Open Discussion: Week of April 29, 2018

The Phillies dropped both series this week, winning one game in each versus the Diamondbacks and Braves.  Their 2-4 record for the week dropped them into a tie for second with the Braves in the division.

#Phly Phillies Phly!

MLB has started to include the wild card optional view on its standings page.  The Phillies had the best record of any non-division leader until this week.  They were passed by the Cubs for the first wild card and tied by the Braves for the second.

Looks like the Phillies Achilles heel will be starting pitching.  We can’t expect Nola and Arrieta to win every one of their starts.  Hopefully Pivetta can continue to pick up some of the slack. With Lively on the DL and Velasquez continuing to struggle, the Phillies’ rotation needs help.  Jake Thompson was recalled when Lively went on the DL.  He pitched Sunday.  Look for another move to fill out the rotation this week.  Cole Irvin and Zach Eflin seem to be the best options.  De Los Santos also pitched Sunday, and is likely not available until later in the week.

Okay, forget all of my speculation.  The decision has been made.  Even though he hasn’t been added to the roster by a transaction yet, Zach Eflin is listed as the starting pitcher in Miami on Tuesday.

Organizational News and Changes

The Phillies placed J.P. Crawford (right forearm strain) and Ben Lively (lower back strain) on the 10-day DL.

To replace them, they recalled Jesmuel Valentin and Jake Thompson from Lehigh Valley.

The Phillies voided contract of international free agent OF Felix Neguis who had been assigned to the DSL Phillies Red.

The Phillies continued to sign international free agents.  They inked RHP Jhostyn Marin and LHP Nathaniel Bido and assigned  both to the DSL Phillies Red.

Spring Training

The Phillies’ XST schedule is available here.

Minor League Report

The GCL Phillies East and West begin their seasons on June 18th and 19th.  I have their preliminary schedules.  You can see them here.

Key Dates:

  • June 4-6, 2018 – 2018 MLB Draft
  • June 15, 2018 – Williamsport’s home opener v. State College
  • June 18, 2018 – GCL Phillies East home opener v. GCL Yankees West
  • June 19, 2018 – GCL Phillies West home opener v. GCL Yankees East
  • July 13-17, 2018 – All Star Week
  • July 17, 2018 – 89th All Star Game
  • August 19, 2018 – Phillies v. Mets in the Little League Classic in Williamsport
  • December 10-13, 2018 – Winter Meetings at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas

Transactions (recently reported transactions in bold): (40-man stands at 40)

  • 4/29/18–Phillies placed SS J.P. Crawford on the 10-day DL. Right forearm strain
    4/29/18–Phillies recalled 2B Jesmuel Valentin from Lehigh
    4/29/18–RHP Ismael Cabrera assigned to Williamsport from Clearwater
    4/29/18–Clearwater activated RHP Will Hibbs from the 7-day DL
    4/28/18–Wilson Garcia assigned to Williamsport from Clearwater .
    4/28/18–Clearwater activated C Edgar Cabral from the 7-day DL.
    4/27/18–Tyler Gilbert transferred from Williamsport to Reading
    4/27/18–Phillies recalled Jake Thompson from Lehigh Valley
    4/27/18–Phillies placed Ben Lively on the 10-day disabled list. Lower back strain
    4/27/18–Lehigh Valley placed Logan Moore on the 7-day DL retro to 4/26/18. Right shin contusion
    4/27/18–Danny Mayer assigned to Lakewood from Clearwater
    4/27/18–Spencer Howard assigned to Williamsport from Lakewood
    4/27/18–Clearwater activated 2B Jose Antequera
    4/27/18–Jhostyn Marin signed as an international FA; assigned to DSL Phillies Red
    4/27/18–RHP Seranthony Dominguez assigned to Lehigh Valley from Reading
    4/26/18–Austin Davis assigned to Lehigh Valley from Reading
    4/26/18–Tyler Gilbert transferred from Reading to Williamsport
    4/26/18–Lakewood placed Jhailyn Ortiz on the 7-day Disabled List
    4/26/18–RHP Luis Carrasco assigned to Lakewood from Williamsport
    4/25/18–Signed Nathaniel Bido as an international FA; assigned to DSL Phillies Red
    4/25/18–LHP Austin Davis assigned to Reading from Lehigh Valley
    4/25/18–3B Trevor Plouffe assigned to Lehigh Valley
    4/24/18–Voided contract of Felix Neguis with DSL Phillies Red
    4/24/18–RHP Luis Carrasco assigned to Williamsport from Lakewood.
    4/24/18–RHP Ramon Rosso assigned to Lakewood from Williamsport.
    4/23/18–Trevor Plouffe signed to a minor league contract; assigned to Lehigh Valley
    4/23/18–3B Heiker Meneses assigned to Reading from Lehigh Valley
    4/23/18–RHP Tyler Viza assigned to Reading from Lehigh Valley
    4/23/18–Jose Antequera assigned to Williamsport from Reading
    4/23/18–Jacob Waguespack added to Lehigh Valley active roster
    4/23/18–Hoby Milner added to Lehigh Valley active roster
  • The organization’s rosters,
  • The organization’s injury list, and
  • The organization’s Rule 5 eligibility list (these are only current as of 4/25/2018)

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

258 thoughts on “Open Discussion: Week of April 29, 2018

  1. I think Vinnie Velo would benefit from a few starts at Lehigh. Give him a plan and stick to it for three games.
    I’m concerned about Nick Williams. Didn’t run hard to first twice the other night. I have never seen him not sprint all out. I blame the situation as he looked very good last year. That said Roman fits this team better. Our bad dressing Ivy leaguer has ruined his trade value.
    Think we need to sign a backup catcher Knapp seems like he would benefit getting daily reps at Lehigh

    1. Knapp & Alfaro both should be given lots of time to sort themselves out. BUT, if they scuffle this bad all year, we may be looking to sign a starting catcher in the offseason, not a backup.

      1. I think both Knapp and Alfaro are good players but it’s hard for young guys who are used to playing every day they the minors to now split time. It’s not ideal for either of them.

  2. Hopefully Eflin can step up this time around.
    Last game at Norfolk was a real clunker after three quality starts,maybe an anomaly, however in his 20 innings so far at LHV has yet to give up a HR…maybe that will continue also.

      1. Hinkie:
        NL April 28, 2018 at 7:29 AM
        Hey Jim, have you seen Cole Stobbe play in extended spring training? He started the year in Lakewood then disappeared about 2 or 3 weeks ago. He is not listed on their DL like Ortiz and Muzziotti are listed and you have him listed on the Williamsport roster. So he is either injured and not listed or got demoted. He wasn’t doing half bad when he stopped playing for Lakewood.

        Reply
        jimpeyton19 April 28, 2018 at 8:37 AM
        He has not been demoted. He was transferred from the Lakewood roster to the Williamsport roster on April 16, 2018. The same day, Zach Warren was transferred from Williamsport to Lakewood so it looked like one of those paper moves to add a pitcher to the Lakewood roster. I have since heard that he aggravated the injury he suffered last season, it swelled, and that he is day-to-day. He is still with the team in Lakewood. This is, however, the type of information that I can’t substantiate through org officials, so I can’t print it in the body of a story. However, the transfer transaction is from a very reliable source, and that I could print. The key here is that it is NOT a demotion, just a paper move.

            1. Tell your wife not to do them – lol.

              I did them for a while and became pretty decent, but then my wife started solving the expert puzzles in 90 seconds (yeah, I know, it’s ridiculous) and it deprived me of my competitive spirit. At least I know more about baseball than she does . . . for now.

  3. I would trade JP Crawford and 2 of any minor leaguers not named Sixto for Machado and take the signing risk. And if I was Baltimore, I would take JP, Roman Quinn and either Medina or Ortiz.

    1. I would be OK with such a deal. I’d prefer to have Machado play third alongside Crawford at SS, but if it brings Machado into the fold this season (and if allowing him to play SS increases his chances of signing a long-term deal), then I say go for it.

      If the Phils traded for Machado, I’d feel incredibly confident of his re-signing, particularly if they continuing playing the way they did in April. Also, a trade allows the Phils to hold onto the first-round draft pick they’d otherwise have to forfeit due to the signing.

    2. You think it even takes that much to get him from Baltimore? He’s more or less said there’s no chance he’s going back so they’d want to get some return, no?

    3. I mentioned in yesterday’s box score thread that Klentak should/will go all in if the Phillies are in serious contention for the division title in August. I mentioned promoting Sixto to the Phillies BP and trading for Manny Machado. Your proposed trade is tempting, but may be just a little too rich for me unless Klentak can also find a #4 starter to place behind Nola, Arrieta, and Pivetta. In a perfect Phillies world, Toronto is 10 games out of a WC spot, and waters down the 3B market a bit by making Josh Donaldson available, also.
      Roman Quinn makes sense. Klentak will also need to include a top pitching prospect (Kilome or Medina), and another younger prospect (I would not include Ortiz for ten weeks of MM). Maybe someone from among the Phillies high inventory of young SS’s (Gamboa or Guzman or Garcia).
      The Phillies shouldn’t have to give up JP Crawford. Klentak could also look to keep the cost (in prospects) lowered by agreeing to take back Mark Trumbo (12.5 million this year, 13.5 million in 2019). They would just release Trumbo and eat his money.
      Maybe Klentak could also ask for Zach Britton in a MM deal. The Phillies could use a really good LH reliever. Britton should be back from an achilles injury by the beginning of June, and should also be a Phillies’ FA target after this season.

      The Phillies and Blue Jays also make great trade partners this summer. Klentak could put together something for Josh Donalson and JA Happ. Both are headed to free agency this winter.

    4. I’m not sure I’d want to do this but what about Crawford, Santana, and B prospect for Machado and Chris Davis? I’d want to feel pretty sure Machado would sign but I think that would temptation both parties. The Orioles get their future SS and a 1b, though he’s currently struggling but also get out and that Davis contract. The Phillies have to suck up Davis’s contract but moving Santana offsets that for the next couple of years . . .

      1. For me … that Chris Davis contract (5 yrs @ 115 million including this season) is a bridge too far to cross. I don’t think the O’s are going to have any luck shedding that bad money any time soon. If Dan Duquette asked for JP Crawford, a second (lower tier) prospect, and for the Phillies to eat 115 million dollars for 10 weeks of MM, Matt Klentak would hang up on him.

        1. I completely missed the fact that the proposed trade also included Carlos Santana. That makes it Crawford, Santana, a mid tier prospect, and swallowing 115 million dollars for roughly 10 weeks of Manny Machado. Appreciate the effort, Forrest. However, you said it best in your preface … “not sure I’d want to do this”.

    5. Why do that? I see absolutely no benefit. Machado will not sign with anyone before the off season. Will trading for Machado make us a playoff team this year? With this pitching? No way. I think it would be a waste of assets to make that trade.

      1. three reasons:
        1. Because it helps us make the playoffs this year.
        2. Because it will help him be more comfortable with our team and management rather than being a cold free agent. It will still come down to dollars, but assuming that we match anyone’s offer, then it can tip in our favor if he had a great experience on the team already.
        3. I think this would be selling high on JP. I do not see a special talent. I think he will be good, but not great at anything. Machado is elite. JP will never touch his WAR in any season.

        1. I think it’s a win now move but without huge long term ramifications. The money doesn’t kill the Phillies with getting Santana’s contract gone. If he leaves, you still have your core of Nola, Hoskins, Kingery and Herrera and maybe can squeeze a few homers out of Davis.

          The more I think about it, the more I think the Orioles would be open to it. That’s a bear of a contract and if I’m looking at losing Machado, I’d want to move Davis and clear the deck.

          If I knew Machado was signing long term, absolute no brainer for me. Even if I knew he might leave, I still think I’d do it

        2. Machado will definitely help the Phils reach the playoffs but not enough to go deep and make a run so giving up a potentially premium prospect(s) like Medina or Ortiz will go to waste.

          If Machado can be had without giving up any of the premium prospects, that It’s a deal. I understand that Machado is one of the top player in the league, but he is only a 3-month rental so his trade value should only be commensurate to the “3-months” of production.

          1. You are overvaluing our Prospects. They are not as good as you suggest above. They are not “premium” prospects across baseball. Ortiz is a lottery ticket who is struggling mightily in low A. Maybe he figures it out, but he is at least 5 years away from being an impact player on mlb if ever. Medina is a 3 best case scenario. That is a nice prospect. But it is certainly not a foregone conclusion that he gets there. And he is at least 3 years from that type of production. Machado is and Elite prospect whom is young and Still pre-prime. Getting him on our team for 4 months increases our odds of signing him (assuming we won’t be outbid). It is very worth it. Frankly, of all the guys that I mentioned, the one that concerns me losing is Quinn. If he stays healthy he has legit 3-4 WAR potential. And he is ready now. Elite defensive CF with Elite speed and very good contact ability. That is a very good prospect.

            1. I still like Ortiz. I would temper your “struggling mightily in low A” comment by noting that he is only 19 years old and had been dealing with an injury issue. He is currently on the Lakewood DL. I would keep him another year at least.

            2. I like him too, but he is struggling mightily in Low A. If you can’t admit that then you have rose colored glasses on. And being 19 years old is not as much of an excuse as everyone makes it out to be.

              Juan Soto is 19 in the SAL and has an WRC+ of 248. There are 7 players who are 19 or lower that have a WRC+ of 100 in the SAL right now. Ortiz has a 50. along with a 39% k rate. there are 7 other players 19yo or younger with a k rate under 20%. stop making excuses for poor performance. good hitters hit low A.

            3. Interesting….back in ’15 Ortiz ($4.4M)was ranked in the top ten of Latin players….while Juan Soto ($1.5M by nats) was ranked 25th and even Tatis ($700K)of the Padres was ranked 30th by MLB.
              The Phillies are not the only ones who have excellent Latin area scouts.

            4. @v1 – prospect rankings can be subjective. whether you consider them elite, very good, good or whatever, a rebuilding team that’s short of “impact” prospects should try not to give up 2 of their Top 5 prospects for a rental that will not even help them go deep in the playoffs. You are looking at it in a micro level, good GMs don’t think like that.

            5. I think you are right about all of this. This is an oddly depressing time for the minor and major league systems. The talent evaluation is highly questionable, especially for hitters. My view is that if the minor league system does not really turn it on this year there is going to be some huge turnover in the talent evaluation staff – Middleton won’t stand for it, nor should he.

  4. The Phillies are close to to contention, but not that close. We should let Machado hit FA and give him his 8 years, $240M in the offseason.

        1. It’s going to be waaaaayyyy more than that. Think about 10 years and $350 as a starting point. It probably ends up at around 12 years and $400+ million with a third or fourth year opt out. Machado is going to get PAID.

          1. And both Harper and Trout will be paid significantly more. One or both of those guys may get a $500 million contract.

            1. And I expect Boras to wait and wait and wait to see how much and how many Manny gets before Harper signs anywhere. He’ll likely be a very late Christmas present for somebody.

          2. Even though the Phillies have money to spend, are we going to give one of the craziest contracts of all time? Because if the Yankees get involved in the bidding, it’s going to get ugly.

            1. If we want one of those guys we will. I do expect them to sign one of the super high profile guys and the contract will blow your mind.

        1. rocco….Trout right now is $33M AAV….so it will start at $34M AAV and work its way up for both Harper and Machado..

            1. rocco…….no….I like Trout over Machado.
              But he is close, he is a generational player…… but you are looking at dollars for Machado and Harper thru the 2025 season.

    1. With all money egual. why in the world would machado sign here. We are so far from winning you can put thim in our lineup and we improve maybe 5 games. still not a 500 team. Anyone who thinks this lineup is a contender and this pitching staff.is only kidding themselves.

  5. Came up to Phanatics birthday yesterday from OCMD. Brought wife, oldest daughter and wife’s best friend(1st Phillies game). And VV did not disappoint with everything I stated about him on the ride up. What a clown show it is running him out there as a starter every 5th day. I am not sure what brass/pro guys see that our educated fan base does not. The track record is there folks.

    Also, even with all of the turmoil/trouble ATL has been in they are still superior in terms of big league talent, mix and match veterans, superstar ceiling players, farm system depth, player development, etc. Jesse Biddle, both on the mound AND the plate rubbed salt into the wound yesterday.

    This team is still 2 years, 2 drafts, and 2 superstar FA signings (fingers crossed because that is no guarantee). ATL’s fraud fan base has no idea what they have in their baseball club. Major success coming their way. Acuna Jr. is the NL Trout. Yep, I said it.

    1. It was a pretty depressing weekend. How do the Braves and Marlins always come up with these 20 and 21 year-old players who are practically superstars the minute they arrive in the big leagues? And please don’t say it’s because the Phillies are too slow to promote players – that’s not the main difference.

      1. If I had to guess, it’s because those teams aren’t shy about taking a chance on the BPA when drafting or being aggressive with J2 signings. The Phillies shy away from high end arms because they are high school players, and always seem to end up with a player rated between 8-14 on the prospect list for international free agents, which is not bad, but it is usually the same teams that are in the running for the top prospects.

  6. Pivetta and Vinny should pitch back-to-back, there’s got to be a stopper between them.

    There’s an equal rational to either have Vinny pitch as a starter for the rest of the year or move him to the pen. Vinny is still young and stuff has potential so he still hold some trade value. Trade Vinny to teams with pitching guru’s like PIT (Searage), TEX (Warthern) and CWS (Don Cooper) and I’m optimistic that these teams with their top pitching gurus will ponder about Vinny’s potential and pull the trigger.

    1. By the way, his numbers don’t always show it, but I think VV has made a lot of progress. He’s using more pitches, changing velocity, throwing higher quality pitches – he just needs to pick his spots and pitch with more confidence. This is what young pitchers do – they frustrate you like hell until the moment they don’t. I’m not pulling the plug on VV yet – the potential is there and I think he is making progress – it’s just not showing up on the stat sheet every start.

          1. “Why can’t development happen in the big leagues?.”..it can.
            But can the fan base deal with the losses….and will managers want to also not put their best out there to win.

            1. He’s not a AAA pitcher – he’s a major league pitcher – he just needs to make the adjustments. Going back to AAA likely will do him no good.

            2. Lets just look at the metrics on Velasquez:
              Game scores:
              2018…..6 starts…Ave GSc-46
              —Three over 50…three under 50
              2017….15 starts…Ave GSc-48
              —-Six over 50…..nine under 50.
              2016…..24 starts…Ave GSc-53
              —-Fifteen over 50….nine under 50.
              Fangraphs chart on Gsc
              30-40 Poor
              40-50 Below Average
              50-60 Above Average
              60-70 Good
              70-80 Great
              80-90 Excellent
              …..he turns 26 in June and is still young.
              His FB stuff plays up….but has poor command on secondary pitches and no effective change-up…thus lefties will continue to hit him hard.
              And lets not get into the early high pitch counts which is detrimental to a bullpen.
              He has an option….why not send him down for a dozen starts in LHV or even CLW to see if it will help!
              If he continues this for the next 4/5 starts….it may help him to get his act together in the minors.

      1. I’m not sure what the numbers say after yesterday, but before it he had the lowest BB rate and best K/BB ratio of his career. I also think he’s made progress and I’d like to see if it will manifest itself in results over a larger sample.

  7. Don’t jump off of any bridges just yet. Lively, Pivetta, and Velasquez have all looked pretty good until their most recent starts. After Nola and Arrieta, the rest of the staff is still auditioning for spots. Lively goes down and Eflin gets a chance to prove himself. We have a number 1 and a number 1A, and 3 number 5’s right now. In the next 2 months, we’ll see who steps up, and the GM will decide if we need to see more, or if he needs to make a trade. With the return of Eickhoff, and return to form of Pivetta, I expect the Phillies to have 4 capable starters by the end of May. They’re young and will stumble from time to time, but that’s what 5th starters do.

    1. At this point, we’re looking for improvement.

      Pivetta was great early on, but you could see that he’s starting to go back to his old ways (giving up HRs and walks, nibbling around the plate). At least his velocity is still up there.

      VV is more concerning. His velocity dipped in his last start and his control went out the window. And as usual, he couldn’t avoid the big inning.

      They have each had 6 starts. Lucky for them, it’s still early. Barring injury or total collapse, they will likely remain as starters to the all-star break.

      This is an opportunity for somebody at Lehigh to make their dreams come true (De Los Santos, Irvin, Eshelman). Somebody better do it.

  8. I. Just waiting to see if VV can pitch at least 100 to 150ings without getting hurt.that right there will tell you if he’s going to the BP. The LV staff will tell too if any of them gets hot and puts pressure on PV or VV.

  9. Tim, Velasquez is the wildcard in the equation. He had progressing until his last start. Let’s hope that he continues to learn from his mistakes. If he does, he has a number 2 ceiling.

  10. I was really disappointed in VV yesterday. Not because he got hit hard, but because his pitches were not really sharp at all. That was not a “bad luck” game. He gt rocked. And, even though he has shown some progress over the year, his numbers against Lefties is abysmal. He is far away from being a legitimate Playoff caliber SP. I am much more optimistic about Pivetta.

  11. I like Carlos Santana a lot, he is an above average regular and probably a good mentor. That said, if we’re lucky he’ll end the season around .250 and probably .750 OPS. In my opinion that’s not enough production to continue playing Rhys in left everyday. Rhys is really bad in left field and should be playing his natural position. That would also allow Nick and Altherr to play everyday, which seems to be needed. I think his signing was a mistake.

  12. Bellinger was admonished by Roberts this weekend for not hustling I found it interesting because we get caught in our philly cocoons sometimes and don’t realize this type of thing happens throughout baseball.

    I can’t excuse Williams for his issues but it is a lot to ask of a young player to go from playing everyday for the last 5 years to only playing a few times a week. 288/338/811 OPS with 12 dingers last year in 343 PA’s once called up.

    Does it start to creep into your mind that the handling of Kingery has thrown this whole thing out of whack? In a vacuum the Kingery contract was great for player and club but I think it really had an adverse effect on guys like Williams and Altherr when you combine that those two lost starter roles with the addition of Santana.

    1. DMAR….I think you hit the nail on the head.

      Kapler adjusted his pitching philosophy and thinking a bit after the first game with Nola (with some suggestion from Arrieta I am sure), and now it may be time to adjust his lineup construction to promote more continuity for those select players who are juggled every few games

      1. I have always said that players like routine. You can’t have players coming into the stadium every day and wondering if they will sit for Scott Kingery. You’re putting too much pressure on players to produce, Kingery included. It’s already a tough game to play as it is.

        In the end, it’s mostly Klentak’s fault. He’s the one that signed Santana to take 1B, he’s the one that didn’t deal away Cesar.

        Now Kapler is starting to realize that all this swapping around is not helping. Altherr slumped heavily but is only starting to recover. Williams and Kingery are slumping bad, Crawford can’t hit above .200.

        So what’s the solution? Altherr takes over RF with Williams getting 1-2 starts per week. Williams will also be the primary LH pinch hitter. Nick gets the short end of the stick, somebody has to. Franco gets 3B. Kingery will share playing time mostly at SS with JP.

        1. Not dealing away Cesar is a mistake? He’s been arguably our best player, setting the tone at the top of the lineup every night. Already 1.1 WAR after back-to-back 3 win seasons.

          1. I didn’t mean it like that. I like Cesar, but if you’re committed to Kingery, somebody has to go. I’m a fan of Cesar. He has made himself into a good player.

            1. Maybe not. For the time being Kingery might be better being a super sub or playing third. Cesar deserves to be protected more than Franco – a now perennial disappointment. I get that his ceiling is high, but he’s been a well below par performer for going on three years now while Cesar is developing into a near all-star level talent.

        2. Agree.
          The Santana signing, his production aside right now, has disrupted things a bit.
          Only three players have been producing…and guess what….they have been the ones who have continued to play at the same positions they started at in spring training….Herrera, Hoskins and Hernandez.
          Santana has also played at the same position but until his hard hit balls start falling he is below his past production levels.

          In the next few months Klentak should look to move players.
          Quinn and Cozens will need to have opportunities this year some time, so there is more of a logjam possibly occuring.

          1. I doubt Cozens is in the Phillies’ plans. He’ll need to go gangbusters at Lehigh to change their mind.

            If the Phillies went with a normal 7 man bullpen, Quinn would be in the majors. But you can’t start Quinn over Herrera, and there’s already a logjam in RF. He’s in a tough situation, injuries aside.

            1. IMO, Cozens will still get his opportunity with them, unless he is dealt this season sometime.
              He and Williams may not be that much different in what they will give you at the plate. Both, athletic in their own right, have high swing and miss, low BA and OBP skills , and both have that power game to their plate skills.

          2. Romus imo Santana made no sense/ 20 hr 240 hitter with good obp. We have a better player in Hoskins. I would rather have spent the money on pitching. If there was not any one you would want then. use that money next year. I rather have had Williams in left to see what he can do, then a 32 yr old who wont be here when we contend .Klentak imo is bad very bad a panic move on his part to try to please the fans.60 million for a guy who we don’t really need is senseless. iwould have used that money in latin market before this move and payed the fine, other teams do it why not us.

            1. rocco…right now you are correct on Santana…..let us see how it plays out.
              For him to eventually get to 250/350 will be difficult at this point, but he needs to trend upward at the least.
              You cannot use that money in the International market….it is a different pot of money.
              Teams are now limited and paying the fine is more costlier and severe than under past CBA restrictions. That is why, for example, the Yankees and Rangers trade low A/tier two pitching prospects to obtain a few hundred K more to add to their pot.

            2. Usually water finds it proper level. It is not at all unusual for a free agent to press out of the gate and have a disappointing first year or first part of his first year. But, ultimately, if his skills have not deteriorated (which is possible), he should get back to doing what he’s always done. There is no way they could have guessed he’d be this bad in his first month – I’ve criticized the management team for a lot of things, but I would have also signed Santana. It was a good idea at the time – and still might end up being just fine.

        3. Guru, I think you hit the nail on the head with the problem, but I propose a different solution and it is a solution based on the challenge of asking young players to manage uncertainty while at the same time they are trying to figure out the league and what it takes to perform consistently night in and night out.
          My solution starts with the Phil’s accepting the reality that most young MLB players/these young players are not “mature” enough to manage yo-yoing back and forth and in & out of lineups and different positions. My solution is two trades, but Phil’s management needs to decide what players to keep or not. Either CeHe or Kingery needs to play every day at 2B and either Williams or Altherr everyday in RF. Whoever is odd man out should be traded as soon as feasible even if the Phil’s get pennies on the dollar. I think it is more important to determine if this core can play & win together then to get premium return value and every day is another day lost for not seeing the core. Is it me or has this year seemed to have no flow to it? Folks here talk about contending for the playoffs in August, but this year for me is about seeing if these guys can play day in and day out at this level and as we head into May, I have no idea. .

  13. Anyone else see Jesse Biddle pitch the other night for the Braves? Looked pretty solid, definitely unfortunate we lost him to a division rival, was a real homegrown kid.

        1. He needed to stop getting injured, mostly. I wasn’t happy when we traded him for a reliever that I’m pretty sure we cut two weeks later. Good to see him finally in the big leagues, it’s just unfortunate what uniform he’s wearing.

          1. He totally lost command of his pitches. He was a mess there for more than a little while, but I’m super happy for him. My son used to play HS tennis with his cousin. Nice family.

            1. Catch but in 48 innings with Atlanta coaching he is pitching well. I never thought about our minor league coaches I know its been mention on here. But maybe there is something to our coaches in minors.

            2. That’s not entirely fair to the Phillies and gives the Braves probably way too much credit. Often guys just need a period of time to regroup and get better. I’m sure a lot of it is experience and desperation. Sometimes players just figure things out.

  14. The Braves have a lot more talent that I would like that is head and shoulders above Biddle. I wish him well, he is a local kid, but I have no regrets that the Phils moved on from him.

    1. I Was just listening to mlb and they think cubs get machado. Package starting with Addison. 9 teams including the philies tried to get him over winter. But cubs make the most sense according to mlb.

      1. rocco…I think the interested teams wanted 72 hours with agent Dan Lozano and Machado to work out a long term contract before a trade was completed…. and the Os said no.

    2. Not sure if this is the case with Biddle (and I realize many hands have changed in the turnover from RAJ to Klentak) but while there’s been a lot of scrutiny focused on the supposed misses on first round draft picks in recent years, I don’t hear much made about whether the actual development of these kids through the farm system is up to par. Talent evaluation is only the beginning of the process. Somebody has to know how to “whisper” to these ponies.

  15. Fangraphs chat today:

    Dylan: Is there a bigger gap between physical talent and actual results than Jorge Alfaro?

    Travis Sawchik: He’s in the conversation
    He’ll be 25 in June so he’s not super young any longer, though catcher development can lag behind other positions

  16. Arano to DL and Phils recall Eflin. I think Eflin needs more time in LHV and I don’t want to see him out of the BP.

  17. Strained Right Rotator Cuff. But, also my bad not knowing that Eflin starts tomorrow for Lively, so not a BP replacement.

  18. I can’t remember but why did Santana move from C to 1B while with the Indians? And could a move back to catcher be possible? I really didn’t follow him much, nor do I follow much of the AL . . . Was he a good defensive catcher? Btw not too worried about his O production, he’s hitting the ball hard just at people. As the weather heats up, I think you’ll see him heat up as well.

    1. ric D….been 5 years since he did any catching for any length and that was only 80 plus games according to BR….and then a dozen games in 2014
      And he had issues.
      He is 32 years old now. I think it will be difficult for him now.
      And this from back then:
      “….Another catcher being moved off the position (mostly) for 2014. Unlike Mauer, however, this seems to be a less painful proposition for Cleveland. Whereas Joe Mauer was relatively neutral in framing terms, Carlos Santana is (was?) a legitimately terrible framer, based on the data available.
      In fact, in 2012, it appears that Santana’s framing ability measured out to -29.5 framing runs, which is like taking approximately three wins off of his value. This is, in a word, bad. In fact, if you were to use his fWAR (3.3 in 2012) as a base, factoring in framing makes him look like something of a replacement-level player during that 2012 season. Carlos Santana. Replacement-level. I know, crazy. So the Indians have appeared to move Santana off the position he played poorly (although less bad in 2013), put him in a position that doesn’t sap his value quite as much as a move to 1B would have, and replaced him with a pretty cool framing catcher. …..”

    2. I don’t think he was a very good catcher but his offensive profile was such that they had to find a spot for him thus he played some 3B until he wound up at 1B.

  19. New to posting but a long time reader. Would like some of your opinions about the Michael Jack comments. I’ve seen a ton of people on twitter up in arms about his in game comments. I tend to agree that he is not the best in the booth but i’m kinda scratching my head about the backlash. He tried to make a joke, it was somewhat funny, are we really in a world where that kinda joke gets someone in trouble? Was it that bad? In my opinion, it was a joke. Big deal.

    1. I turned to my wife last night and asked her she chuckled and said people really need to get a life…again her words not mine

      At the end of the day I am a huge believer in free speech and I would never call for someone’s job over something they said. An Apology perhaps.

      How often have you seen the preface of an oped where the forum providers clarify upfront “the views of the writer are his or her own and do not necessarily reflect the views of blah blah blah”

      This statement is always funny to me because I read prepare to possibly be offended but we are not responsible for giving the writer said forum to offend you LOL.

      I’m the wrong person to ask though as I don’t possibly think that I can ever be offended and Mike Schmidt is one of my favorite players.

      1. DMAR……..Schmidt, Schilling and Rose…three great ballplayers and Phillies during their time….but boy, do they stir up the pot and invoke controversy when they speak…I like to see the three on a panel together! 🙂

        1. Haha Romus I don’t think I can put 20 in the same class as those other two. Interesting times.

          I tried watching the ESPN game Sunday night which AROD is now a part of that broadcast with Matt Vasgersian and Jessica Mendoza who I think are great but talk about awkward when they started to talk about CC getting into the HOF and the subject of Clemons came up

          Matt had to catch himself as to where he was taking the conversation about Steroid ERA players not getting in….booooo

          1. Yeah…I know…many announcers now have to couch their words.

            Come to think about….many former Phillies players seem to land in hot water when they speak….Kruk and Mitch Williams each of them also had their issues on ESPN or the MLB network….besides Schilling and of course all of Rose’s issues.

            Former Phillies players who stay in Philly too long…fatten up on cheesesteaks, then start to embrace the Philadelphia negativity philosphy.

            I blame rocco.

    2. Bryant – First off, Schmidt is a pretty bad color commentator. Beyond that, Schmidt shared an opinion last year about Herrera’s leadership ability. While Herrera is fun to watch, and works hard, I, too, doubt his leadership abilities. It’s only an opinion, but several writers and posters have take shots at Schmidt ever since. The dishwashing comment would have gone unnoticed by me, if not for some people blowing it out of proportion.

    3. It was a joke, but in this day and age, it got blown out of proportion. There was no malicious intent with his joke, and that’s what matters.

  20. This might be a good time to inject some energy in what appears to be a lineup in need of a jolt. Sit Santana a few games. Bring up Roman Quinn. He fits this roster better than Williams. Let Hoskins play 1b. Not sure what to do with Williams at this point but if he’s not going to start (and he certainly hasn’t merited the rf job), he’s pretty much a waste coming off the bench. This is where Klentak needs to earn his stripes. Just my observation…

  21. I noticed last night that the Manny Train conductors want to project him to LA now that Seagar is gone for the season.

    1. Half of MLB teams have incentive to acquire Machado. What any suitors need to consider is what Baltimore is looking for in return, not necessarily what “I” am willing to offer. Does the O’s FO want more in prospects to rebuild from scratch (since they’ll also be dangling Jones, Britton & company)? Or do they want young MLB ready talent to shorten the turnover? And finally which team will be willing to overpay?

        1. That might be a bad deal both for the Orioles (who could probably get more for him) and for the Phillies (who have a ton of cash for free agents and can’t afford right now to be trading away a possible future ace).

          1. For a rental Manny, I would offer Franco, Quinn, and any pitching prospect other than Sixto. That’s it or I wait until early November.

  22. Romus … there is no such animal (a non-rental MM). That animal is only available after this season as a FA.

    1. You do not know that.
      Lozano and MacPhaill may do another LTC like they did in 2010.
      But the issue will be….will the Os let a team negotiate before a deal is consummated…they did not in December.

      1. You’re right. I am not in contact with Manny Machado or Dan Lozano to have firsthand knowledge that they wouldn’t/would be open to a sign and trade. However, I do know that I can’t think of a single instance of a MLB player agreeing to a sign and trade deal. MLB doesn’t have “Bird Rights” (or any salary cap rules like that) that would make sign and trade beneficial to players. As I have posted probably 50 times already … why would MM negotiate with one team, when he can wait just six months now, and negotiate with every team.
        Also … why wouldn’t the O’s be good with a sign and trade ? Machado would be way more valuable in a sign and trade deal. That would increase Baltimore’s compensation substantially. I believe Angelos just would not be ok with a sign and trade situation that would send MM to a division rival (aka NYY).

        1. Romus … I’m also not sure what LTC you are referring to that MM and Dan Lozano agreed to in 2010. He was drafted and agreed to a normal entry level signing bonus. Since reaching MLB, he has made minimum/very near minimum wage in his first three seasons. He then has gone through three years of the arbitration process (though on two occasions he and the team agreed to one year deals prior to a hearing). As far as I can determine, there has never been a LTC between the O’s and Machado.

          1. To be clear … in 2010 MM signed a normal entry level contract w/signing bonus. Other than the amount of the signing bonus, the contract is no different than the ones signed by Mickey Moniak in 2016 or Adam Haseley in 2017, or even the contract signed by last year’s 39th round pick DJ Stewart.

            1. Let’s keep it real though we all know MM is not negotiating with 30 teams if and when he does get to FA. He knows exactly where he will and won’t want to be for this LTC.

              So you can basically rule out 50% of the league if not more IMO. He’ll likely want to cash in and know the team he signs with will still be able to put talent around him.

            2. DMAR … whether MM actually negotiates with every team, half the teams, a half dozen teams, or even two teams … the point is, his price is going to go higher if multiple teams are bidding.
              If you were selling your home, and someone calls you on the phone the night before the sign goes up on your front lawn, and offers you what might be a nice offer, would you accept or would you wait for it to be listed and hope for multiple offers ?
              You get the point. It makes zero sense for Machado to pass up free agency at this point.

            1. Romus … I’ve got all kinds of respect for your baseball knowledge. However, You have to understand the contract Manny Machado inked in 2010 was not the LTC you posted earlier. Aside from the bonus, he signed the same entry level contract every player signs when they get drafted (although, I believe in years long gone, a couple players may have signed deals that guaranteed them 40 man roster spots right away [not 100% certain of that]). Machado quickly worked his way through MiLB, and was on the same rookie minimum/near minimum wage pay scale for his first three seasons that every other player is tied to. Years four thru six, MM went thru the arbitration process. Though it seems he agreed to one year deals on two different occasions to avoid a hearing. Unless your Scott Kingery, David Archer, Chris Sale, or Mike Trout (examples of guys who did sign long term contracts), every player follows the same process as Machado.
              The point of all this is to show you that Manny Machado has been paid on one year deals throughout his career. If you are going to describe his 2010 (draft year) contract as a LTC, then you might as well say Jakob Hernandez inked a LT deal with the Phillies after they took him in the 22nd (?) round last summer.

              Manny Machado (and his agent) have had six years to agree to a LTC with Baltimore. Do you really believe he’s going to pass up God knows how much money just six months before he’s able to become a FA ?

            2. Hinkie…he still had the option not to sign in 2010.
              And yes I understand the process.
              The bonus offer is still a legal contract of mutual assent for both parties
              However……I still think the Phillies should make the offer to the Os with the caveat he must agree to a LTC, and if he is not willing to sign, then no deal.
              What does it hurt to make that offer.

            3. Then … would you also say Jakob Hernandez signed a LTC after being drafted last summer ? He could have turned down the 100 thousand dollars he signed for and gone back to school for his senior season.

              I’m just making the point that MM is in no way doing a sign and trade deal. Even if MacKlentak offered Peter Angelos: Sixto Sanchez, JP Crawford, Scott Kingery, Jhailyn Ortiz, the Phanatic, and a truck load of John Middleton’s finest cigars, it wouldn’t work. All that does nothing for Machado.

            4. @romus – all players need to sign a contract when they agree to play for a team, otherwise, they have no enforceable right to collect the $$ for the time and effort they spent with the team. The $5.25M is similar to bonus $$ that all prospects when they got drafted in Rule IV or signed via J2 IFA — it is similar to the $5.1M that Adam Haseley agreed to sign when the Phils drafted him as a 2017 Rule IV pick 1.8 .

              So the mechanics of that 2010 contract is way different from the upcoming FA contract that Machado will going to sign at some point this year. The $5.25M is technically a one time bonus vs the annual salary that he is going to get via FA contract.

        2. @hinkie – I agree with you. Machado knows that this might be his best chance to set up his (and his family’s) retirement. the Phils will be a key player due to payroll flexibility, deep pockets and young talent, but Machado will do his due diligence so there’s still a high probability that Machado will not agree to any contract until he becomes FA.

          As for sign-and-trade, i don’t see this happening as there’s not benefit for the player. In the NBA, the mother team can offer more money to sign a FA than any other teams that’s why the players agree to sign with their mother team to get the highest $$, thus, the mother team retains their rights and have the ability to trade them.

          the only reason why Machado will approve a sign-and-trade is because he feels indebted and grateful to the O’s for giving him the opportunity to play in the big league which we all know as bull___t.

  23. There will be multiple teams looking to pay him a lot of $ $35M AAV for however many years may be a little light. So, our hopes have always been based on his prior relationships with current Phillies’ personnel. I don’t know how meaningful that will be, and I think his desire to play SS is very real. So our brain trust needs to think a few steps ahead. I think a MM move to play SS results in JP getting traded. I really don’t see his value elsewhere on the field. Josh Donaldson will make an excellent, shorter term Plan B.

  24. I hope Manny Machado does get traded this summer (whether it’s to the Phillies or another team). That will save the club from losing it’s second round pick for the second year in a row when the Phillies sign Machado this winter.
    For me, if the Phillies are contending for the NL East (not a WC), Toronto makes a better trade partner than Baltimore this summer. I’d investigate what it would take to deal for Josh Donaldson and JA Happ (both FA’s after the season). Getting Manny Machado with this pitching staff is still very unlikely to make you a WS contender. If it’s going to cost me only a reasonable amount more to get the big bat (Donaldson) and the arm (Happ), I’d be more open to that.

    1. I have the same sentiments. I’m optimistic that the Phils can land at least one premium FA this offseason and with a reasonable of signing another one before the next season starts.

  25. I’ll take either Machado or Harper though I prefer the latter if I have to choose one. Meanwhile I’d go hard after Patrick Corbin and we’re good for a playoff run in ’19 with Sixto and De Los Santos also in the rotation and Seranthony in the back end of the bullpen.

  26. 8mark, I am with you there. Patrick Corbin is making himself a boatload of $, and I have him right near the top of my wish list if he stays healthy the whole year. Hinkie, I think the best Toronto can hope for is to be in contention for the 2D WC. If they fall out, and we are in the race, I deinitely explore Donaldson and Happ. You are going to hear alot about Cole at the deadline, as well. I am a huge Cole Hamels fan, but I don’t know how much he has left.

          1. Hah……if Matt Klentak signs CB……that will be it for me, this season.
            I can now see the posts on philly.com.

            1. Choosing CB over Charlie Morton was one of the worst combined decisions I can recall over the last 5 years or so. It is one of the things that has me seriously questioning their talent evaluation skills. If CB comes back I’m checking out – going on strike. It’s bad enough we have to watch Jake Thompson pitch.

  27. Before a whole day passes … I wanted to note another example of what keeps Cesar Hernandez from being a complete player. No doubt, CeHe has turned himself into a very good player, but his miscues on the base paths are frustrating/mind blowing/annoying. I’ll admit I was bouncing back and forth between the 76ers and the Phillies games last night. I stuck around for a while in the Phillies 7th inning. With the Phillies down by two runs, Cesar leads the inning off with a BB (Great Thing). A few batters later, the bases are loaded with CeHe at 3B and only one out. Someone (I forget the Phillie batter) hit a sinking fly ball to right-center field. The OF’er had to dive head first and skid across the grass to make the play. Instead of tagging up, Cesar for some reason found himself halfway to home, and failed to score (Really Bad Thing). In the end, that one run didn’t make a difference in the 8-4 loss. But, it’s just another (in a fairly long line of) play(s) by CeHe on the bases that have to make you scratch your head.

    1. Hinkie…agree.
      And what was said afterwards:
      “I should have done better,” Hernandez said.
      “That’s a base runner’s read,” Kapler said. “It always has been and always will be. It’s a play Cesar needs to make and he understands that. It’s a play that he can read better.”

  28. The batter was Santana, and that Kingery dribbled a ball about two feet in front of the plate. I was not going to comment on it, because I did not want all of the Cesar guys getting upset. It was a dumb play and he is not a rookie. But, he has made himself into a good player. Some of the ABs lately are just very poor. Rhys is even catching that bad AB bug, and he is usually terrific at seeing pitches. Too many checked swings with guys on base. I know they want to see pitches, but I believe that, especially late in the game, and definitely with runners in scoring position, they need to hit the first good pitch that they see. That is often the best one that they will see.

    1. Rhys specifically is taking too many first pitch strikes right down the middle. The scouting reports get around quick and until he starts to change up his game plan at the plate he will find himself in unfavorable counts.

      1. I agree Dmar. He struck out twice looking. With his batting eye, Rhys should not strike out twice looking in a week.

  29. 11 baserunners tonight. 1 lousy run. I hope the bats snap out of it cuz when you get Eflin pitching lights out for 5 innings and lose, that goes down as a bad loss.

      1. I just don’t understand. did you think the farm was better than there playing? look at the lack of bats in this system. Drafting has been horrible. Overrated farm system. but last night that was the best stuff , that I ever have seen from elfin. Klentak will eventually get the boot from Middleton OR is Middleton a guy like ed Snyder god rest his soul. Who kept hiring unqualified people as gm. Hey john you want to win. go get scouts from Atlanta, Boston and a winning gm would help. not a young Shelton,

        1. Yes, Roc, I thought and still think – like about 90% of the folks who visit this site – that the system is better than they’re playing. And yes, Roc, I’m concerned like many here that it won’t prove it sooner than anticipated.

          My concern is more with development than evaluation.

        2. @roc – i don’t think that the farm is overrated. there seems to be a consensus about the farm’s depth across the board but lack of elite talent so the farm is where it should be. Prospect rankings are normally influenced by who’s prospect(s) on the top — with Sixto, Kingery and Medina almost unanimously accepted as really good prospects, the farm is up there in the upper third of the league.

          The farm looks bad right now since most of the top prospects are not playing up to their average/level. Sure, there are some bad red flags and concerns on Moniak, Randolph, Ortiz and Kilome certain prospects like Sixto, Medina, Haseley, JoJo and Eshelman have the ability to turn things around.

          But I agree with you that the FO collectively needs to hit with their 1.3 pick.

        3. Of course AAA and AA have mostly fill in players . That will happen when your mlb team is really young.the McBride’s , Ortiz, Cowgill, of baseball aren’t going to win you championship’s. There’s pitching prospect all over starting and relieving.

  30. Quinn has played rf his last 2 games with Lehigh. Could be an indication that he and Williams may soon swap places.

  31. They are going to need a spark sooner rather than later if these bats keep failing. That was a great game by Eflin, and a game they need to win. I still believe that the AB approach needs to change with runners in scoring position. We need to make contact not worry about launch angles. And, Quinn’s base running ability, not just his speed, will add a new dimension to the Offense.

  32. EARLY PROSPECT WATCH

    STOCK UP

    Quinn
    Seranthony
    Delos Santos
    Howard
    Edgar Garcia

    STOCK DOWN AND KEEP A CLOSE EYE ON

    Ortiz
    JoJo
    Kilome
    Eshelman
    Brito
    Seabold

    STOCK DOWN BUT YOU SHOULD RELAX

    Sixto
    Medina
    Haseley

    STOCK DOWN AND POSSIBLY OUT

    Moniak
    Randolph
    Cozens
    Elniery Garcia

    EVEN/WASH

    Valentin
    Gamboa
    Ranger
    Irvin
    Hall
    Mills

    UNDER THE RADAR

    Muzziotti
    Rosso
    Dohy

    TOO LATE THE HERO

    Walding
    Coppola

  33. KuKo, I don’t think Sixto’s stock is down. He is the best chance the farm has for a possible future Ace, and I don’t think that has changed. And, Cozens still has, what they call in Boxing, a “Puncher’s Chance”. I also have a personal moratorium on criticism of MM for the year. I will continue to root for him and hope he finds his hitting tool again.

    1. It pisses me off that Valentin isn’t starting. You can’t have rigid views about your players and prospects. Guys improve or get worse. Things change. But when you’re views are static, you miss some of the best developments. There’s no reason to start Pedro ahead of Valentin. Valentin can freaking play.

    2. Don’t know but the Phillies are trying to win this yr . Nola on the mound they lost 4 straight. Florimon maybe much better at the D then Valentin at SS. I mean Valentin is a jack of all trades.

    1. Not shocking news. As I’ve posted many, many times … MM has not signed a LTC for six years, why would he agree to a LTC now when he’s just six months away from free agency (and a tremendous pay day).
      Also … Machado didn’t put the O’s in a fix. Peter Angelos did that. He should have allowed DD to trade MM last summer (or at least this past winter). That would have then freed the team to deal Adam Jones, Brad Brach, and Zach Britton and not only get a head start on their rebuild, but stock the club with more/better prospects.

  34. There is a good chance that Angelos will simply refuse to trade him. Then, after he leaves, fire the GM. I haven’t believed anyone would get him in July.

    1. matt13…I think his son will tell him that would be a big mistake. They would then up with the 30 something pick in 2019 by losing a possible future HoF player.
      Fans will really be upset.
      They will probably have to settle for one premier prospect and probably a second tier anyway if they do decide to tr to move him in July.
      And the market will be small……some of the contending teams may already have the pieces in play..

    2. Machado is definitely getting dealt some time this summer. That’s good news for the Phillies. It will save them their 2019 second round draft pick.

      1. The good news for Baltimore is … Corey Seager is out for the year.
        The bad news is … Josh Donaldson and Mike Moustakas should also be available.

    1. Romus in macy window. you know the old saying. I will do it. if they are above 500. just not that good of a team

  35. I don’t think I’ve ever seen Nola look better than yesterday. Granted, he was playing the Fish, but he essentially carved them up with fastball, changeup. His money curveball wasn’t even needed. His changeup has advanced to the point where it’s a true plus pitch. That changeup made a lot of hitters look bad.

    1. Shame he cannot teach the CU to ViVe or Pivetta.
      He can throw it effectively 25% of the time and has it sit at 83-85.

      1. @romus – Vinny is the prototypical “thrower vs pitcher” type that’s why I always view him as a bullpen piece. Vinny tend to “throw” his CU too hard that it looks like it’s a slow FB. But I still have trust that Vinny can put it up together because he has the stuff to be a good SP.

    2. Nola always have that good CU since his LSU days and it looks like Nola is trusting it more, thus, the increase in usage. Nola is exactly who he is when he was drafted so no surprise from me. If there’s one, it is his 4S FB that is starting to creep up to 93-95 mph if he really wants to jack it up.

      If i have one concern about Nola, it seems that he starts slowly in the 1st inning. But once he found his groove, he’s like a machine.

  36. He was terrific, and did just what an Ace is supposed to do. Rhys Hoskins OTOH, is in a real slump. Does he need a day or 2 off? K’s 4 times the same way. Look at Strike one, fouled off pitches over the 3rd base dugout because he was way ahead, and Ks on a low and outside slider. Tough to watch,I am a huge fan of his.

    1. Hoskins is overdue for a day off anyway. (Eyes and ears still peeled for a Quinn-Williams swap) Hoskins may need to counter the league’s approach on him by swinging earlier in the count, at least until they stop.

      1. There is talk about a Williams for Quinn swap, but not for the reasons you want. Obviously if Williams goes down, he`s going to play everyday at Lehigh to get him going. As for Quinn, the Phillies are going to treat him as a 4th OF and will play sparingly behind Altherr and Herrera.

    1. does he need to be 96? is 93-95 still not good enough for you? i’ll take a well located 92-93 with sink/movement than a flat 96-97 anytime, any day.

      1. Yeah, except Nola’s 95 and 96 isn’t flat.

        The added velocity creates further deception in Nola’s strategy. It allows him to keep batters off balance by adding and subtracting velocity – from what I can tell it’s very intentional and it makes him that much more effective.

        1. Nola is still young, I will not be surprised to see 1-3 mph more on his heater in the next 5 years. because of his arm slot, Nola will be selective in throwing a mid-90s 4S.

    2. I don’t think Nola hit 95+ too many times. Less than 10 times for sure. He was hovering at 92-93.

  37. KuKo and rocco, I didn’t pay a lot of attention to the velocity. I was impressed with his command, the sharpness of his pitches, and the CU that was terrific. I think we can all agree that his performance was a terrific one.

    1. @matt – i’m not also a velocity guy. my preference for a pitcher are quality of pitches, mix, command and mental composure. i do understand that everything starts with a FB, but as long as a pitcher is not throwing uber slow (<90 mph for 4S), i tend not to focus on velocity.

      1. I completely disagree. Except for small handful of pitchers, the added velocity is enormously helpful. If velocity weren’t that big of a deal Jake Thompson would be a really good pitcher. But he isn’t mostly because he’s a righty and throws too slow. And if you need any testament to how important velocity generally is to a righty just take a look at Matt Harvey. At 97-99 he’s one of the 5 best pitchers in baseball. At 91-94, he’s not even a 5. VELOCITY MATTERS!

        1. Jake and Harvey doesn’t have the same quality of pitches and command as the Nola’s, etc that’s why they are screwed when the velocity drops. Jake’s pitches are there to be hit. We saw Appel’s, Aumont’s, Pinto’s, etc. Vinny will be in the similar boat soon if he cannot improve the quality of pitches.

          I agree that velocity matters, but it is not the end all be all kind of thing. there should be a good balance of velocity, quality of pitches, command and mental psychology for a SP to be one of the top arms in the league.

          1. Aaron Nola is a true outlier and even he shows good velocity. Most righties who can’t throw harder than about 92 or 93 become Jake Thompson – or worse. Exceptions like Nola don’t disprove the rule.

            1. true, but most people down play Nola because of his 4S velocity which doesn’t make sense to me. my argument when it comes to velocity is to consider the Nola-type and not to all SPs that throws below 92 mph.

              I never talked highly of Eshelman’s, Lively, Eickhoff’s, Eflin, Vinny, etc in this site because i don’t think they have the right mix of velocity, command, quality of pitches and mental psychology that I’m talking about.

              on the contrary, prospects like Anderson, Enyel and Howard which I posted here that I really like have the factors I’ve discussed above.

              so i’m not really pro-velocity (Vinny, Pivetta, Eflin) and anti-velocity (Esh, Lively, Eick) since my assessment of a SP goes beyond just pure velocity.

            2. i think the conclusion that we can arrive is — if a SP doesn’t have the command and secondaries close/similar to Nola — then velocity matters.

            3. Catch Prove it were are all these power Rhp with at least 3 yrs success . Also health is a talent too. That’s why all of the most of top rotations have at least 2 LhP starters . There isn’t too many successful Rhp who have 95 fb that are successful for long .

        2. Catch its like talking to a wall. Those few right handers who can win with low velo. Makes people think you don’t need a fast ball if you have a curve and change up. Well imo that’s nuts and you see a lot of bad righthanders who have low velo., if we build our pitching staff on low velo right handers we will never be good.

          1. @roccom – i think this argument is just getting out of context. i don’t have the stats right now, but how many starters (lets focus on RHP) in MLB you think have an average 4S of at least 95 mph? probably no more than 20% and out of that 20% how have at least average command and with at least a plus secondary?

            My point is, a SP with at least 95 mph 4S with good command and at least 2 other above average secondaries don’t grow on trees and probably represent no more than 10% in the league. That’s why if you have one like Sixto, you don’t easily give that up.

            Although for RPs, having velocity is a MUST.

        3. Harvey lost his control & command too including the really never being healthy again.Arietta also avg 93 FB there’s many pitchers that can have a FB below 94 with good to great off speed stuff . Then there’s the young guys who don’t have the control &command or the pitching IQ to make it though the 5 th ing . They try to blow 98 mph FB past everyone they can’t place it where they want it or have 1good breaking pitch that they leave out over the plate.
          The Tj surgery Harvey had really affected him he hasn’t been the same since .the entire Mets rotation had been the mash unit for the last couple of yrs.

          1. Tim…Harvey did not have TJ surgery, he had TOS….thoracic outlet syndrome surgery. Padres’ Ross also had it……difficult coming back from the surgery.

            1. Tim…in 2015 Harvey had a 4.8WAR all-star season after the 2014 rehab from TJ in 2013.

          2. True Harvey did pitch in 2013 178 ings . He has a very short career ing wise . I mean he never pitched over 200 ings . At 29 he’s going south fast.

  38. So I saw an article on ESPN grading the baseball moves over the offseason. I focused on some of the FA names that were talked about in this forum. While it is true that Carlos Santana has been pretty bad for us, it could have been much worse. The numbers on Yu Darvish, Lance Lynn, and Alex Cobb have been downright horrific.

    1. The guru cause other teams free agent aren’t doing anything That’s means we can screw up onours. makes no sense. who cares what other teams do. I want to win here,I icould care less if other teams cant scout or pick up good fa. Santana even with last years numbers, was a mistake. We didn’t need a first basemen who is 32 and switching leagues, when we has a good first basemen already. made no sense. but klentak moves never make sense.

      1. I think the point is that it’s obviously harder than you think for teams to always make the correct decisions when signing FAs, drafting, etc.

        Focusing on the mistakes made by the Phillies without seeing what’s happening elsewhere creates a false sense.. But you were in your post above that its like talking to a wall…

        1. 3UP Not to be rude, but your Reponses really makes no sense on our needs and what we do. if you cant pick a fa who will help, then how in gods name can these scouts get us talent in the draft. I wish I went o Princeton, maybe then I could understand your logic, that if we suck its okay cause other teams make mistakes, The real false sense is making excuses for our bad gm and scouts based on find someone else to say oh they made a mistake. Like saying to your kid well 50 kids took the test and 5 fail, you fail but so did 4 others. doesn’t make it right only a excuse for being bad at something.

          1. Rocco, sorry you are unable or unwilling to try to understand the point. Point out that other teams also miss on prospects/free agents isn’t meant to excuse the mistakes that the Phillies make but rather to put those mistakes in context.

            You seem to be of the mindset that the Phillies management can’t do anything right and why can’t they be like team x, where team X is whatever team happens to be at the top of the heap right now. It was Boston, then Chicago, and now you want them to hire the Braves scouting dept. even thought the Braves have been terrible for how long?

            Just looking for a little perspective..

      2. We focus on the Phillies here, and rightly so since this is a Phillies forum. We rag on the Phillies when something goes wrong, but the fact of the matter is, other teams are just as bad in making free agent signings, in making draft picks. That’s what I wanted to highlight.

  39. For those of you down on Vinnie Velo, keep in mind, Ken Giles has had his ups and downs in Houston. He lost a game on a Gary Sanchez HR the other night. What followed was one for the ages …

  40. Not at all unhappy with the trade. Giles hasn’t exactly been Mariano Rivera. And, VV may find himself or find success in the BP, or do neither. The trade was a success regardless.

    1. agree, that’s a trade that Klentak needs to make since he is selling high on Giles. If there’s a mistake, it’s more on the return that Klentak specifically when he amended the trade by asking for Appel in exchange of Fisher (plus surrendering Jon Arauz)

        1. rocco…Eshelman and Harold A. could still see MLB time and be productive MLB players….they still may end being replacement players that could serve a purpose….or maybe even trade chips.
          Jon Arauz is at Quad cities low a…so he still has 2/3 years to go….and then he wil have to move either Altuve or Correa……looks like he may also be a future trade chip for the Astros..

      1. That deal is a bit of this new administration in a microcosm. Outstanding plan and forethought but not necessarily the best talent evaluation. Unfortunately for Klentak, to be an elite team, you need quite a bit of both.

  41. Romus I was talking to the mom of the kid Minnesota just moved to triple a. I told her I think he he gets called up to majors for one day he gets free medical for life, is that right I thought you told me that.??

    1. Yes free medical for life and MLB players must play 43 days in the majors to earn a minimum $34,000 annual pension plan.
      Just the one day in the majors gets them lifetime healthcare coverage

    1. Complain to Hinkie, not me…..he is running the draft.
      Madrigal I assume you are talking about…….he could be the next Jose Altuve, Dustin Pedroia or Scott Kingery.

    2. rocco … I posted in the draft thread this morning Keith Law says Phillies not interested in Madrigal. He has them taking Bohm, and also interested in Bart.

  42. I haven’t heard this before but a friend just texted me referring to Hoskins and Kingery as Batman and Robin. That is a really cool tandem tag for those two moving forward. Btw, I’m feeling really good about this offense breaking out tonight vs Gio. Lead of course by the Dynamic Duo!

      1. Who do the Phillies DFA off the 40 to bring on Harvey?
        Then there is Neshek and Leiter coming back maybe next week.

        1. Jake Thompson, that’s easy. But is it worth the distractions that Harvey would bring? I’m sure the FO will pass.

    1. Wow….how fast he has fallen.
      Last night he had that one good inning…then the raves exploded on him and wlaked three and that was it and he got booed in NY.
      The Dark Knight gets booed!

        1. how can you not take a flyer on him. don’t think the Mutts want much in return. If he can return to even a semblance of his former self it would be a huge plus. Rather keep trotting him out every 5 days than VV. Send VV to pen

          1. Well he is only with a team 5 months then becomes a FA.
            But man, after 27 innings this season, his FIP, WHIP and ERA are very troubling.

  43. If the Mets are willing to DFA Harvey, that tells you everything you need to know. He hasn’t been good since 2015 when he was 26. The Mets have had 3 years to look at him and decided he’s not worth the trouble. That said, he’s not going to pass through waivers. Some bad team is going to take a chance on him.

  44. With the Mets, it’s like history repeating itself. Remember when the Mets had a trio of flamethrowers, code named Generation K : Jason Isringhausen, Bill Pulsipher, Paul Wilson?

    Now Matt Harvey is gone, Matz and Wheeler can barely stay healthy, Syndergaard missed most of last season. Only DeGrom has been the healthiest and most consistent. And now he’s on the DL with a hyperextended elbow of all things.

    1. I’m not surprised. He completely reverted back to the old Nick Pivetta. Gave up HRs, walks, had no confidence in his secondary pitches.

  45. 96mph fb go along way when there right down the pike. Too being a LhP gets by with a 90mph fb but he mixes his pitches well too.

  46. Drew Hutchison went 5 innings against the Nats? This is going to get interesting for Pivetta’s next start…

    1. Whether he winds up here or not, let’s hope the worst case scenario is that another organization finds him an enticing trade piece for something substantial. But his power is to dream on….

    1. I try to avoid the CU designation for pitches since it could be change-up or curve. I prefer CH and CB respectively.

  47. VV pitched well today. He had a decent feel for his pitches, and mixed them well. He even changed speeds on his fastball, adding more juice when elevating his fastball. I was impressed

    1. Hinkie, do you think the Phils should give Pedro Beato a shot? He’s been good at LV, although that’s only AAA. Neris isn’t the answer. He one was a reliable set-up man, but has never impressed me as a closer.

      1. No to Beato. I don’t think they need to add him to the 40 man. They have other options. They could use Garcia or Hunter to close for now. I think Kapler envisions Ser-Ant’ny has his closer of the future. Whether that happens later this season or it takes until sometime next year, I think he’s the eventual closer.

        1. Probably right re the 40-man, but Hunter and Garcia haven’t exactly been impressive either. Dominguez needs more work. I don’t like any of those options.

  48. I Am not good at stats. But if I am right, Neris averages I runner per inning .It seems to me he hardly ever has a clean inning. I don’t know who else we could use as a closer. but neris to me isn’t the answer.

  49. I think that Arano or Neshek, if they were available, would have come into tonight’s game in the ninth. We have a good bullpen but are shorthanded right now. Klentak needs to keep beating the bushes until he finds a “lights out” closer (preferably a lefty).

  50. What a pity to lose a game like that……Neris is not the answer. I think Roccom is right. Neris rarely has a clean inning – he reminds me of Mitch Williams. He has an unhittable pitch but can’t throw it with regularity. Time to move on. You can’t waste a game like this – and frankly, Hunter and Garcia didn’t help the situation either no matter how effective they appear to be. With Arano and Neshek (the one we are used to seeing) Sunday’s game goes in the W column.

  51. If there is any belief that this team can compete and play meaningful baseball in August and September, they had better get a legitimate closer. Even when Neris does record a save, his reaction is patting his own chest as if almost having cardiac arrest. Like he can’t believe he survived. Us too. We don’t need that.

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