NL East Notes: Phillies, Marlins, Isringhausen

It has been a busy day in the NL East as the Phillies completed a signing, the Braves made a trade and the Mets placed three players on waivers. Here's the rest of what you need to know about the division…

  • Alden Gonzalez previews the NL East for and, with some help, predicts the Phillies will win the division, followed by the Braves, Marlins, Nationals and Mets.
  •'s Mark Bauman argues that the margin for error has shrunk for the Phillies' highly-regarded rotation, because Brad Lidge and Chase Utley have been sidelined with injuries.
  • Marlins president of baseball operations Larry Beinfest told's Joe Frisaro that he isn't actively looking to make any deals between now and Opening Day, though he'll watch out for possible bargains. "You always look to see if there is an upgrade or a different fit for your club," Beinfest said. "We're not going to do something [just] to do something. It's going to have to be an upgrade over what we think we have here." 
  • If the Marlins acquire a third baseman, it would essentially be a "place-keeper" for prospect Matt Dominguez, Beinfest said.
  • Like Bartolo Colon of the Yankees, Jason Isringhausen of the Mets surprised people this spring and pitched well enough to earn a roster spot despite a history of injuries. Joel Sherman of the New York Post explains the parallels between the two pitchers and the uncertainty surrounding them.

56 Responses to NL East Notes: Phillies, Marlins, Isringhausen Leave a Reply

  1. Giorgi Almonte 4 years ago

    well i see the mets are really underrated, the mets just need a bit of luck(0 these past years) and they could win the division or at least finish good…

    • As a Met Fan I don’t think they’re that underrated. I don’t they’ll finish in Last place, although a Reyes and Beltran trade may lead to that (which I’m ok with). my optimistic thinking only brings me to them getting third place and that’s a long shot. A bit of luck only brings you so far in a 162 game season.

    • Muggi 4 years ago

      C’mon man. The Mets rotation is pretty bad, the bullpen outside KRod is a mess, and the lineup has several holes in it.

      They don’t need luck, they need new players. That being said I don’t think they finish last.

      • MetsEventually 4 years ago

        I really can’t see why a healthy Chris Young/Capuano, Pelfrey, Niese and a repeat of Dickey is a pretty bad. Even though…these are all big ifs…

        • Muggi 4 years ago

          Exactly. The chances Dickey is as good as last season are…not high. Don’t get me wrong, I actually like the guy a lot and think he can be a good pitcher for quite a few years, but I don’t think he’s Phil Niekro.

          If everything breaks their way, they’re still at best a slightly above-average staff IMO. If Johan comes back healthy of course that could change, but that’s a big if…as are Capuano and Young, and the crapshoot of which Pelfrey shows up in any given month.

          • johnsilver 4 years ago

            Wakefield’s sophomore season was not all that good either, with the exception that he threw 200+ innings and he was not on the far side of 35YO. Jim Bouton is one that comes to mind who had some success in his initial year with the knuckleball, then had little to none the next.

            Hope that Dickey does maintain his success with it..The game (IMO) needs to keep at least 1 pitcher going who is able to use it on a regular basis and get people out and Wakefield’s time is nearing and end, but i feel that mets fans are going to be in for a let down counting on Dickey to repeat the astronomical success he had in 2010.

    • $6042963 4 years ago

      Giorgi, I agree. The Mets are underrated and will finish no lower than third place. They’ve been really unlucky with injuries the past two years and their luck is bound to change. They had the third best rotation in the division last year, and while they will miss Santana, Alderson has improved the back end of the rotation. So that should mitigate Johan’s loss. And their lineup should be one of the strongest in the NL. They will surprise a lot of people this year.

      • Third best rotation out of 5 teams, amazing. In a year where Pelfrey and Dicky had career years and Santana threw a very effective 200 innings. This season his at least cut in half for him.

        The lineup has the potential to be potent, but Reyes and Bay have to stay healthy. And Reyes is likely to be traded at some point anyway. Can’t see Beltran staying productive.

        The Mets will finish in 4th place unless the Braves and Marlins are destroyed by injuries. I’m not a hater, just being realistic. The only thing that has a chance to be ‘underrated’ is their offense. The rest isn’t pretty man….

        • $6042963 4 years ago

          Last year wasn’t even Pelfrey’s career year. 2008 was better. And how can you say Dickey had a career year when last year was basically his rookie year as a complete knuckleballer? Moreover, he will likely make 7-8 more starts this year than last. Then you have the addition of Young and Capuano who are big improvements over Maine and Perez. What these improvements should do is offset the loss of Santana.

          And of course Reyes and Bay need to stay healthy. You can say that with all the teams in the division about their top players. The Mets have been so unlucky with injuries the last two years that their luck is bound to change in this department.

          The Mets will finish no worse than third UNLESS they are once again devastated by injuries. Mark my words.

          • Young has thrown 96 innings over the past two years, Capuano 216(4.75 ERA over that span).

            I have more faith in Capuano. Young’s last full season(2008), he had a .580 OPS against at home, .782 OPS against away. He’s got decent stuff, but PETCO played a large role into his success. And again, he’s been killed with injuries lately.

            I won’t be shocked if they finished 3rd, but I’m definitely not counting on it.

          • $6042963 4 years ago

            Yes, Capuano and Young had recent injuries but here’s the key — they are almost two years removed from their surgeries. That ‘s important as it’s usually the first year after major surgery that these starters struggle the most. So while I don’t expect both to make 33 starts each, I think you can expect maybe 40-50 starts total between the two, and they will be better than the riff-raff (including Maine and Perez) who were at the backend of the rotation last year.

            When it comes to predictions, I wouldn’t count on anything. Just saying and agreeing with some others that the Mets are being seriously underrated this year.

          • Dickey will regress to a 4.5 ERA and Maine will be average. Young will have a typical year where he is lucky to make 10 starts (and even those will not be great starts). Mets are trying to find a 2nd baseman like usual, and Beltran will not be the Beltran of old. 3rd place at best. At… best…

          • $6042963 4 years ago

            Hmmm, sounds like you really know the team! Would it surprise you to know that Maine isn’t even on the team anymore? LOL. Second, there is no norm for Dickey to regress to. Seriously. He’s a knuckleballer who just learned to perfect his quirky pitch last season which was a breakthrough year for him. You can’t compare him to a normal pitcher or project him out the normal way. Third, it’s an extremely good chance that Emaus/Murphy/Turner put up a better WAR than Castillo did last year. And even with Castillo’s poor 2B performance last year, the Mets were just a few games out of first at the all-star break. Fourth, not many are counting on Beltran to be the Beltran of old anymore. At his age and with his recent health issues, that would be unreasonable. One can say almost the same thing with every aging high profile player on any other team. Alderson realizes this too and has planned accordingly.

            I say third place or possibly second.

          • i honestly think the mets can finish in second and i think they will finish behind the braves…leaving the phillies in third…i really am begining to think the philllies are getting terrible luck with utley oswalt and lindge…their lineup was not good this year andd they knew it so they are rellying on pitching….their pitching is already downgraded with the loss of lindge, and i guarentee oswalt wont be the only ace to get injured

          • Jason Klinger 4 years ago

            Wow. You should watch more baseball before you post stuff like this. It just makes you look bad, dude.

      • Giorgi Almonte 4 years ago

        thanx dude, its good to see people whos understands what i mean, because the mets had pretty good team all this decade but without lucky even all the money, all the players(we have) cant do anything….and for other people if you think good player are famous player you’re wrong!!

  2. EvanKanewtson 4 years ago

    After reading Alden Gonzalez’s article I’m convinced he was one of the writers who predicted the Seattle Mariners to win the World Series in 2010.

  3. MetsEventually 4 years ago

    Lol, Mets in last place? Marlins and Nationals didn’t improve that much. Braves over Phillies, btw.

  4. There is no way the Nats, got “that much” better. The Mets will be better than .500 this year. I think the Phils are due for an injury riddled year. Marlins will be spoilers. Phils and Braves will duke it out for 1st, unless I’m right about the injuries. Mets and Marlins with teeter with 3rd and 4th and the Nats are last. I dare say the Mets may be in a multi-team contest for the wildcard, won’t win it but likely finish 4/5 games behind the wildcard winner.

    • Dylan 4 years ago

      Phillies are due for an injury riddled year…good hunch…

      • $6042963 4 years ago

        I think it has more to do with their age then just a simple hunch. They have a pretty old team compared to other teams in the division.

    • Muggi 4 years ago

      So what did the Phillies have last year? The Phillies had guys out left and right.

      To put it in a Mets/statistical context…in the Mets’ injury-riddled ’09, they lost about 7 WAR in value when combining player WAR with games missed. The Phils lost over 5.5 last season.

      • $6042963 4 years ago

        Huh? The Mets lost 1,145 total days to the DL in 2010, and 1,797 days in 2010. The Phillies in 2010 lost only 830 days to the DL. The Mets in BOTH 2009 and 2010 had more extensive and impactful losses to the DL than the Phillies had last year. There’s just no comparison.

        The Mets have been really unlucky with injuries the last two years and hopefully their luck changes this year and other teams in the NL East get a taste of what’s it’s like to play with such a disadvantage.

        • “and other teams in the NL East get a taste of what’s it’s like to play at such a disadvantage.”

          Give me a break. Last year the Braves dealt with more injuries than any of the other 7 playoff clubs did(not sure if that’s the number of guys they lost to the DL or most time though). They lost Chipper, Saito, and Medlen down the stretch when they were hot. Jurrjens missed a ton of time, then was lost for the year, also down the stretch. Heyward essentially lost a month and a half with a thumb injury. Prado, arguably the MVP of the team, went down 15 or so games before the playoffs shortly after being pulled from the DL. Troy Glaus lost the entire second half with injuries that kept him from being productive. McLouth lost roughly the same amount of time, that could’ve just been him sucking though. Diaz and O’Flherty were also killed by injuries.

          And echoing what was said above, the Phillies were also significantly hampered by injuries to key players.

          • $6042963 4 years ago

            Nonsense. Utter nonsense trying to depict the Braves as being heavily injured last year …

            Days lost to the DL in 2010:

            Nationals 1569
            Mets 1145
            Phillies 830
            Marlins 806
            Braves 804

            The Braves last year were the healthiest team in the NL East and the 10th healthiest among all 30 ML teams. The Mets and Nats lost by far the most players for the most days in the division.

          • Playing poorly through injuries doesn’t show up on your stat sheet does it?

          • $6042963 4 years ago

            No, of course not. But everyone knows injuries are always a factor.

          • Yep. Happens to everyone. It’s just one of those things that’s hard to quantify how much effect it actually has.

          • $6042963 4 years ago

            Except that the more days lost to the DL — especially to key players — the more the team is likely to suffer.

          • aceman515 4 years ago

            yeah, key word is “key players” we lost Chipper, Mclouth, and Prado, i would say thats as key as we can get.

          • Key players, how about the Fish? The Marlins lost Hanley, Josh Johnson, Chris Coghlan, Ricky Nolasco and all 3 MLB catchers, their coach, trading away Cody Ross and Jorge Cantu, and starting AAA players at all but 2 positions for the last month of the season? That’s pretty key too.

            We didn’t get a good look at the real potential of alot of the NL east teams last year.

            2012 will be interesting with a re-structured Mets team, Nats with Harper and Strasburg, and the Marlins with a slightly bumped payroll and a new stadium.

          • $6042963 4 years ago

            But the Mets, just last year, lost Bay, Beltran, Reyes, K-Rod and Santana. That’s even more “key” than the Braves who were out. And 2009 was even worse for the Mets. The Red Sox last year also lost more “key” players than the Braves.

            And the Phillies lost Utley and Rollins last year. So I still don’t see how the Braves’ losses were anything unusual. And overall the Braves were one of the healthiest teams in baseball in 2010.

      • MetsEventually 4 years ago

        Yeah, but they didn’t lose everyone for the entire season

        • Lose everyone for a full season?

          Wright – 157 games
          Reyes – 133 games
          Davis – 147 games
          Pagan – 151 games
          Jeff Francoeur – 124 games(and he was traded at the deadline)
          Pelfrey – 204 innings
          Santana – 200 innings
          Dickey – 174 innings(called up late, right?)
          Neise – 173 innings

          The pen was more or less healthy. The only key players that lost a lot of time were Beltran and Bay. I expect Bay to bounce back, not sold on Beltran whatsoever.

          • MetsEventually 4 years ago

            2009 dude

          • $6042963 4 years ago

            Huh? In 2010 the Mets lost K-Rod for the entire last month and a half. They lost Santana for the entire last month. They lost Bay for almost the entire season. They lost Beltran for almost 100 games … and they lost Reyes for an entire month. Look at the numbers I posted above. The Braves have been a relatively healthy team the last few years compared to other teams in the division.

            And in 2009? Mets lost virtually everyone.

          • How many times did we hear the IR list looks like the opening day line up.

  5. NYBravosFan10 4 years ago

    Wellif it’s all the same to you Alden I’d like to say that I’ve about had it with these expert analysts already giving the world series to the Phillies. The Braves are a d@mn good team and deserve to be recognized. So you Mr. Gonzalez, along with every other bandwagon analyst out there can put your lips on my carry-on seat cushion. I’ve become an expert on sensoring myself on this website lol.

  6. woadude 4 years ago

    An NL East Note that couldn’t help but mention something to do with the Yankees, Couldn’t just mention Isringhausen by himself, had to mention Like that Bartolo Colon guy playing for the Yankees, he is such a surprise.

  7. woadude 4 years ago

    Only thing that will surprise me about Bartolo Colon is if he makes it to June, I mean do people forget he has done this before with the Red Sox? He rehabbed and had a good strong showing and even won a few games before players just feasted on his fastball and he was traded to the White Sox for a bag of balls before being DFA and NOW he is surfacing again and he is a surprise? Come talk to me in June about him.

    • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

      Actually, Colon wasn’t traded by the Red Sox. He just went home to the Dominican and just decided to stay. Sox let him walk as a free agent after the season. He actually pitched ok for them in 7 starts.

      3.93 ERA, 4.34 FIP, 5 of 7 games w/5 IP and 3 runs or less.

      • johnsilver 4 years ago

        He actually pitched really good. Trying to remember the circumstances (game) he got hit with a batted ball and all of a sudden..lost several mph off of his fb and was never the same.. Like his 5th start. then his back..he refused to go to the bullpen because of long time it took to warm up his back..Kind of an ugly situation.

        All from memory there YFS78.. Some may not be 100%.

        • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

          You, my friend, pretty much hit the nail right on it’d head.

  8. bigpat 4 years ago

    The Mets are slightly interesting because their lineup is still good. You have to believe that Bay will be better than last season, Reyes will play his tail off, but they will get nothing from 2B and Beltran is a complete wild card, but I don’t see him ever returning to his past self.

    Their pitching staff is very limited to put it mildly. I will buy RA Dickey’s jersey and fly out to New York to have him autograph it if he has another sub 3 ERA season. Pelfrey is what he is, Niese is ok, Capuano has average potential, and while I love Chris Young, it will be hard for him to stay healthy all season. The bullpen is a complete mess, as they want their best reliever out because he’s an overpaid headcase, and I’m not talking about Ollie Perez. It will be a struggle to carry a 9th inning lead over to K-Rod so I don’t see his option vesting.

    Overall, I can see them finishing third or last, each are very likely scenarios. It all depends on health and I can see a decent amount of guys getting traded if they do prove to be healthy, so it’s all moot.

  9. Michael Perri 4 years ago

    1. Phillies *Division Champs*
    2. Mets *Wild Card*
    3. Braves
    4. Marlins
    5. Nationals

    • bosoque 4 years ago

      aww that’s cute.

    • Jason Klinger 4 years ago

      I appreciate your optimism, but the Nationals are more likely to win the division than the Mets are to win the Wild Card.

      As a Phillies fan, I can see a scenario in which the Braves get hot and win the division, knocking the Phillies into the Wild Card, but that is about the extent of the drama at the Nos. 1 and 2 positions in the NL East standings.

      • I hate the Phils but I agree, unless there are significant injuries to the Phils or Braves, it’s a 2 horse race. Marlins & Nats will put up more of a fight than Mets.

      • the Phils are already opening the season with:

        * Lidge, Brad (P) 03/29 Out Indefinitely Possibly Late May
        Right posterior rotator cuff strain Out at least three to six weeks.
        * Oswalt, Roy (P) 03/23 Day-to-day TBD Hit near head by line drive
        X-rays on neck bruise were negative on March 23.
        * Utley, Chase (2B) 03/28 Out Indefinitely Possibly April
        Patellar tendinitis in right knee Took fielding practice in late March.

        and play 32 games against div rivals the first two months of the season

        the Mets are opening with (of significance):
        * Beltran, Carlos (CF) 03/27 Day-to-day Possibly Opening Day
        Tendinitis in left knee Played outfield for second straight day March 27.
        * Santana, Johan (P) 03/13 Out Indefinitely Possibly mid-season
        Torn left shoulder Said on March 12 that shoulder was progressing.
        (as of right now I don’t think Bays injury merits concern)

        having your closer out and a key defensive infielder who also happens to be an offensive powerhouse out does not bode well. We have all seen this – when a star goes down and the team tries to pick up the slack they in-turn try too hard and get hurt.

    • VERY optimistic I think

      1. Phillies *Division Champs*
      2. Braves
      3. Mets
      4. Marlins
      5. Nationals

      is best case Wildcard could be Braves or Padres

      • Agree, I think the NL east will play out like that. Don’t know about the Padres for the wildcard though

  10. $6042963 4 years ago

    Agree lotus. I think those picking the Mets to come in last are clearly “dillusional” or are just letting all the bad Madoff press color their perceptions.

    That’s OK. They are entitled to their opinions. But Mets fans who have watched the team closely since Alderson took over and through spring training know better.

  11. $6042963 4 years ago

    How do you know Oswalt isn’t missing any time. He’s probably one of the likeliest (along with Lee) to miss some starts this coming year.

    The Phillies are the oldest team in the division and I think it will bite them in the butt this year.

  12. $6042963 4 years ago

    Given Oswalt’s age, he (along with Lee and maybe Contreras) are the likeliest among the Phillies pitchers to go on the DL. The Phillies have the oldest team in the division and I think it’s going to show up in more injuries and declining performance.

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