My big question after last weekend was: Now that the Phils have built a sizable division lead (and, let’s face it, they’d have to totally collapse for one of those other stinky teams to win it) do they still feel the need to sacrifice talented players and make a trade?
The answer: Yes, they do. Very much.
Here’s Charlie Manuel: “Of all the talent we’ve got, we need to put some more pieces around it, and once we do that, that will make us better.”
And assistant GM Scott Proefrock: “All you have to do is look back two weeks ago. We’ve got a long way to go. This isn’t over by any stretch of the imagination, and we still need to be prepared for a tough battle the rest of the way.
Proefrock implied that the team was also thinking about a potential playoff rotation, not just getting there. That’s where adding Roy Halladay comes in, though of course Proefrock did not mention the pitcher by name.
The Phillies clearly believe that a 6 ½ game lead in the NL East should not change their basic goals of improving the rotation, bench and bullpen. Some of you are emailing me, saying, “what about a Hamels/Blanton/Happ playoff rotation, and you get to keep Drabek and Taylor?” Well, fair question, but the front office and manager clearly don’t see it that way.