First off, AJ Burnett in general is hilarious. A Major League pitcher that has had an ERA over five in each of the past two seasons is both an anomaly and an utter failure, but add the fact that he’s making $16.5 million a year to be so awful, and it just becomes
laughable. To put Burnett’s combined ERA of 5.20 from the past two seasons into perspective, here are some of the worst performers in Phillies’ history, and their ERAs.
Adam Eaton (2007-08): 6.10 ERA
Jon Lieber (2005-07): 4.55 ERA
Kevin Millwood (2003-04): 4.34 ERA
Chan Ho Park (2009): 4.33 ERA
So an AJ Burnett, statistically, is somewhere between Adam Eaton and Jon Lieber. Yikes.
Anyway, Burnett was traded today, along with $20 million to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Double-A reliever Diego Moreno and Low-A outfielder Exicardo Cayones. Here’s where it gets juicy. Looking at the age, 25, and stats of Moreno, it reminded me a lot of newly acquired reliever Frank Gailey, 26 (click their names and see for yourself). Who did the Phillies give up in that deal? Ben Francisco. Cayones is 20 years old, but isn’t much of a prospect at all. So to sum it up,
Burnett + $20 million = Ben Francisco (+ random minors outfielder if you want to get technical).
I repeat, Ben Francisco, according to the logic of this trade, is worth $20 million more than AJ Burnett. If you wanted to dig deeper and argue that the Wilson Valdez for Jeremy Horst deal brought a better pitcher to the Phillies than did the Francisco deal, it would mean that Wilson is even more valuable than Burnett.
Think about that.
Earlier today the Phillies locked up their final player eligible for arbitration, when the team and All-Star Right fielder Hunter Pence agreed to a one-year, $10.4 million contract. The figure is the midpoint between the $9 million offer from the organization and the $11.8 million that Pence was seeking. Continue reading
Earlier today, the Phillies crossed another thing off of their pre-season to-do list, when they gave 28 year-old Cole Hamels a one-year $15 Million deal, avoiding arbitration. The deal comes just 32 days before pitchers and catchers report for Spring Training.
The 2011 All-Star finished last season, so far the best of his career, 5th in Cy Young voting, while compiling 14 wins and 194 strikeouts, as well as career highs in ERA and WHIP (2.79 and 0.986 respectively).
The Phillies also worked out a deal with utility infielder and one-time pitcher Wilson Valdez (Fun fact: Wilson Valdez’s hat from that game is actually in the Hall of Fame). The deal is reportedly worth $930,000 for one year.
The signings leave just Hunter Pence eligible for arbitration. Pence reportedly is asking for $11.8 Million, while the Phillies are offering $9 Million.
Just a day after Roy Oswalt got the start offensively for the Phillies, he was back on the mound to start as the Phillies pitcher. Oswalt was forced out of the game before he was able to even take the field last night due to arain delay lasting over two hours. However, Oswalt came back tonight after last night’s embarrassing loss looking to get the Phillies back to their dominating ways. Eight innings and 115 pitches later, Oswalt would come out of the game, having done exactly that, getting his sixth win of the year. Continue reading
When many people think of Wilson Valdez they think of the 19 inning epic the Phillies played back in May, where the back-up infielder pitched the 19th inning, earning the win for the night. However, rarely do the talk about his batting ability, and for good reason, as his .239 career batting average is unimpressive. However, sometimes even Valdez can come through with a big hit, just what he did today. Valdez’ 7th inning gave the Phillies the lead, and they never looked back, scoring five runs after that to finish off the Diamondbacks. Continue reading