Umm, is it over?  Ruben Amaro  Jr. is trying to save the season.  Wait, that don’t sound right.  What is he doing?  Really.  Pence is gone.  So is Shane Victorino.  Cliff Lee was gone if the Phillies organization decided to pay some of what Lee is due, around 80 million.  Blanton survived.   No one was safe during this hurricane.  I wouldn’t be surprised if more were to be dispensed if it wasn’t for the money invested in the player.  Howard especially.

We are going to see how good of a General Manager Ruben actually is.  In the coming months he has to address Roy Halladay, Utley and Ruiz.  He will also have to address if he is going to buy a championship.  Obviously he can wait for next season.  Instead of waiting for the last minute and signing a player playing well, get them early.  Chase Utley is coming off a near career ending injury.  Sign him now and the price will be lower.  If he goes on a tear, well think about it, they pitch to Howard before Utley.  SO Utley needs something of the range that Howard is in.  That’s, of course, if you decide to keep him.  That decision needs to be done now.  Carlos Ruiz is probably having a career year.  Again, these decisions need to be made now, not when other offers are coming in.  Ruben’s real time to shine is after all the trades are done.  Addressing the media with honest answers about the future of this team.  That’s not the really all that easy.

So what happened today.  Today happened because of what happened last week.  An aftershock we’ll say.  The Phillies signed Cole Hamles for $144 million.  That money had to come from somewhere.  Hunter Pence is going to arbitration next year for what looks like around 13 million.  Victorino is due for a new contract for around 8 million a year (my opinion).  So as of right now, there is no outfield.  Dominic Brown’s time is now.  This is a perfect opportunity for him to come in, learn and get the jitters out.  Still, missing two more.

I feel that social media broke this team up.  Media itself.   Listen, yes this season is over.  Unless teams start losing and the Phillies don’t lose, 2012 is in the past.  Damage control was not needed.  With Twitter being available for any analyst to give an un-thought opinion, radical ideas flew.  Everyone pushing for answers. Face it, it’s a bad season. Phillies for the past ten years have been very successful.  One year and its times for damage control.  Overreaction.  The Phillies started without Chase and Ryan.  Key players.  I can see a difference in loses alone with those two in the line-up.  Nationals are ripping up the East.  This team should be fantastic, seriously. That is indisputable.  The Miami Heat were crucified for not winning the Finals the first year.  They didn’t break up.  I have a hard time sitting here believing that the Phillies are going to out and find a better defensive Centerfielder for what you could have locked up Shane for.  Don’t give me the answer that the Phillies need to get younger, because look around.  Seats are selling out, fans are filling in on away games and merchandise is up.  I use these examples because if you want to play in the money game, you have to spend it.  Need I even bring up New York.  I would love to know when the last time the Yankees were even near a salary cap.   By saying we paid Hamels 144 million means that this is the game we are in.  Yes, buying a championship, corporate seating and not filling a stadium until the 3rd inning and out before the 9th.  Oh, and the ticket prices rising.

Don’t get that scared, it might not even be happening.  Ruben has gotten a taste of what it is like to spend money.  Now comes the test.  The test to see if he can go out and find his replacements.  Whether that is for cheap or for money doesn’t matter.  Shane Victorino was a complete steal.  Tier two type player.  These are the players that Ruben needs to go out and find.  Otherwise, it’s time to buy a championship.  I just want everyone to understand that you have to watch when you ask for these types of things.  What is next?  It’s not about the grass being greener.  It’s more on can you even get what you want.

Here is something to put thought into while remembering Victorino.  None of this is for this season.  This is all for Cole Hamels.  That, I am fine with.  He got paid a starting pitchers salary.  That’s that.  Ruben has made Dominic Brown completely untradeable.  The all of the not “ready’s” and “not the right time” has made him completely worthless. What was once one of the most talked about prospects in the MLB, is the Phillies new Right Fielder.  Freddy Galvis wasn’t supposed to get injured.  For that matter, also not hang out with JC Romero.  Galvis would be here right now to help the 3rd base position.  Obviously, the Utley and Howard thing.  I would say that the Bullpen needs to be addressed, but if shouldn’t really get that far.  Starting pitchers should take them to at least the 7th inning, at least.  There are reasons why this team hasn’t fired  on all cylinders.

It was just a bad season.  Clean up, pack and go home.  Come back fresh in ’13.  I think we need to keep calm in all this.  Look up north towards Yankee stadium and see how they run their team.  Chase Utley being paid 19 million a year is the same as 12 million in let’s say Atlanta.  When we fling these numbers around I want you to understand that this is the game Ruben is playing.  IT’s a bigger market and that’s just how it is.  Yankees’ have purchased many championships.  Let’s just hope Ruben isn’t selling one.

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