Originally posted on Big League Stew  |  Last updated 12/13/11
The Philadelphia Phillies plan to use pitcher Dontrelle Willis out of the bullpen next season, and based on his career statistics against left-handed batters, it figures to be a great idea. Reporter Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer said GM Ruben Amaro told reporters at the recent winter meetings that the Phillies were looking for relief help, and Willis would seem to be that. Willis hasn't been effective as a starting pitcher in five years, but his splits against left-handed batters in 2011 were as dominating as ever. Lefty batters hit .127 against him with 20 strikeouts and two walks in 60 plate appearances. For his career, Willis' line against lefties is awesome: .200/.274/.278. He's only made three career appearances out of the pen, so it's funny that nobody had thought to use Willis (or perhaps he didn't acquiesce to be used) as a reliever until now. But he doesn't turn 30 until January, so you have to figure teams were holding out hope he'd revert to the dominating form...
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