Skip to content

Olney: Phillies discussed Howard-Pujols swap

Mar 14, 2010, 4:04 PM EDT

howard pujols.JPGHere’s the craziest thing you’ll read all week (and it’s only Sunday):  According to ESPN.com’s Buster Olney, the Phillies at one point kicked around the idea of offering Ryan Howard to the Cardinals for slugger Albert Pujols. 

Inside Olney’s oddly-formed story we get a flat-out denial of any such talks from Philadelphia GM Ruben Amaro Jr., so it’s safe to say discussions are not ongoing (and may have never actually started).  Even if the Phillies threw around the thought internally, it’s not exactly a fair swap and we highly doubt Cardinals GM John Mozeliak would even hear the idea through.  Howard is an excellent player, but he’s a couple of months older than Pujols and not nearly as valuable. 

Pujols, who turned 30 in January, has a .334/.427/.628 career batting line and is widely regarded as one of the top defensive first basemen in the National League.  Howard, 30 in November, has a .279/.376/.586 career batting line and isn’t nearly as solid in the field.

Sure, Pujols is headed for free agency and is likely to command one of the richest contracts in sports history, but you pay for what you get.  Albert’s stat lines over his first nine major league seasons rank among the finest marks in the game’s 120-plus years of existence.  Thanks for the fun, Buster.  Is it April yet?

  1. s/k - Mar 14, 2010 at 5:08 PM

    the phillies are phenominal

  2. Pundit - Mar 14, 2010 at 6:14 PM

    Nothing more need be said of this so-called “trade rumor,” but keep in mind that Buster Olney got what he wanted out of “reporting” it, namely, his name in front of more fans and on more web pages. For the media, having high name recognition is a good thing, even if you’re mainly recognized for being an idiot.

  3. James Overton - Mar 14, 2010 at 6:17 PM

    The Phillies should try a get someone who can play 1st base and hit a baseball. Yes when Howard hits the ball,once in 20 pitches;it goes along way.

  4. stargatebabe - Mar 14, 2010 at 9:53 PM

    Poor Buster! To have to resort to this sort of garbage must be a huge step down for him!
    As a Cards fan, Howard for Pujols straight up? Don’t make me laugh

  5. tom - Mar 15, 2010 at 1:42 AM

    would never happen in a million years. why would stl want howard? ther is absolutely no comp and buster is smoking weed

  6. Steve Kusheloff - Mar 15, 2010 at 8:41 AM

    Ryan Howard is a core member of the Phillies, along with Jimmy Rollins and Chase Utley. Howard is a big reason the Phillies have won 3 NL East championships, 2 pennants, and a World Series over the last three years. What have the Cardinals done? Albert Pujols? No, thank you. We have a first baseman in Philly and he’s the best.

  7. sjp - Mar 15, 2010 at 8:51 AM

    What have the Cardinals done? In Pujols 9 years they have won 6 division titles, went to the WS twice and won once.
    Offensive, Pujol’s career AVERAGE is better than Howard’s best season.
    When you include defense, Pujol’s LEAST valuable season was better than Howard’s BEST season.
    Ryan Howard can stay in Philly, maybe someday you guys will realize that your best player the last 5 years was Chase Utley, and it wasn’t close.

  8. madhatters - Mar 15, 2010 at 9:39 AM

    Ryan Howard and Albert Pujols are very different players so the comparisons are kind of a silly. Howard is a pure power hitter with numbers not seen since Babe Ruth. Pujols on the otherhand is much more of a Ted Williams (if you’re going to compare in hyperbole).
    I love what Ryan has done in Philly. He is our best offensive threat, and if you don’t watch the Phillies in Aug and Sept I could see why you’d say it was Chase Utley (Chase routinely disappears in September).
    All that said. If the Cards would agree to it, Ruben would be a true moron not to take it. Pujols would add balance to the lineup and obviously a better OPS.
    BTW; I slept with my Phillies season’s tix all weekend.

  9. jonny5 - Mar 15, 2010 at 9:50 AM

    Hmmm? Is that why most Philly Fans don Utley Jerseys? Seriously though, Only Ryan Howards Mom thinks he’s the best ball player on the team. Even Ryan himself would admit it. And look, there is no comparing Puljos to Howard. They are two of the best 1st baseman in the NL, but Albert is the best in MLB. Now, this doesn’t mean I don’t love Howard (in a baseball fan sort of way)because I do. He’s an awesome player who has been doing something the last few years that Albert hasn’t. He’s actually improved his game. Look at his defensive numbers, they’re getting better. His batting? Better. So feel free to bash Howard all you want. He’s still Da man on first and I wouldn’t want it any other way. Now if he was to try to get too much money from the Phills like a few other power hitters have,I feel we could do without. Utley? Werth? May be more valuable for the Phills.

  10. skip7 - Mar 15, 2010 at 9:52 AM

    Sure, the trade could work…if you threw Chase Utley in the deal.

  11. skip7 - Mar 15, 2010 at 9:56 AM

    Sure, the trade could work…if you threw Chase Utley in the deal.

  12. BC - Mar 15, 2010 at 10:42 AM

    This is ridiculous. There’s only one player in baseball that I’d trade Pujols for – Joe Mauer. Defensively you’d be as well off with a mattress at first base than Ryan Howard, not to mention that he strikes out 180 times a year.

  13. Jonny5 - Mar 15, 2010 at 11:07 AM

    So if Ryan howard had one more error on first base last season than Puljos, And Howard is a “matress” on first base, would Puljos be the equal to a head board, pillow, footboard? At least look at the numbers before blindly talking trash would ya?

  14. Deese Knutts - Mar 15, 2010 at 11:44 AM

    The only reason I can see this happening at all is if the Cardinals got cheap and we’re only looking to save coinage.

  15. BC - Mar 15, 2010 at 12:10 PM

    Have you seen Howard field? He doesn’t make errors because he can’t GET TO ANYTHING. Same reason Kevin Youkilis doesn’t make errors. He and Howard have less range than a caterpillar.

  16. Jonny5 - Mar 15, 2010 at 12:29 PM

    All the time. Not everyone can be the best ever like Puljos. Take Puljos off 1st base then who’s left at the top? That’s right It’s Howard and Fielder, we both know who’s got better range between those two.

  17. BC - Mar 15, 2010 at 12:39 PM

    First of all, Mark Texiera is the best fielder at the position, followed closely by Pujols. Fiedler? Not in the same league as those guys, but yes, surprisingly good for a 300-lb guy. Howard is middle-of-the-pack on a good day, and has zero range. But hey, they’re not paying him to be a great fielder.

  18. Luis - Mar 15, 2010 at 1:21 PM

    You chastise someone for “not looking at the numbers,” and all you can throw out is errors? How about you look at some numbers that actually matter and educate yourself a little on a subject before criticizing others’ comments.

  19. Fast Eddy - Mar 15, 2010 at 2:04 PM

    Steve my boy, you have a very short memory. The only reason the Phillthies were in the two W-S, is this. They had outstanding pitching and a great closer for part of that time. If and I mean If they didn’t pick up Lee last July, there was NO possible way they were in the playoffs much less in the W-S. Yes, they have good hitters and some good defense (not at first base), but the pitching staff took them to the playoffs. This is why I can’s see why they let Lee go this past Winter. By the way, the trade could be made, if they threw in the entire pitching staff with Howard. Trust me. you are wrong.

  20. Jonny5 - Mar 15, 2010 at 2:26 PM

    Hey take it easy there Luis, I wasn’t doing anything but sticking up for Howard here. And it is fact that Howard had one more error last season. What gives? When he’s referred to as a mattress I assumed it was due to errors which he used to get more often. On top of that do you know how time consuming it is to try to argue all the freaking fielding stat numbers that exist? Forget it, I don’t have the time to dissect all that then expect someone else too just for sake of argument. You have at it.
    BC, too true Tex is awesome. If he keeps up at the pace he’s at? He may just become the very best at his position in every aspect.

  21. Puck - Mar 15, 2010 at 4:18 PM

    You Philly homers are hilarious. Jonny5, you don’t need any numbers. Just watch the two of them play defense. Pujols is one of the best defensive 1B’s in the league. Howard is, uh, not close.
    Albert is the best righthanded hitter in the game, has had ridiculous numbers for BA, RBI, Runs Scored, HR every year for 9 years, and has transformed himself into a top defender. When he is done he will be one of the best 5 or 10 players to ever play the game. Ryan Howard is a pure power hitter, that’s it.
    Straight up trade? Laughable.

  22. Luis - Mar 15, 2010 at 5:07 PM

    What you did is accuse a poster who from what I’ve seen generally knows his shit of “blindly talking trash,” when all he did was take a humorously exaggerated shot at Howard’s obviously terrible range. Then you used errors, of all things, to make some vague reference to Howard only being slightly worse a defender than Pujols. This struck me as an obnoxious example of the pot and the kettle, etc…except in this case, the kettle wasn’t even the least bit dirty.
    .
    Forgive the straining of the metaphor there. It’s 5 o’clock.

  23. Luis - Mar 15, 2010 at 5:08 PM

    What you did is accuse a poster who from what I’ve seen generally knows his shit of “blindly talking trash,” when all he did was take a humorously exaggerated shot at Howard’s obviously terrible range. Then you used errors, of all things, to make some vague reference to Howard only being slightly worse a defender than Pujols. This struck me as an obnoxious example of the pot and the kettle, etc…except in this case, the kettle wasn’t even the least bit dirty.
    .
    Forgive the straining of the metaphor there. It’s 5 o’clock.

Leave Comment

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

Featured video

Who's to blame for Cubs tarp fiasco?
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. M. Cuddyer (3117)
  2. R. Castillo (3083)
  3. W. Myers (2368)
  4. A. Garcia (2326)
  5. M. Fiers (2318)
  1. J. Werth (2310)
  2. A. McCutchen (2242)
  3. C. Gonzalez (2212)
  4. K. Bryant (2189)
  5. Y. Molina (2159)