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The Phillies have shown interest in Vernon Wells

Jan 19, 2014, 6:05 PM EDT

New York Yankees' Wells hits two-run home run against Kansas City Royals in their MLB American League baseball game in Kansas City Reuters

Sometimes the jokes just write themselves. According to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, the Phillies have recently expressed interest in current free agent outfielder Vernon Wells. Wells was released by the Yankees last week and the Angels are paying the majority of his $21 million salary for 2014, so acquiring Wells is as cheap and risk-free as it can get.

Wells just turned 35 and hasn’t been an above-average regular since 2010, his last year with the Blue Jays. Since then, his offense has all but disappeared, dropping from an .847 OPS in 2010 to a career-low .631 last season. His defense and base running, which used to be assets, have become hindrances to his value.

That being said, Wells can still be a useful platoon or a bench bat. Wells posted an OPS near .700 against lefties and he has historically hit lefties even better than that. The Phillies already have two right-handed hitters, who should be used in a platoon situation but won’t be, in John Mayberry and Darin Ruf, but another team may be able to find a spot for Wells.

  1. proudlycanadian - Jan 19, 2014 at 6:09 PM

    Why should Wells sign with any team? His salary is guaranteed and he did not plan to play after the 2014 season anyways.

    • themanytoolsofignorance - Jan 19, 2014 at 6:16 PM

      Oh? Was he playing in 2013? Not that I’d noticed from about June onwards.

    • NYTolstoy - Jan 19, 2014 at 6:17 PM

      Maybe he wants to show that he can actually earn some of that money he’s being paid. Or maybe he want show that he CAN put it back together.

      • proudlycanadian - Jan 19, 2014 at 6:24 PM

        Possibly; however, I am sure that he realizes that he is done. He will not formally retire until after he is paid in full for the 2014 season. In the meanwhile his kids and possibly his grandchildren are set for life.

        Vernon’s buddy Michael Young is also thinking of retirement.

    • NYTolstoy - Jan 19, 2014 at 6:46 PM

      Yea I agree. It probably isn’t about the money anymore. He most likely wants to show people he is still usefull. Watching the Yankees all season showed me he is not sadly.

      • proudlycanadian - Jan 19, 2014 at 10:17 PM

        Nowhere, does anyone say that Vernon Wells is interested in playing for Philadelphia. It is a big leap to assume that he is interested in the Phillies.

    • American of African Descent - Jan 19, 2014 at 8:46 PM

      Please review the doctrine of “mitigation of damages.”

  2. NYTolstoy - Jan 19, 2014 at 6:15 PM

    How as a phillie fan can you not just shake your head at this? Ruben Amaro is either just a terrible manager. Or a brilliant troll. The M. Night Shamalalalalan of sports

    • tuberippin - Jan 19, 2014 at 10:06 PM

      PLOT TWIST: Ruben Amaro is actually a silent owner of the Atlanta Braves.

      • zemongoose - Jan 19, 2014 at 11:14 PM

        Actually he sees (almost) dead people and gives them 2 year deals.

      • stex52 - Jan 20, 2014 at 12:35 PM

        My winner. Comment of the day. ^^^

    • xmatt0926x - Jan 19, 2014 at 11:44 PM

      zemongoose, that’s good stuff.

  3. banksatdixie - Jan 19, 2014 at 6:15 PM

    Ol’ Ruby Tuesday is as sharp as a turd and as useful as one too. Didn’t take him long to run the Phillies into the ground.

  4. corky2141 - Jan 19, 2014 at 6:23 PM

    I said a few days ago RAJ had a four year deal waiting for him. Sadly, it might come true

  5. tfbuckfutter - Jan 19, 2014 at 6:33 PM

    Alternate Headline:


  6. dirtyharry1971 - Jan 19, 2014 at 6:33 PM

    how about a bluejays reunion for wells? sounds great to me

    • Old Gator - Jan 19, 2014 at 7:01 PM

      Yes, it might drown out that perpetual flatus ripple in your ears – which, of course, is caused by escaping gasses of putrefaction.

      • dirtyharry1971 - Jan 20, 2014 at 2:36 PM


  7. historiophiliac - Jan 19, 2014 at 6:48 PM

    Well, Delmon Young is off the table.

    • tfbuckfutter - Jan 19, 2014 at 7:38 PM

      Only because they couldn’t get the steel i-beams to reinforce the table beforehand.

      • historiophiliac - Jan 19, 2014 at 8:06 PM

        Delmon Young: you :: Larry Jones : me?

      • tfbuckfutter - Jan 19, 2014 at 8:20 PM

        I don’t think I’ve ever taken note of you randomly attacking Chipper….

        But I really don’t make it a point to follow the Braves posts….you know just because they are always great posts for the majority of the time and then out of nowhere they turn terrible and abruptly end.

  8. mikedeman - Jan 19, 2014 at 7:11 PM

    I would love to see Vernon back for one last tour in Toronto. Especially since you can get him for a minor league plus invite

  9. grnthghs - Jan 19, 2014 at 8:14 PM

    Why would sitting on the bench keep you from being in shape and losing skills. I know Wells looked like he had put on some weight last year, but he was a prized player at one time. 35 is not that old, but it is individual obviously. Some just can’t keep it going. I suppose it is all those chips and gatorade along with sunflowers seeds (high fat) and more chips, burgers, beer, cigars, pizza (loads), etc.

    • tfbuckfutter - Jan 19, 2014 at 8:30 PM

      Did anyone else not see this post taking a turn into the nutrition police station?

  10. jbink2585 - Jan 19, 2014 at 11:24 PM

    Since the last out of the Game 5 loss to the cards in the NLDS it has become harder and harder to not laugh at what the Phillies have become, all thanks to the standford grad RAJ. He has constantly failed on his signings IE; Polonco, Delmon Young, Pap etc and don’t get me going wt the in house xtension he has rewarded our players with. He has single handedly turned our once perennial Contending team into the Laughing stock of the NL East. He want to feed us that Health was the reason behind this teams decline and healthy we are contenders. Our teams Pen is a pathetic mess and all he added was brad licnoln to a pen that blew more leads than any other team in the League, and then he expects us to bank on core players in there mid to late 30’s to find a way to stay healthy, give me a break.RAJ you have ruined my summers for the last 2 years and I guess I can call it 3 now aftet I see what you have assemble for the 2014 Phillies, maybe you will get the picture WHEN you see more and more blue seat at CBP.#FIRE RUBEN#Wells signing would perfectly symbolize your tenure TRAINWRECK

  11. weaselpuppy - Jan 20, 2014 at 12:21 AM

    When is Ryan Howard a FA again? He’d be a total bargain!



  12. louhudson23 - Jan 20, 2014 at 4:08 AM

    The guy still hits lefties and always has. Neither his contract nor the situation of the Yankees calling on him to be an everyday player,which he is not, changes that. He is a dangerous bat and useful player against lefties,who can play multiple positions with little or no preparation More than one player has helped teams with less to offer than Wells. Used the right way by the right team,with an understanding of his limitations,Wells has a lot yet to offer.He is a good teammate who works hard and can contribute when called upon.He is not an everyday player who can carry a team,something that his contract and his last two teams have called up him to be….

    • Kevin S. - Jan 20, 2014 at 5:33 AM

      Over the past two years, Vernon Wells is hitting .257/.312/.377 against LHP. And that’s his *strong* side? That’s not hitting even remotely well against lefties. That line is acceptable for a plus defender at a premium position against all pitchers, not an average-ish defender at a non-premium position when he should have the platoon advantage. I’m sure Vernon Wells is a great guy and all, but he’s done as a useful major league baseball player.

      • spudchukar - Jan 20, 2014 at 9:56 AM

        He does have the advantage over some other FAs; in that he is cheap. There are FAs out there who are as useless and not as cheap.

  13. grandpoopah - Jan 20, 2014 at 3:25 PM

    Fire RAJ.

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