Open Discussion: Week of February 14th

Major League teams were required to submit their Non-Roster Invite lists (NRIs) to the league office COB Friday.  Many teams have published their NRI lists on social media after submitting their lists.  The Phillies have not yet.  Maybe Monday.

The Williamsport Crosscutters are officially no longer a Phillies affiliate.  All the affiliates that were extended offers to become MLB affiliates responded in the affirmative last week.  The Phillies affiliates are Triple-A Lehigh Valley, Double-A Reading, High-A Jersey City, and Low-A Clearwater.  Teams are allowed one Complex team.  Discussions remain ongoing on whether the limit will be raised to two teams.  There is no restriction on International rookie teams.  The Phillies have two teams in the Dominican Summer League.

New limits were imposed on the number of players permitted in an organization.  The Phillies and others are allowed to have 190 rostered players during the offseason, 180 players when the teams break spring training and go north to start the MLB season.  Minor League players on the 40-man do not count against their minor league team’s roster until the MLB season starts.  Players in the Dominican League do NOT count against the total.

So, we’re looking at 30ish players on five, stateside, minor league rosters plus 26 players on the major league roster during the season.

Related to the above section, the Phillies began moving players around on Saturday.  Players on the Jersey City and Clearwater rosters were reassigned to Clearwater and Jersey City.  I have made the changes to the spreadsheets I keep.  If you look at the league transaction lists, you will see a lot of duplications unless they go back and correct.

Sunday, all the players on the Williamsport were reassigned.  The Cutters roster is empty.  The status of all players who were on the roster are is “Assigned to New Team/Level”.  Most could likely end up on a GCL roster for an extended time.  You see, GCL rosters haven’t been official until short-season starts in June.  Teams could stash players there while making decisions.  Also, if, for any reason, there is a GCL season then players could avoid being released all summer.  Or, maybe not.

Spring training workouts start this week.  Players have already arrived.  Bohm has a place in Clearwater, Herrera and Realmuto are here, and some of the NRIs are also here.   I drove by Saturday.  Rain washed out any activity that might have happened.  Workers have been busy in addition to unloading and storing the contents of the truck that arrived from Philadelphia last week.

They have also constructed several tents at the Complex.  Two were installed on either side of the driveway at the entrance of the Complex.  One was put up during Instructs for meals with proper distancing.  The eating area inside the Complex building is extremely small, four tavern tables with about 16 chairs.  I assume the second tent was installed for the same reason.

There are also 3-4 tents beyond Ashburn Field’s left field fence.  Once again, I’m guessing these are for meals.  In addition to up to 75 players, there will be an additional 75 support personnel, coaches, trainers, …

The Payroll and AAV balances this week are more accurate.  The site where I was getting my information had neglected to carryover Odubel Herrera’s salary and AAV when they updated their site with 2021 payroll information.  They corrected the mistake after I contacted them.  They also explained to me that Robertson’s and Phelps’ buyouts would not be counted this season since they were paid when the options were declined (last season’s cycle). (I’m not convinced this is correct and will continue to check.

I also found out that the league minimum for 2021 is $570,500.  I plugged that in as an estimate for the 8 players who MIGHT fill out the 26 man roster after Dominguez is placed on the 60-day IL.  I also added the four NRIs who signed split contracts because I learned what their major league salaries would be if they made the team.  Their salaries are there as a reference and haven’t been figured into any totals.

I’ll continue updating and tweaking until opening day or the 26-man roster is set.

The Phillies running payroll is $185,229,962.  This includes nineteen players under contract plus an estimate for eight players under team control with 0-3 years experience (estimated at the league minimum $570,500).

The Phillies’ salary against the competitive balance tax is $195,342,782 and includes estimates for the rest of the 40-man roster ($2.25M) and player benefits ($15.5M).  With a CBT threshold of $210M, the Phillies are around $14,657,218 under the tax threshold.  (see spreadsheet)

My estimates are likely too low.  Some of the 8 players who don’t have salaries yet will undoubtedly make more than the league minimum.  Some will be replaced by one or two NRIs.  And, Brad Miller might be joining the organization again.  If so, expect Kintzler’s and Millers’ roughly $6M to further increase the numbers above.

And now some random reminders.

Any sportswriter who lists MLB Insider in his bio is working for the owners.  Be careful when you read anything they write about anything between the league and the players association.

Jean Segura has “full no-trade protection”.  He also has over $30M owed to him over the next two seasons ($14.85 in each of the next 2 seasons plus a $1M buyout or a $17M option).

Scott Kingery is going into the expensive years of his contract – $4.25M this year, $6.25M in 2022, $8.25M in 2023, and a $1M buyout or options of $13M, $14M, $15M thru 2026.  So, he’s got a guarantee of $19.75M over the next 3 years.

Neither Segura nor Kingery is going to be as easy to trade as writing, “move them”.

Segura, Velasquez, and Kingery provide much needed major-league ready depth.  It doesn’t make sense to trade them AND money to acquire some prospects from some organization’s 10-20 range – if they were to even got that in return.  Trading them weakens the Phillies’ depth at the upper level.

I’ve been reading some of James’ earliest articles.  Particularly the ones regarding prospects.  I also decided to read his first series of articles to see how he got started and how far we may have strayed from his intentions.  I’ll have more on this later.

I’ll be publishing the 2021 Phuture Phillies “Readers” Top 30 Prospects tomorrow.  Yeah, really.

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

Key Dates:

  • February 14, 2021 – Report date for major league ST
  • February 17, 2021 – First ST workout
  • February 28, 2021 – First spring training game @ Tigers
  • March 1, 2021 – First home spring training game v. Orioles
  • April 1, 2021 – Phillies’ home opener v. Braves
  • April 2021 – ST for Double-A and Single-A begins
  • May 2021 – Opening day for Double-A and Single-A
  • June 25, 2021 – Close of the 2020 international signing period
  • July 11-13, 2021 – 2021 Amateur Draft
  • October 2, 2021 – Phillies clinch a playoff berth in Miami

The rosters and lists are up to date as of February 14th … 334 players in the org

Transactions (newest transactions are in bold print)

2/13/2021 – SS Alfredo Alderete assigned to DSL Red
2/13/2021 – RHP Daniel Mejia assigned to DSL Red
2/12/2021 – Jersey Shore activated LHP Ethan Evanko
2/12/2021 – Jersey Shore activated C Colby Fitch
2/12/2021 – RHP Andrew Brown assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – RHP Blake Brown assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – RHP Tyler Carr assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – LHP Jordan Fowler assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – RHP Kyle Glogoski assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – LHP Josh Hendrickson assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – RHP Sam Jacobsak assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – LHP Keylan Killgore assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – LHP Taylor Lehman assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – LHP Ethan Lindow assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – RHP James McArthur assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – LHP Erik Miller assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – RHP Jack Perkins assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – RHP Austin Ross assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – LHP Josh Tols assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – RHP Aneurys Zabala assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – C Jack Conley assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – C Nick Matera assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – 3B Dalton Guthrie assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – 1B Matt Kroon assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – 3B Luke Miller assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – 1B Madison Stokes assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – SS Bryson Stott assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – CF Malvin Matos assigned to Jersey Shore
2/12/2021 – Clearwater activated RHP Ben Brown
2/12/2021 – Clearwater activated RHP Jonas De La Cruz
2/12/2021 – Clearwater activated RHP Tyler McKay
2/12/2021 – Clearwater activated RHP Dominic Pipkin
2/12/2021 – Clearwater activated RHP Mark Potter
2/12/2021 – Clearwater activated RHP Andrew Schultz
2/12/2021 – Clearwater activated 3B Cole Stobbe
2/12/2021 – RHP Albertus Barber assigned to Clearwater
2/12/2021 – RHP Kevin Gowdy assigned to Clearwater
2/12/2021 – RHP Alejandro Made assigned to Clearwater
2/12/2021 – RHP Robinson Martinez assigned to Clearwater
2/12/2021 – RHP Victor Santos assigned to Clearwater
2/12/2021 – RHP Tom Sutera assigned to Clearwater
2/12/2021 – C Logan O’Hoppe assigned to Clearwater
2/12/2021 – 2B Nate Fassnacht assigned to Clearwater
2/12/2021 – SS Luis Garcia assigned to Clearwater
2/12/2021 – SS Kendall Simmons assigned to Clearwater
2/12/2021 – 3B McCarthy Tatum assigned to Clearwater
2/12/2021 – RF Carlos De La Cruz assigned to Clearwater
2/12/2021 – CF Keaton Greenwalt assigned to Clearwater
2/12/2021 – OF Hunter Hearn assigned to Clearwater
2/12/2021 – OF Hunter Markwardt assigned to Clearwater
2/12/2021 – LF Ben Pelletier assigned to Clearwater
2/12/2021 – CF Johan Rojas assigned to Clearwater
2/10/2021 – Phillies signed FA OF Matt Joyce to an MiLB contract with invite to ST
2/10/2021 – Phillies signed FA RHP Brandon Kintzler to MiLB contract with invite to ST
2/10/2021 – Phillies traded RHP Johan Quezada to Cardinals for cash
2/10/2021 – Phillies signed FA SS Didi Gregorious
2/08/2021 – Phillies signed FA RHP Chase Anderson

252 thoughts on “Open Discussion: Week of February 14th

  1. Thanks so much for all the investigation, Jim! Do you think there is going to be a team using BB&T ballpark in Williamsport, but just not associated with the Phillies?

    1. Yes. Williamsport is one of the teams that will take part in a development league for college players before and after the draft. Also, the MLB Little League Classic will be held there this year – Angels v. Indians on August 22nd. Unless, of course, it becomes postponed for COVID reasons. I don’t know if it is scheduled past this season.

  2. Really good work Jim. Hope things are good at home. You mention Jersey City as an affiliate. Did you mean Jersey Shore, or has something changed. Great shots of training facility. Missed last year and will not be going again this year to the Complex. God willing, will be back next year.

    1. Yes. I have to get over the name. It reminds me of a reality show my wife liked. I think a mental block pushes me to City rather than Shore. Gotta check the spreadsheets.

  3. Jim, these spreadsheets are tremendous. I can’t believe how much work you do to provide us this information.

    Looking at the organization, I am not too impressed on our field players. We are very weak and hopefully Barber can stock it back up again.

    I am interested in 4 pitchers; Singer, Parkinson, Warren and Hammer. I think these 4 will be able to help in the near future. Your thoughts?

    What is your thoughts on Simon Mussiotti?

    Just a Note to get everyone through the dark times on limited sports:
    Episode 18 new podcast for the 5 major teams in Philadelphia. Can you name them? Phillies near the end, little past the 50 minute mark. It’s a week worth of info so it sometimes takes a week to complete the listen. My son is from NC but he takes my heritage from South Philly.

    1. Thank you. The real work is designing the spreadsheet after finding the data. Upkeep is just tiresome.

      I think your impression of the position players would explain why I’m reluctant to trade Kingery and Segura for mid-level prospects.

      I think Singer, Warren, and Hammer might be able to help. However, I don’t get the feeling that Singer figures into their plans for whatever reason. Parkinson is a Paul Owens Award winner, but hasn’t the fastball that the Phillies like to see in a starter.

      Muzziotti reminds me of Carlos Tocci.

      1. Okay, so Parkinson is a “soft tosser”; why does that immediately write him off? How do other left handed pitchers similar to DP make it in the majors; i.e. Randy Jones, older Frank Tanana, Tommy Underwood, & other “crafty lefties”?
        I am always confused on the difference between other teams’ pitchers compared to ours?

        1. Denny, I don’t think the new age analytics allow for a soft toss lefty profile. Spin rates and swing & miss peripherals win out, unless the groundball rate is exceptional. But as we know, these trends tend to come around as they go around.

          1. Phillies wait until another teams “crafty Lefty” makes it big and then tries to get him on the market for a big payday.

  4. There is no jersey city team. It is the jersey shore is just a name change for lakewood. The team is still in lakewood.
    Jersey city is a very different place.

    1. Yeah, Romus. AJ Preller MVP this offseason. What a rebuild he’s authored in SD! (Puts MacKlentak’s to shame).
      I’ll be interested to see what he signs for, but for me, I’ve always felt Kela would have been a good fit for the Phillies’ BP. He’s got two plus pitches, has had success as a closer, and I don’t think is going to cost a whole lot (because of a 2020 forearm issue). IMO Kela >>> Kintzler. We’ll see what the price difference in the two is.

      1. Hinkie…for sure age is on Kela’s side.
        My guess Preller will sign him for two years in case Kela ends up ailing this year.
        These are the type of moves Klentak seemed reluctant to make over the last 5 years.
        Fortunately the new sheriff in town has more of a tendency to take on a risk.

  5. Jim – hopefully we’ll have a minor league season this year and be able to get back to following our minor leaguers on this site since that’s why we all came here initially. Lots of interesting guys to follow once the practices and then games start. Morales and Miller and of course Abel for me….

  6. Sergio Romo to the A’s. Pitchers and Catchers report Wednesday. We are getting closer to Opening Day! When do players get to be put on the 60 Day IL? SerAnthony will create a spot, which I think Kintzler gets, but I think there are 2 more needed for Miller and Matt Joyce.

  7. Thanks, Romus! I thought it was much sooner. So, KIntzler, Joyce and Miller will be at ST under MiL contracts with ST invites, and will get added, assuming they are going to be, when the opening day 40 man is given to the league?

    1. That is correct…at least in the pre-Covid days….not sure if they have made any changes to it since June 2020

  8. Most of players on the Jersey Shore roster which was last years Clearwater team will be playing for Reading this year. The current Reading roster has only 7 players.

    1. Well, not necessarily. Some will undoubtedly move up, but there are 15-16 guys on the 40-man roster who will return to affiliates, and some of the 10 NRIs are likely to stay with the organization, and there are already 25 or so players on the IronPigs’ roster.

  9. Ya it will be nice being able to go to Lakewood to see high A. I’m only 39 some minutes from Pigs and Fightns. So looking forward to going to Jersey!

    I love between Reading and Allentown off 78 anybody here live close by? Maybe we could do a road trip to Lakewood?

  10. Romus a question. Is that your real seat at CBP where the cardboard cutout was last Summer? If so, very cool. Just wondering. I always thought the guy doing the radar gun few years back had such a great seat. Seems to me the seats behind home plate would be awesome.

      1. Ok. Just wondered. CBP looks so nice on TV. It seems like there is lots of different people in those front 10 rows or so from game to game. Figure most are corporate seats. I went to a couple games long ago at the Vet. My wife’s Dad was an executive for ARCO. So once we sat like 10 rows behind 3rd and the other was in the ARCO suite. This was forever ago but still very cool for me. Cubbies were in town that weekend.

    1. Apparently “Fred” Jankowski stole home twice more than the entire Phillies team did in 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020

    2. Older Adam Hasely. TJ has struck out 236 times at 884 official ABs. Fast tho, could steal 25+ bases a season. 4 errors in total 2,055 innings but only 4 assists. Plays all 3 OF positions.

  11. Thoughts. Power Rankings have Braves 4, Mets 5, Nats 11, Phillies 18. Seems good for Braves but a little high for Mets and Nats. Say Phillies have basically same team as a year ago. If BP can improve think there is room to move up quite a bit.

  12. Don53, I just saw one that had us 14, which I thought was pretty good to start the season. Top 5 were Dodgers, Padres, Yankees, Braves, Twins

  13. I was looking at an old one. Just saw the cbs one that I think you saw, Don, and I think we are better than the Angels, Red Sox and Cubs.

    1. matt…Vegas insider….Phillies at sixth

      Los Angeles Dodgers…+200…2/1
      San Diego Padres…….+400… 4/1
      Atlanta Braves…………..+500…5/1
      New York Mets…………..+600…15/2
      St. Louis Cardinals………+1100….11/1
      Philadelphia Phillies……..+1600….18/1

      1. If things fall in place could see Phillies being 4th. Top 3 barring significant injuries are pretty locked in. Cardinals have a much easier division so that helps their cause. I am just not as high on the Mets as lots of others.

      2. To be fair, that site has the 4 teams tied at 18/1 (Phils, Cubs, Cincy, Milwaukee) and the Nats at 20/1. So a range of 6th-10th in NL. That seems right to me. We really need the expanded playoffs to come back. I hope it does along w the DH

        1. When I look at those odds, they really look exactly right to me – exactly. Washington might have a last gasp or two but is a team on the steep decline. In another year or two, I expect them to go through another complete rebuild and tanking while Juan Soto stakes his claim as the best hitter in baseball (he probably already is).

          Finally, the Marlins have some good pieces, including Sixto (soooo painful when you think the Phillies could have had him and signed JT as a FA this year, but I digress) and, in the long run, I expect Kim Ng will do a great job, but this year, they are nothing special at all and they will always have the same “nobody in the stands” challenge that the Rays have, although with a larger fan base and a better stadium.

  14. It was CBS. I think that is high for Yankees. Kluber and Taillon are HUGE risks. Kluber has been hurt quite a bit in recent years. Your arm only has so many bullets. Indians really used him hard. May be wrong but Mets are Mets. They almost always find a way to screw things up over the long haul. Padres are the team that just keeps adding and adding. Why are Twins that high? Did Odorizzi go back to them? Someone needs to remind ranking guys Twins have not won a playoff game in like forever. I still have big concerns with the BP. Just not sure enough has been done there yet.

    1. It’s shocking how bad the Twins have been in the postseason and I don’t think it’s a coincidence (well, maybe winning no games at all is, but not losing all these series).

      The moral of that story, I think, is that you really need some dominant pitching to win in the playoffs and as goods those Twins teams were, they never had a true #1 and it killed them – and it will again this year.

  15. Romus you are too funny. Remember lots of those guys. I think there was total of 7 or 8 kids form the North. All but Bruce Calderone from Chicago left. Calderone was just like the asst coach. He was so hard on all of us. Conley was really good. I misspelled Buddy Choat. No E. So there would be no relation with Randy Choate. I thought Craig Herr left but looks like he stayed. So funny you found that. Here is something you may know since you were in Montgomery. Kids in the South always said My Bad. We always said My Fault.

  16. I mentioned hits and misses on players. I see Jim mentioned that Phillies owe Kingery almost $20 million next 3 years. Looks like Scott hit the jack pot. I really hope he becomes an integral member but I have reservations at this point.

    1. It hasn’t worked out well so far, but the contract was a very good idea (and could still work out). The Phillies committed $23,000,000 (less than one Ryan Howard year) for 6 years of control over a player who looked to essentially everyone like he could be a first division regular or better. I want more of these types of contracts, not fewer. Now, maybe you want to wait until the guy has played for a year before you hand out this type of contract, but the basic concept of giving this type of deal was sound.

  17. Saw the Dodgers brought back Turner for 2/$34 this was Friedman’s dream scenario all along. Being able to build a sustainable farm and then when the time was right having
    the $ to shell out to keep the window open.

    They will be close to $13 million in a lux tax penalty this year and then that likely resets in 2022. The Phillies are projected to be 3rd in 2021 payroll yet the best ranking we have going into the season was 14 if I saw it correct SMH

    The two teams ahead of them Yankees and Dodgers and Mets are #4

    1. DMAR….Dodgers will need to pay Bellinger, Seager and Buehler soon…even in their final arb year they could command close to $20M each.
      LADs could stand to trim their salary for the future…..wonder what they would give to get David Price out from under their cap hit.
      Sox still owe half his salary, so he has $32M coming thru 2022……Dodgers may even pick up some of that for some relief if another team takes him off their hands..

      1. I think they have big money coming off the books after this season starting with Kershaw and Jensen’s $51 mil AAV

        1. With regard to Seager I’m sure Friedman would love to keep him but the SS market as it stands right now will be pretty flush after this year and they will be an attractive destination for the likes of Story and Lindor

        2. Kershaw will be back…guarantee…..not at current AAV…but at least at $15M for two years. No way they let their Ho /Franchise Face pitcher go to another team.
          Jansen will probably be gone or come back at 3/4s of his current salary

        1. DMAR…yeah…..but trade them Vinny @$4M for this year,(Jansen is no lock to repeat performances from his past) and maybe they pick up 25% of the rest of the remaining for the next two years, plus have them throw in one of their top ten prospects like pitchers Heeter or Miller
          Friedman is looking to trim payroll…and Phillies end up paying Price the equivalent of $10M AAV for two years.

          1. It’s not a horrible idea Romus I just don’t ever see Friedman make panic moves like that at least not with the bankroll of the Dodgers

            He doesn’t part with prospects that easily either especially if they are any good.

    1. Wonderful news, so happy for you and your wife! – now relax and enjoy spring training (socially distanced of course)

    2. Yea!!!!!

      And our prayers will continue. This time of thanks and joy.

      The best to you and your wonderful wife.

      We PhuturePhillies fans love you guys, even if we haven’t met in person.

  18. Kieth Law’s Prospect Lists for the NL East are out. I listed his top 20 Phillies’ prospects without write-ups in our Reader Top 30 article. Please talk about it (and our top 30) over there.

  19. jim, awesome news! Please send our best to your Wife, and to you as well. Being a family member going through that is also extremely hard, and it’s simply great to hear.

  20. Odubel was invited to ST. I am totally opposed to what the reports say he did, and domestic violence is an important issue and should be strongly dealt with, but I do believe in second chances, and would be hypocritical to suggest that the second chance happen elsewhere. I just don’t know how much of the Baseball player he once was still remains. I know there are going to be negative reactions to him, and I can’t quarrel with anyone who is not happy he is being given a chance here.

    1. Hah…they even used a comp of Sam Fuld for one of the prospects….Sal Frelick.

      Notice that LHP Anthony Solometo from Bihsp Eustace HS is not even in the top 50…Jon Mayo and Jim Callis/ rank him at 35 in their top prospects.

  21. just wait, v1. Dave Dombrowski is going to make his big trade in-season. I wonder, although it only matters to torture myself, if things would have been different had DD been hired right at season’s end. Would the Lindor and Carrasco trade have been made by him? I never thought we were in, at all, on Arenado, so I don’t aggravate myself about that, but I do believe that we will see a big trade coming our way.

    1. Yeah. He is excited to play in Arizona, home turf, in ST. If things don’t work out he may just stay there and continue in his construction business. He spoke to my older son about a construction business relationship in the future. Nowadays people can live on either sides of the country and be close partners.

      1. Well good luck to him whatever path he chooses.
        I think he has his health care taken care of now…..he has 82 service days, use to be a player needed 43 service days to get lifetime coverage.

        1. That is very true. Too bad he couldn’t hook on to buddies in management like Sean Rodriquez to get a 10-year pension.

      1. Denny…he can be a source of information and instructive uptake for the young guys like Marchan, O’Hoppe and Duran

  22. The 19 minor league invites will practice by themselves. But they could get to play in games. This is like spring training for LHV.

    1. Tony Watson is a very good signing. I feel very confident in our bullpen this year. As you know, an organization can win it all if a majority of it’s players have a career year. The Phillies have a team that could far if that occurs, high potential players having good years.

  23. I like that signing, and sets up some more competition. I have to think he makes the team. There will be some 40 man issues that need to be addressed. I wonder if ST ends with a 2 or 3 for 1 move to create 40 Man spots?

  24. BTW … the Phillies can officially move Ser-Ant’ny to the 60 day IL today so I wouldn’t be surprised to see them make the Brad Miller signing official this afternoon.

          1. Great finishing touches by Dombrowski…if in fact he’s finished. No big splashes this off season except for JTR and Didi, but these additions are the quality of good organizations. Aggressive without spending wastefully. How refreshing to have a guy who knows his way along the margins yet can go for the big kill when time and opportunity present themselves. If the Phillies are within playoff range at the deadline, hold your breath.

  25. Love the Tony Watson signing. A quality Lefty for BP. I encouraged patience with DD, and this off-season is definitely a Win, imo!

    I get that the Dodgers and Braves are still better on paper, and likely the field, but for 2 months on the job I give DD a strong A! Now let’s see it all come together on the field!

  26. I was skeptical about DD when he was hired, but he has made one solid move after the next.
    It’s been incredibly impressive. This is all very Gillick-like and just a huge relief. But it all makes you think once again – what the hell was Andy MacPhail doing here?

    1. Also, given how horrific the Phillies’ bullpen was last year, just having guys who are solid and dependable represents an enormous upgrade and I think they’ve done that and more.

      1. Andy and Matt together… many gaffes when you look back….hopefully Dave Dombrowski’s moves all pan out….on the surface they look good so far.

        1. They will not all pan out. That never happens. But if more plusses than minuses it will give the team a chance. Remember no one outside of Bohm really had a great year of the regulars. So hopefully some hits on the BP guys. Plus I think Miller can add to the bench. If a DH comes about sure he would be a fit there.

      2. I was thinking that there was a silverlining in last year’s BP being so bad. It enabled the Phillies to sign 3 or 4 guys to Minor League deals, that otherwise could have gotten Major League deals, probably because the players are confident they will make the 26. So we have more guys competing for spots, then they would have

    2. Can I still be skeptical Catch? Well either way I will be. What Friedman has done in LA is nothing short of remarkable and a new standard by which all GMs will be measured.

      1. You can of course be skeptical. I am. The goal is to operate like the best franchises in baseball and not repeat the more recent DD experience of developing a team that needed a rebuild when he left (that still scares me more than a little bit). We need to draft and develop talent, make all the right big and little trades (including under-the-radar steals) and sign the right free agents. The Dodgers have done it all and, quite literally, the 2021 Dodgers have a legitimate chance to be the greatest team ever- I am not kidding. The 2020 was on a pace to win 116 games and this year’s team could be as good or better. It’s unfathomable how talented they are across the board.

        The hope and prayer here is that DD gets the team to the postseason quickly and, ultimately, Fuld becomes another Friedman and gradually assumes control over time. That’s the dream and might even be the plan internally.

        But for now, I am just appreciating the raw competence of DD, the ability to judge talent, and the skill of building a team, not just acquiring players. Gillick’s greatest ability was putting together a TEAM, not just a bunch of guys. He was the one who identified Jayson Werth and acquired Blanton (a moved I ripped him for at the time), Moyer and Scott Eyre, among others. When something didn’t work, he always, had a Plan B, and a Plan C and a Plan D – and they were good plans.

        1. I’m cool with that…

          Wanna make sure we keep the bar where it should be and not allow the last 5 years of incompetence to remove proper expectations.

          I won’t hold against DD anything that happens this season. None of his moves would dig us any deeper. The real test of his mettle is yet to come.

  27. So with Watson and Miller further strengthening the BP and Bench today, it’s time for the players to step up. I have confidence.

    I’ll echo my mocked statement from couple weeks ago regarding CF….. I believe we’ll see Haseley or MM take a big step forward this year. Haseley is the safer guess but don’t ignore MM. (a “big step up” doesn’t mean all-star. It means earned, productive playing time.)

    1. Don’t expect to see Moniak in the majors this year before September. He needs a full year in AAA and yes hopefully he can improve there.

    2. JohnK….agree with you on Haseley….MiLB metrics similar to Utleys….now just needs to prove it.

      1. Thinking of comp players for those at SA. Conley the OF reminded me of Hazeley.
        Choat comp Mitch Williams.

      2. Can we hit the brakes on the Utley versus Haseley comparisons? First of all, Utley developed as a major leaguer as few have or will – he’s a big outlier. Second, his last year in AAA he was a dominant force and it was a full season. Haseley was good, but he barely played at AAA because the team was so thin in the OF.

        I like Adam Haseley, but he’s got a long way to go before he’s even a first division regular, let alone compared to a guy who’s got a good shot to go to the HOF.

        1. If you want to get excited about comparing some of our guys to Hall of Famers, aside from Harper (who’s roughly on that path already), focus on Bohm and Nola. Bohm hits to all fields and controls the strike zone like very, very few players his age. He has a chance to be an extremely special hitter if he continues to develop as he has.

          And Aaron Nola is fantastic – and I’m convinced we haven’t seen his consistent best yet. He’s the closest thing you’ll see to Greg Maddux. Just an amazing pitcher.

          1. Catch, I agree. I can see Nola putting together an even better year than ‘18, when his numbers were great but were aided by advantageous BABIP, LOB%, and Hr/FB%.

            2019 saw not only a correction of those metrics but also concerning spike in Hard% and BB/9.

            2020 proved ‘19 an outlier as he rebounded and his metrics came back to norms.

            Very importantly though his K rate skyrocketed. It’s been improving YoY but last year (albeit shortened) he fanned 33% (12.1k/9)!

            His improved Change may be what propels him to a Cy Young consideration. He used his changeup 50% more last year (27%, up from 18%) and it was effective.

            So now his arsenal is stronger than ever – strengths with 4Seamer, Curve and Change.

            The clinching factor though may be overall team performance. If the team is competitive I believe it’ll spur him to his best. Here’s hoping…

            1. Nola has two months that he needs to correct…June and Septembers…..remove the June 20 total games and 4.7 ERA and Sept’s 27 games @ a 4.3 ERA and his WAR would surpass Cole’s. His arm must tire in those two months.

          2. Agree about both Bohm and Nola.

            Nola at 27, already has 22.3 WAR according to baseball reference. The only active pitcher under 30 with a higher WAR is GerritCole. And he’s 29 with a WAR of 25.5

        2. Like I said………”MiLB metrics similar to Utleys….now just needs to prove it.”


          If you are going to split hairs…Utley spent THREE years in AAA…and to top it off, Utley’s last year in AAA he was also 25-years old.
          Out of necessity Haseley had to be called up at age 23 (2019-266/.324/.396) …Utley made his debut at 24 years old (2004—239/.322/.373).

          It is pretty obvious Haseley has a ways to go….but Utley was no sure thing in 2003 in his age 24 season.

          1. I’m not splitting hairs. Utley had a full AAA season with a .907 OPS. Haseley has only played 62 games at AA and AAA combined. And, again, Utley was an absolute best case scenario in terms of continuing his development a the major league level. Maybe one in 100 or 200 guys takes next steps as large in the big leagues as Utley did. I’m not slamming Haseley, but we don’t even know if he can be a first division regular. Utley offers no realistic glimpse into Haseley’s potential in my view.

        3. LOL you could have said pump the brakes hitting them sends you skidding off the road…

          I’ve seen Haseley a bunch of times in Trenton and my first look at Bohm Haseley was back in AA on a rehab. Haseley and Bohm were hitting 3/4 I believe that series.

          I’ve said this many times. The Haseley I saw in the minors is not the Haseley I’ve seen in the MLB. Maybe a glimpse or two. The MLB Haseley looks confused and lost in his approach.

          Hopefully he gathers himself this spring and proves he belongs.

      3. The big contracts in RF, C, SS, LF, 2B, and 1B should be able to carry the offense. Those guys plus Bohm should be able to carry replacement level production from CF. A poor record this year will not be the fault of CF.

        1. I remember when teams could carry a weak hitter in CF & SS and still be formidable. Teams like the Mets with Agee/ Harrelson, Orioles Blair/Belanger, Cubs Whomever in center/ Kessinger, Reds Geronimo/Concepcion, Yanks Rivers/Dent, etc.

  28. I think we might see Moniak earlier. He got his feet wet last year and other than a couple of gaffes handled himself ok. Maybe he can push Hazeley or the job himself. BTW I like Hazely and think he has a future. These are both high picks and it would be great if both develop.

    1. Barring injuries (Cutch?!?) I think either Moniak or Haseley will be gone by the trade deadline. I like Haseley’s athleticism and think his current trade value is higher than MM’s. My hope is to see Mickey develop into an above average CF, or LF by next year when Cutch is no longer here…but he would need to pop the ball more than he’s shown so far.

      Along with Moniak, I’m rooting this year for some high ceiling young talent to charge up the ranks. Besides, Dombrowski would have more to dangle should the Phillies be in position to acquire needle moving parts for a post season run.

  29. Some one please help me figuring out David Hale’s contract. I understand it is for $850K and it is guaranteed. Does he have minor league options and if he does, would he have to pass through waivers? If another team claims him, is that team responsible for said contract? If Hale is DFAd, are the Phillies still responsible for the total amount of money or is it prorated from when he is released? When you are so close to the luxury threshold, every dollar counts.

    1. Ciada, Hale has no options remaining. The Phillies would have to DFA him to get him off the roster. Any team can claim him as he passes through waivers. I don’t think he has enough time to declare free agency. Since he has a major league contract (guaranteed), any team that claims him would only be responsible for the major league minimum of $570.5K. The Phillies would be responsible for the remaining $269.5K of his contract.

  30. in regard to the bottom of the 40 man who most likely falls in that area? I am hoping that at least 2 or 3 of the Minor League deal guys prove worth keeping. I am not nearly as up to the moment on these areas as some of you are. Appears since most of the NRI guys are pitchers with exception of a few would more pitchers be in danger of being removed. Romus mentioned to me other day team tries to keep pitchers, catchers, infielders, outfielders in a similar number at most times. I had thought 24 pitchers on current seemed a bit high.

  31. Looks like the Padres are all in on Tatis Jr at 14/$340 which appears to be a sub $25 mil aav through his age 36 season.

    Let’s see if the Nats and Soto follow suit

    1. Padres are spending now.
      Tatis was not even a FA until after the ’24 season , so they buy out 4 years of his arb years and tack on 10 more

      Rizzo will need to do some creative work on Soto’s LTC and also Turner, he is a FA after ’22….Scherzer however comes slightly off after this season, so there is leeway there but understand he has deferments for another bunch of years.

      1. Hard to believe they got that kid for an aging James Shields SMH. Granted that deal was made in June 2016 when Tatis was just 17 and hadn’t yet played a game but still.

        We didn’t have much in the way of pitching but do you think a Jared Eickhoff at that time would have been more attractive than a James Shields? Charlie Morton maybe but I think he went down before that deal was made.

        Hellickson made 32 starts that season and pitched to a 3.71 ERA

        1. DMAR…..Shields did however have a lot more MLB experience than Eickhoff with over 130 MLB wins under his belt… and the WSox were looking for a solid rotation piece at the time. Would they have given up Tatis for Jared Eickhoff?
          He was ranked 30th in the international market in his J2 2015 signing year …and only signed for $700K….maybe.

          But we had a new GM who really did not think outside the box at the time.

          The time frames:
          Eickhoff comes to Philly -July2015
          Helllickson/McWilliams Trade—-Nov 2015
          Morton Injury—-April 2016
          Shields to WSox—-June 2016

    2. When I think about the Nats, I think about the Phillies, circa 2012 – I think they are very close to crash and burn mode. They may do okay this year and perhaps even next year, but they are a team built on pitching and their pitchers are getting old fast and they don’t have a good farm system. They are going to be bottom dwellers in the division again very soon.

      1. Don’t think the Lerners really care. They have arguably one of the best players in baseball and he’s only 22. A few seasons removed from a WS will buy Rizzo some time and does anyone in DC really care.

        I seem to remember even when they way were on the rise they didn’t draw all that well.

        1. Good, I hate the Nationals – there’s almost no team I want to see fail more than them.

          Do you think when the stadium is empty they will finally allow people from our area to buy tickets on-line (they had blocked ticket purchases from our area – seriously) so we can go down there and take over their crappy ballpark (it’s like a giant AAA stadium) again?

      2. Agree with you, catch. I see the Nats on a year-to-year decline.

        For me, the Braves are still the top team in the NL East. The Mets or Phillies (they’re close) are the the nest two teams. The Nats are the fourth best club in the division.

        Hinkie NL prediction:

        Dodgers 108 wins
        Padres 102 wins
        Braves 92 wins
        Cardinals 91 wins
        Phillies 87 wins
        Mets 87 wins
        Brewers 86 wins
        Cubs 80 wins
        Nats 79 wins

        1. Hinkie, as talented as San Diego is, there’s still something very Mets-ish about the organization. Yes, Preller has been aggressive while on the hot seat. I’m not convinced that the front office is that sharp, however. Doubt the Padres win more than 95 games. The Cardinals are the class of the central. The Braves are the team to beat in the east, but I have doubts they win more than 90. Our division may be the most black and blue from beating each other up. I say the Phillies are good bets for 2nd place simply with an improved bullpen which was the difference between playoffs and no playoffs in 2020. It’ll be a 3 team race with Atlanta’s edge by a nose. Nats are aging and injury prone in the arms department. Fish will exceed expectations and challenge Washington for 4th place.

          1. mark … I think going forward teams from all leagues are going to use the Eagles (instead of the Mets) when measuring horrible front offices.

            ICAMI … Howie Roseman drafted Jalen Hurts (who I loved in college) in the second round of last year’s draft. That set off a series of events that led to the team’s franchise QB (Carson Wentz) to demand a trade. Roseman just dealt Wentz to Indy for a 3rd round pick this year and a second rounder in 2022 (that could turn into a first round selection depending on snaps Wentz takes next season). That’s all fine … but … according to reports, the Eagles will now draft a QB with their first round pick this spring. Why not finally pick a HR threat WR at 1-6 and go with Hurts this year. If he stinks up the joint, the Eagles will have a top pick in 2022 + whatever the Colts pick ends up being to nab a top signal caller next spring.

            Don’t get me wrong. Wentz owns some of this debacle. But Roseman should be charged with malpractice.

            1. Agree, Hinkie. Howie is a Lurie pool boy turned 2017 executive of the year myth. Dollars and sense make a good contract numbers guy, but not a good talent evaluator or GM. Roseman pulled off one of this city’s alltime great snow jobs on the owner, media and fan base. Build him a statue, why not.

            2. I am now officially a Colts fan. Listening to Indy radio and buying Colts merch. Turning off Philly radio.

            3. Denny…Eagles play Colts -AFC-South- in 2022….I am willing to bet you will have had a change of heart by then……even Mike Trout will come back to his end zone seat.,

            4. By that time I will be totally engrossed into the Indianapolis Colts culture. Currently watching all their games from last year to get their team down and listening to their sports programs. Much more calm than WiP.

            5. Wentz is horrible. Started regressing in 2019 (and don’t tell me he had a good year in 19’, he didn’t). It’s weird to hear people think he’s going to be so great in Indy, he won’t.

            6. As a new Colt fan, I’m looking forward to Wentz as my QB. Good luck with Howie Roseman building my old team.

        2. I think the Braves are the class of the division, but if the Mets hit on all cylinders, they could easily be a 92-96 win team, whereas I find it hard to imagine a scenario where the Phillies could win 90 games – they’re just not that good. The Mets have 7 of the top 100 players in baseball, some guys who didn’t make that list are also quite good (for example, picking up Carrasco, who could be a 2 or 3, as almost a throw-in in the Lindor trade was huge) and if Thor comes back and resembles his old self they could be even more dangerous.

  32. DMAR, I am waiting for that trade where we give up an aging player and get back a young prospect who turns into someone really good. A much better chance that DD makes such a trade. The more I look back at the Klentak regime, the worse it was. Anyway, I am actually excited to see how ST pans out. I think we have bona fide Major League BP arms, I have not written off Kingery winning the CF job, and I am a believer in Rhys Hoskins. Guys actually have to play, but I am looking forward to seeing them do so.

    1. I’m excited too Matt. I remember 93 could be something like that season for us with a bit of luck

  33. Not sure if I should post this here or in the Reader’s top 30 thread.

    1. They differ on a few from other sites.
      The one that strikes me is Casey Martin.

      29. Casey Martin – SS 35…..30Hit 45Power 50Field 50Arm 70Run

      Can somewhat, but not entirely understand about his hit@30…with so much swing and miss in his soph year….but that frosh year he was spectacular for his age in the SEC, against those more experience pitchers…..peripherals…..BB-9%…..K-22%…slash- 345/418/.556… a frosh. whoa.

      He decided to go LA and EV after that…but if he can get back to an approach like his first year then we could be looking at a real top 100 prospect.
      All the other grades….seem about 5 to 10 points lower than what I have read from other sites….except his run tool, which seems to be 70 across the board.

      1. mark829…exactly….and the 20-year Baylor has played very little, 12 PAs over the last two years…Martin has a built up resume from the SEC
        But Baylor is still a tremendous athlete with plenty of potential from many if not all reports so far written about him

      2. I was just talking about Baylor here the other day. That said I would not have him that high nor Martin that low

        Still no one brave enough to love Marchan as much as I do. Can’t wait to see him in the MLB with another team. DD would do well to get us a stud LFer for him

        1. Yankees would love to have him catching their staff….and preventing all the wild pitches and pass balls on their usage of the breaking balls.
          Cashman would probably give up Stanton, and of course that contract, for Marchan 🙂

          1. Romus, NYY reportedly has had interest in Velasquez in the past. Wonder how much they would give us for him in a package with Marchan.

    2. This is fantastic. The write-up on Baron Radcliffe is eye opening. Plus, Plus raw power (up to 120 MPH EV – that’s Giancarlo Stanton territory) and plus speed. Yup, he has contact problems, but apparently has plate discipline. Love that they are taking chances with high upside players. Who the heck wants a system full of guys whose ceiling is as a back-up or second division regular? You don’t progress as a franchise with those types of players.

  34. Padres trade for Yu Darvish, Blake Snell and Joe Musgrave, and gave up none of their top players. We can argue about the quality of anyone they did give up, but the guys mostly regarded as their top 5 prospects are still there. We had no deal like that under the previous regime. The Mets get Lindor and Carrasco and the Cards get Arenado and give up very little. I am waiting for the signature move, along those lines, from Dombrowski. The difference is, I fully expect that from DD, while I had no faith in Klentak.

    1. matt…they still have some medium to big tixs on their payroll in the pitching dept…..Snell…$40M over next three….Darvish-$60M over the next three….and Musgrave probably in the low teens next year in arb3 , then a FA after ’22 and finally Clevinger….$12M for the next two years and then a FA in ’23….I think Preller is counting on Gore, Morejon, Weathers, Baez et al and the other prospects to step up when a few of the older vets reach free agency and they do not want to pay them…or he can wheel and deal like he has been doing using some tier two prospects as trade chips.

  35. Doctor Jimmy and Mister Jim (as Pete Townshend would call you) – Thanks for the info on David Hale’s contract. I imagine a team would pick him up seeing the cost is only $280K which is better for the Phillies than paying him all of the $850K for him to pitch at LHV. If he is claimed, it will still cost the team $571K. Could be a lot worse: Red Sox paid Rusney Castillo $49M from 2017-2020 and Allan Craig $21M to play in Pawtucket (now Worchester).

    1. The Red Sox sprinkled in enough championships I suppose to escape any major criticism of their oft bad bets.

    2. I remember a few seasons back I went to see my first ever Iron Pigs game. Enyel was on the mound facing Castillo. I turned to my buddy who lives up there but is not all that into baseball and asked him how much he thought this guy batting made

      He said well this is the minors probably not that much maybe a few hundred thousand LOL

      Needless to say he was astonished when I told him the kid cashed/will cash $70+ million in checks

  36. Rosenthal got a good contract from the As…$11M…did not think he would get that much, especially from all teams, the As.

    1. As Sheffield tweeted they paid a guy $11 million for 1 year to trade him mid season for someone making $500K they can control for 7

      It’s a classic Beane hedge bet…

      1. Now if the As are still in it come July/August….they may hang onto him, though you never know what they will do..

  37. Matt Gelb points out that the Phillies could reinvest up to $23.5M altogether on Anderson, Moore, Alvarado, Bradley, Kintzler, Watson, and Bamboo Brad with the $25M AAV for Arrieta. Nice work, DD!

  38. BREAKING: JTR fractured thumb recently, in cast for 2 weeks, hopefully ready by opening day….yikes!!

  39. Happened to my son before who is catcher. Probably got handcuffed by low inside pitch awkward to catch and probably hit thumb part of glove. Son wore thumb guard for several years after that. But they eventually eschew them.

  40. Matt Gelb article on The Athletic today…

    How Phillies’ player development changed in 2020, and the tests that await in ’21

    Two points…

    ThePhillies used their network of scouts across the country to identify places for the farmhands to train or scrimmage.

    The Phillies, according to multiple player-development staff members, were impressed by the caliber of pitching they saw during instructional league camp in the fall. They were excited about some of the specific, pitching-based remote instruction that led to improvements.

  41. Mets sign Walker 2 years 20m. Wish we would have went in on one more backend starter and one with some upside like Walker. Oh well, still have confidence this team wins more than most think. I’m going with 90 wins for their win total.

    1. I would prob play with the order a bit throughout the season but for me, if all breaks right, this would be my line up . . .

      1. Cutch
      2. Segura
      3. Harper
      4. JTR
      5. DiDi
      6. Hoskins
      7. Bohm
      8. Herrera (I know I know)

      1. Oh G Eric I sure hope I never see that LU in 2021…I love you man but that is awful and not because Herrera is in it.

        I’d hope to see Herrera in LF platooning with Cutch but Bohm has to be a top of the order bat for me.

        1. With Cutch, the big thing is whether he can even show average speed. Assuming he can, I’d have the line-up like this.

          1. Cutch
          2. Bohm (if Bohm continues to develop, at some point I might flip him and Harper)
          3. Harper
          4. Hoskins
          5. JTR
          6. Didi
          7. Segura
          8. Whoever is playing centerfield
          9. Pitcher – #@$#$%!! – can’t wait to see the DH again.

        2. I am so inclined to put Kingery in CF full-time and see how it goes. It might be a Craig Biggio event.

        3. So what would your line up be? Bohm hasn’t played a full year at this level and pitchers are going to adjust. Putting him anywhere 3-5 is putting a lot of unneeded pressure on him when you have other players who have hit in those spots and have been successful in those spots. Wanna him him 6th that fine but I’m not slotting him 3-5 until I see more than 1/3 of a season from him.

          And platooning w cutch? If he’s healthy, he isn’t going to be a platoon player. Just not happening.

          1. I mentioned this a couple weeks back…since the Phillies don’t have your prototypical leadoff man (if one even exists anymore what with the new profiles of today)…I would lead Bohm off. Take any pressure away which might compel him to try to go deep in his early major league development, allow him to spray the ball and maximize his eye for the strike zone. As much as Cutch has held his own until now, I’m not feeling him in the leadoff spot other than as a default option.

          2. Yeah I would bat Bohm 1st or 2nd…

            It doesn’t worry me that he hasn’t played a year the kid can hit

            1. Lead off? Or 2nd?
              As you said in your comment, I hope that never happens. Feel like you’re taking away opportunities to drive in runs by putting him in the 1 or 2 hole, esp leading off.
              Nothing wrong hitting 7th and working his way up to 6th as he proves himself as the season goes on.

    2. I think the Braves and Mets are both likely to get to 90 wins. I can’t see 3 teams from the east getting there which means something would have to significantly go bad for either of those clubs for the Phillies to get 90 wins.

      The first could be this Walker signing. 2/$20 is a bit rich for him even with his potential upside. For years clubs have been waiting for him to click and it never transpired.

  42. Saw he was hurt most of last year. He was pretty good in 19. Still think pitching most likely will be issue for Phillies.

    1. Actually the injury was a blister on his throwing hand…..and 3 of his four games were average -to- good outings, he only was able to pitch 14 innings, so it really was not enough to get a good evaluation…..the one game vs KC was the clunker that threw his metrics out of whack……and the one where the line drive off Alex Gordon’s bat caught him flush in the chest and he had to leave and was out for 2/3 weeks.

  43. Ok. Just saw in one of write ups that he only had 4 starts. Not sure article even said reason. He is kinda of a Jeremy Helickson type. Finds ways to keep you in games if solid defense and some offense. I have liked him when I have watched. He is not going to over power hitters.

        1. My wife said her Mom got a headache on 1st but good on 2nd. Hers was like 10 days ago. Good luck Denny. I am wanting to go see Grandkids play sports again.

  44. Lineup – I’d actually bat Haseley first. His style of putting the ball in play could work well at the top if he can get his OBP to 350 which I think is possible. Platooning him with Kingery is fine also if the healthy and real Kingery returns. Leave him at the top but he has to cut down on his Ks. Hoskins at 2, Harper, JT, Didi, Bohm, Cutch and then Segura 8th.
    I also think this would be a great time to sign Hamels to a minor league deal and let him come along slowly.

    1. Signing Hamels to a minor league deal is actually a good idea.
      Does not put any pressure on him nor the team for that matter, for him to return as a shining knight on the white horse to rescue the staff.
      Gives him the time to work his way back at his pace.

  45. Kiley McDaniel of ESPN put out his Phillies Top 10:

    1. Spencer Howard, RHP, 50 FV (44)
    2. Mick Abel, RHP, 50 FV (108)
    3. Rafael Marchan, C, 45+ FV (121)
    4. Bryson Stott, SS, 45+ FV (146)
    5. Luis Garcia, SS, 45 FV
    6. Francisco Morales, RHP, 45 FV
    7. Mickey Moniak, CF, 45 FV
    8. Simon Muzziotti, CF, 45 FV
    9. Adonis Medina, RHP, 45 FV
    10. Johan Rojas, CF, 40+ FV

    You can see that the first four are ranked in his Top 150. His next four are JoJo, Simmons, Baylor and Martin.

    Couple of tidbits:

    “Moniak probably won’t live up to the hype of being a No. 1 pick, but he has solid average tools . . . and will be a big leaguer of some consequence.”

    “Medina . . . there’s enough here for a back-end starter.”

    “Rojas is my breakout pick for the system . . . has plus raw power, speed and arm strength in a center-field profile”

      1. “Morales has a fastball/slider combo comparable to Abel’s, but he is two years older and his changeup and command are both fringy at best, so shorter stints seem likely.”

        1. Ok….on the one hand an Abel comp–FB/SLDR– is quite good for the 21-year old Morales….on the other hand, seems to think he will be a Vinny-4IP guy or perhaps a reliever in the long run.

        2. I keep getting the closer vibe for Morales. Nobody seems to want to abandon his prospects as a starting pitcher, I get that. But at what point in his development do the decision makers decide to acclimate him to the bullpen if he’s suited for it?

        1. ….and likes piña coladas…gettin’ caught in the rain…not much into health food…but into champagne

  46. “MLB and the MLBPA announced Friday the results of the first round of COVID-19 testing results at spring training, which found 13 positive cases among 4,336 tests (0.3 per cent).
    …. conducted by an independent lab in Utah as part of the mandatory intake screening process…….all MLB active roster players, non-roster invitees and Tier 1 and 2 club staff members are required to complete the process — which includes a five-day at-home quarantine, a contactless temperature check, a diagnostic PCR saliva test, an antibody test and a self-quarantine until the results of the PCR are reported — prior to the upcoming start of full-squad workouts. Of the 13 positive novel coronavirus cases, nine were players and four were staff members. Eleven teams had at least one individual test positive.”

    1. Romus, apologies, did MLB require that all people attending perform this COVID testing prior to arriving at Spring Training? In other words, these are the cases that occurred before ST interactions began, and so there is no contact tracing among team members and staff?

      1. I(heart)PP…..from what I have read all have had it done before Wednesday…assume last week or over the past weekend.

        Contact tracing?
        I do not know how that works with MLB….Jim may know.

  47. I saw the other day that the Seattle Seahawks had no positive tests during season. That is unbelievable. Hope lot of the same or similar can happen for baseball teams. 13 to me seems like a good start. Believe NBA was really high numbers when players came back,

  48. listed their top 800 fantasy players in the ultimate FWIW post. Phillies are well represented in the top 218 with 11 players, nearly half the big league roster…

    16 Bryce Harper
    22 Aaron Nola
    45 JT Realmuto
    101 Zack Wheeler
    109 Alec Bohm
    150 Rhys Hoskins
    156 Didi Gregorius
    189 Archie Bradley
    196 Jean Segura
    197 Andrew McCutchen
    218 Zach Eflin
    …then a serious dropoff well into the 300s.

  49. Joe’s starting 8 is already set it looks like:

  50. Our old buddy here on PP, Michael Schwimer cashing in..$$$.. on his idea:

    “…… Tatis Jr. signed a massive 14-yr, $340M contract Padres, which made it the third biggest contract in baseball history. Aside from paying California taxes, not all of that $340 million will go to Tatis. When he was just a teenager playing Single-A baseball, he signed a contract with Big League Advance, (BLA) a firm that invests in young athletes. According to BLA, the firm spread out $26 million among 77 minor league baseball players in 2017, and that included the Padres superstar. Players like Tatis then agree to give up anywhere between 1% and 12% of future MLB earnings. That has now came back to bite him in the butt as Tatis’s deal was for 8% of his earnings, which would mean $27.2 million of this contract will go to BLA.
    “When we signed him he wasn’t considered a Top 40 prospect,” Big League Advance CEO Michael Schwimer said about Tatis. “At the time, talking to investors, the amount of money we were offering him was a sizable portion of our bankroll. But we trusted the model.”

    1. #1. Fernando Tatis Sr made almost 18M as a big leaguer. I’d have to believe Jr’s dad would have given him a better rate that 8% 🙂 . Seriously, you’d think he’d be a guy who wouldn’t have to fall victim to this scam.

      #2. I know Maikel Franco signed a deal (early in his career) with Schwimer’s company. IIRC, he agreed to give up 5% of future salaries. Big League Advance didn’t get quite the same ROI with Franco that they’ll get with Tatis.

      1. Hardly, but he’s very smart and has done well for himself. He (Michael) is also involved with gambling – I’ve seen him on TV football betting shows. It’s pretty weird to see him in that context, but he’s extremely sharp.

        1. I can’t remember who it was running the site then but I distinctly remember that person saying that Schwimmer was not your typical baseball player. That he thought and spoke differently than everyone else. His deal with Tatis is akin to walking up to Jobs and Wozniaki in their garage and offering to invest in their company.

          1. Except nobody knew Jobs or Wozniak – people knew Tatis, Jr.

            I really cannot comment on the deal itself as I do not know the terms. However, I do remember that Maikel Franco made a similar deal and I think it’s going to work out in Franco’s favor.

    1. Can someone dig up the stuff Schwimmer wrote on here discussing how people were taking advantage of minor league players by getting kids to ask them for their autographs, and the adult would have all minor league autographs hoping one turned into Mike Trout.

  51. Those Schwimmer articles would be very interesting reading now considering that some folks consider what he’s doing worse than predatory lending.

  52. I also noticed how it seems like the majority of their players are Latin players. I see a Real Sports with Bryant Gumble investigatory story coming. Those Schwimmer articles could be used as cannon fodder.

  53. Just looked at article by Zolecki on possible Phillies roster. All things looked fairly consistent though he does have Odubel in his list of 5 outfielders. Then he finishes with the BP. His first comment is “there are very few locks here”. Oops. Bet if one went back to projection last year a similar comment may have been made. Hope I am wrong but still think BP is going to be the biggest issue going forward for this team.

    1. I actually think there are many locks in this bullpen. Bradley, Neris, Alvarado, Kintzler, Watson, and Velasquez are all locks if healthy. That leaves two spots for Brogdon, Romero, Coonrod, Suarez, Hale, Rosso plus a few more guys on minor league deals if they can find more 40 spots to fight over. Hale looks to be out to me while I could see the other 5 who all have options swapping places all year. 40 spots will be key so Medina and Jones have a good chance of coming up at some point too.

      1. Agree……Hale seems to be the one as the odd man out.
        IMO, he would need to be the best relief pitcher in the spring, hands down, in order for him to solidify a spot.

      2. Pre-ST………..Brogdon and Coonrod. the other 4 don’t do a thing for me, but injuries always produce opportunities for others.

        1. Suarez and Romero might fight for one spot as the 3rd LH with Coonrod and Brogdon fighting for the other. Lots of good LH hitters in the division so 3 lefties would really help.

  54. Regarding Schimmer. There is always going to be those who look for making the easy buck. The fact most are Latin players really should be no surprise. Those who prey always do so on the most vulnerable. I do agree that Tatis probably should have had better advice from his Dad but who knows how it played out.

  55. I don’t know if anyone has mentioned this, but Falter appeared in Fangraphs article this week as a prospect who took a big step forward in instructs during 2020 – with a large increase in velocity. If that’s the case, he could soon crack our top 10. The article listed him as an under the radar breakout candidate.

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