Qualls Final Piece of Phillies Puzzle?

Qualls Final Piece of Phillies Puzzle?

After opting not to make a serious move to bring back Brad Lidge as a potential setup man, the Phillies went out and signed another veteran in 33-year-old Chad Qualls to throw into the mix. From the Phillies:
Qualls, 33, went 6-8 with a 3.51 ERA in a team-high 77 games for the
San Diego Padres last season.  In his final 19 appearances, he posted a
1.96 ERA and held opposing hitters to a .219 batting average.  Qualls
made the eighth-most relief appearances among all major league pitchers
last year.

Over the past seven seasons (2005-11), Qualls has
made more appearances (512) than any other major league pitcher and
ranks second in relief wins (34), trailing only Jesse Crain (38).

His splits really stand out, and as David Murphy of the Daily News writes, it would be wise for Charlie to use him soley against right-handed hitters:

. . .can run through a righty or two or three in a late-and-close
situation. Last year, Qualls held righties to a .218/.255/.282 line with
28 strikeouts and eight walks in 156 at-bats.

2) .
. .should only be used against a lefty if the other options are Michael
Martinez and death. Qualls allowed a .320/.381/.500 line with 15
strikeouts, 12 walks and four home runs in 135 plate appearances against
southpaws last season. In 2010, lefties hit .392/.448/.583 in 135 plate
appearances against him.

I don't know, everybody is talking about it being a low-risk move that will bring a veteran presence to a bullpen with youngsters like Mike Stutes and Antonio Bastardo, but isn't that guy you just shoveled out $50 million for a veteran?

Should be interesting to see how the bullpen shapes up during spring training.

What may not be as interesting is watching Qualls pitch at CBP.

If nothing else, the Phillies now have a guy named "Chad" on their team.

Even Mike Trout wants to see Sam Bradford's return to Philly

Even Mike Trout wants to see Sam Bradford's return to Philly

When Angels All-Star outfielder Mike Trout's six-year, $144.5 million contract ends in 2020, the Millville, New Jersey, native will be in his prime at 29 years old, and Phillies' fans dream of seeing Trout playing at Citizens Bank Park could be come true.

For the time being, though, Trout, a season-ticket holder, is just chilling at Lincoln Financial Field as the Eagles play the Vikings on Sunday because the Angels are almost as bad as the Phillies and even he couldn't stay away from Sam Bradford's return to Philadelphia.

Michael Del Zotto, Scott Laughton return to practice

Michael Del Zotto, Scott Laughton return to practice

VOORHEES, N.J. — The Flyers welcomed two more players out on to the rink for their practice following Saturday’s 6-3 win over Carolina. 

Michael Del Zotto (lower body) and Scott Laughton (lower body) returned to the ice for the first time since suffering injuries within days of each other. Before Sunday’s light practice, Del Zotto and Laughton had skated two consecutive days prior to work on their conditioning. 

“It’s nice to see them back with the group,” head coach Dave Hakstol said. 

Laughton, who injured himself during a training camp practice after losing an edge, was a bit more forward than Del Zotto on when he hopes to return. 

“I would say within the next five to seven days,” Laughton said.

The 22-year-old pointed to Saturday’s game with Pittsburgh as his target to return. 

As for Del Zotto, the defenseman didn’t want to jinx anything, saying it’s a “day-by-day” situation. He would like to think he’s working on the same timetable as Laughton. If that’s the case, he would be back either a few days before or right on cue with the projected four to five weeks he was scheduled to miss after suffering an injury to his left knee in the preseason against the New York Rangers on Oct. 6. 

“It’s kind of trial and error,” Del Zotto said. 

Above all else, though, the two were just happy to be back with their teammates. Del Zotto said that being around everyone really rejuvenated his spirits. 

“Just being back around the guys and having that team chemistry and camaraderie and being able to joke with the guys,” Del Zotto said, “it’s probably been the best thing for me.”

This past month has especially been hard on the two because of the timing and how last season ended for them. 

While there’s never an ideal time to suffer an injury, the pair saw training camp and the approaching start of the regular season in a different light than most of their teammates.

It was supposed to be their new start. Last season, Del Zotto missed the final few months, including the postseason, after ligament damage to his left wrist. He was having a strong preseason, arguably the top defenseman in camp at the time before suffering his setback.

“Being out so long last year and having to sit and watch playoffs than having six months of grueling rehab to get back into it … that made it sting that much more,” Del Zotto said. “That’s part of the game. It’s a contact sport. I signed up for this.”

The same can be said for Laughton, who experienced a scary injury in Game 4 against Washington after being dumped head first into the boards. 

“I was really excited to have camp and start the year here,” Laughton said. 

The two will be traveling to Montreal with the rest of the Flyers for Monday’s contest. They will each do the morning skate with another bag skate afterward.