November 27 mlb.com writer Todd Zolecki:
With Jayson Werth all but gone, what’s the contingency plan in right field?
— D. Hall, Primos, Pa.
The Phillies have been talking with agent Scott Boras about a deal, but it is believed he is seeking something similar to the seven-year, $120 million contract Matt Holliday scored last winter. If Werth’s market falls and his demands drop from a seven-year deal to a four-year deal, for example, Philadelphia might be in position to bring him back.
But let’s work off the assumption Werth will be very difficult to re-sign. If he isn’t back, I don’t see the Phils signing somebody just to sign somebody. The replacement should be an upgrade over what they currently have, which seems like a platoon with Domonic Brown and Ben Francisco (.901 OPS against left-handers last season and an .806 OPS against left-handers in his career).
Names like Magglio Ordonez (1.171/.954), Jeff Francoeur (.805 /.824) and Jermaine Dye (did not play last season/.871) are free agents. Matt Diaz (.830/.907) could be a free agent if the Braves non-tender him. Players like Josh Willingham (.909/.885), Carlos Quentin (.764/.773) and Aaron Rowand (.682/.826) could be available in a trade.
None of those players really blow away anybody, other than Ordonez. But I’m not sure the Phillies would go more than one year for Ordonez. ESPN.com reported the Philadelphia has inquired about Quentin, but I’m not sure how he fits. He hits worse against left-handers than right-handers, and the Phils are looking for a strong right-handed bat to bring balance to the lineup. I think Francoeur, Diaz and Willingham would make sense. They wouldn’t break the bank and they seem like ideal platoon players.
With Roy Halladay turning 34 next year, should we be concerned that he threw 263 2/3 innings last season, including the playoffs?
— Pete B., Roxborough, Pa.
I wouldn’t be too concerned. Halladay has thrown 1,181 innings the previous five seasons, not including the playoffs, which is more than any other pitcher in the big leagues. He also is a fitness freak and stays in incredible shape — which allows him to throw those innings. Before the Phillies signed Halladay to a three-year, $60 million contract extension last winter, they gave him a thorough physical. Nothing concerned them in those reports. Halladay has the body and ability to pitch without injury for years. If he does, people will say it’s because he’s a workaholic. If he gets hurt next season, people will say it’s because of his workload. Either could happen, but I’d bet on the workaholic.
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