Open Discussion: Week of May 30, 2021

Poor Roman Quinn.  Dude can’t catch a break.  I don’t want to speculate on what this does to his Phillies or major league career, but I hope he recovers and is still able to play next season.

As for the Phillies …


Well, maybe our expectations were a little too ambitious.  Plus, it’s hard to win when your three best players have lost time due to injury. Nobody expected the rash of injuries that have befallen the Phillies (and other teams).

I can’t even think of anything to incite debate.  Have at it guys.

(Oh, I think Jankowski is the correct move.  I would have made this move earlier.  And, Girardi explanation is BS.  Jankowski will fill Quinn’s bench role.  Moniak should play every day.  He will play every day at Lehigh Valley.)


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

Key Dates:

  • June 25, 2021 – Close of the 2020 international signing period
  • June 28, 2021 – GCL season begins (through September 12th)
  • July 11-13, 2021 – 2021 Amateur Draft
  • July 12, 2021 – DSL starts (through October 2nd)
  • July 30, 2021: Trade Deadline (4 p.m. ET)
  • Oct. 3, 2021: Regular season concludes

The rosters and lists are up to date as of May 30th … 305 players in the org


Transactions (last week’s transactions)

5/30/2021 – Phillies selected the contract of CF Travis Jankowski from Lehigh Valley
5/30/2021 – Phillies placed CF Roman Quinn on the 60-day IL, achillies injury
5/29/2021 – Phillies activated C J.T. Realmuto from the 10-day IL
5/29/2021 – Phillies optioned C Rafael Marchan to Lehigh Valley
5/29/2021 – Phillies sent LHP Matt Moore on a rehab assignment to Lehigh Valley
5/29/2021 – Lehigh Valley transferred LHP Rob Kaminsky from the 7-day IL to the 60-day IL
5/29/2021 – Clearwater placed LHP J.P. Woodward on the TIL
5/29/2021 – Clearwater placed 1B D.J. Stewart on the 7-day IL
5/28/2021 – RHP Ramón Rosso cleared waivers and outrighted to Lehigh Valley
5/28/2021 – RHP Carlo Reyes assigned to Jersey Shore from Clearwater
5/28/2021 – RHP Alejandro Made assigned to Clearwater from GCL East
5/26/2021 – Phillies placed SS Scott Kingery on the 10-day IL, concussion
5/26/2021 – Lehigh Valley placed 2B Luke Williams on the TIL, Olympic Team
5/26/2021 – Reading placed RHP Joel Cesar on the 7-day IL, right elbow strain
5/25/2021 – Phillies placed RF Bryce Harper on the 10-day IL, left forearm contusion
5/25/2021 – Phillies signed FA RF Jorge Bonifacio to an MiLB contract
5/25/2021 – Phillies activated CF Roman Quinn
5/25/2021 – Lehigh Valley transferred LHP Kyle Dohy to the Development List
5/25/2021 – OF Jorge Bonifacio assigned to Reading
5/25/2021 – LHP Nick Lackney assigned to Jersey Shore from Reading
5/25/2021 – RHP Aidan Anderson assigned to Jersey Shore from Clearwater
5/25/2021 – C Freddy Francisco assigned to Clearwater from GCL West

202 thoughts on “Open Discussion: Week of May 30, 2021

  1. What I propose would likely be considered too radical for the Phillies FO, but I would give 3B to Miller and send Bohm to LHV to play LF. I would revisit the decision around the All Star game and go from there.

    As many on here have been saying, myself included, Bohm is a butcher in the field. All reports suggest that Bohm has a great work ethic, but his effort has not translated into results at 3B, maybe it will in LF. But right now, he is killing the team both at the plate (53 OPS+ with a league leading 12 GDPs) and in the field (the defensive metrics are just too ugly and too disturbing for me to write – after all, this site has a PG rating). It is time to move him to a less challenging, and defensively less valuable position.

    I believe it is a win-win situation. The time in LHV gives Bohm the opportunity to clear his head while hopefully have success at the plate. If it turns out that he can stand in LF and not constantly embarrass himself, then the Phillies can bring him back and have him share time between 3B and LF. If his play is decent enough, the 2022 outfield might be Bohm, Herrera, and Harper. As for 3B, maybe the Phillies sign a Trevor Story in the off season and then juggle the parts to see who moves to 3B.

    This season might be lost (although I am not ready to throw in the towel just yet) and if so, with the move at least the Phillies gain some valuable insight for 2022.

    1. Sorry, but this is an overreaction. Believe it or not, it’s just turning June and there’s lots of time left this season. They’re not pulling the plug on Cutch yet or on Bohm as a 3B yet. Things are snowballing on Bohm, for sure. I’m not sure however that AAA will help him. He needs to relax and improve his at bats first, and the fielding will likely improve then also. Yes they’re connected, which everyone should realize if you see how frustrated he is. The thing is, he has hit many balls hard but right at people. That’s baseball. He needs some dink hits to get himself going. I’ll bet he’s never struggled before, ever.
      As for the team, I agree with Jim, injuries have hurt badly and while they’re not the only reason they’ve played badly, who expected this team to win games without Harper, Didi, or JT for long stretches? The only good news is that they’re certainly not out of it yet and Harper should be back soon, plus no one in this division appears likely to win much over 90 games.
      Enjoy the Sixers’s run…. haha

      1. 1) Brad Miller at 3B full time would be uglier than anything we’ve seen so far. Bohm runs circles around Miller in the field.

        2) Odds of Alec Bohm snapping out/working through his early season funk are much better than Bohm learning to handle a completely foreign position down in AAA in a month or two.

        Like I said last week … this is rock bottom for Alec Bohm. He is not this bad a fielder or (obviously) a hitter. Chalk it up to a sophomore slump. It’s probably more mental at this point. Maybe he could use a day or two mental health break.

        On another note … this is a pretty big week for the Phillies. They need to win at least 4 of 6 vs the Reds and Nationals. Believe it or not, the rest of the NL East is have their own problems. Winning five of six could land this team back in first place by the end of next weekend.

        1. Why so negative on Miller at 3B? He is as much of a 3B these days as anything. The reality is he has not played enough anywhere outside of the middle infield. He came up as a shortstop with below average range whose value was with the bat. He has played 378 games there and 177 at the less demanding 2B where he has graded out as average. He has only played 46 games at 3B with only 30 starts though. The numbers there are not great, but they are in a tiny sample size spread over a number of years.

          Isn’t it reasonable to think that a middle infielder can become a decent 3B as they age out of the positions that require range? I am not sure he’ll ever be even average at 3B, but I am also not sure Bohm will ever be better than below average.

          It really is something they should think of short term.

    2. spin…you are spot on with Bohm to LHV, but IMO, not as a position change just yet, that can wait until the off-season if they actually decide to go in that direction with him. He will also know when he needs to move off third base….if he is embarrassing himself and hurts the team, he will ask I am sure to be moved.
      But he needs to relax and have the pressure taken off him and get some swings in at LHV and just have some fun playing baseball.

      .

      1. Hey Romus. Long time. Hope all is well.

        I also support Bohm to LHV. He’s still a young player and 2+ weeks or more at LV will allow him to refocus his approach. Not to mention, BMiller needs to play every day, and certainly against every right-handed SP. He’s the 2nd best hitter on a team that struggles to score runs. He needs to be the lineup.

        1. Steve…..yes it has been a long time, and since you have been on here…and hope you are well also.
          Brad Miller….his bat is plus, his glove is the issue facing Girardi.
          If the rest of the team had gloves, then Miller’s defensive inadequacies can be lived with….but virtually every player, except maybe JTR and believe it or not, Doobie in CF, are below average defensively.

  2. After a rainy weekend , thinking back over my years as a Phillies fan the only three eras of success they’ve had were the whiz kids (I vaguely remember the end of that run), the Bowa,Schmidt run, and the Rollins, Utley , Howard era. All were fueled by homegrown players. Looking at our minor league system now I doubt I’ll see another period of success….The only possible way to juice the system seems to be trades for “prospects”. However, as I look back I can recall very few trades that brought the Phillies prospects that turned out. The big trades I recall – Rolen, Schilling, Hamels brought back little in value – not withstanding I’m not sure we have any tradable player of the stature of those three. Where do we go from here?..

  3. Brad Miller is not an outfielder, yet they have him playing RF and LF to get his bat in the lineup. He is not a 1B and definitely not a 3B. He is a below average 2B which is his “best” and most natural position. I feel for him. He’s trying his best to be a good teammate.

    The weekend wasn’t as bad as it could’ve been. The Phillies had Friday off. If not. they probably would’ve gotten swept. At this point in the season they are not a very good team that is playing poor fundamental baseball. They need to play well this coming week.

    1. Not only this week, but the month of “June” looms big! I suspect, (and hope for sure) that by the 3rd week we get some sense of direction from DD. As sure as you have stated what Brad Miller isn’t, Bohm isn’t a 3rd basemen and you can take that to the bank. This is not a good team/organization. JM ought to read this site and sense the frustration with this team.

  4. While believe Bohm needs to be moved from third it probably can’t happen at least till after trade deadline and that’s if Phils are out of it and make moves. I’m sure Dombrowski is aware of this jumbled mess and has a plan and knows this year ain’t happening

  5. Now that I vented, wish you all a nice holiday and ask you remember those who “gave all” that we can enjoy pastimes like baseball. To all you vets, “Thank for your service and sacrifice”!🇺🇸

  6. Thank all who served this great country, I wonder Romus have you ever been back to Iwo Jima, or Pearl Harbor where you served during the war?

  7. Skeet – thanks for putting the appropriate perspective on today. Indeed, to all those who served – thank you !

    Despite all the points above being valid – defense, hitting, etc. Recall that they faced probably the best team in baseball in these last two games. Not only are Rays good they are lucky. A
    15-1 record in their last 16 games – one lousy hit by J. Choi off Wheeler creates a tie for the bullpen to blow – but that must have only been their 3rd hit in the game !!!! in the 7th inning.
    And there isn’t one player on that Tampa team that is a star – go figure ???? Clearly they have found the holy grail – and on a $67 million payroll ? The Dodger bat boy makes that !!

  8. They never rebuilt properly and now the franchise is stuck in an awful in-between. It’s a lineup desperate for talented youthful energy which is something they currently lack in their system.

    Don’t know how to fix their issues I would absolutely listen on JT, Wheeler, Rhys and Nola. They made a decision to double down on trying to contend with a roster that really wasn’t good enough to contend.

  9. Lipstick on a pig, just like our bullpen in 2020 our team D cannot be fixed during the season.

  10. The starting rotation (now) can definitely contend. The bullpen has improved a lot and they are not far off from being very good.

    The biggest issues are two-fold:

    errors

    We knew that the team would not be winning any gold gloves but I don’t think anybody thought they would be this bad. We knew Rhys/Cutch were going to be bad, and they have pretty much lived up to to that. What we didn’t expect was Bohm/Harper/Didi seriously having their defense decline. Also, we needed to play Miller more because of his bat but we also got his poor defense in the process. Right now, there’s not much we can do. In the offseason, the Phillies will let Cutch walk into FA. If the DH comes in, we can move Rhys there. We can move Bohm to LF/1B. As for Harper and Didi, they have to play better.

    offense

    Everybody has injuries and we know that offense is down league-wide so I won’t get into that. The issue is Didi and Bohm, they have declined a lot from last season. Cutch has really been hot and cold all season. CF was a huge issue until Odubel came up. Again, not much we can do here. Sure, Cutch and Bohm will lose some starts. Guys have to play better. Bohm is too talented to be hitting like this.

    1. Bohm is only using the right side of the field. He should be pulling the ball more. He’s a big strong kid not taking advantage of the power he has. I’m not saying he should he should be pulling everything, but it seems he never uses the left side.
      Cutch was a good player 5 years ago, not anymore. Can’t trade him at this point just hope he’ll have a bit of a comeback in the second half. At this point he’s playing to get another contract ,not with the Phillies. Didi same thing except he already has a contract next year. If he starts playing well when he comes back eat some money and trade him. I know he hasn’t hit well lately , but they have to gamble on Maton. He’s got the range and more importantly the glove. Didi lacks these things now.

  11. The starting lineups have been posted and I can’t believe what I’m seeing. The Reds play in a true bandbox, Great American Ballpark. The ball flies out of there. They have 3 guys hitting under .200, including Eugenio Suarez!

  12. Man you all killed me last year for saying Bohm wasn’t a third baseman. Now I see others are coming around. I still believe in his bat. Here is a good stat. His hard hit rate is 2% higher this year than last (at 48.9%). As a comp, Trout’s career HH% is 45%. So that’s a good omen for Bohm.

    The big change is his BABIP normalized from an unsustainable .410 last season to .263 this year. That is a little low. So a little bad luck involved. But he should have a babip around .300. Biggest issue this season is he has walked fewer times and struck out a lot more times. As I say often, if a player has an unsustainable babip, enjoy it as a fan, but lower expectations for the future. Over a large sample size, it will always normalize.

    1. I didn’t think he had the glove to stick at 3B but I wanted him to have an opportunity to show what he can do over a full season. His best value is at 3B and he needed to show the Phillies that he can at least improve. It’s disappointing to see that he looks to be worse than advertised with the glove.

  13. Happy Memorial Day to all of you. And to those who served, my sincerest thanks and gratitude. We need to get lucky with some of the lower level prospects. We cannot build a team that contends just by using the FA market. I don’t know of DD is the guy to rebuild a farm system. I think it was Hinkie who was a big Chaim Bloom fan. Look at Tampa. No money to spend, a poor ballpark facility, haven’t drafted first or second every year, and yet are a much better team than we are. What if those running the drafting and developing for the Rays had our money to spend? So, even better, what if we had, with a great ballpark and a ton of financial resources, a semblance of the Rays evaluation and development ability?

    1. It will be different. The Rays are doing all this stuff to be competitive. Else, they become the Pirates. If they had the money, I’m pretty sure they would be more than willing to sign Wheeler, Gerrit Cole, etc. instead of having Yarborough and Fleming in their rotation. So once they become big spenders, they’ll fall prey to the problems of big spending clubs: under performing big stars. Not only that, they’ll find it easier to spend more to fix team issues.

      1. No, they are not going to become big spenders unless they are sold and bought by an owner that wants to throw money around. Just like the A’s they have an entirely different business model, which they have worked to perfection. The bottom line is that, unlike the Phillies, they know how to identify and develop talent. They also sell talent when it is most valuable and replenish the farm.

        Look, nobody wants to the Phillies to become the Rays or A’s, but we do want them to identify and develop talent as these teams do.

        And another thing. I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again. John Middleton, although he has good intentions, gets a pretty hearty assist in all of this. His approach of “it’s been long enough, we need to win NOW”, has resulted in some bad FA signings and some desperate trades that have deprived this team of needed talent. And if he keeps doing this, we are going to continue to resemble the Angels, which is definitely not a good thing.

  14. On a completely separate note, until about 5 or 10 years ago, I always thought it was pretty easy to compare baseball players across eras – great players would have been great in any era – unlike basketball (where George Mikan would be whooped by the modern player) and football (where offensive linemen used to weight 250 pounds and would be eaten alive by today’s large defensive linemen).

    But, finally, I think that’s changed. In 90s and early 20s, hitters started getting a lot stronger due to steroids and now, without steroids, they are much stronger, although great hitters like Mays and Williams would still have been great. But now, in the last 10 years, there has been a sea change in pitching. Pitchers throw MUCH harder AND they spin the ball a lot better. Back in the late 80s we marveled when a Todd Worrell sat between 97-99. Now most of the better relievers do that and we have a whole group of starters that throw this hard all game. So, while the on-field product has not become more compelling or entertaining (to the contrary, it is more plodding and boring), the modern players are, as a group, way better than players in prior generations in my humble opinion.

  15. Training and the success of TJ surgery. Pitchers mostly used to pitch cause if u blew out elbow likely done. Now back in 10 months with better elbow. Used to be a Gibson, Ryan would say Verlander but he even went down. Lower mound to make game better.

    There were others that said Bohm better in left.

    1. Yeah Patso,… they lowered the mound in 1968 or thereabouts, giving the hitter a better chance and they tried to equalize things. .
      And advances in medical science, with the TJ surgeries , and many more successful labrum surgeries have also aided in pitcher’s longevity.

    1. The Phillies are getting hits, they’re just not getting them with RISP. And VV battled his command.

    2. Was at this game. Won “free food prize” at chik-filet as did every fan attending for Reds scoring 11 runs. Almost earned 2nd for Reds pitchers having 11 strike outs. Miley who limited the Phils to 1 run in 6 innings and who we probably all remember from his time as a Phillie last year, had a top pitch speed on stadium jugs of maybe 90mph while VV was regularly moving from 95mpn to 83mph off speed. overpowering in the first inning, then- it was his fast ball getting hit. VV last games were fine. Surely too early to be down on him.

  16. I think we can admit that we are not a good baseball team. Somewhere below mediocre. The division not being good and our proximity to the lead before this road trip just gave me false hope. We are difficult to watch, the rebuild was a failure, and I get madder and madder at MacPhail and Klentak for doing such a poor job. Middleton deserves a lot of the blame also.

    1. Agreed and I also get more and more angry. Because they were hired to rebuild a team and provided no real players and left a truly empty farm system. They are literally a cautionary tale on how NOT to do a rebuild. Massive, catastrophic failure. And Middleton made it worse, and not just a little worse.

  17. Professor Romus – Thanks for the link on Mozzicato. One of 31 teams will have him in the fold for the upcoming season: 30 MLB teams or UConn. Naturally, I’m hoping he makes his
    way to campus but if he has a shot to go in the second round, go and do it.

    And Hawkeye, thanks for the info on the Phillies. Usually, I wait until the end of the game to get the news on the PP site but you jumped the gun on me. Really sad times for the Phillies and Phillies fans. If they lose a lot this week and eventually go ten under, curtains.

  18. There are too many holes to patch by adding and going over the “cap.” I can see, not a complete teardown, but some strategic selling and releasing of assets. I’d be surprised if DD doesn’t entertain offers on JT, Hoskins and Nola. I can’t see anybody offering what Wheeler is actually worth, and can’t imagine there’s a big market for Segura. McCutcheon DFAed; that pains me, as I’ve always been a huge fan, but he is done. Let Haseley play every day (I still believe) or give Cutch’s slot to Randolph and see if he can play. Pray that Kingery finds his old swing, etc.

    1. Agree. blow this whole team up get good prospects and let the kids play.

      The yanks were interested in Harper I’ll take Jasson Dominguez, we could get a lot for Hoskins, Nola and J.T.

      The only lengthy contract is Harper’s which could need some maneuvering.

  19. My first move is to talk to Harper, see if he would like to leave, its a shame to let him waste a good portion of his career with this organization, Then start moving the few assets we have, JT nola. wheeler,

    1. rocco…if the season ended today…the Phillies would draft 12th in the the 2022 draft….Hinkie would be kept busy once again..

        1. Hope not, they’d probably pick a high schooler that is at least 7 years away! …….but, has unlimited power and potential if only he wouldn’ K so much and could figure which hand the glove goes on.😷

    1. Anthony Hewitt, Anthony Gose, Kyrell Hudson, Travis Mattair, Cole Stobbe, Luke Williams – the list goes on and on.

      We’ve been drafting the same high ceiling, athletic, unproven HS bat over and over and over again for the last 30 years.

      Moniak and Randolph were supposed to signal a change due to their alleged hit tools. But here we are and, still, no results.

      The new administration is again focused on tools, but so far not much of anything from Radcliffe and Casey Martin, although it’s still early.

      1. Bohm and Haseley were college hitters picked in the top ten (Bohm no. 3 overall!) — how have they worked out?

        High school, college — the Phillies struggle with developing players across the board. But we know this.

        Blow it up, tear it down. Whatever it takes, but it’s time to start over. The past ten years have been a waste.

        1. Well, hold on.

          Haseley was not a great pick in my view, but he’s a major leaguer and infinitely better than those other guys.

          Bohm was second in ROY voting last year. He was a very good prospect and I still expect he’s going to be a very good hitter in the majors over time, but he’s only in his second year. And, again, much better than those HS hitters we picked.

          But on the whole, yeah, it’s been 10 years either in the dog house or purgatory. I am soooooooooo tired of watching bad and boring baseball.

  20. Over the off-season both Hinkie and I pounded the table that the Phillies biggest weakness is defense. That they were poor defensively across the board. Most on here dismissed that and focused on the positives. But the defense is killing this team.

    “By any reliable metric, to say nothing of the old-fashioned eye test, the Phillies have the majors’ worst defense. Entering a Memorial Day game in Cincinnati, they had the fewest defensive runs saved in the majors (minus-26), according to Sports Info Solutions, and were tied with the Reds for last in Statcast’s outs above average (minus-17).”

    https://www.inquirer.com/phillies/phillies-defense-alec-bohm-didi-gregorius-dave-dombrowski-20210601.html

  21. v1, I have no argument with your assessment of the Defense. Horrible, by any standard. Here is my problem going forward. We can argue all day that maybe Simmons would have been a better signing than Didi because of his defense. Bohm needs another position as his D is worse, and his hitting has also fallen off a cliff. Cutch is pretty well finished in LF. CF has not been great. Segura is what he is, and Rhys is mediocre at 1B. And, this team may require a complete teardown. Clearly, the “rebuild” was a disaster. But, with Harper and Realmuto and Wheeler, the team is not rebuilding again. I think the fanbase, and definitely the Ownership does not have the stomach for that. So, where to begin to put a Playoff team on the field? Forget long term contention, how about short term? Where do you begin? Not an argument from me, a question to you, and all the guys who post here. Bohm in LF means we need a 3B, so another FA venture? Hope for the DH so Rhys and Bohm can both be on the team? More BP help? Hope we can unload Segura? I have no idea where to start. And, Dombrowski is a “trade prospects for instant impact guy.” Are we going that route? Do we have the right POBO to fix this team? Clearly, I am depressed.

  22. Again I’m amazed at what the Rays do every year with a team salary that’s the lowest in the majors… This year I think the team is around $65 million. Plus the #1 prospect in baseball Wander Franco isn’t even on the major league club… I have the MiLB app and watch Franco and all I can say if he isn’t one of the best prospects I’ve seen since Trout, convince me otherwise…

    1. Soto. Acuna, Tatis, Franco….Phillies turn is coming on a superstar LA free agent signing.

      1. Really? What makes you say that? This is neither random nor fair. The Braves and Nats do a way better job of identifying and developing these players than we do. I’ll believe it when I see, because we haven’t had a real LA star hitter (we had a star pitcher in Sixto, but he’s been traded) since Juan Samuel – 40 years ago! 40 years!!!!!!! And even Samuel only produced 17 WAR as a big leaguer, a figure Acuna will likely pass this year, in his age 23 season. The drought has been brutal.

        1. I have my money on Yhoswar G…..he was scouted to have plus defensive skills and the ability to drive and square up the ball at the plate……and he has a first name that resonates superstardom.

          1. Over in the other thread I said I’ve never killed and often sided with the Phillies on their LA approach/philosophy. We often only cite success stories without fully quantifying the abject failures of so many others and by others I mean player busts and org busts.

        2. Sixto is not a star pitcher, he is a elite prospect but this year is once again proving people’s doubts about him long term. He will dazzle you for short periods of time, a 60 game season was perfect for him. In the end he will just be another tantalizing arm that could nto put it all together.

          1. But all an organization can do is try to develop elite prospects – after that it’s up to fate and the player himself.

            This organization has not done a good enough job developing elite prospects. Sixto and Franco were our only elite prospects in about 30 years. That’s not enough.

            1. So Catch22, the Phillies switched draft managers, to Brian Barber – and likely philosophies, what, two years ago? They switched GMs last year. Do you have a way to monitor the success of last year’s picks and the coming years versus the past regime?

            2. Well, yeah, we have a way. You go to baseball reference and you run each year’s draft and then you check up on the players, although I think most of us generally know how most of the key players from each draft are doing at any given point in time.

              I think the change from the Almaraz philosophy began with the 2019 draft. That draft had a bunch of players that I am fairly confident Almaraz would have never picked in the first 10 rounds or so (although some picks looked like guys he would draft, including Bryson Stott). I am talking about hard-throwing pitchers with control issues and high upside hitters with questionable hit tools – very non-Johnny picks. The 2020 draft was all on Barber and showed a dramatic change in draft philosophy – in fact, it was almost the exact opposite of Almaraz’s approach, which is also concerning, not because it is a bad draft philosophy, but because it shows there are no organizational philosophies – they just veer from ideology to ideology in a desperate hope of improvement and the organization has few guiding principles that matter. That bothers me A LOT.

              As for the 2019 draft, it will be hard to judge because there were only 5 rounds, and the team may already have traded the second best player drafted – Carson Ragsdale (although we can still monitor his progress to see how that draft went).

  23. Lots of depressing posts, which I certainly understand. However, this team is not trading their stars to start over. If anything, I could see them trading any prospects not named Abel plus any marginal guys that have value. What do they need that might be attainable? Unfortunately we need hitting, fielding, relief pitching and a 5th starter. That’s a lot. They’re not trading Bohm, Harper, JT or the three starting pitchers but anyone else is fair game. Who has trade value and for what kind of team? Hoskins or Miller to an AL team? Segura to a team needing a 2B? I expect some move to happen to shake things up.

  24. We don’t identify the elite LA prospects, we don’t identify them when we draft, we don’t participate in the Cuban and Japanese market, and we don’t identify those prospects on other teams to trade for. It is not an exaggeration, it is an organizational problem that has to be fixed, somehow. It’s too early to form any report card for Brian Barber, but we did do it to form the 2008 WS team. Utley, Rollins, Howard and Chooch were not 1st picks in the draft, or even all 1st Rounders. Utley, Pat Burrell and Cole Hamels were. You build a team from various sources, but the Draft is a very important piece. We have to, somehow, do better.

    1. Yes, 2008 shows the various sources from which quality players come. Victorino was a Rule 5 draft pick. Jayson Werth was an untendered free agent, who was cut loose by the Dodgers after struggling with wrist injuries. Blanton and Moyer and others were acquired in low to medium profile trades. But the critical thing is that the heart of that team was drafted players. There were absolutely no high price free agents on that team (I don’t consider Geoff Jenkins to have been a high priced free agent – and, in any event, he wasn’t that great on the Phillies).

      It’s been shown time and again – you can’t build a championship baseball team (or at least a perennial contender) relying primarily on free agents. The economics of it just don’t work. You need to add a lot of talent through the draft or international signings and through other low costs trades or mechanisms.

      Essentially all of this team’s best players are hired guns. It’s been good enough to transform them from what otherwise would be a team as bad or worse than the Orioles to a .500 team – for whatever that’s worth. But they need a home-grown core to help win championships. They don’t have it and it doesn’t look like this fact is going to change anytime soon.

    2. Matt let’s separate the Japanese market because that is an over inflated market with their weird system. Second the Japanese players almost always choose the west coast or in some cases the NYY.

      I accept that Philly like many other markets just don’t appeal to the high end Japanese talent. I don’t see any benefit to going overboard in $ just to sign them here.

      The Cuba market is very similar to the Japanese market. These players are not subject to a draft, not subject to PED testing before they sign and often are subject to loads of visa issues and back home family issues.

      I know the intimate story of Dayan Viciedo and that story plays out frequently across the landscape of the Cuban market.

      I think in time what JM and the Phillies are doing with their DR Complex will pay dividends and I think we’re better off playing in that sub $1 Million market spreading it out.

      Lastly I’m not sure its fair to say we don’t identify LA talent. I’m not sure exactly what Soto and Acuna signed for but I’m pretty sure it was peanuts compared to the players they became. That means 29 other teams didn’t identify it either.

      The LA market until it becomes subject to a draft will always be wrought with insider trading practices. It’s extremely volatile and very corrupt.

      1. DMAR, good points. I just added the Japanese and Cuban because the talent has to come from somewhere. And, I know that sometimes, there is some luck involved. Especially with projecting young kids. But, we have to do a much better job. Clearly, organizations are doing it much better than we are. I don’t know what Sal, for example, saw in certain guys. Maybe he wanted to sign them, but there was some deal already with some so-called “agent” overseas, and they went elsewhere. I don’t claim to know all the workings of LA. But, I do know our results leave a lot to be desired. I hope the change in philosophy to Brian Barber works, I really do. I am big on Abel. Hoping on Stott, and hoping that we get lucky with some younger guys I like like Baylor, Simmons and Johan Rojas. But, overall, we have to improve by a great deal.

        1. matt13….”the talent has to come from somewhere. “….you are correct.
          Russia…..Anton Kuznetsov…….China…Bruce Wang…Australia….Wingrove, Burke …New Zealand…Kyle Glo…. and Taiwan
          Phillies spare no country when searching for talent!

  25. I feel sorry for the fans that think that we can spend our way out of this mess. We’ve already tried that with Harper, Realmuto, etc.
    So, if they sign one or two more free agents and blow past the salary cap, how much will that move the needle?

  26. Maybe Jim knows the answer to this question or my very knowledgeable friends in this site; is there a time during the season when older or under performing minor leaguers start to get released? Is it around the draft or no specific time period just ‘when it happens it happens?’

    1. The timing of releases is probably different the last 12 months because of the pandemic. Domestic roster limits will dictate much of what happens this year because teams are only allowed 180 players on all their domestic leagues. I think they are still tweaking this and probably allow for injured players to not count, but I assume the Phillies are close to 180. The could add/subtract around the draft. Or sign some players to 2022 contracts since the minor league season would be mostly over and they could do some cuts before instructional league to sign the new players.

      The future is going to have more player releases specifically tied to roster limits because you can’t just stick 20 extra players on extended rosters any more. Probably means we go down to 1 GCL team (though they probably stick with 2 in this transition year).

  27. Luke Williams went 3-3 with 2 walks leading off for Team USA in their first game and was named player of the game.

    1. One thing Williams and Randolph have in common of late, besides raking after pretty disappointing earlier career marks….they both played winter ball in the AuBL and did well down there…also along with Simmons, who is in XST and playing third base a little these days, and Aussies Chris Burke and Rixon Wingrove..
      Also see Danny Brito starting to pick it up…he also played winter ball in the Ven.
      Not sure if playing thru the winter mattered at all….but they all seem to be hitting well these days.

      1. Randolph hit .210/.275/.355 in the Australian League. That is . . . not good.

        Happy he got off to a good start this year, but it was BABIP-fueled. That is starting to come down — though it is still at .380 and will likely come down more (his last three years of BABIP have been .316, .298, and .321) — and the other metrics (e.g., line drive rate of 18.5%) don’t really support a breakout.

        His last five games he has hit .105/.150./105

        Unfortunately, I don’t think he’s going to be the answer in left field.

        1. Yeah…but he got swings against older pitchers….and that may have helped his cause early on this season
          Will have to see if he can maintain his current pace.
          If his BABIP levels off around the .320 mark he still may have a decent final OPS+

          1. I am amazed at how Romus can remember all the stats, i am a lot younger than him and i forget so easy, A man in his eighties shouldn’t be this sharp, Wonder if its the water in Buck County

            1. :)………..I marinate my viagra in fish oil…kill two birds with one stone.

  28. Congrats for Luke Williams, USA Team. A non-prospect, HSchooler that has made incredible growth but not getting a chance.
    DD are you or anyone watching.
    DD spending $110m on Hopeful Vets nobody wants.
    Aranado $5m ave. .275 Cards. 3rd Base
    Simmons 10.5m ave. Twins .241 SS
    Story 17.5m ave Rockies .255 3rd Base

    Nope DD spent $110m on $44m On
    2 Defensive liabilities, BA. Mendoza Line
    3 Pitchers with ERA of 7 plus and age 31-36?

    DD still early but I hope you have a Plan B

  29. random non-phillies stat of the day- Brewers big 3 of Woodruff, Burnes and Peralta-if my math is correct:
    179 ip, 92 h, 247 k’s, 38 earned runs

  30. raef – How about Alcantara, Rogers, and Lopez?

    190 IP, 147 H, 199 Ks, 47 ER

    And all that for a combined under under $2M.

    1. Yeah, that’s what having a good farm system does for you. Cheap, high performers.

    2. ciada…. Trevor Rogers’ deal with the Marlins was for a $3.4 million signing bonus as their first round pick in 2017.

  31. Speaking of KBO stars, Darin Ruf since returning has had 200 PAs for the Giants, with 10 HR, a .260 average, and an OPS+ of 146. Of course, the Giants aren’t stupid enough to play him regularly in the outfield, so in 83 games for them — a half a season’s worth — he’s produced 1.7 WAR for them.

    1. i think guys figure out how to hit junk over seas, and then come back and do relatively well…altherr would be perfect as long as the phillies do not say the magic words “we want you to try your swing this way”

      1. There’s a lot of truth to this. In the Asian leagues, most pitchers pitch off their breaking balls, so the better hitters adjust and come back with a much improved ability to hit breaking pitches. I’d love to give Altherr another chance. He has all the physical skills.

  32. Ranger has been impressive this year, wonder if they would consider having him move back into the rotation next year as the #5

    1. I agree, Ranger looks great, perhaps if they give VV or Howard a rest.

      Still I don’t mind seeing him piggyback Howard but maybe not tomorrow.

    1. What was the count? I don’t think it was 3-0. That said I don’t necessarily agree that in a blowout you don’t swing 3-0. I think the opposite I don’t want my guys standing in the box taking walks.

      Especially if they have a position player throwing

      Now if he bat flipped or pimped it running the bases I’d have a problem.

  33. So let’s say Herrera continues to play at the level he has thru May/June, do they pick up his 11.5m option? Or do you buy it out (2.5m) and then have to worry about CF as well as LF.

    1. ErciD….good question, especially .If Herrera continues like this for the next four months
      Some of that answer may involve their evaluation of Haseley and Moniak, though Joe G. did mention something about Moniak being a LFer at some point.
      The other factor…if the sports economy starts to thrive again, post-pandemic, then that $11M may be a bargain for just one more year…..Doobie will be playing for another contract year for 2023.

      Right now yes, pick up the first option year

    2. Odubel’s current WAR is 1.4, which is second to JT. Not only that, he’s the only player providing considerable dWar (0.6). He has already played up to his current salary ($10.35M). He’s currently on pace for a 3+ WAR season and he didn’t start playing until April 26.

      As of now, his option is getting picked up for sure. There’s no indication that Moniak or Haseley will be able to replicate that in CF.

      1. I tried to tell everyone that, if he had his head screwed on straight and was in good shape (and it seemed both were the case), Odubel could do amazing things.

        He’s not a 3+ WAR pace, he’s actually on a much higher pace, but if he produces 4 WAR, he will be a huge difference maker and it would make it much more likely that they pick up his option for next year. However, what’s really interesting is whether they could retain control over him if they rejected the option as his service time didn’t run while he was suspended and then when he was in the minors. I actually think they might have two more years of control, but not sure what the contracts says if the team buys out the option.

        In any event, he’s way outplaying his contract right now.

        1. Hmm, not sure how that will work with his contract. Baseball Reference says he’s arbitration eligible in 2022 but a FA in 2023. So I guess you can decline his option and pay his arbitration number but he becomes a FA the following year?

          He’s essentially on two 1 year contracts after this season. And as you mentioned, he’s outperforming his contract so I think just picking up his option is the best bet to go.

  34. With 7 off days in June its possible we go with a 4 man rotation and Spencer would be a long man to further stretch out his arm and more importantly limit his innings. Interesting, btw our starting pitching is not my concern….2020=bullpen 2021=defense 2022=? Aging, expensive vets breaking down???

      1. Even if we were due for a couple of runs after last night it’s sad when the game gets postponed.

    1. The Phillies will likely not be re-signing the following players:

      Kintzler (36)
      Joyce (36)
      Cutch (35)
      Chase Anderson (33)
      Moore (32)

      Neris (32) and Miller (31) could be back depending on the cost.

      VV (29) is likely gone due to cost.

      Next season, the Phillies will get younger I think. Will they be better is another story for another day.

      1. NOT the game I was at a couple days ago, but VV does throw 95mph, and he has had some good 5 inning stretches this year, and the Phils really aren’t overloaded with players who can say either of those things. I’d really hate to see him gone due to $$$ without decent return.

        1. They have another option…QO him.
          It probably is a one year over-payment…..but he could sign with another team for multiple years and a smaller AAV, but the Phillies do get some compensation.

        2. Would you want the Phillies to re-sign/QO VV or give his spot to Bailey Falter who has been performing at Lehigh?

          1. Personally…I prefer to see Falter given the chance to fill the back of the rotation..
            But who knows what Dave D will be doing….if VV pitches like he did before the Reds game, the Phillies may want to keep him around.

            1. Romus, there will be a trade, or more, at some point, and that is going to change things up. Maybe Vinny is involved? I just know DD will do something.

            2. matt13…..yes Dave D does make trades and I expect his first soon, however as for Vinny, his trade value is pretty low right now…..he would be a rental and he would have to be exceptional over his next 5/6 starts for any contending team to take a chance with him…..and that is if the Phillies decide to trade him at the deadline ..they may still be in it, and need him in their rotation.

  35. I think VV would take the one time QO for big bucks and then go out into free agency the following year. Wouldn’t you? I would!

    The Phillies get Scherzer and Cy Young this weekend. Of course, that would be Corbin who pitches like CY against the Phillies.

    1. Consider Carlos Rodon very similar situation to VV. Loads of potential never lived up to and he was out there most of the off season hanging in the wind.

      He ended up up with a measly 1/$3 back with the White Sox. It would be foolish to QO VV

      1. Though the difference between Rodon and Vinny was the previous season prior to their free agency year ………Rodon’s 2020 season (minus 0.3WAR) does not compare to Vinny’s 2021 season to this point…(0.9WAR).
        Vinny is on pace for 2 or 3WAR season.
        Now if Vinny folds the rest of the way….then I can see the comp between Rodon and him

        1. All true on paper Romus but I’m not giving VV 1/$18+. If you want to tell me something can be worked out in the $8-$10 AAV range ok…

          He doesn’t have that kind of track record and I don’t believe he has turned some magical corner to suggest he will consistently perform and this SSS level.

          1. DMAR….at this current pace for him, he walks he will get an offer the Philies may not want to match…..and they get no compensation without a QO attached to him.
            Now I am assuming the market will be in the pre-pandemic financial setting and not last year’s pandemic free agent market.

            If he finishes with a 2WAR or 2.5WAR eason…which is entirely possible….some team will throw at him $12/14M AAV for 3/4 years.

            Would he take a QO…..I am betting no…….he will want that 3/4/ years of secure checks coming in, then the one year splurge but also the risk of an injury.

            1. It so greatly depend on how he finishes the season, but unless he knocks people’s socks off, I’m not sure he’s going to get super sexy offers in the FA market and he’d have to think long and hard about rejecting a QO, although I think it will be a non-issue – I doubt the Phillies would extend him a QO unless he was lights out (not just decent) the rest of the year, which I think is pretty unlikely.

  36. Phils were ☔️ out yesterday so, I watched our old friend, Nick against the Astros. Threw a ton of pitches (111) and took his 1rst loss of the season, 6-1. He battled all night with his control/emotions, but, the Astro’s helped him out by going after the high stuff. Anyway, I thought they’d yank him every inning from the 4th on, Finally did after 6.

  37. Prior to arrival of DD and his New Philosophy organizations selectedDrafted players to fill spots in the organization usually to fill spots of promotion and/or trades. Thinking they could develop talent. The Phillies Development System has shown it has not been up to the challenge or knowledge, hence players go back home and work with their coach’s . Or they get the opportunity to be “One of the Few” selected to go to winter baseball, usually High Draft Picks” or $$$$ Players.
    MLB Prospects or Baseball America promotes players they think a worthy hence a tier’d System .
    What about the so called “Late Bloomer” !
    The kid who drafted/selected to fill the org chart. The 160lb 18 Yo that throws mid to high 80’s but throws strikes or the 165lb infielder/outfielder that plays everywhere. Both put up numbers but don’t get the hype!
    These also are “Late Bloomers”
    Throws 93-96
    Hits .300-350, runs like a dear and plays everywhere. Are they there to challenge the $$$ Player, develop them because the Org can’t ?
    That’s minor league baseball?

    Just because I’m little I’m overlooked is that what baseball is willing to accept?

    DD has
    Filled .org chart with
    Players that have less than 2 years Minor league experience to loftier or higher affiliates
    Given 40 man position to 7-10 Day IL to 60 IL

    All the while players pre DD went to Aus Winter League and put up good numbers yet are not promoted?

    Yet 27 and 29 YO’s are selected with no real stats deserving and placed instead of the “Late Bloomer” or overachiever? Maybe that want it more!

    Baseball has changed again but talent is talent a maybe reward those who worked for it.

    Maybe why baseball is not getting fan support or the Kid who Dreamed of being the Next Tatis,Acuna or Trout

    Just Food For thought.

    “Love the Game”

    1. Harvey…..”All the while players pre DD went to Aus Winter League and put up good numbers yet are not promoted?”.
      Not sure what you may be referring to but the position players….,
      —…..Simmons is still in XST and may yet get assigned to a team before the season is out, they may be having him learn and be comfortable at another position…that could be the delay, who knows.
      —-Williams has done well at LHV and had the opp for the Olympics…a once in a lifetime event for him
      —Randolph doing well also….but could be a 40’s number game with him and maybe they want to wait to see if it is for real with him so far
      —Wingrove and Burke are where they should be for as young as they are.

  38. Here are a couple of excellent points made by Matt Gelb in the Athletic today:

    * “The Phillies have played 55 games and 31 of them have come against teams with a current .500 record or better. The first-place Mets have played 48 games and just 12 have come against teams with winning records.”

    * “The Phillies might have the softest September schedule of any team in the league — 11 home games versus the Rockies, Orioles and Pirates — but those games won’t matter without a strong June and July.”

    .

    I’ve posted this a couple of times already, but it probably bears repeating … the NL East may/probably will come down to which POBO/GM has the best July.
    IMO, DD needs to do everything he can to acquire a lock down closer. It’s still too early to determine who may become available, but any of Raisel Iglesias, Craig Kimbrel, or Josh Hader would go a long way to scratching the Phillies’ itch. Nothing worse/more demoralizing than losing a game in the 9th inning.

    Another bat, and a little SP depth aren’t out of the question either.

    BTW … Here’s the Gelb story in the Athletic.

    1. Odubel could be in the running for comeback player of the year in the NL…..but with the alleged DA hovering still around him , like Peanuts dust-magnet character pig-pen, awarding him this honor, to some, may not be the politically correct thing to do.

      1. Odubel would have to have like .900 OPS and 4+ WAR for him to win the award. And I agree, MLB doesn’t want to give the award to a player that hasn’t played because of DV issues.

  39. Hinkie, I agree. Step 1 is to remain close by July. Step 2 is which GM does the best job. Sure, we can use a genuine Closer, and hopefully some other issues are settled once we are healthy. Like, Brad Miller platooning with McCutchen in LF, Herrera continuing to ne a plus player, Bryce coming back strong, and the hitting getting stronger as a full, healthy team is on the field. Maybe wishful thinking, but I still want to make the Playoffs, and that is what it will take. We need a RH bat off the bench, and, as you also mentioned, SP # 4 and 5 need to be addressed. Maybe Spencer Howard and Ranger Suarez can piggy back for 1 spot, and Vinny forgets his last outing. Anyway, if we are close, and DD adds reinforcements, we could have the opposite of the past few Septembers. That would be very nice.

    1. Well, let’s start at the beginning.

      How could the Phillies make the playoffs?

      I suppose it’s possible that they could compete for a WC spot, but I think even the second WC team is going to have at least 89-90 wins, and perhaps more. I don’t see the Phillies winning as many games as the second WC, so they will likely have to win the division.

      So here’s the problem. I think the Phillies are the third best team in the division. The Nationals and Marlins aren’t good teams – they just aren’t. However, I think it’s likely that one or both of the Mets and Braves will take off. The Mets have the ability to be really good – like 93-96 win good. If they are, they Phillies aren’t catching them and aren’t winning the WC even if they, say, win 87 or 88 games.

      Nope, the Phillies have to hope that both the Mets and Braves underperform, that the Phillies get really good starting pitching (which they could) and the bats come around just enough to make them a decent offense (that could happen). Some moves will be required for sure, including perhaps another starter, another reliever and another bench bat, but the Phillies need a lot to go right to make the playoffs and I’d put their odds at 25% or less right now. I hope I’m wrong, but I don’t think I am.

  40. What is going on……….
    “Through May, there were 104 soft tissue injuries that resulted in stints on the IL, a 160% increase over the 48 after two months in 2019, according to Stan Conte, the former trainer for the Dodgers and Giants who now operates Conte Sport Performance Therapy in Arizona and consults for multiple MLB franchises and the league office.
    Hamstrings are going haywire – already the most common injury in baseball, they are up 193% since 2019, with 47 IL stints compared to 16 through May 2021.
    Hamstrings are going haywire – already the most common injury in baseball, they are up 193% since 2019, with 47 IL stints compared to 16 through May 2021.
    Adductors are in disarray – there have been 16 groin-related IL trips, compared to two in 2019’s first two months. And oblique strains and tears are up 83% – from 12 after two months of 2019 to 22 in 2021”.

    1. The way athletes are training is having a direct effect on all of these soft tissue injuries. The common thread is to become more explosive. Unfortunately, the human body is unable to withstand the increased stress.

  41. You’re DD, what do you do? There are plenty of smart people on here and I’d like to hear your suggestions on what moves DD should make. Right now. To make this a playoff team this year. Let’s hear them (but please don’t make unrealistic moves like trade for Trout).

    1. I think I have a really serious conversation with Middleton about seeing where the team is at the end of June and if a playoff berth isn’t likely, talk about selling high on some guys and rebooting for next year. I am pretty sure this won’t happen, but it probably should happen if the team doesn’t have a realistic chance of competing.

    2. DD didn’t come here on a short contract to blow off a year. He will absolutely make some moves that he thinks will help propel us into the playoff picture. Assuming Harper and Didi will come back from their injuries, what moves will DD make? I think he might try to unload lots of failed prospects to get someone else’s failed prospects and maybe get lucky. Guys like Kingery, Moniak, Haseley, Randolph, and Medina and maybe even Morales will all be dangled. Maybe Maton’s performance has made him attractive. Maybe Vinny’s good run has made him tradeable. Trade for what? A 4th and 5th SP (put Howard in the pen), another set up man, and a better 4th OF. Clock is ticking, I expect some moves before too long.

      1. Yes, which is why I said “I’m pretty sure this [meaning punting on this year and re-tooling for next year] won’t happen”. Look, I like DD a lot – much more than I anticipated – but I do have concerns about him leaving this team without much in the way of prospects and we just can’t afford that.

  42. IMO, just making the playoffs will not be good enough if the pieces obtained do not sustain our position for the future. So, I agree with “Catch”, that discussion has to be serious and personally the baseball that I have witnessed so far is not good enough to make us a contender. I think we need a change of chemistry. We don’t need superstars (Rays), just some solid ball players.

  43. Skeet, you may be right. But, this is year #10 since we made the Playoffs. So, no matter how serious the discussions are, they are affected by the ownership’s desire to put a Playoff team on the field now. And, quite frankly, a large portion of the fanbase share that wish. It’s a top heavy team, and not much young talent in sight to help. So, I think what we see is a couple of players to help now. A Closer, a RH bat off the bench and another SP. And, without trading Mick Abel. I don’t think Stott is getting traded either. A tall order, sure, but this is the spot they put themselves in. I don’t think that mortgages the future, and I also don’t know that what may be available helps enough. But, I think they try. And, DD did not come here to oversee a 4-5 year rebuild.

  44. So, if they are able to add a few key pieces, do you actually have the prospects to get them?
    Once they have them, how much does it move the needle? Does that take us from a .480 winning percentage club to a .530 winning percentage club? (That won’t get you very far in the playoffs unless EVERYTHING breaks your way.)
    And, we’ve been very fortunate that our starting pitchers have not had any injuries, soon as we get the injury bug there we are Toast!

    We shall see, I hope I’m wrong and the rest of the season goes well for them!

    1. What’s funny is that the difference you refer to (530 vs 480) is roughly the difference between going 7-6 in two weeks vs going 6-7. So, can small moves win one extra game every two weeks? I think we all know that answer is yes.

    2. So they may not have the prospects since you don’t want to touch Able imo, but one place they could flex their muscle is one of their few strengths and that’s money. I could see a few teams if not more that are still hurting due to not having fans last year and so far not having full attendance (not sure what teams are at full vs partial).

      I know we have never gone over the lux tax but maybe it’s time they do if they feel that using money plus lesser prospects could get them the right pieces. But it would likely come down to who they were looking at vs cost and how much cash it would take.

      Then again I never understood why the phillies never go over the lux tax, not saying it’s something you want to do often, but when you have an owner telling the public he wants to spend money and it might be stupid money and you have a team that clearly has struggled to draft/develop, that leaves spending money which of course needs to be done the right way and under the last GM it clearly wasn’t. Hopefully trader Dave can do a better job there as I just don’t see the rebuild happening when you just gave Realmuto all that money, Wheeler is killing it, Eflin looks like he’s going to give us one heck of a top 3 SP staff for hopefully the next several years (once they lock him up, which I assume they do) and Harper will likely be pissed since his comments in the media point to him badly wanting to build a contender.

  45. Daniel, I am purely guessing on this, but I think the issue became Middleton not trusting Klentak any longer, feeling that he had spent enough money, added a whole analytics department, and the results should have been better. He tried firing the Manager, then realized he couldn’t keep Klentak either. I think Dombrowski has the clout to spend, or at least I am hoping so. I, in no way, think this is a great situation, and I don’t know if DD can add enough to make a difference, but I think that is what they will try. I don’t see any scenario where Middleton approves trading any of Harper, Realmuto, Wheeler or Nola. So, what is the option? Pray for a meaningful trade using assets not named Able or Stott, spend more money, or do both?

    1. Matt13, that makes a lot of sense and I agree as it’s hard to blame Middleton for not trusting Klentak after he spent money so badly. Also agree that no way are they trading any of the Realmuto, Harper, Wheeler, Nola and Eflin. When I’ve listened to Dombrowski talk he seems to always point out the top 3 SP being strong so I think he knows that’s likely going to be set for a few years, just needs to find his 4-5, closer, pen help and then fix the defense.

  46. I have a question for Rocco Moffo that I hope he will answer. The Kentucky Derby usually has twenty plus entrants each year and the number dwindles down to ten or so for the Belmont Stakes. If a horse wins the Derby and then the Preakness and then goes to the Belmont, that’s three very grueling races in five weeks time.

    Over the past recent years, some trainers/owners hold their horses out of either the first two races or even both races and then enter a very “fresh horse” into the Belmont. The question is do you believe that any horse should enter late (which is the case) or should there be a rule that only those who raced in the Derby should be allowed in the Belmont?

    Back in 1964, my father took me to the Belmont Stakes (at Aqueduct) by bus (he didn’t drive) to see Northern Dancer go for the Triple Crown. He said not to bet on Northern Dancer with my few dollars because said horse had been slowing in the stretch of the previous races. I wanted to see ND win so badly that I lost my money. My father bet on Quadrangle.

    My point is is that the horses back then ran at least two of the races and by the Belmont only the strong survived and ran all of the races. Who can forget Affirmed holding off Alydar in all three of the races?’ What a sight to see! And of course there was Secretariat. By the Belmont nobody wanted to run their horse against him. The Triple Crown is sacred.

  47. Finally, the Phillies will turn it around and streak to the top of the division.
    MLB will be enforcing the rules preventing foreign substance to balls that pitchers have been doing……the Phillies bats should no prosper…..also I would think the Phillies pitchers do not engage in any of that nefarious doctoring of baseball so they will be fine.
    The Phillies are one of the most compliant and law abiding teams in baseball…and their record of the years proves it.
    https://www.thebiglead.com/posts/mlb-pitchers-illegal-substances-crackdown-01f79qfrfcz1

    1. Pretty sure Phillies pitchers are no different. They all use something to better grip the ball.
      I love to watch pitchers make the ball dance. Pine tar, Pellican Grip, sun screen, and other foreign substances help them increase their RPM, which causes the baseball to move (especially horizontal movement). BTW … it has no effect on velo. Count me against this new crackdown. I’d rather MLB just legalize a minimal amount of pine tar. Also, in theory, batters are safer when pitchers have a better grip on the ball.

      1. If the Phillies’ pitchers are users……they are using the Dollar Store brand……especially the bullpen guys.

      2. Couldn’t disagree more. The game needs more balls in play/fewer strikeouts, not more balls dancing.

        I’d also be in favor of lowering the top of the strike zone by 3 or so inches

    2. Kruk made a comment about one of our pitchers using something last week. Bohm kept throwing used balls into the dugout, keeping them away from the ump.

  48. “On February 9, 1920, a group of major league baseball executives who made up the rules committee came together to ban not just the spitball, but any delivery off the mound in which the surface of the ball was changed.”

    Oh, if they only knew that salvia and tobacco juice was just the beginning.

  49. Nothing could sum up this team better than the 9th inning of this game, nothing!🥴😖

  50. Watching college baseball but turned on Phils for minute. All I saw was fat catcher chase down surfer dude. What the heck is going on around here as the great V Lombardi once said

  51. McCutchen butchered another ball in LF that cost them a run.
    Jankowski looked like a deer caught in the headlights in the ninth inning.
    Meanwhile … Mickey Moniak was having a night in Scranton.

    .

    …. and I’m not saying Mickey should be playing in Philly right now. Just looking for a ray of sunshine in another miserable loss/another wasted performance by a starting pitcher.

    1. MM’s last 10 games: .306/.405/.639

      For the season he’s up to a 90 wRC+, which is obviously not great, but he’s improving. Hope he can have a solid year in AAA as a 23-year-old.

  52. Hinkie, exactly! Cutch seemed to hesitate before going after that ball, Bohm was also not quick enough to get the lead runner on the play before. Our Defense is awful, and it is not just errors that are called errors, it is all the fundamental errors that lead to runs, or prevent us from scoring runs. Rhys isn’t exactly Roman Quinn fast, but had he ran hard to 1B, he would have been at 3rd, not 2d. Little mistakes that ruined a very good Wheeler outing again.

  53. Our starting pitching is good enough to win games if we had an offense that knew how to hit and score runs. Excluding the blowout game, the last 7 games we average 2 runs a game. You come up against contending teams and better pitching and our pitchers have to be perfect.

    Notwithstanding errors and mental errors like last night which have plagued us all year.

    DD needs to change the chemistry of this team, ala Pete Rose, someone who wants to win and hates losing. The Phils kinda talk the talk, but don’t seem to make the walk. Fix the clubhouse!

    1. Skeet…as someone once said, I think it was in reference to Yankees’ Derek Jeter vs ARod…
      ….the difference is, all players want to win, but some players need to win.

      1. ………another player I was thinking of was Frank Robinson. Seem to remember he put a mop on his head and held “court” after games delving out fines for mental transgressions and infractions. A no nonsense guy when it came to winning and losing.

  54. Skeet makes sense. Howard, Utley and Rollins were cocky in a good way. Remember time in spring training Howard got into with Red Sox 6’5 pitcher. Challenged whole Red Sox dugout and they wanted no part of him.

    Our guys get beaned and it’s always we’ll get em down the road. Very Blaise team from character standpoint

  55. By way you can go on computer and watch any college baseball game on espn3. It will remind you when it was fun to watch baseball

  56. Frank Robinson held the “Kangaroo Court”, and Dutch Daulton was the Clubhouse leader for the Macho Row teams. I read an article about the relationship between Kiki Hernandez and Chase Utley, and how much Utley changed the culture of the Dodgers when he got there, and is given a lot of credit for the WS win even after he was no longer playing. So much so, that he was given an Assistant to the POBO job with the Dodgers, so that his presence is always around. We need to stop the fundamental mistakes first, and as much as I like Bryce, I don’t think he is the guy to get tough on his teammates. I don’t know where we get that guy.

    1. JTR and Rhys, and even Alec Bohm are not those type of personalities either that will put the clamps down on fellow teammates..
      Usually starting pitchers do not want to jump into that main role also.
      Looking around the league, not many fit that criteria.
      Lindor of the Mets could be that guy after this year.
      Cardinals have Molina, Cubs have Rizzo, maybe also Baez…Stros’ have Altuve. is Turner or Betts the guy now in LA?
      Tough to find players that fit that mold anymore.

  57. Are the Phillies buyer or sellers at the deadline? And if sellers, what assets do they really have that contending teams want?

    1. Two part question if sellers,
      …what assets do others want and, what assets are the Phillies willing to give up in trade.
      IMO: Five assets could be moved.
      1. Doobie is basically a two month rental if the gaining team so desires.
      2. Segura…….that last year in 2022 can be tricky in a trade, Philles may have to eat a percent of his contract of the remaining approx. $20M ($5M remaining this yr and $15M -’22)…Phillies should look to eat at least 40% for easier movement
      3. Bradley…a two month rental, but he needs to kick it in gear these next 4/5 weeks
      4. Neris and Vinny…..two more rentals for this year.

    2. 1. VV. He’s obviously a rental but decent starting pitching is hard to find and he has reliever experience. You might be able to get something outside of the top 100.

      2. Neris. Another rental but he’s having a solid year. Probably get a decent lotto ticket.

      3. Segura with a caveat. He needs to waive his no trade clause. And the Phillies will likely have to eat some of next year’s money. Maybe get a prospect that’s better than a lotto ticket.

      4. Miller. Long shot lotto ticket.

      5. Herrera. He’s performing well and his 2 club options are decent. I want to say that he might get something out of the top 100 but not sure.

      Highly unlikely, but the biggest trading chip is Zach Eflin. He’s a legitimate #3 pitcher who’s still under control for 1 more year. He should be able to get you a top 50-75 guy. I wouldn’t do this though.

  58. Bradley, Neris, maybe Vinny, Cutch, though I doubt it, Brad Miller, and I think that may be it. I don’t know what they bring back, and who do we trust to identify that prospect on another team that may be a worthwhile acquisition?

    1. It seems at the trade deadline….many more pitchers get moved than position players.
      Vinny, if he pitches like he did in May,
      Neris, if does not slump and have a tick up in blown saves,
      and Bradley, if he ever stays healthy and productive….should all bring back one prospect each….probably in any teams 10-12 range
      I would try to send them to teams noted for their good farm systems…like the Padres, Dodgers, maybe the Stros, Rays, Indians or White Sox.
      I stay away from the Red Sox, Angels and Yankees farm systems.

      1. Well, Romus, I trust you and Hinkie to make those choices of other teams’ prospects, but I don’t think the Phils are paying either of you yet!

  59. Something that really mystifies me: Feliz comes into the LHV game last night in the ninth inning with a three run lead which makes it a save opportunity. He gives up two runs, the Pigs hang on to win 5-4 and he gets credited for a “save”! Something wrong about that.

    1. Spencer couldn’t get the change up over, and he got lucky only hitting 1 batter. Then he lost feel for his curveball. So he only had his fastball and Joe took him out fast.

    2. Note that Howard had 8 days of rest so not too many excuses can be made at this point. Not sure what to do anymore. Phillies are trying to win games and can’t afford for Howard to tax the bullpen like this every time he pitches. It’s almost a given that with all these off days in June, he’s going to be the odd man out.

      If this continues, I would consider promoting Falter and sending Howard to Lehigh in July.

  60. Tuned in 2 batters before they jerked Howard. Thoughts on what is going on with him? 48 – 26 pitches, 2 bb’s, 2 k’s, maybe control problems, pitcher was the only one to hit off him? Is he damaged goods, shoulder problem? What isn’t being said?

    1. If he’s healthy, my guess is that his body can’t handle the strain of being a starting pitcher. There’s no other explanation.

  61. I root for Spencer, and I don’t understand what is wrong. But, he belongs in AAA until he dominates there, and can go 6 innings or more. We cannot keep doing this. And, 3 errors already! Ranger would have been out of the 3rd with no runs. The D gets worse and worse.

    1. LA says he may need more seasoning in LHV.
      have to assume he has had all the imaging done on his wing and cuff and everything checks out.
      So maybe some added time in AAA.

  62. First and 3rd after we tie the game, JT gets a breaking pitch that stays up in the zone and he takes it. Then pops out to IF for 2d out. Very next pitch, Cutch gets the exact same breaking ball up in the zone and he smacks a 3 run Dinger! I want to know what JT was looking at and how he let that pitch go by.

    1. Hitting is hard, and sometimes you just don’t react correctly in the fractions of a second you get to make a decision.

      If a hitter regularly lets hit-able pitches go past him, it’s a problem. If it occasionally happens, that’s normal. Same with swinging at pitches out of the zone. Sometimes you just misread the ball.

  63. Howard is a relief pitcher. His upside is a 7th inning guy. Either put him in a middle relief role at this level or have him work at AAA. This guy is not a TOR prospect anymore unfortunately. He has a chance to be a solid, serviceable reliever for many years. I feel like they are almost trying to mess up his development ie Kingery, Dom Brown, etc.

    1. Hinkie…….agree with you completely on these two and last year, I wasn’t all that keen on Ranger, but he is looking very good this year.

      I’d like to hear you and V’1s opinion on Spencer Howard. He doesn’t look like the #1 prospect in the system to me. In fact, he doesn’t look at all like the guy I’ve heard all the raving about. In all honesty, he looks very ordinary to me. A pitcher who can lose all his “stuff” in one inning (1-3) is not a starter. Your take?

      1. The fact that Howard is losing velo wasn’t the main problem today. The fact that he couldn’t land his secondaries anywhere near the Kzone was most concerning.
        For me, Spencer Howard needs to be Caleb Cotham’s extra credit assignment. The talent is real. We’ve seen him throwing 97 deep into outings in MiLB. At his best, he’s throwing four above avg pitches. Cotham needs to find a way to straighten him out. It might just be a confidence thing. IDK.

        1. To me, Connor Brogdon looks legit. He’s got the stuff to be a closer, including, perhaps, the attitude. Not the nasty attitude of some closers, but the confidence. He was hit around as a rookie as we all know and he’s had his bad outings this year, but he looks like a guy who learns from his setbacks.

    2. I’ve been trying to tell folks all year – Connor Brogdon has a ton of ability.

      Spencer just had a weak shoulder – they need to put him in the bullpen and see if they can build him up for future years. If not, he’s a relief pitcher – oh well. The Phillies often live in denial. How about Ranger and Spencer just trade places?

  64. Howard’s performance signals something is wrong. He had 3 starts AAA
    2 inn 44 pitch’s
    3 inn 40 pitch’s
    4 inn 58 pitch’s

    After his loss of command, velo if Joe wants him then make him a reliever and build on that Or send to AAA and give him innings. It’s hard to believe after last years 60 man alte site, MLB season 60 schedule and 2021 ST he is not performing.
    Remember Sixto was talented but could not stay healthy for us or Miami .
    Talented but needs help not ready yet to be SP

    Hopefully DD and Joe think about what’s best for him, not his PR

  65. “..no player has accumulated more wins above replacement for the team that picked him than Schmidt, the Philadelphia Phillies’ second-round choice, 30th overall, in 1971.”

    1. Thanks so much Catch for sharing this article. I knew most of the stories but somethings I had never heard before especially that Brett and Schmidt were picked back to back. Schmidt will always be my favorite professional athlete!

    2. Interesting. I knew he was far and away the most valuable Phillies draft pick but didn’t realize he had every other org beat too. Finally, something we did best. Mike Trout is a looming threat there, however.

  66. ballplayers often talk about going out there and having fun. when i watch spenser howard on the mount, it looks like the last thing that’s happening is him having fun. he looks very uncomfortable and his facial expressions and body language say the same. maybe pitching in the big leagues is getting in his head. maybe he feels like he doesn’t belong and gives the big league hitters too much respect. obviously something is going on here and i don’t think it’s physical. just my opinion.

  67. Interesting article on Kris Bryant by Nightengale in USA Today on how he changed his batting style and launch angle over the winter and the results he is getting. Also, how it has screwed up the Cubs on their plans for a rebuild.

  68. Hinkie ur preferred No. 1 pick will probably be throwing a couple innings and the Richie ashburn field June 18 9am.

  69. Question to all.
    When does a Prospect fall off the Prospect List?
    When he is promoted? # stats ?

    Pandemic numbers S/B not.

    Big arm but continued down numbers?

    Most of these Prospects are lower level, visibility . Are they BA and Phillies stat/computer guys.

    Eye Test. Can anyone Predict. Remember players grow yet some don’t

    1. Usually a player graduates from the list when they are promoted and hit whatever the threshold is to lose rookie eligibility.

      1. Jim in the past used MLB’s criteria for prospect eligibility……. a player must not have exceeded 130 at-bats or 50 innings pitched in the Major Leagues,

  70. Romus……….was that you, tying that multiple half hitch knot that “saved” the day!😇

    1. LOL…..what a game!
      I bet now every grounds-keeper in every ball park will be checking their cables and lines.

  71. I liked what I saw from Cristopher Sanchez. He wasn’t overwhelmed by the moment and he went after Soto which is what his primary job will be, going after lefties. He has a good arm with a lot of movement on his pitches. He seems to have some deception with his delivery. I know that he was in Lehigh’s rotation, so I’m not sure if the Phillies view him as a possible starter. I think his wildness will get him into trouble if he remains a starter. I think he could be another Suarez type arm with more experience. His stuff will play up and he should be able to go multiple innings.

    And I would rather see Sanchez up than Kintzler/Anderson/Moore right now.

  72. Anyone know what happened to Grenny Cumana. AAA success.

    Kid could play, overachiever.

    1. Grenny Cumana, elected Free agency per MILB transactions November 2020. Now on Venezuelan team Águilas del Zulia

  73. Nick Maton was sent down to Lehigh. No corresponding move has been made. I’m guessing Didi is ready for Tuesday.

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