Several of the Phillies offseason moves have been questioned by the team's fan base. An old team that keeps getting older. Even starting pitcher Cole Hamels seems to admit the team has put off the rebuilding process.
"You have to know when to start over," Hamels told Richard Rys of Philadelphia Magazine. "Will our fans be happy with that? Probably not."
Hamels even described a decline in locker room morale during last year's 73-89 campaign.
"The energy in the clubhouse changed," he told Rys. "It used to be all high fives. This season, there weren't as many high fives. There was a lot of bitterness, pointing fingers — 'You haven't played well in a week, why weren't you in here early?'"
The 29-year-old pitcher remains optimistic about the team's chances in the upcoming season, despite growing pessimism among Phillies fans.
"We won't win 100 games next season," he said. "But with another wild card, we can definitely get into the playoffs."
Hamels had a rough start to open up the 2013 season, losing nine of his first 10 decisions. He bounced back toward the end of the year, finishing with an 8-14 record and a 3.60 ERA.
The lefty, who turns 30 on December 27, now sees himself as a leader in the clubhouse. The Phillies will need him to be one if they plan on playing in the 2014 postseason.