Spring Training is open for business!!! Pitchers and catchers have reported to Clearwater, Florida. The time of year is upon us where every team is tied for first place, every team has potential, and every player has the possiblity to have a great year!!! Except Ryan Franklin, this guy is going to completely suck eggs.
"Why not us?" said (Ryan) Howard. "We could have been playing in the World Series last season. That's what we have to shoot for."
Well, Gillick has not improved the starting rotation by downgrading from Vicente Padilla to Ryan Franklin and opening up 'competition'(codeword so Robinson Tejeda and Gavin Floyd don't get mad when they get thrown to the curb for a bum like Franklin and an average at best pitcher like Cory Lidle). He didn't improve the bullpen by getting some old farts(Tom Gordon and Arthur Rhodes), basically ensuring that Yoel Hernandez, Aquilino Lopez, and Eude Brito will have to go elsewhere to find jobs. But he did get a guy to play an already overloaded centerfield(Aaron Rowand) who had a down year last year. Sure, he could bounce back and player stellar defense AND good offense, but why not trade a chip like this which would be worth a good amount on the open market, and free Shane Victorino, Chris Roberson, Michael Bourn, and Greg Golson??? The Phils are so overloaded at CF that if handled correctly it could be a boon for the rotation or 3B or another position, but somehow I doubt anything good will come of it.
But I will try to be positive. The hitting is there, the lineup is going to score some runs, same as last year. The pitching though… I love the Phils, and I love baseball. I will root for this team, and if they prove me wrong, I will be happy as hell. I guess I just don't see anything more than 85 wins, which is not enough to win the NL East.