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.
Last week the Phils’ picked up, via waivers, infielder Carlos Rivero from the Cleveland Indians.
The team is still looking for low price free agents for their bullpen, while pondering whether to give new contracts to either Chad Durbin or Jose Contreras, or to both pitchers. In the meantime, they are in the hunt to resign Jayson Werth, but since his agent Scott Boras is asking for money in the Matt Holliday/Jason Bay range, it is more than likely that he won’t be back in red pinstripes.
It has been announced on Monday that ex-Phil Jamie Moyer has re-injured his left elbow while pitching winter ball in the Dominican Republic, while trying to prove that he can still pitch. Ouch. Talk about a setback. Hope it wasn’t too bad an injury, Jamie.
It was also announced yesterday that former Phil GM Pat Gillick is on the Hall of Fame ballot that is being sent to the committee to elect those managers, executives and retired players who were not elected originally, who come from Baseball’s Expansion-era (post-1960). Congrats on getting on the Ballot, Pat, and wish you luck getting into the Hall. You deserve it.
Lastly, today, there is speculation that former Phil, ex-Orioles manager and fan favorite, Juan Samuel, is thinking of taking over Davey Lopes’ position as the team’s first base coach. If he does, that should be good news for the team, since he was a very successful base stealer during his days as a ballplayer. Is has also been announced that they are looking at Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg as the new manager for their Triple-A Lehigh Valley ballclub, as he is leaving the Cubs Triple-A club after being pass over as the main club’s new manager. He might be another popular move, if the Phils do go after him. Whether the pair will actually get either post is another question.
Last Friday, the Phils announced that the operation on Placido Polanco’s left elbow, to remove bone spurs and to repair the lateral extensor tendon, was a success and that they expect him to recover in six to eight weeks, in time for him to prepare for spring training.
The Phils are still waiting to hear back from Jayson Werth and his agent, Scott Boras, on what Werth is looking for, contract wise.
Speaking of contracts, the Phils announced on Tuesday that first base coach Davey Lopes is leaving. Lopes says that he’s leaving because the team isn’t offering him what he thinks he is worth, based on what he does for the ballclub, besides his first base duties, as he is the main reason that the team have had a highly successful stolen base percentage. In fact, they have lead the league during the four years that he was with the team. His input will be missed. Good luck wherever you land, Davy.
The Phils, this off-season, will be looking to add some new blood to the bullpen, as well as looking for a strong right handed bat to replace Werth, if they are unable to resign him. They will also be, according to Ruben Amaro, Jr., be looking to improve the way the offense operates. (I hope they do, as that was a major handicap this past season.)
Although the Phils have been knocked out of the playoffs last Saturday, things have been busy during the last week or so since the 2010 National League Champions San Francisco Giants celebrated their victory at Citizens Bank Park. Saturday night, Sunday and Monday the Phils cleared out their lockers before heading off to their respective homes.
On Monday, General Manager Reuben Amaro, Jr. held a press conference announcing that while he was happy that 2010 was a successful year, the fact that they had failed to get into the World Series, as everyone was expecting, have left a bitter taste in his mouth, and he was planning to make some changes as far as the offense was concerned.
During the week, the Phils bought out J.C. Romero’s contract, paying him $2500,000 for the last year of his contract, while letting go both Greg Dobbs and Jamie Moyer, allowing the three to become free agents, although willing to take Romero back if nobody else comes knocking at his doorstep, with a minor league contract. (Sorry to see you go, guys. Wish you luck.) Paul Hoover have also opted for free agency after being assigned to Lehigh Valley.
The Phils have finally contacted Jayson Werth, via his agent Scott Boras, to see if there was any way that they can keep him here. (I’m not holding my breath. Boras equals large amount of money, and I do not think that the Phils are in that particular neighborhood.)
Placido Polanco will be having surgery to fix up his left elbow at some point today, and should be ready for spring training next year.
Roy Halladay, who plans to give his hurt groin a rest, for now, have been named the National League Clutch Performer of the Year and the Players Choice for NL Outstanding Pitcher.
According to Phillies.com, Ryan Madson and the Phillies have come to an agreement, in which Madson now accepts the Phils’ earlier offer of a three-year, $12 million contract, thus avoiding arbitration. Either Madson has just realized that the Phillies’ deal was the best that he was going to get for a while, or he has just told his agent Scott Boras to go stuff it and accept the deal. Either way, it’s good news for the Phils as they now have their ‘Bridge to Lidge’ around in their bullpen for another three years. I am so happy.
Oh, and Scott Boras, I hope Madson did tell you to stuff it, you bad for baseball agent.
Now I do the happy dance. Three down, five to sign.
The Phillies and their favorite pinch hitter, Greg Dobbs, have just avoided arbitration, as Dobbs signs a two-year, $2.5 Million dollar contract. Meanwhile, reliever Ryan Madson has at the same time just rejected a three-year, $12 Million dollar contract.
Congrats on getting Dobbs to sign on the dotted line, guys. One down, seven to go. As for Madson, I knew that he would be a bit harder to sign, as his agent is Scott Boras. Hey, Madson, think what is best for you and the team, and not what’s best for that jerk, Boras.
Phillies make play for veteran Lowe
With Moyer talks hitting snag, club reportedly makes offer to righty
By Ken Mandel / MLB.com
Oh, sure they have. I’ll believe it when I see it guys. Preferably in a local paper.
PHILADELPHIA — With negotiations dragging with veteran lefty Jamie Moyer, the Phillies have turned their attention to other possibilities, including some of the bigger free-agent fish.
Derek Lowe’s name surfaced in a Boston Globe report, which indicated the Phillies have made an offer to the right-hander, who is represented by Scott Boras. Citing a source familiar with the club’s intentions, the report said that the Phillies have discussed the matter “pretty extensively.”
The newspaper reported another unidentified team — not the Yankees or the Red Sox, though both teams are expected to meet with Boras this week — has also submitted an offer.
Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. wouldn’t confirm or deny that an offer had been made, but said, “I will tell you that I’ve talked to Derek Lowe’s representatives. He’s not the only free agent that we’ve had discussions with. There have been plenty of them.”
The Phillies have also spoken with Darek Braunecker, the agent for A.J. Burnett, though it seems unlikely they’ll meet Burnett’s request for a five-year deal, though Amaro didn’t rule that out.
Philadelphia’s interest in broadening its horizons beyond Moyer has been spurred by a snag in talks with the 46-year-old, who earned $8.5 million in 2008 — $5.5 million in base salary and another $3 million in incentives. The lefty went 16-7 with a 3.71 ERA in 196 1/3 innings in the regular season, and he won Game 3 of the World Series.
Despite his age, Moyer is an attractive middle-of-the-rotation name in a market that includes fellow southpaws Oliver Perez, Andy Pettitte, Randy Wolf and Randy Johnson.
Lowe, 35, would command more dollars than Moyer, prompting some creative contract structuring — and may shift the focus toward a more fiscally responsible replacement for free-agent left fielder Pat Burrell.
The Phillies also must prepare for 10 potential arbitration cases, all of which will result in salary increases, and that could limit the team’s spending. Philadelphia didn’t offer salary arbitration to Moyer, preferring to remaining flexible in its offseason spending, so the club will not receive two Draft picks should Moyer land elsewhere as a free agent.
The Phillies would lose one if they signed Lowe or Burnett. Moyer remains the priority.
“We haven’t put any deadlines on [Moyer making a decision],” Amaro said. “He clearly wants to pitch beyond . The challenge is to try and to add pitching. With or without Jamie, we’ll try to do it.”
As for Burrell, Amaro declined to say that his time in Philadelphia has ended, despite the belief that the team has little interest in bringing him back.
“I couldn’t really put a percentage on it,” Amaro said. “We haven’t had a whole lot of substantive discussions, but that doesn’t preclude us from bringing him back. This is a slow-moving process.” (H/T Phillies.com)
My take, I think this is all just a ploy on the Phillies part to get Moyer back to the negotiating table. I mean, remember who’s Lowe’s agent is, Scott Boras. I do not trust that guy, and not just because of the J.D. Drew fiasco. This guy just yells slime to me. If the Phillies have made an offer to Lowe, I’m sure Boras is going to have him asking the Phils for a lot more than they can afford to give out. Hey, Junior, get off your lazy butt, talk with Moyer, quit being cheap and seal the blasted deal already. Sheesh!!! Oh, and if you are going for Lowe, Junior, you better freaking deliver, dude!!!