Phillies Notes: Papelbon finds positives in staying or going

Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon. (Yong Kim/Staff Photographer)
Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon. (Yong Kim/Staff Photographer)
Posted: July 15, 2014

Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon made news last week in Milwaukee when he said he would welcome a trade to a contender.

Papelbon hasn't backed off those comments, but there is an addendum. He was asked Sunday how he would feel if he was still with the Phillies after the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline.

"I would be happy," Papelbon said before a 10-3 loss to the Washington Nationals at Citizens Bank Park. "I am pretty indifferent on the whole situation."

Papelbon, who has a 1.21 ERA and is 22 for 24 in save opportunities, said there are positives to staying or departing.

"Would I like to go on a winning team? Of course. And have a chance at another championship? of course," he said. "Would I like to stay here and be part of this bullpen that I think can be really, really good and part of some of these kids who have an opportunity to be great? Yes, I would love to do that, too."

Rotation plans

Cliff Lee will start July 21 at Citizens Bank Park against the San Francisco Giants, manager Ryne Sandberg said as he announced his post-all-star-break rotation.

Lee has not pitched for the Phillies since May 18 as he recovers from a strained left elbow.

A.J. Burnett will start the first game back from the break Friday in Atlanta. Cole Hamels and Kyle Kendrick will pitch the next two days.

Lee will make his final rehab start Monday in Clearwater, then will begin the Giants series, followed by Roberto Hernandez the next night.

Sandberg said he arranged it this way so the first four pitchers will have seven days between their most recent starts. Hernandez will have a longer time off; he last pitched on Wednesday.

Hamels wants to stay

Cole Hamels' name will be in the rumor mill leading up to the trade deadline.

After this season, his contract is for four years and $96 million. Given that he's 30 and has averaged 32.3 starts in the last six seasons, he could be a valuable commodity.

Even with the struggles of the Phillies, Hamels made it clear that he is doesn't want to leave town, even for a serious contender.

"I enjoy playing for this team, this organization, especially for these fans because I have great memories and want to continue them," he said Saturday night after he picked up a no-decision in a 5-3 loss to Washington in 10 innings.

With a 2.93 ERA, Hamels has enjoyed another strong season.

"You do understand the nature of the business . . . trying to put out a winning team, and if things don't work then they have to make moves," Hamels said. "All I can do is go out and stick to my routine and try to win."

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