Roy Oswalt was a member of the four aces on the Philadelphia Phillies last season. His contract expired after 2011 and he went unsigned in free agency, but the Phillies have been working him out recently and the team may be interested in his services this season.
Oswalt is 35 years old and seeking a new team, and it’s surprising no one offered him a deal during the offseason. The Boston Red Sox are also interested in Oswalt, and he may have his pick of the two underachieving teams.
The Phillies don’t seem like a logical choice for Oswalt. Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, and Cole Hamels give the Phillies arguably the best 1-2-3 combination in the major leagues, and both Vance Worley and Joe Blanton have been thriving as the fourth and fifth starters. Worley is currently on the 15-day disabled list but he should be back within a matter of two or so starts, and if the Phillies were to sign Oswalt, there would be no room for him in the rotation when Worley does return.
Kyle Kendrick is also being paid nearly $4 million to serve as the spot starter and long reliever, and although he’s struggling mightily as both a starter and relief pitcher this season, the Phillies just don’t need Oswalt. Last year, Oswalt was 9-10 with a 3.69 ERA in 23 starts for the Phillies, although he did miss six weeks with a lower back injury. He also missed extended time when he left the team for personal reasons to tend to his family in the wake of a series of tornadoes.