Welcome "Gooch"

July 28, 2007

Tonight’s Lineup
Bourn, cf; Victorino, rf; Rollins, ss; Howard, 1b; Burrell, lf; Helms, 3b; Iguchi, 2b; Coste, c; Durbin.

Second baseman Tadahito Iguchi said he “would miss the city of Chicago and the crowd cheering me with the ‘”Gooch” sound” after being acquired by the Phillies.  He arrived this afternoon along with his interpreter.  Iguchi will wear #12.

When the Phillies learned Chase Utley’s hand was broken on Thursday, Pat Gillick and his staff began looking over rosters for potential second basemen.  The White Sox called that they may move Iguchi.  Of all the potential available second basemen, the Phillies felt he was the best.  A young arm is what the Sox were looking for.

The Phillies moved quickly and made the deal.  We feel we are definitely in contention and wanted to send a message to the players in the clubhouse, the enemy and the fans.   You can’t replace a Chase Utley but this is the best step to soften the blow.

Abraham Nunez started last night and will return to his utility role.  We needed another infielder to give Charlie Manuel flexibility.

Iguchi carries a $1 million salary for the rest of the season and then he will become a free agent.   

The search for more pitching continues.  That search will be a little more complex simply because of the demand for pitchers is greater than the supply.  The trading deadline is 4 o’clock Tuesday afternoon (EDT).

Yesterday was a roller-coaster day for Joe Thurston, the 27-year-old second baseman.  The Phillies brought him up from Ottawa for the game and then designated him for assignment following the game to make room for Iguchi.    Joe wore # 10 for about eight hours.

The glamour of a baseball player sometimes isn’t so glamorous.  From playing every day at Ottawa, to getting the exciting call to the majors to now sitting for 10 days until he clears waivers so the Phillies trade, release or send him back to the minors.  Only good news for Joe, he receives major league salary until the next assignment.

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