Year in Review: Cliff Lee – Phillies Nation
2009 Year in Review

Year in Review: Cliff Lee when you thought the Cliff Lee talk would simmer, we reel you back in!  It is the Year in Review, so we have to cover everyone.  Yes, including the guy who was here for a three month stretch that was one of the most important and unimaginable showings in Phillies history. As quickly as he came in, he was swept away by the front office to Seattle.

The brevity of Cliff Lee’s stay in Philadelphia is somewhat of a head-scratcher considering he dominated the final two months and the playoffs like he was Sandy Koufax.  Still, it’s a piece of Phillies history that won’t soon be forgotten by the allegiance who witnessed it.

Beginning with a complete-game four-hitter against San Francisco in his first start with the Phils, to his finale; seven hard-fought innings in World Series Game 5 to keep the team gasping on life support.  No matter the challenge, Cliff Lee seemed up for it.

In between his first and last starts, Lee tossed in a litany of season-altering performances, many of which you will see on our Top 25 list in the coming days.  A complete-game shutout with 11 strikeouts against Arizona? Check.  A CG-SO against Washington late in the season?  You bet.  A 4-0 postseason record with a 1.56 ERA and two complete games?  Lee made it happen. What he could not help was a World Series defeat at the hands of the evil empire.  But don’t blame Lee for that.  His two WS victories presented a small window of opportunity for the Phillies; one which they could not capitalize on, unfortunately.

And just like that, it’s over.  Feeling the need to secure long-term financial stability, coupled with the belief that Lee would test free-agent waters once 2010 was through, Ruben Amaro Jr. sent him packing to Seattle in that raucous three-team deal that brought Roy Halladay to Philly.  Whether it was the correct move or not, it will only allow for Cliff Lee’s legendary status to grow here in this baseball-crazed town.  Sure, we will learn to love the same type of shutdown efforts by Halladay every fifth day, but few have ever made their mark on a city like Cliff Lee.

There have been heaps and heaps of trades consummated at the deadline over the years, but few have rendered results like this one.  It’s safe to say that this was one of the finest acquisitions in the history of this franchise.

And for that, we will always, always remember Clifton Phifer Lee.

2009 numbers (with PHI): 7-4, 3.39 ERA, 79.2 IP, 74 K, 10 BB, 3 CG, 1 Shutout

GRADE: 9.8/10 – Few players will ever steal the breath of a Phillies fan the way Lee did.  This would have been a 10 out of 10 had the Phils captured back-to-back World Series titles, although it wasn’t from lack of effort Lee.  Just an incredible season, there’s really no other way to put it.



  1. Maverick

    December 29, 2009 at 2:37 pm

    Please.. spare us from having to read about cliff lee. I’m really happy Halladay is a Phillie but the Cliff Lee deal still stings.

  2. Don M

    December 29, 2009 at 3:24 pm

    I’ve already forgotten about Cliff Lee

    he was awesome when he got here, then sucked for a few starts.. and was great in a Playoff run that fell short of a World Series championship

    He’s since been replaced with a better pitcher..

    so thanks for your time here.. I wish you the best of luck, Cliff .. but I’ve moved on, and hope my fellow Phillies fans will do the same

  3. Karen

    December 29, 2009 at 3:26 pm

    Sorry, this trade still stings. To make it worse, lee genuinely was sad when traded. It is tough to see the value in a trade where you lose the only starter to win all games in playoffs.

  4. Don M

    December 29, 2009 at 3:40 pm

    If Lee really wanted to stay here so bad, he shouldn’t have started yapping about wanted a 5+ year deal, at $25 million per season

    Once him and his agent opened up, they also opened the door right out of Philadelphia

  5. Chuck

    December 29, 2009 at 3:45 pm

    As I’ve said before….and I’m sure that MOST of you here at PN will DISAGREE with me…but….. I REALLY DON’T FEEL BAD FOR CLIFF LEE…..I don’t buy this “genuinely sad when traded” thing….sorry….it’s just how I feel…

    Yeah….thanks for what you did for us while you were here….and best of luck with your new team(s)….I wish you all the success in the world…

    Now…onto 2010 and a great season!!

  6. Don M

    December 29, 2009 at 3:56 pm

    Jason Bay to the Mets for 4 years, $66 M … and I heard a 5th year option at $14 Million

    No wonder the Mets keep sucking, $16.5 M per season for a player who is “good” but not “Great”

  7. Brooks

    December 29, 2009 at 3:57 pm

    Karen, I understand what you are feeling, especially since Lee did appear genuinely saddened that he was no longer a Phil.
    But consider that Halladay wants to be here and he is the best pitcher in the majors today!
    It will be fine and we’ll be toasting to the WFC in 2010!

    Go Phils!

  8. mike mike

    December 29, 2009 at 4:00 pm

    Don you are reading phillies propranda. The agent said on radio that he never discuss terms with the phillies but let it be known, that lee wouldn’t stay in cleveland if in cleveland he wanted to test free agency. This was a bad deal. a salary dump any you can try to make it seem different but fans know these owners and they didnt want to pay extra money this year, because they are cheap bastards, for once we had a team that could be dominant and they blow it, all the years i can remember its one two years this team had a chance to be great this year and beyond,

  9. Griffin

    December 29, 2009 at 4:15 pm

    I’m still surprised that people are thinking that acquiring Halladay and dumping Cliff Lee were linked-they were not.

    The Phils dumped Cliff Lee for 40 cents on the dollar but announced the Halladay deal the same day so they wouldn’t take a PR hit. It looks like the Phils strategy is working and people are convinced that there is no conceivable way that they could both have been on the team in 2010.

  10. ashmidt

    December 29, 2009 at 4:18 pm

    thank you mikemike, its a pile of krap no matter how they wrap it, and it really smells bad, cheap bastards is being kind, it is no given we are going to the world series in 2010,halladay and lee would have really made it a fun run. don m is a schill for the phils f.o. cant believe phillies fans are turning into kool aid drinkers.

  11. Ben

    December 29, 2009 at 4:24 pm

    griffin, so had we not acquired halladay we would have still traded cliff lee? not disagreeing with your last statement that there was no conceivable way to have both, but these deals were linked together, one doesn’t happen without the other.

    mike mike, lee said that his agent presented a deal to the ruben. it was more than just general guidelines, and it was certainly more than what we got a superior pitcher for. you have to think at the end of the day ruben wanted to know which ace he could extend (we weren’t locking up both) and i agree there is no way lee agrees to the deal that halladay agreed to. that deal is an absolute steal.

  12. Don M

    December 29, 2009 at 4:30 pm

    mike mike … then go cheer for another team if these “cheap bastard” owners don’t give you a good enough product

    It isn’t “Phillies” propoganda that Lee said he was definitely going to test the Free Agent market..

    He also stated he wanted “At least 5 years”

    and also stated that he wanted “a C.C. Sabathia type contract”

    know your facts instead of being the typical Philadelphia/Negadelphia sports critic.

    Cliff Lee wasn’t going to sign any type of team-friendly extension (which we’ll need players to do if we want any chance of keeping Howard, Rollins, Utley, Werth, Victorino, etc… past their current deals)

    If the Phillies dumped Lee for 40-cents on the dollar, they still made, out because draft picks are worth less than 30-cents on the dollar, and the guys we gave to Cleveland to get Lee were only worth 38 cents total

    so we still came out ahead!

  13. George

    December 29, 2009 at 4:31 pm

    Sure, Lee was sad. He never got a chance to negotiate with a winning team for a bigger contract than Halladay got. According to all sources, the Phils made an offer. Lee’s agent just didn’t counteroffer soon enough.

    This was no salary dump, either. Not even the Yanks could afford both Lee and Halladay long term and still keep players of the caliber of Werth, Howard, Lidge, Hamels, Utley, etc. And as far as trading Blanton, instead, no team will give up much for a $7 million number three starter, even if he’s coming off a particularly good year. You’d be restocking the farm system with barely-warm bodies.

  14. Don M

    December 29, 2009 at 4:33 pm

    Our 2010 team is better than our 2008 team (at least on paper) …

    and we’re definitely better with Halladay and Polanco than we were with Lee and Feliz

    These “cheap owners” have increased payroll something like 48% over the past 5 seasons…

    People that aren’t happy with the job the Phillies F.O. is doing, should seriously think about becoming YANKEES fans .. because that is the only thing that would seemingly make you happy.. spend money to the point where ticket prices become so high that none of your games are sold out because people can’t justify spending $400 to take their family to a game

  15. Chuck

    December 29, 2009 at 4:34 pm

    They both COULD have been on the same team in 2010….and it WOULD have been fun….no doubt….

    But then Lee would have walked…cause he’s gonna be looking for a 5 year deal at 20-25 mil per year….and the Phillies would have gotten two draft picks in return….

    Now I don’t know about you all…but I think I’d rather take my chances with knowing that my rotation has been improved with acquiring Halladay….and…knowing that I now have THREE legitimate prospects in the system…starting at AA Reading this year..

    Those prospects can either be used in future trades….or…OMG….maybe they might actually be something and might just be able to contribute to the big club in 2011 or 2012…

    But most of you refuse to see that….you just want to continue bitching about this situation…instead of celebrating that we have the best pitcher in baseball….for FOUR years….at BELOW market value…..

    And…we’ve UPGRADED at five different positions….

    The team….our Phillies….National League Champs….are poised to get back to the WS for a 3rd straight year…

    How is it that you all can’t see that??

  16. griffin

    December 29, 2009 at 4:57 pm

    Ben, you’re right, I worded that poorly but we’re in agreement that they both could have been here in 2010.

    One year of Blanton making 7 mil is valuable and acquiring him prevents a team from having to sign a decent pitcher and give him 3 years. Blanton could have brought back at least one of the 3 prospects the Phils got for Lee.

    So instead of having Lee and 2 draft picks, they have Blanton and 2 extra prospects.

    Chuck, if the Phillies actually replenished their system with the Lee trade, then I would agree with you. The bottom line is that these 3 prospects are just not that good. Aumont is a failed starter. Ramirez throws hard but has never put it all together and Gillies is a 4th outfielder at best. None of these prospects are in the top 100 in baseball. Compare that to what the Blue Jays received by trading ONE year of Halladay-2 top 25 prospects and a top 75 prospect and it’s impossible to say that the Lee trade replenished the system.

  17. Phan in Atl

    December 29, 2009 at 5:00 pm

    Only two things I’m bitter about: We should have been able to celebrate Doc coming to Philly without getting blindsided by Lee getting dealt (although I realize that wasn’t possible). And I wish it could have been a true 3 team deal with Aumont going to Toronto and us keeping Drabek.

  18. Chuck

    December 29, 2009 at 5:13 pm

    Maybe not FULLY replenished….but I’ll still take my chances with the three of them…instead of 2 draft picks…..

    Besides….Aumont…from what I’ve heard….is projected as more of a closer than a starter….which isn’t a bad thing with the troubles the Phillies have had recently at the back end of the pen….

  19. Manny

    December 29, 2009 at 5:20 pm

    “A 4-0 postseason record with a 1.56 ERA and two complete games”

    It doesn’t get much better than that fellas. I will miss Cliff Lee…. and the trade still stings.

  20. Chuck

    December 29, 2009 at 5:34 pm

    I’ll miss him too….but it’s time to move on…trust me, HE already has..

  21. Joel V

    December 29, 2009 at 5:34 pm

    True but I would think that you would have to take his partial season with the Phils into account when you make your rating. If that’s the case, we’re forgetting the times in Sept and Oct when he got touched up 4-5 games and had a string of bad outings right before the playoffs. That for me brings his rating down a little bit, not much but a bit.

  22. xfactor

    December 29, 2009 at 5:36 pm

    Yes, we all need to get over the Lee trade but I can’t understand anyone who says we don’t need him, we won’t miss him, we had to trade him to get Halladay, or good riddance because he blew his chance making contract demands.

    Come on, contract demands? Who cares! Negotiating is never easy. Besides, even though we would have had to let him walk at the end of the year, we would have gotten two picks as compensation anyway. In a contract year, Lee has every incentive to have a great season.

    I think people just don’t understand the value of a dominant Big Three in a rotation. A true Big Three makes your entire staff better by creating mismatches against opponents 3,4 and 5 starters. It also saves innings for your pen and improves their match-ups and numbers. The elite teams have a 1-2 punch, so having our own Dynamic Duo doesn’t set us apart. We were already an elite team. The tipping point on a starting rotation is the #3 starter; a Big Three is what separates the best teams from the very good.

    Sure, there is an outside shot that one or two of the prospects we received in return will become all-stars, but it STILL won’t compensate for missing a chance at having a dominant Big Three.

    The main point is this: there is no single player on a baseball team that has more of a positive domino effect than a #3 starter who is as good or better than every one else’s #2. The difference is profound.

    Losing Lee for prospects is a rebuilding move, not a move for a team focused on winning it all. 9MM is a bargain for what Lee provided. In fact, it’s half price even without considering his value as insurance against injury to Halladay or Hamels. Not all 9MM is created equal. Shed salary somewhere else, not by trading an ace!

    Why isn’t this clear to people? Strange.

    Bottom line: the Phillies front office was staring at greatness and, sadly, they blinked.

  23. Joel V

    December 29, 2009 at 5:36 pm

    I’m just trying to make the sting of losing Cliff a little less awful!

  24. badlukk13

    December 29, 2009 at 5:37 pm

    Don M– I am unaware of any instance where Lee, himself, said that he was refusing to sign an extension, that he wanted to test the free-agent market after 2010, or that he was expecting a Sabatia-like deal from whomever was willing to offer it; contrarily, the only words I heard from Lee were the words “shocked,” “saddened,” and “angry.” It was the Phillies front office that informed us that Lee was “unwilling to extend his contract, and desired to test the free-agent market.” So, it essentially comes down to Lee’s word against the front-office’s word… and given that the front office began changing their statements mere days after the trade (right about the time Lee spoke out), and began saying that “they felt” that Lee would be unlikely to extend, and that “they began to assume” that Lee would test free-agency– a stark difference from their earlier assertion that Lee was DEFINITELY going to do, or not do, those things, leads to believe Lee over the FO.

    The bottom line is simple: dealing Lee was a salary dump at the expense of being top-tier contenders. The Phillies shopped Blanton to make room for Lee’s salary, when they realized they weren’t going to get what they wanted… they shopped Lee, barely. It’s a strong business decision in theory, it makes sense; however, the Phillies dumped him quickly to avoid a PR disaster, as opposed to waiting a while and getting maximum value for him, which makes it a horrible business decision in execution.

    And stop telling people to go become Yankee fans just because they’re tired of management taking the fans hard earned money and minimally reinvesting that cash back into the team. If you’re content with ownership taking money from your pocket, and most of that cash into their own pocket, while putting a team that’s half as good as what they could be out on the field… then go be a Kansas City fan.

    Philadelphia sports fans are too jaded nowadays; they’re so used to having teams good enough to contend, but not win, that they’re now siding on behalf of the management that has conditioned them to expect mediocrity… sad. Winning franchises are rare these days, so when an opportunity arises to make the good years spectacular then you take those opportunities.

  25. griffin

    December 29, 2009 at 5:40 pm

    I’d much rather have a year of Lee and 2 draft picks than the 3 prospects the Phils got.

  26. Don M

    December 29, 2009 at 5:40 pm

    is the request of no more crying over Cliff Lee as of January 1, 2010

    is that still going into effect??

    We’ve been talking more about Lee than we have about Roy Halladay since we obtained him .. and that aint right

    two more days to get it our of your systems.

  27. Manny

    December 29, 2009 at 5:41 pm


    One full year of Cliff Lee + 2 draft picks (one of them a top pick) > 3 so-so prospects + $9MM

  28. griffin

    December 29, 2009 at 5:44 pm

    After getting shutdown by the Yankees “big 3” in the playoffs, you would think the Phils would have realized what they could have had.

  29. Griffin

    December 29, 2009 at 5:51 pm

    The excitement of Halladay’s arrival should be tempered by the knowledge that the Phils’ minor league system has been gutted as the Phils nominally improved from Cliff Lee to Roy Halladay.

    Usually when a team trades away top prospects, they are “going for it”, but once the Phils acquired Halladay they hurt their chances of winning in ’10 by trading away Lee.

    A few weeks ago, the Phils had the #4 overall minor league system with 3 top 25 prospects and had an ace in the majors.

    Now, the Phils do not have a top 10 system, have only one 25 prospect and a slightly better ace in the majors.

  30. NEPA

    December 29, 2009 at 5:52 pm

    Once again……..There is no record of Lee or his agent stating that he ..wanted…1) CC Sabathia money or..2) a 5 year contract ..or3).. $25 mil per year TO THE PHILLIES.
    These comments were directed at the INDIANS.
    I dont know why these are brought up time and time again.
    Maybe the front office really didnt want to pay him this year,or there could be other reasons….it is their call ..its their money.

    But I’m convinced that it wasnt the above reasons,and I think the decision to dump him was made really early,with no wiggle room to keep him ,and thats it.

  31. Chuck

    December 29, 2009 at 6:17 pm

    “The Phils nominally improved from Cliff Lee to Roy Halladay” “A slightly better ace in the majors.”


    I’m sorry…but if anyone actually thinks that Roy Halladay is a NOMINAL improvement over Cliff Lee… or that he is only SLIGHTLY better than Cliff Lee..then they haven’t been following baseball real carefully over the past decade…

  32. Pingback: Year in Review: Cliff Lee | Phillies Nation - World Breaking News

  33. Chuck

    December 29, 2009 at 6:30 pm


    So what if the comments were made at the Indians….the point is they were made…and that’s how Lee and his agent felt…and, I would be willing to bet…STILL FEEL..

    It’s never a good idea to play all your cards too early like he did…I don’t feel sorry for him one bit..

    Secondly, Maybe the decision to dump him WAS early, with no wiggle room to keep him…fair enough….but I trust Ruben enough at this point…. with all the other decisions he’s made ….to just let this thing play itself out…before judging too harshly..

    At the end of the day…we STILL have a BETTER team…as a WHOLE…than we did a month ago..

    I like the Phillies chances…A LOT….in 2010

  34. NEPA

    December 29, 2009 at 6:36 pm

    There is a big difference as to the team a player directs his comments..what about our own Roy Halladay and the differences in what he would sign for and for which team.
    Think about it .

  35. The second John

    December 29, 2009 at 6:43 pm

    There was no way that both Cliff, and Roy could have been on the same team. They have a BUDGET to stick to. They made this trade to make sure they have an ace for years to come, have enough money to improve the bullpen, and still have some leftover money in case something happens during the season, and someone gets injured, they still have enough money to make a trade. Also, they made sure that they still have a top 10 farm system.

    Anybody calling the Phillies cheap is an idiot plain and simple. They increased their payroll ridiculously over the past few years, and their payroll is in the top 10 in the MLB.

  36. NEPA

    December 29, 2009 at 6:50 pm

    Look I dont think that I have the one and only true opinion on this Lee thing…I’ts just my humble opinion,what do I know?
    I think the Phils should be congratulated for going to $140 million on the payroll,never thought that would happen.
    Also we have now a GREAT Team,better than last year,I think most people out there love the Halladay deal,Polanco too.
    I have been a Phils fan for a long time..this is the best time ever.
    Its just that the Lee deal is WEIRD and doesnt make sense to me,and a lot of other people….It doesnt mean we dont like the team.

  37. James Kay

    December 29, 2009 at 7:00 pm

    @ xfactor: I agree that the FO should have tried to keep Lee for another year. There is no time like the present. But who is this third starter you referred to who has the level of talent of a Halladay or a Lee? Hamels? Perhaps the salary to shed elsewhere should have been Hamels. There a plenty of $400,000 coconut suckers (prospects) with 93+ mph heat who could be experimented with in the # 5 starter position. Youth and competition along with production from proven veterans make the game fresh, exciting, controversial, and not to be overlooked, affordable.
    @Manny: On the mark comment!

  38. The Dipsy

    December 29, 2009 at 7:33 pm

    I think a lot of people feel that that at this time, in this place, and with this team, the ownership should have deviated from a comfortable business practice and kept Lee for ’10. This franchise is in extraordinary times right now. Would Keeping Lee have exceeded the budget? Yes. But I think we all suspect that $140m is just a number ownership picked and not a “drop dead” number or anything of the sort. While I’m sure that number bears a rational relationship to the profits the owners want to realize in ’10, going over it by 9m would have kept none of those guys up at night. As for the prospects, while the Halladay deal would have taxed the farm system, it would have hardly bankrupted it. We don’t need minor leaguers for ’10. We could have waited for the picks that we would have gotten for Lee and Blanton and had quality minor leaguers farther down the pipeline instead of at our fingertips. Ruben made the team better but I’m stuck on what could have been. The Phillies made a value judgment and WHILE ITS NOT MY MONEY, I don’t agree with it. Dare to be great? The Phillies didn’t.

    The Dipsy

  39. The Second John

    December 29, 2009 at 7:44 pm

    Dipsy, I respectfully disagree

    It is a BUDGET. You stick to it no matter what. How do you know we won’t need minor leaguers? How do you know that no one will get injured, and we need to trade for someone, or someone under performs, and we have to get a starter or someone at the deadline? Did you know the Phillies kicked tires on trading for Matt Holliday at the deadline because Ibanez was injured? We need prospects for that. Also, two years ago we got Joe Blanton, and he was huge in our postseason run. We kicked tires on Holliday, and we got Blanton because we had prospects.

  40. xfactor

    December 29, 2009 at 7:46 pm

    @James Kay: I realize Hamels has his doubters and detractors but I for one still see him as an elite starter. Even so, let’s say I’m wrong and he takes another step back this season — isn’t that all the more reason to keep Lee?

    @The second John: Of course the Phillies could have had Halladay and Lee together on the same team. For one, they could have traded Blanton for CJ Henry, a bag of balls and a tub of Lena Blackburne’s Rubbing Mud. I understand there’s a budget but you have to shed payroll where it least hurts and that clearly wasn’t Lee.

    Look, the Lee trade was not just a mistake, it was a BIG mistake. Sure, they can overcome it but I’m concerned about a front office that felt this was a wise move. They say they understand pitching is how you win championships but then they discard an ace right when they have a huge advantage. It’s surreal, to be honest.

    Overall these are good times for the Phillies and the end-effect of the two “companion” trades was an improvement. I’m venting because they improved by a yard instead of a mile. More importantly I’m upset because the Front Office seems to under-appreciate the value of assembling a Big Three. It really is the secret to success and we were so close to having it.

    Meanwhile, I like Blanton. I think he’s a very good starter when matched up against other #4s. However, as a #3, he’s merely good-to-average. I seriously doubt he would have outperformed Hamels or Lee against other team’s #3s.

    I’ll get over it but I won’t drink the Kool Aid. That’s all.

  41. The Second John

    December 29, 2009 at 7:55 pm

    “For one, they could have traded Blanton for CJ Henry, a bag of balls and a tub of Lena Blackburne’s Rubbing Mud.”

    If that would have happened, then you’ve gutted out your farm system. Although the prospects Phills got back weren’t as good as the ones that they gave up, it was still better than 2 draft picks. Also, the prospects they got back help them maintain a top 10 farm system.

    We all know the advantages of having a good farm system. Remember Utley, Howard, Burrel, Cole etc.

  42. The Dipsy

    December 29, 2009 at 8:00 pm

    Second John: I am not keeping minor leaguers, JUST IN CASE, when I know I could have Cliff Lee for them instead. I don’t think that makes sense. Why make one of the trades you mentioned when you could keep Lee.

    The Dipsy

  43. The Dipsy

    December 29, 2009 at 8:03 pm

    I don’t care about a top 10 farm system this year. I want a #20 farm system and Lee. John, we’re in win mode, not in build mode. I love good prospects. You build your team with them. Our team is built.

    The Dipsy

  44. Chuck

    December 29, 2009 at 8:07 pm

    You gotta keep building, though….while IN a winning mode…

    Our team is built ONLY for the short term….

  45. The Second John

    December 29, 2009 at 8:12 pm

    But Dipsy, what are we going to do about the bullpen? If we would’ve kept Lee, our main weakness last year would still be our main weakness.

    Having prospects just in case is important. Remember the year when the Mets had the worst collapse in baseball history? I remember that Chase Utley got hurt and we traded prospects for Tadahito Iguchi. I remember that he played a huge role. What about the year after that? We picked up Joe Blanton because we had enough prospects. He was also huge. Also what about last year? We picked up Cliff Lee because we had prospects. Without Lee we would’ve gotten swept by the Yanks, if we could’ve made the World Series.

    Yes I realize that we are in win now mode, but our core is starting to age. They are going to be out of here soon. We need something after they are gone. Even if we are in win now mode, we still need to plan for the future.

  46. griffin

    December 29, 2009 at 8:12 pm

    If the Phils wanted to have prospects ready to call up in case of injuries, they should have kept Taylor and Drabek, who will both debut in 2010.

    The 3 prospects from the Mariners will not contribute anytime soon.

    Again, the Phillies had a chance to “go for it” this year and they didn’t. They took a huge hit in the farm system by adding Halladay and subtracting Lee and prevented themselves from being able to acquire someone at the 2010 trade deadline (no one wants that Seattle slop) unless they give up Dom Brown.

    Also, what would be the difference in ERA over a full season between Halladay and Lee? .40? That’s 6 or 7 earned runs over the course of the entire season. So yes, the improvement from Lee to Halladay in 2010 is only marginal.

  47. xfactor

    December 29, 2009 at 8:18 pm

    @The Second John: I don’t want to keep this up — it’s depressing and we need to move on — but prospects don’t amount to a hill of beans next to a Cy Young winning ace who treated the Yankees like a JV squad in the World Series. There just aren’t many guys like Lee around. Even if (and it’s a big if) Gillies becomes an all-star CF, Aumont the next closer and Ramirez a good starter, there’s no guarantee they’ll be ready in time to help the current nucleus.

    No, the Front Office blinked and now the team will have to play much better and be much luckier to win. Not saying they can’t, just saying it will be much harder now. Trust me, the players know. Do you think they’d rather have Lee on the mound or Gillies, Aumont and Ramirez in AA reading? Do you really have to ask?

  48. Greg V.

    December 29, 2009 at 8:19 pm

    I give Lee an 8 and it’s not for lack of being an awe of how great of a pitcher he is. But he had a horrific September where he was getting shelled. Though I’d take a bad September for his amazing performance in the playoffs. A true Phillies legend! Even if he was only on the top a few months!

  49. The Dipsy

    December 29, 2009 at 8:22 pm

    I have rarely ever, if ever, seen the best team in baseball also have the best farm system in baseball. There is a reason for that. We have Gose, Mayberry, Brown, Glavis, Carpenter and more. That would have been without this trade. Of course you try to keep your farm stocked. Why not try this then. Make the Halladay trade and then:

    1. Trade Blanton for a blue chip prospect and a middling prospect. When the arms go down on teams right before the season starts, there would have been a feeding frenzy for a guy like Joe Blanton. Believe it.

    2. Trade Victorino for the prospects. If you needed to, Werth could move to center. It would be an offensive downgrade. You’d need to get a stop gap outfielder. They are not that hard to get.

    And there may be more options but Ruben didn’t have time to think of them because he made these deals with his pants on fire.

    The Dipsy

  50. The Second John

    December 29, 2009 at 8:37 pm

    @griffin: No griffin, it is not a marginal improvement. They traded one year of Cliff Lee for 4 years of Roy Halladay.

    @xfactor: I don’t want to keep this up either. In fact this probably is my last post for today. I am not saying have prospects to come up and help them now. I am saying have prospects to trade and help us if someone gets injured, or under performs

    @Dipsy: 1. You are probably not going to get a blue chip prospect for Blanton. He is a #3 starter at best.

    2. Why do people want to trade Victorino? He led the Phills in hits, and batting average. He is also a gold glove caliber CF, and he is a speed threat.

  51. griffin

    December 29, 2009 at 8:53 pm

    The second john, as I stated earlier “Halladay is a marginal upgrade over Lee for 2010.”

    Also, the Blue Jays only traded 1 year of Halladay and got back a king’s ransom. The Phillies traded one year of Cliff Lee and got back less than what Atlanta got for Javy Vazquez.

    I’m still not sure why people are defending the Lee trade.

  52. Don M

    December 29, 2009 at 9:26 pm

    Badluck13 …. and many others…

    If you’ve been following baseball for more than the past 2 seasons, you know that Roy Halladay is a lot better than Cliff Lee..

    to all the comments that “nobody can find the instance where Lee told the Phillies he wanted $$$ x-years, and a C.C. Sabathia type deal, etc..

    No he hasn’t come out and said that in an interview, but all of the major baseball reporters, Stark, Rosenthal, Heyman, etc.. all knew that was the case and stated that MANY times

    The Phillies ownership has done a great job to develop talent, and then increase payroll, to keep their own talent here, and to also build a winner around those players.. They say their budget is $140 .. could they have released other players to make things work, possibly.

    But these comments about trading Blanton for BLUE CHIP PROSPECTS.. that isn’t going to happen.. Blanton and Lee had next to ZERO trade value because on the open market next season, Blanton will command $10 M per season, as a better than average pitcher with lots of playoff experience.. Lee will be around $25 M per season, and is seeking a long-term deal

    that isn’t good news for the Phillies.. or most other teams in baseball

    Seattle took a chance.. they’ll look to resign Cliff Lee next season, and if they have the money to match NY Yankees, or LA Dodgers, or Angels.. I’ll be shocked

    Keeping Cliff Lee for 5-7 years wouldn’t have been a good move for us, because once Rollins, Howard, Werth, etc.. are gone.. it doesn’t matter who is on the hill because guys you’ve never heard of yet will be the new STARS of the game

  53. Don M

    December 29, 2009 at 9:29 pm

    people also forget that we got Cliff Lee for nothing.. so no team was going to give up MORE than we did, to obtain Cliff Lee for LESS time than we could’ve had him

    The Blue Jays situation was different.. they could’ve kept him but teams were beating down their door trying to get him.. because it was known that he was looking for a 3 year extension … not a 5-7 year extension

  54. The Dipsy

    December 29, 2009 at 10:04 pm

    Don M –

    I disagree that Blanton would not have brought blue chip prospect in spring training or at some point during the season. A team with a win now mentality who loses a starting pitcher would give up some decent minor league talent for a GOOD pitcher, like Blanton.

    The Dipsy

  55. Manny

    December 29, 2009 at 10:40 pm

    Don M: Lee’s value skyrocketed with the postseason he had… I think he’s more valuable now than he was when we got him, even though it’s now for 1 year instead of 1.5 ESPECIALLY for a team like Seattle who wasn’t really a legit contender for a playoff spot. Lee has now catapulted himself into the Absolutely Great, Best Pitchers in Baseball category. He wasn’t that when we got him.

    Plus, I really think that the FO would prefer Marson, Donald, Carrasco, and Knapp over the 3 Seattle prospects we just got. But that’s a whole other issue…

  56. Nick

    December 29, 2009 at 10:41 pm

    Man I love the Phils

  57. Don M

    December 30, 2009 at 6:31 am

    Marson isn’t that good.. Donald isn’t an everyday player.. Carrasco has talent, but can’t but it together.. and Knapp is like 20 years old, so who knows

    Aumont is a big young kid with lots of potential.. a possible huge presence on the mound in to close-out games later

    Gillies was in the All-Star futures game too, and looks like a possible leadoff threat with great speed who can hit for average despite his small build.

    I don’t know a single thing about Ramirez, but he was ranked as their 2nd best pitching prospect i think.. so he’s more than a throw-in..

    They couldn’t afford to keep both Blanton and Lee … Blanton couldn’t get you BLUE CHIP PROSPECTS … we know that because they tried to unload him at the winter meetings, and nobody wanted him. Knowing that an average pitcher in arbitration will be $7 Million this year, and then become a Free Agent after that, earning $10 M per season … most teams would say (and did say) that isn’t worth giving up prospects who that team could control for 6 years.

    Could the market for Blanton have changed in Spring Training or during the season, if teams had an injury, etc.. yea … but with their $140 M payroll (which is much, much higer than even teams with bigger stadiums and in bigger media markets) or team has fielded possibly its best roster ever …and of course, people aren’t as happy as they should be, and continue with the what-ifs

    I think it was Ken Rosenthal or Jon Heyman that stated “Roy Halladay is a top 5 pitcher in baseball… Cliff Lee is a top 15” … Lee is a very good pitcher, he’s not a guy that deserves the contract he’ll be seeking.. Lets be happy that we’ve got baseball’s BEST for the next 4 years

  58. Chuck

    December 30, 2009 at 8:23 am

    Officially LESS than 2 days left to bitch and cry about Cliff Lee…

  59. Chuck

    December 30, 2009 at 8:26 am

    Like I’ve said before…if just one of these three guys turns out to be something….then the trade was worth it..

    It’s just that we won’t know that in 2010….and….everyone’s impatient and wants instant gratification

    Life don’t work that way fellas.

  60. Brooks

    December 30, 2009 at 9:07 am

    So much manlove going on with Lee –
    His true mark of greatness was his post season appearance, are we agreed upon that? Truthfully, if you look at his performance during the regular season with the Phils, he had 7 “quality starts” out of 12 starts altogether. That turns out to be just about 42% of his starts where he gave up more than 3 runs (earned or not).

    Guess who had a similar figure? Our 2008 ace in the Post Season, Cole Hamels. In 31 starts (excluding the 10/01 start where he only threw for 3 innings) he had 13 starts where he gave up more than 3 runs. Yes, that figure comes out to be just about the same, 42%.

    People, don’t get me wrong. I loved watching the guy pitch but he is no Halladay! We have the best, our “cheap” management saw to it and we will be in the WS for the third year in a row.

  61. Chuck

    December 30, 2009 at 10:52 am

    Our “cheap management” also has given us a quality product for a few years now…and …if you consider how close they were in the years before 2007….this has been an exciting club to root for awhile now…

    But what does the Front Office know?….they’re just “cheap”

    Go Phillies!!

  62. mikemike

    December 30, 2009 at 12:12 pm

    The point was keeping lee and offering him arb. was the move to do, chance to be great with lee and holiday is worth 9 million. two draft choices we would have had over the low level prospects we receive, what joke. Don most of the people here know you either work for the phillies or a die heart who agrees with eyerthingg they do. its okay but dont try to tell anyone bullshit, the agent for lee was on twice about the talks, and the 5 year bullshit you are throwing around is what was said in cleveland. but forget that, lee for one year was the move for this team. they took junk prospect back for a number one starter, but don or montgomery in disguise don’t come and sell your bullshit to us. salary dump pure and simple. go sell. For the first time in any of these francise history they had a chance to be great again longer than any other phillies team, a real chance for the world series again, and 9 million got in the way , plus they didnt want those draft choice it would cost them. explain to me why they spent less than anyone in baseball in the draft last season. and less in the international market, pass on better talent to take a 5 round pick in the second cause he was a easy sign. Any one who love this team and city sees salary dump, they arent blinded by the bullshit the phillies tried to tellus. they lost money after all those world series and playoff games, sellout almost all games, how don or montgomery whoever you are tell me how. So when you say root for the yankess no i am a philly fan but know in my heart this ownership is bottom line in a big market , if john middleton had his way lee would be here.

  63. mikemike

    December 30, 2009 at 12:17 pm

    Don by the way Aumont was move with arm trouble to the bullpen ramirez numbers were terrible and he is a level player. gilles played in a hitter league great speed but another toolsy outfieler , a lot of guys play in the future games and do nothing after that means nothing. didnt donald play in the game mayberry and others who cant play. salary dump pure and simple.

  64. Griffin

    December 30, 2009 at 12:27 pm

    I love how people complain when people criticize the Cliff Lee dump. What do you expect people to talk about? Roy Halladay? Halladay is awesome and will pitch really well for the Phils. What else is there to say about that?

  65. Griffin

    December 30, 2009 at 12:30 pm

    and mikemike is right about the 3 Seattle prospects. Aumont isn’t durable enough to be a starter. Ramirez is a total lottery ticket who may never pitch in the majors and Gillies is a 4th OF AT BEST. If the Phils tried to trade those 3 for Cliff Lee at the 2010 trade deadline, the M’s would hang up on them.

  66. Don M

    December 30, 2009 at 12:54 pm

    you guys are making good points..

    you’ve flipped me, I’m now pissed at the moves the Phillies made this offseason

    Halladay over Lee .. WTF was Ruben thinking??

    POLANCO ??? Are you kidding me.. you could’ve just kept Pedro Feliz!!

    I love how being greatful for the team they’ve given us over the past 5 years, and getting to a point where I no longer second-guess their decisions …means that I must work for the Phillies

    They’ve increased payroll year after year.. and if they want to keep Howard together with Utley (guys who play in more than 35 games of the 162 in the season) .. they need to have money available .. and they don’t have unlimited resources, despite what many people think

    They play in Philadelphia, and only recently began selling out the stadium every night … they are better right now than they were at the end of 2009

    Are they All-Stars from top to bottom, no.
    Would they be better if they kept Lee, yes.

    but if that move didn’t fit within their budget.. we could cry about it for 3 weeks.. or be happy that they are better now than they were without Halladay

  67. Don M

    December 30, 2009 at 1:03 pm

    and I don’t even mean to be a d!ck, and act like wiseass

    but I’ve seen this team be SO BAD FOR SO LONG..

    that I want to see them keep winning, and I’m so very greatful for the teams of the past 5+ years

    Winning Baseball is something really cool .. I think this sustained effort, they’ll try to have a really good team for the next 3 years

    instead of all-out with a great chance to win in 2010 … and then we’d suck after that waiting for draft picks 4-5 years away from playing in the majors

  68. psujoe

    December 30, 2009 at 1:05 pm

    I’m over the Lee deal, but I just don’t understand why they only contacted Seattle. I also think the Phils made a mistake in valuing Gillies over Saunders, but only time will tell.

  69. Griffin

    December 30, 2009 at 1:08 pm

    Don M, I hear you. It shows how far the Phililes have come that fans are complaining about dumping Lee even though we got Halladay.

    I don’t mean to come off as an ingrate. I love the Phils and love the fact that we can talk about them 365 days a year. The Lee thing really, really bothered me. The Phils had a chance to have the greatest team in franchise history. I understand that money is a factor, but I think there were other ways to get around it. Also, everything I read about the Seattle prospects is not flattering.

    So again, I love the Phils and am grateful that they are awesome-I just really, really disliked the Lee trade, and I think it is OK to feel that way.

  70. The Dipsy

    December 30, 2009 at 1:16 pm

    Don – There is a group of people that believe that the Phils were being cheap when they didn’t need to be when letting Lee go. Are we happy we got Halladay? Absolutely. If those two deals were made in any year but 08 or 09, you wouldn’t be hearing any crap. In fact, they would be hailing Amaro. How he was “managing payroll” and “doing amazing things with what he had” and how he was a true genius. But thats not the case. The Lee deal was made when the Phils, and I’m not overstating here, are on the cusp of immortality. Its a fact. 9 times out of 10 that deal is the right thing to do. But not here. You just don’t make THAT deal with THIS team. It was just plain wrong. Please….PLEASE don’t give me the money, “budgets are there for a reason”, blah blah. Its all bull.

    The Dipsy

  71. The Dipsy

    December 30, 2009 at 1:21 pm

    P.S. – I’ll never be over the Lee deal. Scratch that – If we win the Series this year, I will be over it.

    The Dipsy

  72. Don M

    December 30, 2009 at 1:31 pm

    Dipsy …

    how is it NOT for the budget?

    Amaro didn’t just trade Lee for kicks.. if they would’ve allowed him to go over the $140 M that would be one thing..

    Does the Moyer deal look bad right now, yea..

    But people saying that could’ve traded Blanton or could’ve gotten a ton back for Lee … are just plain wrong

    the market isn’t there, which is how we were able to get Lee in the first place.. and how we were able to get Halladay AND keep our top-rated prospects, Domonic Brown

    who is ranked #13 in all of baseball right now.. Kyle Drabek is #15 or #17 I think.

    “The Phils had a chance to have the greatest team in franchise history”

    We still do.. we’ve got a better team (at least on paper) than we did in 2008.. which many people felt was the best team in franchise history

    I understand the frustrations over NOT having Lee to go along with Halladay.. but we need to let it go, he ain’t coming back

  73. The Dipsy

    December 30, 2009 at 1:43 pm

    My problem is not with Ruben. Its with the ownership group. Ruben did have his marching orders. I don’t mean to lay this all at the the feet of the GM.

    The Dipsy

  74. Chuck

    December 30, 2009 at 1:55 pm

    Yeah, seriously…..for God’s sake…PLEASE…can we just let it go???

    I would have love to have seen Lee and Halladay together, too. Who wouldn’t?? Hamels as your #3?? Wow!!

    But IT’S OVER!!!!

    And this IS a better team than 08 or 09. Ruben has done a fantastic job in upgrading at 5 positions..

    Oh, but I guess I must be working for the Phillies too…since I’m in this particular camp..



    If your over the Lee deal…then why say “I’m over the Lee deal, but I just don’t understand why they only contacted Seattle.” ??….

    Just askin’….

  75. Chuck

    December 30, 2009 at 1:58 pm

    The ownership group that has grown this franchise over the past so many years….and given us a product to cheer for and be proud to support….for MORE than just one season…..

    That’s who you have problem with…??

    Ok…that makes sense now…how stupid of me for not seeing that before.

  76. j reed

    December 30, 2009 at 2:26 pm

    Budget smudget…budgets only have relevance when there is transparency. Let’s say you worked hard enough to earn a raise, the boss/owner says it’s not in the budget. Do you believe him without seeing an end of a year spread sheet. If you do let me introduce you to my friend P.T. Barnum. Why do you think so little gets said in regards to holding teams that take from revenue sharing accountable for how that money is spent. It’s because every owner would have to open up his books in the name of transparency. And that’s the last thing they want; their product which is the labor would demand more of trhe profits. The players are the organization. And get it straight – no one is agruing that we could give Lee an extension but for one year…9 million is nothing just by the sales of all things with a “P” on it under the XMAS tree this year. And no one is saying that Lee is better than Halladay but he should be worth more than the 3 magic beans we got esp. with a record setting WS performance and moreover when we set the ceiling at two top prospects we coughed up for Halladay. Listen to aschmidt and James Kay, they know the history of this team and its dismal failures at the ownership level. Think about it, your defending a bunch of blue bloods who shouldn’t get any credit for increasing the payroll relative to this market which is considered by sports economists to be a big one.

  77. The Dipsy

    December 30, 2009 at 2:36 pm

    Hey Chuck, this ownership group doesn’t own this team to win championships, ok. They own it to make money. I’m sure they’re happy they won a championship. This group has owned the team since…uhhh…I don’t know ’84 or something like that? They were very content for years to march out piss poor teams as long as butts went through the turnstiles. We counted losses..they counted money. This is not an ownership group that anyone could characterize as “committed to winning”. Agreed? The reason we are good now is NOT that the group is spending more money, but that they finally have had the good sense to hire guys (Gillick, Amaro) that can spend the allotted amount wisely. In short the “group” has very little to do with the Phils run of success. They write checks. Ed Snider. That guy is committed to winning. Finally, I am sure that if you gave the owners a choice whether to they could turn even 10% more profit OR win a World Series in any given year, they would pick the former. They are still the same people we hated back in the 80’s and 90’s. They havent changed a bit.

    The Dipsy

  78. Don M

    December 30, 2009 at 2:55 pm

    In comparing the Phillies ownership group to Ed Snider.. lets say, over the past 5 years (which in the Philadelphia-what-have-you-done-for-me-lately is plenty long)

    I would say that the Phillies ownership has done a better job of putting the right people in place to make good decisions..

    The Phillies could have VERY EASILY flipped Ryan Howard for prospects, traded Cole Hamles, etc.. like MOST OTHER TEAMS IN BASEBALL

    instead, they saw that they finally had the right mix of talent, so much so, that Free Agents actually wanted to come play here and start a new tradition of winning

  79. The Dipsy

    December 30, 2009 at 3:09 pm

    Don. Why would anyone have ever traded Cole Hamels? Is NOT trading Hamels an example of why they are a good ownership group? Is NOT trading Howard and example of this, too? Hiring Pat Gillick is the best thing they have ever done. A classic example of bad ownership is keeping guys around while, though not the most competent, are company guys and won’t make waves. SEE: WADE, Ed; MONTGOMERY, Dave; GILES, Bill; WHEELER, Chris; THOMAS, Lee. Wade was just abominable. The ownership does not make baseball decisions. They put people in there that do it for them and before Gillick these men were terrible. Yes, Gillick and Amaro were good decisions. If that qualifies them as a great ownership group then I guess you’ve proved your point.

    The Dipsy

  80. j reed

    December 30, 2009 at 3:28 pm

    Dipsy – the other issue is why the sports media in philly is so complacent about the ownership group. If this was New York or Boston they wouldn’t have let these blue bloods off the hook.

  81. Georgie

    December 30, 2009 at 3:28 pm

    Don and Chuck, you can talk ’til you’re blue in the face, but your arguments will never convince those of us “on the dark side”. For a mere $9M more, we could have been watching two of the most amazing pitchers in baseball today throw for OUR team, it’s a once in a lifetime chance, so don’t go telling people who disagree with it that they should be Yankee fans, the deal STINKS, period! And I say “merely” 9M because the owners speak about millions the way I speak about hundreds, so you know it was possible financially, if just for the one year.

    I wasn’t aware PN had set a time limit on how long we can b!tch about the Lee deal, so since I only have a day and a half left, here goes….


  82. Chuck

    December 30, 2009 at 3:32 pm

    Maybe I’m naive, stupid…or both….but I have a real hard time actually believing that this ownership group isn’t committed to winning….at least a little bit..

    These are Philly guys…sure they’re committed to the dollar…any smart businessperson should be….and I’m not going to criticize them for that…

    And Dipsy…your argument about “butts going through turnstiles…..???….I remember plenty of years when NOT THAT MANY BUTTS WERE GOING THROUGH TURNSTILES… it’s not like people were flooding the gates at the Vet every night..

    This “cheap” ownership group had the good sense to turn things around, get the right people here, and put together a winning franchise…and I don’t think that just because Cliff Lee isn’t here anymore that that’s gonna change…

  83. Manny

    December 30, 2009 at 3:40 pm

    Well said, Georgie!

  84. Don M

    December 30, 2009 at 4:03 pm

    WHEELER, Chris made your list??

    if by hiring the last two GM’s, guys that have turned us into 3-time NL EAST Champions, and 2 straight WORLD SERIES appearances

    the ownership finally figured it out .. so yea, they have been great

    if you want to bring up 1998’s roster, and complain about that, the floor is yours

    I am looking at the more recent history and being thankful that this ownership group (and because of them, the past two GM’s) have committed themselves to winning

    all while keeping payroll at a level as such, so that the BLUE COLLER WORKER.. .the people who makeup the Phillies fan base, can still afford to go to games and support their home team

    In the past 5 years, the Phillies revenue has gone up like 38%…while they’ve increase payroll 48%

    because they are trying to give us a good product

    people can talk about Lee all they want, I just made a request last week that we stop crying about by the New Year , which doesn’t seem likely to happen

  85. j reed

    December 30, 2009 at 4:13 pm

    good business people! what business person can’t see that the potenial return on keeping Lee for 1 yr outweighs the loss of 9 million. It’s a no brainer esp when the owners are projected to make 19 million.

  86. shag beta sigma delta

    December 30, 2009 at 4:17 pm

    I think most of you miss the point when you say it is only 9 million for 1 year. If you do not trade Lee and make the same trade for Halladay, and then spend more money on a relief guy and spend 150 million in 2010, then what do you have in 2011. You have no more money, and no room in the minors to trade for anybody or pull up to the majors. So you get one year of Doc and Cliff. Then what? you are back to being a mediocre team with no prospects two draft choses for Lee no money to extend Howard, or Wreth or Vic or get a pitcher to come in two years from now. If the owner ship was all about money, then it would make sense for them not to worry about the product on the field in 2 or 3 years because of the good will they would have gotten for keeping Lee and Halladay for one year and winning another WS. Because that was a guarantee according to some of you. And they would let Ryan walk and take the draft picks and Hamels would walk and we would be the Mets in 2 or 3 years waiting another 25 years to win the WFS.
    I would much rather but a better team out there each year and afford to drive down from Vermont every Saturday to go the games on Sunday and watch a competitive team for years to come. If the tickets were like they are in Boston or NY I would not be able to afford the season ticket package I have, and would not be able to afford to drive down to Phila. once or twice a month to watch the team play that I have been watching play since Vet stadium opened. It is smart to stay with a budget and look to the future and see the big picture.
    So quite you bitching (I know that is all some of you “fans” know how to do.) Enjoy the ride and be happy we have a better team then we have to start the season then what we had when it ended last year

  87. Griffin

    December 30, 2009 at 4:17 pm

    Not to pile on, but here is a question from a Jim Callis of Baseball America chat:

    “Derek (Philadelphia): I know the story is beaten like a dead horse, but I always wondered was the package the Phillies got from the Mariners the best they could have gotten? Were there any other offers for Cliff Lee or did the Phillies offer him to any other team?

    Jim Callis: I wrote a column about this, which BA subscribers can read by clicking here. It seems the Phillies, perhaps mandated by ownership, determined they had to deal Lee ASAP to make room for Halladay’s salary. I don’t get it. Why not give yourselves a couple of months to get a better offer? It’s not like the Mariners were going to turn down that proposal in February–it was a steal.”

  88. shag beta sigma delta

    December 30, 2009 at 4:18 pm

    One more thing what ever happened to the reliever they reportedly signed pending a physical

  89. The Dipsy

    December 30, 2009 at 4:25 pm

    Don – Cmon. Where are getting these numbers from? 38%, 48%. Please do not represent to us that you, or anyone else for that matter, has any earthly idea what these guys actually spend or make. All I know for sure is that is an insane amount. Do you know that, not only has the “group” not sold the team, one would guess because they’re making a killing, but not even one of the minority partners have sold their share. What does that tell you? Quite simply, the Phillies are winning in spite of the people that own them.

    The Dipsy

  90. shag beta sigma delta

    December 30, 2009 at 4:37 pm

    Yea and this blog stays up in spite of asinine comments from people like the dipsh*t

  91. Chuck

    December 30, 2009 at 4:44 pm

    Manny says at 3:40 PM, “Well said, Georgie!”

    I say at 4:44 PM, …Well said, Don M!!

    I also say that it looks like we indeed WILL be bitching about Cliff Lee, David Montgomery and his “cheap bastards” ownership group, Ruben Amaro, the Phillie Phanatic and whoever else……WELL into the New Year…




    Really…you’re WAY to bright to actually think that….right??

  92. Chuck

    December 30, 2009 at 4:45 pm

    I also say,” Well said”, shag beta sigma delta!!!

  93. The Dipsy

    December 30, 2009 at 5:29 pm

    If the information in Griffin’s post of 4:17 is correct, than there you have no better example of bad ownership. If the owners made Ruben make the Lee deal simultaneously with the Halladay deal to create the payroll room, at THAT VERY SECOND, than an argument can be made that “the ownership group” cheated Ruben, and the fans, of the opportunity to get more value for Lee by holding him a little longer.

    The Dipsy

  94. Chuck

    December 30, 2009 at 5:47 pm

    IF that’s the case….then it STILL doesn’t mean that the Phillies are “winning in spite of ownership.”…

    And by the way….I don’t feel cheated….I feel grateful that I have a WINNING, CHAMPIONSHIP TEAM to root for….

    BECAUSE of what ownership has done in the past 5-10 years….I am one of what?….2,000,000 fans …. that have a team to embrace, cheer for, be happy about…..YEAR AFTER YEAR…

    And it really doesn’t matter….We have a BETTER team than we did a month ago…

    We are poised to compete for and win a 3rd straight WS berth…

    So…Dipsy…I DON’T really feel all that cheated.

  95. j reed

    December 30, 2009 at 6:25 pm

    Poised to play who…the Red Sox…don’t come crying if we play against Lackey, Lester and Beckett. Maybe we send out a 38 year old HOF pitcher with a flat tire. With all there offensive woes last year, why do you think the Red Sox took on Lackey….I tell you why, the thought of Halladay, Lee and Hamels is why. The red sox already bid on Halladay…the most logical place for him to go was us and we still had enough prospects to do it. Believe me, the Legion of Doom (R.Sox, Yankees) couldn’t be more happy with this cluster f**k.

  96. Chuck

    December 30, 2009 at 6:43 pm

    Lackey, Lester and Beckett ain’t exactly Cy Young, Pedro Martinez (of old) and Roger Clemens…

  97. Don M

    December 30, 2009 at 8:24 pm


    I was wrong about their payroll going up 48% in the last 5 years .. it was actually in the last 3 years. And it was a Tom Verducci article, not a Jon Heyman one … I’m off my game today

    “Their attendance has risen 38 percent since 2006, climbing from 2.6 million — ninth in the league — to 3.6 million. Their payroll in those three years jumped 49 percent, from $88 million to $131 million and is likely to approach $140 million in 2010.”

  98. The Dipsy

    December 30, 2009 at 9:56 pm

    Don – Attendance may have gone up %38. You said “revenue”. Two totally different things. The price of the ticket is the least expensive thing the average fan will pay for when going to a game. Or pretty damn close. The money that is made by the club outside of tickets is the BIG number. Please stop portraying ownership as noble and worthy of admiration and respect. And if you don’t feel a bit screwed that they didn’t keep Lee when they comfortable had the financial wherewithall to do it..well…I don’t know what to say. You can take a lot, I guess.

    The Dipsy

  99. Philsgirl

    December 31, 2009 at 6:31 am

    Why is this year so different from all other years? Why are grown men and women bemoaning to this degree a single trade? Because there’s a *psychological* component to this whole deal to which loyal – yes, loyal – Phils fans should not have been subjected – a huge and unnecessary case of “what if” syndrome. Unless we *do* become champs next year, I bet many of us will forever wonder: what if we had had Halladay/Lee/Hamels in 2010?

    It’s one thing to accept what you did with what you had (as we have with 2009). And if people were asking posters to stop repeatedly complaining about a loss in 6 to the Skanks I might have to agree with them. But it’s another thing to be put in a position to always wonder what you could have done with what you could have had, especially if it’s a rotation that offered one of the best starters in the majors and a number two who most teams dream of having as their ace, while still having the rest of a championship-caliber core. At least if we again wind up losing top honors in 2010, we’d know we did it with arguably our best attempt at being greatest team in our franchise history, and most likely the best single Phils team we’d have the chance to see this generation.

    It’s sad that this year there’s a widespread sense of disappointment before the season even starts and anything’s even tangibly been lost, because in a psychological sense something has been – the true pinnacle of what the Phils could have presented to the annals of baseball (heck, even if do wind up WFCs) in the coming year. Too bad management couldn’t see the intangible value inherent in this now-impossible opportunity.

    I’m sorry, but this apparent knee-jerk salary dump comes as not only an insulting, blind-siding, and embarrassing slap in the face to fans in front of the rest of the baseball community but as a nice bolus of s**t to mentally stick in the craw of fans for years to come. Dipsy, Griffin, j reed, mikemike – I will fully offer my shoulders for crying into (and hopefully not, but probably, way past) 2010, because our outrage is justified not only by the indefensibility of the business/baseball moves as many have already expounded upon, but by human nature, and is our prerogative.

  100. Chuck

    December 31, 2009 at 8:50 am

    I don’t feel “insulted”, blind-sided”, or as if I’ve endured an “embarrassing slap in the face” because of the fact that the Phillies made the decision to trade Cliff Lee.

    It’s not as if the Phillies ownership group has made the decision to have a “fire sale”…ala the ’97 Florida Marlins…

    This is baseball, people…it’s the harsh reality of the business part of professional sports in the era in which we live..why is this so surprising to all of you?

    If you didn’t like this move…then you all had better brace yourselves for the BIGGER moves that are yet to come in the next few years…

    What are you all gonna say when the Phillies refuse to resign Ryan Howard…because he’s gonna be WAY too expensive to keep?…

    I guarantee that those of you that constantly criticize him for striking out too much and calling for his head…will be devastated when the Phillies let him walk..

    Same goes for Jayson Werth…(although that probably won’t have the same emotional effect because Werth is constantly underrated and underappreciated by most fans anyway…he won’t be “emotionally” missed like Howard will be…even though he’s so valuable to this line-up.

  101. The Dipsy

    December 31, 2009 at 9:44 am

    Chuck – Stop. We will all understand when Howard asks for $23m a year and the Phils don’t pay him. Thats business. We all know that if you keep Utley and Rollins and Werth (I think they’ll keep Werth) then Howard would have to go along with probably Victorino. You can’t keep everyone. We know that. The Lee thing is completely different. 9m for 1 year. Thats all it took.

    The Dipsy

  102. Georgie

    December 31, 2009 at 10:31 am

    Philsgirl has a great argument, and everyone here knows that if the Phils don’t win the WS in 2010, and it comes down to starting pitching, the “what if” becomes the white elephant in the room. And not just for the fans, but undoubtedly the players as well.

    Chuck, we all realize that Howard will go to the AL at some point, probably sooner than later, so, no, I don’t think you’ll see the same reaction when that happens. Keeping Cliff Lee for one more year, while the core of the team is still here and in their prime, just seems like a no-brainer to me. I’m hoping they’ll be fine without him, but if they end up losing a championship due to lack of SP, well, I don’t even want to think about that now, it’s too painful.

  103. Don M

    December 31, 2009 at 10:52 am

    yea my fault.. I had read that article about a month ago so I only took out of it that their payroll had increased 48% since 2006

    “The price of the ticket is the least expensive thing the average fan will pay for when going to a game. Or pretty damn close. The money that is made by the club outside of tickets is the BIG number.”


    Avg ticket price is what, $30?
    $30 x 3.6 million fans = $108 million dollars

    I would say that’s easily the biggest chunk of their revenue
    Any that pays $30 AND then spends more than that on other things is spending too much at the ballpark

    I have an uncle that works for Aramark.. they took a HUGE drop the past two years since tailgating and bring-your-own food are now the most popular options down there

    I’m not saying they aren’t making money.. but lets not pretend that they aren’t spending money either.

    Some people want them to spend even more, which is easy to say when its not coming out of our pockets … not yet at least .. the slight increase in ticket prices directly relates to their increased payroll.. and their SOLD OUT games help give them revenue to keep this whole cycle going

    I guess they didn’t want SOLD OUT games in 2010 … and then only 20,000 fans in 2013 … so they’re trying to keep things within their budget.

    Keeping Lee and trading him later wasn’t an option.. that would have been a complete d!ck-tease to the fans. So that is why we heard “3 team trade” all along

    People can be upset we don’t have both, and that’s fine … but to still be crying over losing Lee, instead of being thankful that we now have the better of the two pitchers doesn’t make sense to me

  104. Chuck

    December 31, 2009 at 11:16 am


    YOU stop!!!

    All I’ve heard from you…and a bunch of other people on here….is how “insulted” and “blind-sided” you are over this Cliff Lee thing….something that was necessary to do for the OVERALL health of the team..

    All you guys and girls are doing is crying and whining about something that’s done….and we are BETTER OFF THE LONG-RUN for it..

    And…I guarantee that when the time comes for Ryan Howard to walk…all sorts of people are going to bitch, moan, complain…those SAME people that bitch, moan and complain every time the guys strikes out 4 times in a game.

    Seriously…if we don’t get back to the World Series…what are you all gonna do…proclaim that the reason is because the Phillies didn’t elect to keep Cliff Lee for 2010??

  105. South Jersey Al

    December 31, 2009 at 11:28 am

    Philsgirl got it absolutely right. Her post should be carved into Amaro’s desk under the heading – What Might Have Been.

  106. Chuck

    December 31, 2009 at 11:36 am

    All I have to say is…Roy Halladay had better go something like 22-3 with a 1.27 ERA….because anything less than that…and fans are probably want to run him out of town.

    I actually feel kinda bad for him right now….here he is…in red pinstripes…happy as hell to be here….and all anybody is talking about is Cliff Lee and “What Might Have Been.”

  107. ashmidt

    December 31, 2009 at 11:44 am

    alot of great stuff on here, philsgirl and georgie, you go girls, don and chuck you 2 guys have to be working for the phils pr dept. out of all the great points here , you 2 goobers still persist on defending the bluebloods.

  108. Chuck

    December 31, 2009 at 12:00 pm

    Wow…I’ve been called a “goober”….I’ve been called lots of things but never a “goober”….I’m not even sure how to react…


    How is it that just because someone defends the Front Office…you know the one of Gillick and Amaro and Montgomery and Giles…the SAME F.O. that has given us 3 straight NL titles., 2 straight WS appearances, and a World Title….

    How is it that just because someone decides to say “Ok…they’ve pulled the right strings so far so I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt with their decisions” that that person is then assumed to be working for the PR dept…??

  109. South Jersey Al

    December 31, 2009 at 12:54 pm

    Don’t feel too bad for ol’ Roy. He’s got plenty to feel just fine about. And I’ll bet if he were to honestly answer the question, he’d like his chances of winning that title he’s after if Lee were in the rotation with him. That’s all we’re saying. No disrepect to Halladay, but Halladay with Lee is better than Halladay without. And as far as no longer talking about Lee, that doesn’t stop Jan. 1. Not this Jan. 1 anyway. That stops when the next parade begins, because we had a much better chance at a parade with him still here.

  110. Griffin

    December 31, 2009 at 12:55 pm

    Philsgirl, excellent and well-written post.

  111. Chuck

    December 31, 2009 at 1:20 pm

    “Halladay is better with Lee than Halladay without.”

    No sh!t!!….Thats’ not the point of the argument….I would have loved to have had Halladay and Lee together as much as anybody else….but it didn’t make sense OVERALL…for the future health of this club…to just settle for 2 draft picks when Lee would have left at the end of the year.

    But Roy Halladay will be JUST FINE…WITHOUT Cliff Lee here…he’s the best pitcher in baseball…

    If anything…Roy Halladay makes Cole Hamels better..

    Maybe these three prospects won’t be worth a damn…and maybe they will….but I’d rather take my chances with having them here…starting at AA….than settling for 2 draft picks at the end of the year…

    We could afford to do that BECAUSE we got Roy Halladay in the fold….along with Hamels, Happ and Blanton….

  112. shag beta sigma delta

    December 31, 2009 at 1:50 pm

    I don’t work for the PR department, but I 100% agree with Chuck and the few others who can see past the 9 mill for one year of Lee and Halladay. I think everyone of you whiners did not think it was possible to have both Lee and Doc before this trade happened. You short sighted cry babies, Dipsh*t included, are blinded by how inexpensive for one year Lee would have been. The big picture is that baseball will be played in Philly after 2010, win or lose the WS. And that team has to be competitive, financially and physically. We have 4 or 5 years of Doc. And because of the trades we have made a top 10 farm system. What does that mean it means that games in philly will have a competitive team on the field past 2010 and be affordable for phans to buy tickets. I drive down from Vermont 10-15 times a year for games, no way could I afford to do that if they signed everyone and did not care about a budget. And I want to do it for years to come to watch a team that is competitive every year, not just one. So get it out of your heads the whole it was only 9 million for one year, then in 2012-2013 we would be the Mets, or the Marlins.

  113. Chuck

    December 31, 2009 at 2:06 pm

    THANK YOU!!!!….shag beta!!!!

  114. shag beta sigma delta

    December 31, 2009 at 2:11 pm

    no problem chuck, I really think the reason I left Philly was to get away for Dipsy and the other know it all whinners of Philadelphia. And Maybe living in Vermont I do not have the same doom and gloom philly phans have. But to me the glass is three quarters full right now, and two or three more WS appearances and a few more rings in the next 5 years it will be overflowing. Happy New Year to you all and yes even you Dipsy

  115. Chuck

    December 31, 2009 at 2:20 pm

    Dipsy’s ok….he’s sort of like a cartoon character that you just can’t hate…just kind of annoying sometimes!! That’s ok…I’m sure that I’m annoying, too, at times.

    Anyway…Happy New Year to you as well…stay warm in VT.

  116. pheeling it

    February 10, 2010 at 8:52 pm

    I had to go back and read some of these because i dont care about losing lee but i really admire him, one of my favorite pitchers.

    i dont think keeping lee would have done anything.

    i think that the NL is watered down to hell, and were goin win our division by 4 or 5 games again. so what if we get 110 wins in a season with lee, we dont need it! we will still get to the world series without him, making just as much money for FO as winning it with him. and restocking the farm allows us to make moves. Gillies may not seem attractive because of our depth at outfield but look at what michael borne is doing! prospects are important!

    brad lidge costs so much money and for some reason i just dont see him coming back to form. i tihnk aumont will be huge!

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