Open Discussion: Week of February 21st

Last Tuesday, the Phillies made their 31 non-roster invites (NRIs) to spring training (ST) public.  This year they made a distinction between ST and a Mini Camp (MC) that is being run simultaneously.  Regardless of their designation, 75 players are allowed in Clearwater plus rehabbing employees.  Since Tuesday, there have been a few additions and one subtraction.

The 40 players on the 40-man roster receive automatic invitations to ST.  In addition, the Phillies extended invitations to 12 players as part of their signing minor league contracts, the 12 external NRIs – pitchers Neftalí Feliz, Brandon Kintzler, Bryan Mitchell, Iván Nova, Héctor Rondón, Michael Ynoa, catchers Christian Bethancourt, Rodolfo Durán, Jeff Mathis, infielder Ronald Torreyes,  and outfielders Travis Jankowski and Matt Joyce.

The 19 players who were invited to MC, internal NRIs, include – pitchers Tyler Carr, Enyel De Los Santos, Julian Garcia, JD Hammer, Jonathan Hennigan, Jakob Hernandez, Erik Miller, David Parkinson, David Paulino, Zach Warren, catchers Edgar Cabral, Logan O’Hoppe, infielders Darick Hall, Bryson Stott, Luke Williams, and outfielders Herrera, Jhailyn Ortiz, Johan Rojas, and Matt Vierling.

Then, on Wednesday the 17th, the Phillies announced the signing of Brad Miller to a major league contract.  To make room on the 40-man, Seranthony Dominguez was bumped to the 60-Day Injured List (IL).  Miller’s signing did not affect the 75 player limit in Clearwater.  However, later that day, they announced that they signed LHP Tony Watson to a minor league deal with an invite to ST.  That’s 72 in Clearwater.

There is little distinction between ST and MC.  Both are receiving the weekly major league stipend of $3200 and receive meal money on road trips.  Today, I learned that the player count in Clearwater reached 73 when SS Luis Garcia was invited to MC.  He accepted and is already here.  (This is the coolest news I’ve heard all weekend.)

The Phillies running payroll is $188,159,462.  This includes twenty players under contract (including Dominguez) plus an estimate for the seven pre-arbitration 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 $198,272,282 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 $11,727,718 under the tax threshold.  (see spreadsheet)

My estimates are likely low.  Some of the 7 players who don’t have salaries yet will undoubtedly make more than the league minimum.  And, a couple are likely to be replaced by a couple of NRIs.  Brandon Kintzler and Tony Watson receive $3M each if they make the major league roster.  Ivan Nova, Hector Rondon, and Matt Joyce would receive $1.5M.  Depending on who makes it and who gets optioned or worse, the payroll and CBT could go up by as little as around $1M or as much as $2.5M to $5M.

I have a controversial opinion that several of my friends seem to think is valid.  I’ll share it here.

When a new guy like Dave Dombrowski takes over an organization, it is not unusual for him and his staff to NOT be invested in the players and prospects already there.

Most of the free agent signings that have occurred over the past month seem to point to a lack of confidence in the top levels of the organization.  If I were a player or family member of a player in Lehigh Valley, Reading, and maybe even Clearwater in 2019, I would be concerned regarding my future with the Phillies.

In addition to acquisitions, ST and MC assignments raise an eyebrow.  The guys at ST are on the 40-man, external NRIs, and one internal (C Rodolfo Duran, there are never enough catchers).

Some of the guys NOT invited raise an eyebrow. (Mine, anyway)

I think we would all be shocked if anyone from MC made the team.  I would be equally shocked if half these guys aren’t gone by 2021.

This is just my reaction to acquisitions.  It is not based on anything I’ve heard or think I know.  Just my reaction to “my guys” being blocked by more outsiders.

It’s no secret how I feel about “my guys” (and, just for the record, they’re ALL “my guys”).  I’m afraid that the 25th spot on the roster may be a battle between Brogdon and Romero, with the rest of the roster looking like this –

  • C: Realmuto (if JT’s not ready, Knapp)
  • INF: Hoskins, Segura, Gregorious, Bohm
  • OF: McCutchen, Haseley, Harper
  • SP: Nola, Wheeler, Eflin, Moore, Anderson
  • RP: Alvarado, Bradley, Neris, Kintzler, Watson, Velasquez, Coonrod, Romero/Brogdon
  • Bench: Knapp, Miller, Kingery, Quinn
  • The 26th spot depends on the length of the BP and bench.  If BP, the other of Romero/Brogdon is safe.  If bench, then Chatham.

If both Kintzler and Watson make the team that requires two roster moves.  Everyone expects Hale to be one of them.  I’m not so sure.  He is, after all, a Girardi guy.  If Joyce makes it, that’s another move required.  So, a couple more young pitchers/players for cash may loom in our future.  Oh, Hale, Neris, Anderson, and Quinn are out of options.

The above is my speculation of what I think the Phillies might do.  Not what I would do.  If this is close, the Phillies’ average age will be will roughly 30 years and x days.  I don’t think we’ve been that old in a while.  Like, since 2014.

Michael Schwimer wrote here over a decade ago.  I read most of his stuff yesterday.  If you really are interested, I’ll post them on links off the menu above.  All I need to see are two requests in the comments section.

He’s a very well-spoken young man, went back and graduated from UVA when he didn’t like his draft position after his junior year.  One of our former writers is among the social media mob that is railing against Schwimer.  I spent a good portion of my afternoon researching the practice of “lending” practiced by his group.  I strongly suggest you do your own research and form your own opinions rather than accept the opinions of others on social media.  It seems that most of the baseball people I follow I would label liberal democrats.  I would expect them to be against this practice.  Me, I’m not so sure.  My research points me in a different direction.  I read them for their baseball smarts, not their political views.

I mentioned last week that I was reading some of James’ earliest articles on prospects.  This is from his first article on December 1, 2006.

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

Key Dates:

  • February 21, 2021 – First full squad workout
  • February 28, 2021 – First spring training game @ Tigers
  • March 1, 2021 – First home spring training game v. Orioles
  • March 24, 2021 – Opt out date for Brandon Kintzler
  • 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 21st … 338 players in the org

Transactions (newest transactions are in bold print)

2/17/2021 – Phillies placed RHP Seranthony Dominguez on the 60-day IL
2/17/2021 – LHP Tony Watson assigned to Lehigh Valley
2/17/2021 – Phillies signed FA LHP Tony Watson to an MiLB contract w/invite to ST
2/17/2021 – Phillies signed FA SS Brad Miller
2/16/2021 – RHP David Paulino assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – C Jeff Mathis assigned to Lehigh Valley
2/16/2021 – Phillies signed FA C Jeff Mathis to an MiLB contract w/invite to ST
2/16/2021 – LHP Erik Miller assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – C Edgar Cabral assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – RHP Tyler Carr assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – RHP Julian Garcia assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – RHP Enyel De Los Santos assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – C Logan O’Hoppe assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – 3B Luke Williams assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – SS Bryson Stott assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – LF Matt Vierling assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – Phillies invited non-roster C Rodolfo Duran to ST
2/16/2021 – 1B Darick Hall assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – RHP JD Hammer assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – CF Johan Rojas assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – LHP Jonathan Hennigan assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – LHP Jakob Hernandez assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – LHP David Parkinson assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – LHP Zach Warren assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – CF Odubel Herrera assigned to Phillies
2/16/2021 – RF Jhailyn Ortiz assigned to Phillies
2/15/2021 – Phillies signed FA OF Travis Jankowski to a MiLB contract w/invite to ST
2/15/2021 – RHP Brandon Kintzler assigned to Lehigh Valley
2/15/2021 – LF Matt Joyce assigned to Lehigh Valley
2/13/2021 – SS Alfredo Alderete assigned to DSL Red
2/13/2021 – RHP Daniel Mejia assigned to DSL Red

118 thoughts on “Open Discussion: Week of February 21st

  1. Great point Jim, but from another perspective, might it be good always not to be tied to people just because they looked good when you brought them into the organization? If, of course, you have confidence in the talent recognition skills of your current team to keep the best potential players?

    1. I think the new management is an opportunity to get new eyes on the organization. Every so often a review of “inventory ” is needed and an “inspector” with new perspectives provides an open mind to the real product on the field.

  2. Jim, you mentioned “eyebrows” raised due to some players not invited; who are the top players, in your opinion, not invited?

    1. When I look at who was invited I wonder why not …? Josh Stephen, Jeff Singer, Colton Eastman, Trevor Bettencourt, Ethan Evanko, Abrahan Gutierrez, Daniel Brito, Jonathan Guzman, Austin Listi, more catchers (Conley, Fitch, Matera), if Luis Garcia why not Simmons, and what about Kevin Gowdy, Abel, Martin Radcliff, Lindow, Glogoski, CDLC, Pelletier, even Randolph.

      I know I got carried away, and I understand there is a 75-player limit, but a couple of these make sense to me even within that limit.

      1. The ABL bunch…..I assume Simmons and Randolph are back from Australia….along with Edwards , Burke and Wingrove?
        Perhaps quarantined?

  3. On Schwimer…..did not realize his company has ‘loaned’ money to 344 minor leaguers over the years……more than likely 90% or better never have made it, but they get to keep the thousands of dollars they ‘borrowed’ under their contract with BLA… some have labeled Schwimer a predator of sorts preying on the yuong minor leaguers, many who are Latin, , and others have said he has does and provides a service to many who will never make it.
    I lean with him aiding those who need it.
    The Tatis contract may be an anomaly for that company.

    1. WIthout knowing all the ins and outs of Schwimmer’s company – outrage at his company should really be directed at MLB for treatment of minor leaguers that even provides a space for Schwimmer’s company to occupy.

      1. Agree. While it appears to be a bit slimy on the surface, is Schwimer’s enterprise much more than a kind of insurance company for futures in the professional sports talent market? How many Tatis’s will they benefit from? Besides, it’s not like they aren’t laying some money of their own on the line for less likely stars, or aren’t they?

        1. What if a company offered college grads $100K today for 10% of their career earnings when they earn more than $100K per year? Is this model so different? Wouldn’t some college kids jump at this offer? Some may never reach $100K (excluding inflation impact) while others would view it as a way to survive until they’re making good money.

  4. Interesting that Johan Rojas is in Mini Camp. I saw a video of him hitting yesterday and he had a sweet opposite way swing (for an out) and got fooled on breaking pitches. But he seems to have a high upside and with a good spring he could put himself on the radar.

    Ranger Suarez is having issues getting visa into the country and will only training to be a reliever instead of stretching out as a starter when he arrives.

    Most likely to lose roster spots (IMO): Hale, Sanchez, and Quinn. The later 2 would be via trade. Outside of them I can’t see the team moving anyone else. If someone goes on 60 day DL that would open up a roster spot for at least 2 months, but we would rather everyone healthy.

    1. I think Chatham goes before Quinn. This team needs Quinn’s speed on the bench. Kintzler, Watson and Joyce (Herrera?) will require 3 spots without many other options barring a 3:1 trade.

      1. Chatham will probably not go anywhere…..he is under the umbrella of a Dombrowski/Hazen draft choice…2nd round 2016.
        David D brought him here for a purpose.

  5. Jim that is kind of the way things seem to go when new management takes over in most cases. I guess they do not want to fail because of someone else. Another OT point in that direction. I coached for over 25 years middle school and high school athletes. When a new kid moved in they were always given more attention than those who had been in the program for years. I am sure it is still the same way today. Everyone thinks the grass is greener on the other side. I get your point on guys being buried. But this has gone on for years.

  6. Wow how time flies. While I often love to romanticize about the past I’m very grounded in the present. Especially at my age.

    In my lifetime I’ve witnessed two WS Championships and even attended a WS game in 1980 with my father. My Phillies fandom career is complete. Now its just about enjoying the game of baseball even if at times I don’t recognize it as the sport I fell in love with.

    Being here is a trees from the forest kind of thing. The prospects are the trees so getting to know them and getting to follow them on their journey is at times rewarding. I get why you do this Jim.

    If ever you find yourself frustrated or angry (self included) you’re doing it wrong lol

  7. Zolecki seemed to hint in his article that he thinks Odubel may make team off of that MC group. Romus, good points about many never rising that far. But the loans are the hope of those few who may make it big. I may be wrong but think I have heard it mentioned that no one at the time of their signings thought Acuna or Sota were going to skyrocket to the Majors like they did. Conversely sure there are others who went the other way. Also I am not saying they were in the program. Just an example of if you take a wide net you may reel in some big hits.

  8. This is just a general question. If guys know well in advance there may be visa issues why do they not start the process much sooner so they do not get caught in this situation? Seems like these are guys who have done this in prior years so they should have some idea how system rolls. Again I do not have any knowledge of how any of this works. I would just think that if I wanted a chance to be a starting pitcher for a MLB team I would do anything in my power to get that chance. Maybe this is all out of their hands with the various governments.

  9. Jim I just went back and took quick look at Zolecki’s prediction. He has Odubel as one of 5 outfielders. He has both Brogdon and Romero on roster. Coonrod is left off of his.. You always mention to pay attention to the local guys on these kind of things. Makes perfect sense that they will be more clued in on what is happening.

  10. I was really excited to read Keith Law’s observations about Luis Garcia’s potential to bounce back from his struggles with the Lakewood promotion. I would imagine an invite to minicamp is further evidence that the org feels good about him. I really feel like he’s got a chance to blow up this year.

    1. Would be nice to see some of the younger Latin kids break out…Garcia, Rojas, Nava et al
      Brito did well this winter in South America …he is another who could emerge…though he is a little older than the others.

      1. Would love to see Morales either a.) break out as a starter, or b.) settle into a back-of-the-pen role and fast-track to the majors.

        In that order.

      2. Yeah….seems many other teams have their young Latin guys break out….especially in our division…..maybe even a Jhailyn will surface to the top as was expected 5 years ago……now is the Philies time.

        1. My pick for a Latin American player to break out and shoot up the prospect charts it would be Johan Rojas or Yhoswar Garcia. But Johan has a really high ceiling.

    2. Omitting Cornelius Randolph from minicamp is further evidence of how the organization feels about him. He must be wondering about his future in baseball but he made some money as a first round selection.Sorry it didn’t work out for the young man and the Phillies.

      1. Releasing him is a definite possibility. As Jim said, he wasn’t drafted by the current regime.

  11. I find this pretty interesting. The Rays and Dodgers scouting departments are so much better than everyone else:

    1. should have started with this tweet

      1. Speaking of scouting … college baseball season began in earnest this weekend.
        Jim … I have some notes on prospects. Not sure if you want to start a new draft thread, have me go back and find the old draft thread, or use the open discussion thread.

            1. Speaking of freshman … how about this kid playing for Grand Canyon University?

  12. Quinn’s seemed to be a favorite or Girardi every time he spoke about his tools. Would assume he will get every chance to stick

  13. Loved Beerleaguer. Those were the days. I liked the way the most recent posts displayed at the top.

    1. Weitzel was too good at his job and we lost BL to his career at Comcast (fair enough!). Nothing like it — or the baseball we watched — since.

  14. Hoping that Kingery, who reportedly came to camp in great shape, and slimmed down by 15-20 lbs,, can regain the tools we were so high on him about. He had a really nice line drive swing, was excellent Defensively, and I don’t recall too many naysayers when he got that contract. Clearly, he was not good last season, but I am still very hopeful, and I have not ruled out his chances of claiming the starting job in CF. I think that he and Rhys, and of course the BP, are the keys to success this season.

    1. Agree Matt. The same two that I, and many of us, were so excited about 3 years ago, can still deliver on their promise! Both have flashed strong production but just not consistently, and both have revealed low floors we haven’t wanted to believe. This is their time now! With bigger names around them and their feet more than wet, this needs to be their year!

      1. Jim, Thanks. Very informative for those of us who were not on this site then.

        I don’t know how you became the editor of PhuturePhillies, but you are clearly the ideal person. You do a great job and I cannot imagine anyone else replacing you.

        I hope you enjoy publishing and editing PhuturePhillies as much as we all enjoy reading it and posting to it.

      2. We’re all fortunate you ended up with the keys. What a wonderful job you do!

        I was more wondering what happened to the guy — he was all in on baseball and prospects then disappeared entirely. Hopefully he’s ok.

  15. Roman Quinn was 12-12 in SB in the shortened season. He’s 20-20 across ‘19-‘20. Even if just for defensive replacement or a spark on the basepaths, Girardi will want him on the roster.

    And if a coach can unlock improved patience or a better eye, a higher BA or OBP would bring more PT and an exciting accelerator to an already strong O!

    I believe Haseley (and Kingery) will take a step forward this year, but I’m hoping Quinn does too. He actually stayed pretty healthy last year. Maybe he becomes an invaluable part-timer, a key ingredient of a winning team.

    1. Quinn was drafted in 2011. He’s been playing professionally for ten years. I can’t imagine a light bulb is finally going to flash on. What we’ve seen from him is what we’re going to get.

        1. Mookie Betts that draft,
          ….Phillies had scouts on both Roman and Mookie.
          Where it not for soft tissue weaknesses in his body. and the annual break downs….Quinn could be that guy now….the tools were certainly there

          1. The same draft in which the Phillies took Larry Greene when Jackie Bradley Jr. was such an obvious pick (and went one later to the BoSox).

            1. rocco….whoa….maybe that development behind and adjacent to the CVS on Broad and Hartranft.
              Eagles former coach Marty Morningweh use to live over in that development..

            2. I cannot believe those numbers. When I was six, my parents bought a house in Packer Park. It was back in 1963 when the development was first built. We lived at 1521 Forrestal St. I have since been exiled to Spokane, WA.

      1. Didn’t say he’d become a star. But I believe he can be better than the .213/.285 of ‘19-‘20.

        His totals in minors were .280/.355 and in ‘17-‘18 in majors he hit .261/.333.

        I believe it’s a reasonable upside that he can perform similar to ‘17/‘18 or even a tad higher. And if he does, then he may gain a larger part-time role and add to the O.

      2. When I was a little boy and started to realize Santa wasn’t real I still went on believing for a few more years.

        Partly because I thought I would get less presents…

      3. I don’t know about that. I can never remember a position player prospect who had such crazy and constant disruptions in his development time. Given that he never seemed to play more than 65 games or so in any minor league season (and often many fewer games), it’s a miracle he made it to the majors at all. And then, finally, he’s healthy, and COVID hits and, guess what, it’s a 60 game season again (you can’t make this stuff up).

        So, given the foregoing, I’m not sure we know entirely what Roman Quinn could be. But even if he’s just a slightly better variation of the same guy, he has a lot of value in a non-DH league, so I see why they’re holding onto to him for now.

        1. For the record I am not opposed to having Quinn on the 26 man roster. I’m just not counting on him nor am I looking at him as part of this teams future as a contender.

          Haseley IMO has more upside as an every day player I go into the season wanting to see if that is true. Therefore I run him out there every game thru June.

          Cutch is not part of the future with all due respect to him. If I intend on getting Quinn some reps it will be in LF.

          Kingery is a dilemma. His best position is still 2b but hard not to cement Segura as the starter there. Again I have doubts he is an everyday MLB hitter but I need to find that out this season unless a moving trade offer for him comes to me.

          DD and Girardi won’t share their opinions but I’m sure they have them. We’ll get a sense of those opinions probably in the last week or so of ST.

      4. Agree. It is a shame that someone has not been able to get him to go to the left field side of infield. He might have close to a 50% on base if he did. Then take advantage of the SB.

    2. Yep, I have to agree with Jim! The Quinn you have seen is the Quinn he is. While his stolen base success is excellent, you can’t steal 1rst base.

      1. Well, you can. It’s just kinda situational and not counted as stealing.

        Plus they actually introduced the rule in the Atlantic League a couple years ago where you can ACTUALLY steal first base. So who knows, maybe that shows up in MLB some day. Not soon enough to benefit Quinn, though.

        1. I remember in school you could have a pinch runner. He stood on the other side of home plate from the batter. When the batter hit the ball, the other guy took off. Ahhhh, the good old days.

    1. That’s a pinch I don’t want to see. Quinn was moved off SS 17 games into the Threshers 2014 season when JP Crawford arrived.

      The ONLY time he has seen at SS since was during a 24-4 blowout on August 16, 2018. He was part of a double switch in the eighth inning.

      Quinn entered the game as a PITCHER in the 7th inning. He was knocked out in the eighth and was replaced by SS Scott Kingery (who had earlier replaced Asdrubal Cabrera). Quinn stood at SS for 4 outs and had no chances at the position.

      The manager? Everybody’s favorite, Gabe Kapler.

      Quinn’s career FPCT at SS, .902, 61 errors in 149 games.

  16. Signed in 2008 as an amature free agent, I think we gave up on Willians Astudillo too soon. Its just majestic to watch those locks gently flowing thru the air as he runs out a triple or inside the park home run.

  17. I am one of those who just loved the Idea of Roman Quinn. Good contact, super fast, outstanding Defensive CF. I just think that was all it was, an idea. I root for all the guys, and I hope he has success. But, I don’t think there is much there, and I was particularly disappointed in his Defensive play. Matt Gelb has a really good article on Kingery in the Athletic today, and the need for Scotty JetPax to reappear. I know some of you don’t lobe the nickname, but the point was that the team wants that guy, line drive hitting, gap hitter, taking extra bases, using his speed, and playing excellent, fast twitch D, to win the CF job. He saw that his reaction time had slowed, so got contact lenses. He realized he was physically off because of Covid and then back and shoulder injuries. He knows he tried to become a HR hitter. So, I am rooting for him to be that guy again. Maybe another case of talking myself into something, but I have not given up on him.

    1. matt13….2017 Reading affected him.. adversely…..the HRs were coming Fast and Furious 18. His approach at the plate changed after that….became pull conscious.

  18. Just read article. Hope Kingery can get back to what he does best. Seems he has the right idea now. We will see if he can succeed. Do think weight loss may be a benefit.

  19. Thought for discussion:

    I was looking at the NY Mets rotation and saw the name David Peterson as their#4 starter and he is a lefty, made me think immediately of our David Parkinson. When I reviewed minor league stats they are somewhat similar and Parkinson is a tad younger and needs some AAA experience but I would not rule this kid out. Let’s follow this guy closely.

    1. The thing about Peterson is this … he’s a former #1 draft pick who put up monster numbers his junior season at Oregon (100 IP, 140 K, 15 BB). That’s not to say Parkinson can’t end up as good/better … but … the Mets have a reason to give Peterson every chance to succeed.

      1. Minor league stats, especially for pitchers, can be so misleading. Until his last year in the minors you’d never have paid much attention to Jacob deGrom – and now look where he is.

        1. One reason for that is because up until his last season at Stetson he was a shortstop….and even that last season in college as a pitcher, he was unspectacular as a pitcher with an ERA close to 5…. but with plus velo

          JACOB deGROM, rhp, Stetson..Mets -Rd-9, 272nd pick
          New to pitching, SS only in 2009; FB 92-94 w/+ movement; began year as SS/closer, ended as team’s ace

          The Mets had to slowly nurtured him along as a pitcher so he came out late to the show…..

  20. The Phillies have shown recent interest in Jake Odorizzi, according to player agent outlet Jon Heyman (so let’s not put much stock in that happening…right, Jim?).

    Adding such a #3 upgrade to this rotation would put the club over the luxury tax threshold, barring a trade involving significant salary coming off the payroll.

    And sign me up for the new and improved Jetpax revival tour! Time for better coaching and development to take effect, along with a healthy and fit Kingery.

    1. mark8:29………IMO, they sign Jake Odorizzi…..Dave Dombrowski trades Vinny and his contract…..more than likely for a low value return.
      That will help ease $4M worth of the Odorizzi contract for this season.

  21. I really enjoyed reading about how McCutchen wants to “play up to his contract”. I’m sure lots of players feel that way upon signing a big contract. They want people/fans to know that they are thinking about being worthy of the money involved. I’m sure Kingery feels that way and David Robertson feels lousy that he couldn’t (due to injury) live up to the contract.

    1. It will be interesting to watch and see if a new system unfolds. In the past we saw guys like Cutch make peanuts (relatively speaking) compared to their production. So the model was pay for past performance.

      Now the Tatis Jr contract shows us a path forward from that.

      PEDs are mostly out of the game now so one would expect the money to flow on the front end of a career as opposed to the backend. How the MLBPA navigates that is going to be fascinating to watch.

      the owners won’t go willingly rest assured! Like it or not they write the checks and assume the lions share of the risk.

      We all know that service time manipulation is how owners reduced costs with a wink and a nod but now that one guy named Mather shot them all in the foot with his foolish statements its going to be a bloody battle for them.

      But still they have the bigger pile of chips.

  22. A couple of days ago, as requested, I added the Michael Schwimer Posts to the menu above. I forgot to announce it. If you haven’t noticed, it’s between Transactions and Writers.

  23. Poll…..So, which of these contracts do you believe was the shrewdest investment from the team perspective?

    LeMahieu/Yankees …29.34% (4,327 votes)
    Ozuna/Braves ………..28.43% (4,192 votes)
    Bauer/Dodgers ………..20.75% (3,060 votes)
    Springer/Blue Jays ….11.53% (1,700 votes)
    Realmuto/Phillies …….9.95% (1,468 votes)
    Total Votes: ………………………..14,747

    Interesting….many think Phillies may have spent some ‘stupid’ money.

    1. Good one Romus! 🙂
      I would agree that the team got some greater degree of discount (vs expected market value) in each of the other 4 deals compared to how Phillies did with JTR. Truth is we paid him very well and pretty much in range that most expected. I hope we don’t end up considering it stupid. Only Time Will Tell. (Asia)

    2. Barring a catastrophic injury such as the one Posey suffered JT’s contract should age well.

      At the end of the day all of these contracts were pretty darn good for their associated clubs. Only two team changes here as well. Bauer was a great fit for the Dodgers and their window/chance to repeat.

      Springer’s deal is the type of deal a team like the Jays needs to make with the core of young players they have to make that leap into the playoff contenders.

      1. DMAR….going strictly by WAR calculations (approx $8M per WAR)…he produces a total of 15WAR or over, the next 5 years, he was well worth the contract.

        1. No doubt it was far south of the numbers originally being speculated so it worked out. Or at least it should.

          The only deal I saw this season that made go “whoa” was the Hendriks deal.

          1. Yes the Sox up the ante with him…but they are going for the division and whole ball of wax this year, so hope it works out for them.

            I have to find out if Fangraphs still uses that ‘$8M per WAR’ equation……with the reduced pandemic economic issue now, that may have changed.

            1. I’m pretty sure I just saw Brian Kenney use that figure the other night and he’s pretty much a fangraphs disciple..

            2. DMAR:
              Hah…just saw Dan O’Dowd 5 minutes ago….analyzing the Pujols/Angels contract age regression breakdown.
              The new number they are using today on the shows is $7.5M per WAR.

              So at that figure….JTR’s contract and for the team to break -even…would require a 15.3WAR over the 5 years from JTR.

              IMO…..I can see him doing that….dang, he may get 3/4 of that in the first three years of his contract.

            3. LOL I love Dan O’Dowd. I can’t believe he hasn’t got another job in an FO somewhere. I would have loved it if he joined the Phillies as president. He oversaw a lot of really great drafts in both Cleveland and Colorado.

              He’s very frank and reflective on his mistakes as well.

      2. I feel pretty good about the first three years of the JT Realmuto deal – the last two years are a complete mystery.

        Buster Posey is not an anomaly. Catchers tend, statistically, to fall off a cliff after age 32 or 33 although the exact time that happens varies significantly. If you study catchers, this pattern occurs again and again and again and it also happens to catchers that people viewed as being “athletic”. If you want him to last, don’t wish for him to catch 140 or 145 games a year. 130-35 with some appearances at DH and first base would be fine and could help extend his career.

        But, would I have done this deal? Yeah, I think so. He certainly is an excellent player for now and at least the immediate future and is a fantastic team leader.

        1. 125 games behind the plate with another 20 games at 1b/DH should keep him fresh. 3 game days off per month with a good defensive catcher like Marchan would work well.

          1. Haha I’m above that. I say use him up 145-155 a season until he can’t go. The cost is sunk so might as well.

            I mean you signed him to that deal because you want to win now right? You’re not thinking 4-5 years out if you’re Dombrowski. Marchan is a dilemma and gives you really nice depth behind JT

            Is he worth more as insurance or what he could bring back in a trade.

            1. They signed him to that deal because I want him to be good for at least 4 of the seasons. If you wear him out by year 2, that makes no sense. You don’t use him up by having play 150 games any more than you use up a good starting pitcher by having him throw 140 innings in a start. Makes no sense and, if he’s broken down by September he’ll do you little good in the playoffs.

    3. In regards to Phillies contract with JT, at one point it was predicted he would get near $200 million. So the Phils did well when compared with that. Now for JT he did well with one of the top contracts of the offseason especially since $115 million is nothing to sneeze at.

    1. Last year we met Tyler Carr and Taylor Lehman in our hotel’s hot tub.

      Lehman is 6’8″ and Carr is 5’10”, both agreed that Carr throws the hardest of the 2 and is one of the harder throwers in camp. Interested in seeing them.

  24. I am disappointed the first game isn’t being televised. I know it’s early but it isn’t like csn has other programming that is exciting! It’s a Sunday, and I wanted to watch. Minor gripe, I know, but how many can watch Monday?

  25. One thing that I’m really looking forward to, aside from watching the Phillies again, is how the prospects do this year, if there will be any big surprises from guys that perhaps have been looked over due to struggling in the past but now that many haven’t played in a minor league game since Sept 2019, maybe they can surprise. Players that maybe got healthy or just spent a ton of time building up their tools, getting stronger, etc…

    I get the package every year so it will be a ton of fun to watch them this year after such a long break. I try to go to at least a Lakewood game or two so hopefully can get to a game in person if rules allow of course.

  26. Does Tyler Carr have a shot to be mlb reliever? Don’t remember talk of him. #’s where great in 2019. Are there any 5′ 10″ or less successful pitchers anymore?

    1. Went thru all the Depth Charts of all the MLB teams and found 24 pitchers under 6′. Sonny Gray is 5’10’ and Stroman is only 5’7′. Including Gray there are 8 at 5’10” & 1, Deivi Garcia for the Yanks is 5’9″.

      At 5’10” noted are Austin Pruitt, Kirby Yates, Greg Holland and Brandon Bailey.

      At 5’11” noted are Sergio Romo, Tyler Chatwood, Johnny Cuerto, Aaron Loup, JoJo Romero and others.

      In the past I can remember Roy Oswalt, Billy Wagner, Tim Lincecum, David Robertson, Pedro Martinez, Fernando Valenzuela, Ron Guidry, Whitey Ford, Bobby Shantz, Scott Kazmir, are under 6′; and I am very sure there are a lot more.

  27. Openisng Day we will meet at Romus House and Do drive by of the Stadium at 12and then a barbecue

  28. Ok.
    Maybe I’m nitpicking but why in Spring Training the Phillies start 5 hitters today against a lefty pitcher? I noticed that during the year it’s team platoons most of its bench players and go lefty/righty at pinch hitting, why do they not follow this pattern in ST to give proper determinants to making the Team?

    1. Denny…Joe did say the other day they will not start evaluating for another few weeks. Maybe he is just trying to experiment and change things up from the norm.

          1. Heard theat Joe G went to the mound with a plane ticket for Nova when he pulled him in the first inning. Lol.

            1. Well, the Spanish translation for nova is “not going” (from Google). I guess that means “no going north with the Phillies”.

              The name is supposedly why Chevy (?) couldn’t sell the car in Mexico. I heard a looser translation is “doesn’t go” or “doesn’t run”.

            2. Hahaha Jim, that is priceless. Then I guess Nova is a Lemon; we should have got a CarFax on him before inviting him in.

              Before they took him out I was complaining that they should not take a rookie’s spot in Spring Training, then they brought in Hennigan and he imploded. Now I am very confused.

      1. Equally likely that veterans weren’t required to make the bus trip. I think teams are only required to bring two starters to away games – Bohm, Haseley, and Kingery fulfil that requirement.

        1. I was bemoaning that a lefty was pitching for the Tigers and we have many lefties in the lineup. Then Haseley takes him deep and Moniak hits a double over the centerfielders head; so I was very happy with those results.

  29. That is funny Denny. Hope Joe is not in mid season form on mound trips by Opening Day. Hope you are right Romus.

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