What We Know: 30(+2) Games In

The Phillies are 14-18, five games back of first place in the East, and were just swept out of their home ballpark by the Mets in three games. There wasn’t a whole lot to like about the most recent series, one in which the Phillies saw a lead slip away in each game (and sometimes more than once in the same contest).

If there’s a positive, it’s that the team has hit. With double-digit hits in six of the last 12 games, I’m personally almost confused by this thing called “offense” existing at all. Following Wednesday’s game, the Phillies’ collective OBP is above .300 for just the fourth time all season. To the points.

Games 21-32 Recap

  • Record: 5-7
  • RS: 58; RA: 64
  • Notes: Cliff Lee returned from the DL; Jim Thome hit the 15-day DL and Erik Kratz was recalled; Joe Savery was optioned with a corresponding move TBA as of this posting
  • Kyle Kendrick has allowed 16 baserunners in his last two appearances (6+ IP)

The velocity was there. The stuff was crisp and darting as always. Doc rebounded from a
tough start against Atlanta to spin seven fine innings against the Mets, despite surrendering
a lead for the second straight start. Encouraging.

His season line of .225/.233/.268 is still ugly, but JMJ has at least struck the ball better in the last few games (as per the eye test, anyway). It’ll take a serious hot streak to get his
numbers to approach latter-2011 status, though.

  • Crap to Pap

It’s the Bridge to Lidge, only 157 times worse.

Jon Papelbon is having a nice season, Jordany Valdespin or not. Everyone else in the Phillies’ ‘pen, well, can’t really have the same said about them. Peripherally, David Herndon has done some good work, but he’s hurt; Stutes is also hurt; Schwimer and Savery have been up and optioned already; Antonio Bastardo and Chad Qualls are walking too many guys, Jose Contreras is still old and Brian Sanches is gasoline.

This says nothing of Kyle Kendrick, yet to earn about $6 million of the $7.5 million owed him over the course of the 2012-13 seasons. As tweeted earlier last week, since his debut season of 2007, only two other Major League pitchers with at least 400 innings under their belts have a lower K/9 than Kendrick: Paul Byrd (who last pitched in the Majors in ’09) and Aaron Cook. He was ineffective in his first start in place of Lee, good enough in the next two and an absolute disaster in relief Wednesday. Kendrick’s deal is, to me, the most puzzling move of the past offseason, and certainly doesn’t look to be on the way to being one of the more valuable ones.

Cole Hamels has a 7.33 strikeout-to-walk ratio. That leads all qualifying Major League
pitchers. He remains a free-agent-to-be.

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28 comments

  1. wilsonvaldez'shalloffamehat

    May 09, 2012 11:14 PM

    walks or not, Bastardo is my go to man other than Paps he’s the real deal.

  2. LTG

    May 09, 2012 11:37 PM

    Hilarious Headline on Phillies.com:

    “Bullpen Quietly Going thru Tough Stretch”

    I don’t think ‘quiet’ means what they think it means.

  3. Pat

    May 10, 2012 12:30 AM

    I really thought Aumont and/or De Fratus would solidify the 7th/8th inning spot in the bullpen but we might not get anything from them this year. Hopefully Savery’s demotion means Diekman is being called up. He could be this year’s Bastardo.

    Also, Freddy Galvis needs to be sent down. Not that Mike Fontenot is anything special, but bring him up and let Galvis get regular ABs in Lehigh.

  4. dino

    May 10, 2012 01:06 AM

    we may have the worst fielding outfield in MLB…Charlie has totally lost it…Amaro bet the house and lost

  5. Jeff T

    May 10, 2012 06:54 AM

    Other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?

  6. nik

    May 10, 2012 08:55 AM

    Time to give Diekman a look, he’s dominating AAA. Kendrick should not appear in any game where we are up or down by less than 4 runs that isn’t in extra innings.

  7. nik

    May 10, 2012 09:09 AM

    If I had a remote control for this Phillies season, I’d be fast-forwarding right now at least until June.

  8. Ed

    May 10, 2012 09:24 AM

    This is gonna be a long season, and I for one think its time for Amaro and Manuel to take a hike..Pat Gillick built this team and Amaro wrecked it..

  9. EricL

    May 10, 2012 09:29 AM

    Man, how damn stupid is Amaro to have offered Kendrick the $3.5 million to avoid arbitration in the first place, AND THEN add to it, by giving him $4.5 million next season?! Just…what exactly was the thought process there? He’s an extreme-contact pitcher with a declining GB/FB rate whose only ‘good’ years were due to a lot of BABIP luck. What the hell, bro?

  10. Ryne Duren

    May 10, 2012 09:38 AM

    pat i think aumont and defratus are both experiencing arm trouble right now. as far as galvis why send him down? he’s more than solid in the field and hitting wise he’s actually doing better than the a$$ wipe at ss right now jimmy has 5 stinkin rbi in many more ab’s than galvis and he was hitting third! he’s had way more opotunities to drive in runs yet galvis playing way less hitting out of the 8 hole has 11 rbi and had 3 hits last night including a triple that was about 6 inches from being an oposite field 2 run homer! and you suggest he be sent down? the 8 hole in the order is the toughest spot to hit with the pitcher behind him. you don’t see too many good pitches. chooch made a living in the 8 hole and was pretty darn good at it! the first couple of years he struggled but he became clutch. to me galvis is doing just fine. with 11 rbi he is on a pace for about 50-55 rbi rollins pace is 25! not saying that’s how it will end but if anybody should go it’s rollins!

  11. Ray

    May 10, 2012 09:38 AM

    I’m afraid that Charlie and his three run homer
    scenario have lost it and it’s time for him to retire.
    With Ryan Sandberg in the wings as the new-to-be
    manager, give him the reins and let’s start winning
    again. Forget the overused cry about Ryan Howard
    will turn things around as he is gradually becoming
    the strikeout king over the last three years and
    won’t make a great difference when he returns —
    at $20 million per year !

  12. Ryne Duren

    May 10, 2012 09:44 AM

    eric maybe just maybe they did that hoping if he pitched well enough it would be easier to trade him if he’s signed for two years. maybe? that’s would be my thinking if i was GM knowing we got a few starters in the minors that will be ready in the coming year. this trevor may kid looks like the real deal man he’s a stud i could see him up next year. he’s at reading right now but i wouldn’t be surprised if he moves up to LHV

  13. nik

    May 10, 2012 09:44 AM

    My worst fear is that they’ll be mediocre until July, but not bad enough to become sellers. Instead of getting value for Victorino and Hamels we’ll go ‘all in’ again and dump more prospects for a another failed run.

  14. LTG

    May 10, 2012 10:03 AM

    Ryne,

    The point in sending Galvis down is not to improve the MLB team but to get Galvis better at hitting. Even after last night Galvis’s numbers are bad. We sink or fail at short with J-Roll. He’s not going anywhere and he isn’t going to improve by sitting. Galvis could still develop into a better player down the road. And it looks like we need to think down the road more now than we thought before.

  15. nik

    May 10, 2012 10:19 AM

    If Galvis can improve on his hitting even a little bit, JRoll can go to 3rd next season and we’ll have a hell of defensive left side of the infield while saving money to keep Cole or sign a big bat.

  16. Phillie697

    May 10, 2012 10:26 AM

    But of course, paying $50M to a closer was a good idea this off-season, damn good idea.

    This, ladies and gentlemen, is why we picked on every single little bad move by the front office and management of the team, even though they won 102 games last year. Sooner or later, the chickens come home to roost.

    Okay, that’s the last time I’ll say I told you so for the rest of the season.

  17. Phillie697

    May 10, 2012 10:28 AM

    @Ray,

    You mean $25M a year, not $20M.

  18. Dante

    May 10, 2012 10:38 AM

    Nik – J-Roll isn’t moving off short – he wants to stay there as long as possible. Galvis is going to be our utility guy going forward, but if he can hit close to league avg he’s our third baseman.

  19. Dante

    May 10, 2012 10:39 AM

    Phillie697 – I expect another I Told You So by the end of the week.

  20. nik

    May 10, 2012 10:47 AM

    Papelbon is looking like the best move of the off-season. How screwed would we be if we didn’t have him.

  21. pedro3131

    May 10, 2012 10:49 AM

    Wasn’t the point of this article that the biggest issue is the bullpen? Unless my reading skills have gone way down in the past few weeks (and similarly, my ability to watch a baseball game), the problems seems to be Innings 6/7-8 and our inability to protect leads, or hold down the fort. The offense has been better then advertised, and while it’s not going to return to 06 form, it’s only going to improve when the Always Sunny Gang returns. The issue will still be anyone not named Papelbon trotting out of that bullpen.

  22. Phillie697

    May 10, 2012 11:07 AM

    @Dante,

    I swear it. No more. Even saying “I told you so” is depressing.

    @nik,

    Yes, because paying someone $50M to sit in the bullpen is oh-so useful. We haven’t used him enough to say that we would be screwed if we didn’t have him.

  23. LTG

    May 10, 2012 11:11 AM

    Nik,

    We probably could have signed Paps for cheaper too.

  24. Phillie697

    May 10, 2012 11:28 AM

    Unless we get Manny Banuelos, Dellin Betances, and another prospect, or Chase Headley and Robbie Erlin, or something equivalent, I ain’t trading Hamels.

  25. kieran

    May 10, 2012 02:22 PM

    The only consoling thought is the Red Sox, and that ain’t really consoling.

  26. Ray

    May 10, 2012 03:18 PM

    Thanks for the correction Phillie697. 25 million a year
    is even worse ! Maybe, when Howard returns, they could
    eat some money and trade him for several high minor
    league players to some team like the Cubs, the Giants, the Padres or the Orioles ? Build for the future and
    minimize your losses !

  27. LTG

    May 10, 2012 04:41 PM

    Howard is immovable. He is not that good anymore, and the sheer length of the contract is a problem even if the Phillies were willing to pay 50% for the rest of it. And the Cubs and Padres are sellers not buyers.

  28. Nick

    May 14, 2012 04:10 PM

    Cole needs to stay. Anyone else, in my mind, is sellable. Including Halladay (he’s too old to build a team around when you have so few assets).

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