What Do the Phillies Have in Aaron Altherr?

September 19, 2017

Last night, Aaron Altherr finally got going after his trip to the disabled list. Altherr smashed an upper-deck go-ahead grand slam off Clayton Kershaw, the best pitcher in baseball. As it stands now, Altherr has been worth 1.3 fWAR in about a half a season of plate appearances, bashing 17 home runs and producing a 125 wRC+. It’s been a good bounce-back season for the Phillies’ outfielder, but he again…

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Is Odubel Herrera Back?

June 9, 2017

Odubel Herrera ended the month of May sporting a 51 wRC+ and just 0.3 WAR. After two seasons in which the Rule 5 pick was arguably the Phillies’ best player, Herrera received a five year extension that established him as the first building block of the rebuild to be signed long term. He was one of several Phillies, including Jerad Eickhoff, Maikel Franco, and Tommy Joseph, who have experienced significant…

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Adjustment Required

May 17, 2017

It is mostly a fact that all baseball articles concerning Odubel Herrera note the accomplishment of something remarkable. In 2015, it was a league leading BABIP driving a successful Rule 5 season. In 2016, he spent the month of April collecting all his walks for the year. In 2017, the story has been his range in the outfield. In between these accounts, there’s probably one or two about a lack…

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The Wrong Solution To The Wrong Problem

May 1, 2017

The Phillies are intent on getting Vince Velasquez deeper into his starts. Poor pitch economy is the oft-cited culprit of his short outings and also the focus of most offhand solutions. Here is the theory: by throwing fewer pitchesy to each batter, he will ultimately see more batters over the course of a game, and lengthier starts will follow. A well-conceived plan. On a per batter basis, Velasquez does throw…

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The Phillies Have A New Third Baseman

Among the many storylines of 2016, Maikel Franco‘s regression was perhaps the most discouraging. Franco spent the season mixing flashes of formidable hitting talent with an infuriating lack of approach at the plate. He did not swing at every pitch that came his way, but enough to render most of his natural talent moot. It seemed his potential would ever remain unrealized. It should come as no surprise, then, that…

April 14, 2017
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Where Have Jeremy Hellickson’s Strikeouts Gone?

April 14, 2017

Jeremy Hellickson entered the 2017 season as the Phillies’ de facto ace. After last season, in which he posted the highest K-BB% and fWAR numbers of his career, expectations were high for the 28-year-old. Through two starts, the results are better than the Phillies could have hoped for. He’s tossed 10 innings and allowed only one run for a 0.90 ERA, and those two starts account for two of the Phillies…

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Freddy Galvis: In Context

It is easy to look past Freddy Galvis. There is a top prospect waiting to assume his premium position on the baseball field. He does little with the bat. His numbers are underwhelming. But as we often see a player as a single WAR total, we may not be appreciating the full value of Freddy Galvis to the Phillies, because that value is hard to pin down. As a glove-first…

March 29, 2017
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Look Ma, Two Hands! Phillies Trade for Ambidextrous Pitcher Pat Venditte

Two hands are better than one. Sunday afternoon, the Phillies acquired switch-pitcher Pat Venditte from the Seattle Mariners. He’s light-handed, he’s reft-handed, he’s ambidextrous. The 31-year-old, currently pitching for Team Italy in the World Baseball Classic, has spent time with four different organizations since the Yankees drafted him in the 20th round in 2008 from Creighton University. He’s excelled in the high minors, with a career 2.93 ERA in four seasons in…

March 12, 2017
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Tommy Joseph: Swing At The Strikes

For the ardent reader of the Crashburn Roundtable, my enthusiasm for Tommy Joseph should come as no surprise. For those who chose baseball dormancy as Citizens Bank Park was preparing to close its doors, a quick review of said enthusiasm. On September 30, then Crashburn editor Spencer Bingol forced upon us the impossible choice: Both Tommy Joseph (115 OPS+) and Cameron Rupp (101 OPS+) have surprised with their offensive performances…

March 9, 2017
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