Is Sandberg sending Jimmy Rollins a message?

Is Sandberg sending Jimmy Rollins a message?
March 12, 2014, 5:45 pm

Jimmy Rollins, who has not started the past two games, is not listed in the Phillies' starting lineup for Thursday's game against the Yankees. (AP)

CLEARWATER, Fla. – Is Ryne Sandberg sending Jimmy Rollins a little spring message?

One has to wonder.

Rollins is not listed in the Phillies’ starting lineup for Thursday’s home game against the Yankees.

His absence is glaring for a couple of reasons:

1.) The Phillies usually play their A lineup for spring home games, especially those that are televised back to Philadelphia. (Thursday’s game can be seen on the Comcast Network at 1 p.m.)

2.) Rollins was out of the lineup Tuesday and Wednesday. Thursday will be his third straight non-start, a rarity for a healthy player.

Like many of his teammates, Rollins was slowed by a stomach bug last week, but all indications are that he’s healthy now.

Sandberg was asked whether anything was going on with Rollins after Wednesday’s game in Sarasota.

“No, he’s fine,” Sandberg said.

Freddy Galvis started at shortstop and had a triple. He is 4 for 27 (.148) on the spring with a triple and a homer. Rollins is 2 for 15 (.133).

Sandberg likes competition within a team. Given that, he was asked whether Galvis could be creeping up on Rollins, the Phillies starter at shortstop for 13 seasons.

“Freddy’s a guy that will get playing time at various positions,” Sandberg said. “He’s a guy that I like in the lineup. I felt good about what he brings to the table. The biggest thing I like is his energy and his positive influence, his positive influence on everyone around him.”

Sandberg was asked what he would say about Rollins in that regard.

“No comment,” the manager said.

It was certainly an interesting response.

Stay tuned Thursday to see where this goes.