The twists and turns of 2013 have reached the tipping point for the decision-makers and rock bottom for the Philadelphia Phillies of Jimmy Rollins. Will Sunday’s debacle force management to surrender?
This article represents the thinking of a baseball man in my opinion. Most fans do not consider the budget, prospects on the radar, the organization’s weaknesses, the track record, the competition and the other intangibles.
The Countdown to July 31:
The curious case of seller’s remorse is on full display after a roster-depleted pile of setbacks.
Since late April, numerous articles have clamored for the Phils to trade Cliff Lee, Jonathan Papelbon, Chase Utley, Carlos Ruiz and Michael Young. Most reviewers opine that a total rebuilding is the best option for Ruben Amaro Jr.
According to Todd Zolecki of MLB.com, the brain trust will have a decision-related powwow early in the coming week. Will they sell, buy or stand pat? Standing out the most during his interview of assistant general manager Scott Proefrock was Zolecki’s question: How can you justify buying?
If the situation wasn’t cloudy enough, Lee misses one turn–now–due to a stiff neck, which bothered him for a few days before his scheduled start. Domonic Brown returns immediately after the trade deadline. Meanwhile, the reinforcements of Ryan Howard, Ben Revere and Roy Halladay are likely out until September.
The offseason acquisitions were not the cause of this predicament. Revere proved he could ignite the offense, and Young provided the necessary stopgap at the hot corner. John Lannan produced adequately at the back of the rotation. Even Delmon Young should average .270 with 15 homers, which was basically his 2013 projection in March.
With the final outfield job, Amaro even had a winner with Brown over John Mayberry Jr. and Darin Ruf. Other than Chad Durbin and injuries, the decision-maker fit the pieces together within his financial restrictions to compete for serious October baseball. However, the crowded DL was the only hurdle he could not clear with Mike Adams’ absence as the most devastating factor.
The major stumbling block is that the red pinstripes are down to a final opportunity or two for the postseason. This makes selling so undesirable. On the other hand, the Braves and Nationals did not eliminate the Phillies: They did that themselves.
Considering the competitiveness of Amaro and company, the opinion here is they desperately wanted to do anything other than sell.
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