February 19, 2015 |
YESTERDAY, we looked at some of the bigger individual Phillies story lines we'll be monitoring, as pitchers and catchers hold their first official workout tomorrow. Now, let's look at five names who haven't garnered nearly as much attention, but who have more to gain (or lose) than most pitchers and catchers in camp this spring. 1 Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez: At this time last year, the Phillies were hoping that their first significant foray into one of baseball's emerging markets (Cuba, Korea, Japan, etc.)
December 12, 2014 |
SAN DIEGO - While a franchise-altering trade hung in the balance, the Phillies completed one deal yesterday afternoon, their first major transaction of the winter. Veteran reliever Antonio Bastardo was traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for lefthanded pitching prospect Joely Rodriguez. Bastardo, 29, was a pivotal member of the Phillies' bullpen for the last five seasons. He went 20-18 with a 3.72 ERA in 275 games (five starts), striking out 324 batters, while walking 125, in 259 innings.
November 22, 2014 |
The Phillies added prospect Jesse Biddle to their 40-man roster Thursday, and Biddle's recent elbow trouble was diagnosed as mild tendinitis. It is one positive for Biddle, 23, after a forgettable 2014 season. "Everything looked good," said Joe Jordan, the team's director of player development. "Everything is fine. We think he has some tendinitis. Nothing at all. Everything is fine. " Biddle, the team's No. 1 pick in 2010 and a Germantown Friends graduate, was eligible for selection in December's Rule 5 draft if he was not added to the 40-man roster Thursday.
November 12, 2014 |
PHOENIX - The plan was for Jesse Biddle to go to Puerto Rico and make up some of the innings he lost during his disastrous 2014 season in the Phillies' minor-league system. Like so many of the team's recent plans, it went awry. General manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said Tuesday at the general managers meetings that Biddle has returned to Philadelphia after just two appearances with his Puerto Rican winter league team because of a sore elbow. Biddle left with a 0-1 record and a 15.19 ERA for Mayaguez.
October 17, 2014 |
LAST DECEMBER, 3 days after Roy Halladay announced his retirement, the Phillies signed veteran righthander Roberto Hernandez in an effort to fill the gap and solidify the bottom of their starting rotation. Two months later, not content with the final makeup of that rotation on the eve of the first official workout in Clearwater, the Phils signed another free-agent pitcher. A.J. Burnett joined the starting staff, effectively taking Halladay's place as the older, established righthander with playoff pedigree to plop between lefthanders Cole Hamels and Cliff Lee. The Phillies ended up paying just under $21 million for Hernandez and Burnett in 2014.
August 22, 2014 |
AS MANY AS 35,000 people trekked to see the latest episode in Taney Little League's destiny run last night, fueled by ESPN's blanket coverage and the appearance of star pitcher Mo'ne Davis on the cover of this week's Sports Illustrated, and fueling further adulation and, yes, unease. The concern that this is too much too soon is well-meant. But if I've learned anything as a parent helping to raise three children to adulthood, it is that as much pressure is felt during an untelevised regional spelling bee or debate at that age as there is a televised game.
August 19, 2014 |
SAN FRANCISCO - Whatever the Phillies could pull from Los Angeles for Roberto Hernandez, a player who had no part in the team's long-term plan, qualified as a bonus. The first such player, Jesmuel Valentin, has good baseball bloodlines as a high draft pick two summers ago. He, like any single-A player, is a long shot. Valentin was identified as one of two players to be named later from the Dodgers for Hernandez; the other will be a pitcher announced sometime in the next two weeks.
August 8, 2014 |
READING - Aaron Nola arrived here Monday afternoon, the first player among baseball's 1,215 June draftees to reach double A. The team store at FirstEnergy Stadium advertised "NOLA 10" T-shirts for $25. On Wednesday, a dozen fans crowded the railing above the right-field bullpen to watch Nola prepare for his Reading debut. The Phillies are an organization devoid of talent, and they are lusting for a potential cornerstone. Nola, the seventh overall pick in the draft, is no savior because the Phillies' issues are not solved by one arm. But he fired strikes for five innings Wednesday, allowed one run, and braved one of the Phillies' most aggressive promotions in recent years.
July 28, 2014 |
Jesse Biddle remains on double-A Reading's temporary inactive list, but the Phillies' 2010 first-round pick out of Germantown Friends School returned to the mound Saturday in Tampa, Fla. Pitching for the Gulf Coast League Phillies, Biddle covered two innings and faced eight batters in his team's 4-2 win over the GCL Yankees squad. He allowed one hit - a home run to Drew Bridges - walked one batter, and struck out three. "It was encouraging that he was back out there throwing," said Joe Jordan, the Phillies' director of player development.