Tuesday, June 29, 2010

This DL Thing Really Grinds My Gears

Chase Utley and Placido Polanco hit the DL today. That isn't good news. Even with their recent surge, which has them back to within 2.5 games of the Braves, the Phillies have more to worry about now than three weeks ago. Can they survive without Utley and Polanco in the order? Who will step up? Why the hell don't we still have Cliff Lee? Will I work late every day? These are the questions keeping me up at night.

Until Utley meets with a hand specialist in Philadelphia, we won't know how long he'll be out. Hopefully he's back right after the All-Star break. If not we're kinda screwed, unless we bring back Tad Iguchi. As far as Polanco is concerned, well, his head is so big and I still don't understand why. His huge dome-ness aside, he's been this teams most consistent hitter all year so losing him isn't something I take lightly. There is talk the elbow will probably bother him all year and that he'll need surgery in the offseason. Double ugh.

Anyway, unless Howard and Werth both get hot and Ibanez remembers how to hit more than once a week, it looks like the Phillies might need a trade or two to keep them in World Series contention. While all I expect them to add is a bullpen arm, if Happ doesn't come back strong they will need a starter. If Utley is going to miss an extended period of time, they will need a second baseman. And if Polanco can't come back for a while, we would be stuck with Greg Dobbs and Juan Castro as our third basemen. That's about as uninspiring as a Nicolas Cage movie.

So, what should they do? Well, the most important thing is figuring out how long Utlanco will be out. Knowing that will clear a lot of things up. But, to really push for a World Series (which should be the goal) they probably need another very good starter. I'd love to see them make a push for Dan Haren, whose stock has dropped but is signed for a few more years. They'd have to increase payroll to do it, but he'd help through 2012 AND probably wouldn't cost Brown or Cosart due to his subpar year. There have at least been rumblings that Arizona might shop him and if those are true Ruben Amaro better at least give it a shot.

Ultimately though, they probably will aim for someone in the same ilk of a Joe Blanton from a few years ago. So what does that mean? Try these names on for size:

Jeremy Guthrie? Yuck.

Eric Bedard? I'm not even sure he has a shoulder.

Ted Lilly? Reminds me a Cory Lidle, minus being a terrible pilot. (He doesn't remind me of Cory Lidle at all. Lilly is actually pretty good. I just figured no none had made a Cory Lidle joke on this blog. Consider this the first and probably the last.)

Ben Sheets? He'd be on the DL upon arrival, I have no doubt.

There simply isn't much out there (which might be a good thing because the Phillies don't have much to give up anyway). But they are going to do something, they always do.

So, needless to say, it should be a riveting month of July for the Phils. After playing much better during interleague play than we could have hoped for, they sit within stricking distance of first place. If Utley and Polanco come back in mid-July AND Happ comes back strong AND Danys Baez is deported, we stand a good chance of making the playoffs. Shake in some luck and a big time move by Rubes and we got ourselves another champion.

Or Utley misses the rest of the season, Polanco's head explodes, Baez gives up 589 more HRs and we trade for Kevin Millwood. Let's hope for the former.


  1. You forgot to mention that Brian BoCOCK got called up, easily catapulting into the spot of best name on the team.

  2. "That's about as uninspiring as a Nicolas Cage movie." ...

    I was pretty inspired to steal cars by Gone In 60 Seconds ... And when Memphis saves Kip's life, we should all be inspired by the brotherly love!