Randy Miller weighed in yesterday morning with his plan for the Phillies. The team has $23MM to spend, by his count.
He wants to sign Curt Schilling, David Riske, Mark Loretta, and Mike Cameron and also re-sign J.C. Romero. He also would ship Pat Burrell and Geoff Geary to the Angels for "two decent minor leaguers."
Well. Start with the good – I think most of us can agree that Schilling at $13MM is solid.
The bad: Riske’s $2.85MM club option for ’08 is very likely to be exercised by the Royals [Update: turns out the club option became a player option with 60 games. So he probably will become a free agent.] Loretta hit .287/.352/.372 this year, with a putrid .626 OPS after the break. Essentially swapping Burrell out for Cameron…huh?
What would I do? I’d make the same Schilling move, leaving me with $10MM. Then I’d tell Carlos Carrasco to start training as a reliever, because that’s his role in ’08. Rather than make a bunch of questionable three-year reliever signings, I’ll try to just get better at building a cheap bullpen. I’ll lure Leo Mazzone to Philly by topping his best offer by a million or two.
Noting that the Phils had the best offense in the league in ’08, I’ll just look for league average production at 3B (.280/.348/.456). Hello Mike Lamb for two years, $8MM. If Lamb forgets how to hit lefties again, I platoon him with Wes Helms. Betcha a dollar I get league average production out of that.
I’ll go with a Burrell/Victorino/Bourn/Werth outfield, no need to invest heavily in the free agents or trade Bourn.
Hey, I have $6MM left over (unless Mazzone gets greedy). I’ll use it on more pitching, you can never have enough. Maybe I’ll try to get two Cub retreads like Matt Clement and Kerry Wood. Maybe I’ll have my docs look at Bartolo Colon and see what he’s asking for. I’ll check in with Jason Jennings too. If nothing works out, I’ll sit on the money and make a trade in early June as needed. Voila, my team wins 90 games and doesn’t screw itself over for 2009-11.
BooSanta weighs in on Miller’s decisions here, if you want another take. So, you have $23MM. What do you do?