Bobby Abreu and Cory Lidle to the Yankees for reliever Matt Smith, and three prospects, including New York's No. 1 pick in 2005, shortstop C.J. Henry. The others: minor league catcher Jesus Sanchez and right-hander Carlos Monasterios.
Beerleaguer's verdict: Bobby Abreu arrived in Philadelphia in one of the most lopsided deals in Phillies history. As it turns out, that's probably how he will depart.
ESPN's Keith Law: The Yankees get a big OBP boost and the best fifth starter they've had all year, and they did it by using money (of which they have a lot) instead of prospects (of which they have few once you exclude Philip Hughes and Jose Tabata). The Phillies, meanwhile, get some salary relief for 2007, but not much else.
ESPN's Jayson Stark and Buster Olney were first to report Sunday afternoon that the Phillies veterans were to be fitted for pinstripes. The Yanks would take on all of Abreu's and Lidle's contracts.
First reaction on the PhilliesPhans board from FloppedTheNuts:
And this deal is officially worse than the Rolen and Schilling deals.
Great move Pat.
Jake V wrote:
Does this mean the Yanks had to pick up Abreu's 2008 option after all?
The only way this deal doesn't stink is if the following two things happen:
1. Abreu declines for the rest of his contract
2. Gillick makes something great happen with the money saved.
If not, it's a dog.
Abreu is gone after nearly nine years as a Phillie. Lidle, who has won four games in a row, was to be a free agent after the season.
By email, reader Dave of Trenton writes to Blinq:
The Phillies got absolute garbage for Abreu. A 27-year-old relief pitcher prospect and a SS prospect who's hitting .237 in low class A ball. Okay, so they don't have to pay Bobby $15.5 million next year, but Pat Gillick better get an ace pitcher and a proven lead off hitter this offseason.
But he does leave this gift, a link to something purporting to be the 20-year-old C.J. Henry's MySpace page.
Phillies Nation gathered these stats earlier this month, as Abreu's tenure in Philadelphia looked over, making a case for the right-fielder being an all-time Phillies great:
Reports have been flying all over the place today.
The New York Daily News reported this morning that Abreu's agent had freed the Phillies to lift his no-trade clause, allowing the outfielder to be sent to the Yankees, Mets or Red Sox. The latest report from the tabloid put the Yanks in front of the race, and talked about the Phils receiving reliever Scott Proctor and some prospects in exchange for Abreu and pitcher Jon Lieber.
Abeu, set to start today after a day off, was pulled from the line-up ten minutes before the game against the Marlins began. Abreu was shown hugging players in the dugout.
Fox Sports, meanwhile, has been reporting the deal is for Abreu and pitcher Cory Lidle.
And Olney, in ESPN's Insider, wrote:
"Late last night, the Yankees were moving toward the completion of trade talks for Bobby Abreu, but having some internal dialogue about whether Abreu is worth the money. It is becoming apparent that the Yankees could have an Abreu deal they can accept or reject, because it really is down to dollars, and the Yankees almost never let dollars get in the way of something they really want. We'll see if they take on Abreu and his contract, and if the Phillies, in the end, are willing to dump Abreu."
The Phillies have been insisting on not paying any of the $17.5 million remaining on Abreu's guarantee. (At least I think that is the amount. I've read a dozen stories and not see the same figure reported. That's from Marcus Hayes at the Phila Daily News. MLB.com breaks it down this way: "The Yankees will assume Abreu and Lidle's contracts. Abreu is due $15 million in 2007, and has a $16-million option for 2008, or a $2 million buyout, plus the rest of this season's $13.5 million salary, while Lidle is in the second season of a two-year, $6.3 million contract he signed in 2004.")
ESPN's Jerry Crasnick quotes a source close to the deal as saying that the Phillies will pay Abreu $1.5 million in exchange for waiving the no-trade clause and accepting the condition that the Yankees will not pick up his option for 2007.
The NY Daily News report quoted the man hitting .277 for the season as telling The Morning Call:
"Of course, when you hear the Yankees, one of the best teams in baseball, and you hear the rumors it, makes you feel good. They have such great players. They have such a good team. That would not be such a bad situation."
The Daily News reported that the Phils had scaled-back their demands:
At first, however, Gillick was said to be asking for top prospects - Double-A pitcher Phil Hughes and Single-A outfielder Jose Tabata. Cashman repeatedly turned down those requests, believing that he should not have to give up top quality for a player whom Gillick wanted to move to cut salary (Abreu makes $13 million this season and $15 million next year).
Gillick, according to sources, kept his demands high until recently, when it's believed that he decided he had no chance to trade equally high-priced Pat Burrell. Faced with the prospect of keeping both, Gillick began to lower the price for Abreu. If Proctor is indeed included in the trade, it will be a controversial move for the Yanks since he has been one of their most reliable relievers.
Clout groused to Beerleaguer:
Slipping or not, Abreu is still an offensive force. Trading him for mediocre to poor prospects like Proctor & (Eric) Duncan would simply be a disguised salary dump. The problem with Lidle is he is a free agent at season's end and the Phillies don't intend to re-sign him. Thus they must deal him for whatever they can get. Bell was in that category and Lieberthal & Dellucci are too. I think a rebuilding team needs to move guys like that.
One was, however. Tim wrote:
i'd love proctor and duncan for abreu. proctor has huge value, not just to us, but to most teams in baseball, and duncan gives us a legit upperlevel prospect at 3b which we are lacking.
i can't wait to see what this team looks like next year. i predict a lot of playing time for victorino so gillick can decide if he will be their leadoff hitter or if he needs to go get one. his history - rickey henderson, ichiro - indicates that is a spot he covets, and i doubt jroll, as productive as he is (or will be when lower in the lineup), is gillicks guy for it.
finally we're seeing a real gm at work.
Can always expect Deadspin to find the most bizarre angle. It did, reminding readers of when Abreu's ex had that sex problem on Mexican TV.
Swing and a Miss's Tom Goodman bid a cool goodbye to David Bell yesterday. Then, in a comment below, found himself surprising moved by the third baseman's words.
How moved was Balls, Sticks & Stuff? Enough to create The David Bell Tribute Page. With photos.
I particularly like The America Gothic Bell.
Enrico at the 700 Level stuck with simplicity - a photo of Bell with a fork stuck in him.
Phillies Nation quickly cobbled this together about the prospects the Phillies acquired:
C. J. Henry, SS
B-T: R-R . . . 6-3, 205 . . . Born: May 31, 1986, Oklahoma City, OK . . . Resides: Oklahoma City . . . Originally selected by the Yankees in the first round (17th player overall) of the 2005 First-Year Player Draft . . . Was named the 2005 Oklahoma High School Player of the Year and also named by Baseball America as a first-team High School All American . . . Hit .481 at Putnam City High School in 2005 with 13 home runs and 41 RBI in 37 games.
Henry is hitting .232 in 76 games for the Charleston RiverDogs in the single-A South Atlantic League. He has 19 doubles, three triples and two home runs with 33 RBI and 35 runs scored. After hitting .211 through the first two months, Henry is hitting .254 in the last two months, collecting 11 of his doubles and 21 of his RBI. He will be assigned to single-A Lakewood, also of the South Atlantic League.
Henry made his pro debut last summer with the Yankees rookie-level Gulf Coast League team, hitting .249 in 48 games. Baseball America named him the fourth-best prospect in the Yankees organization after the season.
Matt Smith, LHP
B-T: L-L . . . 6-4, 220 . . . Born: June 15, 1979, Las Vegas, NV . . . Resides: Henderson, NV . . . Originally selected by the Yankees in the fourth round of the 2000 First-Year Player Draft out of Oklahoma State University . . . Was the schools all-time strikeout leader (348 over three years) when selected.
Smith has relieved for both the Yankees and triple-A Columbus this season. He began the season with Columbus, was promoted after three scoreless appearances and relieved three times in the majors, returned to Columbus, recalled again on June 4 and back to triple-A on July 4.
Smith pitched a total of 12.0 scoreless innings for the Yankees over 12 games, allowing four hits and eight walks while striking out nine. With Columbus, he went 0-1 with a 2.08 ERA in 24 games.
Last season, Smith was converted from a starter to a reliever while splitting time between double-A Trenton and Columbus. He was 3-1 with a 1.55 ERA in 18 appearances at Trenton before moving up to Columbus bullpen where he was 2-0 with a 2.60 ERA in 25 appearances. He also pitched for Grand Canyon in the Arizona Fall League and for Team USA on the Olympic Qualifying team.
Jesus Sanchez, C
B-T: R-R . . . 5-11, 160 . . . Born: September 24, 1987, Valencia, VZ . . . Resides: Valencia . . . Originally signed by the Yankees as an amateur free agent, July 2, 2004.
Playing for the Gulf Coast Yankees this season, Sanchez was hitting .264 in 23 games with five doubles and 10 RBI. He had eight multi-hit games. He made his professional debut in 2005 with the Yankees team in the Dominican Summer League.
Carlos Monasterios, RHP
B-T: R-R . . . 6-2, 175 . . . Born: August 17, 1985, Miranda, VZ . . . Resides: Miranda . . . Originally signed by the Yankees as an amateur free agent, September 22, 2004.
Monasterios was also pitching for the Gulf Coast Yankees. He was 1-2 with a 2.97 ERA in seven games (three starts). In 30.1 innings, he allowed 23 hits while walking three and striking out 24. Opponents were batting .207 against him. He, too, made his debut in the Dominican Summer League last season, going 1-1 with a 0.59 ERA in 13 games.
Both Sanchez and Monasterios will be assigned to Single-A Clearwater.