Open Discussion: Week of August 31st

“We need to win nine out of ten.”  That Bryce Harper quote and a very short, 15-second comment behind closed doors by manager Joe Girardi may have turned the Phillies’ season around.  They went onto a 5-game wining streak and propelled themselves into the thick of the division and wild card races.

The Phillies swept a two-game series with the Nationals when Thursday’s games was postponed.  They grabbed the first two games of the Braves series before settling for two out of three.  Their rally from a 10-run deficit fell short in a 12-10 loss.


The Phillies are 14-15 .483 and tied for second place with the Marlins.  I think the Marlins 2-1 record in head-to-head gives them the automatic playoff spot.  The Phillies would however qualify for the second wild card and final playoff position.

The Phillies continue with must-win games.  They are at home for four games against the Nationals, followed by a four game series in New York against the Mets.  The Phillies need to compile a lot of wins against division foes.  Six of their last ten games are against the Blue Jays and Rays, teams they don’t fare well against.


With the trade deadline approaching, there was little involving the Phillies.  Deolis Guerra cleared waivers and was assigned to the alternate training site.  Austin Davis did not clear waivers and the Phillies worked out a trade with the Pirates for a PTBNL.  Mickey Moniak recovered from his leg injury and was invited to Allentown.

David Robertson’s Phillies’ career is likely at an end.  The reliever suffered a setback and was shutdown.  The Phillies will probably avoid his $12M salary and buy him out for $2M.


There were a lot of rumors involving the Phillies Sunday.  Some of the deals made me blanch, but then I’m a little over-protective of our young players.  None of the guys the Phillies were interested in came off the board.  So, maybe a deal gets announced today.  Oh, that guy Hinkie likes from Baltimore, the Phillies were interested in him before they made their bullpen upgrades last week.  I think the Orioles wanted to wait until the deadline to get the best deal and the Phillies couldn’t wait.


The PTBNLs may have already been agreed upon.  They may have pushed back the announcement until the end of the season.  Any player traded this season has to be placed on the 60-man player pool.  Delaying the announcement allows flexibility with all those empty slots in Allentown.


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


Key Dates:

  • 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 22nd … 345 players in the org


Transactions (newest transactions are in bold print)

8/29/2020 – Phillies invited non-roster CF Mickey Moniak to spring training
8/26/2020 – Phillies traded LHP Austin Davis to Pirates for PTBNL and cash
8/25/2020 – Phillies invited non-roster RHP Deolis Guerra to spring training
8/25/2020 – Phillies sent Deolis Guerra outright to Alternate Training Site
8/22/2020 – Phillies optioned Cole Irvin to Alternate Training Site
8/22/2020 – Phillies designated RHP Deolis Guerra for assignment
8/22/2020 – Phillies placed RF Jay Bruce on the 10-day IL
8/22/2020 – Phillies activated CF Adam Haseley from the 10-day IL
8/22/2020 – Phillies optioned Connor Brogdon to Alternate Training Site
8/21/2020 – Red Sox traded RHPs Brandon Workman and Heath Hembree, $815K, and a PTBNL to Phillies for RHPs Nick Pivetta and Connor Seabold
8/21/2020 – Phillies recalled LHP JoJo Romero from Alternate Training Site
8/21/2020 – Phillies optioned LHP JoJo Romero to Alternate Training Site
8/21/2020 – Phillies designated LHP Austin Davis for assignment
8/21/2020 – Phillies placed LHP Jose Alvarez on the 10-day IL, testicular contusion
8/21/2020 – Yankees traded RHP David Hale to Phillies for RHP Addison Russ
8/20/2020 – Phillies recalled LHP JoJo Romero from Alternate Training Site
8/20/2020 – Phillies optioned RHP Ramon Rosso to Alternate Training Site
8/20/2020 – Phillies optioned RF Kyle Garlick to Alternate Training Site
8/20/2020 – Phillies activated RHP Reggie McClain from the 10-day IL
8/20/2020 – Phillies recalled LHP Cole Irvin from Alternate Training Site
8/18/2020 – Phillies traded RHP Edgar Garcia to Tampa Bay Rays for PTBNL
8/18/2020 – Phillies activated CF Roman Quinn from the 10-day IL
8/17/2020 – Phillies optioned LHP JoJo Romero to Alternate Training Site

418 thoughts on “Open Discussion: Week of August 31st

  1. If there even is such a thing … last night’s game was a statement loss. The Phillies showed they are serious about the NL East title. A lot of clubs would have packed it in down 10-0 and having won 5 in a row. I give the team a lot of credit for the comeback, and forcing the Braves to use most of the BP. BTW … hats off to Alex Anthopolous for building Atlanta’s pen. They’re as good (maybe even better than) the NYY’s group of relievers.

    1. Hinkie, is it possible for Arietta+prospect for Cobb? They’d decline Arrieta’s option so it saves them $15 million dollars next year and they get a player back as well.

      1. Two problems for the Phillies as today’s trade deadline approaches:

        1. They’re up against the luxury tax threshold so any deal they make would cost them even more (in prospects) because you’d be asking the other club to throw in money to cover the incoming player’s salary.

        2. I just don’t think the Phillies have the prospects to compete for the best/most wanted available arms. Most of the other teams looking to add to their rotation or BP should be able to offer better young players.

        The whole “take back Jake Arrieta” thing would just add to their situation. Also, you can’t overreact to last night’s clunker. As bad as it was (and it was a horrible outing), you’ve got to remember 2 of Jake’s first 5 starts were very good. I mentioned last week I think Arrieta probably still has two more good starts left in him this season. How much of an upgrade is Cobb over Arrieta?
        Cobb’s FIP is 4.72.
        Jake’s FIP was 4.62 before last night.

    2. “statement loss” is the type of mental gymnastics required when your team is not good and your payroll is $200MM. Good grief.

      1. Maybe you’re the type of guy who believes “a loss is a loss is a loss”. I don’t see things that way. For me, a team that battles back from 10 runs, even in a loss, shows some character. They had won five in a row. They could have been satisfied with that, packed it in for the rest of the night, and gone into “we’ll get ’em tomorrow” mode.

  2. One bone to pick with Joe Girardi. You’ve got a young guy who has really been struggling. How can you help him get back on track? On Friday night Scott Kingery did the unexpected: he won the contest with a walk off homer (on an 0-2 pitch to make it even better). Why not put Jetpax right back in the starting lineup the next day to let him try to build off that big knock? Instead, Girardi sat Kingery Saturday afternoon. By Sunday night, he was back to his old self. He looks lost, and lacks confidence. The one AB where he hit the ball about 9 inches, and ran into it while trying to get out of the batter’s box was embarrassing.

    1. Hinkie…agree.
      I think Joe must have had anither reason for sittinghim down on Saturday, though, it has become apparent that Kingery, along with Hoskins, could be what they describe as streaky hitters…..and it is best to ride that wave with those type hitters as long as possible.

      Also see Trader Jerry and AL Preller did a biggie yesterday…Aaron Nola’s brother going down to the Padres
      https://www.lookoutlanding.com/2020/8/30/21408013/mariners-trade-austin-nola-to-the-padres

      …..and Preller trading their number one CF prospect Trammell in the deal…..wondering now if a Phillie’s player like Miickey Moniak is in Padres’ Preller’s cross-hairs to come in and be their future CFer. Trent Grisham is doing a very good job now in CF, but if they move Myers’ before 2021 Grisham could slide over to a corner. And Profar’s bat is nit what they want right now either in LF.

  3. It’s safe to say Robertson + Arrieta are not coming back next year. Of that $32 million at least 2/3rds can go to JT.

  4. Hinkie, I agree. This was the offense begging Klentak for more arms. They did not quit down 10-0, and showed they want to win. They actually had me believing that they could pull it off. A solution to the 2 problems you mentioned is Middleton giving Klentak permission to exceed the cap.

    1. Matt … very, very unlikely Middleton would exceed the cap with a month left in the season. If/when he does, it will likely be a situation where the team is over the threshold for the entire year.

      1. I’m not sure, Hinkie. If Klentak posed a trade to Middleton that would take them over the threshold, he might okay it. However, it’s more likely that the Phillies go over the line if they deal for non-rental, for whom I doubt they would trade a 1st round pick in say, Moniak. Roman Quinn, on the other hand, has immediate major league value. He’s more or less ran his course here in Philadelphia but plenty of other teams would value his skill set as a role player in exchange for a rental, minus some salary.

          1. But would he go over the cap if he expects to be under it next year w potentially didi, arietta, Robertson and others coming off the books?

            1. No. Middleton is not going over the cap with 31 games left in the season. Even though they would be past the threshold for just one month, it would still count as one full year, and put them in the first phase of the penalty box. It’s just not worth it, especially with a team that has very little (if any) chance of winning the WS. They didn’t go over the cap last week when they made the deal with Boston. Instead, they had the Red Sox throw in money to cover the salaries of Workman and Hembree. That tells you everything you need to know.

        1. Trade Roman? That’s crazy talk. What he’s showing is what many of us always suspected. A healthy Quinn is a difference maker. Granted, the odds of him staying healthy aren’t great but I think you just ride it out.
          I do think another pitcher is coming today while I don’t think it will be Lynn because of the cost. I could see Musgrove (Musgrave?) of the Pirates coming here for a B rated pitching prospect.

        2. Why would you want to trade Quinn? He’s making peanuts and won’t be a FA until 2025. You ride him out and then let him walk when it’s time. That’s it.

  5. Josh Hader:
    According to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, the Brewers are listening on closer Josh Hader. ……but, one exec. said Hader would only be available at a “bananas price.” The 26-year-old Hader remains at the top of his game, striking out 14 and not allowing a hit in 10 innings so far in 2020. But also walking 10.
    He has three more years of arbitration, and expected salary will rise into the teens of millions over the next 2/3 years…… Milwaukee will entertain I am sure offers from many teams, including the Dodgers.
    Not sure what the Phillies can offer.
    Vinny to start….then tack on 2 or 3 more pieces.

  6. I really enjoy the Phillies this year, but only on offense. When I watch them on MLBTV.com I watch it taped and then jump to inning when they hit, I don’t watch them pitch.

  7. Padres continue to go for it, getting Mike Clevinger. Hinkie, your guy Cal Quantrill is one of the players going to Cleveland. I hear what you are saying about the LT, but don’t understand the fear of it. What is so onerous about the first level, and why can’t we get back under it next year, even if JTR gets $25M? Some lost International money, I know, but we are hardly great at the International signings. I am not looking at us as WS contenders, but not making the Playoffs this year would be a huge failure. How does Middleton explain that? And, another arm can make the difference between the Playoffs and not

    1. I’m a big Cal Quantrill believer. I wanted to pick him at 1-1 (at a discount) in 2016. That said, Cleveland did not get enough for Clevinger. I wonder what the Braves were offering. I’m assuming Cleveland insisted on Pache, and Atlanta said “no”.
      Anyway … better that Clevinger goes to San Diego instead of Atlanta.

  8. Hinkie, I agree Quinn has not run his course here. And Id say he was proving he belonged in 2016 before one of his injuries. Even 2018 he flashed same skill and promise at mlb level. This year (so far) he is once again flashing what he can do if he can stay healthy. I’d love to see him blossom here given his upside and spark!

  9. Please don’t trade MM, especially for a rental.

    I continue to be optimistic about Mickey. It was always said he needed time to grow/develop into his full potential. He’s shown signs of that over the years, just not as quickly or as flashy as we’d hoped. Maybe he never gets there but I’d rather take that risk and wait on him than give him away.

  10. Since last week, the topic of the Phillies’ future payroll (how to afford JTR … and what else the team can afford) has come up. Over the weekend, I attempted to work out the numbers. Here’s what the 2021 team may look like (with cap #’s * I estimated arbitration results):

    Aaron Nola (SP1) ……………. 11.250.000
    Zack Wheeler (SP2) ………… 23,600,000
    Spencer Howard (SP3) ………… 565,000
    Zach Eflin (SP4) ……………….. 4,600,000
    Vince Velasquez (SP5) ………. 5,000,000

    Héctor Neris (BP) ………………. 7,000,000
    Heath Hembree (BP) …………. 3.000.000
    Adam Morgan (BP) ……………. 3.000.000
    Victor Arano (BP) …………………. 800,000
    JoJo Romero (BP) ……………….. 565,000
    Ranger Saurez (BP) …………….. 565,000

    JT Realmuto (C) ………………. 24,000,000
    Rhys Hoskins (1B) …………….. 4,000,000
    Scott Kingery (2B) ……………… 4,000,000
    Jean Segura (SS) …………….. 14,000,000
    Alec Bohm (3B) ……………………. 565,000
    Andrew McCutchen (LF) …… 16,667,000
    Roman Quinn (CF) ……………….. 575,000
    Bryce Harper (RF) ……………. 25,385,000

    Adam Haseley (bench) ………….. 575,000
    Andrew Knapp (bench) ……….. 1,000,000
    Phil Gosselin (bench) ………….. 1,500,000

    Ser Ant’ny (gets paid despite missing 2021) … 800,000
    Odubel Herrera (gotta pay him) .. 6,100,000
    Robertson buyout ………………… 2,000,000
    Player benefits ……………………. 15,500,000
    MiLB players on 40 man ………… 2,250,000

    Total ………………………………… 178,862,000

    That’s 22 players, and would leave the Phillies $31,138,000 under the 210 million dollar luxury tax threshold with still three guys (a bat and two arms) to add to the roster.
    Here are a few thoughts/ideas:

    * I’ve given JT Realmuto a 5 year/120 million dollar contract, and added him to the payroll (as you can see).

    * Vince Velasquez’s spot on next year’s squad could be in peril. Klentak could shave 5 million dollars from the payroll by either trading or non-tendering him. His (#5) spot in the rotation could be taken by Ranger Saurez, JoJo Romero (although he looks very good out of the pen), Damon Jones, Adonis Medina, or a LH FA arm.

    * The lineup would have a pretty big hole in it w/o Didi. Middleton/Klentak are going to have earmark some of their 30+ million in payroll space to re-signing him. Gregorius’ LH bat in the middle of the order is worth the 14 million AAV the Phils are currently paying the SS.

    * The class of FA pitchers ready to hit the open market this winter have (for the most part) disappointed this season. Add that to a probable depressed market because of the abridged COVID season, and the Phillies might be able to wait out a pitcher wanting a long term/big money deal, and get him on a reasonable shorter term contract. Take a peek at this list:

    – Cole Hamels has been hurt all season.
    – Robbie Ray is averaging a BB per IP, and leads MLB in ER’s.
    – Mike Minor has a negative WAR.
    – James Paxton has an even larger negative WAR.
    – JA Happ has a 6.14 FIP
    – Jon Lester has a 5.29 FIP
    – Sean Doolittle has been hurt most of this season.
    – Ken Giles has only thrown 1.2 innings because of arm woes.

    * I would have a lot of interest in two former Phillie pitchers: Drew Smyly and Trevor May. Smyly should have never been allowed to leave after last season. He would add depth to the rotation. May is the power arm this team lacks coming out of their BP.

    * Jose Alvarado has been my white whale. He’s slumped a bit the past two years, and is headed into his arbitration seasons. Would the Rays consider trading him?

    * Last, but not least (maybe even most importantly) … If John Middleton was ever going to ignore the luxury tax threshold, next year is the time to do it. Teams don’t lose draft picks for signing QO FA’s this winter. And 2021 is the last year of the CBA. The new agreement may not even include a salary cap. If it does, the threshold will almost certainly see a significant increase, and would make it easy for the Phillies to reset.

    So … if you add Didi at 14 million, Smyly at 5 million, and May at 7 million, the Phillies payroll would sit at $204,862,000 (more than 5 million under the cap). If they replace VV with a young arm (maybe Medina), the club’s payroll would total ~200 million. That’s 10 million under the 2021 luxury tax threshold, and would leave them room to make deadline trades next summer.

  11. I am always baffled by these trade proposals that are we will trade you a bunch of pieces with little or no value for something of value.

    Look at it from the Brewers perspective. Is there anything the Phillies have short of a deal starting with at least one of Howard or Bohm for which you would trade that much control of Hader. If I was the Brewers GM my answer would be a resounding “No.”

      1. Klentak would have to offer Howard and Stott to even get his foot in the door. Even then, the Dodgers (if they wanted Hader) could beat the Phillies by including Dustin May or Gavin Lux (a Wisconsin native).

    1. This is where scouting and player development comes into play especially the drafting the best player available regardless of the fit. High upside prospects despite of high risk of uncertainty can be game changers or used to fetch legit MLB talent in return.

      We as fans are at least benefited by having owners with deep pockets to sign big FAs.

      Other than scouting and player development success, finding solid supporting cast is another. Another area that the FO failed for a while now.

      With trade deadline upon us, I don’t see Klentak making a significant move. Maybe a minor piece here and there but nothing that will involve key prospects.

  12. I’m not sure if the Padres will win the WS in the next 5-6 years but that FO at least has an idea of what they are doing. SD made mistakes in the past but it looks like they learned something from it.

    Middleton will need to keep the core of Harper-JTR-Nola-Wheeler + Howard/Bohm together (and happy) at all cost. The Phillies will rely on its key players playing to their potential since no help will be coming from the FO side.

      1. @Romus – Hahaha!! As of now, I view both Hoskins and Kingery as complimentary players. I admit that I thought Hoskins and Kingery are better than what they are right now.

        It’s sad that Seranthony will be out for a while because I really want to see a home grown power arm from the pen that can help the team now. Morales is my best bet but he is not ready until 2022.

        1. KuKo…..as to pen arms….do not give up on Dohy, Warren, Mayer, Schultz and Schulze…all college arms with good velo and stuff.

  13. Bruce should be activated soon. Who goes down? Kingery? Haseley? Release Walker? I think it should be Kingery. We’ll see soon.
    Ranger should be up any day. I guess JoJo will go down but he’s looked very good.

    1. Alvarez is a FA. The club has lots of young/cheaper LHRP’s to turn to. JoJo, Ranger, Clevinger, Dohy, Jones, Sanchez, and Warren should all be on the 40-man next season.

  14. Girardi is handling R.Quinn perfectly. He plays him a couple of days and then gives him a game off. Hopefully, this method will help to keep Quinn healthy and on the field.

    1. They may need to start playing Quinn more at least for now as he’s red hot, going 6 for his last 13. Showed some power on the HR.

    1. The guy I keep thinking about is Sean Doolittle. I don’t think he’d cost too much because he’s been hurt most of this season, and he’s on the last month of his contract. Doolittle’s velo is down. Was only hitting 91 last night (his first game off the IL). The Phillies and Nats have done business at the deadline in the past. W/O Howie Kendrick, Washington probably doesn’t win the WS last year. If the cost is reasonable, I could see Klentak taking a flyer on Doolittle (if the Nats are ready to act as sellers this afternoon).

    1. You think they would sell JoJo? I guess it’s possible, but I’d hold on to him. He looks like a keeper. LHP throwing 94-95 T96, a swing and miss CH, and 6 years of team control. That’s a pretty valuable piece for an already top heavy team.

      1. I hope they do not.
        I think other GMs see the same thing we see in him…but I also would hold onto him

        Hard to believe two years he was ready to become released and left unprotected, demoted t Reading from LHV.

    1. I assume someone not on the 60.
      Have to believe one will be a starting pitcher for sure….one a reliever, my guess one of the five I mentioned above…Dohy, Warren, Mayer, Schultz or Schulze and a position guy.

  15. I have a bad feeling about who the PTBNL might be. We have quite a few talented pitchers not on the 60 (Morales and Miller to name 2).

      1. Supply and demand, I get it. If I was the Brewers that’s who I’d ask for from our system and from who is not on the 60. I guess Luis Garcia could be involved too. Not all three of them but one or two of these three to highlight the deal is what I would gave asked for. Phelps will definitely help this year. Tough call. A GM told “playoffs or see you” will certainly make the deal.

    1. I’m sure Morales isn’t a part of this trade, and I’d be mildly surprised if Miller went in this deal as well. I’m more thinking of guys like Gowdy, Brett Schulze, Andrew Schultz, Victor Santos, Hsin-Chieh Lin, Kyle Glogoski, Nicoly Pina, Fernando Ortega, Jhailyn Ortiz, Rodolfo Duran, Carlos De La Cruz, Alexeis Azuaje, Marcus Lee Sang.

  16. David Phelps has been lights out in 2020 and there’s a $4.5M club option for 2021 that will likely be exercised. Something decent has to be going back to the Brewers.

  17. I’d prefer it not be Miller or Schultz, but three lower level prospects is perfectly fine for a guy who should really help a bad but improving bullpen. This team can hit and the bullpen is horrible so a decent guy is, in context, a huge upgrade. I am ready, after a decade wandering in the wilderness, to watch some real, competitive September baseball. Have at it!

    1. Wow those are some impressive moments by Phelps. Love the movement on his offspeed pitches. And he looks like he’s not overwhelmed by pressure.

  18. If Phelps can stay healthy at his age, I like the deal. Let’s hope he’s not another David Robertson. I would say perhaps one of the Phillies top 10 prospects is in the return, but unlikely we’ll find out until after the season.

  19. In a nutshell, Phelps has been a reliable to good (depending on the season) reliever over the course of his career. The thing is … he is currently on a roll. His 2020 season has been off the charts to this point. Let’s hope his magical season continues as a Phillie.

        1. Rocco would know this for sure, but wasn’t Mr. Phelps the guy on Mission Impossible. If so, he came to the right place.

    1. Can you remember the great Scott Eyre acquired in 2008 ? He was completely lights out for the Phils in 2008 and 2009 ! They would not have won in 2008 if they hadn’t acquired him and he was a major cog in 2009. You can look it up !!! He was 35/36 age junk baller lefty – he was simply outrageously good ! Let’s hope lighting strikes again with Phelps.

      1. RU, JC Romero was a key piece to that run as well. We got him off the DFA’d list from Boston. We have had some luck before. The problem coming into this season was counting on a whole bunch of them.

  20. Did anyone expect this much activity at the deadline? Mets, Marlins, Cubs, Reds, Blue Jays, Rox and Padres all going for broke.

  21. I’d like to see Robertson come back next on a team friendly contract ( say a million) with lots of incentives. A guy like Robertson might do something like that to prove that he was worthy of such a big contract by the Phillies. He might feel like he owes it to them.

    1. He has to prove to all teams that he’s healthy. There’s no way that a team is going to give him a guaranteed contract (and a 40 man spot) if he’s not healthy.

      1. I am sure he will get an invite on a minor league contract from someone, come spring to prove that he can still pitch..

    2. If the Phillies want him back, I’m sure he’d give them right of first refusal. This is the same guy that pledged to donate a part of his salary to the team charity as part of his contract. He’s a good guy, by all accounts.

  22. So what are the LT implications of the Phelps trade/ did we get money back and give up that 3rd prospect? Or, are we over the tax?

  23. LHP Erik Miller is not part of the trade with the Brewer for Phelps. In the last five days the Red Sox’s and Now the Brewers have asked on Miller per my sources and both times it was a no. Ok, get the Ferrari off the sidelines and use him or deal him.

    1. There are still guys like Glo, Kyle Young, Lindow, Morales, Vic Santos, McArthur, Gessner …along with both Schul…tz and ze…and Mayer…..10 arms….and then the other guys from Lakewood…Dom Pipkin, Ben Brown, and eben Kevin Gowdy.

  24. The Clevimger deal highlights how important it is to hit on top first round picks. The headliners are Naylor who was selected 2 picks after Randolph. And Quantrill, who was taken 7 picks after Mickey. Those two plus a catcher with a career OPS+ of 62 got a genuine ace in his prime.

    You want to know why our rebuild is taking so long…there it is right there.

    1. This should be mandatory reading for all Philly sports radio members so they understand the real reason why the Phils are in the situation they are.

  25. Someone mentioned earlier Kingery and Hoskins streaky hitters. 95 percent of mlb hitters are streaky. Difference between Hoskins and Kingery is Hoskins has fast enough hands to hit any fastball. Weird to say mlb player needs to trust his hands but that is case for Hoskins. Kingery great person but until I see him hit a fastball 94 mph or higher upper quadrant of strike zone that is what he will see. Doesn’t matter how many days in a row he plays

    1. Imo the difference between Rhys and Kingery is that Rhys is extremely patient and works deep counts. Kingery swings at pitches outside the zone. Also Rhys has plus power. Also Kingery is better defensively.

  26. Spencer Howard on the bump tonight. So far, Spencer hasn’t shown a snarl. He seems like a really nice kid who doesn’t want to make any waves. Being polite isn’t usually the characteristic most dominant pitchers show on the mound (outside of Aaron Nola). IMO, Howard needs to be more nasty. JTR needs to force him to throw inside. Don’t be afraid to brush batters back, and keep them from hanging out over the plate. He also needs to better command his FB. I’m expecting his best start of his young career so far tonight. Maybe 6 IP, 2 ER, 8 K.

      1. But also remember that was well into Hamels’ career (and it was also BECAUSE Bryce was a showboating rookie). Most often, rookies are just trying to get acclimated. Once he feels more comfortable, then his personality will start to shine through.

  27. For a team that’s had it’s struggles with drafting and development, it’s fun to see Howard, Bohm, Hoksins, Quinn and a fired up JoJo out there.

  28. Jo Jo going down after the game? He’s looked so good. It’s out of the box but I’d send Velasquez down to keep him stretched out to start in the double headers as the extra player.

    1. Murray … where did you hear that JoJo is being sent down? That would be a brutal move. Klentak needs to just own the bonehead deal he made with the Yankees, and DFA David Hale.

      1. Actually wouldn’t even have to DFA Hale. Just send him down. I didn;t realize Phelps has already been added to the 40 man.

  29. Wow, the Phillies need to start thinking about walking Juan Soto. He is so locked in, you really can’t throw him any mistakes or he’ll just hit them out.

    1. It’s great news with Spencer Howard’s first win – terrific for him and the Howard family. Hopefully, as he continues to develop as a pitcher and build his strength, he will be able to control/sustain his velocity deeper into games.

      I also want to comment on Alec Bohm. He’s been a little under the radar, but he has some fantastic hitting skills. He’s one of the only young hitters with power that I’ve seen in years, who hits the ball where it’s pitched. He doesn’t look like a rookie, he looks like a veteran as his approach is advanced and his swing, for a big man, is simple and compact. When he gets more comfortable learning when to turn on a ball, I think we are going to see a superb all-around hitter. I mean, he’s pretty darn good right now.

      1. Bohm has been excellent with the bat. He drives the ball the other way more than some veterans. Once he adds some more bulk, those opposite field flyouts will turn into HRs.

  30. Hoskins’ .946 OPS on the season is #24 in mlb!
    And in last 20 games it’s 1.102!

    Patience is paying off and I believe it will also with Kingery (tho it may take till next year as Covid and slow start have him off kilter).

    1. I am very happy to see Rhys’s rebound. Good for him! We need a hitter like him so badly. I have been a long time fan, but honestly had lost faith. Very happy to see this production. Especially coinciding with him going back to his old swing. He is locked in.

      1. I suspected Rhys would rebound in a big way (and said as much here), but the thing about Hoskins is that, if he hits 25-35 homers a year and bats .255-.270, so long as he can be average-ish in the field, his crazy on base percentage makes him a very valuable player, at 3-5 WAR hitter. Getting on base at a plus .400 pace is an extremely valuable skill, and one that Rhys has.

        1. I give credit where credit is due and Rhys has been smoking hot. A 3-5 oWAR is a lot and Rhys has a long way to go. That’s Freddie Freeman hitting level.

    1. Romero will not be starting this season..he is strictly a reliever, unless Joe G does a Cash and uses him as an opener next week vs the Marlins in one or both of the doubleheaders.

    1. I posted yesterday (above) Trevor May is exactly what the Phillies BP lacks/has lacked since Ser-Ant’ny’s injury. I would target him in free agency this winter.

      1. If Trevor May (31 this month) is throwing 99, there’s going to be a bidding war for his services. I would not be shocked if he gets 3 years, $30M.

  31. Amazing how Rhys and Pat the Bat have a similar career trajectory so far, also with similar approaches at the plate, along with the other comps like ..size, foot speed, glove and both from the Bay area

      1. Skeet…with Ranger removed from the COVID list officially yesterday, and now up in LHV and coming down to Philly any day now, JoJo may get sent to LHV later today or tomorrow I would think. Jo Jo does look good, but assume Joe G wants to see how Ranger does again.

  32. I like Neris as a RP but not as a closer. I’m glad to see that Neris is back as a middle RP — without the pressure the close out games, Neris can be a good bridge from SP to Closer. Workman is also another middle RP arm but he’s the closest that the Phillies has a a closer right now so get ready for a wild 1-2 run games. The bullpen collectively is a group of middle RP arms with no alpha (Closer).

    Not saying with hindsight but I always thought that a Vinny-Pivetta high leverage arm is going to be good but this had sailed already since the Phillies wasted years hoping that these duo will develop as SP — now both are in the brink of being MLB journeymen.

    And yes, that David Hale trade is pure garbage. An overreaction for Klentak to show that he is doing something. Klentak’s ego is bigger that his brain so he will stick to that David Hale guy.

  33. While Workman and Hembree performing less than advertised and Hale chalked up as a non-factor, let’s hope Phelps can assume the closer role with Jojo, Neris, Ranger, Morgan and Vinny as reasonably effective as 6th-8th inning arms.

    1. You’re the one who not only took the time to read the post. You then took even more time to comment on my post. Why don’t you remind us all what exactly you have contributed to the Open Discussion thread (this one or any other one)?

      Maybe you just have other problems, and you need to use PP to vent. Here’s a suggestion: find a friend in your real life. They may help you get this stuff off your chest.

            1. Too far? I was afraid I hadn’t taken it far enough.
              Don’t you two dine out together three nights a week at Popi’s?

            2. I can picture the matinee marquee right now – Jack Lemmon as Romus and Walter Matthau as Rocco in The Odd Couple…..Phmeh! Phmeh!

            3. Hah,
              ….nah…. though understand .rocco’s cousin works there and he gets preferential treatment whenever he goes..

    2. FantasyGM is not only exclusive to Hinkie, some of us play the role from time to time but nobody beats Hinkie at that game. In fact, Hinkie’s posts are like free insider info particularly the prospect watch. I know Hinkie’s post can be long to read at times but it is very informational and not venting or hating.

      At the end of the day, I think your post is just sarcasm. Everybody loves Hinkie here although I still don’t understand why he loves Matt Boyd! LoL!! Urgh!

      1. HaHa! Matthew Boyd. KuKo … TBH I haven’t seen pitch at all this season. I just looked up his numbers. Boyd’s velo is relatively unchanged. His K and BB #s are still very good. He’s given up way too many hits though. Like I said, I haven’t seen him throw at all, but I’m going to guess his command hasn’t been good. I’d still take 29 YO Boyd (with 3 more years of team control) via a reasonable trade over most/all of the other LHP’s available in free agency this winter.

        And I always look forward to your prospect rankings. You’re the one to first turn me on to Logan O’Hoppe.

        1. My biggest turn off with Boyd is the fly ball especially pitching in CBP! We are mostly aligned in a lot of divisive discussions here in PP. I missed a lot of your draft discussion points since I was in hiatus during that time.

  34. I’m not sure what people were expecting when the Phillies traded for Workman and Hembree. Are they better than some of the relievers we had earlier in the season? Yes. Are they elite? No, and the numbers bear it out. Hembree hasn’t had a WAR larger than 0.5 in any season. He’s almost like a RH Adam Morgan. Brandon Workman was slightly better than Hembree but then he had a crazy 2019 season with 3.2 WAR. For a reliever, that’s insane. It’s so big that it has to be an outlier. So odds are, he’ll come back to earth for 2020 and he has.

  35. You are welcome to your opinion, Brock, but I enjoy Hinkie’s posts, and find that he is right much more often than he is wrong. When our team, a big market team, has stunk for 9 years, how can we help but play armchair GM?

    1. Thanks, Matt. It’s not hard to miss my posts. My avatar is hard not to notice. The guy chooses not to skip my posts. He just has some social issues he needs to iron out in his life.

  36. I agree with KuKo about your posts on prospects, Hinkie, I really look forward to them. And, also that Matthew Boyd seems to have hit a rough patch!

  37. Did anyone else take notice to the velocity drop from Howard after the 1st couple innings ? John Kruk made a reference to that and he also mentioned how he kept shaking his shoulder. Also he did not have a strikeout after the 2nd inning. We have not seen this electric fastball that we heard so much about, I’m wondering if he is battling something.

    1. Yes, his velocity dropped from 94-96 the first 2 innings to 91-92 by the last 2 innings. It is a concern considering his counterpart, Erick Fedde, was still hitting 93 at the end. If Howard is hurt, he needs to tell the staff.

        1. I was/am very excited about Howard as he seems like only hope for TOR pitcher anytime soon…..but…I have not been impressed at all. He was not good in his last (best) start imo….he labors out there and throws ALOT of non competitive pitches…Sixto passes eye test. Howard seems average and a dime a dozen honestly. Its painful watching him pitch…Bohm is nice tho

  38. So the DBacks traded a lot of their pieces so was checking to see what they had left. I forgot that Madison Bumgarner signed a 5 year, $85M deal this past offseason at age 30. Numbers wise, it doesn’t seem like a bad deal until you realize that Bumgarner has a boat load of innings under his belt and he was already declining his last 2 years in SF. Now he was going from a pitcher park to a hitter’s park. Reports say that his fastball is down to 86-89! You know where I’m going with this. He’s currently injured, has -0.6 WAR for the season, with 4 more years left on the deal. The DBacks might get no value from this contract at all.

  39. It’s interesting to note that Josh Bell of the Pirates is pretty much their version of Rhys Hoskins. Bell’s defense is awful and he has to hit enough to justify his value.

    Also, Gregory Polanco signed a team friendly early in his career and needless to say, it hasn’t worked out for the Pirates. He’s already negative WAR this season and last season. Why am I mentioning this? Well, Kingery signed a team friendly deal and the jury is out on him…

  40. “You know where I’m going with this.”…..in the words of rocco, I give up….where?

    That the Philies offer Gamboa for MadBum this off-season?
    or…….beware and wary of LTCs to aging vets……JTR?

    1. Can’t be sentimental when giving out contracts, and you need to see the declining signs when they’re there. MadBum was a rock star in SF and they let him walk.

      JT has been great for the Phillies, but we can’t go overboard here. It looks he’s negative dWar already this season. It’s a small sample size, but something to take into consideration because his defense greatly enhances his value. The Phillies shouldn’t give him a 6 year deal. I would be wary of a 5 year deal but I know that 5 years would likely have to be the case to get something signed. I would go 4 years with an easy vesting option for the 5th or a high buyout (say $10M) for the 5th year.

      1. I think you’re on the mark. JTR will probably get a 5 year deal (120 million), or at the very least 4 years and a significant buyout.

  41. Does Vinny still has options left? I rather see him get Vinny optioned (and not Jojo) if Phelps needs a spot. The Phillies should let Jojo pitch while he’s locked in and he is LHP to boot!

    I think think the Phillies will continue to try Ranger as SP unless one of the starters is hurt, Ranger will be at the alternate site.

    And sorry if it not updated on status of the prospects – where in the world is Medina and Llovera? Before trading for those average-ish RPs, why those Medina and Llovera not given the chance to pitch?

    1. JoJo will get more action in LHV….every ther day if need be.
      Joe G may not go back to him often enough to keep him hot, once Phelps comes in and joins Workman, Hembree, Hale, Morgan, Neris, Parker etc etc etc.

      1. I think I’d rather have JoJo than 2 of the 6 that you have mentioned. In the short time he has appeared, his stuff has looked really good and he has a little swagger which I like in a RP opposed to being shell shocked like some of our incumbents.

          1. Remember when he taped his eye to give him that ogre effect. He would stomp to the back of the mound and then pound the ball into his glove with his back to the batter. “Bats in the Belfry for sure!

    2. Presumably Rosso and Brogdon were ahead (and better) than those 2 you mentioned and they got rocked in their time in the bigs. There’s no reason to believe that Medina and Llovera would be any better and the Phillies are trying to win games.

    3. Medina and Llovera cannot do worse than what we saw from Austin Davis, Trevor Kelley, Deolis Guerra, Reggie McClain — all of them no longer in the active roster.

      I also don’t understand why Rosso and Brogdon are ahead of Medina and Llovera?? The young RPs that I can see ahead of Medina and Llovera are DLS and Jojo. Does Cleavinger s_ck$ too? If so, then he needs to be DFAd.

      1. DLS passed through waivers without being claimed so that tells you what other teams think about him. At this point, DLS is minor league depth.

      2. I remember when we had Stukes, De freites, Roaenberg, Diekman, Schwimmer, and others as the young guns. Turned out to be pop guns.

        1. Not sure what you mean. Diekman has had a solid career and De Fratus was good until we ran him into the ground with overuse. You’re also conveniently leaving out names like Bastardo and Giles.

          Not every prospect is gonna hit, but 3 back-end pieces (Bastardo, Giles, Jake) and a solid middle reliever (JDF) all within a couple years of each other (in age, Bastardo debuted way before the others) is pretty good.

  42. I haven’t seen anywhere that JoJo was optioned? He looked really good, and I think that would be a mistake. Where did anyone see that?

    1. I cannot imagine they would option JoJo. They can barely get outs from the veteran relief pitchers they acquired, so they sure as heck wouldn’t turn back one of their own who gets outs, is all business on the mound and throws hard. Why would you demote him? It makes no sense (even if you think his future is as a starter).

      1. The only reason why JoJo would get sent down is because he’s the only guy left in the bullpen with options. He’s been effective.

        1. Yeah, okay, but they are in a 30 game playoff sprint. I’d have to think that the priority is putting the best guys on the field and, so far, he clearly appears to be one of the best guys. The other part is, who would have to be sent down that you would be scared to lose? I actually don’t know the answer to this question.

          1. Klentak loves to play the bullpen carousel and to date, he hasn’t hit on anybody. My issue with Klentak is that he stayed too long with journeyman RPs that not only costs the team some games but not it starts to impact the development of the young arms.

            None of Kelley, Guerra, McClain, etc deserved to be in a roster of a team trying to compete (like the Phillies). Top young arms like Jojo, Medina, Jones and others should get the chance early and possibly proven that the Phillies doesn’t need to trade for those average RP arms that Klentak acquired.

            1. Medina…..is he still in the area…..LHV?
              He may be in CLW or the DR.
              Did he even pitch in march’s spring training?
              I cannot recall seeing him one time.

            2. Rosso made the opening day roster and he looked shell shocked in his limited time, and Brogdon was brought up before the trades and he got rocked. JoJo was pretty much the last guy added to the bullpen lately and he impressed with his mop up duty. To compare, the Atlanta Braves bullpen is excellent, but it’s a much older bullpen. The youngest guy the Braves have in the bullpen is 26 year old Minter. So having a young bullpen pitcher that is effective is not the norm. So what JoJo has done in his limited time is really against the odds.

    1. Romus is my hero, his name stands for a son of either Aeneas or Ascanius: sometimes believed to be the founder of Rome. WOW

          1. Really, another example why this should only be a sports site. Mi Madre, Puerto Rican, would have a lot to say if she could get on this site from heaven. Let’s leave it all alone except the game please. Second generation Italian/Puerto Rican, I am darker than half the team on that field, grew up as poor and had many obstacles to climb.

            Let’s go Phillies, we all agree on this,thanks guys.

      1. rocco…again, you are mixing me up with my first cousin , Remus.
        Sheeesh….if only the Colosseum was still open with the lions!

    1. Great…how did he look?

      Begs the question…..wonder why the Phillies are not letting him have a shot?
      Turns 24 in a few months, and until he even gets into a MLB game…he currently has no trade/chip value.
      Since his time in the minors last season, he regressed back a tick or two.

  43. MLB put out their 2021 Draft Notice:

    “The 2021 MLB Draft will take place in Atlanta from July 11 to 13.
    Next year’s event will be at least 20 rounds – and up to as many as 30 – based on an agreement between the league and the Major League Baseball Players Association,
    The draft will reportedly be tied to the All-Star Game festivities in Atlanta next year. The Home Run Derby is scheduled to take place on July 12 and the Midsummer Classic will be played on the 13.
    There isn’t expected to be changes to how the draft order is determined, However, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred has the power to change the order amid a shortened campaign, an any decision is not expected anytime soon”.

  44. I loved the movie Moneyball. The new way of defining value impacted the game of baseball ever since. However, like every other trend and cutting edge approach, its curve flattens after awhile when almost every other club applies much of the same. I fear Matt Klentak still watches Moneyball in his closet whenever he can, still thinking he can add a journeyman here, a has been there, mixed in with a few never wases. And in a market the size of Philadelphia, it hasn’t taken flight. Maybe Billy Beane will hire him once he’s fired by John Middleton, and show him how to get the most out of a so-so roster.

    I do like the Phelps trade a lot, but as long as Klentak can’t judge talent or until he hires someone who can, this organization is screwed. One good transaction doesn’t erase the ten “meh” ones he’s made before it. Or the ones he should have but didn’t.

  45. It was reported at the time (not sure if true) that the Marlins wanted Howard instead of Sixto and we wouldn’t do it. If that is true, then we made a very big mistake. Don’t get me wrong, I like Spencer and think that he will be a good major league starting pitcher. But Sixto’s stuff is materially better. If Sixto stays healthy, he is a perennial CY candidate with that stuff. Pure electric

    1. @v1 – if I remember it correctly, JimP shared with us some “concerns” by the Phillies about Sixto (one of them is injury risk and another is conditioning or some kind of physical discipline) and the evaluation that Sixto will be bullpen bound long term.

      For me, it will really hurt if the Phillies will not sign JTR long term because JTR will basically justify the Sixto price tag.

      Choosing between Sixto and Howard — I think might be a wash if both develops close to their ceiling and right now I can’t complain yet that the Phillies kept Howard over Sixto.

      1. As for conditioning….Sixto was up to 230 lbs a few months ago……and all of 5’11” stretched….he may have loss some lbs since.

  46. Not certain why Garrett Cleavinger (26) with one out pitch but control issues and Llovera (24) 2019 IL Rule 5 have disappeared in Taxie, Allentown? Along with Damon Jones who has some brief good numbers but control issues why not give them, Medina some reps! Klentak going with older vet arms hoping for? Instead building system arms that need Showcase, maybe hit gold, Bohm, Howard ex
    Sixto ship sailed, look at his injury, attitude.
    What if? Will follow him

  47. v1, there was a narrative that Sixto’s body is going to make him a Reliever down the road. Whether that is true or not, there was talk. I am high on Spencer, and I was on Sixto. Either way, JTR has to be signed Long Term or there was a massive mistake made. And, go back before the JTR trade. There were rumors that we wanted Yelich, but refused to part with Sixto. That was the year prior. What changed in a year? And, I am not offering a complaint. If we sign JTR, then I am very happy with Bryce and him going forward.

    1. The narrative that Sixto has physique/health concerns was put forth by Keith Law who stated that he was skeptical of Sixto’s stature AND discipline – stamina enough that he would be an effective reliever but not a starter. He did not disparage his raw talent. However, when the JTR trade was made there was clearly an innuendo that the Phillies were not pleased with Sixto’s dedication to recovering from an injury nor his sense of purpose. Sort of sounds like he was eating bon bons in the bullpen with rocco or something while rehabbing ?? If he develops into a Fernandez then he does – but his immaturity and demeanor led the team to “sell high” on him at the time.

      1. “If he develops into a Fernandez then he does – but his immaturity and demeanor led the team to “sell high” on him at the time.” <<< no, no, no! Any armchair GM can over react and flip an elite prospect. A good GM sees talent and understands how to develop professionals and doesn’t make those mistakes. This is literally Klentak’s job. To judge talent and develop professionals.

  48. I’m just catching up with the trade deadline transactions and this caught my eye — Mike Minor for 2 low level prospects!! TEX (like DET for Matt Boyd) must be kicking themselves by not selling high on Mike Minor.

    I bash Klentak for his lack of eye in acquiring MLB talent but staying put and resist dismantling the farm to acquire Minor and/or Boyd must been a self relief for him.

    1. KuKo….you may be able to put Robbie Ray in that grouping also…..this season he cannot find the strike zone so far….Jays are going to take the chance however since his stuff is electric if he can keep it in a 18 inch horizontal zone and between the ankles and the neck..

  49. Well another prized BP old guy goes down. Bring on eager young arms and SP who goes 3-4 then 1 inning, 1 inning and 1 inning then close with Velo Vinny . Braves,Twins, others getting young arms ready for playoffs
    Howard remember had shoulder issues with low innings. Be careful
    Hopefully the Sept increase Taxie SP’s with history of 3+ could help

        1. Jim … sorry about my responses above. It was the second time he had taken shots at me, and I felt he had other issues with my posts. I’ll try to ignore him from now on. And yes … I was wondering if that was Tim.

    1. Pursuant to earlier comments – HINKIE bring on your information all day 24/7 – you are terrific at displaying data and explaining it in depth. Meanwhile, you never fail to entertain us with pictures, cartoons, and other amusing tid-bits. Whatever, don’t stop posting !!!! You are the Harper of this site !!

  50. I have to say as concerned as I was about Bohms defense at third in his first week or so with the club, he’s looked really sharp of late. He really seems like he’s playing with much more confidence and has a hell of an arm. I’m still skeptical about it long term but it’s great to see. And he seems athletic enough to continue improving.

    1. Having played many years at third in another age, just wondering if he is playing a few feet a little too deep or transitioning from the glove to the throwing hand is slower than normal….it does seem he has to rifle it across the diamond to barely beat many runners at first..
      They could be positioning him further back, which in itself can be a problem navigating some ground balls, but does afford him a nano-tick more to glove the ball.

    2. He is a good athlete with a good arm. He just doesn’t have the lateral quickness to have good range. He is already -3 in Defensive Runs Saved. In only 16 games.

    1. Yes, this was what I was talking about the other day. It is both surprising and concerning. I really hope he is ok and not trying to soldier through anything. And he still hasn’t come close to the triple digits we have all heard so much about.

      1. Hopefully they did or will do an MRI on his UCL…assume they would have…compare it to his base and see if there is any fraying going on.

        If there is any…then they could go with PRP….they did it with Nola back in the summer of 2016….they saw some abnormalities and Dr Andrews decided with the PRP injections vs TJ in Aug 2016…and it worked. Worked with Tanaka also, but not everybody…Garret Richards it did nt or Seranthony.

        Then again he could have what they refer to as ‘dead arm’.

  51. I want to dispel the false narrative that Klentak’s choice was JTR or Sixto.

    Grandal was a free agent at the time and signed a 1 year /$16m contract with Brewers. He averaged a 5 WAR for the prior 4 years. He put up a 5.2 war last year. I LOVE JT. He is better than Grandal. No doubt. But the difference is not great enough to part with Sixto. And I said this at the time. Sixto was/is a rare pitching prospect. I can’t remember ever seeing a Phillies prospect with his combination of stuff and command.

    My point isn’t to cry over spilt milk. I know we can’t change the past. But I also don’t think we should give the GM a free pass on giving up Sixto. If they don’t sign JT it will be a complete disaster. But even allowing him to hit the FA market is a failure. His price is going to be astronomical.

    1. You put your viewpoint forth very well. I like everything about JT and want him on the team long term, but I got a feeling this is not a slam dunk by any stretch of the imagination.!

    2. I agree that allowing JTR to marinate this long wasn’t good. My impression is that Klentak outsmarts himself in cases like this. Not signing Charlie Morton. Wanting Machado over Harper, keeping Gabe over…anybody else. Let’s hope that Realmuto is still impressed with the Phillies culture, how they take care of their own, and the prospect of future success here. It’s a matter now of whether the Phillies will wind up spending more on him in the end than they would have last November. It’s bad business, that’s all. Go with what you know NOW instead of what might be later.

        1. 8mark…I seriously doubt Cashman will be involved….Sanchez’s future puts him in a precarious position, unless they move Sanchez.
          Mets maybe if Cohen gets the ownership…if not..do not see that happening.
          Dodgers…..Friedman do his one and only in Betts….Will Smith and the kid Ruiz have it down for now….then they need to workin Bellinger and Seager soon.

          Braves…oh yeah…I can see that happening….they have plenty to spend with both Acuna and Albies on very friendly club LTCs and Freddie will be a 32 year old FA in 2022 and if anybody will give a home town discount it will be Freddie and they have multiple players under team control .

    3. I am not defending Klentak’s decisions here, because Realmuto is the best catcher in baseball, so they shouldn’t take a chance and they should overpay him a bit (I also agree with v1again that there were options that included keeping Sixto, who is the best pitching prospect, aside from Hamels, that we’ve had in the last 40 years or so). Still, I think everyone is significantly underestimating the devastating impact of COVID on the finances of almost all baseball teams for this year and years into the future. I think there’s a really good chance that there is just not much money for most free agents and that, even those who get paid, won’t experience the typical inflation bump that players tend to get over the years. This is a long way of saying that I doubt JT’s price is going to go up substantially. It could be wrong, but I think the economics of baseball dictate prices probably won’t go through the roof this offseason. Now, all you need is one willing team to prove me wrong, but I think, as a general rule, this principle will prove correct.

  52. MLB has given teams the go-ahead to hold instructs this fall for their minor leaguers with games against other teams..Starts no sooner than September 18th…Each team has to conform to the MLB COVID-19 protocols that they’ve already laid out and the players will be paid. The MLB is not forcing teams to do this (pre-COVID were instructs mandatory?) After no minor league season I can’t believe any team won’t have instructs, especially when games vs other teams are allowed.Too much lost development otherwise. The choice of location is left up to the team… They can use their alternative site if it’s no longer being used for the 60-man or spring training camp… I would have to believe all the teams will use their spring training sites…No information on how many players will be invited or how long instructs can go..

    Jim do you have any additional information?

  53. I beat Klentak like my punching bag but I cannot fault him for giving up Sixto for JTR. Regardless of his WAR, no GM signed Grandal to a long term contract — I wonder why.

    If the FO erred in their evaluation of Sixto as an injury risk bullpen bound power arm – that’s the mistake, not the JTR trade himself. I was never a fan of JTR before since he played for a division rival – but man, I’m happy that he is playing in red pin stripes now.

    With hindsight, it is easy to say, just sign Grandal in 2019, let Knapp start in 2020 and go after JTR in FA since my crystal ball said that JTR is FA bound — this way you get to keep Sixto who in short time doesn’t looks like an injury risk bullpen bound power arm.

    It is easy to argue a point with the benefit of hindsight. Unless you are a proven clairvoyant, nobody has the benefit of hindsight unless you’re friend with Doc Emette Brown where you can use a time machine and see the future.

    Hinkie brought up a good argument about trading Sixto — can the Phillies get Yelich is they pulled the trigger on Sixto earlier? or are they correct to wait and give up Sixto for JTR instead?

    1. Yelich would have been a huge signing upon acquiring him for say, a Sixto plus. As in BIG BUCK$! Lotta years. JTR is, and would have been, a better value – premium position, less years, less money. Yelich is the better player all around, yes BUT what his contract does to the bigger patroll picture (assume no Bryce at the time) would be significant.

      Romus, to your post above…good points. I don’t fear losing JTR. I think the Phillies ABSOLUTELY HAVE TO re-sign him at virtually all costs due to giving up Sixto and Realmuto’s importance to the entire club…pitching staff, leadership, elite skill set as a backstop. And they know it. And so does JT and his agent.

  54. I am not a Klentak fan. But the JTR contract is on John Middleton. That is his call, and his call to use the Luxury Tax to impede the team’s ability to enter this season with a BP that would have even been mediocre. It was also part of that “staying under the Cap” that sent JTR to Arbitration over a couple of Million dollars, and not doing a LTC until Arbitration set the first year. By then, we were hit with the pandemic. But, the original Arbitration hearing vs. just signing JTR long term was on Middleton. Klentak has done a lot wrong, don’t misunderstand me. But,the Realmuto contract is an ownership level responsibility, just like the Bryce deal. And, v1, I undeerstand your point. You are not the only one who thinks keeping Sixto and signing Grandal was the way to go. There are also those who felt that the money that went to Harper should have been spent elsewhere. I want JTR over Grandal and Sixto, and I love Harper.

  55. Earlier this week on this thread, Trevor May’s name was mentioned as a worthy free agent target. His market should be competitive but the team that signs him may be getting another late bloomer who comes into his own, a la Charlie Morton, and provides a few years of mid rotation quality. The Phillies need to step up in legitimately pursuing this type of player, especially a pitcher. It’s easy for a big market team to zone in on big ticket talent. Let’s sift through the detritus and grab a nugget of gold every now and then, huh! And I don’t mean lucking out on some rule 5 kid like Victorino or Odubel (well…🙄) Let’s find a good arm that everyone and his uncle doesn’t already know about.

    1. 8mark….May has only one start in the last 5 years….2015 he was tried as the starter by the Twins….i think he is now being used primarily as a reliever….I really do not think he can now carry that velo now, for than maybe 2/3 innings at a time.

  56. watching Spencer Howard pitch is painful. Laboring and throwing non competitive pitches. I don’t see it. Certainly no Sixto

    1. A refresher, Vinny looked pretty awesome early on too… let’s give the league a bit to catch up to him. First time around the league he is going to have the advantage.

      On that note, what do you think HOU fans where thinking when VV posted his best gem against the Cubs?

  57. Well a pretty surprising turn of events since I was ready to burn CBP down. Well, I can honestly say I’m glad to be wrong. I won’t jinx anything 🙂

    On Realmuto, I’ve made this argument before on this site, almost right away that the money allocation, and trade chips could be better used to field a team. One thing I will say, I believe The Realmuto trade helped Harper sign with Philly. I’ll pose it this way, is the team better with a rotation of Nola,Wheeler, Sixto, Howard, & Eflin with Knapp and Grullon catchingand Marchan Waiting to over take? We also have a stronger bullpen for the whole season since 10 mil is allocated to JT.

    Do you get a better overall team with the best catcher in baseball eating up roughly 12% of the salary cap or is a average catcher plus a top pitching prospect, and top FA signing make the Phillies a better team?

    You can make sound arguments either way, it depends on how you want to construct the team, one of my points is that it’s not such a slam dunk decision to resign JT at top dollar, even for 2021

  58. 21. Spencer Howard, RHP, Philadelphia Phillies: Similar to Mize, the results haven’t been great because of a homer problem in a small sample (five home runs allowed in four starts over 16⅔ IP) with the barreling rate and exit velocities to back it up. Similar to Mize, there also isn’t a strike-throwing issue and the stuff is still firm, so it looks more like growing pains.

    42. Alec Bohm, 3B, Philadelphia Phillies: Bohm has played in only 16 games so far, but he has continued to show good control of the strike zone with medium power, as in the minors. He has the raw power to potentially hit 30 homers, but has opted to lean into making more contact. Keep an eye on his defense at the hot corner as many scouts think he’ll have to move to first base in the coming years.

    1. 55. Sixto Sanchez, RHP, Miami Marlins Through two MLB starts, Sanchez is already a Pitching Ninja favorite with a visually pleasing, plus three-pitch mix headlined by an upper-90s heater. Sanchez is ranked this low due to a lengthy (but not serious) injury history and a surprisingly hittable fastball. He has dominated through 12 innings, but his weakness in the early going has been giving up hard-hit balls, so keep an eye on how that develops.

      1. Sixto let his locks grow out 8 inches, could pass for a yuong Johnny Cueto.
        He has the stuff that Cueto had early on… and the waist-line..

  59. The Price is Right:
    Wheeler, 10th (53.8%),
    and Nola 11th (51.5%) in MLB for GB%….among starters.
    Eflin…47%-GB%…best in his career.

  60. Let me start by saying that Max Sherzer is a future HOFer. At the time, he signed a monster 7 year, $191M contract that I thought the Nats would regret later. Man, I was seriously wrong. He pitched so well, he’s underpaid. He could be -3 WAR next season (his last season of the contract) and still be way worth it. That said, this season at age 35-36, he’s starting to decline. He used to be 95-98 but now he’s he’s 92-95. He’s still plenty effective, but he’s not elite anymore.

  61. Alec Bohm has a really nice swing. And he has looked very good defensively tonight. A very strong arm, and he just made a great play. I am not arguing with v1, or anyone, just saying that I have seem genuine progress since he was first called up.

    1. That play in the hole tonight was a really good play. I loved it. And I have openly said that I love his hit tool. Great hitter. He came into tonight with -3 defensive runs saved in 16 games. I am not insulting him to say that I think that he is better suited for a corner OF spot.

  62. I’ve been complaining about lack of depth this season, but Neil Walker was outstanding tonight against Scherzer, and in the field. Adam Haseley also did a nice job in place of Roman Quinn. And Phelps (who looked really good in his debut) stretches out the BP.

    I think it’s safe to now include Alec Bohm amongst the Phillies core going forward: Harper/Realmuto/Hoskins/Bohm/Nola/Wheeler.

    The Phillies big 3 this time thru the rotation:
    Eflin 7 IP, 1 R, 4 H, 0 BB, 8 K Saturday vs Braves
    Nola 8 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 3 BB, 9 K last night vs Nats
    Wheeler 6.2 IP, 0 R, 3 H, 2 BB, 6 K tonight vs Nats
    That’s 21,2 IP, 1 R, 9 H, 5 BB, 23 K

  63. Watched Sixto tonight to just see him – in between innings of Phillies. My, he is a hefty young man for his age – his various pitches are very impressive and he throws like Wheeler – effortlessly at 97/98. His offspeed stuff is really deceptive – but I noticed he can be hit if he leaves it up in the zone – saw the 2 run homer which was hammered. He already has a certain swagger but is also poised. He can flat out pitch.

  64. There are few iconic figures who you might associate with a certain era. Growing up in the 70’s, as much as I loathe the Mets to this day, Tom Seaver was as rock steady as they came. Plus, they don’t build his type anymore. RIP, Tom Terrific.

    1. I mentioned on this site before but I met and played volleyball against Seaver and Tom Selleck. I was amazed at the size of his thighs. I kidded with him that they were each the size of tree trunks. He was in his late 30’s then and still pushing to keep his career alive, which he did until he was 41. All the things his former teammates say about him are true. He came down to the Darien CT YMCA and played against a bunch of nobodies and treated us like we’d been friends for years. We were supposed to catch up for drinks afterward but we missed each other.

    2. 8mark….and to think, if the Philies won the lottery in 1966 (they were one of the three teams …Mets and Indians were the other two)… Tom Terrific and Steve Carlton would have been one and oneA for a decade in the Phillies rotation.

      1. I do recall how Tommy Hutton used to own Seaver. Unfortunately he made his career as a great glove as a backup 1B, unless Seaver was pitching. Hutton and Dick Ruthven were brothers-in-law, married to twins.

        Hats off to Dick Allen whose #15 will be retired before today’s game. Never knew that (according to Joe Girardi) his WAR from ’64 through ’74 was higher than Hank Aaron, Carl Yastrzemski and Joe Morgan, all HOFers. And a career OPS above .900 usually gets a guy into the Hall.

        Speaking of Joe G, what a stroke of genius starting Walker in place of Hoskins last night. The previous manager would have run Rhys out there no matter how hot he was or how poorly he’d been playing, with no regard for his 0-17 vs Scherzer. It’s called, having a feel for the game, analytics and all.

        1. I still want o see what transpires over these last two dozen or so games…..Nola and Wheeler should get 5 starts a piece…and if Eflin can maintain what he has done his last few games, they stand a good chance of catching the Braves.
          And wish Harper would get hot again.

          That 7 game series next Thursday vs the Marlins down there is critical…..Nola and Wheeler will only start two of them because of the two double-headers ..one on Friday the other on Sunday.

          So Vinny and whoever ….will be counted upon to come thru.

          Maybe Joe G will go with an ‘opener’ in one game of each doubleheader

          1. Nice one. Not if you are MK. He would have traded Rick Wise for 3 of their older bullpen arms; Moe Drabowski, Stan Williams & George Brunet and he probably would have thrown in Greg Luzinski to the Cards.

  65. Greatest pitchers in MLB history…Terrific Tom…according to WAR ..was considered number 6….some may say 5 if Roger Clemens’ issue were not taken into consideration.
    But in the ‘modern’ era….he may be considered the best.
    .
    Walter Johnson….164.5
    Cy Young….163.8
    Roger Clemens ….139.2
    Pete Alexander….119.0
    Kid Nichols….116.3
    Tom Seaver….109.9

  66. As many of you know, I grew up outside NYC as a Mets fan and Tom Seaver was my hero (still is). I’ve got a painting of him hanging in my work office. An incredibly great, consistent and classy person and player and a tremendous student of the game. It doesn’t get much better than “The Franchise.” Rest In Peace Tom Terrific.

  67. Okay, we crucify Klentak when he gets something wrong, so we have to give him credit when he does something right. I have to say that his acknowledgement that he had to do something about the bullpen, and do it quickly, is likely going to save this season. He acted as if he didn’t have day to spare and, frankly, he probably didn’t. He also didn’t give away the future of the franchise in bolstering the pen and gets big points for that too.

    And while we’re at it:
    1. it looks Wheeler may be the best free agent pitching acquisition of the 2019-20 off season;
    2. The Nola contract was a coup.
    3. The Jay Bruce pick-up was excellent.
    4. The Bohm pick is likely to payoff in a huge way.

    He hasn’t been the best GM, but he hasn’t been a full blown disaster either.

    1. All that you say is true, but is he good enough to have us win it all and keep us in contention year after year. Is he good enough to have a farm system producing MLB caliber talent when we need them? Is his team good enough to evaluate talent at the pre-pro and pro levels? Analytics aside, is he smart enough to assess the moves of the past and discard the policies and processes that didn’t work? Finally, is he really good enough to keep or just passable? JM’s call!

    2. Klentak has more misses than hits and for a GM, Klentak has no eye in finding talent. Any GM can sign a legit MLB player if the FO allows them to spend so Harper and Wheeler (and possibly JTR) are mostly on Middleton rather than Klentak. Also, signing young players early is not a Klentak idea – any smart GMs tend to do that so the Nola signing is being prudent and not being a genius. Also, the JoeG. possibly has influence on acquiring some of the players especially the ones who JoeG has history before. And having early picks since 2015, Klentak should be able to draft some good prospects.

      At the end of the day, Klentak is an average-ish GM at best. Without deep pockets of the owners willing to spend, Klentak will need to rely on baseball Gods to hit on the marginal gains/talents he’s acquiring.

      We’ve seen enough of McPhail and Klentak to get a good sense that they are not in the upper half of the FO competency. We are just lucky that Middleton is willing to spend $–pid money to attract some big time talent in the team.

      1. This is a pretty unfair assessment. I”m not sure I believe he has more misses than hits. Saying that it’s easy to sign a legit FA isn’t super fair. Look at the list of the big name free agents that signed. Think about how many people were lusting after Moustaskas and some of the other names. Klentak went out and signed Wheeler, who has been the best FA signing to this point. Didi has also been really good. He absolutely should’ve done more to fix the bullpen before the season but he’s done pretty well on the fly without sacrificing big pieces. He did well with the JTR trade. Low cost trade on Bruce. Even some of his fixes that haven’t worked out haven’t hurt us, like Asdrubal Cabrera, etc.

        Again, I don’t think he’s perfect but I certainly don’t think you can say he’s had more misses than hits. Plenty of missteps in the beginning – Santana signing, Crawford trade, etc, Segura, and Arietta – that whole hodgepodge wasn’t great. The system has used prospects to trade for players and Bohm and Howard look good. I’m not sure you can just wave the off and say it was obvious – because he and others have missed with high picks.

        I’m not sure how you evaluate if he’s a GM who can win it all and keep the farm system stocked. I would certainly say he’s not in the top tier at this point but I think it’s a little rash to judge him to harshly.

  68. Credit where credit is due. Phils have won 8 of 9. Hard to do in any season but especially valuable in a shortened season. I love seeing it. I didn’t expect it to happen given the early season struggles. But they stabilized the pen with their additions. Not an elite pen, but respectable. Spencer has come up and been an effective starter, pushing VV to the pen. Wheeler has been simply awesome, as has Nola. The lineup has improved materially as the season has gone on. The addition of Bohm has helped tremendously. As has the turnaround of Rhys, which kinda came out of nowhere. Something just clicked for him and he has been a beast during this streak. And the role players have performed. Hat tip to Klentak on the roster moves and Girardi. This looks like a playoff team right now. Keep it up boys.

      1. Actually, Phelps was the one worthwhile addition and could make the difference once the playoffs begin. Workman and Hembree don’t instill confidence at all. Hale is about as dispensable as anyone on the farm. Klentak made moves out of a sense of urgency, when the bullpen was screaming for a renovation since the off season. So, kudos for finally doing what should haven’t been such an elephant in the clubhouse? No. Sorry.

            1. Denny….asking Phelps to save maybe a little out of his realm now……6 total saves….5, 2016 and prior. One last year.
              However with this season and all its abnormalities …..maybe this would be a good time to thrust him into that role.
              Joe does have some history with Phelps from their Yankee days together so he would know the man.

              As for JoJo….not sure Joe would fully trust a rookie in that role..that is asking a lot of JoJo this early in his career.

            2. No no…Jojo could be huge in starter/long relief/opener role. Keep him fresh and use him strategically. Joe can do that.

        1. I don’t disagree that it was his fault to begin with, but as mediocre as some of those guys have been, it was just enough to allow them to turn the tide.

          And the concerns about Klentak going forward are valid. I’m not his defender by any means, but you have to take the good with the bad and there has been some good.

  69. Harper predicted his team needed to go on a winning streak and they did. The irony is Harper pretty much hasn’t done anything over the eight games won. It shows the team can win (with good pitching) without a big contribution from him. Now, if he can get hot over these next four weeks, as Romus implored, the Phillies are in business.

    I only hope that Girardi doesn’t lean too much on Phelps and Workman and forget about the other guys in the bullpen even if some (or most) of them ARE forgettable. And please, Joe, don’t pull a Gene Mauch (and more recently, a Kapler) and desperately pitch the big two until their arms fall off. I’d hate to see them pitch when rest is needed.

    1. ciada….I think Wheeler and Nola get 5 starts apiece from here on in.
      And agree….neither has done exceptionally well on 3 days rest vs 4 days in their careers, so hopefully it does not come down to that.

  70. You all make good points. Phelps actually looked like a bona fide Reliever. It was only 1 game, but he looked great. Workman does not seem to know where the Pitch is going. Hale was awful, and Hembree is inconsistent. Yes, better than what we started with. I give Klentak positive marks for adding to the BP. But, how do you start a season like we did? It cost us 6 Ws, and that is not hyperbole. I don’t think Eflin is getting enough credit. He looks better and better, and could be a legit #3. And, I have no doubt that Harper heats up again. It would be nice if he starts heating up today and leads the team to that 9 out of 10 he asked for.

  71. In the next 30 games, one of the most important development is who among the crop of veteran middle RP will establish himself as a true closer. Neris and Workman can’t continue to put batters on base and provide a roller coaster of a ride in those close games. Will Phelps be the one? I don’t know. But it looks like the Phillies will continue to rely on the veteran average-ish RP to carry the fight.

    The offense can probably contribute an average of 3 runs per game and Nola/Wheeler can probably limit the opponent to 3 runs or less so it will be up to the bullpen to hold the fort for most of the crucial games including the playoffs.

        1. tony….Matt Klentak was saying yesterday that MLB , with this truncated unconventional season has had the opportunity to’ experiment’ with many changes.
          And he mentioned many of them and added the DH in the NL.
          He was asked point blank whether or not he liked the many changes and like them to be continued
          He tactfully deflected his non-committal answers.
          But……it seems that when it came to the DH in the NL, he said it has its benefits, but from what I gather it will not be incorporated until after the next CBA……which is Dec 2021.
          Now if COVID affects the 2021 season…..who knows.

        2. My vote is to keep the DH in the NL after this season. I enjoy the hitting and not watching the pitcher struggle at the plate, also if the pitcher does get on base the probably of injury is not worth the risk. Also, I haven’t really seen much of the strategy that fans were talking about leaving the game happen, there are still pinch-hitters and many pitching changes. It is a good change and we should adopt it going forward.

            1. I’m still on the fence with the extra inning rule, but I am now leaning more to liking it not loving it yet, maybe giving it a 75. I wouldn’t buy it but I would go to a friend’s house to listen to it, not yet dance to it.

            2. Rather start the extra inning rule later …perhaps in the 11th or 12th inning..play the first 10 or 11 as normal.

          1. Oh my God, this is a million times better. The DH and the extra inning rule need to stay. Now we need a pitch clock too (judges should be able to suspend the pitch clock for exceptional cause, like when the rain comes down, but aside from that, get the damn ball, get your sign and throw it – these games need to move along).

    1. Not too upset with Gullon claimed by another team. What I saw was a catcher that will definitely have weight issues and will not be a valuable asset to a major league team.

    1. It’s funny you say that. Aesthetically, they are interesting, very different from their other uniforms and kind of cool (even though they don’t look like “home” uniforms to me). Viscerally, I hate them because I grew up as a Mets fan and, as Jerry Seinfeld might say, those uniforms were the “laundry” I hated. But, other than that, they are pretty cool.

    1. Hinkie:
      They are the doppleganger boys.
      I found mine at the Park….other people have told me.
      I didn’t believe it until I took notice
      Seated below David Montgomery cut-out with his thumbs up….is a guy with a black hat, gold trim, black tee….when left handed batters are up is when it shows that camera angle.

  72. Nice win. From the World Series roster, pretty much only Strasberg, Rodney, and Zimmerman are not there. Yet, this team seems to be only a shell of that ws team.

  73. i guess if Gabe and the Giants could win 7 in a row, i shouldnt be so surprised by this streak but never would have predicted it.

    so in todays game Hudson retired all 5 men he faced and was charged with a blown save, Doolittle doesnt allow a base runner and picks up a loss.

  74. The play I loved today was Harper’s low key throw to the pitcher covering 1st, the putout and the look of disbelief on the base runner trying to figure out what just happened.

  75. The Phillies obviously benefited, but not sure why Anibal Sanchez was still pitching for the Nats. He is done as a starter. I can’t believe the Nats can’t bring up any warm body to take his place in the rotation, unless they are tanking.

    But I don’t think the Nats are built that well for the near future. Sure they have Turner and Soto, but not much else hitting wise. Their top prospect Kieboom hasn’t been able to hit in parts of 2 seasons, Robles had 1 good year and now he’s reversing, and Garcia is too soon to tell. They gave Strasburg big money and now he’s injured, Corbin is already declining in year 2, and Sherzer only has 1 more year left (and he’s declining).

    Nats will be in the bottom of the NL East for a while.

    1. Guru-I think you are on to something with the declining Nats. My view of the division over several years – Braves have most talent, best young players, but are running out of money and medicine to keep players on field – bullpen needs $$$ ? ; Mets are the Mets unless Cohen buys them and then decides to buy alot of assets – pitching still aging ; Nats see above ; Phillies to ride the arms of their 2 studs and hopefully they find 1 or 2 more / Eflin , Howard ? but desperately need a “Soto” to accompany Harper ; Miami loaded with pitching and several up an comers in field – I would be more afraid of them than any other team.

        1. Bosss……four key pieces of the current Phillies offense are not the long term answers that they probably want for their core…….Bruce, Didi, Cutch and Segura.
          Segura is the longest, on contract for two more years, Cutch thru 2021….the others are short term fixes….and all are 30 or older.

          The Phillies may need more after next season

      1. Pretty soon the Nats will be advertising tickets in Philadelphia for home games against the Phillies. Their stadium will be packed with our fans.

        1. Hah….Rizzo squelched that idea back in 2011 or 2012…..any zip code return addresses of 190xx got no tixs or they paid double face value…or something crazy. He said he did not want Philly fans in Nats Stadium cheering against the home team

      2. The Braves are in good shape. They have Acuna, Albies, Swanson as hitters, and a #1 pitcher in Fried. But they have some decisions to make. Markakis, Ozuna, Melancon, Green are FAs after the season. And after 2021, Freeman is a FA. The Braves operate like a small market team. They don’t pay their players crazy money. I think they will let Freeman walk. And I have doubts they’ll be able to keep Swanson once he’s a FA in 2023 because of the money he will command if he keeps playing at this level.

  76. It’s a hot streak, and streaks come and go. But I’m confident that this lineup is the closest thing the Phillies have had to the ’08-’11 run since then. A few reliable arms in the pen will put this squad in contention. That’s a lot, but Jojo and Ranger could provide a boost down the stretch.

  77. I’ll tell you one thing I didn’t expect to see this year, and that’s rookie Alec Bohm showing a potential 60-65 hit tool. If that’s real, he his going to have a long career as a 3-5 hitter in the big leagues. The power will develop as he learns to turn on pitches and develops more strength, but a 60-65 hit tool, for a guy with power, is exceptional, Truly exceptional. As a player, I view him to be similar to Jayson Werth (but potentially better) or Kris Bryant, with less power but a potentially better hit tool than Bryant. Still, that’s really good company.

    Also, we will see what happens at third base for him, but I would expect him to become the team’s left fielder when McCutchen’s contract ends (again, much like Bryant).

    1. I haven’t see a rookie hit like that since Scott Rolen. Bohm is very advanced with the bat. It’s impressive to watch. In a normal season, he could be 15-20 HRs and .800+ OPS for a 23/24 year old. That’s huge right there. The 2018 draft is looking like a big win for the Phillies.

  78. Oh yeah, another thing that seems to be happening is that the pitchers and hitters on this team are getting much better instruction. I always thought that Andrew Knapp was going to hit (great plate discipline, decent power, a beautiful swing) and, frankly, become quite a good major league hitter. When he regressed a couple of years in a row I didn’t understand it. The talent was always there – he tore AA apart one year and was always touted as a hit-first catcher until he developed his defense a few years ago. Now it looks like he may be able to do both. I want to see more, but I’m very encouraged.

    1. It’s great that Knapp is hitting well, but with the DH likely here to stay, he’ll actually get less ABs over the normal course of the season. Knapp is going to play a lot this season because of the amount of double headers. He’ll still get the spot start and the day game start after a night game. And he’s a FA in 2023.

  79. I’m happy to see that Jeff Singer is added to the pool. Local fan boy with motivation to prove he belongs…Wish Jeff success!

  80. So far, Bryce has proven himself as clairvoyant couple of times now…

    Everybody knows about the 9 (of 10) streak to get the Phillies back in the game, and the first was a slip of his tongue when said that “we will bring the WS back to DC”….we (as in Phillies) under performing let WAS backdoor their way to the WS trophy!

  81. With the DH becoming a permanent reality by 2022, and a certain first baseman reaching free agency following the 2021 season, might the Phillies lineup look anything like this?

    C JT Realmuto
    1B Freddie Freeman
    2B Scott Kingery (yes, I still believe)
    3B Alec Bohm
    SS Bryson Stott
    LF Mickey Moniak
    CF Roman Quinn/Simon Muzziotti
    RF Bryce Harper
    DH Rhys Hoskins

    Going over the luxury tax line seems inevitable. The question is by how much. Howard, Bohm, the young outfielders and Stott would still be making peanuts. Signing Freddie puts them well through the cap, assuming JTR remains in the fold. With Nola and Wheeler topping the rotation, Howard as a solid 3, and tracking a few young arms to balance the bullpen, let’s hope a closer rises up the ranks because quite frankly, the open market relievers are seldom worth the price.

    1. 8mark….you skip your Omega 3 fish oil pills again?
      Freeman with the Phillies!
      Never going to happen…..he is ‘Chipper Jones’ type icon in Atlanta.
      He is part of the cement in their new ballpark

      And I see, not keen on Haseley….hmmm.

    2. I see it a bit differently, but not too much.

      I like Freeman a lot, but you don’t sink that kind of money into what will then be a 32 (going on 33) year old first baseman, but if the deal were 4 years or less, there are worse things to complain about than overpaying for Freddie Freeman.

      I think Stott could be playing short and at second, I have no idea. I think there’s a good chance they keep Realmuto and I believe Bohm will be somewhere between 3 and 6 in the line-up playing left field. I think both Quinn and Haseley could be sharing CF. I also think, rather than paying someone like Freeman a ton of money, they are going to buy another expensive starting pitcher – I’m not sure who, but if he’s anywhere near as good as Zack Wheeler, it will be worth it.

      1. I think the Phillies got extremely lucky signing Wheeler. Gerrit Cole was overshadowing him, and Wheeler has been good but not elite in his career. The Phillies pounced early and the rest is history.

        Hoping that the Phillies will strike lightning in a bottle again is highly unlikely.

        1. No, look, we give them hell when they screw up. A good free agent contract or trade always involves some degree of luck, but they did a really good job here, pouncing quickly before the market went crazy. I am not going to attribute this to luck. It was a well-researched, thought-out and executed strategy to bring in an ascending talent like Wheeler on a market-competitive deal and overpay for some has-been or descending player (Madison Bumgarner, what a disaster that’s going to be).

          1. The crazy thing about Wheeler is that I think he’s got some more upside. I think if he could master one more plus pitch, like a splitter or cut FB, he could become an ace-like pitcher. He’s really good and you can see where he could take it up another notch.

      2. If the Phillies are interested in signing a pitcher to a below market deal, I would target Marcus Stroman or Taijuan Walker. Stroman has been injury prone and he’s small, but he has good stuff and you might be able to get him for under $20M per year. Perhaps 5 years, $85M. With Walker, you’re going to have to take a leap of faith. He has stuff but he’s been injured the last 2 seasons. Walker is going to be tough to predict what he will get. Starting pitchers aren’t cheap, so I’m guessing something like 4 years, $50M or $3 years, $38M.

    3. Freddie Freeman is going to be a FA at age 32. If Cutch was able to get 3 years, $50M at age 32, you have to believe that Freeman would get 3 years, $60M. He might even get 4 years, $$75-80M. I like Freeman and I still think he would be able to hit, but the Phillies have money tied up already with Harper and Wheeler. If the Phillies don’t sign JT, then I can see the Phillies going after Freeman. Otherwise, that money can be spent on Eflin or a FA pitcher.

      And I would substitute Haseley for MM in LF. I know you’re rooting for him, but MM needs to have a monster 2021 minor league season if he hopes to start, let alone make the team.

    4. @8mark – i will assume that Haseley and Medina are traded for cash or PTBNL so I will take them out in my equation (but if you will allow me – Haseley will be a starting OF in 2022).

      The development of O’Hoppe, Marchan, Luis Garcia and Johan Rojas will have impact some of key positions in 2022 onwards.

      I’m not sure if Muzzioti, Moniak, Maton, Quinn and even Kingery are regular day-to-day players. Stott is he proves that he is a better hitter than Kingery might take 2B. Luis Garcia is he develops into an uber prospect might take SS.

      The development of O’Hoppe and Marchan will be really interesting. Both have potential to become a 2-way back stop so if not traded, one of them might share the C/1B/DH with JTR.

      Rojas I think is still not ready by 2022.

  82. I agree with Romus that Atlanta does not let Freeman leave, and Freeman takes a contract below what he could get on the open market to stay. I think, being positive for a change, that JTR signs Long Term, and we get another Pitcher in FA. I think, again feeling positive, that Middleton held off this year until he got a better idea that the Luxury Tax goes away in the next CBA, and goes past the tax next year. I think we see a FA closer come in, and another Starting Pitcher, like a Drew Smyly, rather than a high priced one. Depending on the Stott ETA, and the feeling of whether he is legit, or not, that a 3 year Didi contract may be in the works. I don’t discount the influence of Joe G. I think he likes a Closer, and defined BP roles. He does not have that now, because he doesn’t have anyone with that ability. I see a possible Segura trade, Kingery at 2B, I still believe, Didi at SS, and Bohm at 3B. Didi’s money replaces Seguras.

    1. matt13….a Segura trade may have the Phillies having to pick up part of his remaining contract of a little less than $30M thru 2022. So whatever that is , it will count against the luxury tax.

    2. I would agree with matt and Romus – Freeman is a Brave icon and I can easily see him signing a team friendly contract to stay there. The Braves saved so much $$ on Acuna and Albies they will have more than enough money. Aside from Freeman though, they do operate like a small market team because they are forced to keep a lid on salaries by the ownership group.

  83. Eflin:
    xFIP…Eflin
    If he qualified .3.16 xFIP ranks him 11th among starters.
    He does not have enough innings right now.
    Nola is third @ 2.61, behind only Jacob deGrom and leader Shane Beiber
    Wheeler is 23rd @ 3.78 xFIP

    Phillies with three starters in the top 25 of all MLB starters according to xFIP

  84. Alonso vs Hoskins……last year it looked like Rhys was headed downhill, and the Mets had the next big superstar in NY , next to the Judge. This year the pendulum swung the other way so far.

    Alonso:
    2019 – ,260/,358/,583…OPS+148
    2020 – .209/.323/.410…OPS+102

    Hoskins:
    2019 – .226/.364/.454…OPS+110
    2020 – .269/.432/.546…OPS+160

  85. Kudos to the Phillies and Dick Allen for the team retiring his number and for Mr. Allen’s understated career. Based upon today’s focus on statistical data Dick Allen would rank season-wise among the very top players to ever play. I am often reminded of Bill James comment about Dick Allen, which was something like…..”probably as talented as Mays, Aaron, and DiMaggio but lost half of his career or more to immaturity and emotional instability.” He was some kind of incredible hitter and base runner. Congratulations to Mr. Allen # 15 – this was well earned and hopefully the HOF will also recognize you also.

    1. RU…..totally agree on Dick Allen. I remember him dominating many pitchers and games and those mammoth HR over the LF roof into the street outside Connie Mack Stadium were awesome.

      He was almost a 59bWAR player and if you look at his overall career stats…..he had bold/italics in 18 offensive categories….meaning he led MLB or either the NL or AL…showing his dominance.
      https://www.baseball-reference.com/players/a/allendi01.shtml

      He should be an inductee into MLB’s HoF.

  86. I’m a little late on the DH-extra innings discussion, but count me in on an old, hidebound curmudgeon who has unexpectedly become an instant fan of both.

    It’s fun when every player in the lineup can be a factor offensively, rather than sighing “oh, know” when a rally gets started and the pitcher is due up. I am especially surprised with myself over the new extra-inning rule having earlier considered it a pure gimmick. But it has a strategy of its own and it is exciting, certainly more so than sitting through the 11th, 12th, 13th…and so on innings.

    Finally, I agree with Catch. Let’s get a clock on the pitcher and hitter. There was a hitter the other night who, after every pitch, stepped out of the box and walked around. That’s ridiculous.

    Let’s get average games back down to 2.5 hours.

  87. Guru correctly observes that “the Phillies got extremely lucky signing Wheeler” and that “the Phillies pounced early”. Catch concurs, pointing out that “they did a really good job here, pouncing quickly before the market went crazy.”

    Please remember that the much-maligned Matt Klentak was primarily responsible for Wheeler’s signing and that he received the necessary financial support and approval from John Middleton. Both of them should receive full credit for what currently appears to be the best free agent signing from last year’s class.

  88. Fun fact: Out of the 2017 1st round picks, Hsseley has the most career WAR (1.9) out of all of them.

    Notable names:
    Keston Hiura 1.7 WAR (bad defensively, top 20 prospect in 2019)
    Jo Adell: -1.2 WAR (sub .500 OPS, bad defensively, top 10 prospect)
    Kyle Wright: -0.6 WAR (career walk rate of 7.7!, top 100 prospect)

    1. Still early, but seems many on here have concerns over Haseley’s offense.
      Relegating him to a 4th OFer…..I am pretty sure the Phillies scouts when drafting him 8th overall did not have that in mind as he came out of Virginia.
      His defense is plus…..and if he is ever given the opportunity to play everyday, especially vs LHPs, he will be very productive….right now a gap to gap hitter but can see him generating a little more HR power as he gets more experience.
      I do not expect him to be a hitter that will hit 20/25 HRs, but more likely 12/15 range.

      1. I like him a lot, but it is hard to showcase your talent when you only get cameo appearances! I think he might be one of those guys that are very steady, not flashy, but consistently puts out a good performance and fly’s under the radar and is under appreciated. He is young and has time to show more if he gets the opportunity.

      2. Apparently the Earth will spin off its axis and fly into the sun if he bats against a LHP, so I don’t think his ceiling is very high.

  89. Hasley imo will be in mlb long time because he understands game plays within himself gets good at bats and has baseball instincts. Not every guy in lineup needs to hit 20 plus homers. Keep lineup moving score runs play good defense . Type a player that shines in playoffs when plays.

    1. Hawkeye … I respect your opinion, but “stinks” is a little too harsh IMO. Inconsistent and frustrating are two words that more come to mind for me when I think of Hector.

      1. I can’t help but think of Odubel Herrera when Hector “Hand on his Heart” Neris takes the mound. Kindred spirits of sorts…

        Speaking of Odubel (still a $20+M investment), does anyone know whether he is participating in any official workouts or activities at some location? Or is he dry rotting along with many idle minor league players? Shame to lose whatever value he might have on the market.

        1. 8mark….last time I heard of Odubel’s whereabouts he was working out in the Miami area….that was before the July camps began

        2. Why are we going back to this subject? Odubel is a FA in 2022. After this season, he’s still owed $13.85M (including buyouts). Nobody, and I mean nobody, is trading for that.

        1. I understand you being annoyed with Hector. It is “frustrating” that he has been “inconsistent” (the two words I think best describe him). He’s effective/looks good some nights, and is ineffective/looks bad on other nights. It’s easy to forget he looked great his previous time out when he struck out the side vs Washington. The fact is Hector still throws 95, and packs a swing and miss pitch (splitter).

          Despite a 2.00 WHIP, Neris has the top FIP (2.10) on the team, and the second best FIP in the division. Only Jacob deGrom (1.92) is better. Aaron Nola (3.14), Zack Wheeler (3.23), Zach Eflin (2.89), David Phelps (2.70), Max Scherzer (3.30),Edwin Diaz (2.39), Max Fried (2.29), Shane Greene (2.51), Tanner Rainey (2.91), Shane Greene (2.51), and Sixto Sanches (3.35) all trail Hector. BTW … JoJo Romero currently sports an eye popping (and unsustainable) 0.68 FIP in a SSS (3.2 IP).

          Hector’s biggest problem is the fact that the league has learned to take pitches. If he’s throwing his splitter, it’s going to land out of the Kzone most of the time. Look at the Dominic Smith AB last night. Neris jumped out to an 0-2 start. Smith took the next three pitches. Hector had to throw a FB, and Smith sent it into RF for a single. You can make the argument that Neris made two noncompetitive pitches (ball out of his hand) to the Mets 1Bman while he was ahead in the count. I think Hector is at his best when he uses his FB (up in the zone) to get ahead in the count, and then better commands the splitter low in the zone to finish off the hitter.

          The bottom line is this: Girardi can’t give up on him. The Phillies are going to need Hector to be effective to make the playoffs/be competitive in the postseason.

        2. Of course,”stinks” is worse than inconsistent or frustrating. Stinks has no meaning. It doesn’t convey anything about the subject or provide anything positive to the discussion. It is the PG version of sux. When a person uses it in a discussion, it’s an indication that the person has nothing more of value to add. If this is their best response, discussion over.

      1. The Phillies need to get Hector right. He’s still throwing 94-95. Looking at his game logs, the issue is clear. Every time he issues a walk, he ends up giving up runs. He needs to improve his command. Looks like teams are waiting for him to get wild.

  90. This team is clicking on all cylinders now. Braves are about to split with the Nats so the Phils will move to within 2 games.

    And congratulations to Paul Nauert. Not sure what he may have been smoking before first pitch, but he just turned in maybe the worst called game by a home plate umpire in MLB history.

    1. Just heard the Baseball Hall Of Fame asked for Paul Nauert’s face mask. They want to display it to commemorate the worst called game in the history of MLB !!! Congratulations to him.

        1. Romus … I don’t how you found that, but maybe he’s experiencing double vision or something. LOL! He was missing pitches 6 inches off the plate … not just a couple of times during the game … but … a couple of times each AB. He was a disaster.

          1. Hinkie…he certainly was all over the place.
            MLB has 19 four-member team crews of umpires…76 total…and MLB uses some AAA/AA guys for back-ups during regular seasons , when regular umps go on vacations…so can go up to 85/90 different umpires..

            I have to think there are so many variations of pitch calling among all those different guys. And a certain few stick out, like Paul Nauert and Angel Hernandez for two.

            These guys make it a more plausible argument and easier to implement robo-cam umpiring.

  91. Today….Phillies probability of making the play-offs:
    …..Fangraphs –93.6%
    …..Baseball Ref-92%

    ….26 to go, with 7 in Miami starting this coming Thursday will be the key.

  92. Cole Hamels,
    …scheduled to throw tomorrow at the Braves alternate site in Gwinnett.
    They are expecting Cole to pitch for them within the next few weeks , unless a re-occurrence of the tendinitis comes back to the 36 year old.
    He is a free agent after the season.

  93. I read an article about Yu Darvish who has been tremendous this year. He has a very good relationship with Trevor Bauer, who Darvish credits with helping him through his struggles. I know Bauer has the reputation of a head case, and he likes 1 year deals, but I think I would love to have him here next year. He also can really pitch, and has that 6/7 pitch arsenal working for him, similar to Darvish. Any thoughts?

    1. Trevor Bauer will be 30 next season and he’s pitching very well considering he’s pitching in Geat American Ballpark. You have to figure that money is going to be tight this offseason (except for JT) so the players will have to decide whether they sign a below market multi year deal or a 1-2 year deal and hope that the economic environment improves in the future. If he wants to sign a 1-2 year deal with the Phillies, I don’t have a problem with that. He’s already on a 1 year, $17.5M deal with the Reds, so I’m guessing he’ll want something comparable for 2021. I don’t think he will have a shortage of suitors if he wants to do a 1 year deal.

    2. matt13….so basically you want to swap Jake for Trevor…but tack on a few more years?
      I think he desires a 4/5 year contract…whether or not he gets offered is another thing with the reduced revenue this season
      Sure like to have him but JTR’s AAV could be an issue.
      Did you also want to bring back Didi No- No- Notorious?.
      Things get comlicated…and Jean Segura is still around for two more years at $14M AAV.

  94. Like to see if fans get on Bryce the way they get on segura. Harper let his hitting slump carryover into field. Allowed Slow footed Frazier to score on shallow fly because he did not hustle and let a backpedaling 2nd baseman field it in no position to throw. Professional ball player Frazier saw this and scored.

    1. Worst take that I have seen on this blog in a while.
      1. Harper has a .952 OPS and a 148 wRC+. Segura has a .726 OPS and a 96 wRC+
      2. Harper is an exceptional RF and was top 3 in Gold Glove voting last year. Segura was so bad defensively that they moved him to the utility role after his age 29 season.
      3. Harper is a team leader and plays with his hair on fire every day. Segura routinely loafs.
      4. On that Frazier play, Harper was right there. He was called off. He didn’t lolly gag.

      Just a horrible horrible take to compare these two players.

      1. Embellishing Pt. 3: Segura plays when Segura wants to play, hustles when he wants too, and takes breaks when he wants too. It is very evident in his play and all 3 mannerisms may be observed in the course of a single game. He would be one special player if he could channel total concentration, energy, and mindset for 9 innings of baseball.

  95. Romus, my idea was Bauer on a 1 year deal. I thought he only took 1 year deals, so I may be mistaken. I bring Didi back after I trade Segura.

  96. Matt – It will be difficult to trade Segura if he finishes the season at .250 with 2 years of $14 mill per year to be paid. I also believe that if the Phillies don’t finish second in the division, they will not make the playoffs.

      1. Agreed. Segura’s trade value is in the red. The question you have to ask yourself is what prospect(s) would you be willing to give up to have another club take Segura’s contract off the Phillies’ hands?

        1. I wouldn’t. We have so few good prospects. I eat the $14m per year and make him a utility player. He is probably only overpaid by $4-$6m per year. Sucks but not awful.

  97. Point was not to compare segura and harper’s ability. It’s playing to ones abilities even when slumping. If you understand game it’s infielders call until called off by outfielder. Outfielders momentum is coming in and no way Frazier attempts to score. When segura did not run last year think it was more to do with being mad at self for missing a hit table pitch. It’s wrong but most players do it. Harper was called out on that in past. Sorry not good at WAR and other stats but I notice when game not played right

  98. No intent to question anyone’s knowledge or love for game it is just that not everything is about stats. There is intangibles and instincts. Usually the team that executed those things wins playoff games. Ie utley fake through to first throw runner out at plate. Jeter’s numerous heady plays.

    1. Harper is an exceptional baseball player that plays the game very hard, runs out every play and demonstrates a very high baseball IQ on a routine basis. Worst you can say is that he should have more forcefully called off another defender on one play. You can not say anything of the above about Segura. Totally different players.

      1. The issue is not the comparison between Segura and Harper. Harper was slumping, he had a call go against him, and instead of letting it go, he escalated it when the ump was not in the mood to talk, which is his right. So he got himself tossed in a close game.

        As for the popup to second, it was a long run for Harper. Could he have gotten there? Perhaps. The last thing we want to see is a collision. So I don’t blame anubody on that play. It was just unfortunate.

        1. Well, I was responding to the comment comparing the two.

          If the only point was that Harper shouldn’t have gotten thrown out, then sure. Even he admitted that. He said that he made a mistake. But it is one mistake and his play and hustle more than makes up for it.

    1. Which coach was hitting off of? Just kidding. It’s too bad we don’t get more information out of the alternative site.

      14-1 loss. Good Lord.

  99. Quinn on the 7 day concussion protocol. His resume is growing. The Phillies have a significant vacancy in CF waiting to be filled. The rest of the lineup is fairly sound.

    1. Seems to be a foregone conclusion every year! Not if, but when he gets injured. I gotta give him credit though, he isn’t shy about going to the wall or laying out for a ball in the gap. deGrom pitching well, our hitting not so much and our fielding at the corners even less!

  100. We need to decide that these 2 games are over. We played poorly on Saturday, and vs DeGrom, it doesn’t matter if we lost 2-1 or 20-1. Tomorrow we turn it back around. Pretend DeGrom’s face is on every baseball and smash it all over the park. Get another streak going. When do we call up a kid who can actually pitched in relief in the Major Leagues?

  101. Did somebody mention about why Mauricio Llovera not getting an opportunity to pitch? I guess that 41 pitches, 4 earned to get 3 outs says all that needs to be said.

    1. Not that Llovera will be anything; I would like to take the time to look at some very decent long term pitchers and what their first or first couple of games stats were compared to their career.

      I remember back in the ’70s when Tommy Underwood came up, he got blasted by the Reds in his first and only inning, I went into work the next day and said that I saw something in him and took the heat. He had a pretty decent career.

      1. I’m all for giving pitchers opportunities to pitch when it warrants it i.e. they are performing well in the minors. You can’t give every pitcher in the minors the chance to pitch in the majors. It doesn’t work that way, you have to earn it. Llovera has not pitched above AA and it wasn’t like he was dominating AA either. He got his chance due to injuries, I don’t have a problem with that. Sometimes that happens. He came in for mop up duty, and while he wiggled out of his first inning, he got blasted in his second.

  102. Jacob DeGrom is as nasty as it gets in the NL. He’s already 32 and to me, he looks like he’s throwing harder now than he did in his Cy Young seasons. I don’t know how as a hitter you can catch up to 98-100 and then adjust to a 92 changeup/cutter/slider. It’s really unfair.

  103. Copied from a baseball 101 for some on here. Watch full game stop calculating your numbers all time.Love Harper but he was way late to pop up to walker cause he was sulking about not getting call for hit and he was in slump. I saw him throw his head back when he didn’t get there and walker looked stunned that he had to make play.Read post not comparing skills of segura and Harper. But Harper or any pro player cannot take batting slump into field. Rhys slumping long time never noticed home not hustling.

    Priority Hierarchy
    If there’s a pop-up that a corner outfielder can get, his call overtakes any infielder. It’s simply an easier play to come in on a ball than to go back. … Anything that the shortstop calls — assuming an outfielder doesn’t also call for it — is his. The next highest priority is the second baseman.

  104. For a guy who is known for putting his bat on the ball, Bohm is really struggling. So far in this series, he is 1-12 with NINE strike outs. Is he turning into Hoskins?

      1. Yeah, right. Hoskins isn’t a good fielder, but he has a .941 OPS. Give me a team full of .941 OPS hitters and below average fielders and I’ll take my chances.

  105. Maybe their biggest win of the season. And the Segura HR was the team’s biggest hit of the year (to the best of my recollection).

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