How should the Phillies handle the End of the World on May 21, 2011?

Posted by Mike Frohwirth

As the end of humanity is a mere seven days away, the Phillies need to make certain that they are factoring the world's impending doom into their personnel decisions. Only seven (or eight) games remain in franchise history, depending on whether the Phils are able to get their May 21st matchup with Texas in before the cataclysm. Obviously, the Phillies want to go out on top of the NL East. Ideally, the organization will go into eternity with the top record in MLB. Though it remains to be seen whether the chinchillas will become the dominant species, aliens will take the keys to the Earth eons from now, or if the planet will simply be destroyed, the Phillies can take various measures to control their legacy.

The limited time horizon renders many of the typical decision making considerations irrelevant. All that matters is the win-loss record of the parent club. Anything else is immaterial. All assets should be liquidated for the benefit of the major league club. The Phillies likely have their own plan for the Final Days, which could include many of the following measures:

  • Remove Michael Martinez from the active roster. There has been much discussion as to whether Martinez projects to be organizational filler, or if he could (eventually) contribute as a AAA reserve. Neither matters now, and his roster spot could be better utilized.
  • Promote Jiwan James to the parent club. While James' role should be restricted to use as a pinch-runner, this fan-friendly move would be beneficial to those troubled by the end of life as we know it.
  • Trade the rest of the Clearwater Threshers (A) to Seattle, in exchange for Felix Hernandez. The Phillies need to consolidate value on the parent club, while the Mariners' only hope is that the world continues to exist after May 21st. If the Mariners require more in exchange, the Phillies can throw in their Lakewood team, bags of cash, whatever is necessary.
  • Trade Joe Blanton, Roy Oswalt, and the Reading Phillies (AA) to Milwaukee, in exchange for Ryan Braun. If that is insufficient, the Brewers can also have bags of cash, and the Lehigh Valley IronPigs (AAA).
  • Go to a four-man rotation. Halladay, Hamels, Lee, and Hernandez will take the remainder of the starting assignments. Pitch counts are no longer a concern.
  • Recall Chase Utley, and return him to the starting lineup. Rehab is over. Even at less than 100%, Utley is part of the organization's best possible lineup.
  • Recall The Crazy Hot Dog Vendor (AA) and Phinley (A). The more mascots, the merrier. The Last Days of CBP are going to be a party!
  • Inform Manager Charlie Manuel that the next time he allows J.C. Romero to face a right-handed batter, it will be his last action as Phillies Manager. Over the short term, Pete Mackanin will suffice as Manager.
  • The following players are to be added to the Wall of Fame, and their numbers retired: Roy Halladay, Cole Hamels, Cliff Lee, Chris James, Ryan Madson, Carlos Ruiz, Ryan Howard, Chase Utley, Jimmy Rollins, Shane Victorino, and Domonic Brown. There is not enough time to space the ceremonies out, they all need to be performed between Wednesday and Friday. Chase Utley gets his own night on Wednesday, with five players each on Thursday and Friday.
  • May 21st, 2011 is Zero Dollar Dog Night. This will be the last game in Phillies' history, if it is played. No need to save any pitchers, or food, for May 22nd. Free concessions, three mascots, Jiwan James, and a win over Texas: the Phillies, and their fans, will go out on top.