Wednesday, February 17, 2010

2010 Team Analysis: Philadelphia Phillies

Philadelphia Phillies:

2009 Record: 93-69

General Manager: Ruben Amaro Jr.

Manager: Charlie Manuel

Organizational Philosophy: in previous seasons, long before Ruben Amaro was promoted to GM in November of 2008, the Phillies were a team designed to be a future contender.  After a World Series win in '08 and an appearance last season, the future is obviously now.

The question for Amaro and company is how to best maintain this current run of success without stamping an expiration date on it.  In less than one year, Amaro has traded for two high caliber starting pitchers (and, later, flipping one for the other in a three team trade), signed key players to extensions and has turned to the free agency market in an effort to sign veterans as short-term options.  In the first part, the trades for Cliff Lee and Roy Halladay were seen as expensive in terms of the minor league talent it would cost.  For Lee, the Phillies had to trade C Lou Marson, SS Jason Donald, RHP Carlos Carrasco and RHP Jason Knapp; as I reported in my Indians analysis only Knapp profiles (now) as a possible ace, however, recent surgery to his shoulder will have many speculating when he'll be at full strength).  To get Halladay this offseason, Lee was traded to the Mariners along with OF Michael Taylor, RHP Kyle Drabek and C Travis d'Arnaud.  This class of prospects are arguably better but d'Arnaud is 21 and did struggle defensively in '09 during his first full season at catcher while Taylor projects as a .300 hitter with above average power and Drabek has been mentioned as a front rotation starter since he was drafted in the first round in 2006.

These were a lot of young pieces to give away and for a team predominantly in their 30's one has to question if this was truly in the best interest of the organization.  Looking over their recent list of top prospects, the Phillies do have near MLB ready talent in OF Domonic Brown and RHP Phillipe Aumont (acquired along with Halladay from the Mariners) but the rest of the farm is loaded with high-upside low level players.  In terms of player development, this team loves to acquire high-risk high-reward athletes and power arm pitchers.  It's a gamble that doesn't guarantee consistent success but when one of these players hit... they hit big.

2010 Commitments:

Starting Rotation:

Roy Halladay ($15.75M)
Cole Hamels ($6.65M)
Joe Blanton ($7M)
J.A. Happ ($405K)
Jamie Moyer ($6.5M)


Brad Lidge ($12M)
Danys Baez ($2.5M)
Ryan Madson ($4.8M)
J.C. Romero ($4.25M)
Chad Durbin ($2.1M)
Sergio Escalona ($400K)
Mike Zagurski ($400K)
Drew Naylor ($400K)

On the bench:

C: Carlos Ruiz ($1.9M)
C: Brian Schneider ($1.1M)
1B: Ryan Howard ($19M)
2B: Chase Utley ($15M)
SS: Jimmy Rollins ($8.5M)
3B: Placido Polanco ($5.1M)
LF: Raul Ibanez ($12.1M)
CF: Shane Victorino ($5M)
RF: Jayson Werth ($7.5M)
OF: Ben Francisco ($420K)

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