Tag Archives: Ruben Amaro Jr

Trade Update: Hunter Pence

30 Jul

Update: 12:16 PM EST Now that Victorino has moved to the Dodgers the Hunter Pence talks are heating up according to Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.  Jon Heyman of CBSSports says that the Giants are closing in on Pence. 

There have been some rumblings of talks between the Giants and the Phillies about Hunter Pence, and Jerry Crasnick of ESPN says that Giants are only discussing one Phillies outfielder, and it’s Pence. They apparently are not in on Victorino.  That’s as of 10:45 EST.

I guess it’s kinda surprising, but some teams just don’t like rentals.

Being able to have control over Pence in 2013 is probably important to the Giants, however Pence will likely get somewhere north of $14MM after he goes to arbitration. That might make things difficult for them since they don’t know what they’re going to do with Tim Lincecum and they have a bunch of arbitration eligible players like Buster Posey, and Brian Wilson.  Not to mention that they might want to try and lock up Melky Cabrera, who is having another amazing season.

This might be one to watch.

The Giants have a collection of interesting prospects for the Phillies to consider, and unlike the Blanton talks, with Pence the Phillies are looking for a SERIOUS haul.  Centerfileder Gary Brown, Shortstop Joe Panik, and catcher Hector Sanchez are all ones to think about.

Gary Brown is probably the centerpiece of this deal since the Phillies have no idea what’s going on with prospect Tyson Gillies, and all his off the field troubles.

Philliesnation.com has similar thoughts.

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Phillies Preparing to Sell Hard

29 Jul

Victorino slides in safe, but is likely out as a member of the Phillies.

The Phillies needing a great weekend series against the Braves to have any hope of keeping their team together….

It was far from great.

After being swept in Atlanta, the Phillies will likely prepare to dismantle a their team before the 4Pm deadline on Tuesday.

At the top of that list is Shane Victorino.  Vic has drawn interest from Giants, Pirates, Reds and Dodgers, who all need more speed at the top of their lineup.  If Shane has indeed played his last game as a Phillie, he had a good one, crushing his 88th homer as a Phillie and had two other hits and two runs scored.  Shane was instrumental in the successes of the Phillies from 2007-2012, but there just isn’t room for a salary of his kind going into the future.

Multiple teams have inquired about Juan Pierre, and both the Orioles and Cardinals are potential destinations for Joe Blanton according to Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com. He also says that Hunter Pence could be moved if GM Ruben Amaro Jr. is blown away by an offer, and speculates that Ty Wigginton would fit on several teams looking for bench help.

I still think yesterday’s pitching performance bodes well for Joe Blanton.  As you probably remember the Phillies acquired Joe from the A’s in 2008 and he was instrumental in their championship run.  He would certainly help solidify a contenders starting rotation, and in his last three starts has proven to be as durable and reliable as ever.  Joe allowed just four hits and two runs over seven innings. He walked just one and struck out seven.

The Phillies are very likely to keep Cliff Lee for now, although he could be shopped this offseason in an attempt to fill multiple holes, and lower the Phillies overall salary.  With a bit of uncertinty surrounding Roy Halladay, and his less then “Halladay Like” performances, Lee might just be worth holding onto through 2013.

To that extent, Charlie Manual might even consider shutting Roy Halladay down for the remainder of 2012 if things don’t change.

In no way are any of the moves the Phillies are making about dumping salary.  Money is not the issue, prospects and 2013 are. The Phillies need to get better, and it starts in the bullpen.

Ruben Amaro Jr. has really dazzled us the last few years with the players he has acquired, now we’ll see what he can do when he’s got players to sell.

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Downward Spiral Continues

29 Jul

With their second straight loss to the Braves yesterday the Phillies have almost certainly sealed the fate of some of their teammates. They have had their chances, but yesterday’s game was filled with poor at-bats, and uninspired play from a team that needs to be giving it their all.

The Phillies only mustered up 4 hits, and are now 0-10 with runners in scoring position in this series.  They also committed two more errors in the field.

The Phillies are 11 1/2 games back from the second Wildcard spot.  No, not the Division, the Wildcard.

Yesterday’s pitching performance bodes well for Joe Blanton.  As you probably remember the Phillies acquired Joe from the A’s in 2008 and he was instrumental in their championship run.  He would certainly help solidify a contenders starting rotation, and in his last three starts has proven to be as durable and reliable as ever.  Joe allowed just four hits and two runs over seven innings. He walked just one and struck out seven.

At this point I’m starting to think that Blanton, Victorino, and possibly Juan Pierre are as good as gone. With the amount of speculation surrounding these three, and how poorly the Phillies have played this weekend, it’s almost a forgone conclusion.

What else should Ruben Amaro Jr. do?  It would be irresponsible of him to let the opportunity to trade and try to re-tool this team pass him by.  The current Phillies have done little to tell him that he should keep them together.

There are three days left until the deadline… Such a shame.

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A Setback For Howard?

26 Feb

Photo: Miles Kennedy

Ryan Howard has left camp for what is said to be a routine doctors visit in Baltimore. He will be visiting Mark Myerson, the surgeon that repaired his torn Achilles.  This appointment was one that was scheduled a while ago, however Howard will have a small pocket of fluid, called a seroma, examined.

So is this a setback for the slugger?  Charlie Manuel was quoted as saying that Howard had suffered “a little setback,” but Ruben Amaro Jr. said that he wouldn’t categorize it that way.

“We don’t view this as a setback. We don’t view it as an issue. Ryan is doing great. If he wasn’t, he wouldn’t be on the field.”

So what is a seroma? Basically it’s a foreign body under the skin that’s working it’s way out, and in Howard’s case it’s a small piece of a stitch.  Some would classify the feeling as similar to a large blister or cyst.

Howard is expected to be back in camp with the Phillies on Wednesday, so as far as weither this is a setback, I’d say that it’s not really anything to be worried about.  The appointment in Baltimore is keeping him away from camp, but if he were still in Florida, he’d be out there on the field.

Howard participated in BP on Saturday, and launched a few balls over the fence, so if that’s any indication of how he’s feeling then I’d say he’s doing OK.

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Notes From Spring Training

25 Feb

Photo: Miles Kennedy

Just a few updates on what’s happening in Clearwater…

• Cliff Lee - Cliff has been held back with some soreness in his abdomen.  He claims that everything is fine, and he’s scheduled to throw a bullpen on Sunday.  Lee has had some problems with his abdomen in his past, but he says it’s nothing to worry about.

I hate it when they say that.

• Jose Contreras- has thrown a second bullpen, and it went very, very well.  He feels as if he’s able to throw harder then before, and that he’s going to be able to last though the season. “We were very encouraged with how he threw,” Ruben Amaro said. “More importantly, he was really encouraged.”  It’s important that the player throw without reservations.

Domonic Brown - Brown says that he came to camp to win the left field job, even though the Phillies plan to have him play there full time at AAA Lehigh Valley.

• Justin De Fratus - Justin has some soreness in his right elbow which should keep him out of practice for at least a week. De Fratus said he felt tightness in his elbow last month, and it has not improved. “We’ll just slow him down,” Amaro said. “It’s early and we want to be conservative with him.”

I don’t like the sound of that either.

 • Florida State Exhibition Game - The Phillies have decided to start Austin Hyatt.  Also slated to pitch are  Jake Diekman and Jeremy Horst, followed by relievers Michael Schwimer, Joe Savery, J.C. Ramirez, B.J. Rosenberg and Phillippe Aumont.  The game is at 1 p.m. at Bright House Field.

Austin Hyatt spent the season last year at AA Reading, where he went 12-6 with a 3.85 ERA.

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Rollins Signs… So Now What?

20 Dec

You really have to give Ruben Amaro Jr. a lot of credit for sticking to his guns when it comes to his negotiations with Jimmy Rollins.  RAJ has dazzled us plenty of times, but also scares the crap out us with his wild spending.  He signed Jimmy at a great price.  One that was fair to Jimmy, and the organization.   This deal at least makes me feel a little better about overpaying for Jonathan Papelbon.  Don’t get me wrong, I think Pap will be great, but we probably could have gotten him for a pinch less.  Just look at how the market for Ryan Madson has crumbled.

So now that Jimmy is signed, what will the Phillies do now?  Will there be another splash?

I really don’t think so.

Ruben Amaro told the media at Jimmy Rollins’ Presser that he is happy with the team that he has headed into Spring Training, and if you look at the free agents that are still out there, who would you even want? The only major free agent that the Phillies were even tied to recently was Michael Cuddyer who has signed with the Colorado Rockies.

Continue reading here.

A Fan’s Letter to Jimmy Rollins…

15 Dec

Dear Jimmy,

First let me open up by saying that I am extremely grateful for the efforts that you have made in the past to the team that I love, and in the commumity that I live in.  Your charitable efforts have blessed so many children in the community.  From your efforts with Prevent Child Abuse Pennsylvania, to your involvement in the RBI program.  You have helped so many children in our area and we are forever in your debt.  Thank you.

So let’s get to the reason that I’m writing this letter to you.  Sure, I’m a sports writer, but I’m also a Phillies fan.  I follow you on Twitter, and I’m sure you’re pleased to know we’re friends on Facebook.  I’ve worn your #11 jersey on my back, and I have your bobblehead on my writing desk. You’re my Shortstop.  You’re our Shortstop, and I’d like to keep it that way.

Read the rest here…

 

Be sure to keep up to date with the Phillies this off-season, and follow me on Twitter.

 

Phillies Weekly Report

12 Jul

Here’s a look at my column I write for PhilaPhans.com.

I’m posting it here so you can check it out, but if you want to read this in the future, I have a new addition every Monday morning on PhilaPhans. Consider popping over to PhilaPhans and even becoming a member.  I’m usually hanging around in the Game Day Thread during Phillies games.  Come join in!

The Phillies Weekly Report

By The Phanatic Addict

It was another 4-2 week for the Phillies. Two more series wins. One against theMarlins, and one against the hotAtlanta Braves. The series win over the Braves sure felt good with them right on the Phillies tail, and the 14-1 pounding we handed them made it that much better. .666 Baseball is nothing to be sorry about.

I do worry a little about the Phillies second half schedule. They played plenty of teams with losing records in the first half, and a lot of their second half games are on the road. The Phillies are 34-15 (.693) at home, but just 23-19 (.547) away from Citizens Bank Park. The Phillies have recently been known as a second half club, but it would be nice not to have to

The Offense – The Phillies offense showed up for five out of their six games this week. I can’t explain what happened on Saturday, but we do have to give a little bit of credit to Tommy Hanson, who pitched well. Cliff Lee managed to hit a homer off him, why didn’t anyone else? A head scratcher indeed.

As much as I see everyone complaining about how bad this offense is, the Phillies scored 39 runs this week. Yes, 28 of them came in two games but we scored these runs off of some pretty good pitchers.

The biggest blow to the team was losing Shane Victorino after it appeared tat he would be coming back pretty quick. Shane should return as soon as he is eligible when the Phillies face the Cubs next week.

Starting Pitching – Heading into the All-Star break things are looking really good. Sure, We’d like to have Oswalt up and pitching well, but the guys that are here are pitching like studs. The Phillies have three of their starters heading to the All-Star game in Arizona. It is the first time in the last 25 years that a team has had three pitchers with more then 9 wins, and ERA’s below 3.00 at the break.

I’m sure that Cole Hamels enjoyed the 28 runs of support that he got this week. It’s probably more then he got in 2010.

The Pen – I’m excited to see that Ryan Madson is closer to making his return. Antonio Bastardo has been just brilliant in his turn as the closer for the Phillies, but the possibility that Madson could be back next weekend is really big for the bullpen.

Brad Lidge has had some rehab appearances this week in his road back, and all have been rather positive. I’ll take a healthy Lidge over Andrew Carpenter any day.

Two straight scoreless appearances for Juan Perez have earned him the right to hang around a little longer in my book. He’s made the Braves hitters look just silly on Friday night, and you can never have enough lefties in your pen.

The Bench – This bench seems to become more important to the success of the Phillies every single game. With Shane Victorino, and Placido Polanco on the shelf the bench players have stepped onto the field and have almost flawlessly filled in.

Michael Martinez turned in seven hits in his last five games. Not to mention four runs, four RBI and a couple of really great catches. John Mayberry Jr. has also been really great in his last few starts. Six hits, Seven RBI, and three runs score. His three doubles on Sunday are proof that he may just have the tools to be considered for a starting job, if not at least as a platoon player in 2012.

Managers- I’d say that my only surprise of the week from the managers would be their decision to pull Kyle Kendrick out of a game that he was winning after just five innings. They turned the ball over to the bullpen and the game was over. The Phillies committed three errors in this game which cost them, and Kyle was the scapegoat.

After a 14 run game, you want to get right back out on the field and keep playing, but let’s be real. This team needs some rest. With the injured players we have sitting, and Chase Utley’s knee problems I think that a four day rest is just fine and dandy.

Again, the Phillies ended this week with two more series victories, and you can’t ask for too much more then that.

On a personal note, I’ve kept this a little shorter then usual, but with a wild work week, and a new addition to our family, I’m pretty spent. Congratulations to my sister and her husband on the birth of their new daughter. Welcome to the family Erin.

If you have time stop by my blog The Phanatic Addict, and I’ll see you in the forums.

Do We Really Need to Make a Trade?

1 Jul

Ruben Amaro has obviously made a few splashes in the the trade and free agent markets, but some of the trades I hear people talking about are just getting a little ridiculous.

There is so much talk about making a trade for a right handed bat, and I get it. We sure could use a few more runs every now and then, but I’m not quite convinced that it needs to happen with the urgency that so many need to seem to be crying for.

When I talk to people about winning in the playoffs I like to point out that most of the time it doesn’t matter how good your lineup is, it just matters whether you’re team is hot or not. In 2007 the Phillies were cut up by the buzz saw that was the Colorado Rockies. In 2008 the Rays were the hot team all season long but they ran out of gas by the time they got to the World Series and met a Phillies team that was hitting their stride. The 2009 Phillies were surely a better ball club then the Yankees, but they seemed pretty taxed and fell to a team of veterans that at the time were playing great baseball. I think we all can agree that we were a better club then the Giants last year, but again the Phillies went cold and we were beat by good pitching.

The regular season record means almost nothing when you get to the playoffs, but right now the Phillies are still the best team in baseball, and are 20 games over .500. We just won 17 games in the month of June, which is the most they have won in the month since 1993. They lead the Braves by 4 games, and even thought that will fluctuate a little bit before the end of September we are still, in my mind, a lock to win this division.

Sure, I’d love for the Phillies to find a bat that can add a little bit more run support in the lineup, but I don’t want them to make an unnecessary trade that might cost them in the future. How anyone can be saying that they would be willing to trade Vance Worley or Domonic Brown in beyond my comprehension. Right now Vance Worley is pitching great and showing that he’s worth keeping up here, and the little bit we have seen of Dom Brown is not enough for us to be deciding his future.

I’d imagine that a deal finds a way of getting itself done, but I wouldn’t expect anything of the caliber that we have grown accustomed to.

What’s Up With Jimmy?

8 Jun

So Jimmy has been sitting out since fouling a ball off his knee on Saturday in the first inning against Pittsburg.

X-Rays for Jimmy came back negative, but his MRI said otherwise.

Ruben Amaro Jr. said on that Jimmy’s MRI showed “pretty significant bone bruise.” Amaro hinted that the Phillies would know in about 48 hours what to do with Rollins.

Jimmy fired back by saying in an interview with the media on Tuesday that “If I was going on the DL it would purely be because they just made a bad decision.”

Pretty un-Jimmy-like.

Then in the bottom of the ninth on Tuesday with Wilson Valdez leading off Jimmy Rollins walked out to the on-deck circle. He flew out to right.

Its hard to understand what’s going on, but it seems that the team and the front office really aren’t on the same page right now.

Just a few weeks ago a similar thing happened with Shane Victoriono. After sitting out for a few games Shane came out to pinch hit and wound up on the DL the next day. With Jimmy hitting on Tuesday, the Phillies hit the reset button on a possible start date for Jimmy if he needs to go on the disabled list.

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