Archive: April, 2009
Lefthanders J.A. Happ and Jack Taschner have made the Phillies roster, according to GM Ruben Amaro Jr. The Inquirer reported earlier this week that the two pitchers were likely to earn the final bullpen spots. RHP Gary Majewski will be reassigned to the minor leagues following this weekend’s exhibition series against Tampa Bay.
Updated 4:16 p.m.
The deed is done. Now you will boo instead of cheering the man.
Updated 2:45 p.m.: According to a report by the usually reliable Joel Sherman of the New York Post, Gary Sheffield seems close to agreeing to join the Mets. As I said earlier, a good fit for both parties.
Gary Sheffield or his representatives will meet with the Cincinnati Reds today, reports Hal McCoy of the Dayton Daily News. The Reds would appear in a position to offer more playing time to Sheffield than the Phillies. Chris Dickerson, Jerry Hairston Jr., Jonny Gomes and Laynce Nix are competing for the left field job there, while the Phillies outfield is obviously set. Sheffield also has a good relationship with Reds manager Dusty Baker, McCoy writes.
The feeling emanating from the Phillies organization is that, as they've said all along, they are interested in Sheffield—how could they not at least inquire?—but unsure if he will accept a bench role. They’ll probably get a better feel for that later today, after the Reds meeting.
Sheffield aside, the Phils are not sold on Miguel Cairo as their righthanded bat off the bench and are seeking an upgrade.
Rule 5 draft selection Bobby Mosebach has returned to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. As per MLB rules, a Rule 5 selectee must remain on his new team's 25-man roster all season or be offered back to his original club.
The competition for two bullpen spots is now down to J.A. Happ, Gary Majewski and Jack Taschner. Though Happ allowed four hits and three runs in 2 2/3 innings of relief today, Majewski is the safest bet for odd man out--though, as we always say, things could change.
Two things: the Phillies acquired RHP Manny Ayala from the San Diego Padres for a player to be named later. The newest new guy will report to minor league camp. Ayala, 24, has a 19-10 record in three seasons in the Padres system, mostly as a starter. He spent most of last season in Double-A.
Also, Milt Thompson bakes. I was typing on my laptop in the press room this morning at Bright House Field, when I noticed Dave Murphy cutting a slice of a lemony-cream puff type pie, with strawberries on top. He offered me one, and I said no thanks, it was too early for sweets.
"You're going to hurt my feelings," said an authoritative voice. It was Thompson, standing in the doorway.
J.A. Happ is scheduled to pitch in relief today against the Yankees in Tampa (Kyle Drabek earned the start because the team was impressed by his effort this spring). Now that Happ will not be the fifth starter, Ruben Amaro Jr. said yesterday that the 26-year-old lefty will compete with LHP Jack Taschner and RHP Gary Majewski and Bobby Mosebach for two bullpen jobs.
This morning, an official from another team who is familiar with the Phillies' plan told the Inquirer that, barring any unforeseen developments, the team will likely open the season with Happ in the big-league bullpen. The same source said that the Phils would award the other relief job to Taschner. That would send Majewski to Triple-A and result in Rule 5 draft choice Bobby Mosebach being offered back to the Angels, per major league rules.
Last night, Rich Dubee did not commit to this, but spoke of Happ being able to pitch both long relief and the sixth and seventh innings, perhaps spelling Chad Durbin when Durbin needs a rest.