General Discussion – Week of 12-2-2013

Non-Tender Deadline is today. This team probably shouldn’t let go of John Mayberry for nothing. If they eventually sign a backup CF, he should be tradeable, even if it is just to dump what will likely be a reasonable contract for a bench bat with pop, and they already have one 40-man roster spot available for a rule 5 guy if they find one. No harm in keeping him right now.

Bastardo has been discussed in the comments as a possible non-tender. I really don’t see it, unless he truly hurt Rube’s feelings over Biogenesis or something. Otherwise, he’s a real MLB bullpen arm, and there’s no reason not to keep him.

Frandsen is a bench guy who can hit a little and he will make almost nothing in 2014, even if he goes all the way to arbitration and wins. Kendrick is your #3 or #4 starter next year. In a perfect world, you wouldn’t need to keep a questionable arm like him, but there’s no depth to let him go and he’s been very durable, if nothing else. And Revere is a no-brainer – he will be tendered. 

I predict five tendered contracts. In an ideal world it would be two, Bastardo and Revere, but as we all know, the 2014 Phillies will be far from ideal.


241 thoughts on “General Discussion – Week of 12-2-2013

  1. John Mayberry is a fine player for the money he’ll make as a 4th or 5th OF. I believe he has just been exposed the last few years by playing too big of a role on the Phils. I believe he should be tendered and traded.

    1. IF Mayberry can be traded for something then he should be tendered and held as an asset until we see if we can get something (Rajai Davis?) better. The Phils will only tender Frandsen if they want him on the team over Cesar which is very possible especially considering Cesar doesn’t play 3B and Sandberg is known to be a fan of Frandsen’s. The other 3 guys are obvious.
      By the way, let’s open the open 40 man spot goes to a starting pitcher (Garza?) but after seeing the price of Hughes and Nolasco, Garza could go for 5/$75M.

  2. Assuming he is non-tendered, I’d like to see the Phillies take a chance on a guy like Travis Snider. His minor league pedigree suggests something with the bat and I don’t think he’s gotten an extended chance to work through his struggles in the Majors. His situation reminds me a little of Chris Davis…and Dom Brown.

    1. The guy , somewhere along the line lost his power stroke. In his last 650+ MLB PAs he has only 12 hRs. And he is a strong guy.
      A few years ago he was considered a very good prospect.
      Could be the next Laynce Nix.

  3. Mayberry is fine as a RH bat off the bench, he is just terrible when he plays a lot. He’s always been Marcus Thames but the Phillies seemed to think he was more than that.

    Off Topic, I would love to see Ruben make an offer for Brett Anderson, but hes probably 10 years too young to peak RAJ’s interest

      1. JP Aren….strikes out at a high rate…almost 30%…and walks at a low rate. Check his slash line and then see if you still want him.

        1. i know about that but he still hit 21 bombs remember i don’t want him to be the starter just maybe bring him In to fight for the back up job. I also like afford and Andrew bailey at a low cost

      2. We’re 0-for-2 in our attempts to spell “pique” in this thread, but the scouts say the talent is there and some day our spelling skills will catch up with the rest of our game.

  4. Kazmir got paid!

    Regarding Frandsen, I read a while back that Sandberg said, as long as he is managing a club, he wants Frandsen; likes the way he plays the game. Who knows if that was just lip service…I guess we’ll soon find out. Seems like an expensive bench player for what he does, but if he brings the intangibles, etc., and is the apple of Ryne’s eye, who knows?

    1. I like Frandsen’s game even though his average fell off last year. He’s a solid pro and provides a good RH compliment to Asche at 3B for a few of the tough lefties. Barring injury, Cesar will go back to AAA as depth. Mayberry’s spot isn’t secure yet though because I still think a guy like Rajai offers more.

      1. I agree. He can play 3B, 1B, and even 2B for a game or two and hits LH pitching well. A nice complimentary piece and along with Galvis and Ruf, the two bench guys that I most to be with the big club this year. (With Hernandez playing everyday in CF with LHV and the first call up if Utley or Revere get hurt).

          1. He was actually the starting SS for the Giants before he tore his achillies. He’s never regained all of his speed back.

  5. I bet they shock everyone and sign Ellsburry.

    I don’t know what their plan is. I guess they feel they could roll out the same old team, hope they stay healthy and hope Sandburg gets more out of them than Charlie did.

    Marlon Byrd as the 5 hole hitter behind Howard is pathetic. Put him right there with Young, Mayberry and Fransisco.

    I guess they are just playing safe until they get the TV deal.

    1. Nick, I somewhat agree with you. I think there is going to be at least one giant move and I think Ellsbury is a pretty good candidate. An outfield of Ellsbury, Brown and Byrd, with Mayberry and Ruf backing up, isn’t too bad – the team can include Revere in a trade (Revere really is too good to sit on the bench). The good thing about Ellsbury is that nothing about going into the Philadelphia media market should surprise or unsettle him. If he’s healthy, he should be great. The weird thing about Ellsbury is that, although he is a superb player even if he doesn’t hit with power, when he does hit with power (he’s only really done it one year), he is an elite player – one of the best in the game. Look, to get better, the Phillies have to gamble, and there are certainly worse gambles than Ellsbury.

      1. I think that Ellsbury gets a slightly enhanced version of the contract Carl Crawford got a few years ago – something like 7 years and $ 150 million. Basically, a little more than $20 million a year. With a WAR being worth something like $5.5-6 million, Ellsbury should roughly be worth that contract, assuming he doesn’t lose a lot of full years to injury (always possible with him) and knowing that the last year or two of the deal will be iffy (but, if he’s healthy, he’ll likely outproduce the contract in the early years – so it should even out over time).

        1. Well my off-the-cuff guess on the contract amount and duration was just about right. Not that surprising since Crawford is the closest comp and that contract is a few years old now. I think it makes it pretty unlikely the Yankees, who are trying to get down to the luxury tax cap number, also sign Cano, but if they do, I doubt they are committing more than about $175 for Cano. I sure as heck wouldn’t go over $200 given his age.

          1. Any player wanting $20M per, according to past ‘subtle’ comments by Ruben, will be off limits.
            I think he said, paraphrasing, ‘you cannot have a complete team of $20M players’

        2. Cashman cashes out man! He appaently does have a plan for the Bronx Bombers. I assume getting Cano signed at a $25M per clip is the next step along with getting ARod off the rolls with all the litigation surrounding him. And then letting Granderson walk is another move. He is decisive with a purpose.
          RAJ…take notice of the manuevering to playoff contention.

          1. Stop the Brian Cashman mancrush please! The Ellsbury and McCann signings are no brainers especially when your ownership is willing to spend more money than a third world country’s GNP which is ridiculous. Baseball really needs a hard salary cap as the rich get richer and some teams don’t care whether they exceed the luxury tax at all. Unfortunately the Phillies are not one of those teams who will bend or break the rules as Montgomery follows the MLB party line too much.

      2. catch…..does Ruben have Scott Boras’ phone number? Me thinks not. Nevertheless, in past Decembers, Ruben has been known to pull off a surprise or two.

        1. I don’t think they love the idea of negotiating with Scott Boras, and I think Boras will steer him away from Philly if the decision is close, but Boras will be aggressive in getting the most money for his client and if it’s with the Phillies, he’ll do it. You don’t become as successful as Boras has become by refusing to negotiate with one of the 5 or 6 most significant big market teams and that’s what the Phillies have become.

          1. Will see what happens.
            Would be nice to have another Rizzo working in Philly, but the Nats are not ever going to let that happen.

    2. (EricD)
      He pretty much has already said that this will be the OF going into the season. He has said that he wants to add some depth to the OF but a big signing wouldn’t exactly be considered “depth” or at least the way I see depth is a 4th outfield type of player. I just don’t understand how he can honestly feel that basically the same team (plus Byrd) will be good enough to compete. Well wait, they are good enough to compete if everyone stays healthy and performs to their abilities however that isn’t likely to happen with a year added onto their bodies. I don’t think RAJ is dumb, he’s gotta know deep down inside that the team needs a bit of a overhaul however what can he really do in FA? I don’t think FA is a away to fix this team, it’s going to be a slow painful process.

      1. No Amaro seems pretty dumb based on the majority of his moves the past 2 seasons. If he deep down knows it can’t compete, he would have begun to move pieces last season like he did the year before. Utley and Papelbon would’ve been traded. Ruiz wouldn’t have been resigned to a 3 year deal. Byrd wouldn’t have been given a 2 year deal with an option. Mayberry and Frandsen wouldn’t be tendered contracts…they’ve maxed out their ability. Instead you offer contracts to either underachieving and injured players (Jayson Werth) and hope one sticks.

        He’s holding on to the last remaining fans from the 2008 bandwagon with the hope that nostalgia keeps them in the seats.

      2. RAJ knows the team isn’t good enough to compete. He knew that last year as well, but he needs to sell tickets. That’s why he talked up the Youngs as special rebound candidates. This is PR talk.

  6. Nats get Fister from Tigers…seems like they gave up very little. He would’ve looked good in our rotation. An equivalent package from us might be Cesar, diekman and Adam Morgan.

    1. Pre-injury Adam Morgan, perhaps. I don’t think there’s a good value comp to a current Phillies pitching prospect. Biddle is probably closest, but Biddle’s more valuable than Ray, while Ray is more valuable than Pettibone Morgan or Seve G.

    2. IMO Hernandez, Diekman and Morgan would be too much for Fister, I know most won’t agree with this but I think all 3 are valuable players and Fister isn’t a game changer, (not that Hernandez, Diekman or Morgan are) he’s more of a complimentary player. I actually think that Kyle Kendrick (cringe when I say this) COULD do as well as Fister. I don’t want to give up on Morgan just yet, want to see how next year goes for him post surgery, could be a number 3 type pitcher. Diekman is turning into a trust worthy high leverage arm (and after the past few years we all know how important a bullpen) and Hernandez should be a solid utility guy. If I had to package 3 players for Fister it would be something like Galvis, Pettibone and then pick one of the following Horst/Stutes/Rosenberg/Savery/Colvin. Would they take that? Who knows but i think that Hernandez will have a better career then Galvis (who IMO is nothing more then a glove, he ISN’T going to ever hit for even a decent average at the ML level, Diekman is/will be better then the crop of RP I listed and Morgan has A LOT more upside then Pettibone although Pettibone might be a safer bet. With all that being said I don’t think a Fister move to Philly would have done much for them but with the Nats he makes sense.

        1. Yeah it should have said post injury not surgery. They were considering surgery in Sept. but an MRI showed no changers in his shoulder. Thanx for catching that, I reread it before I posed but since it wasn’t a grammatical error i read over it.

      1. I am a bit more bullish on Fister than you are. Is he a #1 – no, at least not on a contender. Is he a #2 on some teams – yes, I think so. I think he would slot as one of the better #3’s out there. He has a career WHIP of 1.2 and a career ERA just north of 3.5, and he did this against the AL.

        No chance a package of Galvis (a replacement level player with little perceived offensive upside), Pettibone (#4 upside?), and a AAAA player gets this deal done.

        1. Take a look at what the Tigers got before you say that theres no chance they would accept the package I listed/

          The Tigers got Robbie Ray, Steve Lobardozzi and Ian Krol. Galvis and Lombardozzi are close to a wash as possible, id even say that Galvis because of his GG caliber glove would make him slightly more valuable. Ray/Krol or Pettibone and one of their RPs I listed are about a wash as well, again it might even sway towards Pettibone/RP of choice over Ray/Krol. There isn’t much upside in either of Ray/Krol or Pettibone/One of the RP listed. I wouldn’t say “no chance”, the package I listed, it is close to what the Nats gave up. The package that CoryK listed was DEF. better then what the Nats offered.

          1. Fair enough. I just now took the few minutes to compare the players that Detroit is getting. Without a scouting report to back up the stats – you might be able to argue that there is not much of a difference between the 2 packages. I think I would take Galvis over Lombardozi as well. The Ray guy seems to have potential upside – he was recently listed as the #5 prospect in the Nationals organization, so there is an upside that does not appear in your package. (one story quoted “Ray’s potential as a strikeout pitcher is very promising at age 22, and he projects to be a number-three starter when he reaches the big leagues in a couple of seasons.”).

            taking a step back – I am surprised that a proven pitcher who is not a FA for 3 years could be traded for – what I perceive – very little.

            1. They just talked about the trade on MLB Network with Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski. Dombrowski said both pitchers are relief arms that they liked which IMO makes this trade even more so lopsided. It also makes the proposal of Galvis/Pettibone and a RP even better. I dunno i’m still scratching my head on this one, it def shows that they prob wont/cant more Max S now.

  7. According to MLB Trade Rumors:

    “The Indians have non-tendered outfielder Matt Carson, pitcher Tyler Cloyd, and catcher Lou Marson, the club announced.”

    Cloyd didn’t last long…

  8. Plenty of non tenders I’d love to take a flier on: John Axford (my #1 choice, although he is bound to have a market with better situations), Andrew Bailey (rehab him and maybe get him on a cheap option for the 2015 season), Tommy Hanson (we have the depth to survive should he continue his downward trend. I also think he might benefit from a possible switch to the bullpen as I remember him having serious problems pitching deep into games with ATL), and Cristhian Martinez (again, rehab him).

  9. Garret Jones would be great pop off the bench from the left side. Also can give Byrd a rest. I doubt he would come here with limited playing time though. Webb and Belasario would be interesting at the right price.

    1. While I like his bat for the bench, Jones can’t play CF and the 4th OF needs to play CF if he’s going to take Mayberry’s spot. After considering the Phillies bench and realizing that they have no left handed pinch hitter (Galvis is it) while every closer is right handed, I think they need someone who can play all 3 OF spots and bats left handed and having a little power would help. One such guy is Tyler Colvin and he’s used to be a 4th OF.
      Two non tender arms that interest me are Wesley Wright and Donald Belisario.
      By the way, the Phils are not signing a high priced OF. They are hopefully trying to sign a starting pitcher like Garza (5/$75M?) and there’s not enough money for both a starting pitcher and an expensive OF, that’s why they signed Byrd.

      1. Agreed that it’s more likely that they spend big money on a pitcher (Garza is my pick) rather than a hitter. But if they don’t get one of the pitching targets they want, it wouldn’t surprise me if they went out and got another bat. They money is going to be spent one way or another (and that’s probably not such a bad idea, assuming the player is good enough).

        Also, don’t rule out an out-of-the-blue trade. I would love for the Phillies to pick up R.A. Dickey. Tortonto needs young pitching and Dickey would be perfect in this rotation – he’s a huge bounce back candidate and could easily pitch well for another 2 or 3 years given his status as a knuckleball pitcher. If they signed Garza and traded for Dickey (the cost would be something like Kendrick, Morgan, and Quinn), the rotation could look very, very good next year – Lee, Dickey, Hamels, Garza and (you pick 5th starter – Pettibone?). That’s a pretty nice.

        1. MAG has 1st crack at that spot. However, I don’t think the Phils will give up their 2nd rd pick by signing any of the guys available this year. I’ve given my opinion in the past, I’d only give up the pick for Cano and that’s not happening. That’s obviously an additional reason why Garza is so attractive. While a trade is certainly possible, I think RAJ realizes that with the age of the club, trading any more young pieces right now could be very shortsighted. A trade of KK, Cesar, and Mayberry won’t get you much and trading Quinn now would be trading low which you should never do. A rotation of Hamels, Lee, Garza, KK, and MAG, with Pettibone at LHV, would not be bad. Maybe they’ll trade for a reliever if they can’t get a free agent reliever signed but I’d rather spend the money and keep the prospects and they really need another arm in the pen. I wouldn’t mind two more arms and have competition for spots.

        2. Ugh! That would be an insane trade target for an aged, fading team to make. We certainly need a high-paid 39-year old pitcher. That’s certainly what I’d want to go out and trade what little young pitching we have to add to the Phillies. The Phillies aren’t going to contend in 2014. Trading more of the future for a non-existent present simply isn’t the way to go. It is just digging the hole a lot deeper. Dickey isn’t so much a bounce-back candidate as a retirement candidate. Yes, knuckle-ballers can be different, but he is already 39-years old. Just not the place to place your bet.

          1. Let’s add that it takes a special catcher for him to be effective. He had 0 confidence throwing to Arencibia last season and I think that did them both in. At least the few times I watched him pitch it seemed to many balls were going to the back stop.

          2. I’ll bet money he will be more than worth his contract over the next three years. Knuckleballers are a completely different breed – they defy all other aging curves and his k ball is thrown much harder than usual, he will pitch like a two or three for several years.

  10. I have had a feeling that Ruben is itching for a big trade; maybe it is just fear that he is. Quinn doesn’t get much until his rehab from injury gets further along. I really don’t trust Rube at all and would rather they wate money than prospects.

  11. For the love of all that his holy, please go nowhere near Tommy Hanson…lots of good ideas in this thread but that wasnt one of em!

  12. The phillies shouldn’t do a thing. They are 3rd place team that has fringe minor league players. They need to be bad for while. Let the pain ensue.

  13. Even if you are right, that is not what they will do. There will be a SP, a reliever and another bat, in some form. The hope is that he doesn’t waste what little Minor League talent we have to get them.

    1. When it comes to relievers I would take a look at Dan Bard or Mitch Boggs, both righties that bring it up there.

      1. I’m all for Bard if they are prepared to be patient and slow play his issues. Bard has been scary bad the last two years including stints in the minors and most recently, Puerto Rico where I believe he walked 9 while recording one out. Since his attempt to transition to starter, he has lost a lot of velocity and I don’t think McClure is the guy to help him find it. In fact, it was on McClure’s watch that his slide became precipitous.

  14. I like the move the A’s and Rangers just made. I would have liked to had either Choice or Gentry to back up or platoon with Revere.

  15. what the hell is It me or did Fowler and Gregerson and even Michael Choice just get acquired for basically nothing and they all are players the phillies would have been interested in

        1. hes a corner who hit 10 HR’s in the PCL with a giant hole in his swing. Going by old prospect rankings that are based off of California League numbers and a high draft slot doesnt mean anything.

            1. youre not the only one in an uproar over Michael Choice. Ive been talking about this the entire season. His value was initially boosted by him allegedly being able to play centerfield and hit with 60 power. All of which is not true. The stats you listed with fringe defense at a corner is probably a 2 win player at a peak. Craig Gentry who is one of the most underrated commodities in baseball was worth 3.4 WAR in under 300 abs last season… 1 win equates to roughly 4 million dollars of worth. 13.6 million dollars of value in a season isnt virtually nothing. Its something Billy Beane saw and devoured.

            2. I have heard average defense for choice from multiple places. I guess I just think choice has more value than gentry and you disagree

            3. And I never said virtually nothing I said on the cheap. And you can’t just predict choice will be a 2 win player

  16. Will Nieves….oh man Ruben…a bunch of decent looking pieces get moved today and you sign Wil Nieves. I am hoping he has something big up his sleeve but it is looking more unlikely.

    1. No problem with signing. Let’s Rupp get consistent every day at bats in AAA in the event Ruiz (inevitably) goes down with an injury.

  17. Here’s your blockbuster:

    @ChrisCotiIlo: #Phillies and #Athletics agree to swap OFs Yoenis Cespedes for Domonic Brown.”

  18. I am reading a writer named todd on mlb, he said he now understands why tigers moved fister for a underwhelmening package, they signed nathan, is it me ? Why did the tigers have to make that move now, to sign nathan, they could have waiting, for better package, did they have to pay nahan today and are out of money, the gm for the tigers imo just gave away a 15 game or better winner who is making 6 million, for two maybe. future relief arms, not proven and a galvis or worse type player , washingston stole this guy and has him for 3 more arb years, great move, ty amaro, The market is paying guys like huges 8 million who cant touch this kid, and 14 million to nolasco who isnt as good, where is amaro.

          1. Nobody really knows. I don’t think his cieling is anything that would ever prevent me from trading him if I was RAJ. In fact, he’d probably be the most expendable out of our top 3-5.

            Brett Anderson when healthy is a dominant starter. The problem is just that, his health. If he could make 28-33 starts a season he could put up Cole Hamels type numbers.

            1. After re thinking that (I wish there was an edit button!) Cole Hamels #’s are probably a stretch. He’s probably a #2 or a #3 on a good team when healthy. He’s still young enough to where he has tremendous upside.

        1. I’m asking you, but I’m really addressing all the fans who propose such trades: don’t you think that Billy Beane knows as least as much as you do about both Anderson and Biddle?

  19. Ellsbury to the Yankees for 7yrs and slightly more then 142m. Looks like whoever said RAJ was gonna scoop him up was wrong

        1. Cano will not go to Seattle…what was the offer from the Mariners, 8 yrs for $200M? Just posturing on his agents part.
          Cashman will go after him.
          Though he slightly overpaid for Ellsbury who is very good player but not a $22M per guy.

  20. That probably means the Yankees might not sign Cano. I know its a super, duper long shot but I hope to god Amaro doesn’t do anything stupid in trying to sign him. I know that we have Utley but they did try Utley at third and they could shift Asche to the outfield. This is might be a crazy scenario due to lack of sleep from finals.

  21. Brad Lincoln to Phil’s for Kratz and Rasmussen.Phils also get 4th pick in competitive draft round

    1. Is Lincoln any better than Rosenberg, Diekman, Bastardo, De Fratus, Stutues, Martin or Aumont? I guess it can’t hurt to have enough depth.

        1. I don’t think that’s necessarily the case. Lincoln doesn’t really seem like a sure thing. Good stuff but he’s not really an upgrade over anything we have in the bullpen currently.

          I think this move just gives them a guy who can soak up some innings in the bullpen and maybe one day becomes more.

      1. IMO he isn’t better then any of them. In just over 31 innings last year he posted a bb/9 of 6.3 . . . that wasnt a typo, 6 POINT 3!!!! Yet still had an ERA+ of 104, weird

    2. How do the Phils get a competitive balance pick from this trade? The Jays don’t have one, and the fourth picks are held by the Marlins (Round A) and the Rays (Round B).

    1. Lincoln drafted by the Pirates out of the University of Houston with the fourth overall pick in the 2006 draft. Pittsburgh selected Lincoln ahead of three pitchers who have combined for five Cy Young awards: Clayton Kershaw (seventh overall), Tim Lincecum (10th) and Max Scherzer (11th).

      1. wow. what else to say? hindsight is usually 20/20, but wow – what a miss. Baseball has to be the hardest sport to scout (differing competition levels, high-school versus college, 18 versus 21, etc).

        Lots of misses in the top 10 of that draft:
        #1) Hochevar
        #2) Greg Reynolds (who was once a Phillies 41st round draft choice)
        #6) Andrew Miller
        #9) Billy Rowell
        (just from the eyeball test, I can understand some reluctance to pick Lincecum with a top pick (5′ 11″, 170, if that, throwing with an unorthodox motion)

        1. I think that was in the Pirates “draft the most signable, not the best player available days” They did this repeatedly until 2008.

  22. Nothing to get excited about but I guess he has more upside and experience than Rassmussen. (he did have a good couple months in 2012) and Kratz was expendable so for what they gave up, I guess it can’t hurt. So the move it fine but I still don’t see a plan. I am not saying that they need to make huge splashes either but so far all these moves have been lateral.

    1. I think the plan is to get as many good bullpen arms on the team as possible and have them fight it out for roster spots. To me, the issue isn’t good bullpen arms. The one thing the team does have in the bullpen is talented arms. The problem is that not that many of them are good pitchers at this point. A lot of talent and expectations are being laid at the feet of pitching coach Bob McClure – I hope he is good with developing young pitchers because, when you think about it, how the young pitchers on this team develop could be the difference between a team that struggles to win 75 games and a team that might be fighting for the last wild card spot (87 or 88 wins).

      1. The problem with Lincoln is that, so far, he appears to have a good, not great arm, which makes dealing with the horrible command and control issues even worse. The Kratz move was more a favor to Erik than anything else because the team really wants Rupp to take over as the backup sometime this year. It’s interesting, however, that the team had that low of a view of Rasmussen, a player who, to me, seemed a little intriguing.

      2. “I think the plan is to get as many good bullpen arms on the team as possible and have them fight it out for roster spots.”

        And that’s how you should build a BP in my opinion. Load up on AAAA upside guys.

  23. Enjoying this off-season and Ruben’s moves so far.
    Since it appears, it may very well be his last off-season making trades and moves with the Phillies.

  24. I like the quote from one of the baseball prospectus guys last night on Beane. Said he doesn’t have a 5 year plan. He is either all in or all out year to year and right now he is moving to be all in. One thing is for sure he doesn’t suffer from paralysis by analysis.

  25. Moving on . . . . an interesting development this winter has been Freddy Galvis’s performance at the plate in the winter leagues. He’s hitting for average and reasonable power and is also drawing more than his fair share of walks (previously a big issue for him). If Galvis can hit .255-.270 and draw enough walks to make his OBP somewhere between .320 and .340, with his above average (for the position) power and his out-of-this-world glove, he becomes an interesting possibility as a the team’s shortstop this year. Here’s hoping Freddy improves enough so that the team can put Rollins on the block and use that salary money for other assets. Nothing against Jimmy, but he’s expensive now for his production and he’s simply drawing close to the end.

    1. That would be an ideal scenario and one worth watching. Galvis doesn’t have to hit a ton, he just has to get on base more and hit with a little pop. He’s been a prospect so long we for get how young he is and how young he was at pretty much every level. There’s still room for development there. Hopefully he can do it

    2. Jimmy is not being traded, he will refuse any and all trades. Its still great news to see Galvis hitting better. He totally reworked his swing last year down in the minors, let’s hope he’s stuck with it and its working for him.

      1. Jimmy’s not agreeing to a trade if he is playing. If he’s sitting on the bench a lot, his ego will not handle that well and he’ll agree to a trade, especially if it makes it more likely his option for 2015 will vest.

        1. If Jimmy is sitting on the bench he cannot break his personal Phillies records that he says is his goal.
          We cannot have that! (tic)

    3. I wouldn’t put too much stock in Galvis’s small sample size winter performance. He showed last year that he gets hot for spells and tantalizes you into thinking he could be a full time player and then he gets ice cold.

      1. But… he has shown improvement with the bat overall. He’s not great, but he’s on an uptrend. The glove is great. On the other hand, Rollins is sinking fairly rapidly. Even odds that Galvis would be his equal in 2014.

        1. I don’t feel THAT strongly about what follows – even assuming that I am right, I don’t know if what I believe to be a relatively small edge to Rollins is THAT big a deal in a season when the team isn’t going anywhere anyway.

          But I’d disagree with you on two grounds. First of all, the “uptrend” argument doesn’t really hold much water in my opinion. Galvis took a huge leap forward as a hitter in AA in 2011. He was essentially league average as a hitter, which, if he could duplicate it in the majors, would make him a heck of a player. But he hasn’t duplicated it in the majors or in AAA (though he’s been than we would have expected prior to 2011).. He’s shown more pop than expected, but otherwise he’s not shown much at all as a hitter. He’s been a well below average hitter.

          Nor is the trend really upward. Yeah, he was a little bit better in the majors in 2013 than in 2012, but not significantly so, and still not very good. And he was worse in AAA. Steamer projects him to .243 .283 .363. That looks about right to me, but it doesn’t look like someone who is ever going to be a productive big league regular, even at SS and even with his defense.

          As for Rollins, sure he’s not the player he was in his prime, but decline phases are not usually a straight line, and the most likely outcome is a slight rebound. Let me ask you this … in what respect do you expect Galvis to be a better hitter in 2014? His BB rate and K rate are both likely to be worse. He actually had more power than Rollins in 2013 – the only reason they were close as hitters, though Rollins still has an edge there – and I would expect something of a power rebound for Rollins in 2014. Rollins also still has an edge as a base runner.

          Now, some might argue that Rollins likely edge as a hitter and base runner will be outweighed by Galvis’ edge defensively – though Rollins is still a good defender. Well maybe so. I guess I’d be more excited about giving Galvis a chance to prove those people right if I thought he was going to develop into a solid regular. I don’t.

          That said, I’d like to see Rollins “rested” enough so that 2015 does not vest.

          1. I hear you Larry, but the real question is whether Rollins is $10 million better than Galvis – I don’t think that he is and, in fact, if Galvis played almost every day, I think they’d be pretty darned close this year, with Rollins more likely to have a slight edge. Not only that, but I view playing Galvis a lot to be key to his ongoing development as a hitter. I’m not saying he’d be great, but whatever he’s going to become, I think he’ll get there faster if he plays a lot in the big leagues.

            1. That’s an interesting intellectual question, but the real question is how would that $10 million be redeployed next year? With Ellsbury off the market, there’s no big ticket CF upgrade to be had on the FA market (not that I would have advocated signing Ellsbury to the deal that the Yankees did…) The rest of the lineup is basically set, except perhaps 3B, where you wouldn’t want to sign someone who might block Franco. With the relatively modest contract commitments he’s made so far this offseason, Amaro already has payroll room to make a run at a top-flight FA starter (like Jimenez or Tanaka if he is posted). So, while saving Rollins’ salary might be a nice cost savings for the ownership, it’s probably not going to make a meaningful impact on the team on the field. It would just be thrift for thrift’s sake. So far as I’m concerned, the Phillies best hope here is that Rollins has a bounce-back first half (or season) and rebuilds his value to the point where he would fetch some kind of return in a trade.

            2. Young Cuban pitcher and SS now on the market. SS appears to be a Galvis-quality glove but not a great bat, so he doesn’t really fit our needs, but the pitcher is a better match. Tanaka will eventually post.

          2. I’ll state my assumptions, the biggest one and the greatest difference between our views being that I don’t expect a significant bounce up by Rollins from last season’s performance. He saw a significant decline in all elements of his game last season, and although there certainly is saw-toothing in his year to year performance numbers, the trend is clearly and majorly downward. He is at the age where further slippage is likely, but I grant that he may well up his OPS to .700 in 2014, I don’t give that more than 30% likelihood, but it certainly is possible. Second, I am a big believer in OPS. Unlike most, I don’t think it over-values power. I think power is crucial to run scoring as station-to-station combinations of 3 hits or walks to produce a run aren’t an efficient way to score runs. In 2013, Galvis already had a higher OPS than Rollins, by a few points. Now, that represented a 50 point year-to-year (majors only) rise for Galvis — that definitely is significant progress, but I admit may lead to a little back-sliding rather than further advancement in 2014. I guess I skipped over assumption #3 — for guys who have been in the bigs and have big-league stats from current year, I pretty much discount conflicting minor league stats from the same year — combination of guys working on specific things and sulking if they think they deserved to stay in the bigs — we see this over and over, as with Ruf in 2013, as well. Final assumption — I think D is really big for SS and Galvis has the advantage here. On base-running, Rollins steals are down and his steal efficiency is also down. This may well be the year that his base-stealing dips to neutral on the season, so not a big plus for Rollins from me on his base-running. The final advantage I give Galvis is that he will be a better hitter where he is willing to hit in the order (basically anywhere, but he should be 7 or 8) than Rollins is where he will happily hit (leadoff and grudgingly #2). I didn’t say I thought Galvis was clearly better in 2014 — I think it is a coin toss whether or not he is better than Rollins. I’d project them about equal for 2014.

            1. Well I think that accurately describes our differing assumptions. Let me just comment briefly on one: an older player who has a “significant decline in all elements of his game [in a] season” (as was indeed the case with Rollins) is unlikely to rebound FULLY (whereas a smaller fall off, e.g. Victorino in 2012, is more likely to result in a complete bounce back). But, at the same time, a bounce back of SOME dimension is MORE likely (if the player is good enough to keep a regular job, as is Rollins) simply because of reversion to the mean (and because declines in underlying skills are usually not quite that steep).

              So on that point I’m pretty confident that the chance of SOME rebound for Rollins is over 50%. But I’m certainly not saying he is going to return to his value in his prime (or even his quite good 2012 season). I see him as a 2 WAR player in 2014, with Galvis closer to one WAR.

          3. you know how sometimes you read something – and what you read causes you to pause for a second. Larry provided one of those moments to me in the above:

            In regards to Galvis – yes Freddie Galvis – “He actually had more power than Rollins in 2013”

            wow – Rollins ‘slugged’ .348 to Galvis’ .385.

      2. Agree on the SSS, but he still just turned 24 so there is the possibility at least that these short stretches of solid hitting could still develop into something more.

    4. On Galvis. His glove is golden. You can put him in 5 different postions and not have to worry defensively. Only CF (lacks the speed) and maybe 1st (lacks the height for the most part) are probably his weaker positions. IMO, i would give him a catchers mitt in the spring and see what he can do back there.

  26. I think the move to make is: Trade for Ryan Braun.. He is still relatively young, has power, Yeah, I know about the steroids, and contract… Trade Dom Brown for him (+ a prospect if we need to)..

    1. Without the PEDs he’d be the ideal fit in the lineup. 30 years old and still owed 6 years, $120M, which isn’t awful when compared to current FA deals. I’m just not sure how to trust guys that have been down the PED road.

    2. would I like to have someone of the skill of Braun on the Phillies – absolutely. Could I as a fan cheer for him – not a chance. How he could throw the collector under the bus – when he knows he was guilty – just goes beyond what a decent human would do. I hope he gets a flat tire on his car the next time he goes out of town.

      That said, I suspect it would take a large return for someone like Braun (not as large as a year or 2 ago, but still large)

      1. He would be worth the large return IMO purely forom a skills perspective, but I agree with you. I could never root for that guy and therefore don’t want him

  27. Tanaka and the latest posting issue status…Joel Sherman of the Post writes:
    ‘MLB officials have been determined to try to lower the fees transferred from their teams to Japanese clubs…. and have indicated that the days of giving more than $51 million to a Japanese team simply for the right to then negotiate with Matsuzaka or Yu Darvish is gone. MLB has a current proposal that involves a max threshold of just $20 million. MLB teams could put in a blind bid from nothing to $20 million, no more. What would happen if multiple teams bid $20 million – which would almost certainly be the case with Tanaka – has not fully been determined. However, the likelihood is the Japanese player would get to pick with which team he wants to negotiate. Japanese officials are said to be strongly against this system, feeling it does not pay their teams enough for the player’
    …looks like the big spending clubs like Yankees, Cubs, Sox, Dodgers will be in it for sure.

  28. So the Dbacks want an ace – why not trade Cliff? What prospects from az would get it done?

    1. So, funny you should type this. I was thinking the same thing earlier today. At the end of the day, are the Phillies contenders this year? Most would say no. With Lee still pitching at a high level, I would be open to offers for him. He has a partial no-trade right? But, with his age, I would have to think he would consider waiving it for a trade to a contender.

      Look to trade him, bring back a few promising young players, and then go all in on Tanaka (I doubt he would want to come here, but we can dream, right). When he signs elsewhere, pick up Tommy Hanson (did I just suggest Replacing Cliff Lee with Tommy Hanson?)

      The above is not going to happen. But, I think the Phillies will do SOMETHING of note (whether that be to trade a Lee or a Rollins, or sign a second tier free agent, and then follow that up by packaging a few players, including d. Brown, for another mid-level star.

      Okay, the NyQuil is setting in – time for bed.

  29. is reporting that Shane Watson had a shoulder setback his throwing shoulder. May need surgery. Between Watson, Quinn, Morgan last year, Tommy Joseph, Andrew Knapp, Yoel Mecias very disapointing. It hurts to be a Philly Fan these days.

    1. Despite advances in medical technology I would take multiple TJ surgeries over just 1 shoulder surgery any day of the week. Pitchers never seem the same after a shoulder surgery.

      1. I had shoulder surgery in august and let me tell you, it still not right, and my surgeon is one of the best, even after therapy, but i am older so that has to count, and I was on the table for almost 2 hours longer, cause when they got in there, found it was worse than mri showed them. another thing to think about.

        1. eoccom……Shane Watson said this afternoon his shoulder feels a ‘whole lot better then it did a few days ago’, but come next Tuesday or Wednesday (10/11 Dec) when he meets with Dr C again they willknow more in what dorection to go. Right now he said, it is inflammation vs and rot.cuss tear oo tendon tears. But he said he arther have surgery and be back in three months then go through another entire session of rehab and then 5/6 months down the road it flares up again.

  30. That really sux about Watson if true.Just another in the list of dissapointing offseason news for the Phils system.Who the hell is gonna be worth watching at Clearwater w/o potentially Watson,Quinn and Knapp? Pickings could be slim.

  31. Judging how Ruben has reacted in the past, trying to get a head start on other GMs and apparently to some, jumping the gun, it would not surprise me if he signs Matt Garza very soon, in leau of the fact that Rakuten Golden Eagles president Yozo Tachibana has decided not to post Tanaka because Tachibana is unhappy with the MLB proposal and the NPL acceptance of a standard $20M posting fee. Of course, he may be posturing and bluffing to get more money out of it.

    1. I dont think its set in stone that he isn’t posting Tanaka, just think he said he is rethinking it. My question is (I’m ignorant to the rules over in Japan) at what point is it Tanaka’s choice? Meaning when can he freely become a FA? I also admit that i’m being lazy in asking this question instead of looking it up.

      1. correct…he is thinking about it…..but I am sure if his league comes up with more money to compensate him, he will more then likely change his mind. Like I said he is posturing. After all, some of the other owners reaped some big financial gains with past large monetary posting fees, why should he not have his own opportunity to gain some wealth!

  32. I was going over the phillies contracts . I really after looking at the years, for howard , lee, pap, am really concern, I really think he is backed into a corner, not good enough,and not enough money to get better,without going over tax, not getting any younger, and a bad farm system wont help, and with amaro in charge,I believe i will be spending more time down the shore and not watching this team, it would be too hard to take,

  33. I don’t know if anyone read David Murphy’s column on Phils finances, but they do have money without exceeding Luxury tax. He includes benefits, $5Mill for in-season call-up and bonues and still shows $26 Mill to spend. They ahve money, just not a competent spender of the $

    1. Garza will eat a lot of that cash with his upcoming 5/$85M deal (I can hope…) and Davis or Colvin will take about 2/$6M. Throw in one more reliever (Veras? 2/$8M?) and I think I just spent $24M a year.

      1. I think I was too low on my bullpen pitcher cost seeing some of these deals being thrown around but back up OF might cost less (predicting contract amounts is not really my thing). Bottom line is that I think they could easily spend the entire $26M on a starting pitcher, a reliever and a back up OF. They could then trade JMJ for a minor leaguer. Next week could be a big week for signings.

    2. My problem is add garza, and we still have a bad offense, unless, howard, and rollins produce, and a big question mark at third, a outfield without big power, and that isnt going to get fixed, imo with the years and money ruben has us locked into. with players on the down side,.

      1. The team’s offense is done outside of possibly upgrading Mayberry with a better bench OF. There are no more moves coming. I’m not saying its good enough, just that the reality is that this is it. The only moves left to make are with the staff.

    1. The additional context, stolen from mlbtraderumors, is as follows

      It appears the Cubs will cede their top pick in the upcoming Rule 5 Draft to resolve a dispute involving former Rule 5 pick Lendy Castillo, Carrie Muskat of reports. The Cubs picked Castillo from the Phillies in 2011, and Castillo missed 91 days of the following season due to injury, then spent the entire 2013 season in the minors. In case of injury, players selected in the Rule 5 Draft must stick on their new teams’ active rosters for at least 90 days. The Phillies will receive the Cubs’ pick after they filed a grievance regarding Castillo. The Cubs don’t plan to select a player this year anyway. The Rule 5 Draft will be held next Thursday.

        1. The order is based on how poorly you did last year – from worst to best. So, the Cubs tied for the 4th/5th worst record, so assuming the above is true, we would inherit their pick. The reality is that many team just pass on a pick. Last year, it looks like 16 players were selected, including the Phillies selection of Ender Inciarte, who was later returned.

          If my count is right, the Phillies have 39 on the active roster now, so in theory could pick someone up. However, one has to assume that the Phillies will sign at least one FA pitcher, which would take that last slot (minus taking someone else off the 40 man).

          Fan Graphs put together an article on a few names to watch.

  34. Since Ruben’s been all for reunion’s during his tenure (Jim Thome, Placido Polanco, Marlon Byrd, Chad Durbin, to name a few) I think a worthwhile gamble would be Gavin Floyd on a one year deal.

    1. I think Gavin Floyd would be an ideal back-end of the rotation guy….maybe even for two years if he were willing. Certainly would give the opp to move KK for somethingof value.

      1. I know Floyd is coming off an injury and he’s really interchangeable with KK even if Floyd were healthy. We also have Pettibone, who has more upside than KK. I think I’d take a pass on Floyd and try to sign Garza or another higher upside starter because if this team is going to improve, it HAS to have upgrades in the rotation – otherwise, we’re just floating at .500 or below.

        1. I would sign both, Garza…long-term contract since that is what he will get and Floyd…one/two year. Garza is a mid-rotation guy and Floyd back-end.
          And Pettibone is still there since you really need 6 or maybe even 7 starters anymore due to injuries.
          Then KK becomes a chip

        2. I’d agree with that but I don’t think they have the money to sign a guy like Garza at the moment… or at least aren’t willing to.

        3. As things stand right now, the Phils are nowhere near a .500 club.

          The poor offense remains poor.

          The defense, which was at the bottom of the majors with a DRS of -102, is not much better.

          The rotation even, with Lee and Hamels, is near the bottom. If they add two good starters, the Phils are possibly a .500 club, no better. And by good, I mean a Tanaka and a Garza.

          1. I don’t see how they aren’t a .500 club. They need to add a pitcher and frankly it shouldn’t be hard to upgrade over what Roy Halladay gave us last year. I’m assuming at some point that guy is going to be Bronson Arroyo on a two year deal but who knows? I’ve already stated my personal preference of Gavin Floyd.

            The offense is about the same although I consider Asche/Franco a significant improvement over Michael Young and I’m expecting Cole Hamels to pitch like he did in the second half and Kendrick to have more success as frankly he wasn’t as bad last year as his numbers would indicate. If you watch his games he gave up a ton of rollers through the infield that led to rallies.

  35. A healthy Floyd is significantly better than Kendrick.On another note, around the league are questions about how Washington stole Fister. He is a legit #3, and I can’t believe Phils could not have put together a better offer without touching our top prospects.

    1. That was true a few years ago, but Floyd is getting older now. I suspect, at this point, if Floyd is healthy, he and KK are roughly interchangeable.

  36. Some of the contracts being signed are insane. Scott Feldman just got three years and $ 30 million from the Astros!!!! Brian Wilson of all people just signed a two year $19 million deal. If you don’t think KK has value during his last arbitration year, you’re just wrong. Garza is going to get at least $15-17 mm per year over at least 4 years. Jimenez may get similar money.

    1. Count me as one who actually likes the Feldman deal. I think he would be a decent #3/4 on many teams. $30MM would have been a million or 2 above what I would have wanted to pay, but I would have been mildly happy to have him.

      This may be step 1 in the Astros trying to build a decent foundation for when the young players that they have been stockpiling get ready for the Show.

      1. Sorry, but Feldman sucks. His aggregate career WAR is 5.2 and 3.8 of that came in 2009. He often has an ERA over 5 and he’s not getting any younger. The odds are that this is going to be a terrible contract. Most years, he barely pitches as a 5.

    2. Garza will get 5 years at his age, 5/$85M Teams will pay the extra year to save the draft pick. I’m hoping its us. Feldman is not a $30M pitcher but these deals do make KK look good. They also mean he won’t be traded.

    3. I think he’s going to have a solid bounce back campaign.

      I urge people to go back and watch his games and see how many infield rollers, infield hits, bloop singles, etc he gave up in that second half. I think he’s going to put up a solid 200 inning maybe 12-14 win season (not that they really matter obviously) with an ERA somewhere between 3.5-4.00 which is more than valuable at $7.5-9 million or whatever he’s set to earn.

      He’s not the pitcher he was in the first half of the season but he’s certainly not as bad the stats he posted in the second half.

  37. I don’t think Mujica got outlandish money from Boston; another supposed early Phils target. Sad when we are hoping for a Rule 5 pick to dream on. The past 2 poor off seasons have led to poor in seasons, and this looks like another

    1. We get the 5th pick in the Rule 5 next week….maybe that Cuban pitcher that the Yankees did not protect would be a worthwhile choice. He is a lefty and he and M.A. Gonzalez are probably BFFs.

  38. The contract to cano is crazy,pays him until 41 years old. I heard that he doesnt like to run out groundballs, amazing what kind of money is out there, garza might just get a 4 year deal in that range. There has to come a point when the owners stop giving out these crazy 10 year deal. i would have given him a 5 year deal. at more money per, and a option for another year, the most.

    1. Actually, the bad deals are good for the market in the long run. When teams sign those big mistake deals it often has the effect of taming the market, just as A-Rod’s two deals have done. But in the long run, these huge deals will continue for the most basic reason – there is much more TV money around and when owners have this money, they will necessarily spend it. I wonder if, at some point, in addition to the luxury tax threshold, there will also be a very high hard cap (this year, for example, the luxury tax is $189, I could see a hard cap at around $230 or so) – it would have to be high enough that the union wouldn’t go on strike over it.

      1. If all thirty teams were in the same size market I can see the luxtax go to that height. But the small market teams will try to get it keep it relatively low so as not to let the Yankees, Rangers, Dodgers et al run amok, even with the high revenues expected with the TV deals.

      2. When has any of the deals tamed the marker? Hasn’t tamed anything yet. You would think that owners would NEVER give out a deal for as long as Cano got, I mean just look at all the deals that were over 8yrs (hell over 7yrs) that didn’t turn out to be horrible. The money is getting to be a joke too. 200m plus? Come on now, NO ONE is worth that kinda money and to think he started by asking for 300m With the way owners are giving out contracts, If I was Mike Trouts agent I would go to the Angels FO and ask for a 15yr deal for 300m. I would argue that with the way contracts are going up, a 15 yr deal at 300m would actually be a discount (20m/yr). There would def be a GM who, if they had Trout would sign this deal in a second.

        Baseball needs to go to a Min/Max base salary system with incentives. The teams and MLBPA would have to negotiate numbers but lets say a 500k Min and 10m Max, They would also have to have agree on figures for various stat incentives (Ex.10K/HR or 50K for an ERA under 4.00, these are just example bs numbers) So Cano would be a player who gets a max base. He’s guaranteed 10m a year then based on his performance his salary would go up. This would take care of a few things: 1. Smaller market teams would be on the same playing field as big market teams. 2. Players have to earn their money. 3. Owners won’t get screwed by players who get hurt or just don’t perform. 4. Kinda goes with number 2 but seasons like Trout put up will get rewarded.
        I realize this would be a tough sell with the players but something needs to be done with the way money is being given out.

        1. The owners would never go for this because it lacks cost certainty. This would be especially bad for small market teams. The good news is that your team had a breakout year. The bad news is that you lost a ton of money because of performance bonuses.

          1. When you sign a player you have a pretty good idea of the production that he is going to give you. I’d say that it’s more common for a player failing to meet expectations then going way above and beyond expectations. So a team would pretty much have a decent idea of what a player is going to cost. Also the “breakout player” that you speak of is prob making a good amount under the 10m max salary so his breakout year wouldn’t be as wallet killing as you may think. Id also say that an owner would be more then happy to pay a player for preforming on the field helping the team win. The better the on field product is the more money that the owner/franchise is making.

            2 players come to mind when I think of this. For all the money that was put into Josh Hamilton and BJ Upton this past year was insane, sure their past warrants it (upton maybe not as much) but what they did this year sure doesn’t. You can say “well it’s the teams who wanted to give them the contracts”, which is true but they aren’t getting a fair return in their investment. I know that this is how things work but I just feel like you would see more teams being competitive and there would be a good chance that you see players perform better on the field. Essentially every year is a contract year and we all know that players seem to preform well in their contract year. Just imagine not having to pay Howard 20m this past year. His contract pisses everyone off because he isn’t preforming the way a player who is making 20m-25m should and with this he’d get paid for his actual performance. Players still get paid up to 10m for their past. I dunno, I know it would never fly but I just think it would be a good idea in baseball. I know Mike Hampton would be against this haha

        2. Both A-Rod deals tamed the market. Zito deal tamed the market. Mike Hampton deal tamed the market. Soriano deal tamed the market. It happens all the time.

          1. where’s the proof of this? There have been AT LEAST 6 deals of 7 years or more since then. That might sound like a small number but not many ppl are worth deals of 5 years let alone 7,8, 9 and 10.

    2. roccom…I was wrong on the Mariners and Cano….thought all along the Cano camp (ROC Nation-JayZ) were using the Mariners to get the Yankees to up the ante.

      1. I think the Yankees signing Elsbury ended their pursuit of Cano (at least at those numbers). They’re looking to spend big on a SP and I’m not sure they could afford all three and still be under the luxary tax threshold which I believe they are trying to do.

        1. The Yankees outfield right now boggles my mind. Ichiro age 40 due $6.5 million, Vernon Wells age 35 due $21 million ($18M from LA), Alfonso Soriano age 38 due $18 million ($13M from Chi), Brett Gardner age 30 likely to get $4 million in arbitration, Jacoby Ellsbury age 30 due $153 million through his age 36 season, Carlos Beltran age 37 due $45 million through his age 40 season.The whole roster is littered with overpriced aging veterans and someone on here was praising Brian Cashman.

            1. I’m not too worried about that. They have six outfielders, no infielders and are in desperate need of a front end starter and probably want a better option as a closer. Right now they are not a playoff team. If they sign Tanaka they are a fringe playoff team. Unless all of Ellsbury’s and McCain’s money is backloaded after ARoid and Texiera come off the books and MLB gives them salary relief by suspending ARoid for the whole year I don’t see how they meet their goal of getting under the Luxury Tax which means something like a 52 cents on every dollar over the threshold.

              Sorry, no Cashman doesn’t get high marks just for having the resources to continue to throw money at the problem. Especially when its more bad money than good.

          1. Cashman has always been overrated. His greatest achievement has been putting up with George Steinbrenner all those years.

            1. Whether or not you believe he is overated or not…he does have 4 WS rings in his 15 years as GM of the Yankees ’98, ’99. 2000 and 2009….no other GM can claim that many rings in the last few decades.

      2. Always a bad sign on a signing when the humongous-revenue team that the guy has played for his entire career decides that the guy isn’t worth as much as you are willing to pay him. That former team knows a lot more about his personality, work ethic, and health than you can ever hope to know. As a fan favorite, he is also worth more to the prior team in intangibles than he will ever be worth to you. He likely was also willing to take at least a tad less money from his current team to remain in a situation where he knows he can be comfortable. In other words, you’ve just signed a really bad deal and you’re going to lose a draft pick for the privilege of over-paying the guy. This is the super dumb award of the year thus far, although a bit of the same criticism could be given the Phillies for paying more for Young than the Rangers are willing to pay to keep him. At least we didn’t lose a draft pick. I’d sure like to have Bonilla though.

        1. Same thing happened with Pujols a few years ago.
          Cano and Pujols are and were, respectively, two of the best players in the game.

          1. Yes, Pujols is an object lesson. His OPS dropped about 100 points his last season in StL — still good but cause for concern or a chance to buy ‘cheap’ based on your perspective. First year in Anaheim, his OPS falls close to another 50 points. Last year, close to another 90 points. He has now fallen from 1.101 to 1.01 to .907 in St. L. In Anaheim it was a first year OPS of .859 followed by .767 and he’s only 33 with more contract years to go. Anyone doubt that StL was onto something about him? Cano hasn’t fallen off yet, but he’s only 30 and Seattle owes for 10 more years. Pujols had peaked at 23-26, early for a power hitter, but then he roared through the minors in a year after being drafted out of Community College. One wonders if the Cardinals didn’t know that he was significantly older than his supposed 19 when he was drafted — American HS, but born in DR at a time when ages were routinely fudged by multiple years. Howard gave warning of problems before his big contract. He peaked at age 26 and dropped 200 OPS points in 2008. He recovered a quarter of that decline in 2009 and it has been pretty much straight line downhill since then.

            1. It actually reminds me more of ARoid’s deal with Texas. I think Cano is going to perform better for Seattle than Pujois has for LA but Seattle is still going to be hamstrung financially like Texas was.

        2. I jumped right to this comment and assumed you were talking about Ellsbury. You could really say the same thing about his deal although its obviously shorter and for less money.

          While I don’t really disagree with your analysis, I don’t think there’s really any reason to question Cano’s personality, work ethic or health. He’s been about as rock solid as it gets over the last 4-5 years.

  39. One year ago today – time flies when you are having fun.

    December 6, 2012: The Philadelphia Phillies traded Trevor May (minors) and Vance Worley to the Minnesota Twins for Ben Revere.

    Worley seems lost, and the jury still seems out on May. I guess advantage Phillies, but not enough to move the needle.

  40. Okay mlb says phillies shopping pap, how much do they have to eat to move him, he is owed about 36 million with his option, if my math is right, who the hell would pay him that much> i think they have to eat at least half or more. and still dont know if they can move him. loving his fastball like we saw last year.

    1. Yeah its coming form Rosenthal. would be 2 years at $26M with a $13M vesting option (vests with 55 games finished in 2015 or 100 in 2014-15). He also has a limited no-trade clause that allows him to stipulate 12 teams to which he will approve a trade

      1. If the Yankees go after Paps…..having ARod, Papelbon and McCann in the same clubhouse would be worth the price of admission

    2. Do we take this to mean that Papelbon was one (perhaps the one) of the finger-pointers and disruptions that Cole Hamels was talking about?

    1. Next closest thing though: Jack Z.

      I’m sure Cashman’s going to have some degree of interest as well. Maybe if they eat enough money Cleveland would have some interest as well.

      1. He can be traded – Issues will be amount of money Phillies will eat. It’s going to take about $5 million per contract year. Phillies would get a mediocre prospect in return – think Kelly Dugan or Gabriel Lino. I’m all for dumping Papelbon – they don’t need him and he’s in the process of falling off the cliff.

        1. Agree he can be traded but I don’t see a deal that makes sense for the Phillies. If they eat $5mil per year to move him, then who closes? There are no internal options so we would need to sign someone to close for us. If we sign someone in the $5-6mil range then we’re saving very little after eating $5mil of Papelbon’s salary. And we certainly aren’t getting a decent prospect in return even after eating a portion of his salary. I’d love to see Papelbon shipped out of town but I don’t see any reasonable deal for the Phillies. Perhaps he regains a tick or two on his fastball, has an All-Star caliber 1st half, and we then move him ahead of July’s deadline for a better return.

          1. You really don’t need a closer. You need a stable of good relievers. A closer is just a myth invented by agents to jack up the price for one guy per bullpen. It also just reduces the manager’s flexibility in using his relievers. Despite the myth, there is nothing magical about pitching the 9th inning. It’s exactly the same as what you do to pitch any other inning. Most of a closer’s appearances, he doesn’t even come in with men on base. The hardest job for a reliever is keeping inherited runners from scoring.

            1. You need relievers with ‘closer’ stuff however you choose to use them. So to my point, if you trade Papelbon, then who pitches the ninth? Who pitches the 8th? He still needs to be replaced with a quality arm.

            2. ‘Who pitches the 8th…who pitches the ninth?’
              Perhaps it is time to empower the youngins’.
              Perhaps it is time to put more faith and trust in a DeFratus, Diekman, Bastardo, Stutes et al, or even, though I dare say, an Aumont as mentioned above.
              Perhaps it is time to take a risk.

            3. EXACTLY!!!! If they can save $ 8 million on Paps this year, next year and the year after, that’s $ 24 million that could go to a player they might need a lot more, like a top notch starter.

            4. I just sent my money in for tix for next season.
              Ruben says fans and people do not want to ‘restart’, or whatever he said.
              He may be reading the fans wrong or maybe he is concerned about losing his job next year if they bottom out.
              But I want to see some excitement and a little something new.

            5. I can’t believe otherwise intelligent posters are contending that our bullpen is not a weakness and would not be further weakened by the loss of Papelbon without a greater or equal replacement. RAJ is using witchery and this point, even diluting Phans. And I’m being facetious here, not condescending. Everyone who posted in response above knows damn well that the Phils are worse off without Papelbon than they are with him, at least as far as 2014 is concerned.

              And I’m not a Papelbon fan by any means. Never liked the signing from the start

            6. We have a hugely expensive pen for a team going nowhere in 2014. Actually, we have a hugely expensive pen for a WS team. Papelbon adds something with his arm, subtracts something with the turmoil he causes in the clubhouse, isn’t really the guy I want around all of our young relievers. Trading him, and I’m neglecting the positive effect of what we’d get in return, likely costs us a couple games if we replace him with a kid/AAAA vet. Then again, he’s a likely candidate to come down with an arm injury. The loss of FB velocity is a big red flag. He’s not clearly a plus closer at this point.

            7. You do not know for a fact if the bullpen will be weaker without Papelbon. You are betting that on the fact from his career standing.
              His aging curve suggests otherwise.
              His velo tailed off and right now,
              IMO, he is a question mark.
              A closer/reliever who may be on the 2011 Lidge ledge.

            8. As far as stuff goes, they have 5 guys in their pen who has better stuff then what Papelbon has right now. Those 5 guys would be Bastardo, Diekman, Martin, Rosenberg and De Fratus, all of those guys have better stuff then Papelbon. The question would be can they harness their stuff in the 9th inning. IMO Diekman would be the best option out of the bunch but why not try a closer by committee? The closer non sense is exactly like someone said, its a myth . . . however it takes someone who is strong mentally to pitch the final inning of a game when close (and not for nothing 3 run lead shouldn’t constitute a save, 2 runs would be more like it), it’s def a mental thing to finish a game.

            9. I just don’t believe this. I think it takes less ability and steady nerves to come in at the start of the ninth inning with a one or two run lead and close out the game, than it does to relieve the starter who was pulled from the game with nobody out and two runners on base. The closer really has a simple job as relief jobs go. It is very predictable when he will be called upon to pitch, he seldom comes in with runners on base and he is seldom called upon to pitch more than an inning. He’s almost never called upon to pitch in the dispiriting garbage time situations. I am continually amazed that on a site like this which emphasizes modern stats for evaluating hitters and eschews the old crap of valuing hitters based on RBIs and some perceived anecdotal views of clutchness, that there is such credence given to the myth of the closer. While losses in the ninth inning are more heart-breaking because of the sense that defeat has been snatched from the jaws of victory, games are won and lost in all nine innings, and runs count the same, whatever inning they are scored in. The pseudo-stat of ‘leverage’ for relief pitchers is bunkum, as far as it relates to extra credit for later innings. Yes, there can be extra credit for relieving in any close time, as garbage time is garbage time, and yes, there is extra leverage involved in being brought into the game with the bases loaded, but pitching with a one run lead in the 7th, 8th, or 9th innings should count the same. Any of those relievers can cost the team the win.

            10. Forget about mental state; you need strikeout pitchers in your pen, the types of guys that could come in and get an out with runners on 2nd and 3rd and 1 out without allowing a run, you need guys pitching in the ninth who can limit base-runners. These type of pitchers cost money on the open market and we have no better prospects for the pen than we did two years ago when 3 of them were ranked in our top 10. Setting up a roster with Hamels and Lee protected by an unproven pen is about as stupid as RAJ’s alignment of players with poor fielding skills behind a team built around pitching. You trade Papelbon and don’t bring in any talent to replace him and you’re looking at a last place team in the division. The ‘go with what we got’ argument is ridiculous even if I have to stand on my own in protest

        2. I’d be fine with that. I think they just need to get him out of the clubhouse he clearly doesn’t want to be here.

          Whether it’s now or at the deadline I don’t think a lot of guys are going to be here in 2015.

  41. I wouldnt care what we got back, at 5 per thats 15 million with option, leaves 8 million per year, do you think anyone would take him at that price?? i really dont know, The one thing is we all are counting the option but if he doesnt get the innings in, then the contract would be 26 over two, more reasonable if we kick in money, its that third year that I Think hurts,

  42. The time to move him was the last trade deadline. He brings back nothing of value, and Phils will have to eat much more than $5 Million a year. Then pay $8-10 Million for a replacement closer. I hope that was a joke about Aumont.

  43. If the difference between what the Phillies would pay and his contract would be enough to get a closer in FA, then why wouldn’t the Yankees just do that??? This trade doesn’t make sense for the Yankees unless we kick a ton of money, and this trade doesn’t make sense for the Phillies unless we are saving a lot of money

    Overall, I think he will remain a Phillie, weather it is between him not waiving his no-trade to the Yankees, both sides not financially coming to an agreement, or the Yankees simply signing a closer in FA or signing too many other positions to the point where they don’t want to go any more over the luxury tax

    1. I think Cole Hamels’ remark to that magazine article has painter RAJ into a corner with Papelbon.
      It was pretty obvious the ‘disruptive; force in the clubhouse he alluded to was Papelbon.
      Cole also talked about the future with younger players.
      Ruben denies or is ‘unaware of’ any clubhouse disharmony occuring.
      Implying, it is the normal thing that happens in a clubhouse when a team doesn’t meet expectations and players get frustrated due to that.

      1. I am a man of few words, so used ‘disruptive’ versus the entire qoute: Actual qoute reads:
        ‘The hitting sucked’……. Cole was also blunt about how the team was just as ugly internally as it looked from the stands. “The energy in the clubhouse changed,” he said. “It used to be all high fives. This season, there weren’t as many high fives. There was a lot of bitterness, pointing fingers — ‘You haven’t played well in a week, why weren’t you in here early?’”

      2. I think it is pretty normal when a team with (unreasonably) high expectations completely disappointed that there’s going to be issues in the clubhouse.

        I truly believe the disruptive force was Jimmy Rollins. Ruben and Ryne basically came out and said he mailed it in last year which probably rubbed a few guys the wrong way.

        Cliff Lee, Jonathan Papelbon, Jimmy Rollins, etc were all called out at some point by Ryne Sandberg the minute he took over.

  44. Ruben has the fan base all wrong. We want either an all out effort to win, or a young exciting base with hope for the future. He has done neither. Letting Rollins walk, playing Galvis at SS, and getting a productive OF would have been the smart play.

    1. I really don’t believe this fanbase would accept trading away Cliff Lee, Chase Utley, Cole Hamels, etc. The uproar when those moves were floated around the last two years was pretty high.

      The intelligent fan realizes that would be the best course of action but frankly they’re few and far between.

      1. Agree somewhat…Hamels and Utley are keepers. However, Lee and Rollins (if he approves) by July 2014 could be dealt if they are out of it again resting nicely in fourth place. Howard is here to stay due to the contract
        And currently, why not try to create a market for Papelbon.
        And finally, not that I favor this, but Dom Brown has the largest chip value right now on this team…controlled contract wise and salary wise along with youth going for him.
        But letting him go creates a pretty substantial hole in the OF.

        1. I was thinking same thing, lee and rollins go if team is in toilet at trade deadline. lee has to bring us two good prospects, at least, like to get a young right hand outfielder if possible, and a good shortstop prospects or third basemen, get younger, and picking so high in draft if they dont blow it, could get a nice replacement for lee, in the draft,

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