– Fernando Rodney is close to being scooped up by the Los Angeles Angels, according to the Detroit Free Press. The Phillies, however, are reportedly also in on the former Tiger closer. Can’t say I’m overly thrilled about this possibility, although there isn’t much out there in terms of back-end help. Rodney wants to close and while he does have good stuff, can be wild at times. His 4.40 ERA and 1.47 WHIP back up that notion, so for those pining for the 32-year old righty, perhaps you should temper expectations. While the bullpen is the most pressing issue at the moment, the Phillies should look elsewhere – and it appears they may have to if the Angels nab him. If he gets more than the two-year, $12 million Mike Gonzalez got from Baltimore, the Phillies should jump ship immediately.
-In today’s Toronto Sun, Roy Halladay showed Toronto just how classy he is. Doc took out a full-page advertisement thanking Blue Jays fans for his time north of the border. Great show of love by Halladay toward his old town. You can tell the guy really gets it and enjoyed what that city gave him for so long. He won a Cy Young award there, made a lot of money, but did not win. Halladay will finally get that opportunity here and we couldn’t be more enthused to see him wear that number 34 with pride.
–Javier Vazquez is now a Yankee. The Braves traded the starting pitcher to the AL East for Melky Cabrera. Vazquez has 12 career wins against the Phillies, the most against any team in the majors, so it will be good to see him go. He faced the Phillies three times in ’09, going 2-1 with a 3.00 ERA. He now joins the Yankees as their number three or four starter, and I have to say, it was a very strong move by the Yanks. He solidifies an already very good rotation, he was had on the cheap, plus will provide a ton of innings for the champs. Brian Cashman is doing a very solid job this offseason.
–Jason Marquis is now a Nat. He joined the Washington Nationals, signing a two-year, $15 million contract to join the worst team in baseball. It was reported that the Phillies had interest in the 31-year old, another iffy proposition. Marquis has been consistently average throughout his career, as is evident by his 4.48 ERA. The Phillies, sadly, are already paying for mediocrity with a large sum going to Jamie Moyer this year. This move would have been an awful idea. Pay a number five starter $7.5 million on average? Marquis’ career stats look very Adam Eaton-like, so it was a wise move letting the Nats take on that hefty sum for lack of upside.
–Brandon Morrow is now a Blue Jay. Toronto shipped Brandon League and a prospect to Seattle for the 25-year old righty. Tell me why the Phillies couldn’t receive Morrow in the Cliff Lee trade? He has just under 200 career innings under his belt and sports a 3.93 ERA. Morrow mostly threw out of the bullpen in 2009, but can start and has done well in limited action. He is 4-3 lifetime with a 4.42 ERA as a SP. He has the tools to be a very good closer for many years, or even a decent mid-line starter. Again, this guy couldn’t have been thrown in for a Cy Young winner?
(UPDATE: Wed., 8:56 am): The Philadelphia Inquirer is reporting that the Phillies are talking with Mike McDougal, former White Sox, Royal, and National. The lanky righty saved 20 games a year ago and has closed before in KC, but has bounced around the league while posting inconsistent numbers over the life of his nine-year career. Is he an upgrade over Condrey?