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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

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Welcome to Philadelphia Roy Halladay!

Hit the ATM and buy those Hallady jerseys. Maybe the store will take Lee jerseys as a trade-in. And will somebody please tell Harry Donahue at KYW that his name is not Holliday.

FWIW I say Heyman mention Gose before, in the same context as you JW, but I'm pretty sure he misspelled Gose.

What will Doc's number be? Steve Carlton's 32 is already retired.

Also, I've seen Heyman and some guys at BP mention Brett Wallace might be destined for LF, much like Ryan Braun.

When you look at what TOR wanted for Halladay last July versus what we are paying for him now (including the $6 mil) this looks like a good deal for the Phils (when looked at on its own and not together with the separate Lee deal).

What happened to the 2015 vesting option? I thought there were gonna be 2 vesting options, not 1.

Oh well, I guess 5 years of the best pitcher on earth are enough.

****What will Doc's number be? Steve Carlton's 32 is already retired.****

Maybe he'll reverse it? 23?


Good question. Maybe Carlton will let him use his number? (Not a chance in hell)

On Gose: I remember his name being brought up at one point last summer for the trade...we were speculating on who they were scouting in Lakewood and came up with d'Arnaud, Knapp and Gose as probables. And there was some really weak RUMINT about him as well.

Got ahead of myself. Should probably say: The Phillies and Roy Halladay agreed on a three-year contract extension Tuesday "... that is believed to include at least one vesting option in the neighborhood of $20 million and possibly a second one for 2015."

I wonder how many Halladay jerseys will be purchased in the next 2 weeks?

I know for a fact I'm getting one...I need to replace my Burrell jersey anyway.

So Roy Halladay is likely signed at 5yr/$100mil ... man what an honor to sign a guy to his free agency's worth AND trade away prospects 2-3-4 at the same time.

His number should be 60, as in million.

Bunch of questions to ask.

1) which team got a better haul for lee, the indians for phillies?

Knapp, Marson, Donald (someone else I'm forgetting?)

or

Aumont, Gillies, Ramirez


2) Would you rather have given up the propsects Toronto wanted in July and still have Knapp, Marson, Donald and not have brown/gose.

The more I think about this move, the more angry I become. I still cannot believe we actually lost Drabek and Taylor simply o upgrade from Lee to Halladay. And I'm so sick of the BS about how we couldn't sign Lee. Really? We could have signed him for no more than we're now paying Halladay. I can't remember being this upset about a Phillies decision...Someone talk me down.

It's a lateral move. Nothing more, nothing less.

Wonder if we could have had Lee for the same deal as Halladay (inc. vesting options)- maybe even for a few million less per year - and kept our prospects? Wonder if Ruben deemed Lee not worth $20 mil/yr?

elliot, Cliff Lee wants Sabathia money. Halladay took a discount to come here. No chance the Phils would have resigned Lee. Dont worry everything is gonna be alright.

Once the core breaks apart and guys like Werth leave the roost, players like Halladay and Lee won't want to come here and do things like demand a trade to Philly. There's a lot riding on this year.

$20 million a year is less than CC gets, less than Santana gets, and a couple more than pitchers like Zito and Zambrano get.

Depends on your defintion of a 'few million', but if you make it 3, you're in Peavy/Jason Schmidt territory.

I think Lee, with a Cy Young and the 2009 postseason cachet, is going to get at least as much as Halladay will be getting, probably more. (Unless his 2010 is a total bust. But Seattle is pitcher friendly and they value defense up there).

Lee's agent has said his CC comments were only valid in his negotiations with Cleveland, but of course part of his job is to not scare every team that isn't the Yankees from being interested in his client.

The Phils are never going to sign a 6 or 7 yr deal with a pitcher. Doc's deal is a 3-yr extension of his current contract, making him ours for the next 4 years, with an OPTION for a fifth year @ $20M.

If we don't do this deal, then both Halladay AND Lee would be FAs, and we'd be bidding against the usual suspects. Those teams have shown a willingness to sign FA pitchers to long term deals and we'd likely lose out on both. Can you picture NYY with a rotation of CC, AJ, Doc and Lee? They have the $$$ to do just that.

If we don't have either of them next year, perhaps Drabek would be just as good as Lee or Doc (not a chance), and Taylor?

We now have a top 3 Ace locked up at below market to get us back to the WS. Halladay is a MUCH better pitcher - this is not just a marginal upgrade.

I'd love to get back more for Lee, but we need to restock the minors, especially if a midseason deal presents itself that would help us get back where we belong ( see Lee, Cliff ), while keeping the finances in line. If we keep Lee, we would get draft picks that would likely take 4-5 years to be MLB ready, instead of having prospects that may be 2 years away.

Don’t know if this was already posted, but here’s Joe Posnanski’s take. I can sum it up by saying pitching is expensive and Roy Halladay is a freak.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2009/writers/joe_posnanski/12/15/posnanski.halladay/index.html?eref=sihp

I mentioned this b/4 and I'll say it again. I like the Halliday deal but not the Lee deal. I don't see why RAJ was in such a hurry to pull off the deal with Seattle. I just don't believe the Angels (after losing Lackey to Boston) wouldn't part with more than we got from the M's. Or the Cards, Cubs, or Yankees. Heck we didn't even get one of their top 3 kids.

If Lee was only worth those 3 kids, the Phils should have found a way to keep Lee and get the draft picks for him.

I really enjoyed that parade last year. Lee and Roy would give us the best chance at another one.

There are two things Pat G taught RAJ: (1) focus on players who love to play and play hard; and (2) maintain long-term flexibility.

Doc's contract places much of the risk on him. We get 4 years at $75M, with a 5th year based on health. No agent would agree to that if trying to maximize worth. As a result, Lee would want (as would I in his place) similar/more money and more years. In the end, Doc is an upgrade that provides more long-term flexibility than we would likely get in extending Lee.

The trade of Lee - restocking the minors - is also about long-term flexibility so that we have a couple of arms to develop/trade and then respond to the unkown of 2010, 2011, etc.

Now, I have no idea if we are getting sufficient value back and if this is the best deal for Lee. That said, the deal for Lee needs to be done now. If we only deal for Doc the fan excitement would be ridiculous in looking forward to a rotation of Doc, Lee, and Hamels. Can you image how crushed we would all be if we then traded Lee a month from now? IT would be a PR nightmare. If Lee is going he needs to go at the same time we get Doc.

A-train: I'm with you. I understand that keeping both Halladay and Lee was never in the cards, but I do feel that the deal with the M's was slightly hasty.

I'll give the Phillies the benefit of the doubt and assume there is something they really like about those three kids.

Lets pretend it is 2011.Lee signs a long term contract with {insert your next favorite team}. Who are the Phillies
5 SP? Would that be a rotation to get to another WS?

If there are 2 vesting options, then the Phils just did sign a 6-yr. deal, in effect (with an out for the last 2 years if Doc doesn't meet as-yet-unknown targets). That's why I'm wondering whether Lee would have taken it. I would have said no until he got so upset about being traded. And I still think it more likely that he overplayed his hand or misread the situation. - And there's also the question of whether he'd have accepted the $20mil. or wanted more - And even if he had, isn't it a better deal to get Halladay for that price than Lee - However, we'd still have a pretty good pitcher, plus prospects.

Honestly, I don't know what I'd have done in Ruben's shoes if I'd had a choice btw. locking up Lee or locking up Halladay but losing prospects.

Hopefully, Ruben made the right choice. And yes, if he really felt Lee wouldn't do an extension, then I have to agree it's a smart move, if somewhat painful. (Plus, there's the question of whether he could have gotten more for Lee with some patience.)

EFF: Santana was turning 29 when he got his deal. CC 28; Zito 29; see a theme?

Halladay would have been 34 going into FA. I think 5yr/$100mil is right on with his value. So why did the Phils waste all that talent to ink the deal?

5yr/$100 mil with a few more or a few(lot) less in 2011 could get you: Brandon Webb, Josh Beckett, Cliff Lee, Roy Hallday, Javier Vasquez. Yes, Halladay blows all of them out of the water so its good they 'guaranteed' themselves him - but at what price? A lot of talent and financial handcuff. The yankees get their guy by throwing money around, not both.

[The more I think about this move, the more angry I become. I still cannot believe we actually lost Drabek and Taylor simply o upgrade from Lee to Halladay. And I'm so sick of the BS about how we couldn't sign Lee. Really? We could have signed him for no more than we're now paying Halladay. I can't remember being this upset about a Phillies decision...Someone talk me down.]

OK, first of all---the issue with Lee wasn't going to be the dollars per se, but the years. From all indications, Lee wanted to get a 5-6 year deal, a la Sabathia or Santana. The fact that Halladay was willing to do 3 with vesting came more into play than the pure annual salary.

Second, many folks seem to forget that the reason we didn't pony up the same prospects for Halladay in July was that the Jays WOULD NOT ALLOW contract extension talks to occur at that time. I have a feeling that if Ruben could have had the same 72 hr window in July that he had now, essentially the same deal would have been made.

Third, even though losing Lee now does sting---esp. since 9 million would have been a paltry amount for 2010---consider this: had Lee left at the end of the year (for reasons already stated), we would have gotten, what? A draft pick? So instead, we flipped him for 3 players, at least recouping SOME of our original investment.
You can always argue about the talent involved---but remember, PROSPECTS are just that---PROSPECTS.

Finally, I would like to point out that the Mets are rummaging through the bargain bin looking at Kelvim Escobar to bolster their rotation. Remember when we were doing that?

Hope you feel better!

"You can always argue about the talent involved---but remember, PROSPECTS are just that---PROSPECTS."

So, you must be a regular caller/radio host at 610 WIP. Because they are spewing the same nonsense. Correct me if I am wrong but isn't our WHOLE core made up of our own "prospects"? Howard, Utley, Rollins, Hamels, Ruiz, etc.. So no, in fact prospects AREN'T just prospects. They need to be factored in as well.

I'm upset about the Lee deal, but I understand why it had to happen.

Halladay really is a freak...He's been, by far, the best, most consistent SP in baseball for the last 6 years. That simply doesn't happen. Look at Posnaski's list of top 10 SPs from 2003; Halladay's the only one who would still be there and hasn't had major injury issues.

The deal really amounts to this: We traded 1 year of Lee and some good prospects for 4+ years of Doc and some good (but not as good) prospects. It's not a bad trade by that measure at all.

Bauman of mlb.com likes the deal. (See link at phillies.com) He ends his piece this way:

"And the Phillies were helped by their own belief that as good as Lee is, Halladay still represents an upgrade. It is this kind of judgment and will that separates a winning organization from an organization that merely wants to win."

phaithful, I get it. Halladay's too old to be overpaid by some team somewhere. He definitely would have gotten much less than 20 million per.

Guess we're lucky he's only costing us around 9 million this year though.

Also forgot, from what I've heard recently, the Phils are really concerned about Lee's workload last year affecting him this season, much the same as Hamels last year. If we keep Lee, and he struggles to a .500 record, the Phils' WS chances are shot. With Halladay, you know that's not a concern. As great as Lee was for the Phils in the playoffs, he really struggled at the end of the regular season and there were some serious questions about his fatigue level. And he's only been great for 1.5 seasons...the rest of his career he's been merely good, and was even demoted and left off the Indians' playoff roster in '07. Halladay has a far more consistent and excellent track record.

The Lee deal doesn't "restock" the minors. None of the guys coming back are as good as the guys going out except maybe D'Arnaud and he has extra value for being a catcher.

How long can the Phillies keep up this ruse of pitchers not getting more than 3 year deals. It's great if you can do it, but the financial flexibility they gained by getting Halladay to sign a shorter deal than Lee is offset by the future need to sign a starting RF, #3 starter, and Carlos Ruiz to a FA contract. If you don't want to seriously downgrade from the current set (Werth, Blanton, Ruiz) you have to figure that's going to cost about $26 million a year minimum on the open market($15 million RF. $7 million #3 starter, $4 million catcher). So unless you can raise payroll significantly, how are you better off in the near term or the long term? How is that better than signing Lee to a 5 year $18 million per and keeping Taylor, Drabek, and D'Arnaud?

Knapp, Marson, Donald, Carrasco, Drabek, Taylor, and D'Arnaud

for

Halladay, Aumont, Gillies, Ramirez, Francisco and 1/2 year of Lee.

I'm still trying to mentally tell my emotions that that is a good deal and I'm not quite getting there. I'm excited about Halladay, but it feels like, in a circuitous way, we've given up a lot of future potential.

Stop undervaluing the prospects coming back to us.

Again, I like the trade because of the window that will be closing after 2012. I think that is Rube and the FO's thoughts as well. They know that after 2012 some/most of the core players could be gone (Hamels, Howard, Rollins, Lidge, etc..) therefore they are in win now mode.

All of us that hate the trade because of the prospects aspect have to just get it into our heads that the ownership relaizes the steep price but look at it as follows, "what good is keeping a Drabek/Taylor if there is no (insert list of guys mentioned above)?". Therefore they are going ALL out from now until 2012, then let wait and watch the chips fall.

To sum it up in a sentence, after 2012 don't be surprised to see this team go back to a 85-87 win team for a few years.

BB - It's hard not to when none of them has made it to AA yet.

EFF: never said he would get less than 5/$100. I said that matches his value very well.

Bed's Beard: why? Gillies is a likely #4 outfielder and isn't appreciably different from Berry and Gose, though maybe more advanced. Aumont is a relief prospect with an injury history probably a little better than Madson was. and Ramirez is a solid starting prospect who's may be Drabek's equal although farther away and thus less certain to contribute.

The Lee deal is bad unless the Phils get Morrow, Saunders, or Triunfel. and even then I'd rather keep Lee.

"How long can the Phillies keep up this ruse of pitchers not getting more than 3 year deals."

My guess? If Hamels rebounds from his struggles this past seaon and has a good next couple seasons, they'll break that rule to re-sign him.

JBird: I think this point has been established a million times.

Would you rather have Lee for a year and keep Taylor/D'Arnaud/Drabek and roll the dice after this year of having a potential rotation to begin 2011 of Hamels, ??, ??, Happ, ?? OR do what they did and be GAURENTEED to have the best pitcher in baseball for the next 4-6 years?

Again, I understand the prospects aspect but BB is right. We are getting some in return and the window for us is closing.

Remember if you let Lee hit the FA market the Yanks are going to gobble him right up. They already said they liked him alot. Also, you know Halladay would command alot of money. So you are stuck then trying to go after Beckett who is one of the only other "ace" options.

ozark: "It's a lateral move. Nothing more, nothing less."

Are you familiar with the game of baseball?

Apparently not.

MVP: The Phillies are paying market price for Halladay. Halladay wanted to go to an Eastcoast team. if he was traded to the Yankees and they signed him to an extension, then they would be out of the Lee contest. That leaves how many teams available to offer $18 plus to Lee? Red Sox? They just signed Lackey and wouldn't sign both Beckett and Lee next year. Detroit has money problems and needs to extend Verlander and Seatte wants to resign Hernandez. Atlanta and LAD don't have the cash. So we are talking about LAA, Phillies, and Boston chasing Vazquez, Lee, Beckett. And if Lester, Bucholz, and Matsuzaka all get better than Boston may decide to spend the money on hitters. Seems like plenty to go around to me.

The only way I can justify trading Lee is the thought that his Cy Young Award winning year and his past playoff success with the Phillies were flukes. He goes against the grain by refusing to ice his arm after pitching. He did have that stretch of games during the regular season where he was lit up for a bunch of runs and looked ordinary at best. We'll see how he does in Seattle. I still wish we still hasd him, or got better prospects for him.

"So we are talking about LAA, Phillies, and Boston chasing Vazquez, Lee, Beckett. And if Lester, Bucholz, and Matsuzaka all get better than Boston may decide to spend the money on hitters. Seems like plenty to go around to me."

Ok, so you would rather sign any of those pitchers about to Burnett money (5 yrs/82.5 mil) rather than the BEST starter in the game for 5 yrs/100 mil? If so, you are foolish. If your concern is mostly about the prospects, I see your point. And at first I agreed with you, but looking back now it is crystal clear to me. Rube & the fO are thinking after 2012 this run is going to be close to over. So they are "All in" until then.

Again, I understand that Beerleaguer is a place where logic takes a holiday and emotion runs wild. But if you match up what the Phils sent to Cleveland to get a half season of Lee (and however much they want of Francisco) with what they got back from Seattle, there is not a huge gap.

Despite the prevailing view here, Marson and Donald are not headed for superstardom. Donald doesn't have the range to play SS at the major league level. Marson has defensive issues as well and lacks power. Knapp and Carrasco have the most upside, but Carrasco has struggled with command. Most young pitchers never master it. He could end up being a total flop.

As for the incoming, I think Ramirez has the most upside, could end up being as good as Knapp. Aumont has setup, and perhaps closer, potential. I'm not as high on Gillies as others here, don't think he'll hit at higher levels, but he could end up being a useful spare part because of his speed and defense.

There really isn't a big gap there and what gap there is was a reasonable price to pay for a half season of Lee.

Andy- ....and $6 million.

Are the prospects we are getting back confirmed yet?

JBird: If you view that the Phillies had to absolutely get back what they gave up for Halladay then yes it's bad. It's also sort of silly and short-sighted to think that would happen.

Again- Halladay is arguably the best pitcher in baseball. Maybe top 3, at worst top 5. Lee is at best top 15, at worst top 20 in the league. Plus Halladay has a longer period to work off of showing dominance.

There is a world of difference between what you could get for either on the market. Those top 5 guys (where Halladay probably is) will get you "A" prospects in return. The rest of the top 15 or 20 (where Lee may be will get you "B" level. We know Lee is only going to get "B" prospects back, because that's all we had to give up to get him. The same prospects who a year prior weren't enough to get Sabathia off the same Indians.

None of this is intended as a knock on Lee either. He's a fine pitcher, but he is not elite. Halladay is.

"Would you rather have Lee for a year and keep Taylor/D'Arnaud/Drabek and roll the dice after this year of having a potential rotation to begin 2011 of Hamels, ??, ??, Happ, ??"

I think JBird is saying that he'd either rather spend the money, not get Aumont et al and have a 2010 rotation of Halladay, Lee, Hamels, Blanton and Happ (and two extra draft choices when Lee walks), or get one of the better guys in the Mariners system to replace the premium value we gave up from ours. We ARE getting good stuff. He's arguing we might have gotten better stuff or eaten Moyer as a sunk cost and moved on.

Of course, I could be mistaken about what JBird is saying.

Incidentally, clout is right about the "lateral move" comment. As good as Lee is, getting Halladay to replace him is not a lateral move.

The beat writers in both newspapers today reported that there was never a chance that the Phils would keep Lee & Halladay because they did not fit the budget.

Why posters don't understand this is a mystery.

You can certainly bash the team for not spending more, but bashing the team for made-up reasons on why Lee was dealt is just stupid.

MVPTommy: I would rather have Halladay at 5/100 than the other guys for 5/90. So it is about the prospects for me. It'd be one thing if Halladay was signed for another year or two at a cheap-ish deal, but he's not. We gotta pay him market rate. And, if I felt like this was a ploy to go all in for the next two years, I could get on board with that, but trading Lee for meh prospects instead of riding him out for a year directly refutes that argument. If you want to go all in for a year or two you take losses for a year or two on the payroll and then in 2012 you cut way back for a year or two while you reload. No use going to 85 wins a year. Might as well lose 90 a year and then come back strong again.

clout: You are making perfect sense. I don't know why that point is so hard to grasp by people. I guess all this winning has people greedy and not believing a budget actually exists. How many more times does Rube have to say the budget is around $140 mil before people start believing it?

What this thread, and the others before it have done, has shown me is that Phillies fans are the absolute most loyal, but FICKLE fans around. The organization was heavily criticized for not going with a "win now" mentality a couple years ago. Now, when they do, and look to the future of the next 3 years as well, they are still being criticized. The old cliche' of "damned if you do, and damned if you don't" certainly applies here.

I do understand that it (Lee) was a financial decision. (And yeah, bonehead, that $6MM is a consideration I left out which really should be there - mea culpa). I wonder if they could have played the "we're the Yankees of the National League" card with Seattle and at least gotten Saunders or Morrow (AAA players) in the deal. I worry that none of the three prospects - as good as they are - has played at AA yet.

" So it is about the prospects for me. . We gotta pay him market rate...but trading Lee for meh prospects instead of riding him out for a year directly refutes that argument."

JBird: 2 things that are wrong in what you wrote. 1.) 5 yrs/100 mil is NOT market price for Halladay, CC money is which is 7 yrs/161 mil. So in fact by trading the prospects and Halladay putting money 2nd we saved 2 yrs(potentially) and $61 million over that span. 2.) They aren't "meh prospects" as you put it. Clout clearly states what skills they have above.

I'm also saying that how can you justify not spending $9 on Lee this year but can justify Halladay at $20 next year? especially since the talent on the cusp of the majors is gone? I can see how you drop $20 on a #1 if your rightfielder and #'s 3 & 4 starters (Drabek & Happ) are making $1.5 combined. But if you gotta pay market for 2 of those 3 positions, how do you stay near $140? It just seems like Amaro split the difference between the present and the future and came up a little short on both ends.

On the plus side, the Phillies are going to be better in 2010 than in 2011 and I'm happy about that. I hope we get another WFC out off all this.

"I'm also saying that how can you justify not spending $9 on Lee this year but can justify Halladay at $20 next year?"

For the millionth time, because spending the extra $9 mil on Lee would put them way over the $140 mil mark when they still need to sign/re-sign 3 bullpen guys.

Lateral move: not significantly improving. Lee and Halladay, by all accounts, are virtually similar in terms of performance, with a slight edge to the latter. How much better are the Phils now? I'm not talking past 2010.

Wow. I'm not feeling fickel or greedy. I'm thrilled to have Halladay. I'm sad to see Lee go. I recognize the financial implications. I am, I think, trying to be reasonable is asking the wisdom of getting three players who have high potential but have not reached AA yet. I also, incidentally, understand that the Lee to the Mariners deal might have been the best one the Mariners would make. Is it the best deal that ANYONE would make for Lee? (And I don't know that either.)

errr..."fickle"

MVP: Sabathia was 29 when he signed a 7 year deal. Halladay will be, what, 35 when his extension kicks in? That's a significant difference.

And the prospects are M'eh by my definition. Ramirez is the only one I like. Aumont's fine, but he's a reliever. If he can get back to being a starter, I'll change my mind. You'll notice the Seattle blogs are excited that they didn't give up any of the top 3 of a middle of the pack farm system to get Lee.

From my Phantastic Phour post this morning-

(MLB Rank over the past 4 seasons)
Wins:
1st- Roy Halladay 69
27th- Cole Hamels 48

Innings:
1st- Roy Halladay 930.1

ERA:
4th- Roy Halladay 2.90

WHIP:
2nd- Roy Halladay 1.13

Strikeouts:
13th- Roy Halladay 685

*Roy Halladay is better than Cliff Lee, will actually end up costing less than Cliff Lee, and is an absolute stud. I love Cliff Lee and wish he were still a Phillie, but this is an upgrade.

"Lateral move: not significantly improving. Lee and Halladay, by all accounts, are virtually similar in terms of performance, with a slight edge to the latter."

Ozark, this simply isn't true. I've made similar statements and been refuted on this board, and after doing my homework on the 2 of them it became pretty obvious. Halladay is in a different class from Lee...Put it this way, Lee is a #1 starter, Halladay is an Ace. It seems like a small difference, but it's not. Lee's only had 1.5 seasons of excellence, Halladay almost a decade. Lee was very inconsistent with the Phils at the end of the regular season, which people are conveniently forgetting in light of his playoff performance. He had 3 starts giving up 6+ earned runs in less than 6 innings in a month with the Phils alone...Halladay's done that once in the past TWO YEARS. Lee was demoted to the minors and left off the playoff roster as recently as '07. Halladay's been in the top 5 for CY voting each of the past 4 years, and I believe 6 of 7.

I would have loved to have both of them in the rotation and gone for it this year, but forced to pick between 1 or the other, it's obvious which is the better pitcher, and better bet for a big money contract.

I'd have like the Phils to get more back for Lee too. But what's done is done. Now unless the names change by this afternoon, we got who we got. We can't change it. The only thing to do is see the kind of numbers Doc puts up. If he lives up to his billing, we should be fine. If he doesn't and Lee performs as he can, then RAJ's gonna have lots of explaining to do.

I read the comments Lee's agent made and maybe they're true, maybe not. Perhaps we'll never know. If RAJ and PG want to speak on it they will.

None of us were in the room when the meeting between the agent and the Phils took place, and none us were in the room when the trade was made.

Remember, agents have a way of spinning thigs. As I recall, When Billy Wagner was a FA, every time the Phils met his demands during the negotiations, per the Phils his demands went up.

I still say Lee will go to the Yanks to replace Petitte next year. He wasn't going to stay here period. Still I agree we didn't have to trade him now or at all. But we did. Dis RAJ do the right thing? In his head, he did. Only time, and possibly what RAJ says through the media, will provide the answers.

ozark - I believe you're incorrect. Halladay is better than Lee.

MVP: I understand, the $9 million doesn't fit in this year's budget. How does $20 million fit into the next year's budget while also replacing the RF and a few starters with FA's? I guess I'll worry about next year, next year; except that trading for Halladay was supposed to be about next year because it only marginally improves the Phillies this year (maybe a game or 2). You can't have it both ways.

I'm okay with this week's big trades by Rube. But, some of his past decisions turned out wrong in that they led to the Phils having Moyer ($8M) and Blanton ($7M-ish) in the rotation, but not Lee at $9M.

I'm still not fully sure what I think about this trade. I love the Halladay deal, as much as I hate to see Drabek and Taylor go (seeing Taylor a couple of times in the minors makes me think he's going to be really good in the bigs, but who knows). But, it's Roy Halladay.

I don't like the Lee deal, though I understand the point. I just wonder if they should have held and shopped... that's my big thing.

No matter what though... Amaro has massive stones. And I have to admit that I like this deal, if not just because Amaro didn't wait and see about Lee. He got a feeling (and I think there's more than Lee's agent says) and said, OK, we'll upgrade and goes and gets one of the top two or three pitchers in baseball.

That's stones. And I'll take that in a GM any day of the week. He has the stones to go for something and does it.

Now, let's just hope those stones don't kill the whole future!

Things that are driving me crazy on this board this week.

1. Stating Lee and Halladay are equals. They aren't.

2. Comparing the prospects we sent to Toronto with the prospects we got from Seattle. Compare the Seattles with the Clevelands, and remember that we traded for 1.5 years of Lee, not one like Seattle did.

3. Declaring that we are paying a market price for Halladay for the extension. $20M a year might - MIGHT - be market value for Hallday at age 33, if the contract was for 6 years. Please find me the last time a premier, top 2-3 in the league pitcher under the age of 35 signed a only three year extension (or a four year deal). Closest I've found is Clemens to Toronto, and when he signed he was NOT a top 2-3 pitcher (he needed HGH for that to occur again).

4. Overvaluing our prospects and undervaluing other teams.

5. Calling the trade an outright lateral move. It is approaching lateral in 2010 (see point #1 above), but a significant upgrade in the outyears.

6. Stating that Lee's 2009 postseason performance makes him a better postseason performer than Halladay.

Roy Halladay: Great Phillie or greatest Phillie?

"So, you must be a regular caller/radio host at 610 WIP. Because they are spewing the same nonsense. Correct me if I am wrong but isn't our WHOLE core made up of our own "prospects"? Howard, Utley, Rollins, Hamels, Ruiz, etc.. So no, in fact prospects AREN'T just prospects. They need to be factored in as well."

That misses the point. A well stocked farm system is definitely key to building a franchise. But go back and read scouting reports on all these guys---they ALL come with question marks. The fact that our current core came from the farm system speaks of depth and a bit of luck. That's an x-factor that can't be measured. Estimated, perhaps. But not really measured.

The point is, is Drabek any more of
a sure thing than Aumont? Is D'Arnaud the next Johnny Bench or the next Steve Lake?
We don't know. And neither do the Phillies, M's, or any of the seamheads out there. All the Phillies did was cover their bases by getting back some value for Lee.

In point of fact, the real question probably isn't whether Drabek+Taylor+D'Arnaud = Aumont + Gillies + Ramirez.

The REAL question is, are the prospects we got back from the M's equivalent to what we gave to the Indians to rent Lee for half a season? I think you could make a case that they are.

Will this turn out to be a Happy "Halladay"? Say what you will,only TIME will tell.
RAJ needs to learn there is such a thing as a 1 year contract ,i.e. Moyer,Ibanez,Polanco,the list goes on.

Last year Halladay was a 7.3 WAR pitcher and Lee was a 6.6. Halladay is an upgrade but is .7 WAR worth swapping Taylor, Drabek, and D'Arnaud for Gillies, Aumont, and Ramirez. I'm saying it's close, but no. I don't know why that's terribly controversial.

I am happier having given up

Drabek, Taylor, and D'Arnaud for Halladay now, versus

Drabek, Happ, Brown, and Gose for Halladay mid-season last year (Happ was the deal-breaker for me).

I'm looking at the two other Lee deals separately. I still feel like the trade with Cleveland was a steal for the Phils, even for half a season of Lee (plus a deep playoff run). I'm not really sold on these Seattle prospects, as their proximity to the majors is far behind what we gave up in Drabek and Taylor.

Baron: just because Cleveland got jobbed doesn't mean we had to.

Hayes - stating that none of the prospects we got have played at AA is not under-valuing them. Noting that many of those we gave up have is not over-valuing them.

"' I understand, the $9 million doesn't fit in this year's budget. How does $20 million fit into the next year's budget while also replacing the RF and a few starters with FA's? "

Because saying that next years budget remains at $140 mil. We have $104.75 mill (including Halladay) already locked in. We have Werth, Blanton and Moyer as FA's. Then Vic, Dobbs, Ruiz, francisco going to ARB.

So basically after the arb cases you are up to about $125 mill at most. Which leaves you with $15-20 mill to sign/re-sign a RF, starter to replace Blanton and potentially 2 bullpen arms.

I would say 2011 isn't going to be an issue.

Where are Aumont, Gillies and Ramirez expected to start in the minors this year?

Clout: Thanks for giving us your thoughts on the only relative comparison at issue here (what the Phillies gave up for Lee and what they got back for him).

JBird -

WAR is a great tool, but it doesn't factor in a lot of other things...for instance, the level of competition a pitcher faces. 7.3 WAR in the AL East is MUCH more impressive than 6.6 in the AL Central/NL East.

You're also not taking into account the consistency factor, Lee's potential workload issues, or the cost-certainty of a contract in hand.

1 year of Halladay > 1 year of Lee.

4 years of Halladay >>>>> 1 year of Lee.

MVP $15-$20 gets you an inferior RF and #3 starter to Blanton and Werth. Werth's gonna get $15 by himself, unless he falls off a cliff.

JBird, please re-read list. I didn't say that I thought we got (or gave) fair value for Lee. I'm not sure we did (but not sure we didn't either, given the timing). Simply saying it's folly to compare the Seattle players with Drabek / Taylor, which a lot of posters seem to be doing.

Baron: I'm not saying we have to get back a Drabek & Taylor, but one would have been nice considering the dearth of talent now at the top of the system. Everyone is in the low minors.

When the Phillies take the field on opening day '10, you won't even notice this trade. Other than the fact the Halladay is pitching instead of Lee. The splitting of hairs over all these prospects and which one is better than the other is pointless if you ask me. We could all be dead by the time they're ready to contribute.

Andy, what is your point?

Chris: that's fine, bump Halladay up to a full 1.5 wins above replacement. I still think the future value of Taylor and Drabek tip the scales. Halladay's a great pitcher. I like having him. But you can't trde Taylor and Drabek and then claim the deal is about the future. The deal is about this year and maybe next year. And I don't think the future cost is offset by the present increase in value. Again, it's close, but Amaro's gonna have to be real shrewd to keep things afloat in 2011 and 2012. I understand he has access to info that I don't (future budgets). I hope he does.

What surpirses me about these deals is it seems that the Phillies had all the bargaining power and didn't seem to use it. The Phillies were the Blue Jays' only potential trading partner (besides the Yankees, who seem uninterested, and the Red Sox, who opted for Lackey). Meanwhile, the Phils could have traded Lee to any team in the league.

Given that dynamic, I'm surprised they ended up trading both Drabek and Taylor. Perhaps the team values Dom Brown much much higher than Taylor and used all fo it's bargaining power to retain him.

On the Lee deal, I appreciate clout's analysis but I'm surprised there's even that much of a gap. To say that the top prospect in this deal (Ramirez) has the POTENTIAL to equal the top prospect in the last deal (Knapp) means that there was a lot less value coming back than what left.

Again, with the Phillies holding all the cards in both deals, I would expect more.

JBird, it's actually possible we did get back a Drabek (although not a Taylor), and for a lesser pitcher on a one-year rental. Again, I'm not saying we got a good haul, I'm merely saying we should compare the value of Drabek / Taylor to the value of Halladay. We should NOT compare the value of Drabek / Taylor to the Seattle prospects. I would have preferred to get King Felix back for Lee, but unfortunately that didn't happen.

Bobby: You think you might be dead before Taylor and Drabek are ready to contribute? Really? I'm sorry dude, what ever you got, that's rough.

These are my thoughts on Amaro's logic in trading away Lee.

1.) Hamels is likely to have a bounceback year. His peripherals were still pretty good last year and he is betting that it is unlikely for a guy to go from Playoff Ace to a No. 3-4 starter permanently. With Amaro betting on Hamels return, that gives us our two aces for the playoffs, thus fulfilling the critical two "ace" need and making Lee expendable.

2.) The Bullpen is nowhere near settled, and could be a mess. He probably knows that backup is neccessary in that area and really needed to leave a little payroll flexibility in order to adequately address it. (Hopefully, they can put in a solid bid to get Fernando Rodney.)

3.) If he keeps Lee, he might be able to make it work financially, but that probably means zero flexibility for difference making mid-season trades. You have to protect yourself from an injury bug.

4.) Trading Lee lets the Phillies recoup the losses in prospects of at least Marson, Donald, Carrasco, and Knapp. These are comparable to the prospects coming from Seattle. If you look at the prospects for Halladay separately, and considering he will be here for a while, it is a pretty sweet deal.

Keeping Lee would have made our rotation the best in baseball, but unless there would be more money coming in somehow, the loss in flexibility mideason is really an important consideration. For the people who want to keep Lee at any cost, think about the effect mid-season trades have had on this team the last few years and consider whether you want Amaro's hands tied come July.

JBird: You are not goign to get back prospects that are considerably better than you gave up. That's the market for Cliff Lee. This is not that hard to understand.

Lee is not worth top tier prospects. He is worth the next level of prospects where you have guys with talent who could be something. That's what we got, and the guys we got back have as much potential to be something as Knapp and Carrasco who we gave up.

Baron: I'm only comparing them in the sense that here's what we lost, here's what we need, and here's what we got back. And what we got back fits our near medium term needs much less effectively than what we got back. So why'd we take what we got back when Saunders, Morrow, and Triunfel would all fit team needs for an almost ready outfielder, a starter, and/or an infield prospect. We did not need a relief prospect, a toolsy outfielder with a low ceiling, or a far away pitching project. We gots them in spades.

Baron: Halladay would be turning 34 going into his free agency.

The deal is not club options, its vesting options. I have no idea what the vesting criteria is, but if Halladay doesnt meet them...that likely means this deal was even a worse idea than we can imagine since he didnt stay healthy or effective over the first years of his contract.

It is my opinion that Halladay's value on the open market with Lee, Beckett, Vazquez, and Webb would be right around 5yr/$100mil. If you disagree with that, then thats your opinion.

I am interested to see what others estimates are at. If the prevailing wisdom thinks that he would have gotten much more, than maybe I am overreacting to the downsides of this trade.

Bed's Beard: It's possible they'll all start at Double-A, but I wouldn't be surprised to see Ramirez, at least, start at High-A Clearwater.

Gillies could probably use another half-year at High-A, but two factors could come into play: One is that the FSL is a really hard league for hitters, so it might be just as beneficial to send him straight to Reading. The other is that Gose, a very similar player, might be at Clearwater as well, if not to start the season then hopefully by mid-season. So I think Gillies will be at Reading.

If they keep Aumont as a reliever, he should begin at Reading. If, and I think it's worthwhile although many others see it as being impossible, they try him back as a starter, he should start lower and work his way up. Most likely though, he'll be a reliever and work out of the Reading bullpen.

Sorry, should be "And what we got back fits our near medium term needs much less effectively than what we gave up."

JBird - That would be the case even without this trade...Blanton, Moyer, Romero, Werth, Rollins (if option not picked up) are all FAs after 2010 season. After 2011, Hamels, Rollins (if option picked up), Ibanez, Victorino, Lidge, Madson are all FAs.

If we'd kept Lee and Taylor/Drabek, add Lee to the 2010 list. Maybe you have Taylor to replace Werth, but do we really expect Taylor to be an All-Star performer his rookie year? Obviously not, so there's already a drop-off there. Then you have to sign a FA pitcher to a 5-6 year, $100-120 mil deal to replace Lee. Maybe Drabek is ready to replace Moyer as 5th starter after '10 season, maybe not. So you still have to replace Blanton with a #3 starter, and maybe a 5th starter as well at 2-3 mil per.

My long-winded, convoluted point is, the budget's going to be screwed up no matter what if you want the Phils to continue to perform at WFC level (with or without Halladay trade). This trade doesn't really affect it that much. It's going to take some very creative GM work to solve the problems, and at least RAJ has proven he can be creative.

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