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January 6 2007

An article on the Phillies' web site reviews players in action in the various winter leagues.  You have to wonder how legitimate a shot Joe Bisenius has of making the team as a righty out of the pen after not faring well in the AFL or Venezuelan Winter League.  Between the two stops he's thrown to a 7.04 ERA with a 1.96 ratio in 15 1/3 innings.

Eude Brito and Fabio Castro may be the stories of the winter action.  On the hitters side, Roberson was able to rebound and get his numbers respectable while Sandoval sputtered.  I would be surprised to see either Roberson or Sandoval on the team to start the year.

If Coste and Ruiz both make the team and Rowand is not traded it looks like the Phillies have one spot on the bench for a hitter -- and they're still looking to acquire a left-handed outfielder.  The pen is still a mess with a lot of work to be done before April.  It should be a land of opportunity for left-handed pitchers like Brito and Castro.

The Seattle Mariners
landed Chris Reitsma.  He will be the setup man for JJ Putz, which is nearly irrelevant from the perspective of a Phillies' fan.  But if you don't seize every opportunity you can to work JJ Putz into a sentence you might as well just move to Florida and start eating dinner at four in the afternoon.  Are you worried about the Phillies' bullpen yet?  If not now, when?

This articles speculates Utley may get a raise of $3 million or more in 2007. 

Shane Victorino comes in second on the list of guys Eric Tokunaga is most proud of, or possibly the list of guys he knew that most wanted to be professional baseball players.  Whichever it is, apparently it was a close second and Shane got extra-credit in the category because Tokunaga knew his family.  I hold out some hope the article was originally written in Tagalog and victimized by some unfortunate translation decisions.

The Phillies claimed right-handed pitcher Anderson Garcia off of waivers.  Garcia, who will turn 26 in March, was signed by the Yankees as an undrafted free agent in 2001.  Last season he pitched on five different minor league teams between the Mets and the Orioles organizations, mostly at the Double-A and Triple-A levels.  He threw to a combined 3.84 ERA in 42 games, 41 of which were in relief.

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