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GIF Thome to Papelbon: “I Want That Check!” and Larry Andersen Pretty Much Calls The Shot

Kyle Scott - June 24, 2012

Thome-check_h_GIFSoup.com

As we told you last night, Jonathan Papelbon offered $5,000 to anyone who could bail him out of his first blown save of the season by walking it off in the bottom of the ninth. Enter Jim Thome, who hit his 13th career walk-off home run, the most ever in the Major Leagues (previously, he was tied with Babe Ruth, Jimmie Foxx, Stan Musial, Frank Robinson, and Mickey Mantle, with 12).*

Two items of note: Larry Andersen all but called Thome’s shot just moments before he hit it, saying, “It'd be a nice time for Gentleman Jim to go yard.” 

He did just that. And, as noticed by several Phillies writers, when Thome was greeted by his teammates at home plate, he turned to Papelbon and said, “I want that check!”

Beautiful.

It’s still unclear if Thome received the check or not (we’ll likely hear more about it today), but it was clearly on his mind as he touched home plate.

Listen to LA’s soothsaying after the jump.

*Thanks to our friends from Hardball Talk for that stat.

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Amaro Consulted Doc, Considered Re-Structuring His Contract, and Details on How We Landed Clifton

Kyle Scott - December 15, 2010

Halladay_lee

Whoa.  We assumed that, at some point, a story would come out about how Ruben Amaro contacted Roy Halladay (who was named the Sporting News' Pro Athlete of the Year today) before signing Cliff Lee. What we didn't expect, was that the Phillies would have been so sensitive of Doc's feelings in all this.

Jayson Stark has the report.  As you would expect, Doc just wants to win:

But Amaro said when he explained the "special circumstances" that had caused the team to consider altering that philosophy [signing Lee to more than three years].  Halladay told him, "Ruben, this is completely different. This is a totally different circumstance. Do what you think you've got to do to put the best team on the field. … All I want to do is win."

This team is so damn lovable.  But this next part is surprising:  [ESPN.com]

That reaction, the GM said, was "exactly what I thought I would hear." But he admitted before he made the call, he and assistant GM Scott Proefrock "kicked around a couple of different possibilities" for adjusting Halladay's contract.

Because the Halladay extension was negotiated in the context of a trade, and not free agency, the Phillies felt those circumstances were different. But because they knew that in order to sign Lee, it would take so many more years and dollars than they'd offered Halladay, they might have an uncomfortable situation on their hands.

"So we definitely talked about that," Proefrock said, "how it would impact, if it would impact it. We were concerned about it. I think that's one of the reasons Ruben even called him. … We talked about it. But I don't think it's gotten any further or gone anywhere beyond that."

Because Doc reacted the way he did, the concept stopped there.  What's amazing is that the Phillies may have had even more flexibility to "adjust" Doc's contract.  And perhaps that's all because of silent partner Joe Middleton:  [Great read from CSNPhilly.com]

John Middleton - Don’t underestimate the billionaire part owner’s impact on the Phillies’ aggressiveness. The guy is a competitor. He likes to win. You can see that when he walks around the clubhouse soaked in champagne after playoff series wins. You could see it in his eyes – they were fiery with anger and disappointment – when the Phillies lost in the NLCS in October.  Middleton might be a silent partner in the public’s eye, but he’s not silent in that boardroom. He’s got some Steinbrenner in him. 

That Steinbrenner is rubbing off and played a part in the Lee negotiations.  

As we first reported on Tuesday, the Phillies were not willing to let $5 million come between them and CP Lee.  Assistant GM Scott Proefrock called Lee's agent, Darek Braunecker, on Friday with an offer. Braunecker, who was driving at the time, scribbled the terms onto the back of a CD case.  From there, talks picked up and continued throughout the weekend.  But by Sunday, it appeared as though the two sides reached an impasse.

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