In news that should surprise no one unless they were living under a rock, the Phillies have released 25-year old centerfielder Tyson Gillies. In 43 games for AAA Lehigh Valley this season, Gillies was hitting .214/.270/.289.
You may remember Gillies' name from 4 1/2 years ago, when he, Phillippe Aumont, and J.C. Ramirez were all acquired from the Mariners as part of the three-team trade that sent Cliff Lee to Seattle and brought Roy Halladay to Philadelphia. You may also remember his name from a few weeks ago when he was outrighted off the Phillies' 40-man roster.
Gillies' time in the Phillies organization had been far from idyllic. Athletic but troubled, he was never able to produce consistently. (And lately, even just produce, period.) Part of that consistency trouble could have been his frequent injuries. He had a number of hamstring issues that kept him off the field and put into question one of his biggest assets -- his speed. But let's not discount his off-the-field issues, as Gillies racked up an array of those as well. He was arrested for cocaine possession in August 2010, though the charges were eventually dropped. Two years ago, Gillies was suspended after being verbally abusive to Double-A Reading's bus driver. And just two months ago, he was suspended three games by the IronPigs for damaging team property after he struck out four times in one game.
Looking at Gillies' history with the team -- the behavior issues and his utter lack of hitting -- they had a remarkable amount of patience with him. But even for the most promising of players, patience doesn't spring eternal. Looks like it finally ran out.
So let's review the three players that were traded from Seattle for Cliff Lee. Gillies: released before he hit the majors. J.C. Ramirez: awful, pitched to a 7.50 ERA in 18 games in the majors, elected free agency in October 2013. Phillippe Aumont: talented but unable to control his stuff, can't stick in the majors, also kind of terrible.
Good luck and godspeed, Tyson Gillies. We'll always have... ummm... we'll always have the fantasies of what could have been. That's the best I can do.