Tire Kickers ….

Phillies Outside

Anyone
who has participated as an exhibitor at a trade show of some kind will be all to
familiar with Tire Kickers’, although not specific to
trade shows, since it’s origin is from used car lots, it is where we have seen the most concentration
at
any given event over the years. I am sure, some will disagree and claim they have seen
more together in one place somewhere else. In the grand scheme of things, the fact that ‘Tire Kickers’ exist
everywhere is enough.

This time of year baseball has it’s own brand of ‘Tire Kickers’,
the front office people for some clubs transform into these at this time of
year. All the ranting and raving as fans will change none of
that, yes we are all armchair GM’s at some time and we all know what
is best for the teams we help through the season by cheering for them relentlessly
regardless of how they actually perform.

Not every team’s front office can legitimately transform, the Phillies
front office has transformed and can on occasion be seen ‘Kicking Tires’ in
places like Houston, Arizona, Pittsburgh, Washington, and rumor has it even
Florida.

The Phillies of recent years have done relatively well by
‘Kicking Tires’ till the deadline makes them transform back to actual decision
makers, lets hope this year is Werth the wait. There are those Phillie fans who
think some players are Werth keeping, regardless of performance or contribution,
I think this year the Phillies should make a stab at a good starting pitcher to
assist the teams continued run at post season and if the offer a Werth-while
everyday player then so be it.

In an effort to curb some disdain by the fair weather booing fans, or just to
show they are action minded, they decided Milt Thompson should join the over
crowded list of unemployed in this country. In just the few days since this
occurred the ever drivelous incoherent commentator booth add on of Gary ‘Sarge’
Matthews has pointed out pertinent hitting features for players that apparently
weren’t there two or three days ago, after weeks of telling us what they were
doing wrong at the plate, yet insists he doesn’t want another hitting coaches
job. If you’ve been watching the Phillies for a number of years now you’ll all
remember similar style of added information from non other than Joe Kerrigan
when he was on the Comcast post game show, right before he weaseled his way into
the pitching coach job for Bowa.

Since I’ve missed a few days or more, the Phillies, after the
ASG break have….

….given 3 out of 4 to the sCrUBs and given 3 out of 4 to the
Cards, while on the road, back at home they currently have won the first 2 of a
4 game set against the Rockies with game 3 being played today at CBP. They actually
managed to knock Ubaldo Jimenez out of the game in 2 plus innings, but
today is another day and it all starts again, especially for JA Happ who is back
with the club, his last start was in April and has been on the DL, rehabbing and
just plain getting back into the swing of things.

Just a Thought:

If a player can have specific balls put into the game when
it’s his at bat, what stops teams from rotating balls in and out for home team
hitters and away hitters. I know a ball is a ball is a ball, but if the Rockies
can process their balls to reduce flight, why can’t teams do that for visiting
teams and process for increased flight for home hitters. I know many will
dismiss this as just another conspiracy with no substance, but isn’t anything
possible in this day and age, and won’t teams grab every advantage they can fair
or foul…. the big prize seems to cloud the judgment of people in and around
sports, no matter what the sport.

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Weekend from Hell ….

– PhilliesOutside –

Well maybe not from hell, but a weekend to move on from, one to let settle in the back of your mind till
one day you may need the knowledge to use as some stupid inconsequential pieces
of data. It wasn’t so much that the Phillies had a losing weekend against the
BoSox, obviously a losing weekend is never good, but inter-league play has not
been a National League strong point since it started. Also don’t forget, in
my
post of May 19th
I had gone into details of why ‘it is that time of the
month’
and for those doubters, let it be known that between now and the end of
the month, the Phillies, will lose at least 4 more,
there is 7 games left in May all against division rivals, which means if they
prove me right could put the division lead back into tight contention, which
makes for some excitement as the season goes on.

News broke that the Phillies were scouting for pitchers, because they had
scouts at the ChiSox and Marlins
over the weekend. I am not sure the White Sox have much to look at, it is
possible they were looking at the Marlins, since
we will be meeting them this week. The Phillies
front office did acknowledge the fact that looking is part of the game, and as
any normal person would do the media asked what of Martinez, just because
the Phillies picked him up last year and it
worked out, doesn’t mean they’ll do it again and again. Amaro did
indicate that since Martinez, just casts them money and no talent then
they keep checking in with him, but they haven’t seen him throw or had any face
to face time with him.

Forewarned is forearmed, so Amaro, here is your warning, “You
got lucky last year with Martinez, regardless of how desperate you think you may
be this year, DON’T do it again”
. I know I was not a big fan of
Martinez last year and I stand by that, I believe we would have had the same or
similar results had they not spent the time and money on Martinez. I
believe he had no influence on how things turned out and was at times more of a
distraction than an benefit.

Let’s face it the only real addition we may need is a solid closer, because
no matter what anybody says, if it’s Lidge out there then everyone is going to
be holding their breathe
for every pitch, knowing that this could be the pitch that blows the save. It’s possible
that Contreras could be converted to a closing role, he’s only had 1 save
in his career thus far, but I have to admit I was more comfortable watching him
close than I have been watching Lidge close.

We still need Happ to return from the DL healthy and give us a solid last two
thirds of the season, and then if we could convince Seattle to let us get Lee
back before July 31st, then we would be in good shape. Lets face it, we don’t
have many prospects to trade, but I don’t think Lee will stay in Seattle
after this year and there is a chance the Phillies
could unload 2 or 3 players, like Kendrick, Dobbs, Bastardo, or mix them
up and throw in a couple of minor leaguers, who knows what Seattle
would do, and Lee would probably sign with a 3 year deal where both Lee
and the Phillies would be happy. A dream
maybe, but after the weekend that’s all I have today, a dream.

 


Triple H can help the Phillies…..

Husband to Stephanie, son-in-law to Vince, world reknown WWE superstar Triple H, NOT the Triple H, I am refering too.

Halladay, Hamels, Happ and why not….

Halladay, since Ricciardi made it known he would trade his best pitcher the rumours have been filled with Philadelphia being the front runner, everybody and their halladay12.jpgdog has come out of the woodwork to make predictions on who should be traded to get Halladay in a Phillies uniform, most importantly the majority of them are throwing Happ into the mix of players to get this guy. Is he really that good, well he won yesterday for the first time in over a month, okay so he’s been injured. I’ll agree he can help win games, but at the moment so is Happ, so why trade one winning pitcher for another, doesn’t that just give you the same outcome, 1 win every 5 days.

I would love to see Halladay but for pitching prospects not one of our current starters that is winning, and at this point is an excellent candidate for ‘rookie of the year’. Halladay pitched well yesterday a complete game against the RedSox, which is some peoples minds this upped the value of this player, in other peoples minds it just showed that the groin injury is very possibly in the past now. Other reports say that Beeston, the Jays interim President stated that the Jays would need to be “overwhelmed” for them to trade Halladay, so what’s this the Jays front office are playing the, good guy, bad guy routine to get more for Halladay. I say don’t give away what we want just to get Halladay, afterall he only pitches every 5th day and we need more than 1 pitcher on the team.

If we do deal for Halladay it would definately put the Phillies in a strong position, but it depends who we deal to get him.

Hamels has obviously been in a bit of a pitchers slump, but I think he could very well be out of
hamels12.jpgthat and on the way to finishing strong. Before the rain delay in Forida, he was definately starting to look like Hamels should look on the mound, he is still the Phillies Ace, this years numbers may not say that, but he’s earned it.

Happ, anybody willing to give this guy up in a trade is not thinking clearly, they are being blinded by what they appear to be getting and not seeing what they have. I’ve heard it all, Happ is going to come down to earth, he’s in above his head, he’s been really lucky, he’s going to fall like Kendrick did, well I say this, if he was on another team and we had the chance to get him, you’d want him. He’s a rookie he has no past to go on other than the minors and we all know how that is so much diferent, back in 2002 people were saying the same things about Halladay, and again in 2004 and now, time speaks for itself and as they
happ12.jpgalways say “Hinde Sight is 20-20” those same people calling to give up Happ, in 5 years will be same ones saying what a terrible trade that was, we gave up a top pitcher for a guy that stuck with us for 1 year. Well you can’t have it both ways and noone has the magic crystal ball, so before anyone knocks Happ he deserves the benifit of the doubt, he deserves to be looked at as possibly a good long term Philly pitcher and not be judged on those that came before him. One more thing with Happ that seems to be overlooked he can swing the bat, no his batting average isn’t up there, but he makes contact, he puts the ball in play and that is a major plus with an NL pitcher.

Summary:

Get Halladay with prospects, keep Happ, Hamels is coming around you end up with a good rotation

Halladay, Hamels, Happ, Moyer, Blanton

 


Pitchers Duel goes to Philadelphia…

It was nothing more than pure speed on the mound tonight, as both Blanton and Duke were quick through each inning, Blanton pitched 7 1/3 innings giving up a solo homer in the first, he allowed just 3 other hits keeping the Pirates bats quiet.

Duke pitched an outstanding game for the Pirates giving up just 3 runs, in 8 innings, all the Phillies runs came in the 3rd inning, the only Phillies batter that seemed to be consistent against Duke was All Star, Victorino who tapped him for 3 hits. Both Utley and Werth got a hit each off Duke during the three run 3rd.

Romero came in to relieve Blanton and got the 3 batters he faced, setting it up for Lidge to get the final 2 outs in the top of the ninth.

Lidge again made the fans sweat and their hearts race, needing just 1 out in the top of the ninth, he gave up a solo homer to Moss, then a single to Wilson and somehow still managed to get the PH to swing through and get himself out, it took Lidge 20 pitches to save the game and a lot of stress and worry for the fans, who went from cheering to crossing their fingers.

I don’t normally single a player out as a player of the game, but today I think I have to give this one to the Pirates pitcher Duke, that was a tough one for him to lose. Imagine what his stats would be like behind the offence the Phillies can produce….. just a thought, while we’re looking for starters…..


Could Halladay join the Phillies?

I guess the answer is unknown at this time but, the chances may have got better today, from a story on SI.com by Jon Heyman, Daily Scoop, he lists the possibles for Halladay, showing the Phillies as number 1 contenders on his list, he also reports that the Jays would prefer he goes out of the AL East, so that could cancel any thoughts for the Yankies and Red Sox. You can read the story yourself and make up your own mind, do the Phillies have the players the Jays would want and would the Phillies give them up? : Full Story