Phillies Notes: Blanton, Gillies, Thome

The latest the the Phillies, who are looking for a sixth consecutive NL East title in the increasingly competitive NL East…

  • The perception among most baseball people is that Joe Blanton is available for the right price, David Murphy of the Philadelphia Daily News writes.
  • Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr. said outfielder Tyson Gillies has the skillset to play in the Major Leagues, according to Phil Sheridan of the Philadelphia Inquirer. "He has better tools than a lot of the guys we've got," Amaro said. "He just needs to play. The poor guy hasn't gotten a chance to play. He's still young." Gillies, 23, missed all but three games in 2011 and played in only 28 games in 2010.
  • The Phillies’ projected 25-man roster consists of many older players, but Sheridan writes that "it's more important to get better than simply younger.” The Phillies added players such as Jim Thome (41), Ty Wigginton (34) and Chad Qualls (33) this past offseason.
  • Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer explains why Thome's defensive work will affect the Phillies' ability to work him into their lineup.

48 Responses to Phillies Notes: Blanton, Gillies, Thome Leave a Reply

  1. LUWahooNatFan 3 years ago

    Phillies window is closing fast..

    • rockfordone 3 years ago

      It probably closed on the last pitch of the playoffs(Howard).
      Pitching wins but need defense and some hitting.

      • notsureifsrs 3 years ago

        howard is not a very important player

        • How so?

          • notsureifsrs 3 years ago

            he simply isn’t very good. the idea that not having his +1 production around for part of the season could close the phillies window is ludicrous

          • John Howard 3 years ago

            He simply isn’t very good …  so you are someone that looks solely at the batting average.  He has already won an MVP and rookie of the year.  His OBP was 370 last year and had just as many rbi and homeruns as Ryan Braun last year.  Batting Average is the most over-rated stat.  Howard is an elite first baseman.

          • notsureifsrs 3 years ago

            his obp was .346 last year and hasn’t been above .370 since 2007

            that was cute though to see you mention RBI while ridiculing batting average

          • John Howard 3 years ago

            How do you win games in the MLB? You have to score runs, right?  A high batting average does not win games.  and yes you are right about the OBP, I looked at the wrong thing.  But I’m still right!!!

          • notsureifsrs 3 years ago

             how do you measure run-producing ability in the MLB? RBI is not the correct answer

            do you know what wRC stands for? weighted runs created. it is a measure of total offensive output and it is miles more accurate and complete than a laughable stat like RBI

            wRC+ will confirm that howard has an above average but non-elite bat. add to that the fact that he is a poor defender and a horrible baserunner and what you get is a player who is barely top 100 if at all

          • bobbybaseball 3 years ago

            RBI is more overrated than BA.

          •  Howard completely changes the face of the lineup. a healthy utley , and pence for a full season… Ryan just needs to get to 100% before he returns

          • You are understating his output a bit. His worst year ever, he was a +2. Realistically he is a high 2-ish type in most years. Also, you are comparing him to the entire league.  I would listen to that argument, and probably agree with you.

            But when viewed in the context of the Phillie’s next best alternative, which are almost all sub-zero types, he is immensely important.

          • notsureifsrs 3 years ago

            important, but not so important that his temporary absence jeopardizes anything. they’d be better with him, but they’ll have him by the time it will really matter (playoffs)

          • You’re original point was that Howard was not a very important player.  Now you are acknowledging that he is important to the Phillies since they do not have a viable replacement.

            My work here is done…

          • notsureifsrs 3 years ago

            important, but not very important. these positions are compatible

            he’s probably slightly better than his replacements and being slightly better is important in the playoffs. that’s the difference between important and unimportant. he is the former

            if he were a very good player, he would be very important. but he’s not, so he’s not

          • Muggi 3 years ago

             Saying their other options are negative-value players is not accurate.

            Even if Thome never plays 1st, Mayberry was a 2.5 WAR player last season (in LESS than 300AB’s) and has shown he can handle 1st defensively.

          • Mayberry played very well last year, but you can’t expect him to do that well moving forward. His OPS last season was as high or higher than anything he’d done in the minors.

            Also, a lot of his positional value would be sapped at 1B. You’re probably looking at a league-average player. Which is good, but isn’t game-changing.


          • Muggi 3 years ago

             I have hopes for Mayberry, if you look at the changes he’s made to his stance the uptick in production COULD be him just “figuring it out” finally.

            Regardless, even if he’s league-average as you mentioned I think my point is valid. The guy said the Phils replacements were sub-zero WAR players (he’s since modified his post to read “almost all sub-zero”) and I do not think that’s a fair assessment. Even at 2 WAR (average), Mayberry alone will help fill the gap somewhat.

          •  At 2 WAR, Mayberry will more than fill Howard’s gap.


      • Max Power 3 years ago

        The Phillies defense is up amongst the best in baseball.  Offensively, they were in the middle of the league.  But thanks.

      •  yup those gloves sure have been among the worst in the league for several years.
         just need some more small ball

    • nm344 3 years ago

      Such a surprising comment from a rival team’s fan.  

    • Muggi 3 years ago

       With the support they get from their fanbase, it’s pretty hard to ever say their window is closing.

      Also, for all the “they can’t afford X, can’t afford X if Y” etc etc stuff that’s been floating lately…if you look at their payroll, they can easily afford Hamels, Victorino, AND Pence should they wish to resign all three. They’re $11m under the luxury for this season (currently $167m payroll, 178m threshold) and nearly $68m under the threshold next season. Yes they have some other guys to deal with besides those three but it doesn’t really change anything – the Phils are fine.

    • Phillies_Aces35 3 years ago

      No it’s not.

  2. meanguygary 3 years ago

    The ‘right price’ on Joe Blanton. 
    Hmmm….Would a peanut butter & jam sammich get it done?

    • nm344 3 years ago

      Better than half of you team’s rotation.  What does that make them? Used bubble-gum?

  3. I am still not sold on the idea that carrying  a player like Jim Thome on a 25 man roster, in the National League, makes much sense. 

    • notsureifsrs 3 years ago

      better hitter than howard the last two years. better baserunner too. is he going to be that much worse than howard’s -10 defense?

      • If he can not play the field, at all, which we do not know, at all, right now than it is a waste of a roster spot for an NL team. 

        • Muggi 3 years ago

          Right, because no other NL team carries a left-handed big-thumper pinch hitter that sucks in the field.

        • j6takish 3 years ago

          This is a team that used a roster spot on Matt Stairs for a year and a half. There are way less useful players on the Phillies roster. Pinch hitting for your pitcher with Jim Thome is a lot better than using someone like Mayberry or Nix.

        • Jay Sanchez 3 years ago

           Right, because Ross Gload was an immense help with his hip problems.

          Thome can play a few games at first, if need be, but for pinch hitting and clubhouse presence, I’ll take him over Gload any day of the week.

    • Jay Sanchez 3 years ago

       Thome is much more useful than our previous pinch hitter and also has great presence in the clubhouse. Manuel is set at ease as well.

  4. Harryhood280 3 years ago

    Teams that sell out every game, are #2 in merchandise sales, have impending colossal tv deals, and can afford to run a 170-180 million dollar payroll don’t have closing windows.

    • I just got off the phone with the Chicago Cubs, they told me to say “hello….”

      • bobbybaseball 3 years ago

        Except the cubs don’t want to spend like a drunken sailor. They want to build from within. Ricketts isn’t going to ever have a $170M payroll.

        • Now you are changing the arguement. 

          The Cubs are a team with strong ticket sales, a big time TV deal, and they sell a lot of swag.  They also have not been to the post season since 2008, and will trade Alfonso Soriano for .15 on the $1 right now so that they can begin rebuilding.

          I would say that somewhere along the line, the window of Reicketts blue-print either closed, or fell out of the wall completely.  Amaro is not that good to prevent himself from having the same happen here in Philadelphia.

          • BitLocker 3 years ago

            Phillies window started in 2007 and were a playoff team since. The cubs were basically either a under .500 team or made it into the playoffs in a off shoot. The former Cubs GM basically just gave out 7 year bloated contracts to guys who should have never gotten a 5+ contract to begin with. At least with the contracts of Amaro his are only 3-5 years. So even when the players start to waver and aren’t worth the contract the contract is either close to over or already over and don’t weigh down the Phillies.

          • Ryan Howard says hello to his new contract after weighing down the team with his performance the past two seasons…


      • bflaff 3 years ago

        Did the Cubs also tell you they never had a window to close, so there’s no comparison? 

  5. bobbybaseball 3 years ago

    the the Phillies have a short window – Lee & Holliday in their 30s and Howard was such an awful signing. You never know about the status of their 2nd baseman…

    • stl_cards16 3 years ago

      When did the Phillies get Holliday?  I hope the Cardinals got something decent out of him…..

    • Phillies_Aces35 3 years ago

      It’s HALLADAY… why do people not understand this…?

  6. tomymogo 3 years ago

    younger is the definition of better. Over 32 is old thereby diminishing skills. Qualls is awful, Thome is too old to be in an NL team, I like Ty but truth is he is pass his prime, but he is still a useful player

  7. There is no more surefire way on this Earth (outside of Iran and Isreal) to start a flame war than by having the balls to state that Ryan Howard is a good baseball player. Poor-to-average baseball players don’t average 40/120 every year and help lead a team to 5 consectuive postseasons.

    RBI, while not the be all end all, are certainly a pretty good indication that a guy is fairly good at helping his team win. A lot. Which the Phillies do. You know people are desperate to discredit him by pointing out his baserunning. But the very next time we lose a game because Howard gets caught stealing I’ll jump right on that bandwagon.

    • No one’s saying Howard isn’t a good hitter, although we’ll have to see how he rebounds from his injury at the age of 32.

      Problem is that most first basemen are good hitters, and Howard isn’t anywhere near $25MM (AAV if they decline option…it’s $23MM if they don’t) good.

      Baserunning is much more than stealing bases. It’s going from first to third on a single, it’s being able to tag up on a fly ball, etc. These considerations are much more important than stolen bases. They affect the number of runs the team is able to score every time he’s on the basepaths. Over the course of the season, it adds up quite a bit.

      He can’t field, he can’t run the bases, and he plays the easiest defensive position short of the DH. That kills his value.


  8. Jesse 3 years ago

    Astros should snatch Blanton if they can and lock him up for a few years. He knows the Al west clubs and Astros will be adjusting to those stadiums in ’13.

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