After witnessing the Florida Marlins celebrate their second World Series in ten seasons, you have to wonder what Ed Wade is thinking now. The aforementioned Urbina was acquired by the Marlins for mere minor leaguers and Conine, who killed the Phillies time and time again, cost the Marlins just two more minor league pitchers. Five prospects is all it took for the Marlins to boost themselves from wild card contenders to World Series champions.
Following last season's off-season moves, the Phillies had the unique opportunity to make a serious playoff run for the first time in a decade. Wade needed just to part with a few minor league prospects – not even the big guns like Cole Hamels or Gavin Floyd - in order to bring a few more weapons to this club. Weapons that could have put the Phillies over the top and into the postseason.
Yes, the Phillies made some exceptional moves prior to last season, but it was apparent by the all-star break that more help was needed for this team to truly be successful. The bullpen fell apart and while Mike Williams was added, more could have been done and it wasn't.
Look, when improvements to a team aren't made when they are needed, the general manager simply is not doing his job. Ed Wade is the face of this ownership group that has proved through the years that they do not have the commitment to winning that other teams have shown to possess.
In all fairness to Wade and company, the underachievement of players already on the roster may have cost the team more then the lack of moves. Inactivity by Wade and the front office didn't help and the fact that they did nothing to improve the roster is unacceptable.
The Phillies front office will have another opportunity in just a few short weeks to reshape and retool a roster that already includes the likes of Jim Thome, Mike Lieberthal, Marlon Byrd and a healthy David Bell. If Burrell can return to form like so many fans hope, and some major acquisitions are made, this team can easily position itself for dominance in the National League East for years to come. But only if Ed Wade does his part.