Phillies Bullpen Fully Expecting Total Abandonment


"“We gave a great rotation and those guys used to go deep all the time in the game… seven, eight, nine innings at a time… so that means our group is going to be fresh, but at the same time, we’re not going to be able to pitch every day, or every two or three days, so we gotta be focused and stay sharp and be ready by the time we need to be there and try to do the best we can.”—Danys Baez"

It took only one endless run-on sentence for Danys Baez to illustrate the temperament of the Phillies bullpen.  Walking that fine line between “proud of his teammates” and “horrified of watching his pitching arm turn to dust,” the Phillies’ worst reliever laid out his concerns the other day as the sun rose on another morning of pointless training.

He stressed the importance of keeping his focus only on the present and living for the moment, like a middle-aged father whose decided he’s seen enough college tuition bills in his mailbox and taken off in his neighbor’s Sedona.  “It’s going to be fun,” he explained, wondering if even one person believed he meant it.

It’s not that the Phillies’ bullpen is going to become superfluous in 2011, it just seems more likely that they will see a cut in hours, at least at first.  So it would be ignorant to assume that they are on the way to a season full of neglect, but its that seems to be what they are preparing for.

Speaking of abandonment, Chad Durbin is still hanging around, like the guy who keeps going back to visit his old high school.  Two weeks ago, he was a free agent reliever in a market full of contenders that could use him.  Sadly, none of them seem to realize it, and the only teams who have been contacting him are ones that will spend a lot of 2011 falling out of contention.  Which is sad, really; Chad deserves better than he’s getting, but also, training camps have been open for about two weeks now.  Eventually, the uneasiness of his job situation will eventually drive him mad.