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Playing the Rube: A Baseball Experiment – Chapter 4 – Pomp and Circumvention

The Phillies won a world championship in 2008.

Then Ruben Amaro Jr. was named general manager.

The Phillies didn’t win another world championship.

Tim Malcolm and Dan Walsh wonder if they can do better. So, we continue “Playing the Rube,” a weekly series with accompanying podcast in which Tim and Dan attempt to steer the Phillies to more victories, starting in 2009, through the deep simulation game OOTP Baseball ’18.



Spring training has ended. The regular season is upon us, and while our roster isn’t perfect, it’s in decent shape:

  • C: Carlos Ruiz / Chris Coste
  • IF: Ryan Howard / Chase Utley / Greg Dobbs / Jimmy Rollins / Pedro Feliz / Eric Bruntlett
  • OF: Raul Ibanez / Jayson Werth / Matt Stairs / Brian Stavisky / John Mayberry Jr.
  • SP: Cole Hamels / Joe Blanton / Brett Myers / Kyle Kendrick
  • RP: Brad Lidge / Ryan Madson / Chad Durbin / Scott Eyre / Chan Ho Park / Clay Condrey / Mike Zagurski / Rodrigo Lopez

But there are holes, primarily in the rotation and outfield, all thanks to injuries. JA Happ, Andrew Carpenter and Jamie Moyer are all out, while Shane Victorino is going to miss the first two weeks of the regular season.

Still, we’re not excited about both Stavisky and Mayberry on the final 25-man roster. So we talk about picking up a hitter off waivers. And there are options:

We feel the best option, fitting our needs and philosophy, is Tike Redman, so we post a claim on him. And he goes through. And then Charlie Manuel makes him a starter who bats second in a lineup with Utley, Werth and Howard. Okay.

Anyway, we play opening night against Atlanta. It’s a good game. You should listen!

Then we simulate the next five games. Not so fun.

We also go back and forth a little more with the pitcher we’re flirting with, Colby Lewis, until, finally, we get a big message that changes everything.

Listen to “Playing the Rube” below!

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