The race for Maitan, Ohtani to begin soon

A few international notes late on this Tuesday:

  • Kevin Maitan, along with 12 other Braves prospects, will become free agents as part of Atlanta’s penalty for circumventing international signing rules between 2015 and ’17. Maitan, regarded as one of the best Latin American prospects in a decade, is a 17-year-old shortstop who hit .241/.290/.340 over two levels last year after being signed by the Braves in 2016.

Todd Zolecki wrote that the Phillies could be in on Maitan, considering they hold some extra international spending money thanks to midseason trades. He added the Phils may also be players for a number of Braves farmhands who are also about to enter international free agency. The auctioning begins Dec. 5.

  • A new posting rules agreement between Major League Baseball and Nippon Professional Baseball means that soon after Dec. 1, Shohei Ohtani will be posted, and teams will bid for his services. Ohtani, 23, is a two-way threat, putting up 1.86 ERA with over a strikeout an inning in 2016, while also hitting .322/.416/.588 with 22 home runs.

Will the Phillies be players for Ohtani? Sure, everyone should be. But serious players? Yet to be seen.



  1. Ken Bland

    November 22, 2017 at 6:07 pm

    They are lined up in throngs to draw parallels between the Eagles Chip Kelly hire and the way the Phillies are conducting off season business. I suppose it’s called who can go further outside the box. Whether the throng liner uppers prove right, we’ll see. All I know is that within the wide spectrum of the baseball galaxy, the Phillies have their best shot at winning this here NL East since 2012, but if a guy wins a hot dog eating contest at lunch, there are those that would favor him at night if it were a day night doubleheader because he knows how to win. Freedom of thought is a wonderful commodity in the off season, especially since I tire easily of hearing rumors and speculation of pitchers the Phils might get instead of educated guesses on which young pitcher that failed in 2017 is gonna at least to a degree offer a turn that young pitchers come up with on more than rare occasion.

    But today, more news that should make the what the hell are they doing bashers very happy. The Phils have hired career minor leaguer Pedro Guerrero, 28, as their assistant hitting coach. He was serving as a bench coach in the minors. They must, I mean MUST know something those of us that don’t know Guerrero don’t. He last played in the MILB in 2013, and assembled a smooth .287 OBP in 1300 at bats. 10 long balls in 1300 at bats. Not that hitting and coaching are the same, but in unison, let’s all chant WE SHALL SEE!

    Elsewhere on the coaching rumor front, it doesn’t appear to have spread from the WIP website that reports that the Phils, through Howard Eskin’s twitter account are “CONSIDERING” Chase Utley as a bench coach. What the bleeping frig does CONSIDERING mean? If Da Man isn’t the sort of guy you hire first and ask questions later about, they might as well throw out the term intense competitor. I don’t get that word considering.

  2. Jeffrey Orbach

    November 23, 2017 at 7:29 pm

    Hire Utley Now!!!!!NOW!!!

  3. bruce

    November 24, 2017 at 5:33 pm

    I read that the New York Yankees are favorites to sign Ohtani. The Yankees have the second greatest amount of international spending money to spend (behind Texas). Also the Yankees have Masahiro Tanaka as a great persuasion for Ohtani to join as a teammate. Tanaka signed with the Yankees for the 2014 season with a 7 year-$155 million contract. Ohtani’s agent knows that and with the megabucks as a powerful lure to go along with wearing with the famed pin-stripe uniform, I have no doubt Ohtani will sign with the Yankees.

    I can not see Utley as a ‘bench” coach for the Phillies. My impression of Utley which is purely subjective, is that he is not very talkative or open with his teammates. When the TV camera is peering into the dugout, Utley can be seen by himself and silently looking toward the field. In the clubhouse, it may be a different story. Who knows? One must also keep in mind that the new manager has own thoughts on the matter and the right to choose someone who he personally knows and be comfortable with as well as to confide with.

  4. Martin

    November 28, 2017 at 7:30 pm

    Ohtani has representatives who want each team to make proposals as to how they plan to integrate the Japanese star into the team culture.
    I have a few ideas. Opening game have a fly over of Vintage Japanese “Zero” Fighter Planes. Have a retired Kamakazee Pilot throw out the first pitch.
    Replace “Dollar Dog” night with 2 for 1 Sushi night at the ball park. Have a Ladies Day at the Ball Park with a Free Komono giveaway….No Japanese Food at the Club house pre game buffet because Gabe Kapler feels it contains too much MSG. Free Ichiro Bobblehead night when the Marlins come in for a series. Team trip to the Air and Space Museum when the Phils visit Washington to see the Enola Gay Exhibit. Team Movie Night when the Phils are on the road featuring such movies as “Bridges at Toko Rei” and “Tora Tora Tora.” Fathers Day at the Ball Park with discounted coupons for a lap dance with a Geisha Girl at a local gentleman’s club.

    • Ken Bland

      December 1, 2017 at 11:46 am


      Nice effort!

  5. Jeff Orbach

    December 1, 2017 at 9:20 am

    Don’t forget renaming the Walt Whitman bridge to Bridge on the River Kwai.

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