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Thursday, December 16, 2010

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More importantly, Andy Tracy had 30HR and 100RBI in two minor league seasons. Two! Jayson Werth never even has had 1.

In conclusion, please give Joe Cowley's post about Werth the mvp treatment. And I'm sure he'll find another topic to be retarded about eventually, so jsut add that on as well.

He therefore is a great hitter and is better than Jayson Werth.

That's a terrible hat.

I don't understand all this ire/anger about executives lying. Guess what - they do it all of the time and repeatedly. The only question is how big the lies are, how often they tell them, and to whom they are addressed to. The only people in a company who generally aren't lied to are the c-suite & the board. That's it. Even there at times the c-suite tries to present things to the board in the most positive spin or M&A deals in the most favorable terms almost pushing the line into BS.

Does Amaro have a superiority complex? Yeah. Does he come off as a smug dick a bunch of times? Yeah, then again most elite MBA guys do even if they aren't nearly as smart as they think they are most notably MBA finance guys who simply couldn't hack the math in a PhD econ/finance program.

The late great Andy Tracy was an .875 OPS hitter for the Phillies. Damn the stubborn FO for never giving the man a chance.


Though, that OPS was posted in 16 PAs over two years.

Shockingly 2011 will be Andy's Age 37 season.

Amaro can, for the rest of his GM career, present the Smug Dick Trick and make other GM's go limp, feel queasy and lose sleep. As a fan I will be optimistic that something wonderful is in the making even if its a couple years away. Yeah Smug Dick rules.

I am already tired of the overhyped and borderline BS "Lee choose Philly because of the his love for the fans." Please. Can't believe that people eat this tripe up.

That might have been a small part of it but Lee came here because he had 3 nearly equal ridiculous offers, Philly is arguably is best shot to win a championship in the next 1-2 years, and a manager that has a very good reputation with his players. My bet is that the fans came well down on the list of considerations.

Well after having posted about the Cliff Lee "debacle" a year ago at this time, I think all the dorks on Beerleaguier who defended Amaro owe me and others like me a big apology.
More important while I am pleased Lee is back--very pleased--if we just do the Math this could have been Lee, Halladay, Hamels and Happ. And yes Happ is no Oswald but if and this is an if , if we had Lee last year than well would the Giants still have won? We'll never know becuase there are no simulations and do overs in life.

The really good news and in fact the more important news--and I wrote about this at length for years here--the Phillies finally understand that this kind of investment--regardless of teh cost--increases the value of the team. I think good times are ahwead for Phillies fans.

Amaro can bask in the moment now but I wonder if he will be around in '14 and '15 to deal with the $50M+ he will have committed to Lee and Howard.

I also wonder how long the 'Four Aces' will be around. My bet it will have a run time of 2 years although the least likely guy to be around is Hamels and not Oswalt.

Meyer: that makes me think of the scene in "Snatch" in the bar where the three guys from the pawn shop try to use a replica gun to pull off a job, but the big guy pulls out a Desert Eagle and gives a soliloquy on your topic.

RK - You still believe that Amaro is being 100% frank about the whole Lee saga? I don't but that is water under the bridge at this point. The only issue is the .60 cents he got back on the dollar from the initial trade.

Not getting back a single prospect who contributes at the MLB level in a meaningful level will be a black mark on the ledger. Still wished they had let Aumont stay in the bullpen last year and had groomed him as a potential replacement for either Madson/Lidge in '12. That was arguably the biggest f@ckup of that trade.

MG playing Grinch on the day after Cliffmas.

JBird - Just a bit feisty this morning. Lee move was coup. Just tired of all of the marshmellowly and gooey nonsense that has been dribbled out the last 24 hrs or so.

MG: The Phillies have said that Aumont is going to the pen this year. No more starting. Gives me hope that he could turn into something. Still wish we'd gotten Saunders, Morrow, and either Pineda or Liddi. Oh well.

I wonder why the Expos never gave Tracy a real shot at 1B in 2001? He finished the 2000 season on a tear for them playin both 1B and 3B but was promptly relegated to a PH role for 01...its not as if they had a gut blocking him or anything. A slightly diffrent break for him and he could have had a Dobbs type career.

Lee = Lee + Aumont + Gillies + Ramirez

RK --

Oswalt dominated the Giants in his first start and only allowed two runs (with shoddy defense) in his second. And the Giants hit Lee around the first time and scored four off him the second time. So yeah, no.

"My bet is that the fans came well down on the list of considerations." MG

My bet is that they didn't!!

MikeMart, unless he stanks in ST, starts the season on the Phillies bench. Book it.

We hope that he shines in his UT duty, but expect nothing.

Gillies was the talk of spring training, and I watched him crush a gapper off of Drabek and fly to third in a blink. Obviously, his season went off the rails with hamstring injuries and dubious off-field stuff. But by no means is the book closed on that guy.

If Aumont can become an 8th inning guy and Gillies can be a leadoff hitter/CF and JC Ramirez becomes a 4/5 starter than all (well, mostly all) will be forgiven.

Proof that it wasn't really RAJ, it was Gillick.

"The Phillies' general manager met with team president David Montgomery and called his predecessor, Pat Gillick, to discuss making Lee and Braunecker a proposal."

http://www.philly.com/philly/sports/phillies/20101216_How_the_Lee_deal_came_together.html

phlipper: Pat Gillick is a HOF GM. If he doesn't mind RAJ calling him up, I hope RAJ is smart enough to do it every day.

"Amaro can bask in the moment now but I wonder if he will be around in '14 and '15 to deal with the $50M+ he will have committed to Lee and Howard. "

I'm sure that fans will be positively furious about the years of watching the best rotation in baseball and one of the premier sluggers in the history of the game.

Jbird - I'm just tweaking the RAJ-haters.

I couldn't care less how much he relies on Gillick's help.

The odd part of Tracy signing with Arizona is that the Diamondbacks had already traded for Juan Miranda, formerly of the Scranton Yankees, who hit roughly .290 the past two season at AAA with solid power numbers. Add in 24 year old Brandon Allen who hit 25 HR for Reno in 2010. All three first basemen have time in the Majors but the majority of Tracy's show time has been a number of years back compared with the recent call ups for Miranda and Allen. A three way race for the AAA spot. Who would you pick?

Greg Dobbs given minor league deal with Council Rock, has to pay for his own shoes and uniform though and his mom has to organize Beef and Beer for travel.

I'll make sure that Lee + Aumont + Gillies + Ramirez all play in the same game together too.

RK - do you really think you'll get an apology?

Dear RK,
We are all so sorry, you are a farging genius suggesting signing Cliff Lee back is a great idea. Thanks for your leadership.

MG: Aumont is back in the pen for 2011. There, now you only have 999,999 things to cry about. Is that going to be your new years resolution?

phlipper - It is like the CEO who pushes through a huge M&A, juices the stock in the short term, and leaves the debt service to some other sucker 3-4 years down the road.

Did anyone else notice something cured Charlie's stammering habit during the WM interviews?

MG: "i wonder how long the Four Aces will be around. My bet is only 2 years".

Two of the 4 aces are only under team control for two more years. Your such a risky better!

RK, you are the man! We never could have made this decision without you. We were going to offer Cliff Politte 25 million per year for 8 years but then we remembered what you said and thought "Wow, Cliff Lee, that's an idea" and sure enough it worked. Thanks pal.

jason - Meant just this year. It was a typo. Dont' think the Phils are prepared to allocate $70-75M+ to just 4 guys in their starting rotation in '12.

Well... technically those ARE apologies....

So to split the lefties is the rotation Halladay-Lee-Oswalt-Hamels? I'd love to be at Lee's 1st game back at the 'Zen.

Suspend your imagination and let's say that Gillies rebounds with a big year & becomes the Phillies' centerfielder in 2013, after Vic leaves. Let's also say that Singleton tears up AA and AAA and becomes the starting left fielder. Dom Brown would already be a mainstay on the roster by that time and we'd still have Howard & Utley manning 1st & 2nd. That's 5 left-handed hitters. Not good.

MG - In your analogy, we're also investors and will reap huge returns on our investment for the next couple of years.

In 2015, I'll go back to being a negative, pessimistic, bitter Phillies fan. I practiced for decades, so I'll have no trouble with that. For the next couple of years, I'm going to sit back and watch top quality athletes perform.

Also - doomsayers seem to think that they can predict what will happen in the future and that the Phillies will make zero moves in the interim to adjust. Trades and acquisitions will be made, quality players will be called up. Why don't you wait until you see what happens before you assume the worst and start hand-wringing?

Remember, MG, how worried you were about Charlie's supposed "overuse" of the bullpen spelling disaster for Madson and the Phillies?

I'll just collect all the ace lefties in the league.

MG, what did you want Amaro to do? He was in a position to put Lee and Doc at the top of this rotation until at least 2014, and to create what may be one of the best rotations in baseball history at a reasonable price (considering the Hamels' and Oswalt's contracts, as well as Lee's willingness to take just $11M in the first year of his deal).

The Phils have 4, hopefully 5, key players under team control in 2013: Howard, Utley, Lee, and Doc (maybe Brown if he pans out). Long-term, and Middleton is only in his 50s, I'd think ownership is comfortable with that investment.

It's actually 2012 where things get interesting. Hamels' arbitration year, Oswalt's option year, vacancy in LF, Rollins FA year, Madson's FA year.

The commitments to 2014 as of today? Lee. That's it. Lee's deal comes at a price, of course. It will probably be 6 years long. But you don't get Doc and Lee in 2013 and 2014 otherwise.

Sophist, Howard's on that 2014 list too isn't he? But yeah, 2012 is gonna be an interesting year for RAJ.

MG-- Why'd you have to piss in my Wheaties? The debt created in 2015 is a little too subjective to worry about (i.e. Ibanez, maybe Rollins, Madson, Lidge, God knows who/what else). Enjoy Phestivus like the rest of us.. I'll be happy to eat financial crow 5 yrs from now.

"Why don't you wait until you see what happens before you assume the worst and start hand-wringing?"

Come on Phlip it's like you don't even know us at all.

Seriously, it is amazing how damaged we are as a fanbase. I've been at it since the mid 60's and even I am astonished by those that immediately want to point out what could go wrong. No Sh*t guys. Tons of things could go wrong in the next few years. Yes the Phillies took on risk. That can't be avoided when your goal is dominance. Like Phlipper says, sit back and enjoy the party. I know I will.

As a fan, I want my cake, and I want to eat it, too. Thus, I would be totally thrilled if the front office decides to keep Blanton as the 5th starter. I would be a-swarm with warm fuzzies if that happened. I've always liked the bloke and he would be a great guy to take the ball every 5th day.

Oh, Howard too, of course. Let's not forget the team's commitment to him until 2016.

But I think the combined investment in the 4 starters in 2011 is something like $56.5M. Fangraphs had their combined WAR at around 20. That's a pretty good return on next year's investment. The plan is either continued success or having enough success between now and 2014 that not even MG will mind an 80 win 2015.

By 2015 the "government" will have decided to save money by not pressing coins and all paper bills less than a $20. They may keep the dime for nostalgia sake as it has FDR's image and will still fit the kids penny piggybank slot.

Shoulda traded Howard away and let Andry Tracy man 1st base fore league minimum.

I kid, I kid.

I almost fell into a deep depression thinking about what might happen to the Phillies payroll in 2015, but 4 seconds later I got over it.

The Theory,
The best way to pitch Blanton is to have him pitch (whatever they call those imaginary games that somebody coming back from the DL uses to get ready) until July when it is good and hot and he drops that winter weight and just count on him for August and September.

****Shoulda traded Howard away and let Andry Tracy man 1st base fore league minimum.****

That's freaking ridiculous. We should get rid of Howard and use a platoon of Tracy/Bozied at 1B. No way we could expose Tracy to RHP like that.

Sophist - Yeah the cost isn't an issue in 2011. I just wonder if he hinders their ability to go after Hamels long-term when they likely have to allocate the likely ~$75M or so in '12 to keep the 'Four Aces' in the fold and roughly $120M committed to the previoulsy mentioned 4 players & Howard/Utley.

I can see why Amaro made the move because it basically puts the Phils in a legit position to be a better team at the start of 2011 than at the end of 2010. If they win another WS next year, then the gambit paid off. If not, Amaro likely faces some really tough choices next offseason because their isn't a ton of MLB-ready talent just around the corner.

phlipper - The Phils did cut Madson's use back a little the final 10 days of thes seaoson just because he wasn't injured doesn't mean it was smart to use him as frequently as they did in what were some pretty extreme situations.

Your reasoning is that along the lines of an alcoholic. Well, I drank 7 beers tonight and made it home okay so the outcome justifies the decision-making process.

'Fortune and Glory' kid. 'Fortune and Glory' is kind of what Amaro went for here. I commend his risk-taking because the Phils now definitely have a better shot at winning another title next year. Amaro does that and his reputation is cemented.

If not, the future comes much sooner than people think next offseason on some really hard choices on surrounding enough quality players around an aging core.

JBird - if any of the Lee-Three spend any useful time in the major leagues it will be against the odds. As good as they are as "prospects" none of them has been worth spit at AA or above. They all have a long way to go before they amount to anything more than somebody's fantasy.

I was just looking at the 40 man roster, and noticed that Lee is on it and Reyes is not. Has that deal not been finalized?

not yet

Mike - Phils are still trying to find a uniform maker who can sew one without a neck.

RK - I am sending my first-born son to you as appeasement for ever doubting that you are the MAN. I mean, the absolute, friggin MAN MAN. I mean...

Enough of that s**t. Get a life.

Here's a thought.. By 2015 the "average" payroll for Phils/ Yanks/Bosox is 250 million.. We just got a bargain.

MG's right. Anyone who thinks the Yankees will make strong moves to pick up star player salary dumps this year, and also be leaders in pursuing next year's top free agents is guilty of "marshmellowly and gooey nonsense." They will obviously not be top World Series contenders anytime soon.

How about, lets not worry about the budget as the FO obviously isnt. Clearly, ownership (Middleton most likely) has given the okay to expand the payroll to this new level...Thus, even if we have $50-70 million committed to 4 guys, we still have another $100 million to build the rest of teh roster.

Stop worrying about things that are 4-5 years away.

In 2015, the creation of "the Phillies network" or a huge new TV deal from comcast will offset these rising costs. Thats when these financial concerns go away, not when they begin.

The biggest problem (and we've done this a million times now) with their own network is the lack of other teams involved. Both the Sixers/Flyers are owned by Comcast. Comcast isn't gonna give those rights away period. The big reason that both the Red Sox (NESN) and Yankees (YES) work as networks is the coverage of other sports. NESN isn't just the Sox, its basically all of Boston/New England sports and they have a huge broadcast area/audience. YES is the same way. The Philly audience/area isn't that big (Its big but not as big as those two) and they wont ever get the rights to the other 3 clubs in the city (2 are comcasts and the Eagles are part of the NFL's overall television deal)

The best they can really do is renegotiate with Comcast and get a better share for their rights.

" although the least likely guy to be around is Hamels and not Oswalt."


Ohhh, MG, I completely disagree with that.

Some facts:

May 14, 1977 in Denver, CO, career ERA+ 136
August 29, 1977 in Kosciusko, MS, career ERA+ 135
August 30, 1978 in Benton, AR, career ERA+ 112 (142 since 2008)
December 27, 1983 in San Diego, CA, career ERA+ 123


These facts lead to a question:

If you were the Phillies, which of the pitchers above would you like to have pitching for you for the next decade?

If the FO has to make a decision between Hamels and Oswalt in 2012, they'll pick Hamels no question.

Also, Oswalt has some say over his option as I understand it.

Per Cots:

12:$16M club option ($2M buyout)

Oswalt may opt out of 2012 option & take a reduced buyout

Acquired by Philadelphia in trade from Houston 7/29/10 (Astros pay Phillies $11M in deal, with Oswalt taking no reduction in his $2 million buyout if club declines or he opts out of 2012 option)


So basically, if Oswalt sees that he can get a better deal (and he'd be able to if he stays healthy), he'll likely opt out of the option, take his $2 million buyout and sign a multi-year deal somewhere else.

So, basically, barring an extension to Little Roy, we only get the 4 Aces for 1 season.

awh - Then they let Oswalt walk for $2m and resign Hamels to a long term deal.

It isn't 4-5 years away either. Its next offseason. Amaro made a big move and gamble. Have to see if there is a WS title in for the Phils next year.

Don't get me wrong. I love that Lee signed here and this team will be incredibly interesting for yet another year.

"Well, I drank 7 beers tonight and made it home okay so the outcome justifies the decision-making process. "

MG - you spent the entire year worry about something that never came to pass.

Meanwhile, had Charlie used lesser relievers more often, it is very likely that at least some wins would have been put into jeopardy, if not turned into loses.

At some point, you have to do a reality check on what you're worrying about.

BTW - don't leave the house today. A meteor could theoretically fall out of the sky and your chances of survival are better in your house than if you're walking on the street.

Plus, those 7 beers are more immediately accessible if you stay at home.

MG, RAJ faces tough choices after next year no matter what, but the Phils have Ibanez, Lidge, Rollins, Madson, Baez, Schneider, and Gload (and possibly Oswalt) all coming off the books after 2011. Lee or no Lee winter 2011 is a pivotal period for the team.

Choosing between extending Hamels for 2013 and more flexibility with position players strikes me as the only big issue presented by bringing Lee into the fold (as far as future payroll goes). But Lee was available, for possibly the last time, now, and Hamels under control for another two seasons.

I don't see Oswalt sticking around much longer unless he takes a big discount or Hamels is moved for an Upton type.

I dont see Oswalt as a "possible", Sophist. Unless he's hurt, he has every reason to opt out of his deal. If he's hurt, the Phillies won't exercise it. So, regardless, he either gets extended or he is gone. Given that Hamels will either be going to Arb (that will be a HUGE award) or being extended...there's no way they keep both.

""Why don't you wait until you see what happens before you assume the worst and start hand-wringing?"

C'mon phlipper, we're Phils fans.

I have one doggie downer for you also:

Heather.

Remember him?

He's already pronounced the Howard extension as one of the worst contracts in MLB history....

and the extension hasn't even begun yet.

"As a fan, I want my cake, and I want to eat it, too."


Theory, are you a Yankees fan?


(Uh oh...did I just hit on something? Are we Phhillies fans becoming so used to winning that we EXPECT the team to win every year, and get angry when we think the team is making bad moves because we feel a sense of entitlement...just like Yankee fans?)

Lee just found Oswalt's secret hunting spot and is being parachuted in this afternoon to meet up with him and Dobbs.

I'm confused as to why the Lee signing means Amaro is all in for 2011. A bunch of these players are expiring contract for 2011 Lee or no, and the key parts of this rotation (Doc, Lee, Hamels, Oswalt) are under contract (Oswalt does have a mutual option) through 2012.

Howard, Utley, Vic, Polanco, and Ruiz are all under contract through at least 2012.

How does the Lee move present an all-in gamble on 2011? Winter 2011 is an important time for this franchise Lee or no Lee. The only question becomes whether or not they want to put even more into a third starter (Hamels) or move him to build around Doc and Lee with a younger core (some return on Hamels and hopefully Colvin/Cosart/May types). Lee only makes making yet another long investment in a SP a more difficult decision.

So we only have 1 shot to win with these 4 amazing starters?

Couldn't you guys have waited 'til after Christmas to point that out?

(But, yes, keep Hamels over Oswalt. He's younger.)

phlipper - No. I did in August when Cholly starting using Madson almost every day. Hell, even Dubee said at one point that they were using Madson pretty hard and wanted to try to take advantage where they could to give him an off-day which included not warming up in the pen.

Meteor no? Crap on the road from a truck on I-95 N heading into Philly this morning? Yes.

Sophist - Yeah they do have some money coming off the books but I just wonder how many of those areas they will be able to fill adequately from internal options.

I have to think it's possible if not probable that the Phils end next season a position to compete for the WFS in 2012. I don't know much about Oswalt's personality or character, but it's possible he decides not to opt out for another chance to win.

It might not be in his best interest financially, but his priorities might be to just win. After next year, he will have made over $90 million for his career. He's already set for life no matter what.

NEPP,
I agree. I would like the Phillies to parlay all these years of connection to Comcast into a big new deal with the Comcast/NBC conglomerate (it will pass with the next congress).
I can easily see them doing some big broadcasts of noteworthy games on the big network or even replacing a big chunk of the weekend on MSNBC, surely they would draw better numbers at night in place of the prison/pedophile docs they currently show. I believe the NY and Boston deals actually show proof that teams can step outside of the MLB local market deals. The weekday games may be the only stumbling block but I believe Comcast local is still the way to go for that.

A's are in talks to trade for Josh Willingham.

Once Werth was signed, it was clear the Nats would listen to offers for Willingham. Obviously, after signing Lee, we can't afford Willingham, but he would've been a perfect guy to pick up if it had been possible.

"awh - Then they let Oswalt walk for $2m and resign Hamels to a long term deal."


MG, unless they want to keep Oswalt around and he signs a team-friendly extension, that's probably the most likely scenario.

I'll be a little sad because I like RoyO - tough competitor, great pitcher.

I'll purely speculate and predict that the Yankees have a down year because of lack of SP. Oswalt opts out and winds up in the Bronx with a lucrative contract offered by a desperate team. :)

NEPP, possible just not likely. There would be a lot of ifs. If Hamels could net an Upton-type, if Oswalt is willing to take a pay-cut (he probably wouldn't need more than 2-3 years), if the Phils are confident in some contribution from some of these guys in Lakewood.

I'd love to see Hamels stick around, but hopefully he'll pitch well enough to deserve his big payday. With Doc's deal expiring 2 years into Hamels' FA, maybe they can get creative. Maybe that a sizable number from that Lakewood 2010 class will contribute, and the Phils will have lots cheap production so it won't matter.

It all depends on how things shake out next year and the year after. But I don't see how Lee forces their hand in any of this or creates a big gamble for 2011. If anything, Lee and Doc give them cost certainty over the next few years allowing them to wait and see with Hamels - even making his possible departure through a trade less harmful. Neither one of Lee and Doc's deals is a big risk provided reasonably good health.

The sky is the limit for ideas for shows with this team. "Crappie Fishing with Charlie" or more realistically "Surf with Moondoggie", "Tour Panama with Carlos",
"Duck Hunting with Roy", "Hunt the Survivor with Kyle" etc.

krukker, one more thing about Oswalt:

Wasn't there some speculation during the trade talks last season that he was considering retirement after his current deal expired? IIRC there was such talk.

Maybe he tells the Phils he'll accept the option year in 2012, because he doesn't want to pitch after that.

BTW, here's a link to b-r.com and the future payroll info for the Phils:

http://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/PHI/2010-roster.shtml

I wouldnt go hunting with Dobbs. he probably has a super imposing shooting form and then misses the target by about a foot. Just like at the plate.

Jack,
I realize they will end up 10 wins short of a playoff berth but don't you think the Nats would have been less into trading him in the division.

From one of many spots about Oswalt's retirement talk:

http://blog.prorumors.com/2010/03/rumors/5376/

The Nats will lose between 80-100 games with that rotation, with or without Babe Ruth in right.

"Heather.

Remember him?"

Yeah. Heather explained to us all that Amaro is a "moron."

Oh, and that Charlie's a "moron" also.

Does anyone still doubt that Charlie's managerial style is a big factor in the Phillies' success as well as their ability to attract top-shelf players?

Oswalt would probably accept a cheaper, short-term deal, while Hamels would be looking for a lucrative, long-term contract. I wouldn't be shocked if we kept Oswalt over Hamels for that reason alone.(and Cosart, May, Colvin)

phlipper, thanks for helping me make my point. :)

Not I phlipper but Dubee could be the real brains behind these last handful of years. He even does the dugout interviews during games.

Wow, it only took one day for MG to be miserable again.

Baxter: I agree that out of the current roster, Hamels is the most likely "star" to sign elsewhere. Oswalt will either stay in Philly or retire.

I had thought that Jimmy was going to be shopped or that he may have higher contractual demands than Amaro is willing to pay, but with such an emphasis put on character and team chemistry, I'm leaning toward the belief that Rollins will spend most, if not all of his career in Philly.

Does anyone still need a pack of hankies to wipe their tears of sorrow for losing Werth? Or is Lee as a consolation acceptable based on what Amaro told us yesterday?

Jeeezus F-in Keee-rist...

For a fan base that whines incessantly about the FO not spending the necessary money, I'm not to worry about what's going to happen in 2014 and 2015.

The Wet Blanket Society is out in full force today!

MG, I can see the argument that they'll be relying on a lot of 32 year olds in 2012, but they do seem to have plenty of financial flexibility to address their 2012 needs. Their entire IF (minus SS) is under contract for 2012 as well as Vic, Francisco, and Brown, and of course Doc-Lee-Hamels. Cot's has $50M coming off the books after 2011. Phils have made a big push for 2011 and 2012. Considering they've already won 4 straight NL East titles, 2 pennants, and a WS, RAJ has set them up to at least end a nice 6-7 year run. Also, considering the ages of this team's core, I don't see why he wouldn't be doing all he can to prioritize '11 and '12.

Wonder how likely a promotion and a 3-year deal is for Madson sometime before he hits FA next year.

Sophist - That's a pretty reasonable conclusion. They have ratched up the payroll now in 3 years in a row to maximize their chances to win and I never thought this currnet ownership group would be willing to do such a thing.

Rollins can't leave the Phillies until he trains his replacement.

What made the Lee deal possible?

1) He accepted "only" 11MM in 2011.

2) Here's the money coming off of the 2010 salary book (all fisures in $millions):

Moyer 8
Werth 7
Romero 4 (.250 buyout in 2011)
Dobbs 1.35
Castro .650 (.050 buyout in 2011)
Jenkins 1.25 (buyout)
Feliz .500 (buyout)
Eaton .500(buyout) (yes, Virginia...)


Total: $23.25 million was spent on salary and buouts in 2010 that is off the books in 2011.

However, the collective raises due (not incl. arb. players) totals up at $17.05 million, so that really only adds up to $6.2 million coming off the books - before the Lee deal and the arb eligible guys.

I second that CJ! Though I disdain that rough language you potty mouth.

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