Tuesday, June 19, 2007

End Of An Era

Tonight was the end of the Pat Burrell Era of Phillies baseball.

Burrell has been struggling lately, as his average has dropped from .344 in late April to .211. Burrell has 2 hits in June, equal to that of Adam Eaton. And while he is walking a lot (.382 OBP) he has only 8 homeruns and his slugging .387 (just barely edging out noted slugger and offensive jugernaut Rod Barajas.)

Tonight Burrell was not in the lineup for the second game in a row, and has been benched frequently in the last 2 weeks. A similar situation took place at the end of 2006, but it was the way it happened in the last two games that separates this year from last, and makes 2007 the end of the Pat Burrell Era.

First, on Sunday, down 3 runs with 2 men on in the 7th innning against the Tigers, Manuel pinch hit Wes Helms (.248-1-17) to face lefty Bobby Seay, instead of Pat the Bat. Then yesterday, in an American League ballpark against a lefthanded pitcher, Manuel put the same light-hitting Helms at first and used Howard as the DH instead of Burrell.

Not only is Burrell seeing less playing time, he has become the next-to-last hitting option on the team (would still hit before Bourn.) If he isn't used in these situations, when will be ever hit again? He won't break out of a slump on the bench but I get the feeling that the Phils may be thinking that April was the exception and this is the rule. Less likely a slump, more likely a routine. Unfortunately, they may be right too. This very well could be the end of an era...

Corey

29 comments:

das411 said...

I thought the Abreu + Lidle trade last season was the end of the Pat Burrell (= Ed Wade) era...?

Should be interesting to see how the team reacts to the kick in the balls Shoppach and the Indians gave them tonight. Here's hoping Kendrick can hold his own against a team that actually has a good offense...

GM-Carson said...

I've been trying to stay somewhat positive lately because the team over the past month and a half has been playing decent baseball, but I can contain my anger no longer.

Ryan Howard- your 15 homeruns are nice, but make some f'n contact and hit a single or double or even a sacrifice fly once in a while instead of whiffing every 3 plate appearance.

Pat Burrell- what the hell happened to you man?!

Abe Nunez- should not be starting, the dude is a weak grounder waiting to happen and he always hacks at the first pitch no matter how lousy the offering is.

Wes Helms- go take some steroids.

Gas-Can Geary- quit igniting the fire my man. His June era is 11.12, and overall era 5.06.

Hamels- I love ya, and you're a great pitcher, but stop serving up the longball (17) to the opposition. Maybe he should pitch to a Phillie in the homerun competition this year at the All-Star break instead of Ramon Hernandez.

I'm done ranting for the time being, or course until after we get blown out again tonight.

GreggyD said...

Personally I am glad that this could be the end of the Pat Burrell era. I have been tired of waiting for him to come around consistently.

As for the Phils, just a horrendous game last night and I really have nothing to say about it. Just terrible.

GM-Carson said...

It just goes to show you that the Phils are way in over their heads when it comes to quality competition (Diamondbacks, Tigers, Indians). Sure they swept the banged up and slumping Mets and Braves, but they were without key players in those series.

I've defended Burrell for too long, I've given up all hope on him. He physically looks like he should murder the ball, but in the end looks aren't everything just like my momma said.

TJ said...

Now why would you go and give me blue balls with a headline and picture like that? We've been predicting the end of Pat Burrell's tenure for the past two years now, and yet it never ever happens. Being benched like this is nothing new, and he'll see more playing time again as soon as Helms strains an ass muscle while diving in vain for a ball down the third base line.

We can't cut him, and we can't trade him. We're stuck with him until 2008, for better or for worse. Until I see him in a different uniform or until I see him on a golf course in July, the Pat Burrell Era is still in full effect.

goDuke said...

Lt. Dan from Forrest Gump would be more productive right now then Pat the Bat. You're not my boy Burrell. Go home to your fiance. We have to stick Dobbs out there in left. Werth stinks.

GM-Carson said...

Lt. Dan would roll circles around Burrell, plus I heard he has a gun for an arm.

goDuke said...

True. Lt. Dan you got no legs, but you got a cannon for an arm. Just saw this article over on the CP...

http://www.courierpostonline.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070619/SPORTS01/706190378

Its never a good sign when a guy is saying how happy he was he ended up not going to your team. The Phils are seeming shadier and shadier. Its time to just start over... so who's our new team gonna be? I'll hop on whatever bandwagon you guys decide to start.

Bob D said...

Yes Borowski had some bad things to say about management and the leak of his physical. Forget his 20 saves we don't need them!

Howard has struck out alot lately but in the last 2 days has made more contact with 3 flys caught at the wall.

Geary is a good pitcher in a swoon, however he does have something like 11 unearned run this year which if they were earned his ERA would be much higher than 5.06.

On most teams Burrell, Helms, and Nunez would be only on the team till they found or have a better player. What would Stienbenner do with them????????

GM-Carson said...

Nunez, Barajas, and Nunez are wastes of money. Gillick is a moron for throwing cash and multiple years at these players. All around the Majors I see successful role players being had for marginal salaries...why can't we do that?

I guess Dobbs fits that mold, but he's an exception to the rule when it comes to the Phils evaluating talent, or lack-there-of.

Jacobin said...

Burrell obviously has the physical skills and natural talent to be a good player, so it must be that he's failing on the mental side of things. Is is a lack of desire to do well? Could it be that he cannot motivate himself to put in the requisite time and effort to be good? Is he just easily distracted and f^@&!ng lazy?

In any event, he sucks and is giving Freddy Garcia a run for the money as the biggest salary thief on the team this year.

das411 said...

Um...Carson?

"Nunez, Barajas, and Nunez are wastes of money."

Nunez especially if the team is paying him twice!

das411 said...

...dumbass ;)

Frank said...

The Pat the Bat era will not be over as long as there as they guy is owed eight digits.

And he is through another year after this one.

Pat is beyond me. He was able to survive for awhile as a sort of thinking-out-of-the-box Moneyball player- conserve your outs, get on base. His OBP is unreal- near .400 the past three years- which is crazy good. Add some homeruns- and you could kinda get by.

But his slider speed bat is now even slower.

You can't even platoon him; he doesn't hit LHP at all.

But I wonder- since he does get on 38% of the time- why not bat him 8th. Seriously. No needs the number 8 hitter to hit much to contribute, particularly if he gets on 40% to clear the pitchers spot?

GM-Carson said...

Das411- that should have read "Nunez, Barajas, and Burrell" are wastes of money.

Frank- I like your idea of batting Burrell 8th, move Ruiz/Barajas up to 7th and then Nunez/Dobbs at 6th. Shit, there's the problem, you can't ever expect to win with Nunez in a lineup batting 6th. He wouldn't hit 6th in a Single A lineup let alone a MLB lineup. Dammit our 3rd basemen suck!

Jacobin said...

So we spend $13 million this year for an eight-hole hitter, who (although having a strong arm from left field) has less fielding range than a starting pitcher (evidenced by having Adam Eaton pinch running for him). Thank you Ed Wade, thank you for giving Burrell such a huge contract with a no-trade clause.

McD said...

I truly wish it was the end of the Pat Burrell era, but he will continue to torment us until his contract expires after the 2008 season. Where was Ed Wade's brain when he made that deal?

Burrell will go down as one of the biggest busts in Phillies' history. That is impressive when you consider this franchise is zeroing in on loss #10,000.

I don't think anybody has an answer for this team. The Phillies organization is a house of cards right now. Sure it is staying up for the moment, but it is only a matter of time until a strong breeze destroys it.

I have said it before, and I will say it again. New ownership is needed. Nothing will change so long as Monty and his mysterious junta of owners are in charge.

michael said...

Ohka signed with the Cards today, eh oh well..

Bob D said...

Carson, don't worry about Das411 - You are correct to type in Nunez Nunez twice - since he is twice as useless useless.:~}

When our team gets to loss #9,999 maybe Manuel will start Barajas, Nunez, Burrell, Werth, and have Garcia, Condrey, and Rosario pitch.

I wonder who will have the distinction of throwing out the first pitch? Any Nominations??

Jacobin said...

For the 10,000th loss the opening pitches should be thrown out by the cheap-ass mystery men of an ownership group that has been running this team like a discount coin-operated laundrymat for more than 25 years. That way all the fans could get a good look at them and give them the ovation they so richly deserve.

BenJah said...

it should be said, for the record, that when burrell WAS good, he was very good. in fact, he was the man for a short time, and based on his skills and supposed potential, the contract he got seemed ok. the only problem was the no trade clause.

i thought the problem for burrell was that we signed thome after burrell's career year, and then he tried to BE thome. remember they considered moving burrell to 1st (which would have been awesome) and then signing vlad guerrero (which would have been genius).

on a related, but different topic: remember this past offseason when everyone was pissed that howard didnt get a massive 'burrell-esque' contract?? well, that worked out! imagine if we were paying him burrell-dollars right now.

Jacobin said...

Another adequate outing from the young Kyle Kendrick (not great, but not bad either).

Another outing where Uncle Charlie leaves Madson in just long enough to give up some runs (this was the recurring theme early this season).

Another game where Jose Mesa comes in to douse the flames... WAIT!?! Did a blind squirrel just find a nut by getting hit by the falling oak tree in the forest that didn't make a sound? Joe frigg'n Table staunched the 8th-inning bleeding... I guess we have to apply the "Jose Mesa Pain Infliction Formula," which results in it being more insulting and painful for the Indian fans to watch this guy stop their rally than it would have been for Philly fans to watch him serve up a fat 430' line drive.

How sad is it that Burrell raises his average from .211 to .212 by going 1-4? Is the silver lining to Geary's recent shitty pitching that he shaved the dead rodent-looking thing off his chin? If the fans boo Alfonseca mercilessly, can he give them the middle finger? How sweet is it to get a win on a night when the Mets lose?

das411 said...

*when the Mets AND BRAVES lose, Jacobin!

BloodStripes said...

Very sweet indeed. A good win for the Phils. Kendrick doing a good job.

Nice rip Carson. That got Howrad into gear. even Burrell doubled. Keep ripping 'em mate.

GM-Carson said...

My wife and I are watching the game last night, and right after Burrell doubles to score 2 in the 1st inning she looks at me and says, "You should talk trash about every player, because they always seem to have a good game following it". She's right, I rip someone and then the next day a homerun, pinch-hit single, or a scoreless inning worked. On the flip side, when I start praising the guys they turn around and have a shit game...go figure.

michael said...

yeah you should just talk trash on every player, maybe we'll go undefeated the rest of the way haha.

as far as howard goes i'm not worried at all about reduced production. the last 2 years it was the 2nd half of the season where he was killing the ball, which i'd rather have someone like that going late into the season than someone like a-rod who dominates the first two months and then chokes at playoff time.

GM-Carson said...

Michael, personally I'd like a balanced player who contributes consistently every month, but if given the choice between first half monster or second half killer, I'll take the latter. Howard does look to heat up as the temperatures do, so if he can get back to batting around .280 and supplying mammoth power, then I'm cool with him. *Not that I'm against him now, I just expected more.

michael said...

i didn't think you were. i understand what your saying and i totally agree but unfortunately this looks like the type of player he is..he'll be streaky the first few months of the season and catch fire for the last 3..could be worse, he could be pat burrell.

GM-Carson said...

Michael- Ryan Howard is a tremendous talent and I believe his career norm will fall in the .280 range, and that's good for a power hitter who'll put up 4-50 homeruns a season for the next handful of years. I hope you're right about the 2nd half heat up.