Open Discussion: Week of October 17th

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

No new transactional housekeeping moves by the Phillies this week.  But they did report the earlier signings of some free agents to minor league contracts – RHP Jose Perez,  C Ronald Torrealba, and RHP Luis Pacheco.  They also announced the assignment of a player to one of the DSL teams who had been signed during the summer, RHP Derwuin Marchan.

None of these signings had an affect on the 40-man roster which still stands at 34.  But, the Phillies still have four players on the 60-day DL (Zach Eflin, Matt Harrison, Charlie Morton, and Aaron Nola).  Well before the Rule 5 Draft, they will be returned to the 40-man roster.

Reminder, one transaction that cannot take place is the release of Matt Harrison.  He is under contract and cannot be released until he has demonstrated that he has rehabilitated from his injury.  So, when you contemplate the make up of the Phillies 40-man roster, remember that Harrison will be counted as a member of the 40-man roster at least until the end of spring training when he can be added to the 60-day disabled list, if necessary.

In addition to James Russell and Cedric Hunter declaring free agency,  Patrick Schuster, Jimmy Paredes, and Frank Herrmann have declared free agency.

Chace Numata re-signed in September.  Miguel Nunez has recently re-signed.

Frank Herrmann, Jimmy Paredes and Patrick Schuster elected free agency.  Unless transactions for the three remaining outrighted players post belatedly, it looks like Colton Murray, Dalier Hinojosa, and Emmanuel Burriss have accepted their outright assignments.

Winter league baseball has started.  The Venezuelan League began games on October 6th. The Arizona Fall League and the Mexican Pacific League began on Tuesday, October 11th.  You can check on the progress of our prospects here.

The Dominican Winter League begins on Thursday, October 20th.  The Puerto Rican League begins on October 27th.

The Colombian Baseball League opens on November 4th (3-4 Phillies are headed to Colombia, I heard Tobias, Numata, Laird, and maybe one more) and the Australian Baseball League opens on November 17th ( I heard no Phillies because Australia’s WBC wants to ensure the ABL is used to develop Australian baseball players, therefore there is no longer an agreement with MLB to provide players).

Cumulative transactions:

  • 10/13 – RHP Frank Herrmann elected free agency.
  • 10/10 – RF Jimmy Paredes elected free agency.
  • 10/10 – LHP Patrick Schuster elected free agency.
  • 10/7 – Outrighted Frank Herrmann, Dalier Hinojosa, Emmanuel Burriss, Patrick Schuster, Jimmy Paredes, and Colton Murray to Lehigh Valley.
  • 10/6 – Phillies signed free agent LHP Casey Brown to a minor league contract.
  • Signed NDFA RHP Scott Hoffman
  • Re-signed FA RHP Miguel Nunez
  • 10/6 – RHP Derwuin Marchan assigned to DSL Phillies2 (Signed July 2, 2016).
  • 10/3 – RF Cedric Hunter elected free agency.
  • 10/3 – LHP James Russell elected free agency.
  • 10/3 – Signed free agent RHP Jose Perez to a minor league contract.
  • 10/3 – Signed free agent C Ronald Torrealba to a minor league contract.
  • 10/3 – Signed free agent RHP Luis Pacheco to a minor league contract.
  • Re-signed Chace Numata

141 thoughts on “Open Discussion: Week of October 17th

  1. Shame Aussie baseball for MLB minor leaguers is done…I am going to miss listening to the Aussie announcers.

  2. Of all the prospects in fall ball. the one I am most curious about is Stassi. I have no idea what the Phillies future plans or expectations are for him. Seems he will be blocking Hoskins this year. Seems to be a decent OBP guy with little power.

        1. That said, I really admire how Stassi has hung there and has managed to continue to improve through his mid to late 20s, which is not an easy thing to do. About a year ago I thought there was literally no chance that Stassi could ever become a major league player (other than a September cup-of-coffee promotion), but now I do think there is a small chance he could stick somewhere as a cheap, second division regular for some period of time, but to get that opportunity, he is going to need to hit a lot in AAA well before he turns 30.

  3. Anyone know when Grapefruit League Schedule comes out? It only shows a few games right now while the Cactus League has their schedule already.

  4. Earlier in the season, someone suggested that we might acquire someone like Baez for cheap.

    At the time, I said that I would rather have Baez than Crawford.

    Any thoughts?

    1. Baez for cheap?
      Theo and Ned Hoyer would not give him to the Yankees, but instead it was Castro.
      Not sure what return the Cubs would have wanted.
      But to your point….I want to stick with JPC…his minor league hit tool, specifically BB/Krate ratio is a lot better than Baez’s was.
      Baez has too much swing and miss in his approach (24% right now) and and also a very low BB rate.(3%)
      In five years from now, I would be interested in seeing who has the better career at that point.

      1. Baez has loud “tools” but his poor plate discipline means that his ceiling might be limited. Crawford is different – he’s smooth and doesn’t overwhelm you physically, But his plate discipline and hit tool along with super fielding abilities give him the potential for incredible growth. Give him time, J.P. should reward our patience over the years.

        1. J.P. Crawford would be precisely the type of player that Epstein and Hoyer would like to acquire (great OBP, growth potential and fine fielder). I suspect they would flip Baez for J.P. in a minute.

    2. soler is probably the one that cubs can deal at a price lower than market cost since they have heyward entrenched in the RF for years to come (and play Schwarber and his bat in LF).

      I still prefer JPC over Baez – other than his hit tool, place discipline, defense at premium position – he’s a legit 2-hole hitter which is something of high value to any team.

      if Kingery continue his progression, i’m not even sure if I prefer Baez over Kingery. Phils already have a lot of hitters with high swing and miss potential in Franco, Alfaro, Cozens (+ B-level players like TJ, Altherr) — no need to add more. Phils should continue what Johnny A is looking for – players who can make contact and get on base.

      1. KuKo….the one name you missed in the bunch was Hoskins. Not sure how it will play out with TJ and him in 2018, but can see Hoskins as a player that the Phillies would want as far as peripheral metrics to include OBP. He had his momentary lapse in the upper level adjustment in April and May, but by mid June he was turning his approach around for the better.

        1. @romus – i just believe more in Hoskins hitting ability, thus, exclude him (yet) in the swing and miss bucket. I’m (still) hopeful that Hoskins will hit with power while consistently making contact.

      2. This is probably way too early, but I’m already looking forward to the 2017 draft. When Hellickson declines his QO, The Phillies should end up with something like picks 8, 28, and 48. The first seven picks could look something like this:

        1. Twins ………….. Tanner Houck
        2. Reds …………… Alex Faedo
        3. Padres …………. Hunter Greene
        4. Rays ……………. JJ Shwarz
        5. Braves …………. Jaren Kendall
        6. A’s ………………. Kyle Wright
        7. D-Backs ……….. Jordon Adell

        That would leave the Phillies to choose from guys like JB Bukuskaus, Tristan Beck (RH college pitchers), DL Hall (prep LHP), Alejandro Toral, Mark Vientos, and Conner Uselton (prep bats). Of that group, I like Hall (Kolby Allard comparisons), Vientos (one of the youngest prospects in the draft; won’t turn 18 until the end of 2017), and Toral. Although, I don’t know that they’d select a HS first baseman (Toral) with the eighth pick. Two other LHP I like with picks 28 and 48 are Trevor Rogers and Zac Lowther. This is supposed to be one of the better drafts. To have three top 50 picks is going to be a very good thing.

        1. I think LHP Brendan McKay of Louisville will be a top ten selection.
          And DL Hall will be there simply because lefties are a premium when it comes to starters, even though he is a HSer.

        2. Hinkie….outstanding job !!! Thanks for the early tips. Comment, it seems that the current management seems to favor position players over pitchers – might that continue ? If they stay true to that format – it reminds me of the Cubs protocol.

          Meanwhile, the Braves have amassed a ton of pitching…

          1. @RU – the regime mentioned about growing arms and buying bats philosophy in developing farm although the recent drafts appears contrary to that. i think the FO is still committed to grow arms, however, Johhny A specifically mentioned that they will not draft an arm in the early rounds unless they project to have a #1/#2 SP upside. I’m probably in the majority who preferred to draft K Allard over C for #10 in 2015 draft – but i also see why the Phils decided to go early on C. The Phils could go arm with @1.1 in 2016 but no pitching separated themselves from the rest so I think the Phils made the right choice in Moniak, but made up with Gowdy in 2.1. Also, rather than settling for cheap college seniors in rounds 8-10, the Phils drafted solid college arms in Dyer, Quinn and Garcia and took shots at Kyle Young, Miller and Brown.

            1. Good post kuko your right about Alvarez he really doesn’t draft pitchers high unless there highly recommended. There really no way of telling right now if any pitcher will drop to 8 that could have a ceiling of a #2. I hope he takes the best power OF bat then go for the pitcher with the Hellickson pick. The Phillies drafted Cole Irvin, Jo Jo Romero , Falter all lefties with pitches your better with numbers there so high risk.

  5. The Phillies should overpay for the best relievers on the market and flip them in season that’s the best chance of prying away elite prospects without assuming much risk. The Yankees did a masterful job with the Chapman and Miller deals hopefully the Phillies could replicate something similar.

      1. @catch – that’s a good point theoretically, NYY is always knows to spend $$ to be competitive “every year” — so the FAs cash in the $$ while joining a team that will compete. the big time FAs – RPs in particular normally shy away from rebuilding teams – since an elite closer is more of a luxury than a necessity (thus the Ken Giles trade).

        NYY did a good job of projecting as a competitive team and cash in with their players. Chapman and Miller’s value is really more on their age (physical peak) rather than the $4.

        Danky’s proposal is a slippery slope. First, the Phils will really need to do a massive overpay (probably more than the Papelbon offer) to outbid LAD, NYY, Cubs, SF, TEX and possibly BOS (all of them are considered contenders in the next coming years). A RP with >$15M/yr for multi years, can be a hard contract to move and with the $$ that a team will absorb it affects the prospect that the Phils will get (which is contra to what the Phils want to do).

        Again, it’s a sound strategy but a risky one and might hurt than help the Phils cause. Hellboy type of a FA are the ones that the Phils can try to get value. As far as $$ is concern, i rahter have the Phils burn that $$ in the international front (no draft implication and no future contract issues to worry about).

    1. Danky…the one guy out there who could be had, and he has just the one year left in 2017, is Royals Wade Davis.
      But talk about risk and ref-flags!
      Prior to this past season, he was one of the top relievers, but his velo has dropped a few ticks….2 mph in same instances…..and he has endured an extended DL stint in July, due to the dreaded elbow issue or specifically right forearm strain. Missed almost all of July.
      So he may be had and if hoping for a trade chip…..keep him healthy thru July and cross your fingers.

    1. Not sure how you can argue against an international draft if from the players lense you don’t want a salary cap. If you want true competitive balance then you have to level the playing field.

      Call their bluff and then let our domestic players who are subject to the chains of the draft system call them out.

    2. Romus – if draft position presumably based on prior year’s reverse standings, worst in league could conceivable have first pick in FYPD, first pick in Int’l, first pick in Rule V, first priority for off-season waiver claims. That’s some advantage to be worst in league – again, presuming int’l draft position based on customary rules

      1. Steve……yes that would be a huge advantage for the worst team or bottom 3/4 teams. The Rule V is not such a huge advantage.. past first picks have virtually very low meaningful MLB career WARS. But that choice in an international draft is a huge advantage.

        1. I see issues with that – that is, worst in league having the first pick in BOTH the FYPD and Int’l. In a given year, that could possibly lead to two franchise types.

          1. Steve…..I think they will eventually try to combine the two into one draft after 2021.
            I think they want the ages of the players to be closely aligned if that were to happen in one draft. Not sure if that is necessary but who am I to know.

  6. Romus, I would think that, if Middleton thinks this is going to happen, the Phils should be very aggressive with International signings in 2017. At least I would hope so.

    1. matt13…I think it is too late now.
      The new CBA in Nov/Dec will for all intents and purposes end the J2 signings with this latest period J2, 2016 thru June 2017. All the big signings have been already signed, ie Maitans, Cuban players.
      J2, 2017 will probably be off the books.
      The Phillies got an ‘A’ grade for honesty and integrity…the fans got the shaft..
      As for Middleton/MacKlentak…..Wednesday/Thursday we will know a little more on their financial philosophy on signing LA amateur talent, when Cuban Lourdse Gouriel turns 23 on Wednesday and is free to sign with any team without penalties imposed. We will see if the Phillies are in the game or just outsiders as they normally have been in the past.

      1. matt13….if the new CBA approves the international draft to start in the spring of 2018, then I see the J2, 2017 signing period for LA talent ended..

      2. Romus, I thought Moncada was the one talent to break the bank on. Granted, no one has proven anything at the mlb level just yet, but I had hopes of a Moncada-Crawford up the middle for 5-10 years. We missed the boat.

  7. I’ve heard several people say how this is a bad idea . . . can someone explain why? In my opinion everyone should be on the same level . . . meaning the high school/college kids should be on the same level as the international guys. I dunno if it would even be possible to combine them but if they did what would be the draw backs? (this is assuming the age limit is raised from 16, which in my opinion it should be . . . how many teams lose money (even tho it’s not much to them) on 16 yr olds who sign and never pan out, wait another 2 years and you might phase out some of those 16 year olds who just didn’t develop in those 2 years (if that makes sense). It would def make int signs/picks less risky (even if only by a little bit)

    1. EricD…the chief objection for the international draft are Latin players, agents and Latin based-paper sportswriters. Bottom line …money.

      1. The current MLB Latin players feel the Latin kids will get the shaft as far as bonus money is concerned and will have less opportunity to reach their goals.
      And fewer kids will make it thru the pipeline.
      2. The less-then-honest buscones/agents of these kids from the time they were 12/14 years old….fel they will be faded out of a career or if they survive, it will become less lucrative.

      The way I see it…..the initial 10-rounds suggested will be negotiated down to 5 rounds.
      And the 18-year old age requirement will be also negotiated down to 17-years old.

      And then there is the vetting process for actual ages of the kids….that can be another sticky point, primarily for the DR kids, where record keeping has been faulty in the past, and most of the discrepancies have been within that country’s origin.

      1. The international system should mirror the domestic system in terms of money and signing bonus structures. You want it to be 5 rounds instead of 10 fine and if you want to institute a years of control structure for older foreign born players that’s ok too.

        1. Recommended a two-round draft, back in 2014, to MLB legal counsel. With the same slotted bonus money as the Rule 4, from first pick to 60th pick. All players undrafted were free to sign with any team….but not more than the 60th pick’s slotted money. MLB rejected the proposal, I assume they wanted to go with more rounds and selections or combining it with the Rule 4 ( which is not a good idea IMO). Eventually, they will have a fight on their hands with the Latin MLB players. And Latin players make up between 25 and 30% of the league now.

          1. And the latin players will lose because they are in the minority and how can they look Kris Bryant in the eye and try to make an argument for an open market system when he and his brethren aren’t granted the same right.

            That’s ridiculous…

            1. I’m not trying to pick at you Romus but I think you’re wrong. There is only 1 CBA not one for Domestic players and another for foreign players. It is what it is and in a democratic system majority rules.

              And let’s keep it real they don’t have a leg to stand on one and two they are not going to give up their paychecks over this.

              Sure they might posture and bark but come the start of the season they will be in uniform to collect their money.

            2. DMAR….hope you are right.
              Bud Selig bailed out and did not want any boycotts, and also not as his exit legacy, and so tabled it for the next commish to work.

    2. That’s pretty easy Eric. Imagine for just a minute or two if Kris Bryant was not a US citizen when he got drafted.

      Why should someone his equal be granted free market when he is not? That is from the players point of view.

      from a majority of the owners view I imagine they want fair access to all talent wanting to play in the MLB. Shouldn’t matter if they are 16 or 26.

    3. You start from the place that the domestic draft is good, all it has done is save owners money. Puerto Rican baseball has declined since being added to the draft and as further spending restrictions are added more talent leaves baseball.

      As for teams losing money on Latin kids. They may lose money on some players, but given the money in the majors, 1 win is about $8-$9 million, the top spending pool is less than that. Baseball is raking in millions on international talent.

      Drafts in general decrease free competition for talent and caps on spending just reduce money that ownership has to spend. The Players Association doesn’t care because amateurs and minor leaguers are not members and maybe some of that money may go to veteran players who are members.

      1. It is obvious that drafts in any sport decrease free completion and spending caps reduces the money spent.

        My counter argument is that not using a draft creates a competitive balance issue where the teams with the most money control the talent. There is a reason why the NY Yankees kept playing the NY Giants or the Brooklyn Dodgers in the WS from the 20’s through the 50’s. Those teams were able to outbid most other teams for as much talent as they could find and then stock-pile them in their organization. It actually wasn’t a good thing for the players either because without free agency, good players who would have played in the majors for other teams never got out of the minor leagues.

        We see the same thing in the international markets today although MLB has tried to balance the field by creating international spending caps but the penalties are not enough to make a difference.

        For the overall success of the game, the fan bases for all teams need to believe that their team has an actual chance to compete for championships. Since ML owners will never agree to true revenue sharing the only way to achieve competitive balance is through a draft, both domestic and international.

        My question, why not just have one draft that includes all players rather than separating out international players separately? It works that way for the NFL, NBA, and NHL…

      2. If I’m Tony Clark I play tit for tat. Concede on the INTL draft in exchange for a quicker path to FA and removal of the QO for players with X number of years of service time.

        1. From the player association side, I would deal for both a shorter time to arbitration and to FA. It is the arbitration process that really starts the rapid increase in player salaries. I don’t know that I would ask for the elimination of the QO because I think it can actually help the player IF the penalties for signing a player from another team is removed.

          For the QO, I would ask the team submitting the offer still get the extra draft pick between round 1 & 2 but the signing team doesn’t lose their pick. That still gives teams the incentive to extend the offer for the pick but doesn’t restrict the market because the signing team isn’t penalized..

          1. That is an excellent idea 3UP. I think the player is tired of being hurt by the attachment of the lost draft pick. Remove that and you accomplish a win-win.

      3. Matt I’m not sure what you are arguing for or against? I think what you are saying is that sports should be a complete free for all in which case you wouldn’t have a league

        ….because the teams at the bottom end of the money scale would never get access to premier talent

        that in turn would cause teams like the Indians and Royals to not have teams because they won’t have fans.

  8. NBA has one draft for international and domestic. Hasn’t hurt them. Same for the NHL. Even the NFL’s Vikings drafted a German WR in the 6th round and he had no connection at all to the U.S. He was playing in a German league.

    I would prefer one draft of domestic and international talent like the other leagues. Barring that there should definitely at least be an international draft. The current system is chaos with signing 16 year olds, under the table deals and the “agents” pushing their agendas.

    1. Would make a lot of sense.
      Though players drafted in hockey and basketball from foreign countries have more opportunities, than having to come to the states to enhance their financial careers.
      That is, the foreign professional leagues have salaries that are very substantial, especially for basketball in Europe and South America.
      In Europe, hockey has also very good leagues with the KHL being also a top dollar league, though it does not have as many teams as the NHL and AHL.
      For Latin American baseball teenagers, there is nothing else but the MLB farm system. Their socio-economic existence is very low o the world scale, so they are more or less at the mercy of MLB to further their careers.
      Cuba has a system for development but I would think it is govt run and pays little compensation.

      1. Romus some LA kids are in poor nations . DR is not 1 of them the economy is doing very well . Plus you have Japan baseball etc, for most part every basketball player wants to play nba, etc nfl, Nhl, mlb. all of those leagues have some of the greatest players in the can’t have 2 different drafts In baseball . They have to get all players in 1 draft .

        1. I don’t know where you are getting your information, Tim. “More than a third of the Dominican Republic lives on less than $1.25 a day and over 20 percent of the country lives in extreme poverty. Most of the poverty in the Dominican Republic is concentrated in the rural areas. The rural poverty rate is about three times as high as the urban poverty rate.”

          The DR kids I meet in Clearwater, are all from families who rely on their sons to send their modest paychecks back home to help their families. The DR kids here (all LA prospects actually) have to live in cramped conditions once they reach Advanced A to continue to send money home. Sometimes they live 6-7 players in a 2-bedroom, 1-bath apartment above a garage.

          The DR might have the best economy of the Caribbean nations, and might be the ninth best among all LA countries, but some things are relative to others. Kind of like being the richest kid in a poor neighborhood, or the poorest kid at The Choate School.

          1. Thank you – I saw that post about people in the Dominican doing well and my head almost exploded. I have been there and the people are so kind and wonderful, but they have great poverty, there is crime and it is hard to make a living. Trust me, they are incentivized to have a baseball career and, in any event, its the national sport – they live baseball.

            1. If there economy keeps up at the place it’s going it’s going they will be first in region .it’s not where it’s at its where it’s going to be.

          2. Here Jim it’s a economy on the rise . A couple of my friends used go to Florida for a golfing v cat now they go there. The fast going economy might a couple more yrs to filter down to the rural areas. It’s also the most visited Caribbean country so there forgiven money . You really can’t compare it too Ven the other hotbed country for baseball.

            1. Tim… the UN ranks the DR 90th out of 182 countries on its human-development index, which combines a variety of welfare measurements. But I think the median income of $14K/annum (USD) is still pretty low. Granted, it is richer than Haiti and other Caribbean countries, but…..

            2. Still a poor country were 40% of the population is below the poverty line. And it ranks 149th in the world. The vast majority of the teenage kids see the economic way out, thru baseball.
              Now MLB will be building more baseball academies from what I read if and when the international draft is implemented, and will have more monies pumped into the country.

          3. My friend who’s in tourism was born in DR . He goes there once a month he’s the one who told me about they economy boom. DR was about mining now it’s about services tourism etc. It’s main trading partner is the US . There still many areas that are poor but it’s getting better. He said the DR doesn’t want a draft , why because what about Cuban, Japan , korean , Canadian players all in the same international draft.

            1. Tim….cross Canadiens off your list for international eligibility….Canadians became eligible for the Rule 4 draft in 1991. Also, from what was earlier established, Japan and Korea have agreements with MLB and players are ‘transferred’ ilo of dratted and that was done after fees were posted with the clubs. Whether that changes remains to be seen. Primarily, I have to assume, it is Caribbean players and perhaps Ven,, Panamanian and Mexican players that would be the players involved in an international draft. It would be ideal if they combined it all into one draft someday.

            2. A friend in tourism told you about their “economy boom”. That’s a kind of self-serving statement, don’t you think? What sort of person in tourism would say “the economy’s terrible down there.”?

              Here’s a consolidation of what I’ve found on the ‘net –

              The Dominican Republic has long been viewed primarily as an exporter of sugar, coffee, and tobacco, but in recent years the service sector has overtaken agriculture as the economy’s largest employer, due to growth in telecommunications, tourism, and free trade zones.

              The economy in the Dominican Republic is highly dependent upon the US, the destination for nearly 60% of exports. Remittances from the US amount to about a tenth of GDP, equivalent to almost half of exports and three-quarters of tourism receipts.

              The country suffers from marked income inequality; the poorest half of the population receives less than one-fifth of GDP, while the richest 10% enjoys nearly 40% of GDP. High unemployment and underemployment remains an important long-term challenge.

              Labor force by occupation – Agriculture 14.4%, Industry 20.8%, Services 64.7%.

              Exports: $9.617 billion
              – Ferronickel, sugar, gold, silver, coffee, cocoa, tobacco, meats, and consumer goods.

              Imports: $15.26 billion – foodstuffs, petroleum, cotton and fabrics, chemicals and pharmaceuticals.

            3. The people in the DR who don’t want a draft are probably most represented by the people who benefit most from the lack of one, the 1000-plus buscones who search for and sign young teenagers with projectable, saleable baseball talents. Most young player are from poor families who don’t have the education to seek legal counsel when entering into agreements.

              Buscones can take as much as one-third of a player’s bonus and salary if the player signs a professional contract.

              I could go on cherry picking facts that denigrate the mishandling of young baseball players in the DR, but here’s a link to an article that will at least present both sides.

            4. Romus if they do that it would be called LA draft not international draft. What’s stopping a American high school kid that’s projected to go in the 3rd rd of the mlb draft. To go down to DR for 2 yrs and become a DR citizen. Have dual citizenship now and be projected to in the 1st rd of the international draft . Now if it’s worth 500 k there might be 10 kids who do that. It might knock down some of the LA kids. 2 Cuba players most be in the draft too. While DR and Ven have the value ,Cuba and PR have the quality. I do think mlb will bring the top 150 LA kids before the draft say about a yr in some type of camp. Plus if Ven ever gets its act together there the comp.

            5. Tim…..actually been done already…Cardinals number one prospect Alex Reyes did it four years ago. One of the many logical reasons why the impetus for an ‘international draft ‘ is priority for Commish Manfred at these next CBA meetings..

            6. I READ the BA article I’m a big subporter of an legal age of 18 to drafted . The DR has to find a better way of taking care of there children . Start a private or state run school league . These trainers sound like they needed to get some morals . That’s why I like getting players from the Asian leagues or Cuba . These a couple of lefties coming over from Asia this yr.

      1. DMAR……Giants and Sabean did exceptional, especially with three straight drafts and their high number one picks…..Lincecum (06), Bumagarner (07) and Posey (08), because without them, they probably do not get all three WS rings.

  9. Romus, thanks for sharing that. We have talked about this before. The draft and FA signings can be duplicated by the Phils. Of course, that requires good decision making. But give them that, for argument’s sake. Then look at the WAR from trades. 2 big ones stand out. Arrieta and Rizzo. I think that is where the MacPhail/Klentak regime either succeeds or fails long term. If VV or Williams/ Alfaro, what the heck, both, 3 years from now, are top level players, just to pick them out, then that is an Epstein type trade success. A couple of FA successes and the progression we expect from JP and Franco, and you have a contender.

  10. Any baseball america subs here? Just curious to see if there’s any good info from their Phillies draft report

      1. I heard now twice the Yanks are eyeing VV . I usually hate trade rumors but the Yanks once usually set there sights on someone they go for it. Hey if its Clint Frazier, Chase Adams and Enns for VV only threw 131 ings but he seems to get hurt Somewhat..the Yanks are really only are only looking for Rotation and bullpen help.

        1. Tim … The Yankees are loaded with prospects. However, for me, any VV trade to the Yankees would have to include Gleyber Tores and James Kaprielian.

      2. Hinkie…I don’t think you got a full answer to BA comments. The Phils, along with Reds, Braves, Brewers, Phillies, Bosox, were ranked that way as having the best drafts. Moniak ranked as the 2nd best hitter; best defensive player ; first high school player to reach majors ; 2nd best pro debut. Kyle Young (22nd) was considered the 2nd best high draft pick (above 11th round).

        Comments about Moniak are universally upbeat and notable as he was mentioned in every category, hitting, defense, throwing and running. BA liked Darick Hall and Cole Stobbe’s power ; David Martelli’s defensive work in the OF ; pitchers closest to the majors includes, Romero, Irvin (best pitching pro debut), Dyer (best breaking pitch), and Quinn. Gowdy got high marks for athletic ability, terrific slider with command. They also liked Stephen as a late round pick along with Kyle Young. Overall, very positive in all aspects. Even the player who got away was not terribly bothersome.

        1. BA rates Adonis Medina, (9) and Ricardo Pinto, (12)….. ahead of Sixto Sanchez, (13). Have to assume proximity may be one of the factors in their reasoning

        2. Great info, RU. Thanks. I think Johnny Almaraz definitely made great use of their 13.4 million dollar budget.

  11. A.yone know what, if anything happened to Evan Crower. Did he go to Independant ball or drop out after being released. I figured he’d be the next Carlton.

    One of the gripes about the latin players is that they can wear personality and showmanship on their sleeves, and it can detract from fundaments. Larry Anderson touched on that point several times this year. But then so does Bryce Harper.??


    1. With all due respects to Larry Anderson, that is a foolish stereotype with little evidence. As you point out with Bryce Harper, there are US players who also show their emotions on the field. It is just as easy to name any number of Latin players who are reserved in their actions.

      Regardless of nationality, different players have different personalities.

      1. I think its a fair assement by LA about LA LOL. I think its cultural not sterotypical and it doesn’t need to be construed as negative. No more so than Japanese players have their own way of playing the game.

        Ultimately the end game should be about winning and any manager worth his salt will mold a team in his likeness and get results.

    2. Actually Freddy Galvis agreed with LA.
      And it was subject on Odubel’s showmanship, to include his bat flip.
      Freddy said that was part of their culture, their passion for the game, how they express it.
      If remember correctly…he, said something about, if you go to game during their winter ball league you will see that exuberance quite often.

      1. Many of us remember Willie Montanez. I was just waiting for him to do the glove flip prematurely and have the ball hit him in the fsce. Not wanting it, just sayin.

        I DO think it can detract from concentration and the game, though perhaps not greatly. Caesar H. Odubbel H and even Mickael F IMO show some effect of that culture. “I’m here”, I’m a pro….I can; swing for the fence on every swing; fall asleep on the bases (or not apply my mind to my situation), daydream in center.

        But hey, they all do better than I would and some of the mistakes and attitudes might be attributed to youth.

  12. Jim,

    I will be in Clearwater this Tuesday and was wondering if anything would be going on at the Bright House complex? If so what is a good time to be there?


    1. Nothing I’m aware of. The Tiki Bar in Bright House is open on Wednesday’s for Happy Hour from 5:00-9:00PM. There’s an MSBL/MSBL (Men’s Senior/Adult Baseball League) tournament with different age groups (18+, 25+, 35+, 45+, 50+, 60+, and 65+) from October 30th thru November 12th. Games will be played all over Pinellas County including Bright House Field, the Carpenter Complex, DiMaggio Field, and in Dunedin. I’ve been asked if I was available to report on one or more championship games. If the normal writers leave an opening, I may lose my amateur status.

    1. Probably. And he’s cheap. That’s why, sooner or later (preferably sooner), he will probably get traded so room can be made for the other catching prospects. I wouldn’t trade him just to trade him, but if they get great value in return they should go for it.

      1. Agree catch – just not confident they get that great value this winter. GMs may be suspect of overpaying for what they consider as a breakout year for Rupp. Personally, I think his season is very repeatable, and with confirmation from Rupp April-June 2017 we have a good chance of a great return at next year’s deadline.

        Either way, a very affordable contract for a useful catcher is going to be attractive to other GMs. He isn’t even eligible for arbitration until after 2017.

    2. Very detailed and analytical article on Rupp.
      Not sure you need all the EV and spray chart data to determine his future value and what needs to be done to increase it.
      His K rate of 27% and BB rate of 6 %…delta 21….is very troubling.
      With two strikes he hits .172 and less….most MLB players have poor 2-strike averages…his is really low.
      Over the last six weeks of the season his K rate hovered around 30%….maybe he was tired or maybe he leveled to his norm.
      If he can take a better two strike approach at the plate, it may serve him well for his future value.
      As Schmidtty says ‘choke and stroke’.

      1. What a great season for Rupp. In the early months he was up there with the highest ranking exit velocities in all of baseball. 16 HRs in only 105 games – that’s good power at any position let alone catcher. I would expect Rupp to play closer to 120 games this season – so 20 HRs would certainly be a possibility.

        The 27% K rate isn’t good, but for a C who’s going to hit 25 HRs (over 162), I’d take it. I’d really love to see that BB rate increase a few ticks though. Just now looking back at his historical stats, including minors, Rupp.s 5.7% BB rate in 2016 was one of the lowest of his professional career. Perhaps 2016 is an outlier and a rebound will be less challenging.

        If Rupp could stay around average overall on the glove side, and he comes out with a strong April-June, we just may get a decent return for him in July.

        1. Steve……if Rupp does have the same or slightly better production next season as he did this season up thru September, his value would surely be high, with his contractual advantages and his age. But not sure MacKlentak would make any trade since Alfaro or Knapp may not be ready. If Ellis is brought back or Chooch, or any other veteran catcher, then I guess it could be done for the remaining two months of 2017 and by 2018 Alfaro or Knapp should be ready.

          1. Alfaro is moving to LV as the FT catcher. They won’t curve Alfaro’s development as a catcher by having him catch only 3 times a week. Perhaps they can give Alfaro 4 starts, a few to Knapp, a few more to Knapp at 1B, and where possible, DH. As a short term solution that might work.

            I keep thinking it possible for Knapp or even Stassi to break camp with the team as a compliment to Joseph (in Knapp’s case, even if they sign Ellis or another Vet C). Knapp could get a start behind the dish once a week.

            Whatever the scenario, its difficult to see how Knapp gets significant time behind the dish – barring a trade of course

            1. Knapp needs time behind the plate and he needs at bats. It wouldn’t surprise me if, for the first month and a half (35 games or so), Alfaro stays in AA and Knapp in AAA so each gets plenty of full time reps and the assessments can continue. It’s difficult to see a long term future for Rupp with the Phillies, but we will see.

            2. Really like Klentak to be a little creative this December at the winter meetings. A few ‘ready to move up’ prospects can be packaged and maybe bring back some value, especially on prospects at lower levels. Two that immediately come to mind are Lively and Knapp…both at positions of value.

  13. Tigers’ JD Martinez will unlikely be extended beyond ’17, according to their GM. He’ll be turning 30 next year. I’ve been impressed by his resume for a while now and I’m wondering what they would be willing to accept as a package should they consider a trade this winter.

    1. Martinez can hit, but he’s not a good defensive catcher and I catchers tend to decline on offense more quickly than other players. If the NL had a DH it might be interesting, but I think I’d pass on him. Given that they already have a decent catcher and two of their better prospects are catchers, I wouldn’t waste valuable prospect assets on that position.

      1. I guess you would need to tell me what it would cost us to get JD and then I can tell you whether or not I would trade for him.

        1. I really have no idea Nick Williams or Quinn plus maybe knapp. I really don’t know Detroit needs but they are selling so.

  14. i know there are questions concerning Nick Williams’ and how his 2016-AAA experience resulted in.
    But when you look at everything he did before the third week of July and what he did after it truly makes you wonder what happened to him?
    According to ToddZo… ‘after hitting .290 with 27 doubles, five triples, 10 home runs, 53 RBIs, 18 walks, 91 strikeouts and a .791 OPS in 399 plate appearances through July 29, Williams hit .161 with six doubles, one triple, three home runs, 11 RBIs, one walk, 45 strikeouts and a .478 OPS in his final 128 plate appearances’….a k rate of 35% in the last six weeks vs 23% the first 15 weeks of the season.

    1. It’s probably one of two things. Either he just got tired and wore down or, more likely, someone figured out how to pitch to him, the league caught on and he did not make the necessary adjustments. I am really down on him as a prospect right now.

    2. I always like to find a silver lining for a guy like Nick. Playing AAA the whole season as a 22y/o is impressive in and of itself. I look at a guy like Jackie Bradley JR and the # of times he yo-yo’d before finding some success in the MLB.

      Sure NW could wash out but I’m still leaning toward his upside.

      1. DMAR…I tend to agree and look to his upside. He is not a big guy….maybe tall at 6’3″, but pretty lean and his 400 PAs in AAA were pretty good and I tend to think he tired and wilted in the last six weeks….in fact, you can narrow it further down to the worst of it….a 15 games stretch between Aug 3rd and Aug 22nd…..65 PAs, 9 Hits and 22 strikeouts.

    3. From the start of August, NWilliams compiled the following:

      PA 117
      SO 43 (36.75%)
      BB 1 (.85%) — Yes, that decimal is in the correct place.

      This said, Williams OPS’d .742 in April, .751 in May, .867 in June and .729 in July.

      He also played the entire season at age 22 (turned 23 on September 8th). He has some power to grow into to yet.

      We all know he has some of the fastest hands in the minors, and we also know about his plate discipline challenges. The prior skill set and his deficient approach are at odds with each other at times. If he figures out the approach piece, I think we have a potential all-star outfielder who flirts with 30 homers and hits .290.

    1. I loved the San Diego Chicken. He is the only mascot who I thought was funnier than the Phanatic. I always love the Phanatic (he is without a doubt the best current mascot – nobody is even close), he makes me smile and sometimes laugh. The Chicken instantly made me laugh out loud. He was incredible.

  15. Looks like the DR traitors will boycott a Mlb showcase . VEN maybe not all why to thing of the kids. How much does this hurt ? For most part teams have been on these kids awhile.

    1. Looks like the trainers, aka buscones, may want to play hard ball with Commish Manfred…he ain’t Bud Selig. This may be the first shot over the bow

  16. Romus et. al.

    I have seen Todd Zo, and now another site have suggested that the Phillies will listen to trade offers for VV………What would all like to see obtained for him should they decide to trade him at this point ? Yankees and Texas expressed interest already but the “ask” was very high. What would be acceptable ?

    Mazaro and a lower level pitcher for VV, Altherr, and Pivetta ? – Texas

    J Kaprelian and Justus Sheffield for VV, Lively, and Pinto ? – Yankees

    1. That Yankees return would be exceptional.
      But will Cashman agree to that?
      J Kap and Sheffield could be top of the rotation starters…..while Lively and Pinto are back enders right now it appears.
      I think you could get one of Kap or Sheffield and possibly someone lower and youngish in their system…Perez, Finley or Martinez.
      As for the Rangers…..who knows what Daniels will do…he gave up a lot for Hamels in 2015 and Lucroy in 2016. But holds onto Mazaro!

    2. How bout Vazquez, Asher, Goedell and Harrison for JUpton, JDM and $20mm

      then trade Rupp (resign Ellis) and Appel for Forsythe, Smyly, and Boxberger

      Then sign RHill for 3/50

      Then sign one of Jansen and Chapman for 4/75

      Then sign Mark Melancon for 4/65

      Then print tickets

    3. I’m not sure if Cashman would do that deal, but Klentak wouldn’t. I would think furthest from his mind would be to trade a young, controllable MLB starter with no. 2 upside for two lower level pitching prospects in A ball. That won’t get it done – I think if they move VV its going to have to be in exchange for a high profile minor league bat (+others). I’d love to get my hand’s on Kaprelian and Sheffield, but certainly not for VV. Need to be thinking higher profile minor leaguer to even begin a serious discussion for VV

  17. I’ve been waiting four months for this. Roy Ozga of The Baseball Draft Report has published his Phillies draft review. IMO, he’s the best at the MLB draft. This piece of work is incredibly thorough. Some of the highlights: Mickey Moniak comps from scouts who watched him in the GCL … Jackie Bradley Jr, Andrew Benintendi, and AJ Pollock. Kevin Gowdy has future postseason starter upside. He’s had more than one contact tell him Josh Stephen is a future .300 hitter in the big leagues. And on the Phillies minor league system … “What the system might lack for sure-thing future stars it makes it up in crazy depth.”

    You could start a whole thread on this one article. It’s that in-depth.

    1. Hinkie…..I remember his report from the summer pre-draft….it is one of the best and thorough.
      Good to hear his report on the Phillies draft.

    2. Hinkle I could and did tell people Josh is a hitter. I like him as a hitter more than Moniak. But Stephen by what I have read isn’t fast, and doesn’t have a good glove. My opinion on him was watching him hit. love his bat . but Moniak is the whole package.

  18. We are Penn St they knock off # 2 Ohio st. Oh Klye Hendricks pitched a 2 hit shut out the Cubs against The Indians in the World series.

    1. And, if it wasn’t for Lester’s dominance so far in the playoffs so far, Hendricks would be the leader for Cubs MVP.

  19. I was looking at an old Phillies top 30 list and I noticed Jon Singleton. I followed him for a couple of years after he left the Phils organization but eventually he slipped from consciousness. So I looked him up. He hit .202/.337/.390 in the PCL this past year. I saw the .202 and said he’s fallen off the face of the earth. Then I see .337 in OBP. How does that happen? He had 80+ walks in 500 PAs. That’s pretty impressive. He also hit 17 dbls, 20 HRs and 66 RBIs. So in 500 PAs he hit 37 XBHs and had 83 BBs. 24% of his PAs resulted in a BB or XBH. He’s had 2 mediocre tries in the big leagues. The guy’s 25 y/o. Have better days passed him by? He was one of the key pieces of the Hunter Pence trade. Certainly the “big piece” of that trade has been a flop. Domingo Santana and Jarrad Cosart are the top pieces in that trade. Santana would look nice in the Phillies OF but his most games played in a season is 77. He’s 23 y/o with breakout potential. As a throw-in in the trade, that was a major failure on the Phillies part but if he’s a platoon type player ongoing, no great loss.

    Cozart as a 24 y/o in 2014 looked like the crushing loss from the Pence trade. He had a very good season and his best years were in front of him. Since then it hasn’t been pretty at all. as a 26 y/o, he still has time to turn things around and there are better young guys than Cosart on the Phils right now and a few in minors coming along.

    A historical view of the Pence trade to the Phils was not as disasterous as it looked a few years after the trade. Where things went with Pence from there, in more damning but Tommy Joseph has given some pain relief but not much.

    1. In addition to Singleton who just turned 25, Santana just turned 23 and Cosart 26. I think there’s a good amount of WAR to come out of that group yet – I particularly like Santana and would not at ll be surprised if he has a number of 30 hr seasons in the majors.

      I think what stung the most in the days and months following the Pence trade, was the realization that our GM was not in touch with the pulse of the market. When you have a commodity (prospects) you are interested in placing into market, you valuate based on market valuation, not your own. Afterwards, Amaro staunchly defended his position in complete ignorance to what was transpiring around him.

      [True Story – at the time the Phillies traded for Pence, Brandon Moss was OPS’ing in the high .800s at Lehigh Valley]

      The inclusion of DSantana – who at the time was heavily covered right here on PP – really put it over the top.

      Above said, there’s a lot more wrong with the Pence trade than only the players Amaro surrendered (or acquired).

      1. Steve…….do not count on a lot of WAR from that group.
        Santana, if truly 24, and SIngleton could be out of baseball in 2/3 years….up or out.
        Singleton’s drug issue with the marijuana a few years ago really deterred his career.
        Cosart, IMO, still may become a top-notch reliever if he does not establish himself as a starter..

        1. Romus – Certainly agree on Singleton. I was actually going to ask Bellman if his “slipped from consciousness” quote was a reference to Singleton’s smoking habits. As for Santana, even if he’s 26 I think he’s going to have a few productive seasons. He’d be a great fit on this team right now.

          Regardless of future WAR of players the Phillies sent to the Stros, my point was that the Pence trade was unpopular for a number of different reasons.

          1. Agree…..that Pence trade, which was a July deal, was more of a Manuel insistence at that time for a proven hitting OFer, and less reliability on a Dom brown. Pence did prove to be a good hitter in that stretch drive and help Phillies win a lot of games…102 of them for the best in their history. Unfortunately the Cardinals did them in later in the playoffs.

          2. Steve, I have to take the approach that Santana has always been more hype than real production. If he stays healthy (last year already proved – no) he may hit 20 homers but K 170 times. I think he is not a quality first division regular in any sense of the word. Cosart is recovering from surgery ?, has had psychological issues, and is in a sense, “lost” until proven otherwise. Singleton, other than his whopping pay day, is a total bust.

            OTOH, Pence has always been the model of stability and you can pencil him in for 23 HR, 85-95 rbi, and a 285 ave with good obp + slugging. Is it any wonder that SF reaped the rewards of a terrific player. The truly sad thing is that Phils got so little for a really solid player rather than what they lost in trade value.

            1. “The truly sad thing is that Phils got so little for a really solid player rather than what they lost in trade value.”

              Right – that’s one of the reasons why the Pence deal is unpopular.

              As for Cosart, we also need to consider that he was later flipped to the Marlins for prospects

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