The Tuesday 10: Embrace the Sell

Trying to be objective, or thinking you’re being objective, can be difficult sometimes. You don’t like losing, I don’t like losing and professional players don’t like losing. The people in charge of said professional players also don’t like losing, of course, because their pockets and reputations are damaged as the losses pile up. So, naturally, it seems against nature to actively worsen a team’s Major League product.

But, hey, that’s where I’m at. And it’s not a casual support, either. Now, in the face of the Phillies winning three of their first four against divisional opponents on what’s being called a pivotal homestand, I still stand ardently in favor of the Phillies selling on 2013, embracing at least a partial rebuild and looking toward the future. So, for this version of the 10, I’ve (sort of) got 10 reasons why selling is the right thing to do. And this will be light on numbers, because we’ve got some Real Talking to do.

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The Tuesday 10: 10 Minutes to Midnight

Ruben Amaro was a polarizing general manager before he was even officially offered the job. The baseball world was made well aware that Pat Gillick would not be reprising his role at the helm after the 2008 season concluded – and winning a World Series probably helped with that transition out of the captain’s chair – and that the Phillies would need a new GM. It seemed then that there were only two candidates, both internal: the current assistant GM in Amaro, or the fellow AGM and scouting head in Mike Arbuckle.

It’s a story you’re all familiar with by now and isn’t worth rambling on about ad nauseum. That time will probably come next month.

Instead, I think this week’s post is about acceptance or, at least, assumed acceptance. GM firings and replacements are far more infrequent occurrences than with managers, so it just seems the smart play to assume Amaro gets at least another year to work through the rough water he himself is partially responsible for stirring up. And with that assumption in mind, Amaro is the most important piece involved in this transitional period for the Phils. That may scare you a little, as it does me, but it seems the apparent truth.

Removing Amaro from play upon that assumption, then, today’s 10 will focus on the 10 most important “factors” (for lack of a better word) for the Phillies as they move forward through this season and beyond.

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The Tuesday 10: Cheese Me

Over the weekend, I made pilgrimage to the great lands of Milwaukee and Chicago, the former of which being close to where current penman extraordinaire Michael Baumann resides. We, along with another friend from the east, had been planning this trip for some time, and considering the poor guy has already been in the cheese state for more than five months, probably due.

I’ve lived in eastern cities my whole life, if you pardon a month-long stint in Lansing, Michigan, so every time I head halfway west I’m always struck by how clean and pretty lots of places out there are. It’s kind of a strange, non-quantifiable statement, I guess, but it’s a good impression to leave an area with. I’d still like to see more of Chicago – especially the north side – but what the troupe of us managed to see was almost universally positive.

I even managed not to get thrown out of a Milwaukee bar when I ordered a brat without kraut.

This left me mostly unaware of the weekend’s baseball action, save for the extra-inning madness I somehow avoided being in the office for. Nevertheless, let’s take a look back together and see just what the week held, and what I missed as I stuffed my face with Polish sausage at U.S. Cellular Field.

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The Tuesday 10: Domonation Station

The 10 is back and cozy in its usual home. Moving into a new apartment, as it turns out, can be a preposterous hassle! I’ll spare you the details, but most of it involves me being holed up in said apartment, growing a Justin Vernon beard and breaking up wood planks for fires and warmth. It was a dark time.

Now, however, I am reconnected to the outside world – and in possession of a razor – and resuming my duties as attendant to the 10. It shouldn’t really come as a surprise that I’d want to talk about Domonic Brown, and unless you’re Sports on Earth’s Jon Bernhardt, you probably enjoy reading as much as you can about the month that was for the ascendant Brown.

Now, I know nothing about Game of Thrones. I’ve neither read a word of the books nor subscribed to HBO, so I’m left in the dark. Which is fine, considering it was still plenty funny to see people from all reaches and corners of my Twitter feed reacting to some crazy event/thing that happened on the show. As I was writing this, Brown homered in Monday’s game. It’s just what he does.

Anyway, enough of this mularkey. Let’s get to some dingerfacts.

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The Wednesday Ten: Starving for WiFi

Once again, the Tuesday 10 has become the Wednesday Ten as Paul, your regularly scheduled host, searches high and low in Manhattan for an Internet connection. Much as early man scoured the desert for water, man now crawls on his hands and knees, growing weaker by the hour until he finds WiFi. Is that… a Starbucks? With free Internet? No, couldn’t be. The closer you get, the more you think your search has ended until… nope, just a mirage. What you thought was a Starbucks in the distance turned out to be the halal cart.

Let’s jump into the Ten.

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The Wednesday Ten: Doubles Will Find Me

So, the Ten is a day late. And Paul Boye, your usual curator, is out of pocket, so I will be pulling together your Tuesday Wednesday 10 today. Plenty happening with the Phillies and around the league, so let’s get right into it.

10. Delmon Young plays the sport of baseball professionally (for money) in an organization known as Major League Baseball

OK, look. This isn’t that bad. Sure, there are countless other .gifs documenting Delmon’s tragilarious defense in the outfield, but that one hit off the wall! He could’ve played it better, or gotten to it quicker, but it bounced kinda funkily. It’s not like he botched a routine fly there. And, more importantly, it’s not as if the Phillies signed Delmon to be early-2000s Andruw Jones in the outfield; he’s here for his stick. He’s a role player, and it’s unfair to- actually, now that I’m looking at it, he’s hitting .214/.292/.393 in 65 plate appearances. That’s really bad. I mean, it’s only 65 plate appearances, and it’s not like the Phillies bet the house on him, but dang. He’d better pull some kind of streak together quickly.

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The Tuesday 10: Go Left, Young Man

The Phillies swept the Mets! That’s really cool! Even in a season that’s been tinged with a bit of malaise out of the gate, taking a series like that in New York is pleasing, without fail. Some players – Halladay, Hamels, Brown – are showing some signs of turnaround, albeit conditional turnarounds. Chase Utley is still slugging over .500. Carlos Ruiz is back! Maybe things are looking up!

Or maybe I’m just getting ahead of myself. Whatever, this was a good week if you pretend that Pittsburgh series never happened.

To the 10!

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The Tuesday 10: Jesse Biddle Afterglow

Another April week, another seven days elapsed where it’s Too Early to Really Judge Anything. Except for Jesse Biddle‘s bonkers 7 IP, 16 K, 2 BB, 0 R outing for Double-A Reading Monday. That one I judge to be “pretty damn awesome.”

It’s very difficult to go back through Minor League games to crosscheck, but I wager a Phils farmhand hasn’t put together an outing like that since Cole Hamels was tearing his way through the pipeline (not to make a direct comparison). To stay grounded: it is just one outing. But for the second-youngest pitcher in the entire Eastern League to do that, well, I’m sure plenty of people will take notice. It sure gave me the tingles.

Okay, on to the 10.

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The Tuesday 10: 4/16/13

A brief aside before I get to the new feature: Yesterday’s events in Boston were obviously horrid, and those in the area could use your help. If you can spare it, you can donate monetarily to the victims through the Red Cross here. Now, back to baseball.

Bill’s begun to introduce you to a neat, concise weekly round-up of the most important plays of the past week with his Week In Review series. As something of a supplement, here’s something a touch more long-form about the week that was around the Phillies and the league at-large, with 10 points that caught our attention.

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