Yeap, you guessed it, right here:
In case you missed it, the title was aptly named:
How to turn the Phillies into champions
Um, ok, if you had the recipe all this time, why not give it to us BEFORE the season ended? Oh, it only works with ridiculous moves on a team that just won the NL East and made the playoffs? How convenient. Well, let's take a look at these "championship" caliber moves. He also makes a stab to do the math to figure out what the Phillies have, but I'll just go on the merit alone.
Transaction No. 1: Sign Curt Schilling to a one-year, $13 million deal with a $15 million club option or $2 million buyout for 2009
While many of here would like to sign Schilling to a short deal giving him as much as he made last year and even more in an option that would likely be picked up is ridiculous. You give a 40+ year old pitcher an option for a second year as an incentive to sign for less, NOT more. Give him 2/20 guaranteed (saves 3 mil this year and at least 2 next year) with an option at a third. If Schilling turns out to be a bust he may still be tradable next year or even perform well. But not a bad move overall.
Transaction No. 2: Re-sign lefty reliever J.C. Romero to a 3-year, $9 million deal that includes a $2.5 million 2008 salary.
The old buy low pay high stratgy at work here. I like Romero despite the fact he walks a ton and got out of a lot of trouble. But this IS the guy the Red Sox let go despite having an ERA ~ 3.00 and the guy who pitched on the Angels last year with a 6.70 ERA in 65 games. I'd like to keep him as a lefty specialist (despite his good splits this year), but a 3 year $9 million dollar deal for a specialist is a lot. Still, it isn't THAT ridiculous despite it taking him through his year 34 season.
Sign reliever David Riske to a three-year, $10 million deal that includes a $3 million 2008 salary.
Riske is an ok middle reliever, but his strikeout rate has been low over the past 3 years. Randy mentions Ricke's ERA which really only tells half the story since if he allows inherited runners to score, it doesn't count on him. Either way, his last two plans involved spending 19 million dollars on two middle relievers and we KNOW how well that turns out. This move has disater written all over it.
Transaction No. 4: Sign infielder Mark Loretta to a 2-year, $6.5 million deal that includes a $3 million base salary for 2008.
Now we are getting into the good stuff. Hello Phillies Phans, how would you like 36 year old Mark Loretta to be your new David Bell over the next 2 years? First off, Lorretta has played a total of 194 games in his 47 year baseball career at 3rd base. Second, his SLG the last 3 years has peaked at .372 after hitting .495 in his .335 anomoly BA year. Loretta has had a decent OBP the past few years, but this is begging to be an awful move as Charlie is likely to stick with him for at least 3 months even if he sucks. Helms and Dobbs would likely outproduce Lorretta.
Transaction No. 5: Sign center fielder Mike Cameron to a 3-year, $27 million deal that includes an $8 million salary for 2008
Ok, let's start spending some money! Mike Cameron would definitely be a target since he WAS on that Seattle team we all know about. Cameron would be the PERFECT, I mean absolutely PERFECT backup outfielder on a good team. He has some power off the bench, he has some patience. What he doesn't have are skills that are useful for more than 100-150 ABs. In the admittedly offense black hole that is Petco Park, Cameron hit .242 .328 .431. But he is 35 years old next year, has a career line of .251 .341 .445 and would cost us 9 mil a year on average.
Can't beat Randy's logic here:
"His 43 homers over the last two seasons playing for San Diego, which has a huge home field, probably translates to 30 for the Phillies, who play in a home run haven."
43 homers in a HUGE homefield translates to 30 in the home run haven that us CBP? Sure, we all know what he means, but if he put no effort into getting this sentence correct, how are we to know he really put effort into anything else he wrote.
Transaction No. 6: Trade left fielder Pat Burrell and reliever Geoff Geary to Anaheim for two decent minor leaguers.
We have the finishing touches. Trade Burrell (while kicking in 500 grand) and Geary to Anaheim for 2 decent minor leaguers. Obviously Randy did his work since he knows what Burrell and Geary could get from them. Sure, trade away our last remaining strong right handed bat (presuming Rowand is gone and Cameron is really just a supplemental bat).
Oh wait, did I mention this excellent part?
"Burrell has $14 million coming in 2008, the final year of his contract, and we're going to pay half and kick in another $500,000 so he waives his no-trade clause. Dealing Geary, who is arbitration eligible, would save another $1 million. Just like that, we're in the black."
We are going to pay them 7 million to take Burrell off of our hands!!! Did you hear that people? Doesn't that then make this year 16 million for Cameron? Wait, 15 since we are paying just 8 this year. This might be the stupidest idea in the world.
First off, Burrell is now a commodity, even with his 14 million dollar contract. He is a slugger who has had an OPS of around .900 for the last THREE years, hits 30 homers and 100 RBIS each year and only has 1 year remaining on his contract. He is also the only real HR source of power from the right side regardless of Jimmy's last couple of years. Not only would we be trading him, but paying 7 million to do so, and we get backa couple of "good" minor leaguers. Are you freakin kidding me?
So, the play to make the Phillies a championship team is to sign a declining 42 year old pitcher, pay 19 million to two middle relievers, give another 7 million to a declining middle infielder who now has to play 3rd base, give 27 million to an old centerfielder who will only get older and is in decline mode while we get to give up our 31 year old slugger AND pay HALF of his salary to leave.
That is a RECIPE for disaster people. I don't know who really reads our blog, but I do know that Phillies people read the paper (at least, I have to presume that they do). We are already dealing with 2 player dumps that still cost this team 7 mil a year (in Thome) and that we got NOTHING in return for (in Abreu). I can't handle if they made the same mistake with Burrell.
"There you have it, a championship team in place."