Not a Mystery Anymore
I think we know at this point that the Phillies will be sellers, not buyers. All this talk about the Phillies maybe being contenders was really just wishful thinking, and now with all these injuries, it’s just not happening. Trying to make moves to make the playoffs was pretty much nonsense anyway, as even if they did make it, they were just not good enough to beat anyone in a series.
There’s a lot to write about concerning this topic the direction the Phillies should take. First thing’s first: David Murphy writes that the Phillies mood after the game was one of “acceptance” that they weren’t going to make the playoffs. Not shocking considering they just lost eight games in a row. Also, Michael Young said he would consider waving his no-trade clause to go to a contender. I think this is a safe bet, because even if the return is negligible, the Phillies will be calling up Cody Asche to play third to get a good look at the young guy. Young is not a long-time fan favorite, so they won’t be losing any fans by trading him.
Along the same lines, Jimmy Rollins said he will not be waiving his no-trade clause because “There are still a couple things I would like to be number one on the lists of in this organization so until those things are done, I’m not going anywhere.” This is an interesting quote for a number of reasons. I can’t blame someone for thinking about career numbers especially when the team doesn’t have post-season hopes, but it doesn’t sound good. It makes you wonder if winning is #1 on his priority list. More to the point, I think it makes Jimmy sound a little entitled in that he is assuming he will be the starting shortstop in Philly for the remainder of his contract. I can almost guarantee if he lost his starting job he would be looking to go elsewhere after pouting for a bit. Rollins has two years remaining on his contract with a vesting option for a third. I think there may be a chance to trade Rollins, but only if the Phillies would pay part of his contract. There are ten shortstops in baseball with a better OPS than Jimmy right now. So, while he’s not great, there are worse offensive shortstops out there. But if he doesn’t want to go, then there isn’t much they could do about. Except sit him until he wants to go somewhere else.
By the way, which stats is Jimmy talking about when he says he wants to be number one? Looking at the numbers, he will be the all-time Phillie leader in hits by the end of next season if he plays a full season. There’s a possibility he could be the leader in runs by the end of his career, but probably not. He only needs two more doubles to be the leader in that category. He is second in stolen bases, but doesn’t get enough anymore to be a threat to be #1. “Sliding” Billy Hamilton is first in that category and he last played for the Phillies in 1895. In case your wondering about on-base percentage, Jimmy is in 75th place just after the legendary Franz “Dutch” Otto Knabe.
I wanted to write more, but this post has gotten too long. I’ll start a new one.