For the record, Depth Chart Brainstorm is a fine name for an Emo or Math Rock band. Anyway, I’m thinking about throwing a couple of these out there during the course of the year, just to give us all a chance to discuss contingency plans for the big club. Some no brainers, and a couple that will likely be fluid as the year and certain prospects progress. But for now, if someone went down with an injury tomorrow, who’d be the man getting the call?
Starters – Very short term (spot start with or without notice) – Cloyd, based on his 2012 season, and his bit of MLB experience, I think he’s the guy. Also on the 40-man roster, so no issues there. But any of the starters not named Morgan could get a spot start if it’s on very short notice as they’re already in option years, so there are no roster concerns.
Starters – 2 weeks or longer – Probably Cloyd again, with Pettibone close behind. Ask me in May, and Morgan might easily jump both of them with even similar results at AAA to the other two – though he does need a 40-man spot and service time will start on him.
Relievers – Right handed – Stutes. DeFratus can’t be far behind, and based on performance, this is probably fluid all year. If Stutes has two weak outings, and DeFratus two strong ones, this will probably flip quickly.
Relievers – Left-handed – Diekman. Easy.
Relievers – Long man – Rosenberg, I think. I guess they could use Cloyd, but right now, I’d rather leave him completely stretched for a spot start. If Minor was on the 40-man roster, I’d say he’d have a shot based on experience, but he’s not, so I don’t see it.
Catcher – Let me come back to this one.
1B – Darin Ruf comes up, or less likely, IMO, they move JMJ to first full-time (or in a platoon with Nix), and bring up Gillies to play 5th OF, or even less likely, IMO, they move Michael Young to first and play Frandsen/Galvis at third and then I don’t know what they do for the bench – maybe still Darin Ruf.
2B– Cesar Hernandez, but Galvis will play every day.
SS – Ugh. Martinez. Again, like at second, at least he won’t play. I guess they could assume Cesar can play short in a pinch and use him.
3B – Probably call up Cesar and use him as the primary 2b backup and use Galvis as the 3rd base backup to Frandsen. If it’s later in the year, and Frandsen is struggling a bit, Asche could take this spot and start every day.
OF – I’ll just group them together and say Tyson Gillies, no matter who goes down. Jermaine Mitchell would probably be the next guy, (needs a 40-man spot), ahead of Darin Ruf. Ruf can make a statement early with relatively mistake-free play in left, and probably move ahead of Mitchell and Gillies if a corner OF goes down, at which point those two would be battling for only the CF injury depth spot.
DH – Meh, not really thinking they’re worried about it too much. They’ll just roll with whoever they have. The schedule’s more fluid than last year, with the interleague scattered throughtout the year, so maybe at some point they might see a couple away series in a short span and think they need a bat. Ruf is likely the man then, maybe to play first and let Howard rest and DH.
Ok, back to catcher. There are basically three types of catcher injuries to consider. The day-to-day, (where the extra man may not even see the roster, let alone the field), 7-10 day, (where the extra man will likely take at least one start), and a true DL stint. I believe the Phils have not really used the 7-10 day option much the last couple years, instead opting to put the man on the DL and bring him back in 15 days. That might have been due to the options they had which they “liked”, Sardinha and Kratz, or just the nature of the injuries in question.
Now the decisions are a little more complicated, with options and roster spots in play. So if it’s day-to-day, and they decide they really need the extra man, I assume they bring up Lerud (and waive Savery or Robles), then leave him on the 40-man as long as they can or waive him and hope he doesn’t get grabbed. If it’s the 8-10 days, I think the same. But if it’s a true DL stint, things could become more complicated.
I’m of the mindset that if you need a catcher, tomorrow, for 2 weeks, it’s probably still Steve Lerud. But the club could opt to use Sebastian Valle so as not to a) use up one of Joseph’s options and start his service clock, and b) have to waive someone to make a roster spot for either Lerud or Joseph. I would personally use Valle for just that reason, (he’s already used his option for the year), but I doubt the Phils will do so, as he’s clearly fallen behind Joseph in their eyes.
3 weeks from now, it may be a moot point, as Ruiz is back and Quintero could clear waivers, be left on the 40-man, and go to LV to wait on another turn with the big club. Or the argument could remain, if Quintero opts for free agency.
What say you? Am I overthinking this catcher argument? Probably. I’ll plan to do another one of these near the middle of next month, when we’ll have likely seen a roster move or two already, and have a nice little sample of the more “prospecty” guys to consider.