After the news conference to announce Shane Victorino's three-year, $22-million contract, Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. provided a frank assessment of the outfield's future.
His deduction? There will be some difficult decisions to make.
No reporter had even mentioned Jayson Werth's name before Amaro did. With nearly $130 million committed to just 14 players for 2011, the Phillies could be priced out of re-signing Werth, especially after the contract they gave Victorino today.
Here's a chunk of what Amaro said:
"You start adding all-star caliber players, that is obviously going to increase your core group. I guess the next question you would have is, where do we stand with Jayson? Jayson is under contract through this year. We’ve had very, very preliminary discussions about what his future might be like here. There will be some difficult decisions down the road. We’ll have to weigh where we want to fit in all the dollars and how we want to fit the puzzle together. We can not operate with nothing but $15- to $20-million players. And if there’s any indication, how much the [Matt] Holliday and [Jason] Bay signings have on direct impact on where Werth may be at the end of this year, we’re going to have to sift through it and figure out what’s best for the organization.
"That’s one of the pitfalls of locking guys up. It’s great to have these guys as stability. But there is risk here. We’re hopeful we put the risk into the right people. That’s the bottom line. Will we have made mistakes along the way? It’s very possible."