July 21, 2009

I usually like Neyer, but...

Do Phillies Need Halladay (or Lee)?

Can the Phillies go to war with the Dodgers (etc.) with their top four starters, as they stand right now? We're talking about Cole Hamels, Joe Blanton, Jamie Moyer, and Happ.

Is Rob kidding? The Phillies pitching has been terrible this year. Terrible. They're no longer last in the league in FIP, having been passed by the Indians, Orioles, and Brewers in the past few days, but a 4.71 FIP is pretty awful (4.88 starters, 4.42 relievers). The Phillies bullpen posted a 3,82 FIP last season, while their starters posted a slightly less terrible 4.53 FIP.

Fundamentally, the Phillies' top four starters right now are just as good as the Phillies' top four starters last year. And just in case anyone's forgotten, last year the Phillies won the World Series.

Neyer addresses this to some extent here, though he doesn't mention the bullpen stuff. Yes, the rotation isn't that fundamentally different. However, Moyer has been especially terrible this season, and Happ has outperformed his FIP by a run and a half. It's more likely that he's just an average pitcher (or worse - ZiPS still has him pegged as a 4.7 FIP pitcher).

Now though, Halladay. You don't think the Phillies would love to replace Moyer (5.58 ERA, 5.58 FIP, 4.79 ZiPS FIP) with Halladay (2.73 ERA, 2.75 FIP, 3.15 ZiPS FIP). Those Halladay numbers aren't league adjusted either. Look, I don't think they need him to win the division (see 2008 Rich Harden), though he is worth about 2 extra wins to the team by WAR. But you'd love to have that kind of pitching in your playoff rotation.


The G ofSports said...

At anothercubsblog you said you didn't understand the comment about the cubs and third higghest payroll in sports. Now you are college educated right? A payroll is the amount of money a team spends on it's players through contracts and bonuses and such. The Chicago Cubs have the third highest one in baseball. I said this being fasetious(sarcastic) because you would think the third highest payroll in baseball would be able to conjure up more than 2 runs in 22 innings.

Jeff said...

You're an english major? Seriously? I weep for the future of our language.

Ben said...

As a Phillies fan, I don't want them to trade Happ for Holliday. Happ has been our best pitcher. Although I would love to add an ace to the rotation, I would rather not replace our best pitcher, even if it is a slight upgrade.

Also, how about that series? A blowout, a pitchers duel, and a shootout. What more can a guy ask for? (I guess I could ask for the sweep)

ps - fasetious? in that rant? really?! The parentheses must have been a definition of the new spelling.

Jeff said...

Ben, Happ has been great but I don't think you'll find anyone who will tell you that he's *this* good. If the Phillies could flip him for Halladay while his value is high that would be a great move.

Believe it or not, this was a much more coherent post by that guy than what he was posting over at anothercubsblog. Apparently he never took English 001: how to use paragraphs.

Great series, though some ugly baseball from the Cubs in those first two games. I'm annoyed that the Cubs didn't pitch Gregg in Tuesday's game - Lou was managing for the save but it cost him the win. Grrr...