Tag: phillies (page 1 of 367)

Cuban Defector Rusney Castillo Will Have a One-On-One Workout for the Phillies

Right-handed hitter, outfielder, and Cuban defector Rusney Castillo worked out for a collection of people representing 28 teams in Miami on Saturday. The 27-year-old is said to be pretty much major league ready, and the Phillies are going to bring him in for a workout in private. According to Jesse Sanchez:

“Castillo will participate in a private workout for the Phillies on Tuesday and the Red Sox on Friday, according to industry sources. The Yankees have also shown serious interest in the 27-year-old.

These tryouts come a few days after the 5-foot-9, 200-pound right-handed hitter ran the 60-yard dash, participated in live batting practice, threw from the outfield, and fielded grounders at shortstop in front of representatives from 28 of 30 teams at the University of Miami.”

Sanchez continues, saying Castillo is “known for his speed and considered a line-drive hitter with power” who would “likely start the season in the Minor Leagues once he signs, but there’s a belief that he could be in the big leagues by the end of the season and compete for a starting job in Spring Training.” Which means, in the Phillies’ system, he’d be the best player on the field his second day in town.

SB Nation also points out that “Castillo spent five years in Cuba as a professional, which means teams aren’t limited to the normal international spending limits on prospects,” and that is just about the most terrifying thing I can even imagine right now.

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The Phillies Have Released Tony Gwynn Jr.

Photo Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Photo Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

After notching only 16 hits and 15 walks in 119 plate appearances (for a line of .161/.281/.204), the Phillies have announced that they’ve released Tony Gwynn Jr. Let’s just hope that come Thursday, Gwynn’s name isn’t the most recent one listed on the transaction report.

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Missing Piece

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Proud of that headline.

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Maybe the Phillies Can Get Some of These Korean Robot Fans

The Phillies, in the coming months (and likely years) are going to have a hard time filling Citizens Bank Park. However, the solution to that issue could come from a Korean Major League team with the opposite problem.

The Hanwha Eagles, a team in the the Korea Professional Baseball League who are “famed for losing” yet still have an abundant and loyal fanbase, recently installed cheering robots in the stands to stand-in for fans who cannot make the games. It looks like there are only two rows of robot fans, so the Phillies might need to place a bulk order.

The fans watching on their phone or computer who can’t make the game can put their face on one of the robots, and send messages of support for the team. A whole video on them is above, but here are my favorite parts:

I really hope someone asked this out loud, and in a room where no one laughed and everyone immediately started working on it:

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The robots take place in the “slow wave,” which is like the wave but slower, so it’s 100% worse:

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And one of these things is not like the others:

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They’d have to put some filters on those robots if they brought them here. Otherwise, it’d just be bare man-asses with messages of “Papelbon Blows” broadcasting to an empty ballpark.

Overall though, I like the way the Koreans look at baseball.

h/t reader Jason

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Cole Hamels Was Better Than This Team Deserves Yesterday

Lost in the shuffle of mid-week, mid-day baseball, exasperation at the organization, and booing other pitchers, Cole Hamels threw a total gem yesterday. You can see that stat above, and that translates to 77.6% of Cole’s 116 pitches being called strikes, but that doesn’t even really do it justice. His velocity was on point and consistent, and he used breaking pitches to his advantage. His release point was consistent. He threw 26 changeups for strikes, 22 of which where swung-and-missed at. He did all of this with — by comparison — a fairly small strike zone. The most impressive look at his day, however, is below:

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What does that really show? Well, for one Hamels was dealing, and when a pitcher is just feeling it and throwing, it’s a beautiful thing to see (even in graph form). It also shows that while other players and the organization are throwing their hands up in the air and letting out a collective “whatever,” Hamels is still going out there, doing his thing. Though maybe he just didn’t get the memo that he’s unlikely to be traded.

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Lenny Dykstra is Radio Gold

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Lenny Dykstra was on 97.5 again yesterday, for a shorter in-studio appearance than the one he made a few months ago [link to that]. He joined Mike Missanelli, Harry Mayes, Nick Kayal, Jon Marks, Sean Brace, Jason Myrtetus and whomever else was in there as part of 97.5′s All-StarThursday– a day-long marathon with all hosts on the air at once.

You can listen to the entire interview here – and I recommend you do – but here’s Dykstra talking about his friendship with Charlie Sheen, how he can tell if someone’s perverted (and why Mike Miss is a missionary guy), and sleds:

Interesting observation from Nails, a guy who was once accused of forcing his housekeeper to blow him on Saturdays. Lenny needs his own show. [I have this idea for a podcast network that includes shows from Lenny Dykstra, Allen Iverson and Roy Halladay. Tell me you wouldn't listen to that.]

The fun will continue today. Charles Barkley will be in-studio with Missanelli from 2-6.

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Oh, The Phillies: Howard Trade, Papelbon Boo, Hamels Strong

This isn’t meant to become a running series, but some mornings you just can’t help but shake your head like a 1950s sitcom child and say, oh, the Phillies.

Ryan Howard

The Phillies could trade Ryan Howard (if they pay, like, 90% of his remaining salary). This leak brought to you by Jon Heyman and his deadline Tweet deals (from $70!):

The Phillies are said by rival executives to be working hard to find a suitor for Ryan Howard, presumably in the American League.

Word from competing execs is that Philly would be willing to eat much or most of the $70 million remaining on his deal. On Wednesday, news leaked that the Phillies have considered whether just to cut Howard after the year. It’s hard to see how that could help his trade value, which has to be severely limited as it is.

Howard — hitting .224 with a below-par .682 OPS — has $70 million to go through 2016, so any acquiring team would only be expected to pay a small portion of the overall deal, which includes a $10-million buyout for 2017. While he has 15 home runs and 60 RBI, everyone understands he is badly underperforming, including him.

However, two GMs said they believed he should have a value of up to $5 million a year to an AL team looking for a DH, though those particular execs were not offering to take him, as they don’t currently have the need. He has an extensive no-trade provision which covers 20 teams, but with the Phillies making clear that they’d prefer he’d be gone, he’d seem to have incentive to accept a trade, if they could find one.

No idea what “small portion” means, but if it’s anything under $40k, I’d consider bringing on the Big Piece as a part-time columnist. I could offer the Phils #socialmedia skillz in return. Or Jim.

 

Papelbon

Boo:

Papelbon was booed when he took the mound on Thursday afternoon at Citizens Bank Park. His recent comments on the Trade Deadline are well known by Phillies fans. But Papelbon is happy to play the role of villain if he sticks around in Philadelphia.

“No, I enjoy it,” Papelbon said when asked if the boos bother him. “I just think that it’s fun. It just brings a little bit of energy and life to the park, and gives me a little bit of something to look forward to do every day … You’ve got to be able to take it if you want to dish it out, right? I think that goes both ways for me. It’s kind of like a big brother little brother relationship, I would say.”

And which brother is Papelbon?

“Big brother.”

You know who likes to be booed by the home crowd? Sociopaths.

 

Hamels Strong

Cole Hamels is all growed up:

“I think it’s just the workouts that I’ve been able to do in spring training and throughout the season that are starting to kick in,” Hamels said. “Just changing my routine enough where everything stays loose but strong.”

Right from the get-go, it was clear that Hamels was pitching with some edge, some urgency, some anger. He blew a 95-mph fastball by the Giants’ best player, Buster Posey, to end the top of the first inning, and got Hunter Pence on another 95-mph heater in the fifth. Hamels struck out Pence, a Phillie tormenter, three times.

Afterward, Hamels admitted to being in a bit of a bad mood when he took the mound. He’d seen the Giants beat the Phillies three straight nights and wanted to write a different story.

“It’s just about going out there and being able to compete and having a little extra adrenaline and anger, trying to prove a point,” he said. “Just trying to go out and let it happen. I think losing the past three games, you just want to go out there and win.

 

Lee

Not a ton of respect for Cliff,  salary notwithstanding. Jayson Stark, who rounded up all the Phillies trade rumors:

Looks more and more like an August deal waiting to happen. And he will get through waivers. “Nobody is claiming that guy,” laughed one exec. The Phillies are motivated to move him. But with at least $45 million left on his contract and his recent two-month stay on the disabled list, teams are wary of giving up real prospects, even if the Phillies pay down his deal. “He scares me,” said one exec. “Maybe if he was going to be a free agent,” said another, “I could see taking a chance. But not with that contract.”

Oh, the Phillies.

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Now Ryan Howard Hates Ryne Sandberg

I blame Ruben Amaro for this. It’s his fault that we have to see first Jimmy Rollins and now Ryan Howard passive aggressively refer to their Hall of Fame manager as a pronoun:

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This on the heels of Sandberg benching Howard two straight days and a report that Howard could be released after the seasonHey, uh, Mr. Montgomery, if you want to release me with $60 million and a lazy river in Florida, I’d be OK with that.

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