Good morning! Are you off from work yet? Hopefully you are.
BUCH-SHOT: As reported Tuesday, Clay Buchholz is a member of the Phillies. He’ll probably start the season in the rotation, along with Jeremy Hellickson, Aaron Nola, Vince Velasquez and Jerad Eickhoff.
That group is decent, but it all depends on health. *If* Nola is healthy and pitching as we expect, and *if* Velasquez can stay healthy and become more efficient, and *if* Buchholz stays healthy and trusts his stuff, the Phillies have a slightly-better-than-league-average rotation. Of course, that’s also dependent on*if* Hellickson and Eickhoff remain steady and capable of delivering quality starts.
If any of those things goes awry, then we bring in Zach Eflin, Jake Thompson, Alec Asher and Nick Pivetta. Maybe even Mark Appel. And then there’s a whole new host of *ifs* to consider.
SEE YA SHAFFER?: And because Buchholz came aboard, the Phils threw infielder Richie Shaffer off the boat, designating him for assignment. Another team may claim him off waivers.
ROLLINS AWAY: David Rollins – DFA’d last week by the Phils – has been claimed by Texas, the team that previously DFA’d him.
You may be wondering why. Well, its all about roster space. The Rangers like Rollins (or else they wouldn’t have claimed him), but didn’t want to keep him on the 40-man roster, so they tried to sneak him through waivers by DFA’ing him. The Phillies saw him on waivers and decided to make a go of him. Now the Rangers have Rollins again; we’ll see what they do.
Meanwhile, this is life for a fringe major leaguer.
HOLIDAY GIFT: Finally, FOX 29 and the Phillies teamed up to give a nice gift to staff Sgt. Anthony Conly, who now serves in the Pennsylvania Army National Guard. The gift: a baseball signed by Phils first base coach Mickey Morandini (Morandini signed a ball for him at his first ever game), and five days at Phils Phantasy Camp in January.