Open Discussion: Week of September 7th

Here’s an open discussion thread so the minor league posts don’t get cluttered with Phillies’ talk and other topics.

  • The play of the young guys.
  • The chase for the #1 pick.
  • Or, anything else …
  • How about this observation.  Delmon Young’s 6-year streak of playing in the playoffs is likely to come to an end.

155 thoughts on “Open Discussion: Week of September 7th

  1. I Couldn’t understand why the redsox refuse to give up prospects for Hamels. Now I understand why, They go into next season loaded with real prospects not stasis types. There major league kids are doing real good on the offensive side, Betts, bogarts, swihart. Castillo. they are loaded and they will have over 100 million to spend. I Think if they can get two starters like geinke and price, they would be favors to win it all in 2016. Meanwhile I just don’t see all the great pitching we have, The two kids they brought are are 5 th starters like bucannan and Kendrick’s. this team needs a ace and a solid two. Plus 7 positions players, Only one I have faith in is Franco.

    1. That’s a pretty clueless post right there. One season of rebuild and you’re comparing the phillies system to the top system in baseball. The Red Sox have quite a few bad contracts by the way to figure out like porcello, panda, Hanley, etc. All with many years left. All we have left is Howard and he’s done more than all those guys this year.

      1. No I am saying, if you knew how to read. The redsox knew what they had. and wouldn’t part with top talent for hamels. They knew they had money comeing off, and didn’t get caught up in win now and give away prospects. Porcello was a one year deal.

        1. Betts was already in the majors when the Phillies came calling. It was obvious that the Red Sox were not going to give him up. Swihart is another story. But I think the Phillies did pretty well with what they got from the Rangers. If 2 of the 5 players turn into stars, the Phillies made out like bandits. At this point, I’m liking the players we got.

    2. rocco…you forgot to mention Jackie Bradley Jr in that string of Sox prospects! Seems, the one-time hot prospect-turned cold-now slowly warming up again, is being optimistically featured as a future fixture in their outfield again.
      But Margot and maybe Moncada will push Castillo or Bradley out.
      BTW…Asher and Eickhoff were not the integral part of that trade but back-of-the-rotation arms, they are serviceable with velo in the 91-93 range. Not sure why you think they are a measure of that trade.

    3. Eickhoff and Asher have both made the Phillies this season. Do you know when the last time that happened was? I mean really. Two prospects you get for a pitcher both making the majors in the same season is something I had never heard of before. Look at most of those deals for ace pitchers over the years. Just the depth in the actual MLB rotation alone that these guys provide is huge. Asher throws in the low 90s as opposed to high 80s like Buchanon and Severino, and his stuff is better than any of the fifth starter types we have had in years. Eickhoff reminds me of JA Happ with his ability to throw the curve for strikes and his knowledge of pitching. And as was mentioned, Eickhoff especially was a throw-in.

      1. I like Eickhoff, he has a good attitude on the mound. He could stick as a #5 starter. Asher, I’m not sure about. Personally, he has more stuff than Buchanan but his stuff is not overpowering.

        1. I really don’t think Eickhoff is anything less than a #4 at the absolute worst. I don’t know of too many #5s who can pitch like him. Asher has a good fastball and decent secondary stuff. He’s much better than pretty much any #5 we have had in all my years watching this team. He’s barely pitched above AA and has only two MLB starts to his name right now. You need to give him at least a full season to see how good he can be.

          I never thought Buchanon was going to be able to continue the great start he got off to last season. He knows how to pitch, Severino too, but neither has great stuff or throws hard enough. If Asher is your #5 though, that’s a pretty damn good rotation. He’s no worse than Vance Worley, who was our #3 at one point.

        2. Asher may end up in the pen. They will have their shot at a number 1 & 2 with this year’s draft and free agency in 2017 or 18. I like the depth they are building. I agree, both of these guys are better than any #5 they’ve had in the last 8 or 9 years except for maybe Fat Joe before he crapped out.

          1. You think his stuff would play well in the pen though? I mean maybe as a long reliever but I’d much rather see him get a full season as a starter before even considering that. Who knows what the front office is thinking half the time though.

            One big reason I want to see Asher get as much of a chance as a starter though is Morgan’s injury history. Even if we draft a future ace and sign Price, that’s still one huge uncertainty and there is nobody to replace Morgan next season if it does indeed become a problem. Asher as your #5 gives you a quality pitcher with good enough stuff to give you a chance to win every game. Thompson and Eflin maybe come up towards the end but there’s a lot of season until then. We can’t have another season like this one.

            1. Good points….I never thought about Morgan’s health. Bottom line is they’re building depth and options. Asher should get a long look to be in the rotation.

      2. I THINK post like yours true is what makes my blood pressure go up You said eickhoff and asher made the team so did bucannan they stink pure and simple. Prove to me that they are quality starters on a winning team. Just cause you made the worst team in baseball. means you stink less than the other bad prospects.

    4. I find a lot wrong with this post. Let’s start on the Boston side:
      1. They bet big on 3 contracts this offseason and were wrong on all 3.
      2. They completely missed on their SP. cost them their season.
      3. Betts is good but we knew that. Rusney looks like a bad investment. No power or speed at 28. Swihart’s value is entirely on his defense at this point. Long way to go on him, but he is not screaming star IMO.
      In the Phillies side:
      1. Odubel looks like a great piece on the offensive side.
      2. Grouping Asher and Eickhoff is a mistake. Eickhoff is a better pitcher. Can be a legit SP. Asher is a reliever IMO.
      3. Phils farm is stacked too
      4. Phils basically have $200 mil to spend in 2017.
      5. Phils have #1 or #2 pick.

      1. v1….however you fail to take into account….Bogaerts, a resurgent Bradley, and actually Swihart’s bat is what they are intrigued with…his defense is coming along, but they also have Christian Vasquez coming back in 2016.
        But look at their top three farm prospects…..Moncada, Devers and Margot …all top 100 or better….and now David Dombrowski is calling the shots….he moves prospects for veterans, ie Miggy from the Marlins…to shore up the team, in this case I assume it will be SP.
        Looks bleak for them now, but they seem to have a sliver of hope going for them.

        1. I am not saying Boston is doomed. Just thought you painted too rosey of a picture for them and too bleak of one for us. We are in GREAT shape.

    5. Here is an interesting stat that kills the RedSox are awesome meme:

      1. Interesting…but nevertheless, year prior they did win the WS and 5 years later again.
        Whereas the D-Backs finished over .500 twice in that time-frame, with one first place division finish..

  2. I’m still laughing about the comments that Herrera needs to go to LHV next year. He has amazingly turned into a very good CF and is a 300 hitter with 10 homer power. He has lots to still learn and can become a very good ball player. In a developmental year, he has been discovered. I also think Rupp has been found to be a decent catcher. Hopefully JP will be up next August and then we will see quite a battle for playing time at 2B between Cesar, Galvis, Sweeney. I no longer think Herrera will be moved back to 2B. I think Williams will get moved to a corner next year at LHV to get him ready for Philly.
    We really need the Eagles to be good!!!

    1. Murray,

      Agree about Herrera. He’ll get to play more outfield this winter and should get a lot of instruction next spring. He’ll be okay.

      I love his enthusiasm and aggressiveness on the base paths. Now he needs to learn a little discipline. He also needs to show the umps a little more respect and keep his upset on bad (close) calls to himself. He seems to want to learn, and this is all stuff he can learn quickly.

      I look for a significantly more mature player next year.

    2. Getting Odubel in the rule 5 draft was straight up robbery. He has a 3 WAR right now. Dude can hit, there’s no reason for him to go down to Lehigh.

      Right now, the OF should be Sweeney, Herrera, Altherr. When (and if) Nick Williams is ready, Sweeney can easily move to 2B. Sweeney has some pop in his bat.

      1. Sweeney is a bench guy, don’t think of him as a starter. Look at his career stats, he’s not a starter. Next year could be Asche and a platoon with Franceur if he’s back while they wait for Williams. Altherr will get a shot in RF most likely.

        1. Sweeney career stats he’s been in the the Major ‘ s for 2 wks. He has great minor league numbers he played mostly 2nd and SS . Give him the at bats that Hernandez or brown was getting . He has power , speed and good arm he just needs a chance.

          1. tim….think he was looking at his approx. 21%krate and 10%BB rate with less then a .800 OPS over his 2000plusPAs.
            Right now…like all first time MLB guys….have that adrenaline rush and yet to have a book on them from the opposition…..later down the road, some can adjust and some level off to a lower standard.

        2. Right now, Sweeney is hitting. Whoever hits, stays. If somebody better comes along, he gets replaced. That should be the focus right now.

          1. Best case scenario for Sweeney is to become a player similar to Josh Harrison IMO. There is real value to being versatile and being able to spell guys at multiple positions.

      2. Herrera is now a good major league player – not many of those come in the Rule 5 draft on the year they are drafted. His surprising fielding has been the biggest difference. I think he’s close to his ceiling right now – I’d see what he does the first few months of the following year, but I wouldn’t be afraid to trade him at all in the right deal. They should be looking to do with Herrera what the Sixers did MCW – capitalize on his value now – they will be able to replace him. Then again, if he’s so unbelievably good through May or June next year, you can always keep him too. He gives them “optionality” – very helpful.

        1. But the Sixers fell off a cliff offensively when they got rid of MCW and still have no replacement.

          To me, you keep the guy who’s killing it until you have somebody else lined up who you think will be better. Right now, I don’t see anybody who is that other than maybe Nick Williams or Roman Quinn, though I would personally rather move Odubel to RF, Williams to left, and have Quinn in center until another change has to be made with that outfield.

            1. Yeah he has impressed. That’s why I think you go with him as your left or right fielder until Quinn and/or Nick Williams come up. I don’t think anybody expected him to be this good this year after years of just being a guy with “potential”. He’s built to rack up RBIs in a corner outfield spot and is a great athlete. No idea if he has real power but I guess we’ll find out next season. I see him as the left fielder with Odubel in center if Quinn doesn’t come up and Williams in right hopefully by season’s end. Maybe sign somebody to start in right until then.

              I’d bring back Brown for half a season and be fine with that except he is an awful fielder. He’ll cost you runs.

            2. Thank you! I was racking my brain trying to think of who he reminds me of. That’s exactly it. With that long swing, the tall, long body, and the “speed” that comes from having long legs and knowing how to use them. Perfect comparison.

              We’re talking a stopgap here though. To me, ideally Williams becomes your left fielder with Quinn in center and Odubel in right. But you give Altherr the chance to win or lose the job until Williams and Quinn come up and sign somebody to start in right who best case scenario you trade at the deadline for a boatload of prospects. Say Jason Heyward.

            3. Comparing MiLB Metrics of Aaron Altherr and John Mayberry Jr.

              John Mayberry Jr (excluding rehab assignments):
              Aaron Altherr:

            4. Romus give it a rest with your Altherr is Mayberry nonsense, you keep repeating it over and over again but it still doesn’t make it true. Throw out all Minor league stats and watch him play. This year you can see the real deal who cares what he did back in Lakewood.

          1. “But the Sixers fell off a cliff offensively when they got rid of MCW and still have no replacement.”

            That’s not true. They actually improved offensively (higher PPG, high offensive rating) but took a slight hit defensively.

            1. No trust me. I watched every game. They really did fall off a cliff, and it showed big time in their second half record. Every player regressed, too, other than Nerlens and Covington. Then in the last week those guys shook it off and two of them had really great games to end the year after looking lost most of the second half.

            2. Well, I can’t trust you because I also watched just about every game and the numbers don’t back you up. Like you mentioned, Noel especially benefited from a point guard who can find open players. Hollis Thompson also improved, but that might have more to do with getting comfortable with his shooting mechanics than with the new PG. How does a team fall off a cliff offensively when they actually started scoring more?

          2. You are missing the point. The point is the goal is not to be “good” it’s to build a championship team. If a good young player can be flipped to acquire a younger player with star upside, on a team like this, you do that deal in a heartbeat.

            1. And by the way, I am not saying you necessarily trade him, I’m saying that you should do it if the right opportunity comes along because his trade value may never be higher. It’s an option. Just an option.

            2. I get your point but to me you don’t trade a proven player unless you’re getting another one in return. Guys with upside flame out all the time.

            3. What are you talking about when you say “you don’t trade a proven guy unless you get another proven guy in return?” That makes no sense. The whole point of a rebuild is to maximize value by trading proven guys for prospects. That’s the model. That’s how it’s done. Does it entail risk? Yes, of course, but if you just trade proven players for proven players you don’t get anywhere.

        2. IMO, only consider moving Herrera if Quinn rakes at Reading or LHV….and stays healthy in the process. Quinn could be the Phillies ‘Betts’.

        3. Wow, we’re talking about Herrera who has a 3 WAR right now and he’s trade bait? Because it’s possible that Quinn (who’s injury prone and still at AA) can be better? Unless Quinn turns into Mike Trout, Herrera is staying. I don’t know why everybody is in a rush to trade Herrera. He’s hitting major league pitching. Until somebody REALLY good comes along at CF, you just don’t move a 23 year old like him.

          1. Guru…I would prefer not to trade him.. but Quinn and him become redundant in CF if Quinn begins to make the push up. Williams is probably viewed as a corner with his power. And a corner OFer, desirably, should have some power behind them.

            1. It’s a big IF though. You’re talking about Herrera who’s already in the majors with a 3 WAR. Quinn needs to go bonkers in the minors for Quinn to take over Herrera.

      3. Roman Quinn may come up mid-way through next season. Or maybe they stick him at LHV for the year. Either way, another OF who will be vying for time. That is, if he can stay healthy.

    3. Call me crazy for this but Odubel reminds me of Jose Reyes a bit offensively and on the basepaths. Plus his overall swagger and personality in the field seems very similar.

      Roman Quinn was hitting almost .300 at Reading before he got injured. If he keeps that up, don’t you think Odubel has to move to RF? I think he can, personally. He’s got enough power to be a solid RF and is a great fielder. Still, you have to wonder if that’s possible. You know the Phillies weren’t expecting anywhere near this out of him when they drafted him. Great problem to have though.

    4. It really is comical to think there was some discussion/thoughts of having him start next year in AAA. The Phillies have already said he’s not moving back to 2B.

      1. That was one of the most ridiculous ideas floating around.
        Ironically, the Rangers’ Rule 5 selection, Delino Deshields, former infielder, is also playing CF and not playing that bad also. Jon Daniels wanted Ruben to return Odubel in May….Ruben made a good move it appears by not obliging

  3. It’s still really, really early, but what players in next year’s draft would everyone be satisfied in drafting, assuming we don’t get the number one pick? From what I’ve read on the up-til-now best prospects, I’d be alright with either Hansen, Pint, or Groome.

    1. IMO, AJ Puk is the Florida U. ‘ace-like’ college LHP who could complement and balance the rotation and be the closest to the majors, maybe 2018..
      But Groome would also be an outstanding selection but will probably not see CBP until 2020. Pint and Hansen are ace potential right handers.
      Any top four pick , if a pitcher, could be a boost to the Philies future staff.

      1. I agree that all four pitchers at the top would be a huge plus. Groome would be my choice at 1-1, however. He’s a lefty, already works in the mid-90s at 16, and has three pitches (FB, curve, change) with plus potential. Plus, he’s a Jersey shore kid!

          1. He pitched at IMG last season so he was in warm weather. He also pitches on the showcase circuit. So I am not sure of his workload being “less” due to being a northern kid. He has left IMG and has returned to NJ for his senior year though. I agree with the poster that Groome would be my guy at 1-1. Followed by Puk.

      2. Romus if everything stays the same. I Wouldn’t know which way to go with pint. groome, and puk and Hansen. I think its really going to be hard, Hope they don’t get caught up in college guy who is closer if they really believe pint or groome will be better in long run.

        1. rocco….IMO Puk could be a David Price venture,and Groome could be a Clayton Kershaw venture.
          Just finish in the bottom two/three…..and they may mess that up over the next three weeks!

    2. At the #1 pick, I really don’t want a HS arm. I’m hoping a college pitcher or a position player separates himself from the pack.

    3. I just want them to go heavy on high-upside pitchers. Groome could be a risk for sure. You have to balance that out in the second round with somebody who isn’t if you take him. I really wanted to see the Phillies take another pitcher this year but I can see why they went with Randolph. But next year I really feel we need to draft a future ace.

      1. I want them to get the best player available – period. If it’s a true toss-up, you can consider need – otherwise, get the best baseball player.

        1. But an ace is the hardest and most valuable piece to find in baseball. You don’t win without one. Sure Nola and Thompson are young but Eickhoff and Morgan are 25, and Asher is I believe 23. That’s not a huge window of having guys in their prime at the same time. It’s a huge pick, and position players can be found elsewhere much more than ace pitchers can.

          1. An ace is great – really great. But I don’t entirely agree with the “you must have an ace” philosophy. It seems to me that the Yankees and the Big Red Machine won a lot of World Series championships without a true ace – but it helps especially if you can ride an ace during a championship series. Still, I think you go with the best available player.

            1. That was a different era though. Almost every team that has won the WS in this century has had a dominant ace or power pitcher. Yankees had Clemens, Marlins had Beckett, DBacks had Randy and Curt Schilling, Sox had first Pedro then Beckett and Daisuke, White Sox had Garcia, Yankees had CC, Giants had Lincecum Cain and Bumgarner, Cards had Wainwright and Carpenter, Sox had Lester and others. A big part of why the Phillies won in ’08 was Cole pitching like a dominant ace in the playoffs. Price is that but he’s not getting any younger so even if we do sign him that’s only a few years at most of dominance from him. We need an ace prospect. Maybe Thompson or Nola are that but neither are locks to be.

            2. Okay, fine, let’s talk about this era. The 2013 Red Sox didn’t have an “ace” (not just a good pitcher – a guy who carries you) nor did the 2011 Cardinals, nor the 2009 Yankees – those teams had solid pitching and bludgeoned you to death with fantastic hitting. You take the best player unless it’s very close. You can always acquire an ace, just as the Nationals did and as the Dodgers have done, if you need one. The Phillies have money – you don’t forego the best player out of fear that you are not going to have the one pitcher you think you might need at some point in the future. And lest we forget, the presence of an “ace” does not always guarantee you do anything, just ask Justin Verlander. BPA, BPA, BPA (best player available)>

            3. The Yankees had CC, and the Cardinals had both Wainwright and Carpenter. They wouldn’t have won without that. And again, the Red Sox had first Pedro, then Beckett and Dice K, then Lester and Bucholz as well if I remember correctly. And Verlander was a rookie and he was going up against perennial Cy Young candidate Chris Carpenter who at that point was one of the best pitchers in baseball. Both teams in that series had ace pitchers, as has been the case in pretty much every WS this century.

            4. First, Wainwright was injured so he wasn’t an ace that year – he wasn’t even pitching. Second Carpenter was not an ace – he was a hot number 2 – lots of teams have good number 2 pitchers but calling him an ace doesn’t make it so just because he got very hot in a series. Third – did you intend to be deceptive with the Verlander comment? You know full well that I as referring to Verlander in other years, not 2007 and Verlander is a bona fide ace. If you want more proof he having aces doesn’t make you win it all just check out the Braves – they won once with all of those HOF pitchers. So yes you need good pitching of course you do but you need lots of other things too.

            5. When the Cardinals won it in ’06, Carpenter was an ace. As for Wainwright, he was replaced by Jaime Garcia who had a great year and Jake Westbrook and Edwin Jackson were great additions to the rotation. They took 7 games to win.

              And are you forgetting that the Giants had a rotation featuring Cain, Bumgarner, Zito, and Vogelsong? No way they win without that rotation.

              I agree you need a lot more than an ace, but your argument was that you don’t need one to win and the past century says otherwise.

            6. You lost me at Edwin Jackson and Jake Westbrook (really?).

              Okay, so in your universe a #3 (or in the case of Westbrook, #4) pitcher who happens to get “hot” is an ace. That just makes no sense.

              At least be intellectually honest. None of those guys were ever aces. Just because a guy gets hot or has a few good games doesn’t mean he’s an ace. And I agree that Wainwright is an ace, but he was never a functioning ace for a Cardinals championship team.

              And the 2009 Yankees did not win the WS because they had aces. Look at the statistics. They won the WS because they beat the competition into submission on offense and you can go back over the history of the NY Yankees and find plenty of similar teams, one after the next – teams that had solid pitching but beat the crap out of people. In fact, I think the optimal model for a great team is one that is outstanding on offense and has solid and consistent pitching (a couple of 2s and a few 3s). The Yankees had some stray aces, but they were built on hitting as were the Reds.

              Now, there is something to the notion that a dominant pitcher can have an unduly significantly influence on the outcome of a playoff series. This is true, especially if the pitcher pitches on short rest. The problem is that, when you are drafting a kid there is absolutely no way to know if that player has that kind of ability. There was absolutely no way to know that “ace” Kershaw would be blown out of the water in the playoffs and that guys like Bumgarner or Hamels (who, otherwise, would be consensus lesser ranked players in comparison with Kershaw) would become dominant.

              All of that said, a hitter can be equally dominant in a short series. David Ortiz is as responsible for the Red Sox winning 3 WS titles as any of their pitchers and, on a cumulative basis, there is no question he is the most influential player in the Sox’s recent history of playoff success.

              I am also cautious with young pitchers because I think the injury and failure rate is higher and their careers tend to be shorter.

              So, yeah, I still take the best player available. It might be a pitcher, but it might be a hitter depending on the circumstances. But I sure as heck don’t take a lesser pitcher over a better hitter. No way.

            7. Westbrook wasn’t the ace. He was a former #2/3 who they picked up to be their #4. Edwin Jackson was a solid #4 who had top of the rotation stuff but was too inconsistent. Carpenter however had been the Cardinals’ ace for years before he struggled a bit later on.

              The Yankees shut us down with CC in Game 4 and Burnett in Game 2, and Pettite was tough to hit. If we get to CC in Game 4 or Burnett in Game 5, it’s a whole new series.

              As for the Cardinals, Jaime Garcia and Chris Carpenter were the closest things they had to an ace when Wainright went down. Both pitched like it. People felt Garcia might just be an ace after the way he pitched that season, and as I have mentioned Carpenter was a former ace.

              I agree with your basic points about young pitchers and injuries, among other things, but a) this is why you need to bring in as many high upside guys like that as possible and b) the Phillies have done a very poor job drafting hitters in the top ten most of the time. To me that a much bigger crapshoot. Plus, you can find good hitters much easier than an ace pitcher.

  4. First Post, but I have Read Comments of you “Regular” contributors; I am happy to find/see fans really taking Minor Leagues, Draft, International prospectsEtc. Seriously. 1) I like the new Guy in Charge Johnnny Alvarado(With Agostinelli already here) AND the Philles Ownership (Middleton, Giving t h e almost “Whatever it Takes” to MacPhail and a Willingness to Spend on International Prospects.(Jhailyn 4mil.) 2) Funny; we trade Hamelsto Rangers, forthe main Prospects Williams, Alfaro & Thompson, and Odubel rule 5’s from Texas, who had not been past AA. (As it turns out) This guy has played baseball-Winterball batting champ, and 6 months of Spring training&Regular season, almost nonstop.

  5. the Phils have opened up a 4 game lead in the loss column over everyone except those pesky Braves, who have managed to lose 19 out of their last 20- Braves had a lead in the ninth this weekend but blew it. So this is a big 3 games series. can we find an excuse to skip Nola’s start? as of now Im counting on Harang to get lit up in game 1 and Teheran to outpitch Morgan in game 3.

    as we think about top draft picks, big name free agents and international signings, i just hope the Phils just make the most of smaller opportunities- look at what the Reds are getting out of Raisel Iglesias on a 7 million/27 million signing- or players who other teams have given up (their Dom Browns). was just looking at Jake Arrietta stats in Baltimore, and then coming to the Cubs in his age 27 season. amazing.

    1. The Braves are just a hot mess right now. Not only they losing, they are getting smoked in most games. During their current 1-19 stretch, the Braves have been outscored 153 to 52. So they have been losing by an average of 5 runs per game.

      On the plus side, the Phils and Braves have opened up a bit of breathing room on the other contenders for the #1 draft pick. The Phils lead the Braves by a slim game. The Rockies are next, 3.5 games back. The Marlins and Reds are both 4 games back, followed by the A’s at 5 games back. The Brewers now trail the Phils by 7.5 games and seem to have pretty much eliminated themselves from contention. So the Phils are in good shape to get at least the #2 pick, and I can’t see them worse than #5. The Braves look to be the main competition at this point, though it’s too soon to count out the other bad teams, except maybe the Brewers.

      Schedule wise, the Phils have 13 games with teams that have incentive to win (Mets, Nats, and Cubs) and 12 games against teams just playing out the season (Braves and Marlins).

      1. If the phils were to go 11-14 over the remaining 25 games that would put them at 64-98 on the season. The problem is the 12 games against the braves/marlins, if we win say 7 of the 12 that won’t be too bad but if we win more then that it could cause a problem unless they get crushed in the 13 games vs Cubs, Nats and Mets. So if the go say 4-9 vs the Cubs/Nats/Mets and 7-12 vs braves/marlins it should put us in a good spot for a top 2 or 3 pick.

        While the braves are the biggest threat, the Reds have 2 games in hand so what happens there with those 2 games is big, rockies with 1 game in hand. But if the phils lose 98 games this year and as long as we don’t have a winning record against said team that would mean they would need 99 losses to move ahead of us. The braves that isn’t hard to see happening, but the rockies would need to lose 18 or 19 of their final 26 games (depending if they have a winning record on the phils or not), the reds would need to lose 19 or 20 of their remaining 27 games, marlins 18 or 19 of their remaining 25 games. A’s would need to lose 19 or 20 of their remaining 25 games.

        They really should be looking to limit Nola’s innings, he’s getting up there and while it’s great that he’s learning you need to worry more about his future. I would do the same with Morgan since he’s coming back from a major injury. Sean O’Sullivan has been doing well in LV, why not give him a few starts, or one of the other LV starters.

        1. I would love to see O’Sullivan, Williams, Harang, Gonzalez, and Asher as the starting rotation here on out. It’d almost guarantee us the 1-1 pick.

    2. I really can’t get behind wanting the team to lose at the expense of our young guys. Haraang, sure, but not skipping Nola or wanting Morgan to not do well. That’s the future you’re talking about there.

      1. I don’t see anyone saying they want to lose at the expense of the young guys. Nola’s next start should put him around the highest innings totals he’s ever had, I believe. He’s at 163 now, so it’s thinking about his future that is the discussion. They need to be careful with him. If no changes to the SP, Nola would get 5 more starts so that could be somewhere around 30-40 innings which would put him around 190-200 range.

        To me the phils just need to be thinking about his future and if that means limiting his innings then I don’t see the problem. Same for Morgan who is at almost 142 innings with 5 starts left which could put him over 170. So the question becomes is it better to keep rolling him out there or should they limit his innings?

        It’s not about losing games in the case of Nola and Morgan, it’s about what’s best for both in the long run. I don’t know what that is, but I don’t see the harm in wanting them to be careful with both and cut back on their innings. Yes I would like to see us get the 1st overall pick, although I’ve already figured that the braves will end up with it. I don’t see the harm in giving some innings to someone from the LV roster, whoever management/coaching thinks should get the call. In the remaining 25 games the phils will win and lose, how many of each is anyone’s guess. At this point I don’t see it having much of any impact on the club or players future if they win or lose a little more so they should be doing what’s best for the future at this point.

        1. I was responding to the idea of skipping Nola and wanting Morgan to get outpitched. I do hope they shut down Nola soon, and Morgan. I don’t want to see either struggle or skip starts though, especially not so we can lose games. That’s ridiculous.

          I agree. Let’s call up guys like Gonzalez, SOS, Severino and Buchanon. Shut down Nola and Morgan, and get rid of Haraang already. Keep Asher and Eickhoff in the rotation maybe until the end of the season to be able to finish strong but not Nola or Morgan. But Morgan has to end his season on a positive note. He needs that confidence going into next season in my opinion. Wanting him to get outpitched to get the first overall pick is ridiculous. No draft pick is anything other than a lottery ticket.

          1. relax, i wasnt being totally serious. and getting outpitched could mean losing 2-1. I don’t know how important it is for Morgan to end on a positive note though. He has gotten healthy, and shown he can pitch in the big leagues, which i don’t know many of us were counting on coming into the season.

            1. But that’s still rooting for him to not do as well as he possibly can which to me is ridiculous. It’s hard to tell exactly what is and isn’t serious on here these days with some of the comments.

              Morgan proved he can pitch, sure, but next year there is going to be a lot more pressure on these young guys and they need more consistent success to end the season in order to handle it in my opinion. Morgan has shown #3 potential at times. If he can at least pitch like a solid #4 then he can go into the offseason confident enough to be the pitcher he needs to be next season. At 25 and with an injury history, he needs to be consistent next season if he wants to stay in the majors. Though I think nobody will feel more pressure than Asher if he doesn’t finish strong. He’s got #5 stuff on a winning team, #4 at absolute best. But he’s also got nothing to lose given his age and how green he is. Morgan can’t let himself get sent down again though, not when he’ll be 26 next season. He has to leave no doubt in the organization’s mind that he belongs as a mainstay in the rotation for years to come.

      2. It’s a necessary evil. It might be easier to swallow if Eikoff, Nola, Morgan, and Asher were pulled from the rotation. I’m certainly not rooting for losses. I want the money that comes with the number one pick. I think that’s more valuable than the player. You’re going to get a really good prospect at 1 through 5.

        1. I really don’t see how jeopardizing the future of the best young pitchers we have had since JA Happ, Worley, and maybe Brandon Duckworth is a necessary evil all to get the first pick. That’s just stupid. I don’t want either Asher or Eickhoff getting pulled from the rotation. Especially not Asher whose confidence has to be shot right now after that bad loss. Morgan and Nola being shut down is necessary to preserve their arms but not the other two. Not yet at least.

          This is baseball we’re talking about. You don’t screw with young guys already in the majors for guys who might never make it there.

  6. Herrera has been a real find, and even if his #s are not sustainable, as some would suggest, I have seen guys who seem to adapt themselves to whatever league they are in, and hit the ball. He is now over .300 over a full season, gotten better in CF and shown a bit of power and what appears to be a terrific attitude. A real nice pick as a Rule V guy.

    1. And Mitch did a spreadsheet of all his hits and he hits equally to all fields, over 30% to each one.. hopefully by midseason its. Williams, Herrera and Altherr in OF

  7. I know they need an Ace, and maybe even a #2. But, Nola has looked good, Jake Thompson has looked great, Eflin and Lively will pitch in the major Leagues, and there appears to be significant talent in both Reading and Clearwater. Hoskins needs to duplicate his year, but in Reading. The farm has more to be excited about than I can remember, and I am 61. Utley, Rollins, Howard turned out to be the best at their positions in team history, but depth wise there is more now.

  8. Latest Top Four International Rankings-MLB……all Cubans……they just keep coming off the line!

    Yadier Alvarez | Rank: 1 ….Hometown: Matanzas, Cuba
    :: RHP Age: 19 DOB: 3/7/1996 Bats: R Throws: R Height: 6’3″ Weight: 175 lb.
    Scouting grades: Fastball: 70 | Slider: 60 | Change 55 | Control: 50

    Vladimir Gutierrez | Rank: 2 …Hometown: Pinar del Rio, Cuba
    Position: RHP Age: 19 DOB: 9/18/1995 Bats: R Throws: R Height: 6’3″ Weight: 173 lb. Sc Grades: FB:65 CB:60 CU: 50 Control: 55

    Yusniel Diaz | Rank: 3 ……Hometown: Havana, Cuba Position: OF Age: 18 DOB: 10/7/1996 Bats: R Throws: R Height: 6’1″ Weight: 195 lb. Scouting grades: Hit: 60 | Power: 55 | Run: 70 | Arm: 60 | Field: 60

    Eddy Julio Martinez | Rank: 4 ….Hometown: Las Tunas, Cuba Position: OF Age: 20 DOB: 1/18/1995 Bats: R Throws: R Height: 6’2″ Weight: 195 lb. Scouting grades: Hit: 60 | Power: 60 | Run: 70 | Arm: 60 | Field: 60

    —would be nice if the Phillies for once would pull a Dodgers/RedSox signing

    1. I knew almost every major signing from Cuba the past three years because they had played on that crazy good Cuba team in the World Baseball Classic in ’13. Sosa was the big bat, Tomas was another major hitter, etc. Now though I have no clue. Can’t really watch any of these guys in games.

      Speaking of WBC, not sure if any of you guys have ever watched it before but the next one is going to expand the field to I believe 32 countries. Should be crazy.

    2. I think you are going to be pleasantly surprised. I expect the Phillies to use the full force of their economic might in the next couple of years. The 2017 team should be interesting and the 2018 might compete for the playoffs.

      1. Just try and make a concerted effort and pay the money for E.J. Martinez and I would be happy. He becomes the power hitting corner OFer.

    3. 1 and 3 really I’m looking for a now Cuban prospect someone who 25,26 who has high grades. 19 maybe great age but that’s 3 or 4 yrs away.we have enough prospects we need an ace and right fielder with big power.

  9. Thank god for catch I listen to the five year plan and it makes me sick. This team could go to 220 million and still make money. Lets see how middleton reacts to this bad season

  10. A few thoughts.

    1. I read somewhere that Groome has an awesome FB but relies more on his Curve. That concerns me since he is in HS.

    2. Puk reminds me of a poor man’s Randy Johnson.

    3. There was a discussion about the Met’s starters a couple of weeks back. I said that I worried about Matt Harvey since he had the TJ surgery. Since then holy hell broke out between him and Met’s Management with Scott Boras now in the mess. Harvey wanted to pull a Strasburg.

    1. I’m not making the connection on the cause for concern with point 1. The curve and FB are both supposed to be excellent pitches. What’s the difference if he trusts one over the other?

      1. Young pitchers that throw a lot of breaking balls seem to wear out their arm a bit and eventually need TJ surgery.

        1. Definitely worth keeping an eye on, but if his medicals look good at draft time and he’s the most talented guy there, I’m not letting that stop me.

    2. TJ guys have shelf-life issues.
      Strasburg and Zimmerman are the latest two that are not the same as previous.
      But then again all pitchers with high velo have shelf-life issues with sustainability of their velo.
      Puk vs Groome.
      Puk , pitching in the difficult SEC did very well his first two years, similar to Nola


      Depending on his last year, this could be the a factor if the Phllies have the chance of drafting him

    3. HS kids have more problems with a plus curveball than a plus fastball. I think that’s why he’s throwing it more.

  11. Tweets from Mitch Rupert today

    —The Crosscutters’ Most Valuable Player (voted on by players and coaches) is Josh Tobias

    –The improvement by Josh Tobias at second base in two months has been drastic, still a little stiff at times, but shows great promise

    –He’s got tremendous range to both sides, but especially the glove side, and his footwork around the bag is much improved

  12. Apparently the Phillies called up Buchanon, Ogando, and Ken Roberts. I guess Buchanon is the sixth starter? Glad to see him get a chance to redeem himself after his last MLB outing if that’s the case. Not sure I wouldn’t rather see Severino though. He barely got a shot in the MLB.

    1. At some point, yeah. The Phillies have a lot of guys who can really barrel up the ball when they want to. Just not a lot of guys who do it consistently.

      One thing I love about this site is while your average Phillies fan probably didn’t know or care who this guy was before tonight, we all know who he is and what he did at Lehigh Valley and are rooting for him in appreciation of that. It’s pretty cool watching guys like this in Ironpigs games and then seeing them get a shot with the big club. Like with Fransden or Kratz.

  13. Over the weekend there was a thread on a comment made by a BA writer on Rhys Hoskins. The comment was (paraphrasing), “temper your excitement, he swings through even average fastballs.” That comment didn’t make sense to me as his performance has been elite on basically every metric on 2 levels.

    I asked Matt Winkelman and here was his thoughts:

    1. I don’t really consider a player solidified as a prospect until he’s in AA because that where they face the best prospects in baseball as their careers are about to take off, but the fact that this kid absolutely raked at Clearwater in his first full season impresses me. I really don’t get the dismissiveness about a kid who has yet to even reach AA. Who knows what he can do until he reaches the upper levels? Hitters make adjustments all the time in the minors. Every level is a huge leap, and the only way to stick and keep advancing is to keep improving. Maybe he “swings through even average fastballs” now but maybe at the next level he continues to work and eventually catches up to those “average fastballs”. Or maybe not. That’s how it works with prospects. It’s not like people are pinning all of the Phillies’ hopes on this kid or making him out to be the next Joey Votto or Anthony Rizzo.

  14. David Buchanan recalled….should be able to incorporate a 6-man rotation.
    And maybe also keep firm hold on 30-spot in standings

  15. All hope is lost romus breakout player cant hit a fastball or was it a pimple ball I forget. something like that I heard from tim.

    1. I didn’t anything about Hoskins all I said let’s wait and see . He does sound like a Free
      Freeman type. A PIMPLE BALL cut it half get a broom handle . I liked stick ball or wire ball better. I

      1. Yikes, let’s all retreat. Camden is not be a dangerous place to attend a game if you are going to the game by car, parking and going home. They have that area well patrolled and it is isolated and on the water to control access and crime. C’mon already.

        1. Ditto catch…the waterfront is secure and safe. Would be great place for a team in the Sally……..Phillies players could easily do rehab assignments and jump back over the bridge for the CBP game.

        2. yeah catch I heard the same thing with the casino in chester. Look how many of those patrons get robbed when they leave that city. You think Camden minor league team will be safe god bless you. I would never go. I have a family to support.

  16. Nola with another gem tonight. Buchanon starts tomorrow so there’s your loss. I’m rooting for him to do well but he really just doesn’t have the stuff to not get hit eventually. Maybe he gives you five strong innings but then the bullpen blows it. Either way it’s a likely loss.

  17. 162 innings for Nola total- how much more do they let him go?

    brilliant move switching in Buchanan for Morgan tonight- starting to feel better about ending up in the 1 or 2 spot.

    wow, moving Storen out of the closers spot has really paid off for the Nats.

    1. 3 more starts, average of 7 innings – ends with around 185 innings. He’ll be fine – he’s not a max effort guy and his pitch counts are generally under control. I’m not worried about him.

  18. Will Odubel Herrera eventually make the list?

    A star can come out of Rule 5 picks, some who stuck with their team for an entire year to complete the process:

    SP — Johan Santana 1999 by Twins from Astros…..RP — Willie Hernandez 1976 by Cubs from Phillies………..C — Jody Davis 1980 by Cubs from Cardinals………1B — Darrell Evans 1968 by Braves from A’s…………2B — Dan Uggla 2005 by Marlins from Diamondbacks
    SS — Everth Cabrera 2008 by Padres from Rockies………3B — Jose Bautista 2003 by Orioles from Pirates………..LF — George Bell 1980 by Blue Jays from Phillies…………..CF — Josh Hamilton 2006 by Reds (via Cubs) from Rays………..RF — Roberto Clemente 1954 by Pirates from Dodgers……… Bobby Bonilla 1985 by White Sox from Pirates………..
    Honorable mentions: Joakim Soria, Mike Morgan, Jeff Nelson, Derrick Turnbow, Shane Victorino and Fernando Vina.

    1. Victorino has produced 31 WAR in his career – he’s not an honorable mention – he’s a standout. That’s more than everyone on your list (including Uggla, Davis, Bell, Hamilton, and Bonilla) except for Santana, Clemente, Evans (one of the most underrated players in major league history) and Bautista (Hamilton may pass Victorino at some point, but not necessarily).

  19. WE have to acknowledge that Herrera has really done a terrific job. Whether or not the analytics show it is sustainable or not, he has taken his opportunity and really ran with it. He is fun to watch, has some power, plays good D, and looks like he has a significantly higher ceiling better than Ben Revere. If Roman Quinn becomes the future CF, he has to be really good. So the front office deserves kudos for Doobie. Nola did a great job bouncing back from his last outing, and may only pitch twice more. Giles has been great, and Aaron Altherr has impressed so far. He looks like a baseball player. I look for him to win a starting job in ST. It is nice not having to constantly vent about the awful job the management has done, and having something to build with.

    1. Right now Odubel Herrera is a better player than Ben Revere – mission accomplished. Revere is a better base runner, but both are about even on the hit tool (Revere might be a hair better), but Herrera is a better fielder (odd, but definitely true), has a better arm (not saying much), and hits for far more power. And he’s younger and has more projection. Herrera is at least an average player, is probably an above average player and has the ability to be a very good player. Pretty nice for a Rule 5 pick, eh?

      1. catch…I re-did the the Rule 5 greatest list with hoping Odubel one day goes on it.
        Bautista, Jose
        Bell, Josh
        Bonilla, Bobby
        Cabrera, Everth
        Clemente, Roberto
        Davis, Jody
        Evans, Darrell
        Hernandez, Willie
        Hamilton, Josh
        Morgan, Mike
        Nelson, Jeff
        Santana, Johan
        Soria, Joakim
        Turnbow, Derrick
        Uggla, Dan
        Victorina, Shane
        Vina, Fernando

        ……………….better? 🙂

  20. I think we can go out on a limb and say the Phils will finish no better than the 5th worst team. I will still be very disappointed if they don’t get 1.1, so I am fine with sending Buchanan back out there. A nice 3 game cushion would be better if they hadn’t gone on a run there for a bit. This would all be over. I think they lose 100 and clinch #1.

    1. Braves may have some confidence now… Reds and Rockies need to get some wins to be spoilers.
      Perhaps Votto’s explosion will inspire the Reds to be spoilers.

      1. man, Votto lost his mind; would have preferred he hit a homer to help win the game.
        How can the Rockies be that bad with Gonzalez and Arenado having monster years?
        feeling better about ending up in the 1 or 2 spot now.

  21. Yes Yes Yes. Rueben Amaro has been fired, dismissed, whatever you want to call it. The future is looking brighter for the Phillies.

  22. No bouncing upstairs! I am shocked, I have to admit. Why do it now and not before the trade deadline, or after the season? And, rumors are that Gillick is leaving also, even as a consultant and may surface elsewhere. MacP may really change things up.

    1. Some of the teams that are need of a GM are making moves now . Maybe the one Macphail had his eye on is talking to other teams.

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