Tuesday, August 15, 2006

One Last Bit of Bobby Abreu Talk...and Minor League Weekly Update

I hope occasional commenter "oper33" doesn't mind me pulling their argument in favor of the Bobby Abreu trade from the comments section to the big stage here...it was a very well thought out argument that really made me rethink the entire trade. In the end, I tried my best to better explain where I was coming from and address some of the points mentioned in the original comment. The beautiful part about a baseball discussion such as this: there is no such thing as right or wrong...it's all opinion. Without further ado, here is the original comment from oper33 (and again, I oper33 doesn't mind me using this):

I had almost the exact opposite reaction to the trade. It was the most blatant salary dump I have ever seen but yet it made me hopeful for the future, I will try to back my faith with facts.

1) Abreu is a really good player and people can argue back and forth about the specifics of clutch not clutch or whatever but to me the bottom line is they were not winning with him. Do the same thing get the same result. A change was needed.

2) We have not seen Gillick in action when he was not handcuffed by the former GM's deals. Going into this off season there was only so much he could do and he did what he could. People can argue that alot of the deals he made did not work out but again he was limited by the constraits laid down by the former regime. I see most of his moves to this point as him dumping Wade's guys so that in the fututre he can get his guys.

3)Pitching, pitching, pitching. If this team is ever going to get any real starting pitching they had to free up some real money. There is not a lot out there in the way of #1 startersthis off season but if the right deal comes up Gillick is now in a position to make it happen IMHO.
I wish they could have gotten more than they did for Bobby, but they Yankees really had ‘em by the balls.

(My Turn...)

1) I agree that the Phillies were clearly not winning with this core group of players, but I just don’t see how trading away your three-hole hitter is a good first step towards building a winning club. The Phillies may not have won anything with Abreu here, but baseball isn’t a simple enough game to say those two factors are necessarily related. Take this year’s team for example: were they underperforming because of Abreu’s VORP (a fairly good indicator of player value although I will readily point out that it doesn’t take financials into the equation) of 24.9 (a number trailing only Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, and Brett Myers on the ballclub) or rather the fact the Phillies have the sixth worse team ERA in baseball (trailing only non-contenders such as the Royals, Orioles, Devil Rays, Brewers, and Nationals). Trading away a good player still performing at a high level just because you haven’t been winning with him just doesn’t make sense to me – was it Ted Williams fault the Sox never won it all? Was it Ernie Banks who was holding back the Cubs all those years? Has Barry Bonds, the greatest hitter of this generation (by far), been the reason why his teams can’t get over the hump in postseason play or is he a big part of the reason why his team is so often in the playoff chase in the first place?

2) Gillick went out and got “his guys” this past offseason…with disastrous results. I can sympathize with the difficulties of having to deal with Ed Wade’s bad decisions (a point I won’t argue with), but it seems to me that this is quickly becoming a crutch for Pat Gillick and a built-in excuse for whenever he makes a bad move. If Pat Gillick was so concerned about cleaning up Ed Wade’s mess to the point he has begun making public comments about his attempts to undo Wade’s bad moves, then he never should have taken the job in the first place.

3) Pitching is absolutely important, but you still need to score to win…the Phils, in my opinion, only have four above average regulars that they can count on going forward in their everyday lineup (Utley, Howard, Jimmy Rollins, and Pat Burrell). I guess the argument about pitching is one all about having faith in Pat Gillick to acquire the right guys. I’m not just being polite when I say I am happy for those who are optimistic about Pat Gillick’s direction for the Phillies – I am 100% genuinely serious when I say I am jealous of those who can be so optimistic. Guess we’ll just have to wait and see on this point.

The Yankees may have had all of the power in negotiating with the Phillies, but I have no idea why…I honesty can not stress this next point enough…the Phillies DID NOT HAVE to trade Bobby Abreu. It was a choice. It seems they entered in negotiations with the Yankees believing that they had to move Abreu no matter what they got back. This makes no sense to me.

I realize this is a baseball argument, so it really isn't all that important in the grand scheme of things, but a deal of this magnitude (a deal capable of shifting the fortunes of the franchise for years to come) is plenty complex and elicits opinions of all kinds. That's what makes baseball fun to talk about...there are rarely any absolutes, rarely any kind of definite right or wrong answers. On to the minors...

AAA Scranton-WB
  • Carlos Ruiz: 809 OPS (.318/.400/.409)
  • Michael Bourn: 690 OPS (.214/.333/.357) - 7 runs scored, 2 triples, 5 walks
  • Angel Chavez: 594 OPS (.217/.333/.261)
  • Josh Kroeger: 465 OPS (.188/.278/.188)

  • Gavin Floyd: 7 IP 1.29 ERA 1.14 WHIP 0.43 K/IP - 4/14 GB/FB ratio
  • Eude Brito: 5.2 IP 1.59 ERA 1.06 WHIP 1.06 K/IP
  • Justin Germano: 5 IP 7.20 ERA 1.80 WHIP 0.80 K/IP - 10/1 GB/FB ratio
  • Clay Condrey: 3.2 IP 2.46 ERA 1.37 WHIP 0.27 K/IP
  • Ryan Cameron: 3.1 IP 5.41 ERA 0.90 WHIP 0.30 K/IP
  • Seung Lee: 3.1 IP 2.70 ERA 0.60 WHIP 1.20 K/IP
  • Matt Smith: 3 IP 0.00 ERA 1.00 WHIP 0.67 K/IP
  • Travis Minix: 2.1 IP 0.00 ERA 0.43 WHIP 0.43 K/IP

AA Reading

  • Jason Jaramillo: 728 OPS (.235/.316/.412) - 3 doubles

  • Gio Gonzalez: 12 IP 3.00 ERA 0.92 WHIP 0.83 K/IP
  • J.A. Happ: 7 IP 5.14 ERA 1.43 WHIP 0.00 K/IP
  • Zack Segovia: 7 IP 0.00 ERA 0.57 WHIP 1.00 K/IP
  • Joe Bisenius: 4 IP 0.00 ERA 0.25 WHIP 1.50 K/IP

High A Clearwater

  • Greg Golson: 713 OPS (.208/.296/.417)
  • Mike Costanzo: 1.351 (.391/.481/.870) - 3 homeruns, 7 RBI
  • Brad Harman: 670 OPS (.214/.313/.357)
  • Bryan Hansen: 685 OPS (.200/.385/.300) - 5 walks
  • Tuffy Gosewisch: 838 OPS (.400/.438/.400)
  • Tim Moss: 492 OPS (.235/.316/.176)
  • Hector Made: 000 OPS (.000/.000/.000)

  • Julio De la Cruz: 12.1 IP 4.38 ERA 1.22 WHIP 0.41 K/IP
  • Kyle Kendrick: 7 IP 1.29 ERA 0.57 WHIP 1.14 K/IP - 8 strikeouts, 0 walks
  • Derek Griffith: 7 IP 1.29 ERA 1.14 WHIP 0.43 K/IP
  • Andrew Baldwin: 6.1 IP 4.27 ERA 1.42 WHIP 0.47 K/IP
  • Nate Johnson: 1.2 IP 0.00 ERA 1.20 WHIP 0.00 K/IP
  • Pat Overholt: 1 IP 18.00 ERA 2.00 WHIP 0.00 K/IP
  • Zac Stott: 1 IP 0.00 ERA 2.00 WHIP 0.00 K/IP

Low A Lakewood

  • Welinson Baez: 1.259 OPS (.350/.409/.850) - 3 homeruns, 5 RBI, 6 runs scored
  • Lou Marson: 611 OPS (.222/.222/.389)
  • Jeremy Slayden: 679 OPS (.308/.333/.346)
  • Clay Harris: 633 OPS (.200/.333/.300)
  • C.J. Henry: 423 OPS (.188/.235/.188)

  • Carlos Carrasco: 14.1 IP 1.88 ERA 0.56 WHIP 1.40 K/IP - 20 strikeouts, 6 walks
  • Matt Maloney: 10.2 IP 6.75 ERA 1.97 WHIP 1.03 K/IP
  • Josh Outman: 7 IP 0.00 ERA 0.43 WHIP 1.14 K/IP - 8 strikeouts, 1 walk
  • Brett Harker: 3.1 IP 2.70 ERA 1.20 WHIP 0.60 K/IP
  • Andy Barb: 3 IP 0.00 ERA 0.00 WHIP 1.33 K/IP
  • Wilfredo Laureano: 2 IP 0.00 ERA 0.00 WHIP 0.50 K/IP
  • Will Savage: 0.2 IP 13.64 ERA 6.06 WHIP 0.00 K/IP

Short Season: Batavia

  • SS Jason Donald (3rd Round): 612 OPS (.214/.290/.321)
  • CF Quintin Berry (5th Round): 667 OPS (.333/.333/.333) - 3 stolen bases
  • 1B Charlie Yarbrough (7th Round): 655 OPS (.250/.280/.375)
  • 2B/SS Zach Penprase (13th Round): 859 OPS (.370/.452/.407)
  • OF Gus Milner (14th Round): 1.042 OPS (.357/.471/.571) - 6 RBI, 5 runs scored
  • 3B Cody Montgomery (16th Round): 552 OPS (.214/.267/.286)
  • OF Jay Miller (17th Round): 745 (.333/.364/.381)
  • 3B/OF Jacob Dempsey (21st Round): 433 OPS (.167/.211/.222)
  • C Shawn McGill (23rd Round): 350 OPS (.100/.250/.100)
  • RF/1B Doug Morales: 825 OPS (.364/.462/.364)
  • C/1B/3B/LF Tim Kennelly: 697 OPS (.222/.364/.333)
  • C Joel Naughton: 550 OPS (.250/.250/.300)

  • Michael Dubee: 10 IP 7.20 ERA 1.90 WHIP 0.90 K/IP
  • Ben Pfinsgraff: 8 IP 0.00 ERA 0.63 WHIP 0.63 K/IP
  • Andrew Cruse: 6.2 IP 1.35 ERA 0.60 WHIP 1.20 K/IP
  • Daniel Brauer: 6 IP 0.00 ERA 0.83 WHIP 1.83 K/IP - 11 strikeouts, 2 walks
  • Alexander Concepcion: 6 IP 0.00 ERA 0.33 WHIP 0.67 K/IP
  • Edgar Garcia: 3 IP 0.00 ERA 0.67 WHIP 1.00 K/IP

Rookie: GCL Phillies

  • Kyle Drabek: 667 OPS (.333/.333/.333)
  • C Jesus Sanchez: 889 OPS (.333/.333/.556)
  • SS Adrian Cardenas (1st Round): 286 OPS (.143/.143/.143)
  • CF D’Arby Myers (4th Round): 250 OPS (.125/.125/.125) - 9 strikeouts
  • OF Terrance Warren (8th Round): 375 OPS (.188/.188/.188)
  • OF Darin McDonald (12th Round): 444 OPS (.222/.222/.222)
  • OF Dominic Brown (20th Round): 606 OPS (.273/.333/.273)
  • 2B/3B Michael Deveaux (33rd Round): 400 OPS (.200/.200/.200)
  • 2B/3B Herman Demmink (28th Round): 364 OPS (.182/.182/.182)
  • LF Jermaine Williams: 111 OPS (.000/.111/.000)
  • SS/3B Derrick Mitchell: 400 OPS (.200/.200/.200)

  • Kyle Drabek: 8.1 IP 8.64 ERA 1.92 WHIP 0.84 K/IP - 12 strikeouts, 5 walks
  • Carlos Monasterios: 5 IP 1.80 ERA 1.00 WHIP 0.80 K/IP
  • Antonio Bastardo: 4.2 IP 1.93 ERA 1.29 WHIP 0.86 K/IP
  • Robert Roth: 4 IP 6.75 ERA 1.50 WHIP 1.25 K/IP


Blogger GM-Carson said...

I like to read your posts about the Minors. I follow the box scores and am intrigued by some of the possibilities that wait in the wings. Feel free to visit my blog and leave comments about minor leaguers or anything else you see fit.


1:25 PM  
Anonymous oper33 said...

Its great to have you back posting your always thoughts on the Phillies. You make some very good points, a lot of which I agree with, but one or two I don't.

I believe the Phillies HAD to trade Abreu, because I think Gillick knew that he would have to free up some money if he was going to go out and get any pitching this off-season. So the two big paychecks to dump are Abreu and Burrell, Abreu just had better trade value, meaning that anyone would be willing to take on his salary. My hunch is that the only reason Gillick made the trade was to have the cash should a deal for pitching come up.

"Pitching is absolutely important, but you still need to score to win…" Couldn't be more true, but I think you over look a very good player in Delucci, who in about half the at bats has 4 more homers than Phillies Abreu (3 more than Yankees Abreu). Homeruns are not everything but he has about half the numbers of Abreu in everything else with a decent OBP. So there has not been much drop off if any.

And you are certainly right that baseball is much to complicated a game to say one player is holding a team back. You site some really great examples and support that comment with logic that I cannot refute with my brain, so it is in these gray areas I sometimes turn to my gut and my gut tells me, its not always the guy with the best numbers who wins. I think the best guys that lead teams to championships are the guys who bring the team up with them, they may not have gaudy individual numbers, but they have something else something more elusive that you can't put down as a stat. I think guys like Utley and Howard have that and guys like Bonds don't. Bonds might have been the greatest hitter of the last 20 years but it’s was Bonds versus his own stat sheet. I hate to say this but my gut also tells me Abreu was a lot like Bonds in this respect.

either way the Phils are playing some fun baseball right now, key words being right now.

1:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i was in clearwater this week but the threshers were out of town, bummer...regardless, the attack is coming

12:37 AM  

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