Morning News: Phillies rumored to be talking with Jake Arrieta

Photo by Mateocubs

Here are your morning news bits …

Arrieta rumor: Jon Heyman writes that the Phillies and free agent pitcher Jake Arrieta “are having a dialogue.” How long do these dialogues last? Is it a constant phone conversation? Is it one phone call each day for four minutes? Are there texts? How does this work?

Anyway, Heyman says the Phils want a shorter-term contract. Makes sense. I guess we’ll just wait for the next update.

UPDATE: Ha! Todd Zolecki reports the Phils would consider signing Arrieta for three years, and that “a deal seems unlikely at the moment.”

In essence, the Phils don’t want to dole out a big contract to a pitcher, and they don’t want a pitcher they’re not certain will be a difference maker. That’s why you’re not seeing Arrieta, Alex Cobb or Lance Lynn get inked yet (they reportedly want more years) and it’s why you’re not seeing them get a Jason Vargas or Jaime Garcia (not perceived as difference makers).

It’s the whole dang team!: Jason Kelce visited Clearwater on Monday to bring some of that ol’ inspirational pep talk juice to the Phillies. Apparently Kelce cursed more to the Phils than to the assembled throng at the Eagles’ Super Bowl parade. Also, here’s a quote from Gabe Kapler:

“I think there were 8 to 10 (things) to take away, but the No. 1 was it is OK to fall down, be fearless, get back up, be bold and do it all over again. Champions have stories to share and they’re effective for a reason.”

This guy with the quotes.

Team Sharpie: The Phillies will go by a motto this year: “Be Bold.” That’s the Kapler way, put on t-shirts and exclaimed at a Sunday dinner for the whole team that included a big video presentation. Kapler enlisted stars to wish the Phils good luck in 2018, including Carson Wentz, Zach Ertz, Ben Simmons, Claude Giroux and Justin Timberlake.

Yes, that Justin Timberlake. His uncle John is general manager of the Threshers.

Also on the docket for Kapler and his crew: talent shows!



  1. raltongo

    February 20, 2018 at 10:10 pm

    5 years, 100 million, opt out after 3. 20mil AAV in 4-5 years time will be less than the QO, so if Arrieta even performs at an average clip he may be confident enough to opt out in favor of a larger contract. Phils are only committed to 60 million over 3 years in that case. If he doesn’t perform, well, the Phils pay a guy who may not be worth 20 million per season, but again, that will be the going rate of an above-average starter by that point anyway. Do I really want this kind of deal? Not really, but I’m sure Jake has an offer similar to this one and will take it over any 2-3 year deal with a high AAV.

  2. Vernon Dozier

    February 21, 2018 at 12:36 am

    He’s not going to opt out heading into his age 35 season with $40 million on the table, so that’s a moot point. Try making a list of the starting pitchers who at age 35+ performed at even replacement level over the past few seasons. It will be very short.

    This isn’t a case where they’re “one starter away” from contending. A three year deal would make some sense, anything beyond that is just throwing a pile of money away.

  3. Jeff Orbach

    February 21, 2018 at 9:14 am

    Chris Russo on mlb network thinks the Phils will sign Arrieta. He also seems to think that next year we will sign Bryce Harper. I hope so….

  4. Craig Glessner

    February 22, 2018 at 7:36 pm

    The only people who know when and who Arrieta is going to sign with is Jake and his agent. I’m tired of hearing that clubs aren’t spending money and signing these free agents. It’s no damn wonder you haven’t signed yet who wants a 36 year old pitcher for $20 million. The agents are ruining the game and careers, the next time you go to a game and have to grossly overpay for tickets and a $10 hot dog remember why you can’t overpay players. 3 years or no deal you can go ruin some other team. GO PHILLIES

    • schmenkman

      February 23, 2018 at 10:45 am

      I completely disagree.

      Owners have been pocketing a higher and higher percentage of the revenue for years.

      Lower player salaries would absolutely not result in lower ticket prices, or any other price reductions at the park.

  5. Jeff Orbach

    February 23, 2018 at 8:47 am

    Arrieta has to be living on “Fantasy Island” to think he’s going to get more than 3 years from ANY TEAM! If Boras is feeding him what he wants to hear instead of what he needs to hear he should fire him. Boras played a large part in ruining Ryan Madson’s career by holding out too long and demanding too much. Madson resurrected his career but suffered needlessly (financially) through Boras’s antics.

  6. Ken Bland

    February 23, 2018 at 1:59 pm

    You can’t handicap this sort of thing since negotiations are tender, and accuracy is questionably iffy, but if we attempted to handicap who would figure to sign Jake if not the Phils, who would be the favorite?

    I’d have to say Washington. Number of factors, including the seemingly longstanding relationship between Boras and Rizzo. Also, while truer than true that the Nats of 2017 exited the playoffs early because of untimely hitting, and not pitching, the acquisition of Jake for 2018 would assumedly put their starting pitching on a par with any other contender. It’s not sound investment logic, but winning a WS would in some ways make it harder for Harper to walk next winter. A lot more often than not, I’d rather have Arietta than Gio in a playoff start. Couple that with even modestly improved playoff hitting, and timelier, better strategies than Dusty demonstrated in a few instances, and they are closer to being over the hump. In the end, Jake has to compromise (likely, anyway) his original demands, but since he figures to be a free agent again before he packs it in, he’s got a better shot at marketing post season success through Washington in the next year or two. You don’t go as far as the Lerners have with spending money to win and all of a sudden stop just because of a luxury tax.

    • czontixhldr

      February 25, 2018 at 12:42 pm

      “You don’t go as far as the Lerners have with spending money to win and all of a sudden stop just because of a luxury tax.”

      But can’t you say the same thing about the Dodgers and Yankees?

  7. Craig Glessner

    February 23, 2018 at 7:01 pm

    I like Arrieta if I was making him an offer it would be $22, 20, 18, 15, 12 for a 5 year deal. By the way I think owners should make more profits than the players that’s why they are called the owners. Guess who pays the players, and second of all if the owners don’t make any money then why would anyone want to own a team. I’m not saying just be in it for the money but there needs to be a balance. There is a correlation between ticket prices and player salaries ask anybody that went to games back in the 80’s. One thing I agree with you schmenkman and will never change GO PHILLIES

    • schmenkman

      February 23, 2018 at 9:14 pm

      “By the way I think owners should make more profits than the players that’s why they are called the owners.”

      Meaning what? The owners’ profits, after all their expenses, should be more than the total they pay in salaries? So if a team has a payroll of $150 million, the owners should have an annual profit of more than $150 million? Is that what you mean?

      “if the owners don’t make any money then why would anyone want to own a team”

      Of course the owners should make money. No one said otherwise.

      But the players’ share of revenue has been steadily going down, which it sounds like you like. Is that what should happen in the companies where you and your family work as well? The workers salaries as a % of revenue should continuously go down, year after year?

      “There is a correlation between ticket prices and player salaries ask anybody that went to games back in the 80’s.”

      No doubt. But any expectation that if players are paid less, then the owners will cut ticket prices, isn’t based on reality.

      • Jeffrey Orbach

        February 23, 2018 at 10:06 pm

        I agree any money saved from salaries will go right into the owners pockets. Owners also need to understand there is a need to re-invest in their business (better players, better facilities etc) to increase the value of their business.

  8. Craig Glessner

    February 24, 2018 at 8:15 am

    Just a guess but you guys are Democrats. Players should be paid based on performance obviously that number goes up over years but there are more mediocre players getting overpaid. How many millions of dollars should an athlete get paid. If an average person made $50 thousand a year (pretty good pay) it would take 20 years of work to make 1 million dollars. 18 year old draft picks who never even played yet are signing bonuses for up to 8 million. Hey I’m not blaming the players if you can get paid you go for it that’s called capitalism just quit crying about owners when they don’t want to overpay. Trump was smart enough to know if you give business owners more money they will make things better for everyone from the players to the fans and their communities. There may be a few greedy owners but if they are they won’t have successful teams and eventually the fans will call them out. Hey MAKE THE PHILLIES GREAT AGAIN

    • schmenkman

      February 24, 2018 at 8:38 am

      Craig, no offense but you sound like a socialist. Who are you (or I or anyone) to say that players are overpaid, except by comparing their performance objectively to others in the league, and at the same stage of their careers.

      After all the system is set up (by agreement between owners and players) to pay relatively little early on, but then make up for it by paying them more once they reach free agency.

      Arbitrarily saying that a player is overpaid only because they get paid more than a similar player got in the past makes no sense, especially when the money in the game has been steadily climbing, and the players’ share hasn’t kept up.

      • czontixhldr

        February 25, 2018 at 1:07 pm

        “Arbitrarily saying that a player is overpaid only because they get paid more than a similar player got in the past makes no sense, especially when the money in the game has been steadily climbing, and the players’ share hasn’t kept up.”

        This is true.

        However, arbitrarily saying a player is underpaid only because they get paid less than a similar player got in the past makes no sense, either, regardless of whether the money in the game has been steadily climbing, and the players’ share hasn’t kept up.

        I’m with Jeff below. “I also don’t think players are entitled to a percentage of MLB revenues or profits.”

        Players should get what they can negotiate. Period. If that’s 75% of revenue or 35% of revenue, it doesn’t matter. That’s what collective bargaining is all about. The owners aren’t running a charity, and the players aren’t paid like they work for a non-profit.

        One thing to remember, the whole notion of players being “overpaid”, particularly in the fans’ eyes, stems from the simple fact that owners handed out some ridiculously stupid contracts in the past and agreed to pay increasing salaries int a players decline years. And it’s not particularly a short list. Hamilton, Howard, Crawford, Pujols, Ellsbury, Kemp, Fat Panda, and many others. If these players had actually lived up to these contracts no one would be saying a thing about them or players being overpaid. And you cannot really complain about ownership wanting to reign in these types of contract because they hurt a team’s ability to sign other players that might actually contribute more. So now the agents and players are whining that the era of the “hallowed” stupid deal is ending.

        Now, you can argue that players are underpaid earlier in their careers, and that is a notion with which I agree.

        So, I believe that what we are seeing is the beginning of a reset, a reset that is not going to happen overnight. I think over time and the next couple of CBAs, the money is going to shift to earlier in players’ careers, whether the MLB min salary goes up, whether the arb process happens earlier, whether the road to FA is shortened, etc. Teams will be less willing and likely to pay big money to guys in their mid and late 30’s, when they can’t produce at nearly the level they can during their peak.

        What I don’t know is whether it is going to take a work stoppage to get it done, because the owners, as the shift occurs, are going to try like hell to limit the money they pay our early in careers, and the players are going to have to do the same to keep even the share of revenue that they have right now.

        If the owners were really smart they would figure out a system to do exactly that, which would eliminate a works stoppage, but I have a bad feeleing that the greed on both sides is going to lead to another 1994.

        • schmenkman

          February 25, 2018 at 9:08 pm

          We mostly agree, and I also hope it can be resolved without a work stoppage.

    • Jeff Orbach

      February 24, 2018 at 9:39 am

      WRONG Craig-I’m a Republican. However I see the way certain teams run thing eg. Pittsburgh Pirates. Why would owners reduce prices on anything if they don’t have to. Would you take a voluntary paycut or a cut in the profits of your business. I think not. I wouldn’t.

      I also don’t think players are entitled to a percentage of MLB revenues or profits. The owners take the risk, players don’t. Players provide a service which they are amply paid for.

      If owners can save money why would they give anything back to the fans-such as lower ticket prices, lower concession prices etc. The only way they would is if it improves the bottom line. We have a capitalist system. The owners provide a product people want to see, the players are that product. Both will try to get whatever they can out of it.

      There is no altruism in business.

  9. Craig Glessner

    February 24, 2018 at 9:13 am

    I don’t think we will see eye to eye on the financial end of things so I will not bring that back up. I am a die hard Phillies fan that enjoys Phillies nation because it brings Philly fans together, it shouldn’t divide us. Let’s just agree to disagree and get ready for another great season. GO PHILLIES

  10. Craig Glessner

    February 24, 2018 at 12:43 pm

    It’s funny you bring up the Pirates. I live in the Pittsburgh market and go to many pirate games during the season. I have to listen to their fans all year round and trust me they are pissed. If the Pirates don’t lower ticket prices this year they may be playing to a very empty stadium. Like I said most owners know how to run a business it will be interesting to see if they have ticket specials once their season starts flushing away. I always look forward to my 5 hour trip to Philly. I take a lot of crap for being a Phillies fan around here but I’m blue and red til I’m cold and dead. GO PHILLIES

  11. Ken Bland

    February 25, 2018 at 1:00 pm

    Public sentiment, even if the public is known means nothing in determining year end W-L results. Even experts are not experts, let alone those clicking keys with their hearts. And that doesn’t even consider the unknown injury factor, let alone trade deadline deals that can greatly effect pennant races.

    But, if we put an ounce of measure to this, there’s some signage that there are some viewing the Phils season prospects with a degree of favor.

    Grant Brisbee, credible blogger from The McCovey Chronicles posted o/u win totals that have the Phils at 75.5. The post is 3 plus days old, suggesting that most votes are in. 5 votes guessed the Phils would win 75 or less, but 44 voted higher. Even 77 wins would be higher, and it’d still not be representative of a great year, but the 44 votes is one of the larger points of disagreement with the stated o/u totals. Oakland, on a total of 74 wins drew 138 disagreements in favor of over, and a mere single vote guessing under. Collectively, that’s called optimism. The Phils ratio of 44-5 in favor of the over isn’t out and out optimism, but it dissuades from taking the negative comments on things like Kapler’s weirdness, the starting pitching having no or little appointment with improvement as if they are written in blood.

    My guess is over. And not just over 75.5. Or 76, or 77. Or 78. For starters.

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