The Phillies Are Halfway to Nowhere
After being swept by the Marlins today, the Phillies are 10.5 games back in the division with a 36-45 record. It is their worst effort through 81 games since 1997.
It is the halfway point of the season; time to count the bodies and see exactly how big the hole is that the Phillies are digging. Let’s begin with Jim Thome. He was traded to the Orioles in exchange for 2 prospects: Class A catcher Gabriel Lino and right-hander Kyle Simon, both of whom will report to Class A Lakewood. So the Phillies did not even get a player who could help out right now.
If the Phillies were actually contending, Thome might still be here. But it is the best move for Thome, who will actually get some playing time in the American League. I wish him the best.
And how about Cliff Lee…when Phillies beat reporter Todd Zolecki asked pitching coach Rich Dubee about Lee’s struggles, Dubee basically pleaded the 5th. The response given multiple times was, “I’m not going into it.” Lee appears healthy, no mechanical issues were mentioned. That leads one to believe that Lee, winless in 13 starts, has thrown in the towel. I hope that is not the case, but Lee has not seemed right in a long time now.
And the bodies continue to mount. Jimmy Rollins’ hot streak is over; he is hitless in his last 11 at-bats. Placido Polanco is 2 for his last 15. Antonio Bastardo has allowed 6 runs in his last 4 2/3 innings in relief.
The next head on the block might actually be Cole Hamels. Just announced as an All-Star this year along with Carlos Ruiz and Jonathan Papelbon, it is rumored that the Phillies are shopping Hamels to other teams. If team management feels Hamels will walk once he hits free agency and this 2012 team is down for the count, Hamels may be gone soon.
That would be a terrible shame, but if the Phillies do not pick themselves up and start winning, Hamels will not be the only casualty.
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Photo by Jenn Zambri Photography