LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - Pat Gillick learned he was going into the Hall of Fame on Monday, one day after Jayson Werth signed a seven-year, $126 million contract with the Washington Nationals.
Without Gillick's decision to bring Werth to Philadelphia after he was cut loose by the Los Angeles Dodgers, the rightfielder may never achieved such fame and fortune after four productive years in Philadelphia.
"I'm happy for him," Gillick said. "That's a lot of money. You can buy a lot of real estate in Springfield, Ill., with $126 million."
Gillick said Werth's departure leaves a void in the Phillies' lineup, but he is confident general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. will find a suitable replacement.
"It leaves a hole, certainly," Gillick said. "But we're going to try to do everything possible to plug it. But certainly you take his home runs, RBIs, and defense away . . . he's a pretty complete player you take out of the lineup."
Phillies president David Montgomery was also asked about Werth's decision to sign with the Nationals.
"I'm disappointed," he said. "We had made an effort to retain Jayson. But at the end of the day, I guess our efforts were dwarfed by another franchise. We have to look forward.
"Personally, I can't thank Jayson enough for the four seasons he gave us. He blossomed. I had this discussion with Jayson on the last day, the day he was packing up. He came to us with the question, could he play? Certainly could he play every day was a huge question. And he emerged to be a very, very significant everyday player and gave us a lot of on-field success. And hopefully we have enough left to continue that success."
Extra bases. Amaro said he would like to add depth to compete with Kyle Kendrick and Vance Worley as fifth-starter candidates, but he added, "I don't see starting pitchers falling off trees." He mentioned non-roster invitees Eddie Bonine, Brian Bass, and Dan Meyer as possible competition. . . . For the Phillies to participate in Thursday's Rule 5 draft, they must release a player from the 40-man roster, which is currently full. The Phillies would have the 30th and final selection in the draft and are still deciding whether they'll use it.