Phillies, Kendrick Agree to Two-Year Pact

In a statement from the Phillies, the team has come to terms with Kyle Kendrick on an extension, making it a two year deal.

Here are the details:

Right-hander Kyle Kendrick has agreed to a two-year, $7.5 million contract with the Phillies, covering the 2012 and 2013 seasons, Assistant General Manager Scott Proefrock announced today. The contract includes performance and awards bonuses.

Kendrick, 27, went 8-6 with a 3.22 ERA in 34 games (15 starts) for the Phillies last year. He shuttled between the rotation and the bullpen all season while reaching career bests in ERA and games. In 18 games against the NL East, he went 5-2 with a 2.14 ERA.

Last month, the Phillies and Kendrick had avoided the salary-arbitration process by agreeing to a one-year contract for the 2012 season.

Originally selected by the Phillies in the seventh round of the 2003 draft, Kendrick has a career record of 43-30 with a 4.41 ERA in 127 games (98 starts) in parts of five seasons (2007-11), all with Philadelphia.

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  1. EricL

    February 19, 2012 at 12:06 pm

    Just kind of head scratching to pay a replacement-level player that kind of money for two years. Voluntarily. Just…I dunno, but if I’m paying a long-man that much money I’m not allocating resources on my ballclub efficiently.

  2. Chris

    February 19, 2012 at 12:25 pm

    Kind of a headscratcher like Eric says. Let’s see how this plays out.

  3. George

    February 19, 2012 at 12:50 pm

    I’m not sure about this one. Part of my brain says “overpay,” but another part says “cost control,” and yet another says “at 27, he hasn’t reached his peak,” and then there’s a part that says “Blanton’s gone for sure. Kendrick will be the final starter.”

    If Kyle can start as effectively as he did in 2011, he might actually prove to be a reasonable commitment. Unfortunately, it’s a rather large “if.”

    • Lefty

      February 19, 2012 at 1:24 pm

      Wow, you just divided your brain into 4 pieces attempting to figure this out, while the rest of us are just scratching the outer shell. 🙂

      • George

        February 19, 2012 at 5:14 pm

        Yep, I’m a bit of a freak. I actually had my brain in 11 pieces once, but I misplaced some of them and can only manage four now.

    • EricL

      February 19, 2012 at 1:46 pm

      “If Kyle can start as effectively as he did in 2011, he might actually prove to be a reasonable commitment.”

      That’s the thing. He can’t. He wasn’t particularly good last year, despite his surprisingly low ERA. He was the beneficiary of a lot of luck last season; he posted a career low .261 BABIP last season, still didn’t strike anyone out (4.6 k/9), and had an unsustainably high strand rate. ERA estimators which normalize for things like luck peg him more as a 4.5-4.6 ERA guy last year, which is basically in line with what he’s been his entire career. An easily replaceable spare part, essentially.

      That, IMO, is certainly not worth $3.5 million this season, much less $4 million next. 🙁

      • George

        February 19, 2012 at 5:04 pm

        You are merely confirming the last statement of my comment, Eric; that KK is a big “if.” Or didn’t you understand that part?

        Maybe you’re right, that he did benefit from luck last year. But even a 4.5 ERA is considered
        pretty decent in today’s game.

  4. Publius

    February 19, 2012 at 2:50 pm

    If nothing else this is a damning indictment of the upper levels of the minor leagues. Guys like Kendrick are perfectly replaceable for well less than 2/$7.5mil. Unfortunately Rube has so gutted the farm system in trades that there is simply no depth at the SP position, resulting in ridiculous overpays like this one for roles that should be filled through organizational depth.

    • Fred

      February 19, 2012 at 4:10 pm

      oh stop with the BMW’ing about ‘gutting the minor leagues’ you like everyone else wants the Phillies to win NOW NOW NOW so the Phillies had no choice but to make trades to try and bring in players that will contribute to the big club. Deal with it!

      • George

        February 19, 2012 at 5:10 pm

        I agree with Fred. I’d also like a list of all those guys available for less than KK who have his experience, versatility, and attitude, as well as his 43-30 career W/L record and 4.41 ERA.

      • Publius

        February 19, 2012 at 5:24 pm

        Well first if you’re using ERA and Win/Loss to evaluate pitching you’re doing it wrong. But to play by your obscenely archaic rules, here are some names, with their stats since 2008:

        Jamie Moyer (minor league FA): 4.40 ERA, 31-20
        Joel Piniero ($1mil): 4.33 ERA, 39-33
        Aaron Laffey (minor league FA): 4.30 ERA, 17-21
        Freddy Garcia (1 year/$4mil): 4.18 ERA, 28-19
        Jon Garland (minor league FA): 4.14 ERA, 40-38

        just to name a few. 3 of those players received only minor league deals, and only Garcia made what KK is making next year. Long story short a lot of good GMs can find guys like KK on the trash heap for cheap. Instead, Rube overpays for trash.

      • Brian Sr. of CO

        February 19, 2012 at 8:38 pm

        Way to not paint a complete picture there! Stellar work ignoring some key compenents. Like say maybe.

        Jamie Moyer – Missed ALL 2011 season with Tommy John surgery and is 49 years old.
        Joel Piniero – Signed that contract with the Phillies by a GM that overpays for trash apparently
        Aaron Laffey – Did you by chance look at Innings Pitched at all? Kind of hard to compare a pitcher who averages about 75 Innings a season with a pitcher who averages 119 IP. Not to mention, Kendrick’s ERA is higher because of 2008 which he had a 5.49 ERA/ 2010 was there other season above a 4 ERA, and that was 4.73, still quite a bit better than 2008. His innings are that low because of 2009 when he had 26.1 IP. Laffey was that high in IP because of 2009.
        Freddie Garcia – Age 35, and signed a similar contract. The average is lower than Garcia’s 4 Mill (3.75) and he will be 29 at the end of it.
        Jon Garland – Pitched in a whopping 9 games, for 54 IP in 2011 (that was only last season) because of Shoulder (here is that pesky word again). SURGERY, on his PITCHING shoulder. “MRIs have long indicated that the 31-year-old Garland has been pitching with labrum and rotator cuff damage that would be expected from a pitcher with 2,083 Major League innings”

        This is NOT to say I do not agree that Kendrick is overpaid, but look at the facts of the pitchers you provided and circumstance behind them. Sure KK IS OVERPAID, but provide all the facts. LOL. I mean, you provide Piniero as a decent contract for “trash” saying basically that the GM who signed him did not “overpay[s] for trash”. I guess you didn’t realize that “Rube” signed Piniero to the PHILLIES? And that was fresh off of a 2 year $16 Mill contract with the Angels! LOL. The definition of “overpay[s] for trash” would be Joel Piniero 2 year $16 Mill contract with the Angels. Just as a refresher, KK’s contract (again at 27 yrs old) is slightly more than HALF of what Joel Piniero’s contract was entering his age 31 season, with rougly similar stats. Again, KK is overpaid, but get your facts straight.

      • EricL

        February 20, 2012 at 9:58 am

        Your point is what, Brian?

        That Kendrick is overpaid but…other people could have been MORE overpaid? That historically decent pitchers coming off bad or injury-plagued seasons can be had on the cheap? Um…ok, I think we’d all agree on that?

        Your argument seems to be that Amaro could have signed one or more of those examples that Publius gave for more money, so he’s not making a mistake by paying Kendrick too much? Or that because Kendrick has consistently been mediocre to poor the other guys aren’t of much use because they might be injured and thus not consistent? That’s basically irrelevant because if you can rattle off a list of guys like that (which you easily can) you’ll see that they’re all basically interchangeable–Kendrick, Pinero, Garland, Moyer, etc–which means that if one of them goes down you can just call up a similar guy to take his place. That’s the thing about the 6th starter/long man, they aren’t a piece that you need to rely on every day to win games, so you can make do with lesser talent there, and as such paying a high price for that low level of talent is a huge mistake.

        If you argree that Kendrick is overpaid–which you do–you’re saying that you should be able to get his kind of production for cheaper, and once you say that you’re basically agreeing that this Kendrick nonsense was silly. Good to see we’re all on the same page here.

      • Brian Sr. of CO

        February 20, 2012 at 8:21 pm

        LOL. We are all on the same page? Not quite. And here I thought it was easy to understand. He is comparing apples to oranges. Age, injury, things like that. there is no way to tell if Moyer or Garland will be able to pitch at previous level, Piniero was signed by the Phillies (that seems to be a surprise to some), and Garcia signed for similar pay. Really, the only one that can be compared is Garcia, so saying ” Long story short a lot of good GMs can find guys like KK on the trash heap for cheap. Instead, Rube overpays for trash.” is not a true statement. He overpays so much for trash that he signed one of the pitchers on that list. He did not sign the other two coming off of significant injuries, It was that difficult to see? Wow.

    • Ryne Duren

      February 20, 2012 at 11:56 am

      and what may i ask have they gutted? i mean really what players or sp have they unloaded that has made an impact on the teams that have them? the only one that comes to mind as of right now is bourne! and the jury is still out on happ. but we won the wfs with lidge so that’s a wash in my mind.yes there are a couple of pitchers who have shined briefly but nothing to brag about. and position player wise who? the guys we traded for doc? drabek still has a chance but he didn’t do so well. and the highly touted catcher de’arnaud? he has promise but is still maybe a yr and a half or slightly less away.meanwhile we have won 5 div. been to the dance 2 times and won once, and have a chance to go again and maybe again. what position players would you have kept to replace utley, rollins or any of the starters? think about it!

      • EricL

        February 20, 2012 at 12:13 pm

        They’ve unloaded players who have a lot of value who could be used to fill those vacancies. It’s not that Jon Singleton or Jarred Cosart (or any other single player traded away) could play second or third base, but it’s conceivable that he could be used to fetch someone who can. When you trade guys like that you’re not just giving away the production they may or may not provide at some later point in time, you’re also giving away the value that is inherent in their raw-talent and renown.

  5. Psujoe

    February 19, 2012 at 4:33 pm

    I like the signing. If KK had another year like last year he’d cost 5+

    • EricL

      February 19, 2012 at 8:23 pm

      Then you non-tender him and sign someone with similarly poor skills.

      • Brian Sr. of CO

        February 19, 2012 at 8:47 pm

        Agreed. That is a BIG IF! Kendrick is versatile because he can start, or say in the Pen, but adding in the 2nd year is a head scratcher. I was somewhat ok with the 1 year deal meeting in the middle, but for a pitcher which has had little consistency over the years 3+ERA to a 5+ ERA back to a 3+ again to a 4+, then back to a 3+. The one deal was fine for me, adding in the 2nd year with no consistency is what makes it a head scratcher. I doubt if you has another 2011 style season (doubtful honestly, but I could be wrong), he still would not be $5+ Mill.

  6. psujoe

    February 19, 2012 at 6:19 pm


    Kendrick 3.32
    Moyer NA injured
    Piniero 5.13
    Laffey can’t start
    Garcia (wouldn’t trust in the pen)
    Garland injured 2 of last 3 years.

    • George

      February 20, 2012 at 9:25 am

      I thank you and also Brian Sr. for this information blowing holes in Publius’ arguments.

      So many people are eager to claim that pitching is cheap and easily obtained, but so many of the options are far bigger risks than Kendrick. There are reasons why some of those listed by Publius signed MINOR LEAGUE contracts; maybe they’re not good enough to make a 25 man roster, and in some cases, not even a 40 man.

      Also, W/L and ERA may seem “archaic” to some, but many others still use those two stats (as well as other numbers) because there happen to be reasons other than luck or good offenses which help produce those. They’re maybe not the perfect indicators, but neither are fly ball rates or K/9 numbers. One of my beefs with sabermetrics is not the added info, but the total ignoring(by some fans) of traditional stats. By sabermetric standards, J.Moyer could never have won 260-odd games. He probably would have been lucky to manage three dozen.

    • EricL

      February 20, 2012 at 9:59 am

      Why wouldn’t you trust Garcia in the pen?

      Do you trust Dontrelle Willis in the pen?

      How about Jose Contreras?

  7. Psujoe

    February 19, 2012 at 10:30 pm

    Arbitration salaries always ho up when a player adds a year of service co
    Parable to his previous years. Another year with an era in the low 3’s and Kendrick would St least approach $5. How many teams have a 6th starter as hood as Kendrick? IMO the plan is to have him be #5. If Joe has a decent stint he’s gonzo for the best deal Phils can get.

    • EricL

      February 20, 2012 at 9:40 am

      First, using ERA as the singular measure by which to measure the abilities of a pitcher is awful. That’s like judging the content of one’s character by the number of pillows they use at night. Using their record is even worse.

      Second, arbitration salaries always go up, regardless of performance. That
      s because in order to offer arbitration to a player you have to tender an offer higher than his previous salary.

      Third, to answer your question, “How many teams have a 5th starter as good as Kendrick?” A lot. Because he’s not good.

  8. Lefty

    February 20, 2012 at 11:17 am

    There is some value to any organization to what we used to call “company men”. We always said there were two kinds of “company men”, there were the spies or “Rats” that all their fellow employees despised. And then there were guys like I perceive Kyle Kendrick to be. The guy that gets sent down, doesn’t complain, just keeps working hard. The guys that loses his starting job, doesn’t complain ( Like Jamie Moyer for example) , just keeps working hard. The guy that gets yanked from Long man role to starter and back over and over and doesn’t complain, just keeps working hard. Guys like that do present value to an organization even if they aren’t the very best at what they do. Just my opinion.

    This type of signing doesn’t bother me at all, when balanced against the ridiculous Papelbon contract. Comparatively it’s not much of an overpay at all.

    • Ryne Duren

      February 20, 2012 at 12:03 pm

      here here lefty well put!

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