The List: 5 Phillies Who Must Go, In Order
Now that the Phillies season is toast, thanks to the team’s current 1-13 wipe-out, it’s time think about next year… and beyond.
The non-waiver trade deadline has passed, but that doesn’t mean we can’t get our ducks in a row, now.
Here, in order, are the 5 Phillies who MUST go, somehow, some way, between now and spring training. (And, no, we’re not including Antonio Bastardo, though today we’d really like to.)
1. Jonathan Papelbon: He was a bad sign two years ago, and that was before he started squawking about guns and doing his Jose Mesa impression. Pray he’s healthy then send him and Cinco Ocho out of town on a rail.
2. Pick a Young, any Young: At best, Michael and Delmon Young were supposed to be nothing more than stopgap rentals for the Phils. With nothing left to contend for this season, there’s no reason either of these guys should be taking playing time away from Cody Asche or Darin Ruf.
3. Jimmy Rollins: Despite missing lots of time to injury this year, Chase Utley has still been the eighth most valuable second baseman in baseball. Not so for his double-play partner, whose bat, glove and wheels are declining, and who is earning $11 million this year to play replacement-level baseball.
4. Charlie Manuel: It’s been fun, Cholly, but folksy awesomeness notwithstanding, the last few seasons have called your bona fides as a hitting guru, and your ability to manage through adversity, into question. From your post as manager, we bid you nothing but the fondest adieu. But we do bid you adieu. Bring on the Ryne Sandberg era. May you be rewarded with a Phillies assistant GM golden parachute. So long as that GM isn’t…
5. Ruben Amaro: My friend and former rotisserie baseball opponent David Faris wrote some 7,000 words on this topic over at City Paper. I’ll boil it down for you: Amaro’s lousy, and has dug the team into a financial hole it’ll be lucky to climb out of. His free spending ways and old-school approach are galling. As my colleague Stephen Silver put it earlier today:
Under Ruben Amaro, the Phillies do a lot of things organizationally that sabermetric types tend to frown upon, such as “signing declining veterans to huge contracts,” “failing to plan ahead,” “not making any trades at the deadline when you have pieces to sell” and “having Delmon Young on your team.”
Hey hey, ho ho, Ruben Amaro’s got to go.… but make him jettison his mistakes, first. (We’re assuming we’re stuck with Ryan Howard, who’d be a fine if overpaid platoon player, for the length of his ill-advised extension.)