Tuesday, November 24, 2009

2009 Topps #107 Pedro Feliz

Early reports indicate former Phillies third baseman Pedro Feliz could be heading to the Baltimore Orioles where he would replace the outgoing Melvin Mora. I had originally thought the signing of a Mark DeRosa or an Adrian Beltre or a Placido Polanco would be an immediate upgrade over Feliz. He drove me crazy all summer (and in the Postseason) with his complete lack of discipline at the plate. Granted, he's a rock defensively at third base, but wouldn't it be nice to upgrade offensively at the hot corner? So I was happy with the team's decision to decline his option and begin the search for his replacement.

Then I read this blurb from Bill Conlin's article in the Philadelphia Daily News this afternoon:

There are 16 free-agent third basemen. The most topical for Phillies purposes is Pedro Feliz, who showed up in Charlie Manuel's starting lineup in 158 of 162 regular season games coming off back surgery. The rocket-armed veteran gave Ryan Howard letter-high throws at first and was the most productive No. 7 hitter in the NL with 82 RBI while leading the Phillies with a .336 average when batting with runners in scoring position. [Phillies GM Ruben] Amaro set off a lively debate among his front-office advisers when he declined to pick up Pedro's $5 million option for 2010. For a few days, I thought Ruben was crazy like a fox. With the glut of free agents at the position, it seemed unlikely Feliz would be offered a starting job for that kind of money. I envisioned a scenario where Amaro would sign good-fit 3B/utility jack-of-most-positions Mark DeRosa. Then he might be able to re-sign Feliz to play third and late innings for a lower number when DeRosa is plugging other holes. However, I'm told Feliz was so hurt by being dumped after playing for two World Series teams he would not consider returning.

Wait a minute. Pedro led the team with a .336 average with runners in scoring position? And 82 RBIs is actually pretty darn good for a guy hitting behind Ryan Howard, Jayson Werth and Raul Ibañez. Should the Phils have hung on to this guy?


Jenna said...

Wow! You can't dispute the stats.

Jim said...

Agreed. And I'm glad you liked the leaves. :)