Representatives of the Phillies watched Ben Sheets throw a bullpen session the other day. Ben is 34 years old, did not pitch in 2009, pitched half of 2010, did not pitch in 2011, and is apparently taking time off from naming his kids after Tom Seaver and owning part of a minor league hockey team to try and make a Major League roster.
That roster could be the Braves, Yankees, and Angels as well, who all stood there and watched as Sheets threw a bunch as well.
The Phillies have been here before, scouting Sheets for a playoff run, only then it was before his second flexor tendon operation and you could link the Phillies with a playoff run without anyone laughing their breakfast crumbs into your face.
So what are the Phillies doing? Who represented them? What did they think? These are questions that we on the internet cannot answer, because we are almost as far from being insiders as you are. Also, some of those questions don’t even matter.
The bullpen has been far from reliable this season, and new additions are welcome, since Ruben Amaro refuses to accept any plan that revolves around using Jonathan Papelbon for 4+ innings. Of course, we can’t be sure how effective a new addition would be if it were a fairly broken 30+ hurler who hasn’t seen Major League daylight in over a year. But that may just be whose available right now, and we weren’t at the session. Maybe he didn’t even need surgery afterward.
Words that have been used to describe Sheets’ potential return: