2014 Reds / Reds - General

Phillips-Yankees rumor

Jon Heyman (CBS, the guy who totally blew the Dusty Baker firing story) is reporting that the Yankees have kicked the tires on a trade for Brandon Phillips.

The Yankees, looking to set themselves up in case star second baseman Robinson Cano signs elsewhere, have checked in with the Reds regarding Brandon Phillips and also asked about free-agent second baseman Omar InfantePhillips is said to be available in the right trade, but word is, the initial price is way too steep.

Not happening. Commit this thought to heart: The Yankees are going to sign Robinson Cano. The Yankees are going to sign Robinson Cano. The Yankees are going to sign Robinson Cano.

The leak of the Yankees’ interest in Phillips smacks of way-obvious negotiation strategery on the part of New York.

Because the Yankees are going to sign Robinson Cano.

47 thoughts on “Phillips-Yankees rumor

  1. Sportswriters love recycling these types of stories every offseason.

    The Yankees GM would be committing malfeasance for not inquiring about the cost of BP.

    Kind of like how virtually every player gets put through waivers after the trade deadline passes, yet the hack sportswriters still trot out the “Konerko placed on waivers!!!” headlines every August 1st.

  2. What if the Dodgers believe Guerrero can play short?……I would not count Magic and his money tree out just yet.

    BP for Gardner anyone?

    • @Drew Mac: and risk having Hanley Ramirez sulk again to play third base, when the dodgers finally got him interested in playing with more effort and hitting back up to his talent level. i just dont think thats likely. plus, like Steve says in the article, its the yankees, they need Cano to be thier superstar anchor and will pay out the cash.

      • @doctor: I agree that the likelihood is that Cano stays put. However, the Alex Rodriguez situation is still playing out and the Yankees may well still be on the hook for his salary. Also, I sincerely believe that teams, including the Yankees, are hoping not to be Pujolsed and are beginning to view draft picks as the long-run way of avoiding such a fate. While this may be an attempt to get Cano to sign more quickly and cheaply than he otherwise would (and I also believe he will end up being in New York), there are still plausible scenarios to the contrary.

  3. Not sure how this is posturing since NYY said the price was too steep. The Yankees now understand their model of putting together priceless super teams no longer works. Thats why they have been unloading the last few years. Cano is too expensive. In this case, I’m sure the Reds are asking for one MLB ready player and prospects. Too much for the Yankees to pay when their system has been depleted over the years by useless midseason trades. But they MIGHT make a deal because Cano wants $300M and they have already been through that before, see A-Roid.

  4. I know this sounds crazy, but hear me out: What if the Reds signed Cano and installed him at leadoff?

    A Votto-like 10 for $225 might not be enough, but what if it was? 10 for $250?

    Obviously, BP would have to be traded, freeing up $11 million in 2014. And bringing Cano in means no Choo, but there’s a (potential) $14 million savings.

    There’s $25 million right there for Cano, and that’s $25 million already in the budget.

  5. The leak of Phillips rumor smacks of way-obvious negotiation strategery on the part of New York.

    Because the Yankees are going to sign Robinson Cano.

    Steve,

    I absolutely agree that the rumor, obviously intentionally leaked by the NY front office, was intended as a negotiating ploy. I think NY will pull out all stops to try and retain Cano, but I also think Theo (Barney’s not the answer) & Sandy (opportunity to show up cross-town Bombers) may have something to say about that before all is said and done. If Cano does leave for greener (pun intended) pastures, the Yankees will certainly need another ‘name’ 2B and the options are very limited and if Cano does sign with the Yankees, other teams really need a good 2B and the options are still very limited.

    The bottom line is that Phillips is available for the right price, but WJ has no intention of giving him away because of his off-field antics last season.

  6. BP for Gardner seems fair…it fills a need on each team along with providing “control” of each player.

    I would say the Yankees don’t want to invest in an aging vet, but they did sign Youk and Overbay last year.

  7. If BP goes to the Yankees, then the Reds should require that they get back in return OF Zoilo Almonte and C Gary Sanchez. The Yanks don’t have much pitching in their minors system. Almonte played well at AAA, was called up then got injured when he rolled an ankle. Was on the DL most of the rest of the season. Sanchez is their top prospect, but they have several good C’s in their top 20 prospects. He finished at AA this year and is only 20.

    • If BP goes to the Yankees, then the Reds should require that they get back in return OF Zoilo Almonte and C Gary Sanchez. The Yanks don’t have much pitching in their minors system. Almonte played well at AAA, was called up then got injured when he rolled an ankle. Was on the DL most of the rest of the season. Sanchez is their top prospect, but they have several good C’s in their top 20 prospects. He finished at AA this year and is only 20.

      No offense, but why would the Reds do that deal? Our top four offensive prospects are outfielders in Hamilton, Ervin, Winker, and Rodriguez. With Bruce under control through 2017 there is potential already for a crunch. Not to mention that Mesoraco still has four years of control, and Barnhart coming up the pike in a year or so. Those two are a perfect tandem as Barnhart is a switch hitter with excellent defense. If we are looking at prospects we should start with middle infielders, as our best prospect there may be still in rookie ball. And if not then pitching is always welcomed.

  8. Here’s a way to think about a trade like this. Phillips put up 2.5 WAR last year, but he’s getting older, and probably will decline over the next 4 years. I think a reasonable guess is that he’ll put up about 8 WAR over that time. He’s also owed $50 million over that time.

    Now that’s not a terrible over-pay at today’s free agent prices, but it probably is a little bit of one. At the very least, you could assume that the Yankees, or whoever, could sign a free agent 2B for $50mil/4yr, who would put up at least 8 WAR.

    So there’s no incentive at all for the other team to give up a prospect if they are taking on all of the salary. Now, if the Reds were to pay $20mil of that contract, all of a sudden Phillips at $30mil/4yrs is a bargain, so the other team would probably be glad to give up a pretty decent prospect to get the benefit of that price.

    So basically, if you’re proposing a trade that involves a top prospect, or two, you’re assuming that the Reds will be paying most if not all of Phillips contract, freeing up no payroll.

    I assume that What Walt asked for was for the Yankees to take the whole salary and give up a prospect, probably not a top 10, and that the Yankees felt that was too high because they could get the same value in the free agent market.

    • @al: I agree with this completely and it’s important that Reds fans understand this so as not to be disappointed with any possible Phillips’ trade. His contract is right about at value, at least among friendly billionaire owners, what’s a couple million here or there. So if the Reds want to completely get out from his salary, it’s unreasonable to expect much in return. They can save money or get a solid player in return, but not likely both.

      A third option is trading BP for a similar kind of player – one that is signed to a contract that is around value. This wouldn’t be a bad-contract for bad-contract deal. Because BP doesn’t yet have a bad contract (in a year he might). This kind of trade could occur with a team that has a surplus at a different position that the Reds could use – not really sure what that would be, CF maybe.

      My guess is that the Reds will believe the PR wouldn’t work on a deal where they basically trade Phillips and his contract. (Remember, the motivation for the trade is the off-field stuff and clubhouse improvement.) Hard to sell the fans on just shipping him off. They could say the money will go to signing Choo or some other deal. But they’d need that in hand first, probably. Problem is not having an obvious 2B replacement in the organization.

      Bottom line: You’ll see a trade that splits the difference. Trade away BP, the Reds agree to pay some of the salary. Get a young, major league ready player in return. The rumored Uggla trade is a variation on that theme, although less desirable.

      • @Steve Mancuso: Talking witha friend the other day about the Uggla trade, he made the point that the Reds really would be saving money with Uggla because his contract is shorter. If the Reds backloaded Choo’s deal until when Uggla comes off the books, that could help them afford him.

        And certainly, if the deal was Uggla for Phillips, the Braves would have to include a prospect as well. I could live with that if it got us Choo.

        Hamilton
        Choo
        Votto
        Bruce
        Frazier
        Uggla
        Cozart
        Mesoraco/Hanigan

    • @al:

      With all due respect al, other than Cano, what 2B free agents knocked in 100+ RBI’s last year? How many won a gold glove last year and have 4 on the trophy shelf? None. So that increases BP’s trade value, at least with certain teams. Maybe 8-10 teams. The Reds might not be able to get a team’s top prospect for BP, but they should get back some quality. Heck, they will be giving up quality, albeit an aging quality. They should be able to expect some in return. Contending teams with money that don’t necessarily have a need for a 2B, might be interested if BP can bring them an upgrade at the position and in the lineup. Teams that lose out on Cano might as well be calling too. It will be interesting to see how it all plays out.

      • @WVRedlegs: Agreed. If the Reds trade BP and get nothing of value in return it is a bad trade. As I’m reading other comments I wonder why other trades of this nature are not figured in to the thought process.

        This is not a unique situation. It happens every Winter. Plus, I think four years of BP in a relatively club friendly contract, especially for a big market, should not net you nothing in return. Although I don’t see a haul either.

      • @WVRedlegs: I certainly agree that Phillips has value, in fact, I said that he was worth about $50mil over 4 years. I just don’t see how you’re going to get another team to agree to pay him that much money and give up a good prospect. That would mean, by definition, that they value him at more than $50mil/4yrs.

        There may be a team out there that values him that much, but with all the bad publicity Phillips has gotten and the fact that other than RBIs he had a very bad year offensively, I would think the list is very short.

        My point was more that if they want to move him, they’ll have to choose between quality of prospects in return and salary relief.

        • My point was more that if they want to move him, they’ll have to choose between quality of prospects in return and salary relief.

          I understand your POV, but I am hopeful it won’t be that stark of a choice. I am hopeful that WJ is the type of salesman that can sell ice cubes to Eskimos, ketchup popsicles to ladies in white gloves, peanuts to Mr. Peanut.
          If BP is traded, we will see just how good of a salesman and GM Walt Jocketty is, with what he gets in return.

  9. If Reds intent is to be WS contender and assuming that BP is not complete clubhouse cancer, my perspective is BP should only be traded to help reds be better next year. for a hypothetical example, a blockbuster trade of Chapman & BP to Detroit to get back prospects who are then put into a trade package to the Marlins for Stanton. That in general should make the Reds better. if that is not the vision, then Reds might as well do a mini-firesale and move Homer, Leake and Marshall as well to get reloaded with prospect talent and be ready to contend in 2015.

    Walt J, I waiting on that call to tell you what to do. LOL.

  10. Don’t be so sure that the Yankees are going to re-sign Cano. The Yankees have $98 million committed to 7 players. That’s about $79 mil below the luxury tax. Per sources today, Granderson is strongly considering accepting the $14.1 mil QO. Kuroda will probably get a two year $30 mil deal or accept his QO. That leaves $50 mil for 16 players. Cano wanted a $300 mil/10 yr deal. Say he gets it, the Yankees would be left with $20 mil for 15 players, of the arb eligible players – Nova, Gardner and Pineda figure to command the most dollars, say $12 mil? Now you are down to $8 mil for 12 players. Oh and don’t forget that if ARod’s suspension is overturned and he hits a few more HRs, he gets a $6 mil bonus which counts against the luxury tax.

    I don’t doubt that Cano is the top priority for the Yankees, but the Orioles (where I think he lands if not with the Yankees), Tigers and Blue Jays have shown a willingness to spend big, and each has a glaring hole at 2B.

    • @David: the caveat there is the A-Rod salary and pending suspension. If MLB wins, then Yanks clear $26M for one year as the suspension stands today.

  11. I really do not like the idea of selling low, and BP plus baggage is low right now, regardless of what may happen in the market.

    I also think there is a chance that he improves from his injury plagued 2013 season.

    I would be comfortable keeping him with new Price accountability for performance and leadership.

    Sell Mike Leake. He is at an all time high and has 2 years team control

    • @reaganspad: I generally agree. There’s no need to sell BP off, since he’s still a useful player. Under a new manager, and used in a different role, he could be more than just useful.

      I’d be fine with moving him for a clear upgrade though.

  12. In a contract for contract trade for BP, I’d look at the D-backs Martin Prado. He’s owed about $30-33M over 3 more years. Might even get some other mid-level prospect back.
    Four gold glove awards and the current GG at NL 2B should not be undervalued or overlooked, either for BP. That has trade value some might be selling short on at this time. Prado has good defense too.
    Prado had a higher fielding% playing mostly 3B but all INF positions, than BP had at 2B. While BP has more power, Prado could be a great 2 hole hitter in the lineup. And he is 2-3 years younger than BP. Prado has only been with ARZ for 1 season. Maybe they don’t have such an attachment to him yet.

    • @WVRedlegs: Interesting, but I also think that at a certain point, that’s just trading BP for the sake of trading him. To me, the only real reason to trade him is to unload salary to be used for improving the team elsewise, or getting a “wow-me” prospects package. BP is certainly valuable enough to keep around if the Reds are vastly coming out ahead on the money.

  13. MLB Network reporting that Phillips has been ASSURED that he will be traded this offseason.

  14. Heyman doesn’t report news, he invents it. His sources are NEVER identified and he doesn’t even bother to cover that up. His best source is “sources familiar with the team’s thinking” or “one rival scout.”

    • His best source is usually Scott Boras.

      Heyman doesn’t report news, he invents it. His sources are NEVER identified and he doesn’t even bother to cover that up. His best source is “sources familiar with the team’s thinking” or “one rival scout.”

  15. Speaking of deals, I just perused the free agent wire today. Lots of names available — LOTS of names. Seems like a bunch of teams are going to look much different next year. Some fairly interesting names. Jacoby Ellsbury, Jason Kubel, Felix Pie … wait … never mind.

  16. “Felix Pie” If Dusty was still managing, I know who would be on our bench next season.

    Interesting Pie facts: 1. His first hit was off Greg Maddux and was for extra bases.
    2. In that same game he showed off some great defense by throwing a guy out at the plate from deep center.
    3. He did squat after that.

    Don’t believe the hype……

  17. any thoughts on a Phillips for Weeks and Aoki trade?
    Aoki is a poor mans version Of Choo, and Weeks only has one year left on his contract.

  18. I would hate to see bp go. He has done everything Dusty asked him to do Bat leadoff, bat 2nd , clean up, As far as i know, he was always willing to sacrifice for the team.I may be missing something, he is not in decline his BA dropped because he is in the clean up spot to drive runs in. Everyone has been knocking votto for taking pitches. Imagine where we would have been this year without him
    Secondly, no one plays a better 2nd base. Let’s give him a year with Price and see if that doesn’t help.
    My hope in offseason is to resign choo, let him play lf in 2015, we will have ludwicks money to help pay his salary and a cheap Hamilton in 2015 and on

  19. if the Dodgers would just view Guerrero as a shortstop(or 3B) might be a contract for contract deal to be made there… With Puig’s emergence Ethier,Kemp or Crawford has to go from LA

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