Scott Graham's HR Call, Put on A Loop
OK, let's not get our hopes up, shall we? What makes us think a below league average pitcher for virtually his entire career (in a picther's park) is going to be anything but Cory Lidle on a bad day this season? I'm not exactly sure how the Phils will get rid of Frankln, because it appears that he stays healthy and is durable innings-wise, but there is NO WAY this guy turns in a good season pitching in this ballpark. Look at Lidles home vs. away number for a year ago:
HOME: .323 / .831 AWAY: .262 / .730
Quite a diffrence. Keep in mind, most would agree that Lidle is a BETTER version of Franklin. You want to trot Franklin out for nothing but away games? Great idea. You want to move him to mop up duty, we'll see how he reacts, but he is not and will not be an effective pitcher for this club in this ballpark this saeson. It would take a miracle. Here's Franklin in Safeco and the road last year:
HOME: .276 / .781 AWAY: .283 / .795
Franklin's numbers are comparable in Safeco to Lidle's on the road. His away number will probably stay about the same, though there's no way to really know this. They may benefit slightly from a switch in leagues for the first half of the season along with the lack of a DH in the NL. However, consider one final stat, the dreaded groundball to flyball ratio, career-wise, for each pitcher:
That, my friends, is going to be a problem. What sets Lidle apart, besides the fact that he is better than Franklin at keeping the ball down, is probably his preparation. As Lidle himself has even said in interviews, he does not possess the greatest stuff; he's gotten this far based on his work ethic in studying hitters, game preparation, and pitch mixing. Chances are, this is what Franklin has never fully developed: craftiness. Maybe Lidle's techniques will rup off on the newcomer to the NL. More likely, however, in 3-game sets when a team gets to face Lidle, then Franklin presumably 2 nights later, pitchers with similar styles, Franklin will get hammered.
And that is bad news for the Phils, unless it's good news i the form of either gavin Floyd, Robinson Tejeda, Scott Mathieson, Daniel Haigwood, or most unlikely, Cole Hamels.