In this day and age, insurance is a must-have. After all, cars break down, or crash into one another. A person’s health can wane, often suddenly. So, the accepted rule of thumb is to have a backup plan.

In the Phillies’ case, that advice is quite valuable. It’s no secret age and health concerns are serious issues for the 2013 club. Roy Halladay’s last outing, a thumping at the hands of the Tigers’ backup squad, is direct evidence of that.

And one only needs to look back to 2012 to see the need even more starkly.

The losses of Ryan Howard, Chase Utley and Halladay to injury for most of the season crippled any chance the Phillies had at the postseason, especially when their replacements faltered.

So, as Aaron Cook and Rodrigo Lopez took the mound for the Phillies in Thursday’s 2-1 win over the Pirates, it’s easy to see their value as insurance. Both have experience (and success) as big-league starters. Both have been solid this spring, and both are signed to minor-league deals.