The Phillies' biggest off-season acquisition won't be ready for the season. Brad Lidge, recovering from knee surgery, has been placed on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to March 21, making him eligible to return April 5. [Link]
Beerleaguer: The Phillies hinted at this for months, even before his follow-up surgery. It's probably the correct move; Lidge will play a critical role this season. Rather than risk another setback with an early return, the Phils are thinking long-term. In the meantime, Tom Gordon returns to the closer role, where the Phils will find out the hard way whether there's any bite left in his curveball. Also, this is probably good news for someone like Travis Blackley, whose chances of sticking around just increased, and Clay Condrey will definitely make it now. If they don't get outside help, it might make sense to go with a six-man bench rather than cart around an extra pitcher everyone knows will stink. Wes Helms and Chris Snelling are possibilities.