Saturday, December 23, 2006

The Weekender

This past week has been a busy one for Pat Gillick and the Phillies. While most people were out and about doing some last minute Christmas shopping, Patty G was tinkering with the roster. We've seen two new faces come in (Jayson Werth and Rod Barajas) and saw one old face leave (Jeff Conine). I could discuss each one of these moves at length, but I'm sure most of you have already been through that in your own head or on another site. Therefore, I'll give a brief synopsis of how I feel about each player.

I'm not really for or against the Jayson Werth acquisition. He essentially replaces Jeff Conine, who is 40, and Werth is 27, so he is younger. Conine is a proven bench player, and Werth has only proven to be unhealthy the past season and a half, hence no games played. If healthy Werth will produce better than Conine, as he has more speed and power and can play all 3 outfield positions. Gillick has recently mentioned that Werth can catch as well, although he hasn't done so since the minors.

I may be indifferent towards the Werth signing, but I'm pissed about the Rod Barajas signing. The addition of Barajas makes no sense to me. Gillick wants a proven veteran catcher on the team in case Carlos Ruiz and Chris Coste can't handle the job. Maybe I'm totally overestimating the abilities of Ruiz, but I think he can be an All-Star catcher in the near future, and we all know what Coste is capable of. I made the mistake before by casting Coste off as merely a feel-good story, and he shut me up right-quick. We now have Ruiz and Barajas guaranteed catching duties with Werth possibly stepping into the picture, so where does that leave Coste? I guess Gillick isn't a fan of Disney. Anyway, Barajas isn't horrible, I just felt that catching wasn't a situation that needed addressed with a 2.5 million dollar free agent contract...we could have gotten Sal Fasano back on a minor league deal (just kidding).

Bye-bye Jeff Conine. I respect the man and was ready to welcome him back to the bench. Conine feels he deserves more playing time than just pinch-hitting, so Gillick granted him his wish and sent him packing. He ended up being the odd man out and therefore was traded to the Red for two "prospects", but they're basically two organizational fillers. The Phils bench now only needs a left-handed hitter, preferably one that can play the outfield. I've recently read the names of Trot Nixon, Darin Erstad, Ricky Ledee, and Jeromy Burnitz. I prefer Nixon because he could platoon with Werth and then we could trade Rowand for what this team really needs...bullpen help.

Ok, now that I've bored you with my opinions of the latest Gillick moves, I figured I'd bring back the Saturday poll...special holiday edition.

What is your favorite thing about Christmas?
Eggnog and Cookies
Time Off
Presents free polls



dane said...

i disagree with your ascertain that werth will produce more if healthy. I think werth is a marginal player at best. i'm also starting to worry the Phillies brass is casting Coste as a one year wonder. They seem to be phasing him out. I'd be pissed if Coste wasn't with the team when the season started.

GM-Carson said...

Dane- I'll be pissed if Coste isn't on the 25 man roster when they head north out of spring training too. Coste may not bat .300+ again, but he's not going to suck as bad as a Roberson, Sandoval, or Nunez either.

I'm trying to think positively with Werth. He's very athletic, and that's why I think he can produce more than Conine. But I did say I would have liked Conine back as a bench player.


Bob D said...

I see this team as unbalanced still. There are spots for 13 postion players (12 if they carry an extra pitcher). They will add a lefthanded OF (Roberson, Bourn, or playerX) and possibly another middle IF (Sandoval or playerY). With that Coste would be the odd man out. We all seem to want Coste back at the big leagues this next year, so he needs at least a legitimate shot at doing so. One alternative to this is sign a lefthanded OF and trade one of the righthanded OF on the team while adding a middle IF who can also play OF. But currently I see a bench of almost all righties. This may not be good.

If they can't trade Lieber for fair value then there is no problem with keeping him and letting him and Eaton battle for the 5th spot. The bullpen needs at the least 1 arm and preferably 2 arms. There is alot of potential with some of the relievers they currently have including Madson. I feel he is underestimated way too much and could have a rebound year this year. Geary and Smith look solid and Gordon should do well. beyond them its a toss up. Castro is a sleeper but I think he will be headed for the minors as a starter or more seasoning. Sergovia falls into that catagory as a possible bullpen canidate if needed, but likely headed to the minors.

So basically I expect Gillick to make 2 or possibly 3 roster moves with position players before spring training.

I wish everyone a Merry Christmas.

GM-Carson said...

Danny Sandoval sucks, he can't even hit in the winter league he's playing in. Roberson sucks too. Bourn needs more minor league time. There are still players on the free agent market that could be signed for bench spots- Miguel Cairo, Aaron Boone, Darin Erstad, Jeromy Burnitz, Steve Finley, Cliff Floyd, Alexis Gomez, Jose Hernandez, Todd Hollandsworth, Shea Hillenbrand, Aubrey Huff, Damon Hollins, Ricky Ledee, John Mabry, David Newhan, Trot Nixon, Shannon Stewart, Jose Vizcaino, Bernie Williams, Craig Wilson, Preston Wilson, and Eric Young.

Now I'm not trying to imply the Phils should rush out and sign a handful of players from that list, but some of them are worth thinking about like Nixon, Huff, and possibly a few more.


BloodStripes said...

I needed that run-down of trades. I've been away working my arse off for truck loads of cash. Good shit.

I thought Coste was a handy IF as well as a catcher. Why can't he be an IF backup? His calling of games and handlig of pitchers last season was excellent wasn't it? What the fuck is going on here? Coste deserves a spot on the 25 man roster going on last year. He produced. What more can the man do?

BenJah said...

i totally agree with the coste assessment, as he should definately be the backup catcher AND 3rdbaseman AND first baseman. i'm fine with werth replacing conine....whatever.

what i dont get is why we dont have more pitching!!!

also, i think the righty/lefty thing is WAY overrated. what matters is HOW they hit, now what side they do it from. in 2003 the marlins and the cubs squared off in the NLCS and both teams had 6 or 7 right hand hitting staters.

TrekMedic251 said...

Coste is likely going to be the go-toguy on the bench and in pinch-hiting situations. he wasn't all that great behind the plate last year, in retrospect. But I, too, want him on the 25-man come April.

But before April comes December 25th, so Merry Christmas, guys!

das411 said...

Merry xmas everybody!

....just don't let it be that godawful Bernie Williams we bring in. Ugh.

GM-Carson said...

Das411- I read that Bernie Williams will only return to baseball if he's offered a job by the Yanks. Otherwise it's Palm Spring for him for the foreseeable future. In all honesty, I think he'd be a good fit for our 4th/5th outfield spot, but that's besides the points.

Hope everyone has an excellent Christmas. Mine if off to a decent start, even had a family verbal fight which really means it's the holidays.


GM-Carson said... Do you have a favorite Christmas song?

Rowand: "12 Days of Christmas," because the whole family sings it. Everybody takes a different part and has to act it out. You can't just sing it or you get in trouble and every year you have a different verse.

*My family did this yesterday, and it was a blast!