Here’s a hastily put together collection of links to get you ready for day two of the Winter Meetings, as we get set to once again begin playing the waiting game Hungry Hungry Hippos in hopes of some actual Jays-related news…

Uh… hello! Buster Olney tweets that the Phillies “have indicated to other teams they are ready and willing to talk about Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels in trades.” The price would surely be astronomical, and it’s hard to quite understand given the way that roster is constructed– they just brought back Carlos Ruiz for three years, they extended Utley over the summer, Ryan Howard’s deal is as bloated as ever, etc.– but if we’ve learned anything from watching the Phillies over these last few years, it’s that Ruben Amaro isn’t a man who is going to let sense get in the way of a decision. So… yeah. If the Jays are going to break the ol’ prospect bank on a pitcher, here are the guys to be going all-in on. Beats Jeff Samardzija and Brett fucking Anderson. Speaking of…

According to a tweet from Jeff Passan, some teams “believe A’s have cooled on idea of trading Brett Anderson this week.” Could that be, maybe, because he’s not ready to pass a physical if he does get traded anyway? I, of course, actually have no idea if that was the issue that saw the Jays’ three-way trade of Sergio Santos to the Rangers, which would have netted them a starter, fall apart, but it sure does make a little bit of sense. Meh.

Joel Sherman tweets that an agreement is in place between Japan and MLB on the new posting system, which will cap the posting fee NPB clubs receive at $20-million. However, he notes that MLB’s executive council still has to approve it. That sounds like it’s a formality, but it won’t take place until later in the week, and it still doesn’t resolve the issue of whether Rakuten will actually post Masahiro Tanaka or not.

On Lee and Hamels, Jon Heyman adds that the Phillies won’t eat any dollars to get deals done– then reminds us that Hamels has $118.5-million for five years left on his deal (including a $6-million buyout for a sixth year option that would cost an additional $14-million to exercise), while Lee has $62.5-million guaranteed for two years, plus a $12.5-million buyout on a third year option that would cost $15-million more to exercise. Get on the phone with Rogers, Alex. Like, right damn now.

Then again, the market for David Price may be softening a bit at the moment, as MLBTR notes– via Ken Rosenthal– that the Dodgers may currently be in the driver’s seat, due to the reluctance of the Mariners to include Taijuan walker in a deal, and the Diamondbacks’ reluctance to add Archie Bradley. “L.A. can’t offer a prospect as good as those two, but they can offer some combination of Corey Seager, Joc Pederson, and pitching,” we’re told. Can the Jays beat that, even with an in-division overpay? Sure, why not? I bet someone eventually bites, though. It’s David Price!

Olney also tells us that the “asking price for Omar Infante is said to be north of $8 million per season, on a long-term deal.” So… uh… not great, but still better than goin’ with Goins, I think. Pitching, though…

This one seemed to slip through my fingers a little bit yesterday, but apparently– or, at least, according to one of Shi Davidi’s posts at Sportsnet– the Jays have checked in on the likes of Logan Morrison, James Loney, and Mitch Moreland. All of those guys, you’ll note, are left-handed hitting first baseman, which makes sense when you realize that the club is simply touching base in case something involving Adam Lind comes along– like if the Pirates had actually been interested in flipping Neil Walker for him, which Davidi reported in the piece yesterday was the Jays’ demand.

Another one from Shi, as he tweeted yesterday that Thad Weber is no longer on the Jays’ 40-man roster, as he’s had his rights sold to the NC Dinos of the Korean League. Two things on this: one, no, the Jays wouldn’t do this without his consent. And two, holy fuck, people responding to minor transactions with sarcasm about it being such big fuckin’ news like the fact that any move being reported should be big enough to make them drop everything they’re doing and daydream about championships, or who act like this little thing is the only move that’s going to ever be made this off-season… um… stop doing that already.

As was first being reported by Ben Nicholson-Smith last night, the Tigers appear very close to agreeing to a deal with Rajai Davis. Too bad for the Jays, as they could have used exactly him, but obviously the fact that they don’t have nearly the playing time for him that he desired, and also have cheap outfielders on the cusp at triple-A, made it pretty much a given he wouldn’t return. MLBTR is following the story, naturally. (And Ben now has it confirmed– Davis to Detroit on a two-year deal.)

Lastly, at Sports On Earth, Jonathan Bernhardt takes a look at Roy Halladay’s legacy and his Hall of Fame case.

Comments (67)

  1. How about this tweet?
    Peter Gammons ‏
    One club says Phils will attach D. Brown if someone takes Papelbon, use $ for a starter

  2. My shopping list just got even more unrealistic! Thanks Philly.

  3. Re: Lee/Hamels – Too bad we can’t afford to take on an extra 20+ million. Seems like this could have been an ideal situation for TOR a year ago…

  4. I would sell my mother’s eyes to get Cliff fucking Lee on this team.

  5. If the Phils are not willing to eat any money owed to Lee/Hamels I would have to think the package Toronto or any team would need to send them would be minimal.. 62.5 over 2 years for Lee and 118 over 5 for Hamels is a shitload of money. While both guys are very good I’m not sure I’d be willing to give up top prospects AND take on that much salary.

    Here’s hoping the Yankees don’t land either of them.

    • I don’t know about minimal, but not as big as ones that it took to get guys with lots more control, like Latos, or who were a lot cheaper, like Dickey.

  6. I love how you make fun of Ruben Amaro Jr, well worth the read for that alone.

    Today is not going to be very productive at work…I can feel it!

  7. ˙pǝddoɥs ƃuıǝq ǝǝl puɐ slǝɯɐɥ ɥʇıʍ uʍop ǝpısdn pǝuɹnʇ uǝǝq sɐɥ ʇǝʞɹɐɯ ǝpɐɹʇ ǝɥʇ

    • Well, the league needs to waste time until Tanaka gets posted, seems like a good distraction/time waster :)

  8. My guess is that the Yankees acquire Cole Hamels for all the prospects they’ve got, then flip Alex Rodriguez for Cliff Lee in a straight up deal that then leaves them with the best team of all time

  9. I’m glad I wasn’t eating breakfast while reading this, because I would have snarfed it everywhere upon reading about Lee’s salary over the next two years. I mean, dammmmnnn.

    Yeah, Phillies can either get prospects or unload the salary, not both. Which of course means the Dodgers will do both.

    • Yeah! What kind of team takes on a lot of salary AND trades prospects in the same deal!?

    • Projecting Lee to get 8 WAR over the next two years seems pretty reasonable (he hasn’t had <4.9 since 2007). Wins seems to be worth rough;y 7M these days, making 62.5 not even seem thaaaaat bad.

      Now, I don't think you should give up that much talent to get a market value asset. However, the bonus of being able to get a top of the line starter for only 2 years of commitment is pretty awesome.

  10. Going to miss Davis for sure….

  11. Who’s Harry Crumb. A classic. It’s not Uncle Buck, Spaceballs or Planes Train and Automobiles, but it’s still some good solid Candy.

  12. Lee is owed 62.5 over 3 years….3rd being a vesting option or a 12mil buy out

    14′ – 25mil
    15′ 25mil
    16′ 27.5 or 12.5 buy out

    option becomes guaranteed with 200 IP in 2015 or 400 IP in 2014-15

    • Thanks Coach. Was going to post a question about this since $30 mil+/year made no sense.

    • He looks well positioned to hit that vesting option which makes his contract a little scarier to be sure.

      • Or maybe not. 12.5 is a big buyout.

      • if he hits the vesting option, its way better for the Jays if they land him, which, i dont think they will.

        we have 15mil….so we hear to land…a SP and 2Bs and maybe a 1B that hits LHP well…..either of them hurts our chances of filling that out…

        but you could do some money moving in sending Lind and Happ somewhere. whats that, 12-13mil? that gives you the money to land one of them and maybe some other cheap options for 2b.

        having Cole or Lee is better then having Lind.

  13. here is Hamels Contract details

    Cole Hamels – 6 years/$144M (2013-2018), plus 2019 club option
    ($24 million AAV) 2013 – $19.5 million
    2014 – $22.5 million
    2015 – $22.5 million
    2016 – $22.5 million
    2017 – $22.5 million
    2018 – $22.5 million
    2019 – $20 million club option ($6 million buyout) – option guaranteed if Hamels has 400 IP in 2017-18 (including 200 IP in 2018) and is not on the DL with shoulder or elbow injury at the end of the 2018 season.
    –includes $6 million signing bonus

  14. This makes me think of the Howard Eskin rumours of Bautista for Brown. He insisted that is what he was hearing and he even tweeted at John Heyman that there were other players involved. The rumour sounds a little more realistic if Hamels/Lee was involved don’t you think?

  15. So …what is Ruben Amaro doing exactly?

    • finally realizing his team needs a massive rebuild?

      • but then why the need to sign Marlon Byrd & Carlos Ruiz?

        • This is Ruben Amaro we’re talking about here. Then again it could be just opportunism after he saw what the market was like for this year and next. Philly is an interesting case because of the age of their players and the fact that they are about to sign a massive TV contract in the coming year.

          • Even if they re-build they’re still going to have to field a team, and sell some tickets… not everyone can pull a Houston Astro and field the best damn A ball team in the game

  16. The only way I could see the Jays getting their hands on Lee would be to flip them Buerhle and prospects. Otherwise the $ hit would be just too much even for those of us who believe in the magical Bottomless Dead Ted Wallet

    • I’m pretty sure they would be able to convince the rogers and co. Especially if it was Lee coming back, it’s only 2 years.

      • I think the 2 years thing is key. The Jays have very little committed long term. If AA fails to build a winning team (and increase profits), the Jays will be in a very capable position to slash budget and rebuild.

      • Again it would have to be about Rogers for sure. If they are wringing their hands at the cost of a free agent starter who likely won’t make more than $18 million a year what are they going to do for a player set to make $25 million + over the next 3 seasons.

        • Cliff lee is quite a bit better then any of the free agent starters lol, If AA can do it for a reasonable price, rogers will approve it

          • It’s Cliff f***ing Lee. He’s EXACTLY what this club needs. A bonafide ace at the top of the rotation. The contract length fits into the competitive window. He’s as steady as an ace gets. I would much rather pay 25 million ofr Lee that 18 – 20 for Jiminez or Santana and have to give up a 2nd round pick.

            This is the kind of guy you give up top prospects for.

            Make it happen, AA!!

  17. Glad to see Rajai is finally getting paid. Think the Jays will miss him. He could be such a game changer on the bases.

    • It’s about double what we paid him right?

      • I wouldn’t have minded Davis for $5 mil/year for 2 years. Is he their 4th outfielder or is he supplanting Dirks?

      • If you look at what Gomes signed for last year as a platoon player then it’s not out of line at all and I think he brings a better overall skill set than Gomes. More versatile defensively and he’s a terror on the base paths.

        TIgers just have to use him properly as a platoon and late inning guy. If they do that it’s a great pick up.

  18. Maybe if Lee and Hamels are available, Utley is too? droool.

  19. Lee and Brown for Santos, Cecil, Melky, Gose, Lind and Tirado? Sound about right?

    • You really like spewing random crap don’t you.

      I have to hand it to you, one of your crazy proposals will eventually stick.

  20. What about mortgaging the ENTIRE future for Lee, Hamels and Utley (if available)…. win back to back World Series and do nothing for another 20 years?

    It would create an entire generation of new baseball fans… just like 92-93 did.

    Rogers would probably still make money. Maybe even a lot of money.

  21. On Thad Weber – it’s not a big transaction, but worth noting that the Jays didn’t have room for him anyway. They have these guys for 10 spots in Buffalo and New Hampshire – Stroman, Hutchison, Drabek, Jenkins, McGuire, Rasmussen, Nolin, Sanchez, Romero, Biebens-Dirkx, Tepera, Brummett, and maybe Vargas. Something’s got to give, ie release more fodder or trade Sanchez or Nolin or, gasp, even Stroman.

  22. Fuck it. Get em both.

  23. So does Halladay still have another hour or so left on his 1-day contract? AA should call up Amaro and swap him for Hamels or Lee.

  24. It’s really hard to gauge what the Phillies might want as a return since they don’t seem to have much of a plan. Do they want veterans and give it a shot, or prospects to rebuild? Who the fuck knows?

    So to that I say give them Bautista, Sanchez and Stroman for Hamels and Lee and Brown

  25. With Amaro’s history/reputation holding firm ranking him at or near the bottom of the GM rankings might make sense for AA to try to go all in.
    A trade where the Jays relieve the Phillies of massive salary commitments(one overpaid another extremely overpaid and highly unwanted) while not requesting Philadelphia to eat any money yet take back short term somewhat serviceable MLB contracts in combination
    with prospects.

    Something Like:

    To the Jays: Lee, Hamels, Papelbon (cost of doing business) and Brown.

    To the Phillies: Buerhle(frees up salary for the Jays to help absorb the above players while replacing innings for the Phillies) , Happ, Lind (or Cabrera….hell its Amaro try for both), Janssen, along with Gose, Drabek, Nolin, Norris, and Smoral plus additional lower level prospects if need be.

    • You would have to add to that package. What about adding Tirado or Nay plus Cecil?

    • This seems like an insane suggestion.

      How about using the same players as trade bait

      trade Happ, Jansenn for Kendrick
      Trade Lind, Gose, Smoral, Norris, Nolin and additional low level prospects for Price
      sign Garza for less than is owed to Hamels over the same term

      This results in taking on less payroll than trading for Hamels and Lee, fills a hole at second base, keeps Drabek in the fold for SP depth.

      Lee and Price are a wash and likely so are Garza and Drabek compared to Hamels. Kendrick and less payroll are bonuses.

  26. Don’t sell the farm. Very few teams can absorb the salary hit while still being able to give up a good prospect or 2. Having said that I won’t be swuch an assh0le next year if I get 2 starting pitchers for Christmas, I promiss.

  27. Would taking on these contracts put the Jays anywhere near luxury tax territory?

    Which contract makes more financial sense for the Jays?

  28. I certainly love Lee and Hamels but why would you trade all these prospects for them if you have a chance at FAs who you could sign for likely less money. Same people all over trading tons of prospects for Lee are saying don’t pay Garza 17M a year as a FA!!!!

    Use those prospects to improve other areas – 2B or even a guy like Price. Ill take a FA signing of Garza, a trade for Price and a trade for Kendrick over giving up more prospects to get just Lee and Hamels who have astronomical contacts in their own right.

    If the Jays want to go all in now trading the entire farm for Lee, Hamels and Utley is not the way to do it. Sign the top FAs left if you can – Garza, Tanaka, Choo – and try to trade for a quality second baseman – Kendrick or Phillips if you can is a much better idea. And to top it off trade more of the farm for Price and a couple decent bench guys and then you have a serious contender

  29. Confused Weber with Neil Wagner for half a second and thought, “Oh, I kinda liked him.” Then I realized I don’t remember Thad Weber.

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