The Phils have just announced today that they have signed Jimmy Rollins to a new three-year contract, with a vesting option for a possible fourth year.
Rollins, who earlier in the post-season had announced that he was looking for a five-year deal, finally decided to take a deal with fewer years, after the Cardinals and the Brewers had last weekend signed multi-year deals with their own shortstops Rafael Furcal and Alex Gonzalez, respectively. Rollins, a former MVP (2007), and a member of the franchise since be drafted in 1996, and joining the main squad back in 2000, had, despite injuries during the last three seasons, appeared in a total of 1636 games, with a career batting average of .272 (1866 hits in 6858 at-bats) with 388 doubles, 100 triples and 170 home runs, as well as 373 stolen bases and 568 walks, scored 1080 runs while knocking in 725. During his MVP season, as he help lead the Phils to their first playoff appearance since 1993, he had a .296 batting average (212 for 716) as he appeared in all 162 regular season games, compiling 38 doubles, 20 triples and 30 home runs, as well as stealing 41 bases, as he scored 139 runs, while knocking in 94.
With the signing of Rollins, the Phils are likely done with any major moves, other than what to do with their four arbitration eliable players, especially Cole Hamels and Hunter Pence, until spring training 2012.
About time they’d locked Jimmy down. Guess his agent finally realized that J-Roll had nowhere else to go.
Let’s go Phils!!!
Earlier today, the Phils have traded outfielder Ben Francisco to the Toronto Blue Jays for minor league reliever Frank Gailey.
Francisco, who was part of the deal with the Indians that originally brought Cliff Lee to the Phils in late July 2009, appeared in 225 games for the Phils from 2009-2011, mainly as their fourth outfielder, although for the first couple of months of 2011 he was the team’s starting right fielder, until he was put back on the bench before the Phils eventually traded with the Astros for Hunter Pence. In those games, he batted .259, having 136 hits including 32 doubles,1 triple and 17 home runs, while knocking in 75 RBIs. He also appeared in 17 post-season games, including the 2009 World Series, where he had an overall batting average of .105, with 2 hits in 19 at-bats, which includes his dramatic three-run home run in the third game of the 2011 National League Divisional Series against the St. Louis Cardinals, which gave the Phils a temporary 2-1 series lead, before finally falling to the eventual World Series champs in five games.
Gailey, a native Philadelphian, had pitched a combine 5-6 with a 3.41 ERA in 45 appearances for Class-A Dunedin and Double-A New Hampshire in the Blue Jays’ farm system. In his minor league career, overall, Gailey is 23-15 with a 2.45 ERA in 175 appearances.
Wish you luck with the Blue Jays, Ben, and thanks for what you did while you was here. Welcome to the organization, Frank. Hope you’ll be able to work your way to the main club.
As the Phils continue trying to resign Jimmy Rollins to a new contract, although presently disrupted by the Angels’ signing of Albert Pujols to a ten-year deal, the Phils announced their signing of Laynce Nix to a two-year deal.
Nix, formerly of the Nationals, a nine-year vet, is a corner outfielder who, last season, batted .250, while hitting 16 home runs and knocking in 44 RBIs in 324 at-bats in 124 games. Also a former Ranger, Brewer and Red, Nix has a .244 lifetime average, with 409 hits in 1673 at-bats, hitting 96 doubles, 11 triples and 64 home runs, as he knocked in 226 RBIs.
With this move, the Phils seems to have finished fixing up their bench, especially with them not going the Rule 5 route, while they still need a regular shortstop (which will hopefully be a resigned Jimmy Rollins) and shoring up their bullpen, which will likely come from within their farm system.
Anyway, welcome to the Phils, Laynce. I hope you and the others will soon be helping the Phils off of the bench during the upcoming season.
Earlier today the Phils had announced that they have invited eight players in their minor league system to try out with the main team during spring training, 2012. Four of the eight players are pitchers, two are infielders, one is an outfielder and one is a catcher.
Among the four pitchers, two are lefties and two are righties. The four are: left-handers Pat Misch and Raul Valdes and right-handers Scott Elarton and Brian Sanches. Misch made six relief appearances for the Mets in 2011, but spent most of the season at Triple-A Buffalo, making 22 starts. In 2011, Valdes went 0-1 with a 3.00 ERA in 13 appearances for both the Cardinals and the Yankees. Sanches, pitching for the Marlins, went 4-1 with a 3.94 ERA in 39 games. Elarton, because of injuries, last pitched professionally in 2010, and last pitched in the majors in 2008.
The two infielders are Pete Orr, who appeared in 49 games for the Phils in 2011, batting .219, and Kevin Frandsen, who played the entire year at Lehigh Valley, batting .309, with 5 home runs and 43 RBIs. The final two invitees are outfielder Scott Podsednik, who played in just 34 games, because of injuries, for the Triple-A teams of the Blue Jays and the Phils, batting .245, with six doubles and a triple for the Iron Pigs, and catcher Tuffy Gosewisch, who, at Double-A Reading, played in 109 games, batting .247, with 13 homers and 66 RBIs. For Gosewisch, this will be his fourth invitation to spring training.
I wish the eight the best of luck.
The Phils have announced that they had just concluded a trade with the Colorado Rockies, getting Ty Wigginton for either a player to be named later or cash. Wigginton, who has played first base, third base, left and right field in his career, will most likely be the team’s main right-handed bat off of the bench, to compliment Jim Thome, whom the Phils had recently resigned.
Wigginton, who played for the Rockies in 2011, had also played for the Mets, the Pirates, the Rays, the Astros and the Orioles since 2002, appeared in 130 games, batting .242 in 401 at-bats, getting 97 hits, including 21 doubles, 2 triples and 15 home runs. He had also knocked in 47 runs while scoring 52.
It is more than likely that during Ryan Howard’s absense, as he recovers from his injuries, that Wigginton might be sharing first base duties with John Mayberry, Jr. and Jim Thome, and might also play a bit of third base to give Placido Polanco some useful time off both before and after Howard’s return to the line-up.
This might be a good move for the Phils over-all, since Wigginton can cover several bases during the upcoming season.
The Phils have just announced that they have resigned catcher Brian Schneider to a one-year deal.
Schneider, who had appeared in 41 games in 2011, batted a low .176 batting average, with 4 doubles, 2 home runs and 9 RBIs.
With that out of the way, the Phils now have to see if they can resign Jimmy Rollins to a multi-year deal, and sign up free agent Michael Cuddyer to the bench, as well as decide whether to sign Cole Hamels to a multi-year deal, or continue with arbitration for another year. (I prefer they tie Hamels up, but that’s just me).
According to reports yesterday, the Phils have signed former Red Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon to a four-year contract worth $50 million dollars, with a possible vetting for a fifth season that could lead to a total of $60 million, all pending on him passing a physical. If this is true, it means that the Phils are passing up on Ryan Madson, who, earlier in the week, was going to sign a four-year contract, worth $44 million, with a possible fifth season, before talks stalled. Reports are that the stalling might have been because Madson’s agent Scott Boras started playing games to push up Madson’s price. If that is so, than Madson has only Boras to blame for his being past over by the Phils, and Papelbon have Boras to thank for the deal he has just gotten, as it is obvious that Phils’ GM Ruben Amaro, Jr. refuses to play Boras’ little games.
Papelbon, who became a free agent after the 2011 season, pitched the last seven seasons with the Boston Red Sox, being a member of the 2007 World Series Championship team. During those seven seasons, he had saved 219 games in 248 chances, as he pitched in 396 games, pitching all but three games as a reliever, with a record of 23-19 and an ERA of 2.33. In 429.1 innings pitched, Papelbon struck out 509 batters, while walking just 115. Last season, as a member of the 2011 Red Sox, which had one of the worst collapses in Major League History, missing the playoffs on the last week of the season, he pitched in 63 games, saving 31 games in 34 attempts, having a 4-1 record with a 2.94 ERA, as he pitched 64.1 innings, striking out 87 batters while walking only 10.
Welcome to the Phils, Mr. Papelbon. I hope that you’ll be able to do what everyone is expecting, especially after what had happened in 2011 up in Boston. As for Ryan, sorry to see you go. Thanks for what you did while a member of the Phils, and I hope that you’ll be able to find another team, especially after what have happened this past week.