Posts Tagged ‘Cesar Hernandez’

Following The 40: Off-season Primer

October 12th, 2015 by Mike H. | Comments Off on Following The 40: Off-season Primer | Filed in Baseball, General, MLB, Phillies

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As the Phillies off-season begins, the first order of business was to pair down the roster to 40 players including ones that would be coming off of injured status. Earlier last week, the Phillies outrighted Justin De Fratus (who recently elected free agency), Jonathan Pettibone, Adam Loewen, Ken Roberts, Erik Kratz, Jordan Danks, and Chase d’Arnaud. The roster currently stands at forty, but with a strong likelihood that Cliff Lee, Chad Billingsley, Aaron Harang, Jerome Williams, Brian Bogusevic, Jeff Francoeur, and Andres Blanco all head to free agency.

Francoeur and Blanco are expected to be asked to return, but will both certainly be given offers with other clubs. Domonic Brown may have seen his last inning as a Phillie as he has a very strong chance of being non-tendered a contract. Jesse Biddle and David Buchanan are both likely to be outrighted in the near future due to their respective injury statuses. That sets the Phillies at 30 players.

Whoever the next General Manager may be, while they have the resources, there probably won’t be any huge splashes for 2016. In fact, the Phillies acquisitions will most likely be role players and players coming off of injury looking to establish value. The rotation will most likely consist of Aaron Nola, Jerad Eickhoff, and Adam Morgan as pitchers three thru five with Alec Asher and Severino Gonzalez given opportunities.

Matt Harrison, whom the Phillies acquired at the trade deadline in the Cole Hamels deal, could also be an option if he is healthy enough to compete. The Phillies could also add from within with Zach Eflin and Ben Lively as potential candidates. My personal targets for the Phillies to add from free agency: Mat Latos or Doug Fister.

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Deconstructing The Phillies: Middle Infield

November 20th, 2014 by Mike H. | Comments Off on Deconstructing The Phillies: Middle Infield | Filed in Baseball, Phillies

Ah, the Hot Stove is in full swing. Hot Stove is back on MLB Network. MLB rumors are blowing up on Twitter. Record/stupid contracts are being tossed at players like they are Cracker Jacks. You gotta love the MLB offseason. Not even just as a Phillies fan, but as a fan of the game. Some moves have WOW-ed, while others make you go, “What?”. It’s been a bit, but let’s push forward with wheels and deals. I am including the catcher position in the middle infield category as it is in the infield, and considered “up the middle”. Plus, I didn’t think it warranted its own post. Plus, I’m going to be updating my thoughts on a previous trade in the summary section. (more…)

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Countdown To Opening Day 2013: 26 Days

March 6th, 2013 by Mike H. | Comments Off on Countdown To Opening Day 2013: 26 Days | Filed in General

With 26 days left until Opening Day in Atlanta,I think today would be a good day to talk about number 26: Chase Utley. Utley is entering the final year of his 7 year, 85 million dollar contract. Utley has been hampered by a chronic knee condition the last two seasons, so Utley has a lot to prove in 2013 if he intends on grabbing one last payday.

Personally, I don’t see how the Phillies realistically consider bringing Utley back outside of Utley accepting a qualifying offer for 2014. Now if Utley has a bounce back 2013, I doubt he accepts that offer. The Phillies do have a couple internal options that could succeed Utley should he be dealt midseason or sign elsewhere as a free agent.

There’s super slick,defensive whiz Freddy Galvis, who is a proven 8 hole hitter. While Galvis would provide a solution to having an affordable, effective second baseman, it would put a lot of reliance on other offensive players to pick up the slack.

There’s also Cesar Hernandez. Hernandez has primarily played second base in the minors and has proven he has the ability to hit for average. While I am in the extreme minority that would like to see the Phillies proceed with a youth movement that would have Cody Asche, Freddy Galvis, and Cesar Hernandez taking over the infield, the likelihood of that happening seems unlikely as moving Jimmy Rollins would require Rollins’ approval to go anywhere.

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Expansion

August 28th, 2012 by Mike H. | Comments Off on Expansion | Filed in Baseball, Phillies

Who should we take a look at??

Saturday marks the changing of the calendar to September and with that, major league rosters expand to include the remainder of the 40-man roster. The AAA Lehigh Valley IronPigs are 1.5 games out of the wild card spot with seven games left to play. If they fail to make the playoffs, it’s all but a lock that pitchers Michael Schwimer, Joe Savery, Justin De Fratus, Jake Diekman, and infielder Hector Luna are called up, but what about reliever J.C. Ramirez, 2B Cesar Hernandez, and C Sebastian Valle?

All three are currently on the 40-man roster, but Hernandez and Valle have both struggled since being promoted to AAA. Ramirez has been extremely hittable since being added to the IronPig bullpen. All three could be used in a limited capacity, but will probably not see action until the Arizona Fall League.

At AA Reading, the R-Phils are hanging on to a playoff spot, so the possibility of seeing outfielder Tyson Gillies is pretty much a longshot at this point. It would have been nice to see if Gillies roaming center field for the last couple of weeks this season. Gillies has played admirably when healthy this season, but his health has been a major concern for the last few years and that diminishes his value. It’s very interesting to see who will be here come Saturday’s game in Atlanta.

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Looking Forward

August 22nd, 2012 by Mike H. | Comments Off on Looking Forward | Filed in Baseball, General, Phillies

Every year, Baseball America does their annual “Top 10 Prospects” reports for each team. Included in that article is a projected starting lineup and starting rotation for three years down the road. It’s really interesting when you look back on old organizational reports. For example, all but two of the Phillies top 10 prospects have been traded. In their projections, Baseball America thought that Jason Donald would be the third baseman of the future. Lou Marson would be the starting catcher, not Carlos Ruiz. Shane Victorino would be flanked by Domonic Brown and Michael Taylor. Cole Hamels would be the staff ace, but would be followed by Carlos Carrasco and Kyle Drabek.

Since then, all the players Sans, Collier and Brown have been traded. They’ve netted Cliff Lee, Roy Halladay, and Roy Oswalt. Not a bad haul for a bunch of guys who are now fringe players. The only player with a good amount of upside off this list is Travis d’Arnaud.

Heading into 2012, that list was obviously a lot different. 2013 may be even more drastic of a change, but not because of trading away players, but because of prospects being added via internal and external resources. It also marks the potential changing of the guard in Phillies baseball. We’ve been told that a lot of the talent the Phillies posess were all at the lower levels of the organization, but we are finally getting to a point where that talent is reaching the upper levels.

While the Phillies have four starting pitchers locked up for 2013, Roy Halladay’s 2014 option will most likely not reach its vesting points. Now, if Halladay pitches like he did in 2010, its pretty likely that the Phillies will pick up that option, but if he continues to breakdown with age, he may be finishing his career with a different team. For the sake of argument, I’ll speculate that the Phillies brain trust picks up that option year. So that leaves one potential spot open for one of Trevor May, Tyler Cloyd, Adam Morgan, Jon Pettibone, and Jesse Biddle.

As currently constituted, only Jonathan Papelbon has a guaranteed roster spot in 2014, which possible leaves as many as five open bullpen positions. I say five because I belive Kyle Kendrick may not be resigned after 2013, but Ruben Amaro may look to sign a veteran reliever this offseason. So if there are five open spots, that means that Antonio Bastardo, Michael Stutes, Phillipe Aumont, Jake Diekman, Michael Schwimer, Jeremy Horst, Justin De Fratus, and Justin Friend are all fighting for spots.

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The Rise Of Cesar

May 9th, 2012 by Mike H. | Comments Off on The Rise Of Cesar | Filed in Baseball, Phillies

For the second straight season, Chase Utley was not healthy enough to be on the Opening Day roster. His chronic knee problems opened the door for defensive wizard (and offensive liability) Freddy Galvis, but if Galvis can’t make the proper adjustments to be a more productive hitter, is he a realistic long-term option at second base? Healthy or not, Utley’s current contract expires at the end of 2013 and it may mark the end of his Phillies career. So where does that leave the Phillies? Right now, things are looking pretty good.

The Phillies currently have a very solid, all-around player that projects to be ready conveniently when Chase Utley’s contract expires. Many of you have probably already heard of Cesar Hernandez, but if you haven’t here’s your chance to get caught up. Hernandez is a switch-hitting second baseman who is roughly two weeks away from turning 22. He was signed as an international free agent and spent his first two years in the organization playing in the Venezuelan Summer League.

Hernandez had a breakout 2010 season in short season Williamsport. The Phillies were so impressed with Hernandez that they had him skip Low A Lakewood and jump right to High A Clearwater for 2011. After a slow start, Hernandez bounced back to hit a respectable .268, but his on-base percentage and slugging percentage were both career lows. Most thought it wise for him to repeat Clearwater due to his age, but the Phillies pushed him through to AA Reading. While the season is still early, that decision is paying off.

  • Hernandez: .317/.349/.446 with 9 doubles, 2 triples, and 15 RBIs

The strikeout to walk ratio of  17:5 is a little off as he is generally just about 1 to 1, but I would suppose that is a combination of better pitching at an advanced level and him hitting the cover off the ball recently. In the 10 games between April 25th and May 5th, Hernandez has been en fuego (.366/.395/.512).

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Countdown To Opening Day 2012: 25 Days

March 12th, 2012 by Mike H. | Comments Off on Countdown To Opening Day 2012: 25 Days | Filed in Baseball, Phillies

As we have officially reached a full week of Grapefruit League action, the biggest contributors have been made by guys who, by all accounts, have the slimmest of chances to make the team.

  • Freddy Galvis:  6 for 19 (.316) with 2 doubles and 5 RBI
  • Scott Podsednik: 6 for 17 (.353) with 3 doubles
  • Lou Montanez: 6 for 14 (.429) with 2 doubles, 1 home run, and 5 RBI

However, one of the players that is supposed to be one of the biggest contributors has yet to make his Spring debut. So let’s take a quick look into the curious case of Chase Utley. (more…)

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