OSWALT TO YANKEES NOT LIKELY
–UPDATE, 8:05 am: Jon Paul Morosi of FoxSports.com says Oswalt is seeking a multi-year deal and says his back feels great. From where I’m sitting it doesn’t look like the Phillies are in a position to offer an aging, yet decent pitcher, two years or more. Doesn’t seem like the prudent move with a roster that’s in need of a youthful infusion. However, free agency can be long and drawn out, so anything can happen with Oswalt and the Phillies.
–Although it seems somewhat unlikely Roy Oswalt will be returning to Philadelphia, he may have a hard time finding what he wants elsewhere. According to ESPN New York, the Yankees are saying no to Oswalt because of his prior back issues.
The pitching starved Yankees need to say yes to a lot of pitching, but a baseball insider close to the situation says they will balk at signing Oswalt this offseason. Realistically, you could say Oswalt is the second best pitcher available behind C.J. Wilson of the Rangers (and maybe Yu Darvish from Japan, but that remains to be seen).
So if the Yankees are drawing a line in the sand on the 34-year old Oswalt, what does that mean for him in free agency? Undoubtedly, someone will take a chance on this guy – he’s too good not to. It seems like it will come down to which team will guarantee him two years on a deal. Many, many teams NEED pitching in the worst way and while the Phillies aren’t one of them, having Oswalt back at a decent price could be accomplished if the market dries up for him due to concerns about his back.
SANDBERG WILL TALK TO STL
–Ryne Sandberg wants to be a manager. The St. Louis Cardinals and Chicago Cubs each need one moving forward. But only one has come calling.
According to both Todd Zolecki and Jim Salisbury, the Cardinals have gotten permission from the Phillies to speak with Sandberg about their managerial opening after Tony LaRussa’s retirement following the World Series. The Cubs, who shunned Sandberg before, have announced they are looking for someone with prior big league experience.
I think we can all agree that Sandberg appears to be on the cusp of being a great manager; he just needs that opportunity. And it looks like it could come from St. Louis, when everyone believed it would come from Chicago. But with Theo Epstein in place, things have changed and the new guy wants someone who has been there, done that.
It appears unlikely the Phillies will be able to keep Sandberg in some capacity, although I would hate to see him go. I see him as a guy who can take over for Charlie Manuel if/when he retires when his contract is up.