Scott Eyre – One More Year
When you think of the Phillies best players over the past two seasons, most people would point out Utley’s 63 home runs, 69 doubles, 225 runs and 37 stolen bases, or Howard’s 93 home runs and 287 runs batted in, or Victorino’s 204 runs, 69 doubles, 61 stolen bases and two .290+ batting averages, or maybe even Jayson Werth’s 60 home runs and 40 stolen bases in limited play. But we have all learned, especially over the last week and a half, that pitching wins championships.
So who is has been our best pitcher over the past two seasons? Cole Hamels followed up a World Series MVP with a terrible regular season and an even worse post season in 2009. Cliff Lee was not here last year so he is out. J.C. Romero was gone for the majority of this season. Brad Lidge led the MLB in blown saves this season. Chan Ho Park was phenomenal this year in relief but was not with the team last year. Ryan Madson posted an era in the low 3.00’s in both seasons but blew 8 saves in 19 opportunities. And J.A. Happ did not get the opportunities in either post season to be considered, which leaves us with Scott Eyre.
After starting with the Chicago White Sox as a starting pitcher in 1997, Eyre would find his niche in the bullpen just two seasons later. Arguably his best two seasons would come at the tail end of his career when he joined the Phillies halfway through the 2008 season. He would go on to post a 5-1 record with a 1.62 earned run average in 61 appearances in. It was Eyre that posted a 0.00 era in 9 innings over 15 appearances during the past two Championship Series and World Series. It was Eyre who took the mound with a one-run lead in the ninth inning of the clinching Game 4 of the NLDS in Colorado. After getting the first two outs of the inning, Eyre turned it over to Brad Lidge to nail down the win.
But the only thing that matters more in his life is family. As Eyre contemplates one last season after he undergoes an off-season surgery this upcoming Monday to remove loose bodies in his pitching elbow, it is ultimately up to Phillies General Manager Ruben Amaro and his family to decide his future.
Speaking about one more season, Eyre stated after last nights series loss, “We’ll see if they still want me around.” The one promise he did make, “I’ll either wear a ‘P’ on my head or nowhere else.” While pitching baseballs is the only job he’s had in his adult life, Eyre has earned about $14 million in the past 4 years, which is more than enough money to support, his wife and two boys, Caleb and Jacob. But the decision is going to tough. Eyre said, “My kids are ready for me to be home, so it’s hard to stand here and not let the water works go right now.”
He concluded his interview stating that he will be at peace with whatever happens. I on the other hand will not be. Scotty please come back for one more year.