Roy, Cliff, Kyle and the Rest

Thumbnail image for halladay 04.jpgIf the Phillies and Roy Halladay can agree to a contract extension, here is what we believe could happen before the end of the week:

– The Blue Jays will send Halladay and a reported $6 million to the Phillies.

– The Phillies will send Cliff Lee to the Mariners, and a package to the Blue Jays that sources said includes right-hander Kyle Drabek, outfielder Michael Taylor and catcher Travis d’Arnaud.

– The Mariners will send at least two prospects to the Phillies. One of them is expected to be right-hander Phillippe Aumont.

OK, thoughts?

Here are two things that Phillies fans should like: Halladay is a stud, a step above almost everybody in baseball. Lee pitched great in the postseason, but Halladay’s body of work pitching in the American League East is second to none. Halladay also will be in a Phillies uniform beyond 2010. The Phillies clearly felt Lee would not have been. So you guarantee yourself a stud pitcher atop your rotation for a few more years, rather than losing Lee after the season.

But they also could have kept both. If the Mariners are not sending prospects to Toronto, it means these are two totally separate trades. Essentially, the Phillies did not have to trade Lee to acquire Halladay. Of course, there is the issue of payroll. Lee is making $9 million next season, so this provides the Phillies salary relief. But Joe Blanton could make $7 million or more next season. I can’t imagine the Phillies are trading Lee over Blanton to save themselves roughly $2 million. No, it looks to me like the Phillies want Seattle’s prospects to restock their farm system. But is it worth it? Having Halladay and Lee in the same rotation is no guarantee of a World Series championship, but it sure puts them in excellent position to try.

So go for broke next year knowing the farm system is depleted, or upgrade the rotation with Halladay and hope the prospects from the Mariners soften the blow of losing Drabek, Taylor and d’Arnaud down the road?


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Even though he’s only a prospect, I don’t like the idea of trading Drabek at all. Why not send Aumont instead of Drabek’s place and have the BlueJays send only $4 or 5m?
I thought AA wanted Toronto to be Canada’s team?

I could swallow this deal if they had kept Lee. We would have a very good shot at getting another ring. But by trading Lee, they still have a thin rotation and there are no guarantees that they get back to the World Series. I really don’t like Drabek being included. They essentially unloaded half the farm system (Marson, Knapp, Donald, Carrasco, Drabek, Taylor, D’arnaud) for Halladay and a couple of prospects. That just seems insane to me. And we thought that J.P. Ricciardi was being ridiculous with his demands last Summer. Looks like Rube might have outsmarted himself and could have gotten Halladay a lot cheaper last July. And, just when the Phillies were overtaking the Eagles as the #1 team in town and were getting respect nationally, they fall back to their penny pinching ways of the Vet Era and put money before winning. A rotation with Halladay AND Lee would have been incredible. I am officially off the Ruben Amaro bandwagon. He truly is a rube.

To be fair, this isn’t exactly the penny-pinching days of the Vet. The Phils’ have a $140M budget, and that’s fairly representative of what they should be spending in the Philly market.

For me, it all depends on the prospects. If the Phils get back Aumont, Gilles, and either Morrow or Triunfel, it’s an outright victory for the Phils in the long term. Of course, keeping Lee would be preferable, but this way, they get a better ace, and they get 3 really solid prospects to reload the system. I can see the logic behind it.

I don’t know much about the Mariners’ prospects, but would it be uneven to send Morrow or Triunfel in place of Drabek?

A rotation of Halladay AND Lee would give you the inside track to make the World Series, which means increased revenues that would far exceed Cliff Lee’s 9 million dollar salary. Same old Phillies: penny wise and pound foolish. Let’s play it safe, save money, and hope to make the World Series again. The Phillies are printing money at the Bank. They didn’t have to trade Cliff Lee.

This is like waking up on Christmas morning to find out that Santa got you exactly what you wanted, only to find out that half of your other belongings were stolen while you were opening your gifts.

If the goal is to have the best chance to win, then on paper this is not worth it.

I am going to miss Cliff Lee. He’s a man’s man. Cool Hand Luke with a baseball.

i would rather send aumont instead of drabek. kyle is better in my opinion and aumont is french Canadian. Toronto would love him. and by the way, triunfel is a stud. i think keith law of espn ranked him top 10 ( or was it 15 ) in his 100 best prospects in 2009.

would kill to have lee and halladay, but we cant…………….

I don’t get this move. Last year, we balked at giving up Drabek, Taylor and Goose to get Halladay. Now we’re sending Drabek, Taylor and d’Arnaud. In other words we just switched Goose for d’Arnaud. By doing this we leave ourselves with NO cathing prospects in the farm at all. I don’t mind the trade, but wnder why we just didn’t do it last year already.

Then we trade Lee for 2 prospects to Seatle. In other words, we traded Marson, Knapp, Donald, and Carrasco for two Seatle prospects and half a season of Lee–not a great trade on our part.

This means our rotation for the coming year is Halladay, Hamels, Blanton, Happ and Fill in the blank. I would pay the extra money for a year and have a rotation of Halladay, Lee, Hamels, Happ and Blanton and get my two draft choices when Lee goes FA or flip him at the trade deadline for a better deal.
If Toronto is sending us 6 million and Lee makes 15, we’re only talking about 9 million above budget and with this rotation the pen doesn’t need to be upgrated as much as both Lee and Halladay finish games, or at least go into the 8th on a consistant basis, Financially it would be a wash if we kept Lee or traded him it seems to me

Correction, Lee only makes 9 million so we’d only be eating 3 million + Hallady’s salary. quite doable I’d think

Correction, Lee only makes 9 million so we’d only be eating 3 million + Hallady’s salary. quite doable I’d think

As for the farm system, Given that after 2011 the entire base of this team is gone (Howard, Rollins, Werth, Ibanez, Victorino, Blanton, etc are free agents) no farm system will be able to replenish the team in any case. We have a window of this year and 2011 to win. We have (assuming the Halladay trade happens as Todd says) Brown and goose to fill in in the OF (Mayberry isnt every going to start for our team) a few pitchers who should be ready and that’s it. There is no infielder anywhere near ready, and if we trade d’Arnaud no catcher either. I don’t see that a pitching prospect from Seatle helps our farm in any usful way

to fan_in_jerusalem
Sebastian Valle as our catcher (if ready), Gilles as an outfielder along with brown and gose, triunfel is our infielder (if we get him that is), aumont as our future madson haha, and a premature brody colvin.

I would trade Hamels before I would trade Drabek.

I hate this deal. Love Halladay, but the price is too steep. They should trade Blanton and keep Lee for just a 2 mil. difference. If we were the Yanks or the Sox, we’d totally have both players right now, which sucks. Plus, if they are going to give up Drabek, WHY oh WHY did they wait until AFTER we lost the World Series to do so?? We could have had Halladay in July had they given up Drabek then! That is who the Jays wanted all along. If we were keeping both Lee and Halladay, I would not care much who they traded…but to lose Lee AND Drabek and God knows who else? Too much. :O(


If they win the World Series next year it’ll all be justified. If they don’t, it’ll be because they went cheap and didn’t keep Lee when they got Halliday in the off season. Thats what it all comes down to. But in foresight, I don’t like it. It reeks of penny pinching if Halliday (and $6M) was traded for just the prospects. Trading Lee for prospects to restock the farm system makes sense on paper but if they’re one solid pitcher away from a world Series win next year, it won’t look as sensible. Lee could have been kept and when he walked next year, they could have gotten the two prospects for the farm system. Yes, they wouldn’t be major league ready for a few years but, we’re talking about a rotation of Halliday, Lee, Hamels, Blanton and Happ. Im still a die hard fan through thick and thin but, this could have been a once in a life time team. Too bad.

Can kinda understand to a certain degree the Phils trading Lee because of being unable to extend his contract. Sorry to hear Drabek might be part of the deal however glad that Happ will hopefully remain in Phillies pinstripes. He’s been the team ping-pong ball since his arrival.

Those asserting that the Phillies could have made this same deal for Halladay this past season are wrong because to begin with the Phillies keep Happ . More importantly, last year the Phillies would have gotten Halladay for a season and a half without the opportunity to negotiate an extension before the trade. The only part I do not like about this trade is the inclusion of Michael Taylor.

There is a lot of revisionist history here about what happened in July. If Amaro could have traded Drabek, Taylor and D’arnaud for Halladay and gotten Halladay to sing an extension he would have done it. There were names like Brown and Happ thrown around also and Toronto was totally inflexible.
Amaro didn’t want to trade Lee. He tried to trade Blanton but could not accept what he would get in return from a baseball standpoint. None of us know anything about the Seattle prospects (pundits like them every bit as much as ours) and, in reality, none of us know how our prospects will perform in the show. If it shakes out the way I think, Amaro will use the money he saves from these deals to sign a big bullpen piece and there are some good ones out there. Bottom line, Halladay is better than Lee and he is signing an extension. We can improve the bullpen. So, in the end, we will be a better baseball team than we were a few days ago, and isn’t that what it is all about?

Well, the initial report was wrong, but it’s still basically 1 year of Lee for 4-6 years of Halladay, plus it sounds like Drabek, Taylor and D’Arnaud for Aumont, Gillies and Ramirez. I don’t know the prospects (and prospects are prospects) but I do like that we might get two pitchers back for one, even if Drabek is more developed than Aumont. Obviously a Halladay, Lee, Hamels, Blanton, Happ rotation would have been sick, but I guess they couldn’t stomach the cost and the gutting of the farm system. It does sound like they’re getting a great load of prospects in exchange for 1 year from Lee, who probably will not stay in Seattle. Overall, I like the deal as it’s currently rumored and still love Ruben. Can’t wait to see Halladay on opening day!

I agree with pherrisphain above. Remember, Ricciardi was asking for Drabek, Brown/Taylor, AND Happ. Having both Drabek AND Happ included in the deal was the deal-breaker. The other huge difference between this deal and the July deal is that the earlier deal would have landed Halladay for only 1.5 seasons while the current deal locks him in for 4.

I also think the Phils should just go all in and keep Lee for a run at another title. Why is $140M such a magical number, esp. when the Phillies franchise is generating heaps of cash?

Lastly, regarding someone’s mention of getting rid of Hamels, I wonder how much he would fetch on the open market, given his disastrous season last year?

lets not forget the phillies sold out about 85% of their games and pretty much maxed out their revenue. I believe thats where the 140 is coming from unless they raise ticket prices substantially i think the phillies have maxed out what they can make in the Philadelphia market

I can’t believe somebody would prefer trading Hamels, a NLCS and WS MVP, instead of Drabek, who hasn’t pitched any inning above AA. Some people are really delusional.


Do you honestly think Phillies make their money only from ticket sales (whose prices are going up by the way)? You don’t think all the sales of millions of caps, jerseys, etc contribute to their profits? Check this link out:

snowdaddy, do you think all the people who spent money on Phillies swag in the last two years are going to go out and replace it in 2010? They maximized what they could off the two WS appearances and I suspect that the money from all of that will recede somewhat.
Although I may go out and get a Halladay gameday shirt. Sweet!

@ snowdaddyo look at the graph with revenues it went from 194 in 08 to 216 in 09 with 140 salaries that means 76 million to run the rest and that includes the stadium and everything that makes perfect sense it would be capped at 140

yes, that makes sense, but win another WS title (or two) and you propel this franchise among the elite, reaping benefits for years.

The Lee trade doesn’t make sense to me. Yes, restock the farm system, but with what? According to scouting reports (, none of the Seattle prospects are top-tier prospects. We’re losing two in Taylor and Drabek.

I am on the side of keeping Lee and Halladay. Otherwise trading Lee after getting Halladay in a separate deal for questionable prospects is a disguised SAlARY DUMP by an organization too timid to go for broke just one time in its over 120 year history. This ownership had finally dug itself out of the doghouse created in the last decade byrefusing to go the extra mile and crying poor and small market which the fans so through as bull. Now they have a shot to practically lock up another WS, but OH It costs too much to keep Lee!!! This may turn into a PR diaster.

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