Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Preview & Review - Vol. 8

Ryan Howard
Review: Did you know that Ryan Howard struck out a lot last season? Sure, he hit 48 homers and drove in like 300 runs or so, but we didn't have a "watch" for those stats...

Memorable Moment: With the Phils holding a one run lead in Game 4 of the World Series, Howard crushed a three run shot to left giving the Phils a commanding four run lead.

Preview: Ryan Howard will strike out many times in 2009. He will also hit 40+ homers and drive in well over 100 runs. There are some question marks hovering over Howard, however. How much will he earn in '09? Will the Phils lock him up long term this offseason? And does he rent his skank out for parties?
Jayson Werth
Review: Werth had an outstanding season for the Fightins. Werth took over for the hurting Victorino in the early part of the season and for the struggling Jenkins in the later part of the season. Along the way, he compiled excellent numbers: .273-24-67 and 20 steals. Sixteen of those homers came against lefthanded pitching, a stat that lead the league.

Memorable Moment: On May 16th at home against Toronto, Werth went 3-4, slamming three homeruns and knocking in eight. That performance narrowly beat out his memorable performance in World Series Game 2...

Of course, his mom was pretty memorable too...

Preview: Werth played in 130 games and got to the plate over 400 times in 2008. Geoff Jenkins, if healthy, will get some time in a rightfield platoon, but Werth should still see most of the starts. (Even though he's only a career .250 hitter against righties...) Also, given the uncertainty of leftfield and the tenuous injury status of the cannonball that plays center, Werth will get plenty of opportunities to duplicate or exceed his 2008 numbers.
Ryan Madson
Review: Madson ended the year with a 4-2 record, 3.05 ERA, and 1.23 WHIP. He was 1-0 with a 2.13 ERA in the playoffs, too. Yet for the majority of the season, I thought Madson sucked. For a while, it seemed that every runner he inherited, scored. I don't have stats for that, though, and he only blew 2 saves during the regular season. In fact, I don't have any stats that say that he sucked. You'll just have to trust me, I guess...

Memorable Moment: He pitched a scoreless 8th in Game 1 of the World Series, setting the Rays down in order. For a set-up man, it doesn't get much better than that. But I don't remember that, I remember this:

Preview: Madson's agent, Scott Boras, compared him to a circa 1996 version of Mariano Rivera. [Pause, so everyone can chuckle...] In 1996, Rivera had a 0.99 WHIP. The following year he saved 43 games and had an ERA under 2. Ryan Madson is not Mariano Rivera. Maybe Saul Rivera or Ben Rivera, but not Mariano Rivera. Expect more of the same from Madson in '09 - an ERA over 3 & plenty of holds...and me only pointing out the negatives.



GM-Carson said...

I'll give Boras credit, he really does try to get top dollar for his clients. I've heard he writes mini-books for his big free agents that describes why the player should get the money they're asking for. Madson was good last season, but comparing him to Mariano Rivera is just foolish. I too, like Corey, fail to see the good of Madson most of the time because I'm so used to him giving up big runs and looking like a little lost puppy dog while doing so. However, I do recognize him for being a crucial member of the bullpen.

GM-Carson said...

From Phillies.com-
What's taking Moyer so long?
Jamie Moyer wants to return, and the Phillies want him back, so what's taking so long? At this point, it appears the two sides can't coordinate schedules. One person familiar with the team's thinking believes it's a matter of time for an announcement, and the 46-year-old may sign a multiyear deal. -- Ken Mandel

Bob D said...

Werth should play even more next year as he will likely cover both LF and RF alot, and CF a few times. I would not be surprised if he approached the 30 HR mark. If Howard could bat 280+ he would get himself a huge raise. He batted 250 last year with 199 SO, that means he batted 372 when he made contact.

Madson had a 5something ERA thru the first month last year then he turned it on. We may see him have a good year, but its good to have Romero, Eyre, and Durbin to help with the setup position in case Madson has a slow start.

GM-Carson said...

If Howard would have batted .280 last year, he would have been the MVP, because that would have meant 50+ homeruns and 150+ rbi.

Werth playing fulltime scares me because I think he'll strike out nearly as much Howard. He has a long ugly swing that is prone to missing. I like his production, but against righties he can struggle for long periods of time.

furiousBall said...

if i had my way, I'd make one of those old kerbanger toys out of a really big string and on one end would be scott boras, the other end, drew rosenhaus.

GM-Carson said...

I loved those things...in middle school.

furiousBall said...

for anyone who doesn't know what carson and i are talking about...


Bob D said...

Kerbangers, nice. I'll pick Boras and Eaton on them.

Utley's surgery went well from what I read and he is still on the 4 to 6 month time table. That is the begining of April to the begining of June. Add another month to get back to normal.

NE Phillies Phan said...

Moyer will be back...its probably just a matter of figuering out how much of his contract is guaranteed and how much is incentive based. Its a holiday week too so that's slowing things down. I guarantee he's resigned before the Winter Meetings in Dec.

That's a great photo of Madson...priceless.

On Werth, you have to think he'd get better the more he sees of righties. That's what you'd think anyway. He just looks plain lost out there against RHP most of the time. He either walks or strikeouts...either way he makes the pitcher work at least. He'll be a full time player next year almost certainly.

NE Phillies Phan said...

On Uts...they shaved down his labrum and a bony lesion on his right hip. From what I have been able to Google, bony lesions are very common issues and its no big deal to have one on you hip. Most of the time surgery isn't even necessary. They probably took care of it because they were already in there.

Dan said...

Best of luck to Utley in his recovery!

Boras is an idiot. He does a good job for his clients, but this is like saying that a criminal does a good job stealing money from others.

Now, that's just my way of saying that he's a bad guy and a money-grubbing jerk, but the idiot part is this: comparing Madson to Mo Rivera is the height of insanity. Madson is a good reliever, and was a great reliever in the playoffs, but Mo Rivera essentially redefined the 9th inning by inventing his own pitch. Madson is not exactly writing new volumes of history by throwing a good fastball and a very good changeup.

In general, I have a million thoughts on Scott Boras and free agency in general, but I'll sum them up here: I think he is the single-worst person for Major League Baseball since Marvin Miller (the Players' Union guy who basically got free agency for the players).

I'll expand just a little more with a bit of history: until Marvin Miller and free agency, players were the "property" of their teams: e.g., if the Yankees drafted you, you would play for the Yanks for essentially any salary they dictated. If you didn't like the salary, then tough nuts for you - you didn't play, unless they traded you to another team who would give you some other salary.

Free agency was a backlash against this - finally, the players had the power - unfortunately, it was too much power. It was essentially a swing of the pendulum too far in favor of the players.

Major League Baseball would be a vastly purer, greater game if the owners instituted a salary cap, like every other major sport. An alternate strategy would be to eliminate free agency and essentially pay every single player by arbitration - e.g., "pay for performance", which is the way that virtually every other industry in the entire world pays its employees.

Ok, rant over. Scott Boras sucks.

GM-Carson said...

The Brewers signed the Great Rock n Roll RJ Swindle.