s only 23 next year.

    2. They really wanted some pitching eh? Sheesh. Myers and Odorizzi are solid young guys with some pretty big potential it would seem. Montgomery is apparently rated high but the stats are just not backing that up at all. He must have good stuff that he hasn’t harnessed yet. If you have any info can you fill me in Matt? Thanks.

      1. Myers is a potential superstar RF, Odorizzi has #3/4 starter upside but he is already at the big league level so there is almost no risk, Montgomery is a great arm for a lefty (flashes 70 fastball and 70 curveball with both looking like 50 pitches in 2012, has had a 60 change up at some time in the development) and if the Rays can’t fix him as a starter he could be a dominant reliever, and the last kid Patrick Leonard was an above slot high school third baseman with big time power potential.

          1. Basically twice the prospect haul for a better player on a more reasonable contract, but not a great player, just a very good one. Unlike the Pence trade you can’t justify this as the final piece that was supposedly missing, this just gives the Royals one competent starter (maybe two Wade Davis could be a solid starter again) and still has them far behind the Tigers and White Sox as well.

        1. Something must be wrong with Myers. I have no idea why Royals had him on the trade block when he is the type of player every team needs.

          1. Dumb move by Moore. He is the type of player fans pay to see night in and night out. A starter even a really good starter can only go out there every 5th day.

            I can’t believe KC ownership allowed this move to happen.

    3. The only thing in my opinion bad about this trade is the fact that KC threw in the 3B. Looks like a big time breakout candidate to me. Did anyone happen to see how much Greinke just got? I think Greinke and Shields are equal and you might be able to argue Shields is better. Oh and Shields makes 9m this year and 12m next year.

      Actually, this trade isn’t even that at all bad now that I think about it. Myers, Odorizzi, and Leonard are very comparable to Singleton, Cosart, and Santana. Then it’s Montgomery for Davis. Not bad at all

      1. But the difference here is KC had some major league ready talent in the deal that are top prospects. Phillies package was years away for every single player basically.

        1. Good point. I didn’t think about how close the prospects were to the majors. I still don’t think it’s bad at all though because Shields is way more valuable than Pence. I’ll believe in what Myers did last year when he actually does it at the majors. It’ll be interesting to see what happens to him this year when TB keeps him in AAA. Apparently, he’s a head case. For me there’s no doubt Singleton is a 280/370/490 hitter in the majors. Damn I wish he worked out in LF.

          1. Purely out of curiosity, why does Singleton get the benefit of the doubt when Myers has performed better at higher levels, but he (Myers) still has to prove himself?

            1. I value character alot and I’m a homer. Singleton was the first player I got excited about since Rollins.

      2. Myers is way better than Singleton now, and they are in different stratospheres when it comes to their value at the time of trade, same can be said of Odorizzi and Cosart.

        1. I completely disagree Odorizzi and Cosart’s value are that far apart. They both project the same imo and Odorizzi throws 89-94 according to Sickels. Cosart 92-97 right?

          1. If Cosart could throw a strike consistently, maybe that extra velocity would mean something. You’re ignoring a whole lot of aspects of pitching right now.

            1. Cosart has more upside though. Upside is way more important to me for a pitcher. Odorizzi is more than likely a 3 at best. Cosart had 2 upside and possibly 1 at the time of the trade.

            2. If we were talking about prospects that are still fairly new to professional baseball, I would certainly take upside over probability. But Cosart has had plenty of time to put it all together and he simply hasn’t even come close. It would be a minor miracle if he could put it together enough to be a starter at all, let alone a better starter than Odorizzi. But hey, that’s just my opinion.

            3. Odorizzi might be the better prospect, but I don’t think it’s as large a gap as you imply. Something I didn’t realize until I just looked it up- the two are the same age. Actually, Cosart is two months younger. Their FIP and SIERA were pretty similar. Odorizzi’s K/BB numbers are better but Cosart is much more of a groundball pitcher.

    4. Matt, can you try being more objective in your responses here(have seen your twitter remarks) as you seem to have a attitude toward RAJ and tend to over value prospects. RAJ has had his bad moments but I think he has improvied each position where we need help so far this year and still has the cash to make the moves to make the Phillies competitive without depleting the farm system.

      1. I have been working on it, but yes I have gotten a bit off lately. Personally I actually think RAJ is a good GM, his best and worse qualitity is that if he really wants a player he always gets them and while that ended up terrible with Pence, he has acquired/signed three #1 pitchers in a four year span, no other GM can boast that, and you can say that he got the better end of all of those deals so far (I cringe thinking about how much the Dodgers would have given Hamels). I was in support of the Revere trade, I just don’t think Young is a good player. I do have a tendancy to overvalue prospects, it comes from writing and reading so much about them, you grow attached to some guys and can get blinded by ceiling.

      1. With roughly $20M to spend I’d rather have Cody Ross to platoon with Brown in RF. Use what’s left and get Mike Adams and a 4th starter. Our lineup would look:


        1. Why are we hitting Young second (despite what Charlie would do) the idea of productive outs is not a smart one. Despite the concerns of too many lefties you are better hitting Rollins and Revere 1&2 and hitting Young 7th in front of the catcher. Revere has less power but better contact and on base ability and will not hit into double plays.

          1. I think there was an article earlier from csnphilly where Manuel was asked about his lineup. He said although Revere batted 2nd for most of his career Manuel sees no problem moving him down the lineup. He has concerns with three lefties in a row at the top of the lineup. I agree with you about batting Revere second but at the end of the day Manuel makes that decision.

            1. I wonder if Manuel realizes, I mean ACTUALLY realizes, that he is capable of moving Jimmy out of the leadoff spot. If he insists on keeping him at the top of the order, why is batting Jimmy second so much worse than leading off?

            2. It would be dumb to hit Revere 8th. You would cut his SB opportunities by a large margin in the NL. You can do a lot of different things with him in the 2 hole. I would hit Young from 5 on down. Maybe if he shows his 2011 form, you can slot him 3rd to break up the lefties, but I doubt Charlie will move Utley out of the 3 hole.

            3. I’m starting to think they really should give Revere a chance to hit leadoff. I know he’s not ideal, but as long as his OBP is above Jimmy’s why not? His lack of power is only going to hurt you more if he’s lower in the lineup. In the leadoff spot he could at least use his speed once he’s on base. If he’s in the 2-hole he’s not going to be doubling in Rollins from first or especially getting two runs with a homer. If Jimmy’s in the 2-hole, he can do those things.

            4. Agree with you there Handzus…Revere at the one and JRoll at the two. And IMO, M.Y. in the eight hole, behind Kratz at 7th, would be interesting….he could be the best 8-hole hitter in the NL, though I see a fair share of double-plays before the pitcher gets up.

          2. Young has to hit 2nd right? Look at his splits. His numbers from the 2 hole are the best. If Revere leads off, maybe Young doesn’t hit into many DPs. Rollins should be in the 5 hole (he should be 6th really but…)

  76. The Phils have Valle and another young BP arm to go get their vet BP arm. Who might it be? Anybody that comps well to Lopez? I would have loved that trade.

    1. Longtime viewer, love the website. How about Kelvin Herrera or Aaron Crow from the Royals. Young and under team control for 4 more years. Give them Valle, Schwimmer, and C. Hernandez/Fransden. We could take Luke Hochevar and his 5+ mil. salary off their hands to make it work. Hochevar could be our 5th starter–young, decent stuff, but with terrible results so far.

      1. Both look interesting on paper but they seem to be a bit too much like what we already have in abundance. Young arms with limited track records. Both Amaro and Manuel like older guys for the 8th inning rule for better or worse (usually worse). That is how we end up with the Contraras’ and Qualls’

      2. I don’t think they need any of those guys (Royals). They have one of the top young catchers and players and more on the way, and Moustakos at 3B and more on the way, and they got Middle Infielders and 1st round picks behind them. Schwimer- I think he’d be assigned to the minors for them. Hochevar- just looking at the numbers I don’t know if he could even produce a win in around half the games he started. Maybe if the Phillies took Hochevar and Jeff Francoeur and gave up a promising middle reliever and Domo Brown or somebody they could get a better middle reliever and a little something else, maybe.

      3. Royals are going for it this year (as dumb as that may sound), they make up for a poor starting pitching staff by having the best young bullpen in the majors (none of the members of their end of the year bullpen were even arb eligible). Rather than trying to predict who else has a good young reliever the Phillies should be identifying which of their arms can be successful.

  77. There are a number of high end free agent relievers still on the market. While attention has been paid to Michael Bourn’s situation as the market for center fielders dries up, there is a risk that the market will dry up on relievers who may end up signing for less than they received before .I’m not sure what the Phils could get in trade that’s better than what’s available through free agency. Some of these guys (with past salaries in parentheses) are:

    Rafael Soriano (($11 M), Jose Valverde ($9 M), Brian Wilson ($8.5 M), and Francisco Rodriguez ($ 8 M). Brian Wilson is the only one of these that makes sense for the Phils as he comes off surgery and tries to restore value. Then there are the cheaper Mike Adams and Carlos Villanueva, either of whom I think would be good signings.

    1. I don’t want Wilson or any of the “established closers”, there is a chance that Stutes, Bastardo, Aumont, or DeFratus emerges as a dominant set up man and the closers job is Papelbons. This means you want a guy who doesn’t have the ego about his role and can pitch in any situation needed (it isn’t so much the 8th inning that is needed as much as a guy you could just bring when you need a reliable reliever regardless of inning)

    2. Brian Wilson would make the most sense, but I personally find him annoying. I wouldn’t cry over it if he goes somewhere else. He’s the Lady Gaga of sports.

    1. I was hoping they’d make a play for Cabrera. But if Ruben turned the deal down because the cost in prospects was too steep, you know it must have been ridiculous.

      1. Doesn’t say that Amaro turned down the deal, just that they discussed a deal that included Worley and 2 prospects. I’m guessing it was the Indians who weren’t interested based on what been their asking price from other teams.

        1. Well, presumably at some point during discussions the Indians’ GM said “this is what we’re looking for” and Ruben didn’t want to pay that price. Even if they didn’t get down to specifics, Rube had to decide at some point that it wasn’t worth it. Unless the Phils just didn’t have a type of prospect that the Indians were looking for.

          1. Don’t think the Phillies have enough to pay the Indian’s price. Consider that they are rumored to be asking for Upton + an additional player(s) from Arizona.

  78. White Sox may be interested in dealing Dayan Viciedo. Corner OF RH power guy who Ks often but is young with strength. Ruf or Brown would have to go however.

  79. According to Anthony Gargano during his interview with a Dallas sports writer regarding Josh Hamilton. According to Gargano, Hamilton is now holding out for a 5 year deal.

    Hamilton sees himself as slightly older than the average free agent and sees this contract as perhaps his only chance to cash in on free agency.

    According to the Dallas writer, Michael Young was responsible for coaxing Hamilton into playing a lot more games than he would otherwise have played. Apparently Hamilton always thinks there’s something wrong with him and Young would goad or cajole Hamilton into playing as many as 30 more games a season. The writer says Hamilton is his own guy, has a good rapport with Young but is not real close to any of his teammates.

    Asked to comment on how Hamilton would do in a Philadelphia fan environment, he said Hamilton is largely oblivious to the fans and would smile occasionally if booed in Texas following an 0-4 performance. He compared him in that regard to Andruw Jones who seemed to smile inappropriately at the wrong times.

    The Rangers apparently still see themselves in play for both Hamilton and Justin Upton. According to the writer, Upton has problems with Arizona manager Kirk Gibson and all is not well in Phoenix.

    Another thing, Yong said his biggest regret was not having a good attitude when it came from moving from shortstop to third base. He felt his attitude got in the way of his adjustment. Young apparently learned a lot from watching how Adrian Beltre prepares himself to play third each day.

    The writer sees Young as best suited to bat second in the order with his bat control. The writer thought Hamilton could hit 55 homers in a season if he played half his games at CBP. Said Hamilton is great at taking pitches to the opposite field with power..

    1. Messed up the top of this. According to Gargano, the Phils have offered Hamilton $80 M for three years.

      1. I like the idea of a huge AAV for Hamilton and less years. I wouldn’t even mind a 3 for 90 if it got a shorter deal done.

        1. I agree with that. I’d also give him a vesting/mutual option for a fourth year if the AAV is lower. But I wouldn’t risk the 5th year unless it’s for under $10m.

          1. Gargano is a radio broadcaster on WIP in Philly. I imagine that you can pick up his program today on a webcast.

        2. $90 million over three years? GULP!!!! But, yes, on the whole, shorter is better. 3 years at $23m AAV plus a 4th year at $25 million with a $10 million buyout might work. Let’s face it, he’s a pretty weird (and previously troubled) guy but, damn, he can hit and is loaded with talent. And at a corner outfield position his defense will actually be just fine.

          I am very, very much in favor of the Phillies signing either Hamilton or Swisher for the following reason. If they don’t sign him they will still probably need another hitter. If that happens, then we will get into the nearly annual “Ruben needs a player” frenzy (the morons on sports radio actually think this is a good thing rather than coming to grips with the fact that Amaro does not get good value and his crises are often just the product of poor planning) where he overpays and trades every good prospect in sight for a guy who is okay and is only controlled for another year or two. I’d rather they overpay with money now then to put themselves behind the 8-ball by getting nobody and paying dearly with prospects for another, probably lesser, player later. Ruben the disinterested seller makes perfectly good deals. Ruben the disinterested buyer has gotten mixed results. Ruben the crazed “I’ve gotta get this guy” buyer is usually an idiot.

  80. Given the length of the Fielder and Pujols contracts, Hamilton even at 4-5 years seems a manageable risk. If he’s going off the wagon, it won’t take him 4-5 years for that to happen.

    1. I would think most teams would insist on a pretty strict “character” clause that voids the deal if he’s caught using.

    1. If that happens, that’s my over-the-edge moment. I have nothing but expletives to convey my distaste for such a trade. If it’s made then Larry’s right – this team is going down and they are going down hard on Ruben’s watch. I wouldn’t take on Soriano for free so why the hell would I give the Cubs one of our best young players for him? Unbelievable. For the last few years the more stupid the proposed trade was, the more likely it was that it would happen, so I’m going to try to ignore this.

      1. Okay, I am going to break my vow of silence – I have to say something.

        Seriously, how could a grown man who has been given tons of money and prospects to work with and has incredible resources at his disposal do such a dumb thing? Soriano is not a good player and he’s 37 freaking years old. Why would you trade him for a 25 year-old with ability whose value is depressed? Why? it’s so freaking stupid, especially if they could sign Nick Swisher for similar money and not trade Brown. WTF!!!

        1. I wouldn’t start freaking out about this. One report doesn’t mean this is or ever was anywhere near happening. Seems like baseball journalists have no standards for reporting on trade or signing rumors. If this starts to heat up, I’m with you, but I’ve learned to disregard these types of rumors the first few times they’re reported.

          1. Well said and Jon Heyman trustworthiness is non existent so cool down Catchman22. I would also bet that the Cubs came to the Phillies with this idea not the other way around.

    2. I read the same thing but that can’t be accurate. It also stated that the Cubs were ‘willing’ to absorb $10mm of his remaining contract if they received promising prospects in return. Say What ?!?

      Agree with catch; wouldn’t take Soriano for free

    3. What. If this trade goes down I might have to rage quit. I mean the Cubs should have been immediately hung up on. Why would you give up Dom Brown to take on Soriano’s terrible skills and salary. No thank you.

  81. In light of the phils apparent offer to hamilton, I was wondering if some guys could chime in on what are the best options for the phils and which side would be very willing to take these.
    1)3 x 27m=81mil
    2)3 x 26 (5 mil buyout)
    3)4 x 24m=96 mil
    4)5x 22=110 mil
    5)6 x 20=120mil
    6)7 x18=126

    I think best for josh would be 4,5. Best for phils 1,3?I’m guessing 1 will be the overwhelming favorite but am very interested to know others thoughts

    1. I don’t think your 5) and 6) are on anybody’s table. $80 M for 3 years surprises me since I didn’t think the Phils were prepared to offer more than Ryan Howard money ($25 M) annually. If that offer was legitimate, then it really opens up your options 1-4. 3) followed by 2), then 4) and 1) is my order of preference. If Hamilton breaks down over the course of a 4-5 year deal, then like a typical fan I’ll turn on Amaro in a heartbeat but without the vehemence that I reserve for Amaro’s signing the Ryan Howard extension.

  82. Everyone is going to be totally in stitches when, at the end of this postseason, Ruben Amaro calls a press conference to go over his moves and ends by saying, “We call it … the Aristocrats!”

  83. Wow Domonic Brown for Soriano with all but $10M of his salary paid for two years…interesting.

    Seems like such a stupid trade – that locks in Soriano to LF for two years, essentially blocking Ruf from playing, Dom goes in the trade, and that leaves a Mayberry / Nix platoon in RF.

    Would much rather have Dom and sign Cody at $7M per year than Soriano at $5M per year, lose Dom, and block Ruf.

  84. The soriano for brown, is nuts, unless the phillies feel .that brown is a bust. even then, its a tough sell to the public, after all the years of buildup,on brown,from the front office.

  85. Why not just refuse to play defense at all? Maybe the front office wasn’t, watching last year

      1. Apparently DMAR’s post was sarcastic and directly attributed to Ruben Amaro and his decision-making in trades. IMO, evidently DMAR has a low opinion of RAJ’s recent moves.

  86. While listening to the Gargano interview IM listed above, I kept getting the feeling that Charlie does not care for Brown at all. I got the impression that Charlie is way higher on Ruf than Dom. And when I heard about the Brown rumor the first thing that came to mind was this may be contingent on them signing Hamilton. Think about it. If you sign Hamilton and with Revere you have 2 lefty OF for the next 4ish years. Can you have an OF with all left handed hitters? If they are good enough hitters sure, but when you look at 3B after this year Asche if he is ready is another left hander leaving you with 2 switch hitters and a right handed Catcher. Unfortunately once again Brown is being squeezed out of this lineup because he is left handed and has not put up above average numbers in his time in the majors.

    1. And just to clarify I want Brown to play everyday. I feel when one looks at the circumstances surrounding his career the significant difference in numbers can be explained.

    2. Ruben would have to be a fool to trade Brown even up for Soriano, talks had to include another Cub prospect in the move…no GM in their right mind would do that trade even up, even with the cash incentives. Ruben cannot be that gullible or desperate.

    3. It kind of angers me that Dom has never really had his shot and that the organization keeps toying with him, surprised he has been so calm about this situation.

      1. I’ve never understood the assertion by RAJ and Charlie that a contending team can’t develop a young player.

        1. Those are moronic statements. The truly great organizations know that exactly the opposite is true. The best way to perpetuate a dynasty is to promote young, capable players who improve at the same time that the older players’ skills erode. This has always been true but is even more true now that the salary scale is so ridiculously skewed in favor of younger players.

          So, to Ruben and Charlie, my answer would be “oh yeah, what about the 1949-53 Yankees who, during their run, developed Yogi Berra, Whitey Ford, Mickey Mantle, Billy Martin and Gil MacDougald? I guess that didn’t work out too well, did it?”

  87. Well, Don’t think the Soriano for Domo Brown trade is all that terrible. I would not do that for Soriano, mainly because he is said to be 37. But the Domo Brown for Right Handed power hitter is sniffin’ down the right trail. I recall some derided the proposal made early in the offseason of Domo Brown for Corey Hart, doesn’t look so bad now, eh? They are getting saddled with too many Left Handed Hitters, It’s just that simple. The object is supposed to be to win a championship, and history shows (though not a stats person and don’t believe what history shows) that teams with large numbers of Left Handed Hitters can be neutralized by assortments of Left Handed Pitchers and others. I , also do not believe either of these moves would preclude Ruf starting in the OF, as Ruben, himself, said that reports say that Ruf could play RF, and a lot of the stats people might overstate just what is required to play RF. It is not as much.

  88. As for Hamilton, I have seen nothing that says Philly will massively exceed the Luxury Tax level. If the report by WIP’s Gargano (by way of Macnow) is correct that would be a given. I believe what Philly has left is around 21 1/2 million. I did not compute, exactly, Gargano’s numbers because somehow think this is unlikely, but it looks like it might be fairly close to 30 million a year. Plus it is said they also wish to acquire another starter, one or two bullpen guys , and maybe even another OF. Financially, don’t see it.

    As for the risk of Hamilton, I know from occasional watching of Dr. Drew, that though Hamilton may no longer be addicted to hard drugs, I read that he occasionally consumes alcohol , chaws tobacco, takes legal drugs, etc, , and who knows what else. So, given this , still an addict, and has a lot more work to do, and might be an accident waiting to happen… I say no.

    1. Does anybody else have an opinion on the viability of Hamilton going to Seattle when Washington state has just decriminalized marijuana?

    2. Hamilton has his issues as evidenced by his problems with high caffeine beverages like energy drinks this past season. But to speculate on his past and future issues would be a dangerous and stupid thing to do because we know almost nothing about Hamilton or is issues. Lets keep the discussion on Hamilton to things like his declining skills or injury history rather than speculation on an issue that we know nothing about.

      1. I disagree. HIs personal issues are a prime reason not to be big $/years on him. He is the mental equivalent of a guy who is currently playing well, but has had two surgeries to each of his knees. Another blowout can happen at any time and if it happens, the team will look back and know that they ignored plenty of red flags. Betting $100+ mill on one player is a big deal for any team, even one that lives at the luxury cap. In the past, the Phillies have focused on quality character guys and guys they thought were in good physical health in making these mega-commitments. It’s true that Hamels had past issues, but the Phillies have seen him daily for years and understand how he ticks. They really don’t have that knowledge of Hamilton. Texas does, and they haven’t been quick to resign him.

  89. Ok so this report could be totally bogus at which point this becomes silly conversation. Let me just say that at the time I thought RAJ was going to be an excellent GM. A Bi-Lingual Stanford grad with some playing experience, bounced around to a few teams mentored by one of the greats etc…

    All GM’s fairly are judged in hind sight and it should be fully expected there will be some wins and some losses. If those even out and the club is making the playoffs and contending the GM gets a positive grade but it’s up to us to keep track of the players and who they belong to as there is always carry over from one GM to the next.

    Now that we are 4 years into the RAJ regime we should start to see some impact from his players, guys he has his stamp on, guys he has extended to deals and so on.

    I’m looking at both the MLB Roster and the system. I accept if we are going to NLCS and WS the system might be a little light. My fear is that RAJ doesn’t have a feel for windows and he doesn’t anticipate areas of weakness. And what I see now is young players going out for old players, and old players going out for young players that have not impacted the big club.

    Now there is still a chance for Aumont, Gillies, Martin, Joseph and there are some drafted players to like. The point for me is I don’t like what I perceive is the current direction. It seems random, it seems to be a waste resources.

  90. I don’t understand the idea that Brown should be bumped and Ruf should be kept (not necessarily saying that is from this site). Yes there is a handedness difference but is that really worth a downgrade in player. I may rile up all of the Ruf supporters, but Brown is the hands down better player and prospect. If we look at defense, despite the crap Brown has gotten he is way better than Ruf will ever be in the field, he has good range (the routes are still a work in progress, though they are better on pure reaction plays) and his arm is at least 2 grades better than Ruf. At the plate there has been a ton of hype around Ruf and the season he had in 2012 but lets compare it to Brown’s breakout 2010 (when Brown was 22 to Ruf’s 25):

    Darin Ruf: 139 GP, 584 PA, .317/.408/.620, 38 HRs, 2 SB
    Domonic Brown: 93 GP, 389 PA, .327/.391/.589, 20 HRs, 17 SB

    Considering the age difference and defensive difference, why is Ruf that much better than Brown, if you extrapolate Brown’s season out to a full year at AA/AAA he would have had close to a 30/30 season at age 22. BTW Brown hit .346/.390/.561 in AAA before getting called up.

    Brown has been injured the last two years with some pretty athleticism/power sapping injuries, why is being right handed enough to say Ruf is a better option (according to many people)

    1. I want both Ruf and Brown to be part of this team’s future. We need guys who can still contribute in 2015 and beyond, when most of the current roster will be gone or turned to dreck. We need to get cheaper and younger. Ruf isn’t super young, but he is super cheap. Brown is both. As you illustrate, Brown’s numbers are far better than he is given credit for. Even his rookie major league season wasn’t bad. As a rook, Michael Schmidt was BAD. Brown was merely ordinary.
      Handedness really shouldn’t matter. We are looking at years of service to the organization and our left-handedness is a short-term problem. I don’t think Utley is a Phillie beyond 2013. By 2015 I am afraid that Howard will be an expensive shell and not a big cog in the lineup. By 2015 we may be worried that our best hitters are too RH and will prize Brown for his LH bat.
      I think Utley will be gone, both because he is too consistently hurt to be depended upon, as well as getting up in years, but also because the Phillies seemed to really like Galvis at 2B.

    2. I think that the Dom of 2 years ago compared to Ruf of today, Dom is a significantly better prospect. That said, while the injuries in most cases aren’t his “Fault” persay, they do affect his value. Look at his performance thus far in the major leagues and you’ll see why some people are just looking for something “different”.

      Outside of getting Hamilton on a somewhat team friendly deal, I don’t think there is anyone out there worth displacing Ruf and Brown for, not becuase I don’t think the other players could make the team better, but because i don’t see those “other” players putting the phillies in division contention.

      Lets take a look at Dom’s performance since being called up. In his career, he’s had 440 AB’s and put up a career slash line of .236 .315 .388

      The good:
      He is managing to maintain a very attractive walk rate of 11% in 2012 and even better at 13.5% in 2011.

      The bad:
      His ISO in the majors, unlike in the minors which you quoted hasn’t been up to par. With a career ISO of 152.
      He’s not stealing bases anymore as evidenced by zero attempts in 187 AB’s last year. And even prior to the claimed hamstring injuries, wasn’t really stealing bases either. He’s attempted 7 steals in 147 career games.
      You pointed out his excellent arm, which while true, is significantly hampered by his overall defense. His range factor per 9 was 1.56 in 2011, and 2.02 in 2012, both below average for his position. Additionally, he posted a career fielding % of .977, also below the league average at .987.
      He has a career strike out rate of 21.5%

      Now all that said, 477 PA is not nearly enough work at the major league level to be a “fair” shake, and I personally want to see him starting out of spring training (I still have some hope he’ll really start to realize his potiential). All that said, for Ruf, we don’t really have a clue what kind of player he’s going to end up being in the major league level from an offensive perspective, but given his defensive concerns, it’s going to have to be very good for it to compensate.

      We’re really compairing to incomplete players at this point. If Ruf manages an OPS between .880 and .900 (I think .780-.820 is more likely) he’ll be well worth his lack of range in the outfield. I don’t think that’s likely, but the fact is, just like wondering if D. Brown is going to realize his potential, we just don’t know.

      So, back to reality, it’s either Josh Hamilton on a 4 year contract, with a 10 million dollar buyout, or letting the kids play and finding out if the run is truely over or of the next generation can carry us with a few key free agent aquisitions over the next few years.

      1. Excellent analysis. My position is the same as yours keep both players hand them their jobs out of spring training with the notion they need to prove they can get it done.

        If Charlie is not on board with youth they should have gone right to Ryne. No disrespect to Charlie he was the right man for the club at the time he came in but he keeps on with this tact that young players shouldn’t be relied upon he should move onto another team that has the right veteran presence.

        As for Hamilton I don’t believe he can co-exist in a line-up with Howard and the consensus seems to be that Howard is an immovable object.

        I for one don’t understand why the Brewers aren’t making a push for Hamilton. If they went Braun/Hamilton/Hart they would be a contender to win that division.

        1. I don’t think it’s fair to say it’s Charlie’s philosophy not to rely on young players. He’s certainly put his faith in some young relievers, Mayberry, Galvis and others.

          He may just think Ruf and Brown aren’t good enough to be the team’s everyday outfielders.

          I hope they both get real opportunities to prove themselves, especially Brown.

          1. Jim Salisbury said Brown’s knee checked out fine in a MRI after the season and now he is in Clearwater working out.

  91. Not to give much credit to the thought process but it seems all about “what have you done for me lately.” My view is that in a case like Brown, you take all the time you need with him unless he shows himself unable to work with the people you put in charge of his development He’s not costly to maintain and with his stock low, it would appear that the only market for him is in compensation for overpaid aging outfielders who are probably better served DH’ing at this point in their career.

  92. Yeah, well I remember reading somewhere the other day, in an “analysis” from a dyed-in-the-wool stats guy, on a dyed-in-the-wool stats guy site, that definitively stated that Domo Brown was by far the worst defensive Out Fielder the Phillies presented in the last 5 years.

    1. That is really interesting, post that article. That may have been true when he first came up. This year if you go by Fangraphs UZR/150 (to eliminate difference in innings), Brown comes in behind Mayberry (punished for having to play CF) and in front of Schierholtz, Pence, and Wigginton. (Darin Ruf and his 4 total outfield plays is a little ahead of Brown as well). Also despite being 5th in OF innings Brown was only behind Pence in OF assists with 7 to Pence’s 9 in 450 less innings.

      1. Read a lot of articles, don’t remember exactly where I read this, If it was findable off of MLBTR it must be old enough that it was zapped off of the back end. So , couldn’t find it.
        Seems like it was a blog of some kind, the guy gave his bona-fides, maybe it was a year old, don’t remember.

      2. Yes, Brown will be fine in the field. He has improved enormously in his routes, he is fast and his arm is lethal. For the next several years he should be at or close to the normal range.

    2. An interesting aspect of this is that the stat community as a whole is kind of down on Brown, partly because of the defense. He was indeed better defensively last year, but still well below average. In a recent Fangraphs chat, 3 or 4 Fangraphs analysts all agreed that Brown was not a good candidate to trun things around in 2012.

      As for “by far the worst defensive Out Fielder the Phillies presented in the last 5 years,” I don’t think that’s true, but I can see where he is getting that. If you look at career numbers, ignoring Brown’s improvement in 2012, and use UZR/150, he does grade out as the worst in the past 5 years (among players with signficant playing time. I’m not sure “by far the worst” is fair even then, as Burrell and Ibanez give him a run for his money, but if you use UZR Brown does grade out pretty badly.

      I posted an optimistic take on Brown for 2013 but would be the first to admit that I would not be shocked if I was wrong. I think Brown might be a classic case of someone who needs a change of scenery. Part of that frankly is lack of faith that the current Phillies organization is capable of fixing whatever is wrong with him.

      But getting value for him is going to be tough. The rumored Soriano deal would be a joke, though it wouldn’t surprise me in the slightest. Ideally we would get someone similar in the sense of a once very highyl regarded prospect who hasn’t quite panned out & needs a change of scenary. But there aren’t a ton of such players available – or at least ones with a comparable amount of team control left.

      1. Those UZR/150 numbers are really kind of depressing in a way. Over the past 5 years, 8 players have played at least 1000 innings in the OF for the Phillies. 6 of those 8 were below average (most surprising there: Mayberry – though he was above average as a corner outfielder). The two above average outfielders – Vic and Werth – are gone and long gone.

        Ben Revere, if he continues to field as well as he has, and if you believe in UZR, will be the best Phillies’ outfielder defensively since we have had the data to calculate UZR. Well … that depends of what cut off you use for innings played. If it is 1,000, Jason Michaels,of all people, grades out better than Revere. So does Kenny Lofton with only 714 innings. With even fewer innings, Bourn also grades out better than Revere, and Geoff Jenkins almost as good. Don’t laugh, those were all very good defensive players. Of course all numbers are with the Phillies only.

        It’s an interesting list, actually. Of players who can fairly be regarded as full time regulars for the team, the guy who grades out best is Jason Werth..

      2. And to be clear, when one combines (a) the current state of the team, (b) Brown’s current low trade value, (c) the fact that he he is under reasonable team control for several years, and (d) his still high ceiling, even if his chance of reaching that ceiling is diminished, my preferred option is to not trade him and see what he can do in 2013.

      3. Would Colby Rasmus qualify for your scenario or has he already had (and failed) his “change of scenery” shot at restoring his promise. Logan Morrison?

  93. Brown and Gillies have been hitting together I’ve heard. According to Gillies himself he is fine physically but what else is he going to say. He hasn’t commented on the Revere and Inciarte moves.

  94. Josh Hamilton to the Angels. MLBTraderumors suggests this may inspire the Angels to trade Mark Trumbo. He’d definitely fill that need for a righthanded power bat. But I’m guessing the pricetag for him would be something on the level of Cliff Lee.

    1. I don’t think that would be the price tag. Trumbo had a down year in 2012 with a huge spike in strike out rate and huge drop in walk rate during the second half of the year (.271 OBP during the second half). He is a poor outfielder and more of a 1B/DH. The price will likely be above what he is worth which to me is a slightly better, more established version of what Darin Ruf could be.

      I would have definitely agreed with you more if I just had gone on gut but looking at the numbers and how he fell off is a huge red flag. I think going forward he is going to give you 25-30 HRs with a .255/.290/.470 stat line with poor defense at almost any position. That is useful, but not worth paying a large price.

      1. Or to put it more succinctly: the Phillies already have a guy like that, and they’re paying him $25 million a year. Still … power and contract control are at such a premium in this marketplace (can’t wait to see what the AAV of Hamilton’s contract is …) that I think Trumbo would fetch a huge price from someone.

    2. Hamilton- 25 million per year over 5 years.

      Angels- I say:
      Hamilton LF, Bourjos CF , Trout RF
      Trumbo 3B, Aybar SS, Kendrick 2B, Pujols 1B, Callasop INF/3B
      Ianetta ,C
      Kendry Morales DH

      What do you give for Vernon Wells?

      1. No way they play Trumbo at third base. Go look up his small sample size numbers at third base they are hilariously bad. He had 4 errors in 14 chances over 8 games. Fangraphs gives him a -99 UZR/150. No matter how you look at it he is 1B/OF and only acceptable at first.

  95. With the Hamilton 5 yr 125 mil signing, all I have to say is that the Angels are going to be absolutely horrendous in 2015-2017 when they are paying Pujols, Wilson, and Hamilton a combined 65+ million for their decline phase.

    I am just glad the Phillies weren’t in on that kind of 5 yr deal

  96. Good for them. Now I am interested to see how the Rangers react and whether or not they will go after Upton. I am a huge Leonys Martin guy so now maybe he gets the job in CF. Will AZ even deal Upton at this point now that they think they have their SS should be interesting.

    What say you now Rube?

    1. It is interesting to think about what they will do, the only bats on the market are Bourn and Swisher. Swisher doesn’t seem like an upgrade over Cruz. They could plug Mike Olt into LF and go after Bourn and use Martin to get a SP or hope that he can go to a corner. The Rangers have money to spend and a need now to spend it.

      1. Don’t forget they have Murphy who is a really nice player and Gentry as their 4th OF. They have to do some thing with Olt I think. Definitely an arm short in their starting rotation.

        1. Judging by what the industry thinks it could still take another piece like a Martin Perez or Leonys Martin to make that deal. This is all contingent on the Marlins even wanting to trade Stanton (just because there is a fair deal doesn’t mean they will make it)

    2. “Will AZ even deal Upton at this point now that they think they have their SS should be interesting.”

      Gerry Fraley is a Dallas sports writer interviewed by Gargano on WIP this week who said that Dbacks manager Kirk Gibson has issues with Justin Upton in which case I imagine they will continue to hear offers for him.

  97. From Jason Parks chat at BP just thought I would try to get a read on the system, and it is exactly what I expected.

    MattWinks (Philly): Any Phillies other than Biddle top 100 guys or is it just a system of guys who are rather ordinary or of extreme risk?

    Jason Parks: Biddle is on the list. You nailed the rest of the system.

    1. Hard to argue with that. Though I think there a several guys who may play themselves onto next year’s list (Quinn, Morgan, Franco). For me, this will be the most interesting year to follow the system in quite sometime- at all levels.

      1. I’m not usually someone who overestimates how quickly a prospect may make the majors, but I could definitely see Morgan being in the Phillies rotation come midseason, especially if their low risk/high reward starter doesn’t work out. Chances are high that one or more of the guys in the rotation will go on the DL at some point, and Morgan could pitch his way into being the first of the young guys on the depth chart, though Cloyd and Pettibone appear to be in front of him right now.

        1. I would say it is Pettibone purely because of 40 man considerations (they don’t have to worry about putting Morgan on for a while. On pure talent and stuff Morgan should be behind Pettibone in the race to the majors. He is a Top 5 prospect in the system for me especially since the reports on the stuff have been very promising.

          1. It not a stretch to imagine both Pettibone and Morgan could be in the rotation by the year’s end. Or, well, a bit of a stretch, but no moreso than predicting Tyler Cloyd would start games of some importance down the stretch last year. But Kendrick could revert to his 2008-2011 self, and the high-risk/high reward guy could turn out to be a bust, and major league hitter may (in fact, almost certainly will) catch up to Cloyd. Any of those events, plus an injury, could open up two spots at the back of the rotation.

            Now of course, let’s leave aside whether anyone wants to know how bad it will be for the Phillies as a whole if Pettibone and Morgan end up pitching a significant number of innings.

          2. I think Morgan will be the better pitcher in the long term but yeah I’d prefer to see Pettibone be the first guy up so that Morgan doesn’t get rushed too much to the majors.

  98. So the Angels sign Hamilton huh? So I guess that makes Bourjos or Trumbo available. Would we go for Trumbo? It might be an ok idea but I have no idea what kind of package it would take.

  99. Anyone else find it interesting that the Phils supposedly offered Ichiro 2/$14 (and were just turned down today)? With him in RF, where would any power have come from? This reaffirms that I think the Phils are trying hard to avoid Swisher and losing the 16th pick but they understand that Ross is overpriced. I’m not sure where they look next. Back to Cuddyer?

    1. Big no on Cuddyer. if they really don’t want those other guys they should just go with corner platoons and hope they pan out. Swisher should actually be on the table for them though and it’s crazy right now that he’s not. I get the pick thing but if you can get him at a certain price they have to check in on it.

  100. I really think it’s looking like a lost offseason. I’m ok with that. You hope that Utley and Howard turn it around, and if they do, you make a trade deadline aquistion should brown or ruf not provide meaningful production. The fact is, if Utley and Howard each play 145+ games, and are healthy, this is still a good team. If Howard puts up a 4 WAR and Utley 5+, that’s going to put the team in a good position. Say Jimmy at 3, Ruiz at 3, Hamels at 6+, Lee at 6, Haliday at 5. And you’ve got the makings of a pretty good team.

    If on the other hand you lose most of that 9 WAR from Howard and Utley, and Haliday is a #3 (2 WAR)not an Ace, signing josh hamilton may not have mattered.

    Just like when we went from being a 104 win team to last year, it’s all about the health of Howard, Utley, and Haliday. And just so we are all on the same page, that drop from 104 to 81 wasn’t age related decline in the least. It was injuries, now those players may never recover to be anything like they were before, but it still remains, this team could win 92-94 games next year and it wouldn’t shock me. That said, the following year, due to that infamous age related decline, the best case is probably 88 baring a major signing.

    Just so you guys don’t think i’m an eternal optimist, realistically, we’re looking at another 81-84 win season. I have zero confidence in Howard overall or Utley’s knees. Haliday i’m a little more optimistic on.

    1. I agree with you, it would have taken a huge move or two to even eliminate the chance that the health of the older players would just doom the season anyway. They shored up some holes to make another run with this core before some more money becomes free. In the mean time they didn’t make any moves that really handicap them long term both prospect wise or money wise (if you are down on the Revere trade they can probably recoup at least half the value given up at any point over the next 2 years in a trade). The good news though is that it is going to be clear by the trading deadline which way this team is headed, either they will be in the hunt or they will be out of it. If they are out they might try a rebuild on the fly trying to get value for any asset other than Hamels or Lee (you just are never going to get full value unless you are deciding to blow the team up entirely) that is healthy (whether it is Utley, Ruiz, Revere, or a bullpen piece). If they are close I would expect Ruben to use some of the space under the luxury tax (which they should have a good amount left) to absorb a contract that a team is looking to unload to avoid giving up a large prospect haul.

  101. So were saving money on third base and CF so that we can go make a big free agent splash but nobody is left. We could go trade for a big bat but we’ve traded 3/4 of our prospects. So it seems like were boxed in to mediocrity. Thanks RAJ

    1. There really wasn’t anyone to get. Would you prefer the mediocrity of Upton and Youkalis?

      Can we all remember for a second that RAJ got Hamels signed to what is looking like a below market deal (not much below, but below)

      1. This is a compilation of bad moves hitting us now. What if we didn’t trade for Hunter Pence? What if we didn’t trade too much for Revere and wait on Bourjois?

      2. I’d prefer the mediocrity of Youkilis or Chavez to the mediocrity of Young and the loss of Bonilla, but otherwise I don’t think there was much to do this offseason. Except to sign Edwin Jackson to take Worley’s place.

        1. There are those who want the Phillies to sign Nick Swisher. The Phillies are balking. Is it the the loss of the 16th pick and his high contract demands!

          1. That, and we don’t really, truly need him. We have talented kids. who are ready and whom we can just give a chance and see how they do. What we really, truly do need is another starting pitcher. With Worley gone, that should be priority #1. RA said coming into the off-season that an 8th-inning reliever was the number one priority. That hole, which may be more simply a matter of not trusting youth than reality, is also not filled. We have to get past the ‘I just can’t trust a rookie’ stage and focus on the hole that is really there. Unless you believe Cloyd is the guy, we don’t have an internal Worley replacement. As with any team, we can expect that we will need to have at least 6 SP getting a significant number of starts next year. Generally, it turns out to be 7 or more. Cloyd can be #6 or 7, but there really isn’t anyone else on the farm that is ready to step in.

      3. Less we forget that Hamels should have been signed long term two years ago, instead of the one year extension. Angels were smart in doing it with Weaver.

  102. I am totally satisfied we didn’t sign Hamilton. Look at his career, he misses at least 30 games a year on average. Over 5 seasons that would be 150+ games. Plus he has been very mediocre in the playoffs. I would be satisfied with Cody Ross RF/RevereCF/RufLF/Brown and Mayberry. Or if you don’t like Ross trade Valle/Brown for Michael Morse of the Nationals

  103. Anibal Sanchez.he isnt worth 75 million dollars, no way.. the market is nuts. god bless these guys, who are getting this money,. but its really crazy to pay him 15 million a year. he has proven nothing,to deserve that kind ofmoney

  104. The Marlins could reverse their stance on trading Giancarlo Stanton, opines’s Joe Frisaro, if the Rangers are desperate to add another big bat and were willing to offer Jurickson Profar or Mike Olt in a deal. Frisaro also thinks Miami could be a trade match with the Angels as
    Peter Bourjos “has been on the Marlins’ radar for a while.”

    If the Angels get Stanton that would just be absurd. I’m assuming they’d need to throw in much more than Bourjos though.

    1. I think they mean that the Marlins would be trading prospects for Bourjos, not Stanton. The Angels have one of the worst, if not the worst, farm systems in baseball. There’s no way they could even come close in creating a package for Stanton.

        1. I really don’t think the Angels pitching is that bad they have a very solid if not necessarily awesome 1-2 in Weaver and Wilson. Yeah I’d like Wilson better as a 3 but he is solid as a 2 with that lineup. Hanson could be a very good 3 or a mediocre 4 or a guy who is constantly on the DL. You just don’t know. Blanton is a 5 that doesn’t kill the pen. If they sign a solid 3/4 guy than I think they are the clear favorites.

          I still have to chuckle though when I think of the fact that the Angels traded Napoli and Juan Riveraa for the right to pay Wells $21 million per year to sit on the bench. It makes the Pence trade look like a steal for the Phillies.

  105. The marlins would love to get profar, olt and garcia, keep them for two years and then trade them. thats what they do, that organization is a disgrace, i really cant see bourjos, getting them stanton.

  106. The big picture at large is:

    1. Paper Tigers rarely win championships (don’t think anyone before the seasons started had the Giants winning their 2 WS and the Cards winning theirs) And as Morosi pointed out in 2011 it was supposed to be the Phillies and BoSox in the WS and the Sox didn’t even make the playoffs and we all know what happened to the Phillies.

    2. It’s more parts luck than we like to believe

    3. Youth has a way of reinvigorating veterans

    1. DMAR, I don’t mean to pick on you because, despite the fact that we often disagree, you are a smart guy and usually make sense even when we disagree. But ,.. what we could call “traditional” baseball wisdom is very often, even usually, true (of course not coincidently it is in those instances it is confirmed, or at least not contradicted by, modern statistical analysis). Sometime is is partially true. But as for #3, I see no evidence, at all, in the history of baseball, that that has even a shred of truth to it.

      1. There is some merit to #3. Bringing up Kevin Stocker sparked the Phillies. Kendrick up from AA was a spark. Galvis last season. A team of old vets can get entitiled and ho-hum, with the hunger gone, especially after the team has had a run of a decent number of years. The Phillies may have reached that stale point..

        1. I do not buy that there is even a shred of truth to that. Your examples are assertions without evidence. Galvis of course especially; if anything the corrolation is the opposite (the veterans played better when he was on the DL/suspended, not that I put any weight on that, and on the season as a whole, the veterans arguably under performed (though IMO more as a result of age, injury, and simple luck; I don’t buy into the whole “tired veteran” meme at all)).

          Kendrick helped the team because he pitched well; the evidence that he “sparked the veterans” is nil, and I’m being kind. Heck, that wasn’t even a particularly veteran team. Of the three veterans on the team who played a signfiicant role:. Moyer was awful after Kendrick was recalled. Burrell was up and down, but overall had a down year for him. Myers was up and down, but really didn’t look “revitalized” in any meaningful sense – he had an okay but not great year in an unfamiliar role. I guess you can throw Rollins in the mix, as he was a 7 year veteran at that point but still young. But there is nothing about his year which screams “revilatized.” He played at about the level that he had played over the past 2 years, and his splits show remarkable consistency, aside from an exceptional April and mediocre May.

          Kevin Stocker’s time with the team did coincide with it’s rise, but that had nothing to do with veterans playing better. There was an infusion of youth during that time, but it was an infusion of very skilled youth. The veterans didn’t “play better,” they were mostly traded or waived.

          Again not meaning to jump on either of you; you’re not the worst offenders by any means. But it’s this kind of assertion, completely free of any evidence at all, which drives me crazy. Just repeating received wisdom doesn’t make it true.

        2. I think the point that Larry is making is that the Statement “Youth is invigorating” is totally unquantifiable. In addition, you can point to examples where a team started playing better when a young guy joined the team to make your argument sound valid. But, no one mentions all the times where a young guy comes up and nothing happens or the team actually plays worse. Is that the fault of the youth?

          1. Yes, Joe, and thanks for the support, but it’s more than that. Look closely at the examples that people put forward, and it isn’t merely that sometimes the team improves amd sometimes it doesn’t (or gets worse), but even when the team gets better, its almost always attributible to a combination of (a) the direct impact of the young player performing well, and (b) other YOUNG players playing well on their own merits.

      2. By various accounts here in Washington, Bryce Harper in the Nats lineup is that example of youth invigorating veterans. Widely commented on by members of the team. You could debate it, preferably with them and not me.

        1. I’d love to hear some quotes. Absent that (well, probably even with that), I think it’s sort of laughable. It was a young team that prospered because young players performed very well. Almost the opposite of what DMAR and others are proposing.

          Look, I DO think there is something to the notion that it is important for a team to have a certain culture that promotes good work habits. A guy like Utley probably is a good example for other players. The problem that I have with the “young guys invigorating the old guys” meme isn’t JUST that it has no evidentiary support, at all, but that it doesn’t even make sense in its own terms. Older players suffer a decline in performance because their skills suffer age related decline. Reflexes slow, injuries become more likely, recovery from injuries is slower. Human physiology 101. They don’t deceline because they get complacent and lazy. And no amount of invigorating youthful team mates can reverse physical decline.

          1. I got a chuckle out of that when I posted it and thought of you Larry. Baseball is near and dear to my heart. There is a certain amount of romaticism about the game that (at age 43) I will never out grow.

            So like left brain right brain debate I don’t necessarily need to quantify everything. I think there is room for many points of view whether they be subjective or otherwise….

  107. The run is over for this core of Phils…Dont be sad that its over, be glad that it happened. Now, we build it back…get Mike Trout in 2017!

  108. I am installing the Angels as my early World Series favorite in the upcoming season. Thie Hamilton signing appears to be a move to win now and you have to respect that philososophy

  109. Obviously the team could still surprise us (I’d still love to see them swoop in to nab Swisher), but at this point the sum total of the Phillies’ moves is tough to defend. Even setting aside some obvious in hindsight missed opportunities (Span or Bourjols, each of which IMO would have been better than Revere; Youk as opposed to Young), the simple fact is that they are leaving payroll money on the table, and they could have been better in the short and medium term by being more agressive on the FA front.

    Now, I know all of the arguments going the other way. But even assuming the truth of some of them, I think they miss the big picture. Looking at the current roster/payroll over the next 2 to 4 years, the team is going to have money to spend and many needs. They are going to HAVE to dip their toes into the FA market at some point. That or accept mediocrity at best (and of course have a declining payroll, great for the owners, not so great for the fans). People seem to be assuming that the market will be better in future years. It won’t. I would say that this year is the new normal, but it will get worse. As for the quality of the players available, next year, at least, looks MUCH worse. As for salaries, they will continue to increase.

    What is most frustrating are the comments about how “crazy” the market is.The market is a predictable consequence of the flood of TV dollars. AEC is a crazy loon who exagerated the situation tremendously, but he wasn’t entirely wrong. It’s one thing to construct reasons why the team should forgo the market in a particular year, but over the medium run certainly, and, i would argue over the long haul for a team like the Phillies with a mediocre at best front office, abstaining from the FA market is suicide. Yet this season, despite perceptions about the talewnt pool and contract amounts, might have been the BEST time to spend some money in the FA market.

    Looking at the current major league roster and minor league system, this team is headed for 90 loss seasons in 2012-2014. Obviously there are a few guys in the minors that might help in that time frame, but they are going to HAVE to spend big in the FA market as well.

  110. Larry, I know your a swisher fan, and dont know if you listen to the radio. but every thing i hear is,the phillies just wont pay swisher the kind of money he wants. and the years. They just think he is going to get more than they would commit, and some writers thinks the phillies dont like him at all. I believe the only thing to do is make a trade, and the best package, i came up with, for a outfielder, is this , joseph, martin or morgan, quinn, and galvis, and that in my imo wouldnt bring you back a top talent. only a overpaid player maybe, a aging veteran,there just imo isnt a true, star prospect in the system.Now things could change this season,greene could break out or quinn. or tocci, franco, and then we would have some bullets,the part thats gets me is this just didnt happen overnight, no hindsight from ruben , and what good is three aces, without a good defense and offense, young at third, is nuts, howard is not great at first, ruf is a adventure in left, and brown stinks imo.and i really have no answer to what they can do. but one thing, i would suggest is, if the two cuban players are out there go and get the outfielder, do something to show us you are trying to improve,

  111. The Phils were an 81 loss team in 2012 so let’s knock that one down right off the top. I’d be shocked to see the Phils as a 90 loss team in 2013 and surprised if they don’t stage a rebound of sorts. It’s looking more and more like Darin Ruf will start the season as the starting left fielder. If he puts out up solid power numbers with a reasonable contact rate and fields just a slightly below average left field, I think a reasonably healthy Phils team will be a contender.

    That’s a bunch of ‘ifs’ but what is a certainty is that critics will be all over Amaro if Ruf has to start the season in AAA or struggles coming out of the gate. Teams will adjust to Ruf and if he shows an ability to adjust, then he can be the right handed 5-hole hitter the team needs.

    I do think that operators are standing by and phone lines are open on Rafael Soriano at any point up to the trade deadline and perhaps after if the Phils decide to revisit trade prospects with the Cubs. It’s true he could be traded in the meantime but if he’s shopped, then the Phils will know of it.

    With no help from minor leaguers completely new to ‘the show’, the 2013 Phils I see as better than the 2012 team with a better result.

    In 2014, you get into the realm of finally getting some help from the minors with pitchers contributing and Asche and Gillies, perhaps Joseph on the scene as well.

    In the meantime, if you’re the Nats you’re worried about Ryan Zimmerman ‘s shoulder and his continuing ability to make the routine plays at third base and to stay healthy throughout an entire season. Bryce Harper should improve. Jayson Werth may not.

    If you’re the Braves, you’re concerned about Brian McCann and whether 2012 marks a downward trend or if he, as a relatively young player, can rebound and approach the performance he achieved pre-2012. They’ll miss Chipper Jones in a way the Phils will some day miss Chase Utley.

    The Braves and Nats will have salary levels at higher than customary levels so their ability a/o willingness to add pieces during the season remains a matter of uncertainty.

    In an off season that has been a little disappointing so far, I see a tendency to hand wring and assume the team is going down. The Phils at this point have salary space and therefore have means to improve their prospects this off season and during the season. It just may be me but I don’t think all is lost.

    1. IM,

      Already spent too much time here this morning, so breifly:

      2013 – I think you’re right that they are not a 90 loss team in 2012 and I too expect a bit of a rebound though I am less optimistic than you are. But it seems to me the MORE optimistic you are about the 2013 team, the MORE you should regret the team’s passivity in the FA market. Say this is a 88 to 90 win team if things break right. That’s exactly the point where a good FA signing can make the difference between a playoff team and a good team that just missed.

      2014 – they get some help from the minors, but not enough to make up for declining veterans and the possible loss of Ruiz/Halladay/Utley. You and I have a long running disagreement about aging curves, and we also disagree a bit about how good the players currently in the upper minors are likely to be, so we are not going to agree most likely, but without dipping into the FA market, it’s very hard for me to see this being a competative team after 2013. Rollins, Howard 2 years older, two rookies, a weak hitting center fielder, Galvis at second, a couple guys at the outfield corners who are young or youngish with potential but who carry huge question marks – that has the look to me of a likely bottom tier offense. The starting ptichers will likely be okay, but not nearly good enough to make up for the sub par hitting. Your third starter (assuming no FA pickups) is going to be Kendrick or a rookie.

    2. While all is not lost there are cracks in the dam. I think the best way to fix them is to try and get younger, get a few surprises maybe Morgan is another Lee, maybe Asche is another Utley and maybe Quinn is another JRoll.

      Maybe this years 16th pick is the next Mike Trout least we not forget how late in the round Trout was taken and wasn’t even the 1st player the Angels took in that round Randall Grichuk was.

      Looking back the Marlins were nuts to trade Cabrerra. there were risks in that deal for both clubs and the Marlins were the ones that came up with the short straw but it could have easily gone the other with Cabrerra;s drinking problem. Maybe that deal happens for us some where in the next year or two. (Tulo)

      The point is you never know what is going to happen in this game. You try and balance the risks and take some chances. Yes we are Phillies fans and parades are euphoric but try being a baseball fan first.

      I am judging RAJ based on what I see as we sit here today and I give him a poor grade but we don’t know what they are talking about and the next move might change everything.

  112. The Phillies are, unfortunately, starting to remind me of the Eagles. The season before last, the Eagles, started poorly and made it to .500. This season they cheaped out, spent well below the cap and have been considerably worse. Last season the Phillies started poorly, and made it back to .500. So far the upcoming season is looking like they are going cheap and have not improved much, if at all.. If your competitors are improving a lot and you are barely improving, you are losing ground. Right now, I don’t see them as serious contenders and they could be under .500 unless they shore up some quite a few things.

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