The Phillies won’t be trading Joe Blanton to the Cardinals

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Maybe that goes without saying, but given that a great number of Phillies fans half-jokingly — at least I hope it was half-jokingly — proposed a silly Joe Blanton-for-Colby Rasums trade after hearing about Adam Wainwright’s injury yesterday, it’s probably wise that Ruben Amaro put the kibosh on such nonsense immediately:

Whether the Phils would deal an accomplished pitcher such as Blanton to a league rival remains to be seen. Asked about Blanton on Wednesday, Amaro said, “He’ll be starting for us in the first week of April.”

Silly trade scenarios aside, there are two ways for competing teas to look at the Adam Wainwright injury: (a) as an opportunity to trade a pitcher on very favorable terms to a team in desperate need of one; or (b) as a cold-water-to-the-face moment in which you realize how just one damn thing going wrong could send your own season skidding sideways.

If you’re inclined to think in that latter, risk-averse fashion, you may be less likely to trade away a starting pitcher to a desperate Cardinals team today than you were yesterday. Because there, but for the grace your pitchers’ elbow ligaments, go you.  And won’t you feel dumb if one of your big guns goes down and you don’t have a Joe Blanton-type to help stop the bleeding?

Arizona Diamondbacks, Tony La Russa part ways

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The Arizona Diamondbacks just announced that they are parting ways with Tony La Russa at the end of the month.

La Russa served as the club’s “Chief Baseball Officer” from 2015-16. For the last year he was styled “Chief Baseball Analyst.” That’s a nice way to saying that he was pushed aside when the club fired his hand-picked general manager Dave Stewart and brought in Mike Hazen to run the club a year ago. La Russa was stripped of his powers, but was told he could hang around as an advisor. Most didn’t think he’d actually take the club up on that offer, but he did. By all accounts he was a pretty unobtrusive presence around the team this year, offering counsel and insight when asked but not making things awkward the way having the old boss around might do.

I suppose that can only last so long, however. The Dbacks had considerably more success without La Russa in charge in 2017 than they had with him in charge the previous couple of years. At some point you just part ways. That point is now.