Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Review & Preview - Vol. 6

So Taguchi
Review: Taguchi started the last game of the season and went 3-5. But if you forget that game, he was hitless in September. He was also hitless in August. He was also hitless in the playoffs, too. For the majority of the season, So Taguchi was hitless. But he hung around and got himself a ring. Good for So.

Memorable Moment: July 22nd, Shea Stadium, Phils down 5-3, bases loaded, one out, So Taguchi at the plate...Taguchi looks sick at the first few pitches, falling behind in the count...until he closes his eyes, throws his bat at a pitch and hits a two-run double to right. So ends So Tachuchi's contribution to the 2009 Philiies.

Preview: He's gone.
Clay Condrey
Review: Condrey did not have good numbers in 2008. His ERA was an acceptable 3.56, but his WHIP (1.51) and BAA (.302) were substandard. But he is the middle innings guy, so as long as he goes out there and doesn't completely suck, no one complains.

Memorable Moment: In a game on August 26th against the Mets, Condrey relieved Jamie Moyer after the 3rd inning with the Phils down 6-0. The teams traded runs in the fourth so when Condrey came to plate in the bottom of the 5th, the score was a daunting 7-1. Undeterred, Condrey smacked a double down the left field line off of Pedro Martinez. It was the spark the Phils needed. Rollins homered, Utley walked, and Howard homered. Suddenly the game was a manageable 7-5. After 13 innings, the Phils pulled out an 8-7 win.

Preview: Condrey is eligible for salary arbitration, so he'll be a cheap option to work the middle innings. The Phils may try to upgrade the pen, but they'll likely still keep Condrey around. There isn't much sense in spending a bunch of money on a mop-up man.
Chris Coste
Review: After the first two months of the season, Coste was hitting well over .300. But then things took a turn for the worse. Coste never hit better than .267 in any remaining month and hit well below .200 in the combined months of July and September.

In the end, Coste accumulated the most at-bats (274) in a season in this three year career but had his lowest average (.263).

Coste barely played in September and that trend carried over into the postseason. He got a pinch single in a loss to the Dodgers and went 0-4 as a DH in Game 1 of the World Series. He didn't play in the last four games of the World Series.

Memorable Moment: In the game I described above where Clay Condrey started the Phillies comeback against the Mets, Coste finished it with a bases loaded single to the centerfield wall in the 13th inning.

Preview: Chris Coste is a solid player and his rise to the majors is nothing short of remarkable. In three years with the Phils, he continually made positive contributions to the team and has endeared himself to all Phillies fans. However, his days in Philly are numbered. Coste will be 36 at the start of spring training and his numbers, while not horrible, are trending down.

Lou Marson, if he's not the catcher of the future, is at least the backup catcher of the future. And given that Marson was up with the big club in September, the future could be now. There is still the possibility that the Phils break camp with Ruiz/Coste and Marson heads to Lehigh Valley, but since Ruiz is so firmly settled as the number one, I think Marson takes Coste's spot and Chris is released or traded.



GM-Carson said...

Ryan Howard finished 2nd in the MVP balloting, while Brad Lidge and Chase Utley also received votes.

GM-Carson said...

Just read that you can add J-Mike to the Phils outfield list. I always like Jason Michaels, but he surely isn't the answer in the outfield.

GM-Carson said...

Happy 47th birthday to Jamie Moyer. Also, Tom Gordon turns 41 today. This is also the aniversary of the Bobby Abreu from Tampa Bay to Phils for Kevin Stocker deal...silly Devil Rays.

Bob D said...

Happy Birthday Jamie Moyer

Michaels would be a good fit to replace the bat of So Taguchi. But I like Ordonez to be acquired first for a mid level prospect and/or an extra player the Phils may have. Kapler would also be a good pickup since he has a higher BA for the 5th OF spot.

GM-Carson said...

Mark my words, Gabe Kapler will never again approach the batting average he posted last season.

GM-Carson said...

Gabe Kapler will be 33 years old next season, and he batted .301 last year with the bulk of that coming early in the season. His career batting average is .273, but that was mostly due to success earlier in his career. If he could be had for 1 year 2-3 million then I'd be cool with it, but I doubt he comes that cheap and I doubt he comes anywhere close to the .838 OPS he posted last season.

furiousBall said...

i'm intrigued to see what the Phils do this offseason, hopefully Jamie is back

Tony said...

I'm a Coste apologist, so take that for what it's worth.

I think Marson spends next season in AAA. He's young enough that he benefits more from playing every day than from experiencing the Majors. His path is 2010, not 2009.

I suspect we'll find that the collision at the plate in mid-season affected him more than we could guess. A healthy Coste in Spring Training will probably trend back to '07 numbers. That would be enough.

That's not to say I think Coste is the backup next year. I think he should be, but I'm fairly certain Amaro will be kicking the tires on a number of potential backups. Whoever is available in late January will probably get a minor league deal and an invite.

Burbot77 said...

Save Chris Coste!

I recognize that he had a few down months...

But as So Taguchi proved last year, we can win a world series with basically an honorary figurehead "contributing" from the last roster spot.

GM-Carson said...

I like Chris Coste, hell if you're anything close to being a decent human being you like the man, but he's no spring chicken. He's not going to improve as he gets older and likely only has a couple productive seasons left. With that said, I'm completely comfortable with him being the backup heading into '09.

Bob D said...

Amaro will likely kick the tires on a trade that would send 1 or either Ruiz, Coste, or Jaramillo for another player or being part of a trade.
Despite the bullpen being 6 deep right now, the Phils are interested in several bullpen arms as a setup man from the right side. I imagine that other teams are inquiring to trade for some one from the Phils pen. Durbin, Condrey, and Madson maybe used aswell in a trade.
The depth in the bullpen and at catcher could be used to acquire a starter or an outfeilder. They could even trade Kendrick as long as another starter is acquired.

Bob D said...

Yeah, by 2010 Marson and or Jaramillo maybe ready to play in the majors. Travis D'Anard is another who could fast track if he does not get blocked. He may even be better than Marson, so he is a name to watch this year to see how far he can go.

GM-Carson said...

Being realistic, Condrey has very little trade value, if any at all. It's doubtful the Phils would trade Ruiz because they highly value his ability to handle the pitching staff. I could see Coste dealt, but for nothing more than a minor league "prospect". Madson would draw HUGE interest if put on the trade block, but I'd hate to see the Phils do that unless it means landing someone like Magglio Ordonez or someone similar.

Burbot77 said...

I hope that Coste is a bat off the bench...Marson would be a great offensive upgrade behind the plate.

Bob D said...

The Phils will carry on 2 catchers out of: Ruiz, Coste, Marson, and Jaramillo. They will not use Coste as a utility gut as he can only play 3B and 1B with catcher and Dobbs does the same along with LF (not catcher). The only way I see Marson or Jaramillo breaking with the team is if there is a trade or injury.

SirAlden said...

Jason Donald, IF (Philadelphia Phillies)

Mesa Solar Sox
A shortstop by trade, this third-round pick out of the University of Arizona in 2006 has been working on his third-base skills in the AFL, as the World Champion Phillies already have a strong double-play combination in the big leagues. Donald batted .307 with 14 home runs and 54 RBIs at Double-A Reading this season and represented the United States in the Summer Olympics. Though the Stenson nomination isn't necessarily about level of play, he is also hitting .422 with four homers and 16 RBIs, along with a .747 slugging percentage, for Mesa in the fall campaign.

SirAlden said...

Milton Bradley-DH- Rangers

Peter Gammons of ESPN reports that signing Milton Bradley "is the Blue Jays' priority" this offseason.

Signing Bradley would keep the Blue Jays from handing top prospect Travis Snider a starting job along with Vernon Wells, Alex Rios and Adam Lind. Bradley is said to be seeking a multi-year deal.

GM-Carson said...

Bradley is likely to DH, his body can't take a regular full 9 innings day in day out.