Wednesday, December 11, 2019

New Phillies Talk Podcast - Phillies Hot Stove 2019 Talk with Matt Veasey

It's the Hot Stove show for December, the Phillies signed Didi Gregorious and we got Zack Wheeler from the Mets. Are the Phils done? Time will tell, but this team is starting to shape up. We're talking a bit of Joe Giradi history with the Yankees, what will this 2020 team do?

Join Rich Baxter and Matt Veasey from @PhilliesBell on Twitter and the Ring The Bell Phillies Podcast on this edition of Phillies Talk Podcast ...

The Phils have some interesting series coming up in 2020 and we're talking about that, a March 26th Opening in Miami, what should be a nice weather day. Mike Trout is coming back to CBP and that should be interesting as well for July.

As we noted on this show, on Thursday, December 12th - all 81 home games will go on sale for the Phillies, (just for Thursday) so if you have a game you want to get tickets for you can do that on Thursday before they officially are all offered for sale in a couple weeks. 

Didi Gregorius signing may not be a great thing for the Phillies

The NY Market responds to the Didi signing, says Didi can do well at CBP

I hope this is one of the articles that you'll look back on and say I was wrong. The Phillies picked up Didi Gregorious for a year to play for the team. His year in 2019 wasn't good to say the least, he was a good part of the Yankees for a few years, but even they failed to offer him a qualifying offer to keep him. Why, you might wonder?

Tommy John surgery took Didi out near the end of the 2018 season, but his 2019 season was hardly a good rebound. Maybe he wasn't ready to return from the surgery, he did make a quick recovery, but he didn't perform on the par that was expected. The Yankees are usually good arbitrators of these things, why would the Phils want to take a chance on him? He was having a banner 2018 year for the Yankees until the surgery though, so that may be a reason the Phils are taking the chance.

Didi's real name is Mariekson Julius Gregorious, his projections for the 2020 season is 24 HR and 80 RBI. He is also reunited with Joe Girardi, but I am wondering if the Phillies needed to make this move, could've they gone and put this money into pitching and picked up a pitcher named Cole for that kind of money.

When you consider that Cesar Hernandez had a much better season than Didi did last year, it kind of makes you wonder about this signing by the Phillies. Hernandez was the Phillies 2nd baseman for several years, he had the most AB's last year for the Phils and had a BA .279 that was better than Bryce Harper's .260 and I feel was not appreciated as much as he should have been by the Phils.

Now, say Didi has a great year for the Phillies? He's a free agent and will probably be looking for a big contract. Will the Phillies even be able to sign him then? These are the questions that surround this signing, is it in the best interest of this Phillies team? Time will tell as we are at nearly 105 days until Opening Day.

Thursday, December 05, 2019

Phillies land Zack Wheeler, for a fairly steep price

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There was a serious doubt that the Mets would be able to sign all of the players still on the team last year. Zack Wheeler was deemed one that the Mets didn't keep in the fold, they did give him a qualifying offer of $17.8M for this season but it was declined by Wheeler to stay with the Mets. The Phillies signed him yesterday for 5 years and $118M - which is quite a lot for a pitcher with Wheeler's results so far. Yes, he is a good pitcher, but is he worth that much?

Last year, Wheeler was 11-8 for the Mets, with a 3.96 ERA, in 2018 he was 12-7 with a 3.31 ERA. Those numbers don't really jump out at you with a guy who will be making over $20 million a season to pitch for you. Wheeler did give the Mets a chance to equal the offer, they passed and now he's a Phillie.

The Mets offer was fairly generous, show us you can pitch very good or better for one more year for $17.8M, but Wheeler who is 29 could have thought that if he doesn't accept a bigger contract and did poorly, he wouldn't be getting a big contract at all if he had stayed with the Mets.

The Phillies passed on a chance to add Cole Hamels for 1 season at $18M, which was probably a big mistake. Why wouldn't you bring back the former MVP of the 2008 World Series for this Phillies team, if nothing else, fans would have had a really increased interest in his starts especially at home. This was a major failure of the Phillies offseason so far.

As reported by My Top Sportsbooks, The Phillies opened the 2019 season as NL East favorites at +225 after beefing up their batting order in free agency. Their divisional odds will reflect that and are likely to open in the +375 to +450 range, behind the Nats and Braves. That would accord with the current World Series futures, where Washington (+1400) and Atlanta (+1200) are shorter than Philly (+2200).

Monday, November 25, 2019

MLB Network to present Dave Parker in 'The Cobra at Twilight'

It's the 40th Anniversary of the World Series win for the Pittsburgh Pirates, and to honor this and one of the Pirate's star players, MLB Network has put together a Profile video on Dave Parker. Parker is interviewed along with other important people that were around Dave and observing from a distance.

The premiere takes place on December 12th at 8:00 PM Eastern:

November 25, 2019 – Following the 40th anniversary celebration of the 1979 World Series champion Pittsburgh Pirates, MLB Network today announced that one of the stars of the “We Are Family” Pirates lineup, Dave Parker, is the focus of the latest installment of the MLB Network Presents documentary series, titled The Cobra at Twilight. Premiering on Thursday, December 12 at 8:00 p.m. ET, the 90-minute film looks back on the life and 19-year MLB career of “The Cobra,” from 1978 NL MVP, seven-time All-Star and two-time World Series champion to his current battle with Parkinson’s disease. A trailer for the film can be viewed here.

MLB Network Presents: The Cobra at Twilight Profiles Dave Parker,
From 1978 NL MVP and Two-Time World Series Champion to Life with Parkinson’s Disease

90-Minute Documentary Features New Interviews with Parker,
Hall of Famers Dennis Eckersley, Tony La Russa and Barry Larkin,
Parker’s Former Teammates Eric Davis, Phil Garner, Gary Sheffield and Kent Tekulve,

Plus Tony Dungy and “Mean” Joe Greene

Saturday, November 09, 2019

Mike Schmidt honored at Louisville Slugger bat history museum

Last night in Louisville, ex-Phillies slugger and current broadcaster Mike Schmidt was honored at the Louisville Slugger museum:

The announcement:

Louisville, KY – November 1, 2019 – Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory will honor National Baseball Hall of Famer Mike Schmidt with its 2019 Living Legend Award on Friday, November 8th.

Schmidt was recognized during a special ceremony that kicks off the 15th Annual Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory Auction with Hunt Auctions, Inc. "I’m proud to be the recipient of this year’s Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory Living Legend Award," said Schmidt.

"Louisville Slugger is an iconic brand that is synonymous with baseball. It’s an honor for me to be recognized by the museum and be included among the award’s past honorees,” Schmidt added.
Schmidt used several Louisville Slugger models throughout his storied career. In the early part of his career (1974-78), he swung a 36-inch K75 model. From 1979-84, his preferred bat model was the K55; a 35-inch bat with natural finish. In total, Schmidt ordered 518 Louisville Slugger bats during his career.

Mike Schmidt Highlights:

Mike Schmidt played his entire 18-season career for the Philadelphia Phillies, was a twelve-time All-Star and a three-time winner of the National League Most Valuable Player award. Known for his combination of power hitting and strong defense, he hit 548 home runs and 1,595 runs batted in (RBIs), while earning the Gold Glove Award 10 times as a third baseman.

Success followed Schmidt in every phase of his career, starting in college when he led Ohio University to the College World Series in 1970. He was drafted by the Phillies the following year and by 1974 led the league in home runs. He went on to lead the National League in homers eight times during his career and his 48 home runs in 1980 set the Major League record for a third baseman, which he held for 27 years. Schmidt won six Silver Slugger Awards and was voted the National League’s MVP in 1980, 1981 and 1986.

With Schmidt leading the way, the Phillies won the National League pennants in 1980 and 1983. Philadelphia won the World Series in 1980 and Schmidt was selected as World Series MVP.
He retired from baseball in 1989 as a Philadelphia legend and is considered by many as the greatest third baseman in baseball history. His iconic number 20 was retired by the Phillies the next season. Schmidt was honored again by the Phillies in 2004 when the franchise unveiled a life-sized bronze statue outside the third-base gate at Citizens Bank Park.

“We are proud to include Mike Schmidt as part of the Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory family and honored to present him with the 2019 Living Legend Award,” said Anne Jewell, Vice President and Executive Director of Louisville Slugger
Museum & Factory. “One of the best to ever play the game, Schmidt is a true ambassador for the sport and a fan favorite.” Limited Edition Louisville Slugger Bat

To honor the Living Legend, Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory has produced an iconic two-toned maroon and powder-blue finished K55 model collector bat for this special occasion. The K55 is the same model Schmidt used at various times throughout his illustrious career. The expertly crafted collector bat will be autographed by Schmidt. The bat design includes his jersey number and career statistics.Only 100 signed bats are available. The cost is $299.99 per bat and includes two tickets to the invitation-only Living Legend celebration on Friday, November 8th. For more information or to purchase a bat, call 502-588-7286, email or visit

Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory Experience history-in-the-making as you stroll through the factory where the world-famous Louisville Slugger bats are created. Admission includes the newly renovated factory tour, engaging exhibits, historic memorabilia, and much more. At the museum store, guests can create a Louisville Slugger bat with their very own name on it, just like the pros.

Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory, located at 800 West Main Street, is open Monday – Saturday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., and Sundays 11a.m. – 5 p.m., with extended summer hours. Admission is $16 for adults, $15 for seniors (60+), $9 children (6-12), and free for children 5 and under. For more information, including holiday hours and extended summer hours, or call 502-588-7228, or find us on Facebook (@sluggermuseum), Twitter (@sluggermuseum), and
Instagram (@slugger_museum)

Monday, November 04, 2019

New For November - Phillies Talk Podcast

Getting the 'Hot Stove' on for winter and Awards Week!

Phillies Talk Podcast with Rich Baxter and Matt Veasey rolls into the offseason with a new Phillies manager, we talk about Joe Girardi and offer opinions on the selection. Bryce Harper has put his first season in on the Phillies, we talk about that. Who do the Phillies need on the mound along with Nola, Arrieta, and ??? - we talk about that and of course the exciting World Series win by the Nationals on this show.

Monday, October 28, 2019

Joe Girardi - Full Press conference - hired as Phillies manager October 28th 2019

The Phillies were looking for a new manager, after releasing Gabe Kapler, the Phils went out and got experience, Joe Girardi. Former Yankees and Marlins manager, and the manager who beat the Phillies in the 2009 World Series.

Girardi is well aware of the passion of Phillies fans, I think he understands the city and their thirst to win. 

Monday, September 30, 2019 countdown to the Phillies 2020 season

Bookmark the page and stop by often over the offseason to see how many days until we have Phillies baseball again - the season for 2020 opens early March 26, 2020 in Miami, then the team heads to New York for a three game series before opening at home in Philadelphia on April 2nd, 2020

First day of the Phillies off-season

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Is this the last time we see Gabe giving the starting lineup at home plate for the Phillies?

The only thing I am thinking about on the first day of the Phillies off-season is about the hype of the Phillies possibly making the playoffs during the past couple months, this team was no more on its way to the playoffs than the man in the moon, but thanks to a bunch of sites that gave the most outside chance for a team to still be in it, the Phils were being constantly mentioned as a team that 'still has a chance' to make it.

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Parker had a peculiar wind up, we haven't seen since the days of Kent Tekulve or Wayne Twitchell

The Phils may have had a really long shot of a chance to make it, almost like saying you have a chance to get struck by lightning, yes, I do think you have a greater chance of getting hit by lightning than the Phillies had to make the playoffs this year. That's the fallacy of sabermetrics in a nutshell, a number that is essentially meaningless but got a lot of attention by writers and the visual media.

What to do in the off-season? Word is that the Phils will announce the fate of manager, Gabe Kapler, and unless they have someone in the wings, the answer will be that Kapler will return as manager, because that is all that has been said by upper management. There has been a small faction of fans that want him fired but not a big public outcry. In fact, there was an article that says if Kapler is fired, it may not be his fault, but points at upper management as a more plausible reason. Some articles say Kapler is gone, but it's the team that lost the games, like it not.

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Kapler thanks Charlie for coming on board as hitting coach, it didn't seem to help Rhys at all though

The pitching staff was a mess, this team spent a ton of money on bullpen pitchers that hardly pitched. Millions of dollars in fact, money that should have went to a quality starter. You had 4 relievers that made millions, (a combined $36M) Neshek, Nicasio, Hunter, and Robertson - that were a near complete bust. The rest of the pitching staff except Arrieta (who made $25M last year for mediocre or less performance) and Nola at $4.5M were guys that weren't highly paid, Velasquez, Pivetta, Eickhoff, and Eflin ($4.4M combined for all). All moves orchestrated by upper management. The Phillies managed to survive on one of the weakest starting rotations in baseball.

There will be time to talk more about what went wrong with this team, will Kapler be returning next year. He stood in the dugout and thanked all the players after the last out yesterday and that was an appreciation that you don't see all that often in the dugout, especially since it may be the end of his career as Phillies manager as well.

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Joe Maddon is available will Phillies make a move?

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If I am Matt Klentak, I'm calling Joe Maddon's agent this afternoon

The games have hardly began on this Sunday when the official announcement was released, Joe Maddon and the Cubs have parted ways officially. It's been rumored for a long time, and now it's true, so the Phillies (and a lot of other teams) can now sit back and possibly make a move for a new manager.

Not that this season is all Gabe Kapler's blame, but he's had the Phillies job now for a couple seasons and nothing has come of it. Nothing bad toward Kapler, he's gone in and tried to do a good job with this group and last year's but just didn't come up with a half decent result. In fact, it's a failure this year. All Kap's blame? No, but someone else should now have a chance at turning this team around.

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It would be great to have Joe Maddon in Phillie pinstripes for 2020

Would Maddon even want to come to Philly with the current roster? He's the kind of manager that has turned teams around with less talent, will Maddon want to take time off to consider? We'll see as this opportunity for the Phillies is now there.