Tagged: pen

The Phillies Read My Mind (Partially)

Well, I was in the middle of writing a long post about the Phillies transaction of bringing R.J. Swindle up, Brett Myers down and Chad Durbin coming into the rotation.  But of course, perhaps the Phillies read my mind and are keeping Durbin in the pen.  They also sent R.J. Swindle down, and recalled J.A. Happ. 
   
    The post I was writing was basically why the Phillies need to send up either Happ or Brian Mazone from AAA, so Chad Durbin could remain a reliever, where he has shined. 
   
    The Phillies did what I thought they should do, except for one thing.   In the “Lost Post” I mentioned (before I stopped writing) that I thought that Swindle actually deserved a call-up, and I was going to discuss why he was way better than other Phillies relievers that are still in the majors. 
   
    As of Saturday, this is the Phillies bullpen along with their age and ERA this year:
  
Brad Lidge, 31, 0.77, Dominant closer who’s 19 for 19 in saves.
Chad Durbin, 30, 1.50, You don’t mess with something that’s finally fixed.
Ryan Madson, 27, 3.07, Nucleus of the bullpen, just as valuable as Lidge.
J.C. Romero, 32, Way more than a lefty specialist, although he is great in that role.
Rudy Seanez, 39, Having an unbelievably great year, perhaps will stay around another year or two.
Tom Gordon, 40, I don’t care about how much experience he has, he’s been bad since the end of May.
Clay Condrey, 31, He’s not dominant, but can play many different roles.

    Explain to me why R.J. Swindle is back in on the farm, while Tom Gordon is 40 years old and has 6.48 ERA in last ten appearances is still with the Phillies.

Let’s compare how they have done this year:
R.J. Swindle          Age:25         Salary:390,000
swindle face.jpg

Level     G     ERA     W     L     IP     BB     K
AA        11    0.54      1      0    16.2   1       16
AAA      19    2.19      1      1    24.2   5       34

Swindle has been awesome, and just take a look at those BB/K ratio.  Nasty.  Plus he has a 55 MPH curveball.  All hail the ephus!

Tom Gordon          Age: 40          Salary: 5,500,000
tomgordonface.jpgLevel     G     ERA     W     L     IP     BB     K
MLB     34    5.16      5      4     29.2  17      26

Explain to me why Gordon, who hasn’t been good the past two years, is still considered better than Swindle.  I actually know why; because teams just can’t get over a player’s reputation even if truthfully they know another player can do better than him.  It’s hard to explain exactly, but it happens. 

     If the Phillies would release Gordon, they would still have to pay a large portion of his salary.  They could send him down, although I’m not sure his current contract would allow it.  Truthfully to be respectful, I think you trade him for a low to mid level minor-leaguer.  That would relieve the Phillies of the of a larger portion of Gordon’s salary, depending of the specifics of the trade.  If the other team is smart, they make the Phillies pay up to 50% of Gordon’s salary. 
    Just trade Gordon to any team that needs bullpen depth.  I’m thinking maybe the Tigers, Dodgers, or Brewers.

    Of any trade involving Gordon, the most important aspect would be how much each team pays of that 5 and a half million.  Still, hear are some minor-leaguers that could be involved in deals.
delwyn.jpgDelwyn Young     Age: 26      Left Fielder
Level     G     AB     H     .OBP     HR     RBI     SB     BB     SO
MLB     57     94     25     .330       1        5        0        9       23

He’s hammered at every level in the minors, and is blocked in LA.  If Geoff Jenkins and Pat Burrell both leave after this year, he could play a big role in 2009.

bazardo.jpgYorman Bazardo     Age:24     Pitcher

Level     G     GS     ERA     W     L     IP     H     BB     K
AAA     14     11      6.47      2      5    65.1  88     26     44

I see the bad numbers, but Bazardo is extremely young and had a very good year in Toledo last year.  He’s a ahead of his age, but Yorman and Detroit don’t quite click.   The Phillies need more young starters after Kendrick and Hamels.  Bazardo looks like he could use a change of scenery.

gillespie.jpgCole Gillespie      Age: 24     Left Field
Level     G     AB     H     .OBP     HR     RBI     SB     BB     SO
AA        84   304&nbsp
;    84    .375       12      55       9       48      70

Gillespie is very similar to Young as a player and the position he’s in.  He blocked in the outfield in Milwaukee, but has done well in the Minors.  Young is more experienced than him, but Gillespie may have more power potential.

brantley.jpgMichael Brantley     Age:21     Center Field
Level     G     AB     H      .OBP     HR     RBI     SB     BB     SO
AA        74   306     62     .405       4        34      25      39      18

Brantley has been very consistent in his career so far, and has a huge amount of speed.  His .OBP is great and has over twice as many walks as strikeouts!   He looks to be ready for the majors by, at the most, age 24, but, like Gillespie, is blocked in Milwaukie.  He could move Victorino over to right if the Phils make a deal for him.

skelton.jpgJames Skelton    Age: 22     Catcher
Level     G     AB     H     .OBP     HR     RBI     SB     BB     SO
A+        42    145    42    .429       2        13       10      36      36

I know about Lou Marson, but the Phillies still really need catching depth, and Skelton is a solid player.  He doesn’t have much power, but he is a fast catcher and knows how to get on base.  He may be like a Jason Kendall-type player.  I’m a Carlos Ruiz non-believer.  Sorry

carlossantana.jpgCarlos Santana     Age: 22     Catcher

Level     G     AB     H     .OBP     HR     RBI     SB     BB    SO
A+        81    284    89    .421       12      80       5       55     46

Every catcher in the Dodgers system should hope to get traded unless they want to be a back-up.  Russell Martin will be there for a long time, so Santana could be future trade bait.  Santana had a bad year last year in the Midwest League(A), so it would be a reasonable thing to say that the high altitude of the California League is helping him.  But hey, he’s putting up some sweet numbers.  I’d jump at the oppurtunity to acquire Santana for Gordon.

   Any of these players I’d trade straight up for Tom Gordon.  Of course that would never happen considering Gordon’s salary, but the Phillies should try to gripe (is that a word?) away some of these players.  Heck, include Mike Zagurski in the deal.

   Well, I plan on talking about the Nationals, Mariners, and Giants in the near future.  See ya.

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