Phillies Aim To Sign Free Agent Closer

Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr. talked to reporters today at Citizens Bank Park, and David Murphy of the Philadelphia Daily News has the transcript.  Highlights:

  • If the Phillies don't re-sign closer Ryan Madson, Amaro will go outside the organization for a replacement, he told reporters including's Todd Zolecki today.  Madson, a Scott Boras client, could be a tough sign.  Amaro said he talked to Madson yesterday, and the righty is excited about free agency.  The Phillies can at least get a couple of draft picks as a consolation prize.  Heath BellJonathan PapelbonJonathan Broxton, Matt Capps, Francisco Cordero, Frank Francisco, Joe Nathan, and Francisco Rodriguez are also on the free agent market.
  • Amaro said he'd like Domonic Brown to spend another full season in Triple-A (Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer with the tweet).  Brown, one of the game's top prospects prior to the season, hit .245/.333/.391 in 210 plate appearances in the Majors this year.  Most of Brown's starts came prior to the team's acquisition of Hunter Pence.  Amaro says Brown has some work to do in left field, a position that will be an "open competition" for the 2012 Phillies.
  • Amaro does not think Ryan Howard's torn Achilles tendon will impact the team's offseason moves.
  • Free agent signings are more likely than trades.
  • The Phillies are still discussing Roy Oswalt's $16MM option internally.  Amaro says that "might be a tough one."  The Phillies' front office has also internally discussed extending Cole Hamels.
  • The Phillies' payroll is expected to be similar to this year's.