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Wrapping Your Head Around Ryan Howard

Posted by The Dipsy, Tue, July 19, 2011 01:00 PM | Comments: 109
Analysis, News, Opinion, Posts

(AP Photo/Michael Perez)

(This post was written by one of Phillies Nation’s best commenters and a big-time Phillies fan, “The Dipsy.”)

The jaw dropping power.  The deluge of strikeouts.  All those RBIs. All that horrible plate discipline. His self-effacing good nature. His head-shaking grimaces on his walk back to the dugout. And all that money, too.  Exhilarating and maddening and prolific and squandering.

To root for Ryan Howard, which we all do, is to experience both the agony and the ecstasy, each in large doses – and very often within the same game, the same inning, or even the same at bat.  That wild swing at a curveball in the dirt will leave one to mutter curses under his breath only to see that same fan rise up exuberantly the next moment when Ryan crushes the next pitch deep into the Philadelphia night.

Ryan Howard was held down for a year-and-a-half while the Phillies figured out what to do with Jim Thome.  When he did arrive he became the best power hitter in the game.  He hit for average, he hit to the opposite field, he took walks.  He was incredible; incredible in a time when offense flourished in baseball, for whatever reason (wink). He won an MVP and led the Phils to a World Series title.  He signed a huge contract.  The last few years have seen his production tail off as he has morphed from an all around weapon into a one-dimensional power hitter. While his fielding has improved slightly, he is still in the bottom third of defensive first basemen. We all love his personality and charm, but few of us can ignore the fact that he who was once the unstoppable offensive force, is not that anymore.

While still a tremendous power hitter, some fans chide him for his inability to perform at his previous offensive levels, and I’m not going to tell them they’re wrong. A portion of the team’s fandom work themselves into a lather at every horrible at bat (which there are many) or each example of bad fielding.  Each miscue is set against a backdrop of his huge salary.  Some fans just don’t think he’s worth it…that the pain just outweighs the pleasure.

I have a view.  I too have been through the years of cheering and cursing and hand wringing, etc. and I’ve come out the other side. While Ryan Howard is not the hitter he once was, he is still the best power hitter in the game, year in and year out.  He does have bad plate discipline and he does swing at everything- but why?  Because when there are men on base, and he looks to the on deck circle, one would suspect he realizes that if he doesn’t drive them in that nobody will.  And rightly so.

Its the “hit a home run or die trying” theory. He has 73 RBIs this year.   He also has a contract calling for him to be paid $25m a year.  A lot of people can’t stomach that.  I know its too much money but guess what? – Ryan didn’t ask for it, Ruben gave it to him.  He gave it to him because it would have been PR suicide not to.  Which brings us full circle.  For all the things he can’t do, he is this: a fabulous home run hitter and run producer who helps puts butts in the seats, a hard working guy who has never given anyone a moments trouble, and a player with a big heart who wants to win, loves the game, and is adored by the 99% of the fans that don’t bitch about him on call-in shows and fan blogs.  And I suspect that’s why Ruben paid him, for those very reasons.

When we get a little angry about why he’s not the player he was or when he can’t catch a throw to first base, remember the saying that goes “don’t let the good be the enemy of the perfect” and know that many other teams in baseball would kill to have Ryan Howard.

Avatar of The Dipsy

About The Dipsy

The Dipsy has written 29 articles on Phillies Nation.

 
 
  • Posts: 385 Publius

    Avatar of Publius

    “he is this: a fabulous home run hitter and run producer who helps puts butts in the seats, a hard working guy who has never given anyone a moments trouble, and a player with a big heart who wants to win, loves the game, and is adored by the 99% of the fans that don’t bitch about him on call-in shows and fan blogs. And I suspect that’s why Ruben paid him, for those very reasons.”

    If Ruben seriously paid $25 million because a guy puts butts in the seats (hint: they’d still come for Roy, Cliff, Chase and other people), has a big heart and wants to win and loves the game, he’s a terrible GM. You pay first and foremost for results, and in that regard Ryan is horrendously overpaid.

    As for the RBIs, I’ll let the much more eloquent than myself Joe Posnanski speak to this:

    “Howard leads all of baseball with 296 runners on base. He had an amazing 60 game-stretch recently when he hit .223 … and he still drove in 47 runs in those 60 games.”

    Let that sink in for a second. Ryan Howard has had more RBI opportunities than ANY OTHER PLAYER in baseball. Give any guy that many opportunities to drive in runs and lo and behold runs will be driven in. In this regard, Ryan’s success is more the result of the success of people batting ahead of him rather than his own ability to bring them in. Look at that line again. Howard hit .223 across 60 games and STILL drove in 47 runs. That is not because of his own ability, but because he is the luckiest batter in all of baseball when it comes to coming to the plate with an RBI opportunity. Paying Ryan for RBIs is therefore also ludicrous, since that money should be going to Victorino, Utley, Polanco and Rollins who all get on base to give the big guy the opportunity to drive them in.

    I like Ryan, I really do, and I can’t blame him for Ruben’s decision to overpay him, especially since he’s not even in the top 5 first basemen in the majors, maybe not even top 10, especially as we go into the future when his extension kicks in.

    Also, please don’t assume that everyone likes Ryan while a small minority of malcontents don’t like the contract. Even the common fan is getting antsy and upset at Ryan’s performance.

     
    • Posts: 0 bill

      He has been a drain on the team for years, package him with brown, Francisco, and Martinez while they have value.

       
    • Posts: 0 Brian

      You can then say that about any power hitter in baseball. Look at any of them, Fielder, Gonzalez, Pujols. In order to get RBIs the guys have to get on. If they didn’t, Howard would hit 40 homers and have 40 rbis. That comment is typical all over baseball. The real question is, if he actually hit 300 with runners on, would he have 100 rbis right now. We all know how talent he is, but i think pitching has gotten better and teams have figured out how to pitch him. Look at the pitch that Wilson struck him out on in Game 6 last year. It was a breaking ball that snuck back over the plate. That is a tough pitch to hit. I also think without having anyone behind him like Werth was all those years, he is seeing more curve balls and breaking balls, because pitchers know that there isn’t enough behind him and they can walk him if need be.

       
  • Posts: 0 Ryan H.

    I’m willing to bet that by the end of the year Howard has close to 40 bombs and 140 steaks (just like he always does). he heats up in the second half every year and this year will be no different.

    howard haters make me sick. i take pity on them

     
  • Posts: 0 biz

    I think realistically, we are looking at about 35 HR, 130 RBIs this year from Howard.

    And people are going to whine about it, and there will be the regular choruses of, “He sucks!”

    Those numbers are pretty damn good, unfortunately for Howard, he set the bar really high for himself when he would hit 47, 58, 44, etc…

    Now 35/130 isn’t good enough. Only in Philly.

    Only in

     
    • Posts: 385 Publius

      Avatar of Publius

      Yep, only in Philly do we look at RBIs and Homers and think that that’s all that matters, forget everything else which actually tells you a lot more.

      Only in Philly.

       
      • Posts: 0 Dave S

        Tell me what matters for a cleanup hitter more than RBIs. I’m waiting…

         
      • Posts: 385 Publius

        Avatar of Publius

        Howsabout slugging percentage, which tells you how much damage the player does when he puts the ball in play? Howard is 15th among first basemen in that category. Or maybe how often he keeps rallies going and doesn’t make outs, like on-base percentage? Howard is 17th among MLB first basemen in that category. If Howard did better in either of these categories, he would have a LOT more RBIs than he does now. If you like RBIs, why would you not want a player that could generate more?

         
      • Posts: 0 Dave S

        All secondary issues to driving in runs. Two out doubles with the bases empty would be gravy I agree.

         
      • Posts: 0 Dave S

        Getting a walk with runners on would help the OBP, but just passes the run producing buck to somebody else, somebody much less qualified.

         
    • Posts: 0 Steve

      Ryan Howard sucks! Does anyone seriously put him in the same league as Fielder or Pujols. Ruben Amaro has made some horrible moves, signing Ryan Howard was his worst of the bunch, but he is given a free pass because the Phils are currently winning. When the Phils go down in a few years he will have to pay $24 million of his $25 per year just to get rid of him. He never hits the monster home runs anymore and if you look away for 10 seconds when he comes up to bat, it is 0-2. Any Ruben out of nowhere last April just reaches out and gives him $25 million a year for five years. Oh now this will haunt the Phils for years!!!!

      I am sure Ruben will give up top prospects for more marginal players no better than John Mayberry Jr.

       
      • Posts: 0 andrew

        yeah averaging 30+ home runs and 130+ rbi a year sucks. sure he isn’t on the same level as fielder or pujols, yeah Amaro probably payed him too much but he is still one of the most threatening home run hitting first basemen in the league. his home runs might be a little down this year but that because he doesnt have a steady 5 hole hitter behind him like when Werth was still around. howard is now getting a steady diet of off speed and breaking pitches which he absolutely sucks at hitting. once the phillies get a decent 5 hitter or brown comes around (whatever the 2 happens first) you will see all of Howard’s stats starting to go up. also he is a victim of setting an incredibly high bar for himself his first three season he had over 40 home runs and over 140 rbi in 2 of the three seasons, now that his numbers are a little bit down for the past 2 years people are wondering were the “howard of old has gone” even though his numbers still arnt that bad. when howard leaves philly or retires with philly you will relize how valuable he was to this team as a player

         
  • Posts: 0 Dave S

    Why do we seriously downgrade his skillset? Run producers like him are rare. Lay off the hate. The contract is already signed, so look at his numbers just as they are outside the context of his contract. All I care about is him driving in runs. He’s hitting .318 with RISP and .346 with RISP and two out. If anything we need our top of the order guys getting on base and into scoring position. Getting the Hawaiian back will help.

     
  • Posts: 1376 Pat Gallen

    Avatar of Pat Gallen

    Looking past the numbers at the end of the year, Howard is frustrating and the contract only amplifies that frustration. He has major holes in his swing that are becoming more and more evident every season. He doesn’t know how to hit with two strikes and he doesn’t seem to want to learn. That’s where people get angry with him.

    Yes the final numbers are very good, but they are undoubtedly falling off and right now he looks lost. His bat is nowhere near as fast as it used to be, so you can’t fault people for worrying that he’s on a downward trend. Yes, Philadelphians bitch and complain, but the complaints here are legit.

    I’m a fan of Howard and have always enjoyed that sweet stroke and the huge power numbers, but the RBI’s are somewhat a product of the players getting on in front of him. Now, he has to get them to the plate, which he does – but if he were hitting the ball even slightly better/harder, those numbers would be much better.

    I see the arguments from both sides. I dont want to bash him because he has done a lot for this team, but I dont think you can argue that it could be a slippery slope for him soon unless he changes some things.

     
    • Posts: 0 Dave S

      He doesn’t know how to hit with two strikes? What? HE PRODUCES RUNS AT A FANTASTICALLY GLORIOUS CLIP. He ability to hit with RISP is what we need, and it’s what we get. I think people just can’t see beyond the contract.

       
      • Posts: 1376 Pat Gallen

        Avatar of Pat Gallen

        Dave S, look at his numbers this year with 2 strikes in the count. They speak for themselves.

         
  • Posts: 0 biz

    Only in Philly do people whine about enormous run production because it’s not enormous enough.

    The Negadelphian nonsense is what killed this site. I forgot why I stopped coming. The sky is always falling on a first place team. It’s basically a circle jerk between a bunch of whiny pseudo-fans around here. Enjoy it.

     
    • Posts: 1376 Pat Gallen

      Avatar of Pat Gallen

      Biz, youre crazy to think everything should be smelling like roses. People have a right to complain about an underacheiving player, no matter who it is. There is negativity on every site, no matter who it is. People want to see their team fulfill their promise and win.
      Ryan Howard is helping, but could be doing more.
      Some people take a more hardline stance against him, are they not allowed to? Don’t bash this site because people put their opinion down. Put yours down too and argue it out with people. Don’t just belittle those who have a negative outlook. Thats too easy.

      Im with you in that his numbers will turn out to look pretty good, but is pretty good in line with his contract? That’s all. Fans have a right to be upset about the deal. He took what was given to him, so you can’t fault him. But you also can’t say he looks like the Howard of old, either.

       
      • Posts: 0 biz

        We all decline, Pat. No one stays 26 for ever. He’s going to lead the league in RBIs again this year, for the 4th time in his career, and people are “sick of him”. Absolutely pathetic. The negativity of Philadelphians is a cultural phenomenon that personally makes me sick.

        If people can’t enjoy this baseball team without harping on every little flaw, then they have serious issues. Look around the league at the best teams. The Red Sox: putrid starting pitching and can’t win at an NL ball park because their 2nd best hitter can’t play the field. The Yankees: 1 starting pitcher, and a mediocre pen. The Brewers: Can’t win on the road. The Braves: An even worse offense than ours. The Giants: They don’t have anything I’d want, other than that pen. None of their starters would be higher than our #4.

        No team is perfect. How quickly we forget that our 08 mash unit couldn’t pitch it’s way out of a wet paper bag other than Hamels and Lidge.

         
  • Posts: 0 Danny

    I think you’re both right.

    I agree that a good GM pays for results first and foremost, but I also agree that letting him go to free agency would have been a bad PR stunt, whether I think Prince Fielder would work better in Phillies pinstripes or not.

    It’s also a fact that Howard has more opportunity than anyone else. I’ve often been greeted with “the offense has been terrible and he still has that many RBI,” yet facts show he has more opportunities than every other player. It’s an indisputable number. Further, he has more runners at 3rd during his plate appearances than anyone. So, I’d expect him to be among the league leaders in RBI, and he is, so that’s a good thing.

    There are better options than Ryan Howard, such as Adrian Gonzalez, Albert Pujols, Prince Fielder and Joey Votto, to name several. There are also worse options than Ryan Howard, such as Adam Dunn, Adam LaRoche, Aubrey Huff and Casey Kotchman.

    I’d be interested to see what the extreme Howard detractor thinks of Mark Teixeira. Right now, Tex and Howard are basically the same player offensively. In fact, according to somewhat flimsy defensive metrics, you could call Howard the better defensive player.

    When I look at Ryan Howard, I see a little bit of good, a little bit of bad. There’s no doubt he’s overpaid — I think everyone agrees at this point who has an ounce of intelligence — but sometimes guys are overpaid. In the Phillies’ defense, Howard’s contract has not shown a significant opportunity cost yet. They have still gone out and acquired Halladay, Lee and Oswalt. Will there be a future opportunity cost? Possibly. If it hinders them from extending Cole Hamels, the Howard contract might be looked at a bit more unfavorably. But for now, it hasn’t been a problem.

    Also, I realize that “clutch” stats don’t have any correlation from year to year, but I also can’t argue with results. You may look at Howard’s entire body of work and think “average” player, but you can’t say he hasn’t come through when it’s mattered most.

    In 2011 with RISP: .950 OPS. In 2010, it was .871, and in 2009 it was .983. Clearly, these numbers can fluctuate, so I’m not going to say this proves he’s a great player. However, I can’t argue with the actual results on the field so far in 2011. If we’re arguing how he might perform in the future, that’s something else, but he’s produced at important moments so far this year (and in most years).

    Ryan Howard is a lightning rod. He’s not the Ryan Howard from 2006-07, and he likely won’t be unless he learns to consistently hit breaking balls. He has never made that adjustment fully. But he’s an exciting player with a strange knack for coming through at the right time. I have a hard time believing that players are able to significantly raise their level of play when it matters most, but his numbers in 2011 (and some other years) show it. Sometimes things can’t be explained — the whole human element of sports that no numbers can ever explain. It’s what makes sports fun, and Ryan Howard’s a fun guy to watch.

     
  • Posts: 0 Editboy

    The incredible lack of pitch/ball/strike recognition gets to me. With enough at bats, even the worst batter should be able to do this, or at least improve over time. Howard seems to be regressing. It’s not all because he’s trying too hard.

     
  • Posts: 0 bsizzle

    Let me correct the last sentence:
    Many other teams in baseball would kill to have Ryan Howard… but not at his salary.

    I’m pretty sure he’s close to untradeable at this point. The teams that could afford him have superior options (Yanks and Red Sox), and the teams that might want him, can’t afford him.

    I like Ryan. I’m a Ryan Howard fan. At the end of the year if he can put up 40-45 homers, I can live with the 180+ K’s and a .260 BA. But it’s hard to separate Ryan from his contract. And it hasn’t even kicked in yet.

     
  • Posts: 64 Jonathan Nisula

    Avatar of Jonathan Nisula

    I can’t hate Howard, I just can’t

     
  • Posts: 5401 Lefty

    Avatar of Lefty

    I am getting “antsy” too, to borrow Pub’s word. Once one of his biggest supporters, I have to admit he is frustrating me now to no end. He could take 30 to 50 more walks per season if he’d stop swinging at – just half- the pitches that are not over the plate. Not all of them, every batter gets fooled, just half. That in itself would make him a more dangerous hitter. Will he ever hit 58 home runs again, to quote Dipsy-”wink”, doubtful. But he could be a very productive power hitter if he would just swing predominantly at strikes. And I think he’s backed off the plate again too, he can’t buy a home run off a lefty. The Braves and Giants have lefties galore to throw at us. Charlie needs to get on him, and stop the kid gloves treatment. And I don’t want to hear the argument about who is hitting behind him either. Shane is in the top ten in the league in slugging %, so lately when he hits fifth, that’s plenty of “protection”.

    As for fielding, I got an interesting perspective by listening to the Mets announcers the other night. There was a foul pop on the first base side. Ron Darling innocently asked ” How did the catcher with the stubby legs and all that equipment on, get there before Ryan Howard?”

    Where I differ from everyone else is, I don’t care about the contract. I can’t even put the minimum contract into context with my life, so I certainly can’t begin to fathom Ryan’s contract. What I know is it has not yet prevented our FO from making any moves, or retaining anyone they really wanted to keep. I also know is that Prince Fielder and Albert Pujols are going to make more than he is next year in an ever escalating world, so it doesn’t bother me.

    But think about it, when was the last time he made a pitcher throw 9 pitches? or got a key hit, a game winner in the clutch? The 2009 NLCS? I don’t know, I guess there must be a few in there, but not many memorable ones. I’m just frustrated with him right now, hopefully he is too.

     
  • Posts: 206 The Dipsy

    Avatar of The Dipsy

    Hey Pub – You’re a “Saber Snob”. Ryan makes me nuts on almost a daily basis. They’re are definitely problems with his game. And he makes too much money. You wanna keep shouting at the brain for the rest of your life. I lament how good he used to be. But the game was different when he first came up.

    A year or whatever before he contract expired, Ruben handed him a satchel of cash. Ryan didn’t play hardball and pull a Pujols. Now, because our offense totally sucks, Ryan does not have the luxury of going up with men on base and “picking his pitch”. And if he walks, what good is that gonna do? Just more men LOB. I believe, and this is a theory, that Charlie tells him that when there are men on base that he better be swinging. And that’s not fair to Ryan but that’s life in the Phils offensive scheme. The fact remains that at the end of the day he is the best power hitter in baseball. Is he overpaid? Effin A. But I cut a guy much more slack with his contract when the GM of his own team just hands money over to him as to that player pulling a Jayson Werth (ha!) and shopping your wares to the highest bidder and THEN sucking. Gregg Jeffries, Lance Parrish, Adam Eaton, Raul Ibanez. I hate it when we pay someone else’s player to come here, at thwe highest price, and then they blow.

    Ryan is great. Just not the greatest. Can people live with that?

    The Dipsy

     
    • Posts: 385 Publius

      Avatar of Publius

      Ryan is very good….I would be loath to call him great though. And I do agree that we cannot blame Ryan for his salary, but Rube for overpaying for declining goods. As for the

      “Ryan does not have the luxury of going up with men on base and “picking his pitch”

      line, the opposite is true. Ryan Howard goes to the plate with more men on base than any other player in major league baseball. He absolutely can be stingy and selective because odds are the opposing pitcher is already in a jam when Howard comes up. I concede the LOB argument, and only suggest that that only further solidifies the need for an RH bat behind Ryan so that walking Howard can be punished.

      Again, I like Howard, he’s a very good player, just not irreplaceable. He is, through no fault of his own, overpaid. I will continue to marvel at the length of his dingers and continue to be flustered and gnash my teeth as he gets overmatched by left handed pitching.

       
    • Posts: 0 Dave

      Hey Dipsy – Great post. A question however. You made a comment that you believe (and I get that it’s not known) that Charlie tells Ryan that if people are on base he has to swing. But do you think he tells him to swing from his heels at curve balls in the dirt? I like most others that have posted cheer at every 450′ bomb and cringe at every swing and miss at a ball. Leaving the contract out, the biggest issue I’ve got is the fact that you don’t need to throw him strikes to get him out.

      I know that baseball isn’t played like it used to be. And I know he’s paid to hit HR’s and drive in runs, but what would it hurt to see him “slap” one to the left side against that shift every once in a while (especially leading off an inning or with no one on)? Eventually teams will have to start playing him closer to straight up and that will do nothing but help all of the offensive numbers. Maybe I’m crazy, but just a thought.

      -Dave

       
  • Posts: 206 The Dipsy

    Avatar of The Dipsy

    *shouting at the rain.

    The Dipsy

     
  • Posts: 1116 betasigmadeltashag

    Avatar of betasigmadeltashag

    Complain all you want about the contract, but really, not one of the top 5 first base in a league. You are crazy. He is getting paid what a guy with 35+HR and 130 + a year gets paid in this league. He leads the team in avg with RISP so the fact that he has the most opportunities is more proof the guy hits when he run production is importent. Like most baseball players and especially this this team is streaky. Pubic and ohers have always hated on here about him, and it is just blantant that they just do not like this guy. Would it be great if he had better plate disclpine, sure, is he frustating to watch, yes. Like most of this team from time to time. Would every team that does not have Votto, Fielder, or Poulois want him on there team, YES. He is in Philly for a long time and will continue to produce for this team so get on board or go Cheer for the Mets, because that is all some of you are, band wagon fans who is the Mets did not suck would be on there web site

     
    • Posts: 385 Publius

      Avatar of Publius

      Pujols
      Fielder
      Votto
      A-Gon
      Miguel Cabrera
      Mark Teixiera

      are all better than Howard without a doubt

      and then people like
      Adam Lind
      Gaby Sanchez
      Freddie Freeman
      Mark Trumbo
      Todd Helton

      are all having better years than him right now. There is no way Howard is a top 5 1B and you could easily argue that he’s not in the top 10 this year

       
      • Posts: 0 Danny

        Is Tex really better than Howard without a doubt, though?

        2010 OPS: Tex, .846; Howard .859

        2011 OPS: Tex, .840; Howard .803

        This year, OBP within a point of each other, both slugging below .500. Their respective baseball-reference WAR are within 0.1.

        The other five on that list I absolutely agree with you. Tex, though, is sort of like a switch-hitting Howard. Maybe a bit more value because he can bat from both sides, but they put up pretty similar numbers, even now. Even defensively, as well (although those metrics have yet to catch up with the offensive ones).

         
      • Posts: 385 Publius

        Avatar of Publius

        Good points. For Tex/Howard if you look at some of the more advanced metrics, like wOBA, you can see some real spacing between them. Plus, Tex is *barely* below .500, while Howard is struggling to stay above .450 in slugging, and that’s a significant difference between the two.

         
      • Posts: 1116 betasigmadeltashag

        Avatar of betasigmadeltashag

        I will give ou adrian Conzo, but not Tex what is he hitting 212 and I would tak howard over him, and the bottom five on that list absoulute take howard over them twice a week. they no where near his production numbers over the years. And stop saying how much you like Ryan ;you have never said a good word about the guy. I am not saying you can not complain about or have opionons how to make this team better, my problem is with those of you who come on here and are 100 percent negetive 100 percent of the time, that is as frustrating as the Phillies offense at times.

         
      • Posts: 385 Publius

        Avatar of Publius

        I’m sorry if I come across as negative, but those who look at everything through rose-colored glasses the entire time are just as annoying as the Debbie Downers. All I am saying is that Howard is a good player who hits cool homers, but that he’s not worth the money he’s being paid. Howard is good, but not great. It’s not like I am bashing him or anything, just trying to rein in some of the more hyperbolic statements about his skills.

         
      • Posts: 0 Danny

        Agree that Howard’s talent level is above-average, but not elite. I think figuring out his place in history is fascinating, especially because we have a lot of cool advancements in how to judge players.

        If this were the 1970s and 1980s, Howard would be awesome in the eyes of every fan. We know better now, though. It’s fun. I can like Howard and be critical of him at the same time.

        Also, I’ll add in here that the Phillies’ offense is average, not “crappy” or “bad” as many put it. Look at the numbers. They’re in the middle of the pack. Much better than the defending champion San Francisco Giants, in fact. The pitching is so elite that it doesn’t matter, so I wouldn’t worry too much about it.

        Pub, if I had to take Tex or Howard over the life of their contracts (with things like chemistry, clutch-ness, likability, etc thrown out the window), I’d take Tex. I love Howard, though, how can I not? He’s easy to root for, and I don’t think you’ve said anything that would make me think otherwise. Just trying to dissect his skill set. Nothin’ wrong with that.

         
  • Posts: 0 Danny

    Just wanna throw some numbers at you, without any bias, so you can use them for whatever.

    2011 plate appearances with runners on base:

    1. Adrian Gonzalez – 228
    T2. Prince Fielder – 213
    T2. Ryan Howard – 213
    T4. Kevin Youkilis – 208
    T4. Matt Kemp – 208
    T6. Adrian Beltre – 205
    T6. Jeff Francoeur – 205
    8. Carlos Lee – 204
    T9. Gaby Sanchez – 201
    T9. Troy Tulowitzki – 201

    2011 runners on base while batting:

    1. Adrian Gonzalez – 313
    2. Ryan Howard – 303
    3. Kevin Youkilis – 294
    4. Matt Kemp – 286
    5. Adrian Beltre – 283
    6. Jeff Francoeur – 281

    2011 runner on third while batting:

    1. Ryan Howard – 66
    2. Jeff Francoeur – 62
    3. Adrian Beltre – 59
    4. Melky Cabrera – 54
    T5. Andre Ethier – 53
    T5. Gaby Sanchez – 53
    T5. Kevin Youkilis – 53
    T5. Ryan Ludwick – 53

    2011 runner on second while batting:

    1. Adrian Gonzalez – 113
    T2. Aubrey Huff – 101
    T2. Michael Young – 101
    4. Carlos Lee – 100
    5. Ryan Howard – 98

    Among players with 300 plate appearances in 2011, Ryan Howard is tied for 15th (with Brian McCann) for RBI percentage — that is, the percentage of baserunners driven in during plate appearances. Howard is at 18.2%, while leader Chipper Jones is at 22.2%.

    (Also, side note, crazy that Jeff Francoeur is on almost all of those lists. And for fun, Jayson Werth’s RBI percentage is 8.9%. Can’t believe how bad he’s been this year.)

     
    • Posts: 385 Publius

      Avatar of Publius

      Awesome post. Where’d you get that info?

       
      • Posts: 0 Danny

        All on baseballprospectus.com.

        Not even the paid part, either. Just go to statistics, RBI opportunities, and it’s all there. I eat that stuff for breakfast.

         
  • Posts: 0 Dave S

    Good job Dipsy, you’re generating some comments with this one.

     
  • Posts: 0 Marley

    Nice post, The Dipsy.

    “For all the things he can’t do, he is this: a fabulous home run hitter and run producer who helps puts butts in the seats, a hard working guy who has never given anyone a moments trouble, and a player with a big heart who wants to win, loves the game, and is adored by the 99% of the fans that don’t bitch about him on call-in shows and fan blogs.”

    This. We’re lucky to have him and I’m happy he’s gonna be here for the next 5 years.

     
  • Posts: 206 The Dipsy

    Avatar of The Dipsy

    Publius – He cannot walk. He has to swing. He gets junk to swing but he has to swing so he gets junk to swing at. If that sounds circular its cuz it is. And the pitchers know this. Put a Matt Holiday or a Ryan Braun behind Ryan and watch what he would do. Ya know how many times Barry Bonds had over 125 RBIs in his career? Not many. We used to kill Bobby Abreu for standing there and taking a walk with guys on base.

    The Dipsy

     
  • Posts: 0 biz

    “Howard should take more walks”

    Why? Which one of our 5-9 hitters would you rather have swinging than Howard? Will one of them pick him up?

     
  • Posts: 0 Ryan

    ” While Ryan Howard is not the hitter he once was, he is still the best power hitter in the game, year in and year out. ”

    People who are better “power” hitters than Ryan Howard:

    By Slugging %: 56
    Jose Bautista
    Lance Berkman
    Matt Kemp
    Prince Fielder
    Curtis Granderson
    Adrian Gonzalez
    David Ortiz
    Paul Konerko
    Miguel Cabrera
    Ryan Braun
    Michael Morse
    Jose Reyes
    Mike Stanton
    Shane Victorino
    Jhonny Peralta
    Matt Joyce
    Nelson Cruz
    Brian McCann
    Carlos Beltran
    Aramis Ramirez
    Albert Pujols
    Carlos Quentin
    Robinson Cano
    Adam Lind
    Joey Votto
    Alex Avila
    Kevin Youkilis
    Jacoby Ellsbury
    Jay Bruce
    Mark Teixeira
    Seth Smith
    Asdrubal Cabrera
    Todd Helton
    Troy Tulowitzki
    Andrew McCutchen
    Adrian Beltre
    Rickie Weeks
    Alex Rodriguez
    Justin Upton
    Hunter Pence
    Brennan Boesch
    Adam Jones
    Michael Young
    Mark Trumbo
    Logan Morrison
    Chris Young
    Carlos Gonzalez
    Alex Gordon
    Ben Zobrist
    Mark Reynolds
    Michael Cuddyer
    Dustin Pedroia
    Danny Espinosa
    Freddie Freeman
    Ian Kinsler
    Ryan Roberts

    By ISO: 37
    Jose Bautista
    Lance Berkman
    Curtis Granderson
    Matt Kemp
    Prince Fielder
    Nelson Cruz
    Mike Stanton
    David Ortiz
    Mark Teixeira
    Mark Reynolds
    Carlos Quentin
    Miguel Cabrera
    Paul Konerko
    Ryan Braun
    Jay Bruce
    Carlos Pena
    Albert Pujols
    Michael Morse
    Matt Joyce
    Carlos Beltran
    Adrian Gonzalez
    Mark Trumbo
    Danny Espinosa
    Shane Victorino
    Adrian Beltre
    Troy Tulowitzki
    Kelly Johnson
    Chris Young
    Alex Avila
    Logan Morrison
    Kevin Youkilis
    Aramis Ramirez
    Robinson Cano
    Rickie Weeks
    Ian Kinsler
    Andrew McCutchen
    Jhonny Peralta

    By HRs: 16
    Jose Bautista
    Curtis Granderson
    Lance Berkman
    Mark Teixeira
    Matt Kemp
    Prince Fielder
    Paul Konerko
    Jay Bruce
    Nelson Cruz
    Albert Pujols
    Mike Stanton
    Carlos Pena
    Mark Reynolds
    Adrian Beltre
    Miguel Cabrera
    David Ortiz

    So let’s give you the benefit of the doubt and make it only people who are above Mr. Howard in ALL 3 categories (a idiotic measure, but when dealing with idiots…)
    1. Bautista
    2. Granderson
    3. Berkman
    4. Teixeira
    5. Kemp
    6. Fielder
    7. Konerko
    8. Bruce
    9. Cruz
    10. Pujols
    11. Stanton
    12. Beltre
    13. Cabrera
    14. Ortiz

    So 14 players are EASILY better power hitters than Ryan Howard (And this list doesn’t include Adrian Gonzalez who ONLY has 17 HRs.)

    As you can see, your view and your statement are…batshit insane. Making that statement while Jose Bautista lives and breaths on this planet is embarrassing for you and your future kin.

     
    • Posts: 1376 Pat Gallen

      Avatar of Pat Gallen

      “Mr. Madison, what you’ve just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.”

      Billy Madison: Okay, a simple “wrong” would’ve done just fine.

      Great movie. Just felt like posting that after Ryan’s comment.

       
  • Posts: 206 The Dipsy

    Avatar of The Dipsy

    Did you really just do that?

    The Dipsy

     
  • Posts: 1376 Pat Gallen

    Avatar of Pat Gallen

    Ryan I hope you didn’t type all that in.

     
  • Posts: 206 The Dipsy

    Avatar of The Dipsy

    I’ll tell you what guy: You pick your top nine guys who are the best performers in your categories RIGHT THIS SECOND (as this is your sample measurement of choice) and I’ll pick the guys I think are the best “year in and year out” and my team will smoke yours. Granderson? Berkman? Morse? Take em. They’re all yours. Oh where’s Pujols? Oh, thats right…he sucks, too.

    The Dipsy

     
  • Posts: 0 Greendale

    Great post. No doubt he’s not the dynamic slugger of 2006 & 2007 anymore, but he should be performing better than he is this year. This is why I endorse letting JRoll walk & investing in a legit #5 hitter. If you don’t get that guy hitting behind Howard, then you’re not even coming close to getting the value from Howard as a hitter that you’ve invested in. Watching him expand the zone has just become painful this year.

    Part of me thinks he’s just trying to do too much, & at the same time, I think he really isn’t doing anybody any favors by swinging at bad pitches.

     
  • Posts: 49 bacardi

    Avatar of bacardi

    He still is driving runs an still hitting a few HR’s. However his BA has taking a nose dive. It would be nice if he took a few more walks here an there.I know he usually goes on a tear in a second half. However one will start to wonder when that year will come when he doesnt. His massive contract is going to cripple this team for years to come if he fails to produce. I say call up the Rizzoti kid an start giving him a day off here an there. Just let him watch a game or two. Why wont they call up Rizzoti? I know his defense is lacking but Howard was at one point atrocious at 1B.

     
  • Posts: 0 Danny

    You guys realize that Howard’s numbers dropped when Werth became the No. 5 hitter behind Howard, right? And I don’t think anybody would dispute that Werth was GREAT for this team the last few years (don’t let 2011 fool you) in that spot.

    In 2006, when Howard won his MVP, he began the year batting 6th and had David Bell bat behind him for a bit. Bell had an OPS of .736 that year.

    Then Howard moved to 5th and had Rowand bat behind him a lot. Rowand had a .745 OPS that year.

    Howard’s OPS in 2006 up until July 25, when he was moved to cleanup finally, was .947. With David Bell and Aaron Rowand as “protection.

    Granted, he kicked ass and had even better results once he moved to the 4-spot and had Burrell “protecting” him most of the time, but you don’t need protection to be productive. Also, Burrell got hurt late in 2006, so the No. 5 hitter for most of Howard’s incredible September (1.312 OPS) was 40-year-old Jeff Conine (.724 OPS) and David Dellucci (who nearly put up a .900 OPS in a nice 2006).

    Howard had awesome numbers in 2006 without the benefit of an awesome hitter behind him, and the best “protection” he ever had was Werth the last couple years, when Howard’s numbers declined from his 2006-07.

     
  • Posts: 4 Jeff

    Avatar of Jeff

    Here is the BIG QUESTION….

    Are you comfy with having Howard at the plate with the game online?????

    My answer is NO…….

    Brown will never be a big time player. Get rid of him

     
    • Posts: 0 Danny

      I disagree with everything in that comment.

      Dom Brown is 23. When Mike Schmidt was 23, he batted .196/.324/.373 in 132 games.

      Brown is at .236/.320/.382. Not superstar numbers by any means, but better than Schmidt’s age-23 season. So how in the world do you know what Brown is going to do?

      And Ryan Howard has come up big in big spots, so I trust him with the game on the line. He leads the league in game-winning RBI this season, so he’s doing something right with the game on the line this year.

       
  • Posts: 49 bacardi

    Avatar of bacardi

    the bigger question game on the line which current Phils starter you would rather have batting…

     
  • Posts: 49 bacardi

    Avatar of bacardi

    RAJ knew Dom Brown wasnt quite ready yet however after a few injuries he had to bring him up an he is doing just well enough to be kept…at same time he is gaining MLB experience that should help him next year when he is projected to be the starter…might as well have him go through some of those growing pains this year

     
  • Posts: 2896 Chuck A.

    Avatar of Chuck A.

    I was right when I said on the morning thread there would be fireworks on here. Nice job Dipsy. This site needed this.

    All great arguments in a bunch of different directions. Howard is frustrating as hell to watch sometimes. Yet he remains the one player that I HAVE to watch. Because he can change the game so fast and with such force (literally and figuratively). I can’t hate on him. Not at all. But I do question what he does/doesn’t do sometimes.

     
  • Posts: 0 Ryan H.

    Ryan is simply in a slump right now. let’s revisit this argument around september 1st and see what people think. power hitters are streaky by nature. almost every last one of them. he’s capable of launching 8 homers in a week. I’ve had it with the sabermetrics geeks with their nonsense.

     
  • Avatar of The Original Chuck P

    Danny… can I just say that you are the man?

    Check out what Jason Heyward is doing this year… .224/.319/.397. Does anyone doubt that he’ll be a special player? Let us not forget that Dom Brown had surgery on his wrist this year, too.

    Dipsy- great post… you can tell that you put a lot of thought into this. I love Howard. Maybe I’m a homer and I place more emphasis on sentimental value than most but I think that he gets paid to drive in runs and that’s what he does. If you were guaranteed that you could throw a guy in at first base who would consistently end up in the top 5 in RBI and HR every year, you would undoubtedly pay this man a lot of money to do that because driving in runs and hitting home runs are the two most difficult things to do in baseball. Howard is as close as it gets. He drives me absolutely crazy when he swings hopelessly at slop in the dirt but I would rather see him swinging than laying off… the most vivid memory that we have of him failing is of him laying off of a borderline breaking ball for a caught third looking with that goofy black bearded closer on the mound.

     
    • Posts: 2896 Chuck A.

      Avatar of Chuck A.

      Exactly, OCP. If he would have just SWUNG….and even missed…..at that effing pitch….we would all feel a little different maybe. People need to seriously move on from that series (where’s Andrew from Waldorf?)

       
      • Posts: 0 Danny

        Don’t think I can be compared to Chase Utley, who is the actual “the man”, but I’ll take what I can get. Thanks!

         
  • Posts: 25 Josh

    Avatar of Josh

    Why is it that posters (commenters?) who include statistics that offer perspective get labeled as haters? I suspect that it’s the difference between Phillies fans and baseball fans that root for the Phillies. Those who are Phillies fans tend to have blinders on when someone even suggests that (based on the numbers) another team has a player better than theirs. When it comes to a guy like Howard, who has shown this fan base so many amazing things over the last 5 years, this is even more evident because the Phillies fan cannot detach themselves from their emotions toward Howard. Almost as if by saying that Tex (or insert any other of the names mentioned) is a better 1B than Howard makes you a traitor. What I think the Phillies fan needs to understand is that there is nothing wrong with pointing out a players flaws and offering statistical perspective while also being a fan of him.

     
    • Posts: 0 Danny

      Agree with that. I simply want to have a conversation about what Howard does well and what Howard does poorly. And guess what? There are things he does well and things he does poorly. Most players do things poorly.

      I hope Ryan Howard hits a home run every time he bats. He won’t. He’s still better than Michael Martinez.

       
  • Posts: 4 Jeff

    Avatar of Jeff

    Very intersting rumors now with Bay coming to the Phillies. Read below….

    Could Jason Bay be a Phillie?

    It sounds crazy, but it might make sense.

    With less than two weeks to go before the trading deadline, the rumor mills are abuzz with chatter about which players will be on the move and who is most likely to swallow them up. We all know who the “sellers” and “buyers” are and can take an educated guess as to which players will be moved.

    Very few teams have an absolute need to move their players, but in a lot of cases, it would be in their best interest. For instance, the Padres would be better served trading any veteran on their roster who could generate interest among the league. Heath Bell, Chad Qualls, Mike Adams and the like all should be dealt—in order to restock their farm system and hopefully build a winner to fill beautiful Petco Park.

    The Astros are going nowhere and with a new owner on board might like to unload payroll and retool the organization going forward. They have a couple of arms (Wandy Rodriguez, Brett Myers) who could/will generate interest and a couple of younger everyday players (Michael Bourn, Hunter Pence) getting a lot of press. But the Astros don’t necessarily have to deal either outfielder, as both are still young enough to build around for the future. Jim Crane, the new owner-to-be, might want to hold onto either or both.

    The New York Mets are easily the most intriguing of the potential “sellers.” They have been playing better than expected and hanging around the race. Potentially, they are within striking distance of the playoffs and that could make it difficult to part with key parts of their roster.

    Jason Bay
    A disaster?
    Or another Lenny Dykstra, Roger McDowell and Tom Edens for Juan Samuel?
    Submit Vote vote to see results Jason BayA disaster?76.9%Or another Lenny Dykstra, Roger McDowell and Tom Edens for Juan Samuel?23.1%Total votes: 13
    However, they absolutely have to move Carlos Beltran or risk losing him for nothing—not even draft choices. (In order to receive draft compensation, the Mets would need to offer Beltran salary arbitration, something he may accept—they’re almost guaranteeing him a raise of his 2011 salary, something the Mets cannot afford.)

    They also have Jose Reyes, perhaps the games most electrifying player, who they absolutely are going to deal—or absolutely going to hang on to and attempt to resign. Now it appears that the Mets have decided to keep Reyes in the hopes of resigning him in the offseason. Good luck with that.

    New York also has other players that are intriguing, especially to a contender like the Philadelphia Phillies. The Phillies are desperately in need of a right-handed bat and one that can play the outfield. The Mets are in possession of one, one who they might be just as desperate—if not more so—to unload.

    At one time, Jason Bay was a terrific ball player. He hit for a solid average and could be counted on for 30 home runs and 100 RBI every year. After languishing most of his career in Pittsburgh he was dealt (as part of the Manny Ramirez trade) to Boston to replace the infamous slugger in Fenway. He followed up a strong finish in 2008 with a MVP-type 2009 season, which he parlayed int a 4-year, $66 million deal from the Mets.

    And his career has fallen off the charts since.

    Jason Bay has been nothing short of a disaster in New York. His OPS is more than 100 points off his career averages and his run production as middle of the order hitter has been atrocious.

    What is the problem? Has Bay lost a step? Is his career over? Is Citifield and its spacious dimensions in his head? Would a change of scenery work?

    Perhaps, but it will take a lot of haggling.

    How desperate are the Mets to deal their beleaguered star? How much money would they be willing to eat to move Bay? Word around baseball is New York is willing to eat a large percentage of Carlos Beltran’s remaining contract to move him, but he’s only owed money through the end of this season. Bay is owed $16 million each of the next two seasons, with a vesting option (and not a too difficult one to attain) of $17 million in 2014.

    Would the Mets be willing to kick in $20-$23 million over the next couple of seasons to rid themselves of Jason Bay? If the Phillies were to deal for him, they’d probably demand Bay rework the option on his contract—either increase the buyout to eliminate it or lower the salary guarantee but make it an easier option to earn.

    With Bay owed a guaranteed $35 million after this season and with the Mets kicking in $20-$23 million, the Phillies would only be on the hook for about $6 million each season. That’s significantly less than what Hunter Pence will make in arbitration the next couple of seasons. The price in prospects would also be significantly less.

    Speculation is that a deal for Hunter Pence would start with three of the “baby aces” in the minor leagues. Now I don’t have a problem dealing the prospects for major league talent. More often than not, minor league pitching prowess turns into Carlton Loewer and Tyler Green. But it would be regrettable if one of them turned into the next Cole Hamels and for a player like that they should get more than Hunter Pence—a terrific ball player, but not a superstar.

    Jason Bay would not cost nearly as much. The Phillies could base a package around “high ceilinged” Anthony Hewitt—whose speed and play might fit well within the confines of Citifield—and JC Ramirez, the young right-hander acquired in the Cliff Lee trade with Seattle. They’d probably have to add another player or two to make it interesting enough for the Mets, but a deal could be worked out—even if they have to include one of their “baby aces.”

    And it might be in the best interest of all three parties involved.

    The Mets would rid themselves of one of their biggest free agent disasters in team history, the Phillies would get a potential impact bat for the middle of their lineup and Jason Bay would have a chance to start over somewhere fresh, in a place where you don’t have to hit balls out of the Grand Canyon to go over the fence.

    Or it could be a colossal failure and everyone loses.

    There hasn’t been a peep about Jason Bay in Philadelphia. The one thing I’ve learned from watching Ruben Amaro operate is that rarely does anyone know what his next move is. How many of us saw Cliff Lee coming—either time? Most of us probably hoped for Roy Halladay, but weren’t sure it could happen.

    The Phillies say they have no “wiggle room” in their payroll, but getting Bay and having the Mets pay for the majority of his contract could prove financially beneficial—both today and moving forward.

     
    • Posts: 385 Publius

      Avatar of Publius

      Please don’t pollute this blog with stuff from Bleacher Report, thanks.

       
      • Posts: 0 Danny

        seconded

         
  • Posts: 206 The Dipsy

    Avatar of The Dipsy

    My points, shortened up, are these: 1) Howard used to be incredible but now he is a one dimensional power hitter; 2) The one dimension is dynamic but everyone remembers what he was and wants to see that again and that he could do it, if only he put his “mind to it”; 3) He’s overpaid but why should we care when he didn’t ask for the money and that it doesn’t effect how much the Phils can pay to make their team better;

    He’s not lazy or stupid. He tries hard. He won a WS with us. He’s charismatic. There IS an emotional component as much as people wanna keep that part out of it. He’s ours.

    Throw all of the above in a stew and form your opinion. Better yet, try and understand why others have the opinion that you don’t. Howard leaves many fans conflicted.

    The Dipsy

     
  • Posts: 0 Corey Seidman

    I disagree with pretty much everything written here but there’s no point in arguing because one side unconditionally loves Ryan Howard and the other side recognizes him for what he is.

     
  • Posts: 2896 Chuck A.

    Avatar of Chuck A.

    Dipsy, you hit the nail square on the head. There certainly IS an “emotional component” and people for some reason DO “wanna keep that part out of it”. I think a lot of people are too black and white, too numbers-driven and that’s why we see this constant negativity towards him. Not saying the numbers aren’t important, cause they are. Publius, I TOTALLY respect, appreciate and have learned from your approach.

    I want him to do better,too, and get just as frustrated when he swings at junk in the dirt. But he produces and has that charisma so I just can’t and will not hate on him. People like Jeff, who proclaim to be Phillies fans, need to get a grip with all that hate.

     
  • Posts: 2896 Chuck A.

    Avatar of Chuck A.

    Corey, I recognize him for what he is but still unconditionally love him. It IS possible to do both.

     
  • Posts: 206 The Dipsy

    Avatar of The Dipsy

    Corey – Check out the name of the article. Not a Ryan Howard fan, huh?

    The Dipsy

     
  • Posts: 0 Andrew from Waldorf

    Wow
    A human being made a thread
    I can only say Bravo

     
  • Posts: 2896 Chuck A.

    Avatar of Chuck A.

    Now taking bets as to when Andrew mentions “0 rbis” …

     
  • Posts: 0 Andrew from Waldorf

    Cutting to the chase.
    He swings at bad pitches.
    When this stops he will be good.
    . If this continues he will be bad.

    The gross HR and RBI stats are just that. GROSSS (SHOUT OUT TO CHUCK)

    Take about 70 more walks hit less homers and drive in less runners and lets win 120 games.
    Just sayin

     
  • Posts: 2896 Chuck A.

    Avatar of Chuck A.

    He’s not paid to walk, Andrew. He’s paid to drive in runs.

     
    • Posts: 385 Publius

      Avatar of Publius

      No, he’s paid to be a productive baseball player. The best way a baseball player can be productive is by not making outs, including taking walks.

       
      • Posts: 2896 Chuck A.

        Avatar of Chuck A.

        That’s true.. The point that I’m trying to make to our friend Andrew, however, is that he’s here for his run production. But if taking a walk more often, instead of striking out at ball 4 in the dirt, will help the Phillies win games…then yeah, he should do that.

         
  • Posts: 0 Andrew from Waldorf

    At this point he is paid to be an anchor around a franchises neck.

    Why would any team start a first baseman with 0 homers and .327 slugging percentage vs lefites?

    Wouldnt Mayberry or anyone else be better at first?
    Any player off the scrap heap?

    This is where I get frustrated at the stupidity.

    1 walk is more than 0 homers.

     
  • Posts: 206 The Dipsy

    Avatar of The Dipsy

    If Howard does not swing and walks, that currently leaves the troika of Ibanez, Chooch, and Brown to knock in the runs that Howard left out there. How does that hit ya? The Phillies don’t play station to station baseball. Walking is immeasurably better when you have other guys on the team that will walk with you, hence not making outs, and putting more guys in scoring position. Nobody on this team walks (save Utley). Shane, Jimmy, Ryan, Raul all swing like idiots. This team swings from the heels at the first good pitch they see. So Howard “walking” does not fit “conceptually” within Charlie’s offensive “philosophy”.

    The Dipsy

     
  • Posts: 0 Andrew from Waldorf

    I mean where is this world?
    0 homers vs lefties and a .327 slugging pct and just put him out there.

    It will be OK
    Halladay and Lee and Hamels will carry you so far. Then this albatross will rear its head.
    Again

     
  • Posts: 2896 Chuck A.

    Avatar of Chuck A.

    Exactly. he’s not up there to walk. He’s up there to 1) get a hit to start or extend an inning 2) drive in any runners on base 3) hit a homer. BUT….he shouldn’t strike out with swinging at something in the dirt, either. In that case a walk is definitely the way to go and then you take your chances with Ibanez, Chooch and Brown.

     
  • Posts: 2896 Chuck A.

    Avatar of Chuck A.

    That “exactly” was meant for Dipsy’s comment, not Andrew’s… just to set the record straight.

     
  • Posts: 0 Jeff

    So because I am a phillies fan I cant dislike a player. Thats garbage and so what if Howard is a nice guy, Dykstra wasnt and I would take him over Howie. Ryan is declining. That is the truth but who cares. He is well spoken so we should like him. I look forward to three ks tonight and him walking back shaking his head. Maybe learn to lay off the bad pitches and slam that helmet down big boy..

     
    • Posts: 2896 Chuck A.

      Avatar of Chuck A.

      Because anger solves everything.

       
  • Posts: 0 Andrew from Waldorf

    It makes me laugh that you guys pin me saying the 0 RBI for nine games last year is the point.

    Its a worlds record. Never happened before or since and they have played baseball since 1876.

    But it is moot.
    Why on earth would he hit 4th vs a left hander except his contract?

    Well?
    Bueller?

     
    • Posts: 2896 Chuck A.

      Avatar of Chuck A.

      And guess what Andrew?? It probably won’t happen again. Sh!t happens.

       
 
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