Tag:Brad Lidge
Posted on: October 24, 2011 4:38 pm
Edited on: October 24, 2011 4:50 pm

Phillies decline options on Oswalt, Lidge

In a move that comes as no surprise, the Phillies announced Monday that they have declined their 2012 contract options for starter Roy Oswalt and reliever Brad Lidge.

It's still possible that either or both could return next year at a lower salary, and general manager Ruben Amaro said he would remain in contact with both pitchers' agents. But the Phillies had no intention of paying $16 million for Oswalt (the price of his option), or $12.5 million for Lidge (his option).

Instead, they'll pay buyouts of $2 million to Oswalt and $1.5 million to Lidge.

The 34-year-old Oswalt battled back trouble this year, when he went 9-10 with a 3.69 ERA in his first full season with the Phillies. Lidge, who is also 34, was limited to 25 games because of injuries, but had a 1.40 ERA.

Category: MLB
Posted on: July 27, 2011 4:38 pm

No Beltran, no Pence, but Phils want relievers

Yes, the Phillies made an effort for Carlos Beltran, before backing down and allowing him to go to the Giants. Yes, the Phillies talked to the Astros about Hunter Pence, although it appears now that nothing will happen, and the Astros will look to deal Pence in the winter, instead.

And as usual, the Phillies' biggest acquisition this month might well be a pitcher.

The Phillies remain among the teams most interested in Padres relievers Heath Bell and Mike Adams, although like others they continue to complain about the high prices. The Phils have looked at the Orioles and other teams, as well, in hopes of finding bullpen help.

I know, the Phillies bullpen has been among the most successful in the game this year. Their three blown saves are the fewest in the majors, and only one of the three came in the ninth inning. And after playing much of the year with three closers (Brad Lidge, Ryan Madson and Jose Contreras) on the disabled list, the Phillies now have Madson and Lidge back on the active roster.

Fine. But fast-forward to October, because the Phillies are all about October.

Do you feel comfortable with Michael Stutes and Antonio Bastardo pitching late in games in the playoffs? Are you sure about Madson as your playoff closer? Will Lidge be healthy and strong enough to help?

People who talk to the Phillies say they're asking all of those questions themselves, and that the answer can be seen in their efforts on the trade market.

The Phillies will likely still look to acquire a right-handed hitter, but it may well be more of a platoon bat off the bench. That could change, obviously, depending on who is available, and it would be interesting to see if the Phillies went after Carlos Quentin, if the White Sox really make him available.

The Phillies didn't get Beltran, and they almost certainly won't get Pence. Don't be surprised if they end up with a reliever.
Posted on: July 22, 2011 8:49 pm
Edited on: July 22, 2011 8:58 pm

No closers were no problem for Phils

For a while, the Phillies had three closers on the disabled list. Now, with Brad Lidge back, they have three closers on the active roster.

That's Lidge, who went into the year as the closer; Ryan Madson, who eventually took over as the closer; and Antonio Bastardo, who filled in when everyone else was hurt. Jose Contreras, the other closer, remains on the DL.

But here's what's amazing: With all of that, the Phillies have had just one ninth-inning blown save this season (by Madson, on June 9 against the Cubs). The Phillies have just three blown saves total, the fewest in baseball.

Compare that to the Cardinals, who have nine ninth-inning blown saves. Or compare it to the White Sox and Blue Jays, with seven apiece.

The only teams that have yet to have a ninth-inning blown save this year are the Tigers, Red Sox and Pirates. And there should be an asterisk next to the Red Sox, because closer Jonathan Papelbon blew a four-run ninth-inning lead on June 4 against the A's but wasn't charged with a blown save because it wasn't a save situation.

Posted on: June 28, 2011 12:29 pm
Edited on: June 28, 2011 8:12 pm

Phils put Madson on DL

The Phillies weren't sure Ryan Madson could close.

They wanted Brad Lidge to pitch the ninth inning. Then Lidge got hurt, and they chose Jose Contreras over Madson.

Then Contreras got hurt, and Madson showed he could handle it.

Now Madson is hurt.

The Phillies put Madson on the disabled list Tuesday with a right hand contusion, which means their DL now includes three closers -- and their active roster includes none.

Andrew Carpenter was called up from Triple-A Lehigh Valley to take Madson's place on the roster.

Madson hasn't pitched since June 18, but the Phillies haven't had a ninth-inning save opportunity since June 12 (when Madson recorded his 15th save in 16 chances this year). Of the pitchers on the Phillies' active roster, only Antonio Bastardo has a save this year (he has two).

Manager Charlie Manuel told reporters that he would use either Bastardo or Michael Stutes to close, but that Bastardo would likely get more of the chances. Manuel also told reporters that Madson may return from the DL as soon as next Monday.
Posted on: May 20, 2011 10:54 pm

Lidge on fast track back to Phils

PHILADELPHIA -- Perhaps surprisingly, the ninth inning has been the least of the Phillies' worries this season.

First Jose Contreras filled in for the injured Brad Lidge, and he was perfect. Then Contreras got hurt, Ryan Madson filled in, and he's been just as perfect.

Now Contreras is on his way back.

And so, against all odds, is Lidge.

His shoulder injury sounded ominous when he went on the disabled list in the final week of spring training. Phillies people wondered if he'd pitch at all this season.

But Lidge will head to Florida on Sunday, and he said Friday night that he may be only 2-3 weeks from rejoining the Phillies' bullpen. Even he seems surprised by how good he feels, and how fast he may be coming back.

"I can tell you I feel very strong," he said. "I can tell you I haven't felt this strong in a long time."

At this point, no matter how good Lidge feels, it's hard to believe the Phillies would go away from using Madson as the closer. He's 8-for-8 in saves, and has a 0.50 ERA in 18 appearances.

He also has a walk-in song that fits his situation perfectly: Journey's "Don't stop believin'."
Posted on: March 30, 2011 3:13 pm
Edited on: March 30, 2011 4:05 pm

The All-DL opening day All-Stars

It's a team that might contend for a title, if it could only get on the field.

Then again, that's exactly the problem.

Think of the players that will (or likely will) begin the season on the disabled list. It's quite a group, lacking a little (for now) on the left side of the infield and behind the plate, but overflowing with top-level starting pitching and back-of-the-bullpen depth.

Not all the opening day rosters are official yet. Some teams are waiting until closer to Thursday's 11 a.m. deadline for final decisions, which only means that the All-DL-Stars could have an even better lineup by the time the first pitch is thrown.

Jason Bay, for example, should be your All-DL-Star left fielder by then. The Mets are expected to put him on the disabled list, but they haven't said so publicly yet. So I left him off, in part because this team is strong enough without him.

For now, we'll only go with guys we're pretty sure of.

So here goes:

1B -- Kendrys Morales, Angels

2B -- Chase Utley, Phillies

SS -- Clint Barmes, Astros

3B -- Nick Punto, Cardinals

LF -- Cody Ross, Giants (Bay could take his spot)

CF -- Grady Sizemore, Indians (with Franklin Gutierrez also available)

RF -- Corey Hart, Brewers

C -- Jonathan Lucroy, Brewers

Rotation -- Adam Wainwright, Cardinals; Zack Greinke, Brewers; Johan Santana, Mets; Mat Latos, Padres; Brandon Morrow, Blue Jays (with Johnny Cueto, Homer Bailey and others in reserve)

Closer -- Brian Wilson, Giants (with the Phillies' Brad Lidge and the A's Andrew Bailey setting him up)

You'd take that team, wouldn't you?

You'd be guaranteed to lose on opening day, because not one of them could play, but you'd take that team.

Posted on: March 25, 2011 9:56 am
Edited on: March 25, 2011 12:07 pm

Phils' Lidge will begin season on DL

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Phillies closer Brad Lidge will open the season on the disabled list, the team said Friday morning.

Lidge told reporters that he has "lingering issues" with his right shoulder, and that he will see a doctor on Saturday. Lidge said he hopes to be able to return by the middle of April, but he hasn't looked good this spring and there is some concern within the organization that his condition could be more serious.

Lidge has allowed six runs in 5 2/3 innings this spring, and his velocity has been down. He was shut down for a week with biceps tendinitis, but the shoulder problem is something new.

"I'm a little concerned, because I haven't had shoulder problems in the past," Lidge told reporters .

Lidge began last season on the DL because of an elbow problem. He missed the start of the 2008 season with a knee injury, but came back to go 48-for-48 in save opportunities as the Phillies won the World Series.

The Phillies will also begin the season without second baseman Chase Utley, who hasn't played this spring because of a knee problem. Utley continues to take batting practice, and to field ground balls while sitting on a stool, but he has yet been able to run, let alone play in a game.

Ryan Madson and Jose Contreras are likely to close games in Lidge's absence. Madson has been a very good setup man when healthy, but has had mixed success as a closer. He had 10 saves in 16 opportunities in 2009. Contreras, who spent most of his career as a starter, saved four games for the Phillies last year.

The Phillies still aren't sure who will replace Utley, either at second base or in the third spot in the lineup. They've been auditioning Luis Castillo, who was released last week by the Mets, but the early reviews haven't been very good, and there's a real chance that Castillo will be released before opening day.

The other options for the Phillies at second base are Wilson Valdez and Michael Martinez.

Posted on: March 25, 2011 9:56 am
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