What's next? Freddy Garcia flies back to Philadelphia for a routine exam?
Every single report out of Florida about the veteran right-hander suggests his fastball continues to be MIA. What's troubling about this state of affairs is that the reports are identical to those from the end of last season. When White Sox GM Kenny Williams traded Garcia to the Phils it was generally believed to be because the 31-year old pitcher was in his final year prior to free agency, had a lot of mileage on his arm and would bring two prospects in return in that order. It now appears number two was really number one.
Yesterday Garcia left action after one inning complaining of a sore bicep that will be examined. During his brief stint his fastball apparently topped out at 85 miles per hour. The last thing the Phillies need is another Jamie Moyer-type pitcher in the starting rotation. According to Jim Salisbury, there is a chance Garcia might begin the season on the DL. Among other repercussions of such a move, Jon Lieber, who only yesterday was sent to the pen, would reclaim his spot among the starters. If Pat Gillick were considering trading Lieber for bullpen or outfield help he can forget it.
The worst aspect of all of this is that it would appear Gillick didn't do his homework, a pattern that is becoming all too familiar. More and more it appears Gillick acts as much on hunches as on anything else in making personnel moves. All that we need now would be for him to trade Aaron Rowand back to Chicago.
Oh the ironies.