Cliff Lee Involved in Roy Halladay Deal?

Thumbnail image for halladay.jpgOh, the plot thickens.’s Ken Rosenthal talks about a plausible scenario in which the Phillies trade Cliff Lee in a multi-team deal to acquire Roy Halladay. And you know what? I could see it happening.

Halladay likely would require a contract extension to waive his no-trade clause, which means the Phillies would have an ace locked up beyond 2010. It won’t be easy to extend Halladay, but I think it would be easier to extend him than Lee.

The Phillies met this week with Lee’s agent about an extension, but nothing is imminent. In fact, there is nothing to suggest progress has been made. I personally think Lee is intent on testing the free-agent market. In an August interview with The Cleveland Plain-Dealer, Lee talked about the Indians’ decision not to negotiate an extension with him during spring training. He said it basically ruled out the possibility of discussing an extension after the 2009 season.

“It doesn’t make sense to do it one year out when I just watched what CC (Sabathia) did,” said Lee, referring to Sabathia’s seven-year, $161 million contract.

If Lee hits the open market like he suggests he will, I don’t think the Phillies will re-sign him. He likely will sign elsewhere, and the Phillies will have just two compensatory draft picks to show for it. So I’m thinking the Phillies are looking at two scenarios:

  1. Trade Lee to get Halladay, who they sign to an extension.
  2. Keep Lee, don’t get Halladay and Lee walks after the 2010 season.

But why can’t they get Halladay without trading Lee? Prospects and payroll.

Rosenthal mentions that the Blue Jays might eat some of Halladay’s $15.75 million salary for a bigger haul of prospects. The Phillies might need the help. Trading Lee might allow them to keep their own top prospects like Domonic Brown, Kyle Drabek and even J.A. Happ, and still meet Toronto’s asking price. It also would provide them payroll relief. The Phillies’ payroll is pushing $140 million, which seems to be their limit. That might explain why the Phillies haven’t made much progress in finding bullpen help — they are trying to get pitchers under market value. And if you’re a pitcher, why would you do that? Maybe if the Phillies free up a few million dollars they can fortify a bullpen that has question marks with Brad Lidge and J.C. Romero recovering from elbow surgeries.

There are a lot of moving pieces and considerations here. Fascinating stuff, if that’s what needs to happen for Ruben Amaro Jr. to pull this off.

So what’s your choice, if the Phillies can only have Lee or Halladay in their rotation next year?


The Phillies have until 11:59 p.m. tonight to tender contracts to the following players or they become free agents: Blanton, Shane Victorino, Carlos Ruiz, Chad Durbin and Clay Condrey. The Phillies are expected to offer contracts to all five.


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Why do people take Ken Rosenthal seriously

Halladay, assuming they can get him to sign a long term deal AND keep Blanton.

Halladay is better than Lee. If we aren’t going to sign Lee long-term than please trade him for Halladay so we can keep a prospect or Blanton or save $ or whatever.

Now its getting ridiculous. Im at my Halliday rumor limit.

Come on joebridgenc, shouldn’t you be gloating after we all told you there was no chance?

Im gloating inside phylan. This trade/signing arrangement makes absolutely no sense. Not even Ed Wade would make this move. Its one step up and two steps back. Its losing Lee and Blanton and picking up Halliday. Its a rotation of Lee, Hamels, Blanton and two question marks or Halliday, Hamels and three question marks. There is no upside to it. It won’t happen.

I can’t believe that this is being taken seriously by anybody. You don’t trade Lee and prospects for Halladay.

At any rate, when push comes to shove, I think that Lee will be a more effective ace for a longer period of time. Halladay is currently a better pitcher and he’s only 1 year older than Lee, but he has thrown almost twice as many innings (Halladay has 2046.2 IP in the MLB, and 638 in the minors; Lee has 1196.2 IP in the MLB, and 428 in the minors). I question how much longer he can pitch with those kinds of miles on his arm.

But I also think that all of this talk of trading Lee for Halladay is ridiculous. They’ll both be difficult to sign, but I think that the Phils can get either one of them (but maybe not both) to commit long term.

Get Halliday, then rename the bank to THE HALLIDAY INN”

Halladay would want a minimum of a four year extension beyond 2010, probably five. He won’t want to pass up his chance at one last big payday, which he is due after next season. The good thing is that the Phillies are his favored destination, due to their spring training locale and the fact that they give him a good chance to pitch in the WS. He would eat up the NL and might be inclined to give a bit of a discount. Not a big one, mind you, but a discount nonetheless.

By the time Steve Carlton was the same age as Halladay he had pitched 2986 innings in the majors alone or more than Halladay has pitched in the majors and minors combined. From ages 33 through 37, or five years, Carlton pitched an additional 1288 innings or over 2oo per year. His record was 98-48 and his ERA was 2.87.

Here’s a juicy one…on the trading block, candidates… Ibanez, Victorino, Blanton and Moyer. trade either Ibanez or Victorino, hey the Phils did sign a #2 hitter, coincidence Shane, maybe. One or both Blanton and Moyer. Don’t know who would take Moyer unless Phils ate atleast 4mill. Play scenarios out, the money works, and Phils keep Drabek/Happ, Brown and Taylor. Come on GM wannabys figure it out.

Shane is too important to the chemistry of the team. He embodies the whole personality of the team, he’s the heart. He’s also a gold glove all star. Id make Victorino untouchable, even for a Halliday trade. Ibanez Id let go if the price was right. He’s good but expendable with Taylor and Mayberry waiting for a spot. Nobody would take Moyer, either leave him in the bullpen or eat his salary and release him. Your trading block scenario doesn’t list what you’d be getting for any of the players. What your getting would determine if Blanton is expendable. Moyer is expendable but too expensive and too old to trade.

One thing I’ll say about Moyer. While he is useless in the postseason, he has been a big part of the Phillies staying ahead of the pack in the NL East. He’s won 42 games in the last three seasons. It wouldn’t make any sense to release him if he can rehab and get healthy. He obviously has something that keeps them in games.

Yes, Moyer has been valuable up until the end of last season but Im always wondering if this game (whichever he is pitching in at the time) is the one where he starts to pitch like his age. It has to be coming any game now, he can’t possibly pitch to major league hitters at whatever age is coming up soon.


I appreciate your point, but you’re talking about a totally different era in pitching. Just look at IP/year if you doubt it. Last year, the pitcher with the most IP was Verlander, who had 240 IP (Halladay was 2nd, with 239). Carlton went over 300 IP twice in his career (346.1 in 1972!), and was really close to 300 IP on several other occasions.

I’m not saying that Halladay won’t be effective over the next 5 years. And I’m definitely not suggesting that the Phils shouldn’t pursue him. I’m just saying that Lee’s arm has much less mileage on it, and I think that, in today’s game, he’s more likely to keep his top-level stuff for a longer period in his career. We’re comparing starters who are similar ages (Halladay is 1 year older) with similar durability, but Lee’s arm has taken much less abuse.

I can’t see how this would get done. First of all, I do not think it would benefit us long-term. If it means depleting our farm system with top prospects, then a definite “hell no!”

For one, just look at their stats: Lee is almost as good as Halladay, is almost 2 yrs younger, and has proven to us he can pitch well in our little-league sized park.

Halladay OTOH, would come from a pitchers park to a small hitters park so his #’s would definitely inflate.

Why does Zolecki automatically assume that Lee will walk after 2010??? Just because he did that in Cleveland ( where it was obvious the ownership didn’t give a crap about the team ) doesn’t mean he’ll do it here. He looks at ease pitching for us–you can see it in his facial expressions during the game–he is calm, collected, and glad to play for a winning team. I almost wish Lee had the 10-5 clause with us, because I don’t want him going anywhere soon!

If Amaro does trade Lee, my confidence in Amaro would do a complete 360. We finally have a stable pitcher who is under 35, doesn’t walk a lot of people, can surprisingly hit rather well, proves he pitches well in the clutch–why would the Phils want to mess that up??!?

No, I say extend a long-term deal to Lee and try to get Halladay w/o including him at all; regardless, or one of the 5 stars on the team. If it means we don’t get him, we don’t get him. I used to include Rollins in there as a star, but no longer, and Rollins is obviously at his peak now going downhill.

Back to what I was saying though, at least we have Lee at a MUCH cheaper contract ( thereby leaving us some lee-way–no pun intended, to sign some relievers we desperately need. )

pherrisphain: while I do think Halladay is a top-of-the-line starter ( just as Lee is ), I think it is still premature to put them in the same class as Lefty. I would venture to guess that even Halladay would agree with that.

The only difference being that when Carlton pitched, there were dozens of other very good/great pitchers pitching. Nowadays, it is a mere handful because pitchers are babied more than they were then.

If Lefty was limited to 200-240 innings per season, we would have seen him play more than 20 yrs that he did.

phillydeitz: who do you think the Phils could get for Moyer and/or Blanton? I’ll tell you now, not much.

Moyer might have another season left, if that, and Blanton is a 3rd-5th starter on most clubs.

Ibanez might be interesting, because though his contract will run till he’s 40 yrs old, who’s to say his numbers will? He just had a sports hernia surgery, so that’ll flag some of his intensity there off a bit, but as for Victorino, you know, I could see him ending up in LA for the Dodgers. What an odd place for him to be nowadays, but he reminds me of someone playing for the Dodgers ( who actually he began his career with. )

I like Victorino the most of the group because not only is he playing the tougher position of the 4 players, but I like his hard mentality attitude that Philly loves players who play hard. He’s one of the few grit players still playing.

There is no way they could trade Ibanez. He’s under contract until he’s 40, and he’s making good money. Who would pick up that salary? And what could the Phils possibly get in return?! Very, very little.

I wasn’t expecting much for Blanton, a second tier prospect at best. Victorino could land you a good prospect or two to be in Halladay deal. Maybe Jays would want him for 2 years try sign him longer or flip him, let the Jays get prospects for him. Boston could be a suitor for Ibanez. I believe Bay isn’t coming back. Would they go after Holliday first, probably, but if they lose out on him Ibanez at 2yrs 11.5mill per year could be intriguing to them, just saying. Look if something is brewing I believe its more than just Blanton’s salary dump. Phils have budget 140mill, is that set in stone? Phils have the now and future to consider, they are not cheap anymore, but they are still not the Yankees. Their are scenarios in those mix players where the money works. Hey, Phils could spend 5-10 mill on bullpen, figure Hamels returns to ’07, ’08 form, they get Lights out Lidge again instead of Lit up Lidge. They still have all their prospects to make a mid-season trade and sign Lee to an extension. That would be fine with me, but let’s not forget the following year Werth is a FA, its Howard last year, Hamels will be getting hefty raise, but Ruben can sort through that in 2011. hey blow the budget get halladay hope you don’t have give up alot thats cool with me too. ITS NOT MY MONEY!

Possible deal… Blanton is traded for a second tier prospect , a Jason Donald type prospect. that’s the best you’ll get. Phils could keep him or send to Jays. Next trade Victorino, his trade value will never be higher. Do I have a specific team and what prospects you’d get, no. I’m not doing all the leg work here. I believe a team thats close to playoff berth would give a Brown type prospect thinking Vic’s hussle, defense, speed and bat could tip the scales. Am a way off base yet? You give Jays Drabek/Happ ( I’m not sure which I’d want togive up or what Jays would like more) Gose, and the 2 prospects ( maybe you get 3 and throw them all in) from trading Blanton and Victorino. Hey Brown could be the deal breaker, but I think you try with Gose first then give in. Anyway halladay= Blanton, Victorino and Condrey projected salary( yes I know Condrey was not tendered which makes my point) ITS AN NBA DEAL, MONEY FOR MONEY, ITS CLOSE GET OUT YOUR CALCULATOR! Polanco bats second, Fransisco or Taylor(if he’s ready) bats 7th. That lineup is still going to score. If its drabek in deal then rotation of Lee, Halladay, Hamels , Happ, Kendrick/moyer/smoltz? maybe. Obviously Lee or Halladay would have to be locked up longterm. You could actually sign both to an extension but then after this season trade Howard. Then the Howard sweepstakes is on. Wonder what talented prospects and/or players you could get for him. Just sayin.

phillydeitz: Not even a 2nd tier prospect for Blanton. Nobody would give that up. No, I don’t want Drabek included in any deal unless it is bringing him into our starting rotation once he’s ready.

Amaro was smart not to trade him.

Howard would be an interesting trade, because he’s approaching 30, is in his prime, has reduced his k ratio a little bit, and improved his fielding a little bit. Dangle him for Roy Halladay and see what the Jays think….or another top-line starter–that might be our best bet to get any best starter out there.

We have far more than enough power in our lineup, we could certainly afford to lose Howard if the price was right.

The Jays aren’t looking for a 30-year old 1B who is making $15-20M a year. They’re looking for young minor leaguers who they can control for a long period of time and rebuild with. Besides, there is no way that the Phils could afford to take Howard out of the lineup. He’s been among the league leaders in HR and RBI each of the past 4 years. The entire lineup is centered around him in the 4-hole. The Phils don’t have another bat that could replace that.

Any trade involving Blanton or Moyer and possibly Ibanez is about THE MONEY not prospects. You have to make the money work, a NBA TRADE. Victorino is your best shot to get a prospect Jays would want or Let Jays decide to keep him or flip ie trade him themselves. My point, its more than just trading Blanton if they are getting Halladay. they would be going passed their budget, Phils do have to get some arms in the pen. Don’t they? Or the bullpen fix is cheap players and/or the likes of Bastardo, Mathieson, escalona, kendrick, just to name a few. Happy with that? I thought Ruben’s priority was to fix the pen. Just sayin. With respects to Moyer, obviously you’d get back a bag baseballs. I’m not sure if any team would take him no matter how much salary Phils ate. Could it be possible (and Jamie would have to agree) release him or he retires, and Phils pay moneys owed(8mill) over years.

My last comment on this… Take everything into consideration, the now, the future, the lineup, the starting rotation and budget, This is what I think Amaro is attempting to do. Get Halladay but keep Drabek, Brown and Taylor. There are numerous scenarios where the money works but it all depends on the value of victorino and if you could work out something with Moyer getting out of his 8 mill owed this year, via trade or buyout, saving money this year. You could come up with a scenario if they don’t have to pay Moyer too much for this season that you keep Blanton. Stop comparing Victorino to Fransisco or Taylor and look at it as Polanco vs Shane. Who is the better 2 hitter in a lineup. Don’t tell me that combo of Fransico or taylor couldn’t produce close to what feliz gave them in the 7th hole. You can’t keep everyone. Werth is a FA after 2010, Victorino after 2011, Ibanez in 2011 might not be worth the money and not to mention Howard after 2011 season is a free agent.

I lied, sorry. What if boston decides to not pursue Holliday and go after Lackey, making Buckholtz trade bait. how about Victorino and prospects( d’arnaud and some one else) for Buckholtz. Would Boston do that? Boston could sign Derosa( i don’t think he signed with any one yet) for 3rd base. Now Phils have pieces to wheel and deal if they so choose.

This has got to be the dumbest, most harebrained idea I’ve heard in a long time. Rosenthal blows this idiocy out of his rear end, and Zolecki lights a match to it. Typical of writers with nothing to write about. They just make stuff up. I’ll tell you one thing, if the Phillies do trade Lee for Halladay and I’m faced with another year of watching Jamie Moyer creak around the mound every fifth day, they can keep their bloody season tickets.

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