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Thread: Brandon Phillips back batting first

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  1. #1
    SSG, Red Army Choir Guacarock's Avatar
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    Brandon Phillips back batting first

    Here's the story:

    http://cincinnati.reds.mlb.com/news/...k_cin&c_id=cin

    What's your take?

    Is Brandon better positioned leading off for us than hitting cleanup?

    Can this move put us back on a tear, like in 2010, when the Reds went 43-29 with Phillips leading off?

    Is he a temporary fix or our answer to set the tables?

    What's going on here, is Brandon priming the pump for his contract extension talks or stepping forward as a leader to solve a real team problem?

    Did he need to step forward on his own? Could anyone in charge ask him to do so first?

    Interesting development, and anything that's this interesting this late in the Dog Days is worth kicking around.
    Last edited by Guacarock; 08-18-2011 at 01:30 AM.

  2. #2
    The Boss dougdirt's Avatar
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    Re: Brandon Phillips back batting first

    Phillips isn't a lead off hitter. Phillips isn't a clean up hitter. Phillips is a 6th or 7th hitter.

    He shouldn't bat leadoff because his OBP isn't that good.
    He shouldn't bat clean up because, well, lets be honest, he isn't that good of a hitter.

  3. #3
    Moderator The Operator's Avatar
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    Re: Brandon Phillips back batting first

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    Phillips isn't a lead off hitter. Phillips isn't a clean up hitter. Phillips is a 6th or 7th hitter.
    Agreed. He is miscast anywhere in the top and/or heart of the order. He certainly brings some things to the table but lead off and middle of the order skills aren't it.
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    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Brandon Phillips back batting first

    Quote Originally Posted by The Operator View Post
    Agreed. He is miscast anywhere in the top and/or heart of the order. He certainly brings some things to the table but lead off and middle of the order skills aren't it.
    This statement applies to the entire roster not named Bruce or Votto. Besides those two, Phillips, a part time catcher (Ramon), a part time OF (Heisey), a couple positionless kids getting cups of coffee (Frazier and Alonso), a bench jockey (Cairo), a departed Jonny Gomes and 3 pitchers are the only players above the relatively low standard of league average. There really isn't much that Dusty can do to fix the line-up. I criticize his line-ups as much as everyone, but he simply doesn't have the right players to fit together to create a real cohesive unit.

    Once again, this curious move is on Walt.
    Last edited by mth123; 08-18-2011 at 04:33 AM.
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    Five Tool Fool jojo's Avatar
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    Re: Brandon Phillips back batting first

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    Phillips isn't a lead off hitter. Phillips isn't a clean up hitter. Phillips is a 6th or 7th hitter.

    He shouldn't bat leadoff because his OBP isn't that good.
    He shouldn't bat clean up because, well, lets be honest, he isn't that good of a hitter.
    Yes.
    "This isnít stats vs scouts - this is stats and scouts working together, building an organization that blends the best of both worlds. This is the blueprint for how a baseball organization should be run. And, whether the baseball men of the 20th century like it or not, this is where baseball is going."---Dave Cameron, U.S.S. Mariner

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    Re: Brandon Phillips back batting first

    This team has a 3-hole hitter and a bunch of 6/7/8 hitters. And a 9-hole hitter when Janish plays.

    They don't have a leadoff hitter. Or a 2-hole hitter. Or a cleanup hitter.

    I will say that Brandon Phillips is the least of the problems. He hits wherever the team asks him to hit and offers to help when he thinks he can help. Not his fault the team couldn't fill those other spots in the lineup. Someone has to do it.
    Last edited by osuceltic; 08-18-2011 at 10:30 AM.

  7. #7
    Member Sea Ray's Avatar
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    Re: Brandon Phillips back batting first

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    Phillips isn't a lead off hitter. Phillips isn't a clean up hitter. Phillips is a 6th or 7th hitter.

    He shouldn't bat leadoff because his OBP isn't that good.
    He shouldn't bat clean up because, well, lets be honest, he isn't that good of a hitter.
    So it sounds like you don't think he's worth the $12mill for next year?

  8. #8
    The Boss dougdirt's Avatar
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    Re: Brandon Phillips back batting first

    Quote Originally Posted by Sea Ray View Post
    So it sounds like you don't think he's worth the $12mill for next year?
    Tough to say. I would offer him the money to keep him, even though I am not sure he will be worth it. My reasoning is this: If we overpay but still get solid overall production, I can eat a little bit of money there. But if we let him walk and can't land the right guy in free agency to replace him, we don't have anyone in the system to step in right now and take his spot and we are very likely to take a large step backwards there. Give him the money for 2012 and see how things play out on the farm or via trade for a replacement. I would NOT extend him though. Wouldn't even think about it.

  9. #9
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    Re: Brandon Phillips back batting first

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    Tough to say. I would offer him the money to keep him, even though I am not sure he will be worth it. My reasoning is this: If we overpay but still get solid overall production, I can eat a little bit of money there. But if we let him walk and can't land the right guy in free agency to replace him, we don't have anyone in the system to step in right now and take his spot and we are very likely to take a large step backwards there. Give him the money for 2012 and see how things play out on the farm or via trade for a replacement. I would NOT extend him though. Wouldn't even think about it.
    I agree with that reasoning

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    Five Tool Fool jojo's Avatar
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    Re: Brandon Phillips back batting first

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    Tough to say. I would offer him the money to keep him, even though I am not sure he will be worth it. My reasoning is this: If we overpay but still get solid overall production, I can eat a little bit of money there. But if we let him walk and can't land the right guy in free agency to replace him, we don't have anyone in the system to step in right now and take his spot and we are very likely to take a large step backwards there. Give him the money for 2012 and see how things play out on the farm or via trade for a replacement. I would NOT extend him though. Wouldn't even think about it.
    It's probably a certainty that the Reds pick up Phillips' option. Not because of his bat.... because of his glove.
    "This isnít stats vs scouts - this is stats and scouts working together, building an organization that blends the best of both worlds. This is the blueprint for how a baseball organization should be run. And, whether the baseball men of the 20th century like it or not, this is where baseball is going."---Dave Cameron, U.S.S. Mariner

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    The Boss dougdirt's Avatar
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    Re: Brandon Phillips back batting first

    Quote Originally Posted by jojo View Post
    It's probably a certainty that the Reds pick up Phillips' option. Not because of his bat.... because of his glove.
    I agree completely, but that is also why I wouldn't extend him. His value comes from his glove and he is going to be on the wrong side of 30 for his entire new contract that someone is going to give him. Pick up the option for 2012 and be searching for a replacement starting yesterday.

  12. #12
    Et tu, Brutus? Brutus's Avatar
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    Re: Brandon Phillips back batting first

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    Phillips isn't a lead off hitter. Phillips isn't a clean up hitter. Phillips is a 6th or 7th hitter.

    He shouldn't bat leadoff because his OBP isn't that good.
    He shouldn't bat clean up because, well, lets be honest, he isn't that good of a hitter.
    He's nearly ideal for the No. 2-hole. Good contact rate, good speed. Gets on base a sufficient amount.
    "No matter how good you are, you're going to lose one-third of your games. No matter how bad you are you're going to win one-third of your games. It's the other third that makes the difference." ~Tommy Lasorda

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    The Boss dougdirt's Avatar
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    Re: Brandon Phillips back batting first

    Quote Originally Posted by Brutus the Pimp View Post
    He's nearly ideal for the No. 2-hole. Good contact rate, good speed. Gets on base a sufficient amount.
    I don't really know. His numbers in the two spot would be ideal if he were able to repeat them there. I just don't know if he would be able to and I am not sure his overall numbers say "ideal #2 hitter".

  14. #14
    Et tu, Brutus? Brutus's Avatar
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    Re: Brandon Phillips back batting first

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    I don't really know. His numbers in the two spot would be ideal if he were able to repeat them there. I just don't know if he would be able to and I am not sure his overall numbers say "ideal #2 hitter".
    What about his numbers suggest a lack of being repeatable? I'd say his numbers have been remarkably consistent the last three seasons.

    His OBP has been nearly identical, so too has his contact rates; his batting average nearly the same; his slugging has dropped a small bit, but for being a 2-hitter, that's not as important.

    If anything, I think Phillips has been extremely consistent. I feel as if we know more about what we'll get out of him than any player on the Reds outside of Paul Janish and Joey Votto on extreme ends of the spectrum.
    "No matter how good you are, you're going to lose one-third of your games. No matter how bad you are you're going to win one-third of your games. It's the other third that makes the difference." ~Tommy Lasorda

  15. #15
    Five Tool Fool jojo's Avatar
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    Re: Brandon Phillips back batting first

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    I am not sure his overall numbers say "ideal #2 hitter".
    I'm with you on this one. There is a difference between a reasonable compromise for the Reds given the context of their roster (i.e. were there better options or not) and an "ideal" option.

    Here's a statistical look at Phillips compared to his peers based upon average production across batting order over his career ranked by wOBA (a great metric for summarizing the overall offensive skill set of a hitter):

    Code:
    Order	         BA	OPB	SLG	OPS	wOBA	BABIP	K%	BB%	ISO
    Batting 3rd	0.283	0.362	0.475	0.836	0.364	0.307	15.9	10.4	0.192
    Batting 4th	0.278	0.358	0.483	0.841	0.363	0.301	17.2	10.5	0.205
    Batting 5th	0.269	0.340	0.449	0.790	0.346	0.299	17.7	9.1	0.181
    Batting 6th	0.264	0.331	0.432	0.763	0.336	0.298	18.0	8.3	0.167
    Batting 1st	0.275	0.340	0.406	0.746	0.335	0.309	14.5	8.1	0.131
    Batting 2nd	0.275	0.336	0.412	0.748	0.334	0.307	14.6	7.7	0.136
    Phillips	0.269	0.318	0.428	0.746	0.324	0.289	14.2	5.9	0.159
    Batting 7th	0.257	0.320	0.404	0.724	0.321	0.292	17.8	7.8	0.147
    Batting 8th	0.249	0.316	0.378	0.694	0.306	0.288	18.0	8.2	0.129
    Batting 9th	0.213	0.267	0.307	0.575	0.256	0.272	23.3	6.0	0.094
    This comparison suggests that over his career, Phillips best fit the profile of an average #7 hitter given his poor on base skills and low walk rate. Over 600 PAs (roughly his average number per year), he's been .5 WAR below an average major league #2 hitter (i.e. .5 WAR/season below an average #2 hitter).
    "This isnít stats vs scouts - this is stats and scouts working together, building an organization that blends the best of both worlds. This is the blueprint for how a baseball organization should be run. And, whether the baseball men of the 20th century like it or not, this is where baseball is going."---Dave Cameron, U.S.S. Mariner


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