That trade was more than three years ago, but with a Cleveland-Cincinnati series looming this weekend, Phillips still has some harsh words for Eric Wedge, his manager in Cleveland and still the Tribe's skipper today. Without being specific, Phillips says that Wedge and the Indians, "Wouldn't let me be me." More of his quote (from the Dayton Daily News) is after the jump
"When somebody takes the joy away from the game by wanting you to be a certain way and play a certain way, that's kind of hard for a player to perform ...So why, exactly, is Brandon Phillips criticizing a team he hasn't played four in almost four years? How the Indians are run really shouldn't concern him anymore. Sure, it's popular to pile on Eric Wedge right now and the guy will probably be unemployed by the end of the season, but he's really got to move on. I mean, sure Cleveland made a big mistake by basically giving him away to Cincy and for all we know, maybe they did really mishandle him. That was a long time ago, though, and still talking about it now just makes Phillips seem bitter.
[The Indians] got a new manager in 2003 (Eric Wedge) and I was put on standby. I had to be a totally different person. I couldn't do that."[...]
"What they did to me was like the New York Mets going up to Jose Reyes and saying, 'Hey, you can't smile and you can't play the way you play.' There's no chance Reyes could do that.