LOS ANGELES (AP) Jimmy Rollins pretty much accomplished everything he could during 14 years with the Philadelphia Phillies. A World Series title. Three All-Star selections. The NL MVP award. The team's all-time hits leader.
That's what made it easier for him to flee a franchise in the throes of rebuilding and not look back.
''I didn't leave anything behind,'' he said.
Rollins' past caught up with him Monday night, when the Phillies opened a four-game series against the Los Angeles Dodgers. The 36-year-old shortstop called facing his old team for the first time since his December trade ''another baseball game.''
''It helps probably having the first chance to face these guys here in Los Angeles as opposed to going back to Philadelphia,'' he said. ''I had to leave all that in the past and be able to move forward and accept who I am as being a Dodger. This is where I am today.''
Rollins wanted to relocate to Los Angeles, down the coast from his hometown of Oakland, California.
''I'm glad to have gotten out when I did, but I'm glad to have gotten here,'' he said. ''It helps so much when you go somewhere where you want to go if you have to leave as opposed to just wherever you end up.''
He ended up on the first-place club. The Dodgers lead the NL West by four games. Rollins' old team is last in the NL East, 19 games behind leader Washington.
The Phillies have endured turmoil since Rollins departed, with Ryne Sandberg quitting as manager last month. He was replaced by third base coach Pete Mackanin. Pat Gillick was replaced as team president, too.
''When you're not winning, things happen like that,'' Rollins said. ''No one wants to see a manager get halfway through the season and walk away for any reason other than if there are health issues. That wasn't the case. Pete Mackanin, who is a jokester, has probably changed the clubhouse over there a little bit.''
Rollins played 2,090 games for the Phillies and his 2,306 hits are a franchise record. But his feelings toward the team changed in recent years. He called the situation when he left Philadelphia ''just heavy.''
Rollins recalled Gillick saying the Phillies wouldn't be competitive for a couple of years.
''We did our best to prove him wrong,'' he said. ''I thought he was up to his old tricks again, inspiring the boys. Maybe he was right, maybe he was being honest with what they have and what they're going to eventually have in the farm system they may not be competitive for a couple of years.''
None of that is Rollins' concern anymore, although he still texts with some of his old teammates, including second baseman Chase Utley, currently on the DL, and pitcher Cole Hamels, who is from San Diego.
Asked if he'd like to have Hamels join the Dodgers, Rollins replied, ''That'd be nice. We have two big-game pitchers that are already here so that would be three.''
Rollins was set to bat ninth in the Dodgers' lineup Monday night, no doubt a strange spot for Phillies fans used to seeing him in the leadoff slot. He's hitting a career-worst .208, lowest among NL hitters.
''I just got to hit a little better,'' said Rollins, who has no plans to retire next season. ''In the second half, I have to go out there and prove I can still swing the bat.''
On his new team, Rollins lends a veteran and winning presence in the clubhouse of a franchise that hasn't won the World Series since 1988. He happily embraces the role.
''My job is go out there and make sure these guys are prepared every day mentally, and when they are playing a game that they are doing things right,'' he said. ''They respect me enough to listen.''
Rollins will get a chance to face his old team and fans on their turf when the Dodgers visit Philadelphia for a three-game series starting Aug. 4.
''I was there since I was 17 in the organization,'' he said. ''It'll be fun and exciting I'm sure going back.''
He already knows he'll need plenty of tickets for family members, including mom Gigi, who told him, ''Oh, we coming out for that game, baby.''