While reports run wild with rumors of C.C. Sabathia, Erik Bedard, and Roy Oswalt type pitchers, it is important to remember that the Phillies are a young team with a large window of opportunity.
Chase Utley, Jimmy Rollins, Ryan Howard, and Cole Hamels are locked up with contracts or arbitration rights for the next few years. The Phillies don’t need to burn the farm for one run at postseason glory.
If the Phillies can manage to get a Kyle Lohse type pitcher as they did last year who can come in and give the team some innings and W’s it might just be good enough. Assuming the Phillies make the playoffs, it all comes down to having three quality starters.
Ace – Hamels – Check.
#2 – Myers – Fingers Crossed (he can’t be this bad all year!)
#3 – TBD (Greg Maddux?)
If Maddux brings his first ballot Hall of Fame resume to Philadelphia, he may be the best fit of any name floating in the web rumor world. Maddux has 350 career wins, valuable playoff experience, and wouldn’t require Pat Gillick to unload a truck load of plus prospects for the Padres.
On a team with very limited playoff experience, Maddux, 42, has a full season’s worth of time toeing the rubber in October. He is 11-14 with a 3.34 ERA in 194 playoff innings.
An added incentive is the Jamie Moyer factor. Cole Hamels has thrived with Moyer as his mentor. A few months picking the brain of Greg Maddux would be invaluable for young pitchers such as Kyle Kendrick, Brett Myers, and Hamels. Maddux has a no trade clause, but he might see his window of opportunity to win another ring closing and want to hop on a team with a real shot of a deep run into October.
In a weak National League and with a great offense, that might be good enough to go to the World Series where anything can happen.