Michael/Male/26-30. Lives in United States/Pennsylvania/Wexford/Christopher Wren, speaks English. Spends 20% of daytime online. Uses a Fast (128k-512k) connection. And likes baseball /politics.
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Friday, November 02, 2007

Free Agents 

Today’s a Friday and I haven’t gotten a chance to put together a discussion of the Phillies other three minor league teams yet. I’m also working on my Season in Review series right now, so there are a lot of logs in the fire.

So far the following Phillies have declared Free Agency:

Kyle Lohse
Freddy Garcia
Rod Barajas
J.C. Romero
Antonio Alfonseca
Jose Mesa
Abraham Nunez
Aaron Rowand
Jon Lieber

Obviously the Phillies have no interest in re-signing Nunez and Barajas since they declined their options in both players. Garcia is out of the Phillies price range, so he’s a goner, and Mesa, Alfonseca and Lieber are players whom the Phillies likely regard as too old and possessing declining skills. There are only three players who the Phillies would be interested in re-signing. Lohse, Romero and Rowand.

Confused about what I’m talking about? Here are the stats I refer to defined:
ERA – Earned Run Average: (Earned Runs * 9) / IP = ERA
FIP – Fielding Independent Pitching: (13*HR+3*BB-2*K / IP) + League Factor Evaluates a pitching by how he would have done with an average defense behind him by keeping track of things that a pitcher can control (walks, strikeouts, home runs allowed) as opposed to things he cannot (hits allowed, runs allowed).
HR/9 – Home Runs allowed per nine innings: (HR * 9) / IP
BB/9 – Walks per nine innings: (BB * 9) / IP
K/9 – Strikeouts per nine innings: (K * 9) / IP

Kyle Lohse – I believe Scott Boras is Lohse’s agent, so the chances of the Phillies re-signing Lohse is slim-to-none. A talented pitcher on a market which is nearly devoid of quality pitching, Boras knows he’ll be able to command a king’s ransom for Lohse’s services. Expect Boras to leverage Lohse solid 2007 campaign (9-12, 4.62 ERA as a Red and Phillie) into big bucks. $10 million plus is not outside the realm of possibility here.

Chances of re-signing with the Phillies: 5%.

J.C. Romero – Here is a player the Phillies would dearly love to keep. I’m actually not that impressed by Romero’s stats, however. As a Phillie he gave up 25 walks in 36 innings of work, which means he’d give up 6.25 walks per nine innings pitched. Romero pitched waaaay worse than his 1.24 ERA as a Phillie suggests. His Fielding Independent Pitching (FIP) ERA is 3.98, over three times higher than his official ERA. Romero has consistently allowed a lot of walks throughout his career in the major leagues. As a Minnesota Twin in 2004 and 2005 he gave up 4.6 BB/9 and 5.7 BB/9 respectively, and as an Anaheim Angel in 2006 he gave up 4.8 BB/9. I know that the Phillies want to bring him back, but I am unimpressed.

Romero made 1.6 million in 2007 and while I think that the chances of bringing him back are good, the scarcity of quality pitching might drive Romero’s asking price too high for the Phillies blood.

Chances of re-signing with the Phillies: 20%.

Aaron Rowand – the Phillies want to bring Rowand back, but it isn’t going to happen. The Phillies won’t, after the Pat Burrell experience, ink a deal longer than three or four years, while Rowand appears fixed on five or six, and they won’t go higher than $10 million a year, while Rowand looks like he wants to go into the $12-14 million dollar range. Expect the Phillies to go through the motions of re-signing Rowand, but they have cheaper options on their roster who would do the job well and they want to commit some of that money to a long-term deal for Ryan Howard and securing more pitching this off-season. Don’t be surprised to see Shane Victorino or Michael Bourn manning centerfield in 2008.

Chances of re-signing with the Phillies: 1%.

Have a nice weekend!

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