The Phillies have a backup catcher, and his name isn’t Paul Bako. I don’t even really care what the follow-up to this is.
Brian Schneider, now backing up Carlos Ruiz, was one of those Mets who did poorly this year (.218, 3 HR, 24 RBI), but he was also one of the Mets playing through injuries because the guy that he was backing up had already stepped on a land mine. But as long as we don’t have to feel the weak gust of a patented Bako swing-and-a-miss and stare as he unsurprisingly begins the embarrassing, long march back to a dugout full of players who are all thinking but not saying “Seriously, dude?” I can call this a win.
So, if the Phillies and Mets are done hiring each others’ former catchers and giggling, we’d like to move on to more important things, like rumors.
Arbitration day has come and gone, and because of the somewhat befuddling nature of the process, here’s a breakdown of what happened with the Phillies biggest question marks:
DID NOT GET ARBITRATION: Chan Ho Park, Scott Eyre, Placido Polanco, Miguel Tejada
GOT ARBITRATION: Uh, nobody.
The draft picks we would get had Park and Eyre been offered arbitration and declined is now not an option, but with Polanco and Tejada also not receiving offers, they are not more costly third base options. Clearly, the Phillies aren’t too interested in handing out briefcases full of money this offseason. Or even half-full. Of Monopoly money.
Ruben Amaro is now scheming after John Smoltz, hoping the old-timer will be willing to fulfill our bullpen needs. After that three-legged dog of a season (1-3, 4.26 ERA in 7 starts) he wrapped up, Smoltz should at least be considering it.
“… But he would kind of fit the ball, certainly. I’m not sure if that’s a role he wants to play, but we’ve had some discussions with some of those guys who could give us some more pitching depth,” Amaro said, winking at the camera.
It must be so much easier to write a fluff piece in New York, where all you need for a premise is “Don’t forget, Derek Jeter is smart/handsome/talented.” Ha, ha! Writing!