Philadelphia Phillies Gauging Interest in Chien-Ming Wang and Ben Sheets

Steve SherianCorrespondent IJanuary 11, 2010

NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 04:  Raul Ibanez #29 of the Philadelphia Phillies bats against the New York Yankees in Game Six of the 2009 MLB World Series at Yankee Stadium on November 4, 2009 in the Bronx borough of New York City. The Yankees won 7-3. (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)
Nick Laham/Getty Images

While both of these "names" excite me, both of these guys would come with some serious issues.

Ben Sheets is coming off of elbow surgery, and is 31 years old. Chien-Ming Wang is coming off of shoulder surgery, and foot issues as well, and will be 30 when the 2010 season starts. If it means trading Joe Blanton to be able to afford either of these guys, I'd have to question the move.

Blanton has been steady, if not spectacular, and for the most part, injury free. Unless they can somehow be sure that either is ready for opening day, and they can acquire some bullpen help for Blanton, I gotta say this is very risky.

If I had to choose between the two, however, I'd take Wang. He is a ground ball pitcher, which you cant have enough of in stadiums like Citizens Bank Park. And while he has had previous injury riddled seasons, Sheets has never pitched a complete season. The closest he's come was in '08, when his contract was up after the season. Coincidence?  

The main thing handcuffing the Phillies at this point is the re-signing of Jamie Moyer after '08. The $8 million he'll earn in 2010 was not only one of the main reasons we didn't decide to keep Cliff Lee around another year, but is also forcing us to decide between Sheets/Wang or Blanton, when one of the two and Blanton would be the best alternative.

If one of them comes cheap, and we can keep Blanton, I say go for it. Whatever will allow us to be able to re-sign Jayson Werth after the season. Unless the Phillies have enough confidence in Dominic Brown or the newly acquired Tyson Gillies to replace Werth in RF after the season.