Results tagged ‘ Gary Sheffield ’

Phillies at the Top in Payroll

USA Today released its annual Major League Baseball payroll database, which says the Phillies have the seventh highest payroll in baseball at a little more than $113 million.

$113 million?

We estimated yesterday that the Phillies’ payroll is more than $132 million. That is quite a difference, but USA Today only includes the 25 players on the Phillies’ Opening Day roster, plus J.C. Romero and Mike Zagurski. It does not include the salaries for Adam Eaton ($9.15 million), Geoff Jenkins ($8 million) and Jim Thome ($3 million) — salaries the Phillies are responsible for and consider part of their payroll.

So push that payroll to more than $132 million and the Phillies rank fourth in baseball behind the New York Yankees ($201.4 million), New York Mets ($149.3 million) and Chicago Cubs ($134.8 million). But remember other payrolls might be a little different, too. The Detroit Tigers, for example, are listed as having a $115 million payroll, but that doesn’t include the $14 million they’re paying Gary Sheffield.

So where should the Phillies be ranked? Let’s just say somewhere near the top. And what makes that even more interesting is that the newspaper reports that 14 of 30 teams this season have reduced payroll compared to last season. But because the Phillies won the World Series, they have been insulated from the recession and boosted payroll more than 25 percent.

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The Phillies replaced the carpet in the clubhouse at Citizens Bank Park after last season because it was five years old and needed to be replaced. (Can’t imagine it was easy getting the champagne smell out, either.) So what are they doing with the old carpet? They’re cutting them up and turning them into doormats. MLB authenticated the carpet, so fans will be able to buy the carpet in front of Chase Utley‘s locker or Ryan Howard‘s locker, etc.

And who knows? Maybe somebody in Japan will pay big bucks for the carpet in front of So Taguchi‘s locker.

The carpet could be available later this month, selling for around $250.

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Happ, Taschner Make Bullpen

The Phillies have announced that left-handers J.A. Happ and Jack Taschner have made the bullpen.

The 25th man has not been announced. It appears Miguel Cairo would be that guy, but perhaps the Phillies have something cooking. A team source said earlier today they would move on and look elsewhere for help once they got word Gary Sheffield was going to New York.

There had been some thought the Phillies might keep Happ in his starter’s role in Triple-A Lehigh Valley, but I think they feel he pitched well enough last season and this spring to earn a big-league job. They also said earlier this week they feel he can keep his arm stretched out enough that he could start at a moment’s notice.

Taschner was a lock all along. He was a lock because they acquired him recently in a trade with the Giants and because he will be paid $830,000 (i.e. they didn’t acquire him to have him pitch in the Minor Leagues … not at that salary).

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Sheffield to the Mets

Gary Sheffield is not coming to the Phillies.

A team source said earlier they were out of the running for his services. And sure enough, the move is official: Sheffield to the Mets. Sheffield, who the Detroit Tigers released Tuesday, signed with the Mets because they could offer him more playing time. The Phillies source said the Phillies will move on and look elsewhere for help.

If they cannot find anybody via trade or through the waiver wire, Miguel Cairo is likely to start the season on the bench.

Mets Interested in Sheffield?

The New York Daily News reported today that the Mets could be kicking around Gary Sheffield‘s name.

They wouldn’t, wouldn’t they?

But it sounds like the Mets could have the same problem the Phillies have: finding enough playing time to make Sheffield happy.

Sheffield’s agent Rufus Williams said last night that they haven’t ruled out the Phillies, but it seems if Sheffield can find a place where he can play regularly that is where he would go. But if Sheffield can’t find a job where he is going to play every day he would have to consider playing in a reserve role.

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Sheffield Update

gary sheffield 1.jpgTigers manager Jim Leyland told reporters yesterday that three teams have expressed interest in Gary Sheffield.

We know the Phillies are one of them, and the fact Ruben Amaro Jr. has acknowledged that interest publicly tells me the Phillies very much want to sign him once he clears waivers at 1 p.m. today. If they were just kicking the tires, Amaro might not be so upfront about it (although he really hasn’t said much other than he has talked to Sheffield, Sheffield’s agent Rufus Williams and that they are interested).

But we also know today that the Reds are talking to Sheffield.

There probably are more than three teams that have interest in Sheffield, but we know two of them are National League teams and we know ESPN’s Buster Olney reported yesterday there don’t seem to be many fits in the American League, where Sheffield would be an ideal fit.

The Phillies’ chances to get Sheffield? Not knowing who the other teams are or what the other teams are promising in terms of playing time, I’d still say it’s less likely than likely, but I wouldn’t say it’s a tremendous long shot, either.

Update: Sheffield told Dusty Baker that he wants playing time. The Phillies can’t give that to him, but it sounds like the Reds can’t, either. So it remains unlikely Sheffield is a fit, but if nobody can offer Sheffield playing time then he might have to reconsider.

Oh, the suspense is just killing me.

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Anything Cooking with Sheff?

gary sheffield.jpgWe learned a couple things after the Phillies released Geoff Jenkins yesterday.

First, they are interested in Gary Sheffield.

Second, they are interested in Andruw Jones.

What are the chances the Phillies get either player? It’s less likely than likely, but that doesn’t mean it won’t happen. Phillies super scout Gordon Lakey has been following Jones recently, but the Rangers might not be willing to move him. Sheffield? It seemed last night like Sheffield would be moving to the American League, but ESPN’s Buster Olney wrote today that AL teams with room for Sheffield are in short supply. Tampa Bay has Pat Burrell. The Red Sox have David Ortiz. The Royals like what they have seen from Billy Butler. The Mariners have Ken Griffey Jr. The Indians have Travis Hafner. The White Sox have Jim Thome. The Angels have Gary Matthews Jr. The Yankees? Sheffield burned bridges there. That could leave the Orioles and the Twins, but it’s unclear if they would be interested.

So maybe Sheffield will have to consider National League teams after all.

The Phillies obviously would need to resolve something before they sign him, if it gets that far. Would Sheffield happily accept a reserve role? If they feel comfortable with Sheffield’s attitude, it basically is a low-risk, high-reward move because they only would have to pay him $400,000.

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The Phillies said yesterday there are four candidates for two bullpen jobs: J.A. Happ, Jack Taschner, Gary Majewski and Bobby Mosebach. But I’d bet hard on Happ and Taschner. Majewski signed a minor-league contract, so they don’t risk losing him by starting him in Triple-A Lehigh Valley. Mosebach, a Rule 5 Draft pick, hasn’t shown enough to earn a spot on the 25-man roster. That leaves Happ, who pitched well enough to earn a spot in the rotation, and Taschner, who the Phillies just acquired in a trade with the Giants.

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Park Wins Fifth Job, Phils Contact Sheffield

Ruben Amaro Jr. announced that Chan Ho Park beat J.A. Happ for the fifth starter’s job. Happ’s fate with the team has not been decided, although Amaro said Happ, Gary Majewski, Jack Taschner and Bobby Mosebach are comepting for two bullpen jobs.

Amaro also said the Phillies have contacted the agent for Gary Sheffield, who the Tigers just released. Sheffield could be a bit now that the Phillies have released Geoff Jenkins.

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Park said he will make his debut April 12 against the Rockies in Denver.

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Phillies Release Jenkins

Just got word that the Phillies have released outfielder Geoff Jenkins.

Does this mean Gary Sheffield is on his way?

Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said he would talk later.

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Reporters just met with Jenkins. Here is some of what he said:

“Anytime you get released it’s obviously a surprise,” he said. “I think it’s just something that we talked about. I don’t know if I foreshadowed this scenario happening, but I knew there were left-handed hitters. So it seemed like somebody would be the odd man out at some point. It’s real tough. I care a lot about those guys in the clubhouse. You just deal with this like anything else and try to find a new spot. It’s obviously something I’ve never had to deal with before, playing my whole career. I guess what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. I don’t regreat anything for one minute that I was here. I told Charlie that, and Ruben. They were great with me.

“What’s there to be mad about? I picked a great year to be here. I wish it worked out better and I could be with them, but I don’t regret one minute. I wouldn’t change a thing being with these guys going through what we went through last year.”

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Could Sheffield Fit in Philly?

sheffield.jpgThe Detroit Tigers surprised everybody this morning when they released Gary Sheffield, who is owed $14 million this season.

Sheffield is a right-handed, power-hitting corner outfielder.

The Phillies are looking for a right-handed, power-hitting corner outfielder.

Is there a match here?

There could be, but there are some things to consider. First, the Tigers released Sheffield because they said they wanted more versatility on their 25-man roster … and they actually could have used him as a DH. Can Sheffield still play in the outfield? He obviously would have no choice with the Phillies. Second, Sheffield told the Detroit Free Press that his first preference is the Tampa Bay Rays, although I’m not sure how that would work because the Rays have Pat Burrell and Gape Kapler. But if Sheffield prefers to play in the American League, where he can DH, the Phillies obviously aren’t a match. But if Sheffield, who has 499 home runs, can’t find a match in the American League the Phillies would make some sense.

That is, if he isn’t looking for regular playing time.

Got it so far?

But even if the Phillies think Sheffield can play in the outfield and if Sheffield is OK playing in the National League in a non-everyday role, the Phillies still would have to release or trade Geoff Jenkins or Matt Stairs to make room for him. The Phillies have been trying to trade Jenkins this spring, and I believe that continues to be their preference: move or release Jenkins and keep Stairs.

FOX’s Ken Rosenthal reported today that the Phillies are unwilling to eat Jenkins’ $8 million salary, which includes a $1.25 buyout on a 2010 club option. But if that is the case, maybe Sheffield could change their thinking.

Why? Because the Phillies only would have to pay Sheffield $400,000. In essence, they would be paying Sheffield $8.4 million to get a right-handed bat for their bench compared to paying Jenkins $8 million.

Other things to consider:

Sheffield was hitting .178 (8 for 45) with three homers and five RBIs this spring. He walked 13 times for a .387 on-base percentage, but had a .378 slugging percentage. He also hit .225 with 19 homers and 57 RBIs in 418 at-bats last season, when he played just six games in the outfield.

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