Open Discussion: Week of June 10, 2019

The Phillies (37-28, .569) rebounded with a 4-2 week.  They won both series 2 games to one, went 2-4 last week.  They opened with two wins against 2 of the weaker teams outside their division, San Diego and Cincinnati.

The Phillies conclude their home stand this week with a 4-game series against a hot Arizona team.  They visit Atlanta next weekend for a 3-game series that begins a stretch of 26 games against division foes.

Injuries are playing a big role in the Phillies season.  They have 7 relievers and 3 center fielders on the Injured List (IL).  Three of the the relievers are on the 60-day IL.  The Phillies have been shuttling arms back-and -forth from Lehigh with moderate success.  They are reported to have signed FA reliever Fernando Salas to a minot league contract

The recent acquisition of Jay Bruce came at a fortuitous time.  But there is little help at Lehigh with outfielders Dylan Cozens and Shane Robinson on the 10-day IL.  The Phillies need to find a better solution than Nick Williams.  Since March 28th, he has been in 6 games when not bouncing between Lehigh and Philadelphia.  In 2 starts he is 4 for 6.  That’s 4 strike outs in 6 at bats.  In 3 pinch hitting appearances, he is 3 for 3.  That’s 3 strike outs in 3 at bats.  In his other appearance, he entered as a defensive replacement in a double switch and, thank god, didn’t get to bat.  So that’s 0 for 9 with 7 strike outs.  That’s a big hole on the bench.

The Phillies are in first place with a 1.0 game lead over Atlanta.  New York and Washington have picked up some ground closing to 5.0 and 7.0 games respectively.

The 40-man roster stands at 40, the entire organization stands at 350.

This is the Phuture Phillies Open Discussion for Phillies and other baseball topics.  Still don’t want to hear about any mythical Trout trades.

Key Dates:

  • June 14, 2019 – Williamsport begins its 2019 season
  • June 24, 2019 – GCL Phillies East begins its 2019 season
  • June 24, 2019 – GCL Phillies West begins its 2019 season
  • July 31, 2019 – Non-waiver trade deadline
  • September 1, 2019 – Roster expansion to 40 players (for the last time)
  • September 17, 2019 – beginning of the Arizona Fall League
  • October 12, 2019 – Arizona Fall Stars Game
  • October 27, 2019 – Arizona Fall League Championship Game

The rosters and lists are up to date. 

6/9/2019 – Lehigh Valley activated LHP Cole Irvin from the TIL
6/9/2019 – RHP Luis Ramirez assigned to Lakewood from Clearwater
6/9/2019 – RHP Oscar Marcelino assigned to Clearwater from Lakewood
6/9/2019 – Ethan Lindow assigned to Lakewood from Williamsport
6/9/2019 – James McArthur assigned to Williamsport from Lakewood
6/8/2019 – Phillies placed CF Adam Haseley on the 10-day IL retro to June 6th, groin strain
6/8/2019 – Phillies recalled LF Nick Williams from Lehigh Valley
6/8/2019 – Lakewood activated C Abrahan Gutierrez from the 7-day IL
6/8/2019 – Phillies to sign FA P Fernando Salas to a minor league deal
6/8/2019 – Colton Eastman assigned to Clearwater from Williamsport
6/8/2019 – Kevin Gowdy assigned to Lakewood from Williamsport
6/8/2019 – Jack Conley assigned to Williamsport from Lakewood
6/8/2019 – Ethan Evanko assigned to Williamsport from Clearwater
6/8/2019 – Victor Santos assigned to Williamsport from Lakewood
6/7/2019 – Oscar Marcelino assigned to Lakewood from Williamsport
6/7/2019 – Dominic Pipkin assigned to Williamsport from Lakewood
6/7/2019 – Phillies activated RHP Zach Eflin from the 10-day IL
6/7/2019 – Phillies placed RHP Seranthony Dominguez on the 10-day IL, retro to 6/6, UCL
6/7/2019 – Phillies optioned RHP Yacksel Rios to Lehigh Valley
6/7/2019 – Phillies recalled LHP Ranger Suarez from Lehigh Valley
6/5/2019 – Lehigh Valley activated OF Jan Hernandez from the 7-day IL
6/5/2019 – Lehigh Valley placed LHP Cole Irvin on the temporarily inactive list.
6/5/2019 – Tyler McKay assigned to Lakewood from Williamsport
6/5/2019 – Ethan Lindow assigned to Williamsport from Lakewood
6/4/2019 – Phillies placed LF Andrew McCutchen on the 10-day IL, left ACL tear
6/4/2019 – Phillies placed RHP Victor Arano on the 60-IL retro to 4/19, elbow inflammation
6/4/2019 – Phillies selected the contract of CF Adam Haseley from Lehigh Valley
6/4/2019 – RHP  Gonell assigned to Lakewood from Williamsport
6/4/2019 – LHP Manuel Silva assigned to Lakewood from Williamsport
6/4/2019 – RHP Michael Gomez assigned to Williamsport from GCL West
6/4/2019 – RHP Kevin Gowdy assigned to Williamsport from Lakewood
6/4/2019 – RHP Oscar Marcelino assigned to Williamsport from Lakewood
6/4/2019 – C Nick Matera assigned to Williamsport from GCL West
6/4/2019 – C Logan O’Hoppe assigned to Williamsport from GCL West
6/4/2019 – RHP Tom Sutera assigned to Williamsport from GCL West
6/4/2019 – LHP Junior Tejada assigned to Williamsport from GCL West
6/4/2019 – INF Nicolas Torres assigned to Williamsport from GCL East
6/4/2019 – SS Christian Valerio assigned to Williamsport from GCL West
6/4/2019 – CF Corbin Williams assigned to Williamsport from GCL West
6/4/2019 – C Kevin Escalante assigned to GCL East from GCL West
6/4/2019 – C Freddy Francisco assigned to GCL West from Williamsport
6/4/2019 – LHP Juan Miranda assigned to GCL West from Williamsport
6/4/2019 – RHP Sandro Rosario assigned to GCL West from Williamsport
6/4/2019 – RHP Eduar Segovia assigned to GCL West from Williamsport
6/4/2019 – C Andrick Nava assigned to GCL West from GCL East
6/4/2019 – C Bruce Wang assigned to GCL West from GCL East
6/3/2019 – RHP Colton Eastman assigned to Williamsport from Clearwater
6/3/2019 – RHP Alejandro Requena assigned to Clearwater from Williamsport
6/3/2019 – RHP Andy Reyes assigned to GCL East from Williamsport
6/3/2019 – C Cesar Rodriguez assigned to GCL East from Williamsport
6/3/2019 – C Juan Aparicio assigned to Williamsport from GCL East
6/3/2019 – RHP Carlos Francisco assigned to Williamsport from GCL East
6/3/2019 – LHP Gabriel Yanez assigned to Williamsport from GCL East
6/3/2019 – Phillies optioned LHP Cole Irvin to Lehigh Valley
6/3/2019 – Phillies optioned LF Nick Williams to Lehigh Valley
6/3/2019 – Phillies recalled LHP Austin Davis from Lehigh Valley
6/3/2019 – Clearwater activated CF Simon Muzziotti from the 7-day IL
6/2/2019 – Seattle traded RF Jay Bruce to Phillies for 3B Jake Scheiner and cash
6/2/2019 – RHP Alejandro Requena assigned to Clearwater from XST
6/2/2019 – RHP Colton Eastman assigned to XST from Clearwater
6/2/2019 – Oscar Marcelino assigned to Lakewood from Williamsport
6/2/2019 – Rafi Gonell assigned to Williamsport from Lakewood
6/1/2019 – Lehigh Valley placed LF Shane Robinson on the 7-day IL, left hip strain
6/1/2019 – 3B Jose Antequera assigned to Lehigh Valley from Reading
6/1/2019 – DSL Red placed LHP Daivin Perez on the 60-day IL
6/1/2019 – 2B Alexeis Azuaje assigned to DSL Red

547 thoughts on “Open Discussion: Week of June 10, 2019

  1. Aside from the LAD series, the Phillies continue to win series. Yet, I’m left very dissatisfied. Something (or things ) is missing. There’s a fog about this team. Fortunately the division is underperforming. The Braves, however, are playing with the confidence of a defending division champ, even though I’m not so impressed with their roster. And God forbid anything happens to JTR. We’re screwed.

    1. I agree with this. Taking 2 out of 3 consistently is a good thing, but the inability to sweep is concerning, especially when they are in situations where all they need is a decent Nola game for a sweep. For me, the offense is the issue though. Sure Nola should be pitching better, but I expected this team to be able to score 7, 8, hell maybe even 10 runs fairly frequently and pick up pitchers in games where they don’t have their best stuff. Those games have been very rare.

      The organization also needs to figure out if this run of injuries is just extremely bad luck, or if there is something in the way the medical staff is going about their business that is putting players at a greater risk of injury. I am no expert, but the rash of injuries, especially to the relievers, would be one hell of a coincidence, though it is possible

    2. 8mark – The Phillies have 7 relievers on the IL. That’s a whole bullpen. They have 3 CF’ders on the IL, plus 2 backups (Robinson and Cozens) at Lehigh. If the Phillies were at full strength, you, and I would have every right to be dissatisfied. At some point, everything will start clicking. Breathe in, and breathe out.

      1. Perhaps. But the concerns are real. Aside from injuries which some teams suffer more than others from year to year – the bench was virtually non-existent before the rash of injuries, the offense with serious fire power has been inconsistent, the mental lapses especially on the basepaths, and the manager’s usage of the pitching staff all need to be urgently addressed.

        1. This ☝🏻. Their record was really good starting out last year, but the underlying numbers started to take shape the second half of the season and the end result was far from stellar. I share the concern that if changes aren’t made and people don’t get healthy there could be a similar swoon.

  2. Please do Nick a favor and trade him. I think he is a legit 270 22 70 guy. He must rub Kapler the wrong way

    1. He might produce those statistics, but still not be very good.

      Okay, so let’s review the historic Nick Williams. Nick Williams hasn’t played good defense. Nick Williams hasn’t hit or gotten on base enough to be a valuable offensive player. Nick Williams has played to a NEGATIVE 1.6 WAR for his career and is negative .6 WAR this year in limited at bats. For his career, Nick Williams has not been a good major league baseball player – in fact, he has not even played at a replacement level. He’s essentially an average AAA player, at best, right now. He should not be in the majors at all now, let alone starting in the majors. I suppose it’s possible he could improve, but there’s nothing to suggest that is magically about to happen.

      1. Nick Williams reminds me of John Mayberry Jr. He looks like she should be an everyday player but never actually puts up good enough numbers to be an everyday player.

        Williams problem is that he’s not a good bench player because he can’t play CF and doesn’t provide enough bat off the bench to be a threat…

  3. Don – I agree, I feel awful for Nick, but if Harper or Bruce go down, even for a couple of days, we’re screwed. I think that Klentak is beating the bushes right now looking for another outfielder. Not necessarily one of Bruce’s caliber, but a body that can play defense.

  4. Biggest disappointment with the offense so far is the lack of power. They are middle of the pack in overall runs but who would have guessed they would be 12th in the NL in HRs at this point?

    1. When it comes to HRs….my expectations for Rhys may have been set too high.
      I thought for sure he would be the leader in that area as for first basemen.
      Right now, solely in the NL, overall offensively, and defensively, he may be behind Bell, Freeman, Rizzo, Alonso and Goldey as first basemen go.

    1. Besides the obvious, there are other things to like about Vierling.
      Like the pick from the beginning….what surprised me, he has ability to steal bases….top five in the FSL right now, and also is a heady player….5 SAC flies, one of the leaders in all of hi-A.
      Like to see if he can handle AA pitching this year sometime.

  5. On Nick Williams. Definitely disappointing, the guy looks like he should be a player, but we have seen that before. He needs to play every day if he is ever going to break out. This back and forth does not help him and does not help the team. I know we have injuries, but he is providing zero help. So, we need to go find another bench bat or give someone else a chance. Let him stay in LHV until he shows he can hit consistently or is involved in a trade because some other organization thinks they can unlock whatever his potential is.

    1. matt13…one issue that will need to be addressed soon by Klentak…is the 40 situation with the OFers.Right now it is pretty crowded with many non-participants and status changes need to be made..once the 60 designation is made than he can go mout and get other players…..Herrera’s situation is a kick in the butt for the 40 and the Phillies.:
      Jay Bruce
      Bryce Harper
      Scott Kingery
      Nick Williams
      Adam Haseley(10-day IL)…due back on the active soon
      Roman Quinn(10-day IL)…due back on the active soon

      Dylan Cozens (put him on the 60-day IL)
      Andrew McCutchen( needs to be on the 60)
      *****Herrera…Inactive List

  6. Not to trigger the over-reactive Cesar faithful, but once Haseley returns, I would like to see him in the leadoff spot – at least temporarily – because Hernandez has been wilting in the heat from it. He’s a bottom of the lineup guy on a good team. Not a leadoff hitter no matter how much he works the walk or 8-pitch strikeout. Longterm (meaning by the stretch run) we’ll need to address it. Giving Kingery an opportunity might also be worthwhile. It may get him in the right mindset at the plate, out of his propensity to try to jack pitches out of his wheelhouse.

    1. 8mark – That’s a lot of pressure for a rookie. If a change in the lead off spot is needed, I’d move Segura to #1, and bat Bruce at #3.

  7. My hopes for the 2021 Phillies lineup:
    C JT Realmuto
    1b Rhys Hoskins
    2b Scott Kingery
    SS Bryson Stott
    3b Alec Bohm
    LF Adam Haseley
    CF Mickey Moniak
    RF Bryce Harper

    ….would mean that recent top draft picks actually made it as major leaguers if not top impact players. Likely? Perhaps not, but also not beyond the realm of possibility.

        1. It is baffling to me that people continue to underestimate how hard the jump is from even the highest level of the minors to the majors, let alone AA or A. The failure rate is so high and the adjustment period is long, even for those who make it.

          This proposed lineup is in less than 2 years and includes 1 player who was just drafted. 1 player in A ball 1 player in AA and one player with a grand total of 8 MLB plate appearances and a .143 batting average.

          Of those, only Bohm was on a top 100 prospects list.

          If you think that is going to win major league games at an above .500 clip, then you have rose colored glasses on. No other good team has that level of inexperience and unproven players in their lineup.

          1. v1 – If the Phillies were still in the beginning stages of the rebuild, it might be fun to look into the future. Last year the Phils were competitive, and this year they’re contenders. Why waste your time dreaming about the future when the present is so exciting.

            1. Exactly. That lineup would be a massive step back from our current lineup. Replace a then 31 year old multiple time all-star short stop with a kid who was drafted 1.5 years prior. bonkers.

              this team has a 5 year window. let’s try our best to add talented veterans. preferably to the starting pitching.

      1. In any case, Bohm and Moniak can’t be worse than Franco and Doobie. And Kingery may exceed Cesar in the long run.

      2. Maybe that is a late September game after we have clinched the division!

        I think Haseley and Moniak are probably on that team but they wouldn’t be starters for me. I hope the DH is in the NL at this point because the Phillies need a better defensive 1st baseman. If Rhys picks that ball in the 7th we win that ball game.

    1. Moniak might be in the 40-man but not the starting CF (that most likely be Haseley). Segura, who can age like wine, will still be the starting SS with Luis Garcia in the high minors getting ready to be added in the 40-man. With Segura at SS, Stott will move to 2B and Kingery will assume either the LF/CF position.

      We all don’t know how Bohm and Stott will progress so I don’t know wjy somebody can easily say that that version of the Phillies will be a above or below 0.500 club.

      I have more concern on how the rotation will look like 2 years from now. Howard looks good and Medina we are hoping to be good. Next in line will be JoJo (who is pitching bad this year) and some high risk arms that may not make it past AA.

  8. I asked this question yesterday, but didn’t get a response. I’m not sure how the service time works in regard to the prospects. Haseley, Suarez, Garcia, and Hammer are listed on the Phillies roster, and the prospects list. Actually, I don’t think that Hammer is even listed on the Phillies top 30 list. Can someone tell what the order is that they will no longer be considered prospects. Who’s the closest, and most far? Does Haseley’s time on the IL count as service time?

    1. not sure the exact answer but i know Eloy Jimenez just got taken off the White Sox prospect list a couple days ago and he’s got 40 games played now, and over 150 plate apperances. Senzel is off now too, but Tatis Jr, who started the season in majors is still on- but he had time on the DL- he’s got over 30 games and 100 plate apperances. so its active games, maybe 35?

    2. Wawa……….. a player must not have exceeded 130 ABs or 50 innings pitched in the MLB, or accumulated more than 45 days on the 25 man

      1. The 45 days does not include time on the IL or call up time in in September. Hence, Dylan Cozens with his 79+ days is still considered a prospect.

  9. 8mark, I agree with you. I am not knocking Cesar. He was very good batting lower in the lineup. I don’t think he is a leadoff hitter. I know it is a SSS, but his #s leading off are poor. I know Cutch just got hurt, and this seemed like the best of a bad situation for Kapler, but I would try others there.

  10. Unbelievably, the Orioles acquired Tom Eshelman for international slot money. The Orioles GM should be canned. Peter Angelos is still running an old school operation.

          1. Out of nowhere, John Means is their ace. Also, hard to believe that Eshelman can be better than Cashner or Bundy.

            1. I was being sarcastic but yes, Baltimore can use anyone who has experience pitching at the AAA/ML level at this point. Both their ML team and the upper levels of their system is badly lacking pitching.

    1. Guru – The trade for Bruce was to add depth and bench strength. Unfortunately, that lasted for one day. I have to believe that Klentak is once again looking for another outfielder, but it could be a bullpen arm.

    2. orioles acquired additional international dollars but then didnt get the guy they were targeting so they have been slowly dumping; has to be used prior to July before the new period starts i presume?

        1. Philles will sign someone in the next few days.
          But if they trade after Saturday for pool money….then that can be used for the J2-2019/2020 signing period.

          1. Are you sure? I think this year’s int’l money disappears after the 15th, and they can’t trade next year’s int’l money until July 2nd, making the 16 days in between inactive days.

            1. As I understand it, you’re right, Jim; trading of pool money opens with the signing period (July 2nd). But I guess that doesn’t prevent handshake agreements in the dead period.

    3. Guru….finally!
      Matt is moving many of the fungible #5s for future gains.
      Anderson could be the next to go.

    4. With Eshelman officially gone, the big Giles trade has boiled down to Giles and J. Arauz (not doing much but still age 20 in A+ ball) for Vinny.
      At this point was still worth taking the shot the Phils did.
      and Houston turned Giles into Osuna, so they are happy.

  11. They needed SP depth and we got extra International Bonus $. Romus should be happy; he does not think Klentak does enough of that. On a different topic, does anyone know who is the closest to coming off the IL?

        1. Im sure this isn’t going to happen due to the rash of OF injuries/availability – but i hope Quinn doesn’t play any minor league games for a tune up. Just stick him out there before he gets hurt. Hopefully, this is his last time on the DL, and all this is behind him.

          1. I think he’s supposed to rehab in Clearwater if I’m not mistaken. But anyway, Tac3 – I’m not sure which part of the wishbone you’ll get on that one. But one Quinn with one good leg is better than Gosselin and Rodriguez with 4.

          2. No disrespect intended, but given Roman Quinn’s injury history, what on earth makes you think that his injury history is behind him? I assume he will always been injured and he will never be able to play more than about 60 games or so a year. That’s not a guess, that’s an accurate assessment of his entire career which is like 7 years long now – it’s not a small sample size.

            1. catch – I’d be more than happy if we could get 60 games out of Quinn this year.

            2. @catch – “hoping”, not predicting. That is a pretty cruel card to be dealt, minus serious health issues, to be good enough to be a mlb plate. It can’t stay on the field. Crazy.

            3. Oh yeah, it’s sad as hell that he’s talented enough to play in the majors but can never stay healthy. It’s a little tragic. That said, he has never ever been able to stay healthy for a long stretch. Not even for one single year so there’s no way the team can or should plan around a healthy Roman Quinn. They get whatever they get from him for as long as he can stay healthy.

    1. The Orioles don’t need depth, they need competent starters. Adding Eshelman does not really help. It’s a great move by Klentak, but if i’m an Orioles fan, I would be boiling. It’s the Orioles cheaping out again.

      1. Guru…Eshelman for $500K or maybe $750K is a bargain for the Os….Eshelman , as a back-end guy, will probably eat innings for them at least
        For the Phillies…..that next 16-year old Latin kid, can be someone to dream on.

        1. There’s eat innings, and then there’s eat innings with a 5+ ERA. It doesn’t really help if it’s the latter. But anyways, not our problem anymore. If the Orioles want to continue running their team into the ground, that’s Peter Angelos’ problem.

          1. Guru…….the Os had only 5 days to get rid of their excess pool money… on the face of it, they get a former 2nd round pick, MLB ready pitcher for lost money.
            The Phillies have 5 days to pluck that pool allowance on a kid…they cannot use it after Saturday.
            So the Os actually made a good move.
            If Eshelman turns into the next Kyle Hendricks or they trade him for something of value later….then they did well for themselves.

            Personally, wish Klentak would have made the trade two weeks ago for the O’s CBA pick, or any team’s CBA pick, in the Rule 4 draft.

            1. Teams aren’t trading comp picks for bad players.
              Yankees received pick 38 as part of the trade for Sonny Gray
              Rangers received pick 41 for Alex Claudio
              Rays received pick 40 as part of the trade that sent Profar to Oakland and prospects to Texas
              Diamondbacks received pick 75 as part of the Paul Goldschmidt trade
              Mariners received pick 76 as part of the Carlos Santana/Edwin Encarnacion swap

            2. Understand that……most all of those transactions involved package deals and the CBA was part of the return.
              On a one- for- one trade….IMO, DLS, Suarez or Anderson could have brought back a Round B CBA. pick.

            3. And the one trade of one-for-one….Claudio to the Brewers from the Rangers for a Round A CBA……that alone would indicate to me, a relief pitcher who’s best days were 2/3 years ago, the Phillies could have recd at least a Round B for DLS.

  12. Hate to be repeatable but New Phillies Player Dev and player positioning but does anyone might think pitching injuries on New Direction,ST regime and conditioning ( BP) not high priority. Offspeed in ST was definitely priority instead of arm preparation. Minor league 6 and 7 man rotation, in between starts a joke. 30 pitch bullpen frequently.
    I guess only the Strong survive, do not build just pitch

    Old school

    1. I legitimately cannot make sense of this collection of words.

      I think you’re complaining about the Phillies’ conditioning in terms of pitchers? Are you blaming the organization for the RP injuries? If so; 1) Robertson, Neshek, and Hunter were injured after coming from other organizations. 2) None of the active roster were in the minors when the Phils started having extra men in the rotation. 3) If you’re complaining about the Phils working on their secondary stuff in spring training, you don’t know anything about pitching. Outside of a changeup, secondary pitches put more strain on your arm than fastballs. There’s a reason people tell you not to teach your kid to throw a curve until they’re older. It also takes longer to get a feel for secondary pitches than fastballs, because you throw WAY more fastballs in your career. So it’s exceedingly important to get your offspeed offerings up to snuff before game action begins.

      Hope that covers what you were talking about.

      1. Good, I wasn’t the only one. I had to read it like 7x and am still confused on whats trying to be said.

  13. Three questions here I’d like to ask this wonderful Monday morning. Not necessarily things I’m upset about or disagree with, but looking for clarifications from those of you that understand analytics better than I do.

    1. The Phillies seem to have recently fallen in love with the idea of walking the 8 hole hitter on the other team with two outs, a runner in scoring position, and the pitcher coming up to bat next early in a game. In many cases that I’ve seen, the 8 hole hitter is hitting 195 or something very low, not a hot or dangerous hitter. I suspect the analytics say that this makes sense, but for the naked eye it doesn’t seem to resonate with me. The analytics have made a case for the opener, as a team’s lineup is best positioned to score runs when leading off an inning with their 1 hole hitter. Wouldn’t those same analytics also tell you that you would want to try whenever possible to get the 8 hole hitter out and leadoff with the pitcher the next inning?

    2. The Phillies have continued to use double switches, which I believe make total sense in a normal environment. But when your pinch hitters are named Nick, Gosselin, and Rodriguez, why would you take Jay Bruce’s bat out of the lineup? I think it was yesterday they double switched Bruce out and Nick Williams and Velasquez in. So we ended up getting Nick with one at bat and then Gosselin for one bat rather than Velasquez potentially for one at bat and Bruce with one at bat? I honestly am not sure I want to see Nick or Gosselin batting at this point over Velazquez or Arietta.

    3. I keep noticing that Luis Garcia in Low A moves around in the batting order almost on a daily basis. Does anyone know why a team would do this with a young player like that? I’m sure there is a reason, maybe even a good one, but I’m not sure I can figure it out.

    1. Buddy – yesterday’s double switch removing Bruce was a classic Kapler gaffe. Even if the pitcher does bat ? at the end of the game Bruce would have come up with the game on the line (and a man on base). Now, admittedly one not might know that then, but if you are going to wheel pitchers in and out of the pen, you could have ph for that player with a lesser bat and still had Bruce in there. The whole thing was stupid when – even though he had given up a hit and a walk on 4 straight pitches, why is it that you would not trust Nola to get that one last out ? The whole game unravelled after they took Nola out !

      1. I’ve said this already yesterday, but taking Nola out in that spot didn’t bother me at all. He was visibly tired and had to take something off his fastball to locate it.

        Using Alvarez specifically was a head-scratcher, though, and the double switch was downright dumb.

    2. 1) Walking the 8 hole hitter is entirely dependent on the situation and the specific hitter. But if there’s no chance of a pinch hitter, the pitcher in almost all scenarios is the much more likely out. Even the worst 8 hole hitter tends to be a threat 1/5 at bats and has a reasonable shot of hitting an xbh. Except for the best hitting pitchers, you’re lucky if your pitcher hits the ball out of the infield 1/10 times. Xbh from pitchers is ridiculously rare. And if the runner is in scoring position already, you probably have a base to give. So it sets up the opportunity to record an out at more bases by walking the guy.

      I could go in more detail if you want to talk about specific situations.

      2) Last night’s double switch made zero sense. Even being ahead, Nick’s defense isn’t particularly good. Not better than Jay’s has been in his time with the Phils. The only reason I can see to double switch Nick in EVER is just to get him some work in. But doing it in a close game seems short-sighted.

      3) Not sure. Could be trying to get him experience in different hitting situations.

  14. I agree with you and 8mark, Buddy. The double switch, a NL staple of Managing, nees a good bench to be worth anything. I am now of the position that we need a bench bat more than a RP or a Starter. We need all 3, but a bench piece right now.

  15. See that Dallas Keuchel is pitching today in the Sally league for the Braves. Appears to be the highest level in their organization that has a game today. That should be a good test 🙂

    1. I would assume he’ll get at least 2 tune ups before joining the big club, no? Meaning, we’ll miss him this weekend?

          1. yes…that is understandable since Soroka has pushed himself to a possible all-star selection…..but they will need to squeeze Keuchel in at some point, so I rather face him in his initial starts, than later on

  16. We are missing Ray and Greinke vs the Diamondbacks. We need to win another series, and sweeping them would be very nice. Big series vs. the Braves is coming up after day off Thursday. Pivetta vs. Fried, Nola vs. Gausman, Eickhoff vs. Foltynewicz

    1. I thought the DBacks were dead in the water…then they beat the Dodgers in their getaway, then swept the Jays in Canada…sheeesh.
      Phillies will need to keep the DBacks’ batted balls in the park.
      I thought losing Goldey and Pollock at the top of their order will sink them fast in the West, but they keep slivering along.

    2. Speaking of which, Matt Breen told Mike Missanelli that he’s hearing rumblings of Zack Greinke as of present interest to the Phillies. Considering the broader scope of their needs, what might they have to offer for Greinke and switch hitting CF Kelel Marte, batting .268 with 15 homers?

      1. I view Greinke as another Papelbon in the dug out. Not sure if the Greinke has a NTC and if the Phillies is listed in the NTC. ARI will be happy to unload the contract with the declining player for some nice young players and prospects.

        This will also depend on how much ARI wants in return but I expect it will be a package similar to DLS + Medina plus another Top 20.

      2. For both DBacks it will be steep…just for Greinke it would not be so high.
        1. Spencer Howard or Adonis Medina…to start
        2. Assume one of Haseley or Moniak
        3. Another top ten prospect.

        1. I think Klentak will balk in acquiring Marte is it means losing Haseley. The Phillies accelerated Haseley’s service time so I expect Haseley to be the current CF (unless something ready bad about the injury).

          I also agree that the prospect equity shouldn’t be high if the Phillies will absorb Greink’s contract and his attitude. This is where I probably like Klentak the most — his attitude of not overpaying in the trade market (assuming no pressure from Middleton).

          1. One thing that’s impressed me with Klentak is his ability to get his guy without giving up too much talent or taking on too much salary.

          2. For Greinke, Marte and RP Matt Andriese

            Phils offer Medina, Grullon, Luis Garcia, Moniak, Jhailyn Ortiz and Nick Williams

            1. Is for for real? Ketel Marte is 25, with a favorable contract and on track for 4+ WAR! Marte alone demands Bohm or Howard.

        2. That lineup would be like winning the lottery twice.

          Given current control, the Phils could have a bench of Segura, Franco, McCutchen and Herrera. Unless you’re trading some of these for a couple of Cy Young-quality SP’s.

  17. I don’t know how much IFA $$ the Phillies will get from Orioles (looks like the O’s still have a large amount) so this Cuban dude can be a target (depending how much IFA $$ the Phillies have left).

    Yolbert Sanchez | Rank: 5 Hometown: Havana, Cuba

    Position: SS Age: 22 DOB: 3/3/1997
    Bats: R Throws: R Height: 6’0″ Weight: 180 lb.
    Scouting grades: Hit: 45 | Power: 45 | Run: 55 | Arm: 55 | Field: 65

    Known for his elite defense, Sanchez’s polished glove might be ready for the big leagues now. According to scouts, he can spray the ball from “line to line” and is considered a line-drive hitter. He ultimately projects to hit eight to 10 homers in the big leagues. He is also known for his average to slightly above average arm as well as an average to slightly above average running ability. Scouts also like his game instincts and track record.

    Sanchez was the starting shortstop for the Havana Industriales and projected to be the starting shortstop for the island’s national team before his defection last summer. He was the starting shortstop for Cuba’s 23U team in Panama and was a teammate of White Sox prospect Luis Robert on the country’s 18U team.

    Because of his age and experience, Sanchez will sign under the international signing guidelines. The Orioles, who came up short in their pursuit of Cuban outfielders Victor Victor Mesa and Victor Mesa Jr. and Cuban pitcher Sandy Gaston, still have close to $6 million in bonus pool money and were among the first teams to scout Sanchez in person. Should the Orioles decide to trade away their bonus money, the Twins, Brewers, Pirates, D-backs, Rockies, Indians, Royals, Tigers, Mariners, Blue Jays and Giants could be possible partners and thus be in a position to make a substantial offer.

    The Dodgers, Phillies, Rangers, Cubs and Red Sox have money to spend during the current signing period. The Astros, Mets, Cardinals and White Sox could be among the teams in play for Sanchez if he decides to wait until the next signing period that starts July 2.

    Sanchez is represented by Ulises Cabrera of Octagon and trains with Edwin Castillo in the Dominican Republic.

    1. KuKo…they have five days to sign him for this signing period…..after June 15th is the dead period until July 2nd, and then starts the new signing period.

    2. And looks lie Yhoswar Garcia, CFer from the Ven will be getting over $2M, maybe $2.5M to sign in three weeks….so assume they have their full allotment of IFA$ available…the Harper penalty must not have hurt them as much.

  18. Romus – Do you really believe the Os would have given up a CBA pick for Eshelman?

  19. How good is Stroman from the Bluejays? Is he Cliff Lee … Halliday? Cliff Lee light? Does it make sense to sell the farm for Stroman and Giles? I know what Giles is, I just haven’t seen Stroman other than the stat lines. Watching some video soon but looking for a consensus on him.

    1. Stroman is very good. He’s not elite, but he’s pretty much a 3/4 pitcher. I don’t think you would have to sell the farm for him since he’s already 28, but he has another year of control left. Comparable to Sonny Gray to a certain extent.

  20. Correct me if I am wrong please, Romus, but aren’t these guys already committed to teams long before they actually sign? So, this extra $ would be better if it could go to next year’s class, wouldn’t it? And, on Greinke, I think we need to add pieces, but he seems like such a head case. I would be reluctant to part with much, especially since Greinke has issues with big markets. I have a similar reservation, because of his emotional stability, about Bauer.

    1. matt13….yes in most cases they are already committed.
      But the money(allowance) the Phillies got today from the Os is not usable after Saturday, since from what I read it is for J2- 2018/2019.
      I think that is how it works….surplus pool allowance monies cannot be carried over into the new period.

  21. So would you agree that the value of whatever Bonus $ they got is diminished? Unless they are really close with a player and the extra $ makes the deal? But, I don’t believe it works that way.

    1. It’s just a way to fill lower level minors with possibilities. Who knows with these players? I’m sure there is a probability matrix where college players have a 20% probability of making MLB, HS 10% and Latino signees or international 5%.

  22. I don’t know the last time I saw a game started with 3 straight HRs. I am sure Jayson Stark will have that tidbit in a column soon, but not the start I hoped for vs. Arizona.

  23. Not sure how long Kapler can keep trotting out Eickhoff every 5 days. Everybody is trying to hit HRs and his 89 fastball must look like a feast. He might get replaced by the all-star break if this continues.

  24. Batting practice pitcher. The Phillies crowds I grew up with at Connie Mack Stadium would have booed that guy out of the stadium.

  25. I don’t ever remember Home Run Derby being this early. Other years it was the night before the all star game.😎

  26. Is Klentak talking to the DBacks GM about Greinke as I type? Eickhoff has run his course as a major league starting pitcher. Or at least with the Phillies. Fortunately it’s apparently a hitter’s night, hot and muggy. Maybe a few fly out for the Fightins before it’s over. Otherwise, it looks like the Braves will be tied for 1st place.

  27. I Would release him tonight. he isn’t a major league pitcher. I said it before and I just don’t understand how they can send out that kid to pitch. If you don’t have better than him. its a disgrace.

  28. Time to DFA Eickhoff . . . he just isn’t that good. If he can’t locate his fastball he’s toast and even when he can, 87-89 can be taken the other way with ease (or turned on if located in). He’s just not that good. I feel like you can replace him by just about anyone in AAA and get similar results.

  29. I stand corrected, Eickhoff won’t get past June. Either he’s headed to Lehigh or he’s going to the bullpen as the long man. His stuff is not good enough to stay in the rotation.

    1. Shame too because the guy has an idea of what he needs to do but can’t execute for lack of stuff. Type of pitcher who becomes a coach. Wish him well in whatever and wherever he goes.

  30. Eduardo Escobar (2 bombs tonight, 17 on the year) would have looked good in red pinstripes down at 3b this season. I guess Klentak’s bigger fish precluded signing him.

    1. C’mon, he broke out as a 29 year old with 3 WAR. How can you tell that it wasn’t a fluke? He had journeyman written all over him. He’s 30, 4 years older than Maikel. Whatever he’s doing now, it won’t last.

      1. Will Maikel even be playing major league baseball in 4 years? I’d rather have the productive older player, not the 5th year project who’s about to come into his own…any day now.

        1. This is all hindsight talk. As much as I don’t like Maikel, he was 26 at the end of the season with an OPS+ of 106. He was still making peanuts. The Phillies needed to give him another season.

          Escobar was 30 and coming off a 3.2 WAR season. Before this season, he had 7.6 WAR in 8 seasons. The DBacks took a chance and it worked out. Good for them.
          It could have easily not worked out for them.

  31. I feel bad for him, but they are professionals and we need to win. The stuff is not good enough. A few good outings, he’s in a rhythm, but over the long haul we need a SP. it’s not just a FB that doesn’t hit 90, it is sliders that are not sharp enough, walking the leadoff hitter after we fought back to tie it. Another outing where the SP doesn’t go 5

  32. Eickhoff starts really echo VV and Pivetta starts last yr . None of them could get past the 5 ing lots of homeruns.Eickoff today was off today he hanging his cb and slider. Hes a 4 or 5th starter. Byw 1 home was off his fb tonight the rest off hanging slider.
    Btw Greinke avg fb 90 but he knows how to pitch. The Phillies dont have a replacement maybe Irvin or Ranger. Imo

        1. I love Eickhoff the person and the player, but when he throws his FB 89 or 90, his stuff just isn’t good enough for him to be a reliable starter. With most pitchers, velocity matters a lot and it’s so true with Eickhoff. If he sat 92-94, I think he could be a borderline #2 and definitely a solid #3, but without a decent heater to keep batters honest (his FB is well below average right now), he’s just another guy kicking around. Pivetta, by contrast has electric stuff – his problems were command and confidence. He’s not a good comparison with Eickhoff, who has the best mound presence and confidence you could ask for – he just doesn’t have the stuff and there’s not that much you can do about that.

          1. I think we can agree that the Dodgers and Cubs are the best teams in the NL. Yet the Dodgers have 1 pitcher that that throws a fb over 92 mph. They have pitchers that know to pitch. Same with the Cubs they have 1 pitcher that throws a fb over 92 mph good teams get good pitchers .

  33. Pivetta has great stuff. His issues were command and the mental aspect, trusting his stuff. Eflin has some good stuff and seems to have a clue out there. After that we have too many #5 hopefuls with not enough . They need to be perfect out there. Irvin included. We are going to need to make a trade. I am also disappointed in our power #s. I expect more HRs from our guys. We should be the team with 7 HRs in 4 innings!

  34. Ranger is just eating up innings. He and Eickhoff should go to LHV after tonight’s game. Irvin can start, DLS can get a shot, also, while we wait for Klentak to make a trade.

  35. Lol what trade ? The Phillies have so many players on IR its hard . Pitching is always a hot commodity. Im not giving up a top prospect for a # 4 or 5 starter.

    The game tonight was hr Derby on both sides.

    1. Tim, I think the chances that Klentak adds at least 1 Pitcher, maybe more, by the deadline, are close to 100%

      1. matt – I agree! I think that the trade rumors for Giles are real. Nicasio, Hunter. and Alvarez are gone after this year, and Dominguez, and Arano won’t be back from their injuries. Giles is still young, and along with V V, they can hold the fort while Garcia and Hammer develop. Edubray Ramos pitched an inning yesterday with 2 K’s

  36. Phils got $1 million for Eshelman, but as said above they dont have much time to use it…..hopefully they were working on this deal/situation for a little while and have someone(s) lined up.

    1. Hoping it is the Cuban ss Sanchez.
      Right now they can outbid most of the other front runners…just not sure how much coin they dropped on pitcher Josh Gessner

  37. Lil’ Scott Kingery….17 Extra Base Hits in 111 PAs for a team high ISO of .286 (sans Jay Bruce with only 26 Phillies’ PAs right now) and an OPS over .9 and OPS+ of 146, with a 1.1 bWAR
    Seems he is adjusting well to MLB pitching.

    1. Let’s put him in the leadoff spot to jump start this offense. Can’t go by last night’s anomaly but Cesar is down to .270 and isn’t a leadoff hitter anyway.

      1. Gabe will eventually move Kingery somewhere else up in the lineup….who knows where.

      2. Kingery will have his 0-for’s and K’s but the energy and confidence and headiness he brings should serve as a catalyst for this offense. Let’s hope Kapler handles him correctly.

        1. Kingery becoming the player we all hoped he could become is a huge development.

          As for a big trade, if it costs one of our few top prospects (aside from Medina, I could live without him – same with Moniak), let’s not do it. I’ve already heard the guys on the radio saying the Phillies only have a two year window because the Braves are getting good so they better trade the prospects to increase the chance of winning now. I wanted to bash my head against the wall when I heard that. I want them to stay good. And the way you do that is to NOT trade away all your best prospects. Start thinking like you do when you have your Eagles fan hat on. Do you think about limited windows with the Eagles? Of course not. You expect them to be good every year. Let’s start thinking the same way with the Phillies.

          1. I’ve found that the guys on the radio aren’t really tuned into the minor league system. My observation. I’m not sure they are aware of Haselely,Bohm, Garcia, the depth at catching.
            Fairly certain they didn’t know about Howard until this year.. if they even know who he is today.

          2. Don’t get me started on radio personalities. What a vast wasteland of misinformation and ignorance. There are a couple decent, informed guys but most are clueless, beginning with the morning carnival barker on 94. Their overview of sports and pop culture is a mile wide and an inch deep.

      1. Early returns are looking really good. Also kinda showing that being “out of position” doesn’t have to affect your offensive performance. It will allow the FO to expand their search for offensive help . . they can look for upgrades at either 3B or CF and which ever they decide, put Kingery in the other spot.
        I was so against signing Mike Moose for 3B over the off season but damn would his numbers look good in this line up. I was 1000% wrong.

          1. Romus, the only players on Salisbury’s list in whom I would have interest are Merrifield, Starling Marte (he didn’t include Ketel Marte who also plays SS although how well?), or maybe take change of scenery candidate Manuel Margot, who’s got talent, only 24 but not playing everyday with SD.

            1. 8mark…i do not want to give up prospects…not for an OFer anyways.
              A starting LHP is one thing….but the Phillies system has position prospects that in 2/3 years will be trying to inundate the roster….plus they already have 4/5 guys there now at CBP who will still be there in 2021/2022.
              With Margot/Marte/Merrifeld you have to allow for them for the long term.

            2. I’m feeling confident that Klentak will pull off a very good trade. It may be an out of nowhere deal that catches us by surprise. Like I said the other day, he has a knack for hitting his target without taking on too much salary or giving up too much talent. Won’t be long. He will be aggressive.

      2. Yeah, last year was a difficult learning experience for him and, like anyone else, made me at least wonder whether he would be any good. Before he had that difficult experience, I said that I wasn’t sure he was our best prospect but I was pretty sure he was our most important prospect because he can be the catalyst for an entire offense – with Utley-like potential at bat (although he is righty and his style is totally different – he could produce similar stats if he hits his ceiling) and great base running and fielding. He’s a very, very important player for this organization over the next 6 or 7 years. If he becomes a star a lot of other things should fall in place.

  38. To anyone who says Eickhoff is a 4, what have you been watching? He’s lucky if he’s a 5th starter, more like an AAAA guy . . . and Irvin is the EXACT same thing.
    Phillies pitching is on pace to let up the most HR in baseball history . . . yikes.

    1. Nola….check (I trust him)
      Eflin….check (I’m pretty sure)
      Pivetta….check (I think)
      Arrieta….check…well, at least every few outings

      This screams for Klentak to pull the trigger for a big trade.

    2. Eric – Calm down, it’s only one game. Granted it was an awful game. Let’s all hope that Jake comes up big tonight.

      1. Their MO has been to drop the first game of a series and win the next 2. If that trend continues we should be fine…

      2. They are on pace to set the record for most home runs allowed. They only have one pitcher with an ERA under 4 . . . .

        1. I agree that the urgency to address the starting rotation has reached DEFCON 4. This is no longer a matter of, “well it was only one game.” It’s become “games”. The Mets and Nats are hanging around and haven’t gotten hot just yet. The Braves are well positioned to defend their division title, especially if Acuna continues to heat up. We’ve been alone in 1st place for many days. We’re no longer alone today. I don’t like the trend. Yes our bats will likely catch fire but I don’t want to have to win a bunch of 14-11 games along the way.

    3. I addressed this in another post, but doesn’t seem to have actually posted

      Eickhoff is a #5 pitcher, unless he regains his 92-93mph FB he had in 2016. It happens all the time, fluctuations in velocity. Will have to wait and see. Until then, he is performing like a #5 – a pitcher who Hovers around a .500 record. For example, last night results, his gm against the cardinals – dominance, and the Rest of the results mixed in. At some point I envision that he can give a team 6-7 innings of 3 to 4 runs, with clunkers mixed in, and a few cardinals type game results – 8innings 0runs – when he is firing on all cylinders

      As of now, Eickhoff, Irvin, Suarez, (I don’t believe in right now) anderson, lively, Eshelman, Thompson, are all a big soup bowl of #5 starters. Yes some of those are gone, but the org has depth for #5 starters.

      To me, Eickhoff, Anderson, DLS, and possibly Irvin can push out of the #5. Eickhoff needs his FB to tick at 92 again, along with control. He has it if he can do that, imho. If not, it’ll be a scenery change for him at some point.

        1. Frustrating, imho Eickhoff is better than he has shown, and way better than this last start. it is possibly the lingering effects of his injury. Give him back his FB mph and he has growth to be a solid #3, who occasionally pitches better. lol I know I’m not crazy, I’ve seen him dominate. I believe the game against the cardinals he touched 92! Possibly higher. Look at the result. Unfortunately he may not put it all together here. He likely needs more time than the Phillies have to give at this point to pitch with this nerve issue. This last game, I think I saw a fb from him come in at 87mph, was wild though.
          My sense is that his nerve maybe flaring up, and he’s keeping his mouth shut for obvious reasons – his spot. Let’s see his next start, if he gets one. My gut is the Phillies believe in him, and will give him a longer leash than most want to give him here :). I say he’s got 2 more starts, possibly 1. He needs to show the bulldog

      1. Anderson’s a mystery to me. I saw him in ST and thought he looked really good but he’s struggled a lot. His future may be as a multi-inning reliever. I think there’s something there with him, but it may be a few years before he really settles in. Not everyone has a fast road to success but I do think he has big league ability.

        If only they had signed on with Charlie Morton. Morton reminds me of Nick Foles. After he does a bunch of great things, the people in baseball just decide that he probably shouldn’t have been able to do those great things, so they disregard him as a fluke. He’s no fluke and, man, would he have been great for this team.

        1. The Phils were on Morton. They had him signed, and got hurt for the .org. Goes on elsewhere and blossoms again. Go figure.

          1. He should have never been allowed to leave and he should have been signed back last winter. He’s not a surprise. He’s been pitching like this for 4 years – since he began with the Phillies really.

            1. Hindsight, but yes, he was a steal at the time. My gut tells me he didn’t want to be here.

            2. The Phillies had a very modest club option on Morton they should have picked up…

              It wasn’t hind sight he was pitching lights out before the groin injury.

  39. Romus lets pick one player from this years phillies draft, who will make the majors for at least one day.He must be outside the top ten

    1. rocco…my guess…a pitcher…they are the safe bet most times outside the top ten rounds…would be helpful if they go the relief route also.
      Two I will go with…Leverett a RHP and Lackney.a LHP.

        1. There are more than one or two outside the 10th round who will get their ‘one day’ in the majors, unless an injury ends it for them, or they retire after a long minor league career.
          The ‘cup of coffee’ is given to many who endure….it is the lasting for awhile over the years that escapes quite a few.
          Your neighbor’s son will get his chance…maybe not the Twins but some team along the way.

  40. I’m on board with Kingery taking McCutchen’s lead off spot and put Cesar back to where he was.
    I was skeptical about Kingery’s season so far,but it does look like he has figured a few things out,so give it a try and see how he does.
    Two home runs to right field last night!! It would be nice if Hoskins would start to go the other way more too.

    1. Hoskins used to go with the pitch when he first came up but then he started pulling the ball and his average plummeted. His power is still there but the Philllies philosophy kicked in and he is worrying about trajectory and exit velocity. Almost like Kingery did last year and he adjusted.

      1. The best hitters in the game routinely hit the ball the other way period. Doesn’t matter lefty or righty.

    2. Kingery doesn’t walk enough to be a lead off hitter. I love him in the 6 or 7 spot where he can drive in more runs. Leave Cesar at leadoff – he’ll be fine.

    3. If it ain’t broke don’t fix it. I’d leave Kingery alone. Cesar will come back on. We just need Rocco to give him a call, tell him to pick it up. .270 after being at .300 … come on unc!!!!!

        1. Cesar just ended a streak of 18 games without a BB. Since May 15, Hernandez is hitting .215 with an .OBP of .270.

          Kingery might not be taking walks but he is being more productive right now..

        2. Also not sure where you get your stats but Kingery’s last BB was on June 5. That’s not 17 days on my calendar…

            1. ah, my mistake.. The good news it that Cesar just broke his streak in the last 2 days..

            2. Romus … I grew up near Island Avenue. When I was in HS, my friends and I one night went to eat at Burger King on Island Ave, and I found Nino Espinoza eating alone in there. We sat at the table next to him and spent about 20 minutes talking to him. Good times!

  41. Don’t be surprised if Odubel Herrera is ultimately included in a trade as the PTBNL. Sounds like something Klentak would do. It’ll be a while before that would be determined but still, the GM can keep Doobie in his back pocket in case some team decides it’s willing to take a flyer on him once his legal smoke clears.

    1. Could be possible…Theo could not trade Addison Russell due to circumstances similar over the off-season. his value has plummeted for both on-field and off-field issues.

    2. Obubel’s not going anywhere until his legal situation gets resolved in some way. I’ve already figured he’s a lost cause for the 2019 season to be addressed in the off-season…

      1. She dropped the charges from what I heard on the radio this weekend, but have not seen anything in print yet….so he will probably get the standard 50 games and ‘rehab treatment’…the suspensions in the past have been back dated starting with the first game after the inactive status was levied….so he could be back in mid-to-late August , and then after some minor league games he is entitled to for rehab.

        But you are probably spot on……if he gets moved it will be in the off-season

    1. Great news to hear.
      Soon should see game action.
      Thanks for the update Mr Howard..

      1. We are all praying to God (well, at least I am) that Spencer is spared the mid-year trade from the Phillies. I, for one, am excited and believe he’s perhaps the most untouchable prospect they have in the system right now. We want him to start for the Phillies, not some other team!

        1. I think Matt Klentak would be cutting his own throat if he included Howard in any July deal.
          I know this year was very important for him since his contract comes up in 16 months, and he is looking for an extension offer, so he did go all out with Cutch, Segura, JTR and finally the Harper signing.

          I just hope he decides not to be tempted for the next big attraction in July and give up valuable prospects.

          1. But also let me say this….sometimes I think Gabe pushes him to go the distance on a trade, and I hope that is not the case this year.
            Last year picking up all those guys..Cabrera, Bour, Joey Bautista and all those relievers who never saw the field for any significance for the most part….was like a panic situation.

            1. I won’t fault them for last year. All of those deals were well-thought out and didn’t involve giving up any critical prospects. It could have turned out much better and it wasn’t Klentak’s fault it didn’t work out well. He missed on Hamels – that’s the only thing I regret (and, I said at the time they should have gotten him).

        2. It was reported during the draft that the Dodgers like the ranked #99 Spencer Howard and a possibility at picks 2.62 or 3.100, so Johnny A. made that move and grab Howard at 2.45. Hinkie and I talked about the Dodger’s really good ability to evaluate talent.

          1. This is true but I think it was the Cubs. We went to Wrigley a week before the draft and he threw in front of Theo & Co. We were told Cubs were very interested.

            1. If he stays his course the rest of the summer, no setbacks, just steady as she goes – he’ll be a ST invite.

              Anyone know when he’ll need rule 5 protection? (It may not matter)

            2. @8mark – Spencer needs to be protected by end of 2020 season. With the way the young arms are doing right now, we might see Spencer’s debut 12 months from now.

            3. 8mark,

              Howard must be protected BEFORE the 2020 Rule 5 Draft at the Winter Meetings. The Rule 5 information for every player in the organization is in the file listed above in every Recap and Weekly discussion I post.

              Here’s how it is determined.

              A player’s age on the June 5th preceding the date he signed his first contract.

              If he is 18 or younger, the player becomes eligible to be drafted at the fifth Rule 5 Selection Meeting that follows his signing date.

              If he is 19 or older, the player becomes eligible to be drafted at the fourth Rule 5 Selection Meeting that follows his signing date.

              So, a 20-year-old who signed his first contract on June 30th after being drafted during the 2018 draft would be eligible to be drafted during the fourth Rule 5 Selection Meeting after his signing date. So, in this example, that would be the 2021 meeting. (2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021)

              There are a few qualifiers. One is, if a player is signed after the season for the team he is assigned to then the Selection Meeting immediately following that season is skipped.

              Others become more convoluted and cover rare instances.

  42. Looks like Eickhoff is headed to the bullpen. So it’s up the air who gets the start on Sunday.

    1. I’m seeing suggestions that it might be Irvin or an “opener” (maybe VV?), but Gabe said it won’t be Medina, in case anyone was holding his breath. Hell, he might be traded for a TOR by Sunday….hey, maybe Sunday’s starter isn’t a Phillie yet.

  43. Opener. Maybe start Ranger and then bring Eickoff or Vv the second half.

      1. The Braves schedule has been lite in the First half of the season. They have a harder schedule in the second half of the season.

  44. Baseball is getting even more hi-tech in analysis….almost every MLB team now employs strategies that include input from top decision makers and advanced tech like :
    1. Trackman — the system that measures velocities, spin rates, exit speeds — along with swing analysis devices,
    2. Edgertronic high-speed cameras for analysis of biomechanics,
    3. Rapsodo (a portable pitch tracking tool) and
    4. FlightScope (another system used to measure hitting, pitching and running mechanics).

    1. Romus, at a minimum, the Phillies have Trackman at all affiliates and are using Rapsido (I’ve seen that equipment set up on the fields at the Complex. I hear that they are going to extend their Driveline participation to include pitching.

    2. You’d think with all this technology you’d start to see some more guys hitting 400 some guys getting close to 70 HR’s some guys with sub 1.00 ERA’s etc…

      Or Nah

  45. Is anyone worried, like I am, that by the end of the day Sunday we will not be in first place, and we may not get there again this season? I have no interest in employing an Opener Sunday vs the Braves. To me, that is not an out of the box method to win a Baseball game, but an act of desperation, because the SP options are worse. That is the team’s view. If that wasn’t the case, they would be starting Irvin or DLS or another “depth” guy because weren’t we told that there was enough SP? We did not need to add in the off season. I don’t want to spend high quality prospects. That is why I wanted a FA arm or Keuchel last week.

    1. I think it was already reported that it wouldn’t be an operner however I may have misunderstood.

    2. It’s a long season so them being in 1st place or not in mid June doesn’t particularly matter as long as they are still winning more games then they are losing.

      They have a stretch starting this weekend where they play all division opponents for the next month. How they come out of that stretch will be much more important that where they stand on Sunday…

      1. Fans are worried about playing division rivals now but before when they had a great record against division rivals they said it was because of a easy schedule; huh?

        1. Not sure what point you are trying to make Denny but because of the nature of the schedule, how a team plays within it’s own division usually decides who ends up winning it.

          So yes, fans should be very focused on how the team does against it’s division opponents. It matters much more than how they do in a 3-game series vs. the Dodgers…

          1. Media was saying that Phillies had good numbers due to plaing mostly with their division. Now that we are coming up to play division rivals again, media is sending up warnings for the Team because Braves are tied with us and Nats/Mets can get hot at anytime. And those pesky Marlins. Fear mongerers.

  46. It’s interesting that Hernandez has the most all star votes on the Phillies roster. You’d think that the more well known players like Harper, JTR, even Cutch (i get that hes hurt) would have surpassed him with votes. It’s even more interesting bc of how many Phillies fans seem to view Hernandez.

  47. So uh, Kingery is looking pretty good. I thought his slump recently was the beginning of his regression, but now he’s decided that it’s time to flash some power.

    Wonder how many people are complaining about his contract now.

    1. Shame Dan you would say that, shows you really don’t know the game. Kingery last year was missing fastballs, a bad sign. That’s what people saw. but you have a crystal ball and seen him doing this a year earlier. wonderful

      1. Whatever he has going on Scottyjetpax that is I don’t care I’ll take it. He’s says its nothing mechanical just confidence and I can only see that he isn’t chasing as many sliders and off speed pitches out of the zone.

        Sometimes its that simple.

        1. Good eye. He’s chasing out of the zone 6.2% less often than last year and swinging at strikes 11.3% more often. It would seem he’s picking up pitches much better.

          1. Call me silly but I predict Jetpax pops TWO more dingers tonight. On his way to becoming the Phillies 2nd consecutive NL player of the week.

            1. That’s optimistic, but I certainly won’t dismiss it out of hand. Scotty looks locked-in, and you never know what a player on a hot streak is capable of (looking at you, Yelich).

      2. My other post may be awaiting moderation, so I’ll just say this in case it shows up later;

        You shouldn’t assume people are talking about you all the time. My last sentence was about how fast things change in baseball.

  48. IMO one of the most important stats when evaluating a young hitter is O-swing%. It is one of the first stats that I look for. Plate discipline is not a “nice to have.” I believe that it is THE most important characteristic of a hitter. If a hitter chases pitches out of the zone, he simply will not consistently hit the ball hard. Yes, he may hit a mistake. But he will be maddeningly inconsistent.

    If you want to see one stat that supports Kingery’s season is for real (despite an obviously unsustainable .384 babip), it is his massive improvement in O-swing %, which has dropped from 39.4% to 33.9%. That is a great improvement. His 33.9% is still too high, but maybe he can keep that downward trend.

    Some comps on that stat:
    – Trout: 23.2% career, 18.9% this year
    – Rhys: 23.4% career
    – Betts: 22.4% career
    – Yellich: 24.9% career
    – Harper: 30.1% career. was 26.1% last year 😦

    And lastly, Barry Bonds has a 13.8% O-swing rate over the last 6 years of his career (when measurements began). Think about that for a second. Over a 6 year span, Bonds has the batter’s eye and discipline to force pitchers to throw the ball over the plate or walk him. That is truly an unbelievable stat.

    1. Love O swing % and agree so to take it one step further it is the hitters ability to slow the game down and trust his eyes and his hands will be able to get to the ball. It’s a hitters ability to read spin instead of guess and so on.

      Players like to use the phrase you “spit on that slider” etc…

      I’m surprised you didn’t do Utley’s. I’m not surprised Bonds was that high. Bonds was one of the last guys with the nuts to stand on top of the plate. In doing that you take away all that inside real estate from the pitcher.

      Rizzo does it bit too

        1. A little hidden secret told to me by someone in the know that rarely gets talked about is Adderall. I was told that and I forget the number but the percentage of players who have the exemption far exceeds that of the normal population.

          This person in the know said they saw the ball much more clearly it was like hitting in the matrix.

          I asked how does the league manage it because we all remember when Chooch got a slap on the wrist for it. he said it’s an 8 hour test playing with puzzles, reading and then answering questions. He said its so mundane that just about anyone in today’s culture of microwave attention spans would fail it and get the exemption.

          Again it doesn’t give you strength or power but it does raise your level of sight and focus to unbelievable levels. It does however fade over time for someone who doesn’t really need it. So they do cycle on and off with it.

          1. Yes….Victorino was on it as a prescription,
            Five years ago, iIn 2014….roughly 9.9 percent of the 40-man rosters league-wide was on the prescription plans.
            Not sure what it is today.
            I think Chooch was on a drug that was not prescribed by a licensed doc in the US…..his family doc in Panama I believe prescribed it for him, that is the reason MLB suspended him.

      1. DMAR……and Utley’s O-Contact% was 78%…..Bonds was 65%…..of course Bonds data along these lines were taken when he was in his late 30s and on a decline.

        1. Just curious would bonds O swing % be inflated/deflated however you want to look at it because of the IBB.

          I assume during that period of time he was one of the highest with the IBB. Back then obvioulsy you had to throw the 4 pitches out of the zone where as today they just say go ahead to 1B.

          1. Over those 6 seasons, Bonds saw 11,079 pitches. I don’t think it moved the needle much. but other good hitters get IBB too

    2. Agree that his BABIP may not be sustainable over the course of the season, and what also gives me concern are his peripherals that may also suggest regression….24%K rate and only 4% BB rate….but as you have indicated his O-swing rate has improved this season which shows as a good sign….and his BB rate may be lower because he is swinging earlier in his plate appearance.
      I suspect it would be unrealistic to think he will ever slash.300/.375/.500 as a hitter but I would be satisfied if he were able to maintain or notch up a few ticks on his overall minor league slash 283/.339/.434

      1. @romus – if Kingery continue to start to hit for power, pitchers will start to work around him and his BB% will improve. Once the pitchers start to work around Kingery, that gives him opportunity to be more selective and the O-swing% will start to improve as well.

        Kingery said it himself that the continuous change in playing different positions affects his concentration as he need to learn to play the positions and concentrate on his hitting. I believe that playing SS really hurt his make up, that’s why a 2-way SS is a premium player and hard to find.

        With more defined role, Kingery’s offseason preparation starts to show it’s effect.

  49. I saw Seager pulled a hammy last night. That guy might be the Dodgers version of Roman Quinn…

    Hunter Pence with an inside the park HR and Adam Jones if he becomes available would be another Right handed bat I would like to see on our team.

    1. Not wishing any other teams’ players injury, but how fortuitous it would be if Klentak could unload Franco to a club in dire need of a 3b.

      1. Maikel Franco has -0.7 WAR. Any team should be able to pick up a street FA or promote a warm body that can give you 0 WAR and he would be BETTER than Maikel. There’s absolutely no reason for any team to trade for Maikel. I think he’s a candidate to be DFAd at the end of the season or even before that.

        1. like the Yanks picking up Urshela off the street and he’s given them .834 OPS and excellent defense at third.

  50. With Delossantos only throwing 71 pitches last night and looking good, I’m guessing he gets the next chance with the Phils. If that is the case, I really hope the Phillies give him 3-5 starts minimum to demonstrate what he can do rather than shuffling him back and forth between the rotation and pen, and/or between MLB and AAA. I think we all agree, and the Phillies, that Eickhoff and Irvin are not long term answers in the rotation, maybe good long men in the bullpen who can make an occasional spot start, i.e., 1993 Mike Williams or 2008 Kyle Kendrick, so I don’t mind seeing them shuffled around as much, but I think Delossantos could have some potential here.

    1. I agree, time for DLS to get his chance. All that said, Spencer Howard can’t get here fast enough. Future rotation is starting to look like

      Nola,Efflin,Pivetta,Howard,&Medina … I’m sure FA/trade upgrades are coming, but that is my crystal ball, unless Arrietta has a rebirth

      1. We might see that rotation a year from now although Arrieta might still be part since he has a player option after this year. I love JoJo to be part of the rotation to give a lefty, but he might be bullpen bound and Parkinson is similar to Irvin.

        Gerrit Cole will be the crown jewel this offseason. He’ll command something similar to what Corbin got and possibly more.

        Other than Medina and Howard, there will be no high upside reinforcements coming in and the Phillies will have to wait for at least 2 years if some of the high upside low minors prospects like Gowdy, Pipkin, Morales, etc are viable options.

        However, I’m still optimistic that the farm will develop a under the radar Sixto-type and Medina-type from the IFAs — my guess will be Manuel Silva and Victor Santos.

          1. Gerrit Cole is an odd case. Had 2 really good seasons that makes you think he’s a legit 2, then he has 0.9 WAR this season at age 28. He’s no Max Sherzer or Jacob deGrom, but his agent is Scott Boras so you know he’s going to ask for the moon. He’s going to get at least DeGrom’s contract, something along the lines of 6 years, $170M. Is he worth it? Not sure.

            1. This is one of the reasons why I never embraced WAR because this stat has been miused most of the time. MadBum has inferior WAR compared to Mad Max but MadBum is one of the most dominant and successful SP in the modern ERA. Looking through WAR you will find a lot of anomalies when you compare WAR vs pitchers actual ability. Thor doesn’t have a sexy war but every GM will want Thor in their team. Gerrit Cole is no different. Cole is 28 yo , durable and has some nasty stuff who can dominate in the mound. Every GMs knows that Cole can command (career 2.4 BB/9) and throw 3 plus pitches (FB-SL-CU) and can miss bats (career 9.6K/9). That’s elite arm regardless of what the WAR lords say.

            2. @KK I would call Bumgarner one of the more dominant postseason pitchers of this era. If he wasn’t so successful in the postseason, he would just be a very good pitcher but not elite as his WAR would dictate. In fact, if you take away his postseason success, you would be hard pressed to say that he was elite. Second, Bumgarner is making $12M! If Zach Eflin came onto the market next season, he would get more than $12M per year.

              I’m not saying that Gerrit Cole is not a good pitcher, but as you’ve seen with Pivetta, production counts. If you can’t produce, it doesn’t matter how good your skills are.

              And if you don’t look at WAR, how can you tell if a player is under performing his contract? So you give Gerrit Cole $30M per year, but as long as he strikes out 10 per 9, you’re ok with his contract? How does that make sense?

            3. @romus. hahaha….. i do value WAR but I use WAR to where it is intended – to measure a player’s contribution to their team. that’s it. a lot of people use WAR for their own intended purposes which should not be the case.

              Also, WAR is based on “historical contribution” and it is not forward looking so it has nothing to do with free agency and contract signing as $$ spent to players involves a lot of factors (i.e. competition, ticket sales, future projection, etc). I don’t think GMs or Agents discuss contracts based on WAR imagine Klentak talking to Middleton like this….

              MK: Hey John, know what? Harper only had 1 good season and based on his WAR he is no Mike Trout or any top MLB player. is he with $300M? Not sure?

              JM: Are you a computer geek or what? GTFOH!

      2. My gut tells me Medina is either traded or transitions to the bullpen….just ask Kuko😀

        1. @8mark – is that your gut or is that you telling everybody? lol!

          Medina being a perennial Top 100 for 2 years now and almost MLB ready will be the hottest chip that Klentak got so he will be linked to almost of trade scenario’s involving a SP.

          As I said before, Klentak doesn’t let himself got carried away in trade situations and give up more that he can stomach so we might still see Medina staying with the team.

          Howard hold the most helium and I do believe that GMs notice that and will smartly try to get Howard (plus another high upside low minor arms like Pipkin, etc) instead of Medina. Hopefully, Klentak just say NO to both of them.

          We might ride this rotation all the way to the end of 2019 season.

  51. Kuko, we kid about Medina but I think our untouchables will be limited to Bohm, Howard and probably Garcia, who even though he’s struggling with Lakewood is still young and may require patience. The question is whether Klentak might offer one of either Moniak or Haseley if the opportunity to acquire a non-rental TOR was there.

    1. The prospect Phan in hopes they keep Moniak and Haseley. Same with Bohm, Stobbe (sp? This years pick) Medina and especially Howard. I’d Moan and groan for years if they traded Howard. To me, as of right now, it’d be like trading Hamels or Nola away. Not going to sit well with this fan. Trout would be the only player 🙂

    2. I agree than Medina is untoucheable but Klentak should only give him up for a real good return or for a legit MLB stud. I understand that you value him lower than most because you view Medina as a reliever and trading him now (when he’s a SP) is like selling high in your books. You might end up right, but I just don’t share this point of view.

      Unfortunately, if Klentak will acquire a controllable TOR (i.e. Chris Sale, Gerrit Cole, John Paxson etc), it will start with the Phillies Top 2 prospects + 2 more Top 10/15ish. If Klentak can avoid dealing Howard and Bohm — Haseley, Medina, Stott, Luis Garcia will be the price — and this kind of a trade might make Klentak blink and become cold feet.

      1. I know a trade for cole/sale/Paxson etc would hurt, and you obviously have to give to get. So far, the Realmuto trade looks like a steal. For the most part, the Phillies haven’t been burned giving up their prospects in trades. My argument is if the team is better in thr long run with their current prospects vs trading them for a year to 2 year spurt. Then having limited prospects to replace them with.

        If they do make a trade, I’m sure they will, I hope the big guns are kept out. Losing one of moniak/haseley is probably likely. Then I hope they start taping into the surplus of C talent they have, which would of course mean that Realmuto better be extended

        If a pitcher needs to go back, I give up Medina before Howard.

  52. “a non-rental TOR”……..that would be an off-the- assembly line Escalade of pitchers.
    Not sure the Phillies will want to go down that road.

    1. agree, the price (which is expected to be high) will make Klentak cold feet. I don’t think Klentak has the temperament with high risk high reward type of moves. The Bryce Harper signing is more on Middleton than Klentak so that doesn’t count.

      1. You may be right. I’m not sure. Klentak may back away if there’s stiffer competition for a higher end arm (see Corbin last off season). He seems to excel in beating the bushes for good value (ala Jay Bruce trade). Thing is, with all he did to upgrade the offense in the off season, he may feel more pressure to make that one big deal.

        My money is still on Mike Minor. Texas will have to wait to see whether they’re buying or selling, and what Minor’s market looks like by then. And also, how motivated might they be to unload salary (Choo?) in a trade as well? Creativity is just as important as identifying the right pieces.

        1. I’ll go for a rental SP – cheaper in prospect equity and it frees up a roster spot if the Phillies decide to go big FA (i.e. Gerrit Cole) hunting this offseason. I’m glad that Klentak did not pursue a once hot trade target in Chris Archer. The Pirates got burned big time and I hope Klentak will not make the same mistake. A young and cost controlled MLB stud doesn’t come along often that’s why the scouting team and player development team NEEDS TO STEP UP and PRODUCE!!

          1. Maybe Klentak is interested in a trade for Greinke because it’s mainly a salary dump with low prospect cost in return.

            1. If they can still sign JTR to a LTC, without getting too antsy about the threshold biting them…., then I would be receptive to a Greinke trade.

    2. Yeah I’m not really sure what plane they are on with this TOR trade talk. Just look at what it took for Boston to land Sale, look at what the Cubs gave up for Quintanna

      Even if we had that kind of prospect in our system I don’t believe we are in a position to give that up.

      Phillies should be looking at guys like a Jordan Lyles or maybe a Jordan Zimmerman both coming off injuries but should be had in low risk high reward trades.

      And I don’t think the D-Backs view themselves as sellers. They are at a +58 Run diff which is better than us better than the Braves, Brewers, Rockies and tied with the Cubs.

      And I would give almost a 0% chance Greinke waives his no trade to come here.

      Madbum holds a restricted no trade and the Phillies are on that list. Yeah he’d waive in a Heart Beat to come here but at a price in the form of an extension.

  53. I wouldn’t dismiss Danny Duffy as a possibility for us. If Texas trades Minot, still a big if, they
    are going to get quite a bit. MadBum also, and Robbie Ray even more. I don’t know that we have the desire to purge our farm.

  54. Who are the best players on worst teams that will be available and Phillies should be interested; i.e. MadBum?

  55. Maybe we should start not get worried about moving on from Roman “Mr. Glass” Quinn

      1. Someone once said that you can’t steal 1b so he needs to worry about getting on base first.

        1. Corbin Williams has a slash of .289/.348/..325 with average-ish BB%. In SSS, it is not bad to say that getting on base is a concern.

  56. random, but just happened to notice how Carlos Santana and Rhys Hoskins have almost identical numbers in every category so far (except for Rhys striking out 25 more times).

    1. Wow…hard to believe they are so similar:

    1. Of all nights to rest BH. I could understand if they took the first 2 games of the series…

      and if you are going to rest him it should be out of the division. Maybe I’m nit picking but it probably would have been better to rest Rhys and play Bruce at 1B.

  57.’s Joe Giglio has the phils linked to former phillies pen arm Ken Giles. No word on the return but adds that he’s under control through next season. Would be in favor of bringing him back depending on the return.

    1. Ken Giles is going to be linked to everybody. He’s having a crazy year. He’s on pace for 3+ WAR as a reliever which is Craig Kimbrel territory. Teams would kill to have a 2 WAR reliever.

      He’s going to get close to a top 100 prospect. There’s going to be a bidding war for him.

        1. Latest is that Giles doesn’t expect to miss more than the minimum 10 days. I’ve heard that tune before.

  58. I like Joe Giglio but I take his rumors with a grain of salt. He tends to latch on to someone else’s report and builds a case for it happening.

  59. Some here wanted to trade Haseley .some want trade Franco Kingery cant play both positions at once.

    If you trade for a Todd Frazier for a 1 yr rental maybe. Im not trading top prospects this year.

  60. Post game comment from Gabe hinted at changing the top of the lineup. This offense is dysfunctional right now. We need more than 2 hot hitters.

    And is Zach Eflin our best pitcher?

    1. Zack is having a very nice season and looks to be a really affordable #3 starter for many years ahead.

      I like Nola slotting in as a solid #2, Eflin is a nice #3, Arrieta is solid as a #4, and Pivetta is good as a #5 right now with massive upside if he gains consistency. The phils need a ToR guy and for Nola to look closer to 2018 Nola.

      1. Jon Morosi says Phils may be a good match for the Tigers’ LHP Matthew Boyd and closer Shane Greene. It would take a haul. Both are having all star seasons, Boyd is highly regarded for his clubhouse leadership and philanthropy. He is under control through 2022. This is suddenly an interesting development to watch….

    2. He’s our hottest pitcher, but, over the long haul, I’m a big, big believer and fan of Aaron Nola. Whatever he’s working through now will make him better in time. I don’t think people are really giving him enough credit due to the slow start. Aaron Nola has HOF potential. I’m not saying he will be a HOFer – I’m just saying that he has that type of upside. Much like Cole Hamels had when he was younger.

  61. Frustrating loss tonight. I don’t know the opposing starter, but it reminds me of last year when guys with little experience and high ERAs would shut us down.
    I think this team has yet to bust out though. They are underperforming offensively. I think John Malee has to be looked at. This team is not a middle of the pack offense based on the histories of their players.
    I also think Franco’s days are numbered. He’s pretty much shown what he is. Once Haseley comes back, I don’t want to see Franco get any more playing time.

    1. Until Haseley returns, look for Quinn to man CF (my guess is he’s there Friday night in Atlanta) with Kingery taking over 3b. Either Quinn or Kingery should be leading off. The Phillies don’t have the ideal guy since Cutch went down, but somebody made a valid point on the radio last night – certain teams (like the Cubs, for example) have been using hitters who can regularly barrel up pitches instead of just working counts at the top of the lineup. We’ll see….

      1. For the first time in a really, really long time, we have a somewhat deeper talent reservoir, at least on offense. Think about it. This team lost McCutchen and has probably lost Odubel – both of whom were counted on before the season started to be serious contributors – and if Quinn and/or Haseley can adequately man CF, Kingery will play third and we will have a deep 8-man line-up with a guy like Maikel Franco on the bench. And, thank God again for Jay Bruce – sharp move by Klentak, especially at the reduced salary.

  62. Braves with Riley are just really good team. They closed the gap on us with offense and have a ton of arms in minors. I really don’t know if we can ever match them. Spending money isn’t the answer. draft is the way to build and plug in with fa with any holes. we did it the other way. Shame Braves have three young studs plus freeman. already signed one cheap. Just a better drafting and development team. That were Middleton should start, get better people to judge the draft and latin market.

    1. “…get better people to judge the draft and latin market”……easier said, than done

      1. Then romus you don’t belong in charge of a team. How many blown drafts does it take to see how, whatever the are doing is bad. You of all people to say is easier said then done. Its done by research on other teams and see the scouts who do well. and over pay to get them. The braves this year have young talent. and used money on one year deals for Keuchel and Donaldson smart. Those two vets fill in a gap and only one yr committment

        1. rocco…..Braves went cheap outside the org, and they still are good because of their deep and talented internal depth and cunning trades.
          So what do the Phillies do…the hire Johnny A from their org a few years ago…so the Phillies did their research on other teams and took what they feel was the best.

          And so are you happy that we took one of the Braves’ centerpiece in scouting?
          He has had 3/4 drafts now and plenty of Latin international/ signings to judge.
          What do you think?

          1. So you telling me that Johnny ran the braves or was top scout came here and is bad/ I don’t buy that. What were is picks? All of a sudden a guy who you say did wonders for the braves is bad here, more to it than that, its like the eagles. Howie is the guy getting the credit. but joe Douglas made the moves on guys who fit. maybe Johnny was there but he might be another Howie. I want a joe Douglas.

            1. rocco…..Johnny A was a key figure in the Braves org when John Coppollella and Hart were running the show….and built their farm system..AND signed Acuna ( who signed with the Braves for $100K in July 2014) and Albies and traded for Swanson.,

        2. I’d prefer to build the way the Braves have… and honestly the Phillies have done the same thing recently … except their drafting has not been as good. The Braves have been drafting good, and the Phillies made shrewd moves by “catching up” by trading for Segura&realmuto…and signing McCutchen, Harper, and Robertson. We could have went into the year with a lineup of

          Herrera cf/Quinn
          Kingery 2B
          Franco 3B
          Hoskins 1b
          Alfaro C
          Williams RF
          Crawford SS
          Altherr LF

          What the FO did to catch-up was remarkable. The consequence is a bloated team salary. Theyll be fine with bohm, haseley, moniak, Garcia, and Stott coming- on should fill in nicely – hopefully bohm


          With Moniak and Stott progressing

          I like that lineup, with

          Nola, Howard, Efflin, Pivetta and a FA/Trade for TOR … I love our chances vs the Braves

          Btw, Harper knows the spotlight, expect a big series from him. Just like opening weekend

          1. Tac3…i lean your way.
            Outside of Cornelius R right now.,…..I have no monumental issues with their first round selections. And believe Moniak and Haseley will be all that is expected of them to be…key contributors to future Phillies success.

          2. I don’t think in terms of chasing the Braves. There are 30 teams in this league. Middleton should be paying attention to the Dodgers, Astros, Yankees Rays and Twins even.

            And it won’t be long probably before the D-Backs emerge.

            Boston is about to fall off a cliff. They have a bloated payroll very little in the pipeline and FA issues coming like you wouldn’t believe.

    2. If we are going to judge Riley by the same standards we use for our prospects, then his 32% k-rate vs. his 3.5% walk rate should be a cause for concern.

      1. I personalty would rather project him on his almost 2000 PAs in the minors….25% K rate and 8% BB rate.
        Which for a guy with his ISO (.221) and power (86 HRs) projects favorably.

  63. Hopefully getting bumped out of first place is the shot across the bow this time needs. Time to sweep the Braves by luck or skill. These Are the games that will determine the division, as well as who beats up the most on the marlins

    1. not looking good
      the braves are playing with a lot of energy, fun and confidence like they are never out of a game
      we’re playing with very little right now
      watch the frustration level of the hitters last night
      we’ll be lucky to get out of Atlanta with one win right now

      1. this is a defining series. Just getting bumped our of first, and facing your main division rival. Do they sulk about their injuries, or do they get pissed and fight back, and play above their heads. This is where Harper comes in. He has to sense this moment. It’s his team for the next 13 years. Time to define the clubhouse culture/set the time for expectations.

  64. I think the most shocking thing for me is , in the yr of the homerun around the league, how mediocre Hoskins and harper have been as compared to the top league power hitters.
    I wonder if harper is playing hurt because his lack of homeruns Is stunning playing in that ballpark.
    this team was built around offense, that’s where the resources went in the off season.
    if they don’t finish in the top 5 in the NL in runs, we wont make the playoffs

    1. I think you’re being unfairly tough on Hoskins. He’s hit 14 homers in 66 games – which roughly puts him on a mid-30s pace and his OPS is .909 and his WRC+ is 139. Hoskins’ hitting is NOT a problem.

      As for Harper, he’s not hitting as well as expected or with as much power but he’s fielding well, playing hard and he’s streaky so I expect him to end the year just fine.

      But to be clear, whatever the Phillies’ problems have been, Harper and Hoskins are not the source of those problems even if you think they could do a bit better (which they can).

      1. Agree – IMO the issue is on pitching and it starts with their ace Aaron Nola (and I’m a big Nola guy ever since) who is under performing and giving away big innings.

        The pitching is giving away 4.5 runs every game on the average with big impact by giving away HRs. 1st is to keep the ball low and stop surrendering HR and 2nd,manage big innings and potential implosion! This should lower the RA average and the offense should produce enough to win close games.

        1. I’ve come to the conclusion that, as much as I like Realmuto, I really don’t like the game he calls for Nola. IMO, Nola is pitching backwards (establishing the curve and then throwing FBs in tough counts) when he doesn’t need to do that. Nola has a nasty FB that he can pinpoint control most nights and that sets up the curve and makes it virtually unhittable. Larry Anderson has been very biting in his criticism of how Nola should pitch off his excellent FB and not off the curve. It results in him throwing more pitches and not maximizing the devastating effect of the curve as an out pitch. Again, I like Realmuto, but I really, really don’t like the game he calls for Nola – and I hope they change this around a little.

  65. Everyone just settle down.The Braves have there warts too. The bp is a avg at best , they needed To sign Dallas there stating pitching was going south fast.

  66. My problem with last night’s game is that no one switched up their approach. Rhys, JT, Scott Kingery all fell behind in the count. The first pitch was regularly an off speed slider or curve that was hittable. They took 2 called strikes, then made outs on weak swings that were off balance because they were reaching. Results were pulled grounders or fly balls with no juice behind them. Kruk complained about it all night, so I am not delusional. It is far different to look at pitches because your eye is good and you don’t swing at pitches out of the zone. It is another to look at called strikes continuously. It produced a game with zero energy and wasted a great performance by Eflin. They should have been telling each other after the first couple of poor ABs, “when he throws that soft first pitch, clobber it”. But, we didn’t all night. Cesar is batting about .100 since he moved back to lead off. Maybe a shake up in the lineup will help.

  67. agreed
    its a long season
    I guess I could understand it more if they were losing 9-8 , 8-6 etc
    last nights game was discouraging because they showed so little fight
    I agree Hoskins and harper as not their major problems
    I was just commently how low they are in the homerun rankings
    danby swanson has more homers than harper and only one less than hoskins

    1. Eshelman is listed as the starter for the Iron Pigs tonight. Big start for Medina (Reading) tonight. His last 3 starts, 15+ innings, 2 earned runs, 2 wins.

  68. Adonis Medina, Francisco Morales, Matt Vierling, Rafael Marchan and Jhailyn Ortiz to the Tigers for Matthew Boyd. I’m not insisting this will be enough but is it at least a starting point? Bear in mind that Boyd is under control through 2022, a solid citizen within the clubhouse and community alike. 28 years old and a lefty with 104 K’s in 84 innings pitched this season.

    1. @8mark – the cost control should be secondary to a team like the Phillies. The priority should be a “reliable arm”. Boyd’s name has been floating around the league as DET’s trade chip because Boyd is having a good year. Having a good year and being a good pitcher are two separate things. Boyd doesn’t look like has the pedigree of a stud pitcher. If Boyd reverts bad to his normal average, the Phillies will have another #5 in the roster until 2022. Taking out 2019, is Boyd a better pitcher than Irvin, JoJo or Parkinson?

      I know you like to jettison Medina like a hot potato. I think it might happen, but Klentak need to be smarter because Medina has the ability to haunt the Phillies in the long run.

      1. Good post, Kuko. Point well taken. 2 things though….8-10 other buyers may be involved, and perhaps a few GMs and their staffs would be willing to bet on the possibility that Boyd’s career has converged. The Tigers could hold onto him as a building block for the future unless they got a Godfather offer. I still like Minor as a target but I would at least like Klentak to explore Boyd as a younger, longer term option.

        1. it’s ok to go head-to-head and beat every bidder if it is for a stud player (i.e. Harper in FA and Machado is last year’s trade deadline).

          Like what Tac3 said, the FO and the player evaluation team needs to be certain with Boyd because the price will be high due to the number of buyers like what you said.

          IMO as a baseball fan, I’m still skeptic about Matthew Boyd. I’m glad that Klentak has that “bank for the buck” mentality so I can see Klentak walk away if the price is creeping up.

          Look for Klentak to go back to his buddy DiPoto and see if he can have Mike Leake for peanuts or work around a package involving players like Leake, Seager and get LHP Marco Gonzales for extra secondary prospects and contract relief.

          1. True, Klentak won’t get involved in a bidding war.

            What’s the story with Kyle Seager? Besides his recent injury, has his star fallen? Another change of scenery candidate? We need a 3b and while I’m fine with Jetpax there short term, he’s our future 2b.

            1. Kyle Seager is out possibly until middle of July due to surgery of his left hand. He’s 31 yo, not lighting the stat sheet and owed about $50M (until 2021). He’s on the downside but has pedigree so can be a change of scenery thing.

              Klentak will not get Seager straight up, but he might absorb his contract and roster spot to get Marco Gonzalez in exchange of Franco (change of scenery candidate with upside), Irvin (west coast dude) and Parkinson (lefty close to the majors) + a high upside low minors or something like that.

            2. Seager can be a bridge and he’s a lefty bat. I don’t really see Cesar as a long term fit with the Phillies so Klentak may let him walk away at the age of 30 and let Cesar cash in with other team. So Kingery will be the 2B and leave 3B open until Bohm is ready and move Seager as a back up INF and a LH bat.

      2. The FO needs to be sure on Boyd. He has had 1 half a season of very good pitching. He is apparently pitching better, I. Terms of sequence and location. Now is this a hot streak, or is he for real. That trade package seems heavy in some ways, light in others, and it depend how you view Boyd. Has he tuned the corner or not? That’s a lot to gamble Medina on. If they pull the trigger on a trade like that, they better be sure

  69. Just another thought on WAR. It is not an end all be all metric. Using WAR without proper logic and common sense will result to poor judgment.

    The Phillies are 38-30 and Bryce Harper only has 0.7 WAR. So does it mean if the Phillies did not sign Harper and instead use Williams or any AAAA replacement to bat 3rd, the Phillies will only be 1 game worst at 37-31?? I doubt that – the Phillies is probably threading 0.500 without Harper. Harper alone contributed to at least 2 wins with his bat and batters working around him to give Rhys and JTR to produce runs possibly resulted to another 2-3 wins. Jay Bruce as a Phillies has 0.9 WAR and I can easily say that Bruce is easily responsible for at least 2 wins with his short time as a Phillie.

    WAR is even unfair to SP. Assuming a pitcher pitched a gem 3 times (i.e. 7IP 2 ER , etc) resulting to 3 close wins followed by a clunker (i.e. 1.2 IP 6ER) resulting to a loss, looking at the WAR calculation that SP will ave a WAR close to 1.0.

    To go back to Gerrit Cole, this SP is young, durable, with command of his 3 plus pitch, strike batters out and can give a team at least 10 wins a year. This kind of an arm only represents the Top 10 % in the whole league why would any GM not want him in their team? Yeah I know, because he only has a WAR of 1.0. If you have Gerrit Cole pitching instead of an Arrieta or Eickhoff, the Phillies will have an additional 5 wins easy.

      1. @romus – eye test can easily verify that Eflin is the best pitcher in the staff. Basic stats backs it up even without looking for it so his WAR is irrelevant. Using logic, Eflin is easily responsible for 2 wins with his 2 CGs, another win when he shut out the Royals, the 2-1 win against MIN is also his and the game last night is supposed to be another W for Eflin. I account Eflin as responsible for easy 5 (of 38) wins and I’m certain that WAR is much lower that than.

        Analytics are good information to have to aid in the decision making. It is only “tool” to give a front office a different perspective.

        I’m actually ok with WAR and all of that. My issue really is the abuse and misuse of the stat by people who want to look baseball smart.

    1. Agree, Kuko. Basically, one great shortcoming with WAR is that it fails to account for the impact – both tangible and intangible – that a player has one the rest of the lineup or staff.

      1. The problem with this statement is that it’s hard to quantify the impact. So in this case, you can pretty much justify any poor singing with any “impact” you can think of i.e he brings stability, he brings veteran presence, he’s teaching the young guys, etc.

    2. Kurt- i agree with the thoughts on WAR. Imho, it’s not the end all be all. When it’s high, yeah the player is having a good year. In harpers case, he is more valuable than .7 of a win over some AAA replacement. He saved 2 games alone with his glove. The star is assuming the AAA player would make similar contributions, with harper edging that player by .7ths of win? Na, not buying that. I’ll say, I fell like trouts war gets bloated a bit from his SB totals. Obviously he is a great player, but another perspective on accessing war. For instance, if he doesn’t score, did that SB help his team win the game?
      Gotta dig deeper than that imo.
      This is where mixing analytics and old school comes into play. Can’t lean 100-% either way, more like 60/40 – 70/30

      1. @Tac3 – you got it right. As i said earlier, these analytics are tools and they are not meant to provide the final answers. GM can tweak certain calculations to provide the information they need to evaluate a player.

        TheGuru evaluation of Gerrit Cole is a clear example of a bad use of WAR. And if Harper is signed by another team and assume that he has the same WAR of 0.7, I’m certain that somebody will point that Harper is not worth the $300M. Jersey sales, ticket sales, TV ratings jumped significantly just by signing Harper and these revenue streams are incorporated in the cost of the contract.

      2. Tac3 – you got it right in the sense that there should be a “mix” of analytics and old school (i.e. scouting, eye test, etc). to make a decision about a player.

        1. I don’t understand how guys like Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Tony Gwynn, Robin Yount, Mike Schmidt, Mickey Mantle, Ted Williams put up the numbers they did without analytics

          How the heck did jolten joe hit in 56 straight games without video

          Believe me I don’t think the game would suffer one bit if you threw it all in the garbage.

          1. It sort of makes me laugh when people say older baseball players were judged on the eye test. Yeah, sure, we all like to see a great player perform – and there’s nothing that can replace seeing that special player in person or on TV. But baseball has ALWAYS primarily been a statistical/analytical game and most of the historic analytics are as valid now as they always were. Why was Babe Ruth so great? Because he put up the best statistics. You all know what his 60/714/.342 numbers mean. Just as we know what 1.12, 511. 406 and 383 mean . These are not eye test descriptions, they are objective analytics that have been around for over a century. So rather than denying that baseball has always been a game about analytics (which it has been), let’s just be flexible enough to note that the scope of the analytics has just progressed naturally as it should and, rather than fighting that baseball is and has always been a game of analytics, we can evaluate the new analytics on their own merits.

            1. @catching – statistics and analytics shared a common thread but are two different things. the use of statistics has been around a long time for sure but the use of analytics as a tool to evaluate players is not that long.

              with the age of data infrastructure to gather more data and statistics, then when analytics becomes more viable so the use of analytics is modern era not more than century ago.

            2. I don’t think we disagree catch. Many things in this world have naturally progressed I’m just saying it doesn’t mean we are better off for it 🙂

              I think there is a case to be made that humans in their quest for technological advancement will ultimately cause their own destruction.

              We say the game is suffering because it is too long or the pace is too slow yet we don’t acknowledge that is because of the advancement in technology. Last nights game was on pace to be over just around 9 then throw in a couple of replay’s and boom it went an extra 30-35 minutes.

              I know in many ways I’m being silly and probably just showing my age.

            3. I’m sorry KK, but that’s nonsense. Analytics are just more advanced statistics and statistics have ALWAYS been used to evaluate players. They are and have always been the primary means of evaluating a baseball player.

          2. DMAR, analytics has much more to do with suits and ties justifying their existence and calling it a new and improved way of applying data. It has not improved the overall quality or “watchability” of the game. That’s because the application of data is actually an interpretation of how that selected data is used, weighted against and favored over other data, and now we have a shell of the game as it was originally designed. Stolen bases, bunting (both sacrifice and for hits), using faster runners (and even not so fast runners) to disrupt the pitcher’s concentration and defense’s comfort level by planting the seed that they’re looking to take the next base. All competitive edge stuff – it’s practically gone. And baseball has suffered for it by trying to appeal to the “more intelligent” or easily bored non-fan. As things usually come full circle, I hope my old game returns once the new breed is eventually extinct. I’ll probably be dead, but….sermon over.

            1. The really smart teams blend analytics with regular scouting, development and common sense. And that’s what the best teams do in all sports, including football and basketball. Baseball is no different.

              I agree the game is suffering, but most of that has to do with the game being so damned slow and torturous. Stop the 3 plus hour games. Institute a pitch clock (it will take teams like 20 days to adjust – get used to it – it’s not rocket science), limit in-inning pitching changes. Require baseball to quickly review instant replays (I think they are getting better at this anyway). And probably limit shifts. Aside from that, I don’t think analytics is ruining anything. People just don’t like change.

            2. Change for the better is welcome. But with any change comes the immediate human reaction by those directly affected, which is seldom compliant to, or cooperative with, the “program”. Along the way, people push for change without being careful what they’re asking for. That’s universal.

  70. Catch in one breath you say the game is slow and torturous and in another you say you don’t think (can I say advanced analytics) is ruining anything.

    Isn’t the genesis of things making the game slow and torturous today’s analytics?

    I’m not trying to be facetious but advanced analytics lead to shifts and an abundance of pitching changes and mound visits have they not.

    1. You’re right, I don’t think analytics is ruining the game. The commissioner has the tools at his disposal to make the game move MUCH faster to counteract the delays caused by these other things. It’s not rocket science. Add a pitch clock. Limit reliever changes. Limit time for ump reviews. You can have games back to like 2:40-2:50 fairly easily. That’s what happens in other sports – when there is a problem or inbalance, they make rule changes and everyone adjusts and moves forward. If the delays caused by analytics couldn’t be counterbalanced you’d have a point. But they can be.

      1. Limit time for ump reviews is tricky… want to get the call correct and not jeopardize an accurate call because of time constraints. So that can be an issue if the umps have to rush a call and get it incorrect.

        Personally….there are minimum of 17 breaks between the innings of 1 thru 9, that total 34 minutes….understand that those breaks pay he bills so to speak, but maybe creatively slice that down…run quickie silent ads, pix-in-pix in a corner of the tube between pitches..

        1. Again, not rocket science. The plays are reviewed on video in a central location – everything and angle is at their immediate disposal. It shouldn’t take more than 2 minutes start to finish.

  71. As to the question of how to determine if a player over or under perform a contract, using WAR or analytics is a good conversion for baseball fans but the actual determination for a FO is beyond that.

    Contract signings (especially the big ones) are decisions made by ownership group who most likely don’t talk and understand advance analytics. To owners, it’s about cash flow and bottom line. Most owners will hand out contracts with the though in mind of recovering these costs thru various revenue streams, of course, a winning team normally generates more revenue there are still other factors to consider.

    So if I will use Bryce Harper and his contract as an example, looking at the $ per WAR – screams Klentak should be fired and Middleton knows nothing.

    When Middleton approves that contract he knows that he will be making >$26M/annually by having Harper with the team. I don’t have the exact numbers, but looking at the increase in ticket sales, merchandise, concessions and TV viewing – Middleton pretty much recovered that $26M that he will spend paying Harper. On top of that Harper can contribute to about 10 wins swing and having Harper in the line up can potentially attract future FAs and make the Phillies team better (thus more $$ to Middleton).

    So to go back to the question is Harper worth the contract, considering everything for Middleton I think it is an easy YES.

    1. First, to think that your eye test means more than analytics is laughable. That’s just straight up hubris. WAR is not the be and end all, but it’s a very good starting point and comparison tool.

      And while I do believe that your argument about Harper being worth more than his production on the field, will that apply to any future FA signings? So if we sign Gerrit Cole for $30M per year, he gives us 1.5 WAR per year and you’re going to justify his signing because he’s a #1, he brings stability to the rotation, he brings excitement, etc.

      Analytics doesn’t care about the outside stuff. If you want to overpay for players because you like them, that’s your opinion. Personally, I would rather the Phillies not do that.

      The Phillies are not dumb, they knew what they were getting into giving Harper $330M. The odds of him living up to that contract is pretty slim. But they gave it to him anyways because they wanted to be contenders. I don’t have a problem with that. It was a big splash that the Phillies needed. Is he under performing his first year? Yes. Am I going crazy about it? No. He has 12 more years to make it up. And in the end, if he brings us a title, all is forgiven. If he doesn’t, well that’s a conversation for 10+ years later.

      1. First is – what you do mean by this “Analytics doesn’t care about the outside stuff.” — you make it sound like Analytics is above everything.

        FA $ is normally economics (supply and demand thing) and dictated by market so analyzing the $ is really about bottom line for most owners. It is the owners who signs of this decisions not fans. And WAR is just a number that has no value and a $ has – so WAR and $ don’t compare.

        If Middleton signs Gerrit Cole for $30M and he pitched at least 30 games, winning half of that help the Phillies reach the offseason, pitch and win an offseason game – that’s worth the $$ and I’m sure that Middleton’s bottom line is positive too.

        1. Analytics doesn’t care about the outside stuff, and that’s true. However, I never said analytics was above everything.

          You’re nuts that WAR has nothing to do with economics. Any agent will be using WAR to get his client more money. And the teams will be using WAR to temper that offer. You know that 1 WAR is worth at least $7M? You can do the math from there.

      2. Catch really said it best….

        “The really smart teams blend analytics with regular scouting, development and common sense. And that’s what the best teams do in all sports, including football and basketball. Baseball is no different.”

        1. Again I’m really interested in this topic and I’m not trying to be a smart A$$ but who are the really smart teams and who are the really dumb teams?

          I think many consider Jeff Luhnow the new SABR god and parts of his tree are starting to branch out to other orgs, the Cards haven’t been the same since he and his software went elsewhere. And to boot they fired a large number of scouts.

          Just curious…

          1. @DMAR – the Astros is of late that I can think who successfully applied the thought process that catch said while BAL and MIA are probably on the opposite side of it.

          2. Any team that doesn’t embrace analytics is behind the curve. Then you have cheap owners who don’t spend as much on international signings.

    2. KuKo…all I said was, Eflin now leads the staff in WAR….and then the annual WAR debate breaks out… time I will use something else…BABIP or xFIP ilo of WAR.

      1. @romus – I like that (using advance metrics when evaluating a player’s performance) rather than concentrating on WAR.

        1. In that case, I’m curious to see which advance metrics predict the success that Eflin has had.

  72. Braves are rolling over the Pirates this afternoon. Tomorrow night begins part II of 2019 – 26 games vs division rivals. We’re currently 38-30. If we can go 15-11 between now and mid-July, we’ll be 53-41 and in decent shape, playoff-wise. If we can beat up Miami in 6 of those games (win 5?) then maybe a better record. I’m not sure what strategy Kapler might employ but if the bats don’t awaken, it won’t matter.

    1. The Pirates are fading quickly and will probably become sellers in a few weeks. They do have a few pieces that will be attractive to a number of teams..

  73. Fangraphs updated its rankings of Phillies prospects:

    1. Alec Bohm (#57 overall)
    2. Spencer Howard (#58 overall)
    3. Adonis Medina (#75 overall)
    4. Luis Garcia
    5. Adam Haseley
    6. Bryson Stott
    7. JoJo Romero
    8. Enyel Del Los Santos
    9. Simon Muzziotti
    10. Francisco Morales
    11. Mickey Moniak

    Jamari Baylor is #16, and Erik Miller is #23. The list goes through #39, and Randolph is not on it.

    1. They still have high hopes for JoJo.
      Gamboa at 18 and Baylor at 16…head scratchers for me.

    2. Garcia #4 batting a buck ninety? He should definitely be higher than Haseley. Big leagues v .190 in low A ball. COME ON MAN!

    3. The list is OK but note a couple of things…

      Josh Stephen broke Top 30 at #30 — is the farm really that bad?

      Alejandro Requena at #31 over Pipkin, Silva, Dohy – FG view Requena as a generic righty with average-ish stuff. And yet, he ranks high than Pipkin and Silva. Is Pipkin/Silva that bad or Requena that good? Geesh this rankings!!

      1. Cole Irvin, Matt Vierling, Abrahan Gutierrez, Austin Listi, and even my fav Darick Hall…omissions even from 30 to 40.

        1. Listi and Hall are somehow polarizing since the offensive bar for 1B/DH type prospects is set up so high and Irvin’s last clunker possibly cost him but Vierling and Gutierrez are notable omission especially if FG has Stephen, Requena, Lindow and Warren in their Top 39.

          1. I can understand Hall/Listi based on their positional value…but Irvin’s MLB games i in aggregate along with his 2019 LHV results should have him in the top 40 somewhere, along with also Eastman and maybe even TJ Kyle Young.

          2. Don’t look now – but Austin Listi has had a very solid – even meteoric – progression this year. His OPS month-by-month is .369 (ouch!), to .771 (not bad), to 1.179 (wow!). If he keeps this up for another month, he might be in line for a promotion to AAA. We’re now seeing again the Austin Listi who tore up Clearwater last year which is exciting because the dude is an unreal physical specimen.

            1. Bohm could get the promo to Reading if Listi is moved up to LHV. since Listi has played the majority of his games at 3rd this season at Reading.

            2. Grade C+ prospects don’t determine the timeline of Grade A- prospects – they get the hell out of the way or get lucky and get promoted to help them get out of the way. I say this again and again on this site. It’s not like a job in a factory folks. High level prospects go where they belong whenever they are ready. The only thing that might block a high level prospect is a starting player in the majors (that’s what happened to Ryan Howard before Jim Thome was traded). That’s about it. But Austin Listi blocking Alec Bohm? Fugghetaboutit!

            3. Who said Listi was blocking Bohm?
              That is an implication you derived from my premise.
              Exactly where did I mention Bohm cannot be promoted to Reading with Listi still there?
              Listi could remain at Reading and play the OF or DH or first base.
              But if Listi is promo to LHV, it is with some certainty that Bohm goes up.

            4. YOU IMPLIED IT – you said Bohm could be promoted if Listi is moved to LHV as if Bohm’s movement is contingent on what happens with Listi – it’s not. Bohm goes up when they think he’s ready – it has zero to do with Austin Listi.

      2. You think Stephen is that bad? He is doing really well is young and can hit.

      1. And yet another head scratcher….though I like Simon Muzziotti,
        Moniak , IMO, does have that one tool, power, that would seem a notch above Muzziotti’s.

      1. They both are RHBs, and with Quinn now a RHB only, and being activated, the Phillies do need a LHB off the bench.

        1. Right. Quinn is back tomorrow but I would not be surprised if Nicky Dubs stays put as a lefty bench bat with pop, and sayonara to both Gosselin and Rodriguez. The upgraded bench would then become Franco, Williams, Miller and Knapp. Nothing much to fear but a marked improvement.

          1. Is Sean Rodriguez coming up on a annual milestone for MLB retirement? Maybe 10 years which is a big payout at 62; $220,000 annually.

            1. The pension at 62 is nice at 220.000 for a utility guy. didn’t know it was that much

            2. Is that Gabe doing his former teammate a solid? Rodriguez was dreadful in ST, and has done nothing to merit an extended stay in the Show. I get loyalty but not at all costs when a team is in the playoff hunt.

            3. He’s at 9.118 years of service time. He’s made $20.2 million in his career if you can believe that…

  74. Got it. Quinn coming back, one of Gosselin/Rodriguez goes down, and maybe Williams goes also, so Miller becomes lefthanded bat off the bench?

  75. I really like the Brad Miller transaction. No cost in prospects, he can play third, which is a position of instability and there’s nothing but upside. It could work out great, but if not, there’s been no cost other than a payment of money. Another solid Klentak move.

    1. Agree. Plus I understand he’s another glue guy for the clubhouse. No false expectations. All gravy if he thrives here. You never know…

  76. Joe Girardi and Harold Reynolds both said they don’t believe the D-Backs are sellers at the deadline and they may actually buy. I agree. They aren’t likely to run down the dodgers unless they suffer another major injury.

    When did Joey Gallo become a CF?

    Hunter Pence….last night he hits a ball that is clearly over the head of Mookie Betts if not out of the park. Elvis Andrus is on 1st and not running hard. The ball hits the top of the wall and bounces back in play. Andrus is standing on 3rd and the camera catches Pence looking at Elvis shrugging his shoulders and making the you gotta run gesture at him.

    A veteran calling out a veteran.

    When is the last time a championship team didn’t have a player in the top 5 MVP vote and do we have such a guy?

    If you could only use 1 stat to choose the MVP what would it be (exclude pitchers) mine would be OPS.

    1. OPS is good….why not also account for park factors (CBP vs COORS) and just use OPS+?

    2. Does OPS count as one stat? It’s literally “On-base Plus Slugging”. If you consider it one stat, does WAR count? Because I’d go with that if so.

      If we’re just going with “simple” stats, I’d probably go OBP. It’s pretty rare for anyone with a .400+ OBP to NOT be in MVP discussions.

  77. How good. or bad is the Phillies pitching? Realistically speaking, If Nola doesn’t right the ship, the Phillies chances of making the post season are slim. Having said that, Eflin and Pivetta have taken a step up, and are solid. Arrieta is Arieta. He’ll battle every time out there, but is probably no better than a .500 pitcher at this point of his career. As of today, the Phillies have no #5 starter. It looks as though De Los Santos, Irvin, or Suarez will get the start on Sunday.
    Edubray Ramos is back on the roster, and Neshek is set to return very soon. There’s no telling how much “rust” they will have, but hopefully Gabe will be able to use them in low leverage situations.
    The acquisition of Bruce was a stroke of luck, but we’ll take it. The addition of Brad Miller and the return of Roman Quinn probably gives the Phillies the best 4th and 5th outfielders in baseball. Haseley will probably return to Lehigh until Quinn gets injured again. The bench now consists of Franco, Quinn, Miller and Knapp, which is much better than it was two weeks ago.
    I expect, as I write this, that Klentak is looking to trade for a starter, but not a rental. Depending on which pitchers they are targeting, the Phillies could offer Franco, Hernandez, De Los Santos, Irvin, or even Medina. In my opinion, only Bohm and Spencer are the only “untouchables”.

    Your opinions are welcome, but be nice.

    1. With Quinn in CF and Kingery at 3b, the bench should be Knapp, Williams, Miller and Franco. I’m only concerned that Kapler keeps his pal Rodriguez and ships Williams down to AAA again.

      1. 8mark – Williams needs to flip the switch right now or he be returned to Lehigh. I’m still pulling for him, but his time is running out. Does anybody know where Altherr is playing these days?

        1. Wawa, I agree about Williams but I’d rather have Williams off the bench at least until Haseley returns. By then, he may be traded. At this point I hope that’s the case for his sake as well as ours.

    2. @Wawa – as I mentioned to 8mark yesterday, the controllable (or non-rental) should be secondary. The Phillies are in WIN-NOW mode and they really need a reliable arm whether rental or not. A controllable good arm will cost a good amount of prospect equity – at least 2 of Top 4 and possibly 4 of Top 10. It’s hard to talk about this unless you have a name in mind.

      I wouldn’t mind if it is a rental because Gerrit Cole is the arm that I like the Phillies to get for next year. They just need to stabilize the rotation this year so they can go deep into the playoffs. As of now, it is still early to figure out who will be sellers and buyers

      Next year, Medina and Howard should be MLB ready to reinforce a rotation of Gerrit Cole-Aaron Nola-Zac Eflin-Nick Pivetta and Jake Arrieta (player option).

      I don’t really like the controllable arm unless it is a stud like Chris Sale or Gerrit Cole when BOS and HOU acquired them. CHC and PIT paid a lot for Jose Quintana and Chris Archer and it burned them so bad.

      Also, the first order of business if for Aaron Nola to right the ship. Without a dominant Aaron Nola, the Phillies may not get to the playoffs (or go deep into the playoffs) even if they acquire a good arm.

    3. If I were a betting man MK let’s this play out until closer to the trade deadline unless a deal falls in his lap he’s not going to be quick to deal a Medina or DLS and he’s definitely not going to deal Bohm or Howard.

      I think everything else as you’ve said is on the table. I don’t think he would hesitate to deal CeHe or Franco or Irvin.

      He’s gotta know this club isn’t one player away yet from being a WS contender.

    4. Fans are notoriously impatient. They have the right especially if they are spending their hard earned $$ to support the Phillies.

      I’ve encountered a lot of fans who is quick to say —- “Klentak needs a controllable arm and give the whole farm except Bohm and Howard and blah, blah….” but when you ask them who specifically they want … most can’t name any and best answer that I probably get is Mike Minor and Matthew Boyd. Really? 4 Top 10 for a SP who is up and down (Minor) or an an average-ish but having a great year (Boyd).

      I actually brought up Stroman and Sanchez but said that it will cost a lot because Klentak will go into a bidding war. I view Storman and Sanchez similar to Archer and Quintana —- good pitchers but not dominant.

      BOS will lock up Chris Sale because he is a stud. But HOU relying their ability to scout and develop players will risk on losing Gerrit Cole.

      If Klentak will give up multiple high upside players/prospects, it should be for a player who will be good for a long time. When Klentak gave up on the upside of Sixto and Alfaro – he knows he is getting the best Catcher in MLB. This should be the same blue print he needs to follow to improve the rotation. If he cannot get one of the best SP, then don’t get emotional and be impulsive.

      1. @kurt -There is not an obvious target in my opinion. Boyd is interesting, and a potentially rare chance to get a 1b/#2 type pitcher before his cost skyrockets to a Chris sale level. I wonder if Scherezer or Thor is potentially available? Likely not to the Phillies, but another team. If they are, hopefully that could take some higher rollers out of a Boyd trade. It’s risky for sure. He could be a #2 or #5. His stats are top 10 pitchers in mlb now. Madbum worries me too, like Arrietta on steroids worries me.

        I don’t think the SP is available this year, or one’s worth selling the farm for, to me… the bats are just going to have to bring it home. Ride Nola,Efflin,Pivetta, and Arrietta, with moves to beef up to bullpen and bench. Let it ride from there.

        …No deal for Howard, unless we are getting trout back

  78. Wawa – Good ideas in your text. The only thing I dispute is that Miller is strictly an infielder.

  79. WaWa Mike, who do you see out there that is not a Rental that we could be looking at? I think Duffy is signed through 2021, and he has been on my list since ST. I know he is not at the top of anyone’s wish list, but I like him, and more importantly, I think he is gettable without doing serious damage to our farm.I also agree with ciada in that MIller can play the corner OF. I did a little research since I questioned why we got him yesterday. After review, a nice pick up at no cost, so a good move by Matt K.

    1. @matt13 – see my early post. I also ask that questions to fans who insist that Klentak should get a controllable/non-rental arm. The best answer i got is Mike Minor and Matthew Boyd. I mentioned Marcus Stroman and Aaron Sanchez but this will cost Kletank a lot. And to be honest, Stroman and Sanchez are no better than Nola. And if Eflin continue his current trend, Eflin might be better than Stroman and Sanchez.

    2. Some here posted Greinke as a salary dump. But that early to say since ARI are overpefroming so they might shoot for WC.

      Robby Ray is probably the most popular here and will cost a lot, but same reason as Greinke.

      Another option is Trevor Bauer who is not signing a LT with CLE. He can be a possibility but is he a Papelbon in the locker room?

      If I’m the GM, I will monitor Alex Wood (CIN). He is injured due to back injury but he will be a FA by the end of 2019. Wood might cost less because of the injury but he can be a high reward if came be OK.

  80. Also, KuKo, Tanner Roark has always pitched well against us. He is not a TOR guy, but definitely ups our level at the back end of the Rotation. I know we all prefer a lefty, but Roark can help. What do you think of Duffy?

    1. Both Roark and Duffy are options, but if Klentak will go that route – Nola needs to be close to the 2018 Aaron Nola and one (preferably both) of Eflin and/or Pivetta continue their current trend.

      With the Phillies offense, Roark and Duffy should be able to provide innings that help the Phillies win. I view Roark and Duffy’s impact similar to Arrieta so more of a #4ish and #3 on a good day.

      Duffy comes with a $40M price tag and knowing KC, they will prefer to unload 100% of it. If Klentak OK to absorb $40M to have a #4 in his team? Maybe not.

      Roark is a pure rental but his cost can go up if more teams will be in position for WC come trade deadline.

  81. I’ve decided I’m now in on Madison Bumgarner. He’s having a bad enough year and is so close to free agency, that the price tag might end up being reasonable – like it was for Hamels and Verlander in past years. He’s now a great “buy low” candidate. And, like a lot of great players, I think there’s a good chance he become rejuvenated once he is back in the limelight. For the right price, I want this guy. He’s post season money and call it gut instinct, but I think this guy is going to have a strong second act for someone. Why not us?!

    1. And this guy has Philly “attitude” with a vengeance. Would love to watch him stare down the batters on the Braves and Nats and hit his own homers in CBP. I’m telling you, for the right price, this is the guy.

    2. Klentak will need to determine if he wants to resign MadBum to a LT contract too. The Phillies is in MadBum’s NTC list, and I believe MadBum includes the Phillies for a reason. Maybe he change his mind, sure, But NTC is one of the annoying hurdles the GMs needs to jump over. Securing a nice LT financial security and winning environment that change a players mind..and I hate to see MadBum go to ATL.

  82. Romus after this weekend and the phillies get swept. Will we be sellers and I am thinking who do we sell.?

    1. Klentak should Josh Stephen and Luke Williams for some Cowboys jerseys and burn them. Lol!

  83. Rocco, I know you are trying to rile up Romus and the rest of us. But, I am not biting! Even if we lose all 3 to the braves, and I certainly hope not, we are going to be in a WC race for the rest of the year. And, we will be buyers. I have believed all along, and still do, that the in-season acquisitions will determine the race this year. Keuchel./Bruce and whoever comes next. That is going to stay the same no matter what happens this weekend. And, when we sweep the Braves, we will still need Pitching help going down the stretch.

    1. As for the WC race we’re going to have a tough time with that. The Central is sure to produce at least one of the WC teams Brewers or Cubs

      Then it will come down to us ATL and D-Backs

      1. DMAR…do not discount the Rockies….winners of 14 of their last 20.
        If Freeland comes back up and is his old self then I think they will have as solid chance at the WC as anyone.

  84. Matt I just think the braves are as good as the dodgers. Wc to me isn’t good enough. I only speak the truth.

    1. Roc, something Matt Gelb just tweeted for you to put in your pipe – the Phillies record vs teams at or over .500 is 19-17, 3rd best in MLB. While I do share some of your concerns, there’s a lot to be said about a club’s ability to rise to the occasion. Yet sometimes they lower their own bar against the weaker sisters. To me, the matchup between the Phillies and the Braves is unpredictable, other than to say whoever is playing the best baseball will win. If the Phillies don’t hit (and I’m not impressed at all with the Braves pitching staff) they won’t win. But taking the first game tonight would be huge in setting the tone for the weekend.

  85. There is no doubt the Phillies/Klentak are all in at this point. They/he are/is going do something (maybe multiple things) before the end of next month. I believe they’d rather deal from the lower levels of the farm, but if push comes to shove, and the right guy (LHP under team control through at least 2020) becomes available, I wouldn’t be shocked to see anyone go.
    I still think Francisco Morales is the guy they’d like to feature in a trade.
    I also believe, with the addition of Bryson Stott, Luis Garcia is now available in the right deal.
    Dominic Pipkin, Starlyn Castillo, Damon Jones, Rafael Marchan, Logan Simmons, Simon Muzziotti, and Logan O’Hoppe are some of the other younger guys who could be on the table.

    Mike Minor is probably the team’s #1 target. Matthew Boyd would be a really good get, but will probably be the most expensive dude on the market. Jake Diekman or maybe even Brad Hand could be BP options.
    In any event, Klentak is going to make some noise in July.

  86. Bummer. Quinn’s rehab stint has been transferred to Reading. Miller replaces Gosselin and as expected, Sean Kapler…I mean, Rodriguez…lives to see another day, or several until he reaches his 10 year mark? Let’s investigate that.

  87. Hinkie, I am with you. I believe exactly what you just said, that we are all in to make the Playoffs this year, and I think that also means to win the Division. SP, BP and even, maybe, another bench bat will be added. On another topic. Herrera has a Court date in AC on Monday. I know delays and continuances are normal in legal proceedings, but let’s assume the legal case is resolved. The young woman declines to move forward, the Prosecution does as well. MLB still, and I hope and believe, the Phils are doing an independent investigation, as well, is conducting their investigation. Do we know a time frame before he gets a 50 game Suspension, assuming that is the outcome? Do any of you believe that he will wear our Pinstripes again?

  88. Miller in, Gosselin out, no word on Roman Quinn. I thought, for sure, he was going to be activated for this weekend. Won’t be the last time I am wrong.

    1. I posted it above, a few comments up – Roman’s rehab assignment was transferred to Reading.

  89. Tonight in Atlanta:
    Segura 6
    Harper 9
    Realmuto 2
    Hoskins 3
    Bruce 7
    Kingery 8
    Rodriguez 5
    Hernandez 4
    Pivetta 1

    1. Most important series of the season so far and Rodriguez plays 3b while Franco sits….hmm.

      1. To think Moustakas and Donaldson were both out there for short signing periods…and somehow someone decided to ignore Andy MacPhail’s subtle suggest last October on Miakel:
        “I mean, the other team, you know, maybe they’ll find the key, or maybe it is a function of just experience and learning yourself and what you have to do to stay focused and energetic the entire season.”

        1. In my small world of thinking. I cant figure out Franco. He looked so good early, and then went back to old habits. He has talent. just doesn’t use it , swinging at those bad pitches, pulling off the ball. Head case imo

          1. Foolishly, two years ago I metric comped his over 2300 PAs minor league career, and first three years in the majors to one time Cub third baseman Aramis Ramirez where they were almost identical…so projected the same results..and early on 2018 it looked that way.
            But how did that turn out?

          2. My theory has always been that he’s hurt by the fact that his bat control is just too good, as ironic as that sounds.

            He can hit pretty much any pitch. The problem is he knows it, so he’ll swing at just about anything. But being able to hit a pitch 2 inches off the plate doesn’t mean you’ll hit it well, so he’ll swing and make contact, but weakly ground out because that’s about all you can do with that pitch.

            But then sometimes he’ll golf club a homerun, so he’ll feel justified swinging at everything and the trend continues ad infinitum.

  90. wow what a team two straight hitters with two strikes and they win. Might be as good as dodgers.

  91. Bruuuutaal. Really thought they had it at 8-7. I would’ve liked to seen hector go with the high heat there. Blown call in the 8th didn’t help, missed called 3rd strike on the check swing.

    All that said. I’ll like our chances against the Braves in the coming years, Need bohm and Howard to develop into stud core players. I’m feeling better about getting bohm. That’s how I’m going to take this.

    This team needs a new closer. The east has Neris figured out

    1. Tac….l agree on the heat, I didn’t like splits til he figures it out. Last year they said he threw too many FB’s and not enough splits, this year I think he throws too many splits. I don’t want it to be 50/50, I want it 65-70/30 splits to FBs, at least a better feel for the moment.

    2. The problem with Neris last night wasn’t the Braves figuring him out, it was Neris not figuring out his splitter. That thing wasn’t close to the elite pitch we know it can be, and that’s what keeps Neris from being a top tier closer. Sometimes he just doesn’t have the feel for it.

  92. Not really surprised. Braves are on fire right now. Unfortunately they won the rebuild with so much young talent.
    The wild card looks like our route to playoffs for foreseeable future

  93. Wow, brutal loss. It looked like we had them. McCann is such a savvy player. He just poked one out into leftfield, probably knew he was getting a splitter.
    But, that looked like the old Neris. We’re in trouble with all the injuries in the bullpen. It would have been nice to have game 1 under our belts, but the Braves stole that one. Give them credit, that’s a really good team.

  94. Takeaways from last night’s excruciating loss…

    Atlanta is a really good team, but can their offense keep bailing out their weak pitching staff?

    Our bullpen can’t get healthy fast enough. It was Hector’s first blown save of the season. It probably won’t be his last. Nonetheless, a reliable arm is needed.

    On the bright side, Kingery is having a breakout season.

    Pivetta flashed both his resurgent self AND his old less efficient self in the same outing.

    Cesar Hernandez is not a good 2b. That play in which he allowed the ball come to him instead of vice versa didn’t hurt us ultimately, but man, I really can’t wait for Kingery to assume his future position. The fact that Cesar is hitting about a buck and change over the last few couple weeks makes the sense of urgency greater. But first we need to settle CF and 3B.

    Free swinging Segura’s 2 walks in the leadoff spot were encouraging signs that he may be able to handle it.

    It was one loss. A win would have been huge in breaking the Braves’ momentum. But let’s get over it…

    1. Re: Kingery having a breakout season, I’m not sure yet.

      His K and BB numbers are basically the same as last year. He’s obviously going to have some kind of regression. His line drive rate is pretty much the same too; he’s hitting more grounders and less fly balls. His IFFB% is down only slightly. His HR/FB% is very high.

      But on the bright side, his soft contact rate is way down and hard contact rate way up, according to Fangraphs. He’s also pulling the ball considerably more, hitting less up the middle and the other way. He’s swinging at pitches outside the zone less and inside the zone more, though making contact the same amount of time in each situation.

      I guess the data suggests that he’s better than he was last year but he hasn’t turned into a star either. He’ll end up somewhere in the middle but I don’t know where.

  95. Teams whose GMs Klentak should begin to contact immediately, if he hasn’t already:
    Texas, San Diego, Detroit, Toronto, Kansas City, Pittsburgh, Seattle and San Francisco.
    He may have to wait because the markets have yet to form, but he can’t make a move soon enough.

  96. Awesome post 8mark! If free swinging Segura can take more pitches and walk more in the leadoff spot,then Kingery should be able to as well,if he gets moved up there in the future.
    However with the increased power he is showing lately,i agree with other the comments on this site this week, to let him bat 5th or 6th for now.
    I read an article on the changes Mookie Betts made that increased his power,so maybe Kingery has tried that to and so far whatever he has done,it’s working for him!
    I think if we had McCutchen playing last night we would have won that game.
    I don’t know what has happened with Cesar,but he has been astrocious for awhile now.

  97. Did every Braves batter who got a BB score? It sure seemed like it. And, Hector’s #s vs. the Eastern Division are not very good. It felt like we could have scored 11 runs and still lost that game. It was a bad feeling as soon as McCann hit the HR to make it 8-4. Pivetta was a mix of his good and bad self last night. Someone already mentioned that. But, he has enough Run support, that we needed the good Pivetta for longer than we got him. Now, Nola has to be our Ace. I don’t trust Sunday’s BP game.

  98. Actually, McCann’s HR made it 7-3, not 8-4, but that was when the bad feeling started to set in.

  99. Obviously, this team needs upgrades. If in a month (maybe six weeks) from now, the Phillies starting rotation looks like this:
    1. Aaron Nola
    2. Mike Minor
    3. Zach Efllin
    4. Jake Arrieta
    5. Nick Pivetta

    And their bullpen looks something like this:
    Jose Alvarez
    Adam Morgan
    Jake Diekman
    Tommy Hunter
    Pat Neshek
    David Robertson
    Hector Neris
    Ken Giles (provided he’s healthy)

    They should be a playoff team.
    This FO is in “win now” mode. They didn’t make the trades and sign the FA’s this winter to take their foot off of the gas pedal this summer. I expect them to put the pedal to the medal and do whatever it takes to bring in pitching help (and probably another bench bat) in July.

    1. Not a fan of the “whatever it takes” mindset for reasons I’ve explained ad nauseum. I don’t want this to be a two year run. No thanks for that. Good news is that Klentak is extremely forward thinking and value oriented. I don’t see a repeat of the reckless days of “ruin tomorrow” a/k/a Ruben Amaro.

  100. I’ve been following the Braves box scores all year, and they don’t quit. I’ve seen the Braves do the same thing to other teams all year long.

  101. Does Quinn catch mccanns walkoff hit? I think he does. Either from RF or cf….

    A combo of McCutchen and Quinn do imo. That’s not possible this year.

    Klentak wasting Quinn in the minors. He is at least valuable off the bench as a LF late inning replaceme t or pinch runner

    Also … did we see the bunt re-emerge as a weapon for the Phils 8th run?

    1. I would certainly like to hear the reason behind Quinn’s rehab moving to Reading as opposed to joining the big club now. But I know there won’t be one given publicly. (I thought that maybe they were trying to work some transaction to open his roster spot.)

      1. 8mark – When I saw Quinn being sent to Reading, My first thought was that Klentak was close to a deal for Nick Williams. Time will tell.

  102. Agree with Tac3 completely. A faster LFer makes that catch easily. If you check the replay again, you’ll see that Bruce takes a poor ( roundabout) route to the ball.

    Don’t know what he was thinking (or saying) about not diving for the ball at least. He’s got to know that if it falls in, the game is over. With two outs the runners are going.

    1. I was waiting for the dive. In that spot, I really really see Quinn playing hero. O well, it sucked, but it is on game. The Phillies still lead the season series 3-1. If the take the next two, I’d be very happy

  103. Hinkie, I want to sign up for those additions today! Why do I have to wait 6 weeks?

  104. Despite the loss, there were some positives from last nights game. Pivetta pitched well for 6 innings, and he and Eflin have emerged as the best 2 starters on the team. The Phillies bats came alive against one of the Braves best pitchers. I don’t know who else was available, but I thought it was a mistake to bring Ramos back into a high leverage situation. Segura (1 hit, 2 BB’s in 1 game) , and Kingery (double, HR) continue to amaze me. Hoskins had a great game(HR, 2 BB’s).

  105. Lots of postives. They blew a lead in a big game, they aren’t as good as we think. There starters are terrible. There closer is a choke artist. There left fielder is slower than me. They don’t have a manager, there gm sucks putting this pitching staff together. There farm system is no help. they cant draft. Other than that they played well

      1. Romus I feel like you did. when you turned 67 and retired.,old and useless to help my team

        1. LOL…..hang in there.
          Matt K everyday now, must be working the phones, or whatever devices they use to communicate these days, to try to get help.

    1. Rocco – It was Hector’s first blown save of the year. He’s no Brad Lidge, but he’s pretty damn good. You need to calm down, don’t panic, and trust the system.

  106. I am still confused over the Roman Quinn situation. Not that I expect him to remain healthy, but why waste time before the next inevitable injury by sending him to Reading? If he can play, let him try to help us. At the very least, he can be a good D replacement at the end of games.

    1. matt13…I agree.
      Activating Roman would probably move Williams to LHV….or even Suarez.
      That seems doable.

  107. Roman Quinn probably needs to change his first name from Roman to Precautionary.

    From Corey S.
    :”Still no Roman Quinn. He won’t play tonight in a minor-league game either. He was hit in the shoulder last night and had some discomfort on a subsequent swing. Precautionary thing, not viewed as serious. He’ll go through his normal pregame routine and Phillies will go from there.” (

  108. rocco…….you were complaining earlier how bad the Phillies are with their talent acquisition and I suppose talent evaluators…. and conversely how good the Braves are.
    But do you realize….when Harper gets on one of his 6 week streaks…he can put the team on his back…..every year he was a Nat…..he was integral in them finishing either first or second in the NL-East…never third…even from his rookie year.
    There were 4 first place finishes and 3 second lace finishes…he may not have been the sole reason, but he was a big part of their success.
    So just stay tuned for the August and September ride.

    1. Are we eventually going to hear that Nola has been hurt and trying to pitch through it? What’s most concerning to me is how he’s laboring, deep counts and hitters waiting him out for that mistake pitch.

      1. His control has went out the window. He’s missing with all his pitches. I hoped that last year wasn’t a fluke (since any pitcher can have a crazy year) but he’s pitching like a 3/4. Him shaking off Realmuto for a fastball from a curveball was shocking to me. Isn’t that supposed to be his out pitch? He’s nowhere near the plate right now.

  109. And now Bruce will likely be out indefinitely with a hammie. JTR took a foul tip in the family jewels. Man, it just keeps getting worse. Quinn HBP last night means he’ll probably take 3 more weeks to recover.

  110. Nola’s command just seems to have disappeared. We are in serious trouble without him.

    1. matt13…..crossed my mind, but now wondering if Nola’s PRP procedure is wearing down. A study from last July, presented in San Diego by Dr Aakash Chauhan, to the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine indicated, “…. Survivorship analysis showed after 2 years less than half of players’ native UCL survived nonoperative treatment…”
      With his lack of command this may be one of the earlier signs that the effects of the treatment could be weaning. PRP does not work for everyone…i.e Garret Richards. But Masa Tanaka has maintained so far.

  111. Great win! Costly but great. Bottom of the lineup was huge….combined 6 for 10, 5 rbi, Kingery and Cesar came through. We may need all they can give…

  112. And Dallas Keuchel finishes the night with 3 runs on 11 hits in 7 innings vs. in AA Mobile.

  113. Nice payback win!
    Wait until next month when these two teams are shopping for the same closer(s).

  114. Interesting stats (min. 100 PA):

    Kingery is 10th in all of MLB in wRC+
    He is also tied for 8th in wOBA
    6th in batting average
    7th in slugging

    He’s not going to keep up this pace forever, but he’s earned an all star spot.

    Also, none of the Brave’s young players are out-performing Scotty. Even accounting for regression. I found that particularly amusing. Despite his explosion onto the scene, Riley is actually ever-so-slightly behind Kingery in ISO (.321 vs .322) and has even more regression coming his way (3.4% BB% vs 31.1% K% to go along with his .354 BABIP). Acuna is likely closer to his true performance, but is still sitting on a .350 BABIP which is likely to come down. But at least he walks at a decent 9.3% clip to go with his 24.7% strike out rate.

    I’ve been hearing a lot about how the Brave’s young core is better than ours, and they certainly have an enviable collection of young talent. But it’s not impossible that we have the single best young player in our division. I’m excited to see where Kingery’s final line ends up.

    1. Amazes me how the Braves regularly come up with this young highly touted talent ……they all come on sizzling hot out of the gate, but only few maintain it…Freeman, McCann to name a few who have weathered the time….then there were the Frenchys and Heywards of recent past who more or less settled into 50/55 players.

      If it were not for astute trading by their previous now banned -from- MLB- for- life GM……not sure they would look the way they do now….Swanson,, Fried, Newcomb, Inciarte, Toussant, and Foltynewicz..products of other farm systems. Of course the same can also be said about the Phillies..since Eflin and Pivetta were transplants from other systems also.

      1. Yeah I’ve mentioned that before, too. The Braves always have the next great player in his early twenties and he starts strong. But then almost all flame out.

        Players lauded as young building blocks either by the fans or the organization itself in the past decade:

        Heyward, Francoeur, Tommy Hanson, Jair Jurrjens, Kris Medlen, Brandon Beachy, Johnny Venters, Randall Delgado, Julio Teheran, Arodys Vizcaino, Evan Gattis, Andrelton Simmons, Christian Bethancourt, Alex Wood, Jordan Walden, Tyler Pastornicky, Jace Peterson, Shelby Miller, Matt Wisler, Manny Banuelos, Aaron Blair, and Rio Ruiz.

        Some on that list have had success elsewhere, some are still young enough to turn it around. But mostly the players have under-performed, flamed out, or had injuries end/shorten their career. And, most importantly, all of that talent has led to exactly two first place finishes in the division and zero playoff series wins that entire time.

        So do they look like they could be a force for years to come? Sure. But we’ve been here before with them. Many times. If they don’t trade away that young talent before we find out, it might just turn out to be fools’ gold anyways.

        1. It just goes to show how hard it is for a prospect to become a consistent ML player. If the Braves are willing to trade a prospect, you have to be a little wary. Although it’s not like the Phillies’ traded prospects have been doing well either.

      2. An analysis. Everybody keeps talking about how good the Braves farm system is, blah, blah, blah. I’m going to blow smoke and say that they’re not, but the Phillies are gaining ground on them. Kingery is amazing and he just turned 25 (I told you so). Harper is 26, and we have him locked up for 12 more years. Hoskins is just 26, and Realmuto is 28. Don’t worry about the Phillies not signing these guys to extended contracts. It will happen.
        Of the starting pitchers, Eflin (25), and Pivetta (26) have looked very good lately, and there is no reason the believe that it won’t continue. Despite Nola (26) being awful for most of the year, he’s still our Ace. He will figure things out.
        That’s a pretty damn good core of players on the major league roster. You may say that the Phillies don’t develop players as well as the Braves, and that may be true. Kingery, Hoskins, Eflin, and Pivetta are examples of what the Phillies have developed so far. Edgar Garcia (22), J D Hammer (24), and Dominguez (24) are still developing at the major league level.
        Down on the farm, Bohm looks like a key piece to the Phillies future. Medina has turned a corner and once again looks like a legitimate future starter. The Phillies have a few pitchers at Lehigh and Reading that could be future starters, or trade pieces, and then there is Spencer Howard. He is the best young pitcher in the Phillies system.
        The Phillies are loaded for this season and beyond. Despite numerous injuries, the Phillies have dipped into their farm system and gotten help from Haseley, Irvin, Hammer, and Garcia. Irvin or De Los Santos may get the start today. We’re a game and a half out of first, but we’re starting to get guys back. I’m extremely optimistic!
        We can expect Klentak to tinker with the roster until the deadline, but don’t expect a blockbuster. Depending on which players get healthy, and how effective they are, Klentak will fill in the gaps.

          1. Romus Love the new starters. Irvin. V.V. And eichoff. now that is a rotation.

    2. Kingery has been on fire pretty much the whole season. Now his babip is .418 so some regression is expected. But he’s swinging at better pitches, and he’s making solid contact. He’s already at 1.5 WAR, which is tied for 3rd for Phillies’ hitters.

      1. What Kingery has in his favor…when it comes to sustaining BABIP…is his speed down the line.
        Regression is probably certain….but the depth of it may be lessened with his ability to have that 60 run tool

    3. Acuna is still 4 years younger than Kingery; Albies is 3 years younger. And Soroka is another guy who looks like a future star. I mean, yeah, anything could happen but the odds are in the Braves’ favor on that one.

      As for Atlanta’s past future stars, three of those guys were widely seen as the #1 prospect in baseball at one point: Heyward, Teheran and Hanson. None of them lived up to it after great starts in MLB.

      1. Youth is certainly on his side, but another way to look at it is they both have the same amount of professional experience. Who knows where Kingery would be today if he had started his career out of high school.

        None of this is to say I don’t think Acuna looks like a good player. I certainly wish he were in Philly rather than Atlanta. I just think some of the fan base is hemming and hawing for no real reason. Maybe he’s a stud, maybe he’s not. But it won’t matter either way if Kingery keeps swinging a bat like this. Let it all play out. Use some of that optimism you (not you specifically, just people in general) have for opposing players on our own.

  115. The Phillies have great depth, well, the best I’ve seen in a long long time from them. They can weather this storm.

    The bullpen will get. A huge shot in the arm, and I predict they will carry this team for a good month once they get
    Neshek, hunter, and Robertson back and in a groove

    The Braves have built up well, no doubt, but the Phillies have countered very well. It stinks McCuctchen is hurt, but let’s not discount Haselely, bohm, and Howard coming down the like, to add to segura,Harper,Hoskins, Realmuto, and now kingery. This team is stacked too. Of the Braves, I’ll admit I’m jelly of freeman, would look amazing in red pinstripes.

    The arms race, the Phillies will be there. The hype is gone off Efflin,Pivetta, etc because their not so flashy and new. The Braves will find out what we did … from Thompson, Appel, Morgan, lively, eschelman, biddle … etc … you need a lot of arms to find one like Efflin,Pivetta, or a Nola.

  116. So glad Moffo was wrong on his prediction that the Phils would get swept this weekend.

    Isn’t it ironic that Rocco’s own Uncle Cesar was the one who put the team over the top!

  117. Romus, I was not aware of that study on the PRP procedure and I sure hope that is not the case. Nola is crucial to our success and I am hoping it just needs some mechanical adjustment. Kingery looks great, I am waiting for Rhys to go on a hot streak as well as Bryce. I think someone has a voodoo doll that looks like Roman Quinn. I have never seen 1 guy with so many different ways to get injured! Has there been a body part he hasn’t hurt?

    1. I figured he was going to get the start, I can’t really criticize Gabe, he didn’t have much of a choice. I think in retrospect I would have started one of the soft tossers and moved on to VV, but I don’t think it would have mattered much.

  118. After this performance, VV and Irvin can’t be viable starters in this league. Next man up, we need to give DLS a shot.

  119. This is one of those games where they threw in the towel when it was 3 zip. Guys are playing for their jobs and don’t seem to realize it. Lineup is telling, in that some don’t have the talent to play for a contender. I for one have seen enough of Nick Williams, bring Lane up or something.

  120. I agree. This was a “throw away” game. It is on the GM to go get a 5th SP, and enough with dragging his feet and praying for a miracle. Why wait another 6 weeks? We were out if this game in the first inning. Contenders can’t do this.

    1. He’s not waiting because he wants to wait. He’s waiting because it takes two teams to trade. I don’t know why people always seem to forget that. A lot of teams aren’t selling at the moment, and the ones who are either don’t have what we want, or are negotiating with multiple teams because what we want is what everyone wants.

      Also every contender gets blown out in games sometimes. That’s baseball.

  121. Quinn played today for Reading….so he may get activated once the team hits D.C.

  122. This was an embarrassment, not just a walloping, but a game we knew was coming and we failed to prepare for. Now Eickhoff is throwing Batting Practice. He and Irvin need to be in LHV by the end of the day, VV back to the BP and Matt Klentak needs to make sure this never happens again.

    1. I guess on bright side, we’re finding out about everyone.
      Eichoff not a starter anymore
      Irvin not a major leaguer
      VV not a starter, bullpen only and probably not high leverage
      Santos should have started this game though he gave up 3 homeruns in AAA.
      Clearly a starter is needed ASAP

    2. A wise old coach once said.
      …..when you win in a blow out, you are never as good as you think you are,…. and when you lose in a blow-out, you are never as bad as you think you are.

      1. Agreed except this is multiple poor outings for all 3. (VV as starter.)
        I just don’t see anything that makes me think they are viable options at this time.
        Irvin has to find a trick pitch, plus change up, or something.

        Not sure where Eickhoff goes at this point

        At least VV can continue to try to convert to reliever.

        Time for next wave
        Santos,at 24, maybe jump Damon Jones all the way up like they did in 2007 with kendrick

  123. Yeah….bullpen game….opener….whatever you wanna call it….let’s not do that anymore.

  124. Klentak has until Friday to find the answer for this rotation if this season means anything. A bench player was his most effective pitcher today.

  125. Clutch is out for the yr. The Phillies have 2/3 of there bp on ir. I’d rather have the Phillies be better in August and Sept. Plus Now Bruce is out.

  126. There is not one chance that after today. Eichoff should be on this team. V.V Should be sent down to pitch relief. Irvin should start his 9 to 5 job tomorrow. He is wasting his time with his stuff.

    1. LHP Damon Jones made his AA debut….6 innings…12 Ks…one single -solitary- solo hit…..and most notably, touched 96 on the speedometer!
      Maybe he can be da man come late in the season.
      Phillies are running out of internal options.

      1. Romus did you see how many walks he has.? If my math is right he averages near 4 walks a game In Single A.

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