Bullpen Struggles in 12-5 Loss to Twins – Phillies Nation
2013 Spring Training

Bullpen Struggles in 12-5 Loss to Twins

It was not a happy 23rd birthday for Adam Morgan, who gave up four runs, albeit three unearned, to the Twins in a 12-5 loss. While much of Morgan’s demise was due to sloppy defense, the same could not be said for the performances of Justin De Fratus and B.J. Rosenberg. De Fratus and Rosenberg each gave up three earned in an inning pitched each.

The Good

In order to compete in 2013, the Phillies will need to have major contributions from first base, second base, and at least one corner outfield position. The good news: Ryan Howard and Domonic Brown have gotten off to scorching starts in Spring Training and again came up big. Howard had a hit, walk and RBI while Brown went 1-2 with two walks, three runs scored, and an RBI. Kevin Frandsen had another nice game of his own, going 2-4, and Ben Revere also had two hits, accentuated with two runs and a stolen base.

The pitching was not all bad: John Lannan struck out one, scattered four hits, and gave up one earned while Antonio Bastardo had his second straight scoreless spring appearance. Mauricio Robles pitched a scoreless eighth.

Areas of Opportunity

In their second rough outings in a row, both De Fratus and Rosenberg struggled. Morgan’s outing was more a result of bad fielding than bad pitching.

Two early storylines are developing: which young arm will step up to the plate and take one of the final bullpen pieces and can Frandsen play his way into the third base gig? Neither De Fratus, Rosenberg, or Mike Stutes has impressed early. Phillippe Aumont has to remain the consensus favorite to snag one spot, but there could be two other spots available. And Frandsen has been raking early while Michael Young has looked lost in the field. How long of a leash will Young get at third, particularly if he cannot shake off the cobwebs quickly?



  1. Lefty

    February 27, 2013 at 5:43 pm

    Michael Young will get a very long leash, but man, Cody Asche sure looked good yesterday.

  2. Roland Schwinn

    February 27, 2013 at 5:53 pm

    We all knew Michael Young would be a butcher defensively when the trade was made, so we’re not finding out anything that we didn’t expect. The Phillies are still on the hook for $6 million of his contract, so we’ll be seeing plenty of Young this season.

  3. Ken Bland

    February 27, 2013 at 6:27 pm

    Regarding Stutes, I would disassociate him from BJ and DeFratus, who really have their own individual situations as well, but Stutes coming off an injury, and having pitched for the parent club for longer time previously seems most separable.

    While I’d like to see him, or a couple guys step up by Opening Day, I think we might need to be patient with him. It won’t surprise me if he needs more than 4 weeks to be ready for important Phillie assignments off his long layoff. But I’m hopeful that by around May, he’ll be a breath of fresh air to the pen.

    I don’t know about DeFratus, and I REALLY don’t know about BJ.

  4. Bruce

    February 27, 2013 at 6:33 pm

    Jeez! It’s february 27th. and report cards on players already being given out (chuckles). Let’s be serious and allow time for pitchers and position players alike to fine tune their pitches and timing their swings; to throw strikes and to execute fundamentals properly in the field. Players like Michael Young, Darin Ruf and Dominic Brown have the benefit of spring training to learn their new positions in the field (Young relearning 3B). And you know Amaro having paid megabucks to Young has no intention of seeing Young sit on the bench or playing part time.

  5. Kmoney

    February 27, 2013 at 6:45 pm

    When Polanco replaced Feliz he struggled in st then regaining form opening day. Lets young follows that route.

  6. George

    February 27, 2013 at 7:33 pm

    Another garbage game. But it’s early, young players are too anxious to please, new guys are trying to get used to new surroundings, there’s no real book on some of the other team’s new players, and the vets aren’t going to expend themselves when they know they’ll be facing a long season. The Phils can lose all their spring contests for all I care, just so long as they’re all healthy and in game ready mode by opening day.

    • Chuck A.

      February 27, 2013 at 7:57 pm

      Exaaaaaactly… I wish a few others on here (one in particular whose name I won’t mention) would understand this concept.

  7. Bart Shart

    February 27, 2013 at 7:55 pm

    Let’s hope the hitting of Brown and Howard continue beyond Spring Training. And, yes, we would indeed like to experience Stutes as a “breath of fresh air to the Pen around May.” Now that is really profound editorial contribution.

  8. Bart Shart

    February 27, 2013 at 8:01 pm

    Michael Young deserves a long leash. He has been an outstanding player all of his career. I hope he has the durability of Pete Rose, who played and was productive past age 40. If that is the case, then Young will likely become a Hall-of-Famer.

    • schmenkman

      February 27, 2013 at 8:49 pm

      I think “outstanding” is a stretch, Bart. I know I will need to defend this, but he’s only been a somewhat above-average hitter, overall, and not a very good fielder.

      • schmenkman

        February 27, 2013 at 8:50 pm

        (but that’s a different question from whether he deserves a chance to play, and unless they find someone who will take him in a trade, he is probably their best option at third this year)

  9. Andrew from Waldorf

    February 27, 2013 at 8:03 pm

    What do people really expect from Young?

    His homers have declined each of the last 4 years.
    His OPS fell .175 just last year alone.

    He is going from the best line up and hitters park and situation in the MLB to one of the worst line ups in MLB.

    I am not expecting alot offensively. 8 homers and 67 rbi in 156 games with the rangers.
    Now a year older?

    He better field his position like Polanco did.
    Or there wont be alot of love for this guy.

  10. Bart Shart

    February 27, 2013 at 8:10 pm

    Michael Young is a disciplined, in-shape, talented achiever. He had a bad year last year and he is getting older, But, if you take a look at a lot of great players, you will find hiccups and down years. Often when traded, they feel they have something to prove. I believe and hope that is the case with Michael Young. I predict that he hits 22 homers, drives in 92 runs and bats .312. His fielding will not be a good as Polanco’s, but it will be respectable. But remember, I am an optimist when it comes to the Phils. And I have been wrong before.

    • schmenkman

      February 27, 2013 at 8:55 pm

      Young’s career high in home runs is 24, while playing in one of the best home run in baseball. At the age of 36, he is now moving to a park that’s tougher than average (believe it or not) for right-handed hitters.

      • schmenkman

        February 27, 2013 at 9:17 pm

        *…while playing in one of the best home run _parks_ in baseball.

  11. Andrew from Waldorf

    February 27, 2013 at 8:20 pm

    Hope you are correct Bart.

    I am more inclined to see him on the deline like so many of the others here.
    He hasnt had 22 homers since 2009.

    Hitting in texas in the summer is a real hitters delight.

    I think if you get .290 15 homers and good defensive play you should be very happy.

    I know he wasnt hapy there last year. So hope there is something to the change of scenary angle.

  12. Bart Shart

    February 28, 2013 at 2:13 am

    I hope I’m right about Young, as well. We’ll just have to wait and see.

  13. Brooks

    February 28, 2013 at 6:20 am

    It would be nice to see the BP string together a few good innings but no concerns.

  14. Lefty

    February 28, 2013 at 7:32 am

    Arc, It’s clear you don’t like the way the front office is run. We’ve all read it six times. What else you got? Because you’re seriously starting to bore me.

    So, tell us how are you going to fix it? By calling people names like rockhead on a baseball blog? Yup that’s pretty mature I guess, if you’re into 5th grade mentality. That will go a long way toward fixing the problem. But alas, it’s the internet, where you can say what you want, and act like a child if you want.

    It’s a shame, because I agree with some of what you’re saying. BTW- You don’t actually think anyone in PR in the Phillies really reads this stuff and rushes back to RA Jr’s desk with the latest bulletins do you?

    “Ruben, quick! We have to take immediate action, a poster named arc is trashing us! We better change the team right now! Get rid of Delmon, they hate him, eat the 6mil spent on Michael Young, or trade him now! Cancel both the Howard and Papelbon contracts. Start getting rid of players while they are in their prime to get great prospects back like good organizations do. Hurry, arc is spreading the word like wildfire. I’m telling you we must act quickly!!!!! ”

    Come on dude, seriously? Who is your audience?

    What’s your end game here? To educate us rockheads? To tell us your plan so we can all start drinking your kool aid?

    How about this for a plan?

    Stop acting like a condescending asshole that treats everyone else like they are stupid. When you offend the community, THIS good community, no one will take you seriously. God knows if you’ve got AFW (of all people) telling you that, you should listen.

    • Chuck A.

      February 28, 2013 at 7:54 am

      Like I said yesterday, AFW seems pretty knowledgeable and likable compared to this guy. I agree with some of what Arc is saying as well. There HAVE been some head-scratching moves by the front office that I don’t necessarily agree with. But whining 3 or 4 games into Spring Training (when it’s still February)…. that the Phillies haven’t scored enough runs or that they suck or are done or whatever complaint he can think of… isn’t constructive at all.

      “Rockhead” though… I kind of like it. It’s original enough (at least on here). Kind of reminds me of The Flintstones. Takes me back to the good old days of my youth.

      • George

        February 28, 2013 at 8:59 am

        Maybe Arc wasn’t refering to the fans (I don’t read his drivel these days), but instead was calling the players “rockheads.” That would fit when one considers that AFW has called the team “fossils” in some of his comments.

        If he was indeed calling the commenters here a bunch of “rockheads,” I wish he’d say which kind of rocks. I’d like to know whether my head is sedimentary, so I could sell it for shale oil, or igneous, which might contain some very valuable rare earth metals. With my luck, though, it’s probably some sort of garbage metamorphic stuff, not even good for cat litter.

      • Chuck A.

        February 28, 2013 at 9:21 am

        Or how about a moon rock? That would certainly be pretty valuable.

    • Ken Bland

      February 28, 2013 at 11:33 am

      Stop acting like a condescending asshole that treats everyone else like they are stupid. When you offend the community,”

      I’m not thrilled with diverting from a personal policy of discussing posters instead of the Phils and baseball, but this won’t be the first time I’ve done that, so what the hey.

      I’m getting a couple impressions from reactions to arc’s conversation (how’s that word choice for polite?).

      One, I’m amazed that people are saying they agree with some of what he says. You have to sort through some ridiculous rhetoric to get to his singular point. His first post here was a triple Moby Dick length comparison of whathe learned from painting a house in Wynnewood to Ruben Amaro’s flaws were. It seems that on a pitch called high and outside for a ball, arc thinks it’s a cue to criticize Ruben Amaro in a way that would best be compared to blaming the gun manufacturer for the Kennedy assassination.Brooks announced yesterday that he likes kool aid, and AFW provided a site of what to mix kool aid with, and in the reply section to the kool aid information, not to be confused with originating a post, arc ripped amaro for the 492nd straight time.

      Secondly, I get the idea that people think his problem is that he’s ripping Phillie fans here and across the land, and he should at lerast be diplomatic. Personally, I don’t think that’s apples related to oranges. Diplomacy won’t change his ideeology which I would best describe from a choice of words that might fit in the category of verbally abusive.

      I’m amazed that several people have attempted to have an actual conversation with him. To each their own.

      I’d consider arc’s contribution to have validated the list of great rivalries in sports that might look like this, take your pick on the order…

      Canadiens-Maple Leafs
      Phillie fans versus all others
      Phillie fans versus the world

      • Dave

        February 28, 2013 at 11:52 am

        Ken…who are you guys talking about? I don’t see anyone on this thread named Arc….

      • Ken Bland

        February 28, 2013 at 12:05 pm


        Sloppy structure on my part. Top of my comment is a quote from deep in a Lefty post a few above which I didn’t attribute, That quote was what I was using as a basis of my comment.

      • Lefty

        February 28, 2013 at 1:25 pm

        Dave- Actually it’s my bad, I just realized that I put my comment in the wrong place, it should have gone in the Phils -Twins Gameday post yesterday. Crap, now he’ll probably never even see it.

      • Ken Bland

        February 28, 2013 at 1:29 pm

        No, but I saw it at least. And the official scorer’s forthcoming change of the error to you from me keeps myperfect typing record in place. Well, in my imagination at least.

      • Lefty

        February 28, 2013 at 4:07 pm

        Sorry, but although I do get credited for the error, the official scorer has decided that you keep the error as well. His ruling was that he can’t remove it properly as your picture changes every six hours. Just a case of mistaken identity, I wouldn’t fret too much over it.

      • Ken Bland

        February 28, 2013 at 5:19 pm

        I took that as a hint that I should change the picture. Wonder how they’ll like the new one.

      • Lefty

        February 28, 2013 at 5:39 pm

        If I’m ever in a jam and need to do a great escape, you’re the man. Hope your price ain’t too high, I’m only giving up half the loot.

  15. Dave

    February 28, 2013 at 10:55 am

    I see the bullpen as Papelbon, Adams, Bastardo, Durbin, and either Horst or Aumont or both, depending on how many relievers they carry. I know some of these other guys technically have a chance, but they would have to pitch lights out to jump ahead of anyone else. Am I missing something?

    • Ken Bland

      February 28, 2013 at 12:08 pm

      Well, they’ll carry either 11 or 12 pitchers, and you listed 6 with an either or. So either or could easily be and with the 5 starters. Certainly seem on track with the names mentioned, assuming health.

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