While I’ve been engulfed in my MLB Preview, a whole bunch of things have happened in Philly sports that I felt I should comment on, but didn’t have the time to write a whole post on. So I’m gonna do what I can here in bullet point form. Please hold back your excitement.
– The Asante Samuel signing was very interesting to me. It was a typical Eagles move to draft/sign someone at a position that they did not need help. However, I’m certainly happy this guy is an Eagle. He is an upgrade over Lito Sheppard in that he will stay on the field. He can hit better than Lito and provides the same, if not slightly better, play-making ability. However, considering the money they put forth, I really hope they can get a good deal for Lito and turn it into another impact player.
– I personally don’t think Randy Moss had any intention of ever signing with us. I think he was just using us to beef up the Pats offer. However, the best thing to come from this is that it shows that Eagles do actually know they need a big-play receiver. The word is that they want Larry Fitzgerald, but the Cardinals are inclined to keep him despite his absurd salary. Personally? I’d give them whatever they want. Lito, 1st round pick and a 3rd round pick? STEEP price, but if we get Fitz, we go to the Super Bowl. (Note: Gcobb.com is reporting today that the Eagles will make strong pushes for both Roy Williams and Chad Johnson)
– So the Eagles have added Samuel and Chris Clemons (who appears to be a real good pass rusher) to the defense. They have Lito to trade for a piece of the puzzle, and each of their draft picks. They need to package their remaining assets into 1 or 2 impact players for next year and it will be an extremely successful offseason.
– Cole Hamels is acting (and talking) like a damn child. The only thing that is clear in this situation is that he (and Prince Fielder and Nick Markakis and Jonathan Paplebon) do not understand how the MLB salary process works. This is a process that the players association has signed off on for years. When you are arbitration eligible, you can plead your case, until then, let’s just try to get through 200 innings without getting hurt before running our mouths about “respect.” I love Cole Hamels, but as you can tell, his little cry-fest really ticked me off.
– Speaking of the Phillies, I’m officially terrified of Kyle Kendrick and whoever our 5th starter turns out to be. I am rooting for Kris Benson to be healthy and “win” the 5th spot.
– I think Ryan Howard is going to be out of control good this year and that Jimmy Rollins won’t be able to put up the performance he did last year. I have nothing to back this up.
– I never really commented on the Phillies off-season because it abruptly ended when the Mets traded for Santana and everything we did seemed insignificant. However, I like nearly every move they made. Jenkins, Feliz, Lidge, Taguchi, Bruntlett, C. Durbin and Benson aren’t going to set the world on fire, but they are all slight upgrades (if healthy) over the people in their position last year (with the exception of the Rowand for Jenkins swap). The real reason the Phillies have been unable to make a move is our terribly thin farm-system. There were a lot of quality pitchers on the market that would couldn’t even get in the discussion with because we came up well short on the quality and quantity of prospects the teams were looking for in return. Overall Offseason Grade: B+.
– Couldn’t agree with Dannie more that people need to start watching the Sixers. They are young, exciting, and leave everything on the court. In the beginning of the year, I had them as one of the 5 worst teams in the NBA, but through sheer grit and determination, it looks like they are going to make the playoffs, and I’m kind of really really excited to see a playoff game again – even if the Pistons stomp all over us.
– You are killing me St. Joes. Absolutely killing me. Looks like the fate of Big-5 might rest in someone knocking off Xavier and winning the A-10. At this point, Temple might be the best bet.