Rollins: Facing Phils in LA just 'another game'

Rollins: Facing Phils in LA just 'another game'

LOS ANGELES -- Jimmy Rollins is not feeling especially nostalgic this week at Dodger Stadium.

The Phillies are in town, but they traded him to the Dodgers in December. So those warm and fuzzy feelings about facing his former team?

"I haven't thought about it, honestly," Rollins said Monday before delivering the key hit for the Dodgers in their 10-7 win over the Phillies. "There's enough going on around here to keep me occupied. It'll be good to see the guys. Obviously, I've texted a few of them. A few of them return them right away, some wait a week or two. But, other than that, it's another baseball game, honestly. Going there will probably be different, but coming here, they're the team we want to beat."

Rollins said he is not following his former team too closely, but he certainly knows the Phillies have the worst record in baseball.

"I'm glad to have gotten out when I did," Rollins said. "But I'm glad to have gotten here. [Phillies senior vice president and general manager Ruben Amaro Jr.] and I spoke of where I wanted to go. I said Los Angeles, and they were able to get a deal done. So that helps, it helps a whole bunch, when you go somewhere you want to go if you have to leave, as opposed to just wherever you end up."

Rollins touched on number topics Monday:

Ryne Sandberg resigning midseason: "When you're not winning, things happen like that. It's unfortunate that had to happen that way, no one wants to see a manager get halfway through the season and walk away for any reason other than health issues, but that wasn't the case. Pete Mackanin, who is a jokester, he's probably changed the clubhouse over there a little bit."

Owner John Middleton, who emerged as a face of the organization last week: "He's a great man. I enjoyed John. Obviously you guys know his fire and his passion. And all he wants to do is win. I've always said if there can be another [George] Steinbrenner, it'll probably be him. He wants to do whatever it takes to win. Him stepping forward doesn't surprise [me]. I think it's a place where he's always wanted to be."

On if he's surprised the Phillies are this bad: "[Team president] Pat Gillick said they wouldn't be a competitive team for a couple of years. I know when we were there he said that [in 2006], and we did our best to prove him wrong and the next year we were right there in the playoffs, finally broke through two years later, won a championship. I remember him saying that. I thought he was up to his old tricks again, inspiring the boys. That hasn't happened so far. Maybe he was right. Maybe he was being honest, that with what they have and what they are going to eventually have in the farm system, they might not be competitive for a couple years."

On Cole Hamels possibly being traded to the Dodgers: "That would be nice. Cole would be close to home. We know what type of pitcher he is, especially in big games. He wants those games. You have two big-game pitchers that are already here [in Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke], so that would be three, and that's one heck of a combination."

Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.