Open Discussion: Week of April 11th

Here’s the open discussion thread for Phillies’ talk and other topics. 

The bullpen was terrible in Cincinnati and the opener against New York, before settling down the last two games.

  • Hernandez, Russell, and Neris gave up 5 eighth inning runs while blowing a 2-1 lead in the opener.
  • Hinojosa gave up 2 runs in the ninth to blow another 2-1 lead in the ninth the next game.
  • Stumpf and Oberholtzer gave up runs in a 10-6 loss in the get away game.
  • Russell and Hernandez combined to give up tack on runs in the series opener against the Mets.
  • Neris, Stumpf, Hernandez, and Gomez pitched no-hit, one-walk ball in relief of Vince Velasquez’ masterful 3-hit, 9 K, 6-inning effort against the Mets and Colon.  They made Ryan Howard’s solo home run stand up in the 1-0 win.
  • Russell, Neris, and Gomez protected Jeremy Hellickson’s 3-2 lead on the way to a 5-2 victory with 3.1 innings of no-hit, 4 K ball.
  • Four of the five starters pitched well the first week of the season.
  • Jeanmar Gomez looks like the closer for now.
  • The Phillies top 3 hitters are pitchers.  Eickhoff, Helickson, and Morton are all hitting .500.
  • Cesar Hernandez (8-19, .421) is off to a hot start.
  • The Phillies are 13th in the NL with a slash of .230/.275/.383/.658, but are ahead of Atlanta and New York.
  • They have 7 HR, good enough for 6th in the NL.  Howard leads the team two.
  • They have a league worst 1 SB in 4 attempts.
  • They have a league low 11 BB.
  • Their 3 runs per game is lower than all but the Mets.
  • Opposing pitchers haven’t found it necessary to intentionally walk a Phillies’ batter.

For those who don’t think it’s to early to worry about this, the Phillies two wins have raised their record to 2-4 but dropped them to the fifth pick in the 2017 draft behind MIN (0-6), ATL (0-5), MIA (1-3), and ARI (2-5).  I don’t know about the Twins, but we could probably throw a couple bullpen games against the Braves to catch up (back?) to them.

Organization rosters for all full season teams have been updated from the affiliates’ web sites.  They have been added as a selection on the Rosters selection on the menu.

Prior Week’s Transactions:

  • 4/3 – Toronto Blue Jays acquired Chris Leroux  from the Phillies in exchange for cash considerations.

71 thoughts on “Open Discussion: Week of April 11th

  1. Do we know why Tirado is now relieving in Lakewood? The last I heard, he was going to be starting in Clearwater. Did something change?

  2. Article in Sunday Inquirer about the infield grass at CBP being changed to “slower” Kentucky Bluegrass. Phils are stressing ground ball pitchers on MLB and all minor teams. My question is how does Groome translate. He is a power pitcher at HS level. What in his arsenal of pitches translate to that or doesn’t it matter at the MLB level? Same thing apply to Puk and Pint? What P’s in the minors we recently added fit do or don’t fit that philosophy? Seems to have acquired power arms but when the ball is put in play is it grounders?

    1. In his first game last week over 5 innings and on a pitch count of 60, Groome had 3 balls put into play, two were groundouts and one was a soft grounder that got thru a hole between 1st and 2nd. Small sample size to be sure, but it is what he did. The rest of the outs were all Ks

  3. Amazes me at times, how on more than one occasion, major league baseball players, when they get on the bases, start to run the bases like Little Leaguers, ie, getting picked-off leaning the wrong way, misreading fly balls, forgetting simple ‘infield-fly’ rules, over-running bags, not sliding going into second base, etc etc etc.

  4. Starting pitchers ERA was @ 2.39 going into yesterdays game, Hellickson, Nola Eickhoff and VV all pitched well….

    Alfaro starting off on fire…

  5. First week observations…4 out of 5 starting pitchers were good. V was electric! Morton is filler we all knew that. Hellickson is young enough to be a part of this thing. I wouldnt be locked into flipping him for a prospect. Cesar hot start! Id like to see more Goedell. Klentak has 2 years to build a bullpen.

    1. After 11 games, Aaron Harang had a 2.02 ERA last year. Need to see more from Hellickson before getting excited.

      Agreed that I want to see more Goedell. Give how poorly his replacements have been and that they want to run out Ruf instead of Tyler, it does not speak well about his readiness.

      1. I agree. We need to see how this plays out over several months, but yesterday’s game was beautifully pitched. This makes Hellickson potentially valuable not only as a trade chip but also as an example to the younger pitchers. That guy knows what he’s doing on the mound and it was a pleasure to watch.

        That said, the event of the weekend was VV’s start – it’s the best right-handed starter power pitching we’ve seen since Roy Oswalt was at his peak. In fact, in terms of pure stuff, VV reminds me a lot of a young Roy Oswalt, who probably had a better FB, but I’m not sure he had the secondary pitches that Velasquez has. If Velasquez comes anywhere close to being another Oswalt then, that alone, makes it a good trade. If any of the other guys come through in a big way, it could make it an all-timer.

        1. The Phillies never had Oswalt in his peak. that said, I know what you meant and might have said Schilling myself

          1. Schilling never had the kind of fastball movement that Velasquez has and, as a younger pitcher (Phillies era), didn’t have as many effective breaking pitches as VV has. What Curt Schilling had was elite velocity and elite fb command with a solid breaking pitch (I think he mostly threw a splitter, but it was little more than a “show me” pitch in the 90s). I went to a game in 1999 (it was 160 degrees on the field at the Vet and we were sitting on the roll-out metal riser seats – ouch!) where the slowest Schilling FB was around 94 – he sat 96-98 the entire game (touching 99) and just blew guys away with perfectly placed FB after perfectly placed FB. I’d say he threw like 85-90 % fastballs that day and I think that was a pretty typical outing for him in those days.

  6. While we shouldn’t get too excited about every top 100 prospect in the system, there’s always the kid lying in the weeds who emerges to find his game. Not sure it’s a Tyler Goeddel, Angelo Mora, or Jeremy Hellickson who we pretty much assume is a place holder. Baseball humbles the experts. But it’s fun trying to be the smartest guy in the room.

    1. I can tell you that Mora was one of the best looking hitters in ST. And he was hitting the ball with power and authority too.

  7. By the way, you want to know what else is impressive? Maikel Franco. You watch him play, it looks like his timing is off, he’s not driving the ball the way he usually does, he’s taking some abnormally bad swing and, still, you look down and his OPS is .984. So even when it looks like he’s almost struggling, he ain’t!

  8. Any reasons as to why Pete is using Galvis in the leadoff spot?

    Also thought Chooch was going to be the opening day catcher, that was whole article on Pete saying him and Howard would start today. Is he hurt?

    1. I can’t figure out why Galvis is leading off either. He is hitting .185 and his OBP is even lower, .179 (how is this even possible?). He has scored two runs and has no stolen bases (actually the Phillies team has only 1 stolen base this season. At the very least, Hernandez should lead off and Galvis could hit second.

    2. No Q why Galvis batting lead off his career obp .281. Cedric Hunter is batting .111 he was suppose to platoon with Goeddel .

  9. Mack did it….pinch hit for Ryan Howard with Ruf with bags loaded and no out, as a lefty comes in. This could be a first.

    1. I saw that but Ruf won’t continue to get those opportunities if he doesn’t put better AB’s together when he gets them. Granted he just missed that pitch for a grand slam and the end result was still a sac fly in the book but a pop-up essentially to shallow left isn’t good.

      1. DMAr…was hoping he take a pitch or two….but first pitch was a dead-red FB, so he swung away.

      1. Hudson Belinsky ‏@hudsonbelinsky 5m5 minutes ago
        No-hitter for Jason Groome. 19 strikeouts. Last pitch was 94. I think this kid is a prospect. #mlbdraft

      2. an effortless mid-90s with a plus to plus-plus curve at 17, with a perfect pitching frame.

        i mean, the kind of stuff you dream on.

  10. Barring the unforeseen (and he probably won’t pitch a no-no every outing) really looking forward to June 9…..then off to Williamsport for short season. Next year Clearwater….’18 Reading/LHV…..’19!!!!!!! Just supposing…..

    1. I think he’s on the Cole Hamel’s minor league track if we draft him. It wouldn’t surprise me if he starts at Lakewood but I get ahead of myself.

  11. We have talked about him for a while now and some have not been in his corner, the HS SP stuff and all that. But, this kid looks so good and this performance was so overpowering that I can’t imagine not supporting him at 1.1 I haven’t seen any comments from Anon lately or LarryM in even longer, but I would like to get their take after today’s outing.

    1. My take is no different. This is what top HS pitchers do. We’re just paying more attention because we have the top pick.

      1. no rocco….wrong again.
        LarryM prefers the mountain trails for hiking…I prefer the gym for exercise.

        1. Romus a question. People question taking a hard thrower first in the draft out of high school. I wonder how many of these hard throwers go to college and don’t have any arm trouble. What is the difference if they start at 18 out of high school. or get drafted three years later. I just cant figure out the difference. Arm trouble is going to happen no matter what. I think going to college for some is a killer. knowing how college coaches pitch them to death

          1. rocco….lots of misconceptions on what college coaches do to pitcher’s arms with their extensive pitch counts.
            First……during the season they only pitch once a week normally…usually once on their weekend series.
            If they get into the college world series, then things could change.
            But coaches and the kids’ parent are well aware of their pitch counts and their over-usage.

  12. Bty Mr Ed Snider the owner and founder of the Philadelphia a flyers has pass on . A true sport man and Owner who went most of the games a knew his players.

  13. If the Phillies get of to bad start like 4 and 15 I think Burris , Hunter , Russell , could be gone . I just read Where Mackanin was happy with 2 and 5 cause the Phillies were In all the games but 1. Well then he should be very happy with more close loses like 1 to nothing. Three things why not Stassi up here instead of Burris who is fast that’s about it. Stassi at least can come in as a defensive replace for Howard. Asche will come back and at least be better then Hunter , Burris . Ruff has to hit for power if he doesn’t he gone. Once Nick Willams gets AAA at bats he coming up . 2 if the Phillies do have Herrera , Cesar, Burris how come there not stealing bases anything would help . 3 there not walking why most of them aren’t hitting geez take the base.when Galvis tried to bunt and popped up the tv showed him in the dugout laughing and smiling.

    1. Having a 3d catcher on the roster is an advantage some MLB rosters can’t afford. The Phils are not in that situation. I would promote Arencibia who is arguably a big league bat to replace Burris who unquestionably isn’t. Burris is Blanco lite and isn’t contributing. In a late game scenario, Goeddel is a choice to fill in on the left side of the infield if another spare is needed.

  14. By the way, I don’t think people appreciate how close Maikel Franco is from developing not only into a star, but a superstar. He really might be that special. Enjoy it – guys like Franco don’t come around too often.

  15. Can anyone explain Freddy Galvis’ partial slash?
    BA-.194….OBP- .188
    OBP less than BA?
    PA-32… AB-31… H-6… HBP-0… SF-1

          1. What is the one thing that subtracts from PA’s but still gives you a base in your OBP of which Freddy has 0 🙂

  16. Phillies about 2 pitch back to back goose eggs they have VV tomorrow. They can’t run the bases or hit but they can pitch.

  17. What is fun to me about the Phillies at this moment is watching Herrera and Franco. Imo two studs for the future. It makes watching them more fun thinking of if we can get a couple of the kids in there by next year. we might be on our way to a good team who can contend.

    1. Franco, Hererra and maybe Cesar H are definitely the hitters the Phillies will need for the future it appears….now all they may need is some fine tuning on the base paths.

  18. Holy cow! Did you see VV today? 16ks, 0BBs — utterly dominate. He got stronger as the game wore on. Unbelievable outing. If you didn’t watch, go back and view the tape – at least the last three innings. Pumping 97 in the ninth.

    Obviously, we hope this is not a one time occurrence. I pray he can have some kind of consistency and make most of his starts at least half this good.

    He makes the Giles trade so one sided right now.

    Actually, the last three starts have all been really good – Morton, Eickof and VV. Who’da thunk?

  19. Watching this kid today. I Just know once he learns to trust his curve and change up he could be really good. Worst case is he becomes a good closer. Very impressive start to season for this kid.

    1. rocco…..wow, I guess that is a compliment coming from Mr Negadelphia himself!
      So once he can trust the CB and CU he can be really good? Until then we can only settle for performances like today, eh?
      Just pulling your chain rocco.
      Going to the game tomorrow night…Hellickson vs the Nats.

  20. I’m ready for a Venable, Lough , Asche outfield please . I understand place holders and Macks loyalty to some players , can we get some that hit a baseball.

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