The Phillies have reached agreements to keep two more veterans around from last year's team, resigning OF Grady Sizemore to a 1 year, $2 million contract and avoiding arbitration with reliever Cesar Jimenez with a one year deal for an unspecified amount.
Taken with Pat Gillick's comments from earlier today, it is clear that the Phillies are content to plug 2015's holes with cheap veterans. These moves, together with the Jerome Williams signing from earlier in the week, cost the Phillies relatively little (probably a bit over $5M once we get the Jimenez figure) and certainly fill some holes at the major league level.
With Sizemore, the Phillies get a 4th outfielder, nothing more. As a relatively known quantity, Sizemore might give GM Ruben Amaro a little more confidence to shop Marlon Byrd without feeling that there would be no suitable replacement at the major league level. Despite his relatively impressive peak in the mid 2000s, Sizemore essentially embodies the idea of a suitable replacement at this stage in his career. Then, again if the Phillies do reach an agreement with Yasmani Tomas, Sizemore will be an expendable piece. Again, $2M is a trivial cost to the Phillies, so not a huge loss if he ends up being expendable.
Cezar Jimenez provides bullpen depth, I guess. The Phillies are already returning a solid bullpen core of Papelbon, Giles, Diekman, and Bastardo. Jimenez does not belong in the same sentence as those pitchers, but if injuries strike, I guess there are worse things than having a pitcher with a career 4.32 ERA making something like the league minimum to throw in there. Nah, he sucks. This one is silly.
Of course people aren't going to let Amaro make a move without ripping it apart:
Cannot remember a pre-November transaction vying for the worst of the winter, but now Ruben Amaro Jr.'s got two horses in this race.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) October 23, 2014
Let's be clear: these two transactions (Williams and Sizemore) will not be anywhere close to the worst of the winter. Any deal for 1 year and less than $5M should be automatically excluded from any such discussion. Sizemore, while likely just a 4th (maybe 5th) outfielder, still provides some intrigue (at least to me) based on his 2005 - 2008 seasons. He's only 32, so it's certainly not completely insane to think he has something like league average outfielder still hiding in him somewhere.
Don't get me wrong, the three offseason moves we've seen so far should not lead you to go out and purchase a season ticket package. What they do represent though is continued evidence of an organizational awareness that 2015 will not be their year. Rest assured, we have not yet come close to witnessing the worst transaction of the winter.