The song remained the same for Brett Myers tonight after another quality start gave way to a Phillies loss. The club could only muster three hits against the Marlins as their starter Ricky Nolasco tossed 6 and 2/3 innings of no-hit ball. Abraham Nunez broke up the fun with a rare hit but was stranded as Myers batted for himself in the bottom of the seventh. Chase Utley extended his hitting streak to 28 games with a single in his final at bat. He only recorded two official ABs as he was HBP and walked earlier in the game. Also, he was a bit shaky defensively at the end. He started the top of the ninth by knocking down a groundball but failed to get a throw off. Then later as he tried to convert a double play, a high throw from Rollins contributed to a throwing error by Utley. The runner advanced, and later scored as Aaron Fultz coughed up three runs in the ninth. This meant that Ryan Howard’s 33rd home run of the year in the ninth was for naught.
The real news to come out of tonight’s game was that David Bell, who went 0-4, was traded to the Milwaukee Brewers. The Brewers, just coming off dealing Carlos Lee, sent to the Phillies a single-A 22-year-old right-handed pitcher by the name of Wilfrido Laureano. Laureano has gone 3-2 with one save and a 3.96 ERA in 29 relief appearances in the South Atlantic League. In 63 and 2/3 innings he struck out 62 batters while allowing 54 hits, 36 walks and a .218 opponent’s average. He will be assigned to Lakewood.
Bell, who is a free agent at the end of the season, knew his days in Philly were coming to an end, but I think we’re all surprised it came sooner than we though. Bell has underachieved in his almost four years with the Phils and the fans have let him know it. While his smart fielding helped to solidify the Phils impressive defense last season, he will be remembered for his error against the Astros late last season as well as grounding into innumerable doubleplays. The Brewers will be David’s sixth team in his 12 years of MLB service. He will likely play a backup role to Jeff Cirillo who is batting .326 on the season. The Brew Crew also have Cory Koskie who plays third, but he’s been on the DL since the beginning of the month.
The move comes among trade speculation surrounding many Phillies other than David Bell. In fact, few suspected any team would have an interest in Bell; and looking at who the Phils got in return, it seems Milwaukee had only the slightest. While this move could be considered a salary dump, Pat Gillick just wanted to get something out of Bell before his playing career in Philadelphia ended. With the starting third baseman gone, the Phillies are left with Abraham Nunez (who has been awful offensively) and Chris Coste (the backup catcher) to fill the hole. However with a roster spot open, Bobby Scales could be called up for an interview; that is, unless that spot is reserved for Randy Wolf. Or of course, this could be the first move in a larger trading deadline strategy concocted by Pat Gillick. We’ll know for sure after this weekend.