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  1. #421
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    May 2016
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    After last night I'm not sure I want to go back...although the free beer/food helps make up for the disaster of a game.

    And with Phillips, its clearly all about the tinted glasses!!

  2. #422
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    I mean, I like Phillips and I really want him to succeed. He's a great dude, he's active on twitter and with the fanbase and I want him to succeed. I hope he's our CF for the next 6 years. But I'm still skeptical. He's been playing well lately and I hope he keeps it up.

    But either way, we are 2 back with 3 to go. I know the playoffs are high unlikely, but I would love it if we could at least get to the point where we are 1 back with 1 to go. It would make Sunday a lot of fun.

  3. #423
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    Quote Originally Posted by crewfan13 View Post
    I mean, I like Phillips and I really want him to succeed. He's a great dude, he's active on twitter and with the fanbase and I want him to succeed. I hope he's our CF for the next 6 years. But I'm still skeptical. He's been playing well lately and I hope he keeps it up.

    But either way, we are 2 back with 3 to go. I know the playoffs are high unlikely, but I would love it if we could at least get to the point where we are 1 back with 1 to go. It would make Sunday a lot of fun.
    Only issue is we'll have no one to pitch on Sunday if that happens!

    And I see Phillips as a corner option. Brinson will be the center fielder of the future. Once again because of the pure raw talent we have in young outfielders I think we are going to need to make some sort of move. I think both players need to be given a significant shot unless one of them, or someone on our current roster gets moved.

  4. #424
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    I don't think I'm super comfortable handing them both a job right away though. I think you can soft platoon them in center and still get braun and Santana plenty of at bats.

    Let's say Santana gets 140 starts in right next year, Braun gets 120 starts in left and Brinson gets 130 in center. You still have about 90 starts for Phillips between those 3 spots. Then factor in we play 20 interleague games, so braun and Santana will likely DH for those games if Phillips is playing well. So that's about 110 starts for Phillips. Add in some pinch hittting and defensive substitutions and he should get 450 to 500 plate appearances. (For reference, braun has played in 102 games this year, the majority of those were starts. He's gotten 416 plate appearances, so if Phillips starts about 100-110 games, and pinch hits in half the games he doesn't start, he should get close to 450).

    All of this assumes no injuries. It's pretty likely Braun gets banged up, so 120 may be a bit aggressive for him.

    If we want to be semi competitive next year, that option makes the most sense to me. It's been a very long time since we've had a prospect come up and not really struggle at all (braun is probably the only recent hitter example), so it's almost a guarantee that at least one of Phillips and brinson has some growing pains, and fairly likely that both will. Moving guys around to guarantee them both a starting spot is risky to me, especially since the soft platoon option still gets them both 400 plate appearances and gives us the option of staying competitive next year.

  5. #425
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    I think another thing to keep in mind as well is that Brinson has a bit of an injury history as well. He's had one year in his career where he's gotten 500 PA, and that was 2013. Other than that, 450 or so is his high. I know the minor league season is shorter, but it's still probably not a bad thing to try to limit brinsons games a bit in the first year. If he only gets 500 or so plate appearances, it's probably not a bad thing. If he comes out and is a stud, then ride him and let him start 150 games. But if he's like most rookies and has some ups and downs and things like that, it's probably not the worst thing to give him enough days off and only start him 120-130 games, assuming everyone else stays relatively healthy.

  6. #426
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    Well I think we just have a difference of opinion on this. I think its extremely difficult for a player to get comfortable and in a rythem when they're not playing every single day. Its also a lot to ask of Phillips who will be trying to get used to the MLB to be good at 3 different outfield positions.

    I realize just throwing them into the fire might mean some growing pains, but I'm comfortable with that. Our offense can't get much worse than it is right now and I think Brinson/Phillips has such a huge upside that its worth the risk of playing them. If 1-2 months in they're really struggling that's when you react and start pulling them back or sending them back to AAA for a couple months to gain some confidence.

  7. #427
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    And replace them with who? If you essentially give them jobs, you're not going to have depth at OF then. So if you have to send them down, you're in trouble.

    And our offense wasn't good, and it can't get worse in center. But it can get worse elsewhere. If Brinson and Phillips both provide broxton level offense, it will be worse offensively as a whole.

    And I agree it's hard to get in a groove when you aren't playing consistently, but that means when you are benched all the time. In a 6 game week, Brinson gets 4-5 starts and Phillips gets 3-4 starts. That's not awful. If Craig is clear with their roles, I don't think it's that harmful to not start them every day. If anything, not starting every day may actually help. It gives you time to disconnect and re evaluate. Sometimes starting every day allows for more bad habits to kick in, and they will only get worse. Guys need off days, and consistently knowing you're getting off days isn't horrible.

    And defense isn't an issue for me for Phillips. He's played all of the OF positions and plays them well. If it was someone like us moving villar from 2nd to the OF and wanted him play all over, it would be tough. Phillips has been an OF his whole life and looks comfortable everywhere.

  8. #428
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    If they struggle we have plenty of depth to take over. I'm working off the assumption Broxton will still be around as well as Perez, Braun, and Santana. Plenty of outfield depth.

    What I do is have Braun play first whenever a lefty is on the mound and sit Thames. That will free up a lot of starts in left that can be used for Brinson, Perez, and Phillips. I would start Broxton in AAA (I think we still have that option??) and look to trade Aguilar to an AL team that wants a DH with upside in the hopes of landing a middle reliever.

  9. #429
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    But your option doesn't give a spot to Phillips. It's basically the same option as mine, only Phillips gets extra at bats over Aguilar. And it loses our best pinch hitter this year, who is Aguilar. Assuming you face righties more often than lefties, your primary OF still is Braun, Brinson and Santana.

    Also, I like the Aguilar Thames combo at first. If you straight platoon then, they can be really good. If you combine thames stats vs righties and aguilars stats vs lefties, you get a slash line of .271/.374/.547. Those parameters accounted for 550 plate appearances. If you factor that up to 700 plate appearances, which is what votto gets per year and he plays close to 162, they combine for almost 40 homers.

    I realize a straight platoon isn't always completely doable, since teams may change pitchers if you lift thames with a lefty in at reliever or something. But with the two of them platooning, you can create a very good player. And that offensive stat line (the ops would be 5th in all of baseball for 1B) is likely much better than Phillips or Brinson will provide.

  10. #430
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    Well first of all we have no real idea what Phillips and Brinson will do. But as I've said many times I think its only smart to start moving Braun to first. Defensively we'd be greatly improved with Brinson/Phillips and while offensively we may be worse next season because of that change, I think long term that's the smarter lineup.

    In my eyes neither Aguilar or Thames are part of the long term roster and because of that I favor playing time (which hopefully equals improvement) towards the longer term options.

    The main problem I have with your scenario is that if either Phillips or Brinson really takes off to start the year, odds are the other one will be basically left behind to waste away as a backup.

  11. #431
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    But not knowing what Brinson and Phillips are is a two way street. They could both be perennial all stars or they could both be bench players. Assuming we don't see major regression, we could be a playoff team next year. I don't like the idea of basically handing spots to Brinson and Phillips and hoping they aren't both good.

    We have a stacked farm, but it's a farm stacked with pretty good players who all have some bust potential. I think there's always an assumption that the future will be better than today, because we have so many prospects who are thought of relatively highly. But to me, our farm sort of lacks the Braun and fielder type guys. When those guys were coming up, you knew they really have stud potential. I think our farm currently has more of the weeks, hardy and hart types of prospects. Guys who can be really good, but may not have absolute stud potential. Or guys who have some high level potential, but have some warts to overcome.

    So there's no guarantee the future is better than the present. That's why, within reason, I think you attempt to win next year. I'm not saying sell the farm for a one year rental or anything like that, but I wouldn't intentionally risk hurting the lineup just to give prospects a chance.

    And I agree, moving braun to first, sliding Domingo to left and planting Brinson in center with Phillips in right its probably our best defensive option. I'm not sure how braun would be at first, but he would have to be historically bad for that lineup not to be better defensively. But like weve said, there's a decent chance that lineup is worse offensively, potentially much worse. And looking at this year, pitching and defense weren't the problems. It was the offense. So I think with this team, downgrading the offense to improve the defense is risky.

    And your final concern is what if Brinson or Phillips breaks out. That would be awesome. That scenario also assumes no injuries in the OF. If that's the case we might be winning the division and probably are having a very good year. So it's not a major concern for me. And in that case, may have out OF of the next three years or so in place, so the other one of Phillips or Brinson becomes expendable.

  12. #432
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    Should have taken him out earlier, 2 F- ing games left, go for broke!

  13. #433
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pcs Papa View Post
    Should have taken him out earlier, 2 F- ing games left, go for broke!
    It was a fitting way to be eliminated. Offense sucked entire second half and usually wasn't close to 6 runs. Score early. Never score again and rely on pen to be perfect. Pen is fried. L.

    As for the OF position I don't think Broxton will be back. Trade him for a high-ceiling prospect or something. Then Braun in left, Brinson and Phillips platoon in CF, Domingo in right. Then Phillips move to RF when Braun and Santana need a rest with Brinson in CF.

    I think getting a couple relievers, a leadoff guy, second base unless Hernan/Villar platoon and then maybe trade for a starter. I have a hard time trading Domingo as some have suggested when he hits 30 HRs and giving up a 30 HR guy in a rebuild.

  14. #434
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    Quote Originally Posted by crewfan13 View Post
    But not knowing what Brinson and Phillips are is a two way street. They could both be perennial all stars or they could both be bench players. Assuming we don't see major regression, we could be a playoff team next year. I don't like the idea of basically handing spots to Brinson and Phillips and hoping they aren't both good.

    We have a stacked farm, but it's a farm stacked with pretty good players who all have some bust potential. I think there's always an assumption that the future will be better than today, because we have so many prospects who are thought of relatively highly. But to me, our farm sort of lacks the Braun and fielder type guys. When those guys were coming up, you knew they really have stud potential. I think our farm currently has more of the weeks, hardy and hart types of prospects. Guys who can be really good, but may not have absolute stud potential. Or guys who have some high level potential, but have some warts to overcome.

    So there's no guarantee the future is better than the present. That's why, within reason, I think you attempt to win next year. I'm not saying sell the farm for a one year rental or anything like that, but I wouldn't intentionally risk hurting the lineup just to give prospects a chance.

    And I agree, moving braun to first, sliding Domingo to left and planting Brinson in center with Phillips in right its probably our best defensive option. I'm not sure how braun would be at first, but he would have to be historically bad for that lineup not to be better defensively. But like weve said, there's a decent chance that lineup is worse offensively, potentially much worse. And looking at this year, pitching and defense weren't the problems. It was the offense. So I think with this team, downgrading the offense to improve the defense is risky.

    And your final concern is what if Brinson or Phillips breaks out. That would be awesome. That scenario also assumes no injuries in the OF. If that's the case we might be winning the division and probably are having a very good year. So it's not a major concern for me. And in that case, may have out OF of the next three years or so in place, so the other one of Phillips or Brinson becomes expendable.
    I think the reality is we just have varying expectations of this roster going forward as well as varying thoughts on how to build a competetive roster in a mid-small size market. In reality the solution is really a compination of the two. I prefer going with the sell high mentality and attempting to win with a lot of young affordable talent (along with keeping a few key players for larger contracts). You seem to be more aggressive and much more willing to trade young talent if it means you can land an affordable proven play with a bit on control.

    In the end I do have faith that Stearns (and our entire scouting department) has a better idea than we do of what to expect of our prospects. I agree that Brinson seems more like a Buxton type player than a Ryan Braun but that's with a very limited sample size of watching him. He scouts out relatively high so its possible that we just haven't seen him get enough time at the MLB level to judge. I've never gotten to see him play in the minors so all my evaluation is based on a few starts and reading scouting reports.

    As far as trading Santana. This goes back to the idea that I'm open to trading anyone as long as the deal makes sense. Its all dependant on what someone is willing to give us for him. Since I haven't seen any rumors involving what a potential trade for Santana would return its hard for me to speculate whether or not the trade would make sense. I do think Santana is most likely at peak value right now though making him an intriguing trade chip. I view Shaw/Thame much in the same way as Santana in that I doubt their trade value ever gets higher. Not saying we need to trade any of them, but just that I'm open to maximizing their value under the right circumstances. I seriously doubt that either Shaw or Santana gets moved though.

  15. #435
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    I get that, but if you're trading them, you're likely trading them for prospects. And often times, a guys value is at its peak while a player is a prospect. To me, there's nothing wrong with having good major league players. If you're always trying to maximize value and sell high, you'll never compete because you'll always be selling for prospects.

    I get the sell high philosophy and if someone makes a foolish trade offer for someone, then yes, you take it. But that's highly unlikely.

    Everyone loves upside and that's what prospects provide. But the number that hit that upside is fairly small. Selling just to sell keeps you in the middle.

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