Another awful injury has befallen the Phillies, as they’ve had to place starting pitcher Vance Worley on the 15-day DL with inflammation in his right elbow. That’s really not a good sign. His scheduled start tonight will be made by Kyle Kendrick, and reliever Joe Savery has been recalled from AAA.
Worley had improved on his 2011 rookie year so far this year, with a 3.07 ERA in 44 innings, along with 45 strikeouts and 15 walks. Worley’s main issue this year was home runs, as he’s allowed seven already this year, compared to just ten all of last season. Worley’s last start was on Friday, when he allowed three runs over six innings to the Padres, walking two and striking out nine.
The news is clearly not what Phillies fans wanted to hear today, but this could just be a pre-emptive move to not damage his elbow even further. But when you hear “elbow inflammation”, it’s not good news at the end of the day.
If Kendrick is the immediate answer for Worley’s rotation spot…well, the Phillies will struggle. Kendrick is absolutely not a major league starting pitcher (let alone for a contender), with his 4.50 career ERA, 4.96 career FIP, 4.18 career strikeout rate, and 1.21 career homer rate. He’s been awful this year for the Phililes (the first year of a TWO YEAR DEAL) in three starts and five relief appearances, striking out 12 and walking nine in 19 2/3 innings while allowing three homers and posting a horrendous 7.32 ERA.
If Worley is going to miss a significant chunk of time, and the Phillies want to actually contend this year…former Phillie Roy Oswalt is just a phone call away. Oswalt didn’t pick up a job this offseason, and decided to sit out until the middle of the year until a contender had a need for starting pitching. Worley’s injury would certainly qualify the Phillies for Oswalt’s services, and the 34 year-old could be a lifesaver for Philadelphia…if Worley is going to be out for more than just two weeks, that is.
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