Posts Tagged ‘Luis Garcia’

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: Relief Pitching

October 16th, 2014 by Mike H. | Comments Off on Deconstructing The Phillies: Relief Pitching | Filed in Baseball, Phillies

In part two of our ongoing series on how to potentially fix the Phillies, we’ll address the bullpen. The bullpen was actually one of the bright spots in 2014. Where Papelbon lacked off the field, he did his best to make up for it on the field, converting 39 of 43 save opportunities. Only rookie Ken Giles was able to convert a save out of the remaining pieces of the bullpen. In my opinion, when people say pitching wins championships, they most likely are referring to relief pitching. Starters, elite or mediocre, have a day in and day out ability to keep teams in games thru six innings. If you have enough quality arms in your bullpen, you shorten that game. Don’t believe me? Just look back to the 2008 squad, they were as good a pen as you could hope for and we all know how that ended. So what should the Phillies do moving forward? Click past the jump for my recommendation(s).

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Minor League Mondays: Luis Garcia

September 24th, 2014 by Mike H. | Comments Off on Minor League Mondays: Luis Garcia | Filed in Baseball, Phillies

Next up in our minor league spotlight is the 2014 Paul Owens award winner for best pitching prospect, Luis Garcia. Garcia was just flat-out dominant as the closer for the AAA Lehigh Valley IronPigs. Over 39 appearances, he completed 22 of 25 save opportunities with an anorexic 0.96 ERA. He struck out 52 in 46.2 innings while only allowing 16 walks.

That success hasn’t translated to the majors however. With guys like Jonathan Papelbon and Ken Giles locking down the late innings, Garcia was thrust into middle relief. Like many other “closers”, success seems to be lost once you’re removed from those higher pressure situations. Garcia has struggled to the tune of a 7.94 ERA with 11 walks and strikeouts in as many innings. In the minors, Garcia was borderline unhittable, but since being called up, just about the only bats that are missed are the results of a walk.

No one is saying that Garcia didn’t have tremendous success for the IronPigs, but I’d think guys like Giles, Nola, or even Ranger Suarez could have, or should have, been better suited to be named the top organizational arm. Even if the Phillies open the 2015 campaign with or without Papelbon, Garcia will have to battle for a spot with Giles, Diekman, De Fratus, and Gonzalez all pretty much locks for the bullpen.

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