Threw this together real quick when I realized no one else had posted this weekend.
Hamels is still a Phillie. This is not a bad thing. While it would be nice to pick up some top prospects, the fact he is still a Phillie means other teams are not offering a fair return. This is not Amaro’s fault. It is a case of other GMs trying to make the best deal for their teams. If we can’t get a “sure thing” prospect in return, there’s no sense settling for a couple of lesser than sure things. The worse case scenario (other than an injury) is Hamels helps bridge the years until the next playoff team, much the same as 1972 Steve Carlton held the pitching staff together until 1976. It is not Amaro’s job to provide an ace to a division contender at a bargain price. The price should hurt a little bit. He should hold out for the value he thinks he’s worth or keep him. And we’ll watch teams try to win with Buchholz and Porcello, for example, as their 1-2. Haha.
Papelbon, different story. We really can’t and don’t expect a bonanza in return. If he insists on his option being guaranteed, keep him and start using him in 4, 5, and 6 out save situations (as well as all the other suggestions I’ve seen). We all know he loses effectiveness after 20+ pitches. When his option doesn’t vest, we’re free of him. He’ll only cost $13M that way. He starts to get too expensive if we have to pay a big chunk of this year’s salary AND a big portion of the option year. Gets to a point where he is too expensive to trade. Oh, and it wouldn’t be the first time that an option or bonus was missed because of management. I’m sure there are many examples. One recent bonus avoidance, albeit for a lot less money, was Delmon Young who was released days (19) and plate appearances (9) before $250K in bonuses would have kicked in. Not to mention the weigh ins.
Then there’s Howard. I wonder if Amaro called Dave Dombrowski to offer his condolences after the announced surgery for Victor Martinez. V-mart is a switch hitter, offer Howard AND Ruf?
Pitchers and catchers report to Clearwater on February 18th; first workout on the 19th. If you come to Clearwater, look me up and say hi.