Beerleaguer has been so fixated on peripheral problems that we’ve lost sight of the forest for the trees regarding Ruben Amaro's big acquisitions.
Among the many nuggets from last night's 7-1 Phillies was this nice comparison/contrast between Jose Contreras and Chan Ho Park. Where Contreras got the job done with the game still in doubt, Park, who paved the way for Contreras a year ago, allowed an inherited insurance run to score in the eighth. While Park hasn't worked out for the Yankees, the Contreras experiment has been a runaway success for Amaro and his staff. The big right-hander, who was among the Phillies’ primary offseason targets, has taken to the late innings like a natural, trailing only Roy Halladay in K/BB (4.67) and anchoring a surprisingly stable late-inning plan. Like Contreras, there where issues as to whether Placido Polanco could make the switch from second to third, and those concerns have vanished as well. As demonstrated by an amazing over-the-rail catch to keep the Yankees away from a big inning, Polly has played exceptional defense. His 3.4 UZR trails only Ryan Zimmerman and Mark Reynolds among National League third basemen. And of course, there’s Halladay, who has done everything the Phillies had hoped.