The Phillies bullpen finally has enough aging, questionably healthy arms for Ruben Amaro’s liking. Now it’s time to fill the rest of those slots with cheap, cheap hurlers.
According to Rich Dubee, that competition we’d all kind of thought had been ongoing since the beginning of spring training has finally started. Guys like Jake Diekman, Jeremy Horst, Michael Stutes, Raul Valdes, and Justin De Fratus will get their shot to have Dubee become a respectable father figure or an antagonistic step-uncle figure.
Yes, with the outfield situation aligning (????, Ben Revere, Delmon Young with a broken ankle) the Phillies see it fit to move onto that other catalyst for failure in 2012, the bullpen.
Nobody’s been able to put together a huge portfolio of innings to show off, which is evident in that most of those guys don’t have an ERA under 9.00. Diekman does! Everyone else, be more like Diekman.
Does this mean the rest of the reliever corps will sneak up to his bunk later tonight and smash him good with tube socks full of bars of soap? Who knows! Anything goes during Rich Dubee’s ‘Anything Goes’ Bullpen Spots Battle Royale!
“We’ll start peeking closer. They’ve been out there for three or four times. Those last 12 or 14 days we’ll start taking a real good look at them.”
“A real good look,” Dubee continued, brandishing an FBI background check for Jeremy Horst. ”You would not believe what THIS guy has gotten into. Shit would not expect. Like, weird shit.”
He leaned closer. ”A ton of negative user reviews on eBay.”
So what are the Phillies looking for? Well, lefties; they always help. The Braves are chock full of them; so many that they are potentially shopping them (IMMEDIATE UPDATE: “NO WE ARE NOT”). It’s a valuable asset, and the Phillies have the ability to keep a slew of them around in Horst, Diekman, Valdes, and the presumed secure Antonio Bastardo. Speaking of which, if Papelbon keeps his cool, Adams stays healthy, and Bastardo finds whatever gave him what he had in 2011, that’s a dependable late inning wrecking crew (not the youth of the Braves, but whatever).
Secondly, these guys all come cheap cheap cheap, which has been the theme of the Phillies offseason. Like, Mike Trout cheap. Yeah.
So, after spending what was probably too much on Papelbon and Adams, the Phillies could potentially have a lucrative bullpen of guys who hopefully won’t get too much work, but can come through when asked. And I honestly don’t see what’s so hard about being flawless at a moment’s notice.