Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Phils Add Outfielder (Not Named Harper)

2018 Topps Now Road
to Opening Day #OD-241
Outfielder Lane Adams became the 19th player on the team's list of non-roster invitees on Monday, and he'll join the Phillies next month in Clearwater.  Adams came up with the Royals in 2014, appearing in six games and more recently appeared in 111 games for the Braves in 2017 and 2018.  He's a career .263 hitter.

It looks as if his most recent mainstream baseball card can be found in the Braves' 2018 Topps Now Road to Opening Day team set, of which just 277 were produced.  His very first baseball card came way back in 2012 in the Bowman Chrome Prospects insert set.

Player (position) - 2018 Organization - Last Major Baseball Card Appearance*
1.  Jeremy Bleich (lhp) - Athletics - 2010 Topps Pro Debut #35 (Yankees)
2.  Rob Brantly (c) - Braves/Indians - 2013 Topps Gypsy Queen #33 (Marlins)
3.  Phil Gosselin (inf) - Reds/Braves - 2017 Topps Heritage #135 (Diamondbacks)
4.  Josh Martin (rhp) - Indians - 2012 Bowman Draft Picks #BDPP160 (Indians)
5.  Matt McBride (c-1b) - Phillies - 2007 Bowman Sterling Prospects #MM (Indians)
6.  Gregorio Petit (inf) - Twins - 2015 Topps Heritage #667 (Yankees)
7.  Shane Robinson (of) - Yankees - 2014 Topps #483 (Cardinals)
8.  Gift Ngoepe (inf) - Blue Jays - 2018 Topps Heritage #579 (Blue Jays)
9.  Edward Paredes (lhp) - Dodgers - N/A
10.  Andrew Romine (inf) - Mariners - 2018 Topps Heritage #641 (Mariners)
11.  Malquin Canelo (inf) - Phillies - N/A
12.  Tyler Gilbert (lhp) - Phillies - N/A
13.  Deivi Grullon (c) - Phillies - 2013 Bowman Chrome #BCP128 (Phillies)
14.  Adam Haseley (of) - Phillies - 2018 Topps Heritage Minor League #131 (Phillies)
15.  Cole Irvin (lhp) - Phillies - 2016 Bowman Draft Chrome #BDC-4 (Phillies)
16.  Austin Listi (inf-of) - Phillies - N/A
17.  Mickey Moniak (of) - Phillies - 2018 Topps Heritage Minor League #261 (Phillies)
18.  JoJo Romero (lhp) - Phillies - 2018 Topps Heritage Minor League #92 (Phillies)
19.  Lane Adams (of) - Cubs/Braves - 2018 Topps Now Road to Opening Day #OD-241 (Braves)

Monday, January 14, 2019

11 More Players Added to List of Non-Roster Invitees

2018 Topps Heritage
Minor League #131
2018 Topps Heritage
Minor League #10
2018 Topps Heritage #579
 
2018 Topps Heritage
Minor League #92
2018 Topps Heritage #641
 
As of this writing, and hopefully that changes soon with some big news, the Phillies active roster sits at 39 players while their list of non-roster invitees is now 18.  Three more veterans and eight prospects were added to the list on Friday night.

I've added them below with their 2018 organization and last major baseball card appearance listed.

Player (position) - 2018 Organization - Last Major Baseball Card Appearance*
1.  Jeremy Bleich (lhp) - Athletics - 2010 Topps Pro Debut #35 (Yankees)
2.  Rob Brantly (c) - Braves/Indians - 2013 Topps Gypsy Queen #33 (Marlins)
3.  Phil Gosselin (inf) - Reds/Braves - 2017 Topps Heritage #135 (Diamondbacks)
4.  Josh Martin (rhp) - Indians - 2012 Bowman Draft Picks #BDPP160 (Indians)
5.  Matt McBride (c-1b) - Phillies - 2007 Bowman Sterling Prospects #MM (Indians)
6.  Gregorio Petit (inf) - Twins - 2015 Topps Heritage #667 (Yankees)
7.  Shane Robinson (of) - Yankees - 2014 Topps #483 (Cardinals)

2018 Grandstand Reading
Fightin Phils Update #6
2018 Grandstand Reading
Fightin Phils Update #22
2018 Grandstand Reading
Fightin Phils Update #17
2018 Choice Lehigh Valley
IronPigs #13
2018 Grandstand Reading
Fightin Phils Update #8
8.  Gift Ngoepe (inf) - Blue Jays - 2018 Topps Heritage #579 (Blue Jays)
9.  Edward Paredes (lhp) - Dodgers - N/A
10.  Andrew Romine (inf) - Mariners - 2018 Topps Heritage #641 (Mariners)
11.  Malquin Canelo (inf) - Phillies - N/A
12.  Tyler Gilbert (lhp) - Phillies - N/A
13.  Deivi Grullon (c) - Phillies - 2013 Bowman Chrome #BCP128 (Phillies)
14.  Adam Haseley (of) - Phillies - 2018 Topps Heritage Minor League #131 (Phillies)
15.  Cole Irvin (lhp) - Phillies - 2016 Bowman Draft Chrome #BDC-4 (Phillies)
16.  Austin Listi (inf-of) - Phillies - N/A
17.  Mickey Moniak (of) - Phillies - 2018 Topps Heritage Minor League #261 (Phillies)
18.  JoJo Romero (lhp) - Phillies - 2018 Topps Heritage Minor League #92 (Phillies)

*This is subjective, and for the Phillies prospects largely based on the cards actually in my collection.

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Remembering a Legend


Our friend Bob passed away on Thursday night after a courageous battle with ALS.

The first memory I have of Bob was him coming over before the holidays to make Christmas cookies with my parents at some point in the mid to late 1970s.  Soon afterward, "Bob is coming over" changed to "Bob and Paula are coming over" and I have hazy memories of being put to bed before the adults enjoyed a few beers and the latest episodes of The Love Boat and Fantasy Island.  There are pictures of my parents along with Bob and Paula in each of our family photo albums throughout the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s.

Like my parents and my sister, my grandparents and Harry Kalas, Bob was ubiquitous while I was growing up.  We'd go over to Bob and Paula's house for dinners, for birthday celebrations, for Miss America pageant viewings and later when they had kids of their own, we all traveled to Walt Disney World together several times.  Much to the delight (and embarrassment) of Bob's kids, Beth, Amy and Andrew, he seemed to have an uncanny knack of getting selected for anything at Disney World involving costumed audience participation.

Bob and my Dad worked together in a junior high school guidance office for decades.  I visited the guidance office before, during and after my time in junior high and Bob was always smiling and welcoming.  He was inquisitive about what I had been up to and encouraged me to keep up the good work.  He usually had a book or a movie or a TV show recommendation, and those recommendations never failed me.  He was always dressed well and whenever I was dressed up for something he'd point at me and say, "Looking sharp, Jimmy."

I can't remember the exact conversation I had with Bob after my Dad got sick and passed away, but I remember his words were calming and hopeful.  He knew what to say and how to say it, with the perfect mix of sincerity and humor, and that will always stick with me.

He was an accomplished artist and two of his oil paintings hang in our house.  When I had kids of my own, he continued the same practice he had established with me of asking them how they were doing and encouraging them to keep working hard.  He invited them both over for painting lessons and he'd send Doug coded letters in the mail.  At each of their birthday parties, as guests would arrive, the boys would anxiously ask, "When are Bob and Paula getting here?"

Bob was a diehard Phillies fan, and even the dreadful play from the past few seasons couldn't dim his spirits or his belief they were just a few games away from turning everything around.

I laughed a lot when I was around Bob.  We all did.  Paula, his kids, his grandkids and his extended family know how special he was and those memories and those smiles won't fade.  We'll all continue to tell stories about Bob, just like we do with my Dad, and when we tell those stories we'll smile and laugh and remember our friend.

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Phils Bolster Bullpen with Robertson

2019 Chachi New Additions #6
On Thursday, the Phillies seemingly put the finishing touches on their 2019 bullpen by signing reliever David Robertson to a two-year deal with an option for a third year.  Robertson will serve as a late-inning reliever, most likely splitting closer duties with Seranthony Dominguez.  Robertson has had two different stints with the Yankees during his 11-year career, first from 2008 to 2014 and then again in 2017 and last season.  In between, he spent 2 1/2 seasons with the White Sox.

One of the more reliable relievers in the game, Robertson appeared in 69 games for the Yankees last season, earning a 3.23 ERA with five saves.  An All-Star in 2011, he was the primary closer for the Yankees and White Sox between 2014 and 2016.

Robertson showed up in the 2008 Bowman Draft set and his first Topps flagship card can be found in the 2009 update set.  He has Yankees cards in several 2018 Topps offerings.

Moving On - 2018-2019 Offseason
  • Trevor Plouffe - inf (10/4/18) - Elected free agency.
  • Jose Bautista - of (10/29/18) - Elected free agency.
  • Asdrubal Cabrera - inf (10/29/18) - Elected free agency.
  • Aaron Loup - lhp (10/29/18) - Elected free agency.
  • Wilson Ramos - c (10/29/18) - Elected free agency, signed with the New York Mets on 12/18/18.
  • Pedro Beato - rhp (11/2/18) - Elected free agency.
  • Jesmuel Valentin - inf (11/2/18) - Elected free agency.
  • Pedro Florimon - inf/of (11/3/18) - Outrighted off 40-man roster, elected free agency and signed as a minor league free agent with the Atlanta Braves.
  • Luis Avilan - lhp (11/30/18) - Non-tendered, becoming a free agent.
  • Justin Bour - 1b (11/30/18) - Non-tendered, becoming a free agent, signed with the Los Angeles Angels on 12/15/18.
  • Carlos Santana - 1b and J.P. Crawford - ss (12/3/18) - Traded to the Seattle Mariners for James Pazos, Juan Nicasio and Jean Segura.
  • Luis Garcia - rhp (12/6/18) - Traded to the Los Angeles Angels for Jose Alvarez.
New Arrivals - 2018-2019 Offseason
  • James Pazos - lhp, Juan Nicasio - rhp and Jean Segura - ss (12/3/18) - Acquired from the Seattle Mariners for J.P. Crawford and Carlos Santana.
  • Jose Alvarez - lhp (12/6/18) - Acquired from the Los Angeles Angels for Luis Garcia.
  • Andrew McCutchen - of (12/12/18) - Signed as a free agent formerly with the New York Yankees.
  • David Robertson - rhp (1/3/19) - Signed as a free agent formerly with the New York Yankees.

As an added bonus, here's the short-printed version of Andrew McCutchen's New Additions insert card, featuring a photo from his recent Phillies introductory press conference.

2019 Chachi New Additions #5b