NEW YORK — History will reflect this was not the greatest of weeks for a man named Casper Wells. There could be an explanation, albeit a frightening one.
Wells was placed on the disabled list Monday morning with what the Phillies described as "vision problems" just two days after he was the losing pitcher and struck out four times in an 18-inning defeat. Interim manager Ryne Sandberg said Wells has played with blurred eyesight.
The Phillies sent Wells to an eye specialist in Philadelphia.
The 28-year-old outfielder had LASIK surgery last November but issues lingered. Sandberg said Wells tried contacts and the prescription goggles. Nothing helped.
"He's also experienced some dry eye in the outfield," Sandberg said. "They dry up when he tries to blink. He tries to blink to gain focus. He's really battling something. It finally got to the point where he didn't feel right about that. He mentioned production and betterment of the team and himself to see if he can get that fixed.
"That is scary. He said oftentimes it was a blurred ball coming in. He didn't know if he was going to blink just right to make it clear."
Wells is 1 for 23 with eight strikeouts and two walks since being acquired by the Phillies on Aug. 8. This is his fifth team of 2013 and the first trip to the disabled list in his career.
Infielder Pete Orr was selected from triple-A Lehigh Valley to replace Wells. Orr, 34, has yet to play in the majors this season. He was hitting .258/.300/.385 with the IronPigs. He will be the 49th different Phillies player in 2013, which ties last year's number with 32 games to play.