2010/07/23

Phillies Need a Lot of Help


The Phillies right now have a lot of issues, and will need a lot of help to not only try to win the division, but even get the wild card in the National League.

With the trade deadline a little over a week away, it looks like the Phillies have targeted an elite starter to attempt to acquire. Roy Oswalt is the name that has been mentioned most in this situation. It seems kind of stupid that the Phillies need to acquire a starting pitcher at the trade deadline this season when they had Cliff Lee on the team signed through the season. It's actually beyond stupid; it's moronic; it's asinine; and the series of moves that Ruben Amaro has made since taking over are basically all moronic, and they leave the Phillies in a horrible position as it stands right now.

Since the Phillies got rid of 7 of their top 10 prospects in the Lee and Halladay deals respectively, and since I would imagine Domonic Brown will not be traded, the Phillies don't have many prospects right now, and almost all the ones that they do are at the single A level. This means that the Phillies might have to include Jayson Werth and J.A. Happ in a trade. Since Werth is a free agent in the offseason, it makes sense to trade him; however, trading Werth really puts the already struggling lineup in an even tougher position.

If you trade Werth, you can replace him in the field with top prospect Domonic Brown, who is a natural right fielder. That is fine, as Domonic Brown is overdue to join the major leagues in my opinion. However, Jayson Werth, even though he is struggling, fills the #5 hole in the Phillies batting order, and is the right handed bat there. Batting behind Ryan Howard is not as easy thing to do. Domonic Brown is a lefty, and will join and already lefty heavy Phillies batting order. Also, you can't expect Domonic Brown to jump into the #5 hole behind Utley and Howard, as a lefty.

This means that you would have to probably put Rollins or Victorino in the #5 hole, both of whom are switch hitters, and unfortunately, both of whom are struggling at the plate. Rollins can hopefully turn it around and have a good end to the season; Shane Victorino just flat out sucks. If you put Rollins there, he can swing away like he always wants to anyways, but you then have Victorino at the leadoff spot, popping up the first pitch he sees every at bat. Either decision is not optimal.

Bottom line, the lineup right now isn't good enough to make the playoffs. In fact, the offense has been so bad that the Phillies fired hitting coach Milt Thompson tonight. Thompson will be replaced with Greg Gross, who has already been the Phillies hitting coach. The offense is flat out bad no matter who is the hitting coach right now, and I can't even remember the last time I said that about the Phillies. Chase Utley coming back obviously can't hurt, but I don't think it will do enough to revive the offense. Utley isn't going to fire anybody up with his personality, and Utley wasn't even hitting the ball anyways before he got injured.

Therefore, if the Phillies do make a trade, it will need to be for a pitcher, and this is what will need to carry the Phillies into the playoffs; because it sure isn't going to be the hitting.