By Kevin K
Many people have trashed the return of Brad Lidge lately saying "we don't need that bum, he stinks". Well I am here to tell you differently, we need Brad Lidge. Yes the Phillies bullpen has held their own this year with great performances by Madson (who just came off the DL), Stutes, Bastardo, and even Kendrick.
However, for those four solid pitchers this season, there have been a rotating cast of characters in and out of the Phillies bullpen, including Danys Baez, Drew Carpenter, and David Herndon. All three of these players are currently in the Phillies bullpen and not performing so well.
After Danys Baez's fantastic five shut out innings, he has pitched terribly. He is currently 2-4 on the season with a 6.25 ERA.
Drew Carpenter is 0-0 on the season, but has a 6.23 ERA in the Majors for the Phillies so far this year.
Now comes everyone's favorite, David Herndon. Herndon is 0-2 with a 4.85 ERA.
(take note, Phillies game on Monday 7/18 was NOT counted in the ERA's of Carpenter, Herndon, and Baez).
All three of these pitchers have been unreliable throughout the entire season.
Now people can still try to argue with me that bringing back Lidge is a bad idea, but it is not. Bringing back Lidge brings depth back to the Phillies bullpen. Lidge had his one bad rehab assignment last week, where he was truly wild as ever, but has been perfect before and after that outing.
Now I am not saying to put Brad Lidge into the closers role, because even Lidge admits that it is Madson's job now. The Phillies needs a veteran reliever (and really another in a trade) to bring more depth to the Phillies bullpen. Lidge would need to be used in the 7th or 8th inning as more of a setup man than a closer.
So go ahead and continue your rants on how bad Lidge is (he actually did great for the Phillies in 2010 and was PERFECT in 2008). Go ahead and tell me that 2009 was a terrible year for Lidge, because it was for Cole Hamels too and no one is currently yelling about him.
Now bringing back Brad Lidge does not mean that the Phillies shouldn't also look at bringing in an arm for the bullpen (which they are looking at). But bringing back Brad Lidge gets rid of players like Drew Carpenter, David Herndon, or Danys Baez.
The Phillies and the fans want to win in 2011, Brad Lidge may be the best option available for the Phillies