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The Phillies are “very willing” to move Jimmy Rollins

Dec 16, 2013, 12:06 PM EST

Philadelphia Phillies v Los Angeles Dodgers Getty Images

Buster Olney of ESPN says that the Phillies are “very willing” to trade Jimmy Rollins.

Which, sure. But he’s going to make $11 million in 2014 and his biggest strength these days — his durability — pretty much ensures that he’ll reach the plate appearance incentives that will cause his $11 million vesting option for the 2015 season to vest. Last year he hit .252/.318/.348 across in 666 plate appearances. He needs 434 in 2014 for the option to vest. Oh, Rollins is also a 10-5 guy, so he can veto any trade.

Could Rollins be moved? Maybe. But it’s way more likely that someone interested in spending $22 million on a shortstop would do better to go after Stephen Drew, pay a little more and get a lot more out of the bargain.

  1. fanofevilempire - Dec 16, 2013 at 12:13 PM

    you can keep him Philly, you deserve him.

    • Old Gator - Dec 16, 2013 at 12:16 PM

      You’re talking about a guy who is destined for the Hall of the Very Good. Show some respect, even if he does play real baseball.

      • 18thstreet - Dec 16, 2013 at 1:32 PM

        Is Fake Baseball the one that just won the World Series?

        It’s hard to keep track, given that the Designated Hitter has been around since 1973.

      • Old Gator - Dec 16, 2013 at 1:42 PM

        Yep. Your problem is that you keep confusing statistics with aesthetics.

      • phillphan - Dec 16, 2013 at 2:06 PM

        Only Craig would put Stephen Drew in the same sentence as Jimmy Rollins. He puts Rollins stats up but not Drews. Drew had same batting average in 200 fewer at bats but lets not let facts get in the way of a good headline. Like always.

      • jjschiller - Dec 16, 2013 at 5:58 PM

        philliphan- Batting average? That’s cute.

        It was actually 160 fewer plate appearances, but whatever. Its the 15 points of OBP and 95 points of SLG that illustrate the difference in value between Rollins and Drew. That and 4 years of age.

      • phillphan - Dec 16, 2013 at 9:32 PM

        jjshiller- what’s cute is you actually took the time to research both of their numbers when common sense would tell you Drew is not as good as Rollins. Not now and not in 4 years.

    • DelawarePhilliesFan - Dec 16, 2013 at 2:14 PM

      You really want to play that “you deserve him” game?

      Rollins is a class guy. Who will actually play again. And is owed over 2 years what your “deserved” guy will make in 3 months. And…..meh, we could go on and on…but why…

      • bronxbomber213 - Dec 16, 2013 at 5:07 PM

        Rollins is def a class guy!! especially when he gets benched on multiple occasions for not playing hard or when he talked smack in 09 about oh were winning in 5 6 if were feeling nice!! oh and can’t forget after game 2 in that series after Rivera put some guys on but still got the save he said soemthing to the effect of That guy they brought in in the 9th were gonna have plenty of chances against him well get to him no doubt…then Jimmy hit 2 broken bat sawed off popups to third his next 3x facing “that guy” stay classy Jimmy

      • DelawarePhilliesFan - Dec 17, 2013 at 9:37 AM

        Sometimes it pays to take a deep breath and proof read your diatribes…..

        “oh and can’t forget after game 2 in that series after Rivera put some guys on but still got the save he said soemthing to the effect of That guy they brought in in the 9th were gonna have plenty of chances against him well get to him no doubt…”

        I think I speak for everyone when I say no frickin clue what that was supposed to be.

        And thanks for the play by play of broken bats, and failed hits. Still don’t get how that rebuts me saying Rollins is a class act, but thank you none the less.

  2. chew1985 - Dec 16, 2013 at 12:14 PM

    What a mighty fall from grace for the Phillies–5 years of “top of the division bliss along with a WFC trophy;” and now we can witness a fire sale in December not July.

    Hard to believe, Harry.

  3. thesportsguru7 - Dec 16, 2013 at 12:14 PM

    The headline should read…

    “The Phillies are “desperate” to move “anyone” on their “team”

    • temporarilyexiled - Dec 16, 2013 at 1:28 PM

      You’re not only accurate, you’ve outdone Craig in the trolling department. Well done.

    • nbjays - Dec 16, 2013 at 3:46 PM

      If you can troll Phillies fans better than Craig, you have accomplished something.

  4. xdj511 - Dec 16, 2013 at 12:19 PM

    And… the Angels are willing to trade Pujols and Hamilton… the Yankees are willing to trade A-Rod… the Brewers are willing to trade Ryan Braun… the Marlins are willing to trade anybody making over the league minimum… and the Tigers are willing to trade Prince Fielder… oh wait… that already happened

    This really IS a slow news day

    • hittfamily - Dec 16, 2013 at 4:00 PM

      I don’t think the Brewers are willing to trade Braun. If they were, teams would be lining up with their top prospect already fitted for a new Brewers cap. Cheater or not, he’s healthy and signed way under market value. Other than Cabrera, he’s most likely to win a triple crown any given year.

      • paperlions - Dec 17, 2013 at 8:22 AM

        Agreed.

        Braun is a jackwagon, but I’d love to see the Cardinals trade for him (especially if they could include Holliday in the deal, I love Holliday, but Braun is better, younger, and even though his contract is long, it is a steal compared to what lesser players are getting in FA)….and the Cardinals don’t really even need OFers as they have Taveras, Piscotty, and others that should be ready to be solid or better MLB players very soon….but Braun is a special talent.

  5. uyf1950 - Dec 16, 2013 at 12:22 PM

    The Phillies better be very willing to eat about 50% (maybe more) of that $22MM he’s expected to make over the next 2 years. That includes his 2015 option which as of right now looks very, very attainable.

    • baldeagle22 - Dec 16, 2013 at 12:32 PM

      Which, once again, tells you that the guy issuing these contracts is totally in over his head….

      RAJ has to go, can anyone say with a straight face what the plan is?

      He absolutely has to sign Tanaka to have any chance of improving this geriatric roster.

      • cackalackyank - Dec 16, 2013 at 2:41 PM

        Of course, if posted, Tanaka will have no one advising him about the “geriatric” nature of said roster as he reviews his offers.

      • kellyb9 - Dec 17, 2013 at 8:22 AM

        Of course Ruben has to go. The only “plan” I can justify is that management told him to cut salary down significantly. RAJ is basically a lame duck at this point… I think he’ll be fired at the end of the season.

    • bolweevils2 - Dec 17, 2013 at 9:06 AM

      I’m not be Rollins defender, but I think saying the Phils would have to eat 50% of his contract to move him is wildly overstating it. With the paucity of available shortstops and the number of teams looking, a lot of teams would sign right now for 2 years of Jimmy Rollins for $11M total. A serviceable shortstop goes for that much easily these days, and Rollins is certainly serviceable.

      Plus, that would result in a saving of $11M for the Phils over two years. Could they get a viable replacement at short for Rollins for $5.5M a year? I doubt it. (Though perhaps they have a young guy ready to step in, I don’t know)

  6. hittfamily - Dec 16, 2013 at 12:24 PM

    He’s a tad below an average MLB hitter,but plays good defense. With the contracts being handed out, 2 years at 22 mil isn’t terrible. If the Phils chipped in 5 mil, I could see a pretty decent prospect coming back in return.

    The Mets might even do a Rollins for Ike swap, and then the Phils could move Ike for a bullpen arm or low level prospect.

    Steven Drew is going to get at least 50 mil this offseason, so they aren’t really interchangeable.

    • Bob Loblaw - Dec 16, 2013 at 12:39 PM

      Exactly what I was thinking. 2 years and $22 million may seem like a lot, but compared to what you would pay for someone like Stephen Drew, it isn’t nearly as binding. Plus, while Rollins doesn’t hit as well as Drew he’s a solid defensive SS, is a better veteran leader, and he’s also far more dependable than Drew, who’s missed 200+ games over the last 3 years. And please, stat nerds, don’t quote me dWAR and any of those other subjective numbers. Rollins is better defensively period. Having monkeys push buttons while watching games is not going to make me believe that Stephen Drew is a better defensive SS than Rollins no matter what you may believe.

      • paperlions - Dec 16, 2013 at 1:13 PM

        Subjective doesn’t mean what you think it means.

      • paperlions - Dec 16, 2013 at 2:29 PM

        I know you don’t care, because you couldn’t be bothered to check, but defensive metrics love Rollins’ D a LOT more than Drew’s.

      • Chip Caray's Eyebrows - Dec 16, 2013 at 5:03 PM

        Dunce.

      • Bob Loblaw - Dec 17, 2013 at 3:26 AM

        TBH paper, I checked last year’s dWAR on baseball ref and it had rolling negative while drew was 0 I think. And I know exactly what Subjective means…the opposite of Objective. In other words, the defensive metrics have individuals watching every play and clicking a button based on whether they THINK the player would have or should have gotten to the ball. If they THINK he could have made the play, and they did not, then their THOUGHT gives the defensive player a negative grade. Whereas, oh, if someone hits a home run, it is a home run. No thought involved.

        Thanks Mr. Eyebrow…BTW nice nickname.

      • paperlions - Dec 17, 2013 at 8:25 AM

        Baseball-refs defensive metric is very grainy and is not derived from as good an approach as UZR. Over his career, Rollins has been worth 125.8 runs, Drew has been worth 22.0. Using single year data for defensive metrics isn’t very reliable (just like using single years of offensive performance).

  7. yardleyphils - Dec 16, 2013 at 12:27 PM

    You gotta make room for Omar Vizquel somehow

  8. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Dec 16, 2013 at 12:38 PM

    Funny, we don’t hear so many loud proclamations from ol’ Jimmy these days. Perhaps his mouth is in its decline phase as well.

  9. cruuuzcontrol - Dec 16, 2013 at 12:39 PM

    These “Phillies are interested in trading [insert overpaid veteran with a terrible contract here]” stories never get old.

    To the posset above who suggested an Ike-for-Rollins swap… If you seriously think either team would trade at all, let alone trade those two specific players to each other.. You may have earned yourself a job as Ruben Amaro’s Assistant GM. Your job? Make sure all contracts include some kind of no trade clause.

    • hittfamily - Dec 16, 2013 at 3:55 PM

      Intradivisional trades happen every year. Just last year there were a lot. Off the top of my head I can think f at least 6 or 7. Morales for Vargas. Ian Kennedy to the Padres. The Brewes traded John Axford to the Cards. The Twins traded Jamey Carroll to the Royals. Jaso from Seattle to the A’s. The Tigers and White Sox worked together on a trade with the Red Sox involving Avi Garcia going from Chicago to Detroit. The A’s just traded Craig Gentry to the Rangers for Michael Choice.

      If Dale Murphy can get traded to the Phillies, Ike Davis can too. There are only 2 or 3 teams that would have any interest in Rollins. The Mets are unquestionably the most desperate.

  10. baldeagle22 - Dec 16, 2013 at 12:40 PM

    The 10 and 5 part of this is very notable – Jimmy Rollins isn’t going to approve a trade to just any team.

    You can round this list down to about 5-6 teams with true championship aspirations, otherwise Jimmy is perfectly happy staying in Philly to chase down career records, cementing his place in Phillies’ history. He’s also one who believes in finishing a career with the same team one started with… Right or wrong, he’s definitely earned that right.

    As a fan only concerned with winning, we could do much worse at SS – it’s not worth eating money to get a prospect that by Ruben’s track record will never amount to anything.

  11. mikedi33 - Dec 16, 2013 at 12:50 PM

    He already used his 10-5 rights last summer saying he was too close to several Phillies records. Looking at what the Cards gave Peralta I do not think Rollins contract would be an issue.

  12. rugdaniels - Dec 16, 2013 at 12:57 PM

    If they Phillies are so interested in moving him, why sign him to that extension in the first place? This has been an extremely concerning off season for the Phillies. Amaro doesn’t seem to have a plan. He signs older players like Marlon Byrd, who would be a decent sign for a team expecting to compete, but then he wants to get rid of Rollins and Papelbon which seems like a move for a rebuild.

    Barring another big move the Phillies are far behind the Nats and Braves and are squarely behind the Mets too. They’ll be lucky to beat out the Marlins for 4th place in the NL East.

    • yardleyphils - Dec 16, 2013 at 1:30 PM

      From a fans perspective, (and seriously, I am trying very hard not to just get mad and type “Amaro Sucks” until my fingers bleed) this off-season makes no sense.

      In 2011 the Cardinals exposed all the flaws the team had masked throughout the regular season with really fantastic starting pitching. That offseason, and each offseason since, the same problems persist, and there is clearly no plan to address what’s wrong with the major league club.

      Not enough baserunners, aging “core” of players, no young players outperforming their existing contracts.

      This year really should be a long evaluation of Ruf, Asche, Brown, Franco, Biddle, and Hernandez. Take this season to determine of those are the guys we can build the next club around, then the team goes out and overpays for guys that don’t really fit into a rebuilding plan.

      No GM can come out and say, “Look we’re going to win 60 games this year” but when you listen to him talk he sounds like he really believes this roster will somehow win 90. It doesn’t make any sense.

      I hope he proves me wrong, but there is no evidence yet to think this team will be any better than last year – which is fine – if you admit that you’re rebuilding instead being dragged into it kicking and screaming.

  13. baseballisboring - Dec 16, 2013 at 1:07 PM

    Anddd the Phillies’ murky, confusing offseason continues…

    • aphillieated - Dec 16, 2013 at 1:22 PM

      So you think Baseball is boring? Please tell me about your favorite sport being Golf..

      • baseballisboring - Dec 16, 2013 at 2:13 PM

        My favorite sport is baseball. It’s the only one I really like, in fact.

      • aphillieated - Dec 16, 2013 at 2:24 PM

        Baseball isn’t a sport anymore, it’s a business.

  14. koufaxmitzvah - Dec 16, 2013 at 1:22 PM

    666 plate appearances in 2013…. That’s something that should scare some teams, and yet be embraced by others.

    Hmmmm…. The devil is in the details.

    • koufaxmitzvah - Dec 16, 2013 at 1:24 PM

      Just to take this up a notch. The sixth letter of the Hebrew alphabet is the Vav, which these days is pronounced as a hard V. But back in the day, and in some parts of Hebrew language culture still today, it’s pronounced as a W.

      So…. 666 = vvv = www

      Muahahahahaaha

      • 18thstreet - Dec 16, 2013 at 1:37 PM

        And while Lincoln had a secretary named Kennedy, Kennedy had a secretary who was a Nigerian Prince! Creepy stuff.

  15. temporarilyexiled - Dec 16, 2013 at 1:30 PM

    Excellent snark on this topic. Seems to be a magnet for it. Hmmm…

  16. aphillieated - Dec 16, 2013 at 1:34 PM

  17. yahmule - Dec 16, 2013 at 2:56 PM

    I never really cared for him after he shamelessly campaigned for the MVP award.

  18. ochospantalones - Dec 16, 2013 at 3:35 PM

    My understanding is Jimmy has let it be known he’s vetoing all trades until after he catches Mike Schmidt as the Phillies career leader in some categories. He’s currently 2nd or 3rd in a bunch of counting stats like hits, plate appearances, runs, etc. In particular he’s only 59 hits behind Michael Jack for the franchise hits record. So I don’t see him approving any trades this off-season.

    • greymares - Dec 16, 2013 at 4:45 PM

      The Phillies control that it’s hard to get hits with your ass on the bench

      • ochospantalones - Dec 16, 2013 at 4:53 PM

        True, but when have the Phillies ever strong-armed someone like that? Especially a long-tenured face of the franchise type? It’s not really how they operate. If they’re paying him, they’re gonna play him. It’s not like they have any stellar in-house alternatives (don’t say Freddy Galvis).

  19. sportsfan18 - Dec 16, 2013 at 3:44 PM

    hey, the Phillies signed him so the should keep him.

    they need to keep Ryan Howard until the end of his contract as well, and Werth and even Chase Utley.

    Kinda like you break it, you buy it.

    • morandini12 - Dec 16, 2013 at 4:46 PM

      Is this the same Werth who signed with the Nationals as a free agent after the 2010 season?

  20. scotttheskeptic - Dec 16, 2013 at 6:36 PM

    The only way the Phils move Rollins is to DFA him, which, for the record, is the kind of bold move that needs to be made in my opinion.

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