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Saturday, December 17, 2011

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I don't see the Phils paying $7 Million for a set up man. I don't think Madson would want to revert to being an 8th inning guy. Sayonara, Mad Dog!

My Madson prediction: he signs for $8 MM with the Phils, stinks as a set up guy because of unrevealed injury for about a month, goes on the 15 then 60 day DL, loses his "elite closer" status, and, when he leaves as a free agent to the Yankees next offseason, gets the Phils zero draft compensation; then he tears up the AL for five years.

Thought I'd beat bap to this wet blanket punch.

"aksmith: Money is money. It doesn't matter who that money is going to. It's kind of a silly argument to say, "Well Lee at 21 million isn't hurting the budget because he's a starter." Why isn't it a possibility in your mind to spend less there and then spend the money they did on Papelbon?"


TTI, good post. The moeny is fungible. You see, the posters here who have been arguing the anti-JRoll case, have essentially been arguing that the money can be used elsewhere. Well, for some reason there seems to be a double standard when it comes to players they like. Lee? No problem. Papelbon, Polly? Too much.

What they're basically doing is playing armchair GM - and that's OK - it's what people do here, but if they're going to play the game they would garner more credibility for themselves by being consistent and applying the same standard across the board.

Madson at $7/$8M is too much at this point. The Phils have to be getting close to the luxury tax. Cot's has them over $126M for 15 players for '12, and they still have some (more important) signings to make -- that 15 player list does not include Hamels and Pence, for example.

They can't possibly have money to sign Madson, can they?

I said all along Ryan should have taken the arbitration and set up or even closed before they signed pap. But now really he has no teams left that are gonna give him a deal. Blue jays with YU won't be in. Plus they already got the closer they wanted. Same goes for our favorite shortstop Jimmy "my option" Rollins. I love to hear what sh!t his agent is slinging trying to get him the "deal". Jimmy's only value is here. I still don't want him back because of price. But more his inspiring desire not to change his approach. I guess he's still living in 07. I wish he would keep same approach as he did in nlds. If him and chase played like they did I would not worry about O. But that won't be the case and the key will be with this team in 2012 will be health. Hope Ty and nix can be good pcs.

I just heard some awful news. Today is Chase Utley's birthday. He is even older than he was last year. We are doomed.

cut_fastball, while I usually enjoy your posts, the one at the end of the last thread was perhaps the silliest I have ever seen from you.

Just silly. It was loaded with so may MOTO statements that it was boring.

No one here is a Phillies apologist. No one.

Just because someone may disagree with you as to the environment or market in which the Phillie's FO is operating doesn't make he or she one.

And stop propping up straw men. No one has said the Phils were "helpless" in the NLDS. But are short series somewhat of a diceroll? Yes. Just ask the 2011 Yankees - the best team in the AL in 2011. They lost too, despite ouscoring the Tigers 27 - 17 in the series. Yep, by 10 runs - an average of 2 RPG - and they still lost. But, hey, I understand, you and DomP and others here seem to think a team can be built for a short series, any your (collective) answers seem to be guys like Cuddyer, who I demonstrated in the last thread is just as erratic in th epostseason as any Phillies' player.

And, frankly, your frustrated sarcastic "Why play the series at all?" question was just....

Never mind. It's too easy a target.

LF, I don't see the Phils paying Madson 7-8MM either, but one can dream.

Assuming health and effectiveness:

Papelbon
Madson
Bastardo
Contreras

Willis?
Herndon
KK?

Would, except for the occasional blowout by the other team, turn Phillies games into 6-7 inning affairs.

Coupled with the SP, another 100-win season would be in the realm of possibility.

awh -- The smartest manager in baseball won the 2011 World Series. Regarding the Phillies, passivity in the face of consecutive failures is crazy. It would behoove RAJ to upgrade his field general. Losing your date at the dance is a real drag -- and the Phillies have been eliminated earlier in each consecutive year since that glorious 2008 season.

I just betcha not a single Cards fan (I hate the Cardinals as much as I hate Atlanta) chocks up the 2011 Championship to "riding a hot hand". The Cardinals won on merit, and it started with LaRussa.

"The smartest manager in baseball won the 2011 World Series."

cut, ass-u-ming you're correct (that he's the samrtest) does that happen every year?

Obviosuly the key is to copy the team that eliminates you. 2009 the Yankees won so we got older and more expensive. 2010 the Giants won with Lincecum and Cain so we added Cliff Lee. 2011 the Cards won with Punto and Freese so we need to dump Rollins and start utility guys at as many positions as possible and realize that the more moves a manager makes the more likely he is to win. I can't believe cut is the only one who sees this.

Also if we can find a way to be 10 back in early September that will help too.

cut, the Yankees have been either the best or second best team in the AL for the last decade - at least for the regular season.

They finished 1st in wins in the AL 6 out of the last 10 years.

In those 6 seasons, how many WS have they won

Oh, and BTW, EVERY team wins on merit - because the BEAT the other team on the field.

Madson isn't coming back here. That boat sailed after he declined arbitration. Amaro & Proefrock also have been crystal clear that the Phils aren't going to invest any more meaningful dollars (not talking signing like Willis at $850k) in the bullpen after signing Papelbon. Phils need that money to address SS & resign JRoll.

One thing I don't understand though is 'how can you judge Amaro for signing Papelbon in hindsight." What a weak cop-out. You who you objectively evaluate most things that occur with a heavy degree of hindsight?

The two things you can't argue on that is that handing out large, long-term contracts to relievers (especially in their 30s) is almost always guaranteed to end in failure, the Phils have had a recent horrible track record with this type of deals (see Gordon and Lidge), and the deepest part of the FA market this offseason was relievers.

Amaro's strategy is that he likes to be a 'first-mover' and acquire the premier player(s) he wants first. In doing so, he pays a premium (sometimes a hefty premium) in terms of dollars and years to do so.

It doesn't mean he is necessarily savvy. It just means he has cash to spend & isn't afraid to do so.

If Amaro waits out JRoll and gets him to sign a 3-yr deal, he deserves a fair amount of credit too from a financial perspective. Just have to hope that JRoll resigns here on a 3-yr deal and that he is content enough that he isn't a malcontent/issue in the locker room.

Either way, I would be surprised if JRoll isn't back here (still probably his biggest payday on the table unless he can get that 4th yr somehow else) and the Phils will again be a very good & interesting team to watch in 2012.

Going to make sure I enjoy this year because it will be the last one with this current core together. Good chance that Vic & Hamels may be gone in '13.

If locking up Rollins somehow gets in the way of locking up Hamels, it's been nice knowing you Jimmy. I have a good feeling Amaro feels the same way.

cut_fastball - I don't know who the Phils would upgrade at the manager spot from Cholly nor would it make sense at this point to upset the apple cart.

I grant you it is frustrating to watch Cholly though be slow to adjust & yes some of his handling of the pitching staff drives me crazy especially his handling of the bullpen. He's not a great strategy manager nor does he have a good feel for when to make a move with his pitchers. It is just who he is.

He didn't lose that series though the Cards. If Lee and Oswalt actually didn't pitch poor games, the Phils win that series. Phils were built around their elite starting staff & it let them down over a short series. It happens.

Rangers have made the WS two years in a row & Ron Washington is an underwhelming manager from a strategy point of view. Doesn't mean the Rangers should dump him.

It kind of funny though about the Phils' fan who argue that LaRussa isn't a better manager than Cholly though. He is and their records/accomplishments unquestionably bare that out over the long-term.

Doesn't mean that Cholly is a terrible manager. He isn't. LaRussa is a just a HOF manager who has consistently had an impressive track record in 2 leagues over 3 decades as a manager.

Scotch - Its either going to be Halladay/Hamels on this roster in '14. You can't pay both of them $20M/year and with Lee together have $65M invested in just 3 starting pitchers.

"One thing I don't understand though is 'how can you judge Amaro for signing Papelbon in hindsight." What a weak cop-out. You who you objectively evaluate most things that occur with a heavy degree of hindsight?"

MG why is this a hard concept to understand. I'm referring to hindsight in that had Amaro known the market would pretty much collapse for Madson he probably would've waited to sign a closer. You don't know that though. And if Madson had signed elsewhere for something like the 11 million the Phillies supposedly offered than Papelbon probably gets closer to 14 million. It's easy to gauge things in hindsight. It doesn't constitute a good argument though and it is just someone trying to appear smarter than they are by purporting to see into the future.

On that last sentence- do you ever proofread anything you write so it sounds like you are trying to make a salient point? Whatever you are trying to say there is completely muddled.

cut_fastball: Of course a team that wins the World Series is not going to speak a word about luck or a hot hand. Is that really your argument? Really?!?!

MG, cut obviously is afflicted with a short memory. He forgets that Chollie managed the pants off of Joe Torre in two NLCS and outmanaged another "genius" manager, Madden, in the WS.

But, hey, expecting Charlie to outmanage "smartest manager in baseball" every time in a short series.

That is the expectation cut, no?

Should say "...he expects Charlie to outmanage..."

TTI - There was an excess of closers on the market this year and there really weren't going to be a bunch of bigger market teams looking for one this year.

Amaro and the FO should have known that ahead of time including the Mets and Red Sox not looking to spend big money on a closer. That is absolutely something they should have evaluated with a fair degree of scrutiny.

It doesn't really matter though because that is against Amaro's 'first-mover' strategy in FA. It wouldn't have mattered what the FA market looked like for closers or how it unfolded. He was going to sign Madson/Papelbon at a premium regardless of what transpired with the market.

Amaro got the player he wanted but he paid a premium in years and dollars to do so. Yeah, it is absolutely on him if the market went south like it did almost right away with closers not getting anywhere close to what Papelbon got.

How is that not on Amaro and an indictment of his 'first-mover' strategy?


FWIW: Top 10 managerial winning percentages in the post-season:

1. Joe McCarthy 30-13 .698
2. Terry Francona 28-17 .622
3. Sparky Anderson 34-21 .618
4. Joe Torre 84-58 .592
5. Casey Stengal 37-26. 587
6. Charlie Manuel 29-22 .569
7. Earl Weaver 26-20 .565
8. Connie Mack 24-19 .558
9. Tony Larussa 68-55 .553
10. Miller Huggins 18-15 .545
10. Ron Washington 18-15 .545

Amaro basically disregards what the market is going to do and just pays a top-dollar for the asset he wants.

Works out sometime but consistently following that M&A strategy ('first-mover') with a large company leaves them with several negatives including a pile of debt, potentially sh~tty ROI/ROE numbers, and starves a company of capital that could have been better allocated internally on new products/services.

It is a hard task to act decisively in M&A to get the assets you want vs. being a 'first-mover' and paying a premium in doing so.

Wait, are you telling me that a guy who managed one of the all-time most talented and feared teams ever (the 88-92 Oakland As) but only won one World Series isn't the best manager in the world ever?
Oh right Larussa had a career before Oct 1st 2011. I fotgot.

Okay, I give. It's more important to have a closer than to have one of the top 7 or 8 starting pitchers in baseball. At least that's what I've now been told by awh and TTI. That is now a firmly established principal. A pitcher who may go 60-65 innings is as important or even more important than the guy who throws 220 innings.

Money is fungible, of course, when you have it. However, when it's already been spent it is no longer fungible.

And it isn't "hindsight" TTI. How many people on this board screamed the second Rube overpaid for Papelbon? There was no market. He created it in his panicked little Stanford miseducated brain. It is not hindsight when many people here screamed at him for supposedly giving Madson a 4/44 offer. And it isn't hindsight when you are urging Rube to just keep his pants on for a change. However, he once again got depantsed by an agent/player and somehow everyone forgets that he lost his first round draft pick as well.

You guys may not be Phillies apologists, but just be honest for a moment. Papelbon was an overpay. What other team was waiting to sign him? I don't see a single team out there that would have paid him what the Phillies did. If they would have, you'd think the'd have at least offered Madson a reasonable contract. Apparently, nobody has even done that if the rumors can be trusted. What the heck was Rube's rush? I would rush for a bargain. I would not rush, and everyone said so at the time, to wasted a boatload of money on something that is truly fungible, relievers.

I make mistakes every day. It must be wonderful to feel so smart all the time. Please do tell me how you do it, especially when being right doesn't matter.

LaRussa is one of the best managers ever. Maybe the best manager ever. Besides consistently winning with teams over very different eras of baseball in both leagues over 3 decades, just look at his team's record vs. the expected record via run differential.

Yeah some years are down but almost more often that not his team won more than expected and more than just a couple of seasons statistically significantly so.

He may piss people off with his persona, frustrate them while will watching a game, and overmanage at times but he's a great manager. Period.

At this rate, I assume Earl Weaver will pass Charlie by 2015.

"Amaro and the FO should have known that ahead of time including the Mets and Red Sox not looking to spend big money on a closer. That is absolutely something they should have evaluated with a fair degree of scrutiny."


OK, MG, that's a little silly. Seriously, why would other teams give the Phils a competitive advantage by revealing their intentions ahead of time?

It's a competitive marketplace.

Unless of course you think the Phillies should spend money on spies and wiretaps?

He's a great manager for sure, but if people are going to get on Charlie about not winning a second WS with this team, they need to hold LaRussa to the same standard with the late 80s/early 90s As. Loads of talent. Always favored but lost 2 massive underdogs in the WS.
I'm not saying that makes Charlie better than LaRussa or anything. It's just something to keep in mind when getting down on our guy and praising LaRussa.

awh - Its competitive intelligence and you didn't even have to be that good at it in this insistence given how much financial information and other information is readily available to even the general public.

You don't have to resort to anything even close to unethical behavior here let alone actual industrial/commercial espionage.

gobaystars - There are plenty of things to nitpick on with Cholly in regards to some of his in-game strategy stuff if you want.

I agree with you and think it is without much merit & generally ignorant to criticize Cholly for 'not winning a 2nd WS.'

MG: Yes there were closers on the market but look at some of those deals.

Heath Bell got 3 years, 27 million. The last three years his ERA+ is 140, 191, 146 for an average of 159 a season.

Joe Nathan got 2 years, 14.75 million. His last healthy season (2009) he had an ERA+ of 210. Last season his ERA+ was 83. 7+ million a year is a lot for a guy who has a huge injury question mark hanging there. But I know he was one guy you heavily advocated.

Frank Francisco got 2 years, 12 million. His last three years he has an ERA+ of 122, 120, and 120 for an average of ~121. He has also lost the closer job twice the past three seasons. Another guy you heavily advocated.

Papelbon got 4 years, 50 million. His last three years he has ERA+ of 254, 112, and 145 for an average of 170. His career ERA+ is 197. Bell's is 127. Also, Papelbon is 3 years younger than Bell.

So when Bell is getting 9 million average, and Francisco is getting 6, and Nathan is getting ~7.5 it is not as if Papelbon at ~12.5 is completely ridiculous. It's not great, but it's not outrageous.

Also, no one knew the Red Sox weren't spending money on a closer this off-season. The general feeling was they were after either Papelbon or Madson. Once Papelbon signed then it came out they were trying to trade for Bailey. Again, you are using after the fact facts to prove your point.

awh - That's the line you're taking? MG is absolutely correct. It doesn't take a genius to know most of what other teams are going to do. It's called being in business. And if you think it's so difficult to know about, then I can show you dozens of beat reporters who know a whole lot about what teams are going to do. I supposed they're using spy drones?

Rube often appears to be making uninformed decisions about salaries. So maybe he's the only GM in the cone of silence. It's bad business and lazy business to overpay continually because you didn't do your homework.

And on LaRussa - I'd have said that Charlie consistently outmanaged him for the last five or so years until he didn't this post season. Hopefully, Charlie will learn from it.

"Okay, I give. It's more important to have a closer than to have one of the top 7 or 8 starting pitchers in baseball. At least that's what I've now been told by awh and TTI."

smitty, that's horsesh8t and you know it. I'm not even going to take issue with it further because there's no point. If you're going to completely misrepresent other people's POV you're not worth engaging. Period.

awh - You are a fine one to talk. Period Period.

"So when Bell is getting 9 million average, and Francisco is getting 6, and Nathan is getting ~7.5 it is not as if Papelbon at ~12.5 is completely ridiculous. It's not great, but it's not outrageous."

That is still a 30% price premium and you are leaving off the most important part in terms of the years. That is where the real risk in the contract lies especially with a pitcher.

"Also, no one knew the Red Sox weren't spending money on a closer this off-season. The general feeling was they were after either Papelbon or Madson. Once Papelbon signed then it came out they were trying to trade for Bailey. Again, you are using after the fact facts to prove your point."

Not true. Just go back to Globe/Herald or several other sources which strongly indicated after Cherington was named the GM that they weren't going to make much of an effort to resign Papelbon.

Cherington even came out after the day Papelbon was signed to say they didn't even make him an offer & that they weren't going to spend large dollars on signing a closer long-term

I'm completely baffled by the moronocracy's insistence that they "know" what the Phillies budget is, or, more importantly, how the Phillies have discussed allocating their payroll.

They must have super secret spies inside the FO.

"Cherington even came out after the day Papelbon was signed to say they didn't even make him an offer & that they weren't going to spend large dollars on signing a closer long-term."

MG - That doesn't really help your case that you are saying teams know what the market is ahead of time. That Cherington came out AFTER Papelbon signed could've been a move to save face. It's not like GMs ever lie or stretch the truth.

Ok, smitty, this is your last chance to keep yourself out of the moronocracy and save any credibility you have.


"It doesn't take a genius to know most of what other teams are going to do."


Great. Since you've already demonstrated here on BL that you're a genius, you should have no problem listing, team-by-team, the moves that will be made the rest of the offseason.

Oh, and don't try to fall back on the "I don't work in the Phillies' FO" excuse. You're being highly critical of the FO and others here who are trying to explain that markets change and are fluid, so you obviously have special insights and clairvoyance that no one else here has.

Therefore, you should have any problem predicting within 90% accuracy every move that's going to be made.

have at it.

"If wishes were horses, beggars would ride." All of my musings about Charlie, and longing for "smarter" decisions in the post season will not change what has taken place.

Charlie has done a tremendous job in the regular season. This cannot be questioned. It just flat out stinks to have the best flippin' record in baseball -- 2 years in a row! -- and nary a ring to show for it.

Oh well. We are blessed to have this club to root for. Let me be the first to wish everyone a safe and happy Christmas season.

cut_fastball: The thing is, the Phillies were not the best team in the NL in either '08 or '09. In '08 the Cubs were the dominant NL team all season before getting swept out in the first round by a mediocre Dodgers team. In '09, the Dodgers were dominant all year, much like the '11 Phillies.

If you play in enough playoff series, you'll end up close to .500 - partly because of luck and partly because the teams are usually pretty evenly matched. This Phillies team, dating back to '07, is 6-4 in playoff series.

awh - Of course not but you know what the luxury tax threshold is and exactly what their current obligations are. You act as if there is little/no information available to make an assessment of their likely budget.

Lee was surprising last year but the real surprise in regards to their budget was when they dramatically expanded it nearly 25% after the '08 season. That was something that was in real doubt at the time & was hard to predict with much certainty that they would expand it so much in 1 year.

aksmith: You show an amazing trend to not be able to critically think but then try to turn it on people because you don't understand the fundamental basis of their argument. It's a trait- I'll give you that.


I find it odd that you weren't here last year decrying giving Lee 21 million even though the situation was sort of similar to how you view the Papelbon situation this year. I want to live in your world where somehow 21 million dollars doesn't matter but 13 million does.

Also, it's funny that you get out of what awh and I said that "They think it's more important to have a closer than one of the top 7 or 8 pitchers in baseball." Are you trying to miss the point?

I do believe that I mentioned numerous times that 12-13 million was a steep price. However, I don't view it as crippling necessarily. It is if they let it be. I don't know what Rube's rush was. Maybe he thought if he didn't act he wouldn't get the guy he wanted or the price may go up. If for some reason some team gave Madson 12 or 13 million than Papelbon would've gotten more than he did.

"hard to predict" is the key word. That's why I cringe reading about 2014/2015.

"Also, no one knew the Red Sox weren't spending money on a closer this off-season. The general feeling was they were after either Papelbon or Madson. Once Papelbon signed then it came out they were trying to trade for Bailey. Again, you are using after the fact facts to prove your point."

Not true. Just go back to Globe/Herald or several other sources which strongly indicated after Cherington was named the GM that they weren't going to make much of an effort to resign Papelbon.

Cherington even came out after the day Papelbon was signed to say they didn't even make him an offer & that they weren't going to spend large dollars on signing a closer long-term

Posted by: MG | Saturday, December 17, 2011 at 12:18 PM

___________________________________________

This is comedy at its finest. I say something and get told it is completely untrue and then the person basically proves my point.

MG: The general consensus was that the Red Sox were in on one of the big boy closers. That was everything read and heard on the issue. In the past two weeks it came out that the Red Sox and Yankees were tightening their belts. Amaro didn't know that 4 weeks ago.

My bet on how Madson/Papelbon went down:

Amaro knew JRoll wasn't going to sign right away but that no other team was going to give him 5 years anyways.

Pursuing a closer then as his first priority & that meant trying to resign Madson first. Amaro worked out what he thought was a preliminary deal with Madson for 4 yrs/~$40M but only to have it leaked before it was finalized by Boras.

Pissed off Amaro so much that instead he went after Papelbon. Basically said to Papelbon's agent, 'What will it take to get your client signed here right now and off the market.' 4/50M and a vesting option did the trick a few days later.

I wouldn't say Amaro 'was foolish' but followed what he has done every offseason since he has become the GM - identify a player for a specific and sign him regardless of years & cost or what else is largely happening/might happen in the market place.

"MG: The general consensus was that the Red Sox were in on one of the big boy closers. That was everything read and heard on the issue"

Just go back and read the media articles after Epstein left on Oct. 12th & before Papelbon was signed on Nov. 11th by Amaro.

It was reported several times that the Red Sox hadn't made a single offer to Papelbon yet even as late as Nov. 8th in the Globe.

Yes that 'isn't 100% certain' but you can make enough of an intelligent guess as Amaro to understand that the Red Sox won't offer Papelbon a 3 or 4 yr deal at $10M+ annually.

The uncertainty in the market was going to be around what the financial conditions were around the luxury tax which weren't finalized until Nov. 22nd.

rollins coming back for 3 years, vesting option for 4... ays krasnick at espn

Per Jerry Crasnick, Rollins is back. 3 year deal. 4th year vesting option. Ken Rosenthal said it's close.

Bigger uncertainty in the closer market this offseason really was what Miami (because you knew they had money to spend this offseason and wanted an upgrade) and Toronto (ditto) were going to do at the closer position.

- Bell signed with the Marlins on 12/2

- Blue Jays traded for Santos on 12/6

Amaro wanted either Madson/Papelbon and didn't want to wait around so that he might be left with a Bell or other option.

Yes he got a player he wanted but paid a premium and guess wronged on the way the market would pan out.

espn reporting Phils and Rollins have a deal. 3 years with a vesting option for a 4th.

MG~ That's exactly what happend with Madson.
And I said as much. Boras pissed Amaro off and RAJ went elsewhere. He offered arb to Madson & Boras said screw you.

But it's really up to the player. Madson already circumveted Boras once and re-signed with the Phils 3 years ago, & Boras probably thought he could get him a new deal he obviously can't. Shame on him.

But now the money is already spent, Good, bad or indifferent. So the question that remains is how are the Phils going to fill their remaining needs with the available $$ they have?

Pence, Hamels, Mayberry, Bastardo, KK, & Valdez will all be back obviously. Then there's SS. I keep a spreadsheet on salaries for fun. I've got them @ 128.7 million for 17 players including the buyouts for Lidge & Oswalt, and including the money from the Rockies for Wiggy.

I am on the phone currently and have just been told jimmy's deal is DONE. 3/36 with a 4th year option.

If Amaro signs JRoll for 3 yrs/vesting option for a 4th, then he deserves credit for not jumping the gun & being stuck with JRoll for a 4th or 5th guaranteed year at $12M+.

If Amaro signs JRoll for 3 yrs/vesting option for a 4th, then he deserves credit for not jumping the gun & being stuck with JRoll for a 4th or 5th guaranteed year at $12M+.

I am not going to try to sort out which one of awh or TTI said stuff because they are taking the same side here on most things. But I didn't criticize the Cliff Lee signing because I thought it was a good one. The guy had a market and the Phillies knew exactly what it was. He had his best offer from the Yankees because Rube didn't jump to the head of the class and make a crazy first offer. Rube came up with a very similar offer to the Yankees once he knew what the market was and knew that Lee wanted to come to Philly.

I don't see that as an analogous situation to Papelbon, in which Rube jumped in, set the market, and overpaid a little in dollars and a lot in years. The only competition for Papelbon was Boston, which apparently wasn't ever interested in making an offer to him. At least they never did get the chance. But it seems that they weren't that interested.

I don't have to know what teams are going to do. What kind of stupidity is it that makes me responsible to know what other teams are going to do when I don't spend time studying it like professional baseball people do. As in all competitive business, you do your due diligence. You see the lay of the land. And you make educated guesses based on what you hear and your experience. Rube makes his decisions on fear. Fear that he won't get the guy he wants because nobody else will do. That's a losing strategy.

The key point in this post is that the Lee signing and the Papelbon signing are not analogous. Completely different circumstances. And the fact that Lee is a top starter vs Papelbon being a top reliever is a huge difference. You don't pay your bench players Rollins or even Polanco money. And while you may have to pay your closer more than the average reliever, you don't have to go crazy on both dollars and years. Simply bad business.

And yes, we do know the Phillies budget. Once they sign Rollins, if they do, they're just about at it. That's why they have made the moves they have this offseason, and not made the moves they have not made. And as I said before, if they sign Soler or Cespedes or similar, then I'll be proven wrong. But it hasn't happened yet.

3/36 for Rollins is a very fair deal. We'll have to wait and see how the fourth year vests to know if it's a good or bad deal overall. But I'm glad he's back.

Jimmy's deal has been announced.

Kevin Cooney reporting its 3/33 not 3/36

Even better.

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