General Discussion – Week of 9-22-14 – End of the Line Edition

Last week of the year. Three at Miami to close out a ten game road trip and three at home with the Braves over the weekend. Last place in the division looks like a near certainty at this point. A protected pick is all but guaranteed as well, as the Phils sit four games “behind” San Diego for 19th in baseball, (oops, I meant 20th, the first unprotected pick) with just 5 games to play. Still looks like they could luck into as high as 25th place, for the 7th overall pick next year, and they currently sit in 23rd place, in line for the 9th overall pick.

Discuss.

40 thoughts on “General Discussion – Week of 9-22-14 – End of the Line Edition

  1. Every loss is like a win right now. Just keep losing baby. Let’s get up as high as possible in draft next year. Also another thing to keep an eye on are Papelbons finishes. He’s at 50 this yr. Lets keep it there. Make that vesting option as tough as possible for him to get.

  2. According to folks on Twitter, Adam Morgan pitched down in Clearwater today. Any reports out there on his performance, especially velocity? He’s going to be hard to rank this offseason, but if he comes back strong, that would be majorly beneficial to the system. It’s time that one of these injury breaks went the organization’s way.

    1. It’s all about velocity with Morgan. If he can pitch in the low 90s he’s a really nice, mid-rotation prospect. If he’s just touching 90 or lower, it’s a crap shoot. We could really use him to come through – I’m hoping for some good luck too.

      1. I’m not considering this comment for 2014, but I wonder if Morgan’s velocity would play up in a reliever’s role. I’ll be keeping my fingers-crossed for a return to full health for both Morgan and Pettibone. Would love to see some youngsters in that rotation in what should amount to be a 90 loss season anyway.

        Aside from an absolute domination of minor league hitters I’d like to see Nola in the minors most of the year, right alongside Franco perhaps. 2016 might not be a good season record-wise, but it should be exciting nonetheless with Franco, Crawford (at some point), Nola, Asche, Dugan, Giles, Biddle, Altherr . . . .

        1. Perhaps Morgan would serve well in the reliever’s role, and could move into a role like Antonio Bastardo’s and freeing up AB for a trade, whose value has increased this past season.

  3. And if you regard the decline of the Phillies’ broadcast team parallel to the field product, avert your eyes: Scott Graham is auditioning for the Mets tonight. His dismissal was, in many respects, even more bizarre than the early Howard extension.

    1. Scott Graham is a nice guy, decent pre-game person and good football voice, but I don’t think he’s anyone to miss in the baseball broadcast booth and I doubt there’s much difference in quality between him and Tom McCarthy (although perhaps a lot less fake laughter).

      The guy who currently stands head and shoulders above everyone in the Philadelphia broadcast booth is Scott Franzke who is one of the best baseball play by play announcers I’ve ever heard. I’m not sure how well it would translate to TV but he’s fantastic on the radio and we’re really lucky to have him.

    1. He is a bit small, ht and wt, a Lincecum statue it would appear, but seems to have the velo, though his K/9 is average, however does have great command,
      He definitely could be a 3 or 4 in the rotation if the Phillies are fortunate enough to sign him.

  4. Didn’t Baseball America just release their top 20 GCL prospects? Can anyone with a subscription say if any Phils prospects made the list and where?

    1. That’s not a surprise. Considering the Phils went almost all college in draft there wasn’t much in GCL. Only guy I thought may be on list was Keyes.

  5. Looks like Jimmy Rollins is giving Ruben some helpful advice in today’s CSN report:

    “……..Rollins has read about Tomas. He is in favor of the Phils pursuing him.
    “Well, if he turns out like the other ones (who have left Cuba), that’d be nice to get him,” Rollins said. “Hopefully, Miguel (Alfredo Gonzalez, the Phillies’ Cuban pitcher) is healthy next year because he has an arm. I asked him the other day, ‘How do you throw so hard?’ There’s no way you can look at that body and see 97-plus coming. But it does. I’ve seen it with my own eyes. “If that’s the trend,” Rollins added, referring to Cuban players, “you’ve got to get in while it’s hot. (Jose) Abreu, (Yoenis) Cespedes, Aroldis (Chapman), (Yasiel) Puig, (Jorge) Soler. Geez. It’s just — they’re picking the right ones. You’re not having to sift through a thousand kids at the academies. It’s, ‘Here are our 10 best.’ “We’ve got to get our hands in that market………”

    1. Did not realize Lonnie Chisenhall, 3rd basemen from Cleveland was rumored to be in a trade for Dom Brown.
      I guess Ruben wants to corner the market on third basemen.

  6. Trying to come up with a trade partner in the AL for Ryan Howard.
    But it is difficul…an AL team with DH capabilities, a team with the finances and a team that needs to rid itself of a faded superstar.
    How would anyone feel about an Alex Rodriguz and Ryan Howard straight up swap, of course if Brian Cashman wants to rid ARod of his up to 2017 commitment vs the 2016 commitment for Howard.?
    ARod has one more year on his contract, and next season he is eligible to return.
    And he probably could play first base.

    1. Romus, I believe that is the route the Phillies will have to go to move Ryan Howard. Arod could be motivated to prove everyone wrong after missing a year and CBP dimentions could lead to a productive year. It would be interesting to compile a list of bad contracts around MLB to possibly move Howard and possibly Papelbon or Lee.

      1. Agree.
        And also with ARod willing to prove something to the league and the fans..
        Its trading one bad contract for another and hope the one you receive works out.
        I think Cashman is looking for a way to rid ARod from the Yankees.

        1. Roccom, that is true but a rebuilding team does not require a established closer at 13 million but if he stays I would not be upset as he has been a good mentor to the young relievers.

  7. From MLBTR:
    The Red Sox are not giving up on Will Middlebrooks in spite of building frustration, but president Larry Lucchino did make clear that the team is “looking for a left-handed hitting third baseman,” as he told WEEI’s Dennis & Callahan (via WEEI.com’s Andrew Battifarano). Though Lucchino said that prospect Garin Cecchini could be that player, he also emphasized that the team will not “make the same mistake that [we] made this year, which is to assume that so many of our young players are ready for prime time.”

    ……….hello Cody Asche!

    1. I’m okay with this if someone like Gillick is picking the replacement. Gillick is a great evaluator of young talent.

      Truth be told, however, Marti was actually decent amd if they are not very careful they could get somebody worse. This this is another move where the GM is keeping his job amd effecting change to keep his own – the other changes he’s made over the last few years have been fairly ineffectual (parade of hitting coaches, development director, manager), which is why I hope Rubem is not the key person deciding on the replacement.

      1. Hiring Joe Jordan as Player Development Director from the Orioles was one of RAJ’s better hires as we have seen some younger players make it to the Phillies. I hope the next Draft Director is from a team that uses scouting and statistics in their selections for later rounds.

  8. I guess Marty had to take the fall. What I don’t know is, if Marty made the pick or amaro? I thought you gathering all the info and then suggest to gm who you like to take with pick, and its gm who makes the final decision but could be wrong. Was Marty the person behind the taking of toolsy players? love to know the answer to that question.

    1. The last 7/8 years of drafting:
      Greg Golson, Mike Costanzo, Adrian Cardenas, Kyle Drabek, Joe Savery, Anthony Hewitt, Kelly Dugan, Jesse Biddle, Larry Greene, Shane Watson, J.P. Crawford and Aaron Nola.

      The first six plus maybe Larrry Greene have not panned out.
      The remaining of Dugan, Biddle, JP Crawford, Aaron Nola and Shane Watson could emerge as MLB players…the jury is still out on them.
      However, in fairness to Marti Wolever, the first six were not high slotted draft picks since the Phillies were selecting very low in the draft.

      1. Also early in draft bombs on Gueller, Hudson, Collier. One can look to the very good Gillick-era 2008 draft to see the problem at the top of the Phillies scouting department. The top 2 picks bomb, with a lot of gems found later in the draft. The top two picks are where the scouting director and his cross-checkers are most heavily involved. It is the guys whom the organization as a whole have fallen in love with and on whom they spend 80+% of the $ they will spend on the draft. The hits in later rounds are more the work of individual scouts, possibly with input from one cross-checker. The top guys in the scouting department just can’t scout that many guys, let alone see them the multiple times that the area scout does in identifying a later-round gem. Wolever also getting dinged for the fiasco of ratting out the two college kids to the NCAA and drafting them in the first place when they weren’t interested in signing. Through that whole process, Wolever’s comments made him seem a grade A ass.

      2. There are plenty of future major leaguers still available after the first 20 or so guys taken off the board. The Wolever draft approach was like Howard staring at a totally vacant left side of the IF and trying to pull everything for a HR. You have to settle for the single or double rather than treating first rounders as really long odds lottery tickets. Greene, Hewitt, Savery, Golson just awful long-shot picks. Costanzo was a late second rounder. I think Cardenas was also. Drabek was a fine pick with plus stuff, he was traded and has had some injury issues, but he was a quality stuff HS pitcher who was healthy when we drafted him.

  9. Larry Greene, Hewitt, collier, mag, encarnacion, Watson, Gueller – lots of wasted money and lost opportunities. Of course I’m happy wolever was dumped. They have to improve their talent evaluation. It’s easy to pick in the top 10, it takes skill to make the later picks. We didn’t show that skill often enough. Check out other teams’ efforts for comparison.

    1. Encarnacion still needs to play out. He’s an international signing anyway. And I doubt Wolever was taking lead on the MAG signing. Still, I’ve been perplexed by our draft strategy for nearly a decade. If your drafting a 19-20 year old I would expect to see basic baseball instincts. That’s not an easy thing to develop at that age. Toolsy is not the same as talent, and the Phils wasted too many picks on players who were athletic but weren’t necessarily good ball players.

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