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June 28, 1:00 PM ET
Chat with Jerry Crasnick

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:01 PM)

Hey everybody, It was fun last night watching Chase Utley's first game back. He looked great. The Phillies bullpen ... not so much. Let's start the chat.

Matthew (Columbia, NJ)

Hi Jerry. Do you think Jeremy Horst and Brian Sanches will provide any relief to the Phillies bullpen that has been awful lately?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:02 PM)

Matthew, After watching what Charlie Manuel has been running out there every day, they can't be any worse. Does that sound like a half-hearted endorsement?

Dave (kcmo)

jerry how close do you feel are the royals to contending for the playoffs? Thanks for the great work.

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:03 PM)

Dave, They've made good progress in stocking the system, but they're not going to contend until their young starters can stay healthy and have an impact. Maybe Jake Odorizzi can help on that front soon.

Ty (Silver Spring, MD)

Jerry,Andrelton Simmons' Fangraph's WAR is 1.3 in 22 game games compares favorably to Bryce Harper's WAR of 1.5 in 53 games. Do we officially have a Rookie of the Year race brewing in the NL for the best hitter?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:04 PM)

Ty, Simmons is an amazing defender, but he has a ways to go before an NL ROY race begins brewing. Or percolating. Harper has a major headstart on him.

Kirk (Las Vegas)

Who do you think are the best suitors for a Carlos Quentin trade? And what is the best return the Padres could get for him?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:06 PM)

Kirk, The Indians and Pirates are among the teams that could use Quentin. And you can probably add the Dodgers to that mix. His injury history is clearly going to dampen the potential return for him. Josh Byrnes might want to get this done sooner rather than later, before he goes on the DL again.

Will (Florida)

With ankle injury still iffy can S.Drew become an everyday player for Arizona,eventually, or will we see more of the platoon play with him(3-4 days a week)?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:08 PM)

Will, I heard team president Derrick Hall do an interview on MLB Network radio this morning, and it sounds as if the Dbacks are going to ease in Drew by playing him 4-5 days a week at the outset. Willie Bloomquist and John McDonald give them enough SS depth that they can afford to be careful with him.

Johnny (Billerica,MA)

Hey Jerry! License to Deal, one of my Fav books! Hope you have another on the way soon! Die-Hard Sox fan, been a bit of an emotional roller-coaster as of late. I know it was time to say goodbye, but very sad to see a Dirt-Dog like Youk run out of town. I think it's ridiculous for him to be labeled the "RAT"....If important guys on the team weren't doing there job and were drinking beer and eating chicken, I would hope somebody would report it to! Guy gave it his all everyday, and had an incredible work ethic! If all the players last September were like this, Theo and Tito would still be here! Thank you!

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:10 PM)

Johnny, Regardless of how things went at the end, I think Youkilis is always going to be viewed fondly by Red Sox fans. He might have been cranky around the clubhouse at times, but he never took a day off. The guy never shied away from competition or a pressure at-bat.

Jacob (Brea)

Hey Jerry... can you give us your take on the Dodgers signing of Puig? and how does he compare to Soler who signed with the Cubs?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:11 PM)

Jacob, I can only go by what I've read on these guys. Puig is apparently very fast with average power, and the scouts aren't sure if he's a true center fielder. Soler has power and a strong arm, but he's a free swinger with contact issues. They're both young, so I think it's going to be a year or two before the Cubs and Dodgers know precisely what they have.

Greg (LA)

Trumbo in the HR derby? He must lead the league in HR's where the defender doesn't move - just turns his head as the rocket goes by.

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:12 PM)

Greg, I'm fine with that. The guy can miss-hit balls and hit them a couple of rows deep.

JM (Dayton, OH)

Why are we debating if Dewayne Wise should be fined/suspended and not talking about fining/suspending umpires for making terrible calls and then ejecting players for calling them out about it?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:14 PM)

JM, I don't think you can fine/suspend a player for gamesmanship, which is basically what Wise displayed there. As for the umps, we never know if they're disciplined because MLB doesn't make that info public. That Wise play is a prime case of where replay would have made a big difference and righted an injust call.

Jarod (South Dakota)

Hey Jerry, now that Giancarlo Stanton is signed up for the Homerun derby, who's the player you're most looking forward to watching, if they agree to participate, and why?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:16 PM)

Jarod, You mentioned him right there. There's a reason why the scouts compare Giancarlo Stanton to Herman Munster when he starts to unload. The amazing thing is, his batting practice sessions are very tame and uneventful. He takes a lot of short, compact swings and hits everything to right field. But the guy can dent some seats when he's in the mood.

Erich (SF)

At what point is Volgelsong not a fluke? All-Star again this year?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:17 PM)

Erich, Ryan Vogelsong is a great story. But the NL is so loaded in starting pitching, I think it's going to be tough for him to make the squad this year.

Mike (Rutland, VT)

Jerry,Do you see any way that the Pirates can hang around in the playoff chase this year?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:18 PM)

Mike, I saw them last night in Philly, and Andrew McCutchen is amazing. But they really need another impact bat (or two), and I don't see how they're going to acquire it in this market. I think they fade again in the second half. But maybe they'll be able to squeeze out that .500 season -- finally.

Frankur (Atlanta)

Is Teheran, Delgado, Minor and Pastornicky enough for Greinke (if Liberty loosens up the purse strings to get him to agree on an extension?)

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:19 PM)

Frankur, Wow, I can't see the Braves trading three young starters (even if they've yet to break through as hoped) for 2-3 months of Zack Greinke. Don't see that one happening.

Sean (AZ)

Regarding Ty: Isn't the NL ROY to date Wade Miley, not Bryce Harper?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:21 PM)

Sean, Yes, Wade Miley is solidly in the mix. We still have three months to see how this plays out, and a lot of things can change.

Sean (AZ)

Can you turn auto-update on? Thanks!

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:21 PM)

I just did. Thanks.

Jeremy (Overland Park)

How soon could Wil Myers be called up for the Royals? The guy is on fire in Omaha.

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:22 PM)

Jeremy, Very soon, from what I see. The Royals are playing much better of late, and Myers could add even more energy and excitement there when he arrives. He clearly doesn't have much left to prove in the minors.

Jon (DC)

Beginning of the end for the feel good Mets story now?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:23 PM)

Jon, Jeff Samardzija and the Cubs bullpen might beg to differ with that assessment.

Julio (Dominican Republic)

Hi Jerry. Can we Braves fans expect a big deadline addition given the state of the pitching staff and the offense? Which players do you see trading for?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:25 PM)

Julio, I don't think the Braves have made a firm decision what they want to do yet. If they can develop a little more consistency with the kids in the rotation, maybe they'll target a bat. If McCann gets rolling and Chipper can stay healthy and productive, maybe they lean more toward pitching. Frank Wren seems to be looking at a moving target at the moment.

Depressed (KC)

Have you ever seen a pitching staff have 4 guys go down with season-ending Tommy John surgery?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:27 PM)

Depressed, I've seen a lot of staffs ravaged by injuries, but I can't recall a team with this many Tommy John cases, no. Maybe they'll give you a change of pace and have a pitcher go down with a shoulder injury soon. (On second thought, that probably won't ease your depression any).

John (Denver)

The President will be here Friday to survey all the horrible fire damage. Any chance he could take a minute and declare the Rox a disaster area as well? The only way it could get worse is if Tulo or Cargo demand a trade to get the heck out of here, and it would be hard to blame them. Is there a more poorly run organization in MLB?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:28 PM)

John, I know Rockies fans are angry and disgusted over the team's performance this year. But the Rox did make it to the World Series in 2007, win a franchise-high 90 games in 2009 and have a winning season again in 2010. Try telling a Pirates or Orioles fan how bad things are there.

Jason (St. Louis)

It's almost time for the All-Star break. What grade would you give Matheny as a manager so far?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:30 PM)

Jason, Off the top of my head, I'd give him a solid "B." He's dealt with a bunch of injuries and he had a huge task ahead of him trying to replace Tony La Russa. I think Matheny and Robin Ventura have both done well for guys who entered this season with zero managerial experience.

arnold (chicago)

does chris sale deserve consideration for the starting spot in the all star game? he has been unbelievable this year!

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:31 PM)

Arnold, Verlander would be my AL starter in the All-Star Game. But Chris Sale and Jake Peavy should both make the team.

Joe (San Antonio)

Heath Bell, how many more saves can be blow?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:31 PM)

Joe, How many more opportunities does he have?

Joe (San Antonio)

How foul do you believe the Chapman celebration was?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:33 PM)

Joe, It was foolish and unnecessary, but at least Chapman didn't have much of an injury risk doing those forward rolls. I was at the MLB draft when Courtney Hawkins, the White Sox' No. 1 pick, did a backflip in a suit and dress shoes. Kenny Williams' heartrate still hasn't returned to normal.

Jon (DC)

Is this chat a tax or a command under the interstate commerce clause?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:34 PM)

Jon, Good one. What did CNN report?

John (Green Bay)

Have the Braves ever made a big trade deadline move? I seriously can't think of one.

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:35 PM)

John, That's the other thing: The Braves are always hamstrung financially, so an incoming player's salary is always going to be an issue.

Frank (La Marque)

With Trevor Bauer set to make his debut today what should we expect to see?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:36 PM)

Frank, Hard to say, but he's a very entertaining pitcher to watch. I saw him in spring training when he was doing long-tosses 360 feet and hurling his first warmup pitch to the backstop. I never like to heap too much on a kid in the way of expectations, but the Diamondbacks are very excited about Bauer.

John (Cincinnati )

Aren't the Reds hurting themselves by starting Rolen? The guy looks done.

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:37 PM)

John, I haven't seen Rolen play since his return, but I agree that there's reason to be concerned when a guy is 37 and has had to fight through so many injuries. But let's give him a little more time before we pronounce him done.

ASN (NY)

How worried should Yankees fans be? Losing the 2 best pitchers on the staff in one day, asking Freddy Garcia to take starts, hope Hughes and Kuroda maintain their good pitching and that Nova just keeps winning despite his high ERA.

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:40 PM)

ASN, Hey, it's never good to lose two pitchers. But if CC can come back from the All-Star break at full health, this little break might turn out to be a good thing. The guy has logged an awfully heavy workload over the years. Pettitte's injury was unfortunate, but I think they'll survive. Not many MLB teams have great starting pitching from 1-5 these days.

Kyle (San Diego)

Can you post this link? And let everyone know to write-in Mike Trout into the All Star Game? www.miketroutallstar.weebly.com

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:40 PM)

Kyle, I'm not into doing these things as a rule. But for Mike Trout, I'll make an exception.

Jay (Baltimore)

So, the Yankees keep winning and just lost 2 more starting pitchers. Will their luck ever run out, will they make a run at Greinke or Hamels?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:43 PM)

Jay, I don't see the Brewers or Phillies making the calls on whether they'll trade Greinke or Hamels for at least 3 more weeks. By that point, the Yankees should have a better idea whether they'll even need to make a trade. As for Greinke, I doubt the Yanks would have any interest in him. They privately aren't sold on his ability to pitch in NY. (I've heard that a lot over the last couple of offseasons).

Rod (Atlanta)

Jerry, is it possible for the Braves to have 3 outfielders in the all star game?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:45 PM)

Rod, I don't see it. You have Beltran, Braun, Melky, CarGo, McCutchen and Stanton in the mix for spots, along with the Atlanta guys. No way all three Braves go.

Brandon (San Jose)

Jarrod Parker = AL ROY, right?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:46 PM)

Brandon, He's been great. But I can't see him getting it over Mike Trout at this point. And let's not forget, Yu Darvish is a rookie as well. It's a very strong field in the AL.

Anders Holmvik (Rancho Cucamonga, CA)

Please Jerry, someone say something nice about Carolos Ruiz! What he is doing is flat out amazing.

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:47 PM)

Anders, You got it. It's not only the way Ruiz is hitting. He plays so hard and is so emotionally invested in the Phillies' pitching staff. To me, he has to rank among the top 5 in NL MVP consideration through the first half of the season. #choochmania.

AJ (NJ)

Didn't the Braves trade for Teixeira at the deadline a few years ago?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:49 PM)

AJ, They did, but that was a while ago. They also gave away Elvis Andrus, Neftali Feliz and Matt Harrison (not to mention Jarrod Saltalamacchia). The Teixeira trade has been the gift that keeps on giving for the Rangers.

AJ (NJ)

Hi Jerry, any other potential moves for the ChiSox that make sense? Thanks.

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:50 PM)

AJ, Their farm system is so thin, it's hard to see Kenny Williams doing much else of impact before the trade deadline. He can't make any other moves without weakening his big league roster. But based on his history, he'll always try.

Al (Chicago)

Jerry, how can you say that Verlander should be the starting pitcher for the AL in the All Star game? Sale is 1st in the league in ERA and 2nd in wins. Verlander while having a great year is not having a better year than Sale and should not just start because of his name. Sale is the best pitcher in the AL right now and should be the starter.

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:52 PM)

Al, Verlander has thrown 22 more innings than Sale, has a better strikeout-to-walk ratio and the exact same WHIP. You can make a case for Sale, but it's hard for me to deny the guy who was the AL MVP and Cy Young a year ago. Sorry.

Joe (San Antonio)

Theo Epstein is considered a genius. Does he deserve flack for John Lackey not working out, the issues that Carl Crawford had last year, etc?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:53 PM)

Joe, Theo is a very intelligent guy, but I think he would freely admit that several of his big-name acquisitions in Boston didn't work out as well as he had hoped.

Mike (Reno, NV)

What do you think about the shutout sweep the Giants just dropped on the Dodgers. And arguably their best 2 starting pitchers didn't even pitch! If Lincecum can maintain whatever he had going yesterday, the NL West and the whole National League better watch out for the Giants.

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:54 PM)

Mike, Yep, that division is wide open for them. And I wouldn't count out the Diamondbacks either, if Stephen Drew can come back and play at a reasonable level and they get some consistency from their starting rotation.

Craig G. (Fairfield, CA)

Hey Jerry, do you realistically think the Giants would trade Pablo Sandoval because of his weight issues? That would be idiotic.

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:55 PM)

Craig, If his weight is a concern to the Giants, it's also going to be a concern to potential suitors and reduce the return for him. Isn't it better to hang onto him and try to keep working with him to get him into the best shape possible?

dkow (honolulu)

Do you see the Diamondbacks doing anything to upgrade the 3B position?

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:56 PM)

Again, I heard Derrick Hall on the radio this morning, and he mentioned that as a possibility. I don't see a lot of tremendous upgrade options out there for them. Can't see a return engagement for Mark Reynolds in the desert.

Ryan Ram (Montreal)

What are your thoughts on Yadier Molina as a player? personally I think he is the best catcher in baseball and has a chance at the hall of fame.

Jerry Crasnick
  (1:58 PM)

Ryan, I can buy that, particularly since he's made such offensive strides in recent years. Yadi is only 29, so he has a chance to keep building that portfolio for several more years.

Eric (DC)

Do the Nats make a move to get some more pop in there lineup or stay pat and enjoy the ride

Jerry Crasnick
  (2:01 PM)

Eric, Mike Rizzo has to have a hitter on his radar, but there aren't a lot of great options out there. Look at the teams who are out of it and looking to deal, and you see names like Alfonso Soriano, Bryan LaHair, Carlos Quentin, et al. He's going to really have to work to get an impact bat.

Jerry Crasnick
  (2:01 PM)

Thanks for the questions, everybody. Next week should be interesting with the All-Star picks coming out. Let's talk again soon.