Buster Olney Doesn't Have Reassuring Things to Say About Halladay, Hamels

Buster Olney Doesn't Have Reassuring Things to Say About Halladay, Hamels

ESPN's Buster Olney joined Tony Bruno and Harry Mayes on 97.5 The Fanatic to discuss all things Phillies this afternoon, which of course means Roy Halladay and Cole Hamels. Not Ryan Howard though, who Ruben Amaro had banished to another dimension on a rehab assignment.

On Halladay, Olney could only speculate like the rest of us on what's wrong. He remarked that it's not uncommon for Major League pitchers to experience general wear and tear throughout their careers, adding Doc will likely try to work through whatever it is. That said, if you were to boil down the interview to one line, it's not something that would instill confidence.

"The Phillies probably have no idea what they're going to get out of [Halladay] the rest of the year."

Halladay is scheduled to visit a medical doctor today (important distinction), so we should know something more and concrete in the coming days. That said, some time off for Halladay is starting to look inevitable, and who knows how long until he can get back on track.

Olney also touched on the status of negotiations between the Phillies and Hamels, and while there is still plenty of time to talk, King Cole seems to have all the leverage.

"When you're in the position [Hamels is] in now, where he's only four months from free agency, the only thing that his side needs to say to the Phillies is, 'Look, you can give him a C.C. Sabathia contract of 7 years and $161 million, or forget it, because he's gonna get the top of the market in the Fall."

Olney doesn't think Hamels will actually get a Sabathia deal, but noted he will be far and away the best pitcher on the market when free agency opens. It sounds like the Fightins are really going to have to wow Hamels if they want to have any chance of keeping him off the market, especially with the season he's having.

The interview also touches on whether Roy Oswalt could be in the picture, and what kind of return the Phils can expect for their coveted players should the team become sellers before the trade deadline.

>> Buster Olney on Bruno and Mayes [Fanatic]
>> Halladay to see doctor [Inquirer]

The Phillies season in one video: 'Phanatic tries to comfort crying baby'

The Phillies season in one video: 'Phanatic tries to comfort crying baby'

What is there to say about the Philadelphia Phillies?

In doing my usual postgame perusal of the Internet after their 7-2 loss on Wednesday night, I visited Phillies.com to see what kind of "highlights" they could have possibly posted from another crushing defeat at the hands of the Colorado Rockies.

Thankfully, the first thing that caught my eye was a video titled, "Phanatic tries to comfort crying baby."

It was not Larry Andersen in the Phanatic's arms. Nor me.

And that's the Phillies season in a nutshell.

"You gotta question the parenting skills here," John Kruk said on the telecast. And he's right! What kind of parent would raise their kid to be a Philly sports fan?!?

The Phillies now have the worst record in all of baseball. They're 4-20 in their last 24 games. It's their worst start to a season since 1960.

Even the Phanatic doesn't have enough popcorn to mask all the pain.

If you want to read about the upbeat approach Pete Mackanin is taking, go give this a gander.

"In a long season, these things sometimes happen," Mackanin told reporters. "I remember Atlanta, the first half last year, was terrible. They had a real good second half. I believe we just need to get something going. We're going to put something together. I believe that."

That makes one of us.

Highly ranked 2018 recruit Brandon Slater verbally commits to Villanova

Highly ranked 2018 recruit Brandon Slater verbally commits to Villanova

The future of Villanova basketball just got brighter.

Brandon Slater, a 6-foot-6 wing and highly touted 2018 recruit, told Scout.com on Wednesday night that he has verbally committed to the Wildcats.

He later made the announcement on Twitter.

Among the 2018 recruiting class, Slater, a product of Paul VI Catholic High School in Fairfax, Virginia, is ranked in the top 30 by Scout.com and top 50 by ESPN.com. He's slated as a four-star talent by both media outlets.

Per ESPN, Slater had offers from Louisville, Maryland, Miami, Syracuse, USC and Virginia Tech. He is Villanova's first commitment for 2018.

"Going up there it just feels like a second home," Slater said, via Evan Daniels of Scout.com. "It gives me a good vibe. It's nothing like all the other schools. I just feel like a Villanova guy. It feels like PVI. It's already home."

Slater and Villanova head coach Jay Wright expressed their excitement on Twitter.