Why have 3 lefties in the bullpen? JC Romero is out until June, originally leaving Scott Eyre as the only LHP guaranteed a job. Eyre should be used solely as a lefty specialist, because he gets slaughtered by righthanded batters (.280/.815). Therefore, Amaro decided to acquire Jack Taschner as a 2nd lefty, who has poor control, allows both sides of the plate to hit him, puts tons of runners on base per inning, and has a career earned run average north of 5. Sounds like a great addition to the reigning best bullpen in the league doesn't it? Then the decision came yesterday to keep JA Happ with the club in a relief role where the 26 year old has made only 4 appearances as such in the majors and 3 in the minors. This is all very questionable to me, and seems likely to go wrong. Both Gary Majewski and Mike Koplove head to Triple A Lehigh Valley as better options in my opinion. Time will tell.
Why release Jenkins in favor of Cairo and Stairs? As Corey wondered the other day- who is the backup to Ibanez, Victorino, and Werth? Matt Stairs, I hope not. I love Stairs because he's pudgy, Canadian, and hit that moonshot off of Broxton in the playoffs. However, the man is 41 years old and is nothing more than a pinch-hitting option. Jenkins has his faults, but he can still play the outfield defensively, is making a ton of money not to play for us ($8M+), and also had a very big hit in the playoffs for the Phightins if my memory serves me correctly. Yes, he was a total bust as a signing, but that doesn't mean he should be given the Adam Eaton treatment. Then, there's the journeyman who made the club in favor of Jenkins, and I don't mean Steve Perry. I speak of weak hitting utility infielder Miguel Cairo (wait, don't we already have one of those in the form of Bruntlett?). Even when Cairo was "good" he wasn't good. The man's career OPS sits at .672, so I could care less if he bats righthanded, lefthanded, or tomahawk chops up there, because that just isn't any good. If a righthanded bat is so strongly desired for the bench, go get someone who can actually hit or give Jason Donald a chance.
On Deck Series:
The Phils were back in Citizens Bank Park against the same opponent they defeated last October to win the World Series. Slight twist, Pat Burrell is no longer the Phils LF, but rather the Rays DH. He went 1-3 last night, and showed his blazing speed that he became world famous for while in Philly stealing a base. Seriously, what the hell was Chad Durbin and Chris Coste doing to allow such an event to occur? Halley's Comet makes more appearances than a Burrell sb.
Today Cole Hamels makes his final tuneup for the season against Tampa Bay at 1:05.