T-minus 10 days until pitchers and catchers report and 21 days until the first Phillies Spring Training game. With Chad Durbin likely being the last major addition to the 2013 roster, so likely ends the Phillies offseason. With the offseason nearing its unofficial close, now seems as good a time as any to compare the last two offseasons.
Below is a list of the major offseason moves (including the deals at the trading deadline) over the last two seasons along with the money added or lost with each deal. The salaries listed are based on a full season and with some of the team controlled players (like Ben Revere) the figures are estimates, but it gives you a good idea.
10/20/2011 - Phillies retain all six major league coaches for the 2012 season.
10/24/2011 - The Phillies officially declined the 2012 options for the contracts of Brad Lidge and Roy Oswalt.
11/5/2011 - Phillies Sign Jim Thome agreed to a one-year contract.
11/14/2011 - Phillies Sign Jonathan Papelbon to a four-year, $50,000,058 million contract.
11/17/2011 - Phillies re-sign Brian Schneider to a one-year contract.
11/20/2011 - The Phillies acquire Ty Wigginton from Rockies for a player to be named later or cash.
12/8/2011 - Phillies sign Laynce Nix to a two-year contract.
12/12/2011 - Phillies trade Francisco to the Toronto Blue Jays in exchange for Frank Gailey.
12/15/2011 - Phillies sign Dontrelle Willis to a one-year contract.
12/19/2011 - Jimmy Rollins signs a three-year, $33 million contract.
12/20/2011 - Ed Wade has re-joined the Phillies as a special consultant to the Baseball Operations department.
1/17/2012 - Phillies sign Cole Hamels and Wilson Valdez to 2012 contracts.
1/25/2012 – Phillies acquire Jeremy Horst from Reds in exchange for Wilson Valdez.
1/27/2012 - Phillies sign Pierre to a minor league contract and eventually add to official roster.
1/31/2012 - Phillies sign Chad Qualls to one-year, $1.15 million contract.
2/19/2012 - Phillies sign Kendrick to 2-year, $7.5 million contract.
Brad Lidge $12 million
Roy Oswalt $9 million
Ben Francisco $1.175 million
Wilson Valdez $560,000
Total Subtractions: $22.735 million
Jim Thome $1.25 million
Jonathan Papelbon $13 million
Ty Wigginton $2 million
Laynce Nix $1.15 million
Jeremy Horst $490,000
Juan Pierre $800,000
Chad Qualls $1.15 million
Total Additions: $19.84 million
Brian Schneider $800,000 (-$825,000)
Jimmy Rollins $11 million (+$2.5 million)
Cole Hamels $15 million(+$5.5 million)
Kyle Kendrick $3 million (+$550,000)
Total Additional Money: $7.725 million
It might surprise you to see how few moves the Phillies made last season. With few holes to fill, many of the decisions revolved around their current roster. The Phillies decided to let Lidge and Oswalt leave, while giving more money to Cole Hamels through arbitration and re-signing Jimmy Rollins. The rest was mostly tweaks to the bench and bullpen. Ruben Amaro did make his one characteristic big splash move by signing Jonathan Papelbon in addition to adding Hunter Pence at the trade deadline. In hindsight, it was a fairly quiet offseason.
7/31/2012 - Phillies trade Hunter Pence to San Francisco Giants in exchange for Nate Schierholtz, Tommy Joseph, and Seth Rosin.
7/31/2012 - Phillies trade Shane Victorino to Los Angeles Dodgers in exchange for Josh Lindblom, Ethan Martin,
and a player to be named later.
8/3/2012 - Joe Blanton claimed off waivers and traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers in exchange for a player to be
10/3/2012 - Phillies fire coaches Sam Perlozzo, Pete Mackanin, and Greg Gross.
10/4/2012 - Phillies hire Steve Henderson, Rod Nichols and Ryne Sandberg as coaches.
10/15/2012 - Phillies Hire Wally Joyner as the assistant hitting coach to Steve Henderson.
11/13/2012 - Phillies avoid arbitration and sign Kevin Frandsen to a one-year, $850,000 contract .
11/27 Ruiz suspended 25 games for testing positive for Adderall.
12/6/2012 - Phillies acquire Ben Revere from the Minnesota Twins in exchange for Vance Worley and Trevor May.
12/6/2012 - Phillies select Ender Inciarte and Brendan Lafferty in Rule 5 Draft.
12/9/2012 - Phillies acquire Michael Young from the Texas Rangers in exchange for Josh Lindblom and Lisalverto Bonilla.
12/18/2012 - Phillies sign John Lannan to a one-year, $2.5 million contract.
12/20/2012 - Phillies sign Mike Adams to a two-year, $12 million contract.
1/18/2013 - Phillies avoid arbitration and sign Antonio Bastardo to a one-year, $1.4 million contract.
1/22/2013 - Phillies Sign Delmon Young to a one-year, $750,000 contract.
1/29/2013 - Phillies sign Chad Durbin to a one-year, $1.1 million contract with club option for 2014.
Hunter Pence $10.4 million
Shane Victorino $9.5 million
Joe Blanton $8.5 million
Vance Worley $495,000
Josh Lindblom $483,000
Total Subtractions: $29.378 million
Ben Revere $500,000
Ender Inciarte $490,000
Michael Young $7.2 million
John Lannan $2.5 million
Mike Adams $6 million
Delmon Young $750,000
Chad Durbin $1.1 million
Total Additions $18.54 million
Cole Hamels $25.5 million (includes $6 million signing bonus) (+$10.5 million)
Kevin Frandsen $850,000 (+$650,000)
Antonio Bastardo $1.4 million (+$895,000)
Total Additional Money $12.045 million
While Ruben Amaro avoided the big splash deals over this offseason, the Phillies roster endured a major facelift, albeit with several under-the-radar moves. The Phillies had major holes in centerfield, third base, the bullpen, and the corner outfield which they filled with Ben Revere, Michael Young, Mike Adams, Chad Durbin, and Delmon Young. The only notable subtractions were Vance Worley and Josh Lindblom. Of course, the bigger moves were made during the season when the Phils traded Hunter Pence, Shane Victorino, and Joe Blanton, while signing Cole Hamels to a big contract.
Try not to read too much into the salary figures provided. My main point here is little more than to remind you of the moves made over the last two years and to show how busy the Phillies have been over the offseason. In reality, the only number that really matters is the luxury tax, which the Phillies clearly use as their payroll ceiling.
The bottom line is that they finished right around the $178 million luxury tax last season and now stand at roughly $172-$175 million. Criticize Ruben Amaro if you want, but keep in mind that even with his relatively quiet offseason, he is still right up against that luxury tax.
Consider this a teaser for the next article describing why I believe Ruben Amaro has done a decent job over the winter.