Archive for December, 2012

Top Moment #2: Jim Thome’s Walk-off

Posted by Amanda Orr, Thu, December 27, 2012 12:20 PM Comments: 4

The Tampa Bay Rays were in town on June 23 for an interleague series with the Phillies.  The ending to the game would go down as the arguably the most memorable finish to a Phillies game in 2012.

The Phillies had a comfortable 6-4 lead heading into the top of the ninth inning.  With Jonathan Papelbon on the mound, there was plenty of confidence that the Phillies would get the victory easily.

Let’s just say, it didn’t go as planned.

Continue reading Top Moment #2: Jim Thome’s Walk-off


Reconsidering Michael Bourn

Posted by Eric Seidman, Thu, December 27, 2012 10:34 AM Comments: 62

The Phillies made something of an effort to sign B.J. Upton and pushed hard for Angel Pagan before trading Vance Worley and Trevor May to the Twins for Ben Revere.

The move gave them a young, cost-controlled centerfielder who plays excellent defense and offers top-notch baserunning. He probably isn’t a finished product yet either, which lends credence to the belief that he could consistently produce at a 3-WAR clip as he enters his prime. The move came out of nowhere and was met with some criticism, but it was a risk worth taking if the team was opposed to doling out a lucrative, long-term contract.

One centerfielder the Phillies shied away from was Michael Bourn.

The former Phillies outfielder, who blossomed into an elite player with the Astros and Braves, was set to sign a big-time contract this offseason. Best laid plans haven’t come to fruition for Bourn, a Scott Boras client, and he remains unsigned. Granted, Boras likes to wait until late in the game, but the rumor mill has virtually dried up with respect to Bourn.

He’ll find a home somewhere but he may have to settle for a one-year deal that enables him to test the free agent market under friendlier conditions next year. If push comes to shove and that scenario plays out, should the Phillies consider him even after acquiring Revere?

Continue reading Reconsidering Michael Bourn


Steer Completely Clear of Vernon Wells

Posted by Eric Seidman, Wed, December 26, 2012 03:30 PM Comments: 37

The Phillies filled their centerfield void by acquiring Ben Revere, bolstered the bullpen with Mike Adams and shored up the rotation with the cost-effective and underrated John Lannan. While these moves likely represent the bulk of their offseason activity, the Phillies have been linked to a wide array of corner outfielders given the obvious uncertainties in those posts.

They went hard after Cody Ross but balked at his lofty demands. They supposedly offered Josh Hamilton a short-term deal with a high average annual value. They have previously been linked to either Jason Kubel or Gerardo Parra, and that link will only grow stronger with the Snakes’ recent signing of Ross. There were reportedly discussions between the Phils and Cubs regarding Alfonso Soriano earlier in the offseason as well.

Some of these players make more sense than others, but the available corner outfielder the Phillies should stay completely away from is Vernon Wells. Unfortunately, the Phillies have expressed interest in the former Blue Jays all-star, though the extent of their interest remains unknown. Let’s hope it is nothing more than executives tossing a name around while brainstorming, because Wells has been one of the worst players in the league over the last two seasons and is signed to the very worst contract in the sport.

Continue reading Steer Completely Clear of Vernon Wells


Replaced by a Franchise Hero: Don Money

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Wed, December 26, 2012 12:45 PM Comments: 19

http://www.itsalreadysigned4u.com/shop/media/images/product_detail/ape-money-don-8x10.jpgA lot of the Phillies’ offseason discussion has boiled down to one question: how does Player X compare to Player Y, whom he is replacing? It is a valid and particularly useful tool when projecting wins and predicting improvement for a club. The Phillies have a particularly strong canon of historically popular players that most of the city’s fans rally around. This canon definitively includes, but is not limited to, Mike Schmidt, Steve Carlton, Richie Ashburn, and Robin Roberts and may soon make room for Jimmy Rollins and Chase Utley.

There are a few articles out there about how teams fared once their golden geese proverbially went South. Most teams, like the Phillies and Schmidt, struggled to find even league-average play at times to replace their superstar, even as their superstar is declining. The Phillies mixed and matched Charlie Hayes and Steve Jeltz after Schmidt retired after 172 plate appearances into 1989 before stumbling upon Dave Hollins in that offseason’s Rule 5 draft to shore up the Hot Corner for a sizable chunk of the next five seasons.

What I have not seen a whole lot of are a lot of words written about who these superstars replaced. (Note: Being a baseball reading junkie, please correct me if I am wrong because I would love to read more). Yes, the Lou Gehrig for Wally Pipp change is well documented and Mickey Mantle famously took the reigns in center field at Yankee Stadium from Joe DiMaggio after sharing time there in 1951, but there is little else, particularly about our favorite red pin-striped ballplayers.
Continue reading Replaced by a Franchise Hero: Don Money


Does Kubel Fit the Phillies?

Posted by Eric Seidman, Tue, December 25, 2012 10:05 AM Comments: 33

The Diamondbacks signed Cody Ross to a three-year, $26 million deal over the weekend, giving them five starting outfielders for just three spots. With Adam Eaton set to start in centerfield and both Kubel and Ross signed to free agent deals, the Diamondbacks are more likely to trade one of their outfielders than use expensive platoons. Gerardo Parra‘s name was frequently mentioned as a possible trade target last year, when the Diamondbacks similarly signed Kubel to an outfield already including Parra, Chris Young and Justin Upton, but now it seems even more likely they make a move.

While Kevin Towers hasn’t officially put Kubel on the block, he noted that his phone didn’t stop ringing with requests for his outfielders after news of the Ross signing broke.

The Phillies were strong suitors for Ross but sources suggest they never really wanted to go beyond one or two years on a deal. If the Phils were seeking Ross’s level of productivity on a short-term and less lucrative contract, they could potentially find that in the form of the now expendable Kubel, whose numbers are quite similar over the last two seasons.

Continue reading Does Kubel Fit the Phillies?


Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays

Posted by Pat Gallen, Mon, December 24, 2012 12:16 PM Comments: 11

Happy Holidays

On behalf of the entire Phillies Nation team – Brian, Corey, Rob, Amanda, Kieran, Jay, Jon, Ian, Ryan, Eric and Don – I’d like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a joyous holiday season. We certainly hope Santa stops at your house this Christmas and brings you an abundance of Phillies related gifts. A belated Happy Hanukkah to our Jewish friends, as well!

We’d like to thank you for sticking with us here on PhilliesNation.com and making us part of your extended family. We strive to put together the best possible website for entertainment and information, and we hope we’ve succeeded over the last year.

And really, we couldn’t do it without all of you. The best fans in the world make this the best source for Phillies news in the world. It’s that simple.

So, thank you all for continuing to grace the pages of PhilliesNation.com and Merry Christmas to all to all a good night!

Oh, and if you get any awesome Phillies gifts, upload a photo of them here:

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Frosty Phillies Favorites: 2012 Christmas Survey

Posted by Jay Floyd, Mon, December 24, 2012 07:00 AM Comments: 2

It’s that time of year that gets you in the mood to be jolly. The biggest of all holidays is loved by all, for many reasons. Baseball players don’t feel any differently.  In recent weeks, I have checked in with several Phillies players, from the bottom to the top of the system, to find out what stands out for them as reasons to get excited for Christmas.

Players that took part include Phillies rookie OF/1B Darin Ruf (pictured), lefty pitching prospect Austin Wright, former supplemental 1st round draft pick, outfielder Zach Collier, right-handed minor league pitcher David Buchanan, third base prospect Cody Asche, former top draft pick, outfielder Kelly Dugan, whose father Dennis Dugan is a film director, and, lastly, catcher Josh Ludy, who was drafted by the Phils in the 8th round this year.

Questions and answers detailing each player’s holiday favorites are ahead…

-What’s your favorite Christmas movie or TV special?

Darin Ruf- Elf with Will Ferrell is my favorite.

Austin Wright- The Grinch Who Stole Christmas- always liked that movie.

Zach Collier- A Charlie Brown Christmas is my favorite one.

David Buchanan-  Favorite Christmas movie is Elf. My family watches it every year!

Cody Asche- I always spend holidays watching all of the college football bowl games. It’s my favorite thing to watch on TV. Continue reading Frosty Phillies Favorites: 2012 Christmas Survey


Weekly Off-season League Updates: 12/23/12

Posted by Jay Floyd, Sun, December 23, 2012 01:15 PM Comments: 6

We’re back with another edition of the (usually) weekly off-season league rundown. Read ahead, as we take a tour around the globe for a look at Phillies talents participating in various autumn and winter league action.

Venezuelan League-

Freddy Galvis (pictured, right) is batting .296 with 11 doubles, two triples, five homers and 28 RBI along with four steals through 57 games. The switch-hitting 23-year-old is riding a nine-game hitting streak, during which he is 13-for-39 (.333 avg). Galvis has been playing shortstop exclusively with Zulia.

Catcher Humberto Quintero, 33, has posted a .314 batting average with five doubles, one home run and nine RBI in 23 games for Zulia. The righty hitting Quintero was signed by the Phillies last month after playing in 43 games with the Royals last season.

Rule 5 draft choice Ender Inciarte, 22, is batting .234 with five doubles and a triple along with three steals through 44 games for Zulia. The lefty hitting center fielder batted .307 with 46 stolen bases combined at Class A and Class A Advanced in the Arizona system in 2012.

Second baseman Cesar Hernandez is batting .266 with a homer, 16 RBI and 14 steals through 44 games with Margarita. The 22-year-old switch-hitter batted a combined .291 with two homers and 57 RBI in 133 games in Double-A and Triple-A during the 2012 regular season.

Shortstop Edgar Duran has had a rough stretch, going just 2-for-23 (.087 avg) over his last 11 games. In 34 contests for Magarita, the 21-year-old has posted a .250 batting average, along with a homer and eight RBI. Continue reading Weekly Off-season League Updates: 12/23/12


Why I Love the Phillies – Michael

Posted by Brian Michael, Sat, December 22, 2012 01:09 PM Comments: 2

I love the Phillies for the simple reason that they are my home team and represent my home town and where I came from. I am proud to be from Philadelphia and I love the teams that represent that. Even if they lost every game, I would be angry, but NEVER root for any other team! Go Phillies, Eagles, Flyers, Sixers!! 4 for 4!

- Michael

Read more “Why I Love the Phillies” stories from Phillies Nation readers here.


Hot Stove: Ross to Arizona, Phils Interested In Ibanez

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Sat, December 22, 2012 12:54 PM Comments: 69

Ross has signed a three-year pact with Arizona. Photo: AP

Ross Signs with Arizona

Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News is reporting that Cody Ross has agreed to a three-year deal with the Arizona Diamondbacks, further limiting the opportunities for the Phillies to upgrade their outfield production.Ten days ago, our Eric Seidman explained why the price tag for Ross just would not match the upgrade value he would provide in the Phillies outfield. Now, fans no longer have to discuss that question.

Phils Interested in Ibanez Reunion?

Somewhat surprisingly, the Phillies are linked to a reunion with outfielder Raul Ibanez according to George King of the New York Post. In 425 plate appearances for the Yankees in 2012, Ibanez posted .240/.308/.453 line with 19 HRs. Jim Salisbury of CSN quoted Ruben Amaro yesterday, citing a need for a productive, right-handed bat. Ibanez is not right-handed and it can be argued that he is no longer productive, but 2012′s postseason hero could add some value in a bench role for the Phillies in 2013 at age 41. King notes that the Mariners have intensified their pursuit of Ibanez in what would be a reunion in its own right.

Hairston Looking For “Significant” Raise

Buster Olney of ESPN reported today that Scott Hairston is looking for a “significant” raise from last year’s $1.1 million he earned as a Met. Hairston fits the Phillies’ outfield need and was suggested by our Eric Seidman as a cheaper, just-as-productive alternative to Cody Ross. Salisbury reported yesterday that the Phillies have increased interest in Hairston, who turns 33 next year, and posted a .286/.317/.550 line with 11 HRs against lefties last year while playing about league average defense in the corner outfield positions.

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