The Phils today divested themselves of Vicente Padilla and the Flotilla he rode in on, trading their one-time All-Star pitcher to the pitching strapped Rangers for the proverbial player Toby Named-Later. Apparently, Padilla was let go because of a general malaise and, oh yeah, he made $3.2M last year and is due for arbitration.
The Phils don't have many more option than do the Rangers, truthfully. They have Brett Myers, who is coming off a breakout season (122 Adjusted ERA) though he had 4.32 ERA in the second half.
John Lieber was okay (108 Adjusted ERA and 17 wins) and was very good in the second half (3.28 ERA and 9 wins).
Corey Lidle was good in the first half (3.65 ERA) but awful in the second half (6.03 ERA).
Next there's the oft-injured Randy Wolf, the only potential lefty in the rotation, who after three disappointing seasons is basically a big question mark.
Finally, there are youngsters Robinson Tejeda and Eude Brito, who were unexpected successes in limited trials this past season (Tejeda was 8-14 with 5.15 ERA in Double-A in 2004; Brito had a 4.85 ERA in Triple-A before the callup) , and former hot prospect Gavin Floyd, who was a major disappointment last year (6-9 and 6.16 ERA in Triple-A and 1-2 with a 10.04 ERA with the Phils).
There doesn't seem to be a real number one among the lot, just a bunch of maybes. Maybe Myers turned a corner. Maybe Lieber will continue his second half success. Maybe Lidle can overcome his horrific second half. Maybe Randy Wolf can be healthy for a full season and maybe he will again draw comparisons to Tom Glavine (when that was a good thing). Maybe Tejeda and Brito are for real. And maybe Floyd will fulfill the promise the franchise once saw in him.
Then again, maybe not. An unhappy scenario is just as likely if not more likely in each scenario.
Padilla was a blight in the Phils rotation for throughout the first half (6.27 ERA, 4-8), but turned the corner just when the Phillies started to notice. He was a respectable 3.63, 5-4 in the second half.
So what's the end result? Does it make sense to weed a bit of the mediocrity by trading Padilla? Sure. Keep it coming. The Phils rotation problems over the last few years stemmed from an overabundance of mediocrity.
But what's the plan? Is there a plan? Does getting rid of Padilla get the Phils any closer to a real rotation? I don't think so. They need to add to the top of the rotation, not skim from the bottom.
The end result one fewer question mark in the rotation and a few million dollars freed up to sign who? More overprice marginal playerstheir trend this offseason. Jim Mecir AND Dan Miceli are still available after all.