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Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Aaron Nola clears a symbolic hurdle in Phillies camp | CSN Philly

Nola’s health is probably the biggest storyline in camp and that showed in the number of eyeballs that peeked in on Wednesday’s bullpen session. Several front office members were on hand. Part owner John Middleton was in attendance, as well.

To the naked eye, Nola looked fine, free and easy, as they say. More tests will come and he will remain a focal point of camp.

“We’re cautiously optimistic,” manager Pete Mackanin said. “He feels great. He feels like he’s 100 percent and he looks like he’s 100 percent. The test for him is going to be during the course of the season, if he holds up. I’m hoping he does. We know how good he can be.”

Jim Furtado Posted: February 15, 2017 at 03:50 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: aaron nola, phillies

Phillies embrace Tug McGraw’s life motto – Phillies Nation

The rivalry between the Phillies and the Mets is one of the best in all of sports, but with the Phils in the middle of a rebuild and the Mets continuing to ride their 30-year championship drought, all has been fairly calm.

That is until the Phillies had the audacity to design a wall in their spring training complex using the words of their Wall of Fame closer Tug McGraw. I mean, how dare they use the slogan “Ya Gotta Believe,” one in which McGraw made his life motto and continued to say long after he was traded from the Mets in 1974?

Jim Furtado Posted: February 15, 2017 at 08:42 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: phillies, tug mcgraw

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Andy MacPhail on where Phillies stand in 2017 | MLB.com

“We think our starting pitching, we have a lot of depth through the system. Not necessarily front-end rotation types, but, honestly, I would rather take numbers of solid prospects over the higher valued few. Give me numbers because we know the attrition rate. So I think we’re in good shape there. Our expectation is that we’ll be better than we were a year ago, and our expectation is that we’ll continue to introduce new talent onto our Major League team, not unlike we did last year.”

Jim Furtado Posted: February 14, 2017 at 09:25 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: phillies

Monday, February 13, 2017

Relaxed John Kruk introduced as CSN broadcaster

John Kruk isn’t going to hold back on Comcast SportsNet.

The Phillies and CSN introduced Kruk as the newest member of their broadcast team Tuesday afternoon at Citizens Bank Park, and Kruk entertained during the nearly 15-minute news conference. Kruk, who sources said signed a 5-year contract, will work between 80-90 games as an analyst this season. Ben Davis will work the remaining 70-80, and Mike Schmidt will work with Kruk or Davis during weekend games in Philadelphia.

“It’s going to be a long year for you, pal,” Kruk said to play-by-play announcer Tom McCarthy.

Kruk worked as an analyst with CSN in 2003 before spending 12 years at ESPN. He left the network last summer, which had many thinking Kruk could join the Phillies’ broadcast crew at some point. In fact, Kruk said he and the Phillies had been talking about a possible reunion for a few years.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: February 13, 2017 at 02:35 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: broadcasting, john kruk, phillies

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

Top 33 Prospects: Philadelphia Phillies | FanGraphs Baseball

Thirty-three players make the list.

Jim Furtado Posted: February 08, 2017 at 06:15 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: phillies, prospects

Sunday, February 05, 2017

OTP 6 Feb. 2017: Curt Schilling, Politics, and the Hall of Fame

Curt Schilling has said that his politics are costing him votes for the Hall of Fame. The other day here at NRO, Aaron Goldstein argued specifically that in the most recent balloting, earlier this winter, baseball writers backed away from Schilling because he supported Trump last year in the presidential election.

A few problems dog that theory. One is that Schilling did better in the 2017 voting than he’s done on average in his five years of eligibility.

(As always, views expressed in the article lede and comments are the views of the individual commenters and the submitter of the article and do not represent the views of Baseball Think Factory or its owner.)

BDC Posted: February 05, 2017 at 10:45 PM | 2003 comment(s)
  Beats: diamondbacks, hall of fame, phillies, politics, red sox

Monday, January 30, 2017

Phillies raise financial investment mining for talent in Dominican Republic

Money matters most here, especially when everyone wants a cut for shepherding a prospect to a major-league team. But this is a place - perhaps the last one - where baseball’s endless fascination with analytics has no reach, where the men on the ground must trust their bonds with the local scouts and buscones, or street agents.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 30, 2017 at 01:40 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: phillies

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Phillies prospect Matt Imhof quits baseball at 23 after losing right eye

Philadelphia Phillies pitching prospect Matt Imhof has announced his retirement from baseball at the age of 23, just seven months after losing his right eye in a freak training accident.

In a first-person piece for ESPN, Imhof confirmed he was walking away from the game young, but insisted that it wasn’t because of his injury. “My injury is not what’s stopping me,” Imhof wrote. “The truth is I need a change of pace after 20 years of doing the same thing.”

In June last year, Imhof was taking part in a resistance-training exercise in Florida, where he was playing for the Clearwater Thrashers, when a metal hook broke away from the wall and slammed into his face. He fractured his nose, broke two orbital bones and severely injured his right eye. “Everything went numb as I hit the ground screaming. I could feel the warmth of the blood running down my face and taste it in my mouth,” he wrote.

Doctors in Miami did their best to repair the damage to his eye, but after learning of the seriousness of the injury, Imhof chose to have it removed. He now wears a prosthetic eye.


FanGraphs: No ordinary Joe

For those not keeping up with Fat Joe’s career post-Terror Squad, he has reinvented himself as the master of the slider and death to all RHB.

Blanton was effective in the Royals’ bullpen, and when he was traded to the Pirates at the trade deadline, he was again successful in a relief role. During the following offseason, he signed a modest one-year, $4 million deal with the Dodgers and was, again, successful pitching out of the bullpen.

Since 2015, Blanton has appeared in 107 games, all as a reliever. In that time he ranks 11th in ERA (2.29) among all relievers, 24th in FIP (3.02) and 26th in K-BB% (19.1 points).

So what’s strange — in an era during which we hear more interest and talk about teams relying more heavily on their bullpens, when we saw inspired bullpen usage by the Cleveland Indians and other clubs in the postseason — what’s strange is Blanton remains available in free agency.


Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Phillies Catchers Have Much To Prove In 2017

In my now-ongoing series on the Phillies rebuild, I’ve examined their pitching, and focused on Maikel Franco. Now, we turn to their catchers.

As GM Matt Klentak has repeatedly done this winter, there will be a stopgap in place, while a fresh young prospect will be groomed to be the next great core player. What will be interesting is to see how Klentak and manager Pete Mackanin balance both.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 24, 2017 at 10:57 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: phillies

Monday, January 23, 2017

Phillies’ Maikel Franco works to improve plate approach

I’m sold on his bat to ball skills. If he can learn to hunt for better pitches, he can be a star.

Franco offered a blunt diagnosis for his woes at the plate.

“In 2016, most of the time I just went to the plate without a plan,” he said. “I just swung at everything. Now, I think about it like, ‘This year is really important for you. You have to know what you’re doing and have to show everybody more discipline and be more selective at home plate.’ “

Franco wasn’t the only Phils hitter to struggle last season. He was one of six Phils to strike out at least 100 times. Only six big-league teams struck out more and only the Kansas City Royals earned fewer walks.

Franco didn’t rest after playing in 152 games last season, He worked on his new plate approach playing in the Dominican Republic winter league. In 12 games (50 at-bats), Franco hit .240 with one extra-base hit (a double), three RBIs and a .556 OPS.

“I have to show everybody I’ve improved and that I’m learning,” Franco said. “When I went to winter ball, I just tried to do my own thing, see a pitch to hit and how more discipline at the plate because I know this year is going to be really important for me.”

Jim Furtado Posted: January 23, 2017 at 03:52 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: maikel franco, phillies

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Drew Anderson hoping to make quick rise through Phillies’ minor league ranks | PhillyVoice

After watching Aaron Nola, Jerad Eickhoff, Jake Thompson, Zach Eflin, and others graduate to the big leagues in the last two seasons, the Phillies will be eager to see the next wave of young pitching make their own case for a chance to call Citizens Bank Park home in 2017. Anderson was one of seven pitchers added to the 40-man roster in mid-November, along with Mark Appel, Ben Lively, Ricardo Pinto, Nick Pivetta, Alberto Tirado, and left-hander Elniery Garcia.

Anderson probably isn’t likely to reach the major leagues before 2018 at the earliest, but his addition to the roster made it abundantly clear what the Phillies think of his future.

“I like a lot about him,” Jordan said. “He’s got very good weapons to begin with, a good arm and a good breaking ball. … I think what I really like about him is he was a low-round high school pick but all he’s done is compete. He’s got a lot of confidence. I think he has a lot of the intangibles good pitchers have. … He’s got a chance to be a good piece.”

Jim Furtado Posted: January 12, 2017 at 10:15 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: phillies

Checking in on Chase Utley’s Hall of Fame chances

Better argument than I could have made, and he’s my favorite Phil since Schmidt, but I guess he comes up short…

Utley was part of the core that led the Phillies during the most successful period in their history and to a championship. He may not have hit 58 home runs or stole more than 40 bases in a season like Ryan Howard or Jimmy Rollins, but he was arguably the most valuable part of that team. Utley is worth 63 career WAR, the highest among 2007-2011 Phillies not named Roy Halladay (65.6). In comparison, Rollins is the next highest at 49.4.

eddieot Posted: January 12, 2017 at 10:03 AM | 81 comment(s)
  Beats: hall of fame, phillies

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

NON-ROSTER INVITEE THREAD

It might be good to have an all-purpose NRI thread. Who has your team brought in? I’ll start with the Phillies who unsurprisingly mostly have prospects, with only Pedro Beato, Pedro Florimon, and Daniel “Pedro” Nava in the “hopeful journeyman” category.

The notable prospects who were invited to camp were SS J.P. Crawford, 1B Rhys Hoskins, OF Andrew Pullin, 2B Scott Kingery, and RHP Victor Arano. It will be Crawford’s second invite to camp, and he is widely expected to take over as the Phillies’ everyday SS at some point in 2017. Pullin, Hoskins, and Kingery all need more time in the minors and are blocked by Major or other minor leaguers at their positions.
...
Triple-A veterans Cam Perkins, Brock Stassi, and Logan Moore also will be in camp. It appears that Stassi will get a shot to be a platoon partner of Tommy Joseph’s, but even if he does not accomplish that goal, he might be the go-to first baseman if Joseph goes down with injury. Perkins is a corner outfielder who can really hit, but has an archetypal center fielder’s power. He is an older version of Tyler Goeddel, essentially. Moore is a good defensive catcher who will be in camp because there are never enough catchers. Joining Moore behind the plate will be Chace Numata, who has grown into a good defender and had a breakout year at the plate in Clearwater.

Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: January 11, 2017 at 11:40 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: nris, phillies

Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Phillies are perfectly positioned to take advantage of crowded market for hitters | FOX Sports

Moss does seem like a great fit.

A hitter such as Bautista or Bruce could thrive at hitter-friendly Citizens Bank Park. Moss, because of his left-handed bat and ability to play first base, also could provide support for Tommy Joseph, who slugged 21 homers in 315 at-bats last season but was better when he had the platoon advantage against left-handed pitching.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 04, 2017 at 07:17 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: free agents, phillies

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Silverman: Red Sox trade of Buchholz nothing more than a salary dump | Boston Herald

$13 million is way too much to pay for rotation depth.

Tobias doesn’t make the Sox better now.

And now the Red Sox’ rotation depth is just two, rather than three, tweaked obliques from having to turn to Roenis Elias, Henry Owens or Brian Johnson as a spot-starting savior. The old adage that you can never have enough starting pitching is one that not-new-anymore president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski has not sworn allegiance to.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 21, 2016 at 08:45 AM | 31 comment(s)
  Beats: clay buchholz, phillies, red sox

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Report: Phillies Acquire Pitcher Clay Buchholz From Red Sox

The Phillies have reportedly acquired pitcher Clay Buchholz from the Boston Red Sox, according to multiple reports. The Phillies will send a minor-league Josh Tobias to Boston, according to Jim Salisbury. Buchholz, 32, was 3-6 last season with a 5.86 ERA in just 66.0 innings of work and 10 starts, bouncing back and forth between the starting rotation and bullpen.

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: December 20, 2016 at 11:26 AM | 49 comment(s)
  Beats: clay buchh, phillies, red sox

Jimmy Rollins signs minor-league deal with Giants | Mercury News

Rollins gets a shot to finish his career in his hometown megalopolis (the A’s must have not been interested in signing him to his real hometown).

He’ll be battling Kelby Tomlinson and Ehire Adrienza for a backup infielder’s role with the Giants.

“Kelby”? “Ehire”? These are ballplayers? JIMMY, that’s a real ballplayer name.

Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: December 20, 2016 at 12:07 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: giants, oakland, phillies

Monday, December 19, 2016

Phillies payroll fell to 26th in MLB last season

2015: 9th highest payroll
2016: 26th highest payroll
2017: 30th?

When the Phillies agreed last week to pay $30.5 million for Odubel Herrera, it represented the largest guaranteed sum issued by the team in more than four years. Not since Cole Hamels signed for $144 million in July 2012 had the Phillies guaranteed a player more, and that feels like forever ago. The last position player to receive higher than a $30.5 million guarantee was Jimmy Rollins when he signed for $38 million in December 2011.

Assuming there are any free agents next winter, the Phillies are going to be rumored to be in for every one of them. Also the Yankees, with no big contracts past 2017 except Ellsbury and McCann.


Thursday, December 15, 2016

Phillies sign extension with Odubel Herrera

5 years, $30.5 million to buy out all remaining arbitration years for Odubel who has two seasons in the bigs now, both with an OPS+ of 111 while playing LF well and CF not very well. Looks like we have our first official building block for the next dynasty.

2022: Club option for $11.5 million
2023: Club option for $12.5 million

The Phillies are usually pretty reluctant to make multi-year deals with players with many years of club control left. Or maybe they haven’t had any good young players who might merit such a deal, until Odubel. They never made a deal with Domonic Brown, that’s for sure.


Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Phillies re-sign Andres Blanco, add a former first-round bat | PhillyVoice

It’s all Phillies all the time at BBTF.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 14, 2016 at 03:23 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: andres blanco, phillies

Let’s get dirty: Dumpster dive pitching candidates – Phillies Nation

I’ve been betting on Anderson for a few seasons. Although I got one decent year, for the most part, I’ve been, like his real employers, disappointed.

Brett Anderson. He’d probably be too expensive, even at a one-year, $6 million deal, for the Phillies to deal with his inherent injury risk. His season career-high for innings is 180 in an eight-year major-league career, and he’s only thrown over 100 innings two other seasons. His back caused him to miss almost all of the 2016 season, and as much as elbows and shoulders usually can be fixed, backs are a lot trickier for a pitcher to come back from. You can book at least one DL trip for Anderson, even in a largely healthy season. That injury history also will reduce his value at the trade deadline, even if he’s been able to trot out every five days for the first half of the season. All that being said, if other teams balk at something like a $6 million contract and the Phillies can get him for $2 million plus appearance and innings incentives and convince him he’ll be starting, it’s probably worth it for a guy who had a good season in 2015, is a lefty and whose peripheral stats have always been better than his actual stats.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 14, 2016 at 12:00 PM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: free agents, phillies

Wednesday, December 07, 2016

Phillies prospect Mickey Moniak adds 20 pounds of muscle

Oh no, not again.

The difference was striking.

When Mickey Moniak arrived in Philadelphia to sign his first professional contract six months ago, he was rail-thin and 170 pounds.

On Tuesday night, Moniak made a quick visit to the winter meetings to be honored as Baseball America’s high school player of the year for 2016.

He’d added 20 pounds to his 6-foot-2 frame.

“It’s all muscle,” Moniak said proudly.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 07, 2016 at 01:02 PM | 58 comment(s)
  Beats: mickey moniak, phillies

Friday, November 11, 2016

Phillies acquire Howie Kendrick in trade | MLB.com

They believe they found one Friday. The team announced it had traded Darin Ruf and Darnell Sweeney to the Dodgers for Howie Kendrick. Kendrick, 33, will be the team’s everyday left fielder, although he spent the majority of his 11-year career at second base.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 11, 2016 at 09:18 PM | 21 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, howie kendrick, phillies, trades

Monday, November 07, 2016

This so-so pitcher refusing $17M is ultimate free agency peek | New York Post

He has his work cut out with this sale.

Boras mentioned age (30 in April), spin rate on his breaking ball (fourth-highest revolutions per minute among those who threw at least 100 curves this year), his improved cutter since joining the Phillies in 2016 and how much better Hellickson has pitched since distancing himself from February 2014 surgery to remove bone chips in his elbow (3.84 ERA in his 46 past starts dating to June 2015).

Jim Furtado Posted: November 07, 2016 at 07:55 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: free agents, jeremy hellickson, phillies

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