Box Score Recap – 7/13/2014

The Futures Game was today. J.P. Crawford was 1-2 with a stolen base and Maikel Franco was 0-2. Franco didn’t take any chances in the field, and Crawford handled a routine grounder and also made a strong throw to finish off a ground ball double play.

Back in the real world, Aaron Altherr was 2-4 with his seventh home run of the year. Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez with his second save in as many tries for Reading. He’s given up four hits and three walks in seven innings, and struck out 12. Not bad. Aaron Nola allowed three runs and seven hits, two of them home runs, and struck out just two. Reports on Twitter have him throwing around 2/3 of his pitches for strikes. Good to see Sam Hiciano with a hit in three straight after a couple days off. He could use a hot streak right about now.

A five inning affair in WIL, as Matt Imhof shut out Tri-City – 3H 1BB 3K in those 5IP before the rain had its way. Aaron Brown hit his second home run in as many days, and Drew Stankiewicz hit his first as a pro.

Here’s the affiliate Scoreboard from MiLB. http://www.milb.com/scoreboard/index.jsp?sid=milb&org=143&ymd=20140713

7-13-14

88 thoughts on “Box Score Recap – 7/13/2014

  1. I never have seen Nola pitch. I can only base my opinion on what I have read, with his velocity and small size, I am worried he might not be anything but another Kendrick type. The guy must be perfect to get out hitters. no room for error with his low velocity. I know I am going to hear the greg Maddox talk. but Maddox threw harder in beginning. And if you really watched him pitch, the umpires gave him 4 inches off the plate pitches, nola doesn’t have that respect level and might never get it. just worried as a seventh pick. he wont be much help. especially if we trade lee and depend on this kid.

    1. You do realize that he has been pitching since last fall and the Phillies have him on a 50 pitch limit. Let’s see what his velocity and effectiveness is at in Spring Training before we bury the guy.

    2. When Nola was drafted, the term that was commonly used was “safe”. Given that the Phillies had the 7th pick, ‘safe’ had a negative connotation. Does Nola project to be a top of the rotation starter – probably not. But, the reports are that he should slot as a solid #3.

      If he peaks as a 2014 version of Kyle Kendrick – I think we will be disappointed. If he ends up as a 2011 version of Kyle Kendrick (ERA+ 119, WHIP 1.22), I would be satisfied.

    3. Sorry, way too premature to go there. His college stats were that of a dominant pitcher. This is all new to him, give him time.

  2. I didn’t think I was burying the guy, Just wondering about his upside, based on his velocity, and height, not a big guy and doesn’t throw hard. I Think of linecum have he has faded to be a less than top of rotation guy;

    1. Isn’t Lincicum their number 1? His no hitter wasn’t too bad. The Giants are at or near the top in the West. If Nola is like him, I’ll be happy.

      1. It’s funny how these comments all reflect some of the thoughts I’ve been having about Nola since I saw the box score yesterday and read the report this morning about his velocity. Here’s what I thought

        1. Wow, 88-91 is not a good place for a right-handed starting pitcher’s fastball velocity to sit.

        2. If that’s where it is going to sit permanently, it’s hard to see him being much better than a 4, a 3 tops, unless he has a devastating out pitch, which I do not believe is the case.

        3. It’s his first year and he’s pitched a long year for him, his velocity could be ebbing at this point.

        4. He could be working on all sorts of things and might be really easing up on the velocity to hone other skills or preserve his arm. We have no idea.

        5. He’s still pretty young, and younger players really do improve velocity on occasion, especially after a good winter of strength and endurance training – something he should have this off season. And it looks to me like Nola could add some strength – he’s on the thin side.

        6. His velocity has been said to sometimes sit in the 91-95 range, touching 96 and 97 – I doubt he’s lost all that steam since the spring, especially since there’s no suggestion he is or has been hurt.

        So, on the whole, let’s not pass judgment too soon and wait and see. Again, a lot of this may be him holding back at the suggestion of the team while he hones other pitches or tries to adjust to the more compressed starter’s routine in professional baseball. In addition, this may just have been an off start. But, yeah, when he gets to Philadelphia I will be seriously bummed out if he’s consistently sitting 88-91 and replaces Kendrick or Hernandez as the #4 guy in the rotation. You don’t pick 7th overall hoping that’s what you’re going to get and, if that happens, it will be an unsuccesful pick although not a complete bust.

        By the way, if he becomes the current version of Lincecum, I won’t be happy with that either. Lincecum is now a 1-2 WAR pitcher – a #4; even with the no-hitters.

        1. If Nola can get the Phillies a few WS rings like Lincecum did for the Giants…one as the Cy Young starter the first time and the other as one of the two key relief guys..then I would be happy.

        2. Come on, I feel like we’re better than this. First of all, judging Nola based on a few games in Clearwater after a long college season is the definition of knee-jerk. Also, he really hasn’t been bad! The report said he was hitting 93 in the first inning, which is not a bad place for a righthanded starter to sit if he has superior command and a feel for pitching, as Nola does, by all accounts. No one said he was the second coming of Stephen Strasburg, but the predraft reports had him sitting 90-93, so it seems like he’s more or less looked as advertised. It seems to me that he’s lived up to his advance billing as a solid mid-rotation starter who should move quickly and might have a chance to peak as a #2. His worst case scenario (barring injury or some unforeseen regression) is not David Buchanan or Kyle Kendrick–those are #5 guys who have been thrust in the role of being #3s or #4s.

          1. I think some of the people reacting negatively were unaware of his somewhat low ceiling and lack of premium stuff.

        3. Only commenting on number 5 – anything he does off season will be on par with what he’s done while at LSU. Big time schools like LSU have solid strength and conditioning programs that players go through. They also lift in season as well. Hell the smaller D1 schools also have big time off season strength and conditioning programs. An example of a bigger school YouTube Georgia Baseball Strength and Conditioning.

        4. Didn’t the predraft reports put a 2-3 ceiling on him because of his lack of premium velocity? I heard a lot about command, control, deception, and pitchability, but never heard that he had great stuff.

          Combined with the fact that this is at the end of a long season, I see no reason to adjust our opinion of him based on some low velocity reports, unless that opinion was unrealistic to begin with.

        5. Does anybody remember Cole Hamels’ fastball velocity when he came up, and compare that to where his velocity sits today.

          1. It’s actually about the same. Generally 91-93, touching 94 and 95 (once in a blue moon he’ll have a start where’s consistently in the mid 90s, touching higher, but that’s exceptionally rare).

        6. Interestingly, when I saw the velocity numbers coupled with the poor control comments I thought wow, look how this guy battles on a day without his best stuff. I’ve always said that a pitcher gets 30 starts a year and is only “ON” for 10 of them. He also has 10 bad starts a year. How he does in the other 10 starts with just okay stuff defines a pitcher.

      2. no believe it or not it Bumgartner followed by Hudson you could argue that Lincecum is there 3 but I think Cain is better so , Lincecum is tied with Vogelsong for 4th and 5th IMO

  3. Puddinhead do you ever read a stat on a player?? or do you just want to tell me lincicum is a number one, he is right now 9-5 with 3.66 era which is real good, last three years under 500 pitcher with a high era, but that would be a number one on t his team if you were running it. point was his velocity and small size imo. has made him not a one but closer to a 3-4 at best

    1. Agreed. Lincecum is now a 3 or a 4. He’s not the guy you want your top pick to resemble going forward.

  4. I do n’t think anybody thought Nola was going to be a 96mph guy, or even a number 1 starter. He is not Verlander, hes not even Chris Sale. What he is is a sure thing to be a ML pitcher with a low floor and upside to be a good 3 starter for a long time. Not every starter who doesnt throw gas is Kendrick…Nola will probably end up being similar to Mike Leake, which is a solid rotation piece. You can make the argument that with a top 10 pick they should be drafting for upside, but this June’s draft was very top heavy and once the few blue chips were gone, they were prudent to get a guy who they know is going to move quickly and be at least somewhat effective

    1. I think everyone is hoping for a guy who is a 2, with a 3 downside. If he’s a #4, that’s very disappointing and does not move the team forward because the Philles, with their resources, can buy a #4 any offseason for around $8 -11 million. Yeah, it saves some money, but that’s what guys like Buchannan are for.

      1. I don’t see any reason he can’t be a 3 or MAYBE 2 with his stuff…he is certainly on a level above kendrick/buchannan…I actually would rather have Nola start a ML game now over those 2 if i had to pick one of the 3 to start a must win game. Kendrick’s gone after this seaon and Buchannan takes over the Kendrick role, but Nola is expected to be better than that, even now.

        He’ll be very carefully used this year, start next year at Reading, and could be in the rotation by the ASB 2015…Hamels-Nola-Buchannan could very well be 3/5 of a decent rotation, they would just need to come up with a solid 2 and a 4 in free agency (not counting on biddle at all at this point)

      2. Really? Thumbs down? If you think that Nola becoming a #4 would be a positive outcome, please explain. I don’t understand that.

        And, by the way, in saying that, I’m not predicting Nola will be a disappointment. To the contrary, I think if he’s healthy he’s actually likely to live up to expectations and, at worst, be a solid mid-rotation pitcher which, while not being an optimal outcome, would be more than acceptable.

          1. He’s being realistic. Can only go off of what we read about the guy. His velocity was 88-91 so opinions are made off of that. Nobody WANTS his ceiling to be a #4, but bc he’s not he’s not blindly praising him he gets a thumbs down? It’s his honest assessment, and one that makes sense. But, like Catch says, we have to wait to see what happens in the offseason and into next year before really making judgements.

            1. LOL – I went back and re-read my comments. Yeah, I never said he was going to be a #4 – he projects as a 2 or a 3. What I said was that IF he sits between 88-91 it would be hard for him to be much better than a 4 or, at best, a 3, which is perfectly accurate. I then went on to explain many reasons why it was unlikely that he not would end up in that place. It’s like having a written debate with Angelo Cataldi.

          2. isn’t he just saying that IF he is an 88-91 guy that is more realistic? That’s what it sounds like to me

    1. At this rate, Biddle will be lucky to be a #5. Since we’re all being realistic all of the sudden….

    2. I really hope Biddle turns it around but based on these last two seasons he hasnt improved like we thought he would

      1. Improved? He’s taken a giant step backwards this year. They gave him time off to nurse his confidence. Aside from being injured, his year couldn’t be any worse.

  5. I wonder if the Phillies see MAG as closing in the future vs starting?
    He certainly can be an effective one inning pitcher just using his best two pitches.
    Him and Giles could make up an effective set-up/closer tandem.

    1. I know that they said earlier he would stay in the bullpen for the rest of this season. After that is unknown, but I hope he gets a chance to start again next year. We’ll probably be looking for bodies to fill out the rotation after Hamels and Lee, if he’s still here.

    2. I don’t know about anyone else but I’m actually starting to get excited about him and I wouldn’t have guessed that was possible a month ago. What a difference good health makes. I was also very excited to see Ethan Martin bounce back to have 2 good innings yesterday.

  6. When is the deadline for draft picks having to sign? Any info on who we may be targeting with that extra signing $$$$$?

    1. 7-18. They’re probably targeting Murray or Gamble but know either is a long shot. Beyond that, I would guess they have a guy or two in mind who might go for $2-300k. Which guys, I couldn’t tell you. Probably not Molina, as it seems he’s enrolled in classes already. Probably not Flacco, because it seems like he’s going to go play football. I’m not up on the rest to say which is or is not possible. Just recall that they signed Venn Biter at the deadline last year when no one knew he was on the radar. It happens.

  7. I think they buy out Ryan Howard before spring training next year. I am guessing Larry Greene gets two more years. but only my opinion. He will be owed 60 million going into next year, that’s a lot to eat.

    1. Eating $60M? That would be almost unprecedented, and pretty much guarantees that Amaro will get fired so I doubt he will do that. This is similar to when Ricciardi of the Blue Jays let Alex Rios get claimed off waivers for no compensation. It was the right move to do but it was the nail in the coffin for him. He got fired before the season ended.

    2. They absolutely buy out Howard in the off-season.

      However I disagree that Greene get’s 2 more years. He might not get through ST next year unless he shows improvement, and doesn’t show up a fat POS.

      1. What do you mean “buy out”? He has a guaranteed contract and the protection of a very strong union. The only way they could get out of paying the contract is if, as other posters have mentioned, some summer intern in another team’s front office mistakenly hits the “claim” button on the transactions machine when Howard hits the waiver wire in August. I suppose they could release Howard at some point, but that seems unlikely, paying him $60 million to be some AL team’s DH seems like a poor use of resources. I think the most likely scenarios for Howard are, in reverse order of likelihood: 5)He magically rebounds and becomes an average first baseman; 4)Franco comes up and displaces him and the team finds an AL team to take on a minimal amount of salary; 3)Franco comes up and displaces him and he is relegated to the bench, sticks around unhappily until retirement; 2) he becomes a platoon guy next year with Ruf, as he should have been this year, and gradually transitions to a bench role as he nears the end of his contract; 1)GM For Life Ruben Amaro goes into spring training next year saying, “For this team to succeed, Ryan Howard needs to hit like we all know he is capable of hitting, he’s our RBI guy,” Howard continues to hit around .220 until he finally blows out his knee, giving everyone a final (if not graceful) out.

  8. I don’t think Nola is getting quite enough credit for his command, which is genuinely plus. Now that Kenny Giles has taken his fastball to Philly, it’s easily the highest rated attribute of any pitching prospect we have. I believe his fastball will sit 91 at the big league level and that his curveball and changeup will be average to above average. If we get lucky, one of the two becomes plus.

    There’s about ten pitchers in the majors who fit that profile ranging from Leake (who I don’t believe has Nola’s command) to the current version of Adam Wainwright (who would be what Nola looks like with a wipeout curveball). There are two guys who I think fit the profile of what Nola could become quite well – Hisashi Iwakuma and Hiroki Kurdoa. Both guys have K/9 rates of 6.5 – 8 per 9 innings, average fastball velocity and groundball rates, and give up about 1 homer per 9 innings. Nothing stands out about those numbers, but they’re very effective pitchers because they locate exceptionally well and never walk anyone.

    1. I think you’re right, Pat. The dream is that he becomes another Adam Wainwright. So, if you think about him that way, he may have #1 upside, but it’s not a likely outcome for him (not a slam on Nola – many excellent prospects don’t project as a #1 and if he’s a #2 or a #3, that would work just fine, thank you).

      1. The other thing, which I know you know Catch, but I think others are giving you some unnecessary grief for above is how we label pitchers.

        There 150 pitching slots each year for MLB starting pitchers (5 starters x 32-33 starts). Most years, only about 90 pitchers are good enough to throw 150 innings as starters. It kinda skews the labeling when we talk about #2 starter vs. #4 starter. If we call his upside a #2 or #3 starter, that’s saying he’s going to be somewhere between the 25th and 50th best pitcher in baseball and be good for somewhere between 2.5 and 4 WAR. That’s huge value. It means he’d be the best or second best pitcher for about half of the teams. Even calling him a solid #4 means he’s Mike Leake, and Mike Leake is going to be the better pitcher in any given matchup 50%-60% of the time.

  9. Clayton Kershaw was a #7 pick like Nola…I think we have every right to shoot for the stars at that point of the draft. While I think it’s quite unreasonable to compare anybody to the absolute best in the game, but we should all hope he becomes a #1 or very solid #2. Anything less should at least be a mild disappointment. I understand the reaction of many because we want him so bad to be the next kershaw/Lee/Felix…There is lot of development time left and lets just have fun and watch this play out.

    1. But Nola is nothing like Kershaw at the time they were drafted. In fact, you could argue that they were on the opposite ends of the draft spectrum. Kershaw was a big, somewhat raw, left-handed high school power pitcher, with some risk but a virtually unlimited ceiling. Nola was a normal sized (for a pitcher) right-handed, college control specialist, with a somewhat high but limited upside and a very high floor. Aside from the fact that they are both talented pitchers that were drafted in the #7 spot, they hardly be more different as prospects or pitchers.

        1. The Phillies could have drafted someone like Touki who might have been a better comparison, at least in terms of upside: a guy who has a chance to be a dominant arm if he puts it all together, but also has a chance to never pitch above Clearwater. They decided to go a different direction with Nola. Comparing him to Kershaw just because he was picked #7 is setting up an expectation he has a 100 percent chance of not meeting. Which is I think the point many of the posters here are trying to make: they are upset the Phillies did not gamble more. But they should get angry at the front office, not at Nola, who is actually what we were told he was.

          1. They might be upset they didn’t go all out for upside on that pick, but they shouldn’t be acting like he was a reach. Nola could’ve gone as high as #4 and everyone in the industry agreed he was a top 10 pick

      1. It is not a good player vs. player comparison but it does highlight the approach to the draft. There were several higher upside guys in this draft (Hoffman, Touki) that were passed on to get more of a “sure” thing. Both Hoffman and Touki are viewed as higher upside guys that could be #1s but had concerns (Hoffman injury, Touki HS pitcher)

    2. The Phillies really didn’t have many options. The big arms were gone by #7 and the franchise is teetering on irrelevancy for a long time. They put a band aid on it the best as they could. The Phillies would get criticized either way. If they took big arm project – we would hear daily about how the just need to draft productive college guys like Cardinals. Well the phillies finally behaved like Cardinals and now they are guilty of not taking more upside. I don’t envy Armaro position at all.

  10. I Guess my point on Nola is this. at number 7 was he a all-star pitcher, or the best prospect available. My trust in our scouts is not good. Romus kind of ruined me when he showed the last 9 first round picks by Washington. granted two were top pick in draft. but they didn’t miss on those picks. and when we get a first round pick, its a low velocity right handed ,who has to have pin point control to win, makes me wonder maybe this kid becomes great, but have my doubts.

    1. “its a low velocity right handed ,who has to have pin point control to win”

      But you just undersold his velocity and his control. You could also say he has pin point control and only needs average velocity to win.

    2. I would have to ask if his fastball reflects breaking fastballs like cutters which would usually be lesser sapped than a 4 seamer. If in fact he his throwing cutters at 91 mph I don.t see the problem. He can probably hit 94 or more with 4 seamer. Maybe he is working on breaking fastballs as you have to have movement to be successful at even A + ball. Or it could even be the case he has been instructed to work on that type of a pitch. He is a strike thrower and has a whip less than 1 which looks pretty good to me.

    3. Matt your the first one who had his velocity at that. I never once saw him at 94 up range.

        1. I think we can all agree that if Nola has that type of velocity, his future is extremely promising.

      1. What happened to Matt’s comment? I saw it earlier, now it’s seems like it’s been deleted. Is there some kind of Phillies-propspect-bloggers schism going on? That would be very unfortunate.

        1. I know I didn’t delete it. Matt’s logged into a WordPress account, so maybe he deleted his own. I have zero problems with Winks and would recommend to anyone to read his site along with ours and sometimes Crashburn Alley 😉

    4. rocco…Nola will pitch in the MLB in two years and be a serviceable pitcher. With his 3/4 arm slot righthanded batters will have a hard time with him. Lefthanders…well that may be another story. His C&C are have been off the charts in the SEC and so far in pro ball.

      1. Romus I Never said he wouldn’t. I never saw the kid pitch, all I could go by is jims report, and it worried me that a 7 pick in draft was 88-91. so I asked a question, which became a witch hut. I wasn’t burying the kid just asking what his upside was based on the velocity, that Jim reported. It would be nice if he does become a really good pitcher, people made it sound like I was killing the kid.

  11. Since today’s discussion has been all about Nola, here are his peripherals so far:

    K/9 BB/9 K/BB HR/9 K% BB% BB% AVG WHIP BABIP LOB% FIP
    7.16 1.65 4.33 1.65 21.0% 4.8% 16.1% .203 0.92 .209 64.8 % 4.70

  12. People would put Biddle ahead of Nola on those rankings? FYI for the KK comparisons, while SSS, Nola’s K/BB is almost twice as good as KK’s in A+

    1. Nobody is or should be comparing him to KK – at least not yet. I think Nola’s not ranked because they are probably not ranking recently drafted prospects. I think Nola would probably be in the top 50 – perhaps a little ahead of Franco.

  13. Just remember it was roccom making the comparison that Nola’s first few starts are making him think of KK. Utter lunacy.

  14. RIggs I WILL try to be nice, I said I wonder with his velocity if he would be another kenricks type, never saw him pitch, was asking with the reported velocity what kind of upside he had. And the way your wording your stupid remarks is like your a scout. utter lunacy . grow up and read, if I said I had seen him. and voice a opinion, that is one thing. I said never saw him and going by what I had read, I asked the question. what kind of upside does he have. that all nothing more. didn’t bury the kid. my god what a stupid comment by you riggs, but what can I expect by someone who things he knows it all.

  15. His velocity was down compared to what it normally is 91-93. His 91-93 also plays up due to the sink and arm side run he gets (bc of his arm slot). He also isn’t a max effort guy (Lincecum was) he sits 91-93 effortlessly. He can tick up a few if need be.

    There were other pitchers I wanted from 7th spot however Nola wasn’t a terrible pick at all.

    1. I think most can live with the safe pick but you hope Phillies don’t make a habit out of it. They will need stars at some point in future.

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