Victorino, Brown, Werth and Oswalt

victorino alone.jpg

Still no word on the severity of Shane Victorino‘s strained left oblique, but we know the injury can be tricky.

It certainly would not be a good time to lose Victorino. Chase Utley is out another month, and Jimmy Rollins seems unlikely to play tonight because of a bruised left foot. Charlie Manuel said yesterday Rollins could miss a couple days. The sooner he is back the better. Rollins had started to swing the bat better, and the offense had started to get on a roll. They also just crawled within 3 1/2 games of the Braves after last night’s 9-5 victory over the Diamondbacks. Now would not be a good time for another deep offensive funk — and losing Rollins and Victorino for a stretch could contrbute to that.

But there are a couple things worth mentioning should Victorino land on the DL:

  1. They’ve got to call up Domonic Brown, right? He is the best outfielder in Triple-A Lehigh Valley, and the object is to put the best product on the field. They could call up John Mayberry Jr., but based on performance Brown is more likely to come up with a big hit.
  2. The Phillies almost certainly would not trade Jayson Werth, if Victorino is going to miss a significant stretch. I mentioned earlier this week the Phillies do not have to trade Werth to acquire Roy Oswalt. This might make that decision a little easier for them.

The Phillies remain top contenders for Oswalt, although consummating a trade will be difficult before Saturday’s 4 p.m. deadline. Sources said yesterday that Oswalt would waive his no-trade clause to play in Philadelphia, which echoed what Oswalt said Monday. Sources also said his $16 million club option for 2012 is not the sticking point it has been made to be, indicating Oswalt might not make the Phillies pick up the option, if it meant being traded or remaining in Houston.

That is important. If Oswalt requires the Phillies to pick up the option, a deal might be too difficult to stomach because of the prospects the Phillies are expected to deliver and the money they already have committed to future payrolls. If he does not, it would be easier for the Phillies to pull the trigger.

It remains to be seen if the Phillies and Astros can agree on prospects. The Astros have scouted left-hander J.A. Happ, which indicates he could be part of the deal. Astros general manager Ed Wade personally scouted Class A Lakewood recently. (Hint, hint, they know the talent in Lakewood very well.)

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The Zo Zone is on Facebook and Twitter. My Phillies book “The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly” is available online, and at Delaware Valley bookstores!

5 Comments

I think the RAJ still has a trick up his sleeve to bring in Oswalt, Reports are that the Phills are unwilling to include Jonathan Singleton in a trade to Houston but with Howard signed forever and Berkmen on his way out I think they include him at the last min to pull off the deal.

If what it takes is Happ, Singleton and assorted detritus, pull the trigger NOW! Singleton is only 19 and at least 3 years away.
A rotation of Halladay, Hamels, Oswalt, Blanton and Kendrick can get them to the postseason. They would still need a bullpen piece.

Todd – who do you think would need to be in the package? Since the Astros don’t want to include $$$ in the deal, does that lower the price? The Phillies better make Oswalt take a physical (Back) if they agree on a deal. Also, can Singleton play OF? He is projected to be a special player. Thanks.

Oswalt doesn’t strike me as a “character” guy. He pretty much threw the organization, the team, and the fans under the bus when he let it be known publicly that he would wave his no-trade clause if he were traded to a contender. He basically said, “The Astros are going nowhere the next year and a half and I don’t want to spoil what good baseball is left in me playing for a bunch of losers.” OK, I paraphased it with a little hyperbole ;o)

erichh: What part of your made-up Oswalt quote is not true? Why is it “throwing the team under the bus” when you say what is (and everybody knows to be) true?
People in other walks of life get to choose where they want to work, so why shouldn’t athletes?
Nobody wants to spend their lives wishing they had done something when they had the opportunity.

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