Around the System–Middle Infield

This was one of the more depressing exercises in my recent existance with JP Crawford saving me from a complete malaise.  Next up will be catchers.

Lehigh Valley

Ronny Cedeno, 31, Acquired as a free agent in 2014; .198/.244/.247 in 81 AB’s; 0HR 8RBI; 6%bb/19%K rates; .148 vs. LH; .222 vs. RHP. 20 games at SS with 3 errors (.963);  2 games at 2B without an error; Cedeno has been a small step above awful thus far

Freddy Galvis, 24, Signed as a free agent in 2006; Went 1-7 before going down with a broken collarbone in Saturdays game.  Expected to miss 6-8 weeks.

Matt Tolbert, 32, Signed as a free agent in 2013; .220/.292/.237 in 59 AB’s between Reading and Lehigh Valley; 0HR 1RBI; 1SB; 8%bb/11%k rates.  6 games at 2B with 1 error (.933); 6 games at 3B without an error; 4 games in the OF without an error; Has been adequate in limited playing time.

DL: Andreas Blanco


Carlos Alonso, 25, Phils 32nd round pick in 2010; .283/.369/.372 in 113 AB’s; 1HR 9RBI; 3SB; 11%bb/17%k rates; .229 vs. LHP; .311 vs. RHP; .275 in May. 17 games at 2B with 2 errors (.977);  12 games at 3B with 3 errors (.857); Alonso has been solid and dependable playing nearly every day for the Fightins.

Albert Cartwright, 26, Acquired from Houston in 2011; .257/.313/.316 in 74 AB’s; 0HR 3RBI; 4SB; 8%bb/20%k rates.  12 games at 2B with 1 error (.979); 8 games in the OF without an error; Cartwright missed some time at the beginning of the year and is just beginning to round into form.

Edgar Duran, 23, Signed as a free agent in 2007; .269/.339/.327 in 104 AB’s; 0HR 8RBI; 3/7SB; 9%bb/15%k rates; .308 vs. LHP; .246 vs. RHP; 28 games at SS with 8 errors (.941); 4 games at 2B with 1 error.  Duran started hot and has started to cool off a bit.  He has had some unexpected issues with the glove.


Angelo Mora, 21, SIgned as a free agent in 2010; .240/.291/.302 in 96 AB’s; 1HR 3RBI; 1/6SB; 7%bb/20% k rates; .214 vs LHP; .250 vs. RHP; 18 games at SS with 5 errors (.948); 7 games at 2B with 2 errors (.957); Medicore at best.

Anthony Phillips,. 24, Signed as a free agent in 2014; .217/..357/.348 in 46 AB’s; 1HR 7RBI; 1SB; 16%bb/20% k rates; 6 games at 2B without an error; 4 games at 3B without an error; 3 games at SS without an error; 4 games in the OF without an error. Spent some of the early season injured and was not very effective minus a solid bb rate when healthy.

KC Serna, 24, Signed as a free agent in 2014; .276/.315/.374 in 123 AB’s; 1HR 7RBI; 3/6 SB; 4%bb/14%k rates; .325 vs. LHP. .253 vs. RHP; .182 with RISP; 19 games at 2B with 2 errors (.982); 8 games at SS with 1 error (.979). Has been one of the few solid members of the CLearwater roster this year, albeit with little run production


JP Crawford, 19, Phils 1st round pick in 2013; .336/.430/.492 in 128 AB’s; 3HR 12 RBI; 8/13 CS; 14%bb/14%k rates; .333 vs. LHP; .337 vs. RHP; .222 with RISP; .432 in May; 32 games at SS with 8 errors (.947); Chose the positive adjective to describe Crawford.  He has played exceptionally well consistently and should be moving up within the next month.  A few more errors than the Phils would like to see I am sure.

Andrew Pullin, 20, Phils 5th round pick in 2012; .228/.305/.348 in 115 AB’s; 3HR 9RBI; 4/5SB; 9%bb/25%k rates; .190 vs. LHP; .234 vs. RHP; .214 with RISP; 31 games at 2B with 8 errors (.946); Pullin has shown glimpses but not much more.  Growing pains were expected with the transition to 2B but not with the bat.

Robinson Torres, 22, Signed as a free agent in 2010; Hitting .120/.120/.120 in 25 AB’s. 4 games at 2B without an error; 3 games at SS without an error; 2 games at 3B without an error.


40 thoughts on “Around the System–Middle Infield

  1. Do you not include Quinn because he is not out of XST yet?  Or, did you include him and I just missed it.

  2. Not much from CWater to Lehigh in terms of prospects. I know Quinn isn’t included which would give them a boost. Also, thank God for Crawford. It be nice to see a Quinn/ Cawford Middle Inf. in 2 or 3 years in Philly.

  3. Wow, this is depressing. Gotta love Crawford, they may have really hit with that pick, but aside from that, when Carlos Alonso is a bright spot, that generally is not a great thing.

    1. No mention of Canelo, who has played a few games with Clearwater (though I suppose he is overlooked as EST–but he may be the best defensive shortstop after Galvis…and may have offensive potential of a greater magnitude).

      And no mention of Quinn, who only has to get & stay healthy, and play a position (whether SS, 2B or CF) long enough to get comfortable there. If Billy Hamilton’s speed can get him to The Show, Quinn with comparable legs and a potentially much better bat has to be a good bet.

      1. Oops. Almost forgot what motivated me to oomment: the question of why there is no mention of Carlos Hernandez, who might very well be in Philly nowif there was no Chase Uley. Yes, I know he is the plan is to make him a versatile bench guy in the absence of a place for a 2B on the parent club—but he has potential clearly to be a major league 2B…and hopefully capable of filling in adequately at 3B, CF, maybe even SS. IMO he will be a Phillie in 2015, if not later this season; belongs now.

        1. You mean Cesar H and yes he’s in Philly already and unfortunately Quinn is not as fast as Hamilton (no one is) but hopefully he didn’t lose too much with the achillies tear and repair and can be a valuable speed weapon down the road at 2B or CF.

    2. You want to get depressed, Look at what singleton and Santana are doing at triple a , Santana is one of the youngest players there.

  4. Well it looks like we aren’t getting a new general thread, and I am too lazy to rework the numbers here at such time as we do, so I’m going OT. It is middle infield, though.

    Rollins is, thus far, having quite a bounce back year. I would pat myself on the back for predicting it, except that he is massively outperforming even my expectations. What are the keys to his resurgence?

    (1) Better plate discipline – this was never the problem for him that many believed, but he has gone from about average to well above average. Not only has his BB rate gone up (12.9% versus 7.8% career and 8.9% last season), but his O-swing% is much improved (20.8 versus 26.8 last year). His OBP (.370), if he maintains it, would be by far the highest of his career.

    (2) More power – .165 iso versus .097 iso last season. This is probably mainly reversion to the mean.

    (3) Better BABIP – (.313 versus .288 last year.) Not a huge departure and a small factor in his success. Probably partly – or even mainly – luck based. His batted ball data is similar to last season’s.

    (4) Defense – all the caveats apply regarding fielding metrics and SS, but his range is back up, and, per UZR, he has improved from about 3 runs below average to 10 runs above average (on a seasonal basis). I’m not sure how much of that is “real” – it may be that he wasn’t that bad last season, but not that good this season. OTOH the improvement is large enough that likely at least some of it is “real.”

    How sustainable is all of this? I don’t think he’ll continue at the same rate – but his current performance, IF sustained, would result (in context) one of the best seasons of his career – roughly 6.3 fWAR. Even a significant reversion – to, say, 3.2 fWAR for the season – will mean that he is still an above average regular.

    One other point – he has arguably already more than earned his 2012-2014 salary (7.7 fWAR @ 33 million salary).

    Of course this kind of year to year variation is far from unprecedented – but I wonder if he had an unrevealed injury last season?

    1. If Rollins makes it to the HOF, I think it will be because he is able to remain a starter for another four or five years after this season and because he is able to accumulate counting stats that the writers won’t be able to ignore. It’s still a long shot, but Rollins is steadily moving up the ladder.

      3,000 hits, 600 doubles, 250 HRs, close to 1,000 XBHs, 500 SBs and very good defense at a premium position is a cinch HOFer.

      By the end of 2015, he should be close to 2,500 hits, over 500 doubles, 225 HRs, and 450 SBs. He already has well over 100 triples.

      Will Rollins then have another 500 hits, 100 doubles, 25 HRs and 50 SBs in his tank?

      He should be able to get a two-year deal as a starting SS after 2015, just not with the Phillies. Rollins will need to perform well enough offensively and defensively in 2016 and 2017 to hold onto his starting job. He’ll then probably need close to two more years as a starter after that to get to 3,000 hits. It’s a long shot.

      1. Your assumption that 2016 is not with the Phillies is an interesting one, I think it’s really going to be dependant upon the status of Roman Quinn and more likely JP Crawford. If either projects as a star and is ready for full time work to start 2016 Rollins is likely gone. OTOH if either of those points is untrue, I could see him getting another 1 year maybe with a mutual option for a second from the Phillies.

        1. What I’m inferring is that, if Rollins is to make that final push for the HOF, he will not remain a career Phillie. While Rollins could remain the Phils’ starting SS in 2016, it might be in his best interests to leave the team after 2015 if there is another organization with an opening at short and no SS prospects at the higher levels. What Rollins should avoid is getting into a situation like Ichiro’s, where he won’t get enough playing time to reach 3,000 hits.

      2. JRoll should pass Schimdtty for the all-time hits leaders in Phillies history, other then Pete Rose of the Reds… there any player, of the original national League teams who ‘s all-time hit leader is not in the HoF?

        1. I think Bert Campaneris of the A’s is the only team all-tIme hits leader besides Rose not in the HOF. He had just 1,882 with the A’s.

          1. It’s astounding that, in the entire history of the Athletics, the hits leader has only 1,882, given how many all-time greats have played with that franchise in its numerous locations. Alas, financial problems from the team’s long ago inception through to this very day have prevented this storied franchise from retaining its key players for their entire career. It’s staggering.

            1. sorry derekcarstairs….you are replying to catchman…since the three spent several years with the A’s

      3. BTW, Rollins can get to 3,000 hits, 600 doubles, 250 HRs, 1,000 XBHs, and 500 SBs if a) he performs the way he did in 2011-2012 this year and next; b) he performs below 2011-2012 levels in 2016-2017, but still well enough to remain a starting SS in the majors; and c) he is barely adequate and crawls to the finish line in 2018 and part of 2019.

        3,000 hits, 250 HRs, 1,000 XBHs, and 500 SBs has never been done before by anyone at any position in the history of baseball.

        3,000 hits, 1,000 XBHs, and 500 SBs has been done by only one player in the history of baseball: Ty Cobb.

        That is why I say that, although it’s still a long shot, Rollins will make the HOF if he can remain a starter for four or five more years after this season. He doesn’t have to be as good as he’s shown so far this season – just career average this year and next; then, very ordinary; and finally, on the farewell tour.

    2. I’m actually really happy about his performance as well. He looks like he has a good 2 maybe even 3 years left in the tank before we’ll need to re-evaluate the short stop position, especially since position players rarely “fall off the cliff” as quickly as pitchers. Excellent timing I might add for JP Crawford.

    3. LarryM wrote:
      ‘Of course this kind of year to year variation is far from unprecedented – but I wonder if he had an unrevealed injury last season?’
      …me thinks a different boss’ leadership inspired Jimmy to elevate his motivational level…….to the point of ‘think I;m done, I’ll show you what i got ‘

    4. There have been a number of people wishing for a self-off, and while I am not happy, at all, with the Management of the team, this would be such a bad product with our prospects filling Major League positions. Trade Rollins, it should be Galvis, don’t re-sign Utley, we have Cesar, etc. Not suggesting LarryM held these views.

    5. When Rollins’ hitting took a nosedive after 2008, it was mainly due to a fall in his BABIP. From 2009 – 2013, Rollins’ BABIP was .265.

      So in context of the last several years, his current BABIP (.313) is VERY high. Now maybe he’s figured something out — his BABIP has generally gotten better over the last several years — but I still expect quite a bit of regression there.

      I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the return of his power and defense. It is starting to look like last year was an outlier and not the new trend.

      1. Someone mentioned, awhile back..maybe even last year, his ‘infield pop-up’ rate were among the league leaders for 2011, ’12 and ’13…

        1. Not true. It was really bad in 2012 – yes, he led the league. Much better in 2013 – still above average, but nowhere near the worst in the league. 2011 it was fine, about league average., Oddly, his BABIP doesn’t seem to correlate closely with his infield fly percentage. e.g., his worst year in BABIP was 2010, when his infield fly percentage was fine.

          His BABIP in 2013 was .288. His career mark is .287. If he regresses to that level, he’ll still be having quite a bounce back year. His increased BB rate and his rebound to decent power are the biggest components of his success this season.

          1. Ok…wasn’t exactly sure what the numbers were in that period of time.
            Of late, he has obtained a rep for that dubious distinction.

          2. But getting back to the original premise we discussed about Rollins and his HoF selection chances.
            IMO, once he passes Schimdt for all-time hits for a Phillie, he seals his Cooperstown induction five years after his retirement.

  5. Direct result of some really poor drafting? Process? Player development? All of the above?

    Seem to have struck gold with Crawford though and that’s something to be excited about. If Quinn works his way back from injury and remains a SS, then this could not be a total disaster – which it certainly is now.

    1. Round peg, square hole? By all earlier accounts, he has all the skills needed to be a solid defensive CF. We need one of those. His speed plays up at least as well in CF as at SS, his arm should be more than adequate, and his offense has a chance. How much has his defensive difficulty learning SS impacted his offense. The Phillies threw a lot at him all at once — switch hitting and switching from CF to SS. We don’t have anyone else on the farm who is anything near a lock to be a major league CF, and I say that as a major supporter of both Tocci and Altherr — both of them has serious question marks.

      1. If Quinn continues to be bad at SS this year, I think the switch happens next season. The XST reports on his defense have been pretty solid, which is very encouraging, but his small professional sample size has shown a little bit of pop, which would be fine for a good defensive CF. If he sticks at SS, however … suddenly the prospect of one of Quinn or Crawford becomes a discussion. Wouldn’t that be interesting …

        1. I can’t see moving Crawford off SS to 2B and since Quinn seems to have problems with his footwork defensively, 2B is probably not for him, especially a late minor league career back to 2B. No reason the Phillies shouldn’t keep both guys and CF is both Quinn’s natural position and a very high-defensive-value position. We are not talking a downgrade from playing a good SS and moving down the defensive ladder just a little to play a good CF. We are probably talking Quinn going from an adequate to good SS to being a good to very good CF. The ‘look how much defensive value he loses if he moves off SS’ argument assumes that he will be a plus defensive SS and that the defensive value of SS is leagues ahead of CF.

          1. I agree the most likely move is Quinn to CF, and I have no problem with it. A scenario in which Quinn moved to 2B would only happen if he stuck at SS, thereby learning the necessary footwork to play the position.

            I’ll be honest: since reports of Quinn continuing to be a burner started coming out of XST this spring, I’ve been calculating in my head how long it will take to get to Philly and replace Ben Revere.

            1. Ben could be traded well before Quinn comes on the scene.
              One attractive aspect of his ‘game’ is his team controlled contract status.

            2. Ah the only attractive aspect of his game is his controlled contract status. And his speed I suppose.

  6. Matt, I was wondering if you could repost the chart you had put up before concerning what you mean by “X- player is a Level 7”. I cannot find the thread where you had posted it before. This time I will make sure to bookmark the thread!

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