All joking aside, someone needs to delete the Texas Rangers’ phone number(s) from Pat Gillick’s speed dial without further delay. With this latest signing of an ex-Ranger, Antonio Alfonseca, the Phillies GM has proved beyond a reasonable doubt he has some sort of fixation with that franchise. It would be one thing if we were talking about a one-way street that approached that between the Yankees and Kansas City Athletics in the ‘50’s and ‘60’s, but we most decidedly are not. Instead, we are witnessing yet another deal between the Phils and a franchise whose record of futility is less grim only because its entire history is so much shorter.
So, until Gillick can demonstrate some self-control, others must act. Alfonseca’s last good season was the same year when everyone was atwitter over Y2K. Most recently he had an awful stint with the Rangers before they released him due to injury and ineffectiveness. According to reports, Alfonseca chose the Phillies over the Marlins, the only two clubs apparently in the running. Imagine, he chose to sign with the team that offered him nearly three times as much money. Aren’t we the lucky ones?! The signing is one more in a series of gambles by Gillick on aging relievers with shaky immediate pasts. If the move hardly inspires confidence in us, imagine what it will be like to play behind Alfonseca.
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By any reasonable standards the just-concluded season for the Eagles was a remarkable one. A fast start out of the gate was suddenly and dramatically halted by stinging losses to
Reid’s greatest asset is his steady hand on the tiller and his obviously methodical, even-tempered approach to his players and coaches no matter how daunting the circumstances. These attributes serve him and the team well, particularly in the locker room and on the practice field, where doubts first arise and can get quickly out of control. Regrettably, the debit side of his ledger is brought into dramatic relief in the crucible of game-day crises, particularly as time is running out. The decision to punt on fourth and fifteen with less than two minutes remaining in the game represented Andy Reid at his crunch-time worst. If ever there were a time to gamble, that was it. Of course, that would have been going against character and if we have learned anything about Reid during his long and successful tenure in