I think we can all agree it’s been a pretty hilarious month and a half for the Phillies. First, they come into the regular season armed with their usual stellar rotation and a closer who for some reason costs $50 million, and without half of their starting infield. Then, nobody hits and several pitching gems implode from sheer longevity. This is followed by somewhat more encouraging hitting, accompanied by a comprehensive systems failure in the bullpen, and the knowledge that a ton of money is locked up in a small collection of currently injured/offensively ineffective players! Hahaha! I mean, that is just the set-up for the ultimate joke. Which I assume is still death.
But hey, I don’t mention this to bring anybody down from last night’s win. I mention it because unlike other years when the Phillies seem hesitant to deal with clear issues (And only have five division flags to show for it! What do they know!), they seem to be in at least the warm-up stages of a solution.
Sure, we don’t have the best minor league system. But we do have one with players in it, and those players do have a purpose. All that depth we’ve heard about between the ripples of low-key minor deals is being explored at the moment, and Ruben Amaro’s recent spelunking expedition in Lehigh Valley in response to injuries or dead weight at the Major League level has turned up some spare names on the roster. Last week, a cluster of newbies rolled into town in the form of bullpenners Raul Valdes and Jake Diekman (who is for some reason “thrilled” to join the Phillies), and infielder/Spring Training glory boy Hector Luna.
Fontenot was dragged out of an underwater cave by Ruben Amaro, and while he may not have been found in a treasure chest, he does, in fact, go well with the drapes. Fontenot gives the Phillies another option at second or third, and probably knows which end of the bat to hold on a good day. He is one of those players everybody knows because he’s been a career National Leaguer, stretching his legacy through Chicago and San Francisco with those quirky 2010 Giants who charmed our hearts. They were sad to see him go.
Mike Fontenot also likes the Phillies organization and has said so, unlike all those players who publicly lambast their franchise and then receive promotions to the Major Leagues.
“This is a winning organization. I had a few choices and I wanted to come here.”
So here’s Mike Fontenot, along with a decent chunk of the 2012 Lehigh Valley Ironpigs, ready to twist this catastrophe into a slightly more tolerable exercise in mediocrity. Good luck to us all!
Except Scott Podsednik. He doesn’t work here anymore.