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Ruben Amaro doesn’t feel “comfortable” trading Joe Blanton

Jan 18, 2011, 9:27 PM EDT

Joe Blanton

When we checked in with Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. last week, he wasn’t in a hurry to deal Joe Blanton. Now? According to what he told Ken Rosenthal of today, it sounds like he isn’t willing to deal him at all.

“I don’t feel comfortable doing it,” Amaro told “He’s going to pitch for the Phillies, probably for the entire season.”

Doesn’t feel comfortable? If having Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Roy Oswalt and Cole Hamels in his starting rotation doesn’t have him sleeping pretty well at night, I’m not sure anything will.

In all seriousness, this is likely a matter of how much money the Phillies are willing to absorb in a potential trade. Blanton is owed $8.5 million over each of the next two seasons and one rival executive told Rosenthal that there was “not a chance” his team would make a deal unless the Phillies were willing to cover a significant part of his salary.

For now, it sounds like Amaro is satisfied with having a pretty good fifth starter in Blanton, but don’t forget, as Craig has said many times before, this guy is a ninja. Can’t put anything past him.

  1. Jonny 5 - Jan 18, 2011 at 10:20 PM

    Well, now that Kyle Kendrick’s salary is all tied up now for the season, maybe he’ll become trade bait? Like noted Amaro is a Ninja. Or more closely a Stealth bomber packing nukes. I’m confused, the Phillies have 6 starters, four of which are top of the food chain. I gave up trying to figure this out. Just sit back and enjoy the ride…

    • D.J. Short - Jan 18, 2011 at 10:41 PM

      Like the Armando Galarraga situation, contracts to arbitration-eligible players aren’t guaranteed. They could release him and only owe him termination pay. Not saying it will come to that, but Amaro has an insurance policy, at least.

      • Jonny 5 - Jan 18, 2011 at 11:12 PM

        Well Durbin or KK at that salary is an easy decision imo. They were still debating bringing him back. KK can go 6, even though Durbin may be a better reliever, I think KK can handle it just fine. I guess it’s going to be Fat Joe and the terror squad afterall. Which is fine by me. I’ve always been a big fan of Joe B.

      • Utley's Hair - Jan 19, 2011 at 12:06 AM

        Okay…so the contract isn’t guaranteed at all? So if they release or DFA KK, they only have to pay a prorated amount, right? The Gallarraga situation just seems a bit underhanded and possibly unethical to me.

        Jonny, I’m good with keeping Big Country, too. I do wonder if anybody would take KK, though. I’m a tad uncomfortable with him in the pen or the rotation. Maybe keep him on for a probationary period or something?

      • Jonny 5 - Jan 19, 2011 at 11:21 AM

        If memory serves me correctly, Durbin was in line (via arbitration) to make upwards of 4 million this season. So while KK makes us all nervous, he’s a much better deal in that aspect. Galarraga, I don’t think is as promising as KK even. I think KK is a good guy to keep in the pen, which we know he’ll rarely be used for relief work. I think for the price, he’s an excellent back up plan if one of our other pitchers becomes injured. And sure, if a pitcher blows up in early innings he can come out and give 5 innings if he has to,and still give the Phills the chance to win. He has had very nice outings, which of course are overshadowed by his tendency to stink up the joint every now and then. They can still make a trade before the TDL if need be, so I like keeping everything the same as it is now. Hey, it might just work great.

  2. writtenbyross - Jan 19, 2011 at 6:50 AM

    They could trade him to my Indians, cover the salary and write it off on their taxes as a charatable donation…

  3. Panda Claus - Jan 19, 2011 at 12:48 PM

    Hasn’t this normally been a popular Yankees’ offseason strategy, go into the season with 6-7 starters and see who sticks? Not a bad idea considering someone on every staff seems to come down with shoulder soreness or a tight forearm somewhere during ST.

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