ESPN's Amy K. Nelson wrote a feature on Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips, focusing mainly on his interactions with fans via his Twitter account, @DatDudeBP. Really cool stuff. But there is an MLBTR-related nugget from a March conversation Phillips had with fans/friends Rachel and Dave Zahniser. Phillips' Spring Training comments on his future in Cincinnati:
"It's going to be hard to keep me here." On whether he'd be willing to take a pay cut to stay: "I'm not trying to break the bank. I'm just trying to be fair. I don't want Jayson Werth money or CC Sabathia money."
Despite that comment, Phillips has made it well-known he'd like to stay in Cincinnati. The first issue will be his 2012 club option, worth $12MM with a $1MM buyout. The $11MM net price feels a bit high, as Phillips' slugging percentage has dipped below .400. His defense remains well-regarded, so some team would probably find the salary palatable even if the Reds don't. Jocketty told Nelson he hasn't had internal discussions or with Phillips' agents at ACES about a new deal.
For fans hoping Phillips stays, Jocketty's dealings with Bronson Arroyo are encouraging. Arroyo's hefty $13MM club option was exercised in November, which was then overwritten as part of a three-year deal heavy on deferrals.