Clearly, the bar was very high for starting pitching after the Phillies’ 13-4 face-blasting loss to the Blue Jays yesterday.
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John Lannan’s masterpiece might have ruined the concept for everybody, and is probably the reason the team cut Aaron Cook today, despite his delightfully mediocre performances this spring.
At one point considered to be Roy Halladay’s possible successor, in that he might pitch in the spot that Halladay once occupied, not that he was going to pitch a no-hitter in the playoffs or chase off an anaconda. But Cook is gone now, and with him is a tiny bit of pitching depth.
Cook showed up over 18.2 innings in six games for the Phillies, amassing a 3.38 ERA. He allowed 19 hits and seven earned runs, four walks, five strikesouts; he had a very “Aaron Cook” spring. Not a lot was going wrong, and nothing went too right.
Now, at 34 years old, Cook heads back into the unemployment. He and Yuniesky Betancourt shouldn’t have an impossible time getting work, but perhaps lengthy, or in some cases, abroad. He could find himself in Triple-A, getting knocked around by top prospects or guys who are the “Aaron Cook’s” of hitting.
Regardless, as the Phillies trim their roster for Opening Day, they are going to be slicing off guys who might have a smidge of usefulness here and there.