SAN FRANCISCO -- There has been plenty of talk about Jayson Werth since Ryan Howard signed his enormous five-year, $125 million contract extension with the Phillies.
Werth will be a free agent after the season, and it will be interesting to see if the Phillies can re-sign him. Werth said Tuesday he does not expect anything to happen until after the season, which means if he plays well he only will become more expensive on the open market.
But look a little further into the future and there is Jimmy Rollins, who will become a free agent after 2011. Rollins joined the organization as a second-round pick in the 1996 First-Year Player Draft. He won the National League Most Valuable Player award in 2007. He is a three-time All-Star, three-time Gold Glove winner and one-time Silver Slugger winner.
He already is considered by many to be the greatest shortstop in Phillies history.
Rollins, who is on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right calf, said Wednesday at AT&T Park that he hasn't thought much about finishing his career in Philadelphia.
"If you're a guy that is a one-team guy it's because the opportunity allows you to do that," Rollins said. "It means you're pretty good, I guess. It means you're important to the team. Of course, if you're pretty good you can switch teams a lot and make a lot of money, too. Some guys choose that."
Rollins said a few years ago that he could see himself finishing his career in San Francisco or Oakland, where he grew up.
"We weren't good then," Rollins pointed out about the Phillies. "We're good now. As long as we're good, I'm good."
Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said the Phillies still have flexibility to retain players like Werth and Rollins. The Phillies have shortstop prospects Freddy Galvis and Jonathan Villar in the Minor Leagues, but as Amaro pointed out, "They're kids. They're not one of the better shortstops in the Major Leagues."
Howard snaps homerless streak
SAN FRANCISCO -- Ryan Howard snapped a career-high 65 at-bat homerless streak when he hit a solo homer to left field in the fifth inning Wednesday to give the Phillies a 1-0 lead. It was Howard's third career homer against Giants ace Tim Lincecum, the most homers he has allowed against any player.
"Oh, really? I didn't know that," Howard said. "I'll take that and put it in my back pocket."
Howard is hitting .286 with six doubles, one triple, four home runs and 17 RBIs. He has struck out 18 times, which is once every 5.1 at-bats. He had struck out once every 3.1 at-bats before this season. Being in San Francisco, Howard has been asked about his offseason work with former Giants slugger Barry Bonds.
Howard said the work has helped. He also said he would work with Bonds again.
"Oh, yeah," he said. "If he'd be willing to work with me, yeah. It's like asking a little kid if he wants ice cream. You don't want ice cream if they're giving away free ice cream?"
Utley reaches 1,000-hits milestone
SAN FRANCISCO -- Phillies second baseman Chase Utley singled to right field in the ninth inning Wednesday for his 1,000th career hit.
Utley is the 32nd player in franchise history with 1,000 hits and the fifth Phillies player to accomplish the feat in the past 20 years. He joins Bobby Abreu, Pat Burrell, Mike Lieberthal and Jimmy Rollins. The Phillies also are the only National League team in the past 20 years to have five 1,000-hit players.
Lidge nears return to Phillies
SAN FRANCISCO -- Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said closer Brad Lidge is close to rejoining the team.
"Probably shortly," he said. "Hopefully we will."
Manuel would not say if Lidge would immediately return to the closer's role. Ryan Madson currently is the closer. He blew his second save of the season Wednesday.
"I don't know," Manuel said. "I'll have to see where we are on that. I'll kind of play it by feel."
Lidge threw two scoreless innings Tuesday with Double-A Reading. Lidge has had six consecutive scoreless rehab appearances. Lidge said Tuesday he was ready to rejoin the team.
Lesson learned, Howard hustles for double
SAN FRANCISCO -- Ryan Howard ran hard to second base in the seventh inning Wednesday after he hit a ball off the right-field wall.
Howard was thrown out at second after he didn't hustle Tuesday. On Wednesday, Howard slid safely into second for a double. When he got up, he flashed a smile.
"[Giants shortstop Edgar] Renteria was kind of smiling at me," Howard said. "Everybody in the whole vicinity had a little laugh about it."
Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.