Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Latest injury report - 6/27/12

Utley - "HEEEEE's BAAAAACCCK!!!" - 3 for 5 w/ a HR (back-to-back with Chooch in the 1st) tonight. He will get a day off for every two games played this week.

Howard - to start a rehab assignment (DH role) with Lakewood (A- Affiliate) Thursday. Has until the end of the post-All-Star road trip to return; most likely not to return before ASG. He won't be 100% this year, only 80-85 percent. He'll need another off-season to be 100% but he will give it all he's got when he returns.

Halladay - a week away from throwing from a mound, expect him to make a rehab start or two.

Scooch - to miss about 3-5 weeks

Stutes - had the surgery, will be shut down for at least ten (10) weeks.

Nix - suffered the  et-back last week but will resume rehab in a week. Hopefully, the tightness will subside.

Ironpigs OF Domonic Brown - sent to DL with a sprained left knee. Out for about two more weeks.

COMING SOON: What To Do With Chad Qualls

Sunday, June 24, 2012


Injury Updates:
  1. 2B Chase Utley (chondromalacia in left knee) will play 2B in about three games for the Lehigh Valley Ironpigs (AAA Affiliate) in order to see better pitching. Activation set for Wednesday; Utility infielder Michael Martinez is my candidate for the demotion.
  2. Ace Roy Halladay (right lat. dorsi strain) continues his long toss program: will throw from 120 ft.
  3. Righty reliever Michael Stutes (shoulder issue) will undergo exploratory arthroscopic surgery on Tuesday. Likely to miss the remainder of the season.
  4. 1B Ryan Howard (Achillies rehab) will begin to play for the Clearwater Threshers (A+ Affiliate) this week. Just like Utley, he has 20 days from the start of the assignment to be acitvated unless there's a set-back.
Phillies-Rays Game One Recap:
  1. Papelbon allowed his first runs in a save situation today, blowing another lead, but was bailed out by Jim Thome who pinch-hit for him. Pap almost got the loss on Thursday but a walk-off error bailed him out.
  2. Thome's walk-off homer was his first successful pinch-hit of the year, giving him 609 homers (tying Sosa for 7th All-Time) and 13 walk-off homers (most by any player) for his career.
  3. The win gave Charlie Manuel, who managed Thome in four stints, his 900th career managerial victory, which is his 680th as a Phillies manager. Those stints include manager of the Indians in the minors & majors and as manager of the Phillies in '04 & '05.

  1. Roster: The new CBA allows teams to have 26 active players for doubleheaders. Not sure on whether it will be used or not.
  2. Matchups:
  • 1:05 PM: Hamels vs. Price
  • 6:35 PM: Lee vs. Cobb

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

6/19/12 - A Brief Focus on Jim Thome

Note: This was edited on Sunday morning. I didn't include the walk-off HR.


Since the Phillies no longer have the DH in the remaining 94-game regular season, Jim Thome – who played as DH in all nine interleague road games going 12/36 (.333) with 6 Ks, 14 RBIs, two 2B, 4 HRs (becoming the fourth player to hit 100 HRs for three different teams), and 4 BB – will be relegated to the bench. Here’s what I think has to happen if Thome will have “continued success” as a Phillie this year:

Thome must still play at 1B (four-to-six innings every twelve days against right-handed pitching) and will ALWAYS be the first lefty off the bench unless he's being saved for a better match-up. This gives him as much PAs as possible without risking too much wear and tear on his back. There is no substitute for regular PAs. To compensate for the loss of PAs for bench guys and reduce the risk of injury to the old guys, the thirty-plus-year-old infielders (including Howard & Utley when they return) must be given a day off every five or ten days. I’ve called for this during the preseason and Charlie has not done so. He actually may benefit from this strategy: this year’s bench is performing better overall than last year’s bench, and call-ups like Luna & Fontenot have dazzled from the get-go. However, I still miss Wilson Valdez!!!

Let’s talk about the rest of the hitters, starting with the outfielders. Except for Victorino (bad year) and Pierre (stellar year), Mayberry and Pence have turned it around in June. Pence (and the entire team) has trouble hitting with RISP. Mayberry and Luna give Manuel defensive versatility: they can play all the outfield positions and first base (Luna also can fill in at the utility positions). And Martinez can play center field. Noteworthy, when Domonic Brown, who recently re-injured his knee after getting a hot bat, is finally ready for the big leagues, he could play center field.

Moving on, our catchers are performing spectacularly with Chooch’s hot bat & stellar defense leading the way despite some wear-and-tear (the cramp/ oblique issue) and a few close calls with collisions. Scooch has good moments and improved offense. I’d like to see Kratz play more if he’s on the roster. Give Chooch his usual days off; perhaps tweak it to let Scooch catch for Worley. #VOTE4CHOOCH PLEASE!!!

So, Thome needs to be “coddled” here to give him PAs but it won’t be at the expense of others if Charlie rests his old guys and uses his hot-hitting bench accordingly.

“Worth Noting”:

There are currently 12 pitchers and 13 hitters on the active roster. The current rotation includes Lee (still winless), Hamels (with a major-league-leading ten wins), Kendrick (the fill-in for Halladay), Worley, and Blanton. The bullpen includes righties Papelbon (who has not blown just blew his first save of the season; unusually, he can only be used in save situations), Qualls, and Schwimmer; and lefties Savery, Bastardo, Valdes, and Deikman. Savery, Schwimmer, and Valdes can play more than an inning at a time.

Today's game: Phillies (Hamels) vs. Rockies (Outman) at 7:05 PM

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Report on the Bullpen


Contreras (RHP): To undergo two surgeries and attempt a comeback. He is about 41 years old. The Phillies placed him on the DL retroative to his last appearance and transferred him to the 60-Day DL after the evaluations. He needs Tommy John Surgery and also needs to repair his flexor tendon (both in his throwing arm).

De Fratus (RHP): Started throwing three and a half weeks ago. Diagnosed with a right elbow sprain. He hasn't played all year.

Herndon & Stutes (RHPs): Progressing slowly. Both have inflation. Herndon has it in his right elbow and Stutes has it in his shoulder.

Roster Move

Before the second game against the Orioles, the Phillies sent lefty Raul Valdes to the Ironpigs and called up right-handed rookie B.J. Rosenberg, who immediately threw a perfect 11th inning before allowing a walk and a two-run home run to Adam Jones in the 12th inning in a 6-4 loss that day. The move was made so that there are more righties than lefties in the bullpen.

Potential Call-Up Candidates are lefty Raul Valdez and righty Phillippe Aumont.

Active Roster

Note: Long-man Kyle Kendrick is now taking Roy Halladay's (right lat. dorsi strain) place in the rotation until sometime after the All-Star Break.

Righties: Michael Schwimmer, B.J. Rosenberg, set-up man Chad Qualls and closer Jonathan Papelbon

Lefties: Jake Deikman, long-man Joe Savery, and set-up man Antonio Bastardo

State of the Bullpen - GRADE: C

Overall, the bullpen sucks with notable exceptions.

With the exception of game four against the Dodgers, Chad Qualls has not allowed any runs: he allowed four (three earned) in that game. He's pitched better and was excellent in April until his appearance on the 30th. From that game and through most of his appearances in May, he struggled - a 6.10 ERA in May. Let's hope Qualls can nail it down or he'll be out of a job. GRADE: D

B.J. Rosenberg pitched excellently in the first half of his debut but gave up the walk-off two-run HR to Adam Jones in the second half of his debut. GRADE: C+

Jake Deikman retired all batters faced in his debut and got the win as a result. He has a 1-0 record with a 4.88 ERA but get rid of his second appearance (in Chicago), he'd have a 1.00 ERA.GRADE: B+/A-

Antonio Bastardo struggled in the second half of April but has been very domainant this season except for June 1st against the Marlins. Yes, he regressed, but this is not too bad of a slump. GRADE: B-

Michael Schwimmer was sent down during the shake-up but has been better since returning. GRADE: C

Joe Savery has a 0 ERA in June but was very terrible in April and May. GRADE: C+

Papelbon is 15 for 15 in saves but has struggled in non-save opportunities. His great season is what's keeping me from giving the bullpen a D. As long as he either doesn't blow a save or blows a save but improves during non-save situations, I will keep him in the A-range. GRADE: A-

DL Guys did ok but not great - inconsistent is a good word to use. GRADE: C+/B-

It's up to Rich Dubee and Charlie Manuel to use the bullpen effectively: they've been better recently but terrible in April and May. While the last two extra-inning losses are tough I think we can turn it around. Injuries continue to mount - Contreras was just beginning to be effective when he went down. Hoping the next three weeks go better and that the 'pen dominates in the second half. Turn it around!!!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Injury updates - June 6th, 2012

RHS Roy Halladay (Grade 1/2 Lat Dorsi Strain): original diagnosis confirmed by Mets' team doctor after he received Halladay's past MRIs; due back in the fortnight following the All-Star Break.
2B-SS Freddy Galvis (back strain): sent to DL - JUST OCCURRED
PH-1B Jim Thome (back strain): activated from DL a few days ago; unable to play 1B but will DH in the next road trip to start on Friday
3B Placido Polanco (day-to-day with a cut on hand): unable to play for the next few days; DL stint not expected - JUST OCCURRED
IF Michael Martinez (foot): activated from DL; assigned to AAA
RHR Jose Contreras (UCL & flexor pronate tendon tears): no surgery scheduled; out for season & subsequently transferred to 60-Day DL
RHR Justin De Fratus (60 Day DL for an elbow sprain): throwing off of a mound at 75 feet
LF-1B Lanyce Nix (calf strain): heading to Clearwater to continue his current rehab program; playing in rehab games TBD
RHRs David Herndon (elbow inflammation) & Michael Stutes (shoulder inflammation): progressing VERY slowly.

2B Chase Utley and 1B Ryan Howard are about 30 days from returning to the lineup. Activation to play one or two games between June 30 and the All-Star Break (July 9-13) may not make sense but it may be necessary.

Can the Phillies' bad luck continue all season? I hope not but the list never ends!!!