Here's the good news: both Brad Lidge and Joe Blanton have verbalized their aptitude to rejoin the ranks of the major league. But before you start unraveling your "Welcome Back" banner, let's look at the cold hard facts.
On Tuesday, after pitching a mere two innings without event for Double-A Reading, Brad proudly proclaimed himself "ready to go!". This, after giving up five runs in 4.2 innings in single A, meaning Lidge has essentially had a six inning spring training.
The very next day, in his start for the Reading Phils, Joe allowed 5 runs in five innings, but still maintained he "felt positive," regardless of the results rendered. Of course, the silver lining is that 45 of his 67 pitches were strikes.
Still, are these aptitude tests really valid enough to bring the rehab partners-in-crime back to the big show?Consider that they are pitching in minor league games and are still giving relative average, if not unimpressive, performances. Has this become the standard for the Phillies pitching?
Certainly, our starting rotation and bullpen need major help, as demonstrated by the previous series of losses. But is it really helping by quickly reactivating two men who aren't exactly tearing up the minors?