Results tagged ‘ Ryan Madson ’

Madson Looked ‘Good,’ But …

Madson Will Close if Lidge Isn't ReadyThe Phillies watched Ryan Madson throw late last week in Arizona, and Ruben Amaro Jr. made an interesting comment Wednesday when asked about it.

“Our reports were good when we saw him, so he’s going to sign somewhere,” the general manager said.

Interesting because Amaro said Madson is going to sign somewhere, not necessarily with the Phillies. If the Phils were in the thick of negotiations or seriously interested, Amaro typically would have much less to say.

There could be a reason for that. Sources said Madson has been telling teams he is looking for a guaranteed Major League contract. That might be too much for the Phillies to handle, considering they just signed A.J. Burnett, but most importantly because Madson has not pitched in a big league game since 2011 because of right elbow surgery.

Burnett Sounds Unlikely, Phils to Watch Madson

Manuel Likes Myers in 8th, Madson in 9thRuben Amaro Jr. said this morning he will continue to look for ways to improve the Phillies roster, but with pitchers and catchers holding their first workout at Carpenter Complex in six days any significant additions seem unlikely.

“It’s more likely we’ll go in with what we’ve got,” Amaro said.

The Phillies have been talking with free-agent right-hander A.J. Burnett, but the Pirates and Orioles also are top suitors.

But the Phillies will be one team watching former closer Ryan Madson throw today in Arizona. Madson has not pitched since 2011 because of Tommy John surgery and complications following the surgery, but when he has been healthy he has been one of the top relievers in baseball.

“There are several guys in that boat,” Amaro said. “We’ll have our eyes on these guys who are working on coming back from an injury or surgery.”

It is unclear if Madson is looking for a guaranteed Major League contract, and if so if that would scare away the Phillies.

The Phillies also have been looking for a backup center fielder. Currently, John Mayberry Jr. and Tony Gwynn Jr. are two top candidates for that job.

“There aren’t a chock full of opportunities,” Amaro said. “It’s a possibility, but as I said we’ll probably go with what we’ve got and see what happens over the course of the spring.”

Madson Injury Won’t Rattle Hamels

Cole Hamels’ head dropped the moment he heard former teammate Ryan Madson needs Tommy John surgery.

“That’s terrible,” he said. “That’s terrible.”

Madson signed a one-year, $8.5 million contract with the Reds in the offseason after he could not find the multiyear deal he wanted. He hoped to have a fantastic season in Cincinnati then get the big money contract next winter.

That will not happen now.

Hamels finds himself in a similar situation as Madson. He is scheduled to become a free agent following the season. If he has a big season and hits the free agent market, there is speculation he could earn more than $120 million. Of course, he also has to remain healthy the entire year to make that happen.

Hamels said today at JetBlue Park that Madson’s injury does not affect his feelings regarding free agency (i.e. he’s not going to have his agent John Boggs call Ruben Amaro Jr. to have him sign a club-friendly deal).

“No, because I think I’ve had some serious injuries with breaking arms and having herniated discs,” Hamels said. “So what? You lose a year, but you kind of gain a year because you don’t have the wear and tear. Hopefully, Madson can look at it like that. If you’ve overcome an injury, I think you can overcome anything. Obviously, I’ve had a few, so I know how to overcome them … Obviously, you can’t help the freak accidents. Sometimes it’s just straight bad luck. But he’s got a good personality. I think he’ll be able to get through it. I don’t think he’ll be with Cincinnati any longer, but he’ll be a nice free agent for some team. Maybe he’ll come back here.”

The bigger question is would Hamels be with him?


Jim Salisbury and I co-authored the book The Rotation, which is now available. Check it out here!
Here are our upcoming book signings:

  • April 2: Barnes & Noble in Plymouth Meeting, PA, 7 p.m.
  • April 3: Chester County Book Company in West Chester, PA, 7 p.m.
  • April 26: Barnes & Noble in Marlton, NJ, 7 p.m.

Season Over: Madson Needs Tommy John


Mark Sheldon covers the Reds for He just reported Ryan Madson needs Tommy John surgery:

The ligament in his elbow is torn off the bone and he will need Tommy John surgery that will end his season before it begins. Madson was examined this morning in Cincinnati by team medical director Dr. Tim Kremcheck.

The Reds did not take an insurance policy on Madson’s one-year, $8.5 million contract because it was a one-year deal and the club policy is not to do insurance on one-year deals.

A couple thoughts from the press box at JetBlue Park in Fort Myers:

Can you imagine if the Phillies had signed Madson to a four-year, $44 million contract, considering the injuries to Ryan Howard and Chase Utley?


Can you imagine if the Phillies had resigned Madson and not resigned Jimmy Rollins? The Phillies would be without a closer, first baseman, second baseman and have Freddy Galvis playing shortstop.

You have to feel bad for Madson. He took a big risk signing a one-year contract with Reds, which means he will not sign that lucrative deal following the season.

It might never come now. You never know.


Jim Salisbury and I co-authored the book The Rotation, which is now available. Check it out here!
Here are our upcoming book signings:

  • April 2: Barnes & Noble in Plymouth Meeting, PA, 7 p.m.
  • April 3: Chester County Book Company in West Chester, PA, 7 p.m.
  • April 26: Barnes & Noble in Marlton, NJ, 7 p.m.

Reds Get Madson

Ryan Madson wants to be a closer, so while the Phillies would have loved to have had him in their 2012 bullpen as a setup man, he is headed to Cincinnati on a one-year, $8.5 million contract.

I never would have predicted that in November.

Back in November it appeared the Phillies and Madson were close to a four-year, $44 million extension. But the negotiations hit a snag (one side said they had a verbal agreement, the other side said they didn’t) and the Phillies decided to spend $6 million more to sign Jonathan Papelbon. Meanwhile, the closing opportunities for Madson dried up and instead of getting the monster pay day he hoped, he has to pitch in Cincinnati for one season before hitting the market again. That’s not exactly how Scott Boras planned it, but that’s the situation.

It will be a strange spring training without Madson and possibly Brad Lidge in the clubhouse. They were the final two pieces of the 2008 World Series bullpen. But there is still a chance Lidge is back. He remains unsigned, and the longer he is out there I think the chances improve the Phillies could sign him to a Minor League deal. Read Paul Hagen‘s story on Lidge here.

Hagen recently joined after leaving the Daily News. He is an awesome addition to our staff. Hagen will be writing plenty of national stories, but he’ll get a chance to write his share of Phillies stories, too. That’s great for everybody. I actually meant to post this back in December, but … welcome aboard, Paul. Thrilled to have you on the team.

Bye Bye Madson

Ryan Madson wants to be a closer, so he declined salary arbitration from the Phillies before tonight’s midnight deadline.

The move means Madson is headed elsewhere, which means the Phillies will receive two draft picks as compensation once he signs with another team. If Madson had accepted salary arbitration he essentially would have been signed to a one-year contract with the Phillies, but would have been a setup man for closer Jonathan Papelbon.

That would have hurt Madson’s earning potential once he became a free agent again next offseason.

“Ryan was never (going to accept),” Scott Boras said. “He’s remaining a free agent here.”

Last month there had been reports the Phillies and Madson were close to a four-year, $44 million contract. The Phillies signed Papelbon to a four-year, $50 million deal instead. It is hard to imagine Madson finding that kind of a deal now with most teams already filling their closer roles, but Boras has worked magic before.

“Ryan Madson is a closer that … has performed in a large market, performed in the playoffs, performed at high levels, one of the few closers at that age (31) and has the combination of a 95 mph fastball and a changeup,” Boras said. “I think we’ve seen a lot of teams that have dismissed the expenditure required to sign a player of that caliber. Much like the starting pitching market, we haven’t seen a lot of activity in that until maybe today. I think we’ll just have to wait in time to see how that filters out.”

Madson went 47-30 with a 3.59 ERA and 52 saves in 491 appearances in nine seasons with the Phillies. He went 4-1 with a 2.37 ERA and 32 saves in 34 opportunities in his first season as a full-time closer in 2011.

Because Madson is a Type A free agent, the Phillies will receive the signing team’s top draft pick, plus a compensatory pick between the first and second rounds in the 2012 First-Year Player Draft.


Need a holiday gift? We’ve got another Sports Writers Extravaganza book signing at 7 p.m. on Dec. 15 at the Barnes & Noble at the Willow Grove Mall.

Could Madson Accept Salary Arbitration?

It seems like there are fewer and fewer places for Ryan Madson to find the lucrative, multiyear contract he desires.

Does that mean he could accept salary arbitration from the Phillies?

The deadline is midnight tomorrow, and although Ruben Amaro Jr. continues to believe the possibility is remote it would not be a complete shock if Madson did. Other than the Boston Red Sox, there does not seem to be a team willing to spend major money on a closer. Not the Reds. Not the Padres. Not the Mets. The Angels are out there. They spend money, and Madson certainly would love to pitch for his hometown team. But if Madson’s agent Scott Boras feels he cannot land the big deal he wants he could accept salary arbitration and try again on the free agent market next year.

“A Scott Boras client has done that before,” Amaro said today.

It happened in 2003, when Kevin Millwood accepted salary arbitration from the Phillies. If Madson accepted he would get a considerable raise from the $4.5 million he made in 2011. The Phillies could keep him to form one of the best 1-2 punches in baseball in the back end of the bullpen with closer Jonathan Papelbon, who signed a four-year, $50 million contract last month. But Amaro also pointed out the Phillies could trade Madson.

“I think a bullpen with Madson and (Jose) Contreras and (Antonio) Bastardo and (Mike) Stutes and Papelbon would be OK,” Amaro said.

The Phillies also offered salary arbitration to Jimmy Rollins, who is expected to decline, and Raul Ibanez, who will decline.

The Papelbon Deal

Jonathan Papelbon is in town today for a physical, so expect an official announcement and introductory news conference later today.

Lots and lots of reaction about Papelbon’s four-year, $50 million deal.

My first reaction? Wow. That is a ton of money for a closer, considering the Phillies just finished a three-year, $37.5 million deal with Brad Lidge. Lots of risk there, and knowing the way pitcher’s break down (there is a reason Pat Gillick hated going longer than three years on pitchers) it wouldn’t surprise me to see this deal haunt them down the road (although Papelbon has never had surgery or been on the DL).

My second reaction? The Phillies got the best closer on the market.

Let’s address a few things that popped into my head as I read comments on Twitter, e-mail, Facebook, etc., since Friday:

– I heard no complaints when reports broke early last week the Phillies had reached an agreement on a four-year, $44 million deal with Ryan Madson. The difference between Madson and Papelbon is $6 million over four seasons. That’s nothing. It’s not going to prevent the Phillies from keeping Jimmy Rollins or signing Cole Hamels to a contract extension. It’s $6 million. When it came time last offseason to sign Cliff Lee or not, Phillies president David Montgomery stopped looking at the total committment and started looking at the difference between the two offers, which was roughly $10 million over five seasons. Montgomery stopped thinking $120 million and started thinking $10 million more and we have Cliff Lee. He pulled the trigger. I think the same happened here. Instead of $50 million it was $6 million more and we have the best closer on the market. And Papelbon was the best closer on the market. He has put up better numbers than Madson (and almost everybody not named Mariano Rivera) since the beginning of the 2007 season, and Papelbon was closing the entire time in the American League East. Those are some high leverage situations. Like Roy Halladay, Papelbon should find life a little better in the National League East.

– If you think four years, $44 million or four years, $50 million is too much for any closer, then what was the alternative? Francisco Rodriguez? Joe Nathan, who had Tommy John surgery and turns 37 later this month? Ruben Amaro Jr. thinks he might have future closers in Phillippe Aumont or Justin De Fratus, but they’re not ready right now. And the Phillies are trying to win now. It would be too much of a gamble with Halladay, Lee and Cole Hamels in the rotation. I understand it’s a lot of money for a guy that’s only going to pitch 60-70 innings every season, but those innings are important. Dallas Green once told me the closer might be the most important spot on the roster in today’s game because nothing is more demoralizing than blowing a ninth-inning lead. Sure, the Phillies survived Lidge’s disastrous 2009, but I’m not sure Phillies fans want to take that roller coaster ride again. I’m not sure the players want that again, either.

– One thing I really liked about Madson is that he seemed to be a great mentor to the younger pitchers in the bullpen. I’m not sure if Papelbon can fill that role or not, but it seems to me this bullpen is missing a good veteran presence. I wouldn’t mind seeing the Phillies bring back Lidge on a one-year deal, or somebody else who can help Mike Stutes, Antonio Bastardo, David Herndon, De Fratus, Aumont, Michael Schwimer, Joe Savery, etc., learn on the job.

– As soon as the season ended Amaro said he wanted a veteran closer for the bullpen. He budgeted for this. My only question now is how much left does he have to spend? So far he hasn’t addressed the offense, which he stressed in his postseason news conference. If the Phillies sign Jimmy Rollins and Michael Cuddyer, I think fans will be happy with that. If they only sign one, people naturally are going to wonder if that’s enough.

– I remember my first few years on the beat when fans were ripping the Phillies for not spending or doing enough. Now some are upset because they’re spending too much. Sometimes you have to take a risk. Is there a chance the move backfires? Oh, absolutely. There’s definitely a chance of that. But if I’m Amaro I’m not comfortable having Halladay, Lee and Hamels hand the ball to K-Rod, Nathan or a youngster the next season or two. And the first couple years of this deal are the most important while Halladay, Lee and Hamels are closer to their primes. Keep in mind Hamels becomes a free agent following next season, too. This could be the final season of the Big Three. You don’t want to waste a bunch of their wins with an unreliable closer. tackles the Papelbon signing.

6ABC catches Papelbon at the airport.

Phils Reach Agreement with Papelbon

The Phillies have their closer for 2012 and beyond.

Sources confirmed the Phillies reached an agreement on a four-year contract with free agent right-hander Jonathan Papelbon, who has spent his first seven seasons in the big leagues with the Boston Red Sox. The Phillies and Papelbon’s agents, Sam and Seth Levinson, are still finalizing the details of the contract, which is pending a physical.

The deal includes a fifth-year vesting option. reports the deal approaches $50 million.

The agreement caps an interesting week. Talks between the Phillies and Ryan Madson’s agent Scott Boras ratcheted up Monday. There were multiple reports Tuesday the sides had reached an agreement on a four-year, $44 million deal, which Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. denied.

Talks between the Phillies and Madson fell apart and the Phillies finalized their deal for Papelbon.

Madson or Papelbon?

The Phillies might sign a closer to a multiyear contact in the coming days.

It could be Ryan Madson.

But don’t rule out Jonathan Papelbon.

Sources said the Phillies and Madson’s agent Scott Boras never reached an agreement on a four-year, $44 million deal, which has been widely reported since yesterday. The sources said the parties continue to talk, but no deal is imminent.

While the Phillies have been talking to Boras about Madson, they also have been talking to Sam and Seth Levinson, who represent Papelbon. Ruben Amaro Jr. has said he wants a veteran closer in the bullpen next season, and Papelbon certainly fits the bill. He is a four-time All-Star with 219 career saves with the Boston Red Sox.