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Wednesday, November 16, 2005

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"High-ranking club officials revealed that the White Sox have informed the Phillies that they want first baseman Jim Thome.

And, yes, the Phillies replied, Thome is very much available. Trading Thome would clear room for Rookie of the Year Ryan Howard.

The Phillies have several suitors for Thome, but with $43.5 remaining in his contract, they will likely have to swallow nearly half of his salary. The Phillies also realize that their offseason options could be severely limited by Thome, who has a no-trade clause.

And guess where he'd love to play next year? On the South Side of Chicago.

The White Sox believe that Thome can help bring them another World Series championship. He not only provides insurance in case free agent first baseman Paul Konerko flees for a potential five-year, $65 million contract offer from the Angels, but he becomes the finest DH in the game if Konerko returns."

http://www.usatoday.com/sports/bbw/columnist/nightengale/2005-11-16-majors_x.htm

White Sox GM Kenny Williams refused to confirm or deny his team's interest in Thome, but Williams vows the White Sox will be aggressive this offseason.

"[Thome] becomes the finest DH in the game if Konerko returns."

As long as the game is not against the Red Sox.

It would be an interesting move for the White Sox though. If Wade were still here he'd ask for Hermanson.

Actually, plucking someone from that bullpen wouldn't be such a bad idea.

Agree on the ChiSox relief corps... and also their numerous OF prospects... esp. if we move Bobby.

Other interesting tidbits today:
(1) Phillies are on Javier Vazquez's "do not trade to" list.
http://www.philly.com/mld/inquirer/sports/13186746.htm

(2) The Twins are now saying that a Thome trade is unlikely until at least Spring Training.

"The Twins' Ryan said that while the team would have interest in adding a hitter like Phillies first baseman Jim Thome to the roster, that he will not even consider Thome until spring training when clubs will be able to see whether Thome is recovered from elbow surgery. Ryan added that Thome has a no-trade clause so he is in a position to stay in Philadelphia."
http://www.startribune.com/stories/507/5731750.html

(3) The Yankees are apparently in the market to sign Tank.

"A major-league source said the Yankees are in the running to sign Todd Pratt, who will be 39 in January. Flaherty turned 38 in October.

Pratt was the Mets' backup from 1997-2001 and played last season for the Phillies."

http://www.nypost.com/sports/yankees/57633.htm

If Thome & Abreu go, that places an awful lot of pressure on young Mr. Howard...Granted, he had a great half season and has mass potential, but it was a half season, there will be some adjustments made by pitchers this year...& what if Manny is what it always is...all talk...no movement?

scooped me again, jason.

(from a short-lived philly blogger)

If Thome does go (and it seems like the White Sox might *gasp* be a possibility), I'm not sure Abreu will go too. Depends on how much of Thome's salary the Phillies will have to pick up. Personally, I'm not fully convinced Abreu SHOULD go quite yet...I'm willing to wait at least till the next mid season trading deadline, but we'll see. He is, after all, the reigning gold glover at his position. *snort*

The Phillies need to top any offer the Yankees make to Todd Pratt. The fact I just wrote that speaks volumes about the current state of Phillies catching, and how much experienced catching is at a premium.

I would agree,if Thome is traded, Abreu or Burrell will not be.

Jason - with you 100% on Pratt. Plus, on top of the necessity of having him here, I like what I hear of the guy, and I think he likes philly. He could have done a benny santiago and worked round as a veteran full-time catcher with any one of a number of teams. But he's stuck with us, given us some good hits and stayed very sane. Does anyone remember about 5 years ago SI doing a load of pre-season interviews with smaller characters in baseball? I think tank had just signed on for us as a back-up catcher, and he came across as ridiculously level-headed and good natured. I've been a fan ever since.

Pratt would never get as many starts elsewhere as he got in Philadelphia last season or can expect next season. Unless he is tired I cannot imagine him passing up that kind of opportunity. He still looks like he wants to play.

"Phillies trainer Jeff Cooper told assistant GM Ruben Amaro, Jr. that Thome is "in the best shape he's ever seen him as an athlete."

This begs the question, have they seen him in shape for other careers? Is this assuming last year he looked in great shape for a plumber?

Well this certainly will be entertaining winter meetings in December for sure. I'd take that kid Crede and take a chance on his back. Along with one of their bullpen guys. I think that would work out just fine.

I also would be sorry to see Tank go. I've always liked that guy. When he was with the Mets, I was up at Shea the night he hit that big dinger in the playoffs. He's a class act for sure.

Let's hope that he hangs around.

I also think that if Thome does get moved, they won't trade Abreu or Burrell. Mr. Gillick will be working on pitching, I think after Thome.

Two (bad) developments:

(1) Chipper Jones is restructuring his deal with the Braves that will free up as much as $15 million in salary space over the next three years... either for Furcal or for a front-end closer.

http://www.sportsline.com/mlb/story/9049551

(2) The Cubs spent $11 million on Scott Eyre for either a 2 or 3 year contract depending on what you read at CBSsportsline.com or ESPN.com. This is a big raise for Eyre, which is probably deserved, but it certainly stakes out a point for other middle relievers to adjust off...

The $5mil freed from Chipper's contract when added with Furcal's salary last year ($5.6mil) gives you $10.6mil to work with.... either for a Renteria-like contract for Furcal... or... a run at Wags???

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