Clearing up part of the debate, the Phils have optioned relief pitchers Justin DeFratus and Jake Diekman to the minors. Both should anchor the back end of the Lehigh Valley bullpen. In other roster moves, INF Josh Fields and RP Cesar Jiminez were re-assigned to minor league camp. The battle for the last two spots in the bullpen has three pitchers currently attached to it (Valdes, Horst and Cook).
35 players remain in major league camp, with two weeks until opening day.
Over at minor league camp, 1B Chris Duffy and OF Gauntlett Eldemire were released by the Phils today. Duffy, 25, was the Phils 26th round pick in the 2010 draft out of the University of Central FLorida. A bit more surprising, but not unexpected was that the Phils gave up on ELdemire, their 6th round pick in the 2010 draft. Eldemire simply could not stay on the field, as the often injured outfielder hit .227 for Lakewood in just over 200 AB’s in 2010. The speedy OF did have 18 stolen bases was a one dimensional player, whose dimension was taken away by injury.
Finally, relief pitcher Mike Cisco was threw for both Reading and Lehigh Valley over the past two years was traded to Angels for nothing. Cisco, who is soon to be 26, was the Phils 36th round pick in the 2008 draft and blocked by at least a half dozen relievers ahead of him in the Phils organization.