Monday, November 28, 2011

Cyber Monday looking for deals on Phillies gear!

Great Deals on Phillies items for Cyber Monday

You think you've seen everything in Phillies gear and related items in the local mall? Think again because it's Cyber Monday and it's one of the biggest days that people shop online for goodies for the holidays.

 Check out the link above to go to some of the great deals and you'll be glad that you did!


Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving 2011


It’s Thanksgiving 2011, I was going to award some holiday ‘Turkey’ awards to a couple players for their play in this past season’s Division Series, they know who they are and I think the reader does as well. But today, I’ll remember a happier time back in 2008 when the Phils won it all.

Now it’s been 3 seasons since the Phillies won the World Series in 2008. We’ve seen a lot of change from that team that won it all, the Phillies team isn’t what it was back then and today I think it’s worth a look back at that team and what was going on back then.

The Phils of 2008 had the 12th highest Opening Day payroll of all MLB teams to start off the season at $98M. In the past 3 years since winning the WS, the Phillies payroll has skyrocketed. In fact, last year the Phillies were second only to the Yankees with an incredible $172M reported payroll from the Associated Press reports. The Yankees were just over that at $201M.

This year the St. Louis Cardinals won it all, they were 11th on the list of top payroll teams in 2011. Their opponent, the Texas Rangers were 13th at $92M on the list for this past season. Is their a correlation between a team having players that aren’t all making millions of dollars and winning championships?

Here's a video podcast that I did back in 2008 just after the Phillies won it all, don't you think Pat Burrell should have accepted that offer from Phillies to extend his contract if in fact that ever happened? Much debate is still circling about if the Phillies ever offered him anything after 2008. He would have remained a Phillie and possibly took his stock higher but opted to leave and never regained the superstar status he had with the Phillies. He did go onto the Tampa Rays though and made $16M for 2 seasons in 2009 and 2010. Not a bad couple years of 'work'.

arbitration offered to 3 phillies for 2012

Jimmy Rollins, Ryan Madson, and Raul Ibanez were all just offered arbitration which means that these players could agree to have their salary arbitrated for a period of one year and if they accept that, they may remain with the Phillies. If they leave the team, the Phillies would be getting some compensation in the form of improved draft pick positions.

season ticket and regular ticket prices to rise in 2012

Season tickets prices have gone up again, as will regular season ticket prices. In fact, since 2004 when Citizens Bank Park opened, the ticket prices have nearly doubled in price in all areas. More on this in the coming months of the off-season. The team is doing well now and no one seems to mind about the price increase now, but if the bubble bursts and the Phillies turn into a mediocre team down the road, we could see a situation where the 76ers are at now. For now though, it’s Thanksgiving, a time of holiday celebration and good cheer.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Off-season still brings team together for charity

The off-season is stilling bringing teammates together as different star players show up and support their teammates' charities. This video has Jimmy Rollins charity featured, while Ryan Howard looks like he is healing up well on this video at least in spirit.

Friday, November 18, 2011

MLB set to expand another ‘Wild Card’ into the playoffs, should we be happy?






The MLB is about to embark on something that hasn’t been done in years. That is change the format of how teams make the playoffs in the game of baseball. This past season in 2011 was one of the most interesting in years, despite that, the MLB is leaning towards expanding the playoffs now and that will bring a lot of change to how things happen towards playoff time. It’s going to be two ‘Wild Card’ teams per league and just one game to decide which one goes further into the playoffs.


I am not of fan of this extra team that is going to be added to the mix come playoff time. To me, it waters down the whole game more, and adds yet another ‘joker’ to the deck so to speak. It allows a team that probably shouldn’t be in the playoffs to get in by just luck and that changes everything. It’s kind of like toying with the number of balls in a lottery draw, add more and it changes everything.


Some people are in favor of it, teams that haven’t been in the playoffs for years, suddenly are seeing the possibility of an open door to get into the playoff scene. Of course this is more about making more money than anything else, and I think it’s the game that is the loser, the game of baseball itself. The fans of those teams that get in of course will be there, and that is what the MLB is counting on.


NHL Hockey and NBA Basketball have playoff scenes like the one that the MLB is proposing, a bunch of teams make the playoffs and it becomes more like a second season than a championship. Of course the tickets cost more money and the season gets dragged on more than it should.


To compound this, the Houston Astros going to the AL? I don’t like that one either, it’s almost like changing the game itself. Al those memories we have of the NL Houston Astros, will now all just be that. Change is inevitable though, and the baseball gods seem powerless to stop it.


Will the fans like it? Baseball purists will probably not like it, but in this day of ‘the more dollars, the better’ type of mentality, nothing else seems to matter to the league and the people who run it. Time will tell if it’s good or bad after it’s done.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Phillies Talk Podcast - Sunday Night Live at 8:45 PM tonight

It's the Phillies Talk Podcast for this week, it's Sunday night chat time for the longest running independent how on the internet that covers the Philadelphia Phillies. Join Rich Baxter and Jim Mulry as we talk Phillies this offseason. We encourage your calls into the show!

Ryan Howard's injury to end 2011 explained on video

Just after the injury to Ryan Howard, this video was aired on MyFox Philly, it explained what happened with
Ryan Howard just after he hit the final pitch of the season of 2011 with the Phillies.

For those of us without a good understanding of the specific nature of the video, here is an explanation from a doctor that says Howard may never be the same after this injury, even when he heals.

We're a long way from Spring Training still, but wait happens with Ryan Howard after that, we'll just have to wait and see to find out.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Phillies not settling with status quo with Papelbon signing

The Phillies aren't ready to settle down and rollover just yet. Three full seasons after the 2008 World Series victory, and an appearance in 2009 in the WS loss to the NY Yankees, the Phillies are still full throttle after the top free agents in a quest to remain in the top of the NL hunt.

The Phils have shuffled some cards so far this offseason and have landed one of the top closers in the game of baseball. Jonathan Papelbon is an all-star pitcher who pitched 63 innings for the Red Sox last year, and will probably log that many innings for the Phillies as a closer in the 2012 season. The amount of Papelbon's contract has some questioning whether any relief pitcher is worth that kind of money. The deal is said to be $12.5M per year for 4 years. Doing the math, it does seem like a lot of money for a pitcher who is throwing a limited amount of innings each year.

Papelbon's numbers in Boston:
Year Age Tm W L W-L% ERA G SV IP HR SO
2003 22 BOS-min 1 2 .333 6.34 13 0 32.2 2 36 LOW · NYPL
2004 23 BOS-min 12 7 .632 2.64 24 0 129.2 6 153 SAR · FLOR
2005 24 BOS-min 6 4 .600 2.59 21 1 114.2 11 110 PRT,PAW · EL,IL
2005 24 BOS 3 1 .750 2.65 17 0 34.0 4 34
2006 25 BOS 4 2 .667 0.92 59 35 68.1 3 75
2007 26 BOS 1 3 .250 1.85 59 37 58.1 5 84
2008 27 BOS 5 4 .556 2.34 67 41 69.1 4 77
2009 28 BOS 1 1 .500 1.85 66 38 68.0 5 76
2010 29 BOS 5 7 .417 3.90 65 37 67.0 7 76
2011 30 BOS 4 1 .800 2.94 63 31 64.1 3 87
7 Seasons 23 19 .548 2.33 396 219 429.1 31 509
162 Game Avg. 4 3 .548 2.33 67 37 73 5 87
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 11/12/2011.

The Ryan Madson issue is one that deserves a second look. What happened to that announced almost finished deal ? Did Ryan and his agent seek more money? Or possibly the Phillies top brass didn't think that Madson had the stuff that they were looking for to be the permanent Phillies closer? Madson pitched 60.2 innings for the Phillies last year, he only gave up 2 HR and his ERA was 2.37 on the season. He had almost identical numbers with Papelbon. However, Madson was not exclusively the closer on this team until the playoffs in 2011.

Here is Madson's numbers as a Phillies pitcher:
Year Age Tm W L W-L% ERA G GS IP HR SO
1998 17 PHI-min 3 3 .500 4.83 12 10 54.0 5 52 MTV · APPY
1999 18 PHI-min 5 5 .500 4.72 15 15 87.2 5 75 BAT · NYPL
2000 19 PHI-min 14 5 .737 2.59 21 21 135.2 5 123 KAN · SALL
2001 20 PHI-min 9 9 .500 3.90 22 21 117.2 4 101 CLW · FLOR
2002 21 PHI-min 16 4 .800 3.20 26 26 171.1 11 132 REA · EL
2003 22 PHI-min 12 8 .600 3.60 28 28 165.0 9 147 SWB,CLW · IL,FLOR
2003 22 PHI 0 0 0.00 1 0 2.0 0 0
2004 23 PHI-min 0 0 4.50 2 1 2.0 1 1 REA · EL
2004 23 PHI 9 3 .750 2.34 52 1 77.0 6 55
2005 24 PHI 6 5 .545 4.14 78 0 87.0 11 79
2006 25 PHI 11 9 .550 5.69 50 17 134.1 20 99
2007 26 PHI-min 0 0 0.00 2 0 3.0 0 4 REA · EL
2007 26 PHI 2 2 .500 3.05 38 0 56.0 5 43
2008 27 PHI 4 2 .667 3.05 76 0 82.2 6 67
2009 28 PHI 5 5 .500 3.26 79 0 77.1 7 78
2010 29 PHI-min 0 1 .000 3.18 5 0 5.2 1 6 CLW,REA,LHV · FLOR,EL,IL
2010 29 PHI 6 2 .750 2.55 55 0 53.0 4 64
2011 30 PHI-min 0 0 0.00 1 1 1.0 0 1 CLW · FLOR
2011 30 PHI 4 2 .667 2.37 62 0 60.2 2 62
9 Seasons 47 30 .610 3.59 491 18 630.0 61 547
162 Game Avg. 6 4 .610 3.59 66 2 84 8 73
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 11/12/2011.

With a decision reached, and the Phillies content with their signing of Papelbon, they can now turn their attention towards the shortstop position and Jimmy Rollins. Will they or won't they? Remember, a shortstop isn't primarily the one who is supposed to 'carry' a team. Rollins has done that and more with the Phillies over the years that he's been on the team. Is he a solid defensive shortstop? Yes, no doubt about it. Will he be the same as a younger player at that position? Probably not, but Rolllins has the experience and is in the prime of his career right now. He could be a lifetime player with the Phillies, he's 32 now and another decent contract and Jimmy will be one of only a few players to stay with the Phillies his whole career.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Papelbon adds to Madson Madness

Mid-afternoon reports from CSNPhilly and others say that Jonathan Papelbon is close to being a Phillie. The announcement of Madson accepting a 4 year deal may be off now with this latest announcement.

Madson had been considered the pitcher that would assume the role of closer with Brad Lidge now out of the spot for the Phillies for good. Does this mean that Madson could be on his way to Boston?

As of 4pm, Papelbon has been plastered on the official website, so this signing appears to be a deal.

More on this mega-deal as details are announced!

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Madson deal all but done, Cuddyer in the wings

  Can Rollins be next to re-sign with the Phils?

Ryan Madson will probably remain a Phillie with the announcement that a deal is all but done. Mad Dog assumes the role of 'closer' after earlier in the season in 2011, this role was shared among a few other pitchers as well as Ryan Madson.

The deal is said to be 4 years, at $44 million with an option for a 5th year. Isn't this where Brad Lidge seemed to take a turn? Right after the World Series victory in 2008 Lidge was never the same pitcher. Injury may have added to the mix in his case, but even when he was healthy, Lidge just never regained the form he displayed in 2008. Lidge signed a 3 year extension in 2008 for $37.5 M that covered him through last season.

The Madson deal is said to be heading to the owner's desk for approval. This in itself is a bit odd, as usually this is already approved before hand, and it may signal that Phillies ownership is not all that pleased with the deal that is proposed. We may hear an official announcement this afternoon, we'll see.

In other news, Micheal Cuddyer made a visit to the Phillies in the past couple days. Cuddyer is just coming off a $24 Million dollar deal that paid him for 3 seasons with the Twins. Wow, an above average but not superstar player like Cuddyer is earning $8M per season? Is baseball heading down the path that basketball is already at? Not that I don't like Cuddyer or anything but he's not a superstar and he's pulling down millions. That is the subject of another story though, and for now it seems Cuddyer is looking perhaps to land in Philly, I can't imagine for more than what he's earned in the past 3 years though.

Sunday, November 06, 2011

'Phillies Talk' webcast live tonight at 8 pm

Join us for 'Phillies Talk' tonight at 8 pm Eastern for more talk about the Phillies and the offseason as we wait until next year in 2012 for yet another baseball season to start.

 It's Rich Baxter and Jim Mulry talking Phillies baseball, you can even chime in on the conversation, we'd welcome call-ins to the show!