Rollins to Dodgers Done Deal

Posted by Pat Gallen, Fri, December 19, 2014 07:43 AM Comments: 7

Update, 1Pm: Jimmy Rollins has been deal to the Dodgers, the club announced this afternoon.

In what has been the longest, most drawn-out goodbye of all time, Jimmy Rollins still appears to be heading to the Los Angeles Dodgers. A baseball source told Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com, the “I’s are being dotted and the T’s crossed.”

Now that the Matt Kemp-to-San Diego deal is going through, the Phillies will receive pitcher Zach Eflin who was traded from the Padres to the Dodgers. The Phillies will also reportedly get pitcher Tom Windle.

Sources told Salisbury that the deal still would have been consummated even if the Kemp deal fell apart. Of course, teams don’t just make trades without contingency plans (for the most part) and apparently there was one for this deal, as well.

Stay tuned, we should be hearing the news soon.


UPDATE: Rollins Deal in Danger?

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Thu, December 18, 2014 12:23 PM Comments: 26



UPDATE, December 18, 2014, 12:23 PM – Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports that the Matt Kemp trade is being held up by a physical that revealed Kemp has arthritis in both hips. It is unknown if the Padres are still interested in proceding with the Kemp deal which, at the very least, would change the Rollins deal.


December 17, 2014, 9:20 PM

Things haven’t broken down yet but they have certainly gotten more interesting in the potential deal that would send Jimmy Rollins to the Los Angeles Dodgers.

First, despite being announced a few days ago, the trade is not yet official. The hold up is a deal that would send Matt Kemp to the San Diego Padres. One of the pieces headed from San Diego to LA is pitching prospect Zach Eflin, who would immediately head to Philadelphia as one half of the return for Rollins. Seems simple enough, right?

Well, the Kemp deal is not yet official either and has a reported deadline of Thursday. The Padres, as you may have heard, acquired 2013 AL Rookie of the Year Wil Myers today in a three team deal. Still following me? Ken Rosenthal speculates that there may be posturing by either San Diego or LA to sweeten either side now that the Padres have an extra outfielder while others have speculated that the Padres may be looking for a way out now that they have acquired a younger, cheaper outfield option.

What does this mean for the Rollins trade? At worst, Rollins will still likely be traded to LA but the Phillies may see a different prospect in return. While Eflin is an enticing prospect, the Dodgers have comparable talent they could ship to Philly instead. In its clearest path, both San Diego and LA take themselves to their deadline tomorrow, agree to continue with the trades as constituted, and Rollins heads to LA.


Manuel Declines Offer to be Orioles Hitting Coach

Posted by Pat Gallen, Thu, December 18, 2014 08:43 AM Comments: 0

He apparently gave it some thought, but decided against returning to the majors. According to a tweet from Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun, Charlie Manuel declined the Baltimore Orioles offer to be their hitting coach.

Manuel, who turns 71 in January, was let go by the Phillies on August 16, 2013, making way for current manager Ryne Sandberg. He always mentioned wanting to stay around the game, and was given an opportunity by the O’s, but declined the offer.

Everyone in Philly loves Charlie, so it would be cool to see him back doing what he does best; teaching students how to hit.



Stigall Rips Chase Utley’s “Ellen” Appearance

Posted by Jonathan Nisula, Wed, December 17, 2014 10:47 AM Comments: 12

In case you missed it, Julie Kramer, a 23 year old woman battling stage-4 Synovial Sarcoma appeared on “Ellen” this week for an interview on inspiring women. Kramer, from Tabernacle, NJ, a big Phillies fan, was surprised with a nice amount of Phillies merchandise and a check for $10,000, presented by Chase Utley himself. He also invited her to any Phillies game next season–including a batting practice invite to “meet the guys”.

It was an amazing moment.

But a radio talk show host for 1210 WPHT didn’t seem to think so. Chris Stigall absolutely trashed the whole situation, at one point even questioning if she will live through the season. Yikes. Remember, 1210 PHT is the flagship station for the Phillies. Listen here:

There’s nothing like crapping on an amazingly nice gesture, by the current face of the Phillies, on a national stage–during the holidays. It was an unbelievably low blow to everyone involved, and way out of line.


Off-season check in: RHP Tyler Viza

Posted by Jay Floyd, Tue, December 16, 2014 07:30 AM Comments: 0

Tyler Viza 1

Tyler Viza, image- Jay Floyd

Righty hurler Tyler Viza had a noteworthy season in his first full year in the pro ranks in 2014.  After being the Phillies’ 32nd round draft choice in 2013 and posting a 1-0 record with a 1.41 ERA in 12 games with the rookie level Gulf Coast League team, the Arizona native dealt with considerable struggles this year.  Notching Class A Lakewood’s all-time record for losses, with his 3-17 record, the six-foot-three 170-pounder held tough, sticking in the BlueClaws’ rotation for the full campaign, sporting a 5.29 ERA with 80 strike outs and 24 walks issued in 126 innings pitched over 24 starts.

Not discouraged by the infamous achievement, the 20-year-old is looking forward to a fresh start in the upcoming season and has been focused to stay in shape and improve during the fall and winter months.

This week, I spoke with Viza about how he’s maintaining his conditioning, how he feels about last season in retrospect and more.  Read ahead for the full interview.

-Off the top, I’m just wondering what your current workout routine is.  Any gym training, cardio, that sort thing you’re doing to keep in shape?

As of right now my off season routine consists of throwing on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Each of those are followed by an upper body workout. On the rest of the days, those are my leg and core workout days.

-Is the fitness routine provided by the Phillies, or something you put together yourself?

My workouts consist of lifts that the Phillies provide for us and a little bit of lifts that I did throughout the season that I benefited from.

-What is the most different about this off-season compared to ones in the past?

This off-season is different from last because I am trying to get my body and mind to a place where I can come into spring training ready to go. I feel as though I am in the best shape of my life so far and I am very antsy to get back on the mound this (upcoming) season. Continue reading Off-season check in: RHP Tyler Viza


Chase Utley Surprises Fan on “Ellen”

Posted by Pat Gallen, Mon, December 15, 2014 05:55 PM Comments: 7

This video speaks for itself. Chase Utley, you are the man.


The Sad End of an Era

Posted by Ryan Gerstel, Mon, December 15, 2014 03:11 PM Comments: 10

Hearing the news of Jimmy Rollins being traded to the Dodgers wasn’t shocking, but it was quite saddening. As the first piece of this core group of players to be dealt, the J-Roll deal signals the end of a very memorable era of Phillies baseball.

When I look back on this core group of players, I’ll instantly think about those five straight NL East championships, the AP Photo/ David J. Phillip potent offense, the incredible starting pitching, the 102-win 2011 season, and of course, the 2008 World Series Championship.

The day after the Rollins deal was an emotional one for any Phillies fan listening to sports radio, as memories were shared about the shortstop’s 14-year Phillies career, and the Phillies’ run as one of the best teams in MLB from 2007-2011.

Goosebumps covered the arms, and possibly some tears filled the eyes of anybody listening, and reflecting back on the good times.

Sure, we’ve watched the core players, and the team deteriorate the past two seasons, and it had been hard to watch, but the success that these players brought to Philadelphia and its fans should be the first thought that comes to mind when looking back on this core group of players.

Looking to the future, hopefully this organization makes the right moves and acquires the right talent when dealing their veterans to make this team fun to watch again, and in the process, create some new, lasting memories along the way.


Baseball America Releases Phils Top 10 List

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Mon, December 15, 2014 12:15 PM Comments: 6

Baseball America is in the process of releasing their annual list of Top 10 prospects for each team and released the Phillies this morning. The list is significant for its inclusion of new names; just four Phillies prospects remained on the 2015 list from 2014 and the exclusions were not due to graduation to the Majors.

In a move that should surprise few, the number one prospect in the Phillies’ system according to Baseball America is shortstop J.P. Crawford. 2014 first-round pick Aaron Nola joins the list at number two, followed by last year’s number one Maikel Franco at number three. Center fielder/shortstop Roman Quinn jumped from five to four after recovering from an Achilles injury and last year’s number six, outfielder Carlos Tocci, moved to number five.

Six through ten are all new names to the ranks of the Phillies’ top prospects. Sixth is 22-year old outfielder Aaron Brown, the Phillies third round pick out of Pepperdine in 2014 who hit .268 with four homers and eight steals in 61 games across Williamsport and Lakewood. Seventh is 6’5″ left-handed pitcher Matt Imhof, the Phillies’ 2014 second round pick out of Cal Poly who posted a 2.98 ERA in 11 starts across the GCL Phillies, Williamsport, and Lakewood.

Number eight is a product of one of Ruben Amaro‘s shrewdest trades, Jesmuel Valentin, son of Jose Valentin. Valentin, a 20-year old middle infielder, was the 51st overall pick in the 2012 draft and had an excellent year at Single-A Great Lakes in the Dodgers organization (.280/.349/.430 with seven homers and 24 steals) before being dealt to Philadelphia. Left-handed pitcher Yoel Mecias, 21, was Baseball America’s pick for ninth while BA selected 19-year old 6’6″ righty Franklyn Kilome as the Phils’ tenth-best prospect after Kilome impressed with the GCL Phillies in 2014.


Rumor: Astros Potential Hamels Trade Partner?

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Sun, December 14, 2014 05:41 PM Comments: 16

hamelsAccording to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, the Houston Astros have joined the ranks of teams that are interested in Cole Hamels. Cafardo calls the Astros a “dark horse” trade partner candidate alongside other presumed potential trade partners in the Cubs, Red Sox, Dodgers, Padres, and Rangers. Cafardo also lists the Giants as a possible destination for Hamels.

Analysis: The Astros certainly make sense from a talent standpoint. With one of the deepest farms in baseball, the Astros could put together one of the best offers among any teams interested in Hamels. Where this rumor or speculation falls apart, however, is why, exactly, the Astros would pick now to trade for Hamels.

The Astros finished 28 games behind the first-place Angels and 18 games behind Wild Card game participant Oakland and Seattle has shown a willingness to continue to build on a strong 2014 by spending more money to lock up home grown talent and sign free agents. I just can’t see why the Astros would pick now to try to trade for Hamels unless they think their young talent will make a significant jump in 2015.

But if the Astros are interested (debatable) and the talent is a match (quite possible), Hamels has a 20 team no trade clause. As of 2014, Hamels could be traded to the Dodgers, Angels, Padres, Cardinals, Nationals, Braves, Yankees, Red Sox, and Rangers without his consent but his list was updated in late October. It is unlikely that Hamels updated the list of teams he gives his consent to be traded to to include the Astros.


PhoulBallz Podcast Episode 73: Matt Imhof Interview

Posted by Jay Floyd, Fri, December 12, 2014 06:00 PM Comments: 0

On the 73rd edition of the PhoulBallz Minor League Podcast Tug and Jay are joined by lefty pitching prospect Matt Imhof, who was the Phillies’ 2nd round draft choice this year. Additionally, the guys talk about the Phils’ rebuild mode kicked off by the team trading former National League MVP Jimmy Rollins and what Rollins’, as well as other core team members’, places in team history should be.   Wondering if Cole Hamels is next to go and the organization’s cranky fan base are also a topics of discussion.

Use the media player below to stream the full episode, or simply download it by clicking HERE.

You can also check out previous episodes and subscribe on iTunes.

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