Well Pat Gillick is still averaging four new players per week, but the latest additions came with the help of the Rule 5 draft. Here are the 3 acquired in the draft:
Round 1, AAA – Peter Ramos (Padres), a 23 year old single A infielder
Round 2, AAA – John Vanden Berg (Brewers), a 25 year old AA catcher
Round 1, AA – Brian Burgamy (Padres), 24 year old outfielder (sounds like a stud according to the linked article)
The fourth player, right-handed reliever Chris Booker, was acquired from Detroit for cash, after the Tigers drafted him in the MLB round of the draft from the Nationals. While Booker tore it up in AAA ball, his MLB debut with the Reds was tainted by 8 runs in 2 innings over the course of 3 games against the Brewers this past September. Wow, that sucks.
By the way if you need a refresher in the Rule 5 draft, check out this post from August 12th of last year.
While none of this raises the level of excitement for the 2006 season considerably, it does bolster the farm system with some quality players. As for Chris Booker, he might be used in a middle relief role if he makes the team. In terms of a setup man, apparently Pat Gillick has expressed interest in the crappy former Mets closer, Braden Looper. (Also included in that comprehensive phillies.com article is information on failed Phillies trades, Madson in the rotation, and players not offered arbitration.) On Looper, I cannot underestimate the negative implications of picking up New York’s trash after they stole our closer. I think this signing would not be received well by the fans, at least not this one.
It appears Gillick’s momentum for acquiring positive impact players has slowed significantly. I might suggest you start getting comfortable with the current squad.