Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com reports (Insider) the Phillies have strong interest in left-handed reliever Will Ohman.
Ohman, 31, went 4-1 with a 3.68 ERA for the Braves last season. Before that he pitched for the Cubs, so a signing would rejoin him with fellow lefty Scott Eyre. Ohman was seeking a 2Y/$8M deal at the top of the offseason.
The Phils are still searching for a reliever, and one who can fill JC Romero’s gap with Eyre until June is most desirable. Lefties recorded just a .571 OPS off Ohman in 2008, while righties recorded a .700, so Ohman would be used in late situations with some caution against righties.
I don’t clearly understand this need, however; while it’s nice to have two lefties in the bullpen (and help for Chad Durbin and Ryan Madson), it’s not as important as having guys up front who can minimize the bullpen, especially early in the season. If you remember, the April-June Phils thrived on six-inning outings and a heavy dose of Chad Durbin. Ohman’s original asking price was also a bit off, though the Phils haven’t shied from giving relievers $4M per season. If the Phillies can sign Ohman for about half his asking price, it would be a fine signing, but he’s nothing to get tremendously excited about.