Originally written on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 11/16/14
Darin Ruf could make the 25-man team of the 2013 Philadelphia Phillies next April. However, it will be due only in part to his long-ball noise during October and November. But keep in mind, the warning-track patrol should become much clearer by mid-December. TAL’S HANDY CAPS   WELCOME, NEWCOMERS: My articles are designed to represent a baseball-man’s thinking, the view from the dugout and the GM’s box.  Most fans do not consider the budget, prospects on the radar, the stick-glove-or-power requirements, the track record, the competition and the intangibles. I published after every battle that was not washed out.  I had many summer-long highlights of puzzle pieces, which were especially important after drubbings and defeats.  Please go to my author archives or Phillies page for my most recent coverage.  Scroll down to Tal’s Handy Links at the bottom.  Thank you.   Check out:  Philadelphia Phillies storyline: A Ruf October (Updated & Current Stats)   Baseball-Fix Monday Schedule: Events will dictate the number from 1 to 4 each for November and December. January to mid-February will be every other week, and it will be weekly after that until the year begins.  This review is updated (2nd posting). Only on a trial basis due to a strong response, the scheduled articles will be supplemented with special fill-ins between main postings.  Continuation is based on reasonable numbers, which appears to be extremely possible.   TIMEFRAMEMAIN ARTICLESSUPPLEMENTS November & December1st Monday Of The MonthThe Other Mondays January To Mid-FebruaryAlternating Mondays From 1/7The Other Mondays Mid-February To AprilWeekly-----       B.J. Upton Cracks A 9th-Inning Solo Bomb On September 30 In Chicago (AL)   3RD NOVEMBER BASEBALL-FIX MONDAY         Dollars For Double U’s:   B.J. Upton and Koji Uehara could be the solutions to two problem areas. Meanwhile, there is more talk about the younger sibling. Justin Upton is under contract for 3 seasons in Arizona, but the Rays have the starters that interest the D-backs: Jeremy Hellickson (10-11, 3.10 ERA), James Shields (15-10, 3.52 ERA) and David Price (20-5, 2.56 ERA). The thinking is that Tampa Bay will replace B.J. with his brother, who is signed for 3 tours at $38.5M, and deal a hurler about to become expensive. Hellickson (24) and Price (27) are arbitration eligible, while management’s options for Shields (30) are reaching the pricey regions. ‘Zona wants to trade for frontline pitching, which means they will keep LF Jason Kubel ($7.5M), RF Gerardo Parra ($2.1M arb. approx.) and CF–no relation–Adam Eaton ($500K). Tampa has a wing to exchange for the younger Upton, while they cannot add the payroll by re-upping B.J. The Diamondbacks prefer 2 players from Texas, who won’t barter either of them. The Snakes want an arm and a shortstop that are young. Meanwhile, there are 14 franchises that fall within the well-heeled category, now or tomorrow. Eleven have other needs, financial limitations, no outfield openings or a good CF currently. Besides the Phils, the other two possible organizations are the Rangers and the Nationals. Other than Tampa Bay, San Francisco and Atlanta are 2 of the other 16 clubs that could be in the mix.   12 Of The 14: NOTE:  Click entries button to open more than the visible 10. TEAMSITUATION YankeesLooking For 1-Year Contracts To Reduce Payroll Under $189M For 2014 MetsLimited Financial Resources For 2013 DodgersHave A Center Fielder AngelsDidn't Re-Sign Torii Hunter Due To A Crowded Outfield NatsDon't Need An Outfielder FishFire Sale CubsHave A Center Fielder White SoxLooking For A Third Baseman & A Catcher O'sHave A Center Fielder TigersHave A Center Fielder Red SoxHave A Center Fielder PadsThe O'Malley's New Team Has A Center Fielder     The Giants plan to keep Angel Pagan and are more concerned about their top of the order. Texas will need a replacement for Josh Hamilton’s bat. The Rangers, however, have 3 fly-ball trackers and could go the DH route. Washington has CF Bryce Harper, RF Jayson Werth and LF Michael Morse, who can move to 1B. If Adam LaRoche goes elsewhere, the Nats might look for another outfielder because Morse filled in during LaRoche’s 2011 absence. Center would be their preference but they are right-side heavy.   $178M Maximum Before The Luxury Tax: NOTE:  Click entries button to open more than the visible 10. DOLLARSALLOCATIONPLAYERS $75.00MCore FourRollins, Utley, Howard & Hamels $56.50M2 Aces & The CloserHalladay, Lee & Papelbon $04.25M2 StartersWorley & Kendrick $06.00M3 PositionsRuiz, RF Brown & 3B Galvis $05.75MBenchMayberry, Nix, Schierholtz, Kratz & Frandsen $02.60M4 Bullpen SeatsBastardo, Aumont, Lindblom & Horst $00.50M1 Bullpen SlotRosenberg or De Fratus (Plus Schwimer or Stutes, If Healthy) $08.00MSet Aside$5M (Trading Deadline) & $3M (Achieved Incentives) $02.00MBuyoutsPolanco, Contreras & Wigginton $159.6MTOTAL22 Roster Spots $018.4M2 Free AgentsA Center Fielder & A 8th-Inning Set-Up Man   Koji Uehara Fires A Bullet During The 8th At Home On October 5 Against The O’s In The Wild-Card Game   The timing of Upton’s suitors reveals the value and approach by the order they occurred. San Francisco hasn’t been mentioned, Texas hasn’t made an arrangement to meet with him, and Washington had initial dialogue for now. The Braves had discussions with him on Thursday, which followed his visit from Cholley Manuel earlier in the week. Rube Amaro is taking the lead on the acquisition, while Atlanta is monitoring the competition due to boundaries for dollars and years. However, the loss of a top leadoff hitter figures into their equation as well. Like the red pinstripes, they need someone at the hot corner and 2 fence guards. Martin Prado is most likely to replace Chipper Jones at third. Pagan and Cody Ross are possibilities that would require 3-campaign agreements instead of the 4 to 6 summers for B.J.   The Moving Parts: ALTERATION+/- $$DOLLARSPLAYERS Start-----$18.4M----- Add Center Fielder- $14.5M$03.9MB.J. Upton Minus Outfielder+$01.6M$05.5MNate Schierholtz Add Leftfielder- $00.5M$05.0MDarin Ruf Add Set-Up Man (8th Inning)- $04.5M$00.5MKoji Uehara Add 25th Man- $00.5M$00.0MMichael Martinez Or Pete Orr     “Babe” Ruf Enjoys His 1st MLB HR In The 2nd At The Bank On September 25 Against The Nats   Realizing the connection and the competition’s parameters, Amaro brought on board Steve Henderson, who was Upton’s offensive coach in 2009.  It wasn’t the only factor but it was part of the equation.  The top bid for the center fielder could be $15M per over 5 seasons, which the Braves probably will not match.  Meanwhile, Jeremy Affeldt was inked for three 162’s at $6M each, which sets the mark that affects the set-up role.  If the brain trust can fit both stars within a framework of $19M, that could be structured as $14.5M (Upton) and $4.5M (Uehara, 37). Amaro could non-tender Nate Schierholtz ($1.3M for 2012), who would receive approximately $1.6M in arbitration. Or the Phils could re-up him and swap him, which would equal 4 open slots. The final roster spot would be for an extra infielder (Michael Martinez or Pete Orr) at $500K. By Rube adding Upton and Uehara to the squad, “Babe” Ruf would platoon with Laynce Nix in left. He could even earn the starting job.   LINK-UP BELOW: Tal’s Handy Caps on Facebook is for notification of posts and any holdups that may occur. It might be worth your while because there are delays of 2 hours on most feeds. This is my 3rd storyline for 2013.  Check out my recent publication (The Fluid Situation) and the 121 storylines for 2012 on the Phillies page or my author archives, where there is an excerpt photo. Tal’s Handy Stats is daily coverage. I alternated the 2012 ERA For The NL East and the 2012 ERA For The MLB 5. Thank you, to all who bookmarked my page. TAL’S HANDY LINKS   TAL’S HANDY CAPS on Facebook  Philadelphia Phillies storyline: Dollars and sense equals change Phillies Tal Venada (Author Archives) Philadelphia Phillies: 2012 ERA for the NL East at final game 162 Philadelphia Phillies: 2012 ERA for the MLB 5 at final game 162  
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