By Sam Bush
So, the Phillies season is over and the locker room has been cleared out.
Phils fans have been left with the sinking sensation that Ruben Amaro Jr. will return as general manager, making me and them wonder what does it take to get fired by the Phillies when you have overseen consecutive 73-win seasons?
But there is hope, and I am not the only one who is beating the drums for Phills’ reliever Ken Giles.
Check out Grantland.com’s Jonah Keri:
For the first time, I’ll be voting on a BBWAA award: NL Rookie of the Year. While I’m forbidden from revealing my pick until the results are announced in November, rest assured I’m taking a long look at Ken Giles on my three-player ballot.
It’s true that relief pitchers don’t have as many opportunities to affect games over the course of the season as do starting pitchers or position players. It’s also true that Giles saw even fewer reps than the typical reliever, throwing only 45.2 innings. Still, he was a stone-cold killer nearly every time out, punching out 64 batters, issuing only 10 unintentional walks, ceding just 25 hits and a single home run, and posting a microscopic 1.18 ERA. He rocks a 97 mph fastball and a more or less unhittable slider, he turned 24 years old this month, and he’s Phillies property through 2019. Amid all the problems facing this team as it works to regain relevance, Giles is a sorely needed bright spot.