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Brandon Phillips on contract talks with Reds: “I haven’t heard anything”

Feb 22, 2012, 4:46 PM EDT

brandon phillips ap AP

Brandon Phillips arrived at Reds camp today and naturally got some questions about the status of long-term contract negotiations as the second baseman enters his final season before free agency.

Phillips told John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer that the two sides haven’t talked about a deal since “before Redsfest … it’s been a long time.”

Here’s more from Phillips, who’ll make $12 million this season before hitting the open market at age 31:

I thought it would be over with by now. It is what it is. The only thing I can do is go out there and play the game, do what’s best for the team. I love the moves we made to make the team better. That’s what it’s all about. We can all go out and get things done. My day will come. I’m not really worried about it. I’m letting my agent and the Reds take care that themselves. It would have been nice coming to camp knowing things were done. I haven’t heard anything.

Phillips added that his agent and general manager Walt Jocketty are planning to meet at some point during spring training, explaining that he doesn’t expect to set a firm deadline for talks and “just want(s) what other second baseman got.”

If true, he could be looking for something similar to Dan Uggla‘s five-year, $62 million deal with the Braves or Brian Roberts‘ five-year, $50 million deal with the Orioles. Historically speaking, second basemen generally haven’t landed monster contracts. Phillips’ current deal was worth $38 million for five years.

  1. buffalomafia - Feb 22, 2012 at 9:02 PM

    Why are Reds & Pirates so cheap?

    • paperlions - Feb 23, 2012 at 7:46 AM

      They have little money. Small TV markets, crappy local TV deals compared to big cities and crumbling local economies that affect attendance, ticket prices, and local corporate sponsorship deals.

      • phlockar - Feb 23, 2012 at 9:17 AM

        Pretty much spot on.

        The Reds tv deal is horrible, compared to recent deals, and doesn’t expire until 2016 I believe. With that and everything mentioned above, they don’t have too much to work with.

      • rscottlow - Feb 23, 2012 at 12:53 PM

        True, with the exception of a small TV market. I think the television market for Cincinnati is actually pretty large. The deal may be crap, but the market it pretty big.

        As far as attendance is concerned, it’s not just the local economy, but the global economy. In addition to that, team performance has a lot to do with attendance. The last couple years have been good for attenance, and hopefully some success this year will lead to higher numbers.

        I, for one, certainly hope that Walt can get something together that works for both the team and for BP. I love seeing him out on the field, and I know he works wonders for the atmosphere in the locker room. He’s a great guy, and probably the best defensive second baseman in the game right now.

    • rscottlow - Feb 23, 2012 at 12:55 PM

      Not cheap. Poor. This isn’t New York or Philidelphia; it’s Cincinnati. The good news is, Cincinnati has a wonderful minor league program, and a lot of excellent prospects.

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