With only one month until pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training, it’s time for the Command Center to give its offseason grades to the teams in the NL East. It’s been an interesting winter, so here it goes…
The Phillies made the move of the Hot Stove season by landing Cliff Lee. Many, including the Command Center, were skeptical of reports that a “mystery team” was bidding on Lee. It looked like a given that Lee would either return to Texas, or follow the trail of dollar bills to the Bronx. Instead, the Phils went against team policy and inked Lee to a 5 year, $120 million deal.
Philadelphia might have had the best starting rotation in the league before the Lee signing. Now, with a starting 4 of Halladay, Lee, Hamels, and Oswalt, there is no debate. But will it be enough? The Phils lost a key member of their starting lineup with the expected departure of Jayson Werth (more on him below), and they will be hoping that rookie Domonic Brown can help fill the void in RF. The Phillies bullpen remains a question mark, but if their aces pitch like they are capable of – and stay healthy – that might not matter.
Command Center’s Grade: B+
I went with a weighted average here. I give them an A for having Lee on board for 2011, but feel the club will later regret the dollars and long term deal. Of course, if they win it all in 2011, it will all be worth it.
What about the rest of the NL East? Stay tuned!