The eight starting spots are filled, but whether or not David Bell will start the season on the DL or in extended camp is still up in the air. Signs seem to point to him not being available on Opening Day. That would move Abraham Nunez into the starting lineup and open up a bench spot.
Since the Phillies will carry 12 pitchers, there will be five bench spots available. Sal Fasano, Alex Gonzalez and Shane Victorino have three of them locked up. That leaves Chris Coste, Chris Roberson and Tomas Perez battling for those two spots that will be open if Bell starts the season on the DL. Otherwise, Nunez would be on the bench and there would be just one spot open.
Perez has cleared waivers, meaning that nobody is interested in picking him up with his $700,000 price tag. If the Phillies release him, a team that signs him would only have to pay the major league minimum, leaving the Phillies stuck for a little over half of his salary.
The Phillies have made no secret of the fact that they're looking for a left-handed hitting outfielder with some power to take the final roster spot. Texas' David Dellucci is a possibility, since the Rangers are open to dealing him and his salary - $900,000 - isn't too steep. Dustan Mohr, Damon Hollins and Craig Wilson don't exactly fit the bill, but the Phillies could still be interested. It appears that the Phillies will make a move before Opening Day to add a player, with Dellucci having become the favorite at this point.
|Texas - 2005||29||65||.251||128||435||97||109||17||5||5||76||121||.367|
Coste played in a AAA game at the minor league complex. Roberson came in to play right field against Cleveland, spelling Bobby Abreu. Perez appeared against Cleveland and drew a walk as a pinch-hitter for Julio Santana and then singled after taking over at first base.
* Minor league games do not count in the spring training stats.
Meanwhile, there are battles for the final spot in the rotation and in the bullpen. Gavin Floyd is looking to push his way into the rotation and furthered his cause with six strong innings against Cleveland. He gave up just one run and allowed four hits with no walks and one strike out. Floyd is now 4-0, 2.08 on the spring.
Ryan Franklin pitched in a AAA game on Monday, allowing three earned runs over eight innings. He struck out ten without issuing a walk and gave up eight hits. He threw 100 pitches and threw first pitch strikes to 23 of the 33 hitters that he faced.
Ryan Madson will pitch Tuesday night against the Yankees.
In the bullpen, it's a complicated situation. Julio Santana threw one shutout inning against Cleveland, giving up a walk, but nothing else. His spring ERA now stands at 3.55 after the outing. The Phillies sent Aquilino Lopez to their minor league camp Monday, taking him out of the running. Tom Gordon, Arthur Rhodes and Geoff Geary would all appear to have spots locked up.