Results tagged ‘ Matt Smith ’

A Crowded DL: Been There, Done That

The injuries are piling up for the Phillies, although Ruben Amaro Jr. said last night Carlos Ruiz won’t be placed on the DL today because of a back problem.

That doesn’t mean it won’t happen. It just won’t happen today. But the DL already is crowded with Chase Utley, Brad Lidge, Jose Contreras, Joe Blanton, J.C. Romero, Domonic Brown and Brian Bocock

The Phillies should be used to this. I pictured players checking their iPads or phones last night and shrugging their shoulders at the latest DL news, if they hadn’t heard already.

“Blanton’s on the DL? Damn. OK.”

The Phillies have travelled this road before:

  • 2007: They used 46 players, including 28 pitchers (some of those players included Chris Roberson, Pete LaForest, Russell Branyan, Yoel Hernandez, Anderson Garcia, Kane Davis, John Ennis, Joe Bisenius, Zack Segovia and Matt Smith).
  • 2008: They used 40 players, including 18 pitchers (Brad Harman, Andy Tracy, Chris Snelling, R.J. Swindle, Les Walrond and Andrew Carpenter).
  • 2009: They used 41 players, including 22 pitchers (Rodrigo Lopez, Paul Hoover, Sergio Escalona and Steven Register).
  • 2010: They used 42 players, including 21 pitchers (Cody Ransom, Dane Sardinha, Brian Bocock, Nate Robertson, Scott Mathieson and Nelson Figueroa).

The Phillies handled the injuries every time. Nobody can say they will handle them this year, but it explains why nobody in the clubhouse is panicked, either.

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Looking Back at the Abreu Trade

Sanchez0532.jpgThere have been countless moves to get the Phillies to back-to-back World Series.

One of them came July 30, 2006, when the Phillies traded Bobby Abreu and Cory Lidle to the Yankees for Matt Smith, C.J. Henry, Carlos Monasterios and Jesus Sanchez. If you look at the talent exchanged, the trade came out poorly for the Phillies. Smith and Henry are out of baseball, and the Mets selected Monasterios with the seventh pick in December’s Rule 5 Draft.

Only Sanchez remains, but the Phillies are optimistic after converting him from a catcher to a pitcher. In his first season as a pitcher, Sanchez went 10-6 with a 3.44 ERA in 26 games last year for Single A Lakewood. He impressed the Phillies enough that they protected him from the Rule 5 by placing him on the 40-man roster.

But the Phillies made the trade not because they were in love with Smith, Henry, Monasterios and Sanchez. They made the trade because the nucleus they had in place had not won, and Pat Gillick wanted to make a change. They traded Abreu to clear salary and change the atmosphere in the clubhouse.

The trade allowed the Phillies to play Shane Victorino in right field the remainder of the season, Jimmy Rollins and Chase Utley to assert themselves as leaders in the clubhouse, and indirectly sign Utley and Brett Myers to contract extensions in the offseason because Abreu had been set to make $16.5 million in 2007 with a $16 million club option with a $2 million buyout in 2008.

“It came out all right,” Gillick said. “I’m happy with it.”

Read the entire story here.

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

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