Somewhere in an alternate 2014, Ruben Amaro, much maligned general manager of the Philadelphia Phillies finally submits to his harshest of internet trolls and trades veteran shortstop Jimmy Rollins to his hometown team – The Oakland Athletics. Fans rejoice, as the East Bay native makes a triumphant return upon a marvelous white steed akin to Gandalf from Lord of the Rings. Children cheer, grown men cry, and the former National League MVP sparks a turnaround resulting in a downtown Oakland parade.
If things were only that simple.
In all reality, the lukewarm rumors of a reunion will fail to materialize for a third consecutive season and Rollins who was placed on revocable waivers on Aug 4th – will end the season where he began, as a member of the Philadelphia Phillies. In an industry where player personnel change in inevitable, Rollins longstanding loyalty to the only organization he has ever known is somewhat refreshing. Despite the allure of playing in front of friends and family, not to mention for a contender, the 35-year old has never strayed in his desire to remain employed in the City of Brotherly Love. Holding a full no-trade rights, and under contract for 2015 courtesy of an $11 million option which vested earlier this season, Rollins has the power to play out the remainder of his contract in Philadelphia without fear of a uniform switch.
In such a scenario where the moons align and a Rollins trade came to fruition, Oakland would almost assuredly shift Jed Lowrie to second base putting an end to the three-headed hydra of offensive shortcomings in Nick Punto, Eric Sogard, and Alberto Callaspo. With his 2015 option in place, Oakland would have a one-year stop gate in place as top prospect Daniel Robertson develops into a suitable replacement and Rollins would presumedly have a decision to make following his age-36 season. This is all in the mind’s eye however.
A delusion made to fool reasonable thought.