It feels like it was just yesterday that I wrote about the happy days of Chase Utley returning and Michael Martinez being optioned to AAA.
But that exciting news was 2 roster moves ago and now we have new exciting information:
Chad Qualls was designated for assignment today. I have no problem with Qualls, when he is not pitching. I have a lot of problems when he is used in games. He has not been what I call effective this year. I feel bad for him being DFA’d, but he has blown a couple Phillies games that should have been won this year. So, I guess I really don’t.
The Phillies have 10 days to trade him. If they are not able to trade him, he will become either a Free Agent or be sent to AAA.
Qualls asked for a trade. Umm, yeah, good luck with that one Ruben!
We also had to say goodbye to Brad Lidge. This move made me sad. Though I know Lidge’s injuries caused him to lose velocity on his fastball and was no longer the Phillies closer, his presence and all-around great guy persona will surely be missed. I do wish him well with the Washington Nationals, though not looking forward to the Phillies facing him. The Phillies/Nats play each other quite often, so the odds of not seeing him are very slim.
Juan Pierre (right) with White Sox 3rd base coach Jeff Cox - Wikimedia.org
And to finish out the week, the Phillies kept the ball rolling by signing Juan Pierre. The reason…speed! His not really needed as an outfielder, but his ability to run the bases, quickly I might add, is something that determined their decision. They signed him to a minor-league contract and he will have to compete with others to assure a spot on the roster. My husband was quick to point out that Pierre was great…a few years ago and questioned his value now.
Pierre spent last season as the Chicago White Sox’ regular leftfielder. He hit.279 with a .329 on-base percentage in 158 games. – CSNPhilly.com
If he can still run the bases and hit decently, then his addition will be an asset.
And I’m shaking my head at this trade because for one I didn’t think the Phillies needed another pitcher and second, Valdez, a respectable utility player, COULD pitch if needed. All joking aside, those who aren’t aware, Valdez did in fact pitch in a game. On May 25, 2011 against the Reds (ironically), he pitched in the 19th inning and collected the win. (Phillies won 5-4).
Last season, Valdez did a decent job filling in for injured starters such as Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley, and Placido Polanco. This alone makes me question what Ruben Amaro, Jr. and company were thinking on this. I’m truly disappointed to see a player like Valdez go, because unfortunately those three mentioned players, are injury prone and finding good temporary replacements isn’t always the easiest thing to do. Valdez was both reliable and an asset to the team.
Valdez, 33, played in 99 games in 2011, had a .249 average and 30 RBIs. Valdez had been with the Phillies since 2010. – CSNPhilly.com
That being said, I’m sure there are other players out there who could fill that role. And from Horst’s statistics, he appears to have pretty good stuff.
Horst appeared in 12 games last season, pitched 15.1 innings and had a 2.93 ERA. The 26-year-old pitcher was a 21st-round selection by the Reds in the 2007 MLB draft. Horst also appeared in 36 games at Triple-A last season, posting a 2.81 ERA with 42 strikeouts in 51 innings. - CSNPhilly.com
According to Comcast Sportsnet’s Daily News Live, Horst has been invited to Spring Training, which means he’s gonna have to earn his spot on the roster.
Wilson Valdez - Photo credit: Steve Trapani
Funny snippet: My mom used to confuse Juan Castro (when he was with the Phillies) and Valdez by mixing up their first names. Wilson ended up being referred to as the coffee dude “Juan Valdez“. Even after Castro left, my mom still called Wilson “Juan Valdez” so it will be sad not to hear that anymore.
I do wish Valdez good luck with the Reds. And hey at least he will be reunited with Ryan Madson (another one of Ruben’s questionable moves).
For more info on the Reds, check out Aerys Sports Cincinnati Reds site: C-ing Red
Great news Philadelphia, Cole Hamels and the Phillies have come to an agreement. Hamels will be making $15 million this year.
Cole Hamels Circa 2008 Photo Credit Steve Trapani
Bad news Philadelphia, Cole Hamels and the Phillies did not come to a contract extension, just avoided arbitration.
Everyday this offseason, I kept hoping to wake up with the news that the Phillies locked up Cole Hamels long term and that the awesome new shirsey I bought over Christmas will be useful for more than one season. I am going to keep that hope alive through the upcoming season, because I truly believe that he belongs in Philadelphia and no where else.
Oh yeah, Wilson Valdez also avoided arbitration by signing a deal worth $930,000. Valdez is an extremely versatile player that really enjoys double plays. And by that, I mean hitting into them, not turning them.
I, like most of Philadelphia, grew up with a history of losing. As a child, I would sit in the 700 level of Veterans Stadium reading a book. I couldn’t care less about the game, for many reasons, but one was because I knew they were going to lose. They were the Phillies, that’s what they did. There was Mike Schmidt and everyone else. Not exactly a lot to root for.
Then there was the ’93 season. I was in 6th grade and loved playing softball, so I decided to watch the game that was on the TV every night that there was broadcast. While I watched the game, my dad, mom and brothers introduced me to the mental side of the game. And I started paying attention. I no longer fought with my parents or grumbled when we would go to the game as a family.
I also experienced my first taste of agonizing defeat as Joe Carter sent one deep to end the World Series.
However, the downside of that team, was that there was really no one that would attract a young fan. Mitch “Wild Thing” Williams scared me. John Kruk claimed not to be an athlete. Darren Daulton lived on another planet. No one in the outfield would help with the cause. And, outside of the Curt Schilling, no one on the pitching staff stands out.
After the 1994 lockout, the Phillies were right back to where they belonged, in the cellar of the National League.
Scott Rolen of the Reds playing 3B
Strangely enough, it was 1996 that I started falling in love with baseball. Not surprisingly, the interest that I had in baseball grew to a full blown fandom when Scott Rolen became the 3rd baseman. He was that young, talented, likeable player that a lot of young fans were waiting to show.
I started paying more and more attention to the team then anyone in my family. By the time I was 16, I was the one that my family and friends went to if they wanted a Phillies stat. I spent most Sunday’s afternoons hanging out at the Vet, going to the game, and then waiting around for autographs.
Oh yeah, and the Phillies did exactly what was expected of them. They lost. Time and time again. I would sit in the stands and root and cheer and know that it was going to end the same way that most of the games that I have attended would end. I was ok with that. I loved being there and I loved watching the game. I just knew the outcome.
It is common knowledge among baseball fans that Phillies’ fans know how to boo and can be very, very loud about it. But last night, Phillies fans took booing to a whole new level, and I have never been prouder to be a fan. I got home last night and turned the game on in […]