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:

  • 4th all-time in walks (3 away from second place)
  • 2nd all-time in intentional walks
  • 3rd all-time in doubles
  • 9th all-time in runs scored (1 away from eighth place)
  • 3rd all-time in strikeouts (that's a bad stat, of course)
  • 4th all-time in slugging percentage
  • 7th all-time in runs batted in
  • 7th all-time in total bases
  • 6th all-time in stolen bases
  • 5th most games played by an outfielder
  • 7-time member of 20/20 club (a consecutive streak still in progress)
  • On pace to surpass Lenny Dykstra's single season record for walks (129 in 1993) by 25 walks
  • Tied record for most consecutive games with a home run with 5
  • Tied record for most consecutive games with a RBI with 10

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. 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.

A couple commenters on Beerleaguer, were not too jazzed about the initial report. Neither was the New York Post.

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.

Fromthe700level_1How 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 school’s 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.

Posted 07/30/2006 04:29:19 PM

Thank god the Phils finally unloaded that lazy and selfish player. Say what you want about his on base percentage, he doesnt get clutch hits, which for being the highest paid player on the team he should be doing all the time, and he is pathetic in the field. The Phils are lucky to get more than a bag of sunflower seeds for Bobby and his bloated salary, its a shame they had to throw Lidle in there too but if it means getting rid of Abreu then good.

Posted 07/30/2006 05:17:43 PM

simply horrible

Posted 07/30/2006 05:33:00 PM

Abreau and Lidle. Two experienced major league players -- and WHO did the Phillies get in return? The names of those four Yankee prospects don't strike a bell. Speaking of Bell, WHO did we get for him? Can't say I am impressed -- perhaps I'll eat my words in three years. Where's Placido when you need him -- and Urbina is in jail. I live in New England. Thank goodness we have the Red Sox, although I am still a Phillies fan. bob

Posted 07/30/2006 06:00:49 PM

I'd cut Abreau from my kid's little league team. Who wants a lazy player with no heart who is afraid of the wall. And Lidle is a free agent at the end of the year the Phillies were losing anyway. This is a great deal from where I sit. The only thing I don't like about the deal is that it is a disgrace that an over paid prima donna with no heart like Abreau is going to be playing in the same right field that Babe Ruth once roamed.

Posted 07/30/2006 06:06:49 PM

Gillick is a joke!!! Stand Pat tried to do what he never did in Seattle, make a good trade. He should definitely check into the nearest old folks home, because he has definitely lost it!! Read some of C.J. Henry's less-than-impressive numbers in Charleston: CJ Henry |

Posted 07/30/2006 06:20:24 PM

If you are going to bash him irrationally, at least spell his name right gerry.

Posted 07/30/2006 06:44:56 PM

I have only one thing to say about the Abreu/Lidle deal. BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted 07/30/2006 07:46:54 PM

This is ridiculous! I could understand making this trade if Abreu was going to be a free agent, and you wanted to get anything for him before he walked. But he had another year left. Basically, they not only wrote off this year, but next year as well. And for what? Top prospects? No, they saved money. Did I miss when they put in a salary cap? The good news is that the owners saved money. Well, that's good, because as long as this ownership group is in place, they're never getting another cent of mine.

Posted 07/30/2006 08:10:00 PM

Phillies fans are morons. He leads the team in batting with runners in scoring position, but he doesn't hit in the clutch? This city loves Rowland because of how he plays, yet he's the worst hitter on the team in terms of stats (worse that the much maligned David Bell). The last player to get this much undeserved criticism is now a hall of fame 3rd baseman. Thank god the fans don't make the trades. We need to stop caring about how a player plays and worry more about the talent. Bobby Abreu is a huge loss in the middle of the lineup. Think of this - Ryan Howard is leading the league in HRs but only 5th in RBIs - imagine what that would be without Abreu on in front of him.

randy weber
Posted 07/30/2006 08:24:24 PM

The only way this trade makes sense, is if Gillick uses the millions saved to upgrade the pitching next year with two new top grade starters. If the Phillies don't spend the money on improving the team, maybe we should stop spending it at the ticket windows and in the new ballpark. But on the other hand I live in New York now and the Yankess are my American League team, so I'm going to enjoy seeing both Lidle and Abreu in pinstipes and the boost they are going to give the Yankees down the stretch. Go figure. Webo

Posted 07/30/2006 08:30:26 PM

Don't stop now! Leiberthal, Leiber, Burrell, hurry before 4 tomorrow. Then good ol Charlie in October. If we are doing a salary purge lets not do it half a--! Oh wait, that would mean the organization has a plan

Posted 07/30/2006 08:36:24 PM

One more thing - don't judge this trade now. The Phillies don't really care if the players they received today make it to the team soon. This trade was made to free up dollars. Judge this trade if in the fall the Phils use the money to significantly upgrade 3rd base, catcher, and most importantly the rotation.

Posted 07/30/2006 10:04:23 PM

I agree with all all the comments on spending the money to upgrade with one exception. We desperately need a thirdbaseman and catcher but I don't understand gnashing of teeth over the rotation. Myers, Wolfe, Hamel, Madsen, Floyd and Mathieson is a pretty good young rotation with a chance to grow into a great rotation together. Just look at Detroit and Florida. Does anyone really want another Millwood, Milton or Lieber? Spend the money on position players and let our young pitchers grow into the job.

Posted 07/30/2006 10:41:53 PM

This is another hopeless move for a planless team. If this is a cut salary move, then we're not going to sign anyone to replace him. Look at the free agent crop at 3B, C, & SP this year...horrible. What happens when we sign Shea Hillenbrand or Joe Randa for 3B? Damien Miller at C? Or - at worst - Mark Mulder at more than Abreu money? He's a strong pitcher, but then this trade will Still be not worth it. Abreu gets on base 43% of his PAs, and leads the team in RISP according to a previous poster. Unless the Phils sign Bonds this offseason, that is irreplaceable in the next 1-3 years, especially since the minors cupboard is bare. Gillick has continued his destruction of the team for the sake of shifting pieces, just like he did in his later years in Seattle. Absolutely, positively, horrible.

Posted 07/30/2006 10:44:52 PM

Did someone forget there is still a wild card race? 60 games left in regular season and 5 games out of the wild card...Should the team be dismantled?

Posted 07/30/2006 11:10:52 PM

Well said, Tim! They shouldn't give up on the wild card with a third of the season left. Yet it's the trade of Lidle, not Abreu, that signals that they have given up. While sad, you can understand trading Abreu: With a surplus of outfielders, they can dump the salary, use it to sign a pitcher or two in the winter, and play Dellucci and Victorino. But the only way to win the wild card is to stregthen pitching, not weaken it. By unloading their most reliable pitcher of late (along with Myers), the Phillies have thrown in the towel prematurely.

Posted 07/30/2006 11:53:46 PM

Typical Phillies Fan yesterday: Trade Bobby! He can't hit in the clutch! He is lazy! After the HR derby he stinks. Booooooooooo! Typical Phillies Fan today: Bobby was so awesone, one of the best Phillies ever and all they could get was a pile of trash! Boooooooooooooooo!

Posted 07/31/2006 06:08:26 AM

Why does the rest of the country wonder why Philly fans boo so much? They have the franchise that has lost the most games in the history of pro sports. If there is another lackluster crop of free agents coming this winter, what is the point of dumping salary? The Phillies have little ready in the farm system, and they're not getting decent prospects in trades. They might as well have held on to Abreu if this is the best they can do.

Posted 07/31/2006 11:45:06 AM

When you consider that the Yankees may very well have been the only team willing/able to take on Abreu's salary for this year and the next, how can we say this is a bad trade? Other than keeping Abreu and likely Burrell, and not changing anything about the team... what was the alternative? They got a bunch of prospects, if even one is decent it's a bonus. If not, they are completely free and clear of the salary and can look to the future and changing the way the team is structured.

Posted 07/31/2006 05:16:03 PM

Please should stop and ask themselves why they only got sub-par prospects for Abreu and Lidle. Because, given his salary, that's all Abreu was worth. And the alternative was what? Keep him and his high salary and don't make the playoffs. Critics of this deal make no sense to me. If we aren't going to make the playoffs next year, you might as well trade Abreu for a bucket of spit. His contract wasn't going to be picked up in 2008 and you might as well get something, anything, for him and save salary. For those critical of the deal, look at the alternatives that exist in the real world. The alternative was that Abreu would drain salary and he would leave after next year.