ESPN: The Cole Hamels Situation

ESPN: The Cole Hamels Situation

At ESPN, I discussed the implications of the latest setback in Cole Hamels’ quest to return from his arm injury, and discussed a few of the internal options that the Phillies could call upon to pitch in his stead.

There’s also this:

Update: And this…

The Future is Unwritten: Jan Hernandez

Until the Ben Wetzler Tattletale garbage surfaced, everything about the Phillies 2013 draft was pie. Delicious, creamy, tooled-up pie with a buttery, athletic crust. Jan Hernandez became a key ingredient in that pie when he was drafted in the third round and signed for $550,000. He became the first ever player from the Carlos Beltran Academy to be selected and is one of the more talented players we’ve seen come out of Puerto Rico over the last half decade. Only four total Puerto Rican players were selected with a top 100 draft pick from 2007 through 2011. Talent on the island appeared to have dried up until the loaded 2012 draft produced four top 100 talents on its own, including #1 overall pick Carlos Correa. Let’s hope that the last two years are signs that a once rich baseball locale is emerging from the dark ages caused by the draft’s blatant anti-trust violations and experiencing a talent renaissance. But back to Hernandez… Continue reading…

Crash Bag, Vol. 96: This Train

I wonder if anyone from Spain has ever written in to the blog. I’d be surprised if that was the case. Because, you know…

@Bradleycs1: “what do you think AJ Burnett’s reaction to the Phillies implementing defensive shifts will be?”

I know he was unhappy with the Pirates shifting last season, but he’ll deal with it, because he’s a professional, and the Pirates shifted their infielders more last season than just about anybody, one of the consequences of such things being that Pittsburgh won 94 games and Burnett got to start a game in the playoffs. The shift is one of many developments in baseball strategy and tactics that I really, really don’t like from an aesthetic point of view, even though I recognize that it’s smart. For instance, strikeouts are on the rise as teams realize the most reliable way to get outs is to have pitchers who miss bats, while also, somewhat paradoxically, realizing that strikeouts for hitters aren’t terrible if they’re part of an approach that also leads to deep counts, home runs and walks. Meanwhile, stolen bases have also gone out of style to a certain degree, since the high break-even point makes it more important for would-be basestealers to pick their spots more wisely. Continue reading…