Open Discussion: Week of August 10th

The Phillies are 4-6 .400, 3.5 games out of first place with 7 games in hand.  They split a four-game series with the Yankees and dropped two of the first three games in a four-game series with the Braves.

This week they close out the series with the Braves, then play three-game series against the Orioles and Mets.  That will end a stretch where the Phillies could have played 16 of their first 17 games in CBP.

The bullpen has been the easy target for blame.  The unit has combined for an 8.10 ERA in 32 appearances.  In 30.0 innings, they have allowed 44 hits, 27 runs, 7 HRs, hit 4 batters, and walked 9 batters (2.7 BB/9).  They have a 1.767 WHIP and .333 batting average against.  They have struck out 28 batters (1.2 K/9).

The staff has also accrued a 58.8% strand rate.  Seven of the 17 inherited base runners have scored.

I don’t have an answer.  It’s early in an awkward season.  I understand Girardi wanting to go with guys he’s familiar with, guys whose track record he knows.  I would rather see our guys who came through the system.  But, Girardi’s hasn’t seen enough of those guys to prefer them.  Give him time.

The offense hasn’t been very good, either.  We can point fingers at a handful of guys – Quinn, Segura, McCutchen, Kingery.  Or, my favorite whipping boy, Rhys Hoskins.

Yeah, he got a couple hits in game two Sunday (raising his season total to five).  And he collects walks (12) like they’re restaurant coupons.  My position is that his .142/.429/.241/.670 is not good enough for anyone, let alone a first baseman.  He sucked the second half of 2019, and he looks off balance on most swings I’ve seen this season.

The profile for a first baseman isn’t no hit, lots of walks.

I saw that somebody questioned the Crawford trade last week.  He wondered if we didn’t miss the boat on Crawford.  It doesn’t matter how well he develops over the course of his career.  He was traded because his removal from the organization would have net good effect on the organization.  It doesn’t matter how well he does in Seattle.

Update:  Crawford has backed up his hot start with a Hoskins-like August, batting .167/.265/.167/.432.  I hope he does better.  But, I won’t miss him if he does.

Spencer Howard made his much anticipated debut.  He may have gotten knicked a little bit.  But remember, he only threw 92.1 innings in 2019 – 40.1 IP at Clearwater (35.0) or rehabbing in the GCL (5.1), 30.2 IP at Reading, and later 21.1 IP with Scottsdale in the Arizona Fall League.  He skipped AAA on his way to the Phillies.

Now, this may bolster your hopes, Howard had a similar line in his first start with the Threshers last season (4.1 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 1 BB, 7 K, 1 HR) as he had Sunday (4.2 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 1 BB, 4 K, 2 HR).  Howard threw 6.0, 3-hit, scoreless innings in his second Threshers start.

This is the Phuture Phillies Open Discussion for Phillies and other baseball topics.

Key Dates:

  • July 23, 2020: Opening Day
  • July 24, 2020: Phillies opener at home v Miami – postponed
  • August 1, 2020 – Signing period for 2020 draft picks closes
  • August 31, 2020 – Trade Deadline
  • September 15, 2020 – Deadline for players to be added to Major League roster for postseason eligibility
  • September 28-October 1, 2020 – Minor League Baseball Innovators Summit, Winston-Salem, NC
  • September 30, 2020 – Expiration of the Professional Baseball Agreement between MLB and MiLB
  • October 15, 2020, 5:00 PM EDT – Close of the 2019 international signing period
  • October TBA – Trading resumes, day after the World Series ends
  • October – November TBA, five days after the conclusion of the World Series – Deadline for teams to make qualifying offers to their eligible former players who became free agents
  • November TBA, fifteen days after the conclusion of the World Series – Deadline for free agents to accept qualifying offers
  • November TBA – GM Meetings (Nov. 11-14, Scottsdale, AZ in 2019)
  • November TBA – Owners meetings (Nov. 19-21, Arlington, TX in 2019)
  • November 20, 2020 – Rosters set for Rule 5 Draft
  • November TBA – MLBPA executive board meeting (Nov. 26-29 in Irving, TX in 2018)
  • December 2, 2019 – Last day for teams to offer 2021 contracts to unsigned players on their 40-man rosters
  • December 6-10, 2020 – Winter Meetings in Dallas, Texas, at the Omni Dallas Hotel and Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center Dallas, held in conjunction with the Baseball Trade Show and PBEO Job Fair.
  • December 10, 2020 – Rule 5 Draft
  • January TBA – Rookie Career Development Program
  • January 15, 2021, 9:00 AM EST – Start of the 2020 international signing period

The rosters and lists are up to date as of August 9th … 346 players in the org

Transactions (newest transactions are in bold print)

8/09/2020 – Phillies designated RHP Enyel De Los Santos for assignment
8/09/2020 – Phillies optioned LHP Cole Irvin to Alternate Training Site
8/09/2020 – Phillies selected contract of RHP Spencer Howard from Alternate Training Site
8/09/2020 – Phillies recalled RF Kyle Garlick from Alternate Training Site (29th player for double header)
8/06/2020 – Phillies placed RHP Reggie McClain on the 10-day IL retro to August 3, 2020
8/06/2020 – Phillies optioned RF Kyle Garlick to Alternate Training Site
8/06/2020 – Phillies optioned RHP Enyel De Los Santos to Alternate Training Site
8/03/2020 – Phillies placed RHP Reggie McClain on the paternity list
8/03/2020 – Phillies recalled Enyel De Los Santos from Alternate Training Site
7/29/2020 – RHP Adonis Medina assigned to Alternate Site from Reading
7/29/2020 – 1B Austin Listi assigned to Alternate Site from Reading
7/29/2020 – SS Bryson Stott assigned to Alternate Site from Williamsport
7/28/2020 – Phillies sent SS Arquimedes Gamboa outright to Lehigh Valley
7/27/2020 – Red Sox claimed RHP Robert Stock off waivers from the Phillies
7/24/2020 – Phillies selected the contract of 2B Phil Gosselin from Alternate Site
7/24/2020 – Phillies designated SS Arquimedes Gamboa for assignment
7/23/2020 – Phillies recalled RF Kyle Garlick from Lehigh Valley
7/23/2020 – Phillies recalled RHP Reggie McClain from Lehigh Valley
7/23/2020 – Phillies recalled LHP Cole Irvin from Lehigh Valley
7/23/2020 – Phillies recalled LHP Austin Davis from Alternate Site
7/23/2020 – Phillies selected the contract of RHP Trevor Kelley from Alternate Site
7/23/2020 – Phillies selected the contract of 1B Neil Walker from Alternate Site
7/23/2020 – Phillies selected the contract of RHP Ramon Rosso from Alternate Site
7/23/2020 – Phillies designated RHP Robert Stock for assignment
7/23/2020 – Phillies activated RHP Tommy Hunter from the 10-day IL
7/23/2020 – Phillies activated 3B Scott Kingery from the 10-day IL
7/23/2020 – Phillies activated RHP Hector Neris from the 10-day IL


348 thoughts on “Open Discussion: Week of August 10th

  1. (Moved from last weeks discussion)

    I know it’s early and I know this is a weird situation but at what point do we look at Hoskins and say, he is what he is, and that’s just not that good. I’d be all for Bohm getting “thrown into the fire”, can’t be much worse than Hoskins. And I was never high on Kingery but didn’t expect him to be non existent. Cutch, Segura, Hoskins, Kingery along with Quinn might as well not show up. I’d rather see Bruce LF, Gosslin 3B, Bohm 1B and Walker 2B playing right now.

    Hopefully people can now see that this wasn’t on Kapler (Know that isn’t a popular thing to say)

    Oh and btw Wentz isn’t elite. He’s a top 11-13 QB in the league. Getting all my frustrations out.

    1. I wont defend Wentz but he did something last year, i believe no other QB did, in NFL History, Without a receiver with 500 yards he threw for 4000 yds, he isnt the 13th rated Qb, in the league, but that is for another site,

    2. Eric…agree.
      Hoskins and Kingery both have an option I believe….they should be sent to LHV for a few weeks to clear their heads and get straightened out.
      However, Klentak does not do those things……he hurt Franco back in 2016 when he slumped and decided to keep him up to play thru it. While at other periods of time the Marlins send Ozuna down, Cardinals send Wong down when they slumped and both were better players than Franco. A number of teams/GMs do that but Matt K does not.

      1. Romus, I agree…the apparent lack of development of the young big league talent and current reliance on veteran has beens or never wases continues to be hamstringing this organization. JTR, Arrieta and Jay Bruce came up big on Saturday, granted – but that was an anomaly for this team.

  2. Why doesnt Middleton understand, You need good scouting, not always a open check book to win. The braves have done a great job of scouting and know when to go after a player, like a Swanson when others let him go, i Always thought to build a team you need good scouts, good gm, and a owner who listens to these people,I Know people want us to sign Realmuto, but without hitting, lack of bullpen, only two good starters, and a bad farm system, His signing will only back us into a corner more for years, without money and prospect, i hate to lose him and i think he is the best catcher in the league, but with him we arent good so why use up more salary cap, to be medicore, How do you build and win with no cap and bad farm?

    1. It’s really about how this ownership group has allocated resources. They’ve always been risk averse and this limited their spending in the draft and internationally prior to their being caps. The Braves rebuilt a lot better because the spending they did was riskier but as you can see it’s led to a lot greater rewards.

  3. I find the manager-GM dynamic rather interesting. Heading into the season, one in which Klentak needs to rehab his stock and hasn’t, Girardi carries the cachet that Klentak has never gotten close enough to grab. Joe G is going to play his options, regardless of who Klentak would prefer…and that has to be frustrating for the GM. BUT….the bullpen isn’t even a work in progress. It’s been a disaster from the get go.

    (As for Kapler, the last two years’ roster was never his fault. Nobody blamed him for that. He’s a poor manager on the field and anytime he’s wearing a headset or a microphone is in his mouth, he’s like the polite, overzealous kid everyone wants to put duct tape over his mouth.)

    Anyway, hiring Joe Girardi was a public relations necessity. What it’s not is good for this GM. Klentak now has to grin and bear 2020. Fortunately for him, all the uncertainty and peculiarity of the MLB season – hell, the world for that matter – might buy him 2021.

    1. 8mark….”Fortunately for him, all the uncertainty and peculiarity of the MLB season – hell, the world for that matter – might buy him 2021.:….I thought that also, until MLB decided to expand the play-offs and add more teams… they miss it again this year, Middleton cuts the cord, eats the extension year, and moves on.

  4. Honestly as frustrating as this team appears, they gave to play every day for at least a week before any determinations or decisions can be made. Tomorrow will be the first day they played three days in a row since the opening series. That’s hard to find a routine. But they look awful so far….. It was good to hear that Bohm is doing well at LHV…in time..

  5. As good as the Phillies looked Saturday they were the opposite yesterday. I thought Howard’s outing was fine and with a few runs of support he would have been even better… 1). when teams see a pitcher getting his first start the strategy is going to run up his pitch count and wait for the mistake or the pitch that’s a sign he’s giving in to try and get the out. It happens 2). home plate umps squeeze young pitchers… Howard had three CB’s that dropped into the top of the zone that the ump called balls. In one case Realmuto turned around and said something to the home plate umpire that I can only guess was along the lines of (you’ve got to be ……. kidding me.) I can’t wait for Howard’s next start…

    1. There was also a strike 3 fastball right down the middle and well within the upper limits of the zone that got called a ball. Meanwhile Fried was getting strikes on breaking balls low-and-in.

      I was angry at both calls individually, but I was pissed that they happened in the same game.

  6. The Phillies played 14 innings yesterday. They scored 2 runs, had 7 hits and 2 Ls. I guess a $200 million plus payroll doesn’t get you what it used to.

    At this rate, with the way the Marlins are playing, the Phils could end up in fifth place in the division.

    With 12 teams making the playoffs, if the Phillies with the money they have spent this season don’t make the final 12, that would be unacceptable.

    1. well they are tied for 3rd in the division and the marlins can’t last. And the played 4 games series with the Yankees and Braves. That would be your glass half full.

      Its crazy – in the NL there are 6 teams with a winning record and 9 with a losing.

  7. Curious about Howards early innings. By the time I got to turn the game on we were down 2-0. I saw a great CB and CU from Howard however the FB velocity seemed down to me and pretty straight.

    What were you guys seeing on the FB

  8. If they don’t make the playoffs, it’s hard to imagine that Klentak will get another year.

    Klentak and the Phillies organization came up with a decent game plan when this rebuild started, but they have executed the game plan pretty poorly. Klentak is a below average general manager. He’s a not a full blown disaster, but he has not dramatically improved anything in an organization that desperately needed dramatic improvement and he does not have an eye for talent, nor is he a good out-of-the-box thinker. Look at the amazing things the Dodgers and Yankees do year after year – has Klentak done anything like that (and I’m not talking about gigantic free agent contracts, either)? No, not even close.

    Was some of this Middleton’s fault? Yeah, a little bit, but most of it falls to Klentak and his people – they are just so-so and, as a result, we have a so-so team and a so-so farm system.

    The most important person in a baseball organization is the GM – and we have not done very well on that front – at all. And this is entirely Middleton’s fault and only he can fix this.

  9. Positives:

    The starting rotation has been really good for the most part. The length isn’t there, but weird season.

    The potential of the lineup is there.

    4-6 currently but a win today and we split two 4 games series with two of the favorites in baseball. That is coming immediately after a long layoff where most of the pitchers were on weird schedules and hitters haven’t gotten into a groove.

    The games have mostly been competitive until the bullpen.


    Bullpen. Woof. The positive would be it can’t possibly get worse. I guess being 4-6 with this bullpen would be a positive. They have some guys who will get better but they are really just guys to fill out a bullpen. Alvarez is fine but he’s not a shutdown guy. Hunter will get better but shouldn’t be in the late innings. Rosso has potential but for now shouldn’t be pitching late in games. Morgan is ok but shouldn’t be pitching late in games. They have 1 late inning reliever now and that’s it.

    Lineup – potential is there but RISP is awful and it just hasn’t been good.

    Things to do:

    Cut Guerra, Kelley and Davis immediately. Those guys flat out suck and I can’t imagine they’ll get better. I want to believe in Davis but he has 50 career games and an era of 5.59. Guerra was good in 2016. Pitched 1 inning the last two years. Kelley has little track record.

    Pray hard the Suarez and Arano come back and are effective.

    Work really hard on Pivetta getting comfortable. At least he has potential in the backend.

    Bring up some of the kids. Brogdon, Llovera, Medina? Can’t be worse than what they’ve been running out there.

    Watch the Flyers until the bullpen gets better.

    Trade: Even in a shortened season, I can’t imagine the Red Sox really see themselves as contenders this year. What would it take to get Workman? Or find another reliever and try to use Quinn or Hasely as the centerpiece. I’m sure there are probably other relievers on bad teams that might be available, but ya gotta get someone.

    1. Also, evaluating Klentak:

      As bad as the bullpen is – he has done a lot of positive in the last two years. Didi signing, Harper signing, Wheeler signing, Realmuto trade – those moves all look great so far. He really can’t be excused for all the bullpen misses but at the same time, I’m not 100% sure what moves he should’ve made. Bullpens are fickle and he did spend big money on a reliever the year before and Robertson immediately got hurt. That being said, he chose to gamble on a bunch of guys with no track record of success – McClain, Kelley, Guerra – and maybe passed on other guys (though they have to be willing to sign here to) like Betances.

      I just think it’s tough to evaluate. If we resign Realmuto, we have 4 cornerstone players locked up – Harper, Realmuto, Wheeler, Nola. That’s a pretty good core four. The problem has been the inability to make the small moves – though the Bruce trade was good.

      1. 4 core players with no money to spend and no prospects, I want you as my weight loss coach, You make points that will make my eating cake okay, you have the best excuses i have ever seen,

        1. Howard and Bohm aren’t prospects? They are both MLB ready too.

          What would you have done Rocco? Not asking that sarcastically and hopefully you aren’t reading my letting Klentak off the hook but you have to acknowledge the good with the bad. And there is certainly bad. Maybe they should’ve given Corbin the extra years, but the rotation doesn’t seem to be the problem.

          1. i Would have build up my minor league dept, better coaches, Better scouts, Its hard enough to draft good players, But with the scouts we have it isnt working, You build from bottom up. Look how well they stole bases when Lopes was here, Just one example of a good coach, Even if Howard and Bohm help, Kingery cant hit enough, the league has caught up to Hoskins, Bruce is ready for Social Security, Quinn is a injury waiting to happen, you see how bad they hit with runners on? dont steal bases, never play small ball when they are in tight games, Middleton really needs to find a good GM, who can rebuild the farm and scouting,

            1. rocco…….ever the optimist…its always darkest before the dawn….Rome was not built in any day… have to look through the rain to see the rainbow….you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take….the grass is always greener on the other side…..a place for everything and everything in its place….all in due time.

              I got a thousand more clichés to cheer you up.

  10. Here is a crazy stat…The Phillies have drafted 16 pitchers in the first or second round since 2002, when Cole Hamels was their top pick. Only three of them — Aaron Nola, Drew Carpenter and Zack Segovia — have made starts for the Phillies.

    2002 – 1
    Cole Hamels
    2002 – 2
    Zack Segovia
    2006 – 1
    Kyle Drabek*
    2006 – 2
    Drew Carpenter
    2007 – 1
    Joe Savery
    2008 – 2
    Jason Knapp*
    2010 – 1
    Jesse Biddle
    2010 – 2
    Perci Garner
    2012 – 1s
    Shane Watson
    2012 – 1s
    Mitch Gueller
    2012 – 2
    Alec Rash
    2014 – 1
    Aaron Nola
    2014 – 2
    Matt Imhof
    2016 – 2
    Kevin Gowdy
    2017 – 2
    Spencer Howard
    2020 – 1
    Mick Abel

    1. Insane. now Rash didn’t sign. I would say that the guys who helped for big trades should be considered wins. Gowdy with the injuries is unfortunate. That being said, so many horrible misses.

    2. Getting a read on how a franchise drafts and develops players is so difficult. Most FO regimes change every 5 years or so especially if that org doesn’t experience any success.

      And so much of it is luck of the draw because you cannot measure or even know what a team might have done had they drafted a spot or two higher or lower.

      Brian Cashman of the Yankees for instance has served as GM since 1998, they have 6 AL Pennants and 4 WS. When was the last time you would say the Yankees drafted well?

      Probably when Brian Sabean was director of scouting.

  11. Scottie no pop needs to go to Allentown. Play the Goose for a week
    Why does this team always inflate prospects velo. I left beach to watch Spencer. I was expecting 96 97.

  12. So this article is fascinating to me.

    The Phillies over the years have flat out failed to identify talent but its not like guys are going elsewhere and having a lot of success after flaming out.

    The Braves pitching looks like it often stalls. And they have spent a lot of first round picks on

    As a comparison- the Braves drafted pitchers in the first two rounds.

    2002 – Dan Meyer LHP – 34S (traded for Tim Hudson)

    2003 – Luis Atilano (1st – 35s)
    Jo-Jo Reyes (2 – 43)
    Paul Bacot (2 – 67

    2005 – Joey Devine (1 – 27)
    Beau Jones (2 – 41s)
    Jeff Lyman (2 – 77)

    2006 – Cory Rasmus (1- 38s)
    Seven Evarts (2 – 43s)
    Jeff Locke (2-51)
    Dustin Evans (2 – 68)

    2007 Josh Fields (didn’t sign 2- 69)

    2008 Brett Devall (1 -40s)
    Tyler Stovall (2-64)
    Zeke Spruill (2-70)

    2009 Mike Minor (1-7)

    2011 Sean Gilmartin (1-28)

    2012 Lucas Sims (1-21)
    Alex Woods (2-85)

    2013 Jason Hursh (1-31s)

    2014 Garret Flenchek (2-66)

    2015 Kolby Allard
    AJ Minter (2-75)

    2016 Ian Anderson (1-3)
    Joey Wentz (1-40s)
    Kyle Muller (2-44)

    2017 Kyle Wright (1-5)

    2018 Carter Stewart (1-8) Didn’t sign

    2020 Jared Shuster (1-25)

    Interesting – The braves almost drafted twice as many pitchers in the first two rounds as the Phillies. Ignoring 2016 on (jury still out) – the phillies look to have gotten way more production. Cole Hamels and Aaron Nola have been by far the best two pitchers of that bunch. Minor has been decent. Woods has been decent. I guess the thing that really jumps out is that outside of Nola and Hamels, the Phillies just got next to nothing. Jojo Reyes pitched a little, Alex woods, jeff locke, gilmartin, and sims all pitched a little.

    I just think it’s interesting to look at it – pitching is hard to identify.

    1. Forrest….and lest we forget….Fried was a Padre draftee, Touki T., was a DBack, Newcomb was an Angel, …it is not like they drafted those guys….they traded for them….so their scouts had a keen eye for other teams’ talented players.

      1. Oh for sure. We also didnt really have guys to trade either. Braves drafting of hitters has been better

    2. Missing Soroka who was a 2015 first rounder. Must be nice to have gotten him and Allard in the same year.

  13. So we all know how it works Middleton brings his staff in. They nothing about Prior Players except stats. So they go withers picks, got too because they gave them money.
    Howard Good for Him. Howe’s his potential but He only has 190 innings, history shows he needs more “High Leverage experience” Get that with innings.
    Current BP is still same old guys, Bring the New players, Max Fried (Atlanta).
    Farm System is what PD is suppose to supply but if Middleton goes with Money picks then this what you get.
    Phillies need players that produce, know how to compete in High Leverage Situations.
    Farm System has some, All Levels Show they can compete , Look DeeperStop Looking for Your #1,2’s look Deeper.
    AA pitching League Stats Look Deeper
    Player Development Needs tostep up and Look Deeper
    We compete in Minors Look Deeper

    1. Harvey….I do think eventually rookie RHP reliever Connor Brogdon will be brought in to give the BP a boost…a shot in the arm, so to speak.
      Also, he will needed to be added to the 40, so someone will have to be DFAed.

  14. Just wanted to drop in, and make/comment on a few points:

    * The story of this season continues to be the disaster this BP is. Jim laid out the numbers above. Other than Hector Neris, all the Phillies relievers pitch to contact. Nobody throws harder than 94 (unless they keep Pivetta in the pen). This doesn’t work in 2020. I’m with Jim (and posted so last week): this short season is down to 50 games, Klentak has nothing to lose by bringing up some of the organization’s young arms. Let’s see what a couple/few of Connor Brogdon, Garrett Cleavinger, Damon Jones, Kyle Dohy, Addison Russ, and/or Adonis Medina can do. They may not succeed, but I’d rather get beat with young guys than the retreads we’re running out there.

    * Just for fun … how would you rank our relievers after Hector Neris? IMO, nobody really stands out.

    * Agree with Eric D (not just about Gabe Kapler getting the blame for Matt Klentak’s ineptitude). We should see Alec Bohm soon. Maybe he gives this inconsistent offense a shot in the arm. I’d play him at 3B. Let Jean Segura and Scott Kingery compete for time at 2B. I’m not ready to give up on Hoskins. At the very least, he’s getting on base in front of Harper while he tries to figure things out.

    * Not sure when the trade deadline is this year. However, I gotta believe there won’t be a whole lot of big deals because no GM wants to surrender a prospect of any value in a season where there is no guarantee that a WS winner will be crowned. That said, there is one deal I’d like to see Matt Klentak explore. I’ve proposed it a couple of times over the past year. If the Phillies plan on using Nick Pivetta out of the pen, I’d rather move him to Baltimore for Mychal Givens. Pivetta doesn’t want to be a reliever. He’s not going to be happy in that role, and will probably not succeed. Givens knows his role. He can set up or close. He gives a different look (side arm), packs some heat (94-97 MPH), and can strike out hitters (13.5 K-rate this year, 12.3% last season). Pivetta is under team control for two more years than Givens (Pivetta reaches free agency after 2023, Givens after 2021) so he fits more the Orioles plan to contend.

    * Finally, I thought Spencer Howard pitched ok for his first time out. He obviously had to be feeling some nerves. He looked like he was trying to overthrow the ball a few times, but the weird thing was his velo was quite a bit lighter than I was expecting. He showed life on the FB, despite it only registering 93-94. He also spun a few very impressive breaking balls.
    Bottom line: it was his first MLB start. He’ll get more comfortable as the season/his career progresses. I’m still confident he’ll team with Nola and Wheeler to give the Phillies one of the leagues top young rotations.

    Mr H: Tell your son to keep his head up. Here’s how his debut compares to some of the games best arms ever:

    Spencer Howard … 4.2 IP, 4 ER, 7 H, 1 BB, 4 K
    Roy Halladay …….. 5 IP, 2 ER, 8 H, 2 BB, 5 K
    Roger Clemens …… 5.2 IP, 4 ER, 11 H, 3 BB, 4 K
    Randy Johnson …… 5 IP, 2 ER, 6 H, 3 BB, 5 K
    Justin Verlander …. 5.1 IP, 4 ER, 7 H, 3 BB, 4 K

    Here’s one of young Spencer’s better pitches. Impressive CB.


    Mychal Givens.

    1. and…..
      M. Scherzer….vs Phi…..4IP…..8H…..5R….5ER…2BB…5K
      Z Greinke…….vs Oak…..5IP….5H…..2R….2ER….1BB…1K

  15. Damm no Penn State football, Guess i will have to pass my time looking at Old Picture of Romus Playing Tennis

    1. There’s not going to be any college football at all. I’ll still be surprised if they’re able to have a complete NFL season.

  16. How about this for an outlandish idea for the last 45/50 games…have Vinny become the ‘opener’ for every other game thru the season.
    A day off between ‘opening’ starts as a normal relief pitcher gets to do..

    If Nola. Wheeler, Arrieta, Howard and whoever is the 5th, can go 5 or 6…then you bring in the closer or late inning guys.
    The double-header days would be the biggest issue to resolve.

    1. Yeah, I mentioned before that might be his best role. Tell him he gets to pitch until a runner reaches second base and let him air it out. I bet he strikes out way more people (which we know he can do, but he seems to attack hitters less often these days).

      Who knows, maybe the knowledge that he’ll never be responsible for more than a couple of runs will let him get out of his own head and thrive.

  17. Harper’s slash when he bunts vs the shift:
    PAs-37…ABs-27…Hits-15…….9 Sac His(Sac Bunts)…1 -Reach on an Error

  18. I know it doesn’t matter with Quinn out there, but is Gosselin really worse defensively than Bruce? I find that hard to believe. Or is Girardi just making sure Phil doesn’t hurt himself in the field so he can keep riding his bat?

    Also, Rhys has been waking up the past few days. The power isn’t back yet (obviously), but I’ll take the consistent contact. Here’s hoping.

    1. And right after I say it, Hoskins hits one 4 feet shy of the left field seats. On a first pitch, no less! I’m sure that makes some of you happy that are concerned about him being overly patient. Keep it up, Rhys.

  19. Wow, Sean Newcomb has to be the Braves’ version of VV. That guy has arm talent, but he’s so wild that you wonder if he’ll ever have even average control. I’m sure Braves’ fans must be fed up with that guy.

      1. After the game, Sean Newcomb got optioned down. The Braves did this even though Soroka is out for the year. They will have to find a way to find 2 starters soon.

          1. He had a 1.50 ERA over 36 innings with a K/9 of nearly 14. His Willis weren’t outrageous..All in all a strong first season. I asked this before but Miller ascended four levels his draft year how often had that happened with draft picks n recent memory?

  20. I don’t want to be but I am becoming increasingly concerned about Rhys Hoskins. Darren Ruf and Dominic Brown are coming to mind. Have major league pitchers just figured him out? Is there something technically wrong with his swing? Is it all mental? I know baseball is hard and I never thought he would be a .300, 40-50 home run guy, but this has become sad. A first baseman who basically sees lots of pitches and walks a lot doesn’t seem very valuable. Does he need to go back to AAA if it comes back next year. It seems his career could be in the balance soon

    1. For the sake of repeating myself…I just see a lot of Pat Burrell in his approach and possibly production.
      If he can get 30 HRs/35 doubles a year…..that would make me happy….and maybe bat at least BA 250/260 RISP.
      All he may be is a max 3WAR first baseman.

      1. Rhys is just a click or two from taking off IMO. A lot of guys don’t make it in the league because they have poor pitch recognition skills or as a by product of that they chase too many balls out of the zone.

        That’s not Rhys’ problem. And I’m repeating myself by saying he just misses too many mistake pitches. Once he dials that in you have a really nice player.

        I’d like to see him think oppo a little more as well and maybe try not to be as lift and pull happy. More like he was when he first turned pro.

        1. Lets hope so…cannot afford to wait too long…his in his age27 season now…incidentally, same as Harper.

          1. For JD Martinez the switch flipped at age 26 for Jose Bautista it kind of flipped at age 29.

            Rhys has the capacity to be something in between those two players still.

    2. I guess it wasn’t a good move by Rhys when he declined to sign a team friendly deal to buy out his arbitration years. Kingery got his $24M. Rhys will be lucky if he sniffs $10M.

      1. Boras may have had something to do with him not signing early.
        All part of life’s decisions.

    1. I’m glad you ate and didnt get to watch him. He sucked. I would volunteer to drive him out of Philadelphia tonight!!!!!.

  21. You’re watching the game, Phillies are routing the Braves, Pivetta comes in for a mop up role with no Acuna/Swanson/Freeman and he gets 1 out. 1! It’s a total embarrassment.

  22. Man, I’m getting angry with this bullpen. Some of these guys have got to be shown the door, starting with Pivetta. I’m going to be pissed if there’s not a bullpen transaction in the next few days.

  23. I don’t even remember Alec Rash or Matt Imhoff. Girlier and Watson I do, but wish I didn’t. And Nick Pivetta needs to be sent to LHV before the evening is done. A mop up guy should be able to Pitch with a 13-1 lead. So he doesn’t qualify as a mop up guy. I don’t care who they bring up. He needs to learn to be a Major Leaguer requires a minimum of something he needs to find.

    1. Imhof was the pitcher that lost his eye in the training room accident.

      Rash never signed, so that’s probably why you don’t remember him.

  24. I meant Gueller. And someone needs to make a statement. Nick Pivetta looked like a guy who thinks he is too good to mop up, when the fact is he isn’t good enough to mop up. Someone needs to be called up to replace him.

  25. All of a sudden, the Phillies look to have the best starting rotation in the NL East. Nola and Wheeler are rolling, Arrieta is healthy and pitching well, Eflin kept us in the game, VV/Howard SHOULD be ok.

  26. any word on when Roberts, Arano, Suarez will be back?

    Suárez? Was that just a bad case of Covid?

      1. I try not to criticize players, but here it is: Pivetta needs to be gone. We’ve tried long enough with him. Velasquez is next. Give him some bullpen opportunities. If he makes the most of it, fine. If not, he should be gone, too. And No more starting.

        Maybe these guys can harness their talents somewhere else, and I wish them well, but be gone from Philadelphia, please.

  27. I went out to mow my lawn after the 6th inning with the Phillies up 13-1. It took me about an hour. When I came back in, it was 13-8. Like I mentioned earlier today (and a couple of other times since last season), Nick Pivetta doesn’t want to be a reliever. Without the heart or mindset to work out of the pen, he won’t succeed. He is the classic example of a guy who could use a “change of scenery”. I still believe Nick has the ability and “stuff” to be a middle of the rotation starter (or maybe more). IMO, it’s not unreasonable to think Pivetta could have a Jake Arrieta type career: fail at your first stop, respond to new surroundings.
    Believe it or not, Pivetta still has some trade value because he is under team control through the 2023 season. If Klentak could flip him for someone like Mychal Givens (under team control thru the 2021 season), make the move.

    1. I disagree regarding Pivetta’s potential. I feel like we (including myself), overvalued him because he hits 95 mph regularly and has a big starters frame. He also had a few flashes that showed promise earlier in his career during a time when we were hurting for youthful talent.

      The more I watch him the more I realize that his fastball is straight as an arrow. He also obviously doesn’t hide it well because hitters tee off on it regardless of the velocity. His secondary stuff and command has always been mediocre. He can’t help this club as a starter or a reliever, in my opinion.

      1. I always believed Pivetta is a big league Pitcher, But he is a head case, I told you before i got it from my nephew who does pop cast with a guy who knows him. He needs a change of scenery like Hinkie said,

        1. rocco…agree…he wants to move on anyway, after what Gabe did with him last season his enthusiasm waned….maybe Seattle would be a nice spot for him.

      2. I said his fastball was straight as an arrow after he made his MLB debut. And I was hammered for saying it on this board. Add in his spotty command it is easy to see how he gets hit. I agree that he does not have much trade value unfortunately.

      3. I had to be one of the very few that was not pro-Pivetta. He may throw 95 but his results were not great and he had his share of meltdowns. If you can’t locate and control your emotions, it doesn’t matter how good your stuff is.

  28. Hinkie he was great last night, I love when he is at 93 to 96, that is when he is at his best, I dont remember him last night hiting 95, but his other stuff was great,

    1. I think the pitching coach has been really helpful with emphasizing FB command and pitch sequencing. There was nothing wrong with Nola last year – there was a lot wrong with what Chris Young was telling Realmuto to do. Aaron Nola is a true ace – one of the best pitchers in baseball. He’s the closest thing to Greg Maddux you will ever see. If he can stay healthy, he has HOF potential and I don’t say that lightly.

      1. For me … I’ve always considered Orel Hershiser as the best comp for Aaron Nola. They have similar bodies, similar deliveries, and the ability to make the ball dance.

    2. Rocco, you can add 2 mph to pitches. Statcast was running slower than the more reliable Trackman. That includes Howard the previous day, too.

  29. Hard to believe …..Nola is looking for his first, Wheels has only one and except for Jake Arriet’s 6 CGs with the Cubs,,,,Zach Eflin is second on the Phillies staff with 4 career CGs.

  30. Velo is great and in most cases, indispensable. But there’s nothing like knowing how to pitch. A catcher can help a kid who has an idea of what he’s doing on the mound. A pitching coach can offer insights and tweak a mechanical flaw here and there. But if a kid with all the gas and movement you could hope for doesn’t have the mentality, forget about it. Neither Velasquez nor Pivetta can sustain success in their present makeup, and no other GM in MLB is going to offer more than a bag of balls at this point of their careers.

    1. Its mind boggling at times. The line between having all the stuff you need to be successful and then having success in the league is so razor thin.

      I am starting to enjoy baseball again and I am going to embrace this season for what it is. Also I am embracing the DH and never thought I would say that as a purist.

      I’m also inclined to believe the 7 inning double header should stick around going forward but not the runner on second move in extra’s.

      1. Nick Castellanos homered for the seventh time in Friday’s Reds’ win over the Brewers, which at the time tied him for the MLB lead….now who was it on here that wanted him for the Phillies????????

        1. LOL don’t get me started Romus. The good news is he will opt out after this season you can bank on it and he will get his $100 Plus million contract in the off season.

          Only this time around it will cost you a compensation pick.

            1. Two season ago Andrew Friedman signed an oft injured 31 y/o to a 5/$60 contract. A right handed bat, good OF and when healthy very productive player.

              That in and of itself wasn’t eye popping. What was the ire of many was that they already had a crowded OF and they had Verdugo knocking on the door to come up and they were up against the cap already.

              The player only played in 86 games in 2019 and the results were mediocre at best. Fast forward to this season and Verdugo gets traded for Betts and the player is hitting 304 with a 999 OPS.

              A nice insurance play if you ask me. Who knows maybe MK wanted to sign Nick and JM wouldn’t pony up but for me it was a no brainer move with Cutch at his age coming off an ACL tear.

          1. DMAR … rule change this winter: teams will not lose draft picks for signing FA’s with QO’s.

  31. Decided to look into potential MVP candidates for each league (JTR is right there with Tatis if you take into account the extra games played) and saw Trout hit another 2 HR last night.

    Can we just elect him into the HoF right now? If he retired today he’d make it in. Anything past this point is just icing. Also, get him off that team. Dude deserves to win some games. (I know he chose to stay because he’s loyal, just saying)

  32. Well run orgs also don’t write out their starting 8 based on salary. If you have $23 mil sitting the bench because $550K is giving you $23 million worth of production that’s what you do to win baseball games

    That is an exaggeration of course. I understand the guy with a track record getting the big payday is going to have a longer leash

    But mistake contracts happen all the time to every club. The difference is in the clubs that have the balls to cut bait so to speak but do it in a dignified manner.

    1. You need to tell us which team has cut bait on a super bad contract and traded it to a sucker team.

      The Angers gave Pujols 10 years, $240M at age 32. I think everybody and their mother knew that was bad contract. The Angels couldn’t give away that contract. Now 9 years in, Pujols has total WAR of 13.9. 13.9! He cratered at age 37.

      The infamous 5 year, $125M contract Ryan Howard got that started when he was 32. The Phillies obviously had no takers for that. Howard give us -4.8 WAR for that!

      Giancarlo’s massive 13 year, $325M contract. The Marlins were crazy to give him that deal and pawned him off on the Yankees after Stanton went wild with 8 WAR and won the MVP. So 3 years in on the rest of the 10 year deal for the Yankees, he’s given them 5.2 WAR. He had a 0.4 WAR last season. Stanton is starting to get more injured. Stanton has an opt out after 2020. What are the odds that he’s going to opt out? Zero? Really close to zero?

      And then there is Chris Davis and his ridiculous 7 year, $161M at age 30. Nobody is lining up to trade for that. He’s 5 years in and he’s given the birds -2.8 WAR!

      The Red Sox ate the rest of Pablo Sandoval’s contract ($49M) when they cut him. The Angels ate a whopping $68M when they cut Josh Hamilton.

      And the list goes on and on. if you’re dumb enough to give a bad contract, you’re likely to eat that contract because nobody is going to trade for that.

      And I pray that Bryce Harper doesn’t turn into a pumpkin when he hits age 33-34.

  33. You’ve got to give Realmuto his due credit. Even with reduced revenues, if JT continues at even a reasonable pace this year, he’s going to get his AAV and a lot of contract years (6 and maybe even 7). I didn’t think that would happen, but he’s proving me wrong.

    Good for him – he’s a heck of a player.

  34. Maybe loyalty had something to do with it but Mike is a smart kid and I’m sure his advisors are as well. He knew what he was getting into from a winning perspective.

    He also knew signing that deal then and there was money in the bank. FU you money that would set up his family for generations. I hope he doesn’t regret the decision because he shouldn’t.

    he gets to play the game he loves win or lose

    1. He already had money for his family for generations; remember that his contract was technically an extension. His original $144M contract would have run out after this season. And he would have made more money as a FA, shortened season or not.

      Now was part of it a hedge against injury? I’m sure. But loyalty had more than just a little to do with it. Even if he never intended to leave, he could have had the Angels up the offer by testing FA. But that’s not who he is.

      I desperately hope the team gets its **** together and helps him win games and, hopefully, a couple rings.

        1. No biggie. Found it in the Pending Folder. Had to read it twice to find the offending word. Figured I’d edit it rather than let it be deleted.

  35. I’ve been paying a lot of attention to Kyle Lewis as he was the player I would have drafted in 2016 he’s slashing 373/440/1.007 OPS for the M’s and playing a really nice CF at 24 years of age.

    Jesus Luzardo was also in that draft and picked after Gowdy by the Nats who then dealt him to the A’s for Doolittle and Madsen. The A’s brought him up last season at age 21 for their post season run and he didn’t disappoint posting a .661 WHIP

    This season he has been used in 4 games 2 starts and has 152 ERA+ with a 1.15 WHIP.

  36. DMAR, we can go through a whole litany of decisions that didn’t work out in the draft. There is no question that we need to do better. Not picking on anybody, just, overall, much better than we have done. This was our new guy’s first year. Let’s hope it was a good draft, and we have a few more in a row. Certain teams, like Tampa, seem to get it right more so than not.

  37. I would look to package Hoskins in a deal this winter (or even at the 8/31 deadline, perhaps, if the opportunity is there) for some legit bullpen help. Sign Nicky Castles in the off season. Dude is a true beast at the plate, crushes pitches, bonafide DH for a 5 or 6 year contract period. And doesn’t stand with the bat on his shoulder looking for perfect beach balls. Bruce is a free agent. Bohm replaces Hoskins at 1b. Let’s get this lineup loaded while someone PLEASE addresses the pen.

    1. I look to see where Hoskins is at the end of the season. His plate discipline is so damned good that even okay other numbers make him a very useful player. I get he’s struggled, but I think there’s still a lot of ability there.

    1. Arrieta gone. Didi gone. Jay Bruce gone. David Robertson gone. And Johnny Cigars decides to exceed the luxury tax threshold. This core of Harper-Realmuto-Nola-Wheeler has a golden window (I know, I know…some people here don’t like windows of contention but sustainability…yadayada…in a perfect world in which the Phillies don’t exist and won’t until the front office is overhauled) to win big.

      1. 8mark……Castellanos has a few flaws…….lacks the required defensive skills for all[positions except LF and possibly 1st base.
        Plus he does have some swing and miss in his bat…22% over the last two years…..and does not walk much….7%, and really 6% when you filter out the IBBs.
        Thus his OBP is just league average…..hovering around.325

        So you get a guy with power but who also does make contact , if that makes any sense since his K rate is >20%.
        He may not have the patience of a Hoskins and probably swings early in the count.


      2. I like to operate within the confines of what the ownership will give us. If the ownership doesn’t want to pay tax, so be it.

        Nick Castellanos is feasting at Great American Ballpark. Obviously it’s not sustainable so we’ll see what happens when it normalizes. If he opts out, he’s probably looking for a 5 year, $100M contract. If he becomes the DH, then his value will be based purely on oWar. He would have to absolutely rake like there’s no tomorrow. Can he do that? I might be inclined to roll the dice on it. If he profiles to JD Martinez, it might be doable.

        Now here comes the rub. The Phillies can’t pay everybody $10M. What does that mean? That means that if all 28 players are making $10M per year, then the team salary is $280M and the Phillies are paying mondo tax. Currently, the Phillies already have Wheeler and Harper making $20M+ per year. If the Phillies pay JT and Castellanos another $20M per year, that’s 4 players right there. As a comparison, the Nats have opened their checkbooks lately but they still only have 3 players (Sherzer/Strasburg/Corbin) making $20M+ per year. They didn’t want to pay Rendon and make him their 4th member of the $20M+ club. If the Phillies have 4 players making $20M+ per year, that will mean that they will be out of any large/medium contracts for the foreseeable future. And the Phillies will have to replace Didi and Arrieta.

      3. Bruce only counts like $1.375M against the cap. Pro-rated for 2020, probably less.
        Most of his contract is being paid by the Mariners. No big savings there.

  38. Tonight Phillies face Alex Cobb…..hope I am wrong, but they may wish they were facing a Cobb Salad vs the Cobb splitter.

    1. Romus i love the Cobb Salad at Pastificio in Packer Park, next to Chickie and Petes

  39. At what point does St. Louis’s inability to get back on the field put the entire MLB season in jeopardy? They have only played 5 games, worse than the Marlins fiasco. It will soon be impossible to play enough Double headers to catch up. I wonder what the contingency plans are?

  40. If they resume this weekend against the Palehose, they will need to play 55 games in 45 days
    to finish season on time. Don’t see this as being possible

    1. It’s not possible, and that’s not even counting the inevitable rain postponements that will come. The Cardinals will simply end the season playing less games than everybody else. And their winning percentage will come into play when it comes to seeding.

      1. Honestly, Pivetta needs someone he somewhat respects to get in his face and yell at him and tell him that if he doesn’t clean up his act and pitch where and when they want him to pitch, he is going to lose a major league career. He needs an intervention. There’s no way he should be this bad.

        1. Maybe a team like Seattle and Jerry Dipoto would take a chance with Nick.
          May not get much in return for Nick, but a change of scenery may do him a world of good for his confidence…a fresh start more or less.

      2. Thank god! After yesterday’s performance, there’s no way he belongs on a ML roster. He’s had ample opportunities and done nothing with them.

  41. tony curry – heard today via Jim Bowden that MLB will likely revert to a % of games won vs losses to determine the playoff spots, i.e. – the Cards will play what they can without trying to harm pitchers and MLB will just have to take their record as is. 55 games in 46 days does not compute says Bowden.

  42. Finally BP will become MLB ready…Brogdon’s mid 90s FB and unhittable slider will play well.

    1. Bullpen changes overdue. I always prefer young arms to retread veterans.Cheaper and more upside.

  43. I’m surprised with the Orioles. Granted, Wheeler wasn’t sharp tonight but the Orioles have a bunch of under the radar guys who can hit a bit.

  44. The bull pen was set for crap from the pitchers they took into the 60-man in July. Better arms were either left off or called up late.

  45. I heard it read someone say this yesterday and I could agree more . . . Some one tell me what Kingery does well . . .

    He hasn’t shown the ability to hit for average (or even the ability to make constant contact).

    He isn’t a power guy

    He hasn’t shown the ability to get on base.

    He has speed but when have we seen him use it?

    Lastly, so many have said he could be a GG 2B . . . Well he sure hasn’t shown it. Not saying he’s been terrible but no where near advertised.

    Send him down. Stop trying to lock players up before they play a game at the ML level, esp with guys who aren’t “locks”.

    That’s it, I’m out.

    1. Scott Kingery looks lost out there, and it’s not even close. And I’ll say it right now, he’ll likely finish with negative dWar for the season. He needs to start losing playing time to Neil Walker very soon.

      1. Agree on this. He’s not a first or even second year player. The season is only 48 games, so time is of the essence. He needs to earn his playing time. Sitting on the bench and watching and perfecting his approach might even help him.

    2. I really need to proof read my posts. My apologies guys. Should start out “I read or heard someone say this and I couldn’t agree more”

  46. Just when you think you’ve seen it all. A pop up to the Pitcher’s mound drops in. Should have been an easy snatch for Hoskins, Segura calls him off and whiffs! Doesn’t drop it, completely misses. Neris wasn’t sharp, Wheeler wasn’t either and Hunter stunk.

    1. When Guerra ran the count to 3-1 on Hayes they should have walked him with 1B open and hoped for a ground ball DP. Instead he throws him an average FB down the middle.

      Granted Quinn was too aggressive there but still…

      And why bring up Connor if your manager is afraid to use him sheesh!

  47. I want the Phillies to win it all every year, but they just aren’t great as constructed. The bullpen couldn’t be more opposite of ‘championship caliber’.

    In this crazy, shortened season, I’d equally like a 10-game win streak or a 10-game losing streak with a bottom-five finish. Yes, we blew some years of high picks but I believe the past few will fare better, and besides, no team in baseball consistently nails the draft. So why not add another possible high-upside draft pick? It’s a crapshoot but it may improve our odds to strike it rich!

    I’m excited for another Barber draft! (And I think Bonifay will help deliver some treasures from Almaraz’s last few too!)

    1. Your second paragraph captures my thoughts precisely, starting from right before the season started. The top of next year’s draft looks really good, and this season is an aberration/asterisk anyway.

  48. Is this the finished product? Are we still rebuilding/retooling? Every year we spend big money on big name free agents but for what? FAs are only helpful as complementary pieces to a solid core, as icing on top of the proverbial cake. As currently constructed, this team has no such core, and is still only a fringe playoff team in an expanded playoff year. As much as I would like a high pick in next year’s draft, this team is discouraging to watch…too much inconsistency/boom or bust.

    1. This whole MacPhail-Klentak era has only proven how rare excellent or even very good front office executives are. The best ones know how to balance patience with aggressiveness, maximize value in talent at each pro level, and work within the constraints of their budget without blowing big money on the overblown reputation of a “star” player. But Klentak’s biggest detriment is being unable to identify talent from the starting block, and sifting through the ranks to find diamonds in the rough, which may result in luck – ie let’s hope Phil Gosselin’s tenure here isn’t squandered, for whatever type of asset he is.

  49. Lingers can’t hit major league fastball. Time to move segura to 2nd Bohm to third for now. Offseason get what can for Rhys. Sign first baseman or third baseman. Time for new GM that will fix minors to develop real baseball players.

    1. i wish i could show you my post from last year, I said the same thing he cant hit a fastball, and sucker for low offspeed pitches,

      1. rocco……No, No, No, …..Gregorius….only 19 scheduled home games left in the season…can hear Duran Duran maybe 76 more times

  50. Too many of the best arms in the system were either left off the 60-man or now the 40 man and the result is our bullpen is god awful… Either Howard or Vinnie need to anchor the 6th-8th before we blow the game in the 9th… The other can be a starter…

  51. I think Kingery needs to go down for a while until he gets his legs under him. I think he’s still battling his way back health wise. Bring up Bohm and slide Segura over. Kingery just looks lost. In the field too. It will force another 40 spot to be required but Davis doesn’t look like a major leaguer to me. I’d give Clevinger a shot.
    Hunter and Guerra again last night….. no words…..

    1. Agree Murray it’s time for Bohm

      Not sure what these guys are doing when they are sent down. We know they aren’t playing real games so development time is definitely lacking

      1. DMAR…they do face live pitching in those simulated games. …or what do they call them…rollover games or something like that.
        And I assume they do defensive drills also.

        1. Better than nothing I suppose but still has to be a far cry from facing competition from other teams players.

          I don’t think you can replicate the intensity or pressure of a live game in these sim games.

    2. Kingery hasn’t shown anything in 2+ to give me hope he can hit major league pitching. I’d be all for swapping him for Bohm and letting Segura play second. Then if Walker struggles maybe let Kingery be a super sub. Maybe he doesn’t love it but his versatility is his best asset and his best chance, IMO, to stick in the majors.

  52. Like to see Phils play Hasley full time. Understands the game and if swing develops becomes part of winning organization. Every once and awhile Phils get lucky sign a Manny Trillo or Pedro Feliz who becomes intregal piece. Been watching Phillies not develop these guys for 50 years. Other organizations constantly lose minor league leaders but continue to develop baseball players. Need somebody to fix that whole system

    1. In what world was Feliz an integral piece? He hit .249/.302/.402 in 2008. The only reason he was a positive contributor was he had a great glove. He’s the definition of replaceable. You think the Phils haven’t developed 1 WAR players?

      Freddy Galvis, Cesar Hernandez, John Mayberry, Odubel Herrera, Rhys Hoskins, Maikel Franco, Jorge Alfaro, Erik Kratz, Scott Kingery, Aaron Altherr, and Kevin Frandsen.

      There’s a bunch of names that the Phils developed (or snatched before they were MLB players) since 2008 that have contributed better seasons than anything Feliz did for us.

      I have plenty of nostalgia for that team, too. But you’re committing some serious revisionist history here.

        1. Part of the beautiful chaos that is baseball (and sports in general). Joe Blanton hit more HRs in the world series that year than Pat Burrell.

            1. Yeah, I remember. I was sitting a few rows back of where Jenkins hit his double in the 6th. I’ve always loved that aspect of baseball; how even the role players can be heroes in the biggest situations.

              I mean, how often is a Wilson Valdez-type of player one of the more popular ones on a 100 win team? Maybe in the offseason I’ll try to collect everyone’s favorite obscure player moments/trivia from Phillies history.

  53. Does anybody have the slightest idea what is going on in Lehigh Valley? Mitch Rupert? Anybody? Seems to be locked down tighter than you know what. Very frustrating.

    1. Mitch Rupert is in Williamsport.

      They let 25 season ticket holders in to watch on August 11th. They were required to wear masks and socially distance. They didn’t. Probably killed that experiment there and elsewhere.

      Subscription coverage of Phillies Taxi Squad baseball can be seen on @TV2_Sports.

      KRAM 207 (@Kram207) has some recent game observations on Twitter.

  54. Baseball America released its mid-season farm system rankings. The Phillies are a rousing 26th.

    Here’s BA’s comment: In normal systems, having two Top 30 prospects would mean inclusion in the upper echelon of baseball. Aside from first-round picks RHP Mick Abel and SS Bryson Stott, however, the system’s quality takes a short, sharp dive. Third-round pick SS Casey Martin, who was among the most tooled-up players available in the draft, could give the group a boost with a strong pro debut in 2021, however.

      1. Romus I Think the emulations of the thermo nuclear resistance, Says that Hall might not be a molecular fit in the Realm of the way, the phillies do escalation of the system

        1. I think you are right Rocco, I never really thought of it in that light, but I think 🤔 you hit the nail on the head!

  55. I don’t understand the 60 man roster pool. I thought the purpose was to have replacement players in case of positive virus tests. Why didn’t the Marlins and now the Cards pull from this pool and continue on in a depleted manner?

  56. Ok we’ve seen that Middleton’s Group is no better than Klentak/Macphail’s so let’s make the moves. Move: Hunter, Velazquez, Morgan and Davis( Putting our hopes on Suárez (no ST). They have Spencer a shot and realized he needed more innings but let him get them. Brogden(3 years in Milb) yet a mid to low 90’s right hander.
    Made the move on one pitch Cleavenger(slider) a Rule 5 and Llovera (2018 Milb Phillies Minor League POY) but was shut down with arm issues in 2019.
    What’s the reason for 60 man taxi apparently just Prospect Development. In the eyes of Middleton. Go Deeper into Farm, look for that Special Talent stop thinking you’ve got the next Acuna, Guerro, or ? Maybe you do but you cannot recognize it. No you depend on BA or ? Look at their Success/miss Rate at their record of success
    Where’s the Coaching, teaching that this Staff was hired to do. Pivetta, Eflin, Irvin, Rosso, Howard, Medina( Your Falling Prospect) (TEACH).
    What about the Super Sub, the SP that continuing to put of success rate but is over looked because he was Not #1, or YourTop Choice. Give them the tools and do what almost everyone else is doing: Move them up or Give the next in line to Show they might have The Right Stuff.
    No Middleton just keeps going with retreads
    Oakland, Minn are going deep for that Talented player.

  57. Felix started for WS Champion I seriously doubt the other players could start for playoff team. Never held my breath with his perfect chest high lasers to first. Knew he could get bunt down and not make many mental errors. Not well educated on war but doubt good baseball instincts part of calculation. Not saying I want 9 Felizs but want guys who understand how to play game right.

    1. Michael Martinez played on a team that won 102 games (2011 Phillies) and a team that lost game 7 of the World Series by 1 run (2016 Indians). Let’s not pretend this isn’t a team sport. Feliz was lucky enough to be on a good team at the right time. You put any of the players I listed before on that team and they have a ring, too.

      It’s not their fault they weren’t born at the right time to play with the Phils’ best SS, 2B, 1B, and second best LHP in team history. Not to mention Werth, Victorino, Burrell, Ruiz, the perfect Lidge, etc. etc. etc.

      And by the way, Cole Hamels pitched out of his mind in the post season, so he clearly knew how to win. But it didn’t help when the team around him stunk (like 2012 onward). Mike Trout has zero rings, but I’ll take him over anyone that has ever played for the Phils.

  58. Agree with Patso about Pedro Feliz. He gave the Phillies two really good years. He was a capable bottom of the order hitter and a very steady glove at the hot corner.

    1. “Really good” as in… what? A combined 2.3 WAR? We’re conflating team results with individual skill. Feliz had very little to do with the success of the 2008 or 2009 Phillies. Those Phils won games by bludgeoning opposing pitchers; something Feliz did not do. He was a serviceable extra piece on a team with historically good players at multiple positions.

      You can’t laud Feliz and then turn around and say Galvis or Hernandez were failures. They were too young to have an impact on the good Phillies teams, but they were WAY better players for us.

      1. Time for you to back dial it back. You don’t like Feliz. I read you.

        But, nowhere have I seen the guys you’re arguing with call Galvis, Hernandez, or any of the other guys you listed as 1-WAR players failures. Don’t attribute words to them to bolster your hate. Everyone is entitled to express their opinions until they cross the line you’re dancing around.

        And, just for the record, in his 2 seasons with the Phillies, Feliz provided better defense at third base than the Phillies had enjoyed post Scott Rolen, unless you were also enthralled by David Johnson, Abraham Nunez, Wes Helms, and Greg Dobbs.

        Feliz’ defense (.974) in 2008 was better than those listed above. It was also better than Mike Schmidt’s in each of the 1976-1980 seasons. So, while I might not use the word integral, Feliz certainly offered more than you seem willing to credit him.

        1. I really don’t dislike him at all, and I’m sorry if it reads that way. I appreciate what he helped us achieve. He was certainly a slick fielder, although other fielding metrics of his are less gaudy than fielding percentage (still good, just less so).

          This is much more a defense of the players that Patso has labeled as, “not winners.” As a former player (at a much lower level) I find it disgusting to diminish a player’s value based on how his team fares. I’ve played with incredible players on bad teams, and bad players on incredible teams. It’s not fair to them to say they could not have been auxiliary pieces on a good team. They absolutely could have. He also accused them of not understanding how to “play the game right” which also bothers me a lot.

          It’s one thing to criticize the Phils for not finding/developing their next championship core, but completely another to say that they haven’t produced a player that can win or play the game the “right” way since at least 2008.

  59. I suppose I’ll never understand managers and why they do some of he things they do. I mean I feel bad for guts like Proce who has the unenviable job of of being pinned with this bullpen but why managers stick with guys at the top of the lineup when they are clearly struggling.
    Kapler drive me insane with his “loyalty” but big G is doing it as well.

    If you make over $100K a year chances are you are being paid to perform at a high level. I get get you have match up decisions but I would be batting Cutch and Hos lower in the order till they start consistently performing above 250.
    Yes I know Hoskins draws a lot of walks but he is not exactly Quinn in the base paths. I would be batting Quinn and the local kid 1 2 or 2 1 in the order based in whatever your analytics says tonight. If you want a righty batting fifth maybe put Hos there since Segway isn’t lighting it up right now.

    Sorry if I’m a little down but last night made me not want to watch Baseball.

  60. Question: How many players do the Phillies have right now that will be key players in 2022? Bryce, Segura, Nola, Wheeler, Howard, maybe Eflin, maybe Bohm, hopefully JTR, not many more. For the cupboards to be this empty after a decade of losing is incomprehensible..,

  61. 20% of the season complete. 11 of the first 12 games played at CBP. The Phillies have the 5th worst record in MLB.

    Probable top 5 for the 2021 draft:

    Kumar Rocker
    Jaden Hill
    Jack Leiter
    Brady House
    Jordan Lawlar

    1. You already know who I like the best. But, having looked into these other guys, I think both Hill and Leiter have at least no. 2 starter upside. And Brady House is a friggin’ man child.

      So, if the Phillies pick top 5 next year (and assuming this is still the top 5), they’d have to try really hard NOT to get an excellent player.

  62. I hope Hinkie that we draft well, cause this team needs Help, One Question for you out of the five guys you list, Who do you think has the fastest track to majors?

    1. Rocco … Kumar Rocker and Jack Leiter both pitch for Vanderbilt. Both were top prep players who had very high bonus demands out of HS. Both have dads who played professional sports (Tracy Rocker and Al Leiter). They should each be on fast tracks to reach MLB. I like Jaden Hill a lot. He’s also a college pitcher (LSU), but is more raw. House and Lawlar are prep bats.

  63. Jim how is your wife Doing? Second i dont know if you mention it, but do you get to see any of the guys down in clearwater work out? Have you heard if they will have some type of Fall league or instruction in clearwater? ty

  64. We need to realize that we are a sub-mediocre team. Thus Hoskins looks terrible. I particularly was impressed with his K looking in the 9th down 1 run. I am to the point that the BBS annoy me when his Slugging % is under 2. Scott Kingery was already benched, Wheeler and Eflin failed to hold leads and the BP is a joke. And Buddy, I do not count Segura as a key piece for 2022.

  65. Everyone sees the sky as falling and, yes, this team has played a pretty frustrating brand of baseball, but there are a number of silver linings here. To me, great teams are built around stars and we have several, including Nola, Harper, and Realmuto (I expect they will sign him – I’m not too worried about it) with some very good young players on the way or just arrived.

    If the team falls too far out of contention, they would be better off doing what the Red Sox and Yankees do when they don’t contend. Make strategic trades and re-load for the next season. But I have no idea if they will do that.

    What this team really needs is an upgrade in the front office (Klentak is just so-so – he’s not a disaster, but he’s not particularly savvy either) and it needs to show the ability to find and develop talent.

    However, if Middleton gets impatient we just trade young players to make a run this year (I’m not saying we should make no trades, but we shouldn’t mortgage the farm), this team will be in an endless cycle of mediocrity. The goal is not to make the playoffs this year (although that would be nice). The goal is to become a juggernaut – and decisions should be made with that goal in mind. Always.

  66. Good Morning Phuture Phillies fans 🙂

    The race to the bottom is on. Cherington has his Pirates sitting at a .188 WPCT clearly the leader at the turn. Bloom has his Red Sox at 333

    Farhan Zaidi is stalking the pace with his Giants sitting at 400. Klentak sitting in the mix at 350 only he wasn’t trying to tank this year.

  67. I don’t want to give up on Rhys, and sorry for the spell check calling him “Thus” earlier, but I would like to see some adjustments to his approach. Like hitting the ball the opposite way. How many ground ball DPs are needed to realize that maybe something different may work. Especially with 2 runners on and less than 2 outs, hit the ball the opposite way! And I don’t want to give up on Kingery, either, but he has looked lost. He isn’t catching up to FBs, and swings at breaking balls that are not close to the plate. And, the great D I expected hasn’t appeared. Let’s say this season continues like this. What can possibly be done to correct it? This team, without JTR, may get the #1 draft pick in 2022, but does anyone feel really confident that the guy picked is a game changer? I know, only 13 games, but we stink vs. 2 teams that combined to lose 208 games last year. Teams we should beat up on. The O’s are hitting our Pitchers by being aggressive, all the time. Just really disappointed with this team.

  68. We need new leadership in the front office! Until that happens, expect mediocre results.
    What you see is what you get, A team that is up against the luxuary tax, a bottom tier farm system, the list goes on and on.
    And please don’t use Covid as an excuse, after all the other teams have to deal with it too, the same with “bad luck” with our prospects and injuries. The other teams all play within the same rules, except the Phillies are in one of the better markets for dollars so they have a great advantage over what…, 80% of their competition?

  69. I guess one of the positives so far in this poor beginning is Andy Knapp. I am really happy for him and happy that the organization did not give up on him. I understand that he might go zero for his next thirty but at least, at this time, he is playing with confidence.

    When Knapp was drafted out of Berkeley all those years ago, I was encouraged that he might be a solid major league player. He had a breakout year in Reading (even with his porn stash) and it appeared he could stick at catcher while some were doubtful of that.

    I’d like to see Girardi ride him out there for as long as he is playing well. Realmuto could play more first base and Hoskins can sit for awhile and maybe get his head together. In any event, I’m just glad that Knapp is doing the job some of us thought he would when he was drafted.

    1. He actually has a very nice swing that was screwed up by the last hitting coach. Knapp tried to hit everything up in the air with elevation. That’s not his swing! He’s back to a more level swing since he’s not a power hitter. Kruk noticed it during the game last night too. I think the previous hitting theory messed up lots of guys’ swings that they can’t seem to fix. I once had a talk with Von Hayes and he said the Phils asked him to hit homers after Schmidt retired and he tried for awhile. However when he tried to go back to his old swing he could never find it again. Let’s hope Hoskins and Kingery can find their old swings.

      1. As much as I like seeing Knapp get his hits, he’s still a backup. His ABs will be few and far between. He won’t be the reason why the Phillies win or lose.

        The bigger issue are Kingery/Cutch/Hoskins. These 3 players all have OPS+ under 100 and not surprisingly, negative WARs. These 3 guys are the main reason why the Phillies are in last place. Although the bullpen has been a disaster too.

  70. Bohm, baby. Does Kingery sit and Segura play 2nd? I think I heard Girardi say he’s committed to playing Hoskins at 1b.

    1. Much as I still have hope for Jetpax, he might get some time in Lehigh for a while. Hoskins gets more time to sort himself out but it’s a fluid situation, as RAJ used to say.

      1. Hoskins is pretty much on the Dom Brown trajectory. One crazy month and then 🤷🏼‍♂️
        Let’s be easy on Bohm. His ranking is close to where Kingery was when he was called up. He’s no lock. With that said, I have a good feeling about him.

      2. Kingery goes down until the trade deadline, when Segura gets moved for bullpen help. Bohm plays 3b/DH until then, by which time Hoskins’ status is better gauged. Gosselin plays 2b vs lefties. That’s my take.

          1. Sorry, it’s called the IL now. The other option is that Kingery goes back in the IL. He doesn’t look healthy.

        1. 8mark … I think the Phillies are stuck with Jean Segura. He has negative trade value. Klentak would probably have to give up a prospect to have another team take him, or the Phillies would need to take back another guy with negative trade value.
          Happy to see Bohm get a chance, just like I was happy to see Howard. If they’re going to lose, let’s do it with young guys. While they’re at it, Klentak should also promote more young arms (in addition to Brogdon). That BP is a disgrace.

  71. Great to hear that the Phillies will retire Dick Allen’s #15! First player in franchise history not in the HOF to have that honor bestowed upon him. Congratulations, Richie!

    1. ….despite it’s shortcomings as an organization, the Phillies are definitely a class act when it comes to taking care of their own. Well done and very cool😎

    2. I used to sit with Richie when he would come to the turf club to bet horses,He would drink Heinken and tell me stories, nice guy

    3. ….and it may be the final push that gets him into the Hall of Fame. If Harold Baines is one, come on now….

  72. If Bohm is being called up, he needs to play almost every day because it makes no sense for him to sit on the bench. The Phillies have DH covered with Gosselin/Bruce. Bohm will either play 3B or 1B, but I’m leaning towards 3B. Segura should go over to 2nd and Kingery will get his playing time drastically reduced. Kingery should be pissed but he has no one to blame but himself. The Phillies are looking to win games so they can’t afford to wait too long for somebody to get out of their funk, especially by a young player who hasn’t established themselves yet.

  73. This team was built to score runs, although veterans like McCutchen and Segura aren’t producing anything near their past levels. With his plate discipline, Bohm should certainly add to the runners on base total, but that’s never been the problem for the Phillies…driving them home is!

    At this point, the pen is what it is. The Phillies have to outscore their opponents, even if the SPs give them solid starts. No lead is safe.

    1. Odd that Walker is in for Hoskins. I guess Girardi is making a statement?

      As for Kingery, well, he better get ready for ST 2021.

    2. I really did think the new -do would work for Rhys…maybe give it some time.
      Nevertheless, last night’s 3 GIDPs is tough to swallow..

    1. rocco… know, I value your opinion…..but hasn’t Bernard been retired for awhile now?

  74. May be wrong….but over the last decade Bryce Harper may lead MLB in bunt hits with 16 in 38 PAs….and slashing a very unique .552/.552/.552.

  75. I don’t want to pile on Rhys, who I like, and root for, and still believe will turn it around. But his ABs show no plan at the plate. He often looks at the best pitch of the AB, while swinging at the worst. Those DPs are because he never tries to go the opposite way. If you are slumping and runners are on, go the other way. You may hit it where the shift isn’t, or, at the least, have a chance to move runners along. How does a guy like him not have a HR unless he is totally screwed up at the plate? It has been painful to watch.

    1. matt13…..he needs to be sent down along with Kingery at least thru August…clear their heads and take swings without pressure….but Matt Klentak seems to avoid doing those things, though it has worked with many others in the past..

  76. I will be glad once the Orioles leave town. These are not the same sad sack Oriloes of the past. These guys spray the ball all over and can seriously hit.

  77. VV is now in the bullpen. With all the double headers coming up, I’m assuming that VV will get some starts along the way.

  78. Embarrassing. Let’s tank, fire Klentak and MacPhail and grab next year’s #1. That would make 2020 a successful season.

  79. Tough to argue 8mark. Just awful. And I refuse to buy the O’s as a powerhouse. And we managed 6 hits?, 4 in the first couple of innings. There are very few bright spots. And one of the brightest, JTR, may only be here for 40 or so more games.

    1. After watching the Orioles rake for 3 games, that team is definitely on the rise. They can really hit, their rotation is lacking. They’ll be in the mix in the AL East.

  80. So Brogdon gets his debut, throws a chest high fastball and it goes out on a rope to LF. Welcome to the big leagues kid.

    1. And Brogdon’s day is done. He was obviously wild with his fastball but he has a really good changeup. Not as good as Madson’s (who had sink with his change), but it’s up there. I’m encouraged about that.

  81. I would not blame JTR for not wanting to resign after this series. You don’t get swept by the O’s AT HOME and lose 2 of 3 to the Fish AT HOME.

    1. Yeah, I was thinking before you wrote this that if you ask JT what it is like to play for the Phils, he would probably tell you it is a lot like playing for the Marlins! I really wonder if we can sign him. This is a really bad baseball team. They are so bad, I don’t even get mad anymore watching the daily debacle.

    2. Have you seen the hitting numbers of the Orioles before today’s game? They have 7 starters with an OPS of .850+. 7! And their backup catcher who has played in 11 games has an OPS of 1.298!

      How many starters for the Phillies have an OPS above .850? 4: JT, Harper, Bruce, Gosselin. Knapp is also on the list but he’s only played in 5 games.

      The Phillies got their azz kicked and rightfully so.

  82. Eschelmen, another castoff
    5 in, 4H,2ER,1Hr
    Brogden 2017 15th rd
    1.1 in,3H,3R,1BB,2K,2HR

    That’s Middleton
    Let’s stay with Hunter,Davis,Segura,Bruce

    Phillies laughing stock of MLB
    Anyone heard of Taxie Squad or someone sitting at home waiting for call of help

  83. Brutal. The Phillies didn’t bring the best arms up for the 60 man in July and I said it at the time. Experience over talent.

  84. How can Eshelman outpitch Arrieta? Or the better question how can our lineup not hit Eshelman it’s just embarrassing. I have zero faith in Hoskins, Kingery, and Segura. While the price for JT keeps going up. The Bullpen ugh I can’t.
    We might be looking at another high first round pick next year and Im just glad Johnny A is not here to make it. I don’t know if it’s drafting or player development but something needs to change. For god’s sake we cant even find a decent bullpen arm in the entire farm it’s disgusting. Other teams call up players with plus stuff big fastballs everyday where are ours. We don’t have any. After Spencer Howard there is nobody. Francisco Morales, Medina, Damon Jones, Connor Seabold, Mauricio Llovera exciting stuff. There are some talented players in the system that are not developing the way they should be. (SS Luis Garcia, RHP Adonis Medina, OF Mickey Moniak, OF Jhailyn Ortiz, SS Gamboa) The Braves and Nats are killing us on the international front. Their signings are really carrying their franchises Soto, Acuna, Albies, Pache on the way. Why aren’t we poaching any of their scouts? We seem to do well with the smaller signings and whiff on the big ones Although i still have hope for Garcia. I see the Nats are signing another top INT player this year SS Armando Cruz. While we are signing another catcher while rated #8 overall by We keep signing these guys Marchan, Grullon, Duran, Aparicio, Nava, Gutierrez just off the top of my head. Im just frustrated with everybody in the Phillies org right now. Like how in the world did Klentak think it was ok to go into the year with this slop in the bullpen and not sign anybody just 1 or 2 solid additions would have made this team so much better.

    1. What Joey said . . I usually think people who say “I’m done with this team” are overreacting or just miserable people but I’m just about at that point . . . I’m not even mad at the players, they are what they are, not like they are trying to lose. But the FO, how is it that every single one of us Phillies minor league fan boys, posting on a freakin male cleat chaser website, know that the bullpen was going to be horrible but the people getting paid to make sure it isn’t horrible, seem clueless! How it is we go thru a rebuild and have NOTHING to show for it . . . Yeah what Joey said.

      1. At what point do you start to question the culture? If you look at the Marlins and Orioles and compare their rosters to ours from merely a back of the baseball card talent perspective then clearly those teams are getting far more out of their players than the Phillies are

        Yeah Brogdon got roughed up last night but his FB was topping out at 94 and I can tell you from first hand looks he has more than that #notworriedyet

        Also have to believe that since JM hired him Girardi is communicating directly with him about needed changes.

        I do want to point out though about Girardi much of his cache came from managing the Yankees who never spared any expense to field or team and had some terrific legacy players playing for him.

    2. But, then again, even if they get a Kumar or Leiter, what are they chances the Phillies actually maximize their potential….

      1. Up to … or … down to the 4th worst record in MLB.

        The good news is they finally found a reliable reliever.
        The bad news is that guy is Neil Walker.

    3. I think there’s only so much blame you can give Klentak for the bullpen this season. It’s clear there’s a mandate to not go over the luxury tax. They chose Gregorious/Wheeler over adding veteran pitchers.

      That became abundantly clear when they released Fransisco Liriano. What a boon her would be to this pen right now. They went with this slop and the young kids because ownership will not allow them to go over the luxury tax.

      Am I defending Klentak? No. It’s an absolute disaster and terrible roster construction. The Kapler experiment set this team back years. They’d be much better off with guys like Kingery and Hoskins and maybe even Crawford if they kept Pete and just gave the second half 2017 line up a shot at 2018 with that same coaching staff.

      1. JP Crawford trade looks worse everyday. He is doing well out in Seattle playing really good defense too. (Still early I know) and under team control for a few more years.

        1. i Guess this is the new site for Crawford talk, How many times are you going to post about Crawford, really its a short season and no one cares

        2. Give me a break. In 2018 (JP’s final year here), he had 0.2 WAR and people on this site were grumbling about him, which included trading him out of town. If the Phillies didn’t trade him and kept him for 2019, his WAR was 1.1 and people would be irate if he was the starting SS for the Phillies in 2020. There’s no way he would have lasted 4 years in Philadelphia. None. Let’s move on from this conversation, he’s not a Phillie anymore.

      2. I hate the tales that $200m isn’t enough money to spend to not have a league worst bullpen. 100% of the blame is on Klentak. 100%.

        Oh, and it had been reported that Klentak wanted Machado over Harper, and it was Middleton who pushed for Harper. If true, that also would have been a disaster. Harper’s play is far superior to Machado.

        1. The FA decisions have been mind boggling. That Carlos Santana contract turned out to be a larger mess than predicted. They tried to get cute with the Analytics saying Rhys would be slightly better in LF than 1B and has now caused us to be stuck with Segura.

          What a missed opportunity this rebuild was. They tried to be the Astros/Cubs/Dodgers but hired people from consistently average at best organizations (LAA and BAL).

          You’re right, we could be way worse off if Klentak got his way. Machado would’ve been a terrible signing and acquiring him at the 2018 deadline could’ve been worse (wasn’t Howard rumored for those talks)?

      3. I can’t agree with that, we need to go over the luxury tax to have a good bullpen.
        How many teams from low market teams have a better bullpen than us right now?

        If we think that we can buy our way out of poor results in drafting/ developing good players, we are wrong…That is the number one reason we’re in this situation right now, after YEARS of attempting a re-build!

        Look…it’s fairly simple, we need much better people running this team. Imagine what the Rays and A’s front office could build with ALL of this money.

  85. So Brogdon throws 93-94? Can someone please tell Klentak it’s not 1987? RH relievers throwing 94, that’s our new shiny object? 🙄

    1. The bigger concern to me was his poor fastball command. But I will chalk it up to debut jitters. That said, this guy ain’t fixing our bullpen problems.

      1. I will give Brogdon the benefit of the doubt….and see how he does after he gets his feet wet. Jitters could be the early reason as you say…..and his FB did get to mid-9os at Reading last season…but he needs his CU to be on even more..

  86. Good organizations construct bullpens with their live armed left and right handed minor leaguers and then supplement with free agents and trades. Phil’s hit lottery couple times with lidge and tug. Not an expert on Phil’s minor leagues but nothing down there looks like building blocks of a bullpen. Ugh need a really elite baseball mind to fix this disjointed system and team.

    1. Exactly. Alamarez prioritized command over velo in draft. And this is what we have to show for it. No power arms that can get 3 outs.

  87. Imagine how bad we would be without Harper and Reamulto? The worst team in the league. And we may very well lose JTR. Another worry is that the money loss this year because of the pandemic causes Middleton to keep Klentak. If we were tanking, we would have put together a BP exactly like what we have. And we claimed the Playoffs was the goal.

    1. matt13…trade deadline in approx two weeks.
      Possible movers:
      1. Didi
      2. Jake A.
      3. Jay Bruce

      ……Matt K sees the hand writing on the wall……none of those will bring back much on their own……IMO, I’d go for $500/750K a piece in international ‘credit-line ‘ money.

      I will give Ruben credit for this….he knew he was going out the door well before June/July 2015, since no extension was offered, but he took the high road, and decided to do the right thing, and start the rebuild with trades.

      I will be interested in seeing what Matt Klentak will do in another week or two if the Phillies continue to play poor ball.

      1. Excuse me, if Ruben knew what he was doing we would have been reaping the benefits of the Cole Hamels trade right now. Instead, the only contribution it made to the long-term health of the franchise was providing a secondary piece in the Realmuto trade. Yes, agreed that he took the high road and did his best (which is to his credit), but his best wasn’t very good, which is why he was fired in the first place.

        1. He did the right thing,
          …….who was suppose to know that Cole’s return would be minimal….that is what all GMs do when they trade a star for multiple prospects…they do not have crystal balls and are able to see what prospects turn into down the road.

          But that was not my point……it is Matt Klentak and what he plans on doing if the Phillies’ next 10 games are a below .500 record….will he cut bait and trade for the future, in which most can see this will be his last year, or will he try to hang on to these FAs after the the season, and try to get as many wins in a season where the play-offs are not attainable?

          1. “who was suppose to know that Cole’s return would be minimal….that is what all GMs do when they trade a star for multiple prospects.”

            No, not so, the better GMs do great on these trades. The Phillies did not and that’s the responsibility of the GM.

        2. Ruben would have been the best GM in history if it weren’t for an inordinate amount of injuries to main players. Many players play into their mid to late 30’s, we had Howard, Utley, Lidge, Doc, Lee, Oswalt, Romero, Burrell all break down. If they would have maintained health and we would have kept Werth. It might have been a very, very different storyline here.

        3. To be fair to Ruben at the time I think the Rangers package was the second best one offered. Maybe even third.

          Hamels officially declined a trade to Houston and it’s rumored they liked those players more. Given the Carlos Gomez package i think at a minimum we would’ve gotten Hader but that’s pure speculation.

          1. Boston was another trade candidate….but they kept pulling players off the offer sheet, two of them I am aware of were the prospect catcher that never panned out, Blake Swihart and LHP Henry Owens …so Ruben decided to move on.

            And the Rangers trade also had the Philies interested in Nomar M. or Lewis Brinson the OFers, but Daniels told them it would be Nick Williams instead.,

      2. TBH … I think this is a bad year to be a seller. Didi, Arrieta, and Bruce are all on the final couple of months of their deals. Hard to see GM’s surrendering prospects (of any value) for them in a season where there is no guarantee that a WS champion will be crowned.

        1. Hinkie…I’d would not want prospects… will never get any premier prospect anyways…..go for the international ‘money’…you can get 500k/750K per player…and pour that money into a 16-year old from the DR or Ven. There are teams that sell their international credit line for players, the Os use to be one, not sure anymore.

          But that is a philosophy for a GM that is just starting his job with a team……Klentak is in the twilight right now and does not have the time to wait.

          1. Romus … I may be wrong, but I don’t think teams are allowed to trade draft picks or J2 money this year. No loss of draft picks for signing QO FA’s. No trading competitive balance draft picks. And no trading J2 money. Like I said, I’m not 100 percent certain of that, but I believe I remember that to be true.

            I may end up being wrong, but I just think the trade deadline will be pretty quiet this summer. Maybe some trades can be made for players with at least another season of team control. On Monday, I brought up a Nick Pivetta for Mychal Givens possibility. He looked pretty good vs the Phils Tuesday and Wednesday. Givens has been relegated to 7th inning work for the Orioles, but he’d be capable of setting up (or even closing if Neris needed a rest) for the Phillies. Givens is under team control thru 2021. Pivetta (who obviously needs a change of scenery) doesn’t reach free agency until 2024. The funny thing is when I first proposed this deal, I thought the Phillies would be competing now, and the Orioles would be thinking more long term. LOL!

    2. I’m looking forward to the year end press conference where Klentak, McPhail, and Middleton roll out the excuses

      “We were really counting on guys like Dominguez and Arano and they were hurt…”

      “The start/stop really hurt us” (Marlins didn’t have any trouble with it).

      Just terrible roster construction and a year of Harper/Nola/Realmunto in their primes wasted.

      I don’t personally think they fire Klentak or McPhail given the pandemic.

      1. JL26…if they miss the play-offs in an expanded play-off qualifying season…I think Middleton does what he did with Kapler, eat the last year of the contract (extended for Klentak) and let Klentak walk.

        Five years is about the normal life-span for non play-off GMs anymore….they are analytic guys who were never former ball players for that specific team… its a purely results oriented business decision.

        1. Don’t get me wrong I would LIKE that to happen but I have a hard time seeing them eat whatever the two make combined ($5-10milish?) when the owner said they are going to lose $100m+ this season. Would think he rides it out and makes a move after 2021.

          I wouldn’t mind being wrong though. Clearly the two men should’ve been removed along with Gabe last year.

      2. If the Phillies miss the playoffs or worse, finish last in the NL East, I fully expect Klentak to get canned. He’s been here 5 years, and you can’t spend $200M and miss the playoffs.

  88. I usually feel bad for anyone losing their job. But, If Matt Klentak really believes the things he says then I won’t this time. First, everyone is playing during a pandemic, so we are not more affected than other teams. The Marlins lost half their team and have played better than us. But the worst is the whole Tommy Hunter explanation. “He gets hit when he throws 91, and gets outs when he throws 94”. Let’s not even discuss how good he is when he is right, but Klentak counted on a guy that just came off elbow surgery, and signed a minimum contract because of that. Do you really need to be an ace evaluator to thing that, just maybe, he would not be at his best coming into the season? And, if so, why was he the key to your BP construction? And SerAnthony? Needs TJ surgery, doesn’t get it, and maybe we shouldn’t have counted on him? I don’t let Klentak off the hook because of the Luxury Tax nonsense. You can build a better BP with a $200M payroll. And, just maybe, after 5 years, have power arms ready to come up. Middleton cannot look at this mess, and after boasting about “I want my bleeping trophy back”, see one of the worst teams in the league, with a bottom third farm, and 2 supposed keys from the system, in KIngery and Hoskins, and a key trade acquisition, in Segura, combine to put out a BA of around .125, with zero power, and say that this whole Andy MacPhail and Matt Klentak regime has been a rousing success.

    1. Virtually all veteran relievers he has signed has come up lame at some point.
      Robertson is another up there on the list, you can put into this bullpen fiasco over the last five season.

      These last few drafts they have shown the resolve to go after hi velo relief arms…..but may be a little too late.

      1. Romus why do so many Relief pitcher come up debilitated.i just dont Fathom, why this happens, Maybe its the sign of Aquarius.Where the Moon is in the seventh sun

        1. Rocco … maybe this will help explain it.
          BTW … Take note of the lip syncing. It’s as bad as the Phillies bullpen.

    2. Been awhile me gents, hope all it well. Yes, I agree. It’s unfortunate because the opportunity was there to build a contender for a significant period of time – he had a nice handful of prospects to start with, certainly got the draft picks to build the farm up, and had the war chest to add. Honestly, it was almost
      Impossible to mess up, but they did. In comparison to the flyers, the flyers hit on so many draft picks (I know it’s a different sport) where are the Phillies have whiffed on just about them all. Part of that to me is the instruction & environment given to the kids.

      How come not one of Appel, Efflin, Thompson, Pivetta, Vasquez, Biddle, eschelmem, Lively, etc – I’ve forgotten how many pitching prospects have come through and the best we can hope
      For, other than Nola (Amaro pick) is Efflin? You need to have a better success rate than that.
      To have the team where they are at, The prospect pool and payroll near maxed, we are back to 2012, but no recent championship.
      It looks real bad in my eyes.
      Nola,Wheeler, and Howard should be solid rotation to build, there is a window for Nola’s elite performance.
      Harper and I doubt Realmuto resigns. If we can see it, I’m sure he can. Hopefully it’s comfortable For him here and money talks in the end, if not, he’s gone.
      McCutchen is a perfect example of the state of the Phillies. He was nice to have last year, but honestly l, they should not have needed to sign him with all the OF prospects. If they could develop, then that money could’ve been allocated for the bullpen… which is obviously needed. Sure some
      Bad luck was in play, but that example
      Is repeated a few times on this team.

      Did not proof read 🙂

  89. How Phillies would it be if the best player in the Ken Giles trade (or second best after Giles) ends up being Jonathan Arauz? He was a rule 5 pick of the Red Sox and is off to a solid start. He might see more regular playing time if that team stays in the basement.

    1. I’m always wary of guys who in a SSS size playing for a team with no expectations flash well above their traditional norms…

      1. And rightly so. Although Arauz only just turned 22 and maintained solid K/BB numbers up through the ladder. Time will tell.

  90. As far as the offense goes, I’d play Bohm, Didi, and Goose everyday at 3B, SS, and 2B. I’d platoon Hoskins and Walker at 1B. And roll with Bryce, Quinn, Cutch, and Bruce.


  91. This team is hard to watch. Nothing worse than a rebuild gone wrong. Hoskins,Kingery, Haslely, are a great collection of player … to come off the bench. So many missteps, that basically put this team back in another rebuild imo. This team should not be below .500
    At the halfway point. If it is, I don’t think Klentak
    Makes it to the end. This was a make of break year for him imo. As a Phan, I’m real upset with his plan, he had the best setup in baseball, and in team
    History to put a contender together, for a large contention window. Harper, Nola, & Wheeler, the rest are expendable. Realmuto is obviously great, but his payroll hit and this teams needs just to get back
    To a .500 level, it’s probably best to trade him. I say this with the expectation that Hoskins and Kingery are no more than bench players. Really need Howard and Bohm to step up
    To reset the trajectory of the team. I’d take what I can for McCutchen,Arrietta, & segura. No real replacements for them, but
    To get prospect, clear the payroll, and start the back to back rebuild, it’s unpopular but likely need it – 2025

  92. DLS cleared waivers and went to Lehigh.

    Jacob deGrom got scratched from his start tonight. We’ll see if the Phillies can capitalize.

  93. Spencer Howard left the game early, possibly with a blister. There’s no doubt he has skills, but he needs some refinement. He was a tad less wild with his fastball, but man, he hung 2 meatballs to Smith and Cano and they went out. I mean Cano hammered a fat curveball. Howard is going to be a work in progress for 2020. Not sure he will make his next start.

    1. I’m hoping the blister is affecting his stuff a bit because I was hoping for 97-98 with nasty secondary stuff. Don’t get me wrong, I definitely think he’s going to be a legit big league pitcher, maybe even a really good one, but the stuff isn’t as electric as I thought it would be. Maybe it’s the blister and/or just ramping up in a weird season. Looks composed and seems like a great kid, really rooting for him.

      1. I held myself back from posting the same thing, but I had the same thought. I saw a few 92 mph pitches in the 4th. That is not going to get it done. And the homers he gave up were off the curve and change. Supposed to be plus pitches. I didn’t see electric stuff as he had been billed. But withholding judgement for a few more starts.

        1. In past years I’ve depended on evaluations from others on the GCL, A ball, etc. When they get to Reading and Lehigh Valley I form my own opinion of their stuff. I too, am somewhat surprised at what I’ve seen and what has been reported on Spencer.

          Then again it’s a huge jump from the minors to the majors and from average major leaguer to elite all star. After all, we thought we had the next Maris and Mantle tandem in the “Bash Brothers” and we all know the brothers act is over and the survivor is struggling and under the microscope now.

  94. I must admit, Ruben Amaro commenting hasn’t been bad. He’s a smart guy, he definitely knows his stuff.

      1. Ruben Amaro’s time here has passed. If a GM makes 10 transactions, they’re not going to go 10-0. It’s a fact of life. Ruben (and Klentak) have had their share of wins.
        If the Phillies move on from Klentak after this season, so be it.

        Ruben Amaro commenting over Mike Schmidt? I would take that for sure.

  95. took no Degrom, best overall performance by bullpen and three real close plays all going Phil’s way to scratch out a win, but we’ll take it. Cutch showing signs of life, if Hoskins can be just OK that can be a real nice lineup with Bohm in there.

    Degrom was just 1 of 4 starting pitchers scratched from starts last night due to sore necks or backs. strange year.

    cards back on field today but Reds now with another case- for a team that had a positive test and some other scares after opening day, saw parts of a couple Reds games this week and they seemed non-chalant with Covid protocols in the dugout.

  96. Spencer Howard will be really good once he grows into mans body. Rhys Hoskins is great human being. Ran MD walk last summer we attended. May hurt Phil’s chances but hope they give himself summer to hopefully figure out. Dinner to root for group of good guys.

  97. I hope that John Middleton is kicking himself for not already having JTR under a LTC. And, has let the Buck cousins know that we are signing him no matter the cost. There is not a C even close to Realmuto. He is the best in the game, and Middleton losing him is tantamount to admitting he can not be the owner of a successful Baseball team. I know that is not prudent, and we need much more than him to be a good team, but losing him is a setback that will take years to recover from, and indicates, to me, that despite signing Harper, we do not have an Owner that will go all out to win.

    1. matt13…..Ruben post-game mentioned he thinks it will be done.
      The talks stalled with the situation at hand , but he believes the match is there.
      I am hoping he is had so small talk with Middleton lately.

  98. The Phillies keep getting breaks from other rivals. Strasburg left his start early due to lingering nerve damage. deGrom out last night. Braves got toasted by NYY. Klentak needs to find a couple stabilizing arms for the bullpen. They ain’t from within the organization, apparently. Howard will be fine.

    Anybody figure out what the Phillies record would be without JTR and Harper? Like, 0-15? Yeesh! Tonight vs Matz. ERA over 8…bats gotta rake behind Nola.

    1. 8mark…..if Rhys did a little better in his 11 PAs-RiSP there may be a another couple wins on their ledger and fewer losses.
      RISP…… a SSS, but so far Rhys has hurt them more than helped offensively…. BBs are just not productive in RISP situations.
      Currently he is slashing .143/.455/.143 in RISP….with 3 BBs in 11 PAs in his 10 games played.
      Conversely JTR in his 17 PAs in RISP is slashing .438/.471/ 1.188…with just 1 BB

      1. Romus i Really Relish your reflections, It makes a dull day invigorating, I diverge.with your comments sometimes but most times , your make some really great eminent points on the whole of the team. I think it must be your cultivated higher learning,

  99. Rocco, you never fail to bring a smile to my face, even when we disagree on Cesar! Skeet asked above something that I thought while listening to RAJ comment during the game last night. Would I take him back over Klentak? Yes, I would. I, like Hinkie, who pushed for him a number of times, really was interested in Chaim Bloom, before he got the BoSox job, and Ruben would not be my first choice, by far, but I would take him over the present GM. What do the rest of you think?

    1. Great choice – Salisbury steak or meatloaf. I don’t pretend to have insight on how interviews for the GM position went down with MacPhail back in ’15, BUT where was Middleton when Bloom came in. Good ol’ boy Andy went with his “protege” Klentak instead. Bloom may have been too smart for MacPhail’s comfort? Anyway, here we are…and hopefully Johnny Cigars will have seen enough to cut both of these guys loose…

      ….then comes the interesting part – hiring a new prez AND/OR GM who will agree to keep Joe Girardi as their skipper.

    2. matt13…….in some respects agree about that. He started as Asst to Ed Wade back in ’98….then when Ed W. left, became Asst to Pat G…..then got it …the GM job in 2009. So he has plenty experience.

      Trouble was….he was like that little boy who grew up in the family…from batboy on the 1980 Championship team to the GM……and every one loved him as a son…Monty, Giles…..and Uncle Charlie.
      I remember Claire Betz’ grandson telling one of my buddies at a game, saying everyone in the Phillies family loved Ruben… and also Ruben Sr.
      He bled Philly red.

      So many of his decisions as a GM were subtly dictated by Uncle Charlie (trade for Hunter P. ) and a blessing from Monty. In some respects he may have been handcuffed.

      BTW… yuo remember, the Phillies traded Von Hayes and a pitcher I think, for Ruben just before his last tour as a Philly ballplayer.

    1. I remember Howie’s lieutenant who moved on to the Jets. Howie couldn’t draft to save his life. And Doug P was made by his former OC and DC. What have we seen since? Mediocrity.

      1. Ruben is a good color man in the broadcasting booth, and a multi-generation Phillie.

        As for any other role, maybe some kind of advisor, but I don’t think we go forward by going back.

        I think Middleton’s mistake was in bringing in McPhail. He brought in a seasoned baseball executive from a family of illustrious baseball executives, but McPhail just wasn’t the right guy. He’s proven that repeatedly with his nonchalant, almost not-caring approach. And he brought in his protege in lack of urgency to be the GM.

        Time for Middleton to make his second stab at bringing in leadership. Maybe, with this experience under his belt, he’ll do better next time.

        Other than that, I don’t blame Middleton. He is genuinely trying. Even Lincoln had his McClellan. Maybe now Middleton can find his Grant.

    1. Nick Williams played 290 games as a Phillie, and his WAR was -1.8. If he plays well for the Reds, good for him, but his time for the Phillies was terrible. I’m not losing any sleep over this transaction.

      1. I agree with RAJ that Williams’ growth was stunted by the Harper/McCutchen acquisitions and subsequent lack of playing time. I don’t know if his bat would have ever significantly outweighed his poor fielding, but he was an above average hitter his first two years here, and had his BB and K rates trending positively. He was abysmal last year in a role he was clearly uncomfortable with.

        Side note: Rube is a pretty good follow on twitter because he’s more forthcoming about certain things than you might expect.

  100. No matter how this crazy season goes, one thing is very clear, as it was end of last year, the front office requires an overhaul. This org will never get to where it needs to be with MacPhail and Klentak running things. They both must go, not one to save face, both must go.

    Let’s look at Middleton’s track record here of major decisions:
    – He kept RAJ too long.
    – Sandberg as manager was a fail.
    – Mackanin wasn’t a fail but it wasn’t a success either. They could’ve at least taken a shot on a young up and coming manager.
    – MacPhail was a major fail.
    – Klentak ditto
    – Kapler ditto

    I appreciate his passion and willingness to spend money, but there is no evidence he has any idea he knows what he’s doing. Maybe a poor man’s Jerry Jones or George Steinbrenner wannabe.

    1. Your first point has a small flaw.
      Middleton did not officially take over as General Partner until Nov, 2016.

      He still had to have approval for technically, not firing RAJ , but not renewing his contract…..and then the hiring of MacPhail in July 2015, and then Klentak’s hiring in October, 2015. Monty was still around as Chiarman, but he was at that point stepping aside.
      The first six years of RAJ’s tenure – 2009 thru 2014 – Monty was the decision maker.

  101. Buddy. Awesome post! That is absolutely correct. I can’t believe he extended MacPhail and Klentax. Apparently he was drinking their Koolaid.

    If they can sweep the Mets and the bullpen straightens out a little they will look better, however, this team has too many problems moving forward. Face it, this re-build has been a failure.
    Right now they have Harper and Realmuto playing extremely well, one is very expensive and the other one will soon be.
    Lot’s of question marks moving forward, again I can only dream of the A’s or Ray’s front office running this organization with this amount of cash to do it!

    1. They could still do some great things this year. It’s a crazy year and anything is possible. But regardless of how well they do, it doesn’t change the reality for future seasons.

      1. This team is not good enough as currently constructed.

      2. There will be more talent going than coming up from the minors. Didi, Jake, Bruce, Alvarez, Cutch, and god forbid maybe JTR.

      3. Existing players likely to get more expensive at a quicker rate than their output will improve – Hoskins, Kingery, VV, Pivetta, Eflin, Quinn.

      4. The ability to add talent through free agency at the top tier is basically gone if they resign JTR.

      Here is how this team has a successful run in the 20s – successfully work the margins of free agency and the trade market, while buying time for much improved drafting and player development starting next year, a major league manager who can pull more out of the team than its individual pieces, and some luck along the way.

      Raise your hand if you think this can happen with MacPhail and Klentak.

  102. I always try to be optimistic and preach patience, however barring some incredible revival (not just squeaking into playoffs and losing somewhat quickly), I am completely in support of telling MacPhail goodbye! And MK too.

    Middleton’s track record of hires is not strong as noted above but he tries and he cares so I’m confident to see his next move. If I were him I’d be bending ears and asking questions of many. Within org that would include guys like Barber and Bonifay.

    1. I believe … was not technically a double header….the one game was the suspended game from DC from last week—something about the field conditions—- and that was completed first….then came the regular game.

          1. rocco…got me gain…had to look up rispote……at first, thought it was an Italian dish…you know….rispote and meatballs….but then realized you misspelled it…it is riposte. 🙂

  103. I have been, and still am, a believer in Rhys Hoskins. He has been terrible. Tonight, with runners on, he went the opposite way and knocked in 3 runs. Had he done that in the first 15 games, we would have 4 more wins, minimum. I hope this turns him around. And, I also support Scott Kingery. He has looked list, and Segura has played 2N the way I expected Kingery to. Nola was great! Let’s sweep the Mets, and go on a roll!

  104. All kidding about RAJ as the new GM aside, he is doing a terrific job as a color analyst.

  105. If .200 is the Mendoza line, what is .100, the____ line? Come on Romus, check the BB Lexicon out.

        1. Romus Since i cant work, i have taken up doing portraits, I like you to pose for me,

  106. Nola and Wheeler have those Carlton in ’72 vibes; the team as a whole may be hard to watch, but it’s always fun to see them pitch.

  107. The traditional end of the minor league season August 31st is approaching yet this year from high level AAA to lower level prospects like Miller/Abel haven’t thrown a competitive inning of baseball. Hopefully next year when baseball returns to some resemblance of normalcy how will the Phillies ramp up their minor league pitchers to 100 innings without injuring their arms? Abel hasn’t thrown since his junior year in high school…A huge factor will be innings and load management for pitchers in 2021..

    1. They could still have a lengthened FIL (CLW) and also a lengthened AFL….starting a bit earlier and ending a few weeks later.
      So minor league players will have more development opportunities.

    2. Thomas … I hear what you’re saying, and it’s a valid point. However, it’s not a Phillies-only situation. Every organization will have to re-ramp their young arms. For me, the younger the pitcher (Mick Abel, Starlyn Castillo, Fernando Ortega, Gunner Mayer, and Dominic Pipkin), the more cautious I would be.
      Thanks for raising the question.

  108. So Roman Quinn is on the IL with symptoms. Garlick has been called up. Let’s hope it’s not you know what for Roman.

  109. Seems like Segura has been revitalized playing 2B. He’s been hitting better and his defense has been spectacular so far.

    1. Along those lines of revitalization……or maybe just an emergence of sorts…..Andrew Knapp seems to be a totally different player this season…at the plate and behind the plate.
      He must have did something differently during the break or even the off-season, but he appears to carry plenty of confidence and is handling the pitchers very well.

      As a back-up he could be a real plus.
      Anyone else notice a change in Knapp or are my eyes deceiving me once again?

      1. I’ve noticed his helmet is falling off his head every time he swings the bat this season. Smaller helmet? Less violent swing?

          1. Skeet … thanks for that reply. I should have said his helmet *isn’t falling off his head. It just seemed to me (maybe because his helmet kept ejecting from his head) that he was putting too much emphasis on swinging hard in 2019. He looks more under control at the plate this season. He looks comfortable behind the plate also.
            Do you know Andrew personally? Or did you read this somewhere?

            1. Nah, I was just kidding, but I like how he looks this year and I’ve always liked his demeanor.

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