Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Another Ruin Tomorrow Moment, Trade Chips

First, I'd like to wish everyone a belated Happy Memorial Day, especially to the men and women in uniform & particularly the fallen. I get to enjoy playing my clarinet & saxophone, weather forecasting, computer & web programming, and sports watching & analysis because of your sacrifice. Thank you!

By now, you have heard what Amaro said yesterday about Philly fans in regards to wanting the organization to be aggressive with its prospects, particularly at AA & especially Nola. Here's the quote:

“They don’t understand the game,” Amaro said. "They don’t understand the process. There’s a process. And then they bitch and complain because we don’t have a plan. There’s a plan in place and we’re sticking with the plan. We can’t do what’s best for the fan. We have to do what’s best for the organization so the fan can reap the benefit of it later on. That’s the truth.”

That first sentence is incredibly insulting to fans. It is bad business to insult the paying customer, as Brian Michael of PhilliesNation.com said earlier today. I also agree with Brian's proposal for Rube to explain what he the organization/ front office plans to do to get us to contention by 2017. Perhaps he wants to see if Nola is resilient at AA (much like he wanted for Giles last year). Perhaps he will wait until a team bites on Cole or promoting Nola and either Efflin or Biddle, although promoting Nola now, with injuries to Buchannan & Billingsley, will more quickly create some starting pitching depth.

We don't know but would very much love for Rube or Gillick or SOMEONE to tell us. If that is not the case, then the front office has absolutely no business insulting us. During today's edition of Philly Sports Talk, Rube acknowledged that he "probably" misspoke, used a poor choice of words in his Monday interview with Jim Salisbury. Rube also acknowledged that they should have begun the transition years ago. Jim Salisbury said that Rube is sincere in his apology, bringing up a quote saying that fan support led them to want to contend over the past few years.

After a long internal debate, I accept Ruben Amaro, Jr.'s apology but I cannot yet forgive him. Most of his tenure has been negative. I don't think he's calling the shots on any of the major moves, which is a good thing, but he needs to go. I think I will be able to forgive him if he either says that he'll leave after a one-year extension... or better yet, resign immediately or at least as soon as game 162 is in the books.

UPDATE - Poll Available here until the trade deadline. I hope for tons of responses.

Rube is reluctant to promote our top prospects. When would you promote one of our top 20 prospects?
After a full-yr in any level
4 months
2-3 months
6-8 weeks
3-5 weeks
  Show results
Votes so far: 0
Days left to vote: 16

Now, in that same interview, Rube talked about how the veterans are doing. So, let's talk numbers:
  • Cole Hamels, in his last seven starts (48.1 IP) is 5-1 with a 2.23 ERA, 1.12 WHIP, 9.17 K/9, and a K:BB ratio above 3:1, and is 4-0 with a 1.53 ERA in his last 4 games.
  • Aaron Harang is 4-4 overall (10 starts, 65.1 IP) with a 2.87 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, 6.3 K/9, and a near-3:1-K:BB-ratio.
  • Pap, Giles, & Garcia each have an ERA less than 4.0, with Pap & Giles with a 1.5-1.9 ERA. Unfortunately, after the Nats series, De Fratus' ERA jumped to 4.3 from 3.4 - I blame Ryne for poor decisions - and Diekman has an ERA over 7.0. The good news: the bullpen, overall, has been a strength of the team.
  • As I've been posting on Twitter, Howard & Utley have been valuable to the Phillies lately. Howard, since hitting his first homer of the season on 4/21, has a .999 OPS - didn't think that would happen when I predicted a bounce back year for him. Utley, in his last 15 games, has a .904 OPS. Both have full no-trade rights.
  • 3B Maikel Franco has brought his hot bat from AAA to the majors. He is 10-for-43 at the plate w/ a 2B, a 3B, 2 HRs, 7 RBIs, 3 BB, 5 Ks, and a .724 OPS.
  • SS Freddy Galvis has cooled off as of late, hitting .189 in his last 9 games but is still hitting .314 on the season.
  • C Carlos Ruiz is not perfoming well offensively, costing the Phillies about five runs at the plate, but he still controls the dish defensively and is one of those players who turns on the bat in the second half. Should be a nice addition to a trade.
  • As I mentioned before, most of the minor leaguers are doing well: Asche (LF @ AAA), Brown (RF @ AAA), Efflin & Nola (AA), and Crawford (Clearwater) are among those performing well.
Hope everyone has a great week! Enjoy the games!


  1. My thoughts about the comments made by Ruben Amaro are that he was correct in his assessment of the fans here in Philly or any other city. Fans are fans they are not owners they are not professionally paid GMs or players. My thoughts of the local fans compared to the city I moved from, Dallas, is that here they are very thin skinned and somehow believe they know much more than a “paid” professional.
    Yes fans in Dallas have opinions but also it seems they have lives outside of following sports. Maybe because the DFW area is predominantly made up of a population that relocated from other areas of the country, here the fans have lived here all their lives and somehow have made following sports their number one priority in life.
    But to my point: Yes, it is possible for a fan to have as good of an understanding as a professionally paid coach or owner. But where the line blurs and then disintegrates completely is when your begin talent evaluation and or dealing with salary caps and long term team building.

    So I suppose I’m in the great minority of people here in the NE Corridor when I think the paid professionals will always know more about running a professional team than I ever will.

    1. My response: whether or not we know more than Rube vs. as much as him is irrelevant... we do pay attention to the games & most Philadelphians pay attention to the stats... this year, we're also paying attention to the minors stats. Regardless, Rube should have gone into detail about "the plan" rather than saying, "We don't understand the game."