Removing Lidge Would Cause Great Concern – Phillies Nation

Removing Lidge Would Cause Great Concern

LidgeCurrently we’re being told Brad Lidge should be fine and just needs a few days rest. He could be ready to pitch tonight against Washington. Still, there is a sense of paranoia surrounding Lidge, since this knee problem isn’t anything new (it was the body part that received surgery before 2008).

If we remove Lidge from the bullpen, here’s the composition:

Closer: Ryan Madson
Setup: Chad Durbin
LOOGY: Scott Eyre
Middle: Clay Condrey
Middle: Gary Majewski/Mike Koplove/Tyler Walker
Middle Lefty: Jack Taschner
Long: JA Happ

Scared? You bet I am.

It’s nothing against Durbin (who was fantastic in 3.2 innings yesterday) or Condrey (currently ninth in the ESPN Cy Predictor), but their quick overuse has me paranoid. Moreover, while Madson has the physical stuff to save games, does he have the mental stuff? His trial run against the Nationals was a nice preview, but that was the Nationals. What about this weekend against the Mets, a team who knows Madson very well (though he does have a 2.89 ERA against New York)?

Point is, the Phils are already down one reliever (JC Romero) and can’t afford to lose another high-leverage specialist. It might suffice for a week. But a DL stint? No thanks.

So how could the Phils remedy things if Lidge had to hit the DL?

Maybe bringing up a young fireballer (Jason Knapp?) could be the crazy idea that might work.

Click to comment


  1. Jeffrey

    April 29, 2009 at 10:39 am

    Nobody wants to lose Lidge but I think we’re fortunate to have Gary Majewski stored away in AAA. I saw him pitch a bunch when he was with the Nationals a few years back and I think he’d slot nicely into the role Durbin has played for the Phils the last two years while Lidge heals.
    I also think we couldn’t do much better than Madson as a back-up closer.

  2. Griffin

    April 29, 2009 at 10:58 am

    I think Condrey would be in the setup role and Durbin in middle relief. Either way, it’s trouble and I’m very worried about the bullpen being taxed. Bottom line, the starters need to go deeper into games.

  3. Chutley

    April 29, 2009 at 11:04 am

    ITS APRIL/May. No worries. Hamels is 0-2 7.27 ERA and we’re still only a half game out. Lidge came in late last season too. If its August and Lidge is hurt then we can find a bridge to jump off. We had the best bullpen in baseball last year, but this year they wont save a game without Lidge? WE’ll be there in September and that’s when we need them healthy, not April 29th.

  4. Evan

    April 29, 2009 at 11:06 am

    Madson stepped up last year in the post season. He was able to play under pressure then, he’s got great speed, and he has an excellent changeup to go with a ridiculous fastball.

    I like him. He’s probably a better closer than some guys who are actually pitching the 9th for other teams.

  5. Chooch's Cooches

    April 29, 2009 at 11:09 am

    I think the great news is that we’re still winning games. That buys us time, at least.

  6. mikemike

    April 29, 2009 at 11:11 am

    Knapp is eighteen, One player in the minors who might help is a college relief pitcher we drafted. He right now is in Clearwater, He is twenty three years old and has been dominate since we took him last draft. Swimmer is 6’8 and can bring it plus he has faced top competion coming out of virginia college

  7. Albert

    April 29, 2009 at 11:11 am

    I’m not really worried about the overuse of Condry at this point. Once our starting pitching finds a nice groove Condry will be used less and less.

    I wouldn’t be too concerned if Lidge spends some time on the DL because we havea nice stock of AAA relievers who have MLB experience. For now, lets ride the hot hand of Condry and give Lidges knee some rest.

  8. 85

    April 29, 2009 at 11:23 am

    I don’t think a guy like Knapp is the right call. That’s a move for a team that’s flailing and desperate. The team is hitting well right now, and the pen, while being overused, is still getting guys out (Monday night’s HR Derby notwithstanding). For now, let’s patch it together with what we’ve got. I’d even be OK with a 15-day DL stint for Lidge if that’s what it took to get him right. There’s depth at AAA, get some use out of it if need be. The starting pitching literally can’t get worse, so hope it gets better and hope the bats keep it up for the time being.

    JC’s back in a little over a month, and he’ll have no wear on his arm. Stay afloat, keep the faith. In offense we trust.

  9. Richie

    April 29, 2009 at 11:25 am

    Why not give Drabek a shot, Knapp is 18.

  10. mikemike

    April 29, 2009 at 11:39 am

    Drabek isn’t physcial ready yet, he is coming off a injury and needs innings, to see how he holds up without pressure of trying to get out big league hitters, If he holds up he will be real close to taking either Myers or Blanton spot next season. He will be a september callup if he isn’t injured.

  11. Justin

    April 29, 2009 at 11:40 am

    While i like and admire the suggestion of Knapp Tim, when have you ever seen the Phils rush a kid’s development? They won’t do it with Knapp, he’s still learning how to pitch at this level. Mikemike has a good point with the idea of Schwimer being added but he’s only faced High A talent, at least go with Bastardo if your going to call up a prospect, he’s dealing in AA, and seeing better talent. If they did that then the Phils could at least give Schwimer a chance to deal to a better level of talent, either way he’s not long for Clearwater, he and Drabek will probably be on the move to Reading once the weather gets warmer consistently.

  12. Don M

    April 29, 2009 at 11:53 am

    Why take young starters and halt their development by putting them into unfamiliar situations… ones where, even if they succeed, they’d be sent back down to their old jobs.

    Its a no-win

    If Lidge had to go on the DL, I think Mike Koplove would get the call right now.. a few more K’s.. lower batting average against than Majewski

    Or how about this Lefty, Matt German, currently in Reading:
    (career 2.88 ERA going into this season, with 110 K’s in 93.2 Innings, with a 1.14 WHIP)

    2009 – 8 games, 11.2 Innings = 6 hits, 6 walks, 16 K’s, 0.00 ERA and Opponents batting just .146 against him

  13. beta sigma shag

    April 29, 2009 at 11:53 am

    Fist off wasn’t it just last week how you were saying we have all these young arms in the minors pitching great. Well this is a good time to give them a shot at the big time if Lidge goes on DL. And I am not sure how you can question Madson ability to handle pressure, he did awsome in the playoffs and WS. And he definatley has the stuff to be an awsome closer. upper 90s fastball and a killer change at what 80. Other then over use, I am not worried about Lidge if he needs to go the DL. I do not follow the minors except for what I here on here, but if we have the young arms let them pitch in the majors for two weeks experience never hurts

  14. christopher

    April 29, 2009 at 11:54 am

    the overwork of the bullpen is definitely a concern. they need to get another arm in there ASAP and get cairo off the team. once that is done i won’t be too worried about madson filling in for lidge, and the rest of the bullpen can handle their roles. they just need another arm in there to keep things fresh… and man oh man will it be great when they get back JC.

  15. bull

    April 29, 2009 at 12:13 pm

    the starters are taxing the bullpen, in the interim bring up a righty that can pitch long relief like they are doing with Happ…maybe the two of them alternate long relief until the starters settle down…put lidge on the dl and push our 4 everyday guys back…madson, condrey, durbin and eyre

  16. mikemike

    April 29, 2009 at 12:20 pm

    Don M German I am told topps out at 82 miles a hour, Can’t figure out why he is so effective, I Know he is a sidewinder, He is like Swindle from last year a loogy.

  17. Geoff

    April 29, 2009 at 12:20 pm

    I dont like interfering with the development of young starting pitchers. Knapp needs to dominate for another year and a half before they should think about calling him up at all. Sometimes its ok to call up starters to work in relief, but you have to be VERY careful and make sure they get enough work. Bastardo, for example, has shown he can work fine out of the bullpen as well as starting. However, using someone like Carrasco out of the bullpen is not really a good idea.

    Call up Majewski, Bastardo, Koplove, or someone like that.

  18. mikemike

    April 29, 2009 at 12:26 pm

    The real answer to the problem isn’t Koplove or Majweski, or any other reliever, its getting the starters deeper into games, if they continue then we need a top starter who can give us innings. The best thing right now is we have some ammuntion to pull off a trade for Peavy or Oswalt if we have to do it. Drabek, Donald, Galvis, Brown, Knapp, Marson, they are stud prospect, beside Stutes and Worley we have the prospect to do a trade if they need to.

  19. Joe A.

    April 29, 2009 at 12:28 pm

    Koplove and majweski suck really bad i have seen them so many times at lehigh valley and they are very inconsistent and cannot throw strikes! Drabek and carrassco would be a better fit for the bull pen if lidge cant go

  20. Don M

    April 29, 2009 at 12:29 pm

    I’m not sure if that beta-sigma-shag comment was directed at me or not?… I was never too hot on the great first week the prospects had.. the same way I was never upset that the Phillies were playing .500 ball to start the season.

    Read back over the comments if you want.. you bring established guys into your organization for the simple reason that if one of your regulars goes down, you have someone with experience to fill-in..

    that is why Majewski and Koplove are here, and the reason I believe either would get the call if a need came up

    German’s thrown 11.2 Innings already.. so he’s pitching to more than just a hitter or two per game. I didn’t know anything about him.. I don’t think i’d ever heard of him before I just looked at Reading’s stats.. maybe him topping out at 82 messes with the hitter’s timing THAT much, but that should induce more pop-ups than it does Strikeouts

  21. Don M

    April 29, 2009 at 12:32 pm

    Drabek and Carrasco WILL NOT BE PUT INTO THE BULLPEN…

    no TOP pitching prospect is going to be pulled from their development to fill-in to an unfamiliar role at the highest level..

    Happ can’t accomplish anything more at AAA, he’s obviously good enough to be in the Majors.. and he would be in the rotation on probably 25 of the teams in baseball.

    Drabek is at least two years away from the Majors..

    Carrasco MIGHT see some action here this year, but probably only a spot-start or September callup.. Next year he could be in the rotation if all goes as planned

  22. Geoff

    April 29, 2009 at 12:33 pm

    The last thing they need it to being up another junkballer with Moyer stuff to give up EVEN MORE home runs….

  23. mikemike

    April 29, 2009 at 12:36 pm

    I have been asking about him on phuturephillies, I know he is pitching more than a loogy but that is what he project as in the majors. I couldn’t believe he was that effective at that slow speed, maybe its the sidewinding motion he has, not sure all I know is he is big ,But the real answer as I stated is longer starts, they must get us to the seventh inning or at least 6 in each start, early exit by starters kill your pen.

  24. mikemike

    April 29, 2009 at 12:40 pm

    Sorry hit key one thing I totally disagree on is Drabek I really believe if he doesn’t get hurt he is a september call up and fights next year for a spot. The talent is there and he has the bloodline, a father who coaches him and was a pitcher so in my opinion he is advanced, The biggest knocks on this kid were size which he has grown and attitude that is why he slip in the draft.

  25. Geoff

    April 29, 2009 at 12:41 pm

    I agree that the answer is to get more quality innings from your starting pitching….thats always the case…

    however, I dont think they need another soft-tossing member of this staff who throws a sinker that doesnt sink, a slider that doesnt slide, a cutter that doesnt cut, and a curveball thas doesnt curve. Thats a recipe for disaster.

  26. mikemike

    April 29, 2009 at 12:44 pm

    Geoff Says listen to people who have seen German he is another Swindle. do you remember him?

  27. Don M

    April 29, 2009 at 12:46 pm

    hhahaa I’m not asking for German to get put on the roster.. I just saw those numbers..

    and like I always say, Stats show a lot, but they don’t show everything..

    If he was as good as he numbers indicated, we would have heard of him a long time ago..

    But really, Koplove and Majewski were brought here IN CASE.. so if something happens, one of them gets the nod

  28. christopher

    April 29, 2009 at 12:49 pm

    koplove and majewski certainly suck at throwing strikes in spring training, going up against a higher caliber of opponents than they are now… have they both really fell off that bad?

  29. christopher

    April 29, 2009 at 12:50 pm

    certainly didn’t suck, that should say =D

  30. Don M

    April 29, 2009 at 12:50 pm

    Kyle Drabek has a total of ZERO innings at any level above Class-A Clearwater… at Clearwater, he’s got a total of 24 innings.

    While he’s looked strong.. he’s only recently removed from Tommy John (at a young age for the surgery)

    I’d like to see him continue to excel at A, then move up to Reading in the 2nd half of the season…

    It wouldn’t be a stretch to think we might see him in 2011, but I highly doubt he’ll be anywhere close to the Majors in September

  31. gabriel

    April 29, 2009 at 12:51 pm

    two words:

  32. Geoff

    April 29, 2009 at 12:53 pm

    Drabeks got a year at the earliest. My thinking is Myers will walk…replaced with Carrasco (presuming Moyer and Park/Happ hold up), then the follwing year Blanton will walk…replaced by Drabek.

  33. shag beta sigma delta

    April 29, 2009 at 12:55 pm

    I didn’t mean to offend and I was not directing my comments to anyone person, the point I attempted to make was, isn’t there young relievers in our minor system that are doing good we can bring up for two weeks, I agree you don’t want to bring up a young starter to pitch every 2 or 3 days for an inning or two. And I am not worried at all at Madson being able to close

  34. Brett

    April 29, 2009 at 12:56 pm

    I seem to remember both Koplove and Majewski doing very well in Spring Training. Am I wrong?

  35. gabriel

    April 29, 2009 at 1:03 pm

    koplove started hot and had one or two crappy outings… majewski i was almost positive was a lock for the 25 man roster but… insurance policies are nice too. oh btw i sell allstate insurance if anyone’s interested lol

  36. Don M

    April 29, 2009 at 1:05 pm

    They both did well.. and they are both continuing to pitch well in AAA

    Either would be a nice addition if somebody had to spend some time on the DL

    Neither will win the Cy Young this year, but as fill-in relievers, they look like they would be pretty good.

    You don’t want to bring up “young relievers” because most times, they are overwhelmed by tough competition.. which is why so many relievers stay in the game for a long time.. guys that might pitch awesome with 3,000 fans watching them in a Double-A stadium, all of a sudden can’t find the strikezone with 43,000 people watching..

  37. Brooks

    April 29, 2009 at 1:10 pm

    This could be this years story line – pitcher pulled in to fill key starting role on Phils squad – I say it wont be too long before we see a visit from Carrasco and more innings from Happ.
    Joe B, Scott Eyre and Myers have to figure out why the ball is jumping out on them.
    Is Cole upset because he should have been able to sustain a pic on his ankle? Is that something we see Chase Utley do on a very frequent basis. No doubt, he is quite upset at himself.
    So much power this year, so refreshing to see the Phils own another winning percentage in the month of April – the last time they came out and had a winning April? Last year. The WS champions are looking good. And this is pretty much all offense so far

  38. Griffin

    April 29, 2009 at 1:19 pm

    Marlins score 2 off of Johan in the first.

  39. Sam D.

    April 29, 2009 at 1:22 pm

    We have quite a few options down in the minors because all of the minor league free agents that the phillies signed in the offseason

  40. mikemike

    April 29, 2009 at 1:26 pm

    The one thing I can tell you is he is heading to reading as soon as the weather changes, barring injuries or some other pitching setback. They want him in warmer weather. And I may be way off base on him being here in september, but he has all the tools to be something special and they will challenge him. Where as with other prospect Knapp it going to be slow. Knapp has a delievery they are trying to change for fear of injury a lot of people think because of his delivery his future is as a reliver, This year they did something they don’t normal do and that was fast track, Stutes and Worley and Worley I believe is twenty,I think they have change the way there farm system runs, a lot of the coaches in double aa and triple aa were changed.

  41. Griffin

    April 29, 2009 at 1:31 pm

    mikemike, if you’re talking about Drabek, I’m with you. He is tearing up A ball and the Phils are just waiting until the weather gets better to bring him to Reading. Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus said that if he had a re-do of his preseason prospect rankings, Drabek would definitely be in the top 100, maybe even top 50. That is high praise.

  42. Bruce

    April 29, 2009 at 1:35 pm

    With Geoff, anything below 90 mph is considered “junk” for a pitcher. Velocity matters more than location it seems. (chuckles)

    I’m more concern about Hamels’ situation. The rotation is already out of order and as one poster here stated, the early struggles of the starters is “taxing” the bullpen. The team have an N.L.-high 5.72 ERA and have allowed a homer in all but one of their 19 games (the one that Moyer was outstanding). I read that at their current rate, the Phillies would allow 341 homers this season. The major league record for homers allowed in a season is 241, by the 1996 Detroit Tigers. The Phillies are fortunate they have a winning record thanks to NINE “comeback” wins of the eleven they have. Needless to say that is not the usual way of winning. During the course of the season, the offense is not always going to be there. The peaks and valleys with inevitable offensive slumps will require solid pitching of both starters and bullpen. That’s why I am concern that Hamels and Lidge get healthy as soon as possible and minimize potential problems with other pitchers.

  43. Doug D.

    April 29, 2009 at 1:59 pm

    If Lidge goes on the DL, there’s no reason to bring up Jason Knapp at all. Why would the Phils want to start his “service time” clock? Bring Majewski and Koplove (if Hamels has to go n the DL, too.) That’s why the Phils acquired these two relievers and signed them to Minor League contracts — as insurance policies for injuries, overuse, and/or ineffectiveness…As far as Madson closing, I think he will be just fine. Sure the Mets have seen him, but he didn’t start throwing 96-97 mph until late last year. Mad Dog didn’t throw that much against the Mets late last year. Also, he knows how to pitch up in the zone (and of course, a little above the zone) with heat. The Mets don’t have anyone who can handle high cheese like his. In fact, there are only a handful of hitters in all of baseball that can.

  44. Geoff

    April 29, 2009 at 2:10 pm

    Obviously not…location is key. But If merely doing one or the other was acceptable anyone could be a pitcher in professional baseball. Moyer is a soft tosser for sure, but he can still throw 82mph and change speeds. You HAVE to be able to change speeds. Still, he throws all garbage with ONE really good pitch (changeup).

    But If there are guys in the majors that throw 72 mph fastballs and 52 mph breaking stuff (RJ Swindle) then I should just go and head and try out for the Riversharks or the Trenton Thunder next week!

  45. Geoff

    April 29, 2009 at 2:12 pm

    The slower you throw, the more you have to know how to “pitch” and locate your spots and setup hitters. Thats where Moyer is proficient despite all the things I dislike about him.

  46. Justin

    April 29, 2009 at 2:13 pm

    off topic but does anyone else wish we kept paulino and traded coste? paulino’s battin .333 with a homer and 5 rbis, coste is hitting .189 with zero hrs and 5 rbis.

  47. Manny

    April 29, 2009 at 2:18 pm

    I’d rather have Koplove or Majewski, as well. No need to call the younger guys yet.

  48. Don M

    April 29, 2009 at 2:38 pm

    Jason Knapp??… he’d probably have the same success against Major League hitters as he does against the guys that Lakewood plays…

    People are nuts

  49. christopher

    April 29, 2009 at 2:43 pm

    nah i still don’t want paulino, coste isn’t off to a good start but i’m glad he’s there to work with marson in this situation. marson has said in the past that he looks up to coste and tries to learn as much as possible from him when he gets the chance to be around him.

  50. Griffin

    April 29, 2009 at 2:49 pm

    The “speedsters” Fernando Tatis and Daniel Murphy have stolen bases off of Paulino so far today. Paulino is hitting well, but it’s a small sample size.

  51. Woodman

    April 29, 2009 at 3:41 pm

    Putz (isn’t that a great name for a MUTS reliver?) just coughed the lead in the eight inning…… seems like old times!

  52. lm

    April 29, 2009 at 3:48 pm

    lets just get this out there – Madson is greatness!!

  53. mikemike

    April 29, 2009 at 3:54 pm

    you might see it after this upcoming draft, what I mean is a pitcher going to the majors with little minor league time. This kid Strasberg is considerd the best draft prospect ever, I never saw him but they say he is far and away the best pitching prospect they ever saw.

  54. Griffin

    April 29, 2009 at 4:01 pm

    yeah, Strasburg is the real deal. He will be a superstar. The Nationals have the first overall pick thanks to having the worst record in baseball last year. They can thank the Phillies for sweeping them and the Mariners for sweeping a meaningless series against the A’s at the end of the season, thus giving the Mariners one extra win than the Nats.

  55. mikemike

    April 29, 2009 at 6:47 pm

    One thing about pitchers they scare me. Coming out of college Prior was just unhittable. I think he had a record for wins, look at his career, same thing with Wood his stuff was electric. never could stay healthy.

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