Philadelphia Phillies, Part 3

A preview of the 2008 season

By Peter Schiller

2008 Needs:

If the Phillies want to improve upon their first round appearance in the 2007 playoffs, they have to strengthen their pitching & they need to replace or re-sign Rowand in CF. I would have said that putting speedy Michael Bourn in CF might have been sufficient, but he was recently part of a 5 player deal that sent Bourn, along with RP Geoff Geary & minor leaguer Mike Costanzo (3B) to the Houston Astros for Closer Brad Lidge & infielder (mainly SS) Eric Bruntlett. This deal will put Myers back into the starting rotation with Hamels, Moyer & Eaton . Myers will become the # 2 starter between Hamels & Moyer. They still need 1 more starter to really strengthen their rotation from what they had in 2007.

For a breakdown of the trade see the comparison below between Bourn & Bruntlett along with the stats on Geary & Lidge. Costanzo did hit 27 homers in the minors in 2007, but he is a few years away from being in the pros unless he either excels or is rushed to the Show.

NAME POS G AB R HR RBI AVG SB VORP
Michael Bourn lf 87 119 29 1 6 0.277 18 6
NAME POS G AB R HR RBI AVG SB VORP
Eric Bruntlett ss 68 138 16 0 14 0.246 6 -1.4

Closer Brad Lidge

LIDGE: IN THE LAST FOUR SEASONS

  2004-2005 2006-2007
SV/Blown SV 71-8 51-14
ERA 2.07 4.37
Opp. BA 0.196 0.229
K per 9 14.2 12.2

As for my take on this deal, I don’t like it from a Phillies standpoint, but if you’re an Astros fan, you’ve gotta like your new GM if he can get deals like this one done. I think the Phillies should have been more patient & should have traded anyone except Bourn who would be good in a transition year in CF (and cheap!). Lidge no longer impresses me. Now if trading away Bourn wasn’t bad enough, they throw in Costanzo also? Why? They are in need of a 3B or am I missing something here? This deal just doesn’t make sense to me in the long run. For 2008, maybe it works, but I don’t usually like playing for just one season when considering trades.

What are your thoughts on this deal? Add a comment below! You know you want to…

The Phillies should consider signing one of the following free agent starting pitchers: Josh Fogg, Livan Hernandez, or Odalis Perez. If this can’t be done, they should look to trade for one.

As for their bullpen woes, Lidge, if he can be the Lidge of 2005 & prior, will bolster their pen from the back down, but some insurance help would be nice. They might try to sign one or two of the following free agent RP’s to either set up Lidge or as a back up in case Lidge continues to worsen: closer Francisco Cordero, or other RPs like Jeremy Affeldt, Mike Timlin and maybe Scott Williamson.

Back to their CF situation, keeping Bourn would have kept costs down, so maybe they are looking to get Torii Hunter, but he would be more costly than keeping Rowand who seems to have become a fan favorite for the Phillies. Other possible options, would be signing one of the following free agent centerfielders: Corey Patterson, Andruw Jones (who might be more of a bargain after his lesser 2007 performance), or Mike Cameron (who is going to be serving a 25 game suspension to start the 2008 season). Personally, I would avoid Cameron, but he might hit for more power in Citizen’s Bank Park than he did out in pitcher friendly San Diego. As far as possible trades go, I’d look for a nice trading partner like maybe the Red Sox for Coco Crisp. Maybe they can take a chance on Tampa’s Rocco Baldelli & see if he can stay healthy.

Either way, they should be in the running for the top spot in the NL East again in 2008!

2 Comments

  1. Pat Gillick

    November 11, 2007 at 1:53 am

    Charlie told me about this site. OK sabergenius, you don’t like our trade? What else you got?

    I’m supposed to spend maybe $10 million more next year. I can ask management for extra if we find something special.

    So the Twins wanted Howard AND Utley for Santana. Really. That was BEFORE we talked to Santana’s agent about the new contract. C’mon.

    Marianno thinks he’s worth $25 million per. C’mon. Maybe the Red Sox will sign him.

    Speaking of Red Sox, Lowell isn’t returning my phone calls lately.

    So genius, what did you want us to do about starting pitching and the bullpen? You run your computer and tell me. I’m all ears.

    As for Timlin, we’ll see. Andruw Jones, Coco Crisp — are you serious?

    I’ll be watching,

    Pat.

  2. Peter

    November 11, 2007 at 2:29 am

    Hi Tommy, Chris, Charlie & Pat,

    I appreciate all of your comments, but couldn’t help but notice that they all were coming from the same IP address. I don’t care which name you go by as long as you keep reading & commenting on my blog. I like the banter! 🙂 By the way, you spelled Mariano wrong! 🙂

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