Fishing for Free Agents

The Winter Meetings are officially wrapping up in Indianapolis and Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. is leaving with a little more luggage than what he arrived with.

During the meetings, which has been more rumor based than anything else, Amaro Jr. did pull the trigger on free agent Ross Gload as the week came to an end.

Gload is a decent addition to Philadelphia’s bench, leading the majors in 2009 with 21 pinch hits. The 34-year old hit .261 overall with six diggers and 30 RBIs for Florida.

The Phillies will sign the first base/outfielder to a two-year deal pending on a physical.

Gload joins three other Philadelphia offseason additions in Juan Castro, Placido Polanco and Brian Schnieder.

But the question remains, what’s the deal with the pen?

Grab the bull by the horns and make a move already.

Slow your roll fellow bloggers, it’s not that easy.

The team had their eyes set on righty reliever Brandon Lyon but Houston snatched him up in a three-year deal. Free agents Chan Ho Park and Scott Eyre are possible suitors for the Phils and a big part of the Phillies second World Series run last season but Amaro Jr. said the team is looking externally for help.

And let’s not keep it under the rug. Yes, the Phillies are still in the mix for ace Roy Halladay, but so are the Yankees. Sources are saying the Phils are still at the top of the hunt to get the heavily sought after starter but the organization isn’t talking trade details.

Not yet anyway.

After capping the 2010 budget at $140 million, the team isn’t making any fast moves on Halladay who is owed over $15 million next season by Toronto.

Possible trades would include lefty J.A. Happ and possibly Joe Blanton along with several prospects.

Philadelphia has a very solid farm system but they have to consider running it dry. Jayson Werth and Ryan Howard also become free agents at the end of the season so the organization has to consider their spending if they look to bring the two heavy hitters back.

 Here’s the kicker- Halladay also becomes a free agent after next season. Is the future really worth the present?

Right now the Florida Marlin is nodding yes.

Amaro, Jr. however is not a fish out of water and so far so good during the off-season. Yet after last seasons World Series it has become evident that the Phillies need another solid starter in the rotation.

Although the conservative play of the team has been succesful in past three years, wouldn’t it be nice to see Ruben reel in the big one?

And not just the Gload-fish.

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