The Phillies Missed Out on B.J. Upton, But One Report Says They Might Go After Josh Hamilton

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The Phillies missed out on their man last night, when B.J. Upton signed with the Braves for $75 million ridiculous and foolish dollars. So, it’s on to option two or three, which could be Josh Hamilton. Here’s what ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick had to say last night:

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Screen Shot 2012-11-29 at 9.07.43 AM

Those read an awful lot like these Tweets from Ken Rosenthal, Jon Heyman and Jayson Stark just hours before the Phillies signed Cliff Lee. 

Previously, Heyman wrote that Hamilton would be the Phillies’ third option if they were unable sign Upton or Michael Bourn. Well, Upton is off the board and Bourn is probably going to cost more than he’s worth (though the Phillies are reportedly still interested in him).

Jim Salisbury writes that the Phillies have some reservations about Hamilton (I do too), noting his struggles with addiction. But he doesn’t rule out the possibility. Jayson Stark, however, says the Phillies are “not in on [Hamilton].”

I think signing Hamilton for the upwards of $175 million he wants would be foolish. The Phillies don’t need another aging star with a monster contract. But, recent reports about large payouts to teams from league TV contracts have shown that what was considered to be a ton of money five years ago may be a bargain today. Starting in 2014, teams will receive around $27 million more per season from national TV deals, according to this report by Matt Gelb of And that doesn’t factor in the massive local TV contract the Phillies are going to get in 2015, when their current deal with CSN expires. When compared with other big market teams, the Phils receive relatively little from their current deal– $35 million. [This FanGraphs article ranks team TV contracts.] So, with an infusion of cash coming, the Phillies could likely afford Hamilton. Hell, there have already been reports that they’re OK with his salary demands. It might not be smart, but they could do it.

Salisbury also points out that the trade for Astros reliever Wilton Lopez has stalled, for now. Lopez was in Philadelphia for a physical yesterday, but the trade was never finalized as expected. The assumption (worry?) is that the Phillies found something they didn’t like. Lopez missed time with an elbow injury last season.

Anyway, Rube is the great distractor, and all of this focus on Upton and, to a lesser degree, Lopez and Ryan Madson, could have been a diversion from the real target– Josh Hamilton. Or Shane Victorino: 

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Screen Shot 2012-11-29 at 9.21.30 AMAloha.


11 Responses

  1. Thank god we didn’t sign Upton, and for $75 mil!?!? We pay Mayberry league minimum to put up the same numbers.

  2. Atlanta’s going to regret that signing, and soon too, just like the Phils will regret inking Hamilton to a deal should they go down that potholed street.

  3. Sign Hamilton.
    Now that would put the Phils right back in World Series contention.
    That and some bullpen help.

  4. This spending of the new contract deal reminds me of comedian Christian Finnegan doing a standup routine on how he sucks at Monopoly, because he spends the $200 he doesn’t have yet, because he’s about to pass go in like, two turns as long as he doesn’t roll a 4, 6, 9, or another 81-loss season.

  5. Sign the drug addict, he would pop 55 hr’s in the bank. Also bring back the wife cheater shane & wife-beater Myers.

  6. Ashton I hate to break it to you but Jimmy does have mediocre stats plus last year he was definitely on the juice with Chooch. So get your head out of your ass, you stupid motherfucker.

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