The Future Is Unwritten: Albert Cartwright Scouting Report

Every piece of an organization is important, especially when your roster is shallow and old enough that injuries and poor play mean Michael Martinez spends nearly a fifth of the season on your big league roster. Marginal improvements, even deep in the annals of the organizational depth chart, can impact your big league club in some way if things break right. Roster expansion in September means teams can utilize players who were wholly insignificant during the season in ways that their most prominent skills can impact the game. Francisco Rodriguez for the Angels in 2002, Franklin Morales for the Rockies in 2007, Dan Johnson for Tampa in 2011, Billy Hamilton for the Reds this year, there’s a long list of guys dripping with anonymity that were called up late in the year or forced up due to injury that have contributed to the cause. Or at least were good enough that they didn’t irreparably damage the cause. That’s why today I’d like to take a look at an unglamorous but interesting player named Albert Cartwright. Continue reading…

Amaro Hints at Analytics Incorporation

With the way Major League Baseball operates in the year 2013, little things like this shouldn’t necessarily be news. But given the organization’s stubbornness and obstinance vis a vis the incorporation of analytics into player evaluation, this quote from a piece by MLB.com‘s Todd Zolecki feels important:

“We’re going to make some changes,” Amaro said. “I think we’re doing some stuff analytically to change the way do some evaluations. Look, we are going to continue to be a scouting organization. That said, I think we owe it to ourselves to look at some other ways to evaluate. We’re going to build more analytics into it. Is it going to change dramatically the way we go about our business? No, but we owe it to ourselves to at least explore other avenues. We may bring someone in from the outside, but we have not decided that yet.”

Whether this is the first step toward a total renovation of player evaluation or merely a placation of a growing portion of the fanbase remains to be seen, but it’s encouraging nonetheless. A moment of lauding for the much maligned RAJ, either way.

Looking Back at Pre-Season Projections

Part of the fun going into every season are the projections. There are quite a few systems out there, including Steamer, Oliver, Marcel, and my personal favorite, ZiPS. ZiPS didn’t paint a very rosy picture of the Phillies’ offense, projecting only Chase Utley Domonic Brown, and Carlos Ruiz to cross the .330 mark in terms of weighted on-base average. For the sake of comparison, the average wOBA across the National League for non-pitchers was .318.

Continue reading…

Thank You for A Great Season

It may have been a disappointing season for the Phillies, but nevertheless, it has been another great year interacting with you, the loyal readers and commenters here at Crashburn Alley. On behalf of Michael, Paul, Eric, and Ryan, we can’t thank you enough for making our site a part of your routine. Just because the season is over, though, doesn’t mean we’re going away. We’ll still be here throughout the off-season providing the most thorough and objective analysis of the Phillies around, so don’t clear us from your bookmarks yet.

On a related note, thank you to the diligent writers on the Phillies beat for making our jobs possible and much, much easier. Matt Gelb, Chris Branch, Todd Zolecki and a host of others have been doing the dirty work so the rest of us don’t have to clean the Cheeto and Dorito dust off of our fingers to find something to blog about.

When we’re not posting stuff here, we’ll be putting our thoughts on Twitter, so make sure to follow us:

Starting on October 1st and running well into November, we will be providing report cards on every player to don Phillies pinstripes this season.