Unfortunately this is not an April Fool’s joke. Joe Blanton is headed to the disabled list for 3-6 weeks. Blanton suffered a mild oblique strain while throwing a bullpen session in Clearwater yesterday. This immediately alters the Phillies starting rotation. Kyle Kendrick will be in the starting rotation, but there is no word of what spot he will pitch in. I would think that Charlie Manuel would want to break up his left-handers. That would make Kendrick the number three starter with J.A. Happ and Jamie Moyer rounding out the rotation.
The Phillies should take their time easing Blanton back into the starting rotation. Kendrick has proved this spring that he is completely capable of pitching in a Major League rotation. This type of injury is tricky and could linger all season if it has not healed properly. We do not know how Big Joe will bounce back from the injury because he has never had a stint on the disabled list before in his career. I would hope the Phillies would keep him out the full six weeks and bring him back healthy in May. This team is poised to make another World Series run, so it would be in their best interests to let Blanton fully recover from his injury before bringing him back.