As spring training finished up yesterday afternoon in Florida, something finally went wrong for the Phillies.
The Fightins had a relatively pain free spring training this year, with only Brad Lidge and J.C. Romero not expected to start the season with the team.
That is, until yesterday, when Heavy Joe Blanton was placed on the disabled list with a strained oblique. He injured himself during a bullpen session and, while the injury was termed “mild,” he’s still expected to be out 4-6 weeks. Injuries like this are worrisome. Clay Condrey had the same time of issue last season and he ended up missing 2 months.
With Blanton out, all of the bitching about Kyle Kendrick not making the rotation can be put to rest for a bit. He will take Blanton’s spot in the order, behind Roy Halladay and Cole Hamels, with Andrew Carpenter most likely taking Kendrick’s spot in the bullpen.
While stretching the pitching depth a bit, the Phillies don’t have any time to worry about that because they start playing games for real in a few days. They take another step towards the regular season with the annual On Deck series at Citizens Bank Park tonight against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
I’ve never been a fan of the On Deck series. Something about going to CBP when the game doesn’t matter just doesn’t add up for me. I’ll continue to leave these games for people who have never been to CBP or who get suckered in to buying tickets to this game in a season ticket package.
Cole Hamels, Jamie Moyer, Antonio Bastardo and Jose Contreras are scheduled to pitch against the Pirates tonight in their final tuneups before the regular season.
Baseball will be played in South Philadelphia tonight. The 2010 season inches just a bit closer.