Just when you thought the Phillies were about to run out of pitchers, along comes one of the pitchers they signed so that they wouldn't run out of pitchers.
Chad Billingsley will pitch in a minor league game on Saturday at the Carpenter Complex.
— Ryan Lawrence (@ryanlawrence21) March 19, 2015
Yes, Cliff Lee is out and Jerome Williams has problems, but at least we have the "Not Even Traded Yet" Cole Hamels, "Master of the Backwards K" David Buchanan, and "Almost Healthy Enough to do Baseball Things" Aaron Harang, and Paul Clemens. We also have MAG, whose 9.00 ERA matches that of our best pitcher, who is again Cole Hamels.
That is barely enough pitchers to get through a month of what will almost certainly be injury-plagued baseball, but the good news is that the Phillies planned for this. That's why they signed guys like Harang, whose health remains paramount, and Chad Billingsley whose health wasn't 100% coming in but whose role as a rotation slot-filler has never been more important.
The 30-year-old Dodger of eight years turned up in Phillies training camp by way of a one year, $1.5 million deal with performance bonuses. He is currently trying to crawl his way back from double elbow surgeries, and gosh, could his development not be more convenient. Although he's not ready to take somebody like Lee's place skill-wise or health-wise just yet - he has not been slated to be ready by opening day - it's nice to know he'll be there to take Sean O'Sullivan's place at the end of April.
An "excellent candidate to bounce back," Ruben Amaro called his offseason signing, and you know what they say about Ruben Amaro's judgement in Philadelphia. "Ruben Amaro," they say.
For any of you doubting the hopefulness of this transaction, consider this: if he's bad, we can call him Bad Chillingsley. So, win-win.