From the Phillies:
The Phillies officially declined the 2012 options for the contracts of right-handed pitchers Brad Lidge and Roy Oswalt, the club announced today.
“While we will not pick up either of their options, we will remain in contact with representatives for both players about the possibility of bringing them back for the 2012 season,” said Senior Vice President & General Manager Ruben Amaro Jr. “Brad and Roy both made significant contributions to the Phillies over the past several seasons.”
Lidge, 34, went 0-2 with one save and a 1.40 ERA in 25 appearances for the Phillies in 2011. He struck out 23 batters in 19.1 innings, an average of 10.7 strikeouts per 9.0 innings pitched. In four seasons (2008-11) with Philadelphia, Lidge posted a 3-11 record with 100 saves and a 3.73 ERA. In 22 postseason appearances, he went 1-1 with 12 saves in 12 opportunities and a 1.77 ERA.
Oswalt, also 34, went 9-10 with a 3.69 ERA in 23 starts for the Phillies this past season. In 36 regular season games (35 starts) since being acquired from the Houston Astros on July 29, 2010, he was 16-11 with a 2.96 ERA.
Opinion: I think Ruben Amaro will make a strong play for both men. Lidge is in one-year territory at less than $2 million these days, and I’m not sure teams will be lining up for him with his injury past. Maybe he feels he owes it to the team and will take a minumum contract or a minor league deal.
As for Oswalt, there is always a market for starting pitching, and while he is no longer an Ace, he can be a very good pitcher for several more years. As long as that back doesn’t act up…