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Analysis: Blanton Not The Right Guy

Throughout the day it seemed evident the Phillies were closing in on a trade for Joe Blanton. By the end of the day, I felt it was a matter of days before a deal came down. It came much quicker. Billy Beane traded Blanton to the Phils for infielder Adrian Cardenas, pitcher Josh Outman and outfielder Matt Spencer.When Blanton was brought back into the thick via Jim Salisbury, I said the Phils shouldn’t make the deal for him, no matter what they’d give up. Now that it’s done, I feel even worse.

No, I don’t like this deal.

First off, the prospects. Cardenas, a 20-year-old middle infielder, was hitting .310/.375/.447 for A+ Clearwater. Baseball America rated him the Phils’ No. 2 prospect. Most of all, besides Lou Marson, he was the only position prospect you could really bet on to make an impact in the Major Leagues.

Outman was mishandled, moved from a starter to a reliever to supposedly slot into a LOOGY role in the Majors. He never made it. This year in Reading, Outman went 5-4 with a 3.20 ERA, 66 strikeouts and 37 walks. A deceptive lefty, he represented something the Phils clearly lacked in the farm system.

Spencer was a low-end prospect who has struggled in A+ this season. His inclusion would’ve been worth it as the No. 2 man in the deal. The Phils gave up too much. Cardenas is potentially a solid starting infielder in the Majors; Outman should find his niche in the back end of some rotations.

Now, if this was a package for Matt Cain, I’d be salivating over it. But Blanton? What has he proven?

In 2007 he had his best year, going 14-10 with a 3.95 ERA and a 106 ERA+. His rookie season was also very strong. But his other two seasons thus far have been poor. In 2006 he had an ERA+ of 92, maybe good enough as a No. 4 starter. And this year he’s been utterly bad, matching Adam Eaton’s ERA+ of 77. He may represent an upgrade over Eaton, but the Phils don’t need just an upgrade over Eaton.

I’ve written the Phils need a pitcher who can go deep into games, dominate most teams and line up against other No. 2 starters in key games. Does Blanton (with his 6 IP, 3 ER starts) do such a thing? No. He’s Kyle Kendrick. He’s Jamie Moyer. He’s just another back piece.

Sure, there’s the hope Blanton grabs hold of National League competition. But in three starts against the NL he has a 10.29 ERA. Throw out his dominant start against the Phils, and he has given up 15 runs in seven innings against the Giants and Diamondbacks, two poor offenses. So that doesn’t bode well.

I’ve heard people point to Blanton’s second-half success. For his career, Blanton has a 4.05 ERA in the second half, including a 4.82 ERA in September and October. And with the A’s, Blanton has pitched in meaningful September and October games. Yeah, this doesn’t bode well either.

This season he’s pitched 83.2 innings at spacious Network Associates Field for an ERA of 4.63. Anything good out there? He has pitched well at U.S. Cellular Field and at Safeco Field. So there’s hope yet.

Joking aside, it’s hard to find a silver lining with Blanton, and it’s especially hard to like this deal when the Phils gave up a top prospect, plus a potentially solid pitcher. Yes, we all know the credo is “win now,” but as I wrote before, a deal like this doesn’t help much. Blanton isn’t much of an upgrade over Eaton, and really, he’s probably as effective as Brett Myers. He’s false hope. He’s a move to make a move. He’s a prayer. And he’s Adrian Cardenas and Josh Outman.

I’ll eat my words if Blanton rips off a string of eight-inning, one-to-two-run efforts. I’ll eat my words if this guy shows up and adds that elusive No. 2 starter to the rotation. But this move has me sliding my spoon back into the drawer.

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0 Comments

  1. Jordan

    July 18, 2008 at 8:40 am

    couldn’t agree more, well put. it’s a typical more harm than good fluff move by the Phils. Here’s hoping Moyer can get this thing started off right tonight, there are still a lot of games left. Go Phils.

  2. Tom

    July 18, 2008 at 8:44 am

    its a typical phils being cheap move and not wanting to make that move that would put us over the top…

  3. Runshouse

    July 18, 2008 at 8:49 am

    Adjusted ERA is such a crappy rationalization.

  4. Rivlez

    July 18, 2008 at 8:50 am

    They definitely gave up a good amount to get a unproven pitcher. He may be great for the Phillies. I wonder when his first start will be.

  5. Bill

    July 18, 2008 at 9:05 am

    I disagree that he is another Eaton. No one is that bad! But once again the Phillies went for the wing and a prayer solution. Maybe Joe Blanton will be 10-2 and lead us to the post season. Maybe the pitcher from last year will be back and we will have pulled out a gem. But it is always a maybe with the Phillies. When do WE make the trade for the 17 game winner that is still pitching good? It just is not the Phillies way and it id what drives their fans crazy (and some away).

    http://myteamrivals.typepad.com/phightin_phils_phorum/

  6. Tim Malcolm

    July 18, 2008 at 9:09 am

    Well I’m not saying he’s another Eaton, and Runshouse (that show has sooo jumped the shark), adjusted ERA is a fair statistic to me. ERA is a pretty crappy rationalization, really.

  7. Rob E.

    July 18, 2008 at 9:15 am

    Tim great post. I dont think he is another Eaton. The reason the phils got him is because of $$$$, He is dirt cheap. The big questions now is do they DFA Eaton? What about Happ. he pitched a 7 inning no hit 12K performance last night. Clearly he has no value in AAA

    Cole
    Blanton
    Moyer
    Kendrick
    Myers

    What about Happ. he pitched a 7 inning no hit 12K performance last night. Clearly he has no value in AAA, he is ready.

    Also can someone explain the formulation of Adjusted ERA. My work blocked Wikipedia and the majority of baseball sites.

  8. Mike T.

    July 18, 2008 at 9:22 am

    We improved – relax everybody.

  9. Phil

    July 18, 2008 at 9:36 am

    Yeah, I’d rather have just used Happ than trade away a huge prospect chip.

  10. TJ

    July 18, 2008 at 9:36 am

    I find most of you guys flip flopping your opinions more than a politician. Seriously, you are typical Philly sports fans. You want, you want, you want, then your get and your ungrateful. We all wanted a pitcher, Blanton was the lowest risk one available from our reasonable pickings. Lets be honest, after CC was off the table it was clear that we were going to resort to a B list pitcher. Blanton is that B list guy but in the offseason he was an A lister and some teams offered alot for him. Cardenas was blocked in the majors, Outman is a reliever and clearly expendable with our bullpen playing the way it has. Besides, Outman would never be a back end rotation guy here in Philly if we got Blanton without him. Cole, Blanton, Kendrick, Happ, Myers, Cardenas, Maybe Moyer. Where does he fit in? Give Blanton atleast 4 starts to adjust then rip him if he does bad. I can’t defend his ERA but his win loss should’ve been atleast .500. Five times Blanton has given up 2 runs while pitching atleast 6 and taken the loss. All I’m saying is give the guy a shot before you call it a dumb trade. At first I was angry that we gave up Cardenas but as I said he wouldn’t be on the Phils major league squad until atleast 3 years from now, and thats not gonna help us win now. I know, your thinking well we could’ve traded for someone better with Cardenas a the bait, if we could’ve I think we would’ve. I’m giving Blanton a shot to prove himself. Getting him is better than hoping our current rotation can take us to the playoffs and beyond.

  11. freddy gonzalez

    July 18, 2008 at 9:41 am

    Savery? Drabek? Carrasco? If these guys played for me they would already be contributing. Prospects are worth nothing to you beacause you wait until they are 29 to bring them up.

  12. TJ

    July 18, 2008 at 9:42 am

    Freddy, your right. We do wait to long to bring us prospects. What is your point?

  13. Phil

    July 18, 2008 at 9:50 am

    Drabek is hurt, Savery was hurt and just got done a surgery. TJ I believe? Carrasco is pitching mediocre in AA. He has some things to work out. I also would favor Marson coming up at the same time as Carrasco since he calls his games already.

  14. Adam Eaton

    July 18, 2008 at 9:54 am

    Where’s this guy gonna play? I mean, with Brett coming back, and me straightening out my mechanics, there’s no room for him.

    Hey, I’d love to chat more, but it’s Friday, so I have to go and pick up my huge paycheck. See you later, fans!

  15. Phil

    July 18, 2008 at 9:58 am

    Blanton really does have good mechanics and stuff. That is why he was so talked about during the winter, and why everyone was in hot pursuit against him in the beginning of the season. The fact he was having a bad year made his price tag cheaper. I really hope he just needed a change of scenery. He keeps the ball in the park too, so I’m not too concerned with him switching parks. Lydle, Moyer, and Loshe were all huge for us down the stretch, and honestly, out of the 4 Blanton is the best one we’ve gotten. We did give up too much for him, but hopefully the guy can come pitch well for a team that is contending.

  16. scot

    July 18, 2008 at 9:58 am

    If you asked me if I’d take Blanton or Burnett, I’d take Blanton in a heartbeat. Especially looking at what the Jays were reportedly asking for for Burnett (Carrasco or Marson).

    This move does improve our rotation. We weren’t gonna get Harden, CC, or even Cain or Burnett without giving up a Carassco or Marson. We improved ourselves by dealing a few pieces that were never gonna see the majors for us anyway.

  17. Don M

    July 18, 2008 at 9:59 am

    TJ hit the nail on the head… Basically, does Blanton improve the rotation.. YES.

    Cardenas was projected all over the place as a RF.. if that’s the care, why is he still playing 2b in the minors.. He isn’t going to take the place of Utley or Howard, who are both MVPs… which I’m willing to bet Card will never be.

    Outman was high on everyone’s list… but if he was going to be an impact guy, he probably would have already been called up over guys like Swindle or whatever his name was…

    I dont know the first thing about the OF they gave up..

    Blanton is an innings eater and an improvement to the rotation.. considering what they would have had to give up to get AJ BURNETT.. this looks like a good deal to me! So far Gillick has been right on the money with his in-season pitching additions, so unless Blanton blows up, this is another good move in my opinion.

  18. Mike T.

    July 18, 2008 at 10:00 am

    Don M and I have officially agreed on something.

  19. Chris C.

    July 18, 2008 at 10:01 am

    “He’s a move to make a move.” Could not say it any better than that. However, you cannot fully judge this trade until after all moves are made. IF they can tighten up an already impressive bullpen, IF they get another pitcher or Myers comes back strong, and IF the offense starts clicking, then this will work out great. However, there is a much more likely scenario where nothing else is done and the Phillies remain a perennial good, but not great team. As always, time will be the ultimate judge but as long as Eaton does not go out and give up 30 runs in 2 innings every 5th day we are in better shape.

  20. TJ

    July 18, 2008 at 10:01 am

    Phil, I was saying Carrasco for next year. Most highly touted prospects pitch mediocre in AA but once they get the right coaching advice and coinfidence they tend to settle it down and become gradually better in the bigs. I would love to see a Carassco/Marson combo come up next year, but that depends on their developement and our depth situation at both P and C.

  21. Don M

    July 18, 2008 at 10:01 am

    Good point Phil.. There is nothing to suggest that Blanton will be getting rocked in CBP.

    I’m loving this, I thought I would have to be arguing with people all day about the fact that Blanton in an upgrade to this team!

  22. Gavin

    July 18, 2008 at 10:03 am

    Why not give a guy like Happ a chance. I dont get it.

    I’m cautiously optimistic that this will improve our club, but this has to be frustrating for Happ. he did everything asked of him. I agree that this might have been a move just to make a move.

    Oh yea, Blanton better be good b/c he’s here through 2010.

    BTW, please release Eaton. Who are they going to send out of the bullpen? Bisenius will leave when Myers returns. Send Condrey out? he’s done a helluva job. If Eaton is still on this team when Myers returns then the Gillick, Amaro, and Arbuckle are a bunch of losers.

  23. fred

    July 18, 2008 at 10:04 am

    I like the move for Blanton. He is no Adam Eaton. He is no Jamie Moyer, and he is no Kyle Kendrick. Where did all this 6 IP crap come from !?!? Over the last 3 seasons he has pitched the third most innings in the AL ! He is a workhorse, he goes deep into games and in 2 out of 4 years his ERA has been stellar in the tough AL, pitching against good lineups such as Texas and Anaheim. And he’s under control through 2010. This is a good move, and a better deal than the Cubs one for Harden. Blanton is not injury prone, and the prospects we gave up are a LONG way away from being major league ready, if they ever are. Don’t get me wrong, one day Cardenas will probably be a good second basemen, but we have no need for a 2B with Utley in the team. He’s hit 4 HR’s at A+ this season, is that really what a top prospect would do ? Outman has been average at AA and the other kid is a throw in. Yes Cardenas had talent, but all he was ever going to be was a trade chip and Gillck cashed him in for a cheap young, above average starter. If we get Myers fixed and back in as a solid #2 we then have a good rotation with Blanton #3 Moyer #4 and either Kendrick or Happ #5. I’d still like to see a reliever added though, or even another OF like Nady or Winn. Go Phils.

  24. Phil

    July 18, 2008 at 10:04 am

    Well, Burnett has electric stuff when he’s actually pitching to his potential. That’s basically saying he’s an older Brett Myers who tends to constantly break down. I don’t want another Brett Myers on the team. He’s also as big of a headcase as Myers. Honestly, it’s a toss up between Blanton or Bedard. Blanton doesn’t break down, Bedard does. Blanton can regularly go 6 innings, Bedard can’t. Bedard’s a better pitcher, but he has his own pitch count and breaks down a lot, so Gillick obviously went with the guy that stays healthy. I respect that. IT’s like the Harden situation. If Harden breaks down the Cubs got robbed. Harden was high risk high reward Blanton is low risk high reward. I’d rather have low risk high reward personally. We all know Harden’s reward is much higher, but his risk is WAY too high. I think Beane knew he was about to break down and that’s why he traded him and pulled the trigger on the 1st deal offered.

  25. TJ

    July 18, 2008 at 10:05 am

    We are a second half team, we all know it. Blanton improves our rotation, no denying it. We gave up a good player in the future that we’ll never use for a guy that gives us a chance now.

    Please stop speculating that Cardenas was gonna take over Howard or Utley’s positions because we aren’t letting them go for atleast 4-5 years. They’re our core.

  26. Mike T.

    July 18, 2008 at 10:07 am

    Honestly everyone, what did you want the Phils to do in this case? They still have their “untouchables”, and they improved the team. What did you want? Matt Cain for Cardenas, Outman and Spencer? Haha – that’s laughable. I really wish I knew what San Fran’s response was to that offer – that’s just a huge joke.

    Look, for all the people on here that are saying this years team is better than last years – doesn’t this deal make the team even that much better? Considering the Lohse deal last year was equally as good? I mean, come on, Sabathia and Harden were out of reach from day 1 – so the Phils got what they could without giving up the big 3.

    Plus, I don’t think the Phils are done yet. With pitching, yeah, they’re done making moves, there’s nothing left – but I see a veteran bat coming on board.

  27. Phil

    July 18, 2008 at 10:10 am

    Happ is going to be Myers back up if he doesn’t get his shit together. I like that we got Blanton, I don’t like what we gave up to get him. Also, you can’t project Cardenas as a RF. He doesn’t have the pop in his bat to be a corner outfielder. He needs to be a middle infielder for what he gives you production wise. He’s a speedy guy who gets on base. He was blocked from coming up to the majors. We’re not done trading. We still have Donald, Bastrado, Happ, Drabek, Savery, amongst many others we can unload for the big bat we need. We also need that lefty reliever which will probably be Grabow.

  28. Phil

    July 18, 2008 at 10:12 am

    I agree Mike T. I’m leaning towards Giles. That guy is putting up incredible numbers in San Diego. He would look good in CBP. He’s a great player and a great hitter.

  29. TJ

    July 18, 2008 at 10:12 am

    We’re done making moves. Mark my words. We signed Jenkins to a lucrative contract and we have Werth performing well. Why do we get another bat now? Unless either of them are involved in a trade or Victorino then I just don’t see it happening. Don’t get me wrong I’d love to see a Nady, Holliday, Freel, Taveras come to town but I’m a realist. Our offense is plenty capable if we are given a chance to win by our staff.

  30. Don M

    July 18, 2008 at 10:14 am

    Baseball Prospectus and Baseball America project him as a RF.. not me.. I’ve never seen him play, and neither has anyone else.

    The point is, they know which guys they want to keep for themselves.. Carrasco and Marson.. and I think everyone is tradeable.

    I think they might even go to a 6-man rotation at times. or just skip Moyer every once in a while to keep him fresh.. he gets tired as the year goes on, so maybe an extra day of rest here-or-there will do him some good.

  31. Mike T.

    July 18, 2008 at 10:14 am

    If I’m supposedly the most pessimistic person on here, how am I not making people feel better by being optimistic towards something everyone is so upset about?

  32. Phil

    July 18, 2008 at 10:15 am

    mlbtraderumors.com is saying Duke is still for sale. If Duke gets traded I will go find Gillick and punch him in the fucking head. Duke>Harden>Blanton.

  33. Don M

    July 18, 2008 at 10:23 am

    I hope you’re not talking about Zach Duke on the Pirates.. cause he sure as shit ani’t better than Harden and Blanton.

    He’s got a career ERA of 4.24.. A 1.52 WHIP… and hitters RAKE against him..

  34. Gavin

    July 18, 2008 at 10:24 am

    Two words…Randy Winn.

    If it makes anyone feel better……JD Durbin was in our rotation this time last year.

    Also, our rotation the last month was Moyer, Myers, Lohse, Kendrick, and Durbin.

    We’re a better team with Blanton. I wish we had just given Happ a chance.

  35. Don M

    July 18, 2008 at 10:24 am

    Mike T. how about us on the same page today!! Crazy, it must be a friday since we’re all in good moods!

  36. Mike T.

    July 18, 2008 at 10:28 am

    Hey, I’m just happy that out of all the teams in the NL East, we’re the only ones that made significant in season improvements. You’re not going to match the Cubs or Breweres, but you can gain ground on the Mets and Marlins, and I think we have.

  37. Don M

    July 18, 2008 at 10:38 am

    Just saw online… that the game of basketball was invented in 1891.

    The Phillies were started in 1883…. we have 1 Championship since the game of basketball has been invented…

    No seriously, share that with all your friends tonight.

  38. Pingback: The Sports Complex :: Blog Archive :: a look at the Phillies new pitching :: Philadelphia City Paper :: Philadelphia Arts, Restaurants, Music, Movies, Jobs, Classifieds, Blogs

  39. chris m

    July 18, 2008 at 10:44 am

    this make our team better but not much better unless he pitches where his potential is but hes never done that for long stretches. clearly we gave up too much. outman might not have been the real deal but we could of got a fuentes for around that. billy beane knows what hes doing and gillick, well you never know. if i was an A’s fan i’d be really estatic but as a phillies fan i feel apathetic. Mike T i believe this is a solid move but not a significant one where we are now the clear cut favorites in the division. To me this move is on the lines of making a move bc it was there. i think happ will do about what this guy could do and the wild card is myers.

  40. Rob E.

    July 18, 2008 at 10:50 am

    Hey anyone know what pitchs/speed Blanton has. I know a 4-seamer and a splitter? I was just wondering, I havent seen much on him. Thanks

  41. Phil

    July 18, 2008 at 10:55 am

    I’m especially okay with this move if we sign Sheets in the offseason.

    Sheets
    Hamels
    Myers
    Blanton
    Kendrick

    That’s a great rotation for next year.

  42. fred

    July 18, 2008 at 10:56 am

    I think he’s around 91-92 MPH, with a change, slider, curve and 4 seamer. All his pitches are plus, although his slider is his weakest pitch.

  43. Don M

    July 18, 2008 at 10:56 am

    Low-90s fastball… slider, curve.. good command… good arm strength so he can throw usually well past 100 pitches.. doesn’t really have an out-pitch, so he’s not a strikeout guy.

    Maybe you could have received Fuentes… but with Blanton you get a starting pitcher instead of a bullpen piece.. and you have him under contract for 2 more years I think

  44. fred

    July 18, 2008 at 10:58 am

    The real key to Blanton is his ability to work deep into games. This is what makes him a SIGNIFICANT improvement over Eaton, Kendrick and Moyer. He also helps rest the bullpen, as Don M said which is a big plus as Durbin, Romero and Madson are in danger of getting worn out working all those innings.

  45. Don M

    July 18, 2008 at 10:59 am

    Blanton isn’t going to win a Cy Young… but he’s a good addition for a couple of minor-league prospects.. and although Cardenas was our #2 guy.. I don’t even know if he was a top-100 prospect in baseball.. So its a good trade.. and eventhough you guys all think Gillick sucks, and Billy Beane is god.. the rest of baseball thinks very highly of Gillick and knows that this trade improves the Phillies

    I’ll bet the Mets try to get Burnett now

  46. PhillyFriar

    July 18, 2008 at 11:00 am

    We’re on the exact same wavelength, Tim. The Phils needed a bona fide #2 starter, and Blanton represents a #3 at his absolute best (which he’s not been at this year).

    Waking up this morning, I guess the one silver lining is that he’s the best of the B list pitchers we could have hoped for (over Wolf, Byrd, Arroyo, etc.). But no other B list pitcher would have cost as much.

  47. Mike T.

    July 18, 2008 at 11:02 am

    PhillyFriar, the “right guy” was never available to us. The “right guy” was Sabathia or maybe Harden – we know this. The Phillies didn’t have a chance to get the “right guy”. I don’t know why everyone is making it seem like the Phillies think Blanton is the savior. He isn’t. But he is an IMPROVEMENT — that’s the keyword here – IMPROVEMENT.

  48. Don M

    July 18, 2008 at 11:04 am

    THEY DIDN’T GIVE UP ANYTHING TO GET BLANTON ………..

    Arroyo is garbage.. if they would have traded for Paul Byrd, I would have stopped being a Phillies fan.. and Randy Wolf gets hurt every other week…

    That link that from “The Sports Complex” says everything that is wrong with Philly Sports… Talk Radio took one look at his record and decided he was a bum…. None of them know anything about baseball and would have complained no matter who we got.

  49. Griffin

    July 18, 2008 at 11:05 am

    Blanton is better than Eaton. This is true and the Phillies didn’t give up much for Blanton, but the Phils are in a tough spot. Do they trade Carrasco and Marson (who will be on the team next year) for a better pitcher this year?
    At this point, who should they have gotten? But, am I the only one who thinks the Cubs stole Harden and Gaudin for spare parts?

  50. Don M

    July 18, 2008 at 11:05 am

    “The MikeT & Don M Show” will air weekdays at 12noon on http://www.philliesnation.com

  51. Griffin

    July 18, 2008 at 11:07 am

    also, why isn’t Cole Hamels pitching tonight? He’s pitching Sunday which means he won’t pitch against the Muts next week. Johan pitched last night and WILL pitch against the Phillies. Why are Moyer and Kendrick starting the first two games after the break? I’m baffled….

  52. Don M

    July 18, 2008 at 11:08 am

    Harden has been on the DL 6 times in 6 years!!! If that isn’t an injury risk, I don’t know what is..

    Sabathia would have been awesome, but would have cost the whole farm, and maybe you can get him as a free agent if you want him that bad.. Burnett sucks and his contract is a joke.. Bedard is very good when healthy, and I think he still might be in the works.. the Mariners DO NOT want to keep him..

  53. Mike T.

    July 18, 2008 at 11:11 am

    Hey Don, we need Geoff to start posting, I know he’s on the same page.

  54. Mike T.

    July 18, 2008 at 11:14 am

    I’m also interested in hearing what Bruce has to say about this trace. Bruce, where are you? I’m calling you out.

  55. Phil

    July 18, 2008 at 11:14 am

    Yeah, people really need to stop taking w/l into account when looking at how good a pitcher is. Hamels should be like 13-4 right now, but he’s 9-6.

  56. Mike T.

    July 18, 2008 at 11:14 am

    *trade

  57. Griffin

    July 18, 2008 at 11:16 am

    sorry to re-post but does anyone know why Hamels isn’t pitching tonight?

  58. Phil

    July 18, 2008 at 11:16 am

    I agree Griffin. That was a bad move by MAnuel.

  59. Don M

    July 18, 2008 at 11:19 am

    They had this rotation set before the all-star break.. I guess just to rest him more. And if you pitch him against a worse team, you have a better chance of getting the win… even when he pitches well against Santana its a toss-up..

    Not a big deal, they are trying to make sure their guys are rested going into the 2nd half

  60. chris m

    July 18, 2008 at 11:30 am

    im just glad we didnt give up our farm studs at least. im not worried about his record but his era in a big ballpark. im worried what it will be in a small park if he doesnt improve. when will be his debut? it was a decent trade not great. im apathetic bc i was looking for a 2 and we got a 3/4. there really wasnt any 2’s out there w/o injury problems so he was one of the better pitchers on the market but i think this isnt a big improvement over happp and myers. now its just blanton and myers.

  61. Troy K

    July 18, 2008 at 1:28 pm

    Straight from Rob Neyer (whether you like him or not, his statistical analysis cannot be questioned):

    “Meanwhile, apparently Blanton will replace Adam Eaton in the Phillies’ rotation, or at least that’s what every Phillies fan must be hoping. Really, it’s sort of amazing that Eaton’s been allowed to pitch for as long as he has. As a rookie eight years ago, Eaton went 7-4 with a 4.13 ERA. Since then he’s never actually been good, and most of the time he’s not even been adequate. Since signing his three-year, $24.5 million contract prior to 2007, he’s 13-18 with a 6.06 ERA.

    That’s right: three-year contract. The Phillies owe Eaton another $9 million after this season, which does make releasing him now both embarrassing and (thus) difficult. Still, it probably must be done. Sunk costs and all that. Because while Blanton might have been the A’s worst starter, he’s now one of the Phillies’ best. ”

    Kind of puts it in perspective when you see an unbiased opinion like that.

  62. Don M

    July 18, 2008 at 1:32 pm

    With EATON.. just think of it is as “you already spent that money” …. he’s already paid.. that doesn’t mean you have to play him.. if he doesn’t want to go to AAA, release him… the money is gone… EATON should be too

  63. Pete

    July 18, 2008 at 1:58 pm

    The more I think about it, the more I like this trade. Blanton can pitch a ton of innings, has 3 plus pitches, and is under control for a while at a cheap price. We didn’t give up Marson, Carrasco, Golson, or Donald. Eaton is (thankfully) going to be out of the rotation. Given what was out there, I think this is the best we could have done. Bedard is injured, would have cost more, and as far as I’m concerned is a worse pitcher than Blanton anyway. Burnett has better stuff when he’s on, but is an injury risk having a down year. Plus, his cost would have been much higher and if he played well he’d be gone at the end of the year.

    To win this year, the Phils need a consistent bat. The LOOGY would be nice but isn’t strictly necessary – it would all depend on the offer. Love the Holliday speculation, but hard to see it happening. Still, if they can get Holliday for Carrasco, Donald, and one or two others, Gillick will look like a genius for saving his best ammo for Holliday and not wasting it to get a pitcher who wouldn’t be better than Blanton.

    Longer term, I think this trade is going to look even better. The rotation, as big of a headache as it has been this year, was looking even worse for next year. Eaton needed to go, we don’t know what Myers will be like when he gets back, and Moyer may decide to hang it up. Blanton fills a huge hole and will prevent us from having to overpay in free agency for a #3 starter. If the Phils go out and get Sheets as a FA (which doesn’t seem out of the question), they will have turned their biggest hole into a strength, and this trade will be a huge part of it. For now, this:

    Hamels
    Blanton
    Moyer
    Kendrick
    Myers

    looks a helluva lot better than this:

    Hamels
    Myers
    Moyer
    Kendrick
    Eaton

  64. PSU Fan

    July 18, 2008 at 1:59 pm

    I say convert Adam Eaton into a position player, Rich Ankiel-style.

    He would be a better pinch hitter than So Taguchi.

  65. Bruce

    July 18, 2008 at 2:10 pm

    Hey… I’m back from my busy schedule. I read the posts and it’s nice to see some positive opinions on the prospects for Blanton trade from the “Mike T and Don M Show” (chuckle).

    I agree that it’s an marginal improvement/upgrade for the rotation. Blanton doesn’t excite anyone, but I think we can agree that this team’s biggest problems isn’t the wow factor, its the consistency (see Eaton & Myers). And Blanton’s career stats (on average) indicates he’ll give you mid 4 ERA and 200 innings a year. And needless to say, the Phillies do need an “inning eater” type pitcher to give the bullpen some needed rest. Hopefully, with the added stability in the rotation, this give the team a better chance to make the playoffs. Beyond the playoffs? The answer to that question depends on a number of factors including potential injuries that can impact any of the contending teams lacking depth. It’s nice to know that the team has Happ waiting in the wings when needed. I also think the Phillies could use another versatile position player that can hit for decent average and ready to come off the bench when needed. To find one is easier said than done. And I don’t want to give up more of our better prospects to do it. Unrealistic? Perhaps. Let’s see what route Gillick may take, if at all, prior to the trade deadline.

    It’s will be interesting to see what will develop with Eaton for the immediate future. If the decision is made to put him in the bullpen, the lack of experience there can hurt his ability to make that transition. In his 9 yr career, he has started in 193 of his 195 game appearances. Like Myers, he has that right to accept or reject the assignment to the minors. It’s unrealistic to think he will be release and the tightfisted owners will accept a huge loss his $24 million contract. My best guess is he will be given a chance to work out his mechanics in the bullpen and hope he can be effective again (13 quality starts in 17 earlier in the season) to be the “back-up” emergency starter.

    Final note: stating the obvious…. Myers will be the key piece of the puzzle that will determine how far the Phillies will go this season.

  66. Chase Mutley

    July 18, 2008 at 2:13 pm

    Don M, man, seriously you’re just going to have to get over it. Enjoy the game. I sure hope that no one here is going out with their friends tonight and whine about sports championships while there are so many pretty girls out today in this 95 degree weather. Let the man throw a game first.

  67. NJ

    July 18, 2008 at 2:16 pm

    Blanton’s a fantastic pick-up if used in the right way. The rotation needs to be

    Cole
    Brett
    Blanton
    Moyer
    KK

    The bottom of that rotation is going to be like trying to walk through thick mud for the other hitters and Blanton is that prototypical 3, a guy who when you get past the plus stuff guys sets you up for a horrible couple of days of trying to be better prepared than the guy on the mound which is a tough ask for most hitters.

    The worry in the move is that it realies again on Myers showing up with a plus fastball and tight curve. I’ll take Blanton and consistently chewing up innings than the Mets number 3 in Perez who can only dream of consistency.

  68. ryan

    July 18, 2008 at 2:57 pm

    the phillies always take way too long to get prospects up to the bigs. Howard and Utley came up way later than they should have. Especially Howard who absolutely tore up the minors and came up way way late. I want to see Carrassco and Happ in the starting rotation next year for the whole damn year.

    i’m thinking we really need to trade myers. there’s no longer room for him here. he needs a change of scenery to rejuvenate his career anyway. get rid of him. unfortunately he has no value right now and he could potentially still turn out to be a #2 starter or a dominant closer. so if we trade him now we will seriously get ripped off and get no value

  69. ryan

    July 18, 2008 at 2:57 pm

    i agree with the earlier post as well that said Hamels needs to pitch against the mets. If they let him pitch on Sunday against the Marlins they are complete morons.

  70. Don M

    July 18, 2008 at 3:03 pm

    Chase Mutley.. is was a joke there champ

    Bring on the Muts.. I can’t wait until we face Pedro Marti… …. “El Duque” Herna…. wait, who the f*ck pitches for those guys now?

  71. Chase Mutley

    July 18, 2008 at 3:41 pm

    Don, c’mon, be honest with yourself, every single post you’ve made has been whine, whine, whine. It wasn’t a joke, you’re actually really upset and this really bothers you… chump.

  72. Chase Mutley

    July 18, 2008 at 3:50 pm

    Ryan, you know that we already had a power slugger playing the first base position blocking Howard, right? Which is it going to be? First it’s “why did you trade the second basemen shortshop?” then it’s “they don’t bring players up quick enough.” Where exactly would we have put this future all-star second baseman? We have one of, if not the, best infields in the National League.

  73. Don M

    July 18, 2008 at 4:15 pm

    Have you read anything i’ve ever posted??

    Or are you one of those clowns that creates a new name every day and tries to be funny on here, but then you try to hard, so its not funny at all…

  74. Pete

    July 18, 2008 at 5:36 pm

    Ken Rosenthal, via MLBTR:

    “The Phillies were recently working on a blockbuster with Colorado that would have netted them Brian Fuentes and Matt Holliday for something like Shane Victorino, J.A. Happ, Carlos Carrasco, and Lou Marson. Those talks have stalled, and the added payroll might’ve been a problem for the Phillies anyway.”

    http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2008/07/rosenthals-la-5.html

    Get it done Gillick

  75. Chase Mutley

    July 18, 2008 at 8:25 pm

    I’m not trying to be funny — at all. The negative-ish, it’s kinda played. It’s tiring reading it all.

  76. BM

    July 21, 2008 at 4:58 pm

    Blanton is rather mediocre. Hes better than Eaton though.

  77. Pingback: Blanton Trade Was Worth It | Phillies Nation

  78. Laptop Computer

    March 19, 2009 at 9:37 pm

    Do you guys have a recommendation section, i’d like to suggest some stuff

  79. atve

    November 18, 2009 at 12:03 pm

    Have been waiting for this kinda stuff for years

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