Amaro: Phillies Have Not Considered Releasing Howard

FRIDAY: Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr. “emphatically” denied reports suggesting that the team was considering a release of Howard, writes’s Jim Salisbury“That is not something we are contemplating,” Amaro told Salisbury. “I don’t know where that’s coming from.” Later in the interview, Amaro repeated that releasing Howard “has not been a thought” and added that Howard “should have no concerns” about being released.

Amaro did note that a platoon situation was a possibility if it improved the club’s production, but he said his real hope was to get Howard’s bat back on track. “I don’t expect him to be the Ryan Howard of 2006, 2007, 2008,” said Amaro. “What we expect is him to perform better than he is. I know he’s a better player than this.”

THURSDAY: Jon Heyman of has some additional details on Philadelphia’s efforts to deal Howard. The club has shopped him, indicating that it would eat “much or most” of his remaining salary. Rival executives say that Philly is working hard to line up a match.

As Heyman notes, an American League team would seem most likely to add the former MVP, and two GMs told him yesterday that Howard was probably worth between $3MM and $5MM annually at this point. (Though presumably that does not mean that a multi-year commitment at that price would be desirable.)

WEDNESDAY: As his struggles worsen, the Phillies have had internal discussions about releasing one-time star first baseman Ryan Howard after the season, reports Jim Salisbury of Howard is owed the rest of his $25MM salary this season and comes with $60MM in future guarantees.

It does not appear that the club has reached any finality in regards to Howard’s future. The possibility of a trade has been explored, but Philadelphia has not found another club interested in taking on any substantial part of Howard’s contract. That is not surprising, of course, given that the 34-year-old is slashing a career-low .224/.305/.377 through 417 plate appearances on the year.

Now, with Howard’s decline becoming more pronounced, Philadelphia appears set to give more playing time to younger first base option Darin Ruf, who was recalled today. Manager Ryne Sandberg did not call it a platoon situation, but suggested as much. “As far as the lineup, that will be a day-to-day thing,” he said. “I think it’s important to see what a guy like Darin Ruf can do also going forward,” the skipper added.

Howard signed his extension at the start of the 2010 season, coming off of a four-year run in which he put up a composite .278/.379/.589 line and hit 198 home runs. Though he continued to produce at an above-average clip at the plate for two more seasons, things began to head south when he tore his Achilles tendon while making the last out of the team’s Game 5 loss in the 2011 NLDS. (That, of course, was also the Phils’ most recent postseason game.) Since that time, Howard — long considered a substandard fielder and baserunner — has mustered only 917 trips to the plate and owns an OPS that falls below league average.

190 Responses to Amaro: Phillies Have Not Considered Releasing Howard Leave a Reply

  1. sflomenb 1 year ago

    Best news ever

  2. ROR1997 1 year ago

    Watch the yankees swoop in, take on Lee, Howard and Hammels salary for Sanchez and a Single A arm.

    • Phillyfan425 1 year ago

      Sure…you can have this “Hammels” fellow, whoever he happens to be.

      • Jaysfan724 1 year ago

        I think he meant Jason Hammel’s salary…he can stay in Oakland, the Yankees will just take on his salary.

    • Bill Tull 1 year ago

      I wouldn’t give you Sanchez in that deal

      • ROR1997 1 year ago

        I’m a tanks fan and I would. Have you seen the kid play in person? There’s nothing special about him. Sell while his stock is high. He’s worse than Montero

        • Tko11 1 year ago

          I like tanks too although they are a bit violent.

          • GetToTheChoppa 1 year ago

            GTA online needs to get rid of tanks

          • Travis2014 1 year ago

            Heard the A’s are considering a move to Los Santos.

    • sunshipballoons 1 year ago

      If the Yankees (or any team) were to take on Howard’s contract, I think that’s what they’d be giving up for Lee and Hamels. Even a marginal prospect on top of that would seem like too much.

      • NotCanon 1 year ago

        Lee and Hamels? No. No, it’d still take some solid prospects (though obviously not top-10-in-baseball types). You might be able to get Lee out of that, but even Hamels alone would cost you more.

        • sunshipballoons 1 year ago

          The reality is that, unless they give up a ton, there is no way the Phillies will find anybody to take on Howard’s bloated contract. I agree that, if I were the Phillies, I wouldn’t trade Lee and Hamels to make it happen; on the other hand, if I were any other team, I wouldn’t take on Howard without that kind of deal (or maybe one of them, Franco and another prospect).

          • NotCanon 1 year ago

            Right, but there’s no point to that. The Phillies don’t need salary relief – the FA market this year just doesn’t have the talent to put them right back into the hunt for next year, and they don’t have the near-MLB prospects to supplement what they’d get.

            It’s far easier to just ride out Howard’s contract (or, as indicated was a possibility in the article, release him) and deal with the financial fallout for all of 2 years (during which time their new, ~$200MM/year TV contract kicks in).

            If this was the Orioles, then yes, the money would be more of an issue. However, the Phillies are pretty financially set to deal with any sub-CBT-level salary.

          • sunshipballoons 1 year ago

            From a fan perspective, sure. But the Phillies aren’t going to be in playoff contention of the course of Hamels and Lee’s contracts, so from the owners’ perspective why not dump their salaries too and get out from under Howard’s massive contract, too. Very little downside for them, other than fan backlash. Financially, it would probably make more sense to save that money.

          • NotCanon 1 year ago

            Ownership would much rather have a prospect who could turn into a great player that would drive gate revenue for 6+ years than they would a 2-year salary reprieve on Howard – especially since next year is the first that their new TV deal begins – effectively increasing their income by more than the cost of the entire team’s salary.

            Getting out from under $70MM over 3 years doesn’t make sense if it mitigates the return you’d get from guys who are actually worth something. Especially when you’re increasing your income by almost triple that annually. The best return on their monetary investment would be to make moves that would again return CBP to daily sold-out crowds (45K fans/game * 81 games/season * mean ticket price of $55 = $200.5MM in gate revenues alone), and would hasten their return to playoff baseball (extra games * higher cost seats = more money). Selling their best current assets to simply void their worst current money sink is not an efficient way to do that.

            Also, Hamels, is contracted through 2019.

    • $2509879 1 year ago

      If the Phils take ARod back…sold!

      • Sliders 1 year ago

        As a straight up trade, Howard and his salary for Rodriguez and his salary…….I’d do that in a second if I’m the Phillies. I have more faith in ARod going forward than Howard.

      • Kamoteng Baging 1 year ago

        Didn’t know ARod was a Phillies.

        • Douglas Bath 1 year ago

          he’s not on the Phillies roster. that’s why it would be a trade.

          • Kamoteng Baging 1 year ago

            I know he was not a Phillies at anytime in his career. I was being facetious.

            This was dougsmash words:

            “If the Phils take ARod back…sold!”

            Keyword “back”. Which means he was at one point a member of Phillies.

          • Douglas Bath 1 year ago

            I assume “back” means “in return” in his post. Not everyone uses full sentences and proper grammar. I’ve learned to roll with it and try to find what the person really meant.

  3. East Coast Bias 1 year ago

    Release? That means there are 25 other players better than him on the Phillies roster. And they’re willing to give away 60m for nothing.

    I don’t buy it.

    • Chris_RG 1 year ago

      Seeing as he has below-replacement-level value, it’s safe to say they could find someone as good or better who’s younger to play 1B.

      Howard is a sunk cost for all intents and purposes. They’re going to pay him regardless.

    • The Virus 1 year ago

      fans are tired of seeing him play. im not sure if you are a Phillies fan, but honestly I cant stand when he comes up to bat. watch him one game, the way he stands, the pitches he swings at, the look on his face as he walks back to the dugout. fans are done with him.

      • Mike Query 1 year ago

        Id be pretty jealous if you guys did this and we kept Uggla as long as we did.

    • Kevin Reardon 1 year ago

      There’s at least an OK 1st baseman on the Phils 25 man right now in Darin Ruf, certainly at least better than a forever hobbled Howard.

      • Michael Fisher 1 year ago

        Are you sure about ruff, batting around .260 in triple a, has showed little power and hasn’t shown he has he ability to knock in runs. Also an awful strikeout rate. I wouldn’t say he is an ok first baseman.

        • Sliders 1 year ago

          Unless you are running Ryan Howard out there day after day after day after year after year.

      • East Coast Bias 1 year ago

        But we aren’t talking about replacing his position, we’re talking about replacing his roster spot.

        Darian Ruf can be the 1st baseman. That wasn’t my point. I refuse to believe Howard cannot fulfill some type of role on the 25 man roster, given his monster salary. He can be the Matt Stairs, I don’t care. But to outright release him and eat 60m is ridiculous.

        • Phillies_Aces35 1 year ago

          I think they would release him out of respect for him, his at bats truly are depressing. I feel awful for him everytime he goes to the plate.

        • Ryan 1 year ago

          He can be Matt Stairs? You mean Ryan Howard can join the broadcast team? Ok, sounds good…..

          • NotCanon 1 year ago

            There’d be more constant reminders of how awesome he was when he was doing great, at least.

            How many times have we seen the Matt Stairs LA moonshots this season?

  4. John Smith 1 year ago

    When will teams ever learn!! Long, bloated contracts! No sympathy for the phillies. Serves them right.

    • Stuart Brown 1 year ago

      This has less to do with the long contract and more to do with Howard’s specific skillset.

      • Sliders 1 year ago

        Though his power could have reasonably aged better than it did.

    • Kamoteng Baging 1 year ago

      Phillies never learned.

      They did that with Abreu, Liberthal era. All of them stars got lazy, unproductive after they signed the long term big money no trade contract.

      Gillick came on board and it coincided with Rollins, Utley, Howard and Hamels coming up from the minors. Gillick’s was once quoted as long term contracts creates complacency. He rarely signs anyone to more than 3 years contract.

      Then Ruben Amaro happened.

      You all know the rest of the story.

      • Phillies_Aces35 1 year ago

        They had no choice. Who was going to come in and replace these guys. Their farm system produced no fill ins and if you look at the guys they’ve traded non of them have panned out.

  5. W.G 1 year ago

    Does anyone know how much money it would cost phills to just outright release him? How much would they have to eat?

    • flyerzfan12
      flyerzfan12 1 year ago

      Everything left on the contract minus league minimum assuming a team signed him at that price.

      • sunshipballoons 1 year ago

        I don’t see him getting a league minimum contract. Maybe he gets a minor league deal.

        • Chris_RG 1 year ago

          I think he could. An AL team desperate for offense could try him at DH and hope that he would put up numbers closer to what he put up in 2013, in which case he’d provide some value at that price.

        • $21621694 1 year ago

          He will definitely get a league minimum deal

    • KINGMOJO 1 year ago

      About 85 mil give or take,and does that mean Vernon wells was worth more than howard was interns of contract and production… The yanks did trade for him.

    • Jeff Miller 1 year ago

      In total it’s a little under $70M. $50M 2015-’16, $10M buyout and about $9M left this year.

    • Mike Query 1 year ago

      It says it right in the article…

  6. Oldredgunslinger 1 year ago

    How in the world has Rueben Amaro kept his job?? Does he have incriminating pictures of the owner??

    • sunshipballoons 1 year ago

      Owners are cheap and he has a long term contract.

      • Mike Query 1 year ago

        The owners are cheap? You have the third highest payroll in baseball.

      • Sliders 1 year ago

        The players are not cheap and have long term contracts.

    • KW 1 year ago

      Phillies ownership is notorious for sticking with “their guys” through thick and (mostly) thin. Other than one roid-fueled year (1993) and a smart draft/development system led by Mike Arbuckle (now in KC) which built the 2005-2011 teams, the Phillies have been mostly terrible since this group bought the team in the early 80s.

      • Monk81 1 year ago

        Tell that to Davey Lopes

        • Ryan 1 year ago

          He was never really “one of us” to the Phillies front office because of the rivalries in the late 70’s with the Dodgers where Lopes was a key part of the LA teams.

    • Monk81 1 year ago

      The same George W Bush got into Yale–Primogenature

  7. rct 1 year ago

    Poll: worst contract considering all elements (duration, amount, tradability, production, etc) – Ryan Howard or Vernon Wells?

    • The Virus 1 year ago

      that may be a tie, good comparison though :)

    • Jaynestown 1 year ago

      I’d say Ryan Howard. Vernon Wells could at least play the outfield and even had that one game he was forced to play third base

      • WindsorJaysFan 1 year ago

        Wells was statistically the best defensive CF of all time for a number of years.

        • Zak Arn 1 year ago

          Statistically, Howard was one of the best offensive power bats of all time for a number of years – fewest games to 100-250 hrs. Too bad none of those 25 MM years came during any of his peak performance years.

          • Jaysfan1994 1 year ago

            Statistically Ryan Howard had one season where he posted a 5.0WAR or more and it was the one where he hit 58 homers.

            He’s such a bad fielder and baserunner he’s actually costing his team runs when he’s out on the field/on the bases. He’s a prototypical “baseclogger” that needs his teammates to hit a homerun to drive him in, or 3 singles out of the infield in a row.

          • Zak Arn 1 year ago

            bwar or fwar, and before his Achilles tear he wasn’t a baseclogger

          • Douglas Bath 1 year ago

            yes he was. negative Rbaser on B-R-dotcom for every single season of his career. many people said he was overrated. But Phillies fans kept pointing to RBI totals and an idea he was “clutch” while ignoring he had more RBI opportunities than any player in baseball.

          • Zak Arn 1 year ago

            3103 PAs to get 220 HR and 635 RBIs. Pujols, A Rod, Dunn, Ortiz, Teixeira, Cabrera, Berkman, etc.. all had more PAs than him and less HR/RBIs.

          • Douglas Bath 1 year ago

            a one dimensional player. very good at that one thing. hitting home runs.
            career WAR of +18.6, which is behind such stars as Chase Headley.
            there is a reason nobody wants him. he’s a DH who can no longer hit.

          • Zak Arn 1 year ago

            There are 25 million reasons. If he had some reasonable contract he’d have been traded a while ago.

          • Jaysfan1994 1 year ago

            He was a -4 baserunner in 2006 so I have no clue what your argument is.

          • Zak Arn 1 year ago

            Do you use this argument when you talk about Miguel Cabrera too?

          • Jaysfan1994 1 year ago

            Ryan Howard isn’t hitting .330 every year with 30+ homers, will you use this argument when he’s released in a week?

        • monkeyking42 1 year ago

          Which years, and by which stat?

          UZR did like him for a 4 year stretch from 2004-2007, but he rated below Corey Patterson, Aaron Rowand and waaay below Andruw Jones.

          TZ had him tops in baseball from 2006-2007, just ahead of Jones, but there’s a reason people pretty much stopped using TZ when UZR and DRS came along.

    • NotCanon 1 year ago

      The worst contract? Probably Prince Fielder.

    • chalk1973 1 year ago


  8. indybucfan 1 year ago

    And the experts on MLB Network think the Pirates should trade for him.

    • Chris_RG 1 year ago

      Sounds like something Harold Reynolds would say.

    • Jaynestown 1 year ago

      If the Pirates had to pay 0% of his salary, could probably find a spot for him in Altoona

    • Phillies_Aces35 1 year ago

      I think they just threw a dart and randomly selected a team with a need at 1st. At this point only an EXTREMELY old school type of baseball man thinks Ryan Howard can still help a team.

      • indybucfan 1 year ago

        No actually, what the “experts” choose to look at is the name on the back of the jersey instead of what he’s capable of in the here and now.

  9. KJ4realz 1 year ago

    Since it’s seems as though he would be picked up rather quickly if released, why not trade him and eat 90% of the contract? You’d get something in return instead of getting absolutely nothing while still paying 100% of the deal.

    • Kamoteng Baging 1 year ago

      Phillies were basically offering him for free. No trades. Just take him. No one wants him.

    • Douglas Bath 1 year ago

      pay 10% of that contract? no thanks. $2,500,000 per year is still too much for a below replacement level player.

  10. Allismileo 1 year ago

    What would the Phillies gain by releasing Howard?

    • Jeff Miller 1 year ago

      It would open a spot for Darin Ruf and their 2nd best prospect Maikel Franco. Considering how poorly Howard has played over the last 2.5 years, they can’t keep sending him out there if the objective is to win.

      • BitLocker 1 year ago

        That would be kind of waste of money. At worse, Lillies should put Howard as a bench player/platoon setup. The team won’t be competing this year or next year.

        • Jeff Miller 1 year ago

          He’s got no value as a bench/platoon guy. He doesn’t hit RHP or LHP and is a terrible defensive 1B. It’s a bad situation, but there is really no point in keeping him around at this point.

          • Monk81 1 year ago

            But it would be humiliating for Howard. That alone would justify making him a 25th man

          • Fetty007 1 year ago

            baseball doesn’t care about humility, there’s no crying in baseball

        • Douglas Bath 1 year ago

          he has no value, and worse than that… he has negative value. The Phillies would trade Ryan Howard and Chase Utley for a hot dog or a diet Pepsi if they could get that deal done. Chase Utley is a good player, but it takes his positive value just to offset the negative value that Ryan Howard has.

      • Allismileo 1 year ago

        But would they save any money by just releasing him?- he must have some value- and it would be nice to see them free up some of that money. I don’t see Ruf as any type of improvement and Franco hasn’t proved he can hit at triple A yet

        • Mike Query 1 year ago

          Explain how “he must have some value”?

        • Jeff Miller 1 year ago

          He’s got no value because he doesn’t consistently hit any pitching and is terrible defensively. If the Phillies released him at most he’d get a spring training invite for next year with nothing guaranteed.

          Ruf might not be an improvement, but at least it’s an attempt to make a change. Franco has started to turn things around at AAA hitting over .350 in July with a lot of XBH. Remember he’s only 21 and some 6-7 years younger than the average player in the IL. Some growing pains were to be expected.

      • Michael Fisher 1 year ago

        Ruf isn’t an option. And Asche’s struggles at 3b make Franco more attractive at 3b. The objective can’t be to win now, that was ruined over the years of jeopardizing the future with nonsense trades

        • Phillies_Aces35 1 year ago

          They didn’t jeopardize the future at all none of the players they’ve traded have panned out which is why prospects are overrated in this game. They wouldn’t be contenders now if they kept everyone and wouldn’t have made the playoffs in 2009, 2010, or 2011.

          What’s cost this team is poor free agent signings and a poor allocation of resources. If they spent their money smarter in the 2011 and 2012 off seasons they could conceivably have contended in 2012 and 2013.

          The only guy they didn’t trade, the only one who was a true can’t miss #1 type prospect has been a bust and that’s Domonic Brown. It’ll be years before any of those guys show their true potential (if they do at all) and by then the Phillies may have a solid young core themselves (Franco, Crawford, Quinn, Nola, Giles.. maybe Asche, I’m not sold that he’s an every day third baseman on a contending team) and serious TV money.

          • Michael Fisher 1 year ago

            See Dominga Santana, Jared Cosart, Jonathan Singleton, even Worley are guys that look to have a good future. I wouldn’t say not all, but I didn’t mean just the guys they traded away. What did they receive for Lee, Pence, Victorino, etc… not close to what they traded for those guys as top of the line prospects. Easily could’ve had guys step in for aging players such as Singleton for Howard, a top young pitcher in Cosart.

            They have some guys who may pan out in the future, but those all are years away minus Giles. But their minor league system became depleted. A few years ago it was highly regarded, now it’s viewed as one of the worst in baseball. If they move on from Howard they still have a hole at first amongst plenty of other problems.

          • Phillies_Aces35 1 year ago

            I don’t know what they were supposed to get for Victorino. There were serious questions about his ability to be an everyday player considering the numbers he was putting up when they traded him.

            I might’ve kept Pence in hindsight but at the time Tommy Joseph projected as Ruiz’s successor. Concussions have completely derailed his career which happens and they essentially traded Lee for Halladay given the order from David Montgomery to trade Lee or don’t acquire Halladay.

            I don’t think any of the players traded for Hunter Pence are going to be anything more than average regulars at this point or in Cosart’s case: a mid rotation starter. There’s so many red flags with all of them at this point.

            According to if the Phillies moved Franco to first base on a permanent basis he would’ve ranked higher than Singleton in their position by position prospect rankings.

    • Mike Query 1 year ago

      They could play a player that doesnt have negative value, heck, maybe even the guy would help.

  11. Cam Hodgson-Dwyer 1 year ago

    The Phillies make so much sense, that they are considering releasing Ryan Howard at the end of the season..and they still batted him cleanup yesterday.

    Sounds like there’s a bit of a disconnect.

    • Jaysfan1994 1 year ago

      They’re trying to keep the average fan from catching on that he’s been horrible for years. It’s like Brian McCann batting #4 in the Yankee lineup.

      You get RBI’s and the average Joe looks at his stat line and thinks he’s doing better then he actually is.

    • Tanthalas 1 year ago

      The Phillies are just that bad. Other than Byrd, there isn’t a halfway legitimate cleanup hitter on that team. Must be depressing to be a Phils fan and have to watch that lineup every day.

  12. Mike1L 1 year ago

    Howard needs to be with an AL team, where he can DH and only occasionally play the field. The problem is his sinking OBA, which makes him more of a “two true outcome” player (strike out or home run) and seriously diminishes his remaining value. He needs someone to take a chance on him, but as long as RA thinks he should get something good back and not send too much money to the acquirer, it’s not going to happen. The problem for the Phillies is that there really isn’t a palatable outcome that they can see without taking a substantial risk. They can keep playing Howard and stifle their younger talent. But if they trade or release him and Howard can return to even a 2 WAR player (not impossible if he could bring his OBA back up) they will be kicking themselves for years.

    • Fetty007 1 year ago

      It doesn’t matter what division he’s in, he still won’t be able to hit, I would think the AL has better pitchers and would be worse for howards hitting.

    • Monk81 1 year ago

      If by AL, you mean American Legion, I agree wholeheartedly

      • Fetty007 1 year ago

        Explain to me, how, by changing to the AL would make him hit any better??? His fielding doesn’t get him on base any more. First base is by far the best place him. He’s not racking up errors as far as I can see.

    • Kamoteng Baging 1 year ago

      To be a DH you actually need hit, yes?

      There seems to be a simple formula that pitchers used against Howard over and over again. Down and away. It’s almost like a dog and a ball situation. He just can’t help himself.

  13. Fetty007 1 year ago

    Anybody else agree with me that Reid Brignac is a very under rated player right now. He has a lot of potential. Reminds me of an Erik Kratz type player.

    • Jeff Miller 1 year ago

      He just came off the DL 2 days ago. He’s had some big hits, but he’s not some unknown guy. He’s been in the league for awhile. If he’s an Erik Kratz type, that’s not a lot of potential.

      Kinda feel like you’re just trolling, but it’s the internet so you never know.

      • Fetty007 1 year ago

        Erik Kratz was a solid utility man who won a lot of games for the phillies. We had a lot of those guys over the past few years that we let go and could have been cheap. Wilson Valdez, Kevin Frandson, just to name a few.

        • Jeff Miller 1 year ago

          Sure, but you don’t build around decent utility guys. They’re nice to have, but there’s a reason they generally move from team to team.

          • Fetty007 1 year ago

            Though Billy Beane builds his team off of guys like that, and he has been successful. Ok no world series, but overall sucessful

        • Monk81 1 year ago

          You forgot Ty Wigginton and Laynce Nix

          • Fetty007 1 year ago

            Matt Stairs was probably the best, still one of my best memories of 08 is Stairs home run in game 5 of the NLCS

        • NotCanon 1 year ago

          Erik Kratz was a backup catcher. He’s now no longer as good as a backup catcher, which is why he was DFA’d.

    • Ted 1 year ago

      Reid Brignac does not have potential at this point. He’s a 28 year old former prospect who has OPS’d just .587 in 889 plate appearances over 327 games. Even this season he’s got 24 strikeouts in 66 at bats. Not good for a utility guy you want to use off the bench as a pinch hitter.

  14. citizen 1 year ago

    sounds like a perfect candidate for the yankees.

    • Fetty007 1 year ago

      brian cashman is too smart for that

      • raltongo 1 year ago

        At this point it seems quite apparent that not even an average prospect will come back in a Ryan Howard trade…so its about money now…you’re tellin’ me that that Yankees and Phillies couldn’t sit down and say, ‘okay, 50/50…each of us pays around 30 mil for Ryan Howard to play on the Yanks for 2 years” …. I think the Yanks do it…what is a mere 30 million in baseball contracts these days anyway?

        • Fetty007 1 year ago

          but why sit down and talk trade if its just over money? Yanks can sit an wait for a release then the philies are eating all of howards contract. Don’t think there will be teams jumping at howard for 30 mil, hes not worth that much money.

          • NotCanon 1 year ago

            Because they’re not going to release him. There’s no point to releasing him unless they feel like he’s taking up a spot on the 25-man roster that someone in the minor leagues could use. He isn’t – primarily because there’s nobody knocking on the door of the bigs – so there’s no reason to just release him.

  15. zimzyma 1 year ago

    His home/away splits are very pronounced this year, 65 OPS+ vs 120 h/a. Something tells me he could resurrect his career in the AL as a DH or a platoon player without the weight of the contract on his shoulders. If the Phil’s eat 40-45 mil they might get a decent prospect back and save a good chunk of $ vs cutting him .

    • Jeff Miller 1 year ago

      I doubt that they’d get anything decent in return even if they took on about $60M. While there is a decent gap in his home/road splits this year, that’s not the case for his career. There aren’t many teams that have a need for a 1B/DH type and Howard also has a NTC.

    • Monk81 1 year ago

      His stats against RHP this year–.229/.314/.368–even taking the contract out of the equation, Howard is simply not good enough to play MLB at this point.

    • Fetty007 1 year ago

      Ryan Howard = Kenny Powers (at least a hitting kenny powers) this is a joke by the way

  16. Fetty007 1 year ago

    So they are putting charlie on the wall of fame this year. Anyone else think that Fregosi should had maybe got it this year?

  17. Zak Arn 1 year ago

    What’s worse? The collective wasted salaries of Contreras, Baez, Blanton, Moyer, Schneider, Willis, Qualls, Romero, and Adams OR Howard?

    • Fetty007 1 year ago

      I have a hard time putting Blanton, and Moyer in that group. Blanton played a big part in winning the world series in 08. Moyer was a great guy to have in that rotation to teach the younger guys. Probably a good reason hammels is as good as he is now.

      • Zak Arn 1 year ago

        You’re referencing pre WS contracts, sorry this is the Post WS deals..

    • Fetty007 1 year ago

      but Howards deal is still worse than all of them, because Howard could be considered similar talent to the rest of them, but the other guys didn’thave big contracts

  18. Pegasus 1 year ago

    Talk about a fall from grace…

  19. Gumby65 1 year ago

    “Internal discussions”? I am sure Mr. Salisbury will continue to get the red carpet rolled out for him in the clubhouse and management suite.

  20. Donnie Bandera 1 year ago

    Basically – The Phillies eat all but $20 million left on his contract and any of those teams would be getting a better DH then they have now or will lose via FA after this season. CJ Cron for Kendrick + Howard to Angels + all that cash? S. Vogt + T. Milone for Howard and Rollins to A’s? Byrd and Howard to Seattle for Franklin+Elias?

    • Jaysfan1994 1 year ago

      Nobody wants Howard, he’s a horrible baserunner and offers no defense. If he isn’t hitting 30+ homers a year, he offers no value.

      • Donnie Bandera 1 year ago

        There are 15 teams that have a DH – no defense required.
        Of the 15 DH’s playing now, who IS a good baserunner???
        How many will hit 30 HR’s? (Ortiz and Cruz) Howard is on a pace for 25 HR and 100 RBI – as far as DH’s go, that would make him the 3rd best DH in Baseball… No Value? I have to highly disagree.

        • stl_cards16 1 year ago

          Ryan Howard has an 88 WRC+. That means he is a below average MLB hitter. If that is the 3rd best DH in baseball then the whole “NL pitchers get an extra free out” is WAY overblown. Ryan Howard has no value.

  21. SteveS11 1 year ago

    Before they release Howard, they’d better be sure that they have a better option at 1st base. If that means platooning Howard with a right handed hitting 1st baseman until they find the right guy, then that’s how they should go. Since they’re going to be paying Howard regardless, they may as well get what they can out of him if there isn’t clearly a more favorable option.

  22. ateam043 1 year ago

    Carl Crawford for Ryan Howard…who says no?

    Gives the Phil’s an outfielder that would be semi-useful compared to his contract and would clear the OF logjam for the Dodgers while saving them money and having Howard as a bench bat.

    • Fetty007 1 year ago

      Phillies would have to eat all of howards contract to make that deal.

    • Gumby65 1 year ago

      And Dodgers would do exactly what with Howard? They’d rather have Crawford or Ethier off the bench if they were to continue keeping spare starting outfielders around.

    • sourbob 1 year ago

      People don’t typically devote a roster spot to a backup guy who can only play 1B, particularly not if he’s having trouble hitting.

  23. raltongo 1 year ago

    I’m calling it…Byrd and Howard to Seattle…no prospects come back but the Phillies ‘only’ eat 30 mil of Howard’s contract.

    • Fetty007 1 year ago

      you need to get something back for byrd, too thin in the minors to let two guys go, just for salary relief.

    • Where would Howard play?

    • Phillyfan425 1 year ago

      No way Phillies trade away Byrd to get nothing back. He’s one of the top bats on the market. Plus, they need prospects. If they get rid of Howard, it will be solely to not have him on the roster.

      • raltongo 1 year ago

        right but they realistically cannot justify just cutting Howard and eating all of the 60 million. I mean he’s bad, but he’s not gotten to THAT point yet. He has no trade value, yes, which is why I think he has to be packaged with Byrd in order to shoulder the Mariners burden of taking on half the contract.

        • Phillyfan425 1 year ago

          They aren’t going to realistically package one of their best offensive trade chips and their worst offense trade chip (plus $30 M) and get zero return. If they move Howard, it’ll be by himself, with the Phillies taking on the overwhelming majority of his contract – and they’ll expect next-to-nothing back.

  24. Douglas Bath 1 year ago

    A-Rod for Howard would be a hilarious trade.

  25. Hoosierdaddy92 1 year ago

    Impossible idea, but a blockbuster deal (similar to the infamous Dodgers-Red Sox deal), where Howard, Cliff Lee, and some cash (over half of the Howard contract) come to the White Sox for John Danks, Adam Dunn, and some mediocre prospects. Phillies gain some financial flexibility in the long-term (Dunn free agent after this season). White Sox take on more salary but lock-in a very formidable 1-2-3 in Sale, Lee, and Quintana long-term. I actually think Howard, hitting behind Abreu, gives him the best protection he has had in years. He’s no longer relied on to be “the guy”.

    • Jeff Miller 1 year ago

      The Phillies will have financial flexibility after next year, 2016 at the latest. They’ll have $25M coming off the books after this year (Burnett, Kendrick, Hernandez and Adams). They’ll have at least $11M coming off the books after next year (Rollins) and potentially another $50M (Lee, Utley, Papelbon, Byrd) or somewhere in between depending on vesting options or possible trades. Going into 2016 the only big guaranteed contracts are Hamels ($22.5M/year through ’19) Howard ($35M in ’16 including buyout) and Ruiz ($9M in ’16 including buyout).

      Of course they’ll have to bring in players to replace guys, but I’d expect nothing but short term mid-range signings or in-house replacements. Given how they’ve played the last few years and how it appears that Amaro and the FO have finally seen that team just isn’t good enough, I don’t see them as real players for Scherzer, Lester or Shields. At most I could see a Melky Cabrera or Colby Rasmus and even that would have to be at their price.

      I don’t see the Phillies trading anyone just for salary relief. They’re not struggling to meet payroll and have a vast amount of resources. If they were to do your proposal it would probably cost something like Danish and Hawkins in terms of prospects. Moving Cliff Lee won’t be cheap even if they take on Howard at 50%.

      • Fetty007 1 year ago

        agreed, if they are talking about releasing howard, obviously they are not worried about payroll. This is more looking to trade to bring young talent into the organization. A rebuild of the farm system in major need.

        • stl_cards16 1 year ago

          They’re not getting any young talent for Howard. They’ll be lucky to save $4MM-$5MM a year for the reminder of the contract.

          • NotCanon 1 year ago

            I believe the point was that you don’t package Lee and Howard, because you can get something for Lee (young talent), but there’s no reason to trade Howard in the same deal because that diminishes your return. Since the Phillies aren’t strapped for cash (especially next year or 2016), the salary relief isn’t that useful.

        • jaybuck 1 year ago

          Young talent?

  26. Mario Saavedra 1 year ago

    How about releasing Amaro Jr.?

  27. Lefty_Orioles_Fan
    Lefty_Orioles_Fan 1 year ago

    Will they throw in Ruben Amaro for free as an added sweetener?
    That might help this deal get done!

  28. sourbob 1 year ago

    It’s depressing, because you know they’re only trying to trade him to spare him (and Amaro) the indignity of releasing $60MM worth of contract.

  29. sourbob 1 year ago

    The Phils need to find someone with a terrible contract they can take on so they can reduce the amount of cash they have to send. It gives them a small chance of recouping some value while reducing the amount of cash they have to humiliate themselves by sending out of town.

    EDIT: I originally said Weeks here, but looking over his numbers, Weeks is a semi-sorta useful platoon guy right now. Maybe forget this example.

  30. jaybuck 1 year ago

    Cards throw a flyer in on him.

    • stl_cards16 1 year ago

      Throw a flyer at him.

      • jaybuck 1 year ago

        Yeah because their offense is so superior right now.

        • stl_cards16 1 year ago

          Is Howard going to play CF?

          • jaybuck 1 year ago

            No he is going to come off the bench and give Matt Adams days off. A bench with Craig and him on it regularly is a potent combination they have not had for awhile. Put Oscar in everyday, and I say bat him third and let’s stop with this easing him in bs. Holliday, Craig, Peralta, and even Marp to a degree cannot hold this team up right now. Let’s just try some different. So, yes Ryan (who rakes at Busch) is an option I think may shake things up.

  31. jaybuck 1 year ago

    What do the Phillies possibly want for him?

    • MB923 1 year ago

      A Derek Jeter gift basket

    • Phillyfan425 1 year ago

      At this point, they’d probably take a back end prospect for him (somebody at the end of a team’s top 20 organizational guys). This is about the only salary dump that I see the Phillies actually taking part in (and it’s more of an “open up a spot” dump, then pure salary).

  32. jaybuck 1 year ago

    I’d love to see him in a Cardinals uniform, but not for any “young” prospect. I’m thinking the Phils eat enough salary to get it to $5-6 mil per year, and send back some guy like a Shane Robinson and one of Ellis or Choate.

    • jaybuck 1 year ago

      I’ve reconsidered Robinson, Ellis, and Choate for Howard at $5 mil per.

      • stl_cards16 1 year ago

        That’s what we need, a terrible hitting left handed 1B to back up the solid hitting left handed 1B. I wouldn’t give Choate for him.

  33. bjsguess 1 year ago

    Phillies are crazy if they think someone is going to take Howard on what would be a 3 year $9-15M deal. At this point he would be in line for a one year flyer at league minimum.

    I wonder if the Phillies can include performance escalators in their deal. Say the opposing team takes him for $1M a year but then would kick-in additional money if he hits performance milestones. Since this would be outside the player contract, I wouldn’t think a clause like this wouldn’t be subject to the MLB / MLBPA agreement.

    • timpa 1 year ago

      all but $1m of each year paid for and traded to the Nippon Baseball League might get a taker.

  34. Phillyfan425 1 year ago

    It’s amazing how his career changed on the pop of his Achilles. Obviously, he was never going to continue at the performance level when he was signed – but if he could have replicated his age 30 and 31 seasons (with the natural regression for an aging curve), he could have still been somewhat productive. Again, nowhere near the contract, but not a “completely cut bait” level.

    • Phillies_Aces35 1 year ago

      It started before he tore his achillies, the achillies just sped up the process. What’s hurt him is the failure to adjust to what pitchers were throwing him it’s like he’s guessing at everything and making his mind up to swing before a pitch is thrown.

      • Phillyfan425 1 year ago

        That’s why I said his age 30-31 seasons (that’s where it started). I’m not talking about the 45-50 HR, 140 RBI, .575 SLG guy. I’m talking about the 30 HR, 100 RBI, .500 SLG guy, who was walking a bit more and striking out a bit less. Which is what he was the year he tore his Achilles.

  35. rct 1 year ago

    If everyone knows that they’re willing to eat all of his contract and get nothing back (ie release him), I don’t see why anyone would trade anything remotely significant for him, or eat much (if any) of his salary. Whoever leaked that the Phillies were talking about releasing him doesn’t understand how to drum up perceived value. This story essentially removes any value Howard had. The only way they’ll get something now will be if Howard goes on a tear, which is unlikely.

  36. DempseyK 1 year ago

    If the Phils eat all of his contract in return for a couple low level prospects, I would have no problem with the Buccos acquiring him. Perhaps being in a pennant race again reinvigorates him and he starts hitting the longball again. And if not, you cut him loose with no real loss. A guy with his track record could always turn things around for 1 final push at a ring. Its not like the Pirates would lose much production by benching Ike Davis against righties for a few weeks to see what Ryan brings to the table. In that particular scenario, the potential reward would far out weigh the risk.

    • Jeff Miller 1 year ago

      Something like Jose Ozuna and Felipe Gonzalez?

  37. Guest 1 year ago

    Alex Rodriguez for Ryan Howard. Both owed 60 million. Both bad players.

    • A-Rod is a negative clubhouse presence, but he isn’t a negative WAR player. That’d be a horrible trade for the Yankees.

  38. daveineg 1 year ago

    Well obviously talk of releasing him makes it harder to convince another club to take on any part of his salary. The Phillies should have realized that at 34 and having missed significant time the prior 2 seasons, that expecting him to play day in and day out for 6 months was asking too much. He probably can do a decent job playing 4 or 5 times a week tops. The way the Phils have used him though has decreased his value to where no team is going to want to pay more than about $3 million per season for the remainder of his deal.

  39. Aces 1 year ago

    Well they should consider releasing him

  40. sascoach2003 1 year ago

    RAJ saying he “emphatically denies” something…Howard released soon…

  41. Spencer James 1 year ago

    Howard and Hamels for Gary Sanchez, a PTBNL, and “cash considerations”. Who says no first?

  42. Ralph 1 year ago

    Rube is quite the poker player. No one is going to trade for Howard — now they will just wait until he is released.

    • NotCanon 1 year ago

      Except he won’t be released…

      Add to that, if multiple teams are waiting for him to be released (aside from the fact that they’ll be waiting a few years), now there’s potential competition for his (inexpensive) services. Do you make a move to try to trade for him, thus guaranteeing getting him on your team? Do you risk offering him more once he’s released in order to entice him away from other teams that would take a flyer on a guy who was near the tops of the league for power only a few years back?

  43. Jeff Miller 1 year ago

    I’ve seen Franco a handful of times as well. He’s young and used to constant success with the bat. He’s adjusting and starting to see results. Are you seriously gonna write him off at 21 after a few months at AAA?

  44. Fetty007 1 year ago

    I understand what you are saying, young guy with a lot of potential. But is he really going to develop. Can we trust this organization anymore to develop this young talent. I think we need to start from the bottom. Although I hope your right, but you can’t blame me for being a little sceptical

  45. Fetty007 1 year ago

    I mean start a rebuild from the bottom

  46. Jeff Miller 1 year ago

    I agree they need to rebuild and definitely don’t blame you for being skeptical given the Phillies track record. That’s why moving Howard (trade or release) is a necessary step. Either way would be fine. They need to start bringing up young talent.

  47. Fetty007 1 year ago

    Has Franco played any first? I thought he was primarily SS and third?

  48. Jeff Miller 1 year ago

    He hasn’t played an SS, at least since the Phils signed him. Primarily a 3B, but he started playing some 1B late last season and played maybe 15-20 games there this year.

  49. Fetty007 1 year ago

    Totally agree, very poor GMing and especially bad on the part of Ruben since Howard was already declining before he signed that deal, it didn’t take long before ALL pitchers were throwing low and away on him and putting on the shift.

  50. The Virus 1 year ago

    triple digit strikeouts 10 years in a row

  51. antsal 1 year ago

    Or 7 if you are counting. If not, Derek Jeter had 12 seasons in a row. The three 99 K seasons are a smokescreen. He was hurt and still had 88 in 119 games.

  52. The Virus 1 year ago

    I was ballparking, but Howard’s strikeout seasons of 3 digits are not even close to 100, more close to 200 per season

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