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Tuesday, January 18, 2011


I'm in the wrong business.

I am the Super Smart Baseball Guy Who Knows What LOOGY Means

I should be his agent.

Will Schniztleman...Hell-oooooo?

I suppose it could have been worse, but that's a hell of a lot to pay a guy who's not a sure bet to spend the entire season out of Allentown.

Will Schweitzer...guess who I am?

Kendrick is a likley nontender candidate next year. He really loses his value to the team now that he is making more than what veteran replacements / younger team controlled players usually make.

I'll consider that as comprising: (1) a belated bonus for 2008 and (2) a less-belated wedding present. His real value is right around half that.

According to Fangraphs WAR Kendrick was better than a replacement level player and worth about 3 million last year. 180 IP and it wasn't a total disaster. Not exactly as cheap, but Kendrick deserves a decent payday.

Clout gets 25% of that money for always defending Kyle - congrats man.

Kyle's contract probably includes a "No Competition in Spring Training" clause now that he has arrived.

Ah yes. Remember the good ol' days when Kendrick was our No. 2 starter in the '07 NLDS?

The problem with him is that it's easier to remember his bad moments than his good ones. I remember him throwing 8 shutout innings against the Braves only to get the hook and the Phils ended up losing. I also remember him walking a ton of batters and when they made contact, it wasn't pretty. At the end of the day though, his numbers balance out to acceptable.

WAR without consideration of supply and demand is troublesome for me. Sketchy starters these days are like corporate executives, plenty out there and no one wants to look cheap so GM/BoD have to give them market for a year, prey and then more likely than not jettison at end of K. Think next year KK can fare better than Gallaraga who was dfa'd today? I'd be surprised, especially since he may not even get a chance to start on a no-no, let alone have one deprived of him.

A complete waste of money spent on a "deer in the headlights" pitcher. I better not a here a word about not being able to affor a RH hitting outfielder who they might want to go after.

What a disgrace !!!!!!!!!!!!!

He has an option left, so can't they just send him to the minors and pay him a minor league salary, especially if they keep big Joe?

you can NEVER have too much starting pitching....

Phillies Red: They're not paying Kendrick $2.45M to pitch at AAA. Blanton will be traded & Kendrick will be the 5th starter. In the unlikely event that Blanton is not traded, KK will be a very expensive long man.

Hey, I'm not saying pay him that in the minors, but it's my understanding that he gets payed a minor league salary if he's in the minors. Perhaps I'm wrong about that - I really don't know.

If Blanton is dealt, its got to be the $2.45M man in the #5 spot now, right?

Does Worley stay in AAA or does he make it as a longman?

If you assume the top 6 relivers are set(that includes baez) - who is the 7th? Worley or Herndon?

Take a player like Brown for instance. He doesn't make $400K+ a year in the minors, but he does get payed a pro-rated salary of the league minimum ($400K+) when he comes up. I could easily see how it's different for actual contracts, like Kendrick's, but I'm not sure. Does anyone know how this works?

Based on his service time, Kyle Kendrick was due for arbitration this year. The Phillies needed to decide back on Dec 2(around that date) whether or not to 'tender' him. Once he tendered, he was guaranteed a MLB contract by the Phillies, whether on their own terms or by an arbitrator.

Forgot he pitched 180 innings last year. That is a load.

Phillies Red- he signed a guaranteed contract, he gets 2.45 no matter where he pitches, options or not.

KK is now guaranteed that 2.45M, no matter what RAJ decides to do with him over the course of the year. IMO, there's no reason not to trade (if possible) or send him to Allentown if Worley looks better in Clearwater. Just a sunk cost of doin biznez.

Comcast purchased a majority of NBC Universal from General Electric. What's next?

Thanks guys, wasn't sure how that worked.

Lefty: If Worley wins the job, your extra cost is paying him ontop of already paying Kendrick - and at the same time accelerating Worley's service time.

So although Kendrick is a sunk cost at $2.45M, by sending him down you end up having to pay extra to replace him.

Pretty fair and we actually spent less on BenFran/KK than I figured (guess was $4 million total and we came in at $3.6 Million)

Not the worst deal on earth. KK gets a lot of crap but he's a good 5th starter.


How about Comcast purchases a share of the Phillies and owns it in a 60/40 split with Middleton??

Since the Phillies made the error of offering arbitration to Kendrick, this is probably the best outcome.
Kendrick gets back pay for 2007, and now he is too expensive to offer arbitration next year.
Only one more season of watching him get bombed THREE times a month. Also, only one more season of watching him walk a tightrope ONCE a month, to avoid being sent to the minors.

I don't see any way Kendrick starts the season in AAA... he is either the 5th starter or the long man (depending on blanton)

I think they need to leave worley in the minors to keep him stretched out in case they need an injury replacement for a few weeks...


True all that, but it's all collateral costs of acquiring Lee (justifiable, IMO). Of course KK would not have been tendered (been let go to be a FA) if RAJ thought Lee was a possible get. That's why I say all cost of biznez.

What happens next is Comcast has to keep cash heading to Republicans in PA and DC and hope somebody sways the FCC and the 3rd Circuit judge that this merger is in the best interest of the people or close enough that dumb people won't question it outside of the industry.

Every once in awhile, Kendrick cranks up a masterpiece, like the one he threw in Yankee Stadium last year (in June, I think). He also seems to pitch reasonably well against the Braves, for some reason.

Saw Kendrick pitch a gorgeous game against the Cards this past summer. And I was sitting in the 8th row behind home plate. I couldn't see how he did it honestly. I went to 5 regular season games last year and managed to see him twice and Moyer twice. Did get to see Hamels pitch a beaut against the Sawx though. Finally got to see Doc and it was game 1 of the NLCS. My sphicter tightens every time KK takes the mound.

A signed Kendrick is a tradeable Kendrick. It might not (only?) be Blanton on the block. Now the Prince of Darkness has two chips to offer - a cheapish one and a less cheapish one.

I KK is frustrating/sickening when compared to the other guys but where were the phillies going to get 180 serviceable inning for less than that? Look at how many teams can't keep a staff together.

donc - I have gotten stuck with my share of KK starts over the past few years too including 2 last year.

All I know this year that I might be more than willing to just sell my tickets if KK is starting a Sunday game & I have already been to a game that month.

Married, Honeymoon and now his first big contract. That's at least 30 pounds.

Andy that's what I was thinking too. I wonder if anyone would want Kendrick for that much though. I know that my opinion of KK is lower than perhaps anyone else's on earth though. I do lack a little perspective.

Times have changed. When Kyle Lohse posted a 4.72 ERA for us over 11 second-half starts in 2007, Phillies fans were apoplectic that management didn't rush to resign him. When Kyle Kendrick posts a 4.73 ERA over 31 starts, Phillies fans are apoplectic that we are throwing $2.4M at him.

BAP - Comment winner.

BAP: It's true. But there is just something about KK that bothers me. It must be that "just pumped the neighbors cat look". He really isn't that bad for a 5th starter but the odds of him dropping a steaming hot turd on any given night is just so high.

From the Onion SportDome (new show on Comedy Central tonight at 10:30 EST):

- And the inspiring story of a brave little Phillies fan battling cancer with the best medicine of all -- virulent hatred of Mets third baseman David Wright.

re: Lohse

Its hard to think of a bigger swing in regards to performance/contract in 1 year.

Cards looked like the smartest team in world for signing him to the 1 year deal once it was done.

Then they re-sign him to a $40M deal and they look like the dumbest team in the league.

my "Kyle Lohse" canidate in 2011? Brett Myers. Excelled on a 1 year deal, and now got signed big and will probably fall apart.

I'm not a big Kendrick fan, but I still think his stuff plays better in the starting rotation than in the pen. Relievers often have to enter the game with men on base and a guy who pitches to a .288 batting average, and doesn't induce a lot of ground balls, is not someone I would feel confident bringing into the game in that situation. I'd rather have him starting & leave the bullpen duties to pitchers with better pure stuff.

Mrc H, I was at the game in Yankee Stadium. KK looked really good that night. Surprisingly, he also pitches well against the Cardinals, though his last outing wasn't anything to write home about.

Of course, there's also this small caveat on the Lohse-KK comparison: Lohse's 4.72 ERA in 2007 was a 97 ERA+; Kendrick's 4.73 ERA in 2010 was an 85 ERA+.

League-wide pitching stats were much better last year than in 2007. Still, I also think our expectations have changed. When Adam Eaton, Freddy Garcia, and J.D. Durbin are being shuffled in and out of your rotation, a 4.73 ERA looks pretty damn good.

I just read the blurb on mlbtr about Gallaraga getting DFA'sd because the Tigers signed Penny.

It says his contract is not guaranteed, and that if they release him he's only owed termination pay.

Is the same true of Kendrick's deal?

IIRC, Varitek refused the Bosox arb offer a couple of years ago coming off of his 4/40 contract, ehre he would have gotten a raise from the 10MM/yr he was making. The reason he refused to accept arb is the same circumstance as Gallaraga's contract - Boras, his agent, said the Bosox could have released him in ST and would only have owed him termination pay.

Based on these two examples, is it possible the Phils are in the same situation.

Can they cut bait with KK in ST and only owe him the term. pay? (IIRC it's about 450K).

I don't get the hate for Kendrick. Is Blanton that much better really? I think they equally blow sometimes, but most of the time, are serviceable guys. I don't get it honestly. If someone wants to take Blanton and his 10 million, and we keep kendrick at 2.5, sign me up. I don't if it's worth paying 80% more for 20% better production? Especially out of a fifth starter. On a team with four "aces" ahead of him.

PS: Scotchman, that loss to the braves was heartbreaking.

If KK's deal isn't guaranteed either, the Phils have a few options:

One, if they can't trade Blanton they can release Kendrick and try to re-sign him at a lower cost.

Two, if Blanton's traded and they keep Kendrick, they let him and Worley fight it out for the #5 spot and the loser goes to the pen. The higher salary is irrelevant, because it's a sunk cost and they'd want the best guy taking the hill every 5th day. They could then release KK at the end of the year.

Three, they could trade Blanton, and if Worley wins the #5 spot, DFA KK for only the term. pay and stick one of the younger, cheaper guys in the pen for the long man role if they think he can handle it.

Four, if they think Worley can handle the #5 spot and the younger guys inspire confidence in ST, they could trade Blanton AND KK.

Five, they could trade Blanton and KK, spot Worley at #5, bring Durbin back for less money if he get's desperate, and use the young guys as bullpen filler.

The point is, if KK's deal is similar to Gallaraga'a in that it's not guaranteed, the Phillies still have a lot of options open to them.

KK will probably ne pitching somewhere in 2011, jsut as Blanton will, but don't let today's contract agreement fool you into thinking that it will only be in Philly.

They are both tradeable commodities.

Two, trade Blanton, sign Durbin and give KK his earned many times over spot as 5th starter keeping Worley at AAA ready to go.

Here's a blip on the arb process. According to this info, KK's deal is NON-GUARANTEED:

The Arbitration Procedure and the Arbitration Hearing
Arbitration works as follows: In January, the player and the club each submit a salary figure to a three-person panel of professional arbitrators. hearings are conducted between the 1st and 20th day of February.

At the hearing, each party has one hour to present its case to the panel, and then has an additional 30 minutes for rebuttal. The player must attend the hearing, but is usually represented by his agent. A club executive or attorney usually represents the team.

The arbitration is a “high-low” proceeding, during which each side presents its case for why the player should be awarded the requested salary in the upcoming season. In deciding to award the higher or lower salary, the panel may consider the following criteria:

(1) the player’s contribution to the club in terms of performance and leadership;

(2) the club’s record and its attendance;

(3) any and all of the player’s “special accomplishments,” including All-Star game appearances, awards won, and postseason performance;

(4) the salaries of comparable players in the player’s service-time class and, for players with less than five years of service, the class one year ahead of him.

The parties may not refer to team finances, previous offers made during negotiations, comments from the press or salaries in other sports or occupations.

The panel, without opinion, awards the player a one-year, non-guaranteed contract at one salary or the other. If the player is cut within 16 days before the season begins, he is entitled only to 30 days’ termination pay. If the player is cut during spring training but after the 16th day before the season begins, he is entitled only to 45 days’ termination pay."

Read more at Suite101: How Baseball Arbitration Works: MLB Rules Governing the Eligibility and Process of Arbitration

AWH, I went and found the same thing when I was trying to figure out what happens if the Phils option KK. The language in your quote, however, is very specific: the panel awards a no-guaranteed contract. It's possible the two sides agreed to a guaranteed contract - at least I think it's possible.

Re optioning KK, contracts are allowed to stipulate minor league assignment salary, so it is in fact possible that kk would make what normal minor league players make, if he were to be optioned. I guess we'll just have to wait for the details to emerge.

Interesting misdirection coming out of Amaro here:

I will say that I have no problem with the phils keeping Blanton. That is one mean rotation, and it provides a good amount of insurance with KK and Worley in the wings, should something go wrong.

Damn...Armando Galarraga has some pretty crappy luck.

Guys: The 2.45M deal today was struck to AVOID the arb panel. If finalized, there's no out.

mm - I don't dislike KK either. He's is a valuable commodity because he is still cheap even next year. If he put up a similar performance this year though, he price would likely double next year.

I like KK as a 5th starter/swingman at $2.4M. Not much at ~$5M.

"In four seasons, Kendrick, considered the spring training favorite to emerge as the Phillies fifth starter if the club does indeed find a suitor for Joe Blanton, is 35-24 with a 4.69 ERA in 483 and 2-3 career innings, spanning four seasons. That's more wins and the second-most innings (second to Lannan) of any of the pitchers on this list, but a lower ERA than most of them."

Yeah, but he can't possibly be a successful MLB pitcher with a K/9 that low.

P Red, I just did a lengthly post detailing what KK is guaranteed if he had gone to arb, and it disappeared somewhere.

I cannot imagine the Phillies would give him a fully guaranteed contract and hurt their own position, because if they had gone to arg his contract wouldn't have been guranteed past the 30 or 45 days.

At $2.45MM, KK makes about $13,536/day once the season starts (181 days from April 1 to Sep 28th.)

So, they'd owe him $609,120 if it's 45 days, and $406,080 if it's 30 days.

They could easily go to KK in ST and tell him they want to renegotiate or they'll be forced to cut him for financial reasons.

They could offer him ...say $1MM guaranteed, and a spot on the roster, or he could take the term pay and try his luck elsewhere.

Again, my point is I doubt the Phillies gave him a guaranteed contract when he wouldn't get one even if he went to arb. It just doesn't make sense for them to do that.

Ruben Amaro tells Ken Rosenthal:

"I don’t feel comfortable doing it," said Amaro. "He’s going to pitch for the Phillies, probably for the entire season ... We do not need to trade the man."

I believe, as most of you do, that the Phils want to deal Blanton. But I also believe that Ruben will play a good game of chicken and if it means holding on to Blanton instead of eating much of his contract, we'll hold on to him. No reason to deal him if we'd have to eat money anyway.

"Guys: The 2.45M deal today was struck to AVOID the arb panel. If finalized, there's no out."

Lefty's, Gallarga avoided the arb panel as well, and according to mlbtr his deal is not guaranteed.

Why would the Phillies guarantee the deal if the didn't have to and they're bumping up against their payroll ceiling?

Doesn't make sense.

clout, you're at it again.

WTF did you get that quote?

Never mind.

awh: "Again, my point is I doubt the Phillies gave him a guaranteed contract when he wouldn't get one even if he went to arb. It just doesn't make sense for them to do that."

Unless, of course, they wanted to keep him. If they thought he was too expensive or planned to cut him if he got too big an arb award, they would've non-tendered him.

Despite what the moron caucus on Beerleaguer thinks, the Phils believe he has some value either as a 5th starter or trade bait. If the contract wasn't guaranteed, he wouldn't have signed it. He would've gone to arb and gotten a bigger pay day.

CJ: A bunch of reports have said that the Phils are shopping Blanton because they want to cut payroll.

Rube says that's not true.

Who do you believe?

awh: Did you read Jason's header?

Jim Bunning, Sandy Koufax, Marvin Miller and the players union lawyers everywhere are shaking their heads.

clout, then why would Gallaraga's contract be a non-guaranteed one?

Why, pray tell, would he have signed it?

Sure, KK's contract 'might' be guaranteed, but I see no compelling reason (the ones you list don't do it for me) for the Phillies to do for KK what the Tigers didn't do for Gallaraga.

"Despite what the moron caucus on Beerleaguer thinks"

Sir, you would make an excellent mother-in-law. I do agree with you. Plenty of teams will trade a fringe prospect for a fifth starter at a reasonable cost. Kendrick will likely be trade bait.

Besides, clout, why would a team fear an arb award for a player like KK as being too big when they have the option of cutting him during ST and only owing 30 or 45 days pay?

Sure, KK could say he'd only sign a guaranteed contract, but the Phillies could counter with the fact that if they did go to arb it wouldn't be guaranteed anyway.

You'll have to do better than that to convince me - at least until we know the details.

Should read "higher" ERA. Obviously.

JW: Amen. Great article. But reading this I can't help wishing for Jamie this summer.
Hi BL. Checking in.

Now if we can just give Durbin a big raise and extend Baez after 2011 we'll be set. But... Kendrick is no Eaton and it seems like lots of teams are overpaying guys. 180 IP and 11 wins in the big leagues - he deserves to get some cash and face it, the guy busts his but. Hanging around the Phab Phour is sure to continue to help him along.

I can't help buy wonder if KK would be as polarizing if he didn't have clout as a staunch supporter. I think much of the vitriol/criticism of Kendrick is actually misplaced venom towards our resident antagonist.

If RAJ offered arb, only to acquire Lee (assuming that KK was a "fall back") then he had his out by actually going to arb and seeing it through if he wanted to renege. The fact that any contract was reached to avoid arb (whether guaranteed or not), only shows that RAJ actually WANTS to have Kendrick on this team in some form or fashion - whether KYJoe is on his way out, or whatever.

Simply put, RAJ was negotiating from the point of strength with his stacked rotation and a non-guaranteed contract only a short time away. Signing KK signals that KYJoe is on his way out or that RAJ doesn't mind spending some $ to have a fairly reliable arm as a 6th starter type.

Preacher, could be. Remember that Blanton and Lee did time on the DL last year.

Interesting THT article on spending trends in MLB over the last 10 years, broken down by division:

Great line from the THT article:

"Around 2003, the Phillies realized they're actually in the sixth-biggest city in the country, and started to spend like it."

****"Around 2003, the Phillies realized they're actually in the sixth-biggest city in the country, and started to spend like it."****

Hmm, what else was happening right around that time...what OPENED in 2004 that allowed for a massive increase in spending.

Can't put my finger on it.

$2.45 million is a lot? This is PRO-baseball, right?

Samuel Dalembert is somewhere writing KK a charity check for Christ's sake.

Cliff, $2.45 million IS a lot if you have no intention whatsoever of using the guy in any way, shape or form.

I think that the signing says more about where RAJ's mind is at regarding Blanton, but that's just me.


$2.45 million is a lot when you have a guy in Worley who could arguably do the same job for $2 million less.

That said, if the Phillies are willing to pay $2.45 million on an insurance policy at the 5th starter position, so be it. Not my problem. As long as they're willing to pitch Worley if he's better, I'm all for the Phils' new big-spending ways. Let the best 5th starter win.

If they have unlimited resources now, great. It's only when the resources are allocated inefficiently that it becomes an issue.

I forgot about today's news that Blanton is reportedly staying.

So if the Phils are willing to pay $2.45 million for a SIXTH starter/swingman, awesome. Good for them. As long as it doesn't prevent resources from being allocated to other important spots, then I hope KK enjoys his newfound riches.

The best use for Kendrick is to trade him to the Nats for beans. Start Rollins, Victorino, Utley, Howard, Ibanez, Brown/Gload, then let Polanco and Ruiz give switch-hitting a try.

Oh, make sure it's a Hamels or Lee start, too.

Yup. Kyle is killah against them lefties.

Jack, I echo your sentiment on the resources. Knowing what we know, however, your statement "As long as it doesn't prevent resources from being allocated to other important spots..." leads me to believe that no matter what is said, Blanton more than likely is not staying.

It's already been stated that $ is part of the reason that no additional RF help was pursued, and $ has never been an unlimited resource in the past. Not likely that something happened between yesterday and today to change that.

Mrs. Kendrick will soon unveil this year's new lefty killer pitch from Kyle. They're calling it "The Beaver"

Hey, maybe they feel that they'd be tempting fate to assemble the best starting rotation in decades without adequate backup. Maybe they are really, really going all-in this year, and that means having not one but two serviceable starters behind the top four guys. This way even w/ injuries they wont ever be relying on minor leaguers or other talents more marginal than Kendrick as starters.

The Kendrick signing and Amaro's comments re: holding on to Blanton are wholly consistent with the current regime's emphasis on starting pitching. As a roster decision, holding Kendrick is a no-brainer. You can write his name in as a major leaguer this season - not likely in the PHillies bullpen. Financially vs. tactically, I expect Blanton would be a helluva chip come July. I don't recall many trades by contenders of similar quality pitchers in mid-season but, I could honestly see either OR both moving at some point this season.

I know KK's numbers are what they are. And he's not a bad ML starter-especially for a 5th. However, he doesn't instill a lot of confidence when he pitches.

There is something to be said for 2012 in the Kendrick/Blanton discussions. There's no guarantee Oswalt will be with the club. He's said in the past that he was strongly considering retirement after 2011 and even if he decides to play, there's no guarantee the 2012 option is picked up.

They have to plan for the possibility that their 2012 rotation will need a 4th and 5th starter. Blanton, Kendrick or even Worley could be traded, but I strongly doubt that 2 out of the 3 are going anywhere.

Train - Could it be this career slash line against LHBs that worries you?

clout says it doesn't matter. So you should just relax.

Come to think of it, can we sign Kendrick's career slash line against LHBs to play right field this year? That would make for a devastating offense.

Andy: Kendrick is a serviceable #5 that struggles against left handed batters. Nothing more, nothing less.

Clout isn't saying that it doesn't matter. In fact, his sole argument for Kendrick seems to be a sarcastic jab at someone who dared question his K/9.

BAP put it best with his comparison to Kyle Lohse. It wasn't long ago that Kendrick could have been our #2 or #3 in the rotation. He's no ace, but he certainly has value at the back end or in the pen, and I believe he'll have more value at the trading deadline to an injury plagued team. I'm just hoping that injury plagued team isn't us.

If KK doesn't start this year he will be a vastly overpaid long reliever. I'm still hoping Amaro finds a taker for Blanton (and his entire contract), leaving KK with the 5th spot and Worley as insurance.

I don't know, I like having KK as a 6th starter more than I worry about how much money he or Blanton is making. Baseball ownership is vastly overpaid as well, and apparently they think they have enough to pay KK a fair salary.

.531 SLG = "struggles"

That's like saying
level 4 hurricane = "rainstorm"

I will say this about KK. He's got a hellaciously good BABIP with RISP. I'm sure THAT will hold up forever. (Somewhere in Kyle's hometown there are lots of horses without shoes and rabbits without feet.)

It costs money to have the best number 5 in the league... Especially when you have 4 number 1's

"If KK doesn't start this year he will be a vastly overpaid long reliever."

I'm only half kidding when I say this, but Figgy at 900k is looking pretty good right about now.

Including Kendrick, Contreras and Worley, we've got 8 viable starters going into 2011, two of whom have won the Cy. I'm feeling pretty good about this season.

Don't forget, we didn't lose the World Series because thru lack of pitching (except for that game where Durbin blew it); it was lack of hitting that did us in. Management hasn't shown any signs of being aware of this. They seem to think that losing Werth, the most consistent hitter last year, and replacing him with an assortment of bench-warmers and/or a not-major-league-ready player like Dom Brown will improve our hitting, which doesn't seem logical. The only possible silver lining in the Kendrick signing is that it could mean management is preparing to trade Blanton for some good power hitter--but considering RAJ's interview on Sports Rise this morning, in which he was proclaiming the team "ready to go," I'm not too hopeful.

will: "it wasn't long ago that kendrick could be our #2 or #3"

Could? He was.

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