Open Discussion: Week of October 24th

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

No new transactional housekeeping moves by the Phillies this week.  But, Emmanuel Burriss elected free agency on the 15th.

With Dalier Hinojosa and Colton Murray apparently having accepted their outright assignments, only four required roster moves remain.  After the completion of the world series and the return of Zach Eflin, Matt Harrison, Charlie Morton, and Aaron Nola to the active roster, four players will have to be moved off the 40-man to make room.  

Of course, the end of the championship season will also signal the beginning of a bevy of off season moves throughout the league.  The Phillies will tender the expected quality offer to Jeremy Hellickson.  They will decline their club option and buyout the final season of Ryan Howard’s contract.  They have a similar decision on Charlie Morton’s mutual option or buyout.  They have four arbitration eligible players to whom they will have to decide whether or not to tender contracts (Jeanmar Gomez, Freddy Galvis, Cesar Hernandez, and Cody Asche).  Plus, four players enter free agency (Andres Blanco, Peter Bourjos, A.J. Ellis, and David Hernandez).

(Reminder, one transaction that cannot take place is the release of Matt Harrison.  He has a guaranteed contract and cannot be released until he has demonstrated that he has rehabilitated from his injury.  So, when contemplating the make up of the Phillies 40-man roster, remember that Harrison will be 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.)

We have discussed the MLB contract issues that have been leaked so far.  Particularly, the implementation of an international draft and the raising of the minimum signing age from 16 years to 18 years.  Someone suggested that some highly talented American high school players might want to take citizenship in a Latin American country to avoid the draft and take advantage of international signing rules that afford the most highly sought after LA players much higher signing bonuses.

Cardinals’ pitcher and top prospect, Alex Reyes, was offered as an example of an American high school player who did just that, taking up residence in the Dominican Republic and signing a $950K contract.  In Reyes case, although he was born in the US, both his parents were from the DR.  They were unable to send him to the showcases and tryouts that would have helped him get the attention of scouts.  He relocated to the DR where he lived with each of his grandmothers.  He worked out with the son of the town’s mayor, former MLB outfielder Raul Mondesi, and was spotted by a local scout and a Cardinals’ scout.  After a one-year delay due to his emigration to the DR (per MLB rules), Reyes signed with the Cardinals in December 2012.

The United States does not formally recognize dual citizenship. However, it also has not taken any stand against it, either legally or politically.

Dominican scouts (buscones) have indicated that they may withhold their players from showcases in response to MLB’s consideration of an international draft.  This shows how seriously they take the MLB discussions regarding a draft.  However, I wonder if this might not play into the MLB’s hand.  Since MLB also wants to raise the signing age of international players from 16 to 18, MLB could conceivably “lock” international players out for two years until next year’s crop of 16-year olds is old enough to sign in 2019.

Extra Innings

Former Phillies’ pitcher Jim Bunning suffered a stroke on Tuesday, October 18th at his Cincinnati home.  According to his family and friends he is recovering and watching the baseball playoffs.  The family issued a statement to a local paper that,”He has been provided skilled care that is leading him on the road to recovery”.  The Hall of Fame pitcher and former Senator from Kentucky turned 85 on Sunday.

jim-bunning

The Florida State League is honoring Ryan Howard with an induction into the FSL Hall of Fame on November 15th at the Sheraton Sand Key Resort in Clearwater Beach.  The Dunedin Blue Jays’ Roy Halladay and Fort Myers Miracles’ Joe Mauer are also among the 2016 inductees.

The following is a copy of a letter sent to season ticket holders from Matt Klentak.

On behalf of the entire Phillies organization, thank you for your support as a season ticket holder.  We appreciate your commitment, and hope that you share in our optimism for the future of this franchise.  Now that I am nearly a year into my role with the Phillies, I would like to share with you some of the success stories that we experienced this season, both at the major and minor league levels.

At the major league level, we witnessed firsthand the growth of a young, promising pitching staff that should only improve with experience.  Notably, Jerad Eickhoff, Hector Neris, Aaron Nola and Vince Velasquez (among others) took impressive steps forward this year.  Offensively, Odubel Herrera followed up a fine rookie season with an All-Star sophomore season and was joined by César Hernández, Tommy Joseph and Cameron Rupp (among others) as players who achieved marked improvement this year.  Indeed, the performance of these young players contributed to an eight-win improvement from 2015 to 2016, tied for sixth best among Major League teams.

In our minor league system, we experienced an outstanding 2016 season from both a team and player development perspective. Our domestic affiliates combined to post a .595 winning percentage – the best mark of any organization in baseball since 2007. Furthermore, four of our six affiliates qualified for the playoffs, all while featuring some of the youngest rosters in their respective leagues.  Our players and staff deserve a great deal of credit for the successes of our farm system this year.

At the upper levels of our minor league system, we had two players in Reading (AA) who posted record-setting power numbers.  Outfielder Dylan Cozens (40 home runs) and first baseman Rhys Hoskins (38 home runs) were the top two home run hitters in all of Minor League Baseball. Cozens was awarded the Eastern League MVP, while Hoskins received Rookie of the Year honors.  On the pitching side, we witnessed the emergence of Ben Lively, who won a combined 18 games overall between Reading and Lehigh Valley (AAA).  At the conclusion of the season, all three received the prestigious Paul Owens Award, presented annually by the Phillies to the top minor league player(s) and pitcher(s) in the organization.

At the lower levels of our system, we watched as an impressive group of young players made their debuts in professional baseball. That group included promising centerfielder Mickey Moniak, who we selected first overall in this year’s draft, and who experienced a strong first season in the Gulf Coast League.  Moniak was joined on the GCL club by several other young and exciting prospects who together have added depth and upside to our already strong farm system.

In my opinion, this franchise is well on its way to returning to the top of the standings. It doesn’t happen overnight, but with your support we will achieve our organizational goal of sustained winning and consistent success. Once again, on behalf of everyone at the Phillies, thank you for all of your support as a season ticket holder.

A friend and follower of Phuture Phillies wrote a book about the 2016 minor league season.  It’s available on Amazon.

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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.  The Dominican Winter League began on Thursday, October 20th.  You can check on the progress of our prospects here.

Rhys Hoskins has started out hot going 5 for 10 with 4 RBI in his first 3 games.  Brock Stassi is batting .349 in a larger sample size.  He has amassed 3 HR, 8 RBI, 16 BB and 11 K in 59 PA. Wilson Garcia has a .344 AVG but only has an OBP of .382 (even though he has 0 BB and 0 HBP ???).   Carlos Tocci has an AVG of .333 in 54 AB, but with just 3 doubles he only has a .389 SLG.

Gregory Infante has a 0-1 record and 2 saves in 5 appearances.  His ERA is 0.00, the loss came on an unearned run.  Including Infante, 8 pitchers have an ERA of 0.00.  Alberto Tirado is one of the pitchers with a 0.00 ERA.  In his one appearance, he pitched 1.0 IP and struck out the side.  He also gave up a hit and issued 2 walks.  Elvis Araujo, another pitcher sporting a 0.00 ERA, has 3.2 IP in 4 appearances.  He recorded 7 K among 11 outs.  He also walked 4 and gave up 2 hits.  Jeff Singer has pitched 5.2 scoreless inning in Arizona.  He has struck out only two, but also has allowed only 3 hits and walked none.

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:

  • 10/15 – 2B Emmanuel Burriss elected free agency.
  • 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
  • The organization rosters are up to date.

161 thoughts on “Open Discussion: Week of October 24th

  1. Get well soon Mr. Bunning. I saw him pitch a few times in Connie Mack Stadium in the mid-60s. He had that string of 19 game win seasons and I was 8 to 12 years old during that stretch. He was fun to watch and successful. An interesting fact is that he led the league in Hit Batsmen from ’64 to ’67. You better not be crowding the plate with Jim on the mound.

    1. Yes, like Bob Gibson. If you crowded the plate, he would hit you and stare at you. If you were stupid enough to charge the mound, he could literally knock you because he was a Golden Glove boxer. The same was true with Kyle Farnsworth – a legit MMA type fighter who was perhaps the scariest guy who ever took the mound (aside from Ugueth Urbina – who truly had a homicidal bent – he was a dangerous individual).

        1. He was a frightening human being. There were stories about him being on the team plane, blasting music and when people asked him to please turn it down, he apparently stood up, defied them, try to intimidate them and was ready to fight them. Nice guy. The picture painted was consistent with the psychopath who tried to burn people and maim them with a machete.

            1. No, if Wikipedia is to be believed, tried to (but that attempt was enough to get him sentenced to jail; a term of which he served 7 years):

              On November 7, 2005, Urbina was arrested by Venezuelan authorities on a charge of attempted murder for an incident that occurred a few weeks previous, on October 16.[6] Urbina attacked five farm workers on his property whom he had accused of stealing a gun. The pitcher tried to injure the men with a machete and also attempted to pour gasoline on them.[7] On March 28, 2007, Urbina was convicted of attempted murder and sentenced to fourteen years and seven months in prison.[8] He was released, however, on December 24, 2012, after serving just over seven years of his sentence.[9]

  2. Alfaro is Colombian, maybe he will be the 4th to play in the Colombian Winter League.
    Though it may not be a challenging league for him.
    He has played in the Puerto Rico, Venezuela and the Arizona Fall league in the past.
    Though hope he goes to the PR league where the pitching is more developed.

    1. He is slated to play in Venezuela again for the same team he was with last year. Later start because he was on the MLB roster but he probably gets there in the next couple of weeks. Colombian league is not good enough for him (though it looks to be a nice substitute for Australia if the Phillies want to place A ball players).

      1. I think the ABL is done for MLB minor leaguers. They did not sign an agreement this year from what JimP may have said here earlier this month..

  3. I understand this site isn’t really about commerce, but I did want everyone to know that I’m selling my seat on the Brandon Leibrandt bandwagon. You can get it pretty cheap, too! Only one seat available.

  4. I noticed that Leibrandt’s name is no longer on the AFL roster. A LHP from the Yankees’ organization (Nestor Cortes) was added to the roster on October 18th (bringing their total to 9 players). Don’t know what this means for Leibrandt. I last saw him pitch on October 1st when he and two other pitchers headed for the AFL made appearances. Leibrandt started and threw 2 innings that day. His FB was 87-88 mph.

  5. It’s inaccurate to say the U.S. does not formally recognize dual citizenship. You can acquire U.S. citizenship without having to relinquish a prior citizenship. And you don’t lose U.S. citizenship by acquiring another nationality unless, in doing so, you serve in a military fighting the U.S. That double nationality loophole for those seeking to achieve foreign free agency isn’t going anywhere as far as the USG is concerned. What MLB chooses to do could be another matter though it could get a legal challenge if viewed as infringing on the rights of a U.S. citizen seeking status on a foreign passport. Would be an interesting test case.

    1. It is totally accurate to say that the U.S. doesn’t formally recognize dual citizenship. I looked it up on the State Department web site before I published it.

      1. I’m almost positive duel citizenship is a real thing. For example my ex girlfriend was born in the us while her parents were on a work visa from Brazil. Since she was born here she gets us citizenship and since her parents were “citizens” of Brazil (or Brasil) she had that as well.

        1. Dual citizenship is a real thing. I am an American citizen who has lived in Israel- with Israeli citizenship- for the last 20 years. The US consulate even encouraged my Israeli children-in-laws to apply for Green Cards rather than tourist visa when traveling to the US. I do not know how the State Dept. officially relates to dual citizenship status but there are 10’s of thousands of Americans with the same status that I have living here.

          1. Yes, other countries recognize dual citizenships (Israel, Canada) but the US does not. IF you are a US citizen many other countries with also grant citizenship…

            1. Dual Citizenship: The U.S. government allows dual citizenship. United States law recognizes U.S. Dual Citizenship, but the U.S. government does not encourage it is as a matter of policy due to the problems that may arise from it. It is important to understand that a foreign citizen does NOT lose his or her citizenship when becoming a U.S. citizen. An individual that becomes a U.S. citizen through naturalization may keep his or her original citizenship. However, as some countries do not recognize dual citizenship, it is important to consider it carefully before applying for U.S. citizenship

              This was taken from usimmigrationsupport.org.

      2. Whether or not the US formally recognizes dual citizenship, Americans who gain dual citizenship are not breaking any US laws.

        I am a US citizen who is about to acquire an Italian passport. An American with a second passport is a common phenomenon.

        Since those holding US passports or green cards are taxed on their world-wide income, the US government has a financial reason to encourage foreigners to acquire green cards.

      3. Jim is correct to say that US doesn’t recognize dual citizenship.

        I have a dual citizenship and I can verify it exist. Under the law, US citizenship can be obtained in 2 ways: a) naturally (or some say physically) born in the US (in regardless of the citizenship of the parents) and b) thru naturalization (for 18 and above needs to apply – Form N-400 , below 18 – at least one parent is a US citizen to apply – form N-600). The INS naturalization procedures will require applicants to “renounce” any existing citizenship they have and it’s a requirement (thus, they will require you to surrender all the immigration documents that you have including your foreign passport). So technically, the US government doesn’t recognize “dual citizenship”, however, the law doesn’t prohibit any US Citizen to obtain other foreign citizenship(s) – as long as other other country recognize your US citizenship and will not make you renounce it when you apply . Countries like Australia, Spain, Philippines, Italy, Israel, etc will let you apply for citizenship without renouncing your American (and surrendering the US passport).

        So they key is to become a US Citizen first (whether thru birth or naturalization), then, apply or pursue foreign citizenships after (for countries that allows it) that you want and start collecting different passports.

        1. I don’t think it is correct to list children born to U.S. parents abroad as “naturalized,” and N-400 and N-600 are very different. Natural born U.S. citizens can either obtain that right through jus soli (being physically born in the U.S.) or jus sanguinis (having a right to citizenship from blood–i.e. parents). There are a few exceptions in which either category may not apply but they are rare (especially jus soli or children born to a U.S. citizen mother). Naturalization is for people who were not born without those rights and obtained citizenship later. Agreed on dual citizenship.

      4. My father-in-law had to renounce his Canadian citizenship when he became a U.S. citizen. My wife and her sibs had the choice of becoming Canadian citizens, but that passed when they did not establish it, turned 21, and voted in U.S. elections. I guess the fact that you must renounce your foreign citizenship to become a U.S. citizen does not preclude your original home country from still counting you as a citizen.

        1. Was just listening to an interview with Jessie Ventura who said “the US is great but I have duel citizenship which we recognize”. I dunno but that’s coming from a former governor.

          1. Hah……didn’t he file for Mexican citizenship, one of many reasons being, the use of stringent TSA inspections at airports, among other US government policies he thought unfair?

  6. Congrats to Steve on the book coming out, very impressive. It sounds like he’s living a nice winter Florida lifestyle. Playing baseball in Florida I assume in their senior leagues.
    The one thing I’d mine to see is for Kingery to get hot. I’m starting to wonder if he’s a first division starter… Ceasar certainly did enough to have his job next year to start.

  7. Another name to know for the 2017 MLB draft. Deon Stafford is a local kid who will probably be picked in the first two rounds. The St. Joe’s University catcher had similar numbers to Clemson superstar Seth Beer last season:

    .395/.486/.702/1188 18 HR ….. Stafford
    .369/.535/.700/1235 18 HR ….. Beer

    Stafford followed his eye-popping sophomore season with a successful summer in the Cape Cod League. He slashed .283/.377/.509/.886 6 HR in 106 AB.

    1. I think the Phillies need to really stink next yr . Seth Beer might be the right handed RF there looking for.

      1. It might make sense for Beer to transfer to a JUCO this winter so he could enter the 2017 draft. Why risk a serious injury over two years ? That would be a very positive thing for the Phillies. Even if he didn’t slip to the eighth pick, he would probably push one of the top college pitchers (maybe Kyle Wright, who I like a lot) to the Phils.

        1. For me I think Alvarez sticks to his Mo takes a bat first , then a couple of pitchers later. I don’t think he’s going to get a clear 1 or 2 starter in the 8 pick.I think Greene , Houck are the only too.there always alot of prospects coming out of nowhere . It’s way to early say who might improve . Maybe with the new CBA we could trade the pick like every other friggin sport.

        1. That would make a good movie, though how do you make a Maury Lerner likable and dislikable at the same time.

  8. Here we go….the Cubs have the better roster and if Schwarber is activated, he could be the X factor especially as DH in Cleveland BUT timing is everything. I’m going with the Tribe in 6 games.

    An aside poetically, I attended the walkoff game earlier this season vs Cleveland at CBP when the Piece went yard in the 11th.

    1. The Cubs are the better team, but I think the Indians just have something going.

      I also say Cleveland in 6 – Cubs get their championship in the next 3 years, however; not sure quite when, but they are so good, they will win one.

      1. Comes down to pitching…..if Arrieta and Lester get old, too fast, then it could be a difficult venture. But of course, that may never happen, if Theo comes with more ‘aces up his sleeve’.

  9. I’ll be pulling for the Indians and I do give them a shot but I think it would take seven games unless they some how manage to win games 1 and 2 at home. I don’t think a 2-3-2 format favors their style of winning.

    if you look at how terry likes to deploy his weapon out of the BP (Miller) it will be tough to get away with that under the NL rules (no DH)

    1. That is the exact reason I can’t root for the Cubs. It should always be about the players. It’s a turn off for me when the FO or manager gets to much of the spot light.

      Granted those guys are some of the best in the business the mere fact you mention them and don’t even mention a kid like Kris Bryant makes me go the other way.

  10. Next season’s Lakewood club could be one of the most talented clubs in all MiLB.
    http://thatballsouttahere.com/2016/10/25/phillies-lakewood-talent-packed/
    This sort of piggybacks off what Roy Ozga had to say about the wealth of Phillies pitching prospects in his 2016 draft review … “JoJo Romero’s long-term prospects are one thing, but I’m just as intrigued about his 2017 assignment. It’s easy to mentally pair him with Cole Irvin — “college” lefties with fairly similar stuff selected in back-to-back rounds (same bonus!) who both started together in Williamsport — but that ignores the fact that Romero is a whopping 2.5 years younger than Irvin. Pushing him to Clearwater would be exciting, but it seems more likely he’ll get treated more like a high school draftee and begin at Lakewood. Although, even that could pose a problem. Simply put, something has to give when it comes to the Phillies low-minors pitching surplus. By my preliminary count, there are 21 potential starting pitching options ready for full-season ball that will need to find a way to share ten to twelve potential rotation openings to start the year. Clearwater (High-A) could have Franklyn Kilome, Alberto Tirado, Drew Anderson, Cole Irvin, Shane Watson, Jose Taveras, Harold Arauz, Tyler Gilbert, and Luke Leftwich. Lakewood (Low-A) is even more loaded. They’ll have to find homes for names like Sixto Sanchez, Kevin Gowdy, Adonis Medina, Edgar Garcia, Bailey Falter, Seranthony Dominguez, Nick Fanti, Mauricio Llovera, Julian Garcia, Ranger Suarez, and Felix Paulino. I don’t think this is pie-in-the-sky local guy optimism, either. All of these names are legitimate prospects, though admittedly some at the back end of each list might be best served switching to relief down the line.

    Even if they get aggressive with some of the Clearwater guys (Anderson, Watson, and Tirado?), there’s no real clear place to put them yet in AA where Tyler Viza, Thomas Eshelman, and Elniery Garcia, among others, are set to begin the year. The bullpen is always an option for some, as is being left behind in extended for some of the younger arms (a less than ideal solution to be sure), but this pile-up is real. So squeezing Romero into either rotation is going to be a challenge. His stuff and draft pedigree make it extremely likely (99%, give or take) that they’ll find a way, but I couldn’t tell you at which pitcher’s expense. Too many prospects for the Phillies…who would have ever thought?”
    https://baseballdraftreport.com/2016/10/14/2016-mlb-draft-reviews-philadelphia-phillies/

    1. Great stuff, Hinkie. These things do however tend to work themselves out with (unfortunately) injuries and of course trades for big league talent. Gonna be a busy winter IMO.

    2. There also really good articles on Herrera , C Hernandez , and Galvis. Some of the best articles I read in a while.

    3. “being left behind in extended for some of the younger arms (a less than ideal solution to be sure)”

      The average age for pitchers in the SAL was 21.9 in 2016. Rome had the youngest staff at 20.8. Only three of their pitchers were under 20 – 18-year olds Kolby Allard and Mike Soroka (the 14th and 28th overall picks from the first round of the 2015 draft) and 19-year old Ricardo Sanchez (a third-year international FA).

      I don’t think it is necessary to push kids like Gowdy and Sanchez to full season ball. 18-year old Kevin Gowdy only threw nine innings in an injury shortened GCL season. 17-year old Sixto Sanchez averaged five innings per start (54 IP/11 GS) in the GCL after averaging a little over two innings per appearance in the 2015 DSL (26 IP/11 App).

      With a pitching-rich organization, the Phillies don’t have to rush young arms to full season ball. I don’t think it’s as cut and dry as the article would have us believe. It wouldn’t retard their development to have them stretch out a little more in Williamsport.

      Another player who might not see Lakewood at the start of the 2017 season is 18-year old Cole Stobbe. He slumped in early August but rebounded to a .270 AVG with a slight spike in strike outs toward the end. Not a big deal, but he spent most of Instructs at third base. If the Phillies are serious about this position change, it seems unlikely that Stobbe would start the 2017 season in Lakewood.

      1. Have to agree.
        Not sure I have recently seen any Phillies starting pitchers leave the GCL, and then the following season start straight at the low-A Lakewood full-season team. Now position players may be different. But as far as starters go, it seems to be EST then Williamsport in June. But I could be wrong, but don’t recall any in the last five years.

        1. I don’t see Gowdy starting in Lakewood as him being pushed past what most early round prep pitching prospects do across the sport. The average player age stat quoted above is well and good, but I don’t consider it the same as the average prospect age; Jim’s point about recent early early picks like Allard and Soroka being exceptions to the rule is exactly how I view Gowdy. I wouldn’t expect a fifteenth round lottery ticket high school pitcher to necessarily start out in Lakewood in his first full year, but expecting the same out of a first round talent who got $3.5 million to sign is more in line with what happens in twenty-nine other organizations in baseball. The Phillies might take the conservative route with him — Jim’s point about Gowdy’s injury-shortened debut is a really good one — but I don’t think they’d hold him back from pitching every fifth day out of the shoot if he proves ready during the spring.

          FWIW, both Watson and Biddle went right to Lakewood to start their first full pro season. There are plenty of caveats there — different regime being the most obvious, plus, unlike Gowdy, Biddle got a brief cameo at Williamsport at the end of his first summer — but it’s not as if there isn’t any recent-ish historical precedent to draw from. Still, it is hard to guess how the new management group will approach a prized young high school arm like Gowdy, so I suppose we’re left having to wait and see there. Ultimately I think the math here is pretty simple: if he’s really valued as one of the handful of best pitching prospects you’ve got, then get him going in full-season ball as soon as he’s ready. If he’s not ready, so be it. But no sense in holding him back to give a less talented but older guy his spot. I certainly don’t consider that “rushing” anybody; the best prospects go to the best level for their individual needs and then you fill in the rosters with the lesser guys along the way. The system being deep in pitching wouldn’t be a reason to take it slower with guys than necessary in the same way you wouldn’t rush prospects in positions you’re thinner at across the organization. I’d rather the Phillies (or any team) be aggressive rather than conservative with early season assignments (while conservative assignments don’t retard development, they don’t maximize it either), but that’s me projecting and not necessarily what we’ll actually see. It’s all just semi-educated guessing at this point, right?

          Very good points on both Sanchez and Stobbe. The former’s mention among the potential Lakewood crew might have been wishful thinking on my part. Managing his innings and keeping him on the Kilome one level at a time path seems more likely than skipping him past Williamsport. My hunch is he could be on track to get a late season audition at Lakewood (less mechanical stuff to work out with him than Kilome), but starting there is probably too aggressive. Between Stobbe’s approach at the plate and his potential defensive switch, Williamsport makes sense for him as well. Still wouldn’t shock me to see them go aggressive with him considering their recent track record with hitters, but short-season seems most likely.

          1. I see you point , and tend to agree that perhaps a ‘different regime’ will have their plan for developing front-line arms set up different then prior Phillies’ regimes or other MLB teams.
            Not sure how they will play it out on Gowdy, but like you mentioned, and who I forgot, Watson jumped from the GCL straight to full-season Lakewood, by-passing Williamsport, and actually , though nothing spectacular, acquitted himself well…then he started to have his medical issues.
            Now we will never know how they view starters like Irvin, Romero, Falter, Medina, Paulino, Suarez et al who are all in line to be promoted to the Low-A level next season and in the starting rotation, and whether or not they would be in the way of Gowdy’s development.
            My gut feeling is that they may want to go slow with Gowdy, and let him experience Williamsport before Lakewood.
            It will be interesting to see how it works itself out.

          2. Rob … Your “the best prospects go to the best level for their individual needs and then you fill in the rosters with the lesser guys along the way. The system being deep in pitching wouldn’t be a reason to take it slower with guys than necessary in the same way you wouldn’t rush prospects in positions you’re thinner at across the organization” point is right on. I’d bet Pint, Groome, Manning, Anderson, and Wentz all start in full season ball next year. I think Gowdy is in their class.

            Appreciate your posting here. IMO … you are the top guy for the MLB draft, and I follow your web site (The Baseball Draft Report). Who are your early top 10 guys for the 2017 draft, and who are a couple of “off-the-radar” guys (I like Zac Lowther) ?

            1. Appreciate that very much. Way behind on 2017 prep for now, but planning to fix that soon enough. I’ll ponder that top ten for a bit and try to pop back into this upcoming week’s open discussion thread with an answer.

  11. As we get set for the official off season to start, after the WS, I saw a trade idea for the Phils. Take on Pelfrey or Sanchez and get a prospect from the Tigers. We have talked about similar ideas before, especially after the Braves stole Toussaint. Does anyone else think this is the off season the Phils should use their $ that way? I am sure there are a few teams that need to move $, and the Phils can certainly afford it.

    1. matt13…that is a ‘Hinkie’ maneuver…Hinkie of the 76ers. Now Pelfry, at $8M is very manageable for 2017, Sanchez doubles that…. but will they, one or the other, further block development of one of the youngsters in the rotation?

    2. I’ve always been a big proponent of taking on a bad contract (or two) to collect prospects or CB picks (if they are still a part of the new CBA). The Orioles have a few pitchers (Ubaldo Jiminez, Wade Miley, Yovani Gallardo) that have under-performed. Baltimore might look to rid themselves of one of them. It seems like they surrender their CB pick every year.

      1. That is exactly what the Phillies did with Matt Harrison. The problem with doing so moving forward is the issue they now have with Harrison, He’s locked into a 40-man roster spot until proven healthy. With the 40-man roster crunch they have, they cannot afford to lose spots to bad contracts. Now if the deal is for an underperforming big contract but the player isn’t injured, then that is different. They can release the player and eat the $$$.

        In my opinion, they Phillies are now in a place where they need to be looking to move some of their mid-level organizational talent for high level talent. IF that includes taking on a bad contract to get the job done then that’s what they need to do. Taking on bad contracts for more mid-level talent doesn’t help the team. They are already loaded with 4th/5th starters and league average hitters.

        The financial power they have needs to be used to find all-star caliber players. They should be targeting teams like the Pirates in a deal for McCutchen who will be a FA in a couple of years. The Pirates have his replacement in the minors ready and they won’t be able to afford him after 2018. After his “down” year, the fan backlash wouldn’t be nearly as severe in Pittsburgh..

  12. True Romus, but the Sixers Hinkie would then waive the veteran. I am looking for a guy to take Hellickson’s spot, and maybe be able to be flipped at the deadline. Just do it as an alternative to a 1 yr FA signing. I figure there may be a few more candidates than Pelfrey or Sanchez.

    1. Pieces of a larger trade. I doubt Tigers give away Sanchez since they have a large budget also. However, maybe Phillies can give up a young average player and get back a higher caliber player for taking on Sanchez.

    1. He may not be a top prospect right now but Bossart is in my top 5 players to watch in ’17. Like him a lot.

      1. Huh, interesting. I’ve never given him much thought, but he did pretty well in Clearwater and he’s age appropriate. Any reports on his tools, other than the mental tool which I assume is pretty good in that he went Penn?

  13. By the way, how awful is that Scottsdale team the Phillies prospect are on? Kingery hasn’t played great, but the other Phillies guys have done just fine. Still, the team as a whole is dreadful.

  14. I’ve started my top 30. I’m evaluating and re-evaluating everyone. My major wildcard is Williams. What to do with Williams? Is he going to be more like his 1st half showing or his 2nd half showing? Will he be able to adjust or is he the next Dom Brown? Nothing is etched in stone, in fact, I’ve changed the order 4 times in the last 3 days. But here’s my top 10, right now.

    1

    1. Darn thing posted before I got to do the sequence.

      1 Crawford
      2 Alfaro
      3 Kilome
      4 Williams
      5 Moniak
      6 Cozens
      7 Hoskins
      8 Randolph
      9 Quinn
      10 Pivetta

      1. You are starting the top 30 early!
        Some of those prospects could be on other teams after the winter meetings if Klentak decides to make trades, and perhaps add a few thru the Rule 5 and those trades..

      2. I amdown on Williams – I probably have him at the very end of my top 10 and I’d be tempted to drop him further. Plate discipline issues generally don’t easily resolve themselves. My view on Williams is that he is either going to figure it out and be really good, or he won’t and he’ll end up much like Dom Brown, never quite being good enough to start and not being useful enough with the glove to be a 4th outfielder and finishing his days in baseball as a AAA guy. I don’t see Williams turning into just an average player.

      3. On my list, Quinn is either off the board or ranked higher. Kind of like we know what type of player he is, it’s only a matter of whether he can stay on the field.

        Pivetta may turn into a solid 4 or 5 guy but I wouldn’t rank him that high. Odd thing is – half of these guys may be with another organization this time next year.

    2. The reason for my one star is your lack of commitment, bellman1… Live on the edge for once and etch it in stone. I believe in you, my bro.

  15. By this time next week, future former Met, Yeonis Cespedes could be an official FA.
    Wondering if the Phillies will make an offer for him , which is the type of bat Mack wants in the middle of their lineup.
    Have to imagine it will take a minimum of $26M AAV to get him to even consider.

    1. The conundrum is FA’s of his ilk will not come to us at this stage of our rebuild unless they were to severely over pay. And I’m down with a severe overpay on a guy if its only a 1-3 year deal.

      There are enough teams in a 3-4 year playoff window right now that he is likely to choose over us.

      1. I can see that, but Mack’s wishes and desires may over-ride thoughts of sensibility….Charlie’s did back in 2011.
        Also not sure if Middleton will not want to jump in on him.
        If they were to offer him, at 31-years old, something akin to 3 years at $81M, that may be what the market will dictate, and they would be in the running.

        Personally, the one now available and nothing is being heard of at this point, is Lourdes Gourriel, another Cuban and 8 years younger then Cespedes and could be something to add to the future core. he is the one I would offer the large money to.

        1. Romus, what is Gurriel’s status as of right now? Is he showcasing for any teams yet?

          Catch, regarding Bossart – his offensive numbers were impressive in ’16. If he sustains reasonable production at the plate, he’s a top 20 prospect at least. He’s already been regarded by some as the best backstop in the organization, calling and framing. Right, smart Penn boy.

          1. Well, he’s a low round draft pick and he has had a small sample size on the offensive numbers. He’ll need to really produce this year to climb into the top 30. I’m not saying it’s impossible, but he was essentially drafted as an org prospect to provide back-up catching. It’s not easy to move out of that role and he’ll have to make a big impression just to get more at bats.

            1. agree with catch. i like bossart, he is a good prospect with a high floor. but the depth in the farm and his lack of projection limits his ceiling. bossart “might” sneak in the back end of the Top 50 as of today’s ranking.

            2. @romus – yup, i still remember Tuffy. although i believe that Bossart is a better hitter than tuffy. if tuffy made it in the big leagues, bossart can.

          2. 8mark….yes he is showcasing, at least he was last month, and I assume listening to what GMs are telling his agent. There are no penalties to sign him since he is 23-years old….and that is needed is the money.

  16. Soler from the Cubs may be on the block this off season. Schwarber has to have a spot and Heyward is going nowhere with his $184Million. Zobrist is a gamer who has to play and Baez is the 2B going forward. Is he someone that interests anyone here? And, if so, what would the cost look like?

    1. I think so – the Cubs don’t have room for him. Since he’s relatively expensive for an unproven player, that should lower his acquisition cost slightly in terms of the players Chicago needs to receive in return. The Cubs need young arms – it would probably cost something a solid pitching mid-tier prospect (Pivetta or Eflin) and a younger prospect with some upside (Medina?). But I don’t give up a top 5 prospect to obtain him and I’d think long and hard about giving up someone like Roman Quinn – straight up – to acquire him; but I’d bet money the Cubs would want someone like Quinn and a young pitching prospect with upside.

      1. Can I just say a word about Schwarber? He’s ridiculous. Until the NL has a DH, they will probably need to throw him out in left field and hope for the best but man o man, what a hitter! The combined power and hit tool are extraordinary – like Jim Thome or Manny Ramirez (or even David Ortiz).

        1. I am wondering if the White Sox would ever consider moving Chris Sale across town to the Cubs for Schwarber, Soler maybe their best pitching prospect Dylan Cease and if that is not enough, then also Ian Happ.
          Can you imagine the Cubs staff then.

            1. Hinkie…cannot take credit for that…I believe I remember seeing some of those names, pretty sure Sale and Schwarber, on a Cub blog during last winter’s off-season.

    2. @matt – i also mentioned soler in the separate discussion thread as a potential OF target of the Phils. Fowler is only in a 1-year contract. If Fowler and the Cubs cannot make an agreement this weekend, I (doing my Klentak) will try to swap Doobie for Soler (and try to squeeze another B-level prospect or high potential potential prospect in the low minors).

      1. add to that – Phils should try to buy low on Andrew McCutchen. A deal absorbing some contracts will further drive down the Pirate’s asking price.

        1. I love Andrew McCutcheon – I’m all for buying low on him, but what does that mean exactly? Who would we be giving up? Also, I’m not sure I do that deal without first negotiating a contract extension. You don’t want to hurt the rebuild to get a cornerstone player only to lose him 2 years later. The Phillies have tons of salary flexibility for the next few years, so, unlike most deals, I would front load as much of the money as possible.

          1. @catch – I’m thinking of 2 potential trades with the Pirates – a) McCutchen; and b) McCutchen and Gerrit Cole.

            For Cutch – I’ll start with Pivetta (or Eflin or Live), Canelo and a B-level bullpen arm. See also if they can absorb some contract (ala Morton trade last year) to lower the asking price.

            For Cutch and Cole – the Phils might be ready to give VV or Eickhoff + Tirado + Knapp and (1-2) complimentary pieces like Pujols, Canelo, Grullon or Tocci.

            1. I don’t see the Pirates departing with McCutchen and Cole. That would signal a rebuild which they are not doing.

              As I think about this, the Pirates intend to compete continuously, so I think they would want MLB-ready players plus upside down the road. They would probably want a package that looks something like Thompson, Pivetta, and Rupp. They might also take a package of Rupp, Thompson and C. Hernandez – that would allow them the upside of a young pitcher plus two solid young position players at positions where they are now not very strong and, really, down the line, how much are we likely to need Rupp and Hernandez?

            2. McCutchen may be available. I agree that Pirates would want MLB players including cheap pitching, like Eickhoff.

              Agree with post below that Hernandez and Rupp might have value to them. I figure Pirates are valuing Cutch as an MVP player.

      2. KuKo….you do realize Doobie , as of August 2016, according to SDI, was the fourth best CFer in the NL @ 2.1….only .1 behind third place Dexter Fowler. Soler is a defensive liability in either of the corners, but for this he may not have qualified due to limited game appearances.
        I would want more than just Soler in return for Herrera.
        I would also ask for Cease.
        http://sabr.org/sdi/2016-08-07
        http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/s/solerjo01.shtml

        1. @romus – I understand that. but i also believe that MickeyMo! (in 3 years) will be the CF of the future. That’s why I also propose to get Cutch to bridge the gap to MickeyMo!.

          I did say Doobie for Soler + another prospect. Dylan Cease might be a deal breaker, but I can settle for Soler and Sands. If the Cubs is looking for OF depth with defensive flexibility, I will throw in Altherr as well.

  17. the phils should also explore the Detroit Tigers avenue who is looking to reload and cut payroll. I will target JD Martinez + Anibal Sanchez — to address the power bat in the OF and veteran pitching. With the $$ tied up to both, the Phils can lower the prospect they can give up. Pivetta, Grullon and Tocci to start the negotiation.

    Braun and his $76M contract is another option. A Tocci and Canelo might do the trick.

    1. No offense, but I’m not a fan of any of these moves. I think, long run, by the time the Phillies are ready to compete, Braun and Sanchez will be expensive salary drains.

      J.D. Martinez can really hit, but he’s a bad fielder and I think they are going to want a ton of prospects in exchange for his rights. I’d be open to this, but it’s not going to be cheap and Martinez is in a contract year, so there’s always that too.

      1. @catch – no worries. my proposal in only a stop gap while the “new core” develops. Both Sanchez and Martinez will provide proven veteran presence that can be valuable trade pieces as well.

        I’m not concerned about the salary drain and the phils can absorb $$ with little future commitments.

        you’re right, the tigers might ask a high tag price, but i think Anibal Sanchez can be doable.

        1. I went back and looked at both Sanchez and Braun.

          On Sanchez, it might be okay if you think he’s ready for a bounce back year (last year of contract) and you only have to give them a secondary prospect (Canelo?) – they would be doing Detroit a favor in taking him off their hands. But will he bounce back after two bad years? I have no idea.

          On Braun, he has another 4 years on his contract. That will take him through his age 36 season and I think you would have to do it with the expectation/hope that he would be here for at least one or two years of a playoff run. I guess I’d be open to it, although he’s kind of a creep as a human. If the Phillies could get him on the cheap you’d have to think about it because, whatever else you might think about him, he can flat out hit.

    2. KuKo…I assume you are targeting Sanchez for the express purpose of a Hellickson venture of this year?
      Which I think is a good maneuver…he is at $16M for ’17, then FA after, and if he does well by July he will be only on the books for less than $8M and possibly a valued trade chip.

      1. @romus – that’s correct. I will specifically target him for that and/or try to get JD Martinez as well. Both are not future pieces – mainly stop gap type that can be flipped in July or serve as stable veteran presence in the line up.

        1. anibal has looked done to me the last 2 years- 59 homers given up- i dont think a move to the NL is enough to help him.

            1. Sanchez is a risk….but did you check out Hellickson’s three years prior to this year ? Total approx FIP 4.3….. WAR negative
              It is all about gambling that he turns things around in his close to future contract year.

        2. Martinez is right up there in ops with the best hitters in the league. I’d do the trade but it will cost the Phillies at least 1 young arm . Detroit may go Cozens , Alberto T and Amano .

          1. Tigers are neither rebuilding nor cheap. They will not just dump payroll. I like idea on both Sanchez and Martinez but likely have to give up MLB proven guy to do it.

            Sanchez only may require a decent pitching prospect like Lively, Asher, Pivetta.

  18. Doobie and Freddy Galvis are finalists for the Gold Glove. I know that is not always an accurate award, but they deserve kudos. Galvis may actually win it. I think Hamilton gets the CF one. I am one of those who may undervalue Doobie although getting him in Rule V was a coup. He has to be much more consistent and improve his base running.

    1. matt13…yes 2013…one game, made the roster, but then Charlie said adios to Enders after the Phillies got Ezekiel Carrera. Then back to the D-Backs

      1. If the Phillies realized at the time that they should have been in rebuilding mode, rather than attempting what, at that time, was the hopeless endeavor of trying for another playoff run, they probably would have kept Inciarte, who, as I recall, played pretty well. Of course, if they had Inciarte, they probably wouldn’t have picked Odubel (who is more erratic, but has a higher upside), so it all worked out fine.

        1. Agree…coming off a .500 record in 2012 should have been a red-flag, but they took it as just a blip on the radar and would rebound with their core. Again, it all came back to what the manager wanted at the time.
          Now we are in a situation where the manager wants a veteran bat in the middle of the lineup to helplessen the burden on the likes of Franco, Herrera, Joseph et al coming up, and Matt K. has to decide to acquiescence to his wishes and spend the money on a 30ish bat, who may or may not be around in 3/4 years or just go with a more youthful movement.

          1. I think Matt K. is going to split the baby and look for a non-tender candidate on a one or two year contract – basically a hitting version of Hellickson. I don’t see anything longer than that unless they are convinced the guy will be part of the next Phillies playoff team. I doubt that latter type of signing occurs this winter.

          2. It’s the system ,control the stike zone,Martinez obs is excellent he may not be excellent in the Outfield .

  19. Last week, I mentioned I would offer Odubel Hererra to the Mariners for James Paxton. I asked Keith Law about that possibility today.

    Hinkie: Odubel Hererra for James Paxton … who says no ?
    Klaw: Mariners say no to that.

    I like Paxton a lot. He’s the LHP I’d target to add to the Phillies starting rotation. Klentak should be on the phone with his old boss (Jerry Dipoto) to explore what it would to take to make a James Paxton to the Phillies deal happen. He’s a guy (TOR potential) worth spending some of your deep farm system on. Maybe Odubel, Jake Thompson, and Andrew Knapp for James Paxton and Joe Rizzo (2nd round pick who I liked a lot before this year’s draft). Would anybody do that deal ? I think most people on this board feel the Phillies system is very deep and are willing to surrender some of that depth for high-end players. I guess the better question would be do you feel Paxton is the kind of guy you would deal some of that depth for ?

    1. I like Paxton…..age28 season next year, good FIP this past season, H/9 have gone up, with control and command plus, also velo at mid-90-s and higher 4Smr is a real plus.
      The con now…. last three years been on the DL for periods of time, 46 starts in three years is a very poor reliability factor. have to wonder what is going on with his arm/elbow/shoulder or whatever. Last, but not least, his agent is a detractor.
      As for what I would give up for him….Knapp and Lively would be two of the four in the discussion, then perhaps thie choice of…..Williams or Quinn and also their choice of one of Thompson, Eichkoff or Asher.
      I would not include Doobie.

      1. I like the idea of trading three for one with our depth but I don’t like trading for pitchers with a history of arm injuries like Paxton. He looks to me like a guy who will at some point have one great year and then get paid and then get hurt again. How about Duffy on KC? Any other arms about to get a big pay raise? Those are the guys we could get.

      2. The Phillies wouldn’t be able to get Paxton without including Odubel Hererra in a deal. The Yankees and Pirates are also interested in Paxton and are reportedly willing to include Brett Gardner and Andrew McCutchen in trades. It seems to me Odubel would be worth more than Gardner, but worth less than McCutchen. On the other hand, OH is five years younger, comes at a much cheaper price and is under team control for twice as long as the Pirates CFer.
        As for James Paxton, he has had injuries the past three years. However, none of his trips to the DL have been for anything structural to his left arm. In 2014, he suffered a muscle strain in his upper back (behind his shoulder). In 2015, he strained a ligament in his finger when he fell during a workout. This season, he missed a few starts from a contusion to his left elbow when he was hit by a batted ball. The guy throws 96-100 MPH (as a LHP). He features a plus breaking ball. He has a 3.43 career ERA, and a career FIP of 3.32. His 2.80 FIP this season was fifth best in MLB. If Paxton was consistently making 30+ starts per year, he wouldn’t be available. He’ll pitch as a 28 YO next season, and will be under team control for three more years. He has a real chance to develop into a TOR starter. The Phillies have a glaring need for a LH starting pitcher. The Mariners have a need for OF help (they also need a SS if you’d be willing to deal Freddy Galvis). Matt Klentak has a relationship with Jerry Dipoto. For me, this makes too much sense.
        Again, I’d offer Odubel Hererra, Jake Thompson, and Andrew Knapp for Paxton and Joe Rizzo (this year’s second round draft pick).

        1. You make a good case. And he would be a good candidate for a TOR guy.
          But who plays in the Phillies OL, that can hit?
          They will have to find a bat somewhere.
          Are you confident in Altherr, Asche, Ruf etc ?
          Quinn, Williams , Cozens and Goeddel all seem to be headed to LHV.

          1. I believe in Roman Quinn. I’d start the season with Quinn in CF, Altherr in RF, and look to add a LFer through free agency or another trade. The Phillies have enough young, promising OFers that a couple should pan out over the next few years. Also, OF help is much easier to find than top shelf pitching.

            1. Here’s the thing with Herrera. Say what you want, but the hit tool is real and the athleticism is real. Probably the worst he is going to be is what he is now – which is a well above average player – nothing to sneeze at. I’m encouraged by Quinn and Altherr but either or both guys could easily end up being busts. So, yeah, I’m concerned about them trading Odubel.

            2. So you Quinn who has never stayed healthy for more then 82 a yr on avg for the last 5 yrs is. QUINN is going be as good as or better offensively then Herrera. The Phillies need bats and POWER in the Outfield. The OF the Phillies said there going after Offense because they were last in Runs . BTW how many LHP starters do the Cubs or the Indians have 1 . I’m saying lHp isn’t important it is the better way might be A Gio Gonzalez . Gio is far more established lhp the Nats might not buy is option there have 2 vg pitchers on the way up. 2 trade for bats since the Phillies couldn’t score last yr.

          2. I agree with Hinkie on the following:

            1) Trade proposal for Paxton. My slight modification will be to offer Rupp instead of Knapp and see what happens. Adding Galvis and/or Morgan to the deal should be considered too.

            2) Quinn. I’m a believer of Roman Quinn too. I like Doobie but the Phils has options to cover for his loss. Considering Doobie’s value, he can get a very good piece back to the Phils. I’m drooling for a Quinn-JPC in the top of the batting order.

            3) Young OF prospects. I also think that one of OF prospect will pan out.

            4) TOP pitching > OF help

            1. KuKo…..I rather have ‘a bird in the hand than two in the bush’
              OHer would be hard for me to let go of.
              If it is Paxton that is desirable…I think an offer of Thompson, Lively, Knapp and their choice of one of Williams/Quinn/Cozens could get their attention….whether they bite who knows.
              But like Tim said…if Gio Gonzo. is made available somehow (he has a team option for ’17) then, I am in on that. He is older by three years but still he could be around for awhile..

            2. @romus – i think there’s no right or wrong answer for now. i’m just betting on the following: a) Quinn and MickeyMo can replace Doobie at CF; b) one the OF prospects in the upper minors will play one of the corner OF; and c) financial ability of the Phils to sign an impact bat thru FA.

              As for Gio Gonzalez, there’s no more upside with him when he’s available. A better FA arm is probably available for the Phils.

            3. Hate to get rid of the one good hitter Phillies have. I think other teams would give up more for Paxson. Not sure why Mariners get rid of him for all the reasons mentioned.

              Phillies have lots of young pitching. Not sure they need to trade for more potential pitching; see how the current guys play out.

              I agree in trying to trade from depth, but many teams have ‘mid rotation’ upside guys, so Phillies will likely need to include some MLB talent to get anything good. Not sure how much other GM value Rupp, Galvis or Hernandez.

    1. Tim…with all these FAs…Desmond, Cespedes, etc etc….besides the money…they also want a playoff contender to play for in October.
      So even if the Phillies come up with the big money, there are still no guarantees they will want to come to Philly…and they also may want the 5/6 years length on their contract.

    1. So what? Just because there are rare soft tossers who can be effective doesn’t mean that’s who you should be looking to acquire. Your exception doesn’t swallow the general rule. Velocity isn’t the only thing, but it’s very important.

      1. I love the word Rare Estrada, Klye Hendricks, Tomlin, Rich Hill, even Kluber and Lackey are 92, 93 mph have had success this yr in the playoffs . Arrieta who can hit 94 mph and above seems to be the only rare Rhp with high velo in the World Series.another Rare thing is the Cy young which is probability either Kershaw or Lester or Hendricks in the NL. AL Porcello, Happ, Kluber were the Hi veto rhp . I guess there rarely not sucess enough these days. The Main thing is being healthy enough to get to the Playoffs or win a Cy Young . There’s a very long list of TJ Rhp high Velo pitchers that are getting Tj surgeries for the first or second time.

      2. I said 1 pitcher that was Klye Hendricks that the Phillies could go after with a trade. Now His value is too high . I’m happy with the Phillies SP Eickhoff, Nola, Thompson, etc . There Bp and Outfield need help I’m not the one crying about they need a Ace .

  20. Catch he is like a broken record. just tell him he is right , just never stops, But if he knew anything he would see how much velocity the rest of top starters have, omg. I saw something today, Phillies still owe hamels 9.5 million. plus Harrison contract about 16 million. ten million to howard to buy him out. and mortons buy out about 38 million without any insurance they might have , so if there is no insurance they have 40 million almost in dead money. crazy

    1. rocco…welcome back.
      On Hamels/Harrison contracts by COTS:
      Hamels……”acquired by Texas in trade from Philadelphia 7/29/15, with Phillies responsible for $9.5M of the $81,737,704 left on Hamels’ contract ($8,237,704 in 2015, $67.5M in 2016-18 salaries and $6M buyout). As part of the deal, Philadelphia also assumes responsibility for $32,759,562 remaining on Matt Harrison’s contract.”
      Harrison……”acquired by Philadelphia in trade from Texas 7/29/15, with Phillies responsible for $32,759,562 remaining on Harrison’s contract ($4,759,562 in 2015, $26M in 2016-17 salaries and $2M buyout), plus an additional $9.5M paid to Texas to cover a portion of the $81,737,704 remaining on Cole Hamels’ contract”

      ….Harrison looks like $28M more. Thems a lot of sheckles!

    2. Realty , Roccum Kluber 93 Bauer 93 , Tomlin 88 mph Cleveland. Cubs Arrieta 94, Lester Lhp 94 , Hendricks 88 , Lackey 92 mph. So there you Roccom

      1. Kluber, Arrieta, Lester and Bauer are all power pitchers – you don’t need to throw 97 to be a power pitcher. Tomlin is very pedestrian. Lackey is average and used to throw a lot harder – he is at the end of the line and it shows. The only soft tosser you mentioned who is really good is Hendricks. He’s the exception. Tim – I don’t understand the point you are making. If you mention Hendricks 100 times, it doesn’t change the analysis.

        1. 1 your the one I ever know to put Bauer as a power Pitcher he only uses his fb 50% of the time. Tomlin isn’t a soft tosser then what is he . The Avg Fb in the mlb is 91 mph so 93 I wouldn’t call power Fb. Lester is a Lhp who don’t need speed lhp have natural movement. Kluber is know for his sinking action on his FB . Which would put Arrieta has th only real power pitcher. Power rhp Pitcher 94 and up if 93 is a power fastball and 91 is the avg Fb then there’s alot of power rhp in baseball like 85 % 9f Rhp in the league.

          1. Tim – you change your argument every day. Bauer and Kluber all throw hard as does Lester (for a lefty). This argument started with your promoting guys who don’t throw a FB that averages over 90 MPH. That’s not Bauer, Kluber or Lester. If your point now is that well rounded pitchers who throw above average to dominant fastballs can be great pitchers, then I agree with you. If your point is that there are a lot of right handed pitchers who are great who throw a FB that averages below 90 MPH, which was your original argument, then I continue to disagree. Those pitchers are the exception I’ve been referring to.

            1. My argument is easy 1 a clean easy delivery ,2 an ability to locate any pitch you throw 3 movement is a heavy key to any pitch. A pitch that has greater movement is harder to hit then a straight Fb. A fb of 93 is fine as long it moves and you can control and Command it. A 99 mph fb will little movement you can’t throw it right down the pike. BTW Bauer has had a awful playoff and WC and Arrieta has had trouble in the second half of the season.

  21. There are many who believe that being a baseball manager is a relatively innocuous position. Maddon and (especially) Francona are the two best in baseball and prove that a good skipper can make a huge difference. Handling a pitching staff most notably.

    1. Having a good staff makes that a lot easier.
      Francona does seem to have the golden touch. Has managed Kluber well. Miller has been lights out. Crisp gets pinch RBI. Santana gets start and hits HR.

      Importance of super bullpen and willingness to ‘overuse’ them has certainly changed playoff strategy the last few years. Indians and Royals showing superstar-less path to WS. That is a model any team can try to follow.

  22. Just read last Klentak interview which said he is happy with Joseph, Galvis, Hernandez, Rupp, Franco, and Herrera. Said that Quinn is a good bet to bat second on opening day. Said that Altherr, Williams, and Goeddel will likely start year at Triple-A.

    1. Trying to figure out the Altherr/Quinn scenario that he mentioned, and why the one particular one starts in Philly and the other in LHV.

      1. You aren’t the only 1 he’s his numbers 16 % 21% 27 % that’s Quinn’s k rate in AA and pro ball. He needs at bats and they a a very good backup plan. I haven’t read the article yet .

  23. Looks like plenty of good position players for LHV. Altherr, Williams, Goeddel, Cozens, Pullin, Stassi, Valentin, Crawford, Walding, Hoskins, Alfaro and Knapp. Will score plenty of runs, not sure about the pitching.

    1. Pullin will start at AA so he can play. I love Quinn but I don’t think he’s ready for the majors. Circumstances (40 man spots plus Goeddel and Altherr needing AAA at Bats too) might send him to the majors early.

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