Open Discussion: Week of June 11th

The Phillies were 2-5 last week.  Hope you enjoyed their 4-game winning streak when they won the first two games of the Atlanta series.  They floundered their way to five losses after that.

The Phillies are still the worst team in baseball with a 21-40 record and .344 winning percentage.  Things get better when they face the  Red Sox and Diamondbacks.

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

Key dates remaining:

  • June 12-14th – Rule 4 Draft
  • June 15th – Last XST game
  • June 19th – Williamsport’s season begins
  • June 26th – GCL Phillies’ season begins
  • July 31st – Non-waiver Trade Deadline
  • December 10-14th – Winter Meetings in Orlando
  • December 14th – Rule 5 Draft

Transactions: (includes roster juggling and paper moves)

  • 6/11 – Phillies activated RHP Joaquin Benoit from the 10-day disabled list.
  • 6/11 – Phillies placed 2B Cesar Hernandez on the 10-day disabled list. Strained left oblique
  • 6/11 – RHP Sixto Sanchez assigned to Lakewood BlueClaws from Williamsport Crosscutters
  • 6/10 – Jacob Waguespack assigned to Lehigh Valley IronPigs from Clearwater Threshers
  • 6/10 – Colton Murray assigned to Lehigh Valley IronPigs from Reading Fightin Phils
  • 6/10 – Tommy Bergjans assigned to Reading Fightin Phils from Phillies Ext. Spring Training
  • 6/10 – RHP Jose Taveras assigned to Clearwater Threshers from Williamsport Crosscutters
  • 6/10 – Ismael Cabrera assigned to Williamsport Crosscutters from Lakewood BlueClaws
  • 6/9 – Phillies traded 3B Taylor Featherston to Tampa Bay Rays for cash
  • 6/9 – Lehigh Valley IronPigs placed LF Roman Quinn on the 7-day disabled list retroactive to June 8, 2017
  • 6/8 – Phillies designated LHP Joely Rodriguez for assignment
  • 6/8 – Phillies selected the contract of RHP Casey Fien from Lehigh Valley IronPigs
  • 6/7 – LF Jiandido Tromp assigned to Reading Fightin Phils from Lehigh Valley IronPigs
  • 6/7 – 1B Brock Stassi assigned to Lehigh Valley IronPigs from Reading Fightin Phils
  • 6/6 – RHP Ranfi Casimiro assigned to Clearwater Threshers from Reading Fightin Phils.
  • 6/6 – RHP Tyler Frohwirth assigned to Williamsport Crosscutters from Clearwater Threshers
  • 6/6 – LF Enmanuel Garcia assigned to Lakewood BlueClaws from Williamsport Crosscutters.
  • 6/5 – Phillies optioned 1B Brock Stassi to Reading Fightin Phils
  • 6/5 – Phillies recalled RHP Nick Pivetta from Lehigh Valley IronPigs
  • 6/5 – RHP Jose Taveras assigned to Williamsport Crosscutters from Clearwater Threshers.
  • 6/5 – LF Cord Sandberg assigned to Clearwater Threshers from Lakewood BlueClaws.
  • 6/4 – Lehigh Valley IronPigs placed RHP Zach Eflin on the 7-day disabled list retroactive to June 3, 2017
  • 6/4 – Lehigh Valley IronPigs placed RHP Zach Eflin on the 7-day disabled list retroactive to June 3, 2017
  • 6/3 – Phillies recalled LHP Adam Morgan from Lehigh Valley IronPigs.
  • 6/3 – Phillies recalled RHP Ben Lively from Lehigh Valley IronPigs.
  • 6/3 – Phillies optioned RHP Mark Leiter to Lehigh Valley IronPigs.
  • 6/3 – Phillies placed RHP Joaquin Benoit on the 10-day disabled list retroactive to June 1, 2017. Left knee sprain.
  • 6/3 – LHP Hoby Milner assigned to Lehigh Valley IronPigs from Reading Fightin Phils.
  • 6/3 – LF Jiandido Tromp assigned to Lehigh Valley IronPigs from Reading Fightin Phils.
  • The organization rosters are almost up to date.


58 thoughts on “Open Discussion: Week of June 11th

  1. Based on the performances during the year to date, the Phils will not be confronted with many hard decisions putting together their 40 man roster this off-season. The success of the farm teams has not translated into a traffic jam of players and prospects in need of Rule 5 protection. Some players like Andrew Pullin and Carlos Tocci appear to have earned a spot, although left unprotected and unselected last December.

    On the other extreme, the Yankees will be challenged to accommodate the abundance of young talent in their farm system. Like last year when 4 of the 18 players selected in the major league phase of the Rule 5 draft came from the Yankees, they face the prospect of being significant net losers again this year.

    In the lead up to this year’s trade deadline, each team should recognize they complement each other well as trade partners. The Yankees as usual are in ‘win now’ mode and are likely to make moves to help them compete down the stretch. The Phils have impending free agents/rentals like Kendrick and Neshek who could contribute as role players on a pennant contender. The Phils also have some young prospects like Medina and Tomscha who are performing well in A-ball and are a year away from requiring Rule 5 protection.

    Many of the Yankees quality prospects are stuck at Scranton-Wilkes Barre, others are in Trenton. The break out year by Aaron Judge and others has to change the way the Yanks look at players stuck behind some of their emerging stars. At the same time, the Yankees are a veteran team with a number of weighty contracts that cannot be shed easily. In short, a logjam has been created for the next batch of prospects in their high minors. $50,000 is what the Yanks get for their Rule 5 casualties.

    The Phillies by now have to see this season as something other than a success moving forward in the rebuilding process and doubt has been cast regarding some players (Eickhoff, Franco, Herrera) thought to be pillars in that process. Some players who were protected last year (Tirado, Pinto, Valentin, Rodriguez) have come off the 40-man or figure to do so this time around.

    The Yankees have players perhaps best seen as their 6-15 best prospects whom they will be hard-pressed to retain. Among these are lefty starters Justus Sheffield and Travis Webb (the latter selected in the 2016 Rule 5 and then returned), 3B Miguel Andujar, utility infielder Tyler Wade and OF Dustin Fowler.

    Matt Klentak is starting to get a lot of criticism from the public including from those who want to see the team trade so many of the under-performers. To my eye, the best measure is what Klentak can do with assets that have value — Kendrick, Neshek, possibly Nava — and some of the very young good, but not top 30 prospects, when given an opportunity to acquire prospects who will fit the Phillies’ rough time line for when they expect to be competitive once again.

    1. Phillies need to trade for ML players not prospects. This rebuild will never end, at some point they need proven ML talent . Yes young proven MLB talent instead of trade for Folwer . the Yanks may trade Brent Garner or Hicks and keep Fowler. Why would they trade Sheffield,2 of there starting rotation, Tanaka and Pineda are free Agents next yr and C C is 36 yrs old. There going to need pitching, btw the Yanks they just scored 30 runs in 2 games. Then​ Phillies need young ML talent .

      1. I intended to call attention to a systemic situation and used the names of certain Yankee players. You pushed back to my inclusion of talented Justus Sheffield, playing at Double AA, saying ‘why wouldn’t they just keep him?’

        For fun (fun ?) I went on the MLBTR site where they maintain depth charts for every organization. In the power rankings, Sheffield ranks below 3 other Trenton starters. At the AAA level, there are 6 pitchers with higher power rankings at the higher level.

        Not to get too hung up on numbers but that’s the point. the Yankees have far too many talented young pitchers than they can protect.

        You mention their trading Aaron Hicks for which there would certainly be interest. But unless they traded him for a bunch of very young prospects, their roster crunch is not addressed. They could trade Gardner but there you have the contract impediment in addition to the issue I just cited for Hicks.

  2. There some noise that the Rays and the Braves might have pre deals done . Braves did it last yr with Ian Anderson.if that’s the case look for a prospect​ or too drop.

  3. When a team is going bad, they can always find a cure by playing the Phillies. The Phillies are the punching bag of the National League, the AL West, and for these next four nights, the Boston Red Sox. Just when you think that things can’t get worse, they will.

  4. It’s getting ugly. In fact, it has already gotten very ugly. The GM needs to try something to shake things up. Usually a trade occurs about now with young kids coming up as a result. I don’t expect a manager change but I do expect something to change. At least move Kingery up to LHV, he has nothing more to achieve at AA and I’d like to give him a chance to fail there initially before he figures it out. Let’s go Klentak, earn your money.

    1. Murray, it is interesting that the Phillies started their meltdown after Pete was extended which may have been a mistake in hindsight. The Phillies need a manager that will demand that the players play correctly like Buck Showalter with the Orioles. The top of the order is still getting on base, our bottom half is putrid and there is little timely hitting. The relief pitching beside Neshek has been an arson squad. Very few of Klentak’s moves have been helpful this year. Something big needs to be done soon.

      1. philabaltfan…..irony of sorts…but didn’t MacPhail do the same thing with O’s manager Dave Tremblay back in ’08 and then he went south, and after Macphail left the new FO brought in Buck?

  5. I was a big proponent of signing Saunders but it’s time to cut bait with him sooner rather than later…

    1. I was too – it was a good idea in concept. But it’s not working out and they need to realize that he’s not going to have any trade value. They are better off playing Nava and increasing his trade value. Nava has been a revelation for me. It’s not just the hitting – it’s his approach at the plate. When I watch him hit, I think that he has a lot left in the tank and it’s surprising to me that he did not become a minor star (even though I know he came up very late). He has incredible plate discipline, a good hit tool and good power.

    2. DMAR, the fear of scaring agents off is exaggerated as the Brewers just DFA’d their opening day closer. Michael Saunders should be gone and bring up someone from Allentown.

  6. I’m not too quick to jump on firing coaches, but McClure needs to go. Every single pitcher has regressed from last year other than Neshek. McClure has no positive track record.

    Also, I like klentak and Pete, but every single day that gomez and Morgan are on the roster deteriotes my confidence. Give milner, beato, or Venditte a chance (therrien will come eventually). If they suck, DFA them and throw more stuff at the wall land see what sticks

  7. Just a thought, but if I am the Phillies I would package a deal for Todd Frazier. Clubhouse leader, professional hitter albeit a struggle since going to the AL. Handles the media well and has a tireless work ethic. His recent struggles suggest you may be able to put together a mediocre package to get him. NJ roots (although he grew up a Yankee fan I believe) would ultimately make him a short term fan favorite. I think coming back to a ballpark in CBP similar to what he played in with the Reds you would see him become productive again.

    1. Why would they trade for him? I get your point about him because he actually could be an interesting guy to have around, but he’s on a one-year contract. They are going nowhere this year and so there’s no reason to give up assets for him this year. If they want to sign him, they can easily do that in the offseason. It’s time Franco get a little competition at third and, you know what, Frazier has had a weird, but quite productive career. It’s not a bad idea.

    2. A little out of the box but I can see a scenario from our side that makes it work. He’s having a pretty down year and owed the remainder of $12 million maybe they want to dump Salary instead of betting on getting something of high value for him at the trade deadline.

      They could dump his remaining salary on us and in exchange for doing so we swap prospects of some type.

      Send Franco down and hope the Todd Father gets hot then come July 31 we flip him somewhere for something and bring a fixed Franco back up.

  8. McKlentak capability in serious question, no evidence Mackanin is the right guy to manage the team, McClure has not developed a single pitcher forward this year, and little evidence (Altherr) that Stairs has improved anyone.

  9. Benoit had a difficult return yesterday and I think I know why. He wasn’t used in the eighth inning. This is a guy who was supposed to be a “role model” for the mostly Latin bullpen. Complaining about how you are used won’t help anybody.

  10. Happy draft day everyone!

    I’m still in Buffalo for my new job, and it just so happens our lhv iron pigs are going to be here. I plan on seeing 1 or 3 games, so if anyone wants me top look for something in particular, let me know.

      1. 😀
        This is a remote position, I won’t have to come back in the winter.

  11. Knapp gets another start tonight. I would like to see him get about 4 in a row to get a better idea of what we have. I suspect he might be the best of what we got. Saw Alfaro this past week and I’m not impressed at all at his ability to block a ball in the dirt, sometimes has difficulty when they hit the glove.

  12. phils still owe a PTBNL later for Neshek, right? didnt think much of it at time, but with Neshek pitching well, and Houston having a knack for picking up young players in trades, anything to be nervous about?

  13. Joely Rodriguez to the Texas Rangers in exchange for a player to be named later or cash considerations

  14. Cesar H out 6 weeks with oblique. That’ll take him right to the trade deadline but I doubt Howie remains the 2b until then. He’s awful with the infield mitt.

  15. After watching Kendrick play 2B last night, it’s easy to see that he should be in LF. Anybody hear/read what’s the latest on Velasquez?

    1. was there ever a conclusion of exactly what happened with that deal, if the Phils wanted Appel over Fisher, or Fisher had a medical issue? it wasnt like Fisher’s name was just out there for a couple hours as part of the return- there is still a fangraphs piece up from two days later talking analyzing Fisher as part of the return for Giles.
      I guess at the time he was a pretty similar prospect to Nick Williams.
      anyway, he debuted with a homer last night.

  16. Hellickson’s value is nil. Last year they wanted too much for him. Salisbury has a nice piece suggesting Neshek will bring a similar deal to Joe Smith which was Andrew Susac. And an Utley comp to a value for Kendricks. What does everyone think? Maybe a team needing a pinch hitter will take Nava. Saunders and Benoit are more likely DFA candidates.

  17. Anyone hear KLaw on 97.3 yesterday? It was NOT a good interview for Phillies fans. Commented that multiple scouts say that JP looks “horrible” and isn’t even “making solid contact”. Wanted to turn it off it was so depressing.

  18. Man, PIvetta had it all working tonight against the Red Sox. Got some help from Nava, but otherwise, he was dominant.

  19. Making a trip up north at end of month June 29-6th , trying to go to Reading ,Lehigh, and Lakewood. Any good areas to sit in where my son can get auto’s he loves being close to the players. Thanks for any info also if anyone else collects he has doubles of players willing to share.

    1. I’ve been to all 3 and LHV will be a little crowded compared to the others but all 3 you can simply walk to the edge of the field along the first base line before the game and easily get auto’s/ talk to players.

      We talked with Dom Brown before a Reading game a few years ago, and my (at the time) 4 year old talked to Sandberg, Kingery and Martin before a Blue Claws game.

      With all three I’d be more concerned about having the kids in the sun for prolonged periods. We had seats under the deck for this very reason. Lakewood can get HOT.

      1. Thanks, my son doesn’t mind the sun , he had me in the sun last year in Clearwater in August for the GCL playoff game. Thanks for the info, also is 1st base the dugout side?

  20. About three weeks from the all-star break & it can’t happen soon enough.

    Nava, Kendrick & Neshak are doing their part to get traded at the deadline.

    Saunders could be worth keeping until you see how Cozens & Williams perform in the majors. You will still need a mix of veteran players next year.

    Rupp & Knapp have not responded well to the part time role.

    I’m not sure Alfaro is ready to call games in the majors yet, it could be prudent to hold onto Rupp unless you are all in for Alfaro learning on the job for the remainder of the season.

    After clearing out players in July, Hoskins, Williams, & Quinn should all get the call up to stay. It will certainly inject some life into the team.

    In September, Kingery (after strong play in AAA), Cozens, & Alfaro should round out the promotions.

    Off-season decisions: ToJo & Rupp due to depth push. Franco due to under performance. CeHe due to combination of depth push, potential re-positioning, & Kingery factor.

    In general, pitchers & position players will need to be re-calibrated.

    1. I believe Knapp has the hit tool and the acumen to become a well rounded catcher. He’s a ‘ballplayer’ in ways that Rupp is not. It wouldn’t surprise me if he exceeded Alfaro as the future catcher although the latter certainly has the upside what with his power arm and power bat which hasn’t shown up yet in game action consistently.

  21. John, disagree with you about Knapp and Rupp as Knapp is passing him especially in pitch calling. Knapp is also the better hitter and runner.

    1. Knapp has done just fine – actually, very well. He’s the better player and I think, over the long run, it would not be close. Knapp’s bat, I believe, is going to continue to develop. I hope they hold onto him long enough for him to have a breakout because I prefer it come with us rather than some team like A’s.

      1. Funny you mentioned the As by happen stance and Knapp…they were the ones who originally drafted him out of high school.
        Cannot get over how far Knapp has come in these last two years….I use to comp him and Swihart of the Sox, with Swihart getting all the prospect recognition ranked in the top 20 of all prospects, and Knapp not even breaking 125 by BA/BP or MLB.
        Even Ruben wanted Swihart when they were talking the Hamels trade back in ’15 with the Sox.
        Now Swihart is finding it hard hitting in the IL and is more less out of the Sox picture for future catching.

      2. Both players are hitting sub .170 in June. This since Pete announced he would split time between them.

        My perspective of Knapp catching is the game where three consecutive HR’s were given up. Still young & progressing, but not better than Rupp right now.

        If the season is lost, why not just call up Alfaro & let him learn how to catch & take walks in the majors?

        1. John H….hope Alfaro is da man eventually….but learning how to catch and also take walks in the majors…he has taken 120 walks in 600 minor league games….not sure that will happen.
          And the catching issues….the MLB pitchers will not appreciate that I do not think.

  22. Nick Cafardo suggests that the Marlins might trade Stanton and the Phils would be a sensible partner especially if Yelich was included in the deal. In light of the impending sale, it would likely be a salary dump, in which case it would cost the Phillies less in prospects. Odubel would be a reasonable chip to center the trade around from our end. Personally I prefer Ozuna over Stanton but….

    Cafardo also hears that Kendrick would appeal to the NYY and Bosox if he could hold down 3b.

    1. I would give them kingery. obbie. and any three propsects they want no untouchables to get both of those guys.

      1. Yeah that deal would be a game changer and the type of aggressive and creative move this FO needs to make.

        Id rather hold onto Kingery but I’d give them Herrera, Crawford, a AAA starter, one of the LA starters, and one of the AAA outfielders without hesitation. If Kingery would be a deal breaker than I’d swap him and Crawford. It’s so hard to figure out what a fair price is given Stanton’s contract. His contract may even look good once Harper signs.

        A potential outfield of Yelich in LF, Altherr in CF, and Stanton in RF would be worth the prospect expenditure. If the Marlins accepted my trade you would still have Pullin and Quinn as 4th/5th outfield options. Plus Moniak & Alfaro could be used to trade for a TOR guy.

    2. I like the idea & type of trade, but not some much the prospect of having Stanton’s contract for the next 10 years. He hasn’t played a full season in the last 2+ years.

      Not sure Kendrick can play 3B, but it is a start of the trade market for him.

      1. The Phillies can absorb it. He does really need to play 162 games to be value able, especially as I’d imagine his production would increase playing 81 games at CBP.

    3. Hmm Stanton is a RF , Herrera is a CF / LF , Ozuna is there CF ,Yelich is there LF. It would make a lot more sense to trade Altherr since he plays all 3.

  23. If the Phils make a deal for these two, that would leave Herrera, Altherr, Quinn, Cozens, and Nick Williams for one other OF spot. At this point, they’d likely include at least 1-2 of those 5 in the deal.

  24. 2019 Opening Day?

    1 Yelich CF
    2 Kingery 2B
    3 Harper RF
    4 Stanton LF
    5 Hoskins 1B
    6 Knapp C
    7 Franco 3B
    8 Crawford SS
    9 Darvish P

    1. I find it very hard to believe the Phillies will land Harper, especially in that scenario.

  25. In a lot of ways, I see this off season as the perfect time to go “all in.” Other than to build on the momentum the Eagles and Sixers are building:

    1) I see the bigger market teams like the Yankees, Dodgers, Cubs, etc waiting for 2018 to take their shot with Harper and Machado. While I’d expect to be in on those guys (even if we make the Stanton/Yelich trade) you can’t bank on it. Machado would fit the Yankees like a glove at 3B next to Torres for the next decade. Are those guys going to come here if we have another 100 loss season in 2018? I wouldn’t come here over New York or LA. Plus I’m the case of LA and NY they are trying to get under the Luxury Tax so they’re probably sitting out this year.
    2) The Phillies will have the #1 pick next year, an optimal position to be in to restock the farm the way they did with Moniak, Gowdy, and Stobbe..
    3) The farm is also so deep in certain areas that at some point they will need to trade a catcher, SS, 2B, 1B, or CF. With Haseley in the system, Moniak becomes expendable in a deal, for example.
    4) the Phillies payroll next year is void of guaranteed money other than Herrera. As a large market there is a responsibility to spend some money.
    5) none of these moves: signing an ace, trading for Stanton/Yelich prevents them from signing Trout eventually 🙂

    1. Perhaps Klentak and co agree with my assessment and that is why they’re hesistant to promote guys like Williams, Kingery, etc. they want to preserve their value at the levels they are having success.

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