The Phillies needed to make a move this weekend to make room for Vance Worley to return to the roster to start on Saturday in Seattle. Instead of optioning one of the younger players, Ruben Amaro Jr. and co. went the route of seemingly cutting ties with a veteran and key cog in the Phillies 2008 World Championship.
J.C. Romero was fantastic for the 2008 Phillies, and was the pitcher of record in two of their wins against the Rays in the World Series. Unfortunately, his time with the Phillies following that magical season was hampered by both an unfortunate PED suspension and nagging injury after nagging injury. When used in the right situation this season, solely against lefties, Romero wasn't bad, but his lack of control and penchant for free passes cost the team on too many occasions and J.C. finally paid for it yesterday by losing his roster spot.
Romero, after a reported temper flare when first hearing the news of being designated for assignment, was gracious in his departure. He spoke of youngster and lefty replacement Antonio Bastardo like a proud mentor, noting that the student has surpassed the teacher.
Fans were frustrated with Romero's performance this season, but the joyous reaction by a small contingent of fans upon his DFA'ing was a bit misguided. J.C. helped bring this city the only championship it's had in decades. That shouldn't be forgotten.
If his being designated for assignment gives the Phillies the best team to win the 2011 World Series, as Ruben and co. seem to believe, then it's the right move for sure. But parting ways with a WFC shouldn't be taken so lightly. Or mockingly.
SANDY, Utah -- Joao Plata scored his first goal of the season and Real Salt Lake beat the Union, 1-0, on Saturday night to snap Philadelphia's club-record winning streak at four games.
Plata tapped in his goal in the 36th minute after quickly exchanging short passes twice with Jefferson Savarino. Tony Beltran got the play started by saving the ball just before it went over the goal line.
The Union (4-5-5) had a chance to tie it in stoppage time, but goalie Nick Rimando blocked Haris Medunjanin's belt-high free kick and Salt Lake (4-8-2) cleared it after a scramble in front of the net.
Union goalkeeper Andre Blake made seven saves.
Howie Kendrick on Saturday night made his fourth rehab appearance in Triple A during Lehigh Valley's 13-1 rout of the Louisville Bats in Allentown.
Kendrick went 1 for 5 with a run scored and three strikeouts. He also grounded into a double play and left two runners in scoring position.
It was his second rehab game playing third base. He played third during his appearance in the IronPigs' 8-4 loss Thursday to the Indianapolis Indians. He was 0 for 1 in three plate appearances with a run scored and was hit by a pitch twice (see story).
The Phillies' plan for Kendrick was to have him play a minimum four games at Lehigh Valley. He played left field in two games and third base twice. Pete Mackanin said Wednesday that Kendrick would also get a game at first base but he hasn't gotten a game at first yet.
There is a chance Kendrick could be recalled Sunday before the Phillies’ series finale against the Cincinnati Reds depending on how he feels.
Kendrick has been sidelined since April 15 with an oblique strain. In 10 games before the injury, Kendrick went 13 for 39 (.333) with five extra-base hits and four walks while exclusively playing left field.