Jim Thome last stood at first base as a regular almost seven years ago. The Phils will continue to assess whether it's even a remote possibility in the home half of a split squad game beginning at 1:05.
Beerleaguer: Gentleman Jim doesn't necessarily have the spring stats to support this (.273/.360/.318), but from what I've seen on TV, the ball has been jumping off his bat. The lineup, sans Ryan Howard, would look a lot better with Thome's presence in the middle of it. It's a temptation Charlie Manuel must balance along with the rest of the lineup juggling act.
It's a job that could get even harder. The Phillies are reportedly putting out feelers for infield depth while the Giants have reportedly let teams know they're open to dealing infielders Mike Fontenot and Ryan Theriot. The Phillies should take a hard look, but I'd be inclined to see where Freddy Galvis takes them as a starter. The whole reason Fontenot and Theriot are being shopped is the Giants think they can get more for less with younger players (Emmanuel Burriss, Brandon Crawford, Joaquin Arias). The aging Phillies should follow suit; youth should be the tiebreaker. There's little doubt the Phils should add depth, but Galvis, who homered yesterday, has earned the right to start.
Lineup vs. Orioles: Rollins SS, Polanco 3B, Thome 1B, Mayberry CF, Montanez LF, Ruiz C, Clevlen RF, Galvis 2B, Halladay P. This is Placido Polanco's first game back since injuring his ring finger. Outfielder Brent Clevlen played parts of four seasons with the Tigers and Braves and spent last season in Double-A Reading. Outfielder Brandon Tripp and infielder Albert Cartwright, who came to the Phillies in the big Sergio Escalona trade (Escalona out for the year with elbow surgery BTW), are among the extra men. ... Scott Elarton starts against the Tigers. ... Chase Utley is expected to address the media today. I'll post the video when it becomes available.