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Tuesday, December 10, 2013


So it's apparent that Rube is listening to offers from.... himself.

He's offering himself a package centering around Dom Brown in exchange for Cole Hamels. But, he can't agree (with himself) on how much salary to pick up.

Just.... brilliant.

Hamels straight up for Kemp

Some men just want to watch the world burn.

awh: Learn from you I guess.

But it is a legitimate question. People on here complain about moves all the time yet they never seem to have any ideas. It's BS spewing coming from usual suspects.

Jack said we could have gotten creative in 2012. Let's hear the moves. Otherwise just stop posting idiotic ramblings.

Same goes for you too.

Given Amaro's pension for Starting pitching Lee & Hamels aren't going anywhere. Lee maybe at the deadline but not now. As I say, the Phils are tied to a lot of rumors but it's much ado about nothing.

If the Phils trade Lee or Hamels I will eat that Danys Baez jersey JW had to buy a few years ago.

I think the word you're looking for there is penchant...

There's nothing wrong with shopping any player at all...I just am very wary of Rube doing the shopping.

Two major mistakes are hanging over the franchise right now and they are really the root of this current issues (well Rube is but that's what I'm getting at here)

1. Signing Ryan Howard to that deal a full 2 years early

2. Trading away Lee when we traded for Halladay and/or trading for Doc when he knew he had to give up Lee to make it happen as he apparently did.

Both of those moves and the series of subsidiary moves they have caused are why we are at where we are right now.

This whole scenario was predictable. Rube is negotiating from a power position. The 2014 slot machine team is set with an 85% chance to win every other game.

NEPP - The Pence trade is #3 and #4 is Papelbon after this organization apparently learned nothing from the Lidge extension.

As a couple people have said, Everybody should be available, I don't trust Rube to get a good return though. Also, making Lee available after signing Byrd and Utley makes it look like there is little semblance of a "plan" for the franchise.

Lee for Kemp strait up

With all the stats kept in baseball, someone should track % of rumors correct.

It would be far lower that Mini Marts batting average and just above Ben Revere's HR per PA.

Good point on Pence...that trade might have been survivable had they not given him away a year later but the entire trade reeked of hubris. There was no real need for him and there was a cheaper option available in Michael Bourn who would have helped that lineup just as much by giving them a true leadoff hitter and SB threat as well as spectacular defense in CF (and also RF by moving Vic back over).

Papelbon was just idiotic on every count...from signing him a week earlier and thus forfeiting a draft pick for no reason to massively overpaying him when there were other, cheaper options available to committing that much payroll to the Closer position when there were gaping holes elsewhere.

I hate this team.

Captain Hindsight provides no foresight.

Maybe he's a foreskin.

I used to think that the Howard contract was far and away the worst move of the Amaro regime, but all things considered, the Papelbon deal is getting close.

The fact that he's pitched pretty well actually proves the point--this was the best-case possible scenario for the deal, and it's still done no good for the team, and they're trying to dump the guy but can't find a single taker.

My recommendations for r00b's 2014 Dumps on the Diamond:
Utley to Yankees for Angelo Gumbs in SALARY DUMP

Lee to Yankees for Bryan Mitchell in SALARY DUMP

Hamels to the Angels for Yency Almonte in a SALARY DUMP

There, I just saved the Phillies hundreds of millions that they con go spend on any player Captain Foreskin says...

I suspect the dysfunction goes much deeper than just the big moves. We haven't developed a star player in almost a decade now. I would guess that the scouting and coaching staffs are poor. The medical staff appears suspect. Not to mention the host of small missteps in acquiring and retaining bad players due to poor talent evaluation.

Well, expensive closer is the high-end, luxurious capstone to any team looking to be WFC favorites. The Phillies are not in that position. It'd be like an Arthur Andersen executive getting a Bentley car payment right before Enron. Worth it (I guess) when the good times are rolling, expensive albatross when the party stops.

Hamels and Lee to LAA for Mike Trout

Even if we included $200 million and our Top 10 prospects in that deal, the Angels still wouldn't accept.

Actually, Rube's stupidest moves go like this in ascending order:

#6: Re-signing J-Roll instead of going cheaper at shortstop with someone like Barmes and using Rollins' money to sign a real bat for LF or 3B (Ramirez, Cuddyer, Willingham)and make up for the absence of Howard; devoting that 11 million to a weak-hitting SS (and 12 million to Papelbon) forced him to go with Nixington and Mayberry instead (I advocated letting J-Roll walk at the time, although few others agreed with me).

#5: Signing Papelbon instead of trying to find a cheaper bullpen option and devote more money to the offence.

#4: Failing to realize that he needed a RH RF during the 2010-2011 offseason and thinking that Ben Francisco could be a starter; had he abandoned that idea and tried to trade for someone like Pence, Ludwick, or Willingham after re-signing Lee, he wouldn't have been forced to pay through the nose to get Pence at the trade deadline.

#3: Trading Pence away for pennies on the dollar in 2012; he might have been expensive, but the fact remains that he was an above-average player better than anything we've had in our outfield since, and should have been traded only for a respectable return.

#2: Trading Lee to Seattle for a bag-o'-poop instead of either keeping him in the rotation (thus obviating the necessity for acquiring Oswalt) or getting a respectable return.

#1: Extending Howard two years early instead of trying to lock up Hamels or Werth following the 2009 World Series. Just think, if we'd extended Hamels coming off a down year we've wouldn't have scraped against the luxury tax after resigning him in 2012; if we'd extended Werth before he switched to Boras we'd still have a RH outfielder who can play above-average defense and get on base (and would still have Cosart and Singleton in the system). And, if we'd play a wait-and-see game with Howard, we would have been able to either bring him back on a low-risk incentive-laden deal after his Achilles blowout or sign a new (and cheaper) first baseman like Cuddyer in the 2010-2011 offseason (one who could now be traded to make room for Ruf). The Howard contract was the single greatest franchise-destroying move Rube made, no doubt about it--nothing else he's done, no matter how stupid, even comes close.

This team is just silly...

They really think other teams would trade them anything significant for Hamels or Lee if they don't include money?

In the above comment, make that "2011-2012 offseason" in the Howard entry.

"Captain Foreskin"?

LMAO, I love it!!!!

"Even if we included $200 million and our Top 10 prospects in that deal, the Angels still wouldn't accept."

They might if we agreed to keep the 10 prospects.

If someone did a Top Six List of AT's dumbest comments, that top six would be near the top of the list.

Wisniewski: "Trading pitching away is not his style."

Ummm, Mike, they traded Lee to Seattle, and Worley/May to Minnesota.

I could go on...

If the Phils were to trade Lee and/or Hamels, any chance they could add Howard into one of those deals (kind of like the way they want to add Papelbum in with Brown?). Eat some money if you must. If you are going to rebuild, go all the way (even if it is a bit absurd after inking Byrd and Ruiz).

Seattle could use Lee or Hamels and they definitely could use Howard as an upgrade over Smoak at first or as their DH. Papelbum even makes sense for them.

This team does have a shocking amount of money tied up in guys who can't really hit anymore.

Baked a litterful of poodles since that 2011 offseason.

I don't trust Amaro at all. God only knows the level of damage he is going to do this week. The Phillies are quickly heading into the 1984-2000 vortex.

God help us in 2016 if the following options all vest:

Lee: $27.5 Million
Papelbon: $13 Million
Utley: $15 Million
Byrd: $8 Million

Its not likely given some of the vesting numbers (Byrd's is pretty hard to hit at least) but if it did it would easily kill the payroll for the year.

NEPP: but if those options don't vest, doesn't that mean the players were injured and/or ineffective the year before? Is that better or worse?

The danger is that those players are ineffective but healthy and the PA/IP numbers are hit regardless.

Thornberg, what makes you think they DIDN'T try to extend Werth before he hired Boras? Do you know for a fact that they didn't?

Seems to me that the reason Werth hired Boras was that he wanted to maximize his value, and Boras got Rizzo to overpay.

I could just as easily conclude (with the same evidence you have) that the Phillies TRIED to extend Werth, he wasn't happy with the extension offers or his agent's performance, and therefore, because he's smart enough to know he was going to have one shot at a significant contract, he hired Boras.

" The Phillies are quickly heading into the 1984-2000 vortex."

Just thinking about those gems (or is it germs) of seasons that the Giles/Montgomery regime has given us made my skin crawl.

In their defense, with all the money being thrown around, the Phillies as a small market franchise simply cannot compete financially these days.

awh: True, he did trade away Lee that first time, but only because he had just acquired Halladay and thought he'd be replenishing the farm system. The Worley move was actually a good one, trading away a guy at the peak of his value who completely fell flat this past season.

I guess what I'm saying (both here and in the article) is very unlikely to trade these guys, although it is possible. But trading away pitching would not be a Rube move.

You have to wonder how Hamels and Lee catch wind of this and if a teammate or their agent literally has to tell them second hand.

Not hard to see this being another dysfunctional clubhouse if they are rotten midseason with the same cast of characters back.

My whole family suffered incredibly during those years. Lost a son to the Giants, hair began to prematurely gray, lost sleep never to be recovered.

***he did trade away Lee that first time, but only because he had just acquired Halladay and thought he'd be replenishing the farm system.***

Yes, it had nothing to do with balancing the payroll at was all about the prospects.

~rolls eyes~

I wish that Ruben Amaro, Jr. would drop dead on Christmas Eve.


Might be that Lee and Hamels have their agents helping Amaro.

Rube is just a symptom of the much larger problem...This entire franchise seems to be inept. This 2007-2011 run is looking more and more like lightning in a bottle.

The GM is subpar, scouting staff is subpar, the coaching staff is subpar, the medical staff is subpar, the ownership is subpar.

Depressing to fall so far so fast...

NEPP: Payroll probably played a role too, yes, but...

Is anyone actually disagreeing with the statement that trading away pitching is not Rube's style?

Chris: You're going to feel super-foolish when the entire team experiences a dead cat bounce in 2014.

I dont disagree...he's shown a penchant for focusing too much on building a strong rotation since he took over in Nov 2008.

I certainly hope so, jbird.

Rajai Davis got a 2yr/$10M deal.

Holy crap...and I predicted he'd be the same price as Mayberry. I was way off on that one.

The price of mediocre 4th OFs has skyrocketed this does help put Marlon Byrd's contract into perspective now that you've seen Rajai Davis and Nate McLouth both get multi-year deals with AAVs over $5 million.

Makes you wonder how much Nate Schierholtz would be worth on the open market (or trade market for that matter)

It also makes you wonder if RAJ's tendering of a contract to Mayberry was actually a shrewd reading of the market.

Given the recent deals, Mayberry at $2 million is probably about his market value.

Team With Bloated Payroll And No Shot At Winning Seeks To Unload Salary ...

Wow, that is a scoop!

No one calls me "The Zen" and it ain't catching on.

"The price of mediocre 4th OFs has skyrocketed this off-season..."

I've been pointing out for a while, NEPP, that the influx of new TV money was going to lead to higher prices.

I don't know why so many people are surprised by this.

The law of supply and demand... revenues have risen to $9B, and teams are locking up their younger and better players, so teams are spending money on tinkering around the edges on their roster in order to make marginal improvements.

Davis getting 2/10 doesn't surprise at all.

The FA price per WAR keeps rising.

Who'da thunk?

My ranking on recent worst signings / trades:

#1 Howard extension - Phillies got creamed with his arbitration loss into a much higher salary escalation, then signed a player at the bottom of the defensive spectrum to a mega deal two years early when Pujols, Gonzalez, Fielder were all potential options. If it was a "team friendly" deal then maybe I'd be okay with signing two years early.

#2 Pence trade - As mentioned getting Pence was overkill, the team was already excellent. The price was extraordinary, especially considering what Braves paid for Bourn. Just letting Brown learn on the job would have been sufficient with Francisco at the 4th OF. Phillies went "all in" and knew it. Those pieces were going to be critical to the rebuild in subsequent years (either to play or trade).

Papelbon deal was bad luck on the draft compensation. I do not know if Phillies were aware that the new rules would be coming out a week later. Given the choice of Papelbon or Madson they seem to have made the right choice. And Papelbon just cost more money (I'd estimate he was overpaid by ~$2M/year). The vesting year can be somewhat controlled by the manager so if attained would probably be worth it. The fact that he is already falling apart is why signing top free agents rarely works out.

"It also makes you wonder if RAJ's tendering of a contract to Mayberry was actually a shrewd reading of the market."

ColonelTom, this is BL where you are not permitted to say anything remotely complimenting the Phils.

***Papelbon deal was bad luck on the draft compensation. I do not know if Phillies were aware that the new rules would be coming out a week later.***

How would they not be aware? Everyone else on earth was as it was heavily rumored in public and they had a seat inside the damn room it was being negotiated. It was pure idiocy by Rube to not wait when every other team in baseball was able to.


No but given the alternatives there wasn't really anyone better than Mayberry.

NEPP, the only reason they may not have waited was they thought that if they did and other teams realized they didn't have to give up a draft pick for Papelbon that they would face more competition and it would drive the already high price up.

If that's the case then they were more worried about the extra money that losing the draft pick, which is true to form for this group.

"It also makes you wonder if RAJ's tendering of a contract to Mayberry was actually a shrewd reading of the market."

Even a blind squirrel will eventually find a nut.

(Is that better Captain?)

***The vesting year can be somewhat controlled by the manager so if attained would probably be worth it.***

FWIW, a manager can't legitimately bench a guy solely to avoid hitting his option...without a performance justification to it, it would lead to the player filing a grievance with MLB through MLBPA.

The Pence trade is only egregious because of the fact that they turned around and dumped him for very little only a year later...If they had just hung onto him they would have had a very good RF still in his prime...Instead they gave up 3 of their best prospects and have basically nothing to show for it. That's the real lunacy.

I concur trade RAJ.

Hey guys, how do I insert a picture into my comment? I have a picture of Ruben that'll make you guys cry laughing.

Sorry but that's a trade secret...

To continue various past trade/signings comments:

Probably my #3 worst because of the cascade affect:
Blanton extension possibly caused the Lee trade as both made about the same money. I think he was still in arbitration so they could have delayed signing him while 'shopping' Lee.

Lee was in his Free Agent year and only going to net a draft pick post season. Amount has tremendous stuff, Ramirez had some backers but Gillies over Saunders seemed dumb. I still would have preferred a true 'stud' but Smoak and Montero do not seem like superstars either.

Halladay trade was good, the extension was excellent. Arnaud saved them $6M which could buy a lot of prospects back in the olden draft days (which Phillies did NOT do though).

Oswalt trade seemed pretty good. Gose and Villar will probably be okay players but not superstars.

Pence redumping trade could have been better. Why they took Schierholtz I have no idea. He was redundant to Nix. Joseph had a chance to be okay but he's done. Rosin was a nice get but will now be a Rule5 loss. I hate Pence as much for these trades as I do for his weird style of play.

Ibanez and Pence wore out their welcome but were good elsewhere. Ibanez's left-handedness did become an issue of course.

Polanco was actually better than most other options. Rumor was Phillies offerred Beltre more but he wanted a 1 year deal. Smart man.

Rollins contract was reasonable in my opinion and I have no faith in Glavis to hit better then Brendan Ryan.

Read this article about the Mets in 2011 and sub out K-Rod with Papelbon and Putz with Mike Adams.

It will make you laugh...and cry most likely.

***Probably my #3 worst because of the cascade affect:
Blanton extension possibly caused the Lee trade as both made about the same money. I think he was still in arbitration so they could have delayed signing him while 'shopping' Lee.***

It was the contract tender to Blanton, not the extension that was signed a month after Lee was dealt. The extension (which paid Blanton just $3 million in that first year) was another part of getting Doc's salary to work under the payroll for 2010. Remember they also had the BlueJays throw in $6 million to help pay for the difference between Lee's 2010 cost and Doc's. Everything about those moves was to keep them under their internally set salary cap.

Now, had they been able to work out the Halladay swap before the deadline to tender contracts, its very possible they simply would have non-tendered Blanton and kept Lee to go with Doc/Lee/Hamels at the top of the rotation in 2010. That didn't happen and the rest is history.

Re: Papelbon's contract
It is tied to games finished. If Martin turns into a better closer than Papelbon then Paps will not be finishing games, hence no vesting option. He will still play but I doubt he'd win a grievance unless he is pitching well.

That's the key...if he's pitching well (or at least better on paper than the alternative), you can't pull him from the closer role without the guarantee of a grievance.

If Ethan Martin or Brad Lincoln or whoever is pitching completely lights out and Pap is struggling to hit 90 mph and looking like Lidge post-knee injury, you are fine.

One way to avoid the vesting option...dont use him in meaningless games where' they're behind "just to get him work". If they use him almost exclusively in Save situations, its not likely that he'd hit the games finished requirement for the option to vest.

Last year is a perfect example...he had only 29 Saves but finished 54 games.

Well, I guess Dom isn't going to Arizona:

Recap: #Angels get Skaggs/Santiago; #Dbacks get Trumbo/2 PTBNL's (LAA & CWS); #WhiteSox get Eaton. IMO: Nice haul by Dipoto.

— Alden Gonzalez (@Alden_Gonzalez) December 10, 2013

Pretty high price for a sub-.300 OBP DH, eh?

Kevin Towers has really thrown the gauntlet down in the "Worst GM in Baseball"'d think Rube would be the clear winner but Towers really warrants some consideration between this move and the ridiculous series of trades he made last year to give away Justin Upton all so he could start Kubal.


I don't know how to insert a picture.

You Beerleaguer jerks ruined the tomorrow that I was building:

NEPP, I prefer these memories of the Mets:

I have to say, that at this point, DiPoto pulled off a really nice trade for the Angels.

Santiago is a nice pitcher and Skaggs looks like he has a ton of potential.

Stark says they want 2-3 young guys for Dom:

Day 2 down. Same ad Day 1.

"Stark says they want 2-3 young guys for Dom"

I'd like to trade in my current fiance for 2-3 20-somethings, as well. I'm betting we both have the same shot of achieving our objectives.

"Stark says they want 2-3 young guys for Dom."

Good. Now let's just hope this isn't one of those instances where, 2 days from now, "2-3 young guys" has turned into "1 good young player," and 2 or 3 days after that, "1 good young player" has turned into "a B prospect," and 2 or 3 days after that, "a B prospect" has turned into "an experienced middle reliever." That type of progression has been known to happen a few times during RAJ's tenure.

Amaro on Hamels/Lee rumors: "Silly."

— Ryan Lawrence (@ryanlawrence21) December 10, 2013

Of all the guys on the roster, Amaro is trying to trade Brown to get younger and more organizational depth? Que?

Full quote from Todd Zolecki's Twitter feed:

Amaro on Lee and Hamels rumors: "I think they're silly, but that's ok." Said they want to add, not subtract.

— Todd Zolecki (@ToddZolecki) December 10, 2013

Buyers, not sellers.

“We’re built to win,” Ruben Amaro Jr. said.

Stanford must have a bitchin' performance arts program. r00b would absolutely kill doing stand-up.

As much as I was laughing at an imaginary confrontation between r00b and Beane earlier, the Rockies just stole Brett Anderson from the A's--for that price, r00b should have tried to get his hands in the mix for him.

Verducci just said he thought the DBacks should have made that deal for Dom Brown instead of Trumbo, but that the DBacks didn't view Brown as a "good fit" for them.

Given that they've insisted on "gritty players" the last few years, and traded Justin Upton in order to play guys like Cody Ross and Jason Kubel, I think I'm starting to get an idea of the kind of guys the Arizona front office views as a "good fit."

You mean it is possible there was nothing to the Lee/Hamels rumors?

The heck you say.

GTown, LMOA!!!!

I don't know what's more depressing, the thought that the Phillies don't have a plan, or the thought that they do, and this is it.

My favorite part of December every year isn't Christmas. It isn't New Years Eve. No, it's when DPat starts complaining that Amaro has no intention of making any moves.

It took a few weeks longer than last year, but DPat Day has arrived.

My second favorite part comes after Amaro does make a move and DPat says it 'isn't good enough' or doesn't meet his standards.

Racism in Arizona, Jack?

Surely you jest.

DPat = Captain Hindsight!

BTW, anyone see that Mark Prior finally retired - 7 years after throwing his last pitch.

Gotta give him credit for effort and persistence.

Should we chalk him up as another case of DustyBaker-itis?

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