*Official Fire Gillick (and Amaro and Arbuckle too) Thread*

Postby traderdave » Thu May 31, 2007 1:15 pm

Tough to argue with anything in that article - the bullpen does suck, Helms and Barajas have been terrible (Helms a little less so) and Coste should be on the big team. Helms has been a huge negative surprise to me. I wasn't expecting A-Rod #s from him but to have zero HRs and only 14 RBI at this point is a bit shocking.
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Postby jemagee » Thu May 31, 2007 1:19 pm

Is it just my perception or has the fielding recently been particular bad in in 'key' situations...ifrom jimmy no less...or maybe it's just a cluster or maybe i'm just thinking it's worse than it is
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Postby Warszawa » Thu May 31, 2007 3:12 pm

jemagee wrote:Is it just my perception or has the fielding recently been particular bad in in 'key' situations...ifrom jimmy no less...or maybe it's just a cluster or maybe i'm just thinking it's worse than it is


Yeah, I think they call it the (David) Bellsies
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Postby smitty » Thu May 31, 2007 3:42 pm

traderdave wrote:Tough to argue with anything in that article - the bullpen does suck, Helms and Barajas have been terrible (Helms a little less so) and Coste should be on the big team. Helms has been a huge negative surprise to me. I wasn't expecting A-Rod #s from him but to have zero HRs and only 14 RBI at this point is a bit shocking.


I actually disagree with much of it. He compares apples to oranges (Coste's .803 OPS in the minors isn't THAT impressive and he loves him some small samples).

As I pointed out in my earlier post, the Phillies are close to a Sabremetric dream team in many ways and have been for years.

Helms has been terrible. One hot streak (a la Dellucci last year changes that pretty quick though). Barajas is most likely one of the better 2nd catchers in the league (addressed more fully in earlier post as well).

The bullpen sucks and the pitching overall hasn't been any good as usual. But really if you compare the past records of many of the Phillie relief pitchers to those of the rest of the league, they aren't all that bad. They are pitching really bad this season though. (Who is Chad Paronto and Tyler Yates and Joe Smith and Feliciano and Sele and Moylan and a bunch of other guys?).

The Phillies have been proven to have really high team ERAs year after year. It's not just CBP. Something is wrong organizationally I think. And Manuel, who had the same problem in Cleveland, may be a big part of it.

In fact, Gillick is following the Moneyball bullpen thing by getting a bunch of cheap young (or youngish) arms and hoping some of them work out for a year or two. That is again, a Sabremetric mantra.

One problem with the Phillies is their artificial salary cap that puts them in the middle of the pack payroll wise (man, that sentence comes right out of "THe Apartment" -- great movie by the way). Signing Barajas and Helms shouldn't prevent them from signing anyone else. That is aproblem with this team. Gillick might, and could be blamed for that and that is what the author should be saying in my view.

I thinlk he dances around issues and uses poor examples and reasoning and doesn't get at the real issues. Other than that, I don't find much to argue about either. :wink:
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Postby swishnicholson » Thu May 31, 2007 6:13 pm

The article reminds me of that old saying, with enemies like these, who needs friends. I'm no Gillick fan, but the choice of position players this year overall seems better than average. Sure Helms has been disappointing, but Nunez has stepped up surprisingly. Ruiz/ Barajas is hardly the envy of the league, but are reasonably solid. I should take the time to look it up, but off-hand I would guess that the Phillies' production at catcher and third base, both question marks going in, are somewhere in the middle of the pack for the NL. I think that's about all this team can ask for: to be above average at 1b, 2b, SS and LF, and around average at the other positions. If the Phillies do that, they'll have a pretty potent offense year round. If things work out OK,Helms will start to approach his historical averages about the time Nunez sinks to his.

The bench has been absolutely as good as I could have hoped. I think there's a lot of luck involved in that, particularly in the case of Dobbs (so it's nice to have Coste in the wings), but there had to be some sort of bad luck involved last year in the horror show antics of AGon, Nunez and company last year. In general , the Phillies seem a lot better at evaluating hitters than pitchers

The big failure as position players go is still the presence of two CF's and no RF, something that's been covered up so far this season by Rowand outperforming expectations.

But to criticize Gillick, or the team, without focusing on pitching is silly. It doesn't really matter whether he's done it the right way or the wrong way, the bullpen needed to be improved, and it hasn't been-nor is there really much evidence that the people they have in there should be pitching any better than they are. The starting pitching has shown signs of improvement, and should remain decent if healthy, but no one has really exceeded expectations while some have fallen short, and it hasn't done a very good job of going deep into games, exposing the continuing weaknesses of the pen.

The Phillies seem to lose a lot of frustrating games, but I haven't really figured out if they are any more frustrating than other teams-lacking in fundamentals or whatever-or whether it's just that I don't really care if other teams blow ballgames they should win. I probably don't want to know, because when each loss stops feeling like torture I'l know I just don't care as much any more, and that would be a shame (or an opening to a new life full of possibilities, but who wants that?)
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Postby Laexile » Thu May 31, 2007 7:05 pm

I should take the time to look it up, but off-hand I would guess that the Phillies' production at catcher and third base, both question marks going in, are somewhere in the middle of the pack for the NL

The Phillies are 8th at third base at .738 OPS. There are a lot of rotten teams at third, but there are four good ones. The 4th team has an OPS of .888. The Phils are closer to 16th than 4th.

The team is 5th at catcher at .726. The top four teams are between .770 and .828. So no one is real good and, as bad as the team's catchers look they are actually better than most.

There are two ways to look at this. 1) The Phils are inadequate at the positions. 2) So are everybody else. It's hard to be good, so it's no big deal.

The only position the team is below 8th is left field. They are 14th. It's hard to argue the Phillies' catchers and third basemen have been good, but they are adequate enough that the team is leading the league in runs. The Phillies really don't have a lot of money tied up in catcher or third. Combined the four players make half of what Burrell and Werth make combined.

I don't see either the Barajas or Helms acquisition as being good ones so far, but they aren't really hurting the team. He also acquired Werth and Dobbs. If they continue to come through, Gillick's overall investment on those four, around $6.5 million, will have good returns. Gillick didn't pay a lot and isn't getting a lot.

Gillick's big gamble is the $24 million investment in the three starting pitchers, Moyer, Garcia, Eaton, he signed.
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Postby swishnicholson » Thu May 31, 2007 8:17 pm

Surprising (to me anyway) fact: Phillies' relievers have thrown the second fewest innings in the NL (and so the starters have thrown the second most). So while it's true that it hurts the Phillies when starters don't go deep, because the bullpen sucks, they've been doing a better job of it than I thought.
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Postby cshort » Thu May 31, 2007 11:25 pm

The Inconsistentillies wrote:
dajafi wrote:Okay, I'm just going to come out and say it:

Things won't get better for the Phillies until Bill Giles dies.

Awful, I know. And I am NOT advocating or calling for his decline and demise, just following a logical progression of thought. Consider

1) This ownership group, led by Giles, inherited the best organization in sports in 1981. It took them really seven years to destroy it, and with the exception of one unsustainable fluke--'93, which of course they failed to understand wasn't sustainable--they stayed down for another dozen years.

2) When they began to reassemble a viable core of talent on the field, this same ownership group, and/or their executive proxies, made a series of terrible employment and managerial decisions (keeping Wade past his sell date, allowing Green and Bowa to push Scott Rolen out of town, hiring Manuel because he was Jim Thome's buddy, hiring Gillick because he's beaten the fluke '93 team) that, for six straight years, undermined that core enough to keep them out of the playoffs.

3) Worst of all, they seem to have learned nothing from any of this. The Phillies' organizational philosophy isn't noticably different today from what it was in, say, 1990.

4) Despite their astonishing record of failure, this ownership group has seen its original investment of, I think, $30 million appreciate by at least 10 times, probably 15.

5) Giles has said he won't sell the team while he's alive, despite the rumored potential interest from some of the less visible ("Teflonic") partners in doing so.

6) Unless he changes his mind, our pain as fans, the people who are really just along for the emotional ride, won't end until Giles is gone.

I acknowledge that this is a sick, dismal view. I wish it weren't so. But, short of a midnight visit from the Ghost of Branch Rickey to Giles, am I wrong?



This is the first chance I have had to read through this thread- and this is a great post. I might add that there is no reason for the owners to want to sell as long as people continue to fill the seats. The problems in this organization are at every level - but it starts with the people, in my opinion, who really don't care about winning championships just as long as they are making money.


Not sure if this was mentioned elsewhere on the site, but Eskin addressed the ownership today on his show. Couple of highlights:

1) Thome was promised by one of the owners when he was signed that if Bowa left, Charlie would be hired

2) When it got to that hiring, one of the owners (Middleton?) was vehemently against hiring Charlie. However, since Monty is in charge, he went ahead anyway

3) An owner sold his share awhile back. He was not permitted to sell it to the original buyer, as the other owners wouldn't approve it, so he had to sell it to someone that was acceptable to them

4) All of the owners have refused to personally guarantee any loan that the Phillies would need to take in the next off-season to significantly upgrade through free agency. In other words, it means the payroll stays in the $90-$100 million range (Phils made about $7 million last year)

5) Jimy Williams is the most likely successor if Charlie goes mid-season. Eskin seemed to think they'll keep Charlie as long as they can, since they don't want to pay Charlie and Jimy manager salaries

6) He also wouldn't be shocked if Williams is the manager next year. His personality fits with the ownership, and it's all about the owners having a comfortable feeling
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Postby dajafi » Fri Jun 01, 2007 1:07 am

It's tough to determine who's more worthy of hatred: Eskin or the owners. I guess the owners, because I can mostly ignore Eskin, and I feel fairly certain he's a miserable guy who suffers every day from his own excess bile. The owners, though, inflict their ineptitude on me... maybe it isn't that tough a call. But Eskin really is worm excrement.
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Postby pacino » Fri Jun 01, 2007 4:36 am

Giles is basically a very rich fan nowadays
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Postby mpmcgraw » Fri Jun 01, 2007 1:38 pm

Besides that he doesn't particularly care about winning or what is best for the Phillies he is exactly like a fan.
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Postby usctrojans31 » Sat Jun 02, 2007 11:26 pm

Germano another solid 6 innings.
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Postby dajafi » Tue Jun 05, 2007 12:29 am

Mike Radano on Gillick's future:

Personally, I think Gillick has been surprised at how this organization works and just where the farm system was upon his arrival before last season. He's moved on from situatins he didn't like before but always made the team a winner before he left.

The question is, does he believe he can turn this thing around. He's ceratinly a competitive sort and one would think at 69, this is one of his last stops and he'd like to go out on top. The Phillies have a good core of players but need to build around it.

Gillick has also faced a fair share of criticism for his offseason acquisitions the last two seasons. The bullpen has been a shambles and even the moves that have garnered some praise, have for the most part, worked against him.

This leads to an even more interesting situation. If Gillick does decide to walk and the Phillies don't make the playoffs putting the coaching staff of the unemployed line, does this management have the ability to hire the right group to fix the farm and big club simultaneaously?

Look, Gillick is a Hall of Fame GM. He has an eye for talent, even though his moves are easily questioned since coming to Philadelphia. Last year at the deadline, he wondered if the team could contend even through 2007 so maybe he knew what he had to overcome. There certainly has been an emphasis on replenishing the farm with a certain awareness of draft picks in this weeks draft.

Gillick could certainly being looking to a new opportunity but the biggest challenge remains here and wouldn't fixing this be the perfect end to his career in baseball.


It gets ever harder to see how this organization turns around unless and until the jerkass owners sell. And I'm not holding my breath on that one.
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Postby philliesphhan » Tue Jun 05, 2007 12:58 am

is the hamels filter amazing?

oh i see, perfect
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Postby BigEd76 » Tue Jun 05, 2007 10:09 am

Sielski again:

“What's there to say?” Manuel said. “We've got to improve. What the hell you want me to say?”

He sustains the brunt of the fans' anger during those long walks to the mound each game, but don't pin this travesty on Manuel. Don't. He didn't assemble this rotation, didn't trade for the dead-armed Garcia, didn't sign Eaton for three years at $24.5 million, didn't presume it would be a snap to trade Lieber. Yet he has to deal with the fallout of an off-season full of someone else's failures.
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Postby Grotewold » Tue Jun 05, 2007 10:13 am

I'm glad to see the spotlight shining on Gillick now. Heck, I'm even happy for once to listen to Cataldi.

I think he did an even worse job last year and would have been buried were it not for Howard and Hamels, especially, getting hot.
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Postby Wizlah » Tue Jun 05, 2007 10:20 am

This is where I start to lose patience. Reading reports like the sielski piece is like a game of pong back in the early 80s 'it's the manager' 'no it's the gm' 'it's the manager!' 'NO, IT'S THE GM'. Then every now and then someone comes up with 'IT'S THE OWNERS.'

I realise they must be as bored as we are blaming the same people but . . . feh. Whatever. Feckin' Useless Team. Why even bother getting worked up.
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Postby LoneStarPhan » Wed Jun 06, 2007 2:36 pm

I could care less who is at fault. All I care about is getting this mess turned around. There is no longer any excuse, get it done or move along and let someone else try. Coming close is not good enough. Playing well for half a season is not good enough. Nothing short of post season play this season is good enough. If they miss, I expect a new manager, new coaches, and a new GM. I know new owners is not going to happen.
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Postby steven snell » Wed Jun 06, 2007 3:08 pm

Im curious, if a manager is fired mid-season and one the coaches takes over, does the coach get a new contract, or does he manage on the original coach contract?

I juat dont see this management group firing Charlie and hiring a manager this year from out of the org, and pay two managers.
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Postby Warszawa » Wed Jun 06, 2007 3:10 pm

LoneStarPhan wrote:I could care less who is at fault. All I care about is getting this mess turned around. There is no longer any excuse, get it done or move along and let someone else try. Coming close is not good enough. Playing well for half a season is not good enough. Nothing short of post season play this season is good enough. If they miss, I expect a new manager, new coaches, and a new GM. I know new owners is not going to happen.


Right....so if the tired old man retires they'll probably name Amaro Jr or Arbuckle GM, who will then proceed to name Jimi Williams manager, who will then probably keep the majority of the coaching staff intact (Lopes, Dubee, Thompson). Player wise you can't move Burrell, Helms, Eaton or Gordon, and they'll let Rowand, Lieber, and Garcia walk.
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