It became a big story Wednesday night that Jimmy Rollins would be benched for a third straight game Thursday, and this morning he was frank with reporters about the situation with manager Ryne Sandberg.
"Obviously he’s upset about something,” Rollins told reporters, including CSNPhilly.com's Jim Salisbury. “When he’s ready, he’ll let me know.
“I don’t know. You have to go ask the manager. I don’t write the lineups. It is unusual, yes, but I’m not going to try to second-guess or predict or try to come up with a reason why.
“Over the course of spring training, it could have been one specific incident he’s upset about it. That’s something that when he’s ready he’ll let me know.”
Rollins was quoted a few days ago in the Daily News with a "Who cares?" when asked about the Phillies' spring futility. That could have been what set Sandberg off. Typically, spring training numbers are meaningless, but that's not the best thing for a team leader to say when his team ranks dead last in baseball in batting average, OBP and slugging, 29th in runs and steals, and has 12 fewer hits than any team in Florida or Arizona.
Freddy Galvis gets another start at shortstop against the Yankees.
This is far from the first time a manager has tried to send Rollins a message, though he says no message has ever needed to be sent.
Rollins, who turns 36 in November, is in the final guaranteed year of a three-year contract. If he totals 434 plate appearances in 2013, an $11 million vesting option kicks in for 2015. If he stays healthy that's a virtual assurance -- Rollins' 434th PA of 2013 came on July 26.