Just one or two more games left in the season and we can officially start baseball’s hot stove season. Then we will get a welcome break from all baseball stories centering on the Dodgers and Astros, and we we will return to baseball normalcy where all the stories are about the Yankees, Red Sox, Dodgers, and Cubs with a smattering of releases about the Rangers, Cardinals, Astros, and Stanton. And of course, those cheatin’ bastards, the Braves.
I tuned in to game three in time to hear the announcer repeat ad nauseum that the Astros’ reliever was striving to become the first pitcher to record a 3.2 inning save, the longest in post season history. I was willing to bet the reliever wasn’t even aware of such a record. I was right. During a post-game interview, when asked about this “record”, the pitcher stated that he was unaware of any significance to his outing until the interviewer brought it up. Baseball prides itself on its ability to quickly produce these “records”, but for gods sake, stop trying to create fake news during an event. There’s plenty of time to revel in an extraordinary feat after it occurs.
Organizational News and Changes
The Phillies are set to announce the hiring of Gabe Kapler as their new manager. Though he has minimal managerial experience, Kapler was narrowly beat out for the Dodgers’ manager position by current incumbent, Dave Roberts.
Matt Stairs assumes position as Padres’ hitting coach. “A bird in the hand …” With no guarantee that the Phillies new manager would offer him a position, Stairs was right to bolt for the west coast.
In fact, it is my opinion that all the scenarios where Stairs, Wathan, Halladay, Ruiz, et al would have positions on a new manager’s staff were optimistic.
Freddy Galvis was nominated for the NL Gold Glove for shortstops. His competition is the Giants’ Brandon Crawford and the Dodgers’ Corey Seager, from teams with the worst and best records in all of baseball.
Since the Golden Gloves are generally assigned on merit unlike the MVP, it seems to me that Galvis is the presumptive NL GG at SS. Frankly, I don’t see how Seager qualified over Trevor Story and Jordy Mercer except that he’s on a 104-win team. Maybe Galvis is doomed to finish second.
Winter ball stats are available here, but include only the Arizona Fall League, and the Dominican, Mexican, and Venezuelan winter leagues. The Puerto Rican Winter League has been cancelled. Foreign players reported to the Colombian Winter League on October 27th and they begin League play on November 3rd. Rosters not available. The Nicaraguan Winter League began on Tuesday, October 24th. I see no Phillies’ farm hands on their published rosters. The web site for the Panamian Winter League is a cluster____.
Oh, it appears that the Australian Baseball League has allowed teams to contract with MLB teams again. But, not Phillies as of this report. Players from the Pirates, Rangers, Astros, Padres, Blue Jays, Rays, and Delmon Young have signed to play in 2017-18.
Edgar Cabral has raised his average to .385 in the AFL. Trevor Bettencourt and Garrett Cleavinger saw their ERA’s sky rocket after a bad appearance, but J.D. Hammer have yet to allow a run in 6 relief appearances. Elniery Garcia had a rough week and sports a 5.79 ERA in four starts.
In the DWL, Cameron Perkins has a .308 batting average. Angelo Mora is hitting .300. in the DWL. Zac Curtis has a 1.17 ERA and a 2-2 record in 8 appearances. Looks like the guys following him are allowing inherited runners to score. Kilome and Windle have ERAs under 3.00, and I heard that Roman Quinn has gone home for the winter. If so, he left with .118 avearge on on 2-17 with 5 K and 0 SB attempts.
Mitch Walding (.245) has 2 HR in the MWL, as does Brock Stassi (.304). In the VWL, Daniel Brito is laying regularly and is hitting .282. But, he has struck out 11 times in 39 AB. Walding is also whiffing, he has 15 in 49 AB. And Zach Green has 10 in 32 AB in the AFL.
Teams are beginning to release their tentative spring training schedules. So far, the Phillies haven’t. But the Tigers, Athletics, Astros, Nationals, Orioles, Rays, Pirates, and Giants have.
Incomplete list of Phillies tentative dates:
- Friday, February 23rd at Toronto in Dunedin
- Saturday, February 24th v. Baltimore at Spectrum Field
- Sunday, February 25th v. New York at Spectrum Field
- Friday, March 2nd at Tampa in Port Charlotte
- Saturday, March 3rd v. Baltimore at Spectrum Field (split squad)
- Saturday, March 3rd at Pittsburgh in Bradenton (split squad)
- Sunday, March 4th v. Toronto at Spectrum Field
- Thursday, March 8th at New York in Tampa
- Friday, March 9th v. Pittsburgh at Spectrum Field
- Sunday, March 11th at Baltimore (night)
- Monday, March 12th at Atlanta in Orlando (night)
- Wednesday, March 14th at Atlanta in Orlando
- Friday March 16th at Detroit in Lakeland (split squad)
- Friday March 16th v. Toronto at Spectrum Field (split squad)
- Sunday, March 18th at Minnesota in Fort Myers
- Friday, March 23rd at Pittsburgh in Bradenton
- Saturday, March 24th at Detroit in Lakeland
- Sunday, March 25th v.Baltimore at Spectrum Field
- Monday, March 26th at Pittsburgh in Bradenton
Key Dates (new entries are in bold/italic text):
Oct. 26, 2017 – Freddy Galvis announced as one of 3 finalists for NL Gold Glove
- The day after the last game of the World Series, 9:00 AM – “Following the completion of the term of his Uniform Player’s Contract, any Player with 6 or more years of Major League service who has not executed a contract for the next succeeding season shall become a free agent.” Organizations began an exclusive five-day negotiation window (referred to as “the quiet period” in the CBA) with their own free agents. During “the quiet period” any Club representative and any free agent or his representative may talk with each other and discuss the merits of the free agent contracting, when eligible; provided that the Club and the free agent shall not negotiate terms or contract with each other. The following subjects are among those which may properly be discussed between any Club and such Player:
- (i) the Player’s interest in playing for the Club, and the Club’s interest in having the Player play for it;
- (ii) the Club’s plans about how it intends to utilize the Player’s services (as a starting pitcher or reliever, as a designated hitter or not, platooning, etc.);
- (iii) the advantages and disadvantages of playing for the Club including the nature of the organization, the climate of the city, availability of suitable housing, etc.;
- (iv) length of contract;
- (v) guarantee provisions; and
- (vi) no-trade or limited no-trade provisions.
- Notwithstanding the foregoing, the free agent and his former Club may engage in negotiations and enter into a contract during “the quiet period”.
- The fifth day after the last game of the World Series, 5:00 PM – Deadline for organizations to submit qualifying offers to their free agents. Last year’s QO was $17.2M.
- This is also the deadline for organizations to exercise any club/mutual options.
- October 15 or on the fifth day following the last day of the World Series, 5:00 PM Eastern Time, whichever is later (MLR 55(a)) – a player whose Minor League Uniform Player Contract expires becomes a Minor League free agent unless the player’s Major or Minor League Club has remaining options to renew the contract. As a Minor League free agent, the player may negotiate and enter into a contract with any Major or Minor League Club beginning on the first day that year that a Major League free agent is eligible to sign with a different Major League Club upon expiration of the player’s Major League contract (usually, the fifth day after the conclusion of the World Series. I guess the inclusion of an October 15th date is for a year when a World Series might not be held – strike, natural disaster, terrorism?).
- The fifth day after the last game of the World Series – Free agents become eligible to sign with any team.
Nov. 6, 2017 – BBWAA Awards Finalists announced (MLB Network)
Nov .7, 2017 – Rawlings Gold Glove Awards (ESPN, 9 p.m. ET)
Nov. 9, 2017 – Louisville Silver Sluggers (MLB Network, 6 p.m. ET)
Nov. 10, 2017 – Wilson Defensive Players of the Year (MLB Network, 6 p.m. ET)
- Tenth day after the end of “the quiet period”, 5:00 PM – Deadline for players to accept/reject qualifying offers. Those who decline will become free agents.
- November 13-16 – GM meetings in Orlando.
Nov. 13, 2017 – Rookies of the Year announced (MLB Network, 6 p.m. ET)
Nov. 14, 2017 – Managers of the Year announced (MLB Network, 6 p.m. ET)
Nov. 15, 2017 – Cy Young Awards announced (MLB Network, 6 p.m. ET)
Nov. 16, 2017 – Most Valuable Players announced (MLB Network, 6 p.m. ET)
Nov. 17, 2017 – Esurance MLB Awards (MLB Network)
- November 20th – Deadline for roster expansion to 40 players prior to the Rule 5 draft.
- December 2, 8:00 PM EST – Deadline for teams to tender contracts to unsigned players on their 40-man rosters, including arbitration-eligible players. Non-tendered players become free agents. Tendered players who are arbitration eligible who do not accept the tender proceed to the arbitration process in February.
- December 10-14 – Winter Meetings at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort in Orlando, Florida.
- December 14th – Rule 5 draft.
- January 9, 2018 – Salary arbitration filing deadline
- January 12, 2018 – Salary arbitration figures exchanged
- January 29 – February 16, 2018 – Salary arbitration hearings, Phoenix, Arizona
- February 13, 2018 – earliest date for pitchers/catchers to report to Spring Training
- February 18, 2018 – earliest date for all other players to report for full squad workouts
- February 22, 2018 – Tentative date for the start of Grapefruit League games
- March 29, 2018 – Opening Day for the 2018 season
April 15, 2018 – Jackie Robinson Day
April 17-18, 2018 – Twins v. Indians at Hiram Bithorn Stadium in San Juan, PR
May 13, 2018 – Mother’s Day events, all host ballparks
- June 4-6, 2018 – 2018 MLB Draft
June 17, 2018 – Father’s Day events, all host ballparks
July 13-17, 2018 – All-Star Week
- July 17, 2018 – 89th All Star Game, at Nationals Park
- August 19, 2018 – Phillies v. Mets in the Little League Classic in Williamsport.
- December 10-13, 2018 – Winter Meetings in Las Vegas, Nevada
Last Week’s Transactions:
- 9/30-10/13 – Ranfi Casimiro re-signed with the Phillies
- 10/13 – Pedro Beato elected free agency
- 10/5 – Kevin Segrist elected free agency
- 10/5 – Ty Kelly elected free agency
- 9/16-29 – Mitch Walding re-signed with the Phillies
- The organization’s rosters are up to date.
- The organization’s injury list is as up to date as I can make it.
- The organization’s Rule 5 eligibility list is as accurate as I can make.
Here’s the open discussion thread for Phillies’ talk and other topics.