Beerleaguer hit its contentious zenith in the winter of 2006-07 when the Phillies, who fell gut-wrenchingly short of the postseason, tried selling us on Matt Smith as the top lefty out of the bullpen. Disaster became imminent in spring training when Smith was battered hard, the way Bastardo and Escalona have been battered this spring. Smith would eventually undergo Tommy John surgery and disappear off the face of the earth.
Letting youth prevail sounds like a fine idea in January and February, but look for the fearful Phillies to corral all their spare change to bring an experienced lefty to town. There are a few remaining options who could be had for a minor league flier, Aaron Fultzian loogys like Alan Embree and Ron Mahay. Meanwhile, you get the sense that Scott Eyre, who posted an injury-plagued 1.50 ERA in 2009, didn’t exactly close the book on his career when he announced his retirement. Eyre is still lurking around as an analyst-in-training. In addition, you can bet the Phils are looking outside the organization for players who might shake loose at the end of camp.
Meanwhile, J.C. Romero threw a 40-pitch bullpen session yesterday that included breaking balls, the first he’s thrown them since surgery. He remains a longshot for Opening Day.
Moyer shelled: Jamie Moyer’s B-game line against most of Toronto’s regulars today: 8 hits, 5 runs, 1 walk, 4 strikeouts. Roy Halladay and the Phillies are taking on the Pirates as of this writing.