The Grapefruit League has come to an end. Today the Phillies will board a flight to the City of Brotherly Love, and play two games against the Blue Jays, then one final tune up against the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs on Sunday. On Monday they welcome the Nationals to Citizens Bank Park as the 2008 season kicks off.
Even though spring training has come to a close, this is still a big weekend for the Phillies when it pertains to their roster. The Phillies have until Sunday at 3:00 to make final cuts, but as it stands now, the Phils have 10 pitchers and seven bench players. Pat Gillick & Co. will be following the waiver wire closely looking to add an additional relief pitcher.
Then there’s Wes Helms. They’ve tried to deal him, and have been unsuccessful. They couldn’t even get a leftover like Steve Kline for him. That’s when you realize what little value Helms really has.
Let’s not forget about Chris Snelling. He hasn’t shown much this spring, but he’s been getting a lot of play recently. Will he make the team, and the Phils start with an 11-man pitching staff, or will he join Helms on the scrap heap, so the Phils have an extra reliever if they need him?
The questions will be answered in the next 72-hours. My call is Helms will be release on Sunday ifhe cannot be traded. The Phillies will pick up a reliever off waivers (probably Rudy Seanez), and Snelling will stay with the team until Brad Lidge comes off the disabled list.
I’m rarely right with these things, but we shall see…