One of the offseason’s major free agents finally came off the board today, as Jake Arrieta agreed to a three-year, $75MM contract with the Phillies that will become official once the right-hander passes a physical. Here is some of the early reaction to the deal…
- “For the Phillies, this was as close to a no-brainer as $25 million per season gets,” David Murphy of the Philadelphia Daily News writes. Murphy argues that the Phillies were simply in such dire need for starting pitching that a quality arm like Arrieta was too good to pass up, even at a significant price for a still-rebuilding team. Though Arrieta’s performance dipped in 2017, Murphy notes that even Arrieta’s down year still more or less equaled Aaron Nola’s numbers, so “in essence, the Phillies will have added another Nola even if Arrieta’s 2017 is his new normal.” Even if Arrieta declines further, the three-year length of the deal means that he won’t be much of a long-term burden on the Phils’ spending abilities.
- The threat of such a decline, however, makes this signing “a strange one” for the Phillies, in the opinion of ESPN.com’s Keith Law (subscription required). Arrieta’s peripherals and velocity were both down in 2017, and Law wonders if “this is a Tim Lincecum situation where there’s no actual injury but he’s just wearing down after a great peak.” Even if Arrieta stabilizes his performance or regains some of his old form, Law questions the wisdom of a contract that will likely deliver most of its value before the Phillies are truly ready to contend.
- “The Padres had more than passing interest in Jake Arrieta”, Dennis Lin of the Athletic tweets, but the $25MM average annual value of Arrieta’s contract was too high for San Diego’s liking. The club was known to have been at least considering the idea of going after the right-hander, who could’ve joined Eric Hosmer as the second major Scott Boras client to (surprisingly) sign with the Padres this winter. Lin feels the Padres are likely to stick with their current rotation mix rather than add another starting pitcher, though “there are fans of Alex Cobb in the organization.”
- The Nationals had been mentioned as a speculative landing spot for Arrieta for much of the offseason, due to both the Nats’ possible need for another starter and Boras’ well-documented relationship with the Lerner family. As Mark Zuckerman of MASNsports.com notes, however, “Nats folks insisted from the beginning Boras was trying to make them more interested in Arrieta than they were.” Even if Washington was more likely to engage in Arrieta’s market if the price dropped, it seemingly never got low enough for the Nationals to make a strong bid.
Weird offseason. Weird signing. No clue what to think of the Phillies. No clue what to think of Jake Arrieta. Just question marks and head scratching since November.
Agreed. You have to think maybe they’re making these moves now to make the team more appealing next season for a Harper/machado type of signing. Only explanation I have for now.
Agree with both comments.
Bingo. The Phillies without Arrieta win like 75 games and are not buyers at the trade deadline. That won’t draw Machado or Harper. If Arrieta puts them in contention for a wildcard, maybe they are buyers at the deadline. Then they might attract a big free agent next winter
Ehh I don’t see how Arrieta makes them contenders all of a sudden. They’re still not better than all the other wild card worthy teams. If they sign Machado or Harper it will be because in the end Money talks.
Phillies would need around 85 wins to contend for the WC. Adding 2015 Arrieta to the Phillies barely gets their win total into the 80s. Arrieta’s last two years are about half that value, and declining.
They don’t have to better than Milwaukee, St. Louis, Arizona, or Colorado. They just need to have a better record.
We tend to mistake those two statements as being redundant. But they aren’t… A teams record isn’t just about talent.
Arizona and Colorado can rack up wins against SD and SF. But they’ll beat each other up, and then both will get their teeth kicked in by LA.
Milwaukee and St. Louis can beat up Cincy and Pitt, but they’ll beat each other up and then they’ll get their teeth kicked in by the Cubs.
But the Phillies are interesting. They’re in the worst division. They’re one of three teams rebuilding with a fourth team struggling to fill holes despite having a below-average roster. Because Philly started their rebuild first, their prospects are reaching the bigs first. A lot are already there. They’re ahead of that curve, and with Jake, they can clearly separate themselves from the other garbage in their division. Sure, they’ll get their teeth kicked in by Washington, but if their young players improve as expected, then they’ll beat up on Miami, Atlanta, and New York.
Essentially, they have the same dominant team in their division as the other WC contenders. But the lack of another WC contender in their division gives them an additional 18 games against garbage opponents. Theoretically, the Phils go 14-4 against the garbage third place team in their division while Milwaukee/St. Louis split (9-9) and Arizona/Colorado do the same – that’s a 5 game advantage in the standings. That’s a gigantic advantage.
I’m not saying this will happen. Or even predicting it. But it’s plausible.
Even if Milwaukee dominates St. Louis and Arizona dominates Colorado, that still thins the field for the Phils, which gives them a better chance to contend. It changes their midsession strategy. And it makes next year’s class see them as a missing piece to a budding team.
Now It all comes down to Philly’s young guys taking a step forward. If that doesn’t happen, then nothing else remotely matters. But when compare their roster against their divisional opppnents, they have clearly distanced themselves from the non-Washington teams. It’s really not a crazy thought to see them winning more games than their roster suggests they should just because they’re probably better than the teams they’re playing against.
How is az and Colorado going to rack up wins against the padres and the giants?
Both of those teams are expected to be under .500 for the year
If we’re using the Cubs as a model, this is Jon Lester. Most thought the Lester signing was a year early, that the Cubs wouldn’t contend for the playoffs until 2016. But the Cubs saw an opportunity to find an anchor for their rotation, and they took it. I don’t see it as weird that a team like Philly did the same with Arrieta.
Perhaps the difference in opinion is how I view their chances in 2018. I don’t see playoff contention being outside the realm of possibility. Outside Washington, The NL East is atrocious. Philly has a lot of young talent that most expect to take a step forward this year. If those steps forward result in Philly just being an average team, that could equal a ton of wins just because they have so many games against Miami, Atlanta, and New York.
We all predict playoff contention based on who the best teams are, and this extends to the WC. Sometimes it works out that way. But there are plenty of times when a lesser team makes the playoffs simply because they get a cake schedule filled with garbage opponents.
I’m sorry. But why are the Mets a push over team? At what position other than first I will give you that are the Phillies better? And since when were the Mets rebuilding?
They’re never rebuilding. The Mets catch lightening in a bottle every decade or so and then so a slow melt down.
2015 was the peak and Mets fans will be content for the next couple of years to say that “once everyone is healthy we will be back in the post season”.
Ugh this guy, I get your bored but get off that yankee D every now and then bud.
The way money will be thrown around next off-season for top free agents will make this Arrieta contract look like a bargain.
Well, that’s what people said last year and look what happened.
True or False:
Bryce Harper and Manny Machado are younger than Odubel Herrera, Aaron Altherr and Cesar Hernandez?
Because this off-season had the talent level that next year’s will, right?
Philly making smarter short term deals with impact players. Bryce Harper will be there big catch next year.. Nats have 1 more year to win it all.
Did nats do anything this off season to improve enough to overcome say the dodgers for example? IF nats out of it for whatever reasons at trade deadline do they trade Harper? I said IF. That would be an interesting trade talk
Short series are a crapshoot. The Nats certainly have the SP to go head to head with any team, so their lack of postseason success is a little mysterious.
Maybe Jobu put a hex on them.
They got rid of Dusty Baker. That exponentially increases their chances of winning a playoff series.
Dusty is better than people give him credit for. He has managed a team into the World Series and into the pennant. He rides his pitchers too hard is his biggest fault
What did the Dodgers do? I think they got worse. Especially in pitching !
Im sorry but harper or machado are not coming to philly, over the cubs, dodgers, nats, yanks and red sox. Those guys want to win a ring and they are gonna get paid 300+ mil regardless where they go, so no, they are not coming to the phils.
I like the signing for the Phillies. 3 years won’t hurt them. Even if he declines more, he’ll still eat innings.
At $25M per? I’d have held on to that cash and put all my chips in for next year’s crop of FA’s. Arrieta isn’t worth it.
Need to go after Cobb too. Don’t see them as players for Keuchel next year, he’s the only legit starter worth pursuing in 2019. But they have the cash to go after Harper or Machado next year. They could add Cobb, Machado and Harper and still not hit the luxury tax. Enough young players that some will stick. Shades of 2008… Nola, Hoskins, Herrera, Kingery, Crawford… Hamels, Howard, Victorino, Utley, Rollins.
Who knows? Some people do better, on new teams. Maybe the guy’s numbers start to trend up, on the Phillies.
Some guys do worse on new teams….maybe his numbers start to trend even further down with the phillies.
and ya know what.. oh well. 75M isn’t gonna kill the Phillies for a #5 if he continues to decline
3 years at 45 mil would have been more reasonable.
3 years @ 3 million would have been even more reasonable than that but I don’t see him getting that either
Glad you weren’t his agent.
Or down. Just saying. I wish him well. All this. Oils have been avoided taking 6/126 or 5/110 a year ago or even 4/88 in Jan.
love that it’s $30M>$25M>$20M. so happy they front loaded the contract. in 3 years, $20M will be nothing for a starting pitcher.
I think this signing helps with getting FAs next year. We only had 1 good starter. Now with 2, maybe add another this year at the deadline (wishful thinking), and Philly is contending again. the end is finally near!
Why does it matter at all that he is paid more rather than later?
The way contracts went this year, that 20 million may be way high for starters.
average value is what counts toward the luxury tax, so front loading is not as big of a help as it once was.
Luxury tax is irrelevant since the Phillies have the money to spend.
The structuring of the contract provides good opportunity to get surplus value out of the later years in case there isn’t any in the first year. Given that a win will probably be worth at least $10 million in 3 years, it’s likely this contract will at least break even as long as arrieta doesn’t get hurt.
Actually one of the really cool thing about a front loaded contact that I am surprised more teams don’t consider is that if the team flops, the player is easier to trade, if he regains form and the phils rebuild isn’t working out you can trade a front line starter with a 20mm salary
Agreed 100%. Front loading helps rebuilding owners pockets also because should they another high priced FA, say Harper for 10/$400 and its 40M every year – now that is only 60M out of owners budget. Totally different from luxury tax but still the money has to come from somewhere
There’s a luxury tax, now. Spending isn’t going to continue to be as out-of-control (and exorbitant) as it traditionally was in baseball.
The prices you’re seeing, right now, won’t change much as the years progress. This is pretty much the “new norm.”
Between teams finding out that you can actually build your own team (for cheap), advanced analytics, and the luxury tax, there’s simply no need to routinely spend that kind of crazy money, anyway — as was always the M.O. of baseball front offices.
More like the beginning is almost over. Good for Phillies.
Now the phillies just need to get BOTH Harper and Machado next year and they will win the following 5 World Series lmao….philly fan logic. They will get neither of them btw.
Careful…You’re making a push for most obnoxious poster.
No that has already been awarded to a phillies fan I came across earlier who seems to think the key to World Series rings is buying up the most expensive players.
Well in fairness, the yankees bought the 2009 world series.
You went wrong in making the generalization that Phillies fans are illogical.
Phillies fans don’t have that reputation.. I’m a diehard fan and certainly agree that talk of both, Harper and Machado to Philly is silly. I also agree that neither will end up here without outbidding the competition by a large amount.. Arrieta doesn’t make the Phillies a legitimate contender. If they were to also get Cobb, it becomes a little more interesting but I’d still see them as a very long shot… I was fairly happy with their rebuild process and the young players they’ve accumulated through the draft and trades…
Each of their notable free agent signings have me scratching my head at least a bit.. Neshek, Hunter, Santana, Arrieta
I’ve lived in philly my whole life and 9/10 Phillies fans do think think close to the original comment… “nah we’ll just get these two or three super stars.. and then mike trout.. then we’re golden”… “next off season man that’s the Phillies time”. As soon as Hoskins hit a bunch of homers people were starting to see rings and going “ this Guy is going to be an MVP”. You know… just like Dom Brown.
yes, philly is the only sports town that overreacts to a players initials success. come on.
It’s hard to be much worse than Dom Brown and that was basically because he was lazy and stopped working once he was doing well. Didn’t hustle and was a whiner. Not saying we gonna get 2-3 superstars or even trout but this team isn’t as bad as people think. Obviously we need a few pitchers to step up but everything else is decent. Hoskins will never hit homeruns at the clip he did last year but we don’t need him to. There’s 8 other guys in the lineup and 2-4 of them will most likely have power as well. Everyone hating on the Phillies needs to calm tf down. Most of us true fans aren’t delusional especially if you actually know the game like myself.
They had no injuries either, like the Cubs. Nothing wrong with everything going right.
Dropping a Dom Brown reference….OUCH.
All MLB are bought ! Players don’t play for free!
Sounds more like Yankee fan logic
Yankees fan logic is that it’s collusion when the Yankees don’t get every player at the same time but simultaneously being keenly aware none of these free agents are worth the asking price because they want to sign everyone simultaneously next year and not this year.
lol you salty af. Phillies have a decent little core going right now if they add a star player and some of their starting pitching works out, you better be ready for a solid team for a long time. You act like the Phillies haven’t lured big names her in the past. Look at all our teams from like 2008-2011.
Is it true that Arietta turned down 6/126 with Cubs before they gave it to Darvish?
If so, Boras is having a bad year, which is about to get worse with Holland (who apparently turned down 3/51 with Rockies) and now probably lucky to get anything more than a one year deal.
JA turned down several offers. Yes he turned that down the weekend the Cubs signed Davis. He also turned down 4 years at 110 million and and extension in Jan 4/88. There was no winning with Jake. Life goes on wish him well.
I wish him the best. It didnt seem like he wanted to stay and now hes forced to take less. I obviously dont know him personally, but his attitude didnt seem like one that meshed well with the organization. Im very happy with Darvish as his replacement.
Davis got 52 million. Same deal they offered Holland. He turned it down.
JA turned down 6/126 same deal Darvish got. In Jan 4/88 and back in 2016 an extension 4/110
Lynn turned down a QO 17.4 and 2/20 he got 12
JD turned down 5/125 he got 5/110
It’s a gambell agents need to do their home work. Supply n demand and who’s a fit and who can pay.
Giving up draft picks don’t help them either. All this plays into the market simple as that.
There is no confirmation that JD turned down 5/125.
1.Phils have some pretty decent young arms(Nola,Velasquez,Pivetta,Eflin that can learn from a Pro like Jake Arrieta.
2. Arrieta signing gives a jolt to the entire Phils situation from the team down to the fan base.
3.Arrieta becomes a magnet for potential free agents in the ensuing years.
4.Phils have ample space in their payroll to roll the dice on Arrieta. Its a franchise that should be in the $175M-$200 M range and I believe payroll was like $50 M before today.
How did this possibly get down voted?
The people here are morons, just use the app so you can be blissfully unaware about what anonymous people think of your comments.
So there’s another platform outside the app? I always wondered about what people were saying about voting and other nonsense. Just get off Facebook and you’ll be better for it.
Not sure what Facebook has to do with anything, the voting is on the actual site…
I’m not sure if MLBTraderumors is connected to Facebook (not an expert on it at all), but I think that a lot of people use the official website as their connection point. I know that after months of experiencing the horrible app I went back to just using the website. I think that a few people claimed it was much better for Apple platform than Android though.
Probably because #3 isn’t true.
I downvoted. But I will at least tell you why. First off, let me say I’m a Mets fan but that my vote was because of certain things you said not because of the phillies themselves who will encompass my hate for all time. So with that said. Let’s move on. The phils have a decent young core but will need to expand on that or at the very least just get more experience under the belt so realistically they’re two years away. I can see how at the very least Arrieta will give the fan base reason enough to go to the ballpark so I agree with you on that point. Now here’s where I disagree with you. Arrieta may give a fan base some spark but it doesn’t make philly a more appealing destination especially when you know the franchise is in rebuild mode so they will have to over pay i.e. Arrieta at 25/yr. Now if they sign an albatross like Machado or Harper I can see the team being very appealing. But they may need to break the bank to do it. The phillies will be better it just may take two more years but that’s not much in the grand scheme of things.
And I can understand your hatred, but it’s somewhat misplaced. It’s your team that choked away leads in 2007 and 2008.
As an all-in-fun ribbing, remember these?:
Maybe Phillies taking one for the team (MLB) This signing may be enough of a bone to MLBPA to prevent a collusion grievance
6 of the top 7 teams spending on FA are from the NL and 5 of them spent over 100 million.
NL out spent the AL 2-1. Dont think that ever happened before – 948 to 431.
Lack of AL engagement besides the Red Sox in the FA market is responsible for the entire shortage in projected vs actual spending
Interesting perspective. After taking a look at the money spent, it’s a point worth keeping an eye on. Who knows what Tony and the boys will do after this offseason.
The MLBPA can always try to argue collusion but from what the fan sees on the outside, this off season was like none other. The luxury tax threshold that the MLBPA agreed to prevented certain big market club’s from going after the big ticket item. Add on the compensation for signing them (offered $17.1m, over $50m contract, etc.) and the fact that only Boston was willing to go over the threshold (because they strategically decided to reset theirs in 2017) are the obvious factors. Also certain historical spenders are currently rebuilding and finally realized paying more to still finish last had a diminishing return. I may be missing some but the above can’t be ignored.
Feel like he got overpaid just to take a short term deal and even then I don’t like the deal.
Moustakas should find a better agent because I’d be livid I have to play for my future security while practically every other Boras guy got set. I mean granted some of that is Moose’s fault but still. Boras seems like he just guessed on the market and knee-jerk told Moose to refuse the QO. But it’s his job to not guess at the market for his clients.
This was Mousakas’s time to collect. Next year there’s Machado for long term and Donaldson for short term. In between you have “That guy” in CO. Unless he improves on 2017, where will his market be?
How do you know what happened between Boras & Moustakas? Perhaps Boras encouraged he take the $17.4M QO and Mostakas said no. Agents don’t make the decisions…they offer advice and guidance, and at the end of the day it’s up to the players. Typically Boras has a bad reputation because he’s a pain the butt, and very contradictory when it comes to his players and how they’re handled, but he’s gotten a lot of players a lot of money over the years.
There’s no way Boras would have encouraged him to the the QO, no agent would, because next year there is no market for him. As much as I dislike Boras, on this instance, I don’t think he is at fault. The Angels signing Cozart and the Giants trading for Longoria pretty much killed his market this year. No one could have predicted these 2 events happening.
Predict? No. But agents also get paid to assess probability as well, and probability dictates that teams may try to fill needs elsewhere if you don’t meet their price.
That may have been the Boras/Mous error, is not accounting for the fact that there was competition for the same dollars he was after.
This is purely speculative – and Boras has denied it (though I don’t believe him, I believe the offers were verbally floated and rejected), that the Angels reportedly offered 3/45 and perhaps another team(s) floated verbal “suggestions” of what they would be willing to pay, and that they were rejected, and countered with the asking price (7/85-100?). The early “floaters” may have led Bor/Mous to think that there was a bigger market out there that could be played up a bit, but the 2 – 5 teams that may have had any interest quickly looked elsewhere because they concluded that no deal could be reached with Bor/Mous. Thus, whatever market that existed collapsed faster than Boras could react.
It also didn’t help that Mous’s one above average skill – power – was devalued somewhat by the Great Juiceball Power Surge of 2017.
Ninth 3 Year Plan
Is Keith Law actually ignorant to Lincecum’s degenerative hip condition in both hips?
Quite an insider
Aaron Nola has a 3.27 FIP
Arrieta had a 4.16
He isn’t another Aaron Nola unless you only look at innings and ERA
Who were they bidding against!?
yes, that is a question id like to see answered.
Mante Te’o’s ex-girl friend
No one. That’s what makes this probably the dumbest move of the off-season. They can argue that this tells potential free agents that they are willing to spend money, but everybody knows that next year they were going to spend a lot anyways. And no, a declining Arrieta does not entice free agent to join him, IMO, it just tells free agents that the Phillies are not smart with their money and being taken advantage of is very possible.
Everyone acts like his era dipped into the 6’s. Everyone knew his 2015 numbers were unsustainable. He had a 3.30 ERA for crying out loud, with a 2.10 ERA after the all star break. He was able to do that with his reduced FB velocity too. Smart signing for the richest owners in baseball. They had a payroll of less than $70MM. All this does is make them more competitive this year and more attractive to FA next offseason. That’s a win in my book.
i thought Verlander looked like he was on his way to done at age 31 as well, so hopefully wrong again.
Keith Law is just looking at numbers and not the bigger picture of the trade, and some posters above have explained well.
And if Harper leaves the Nats, contending for a division could be happening for the Phils in 2019.
Im in agreement on keith law. The guy cant see past the spreedsheet data and if he had his way the kc royals would have been sold off at the 2014 deadline. In fairness he wasnt the only one and at the time most numbers guys gave little to no credence to the importance of a dominant bullpen.
This isn’t a bad signing for the Phillies. It’s a limited duration contract with the option, if Arrieta and the team is doing well, to extend it at a reasonable rate for years 4 and 5. Overpay? Very possibly. But there’s a pretty good chance that the worst that will happen is they paid Ace money for a number 3/4–and only for 3 years.
Except that Lincecum is a small pitcher that was bound to some velocity making his changeup normal again….when he had his Velo up on his FB…his changeup was devastating….Arrieta is in great physical condition and has better stuff than Lincecum therefore a total breakdown is probably not in the making as it was for Tiny Tim….I think Arrieta has a good year and will be a bounce back candidate
Bound to lose velocity
Bound to lose velocity*
As both an angels and phillies fan, I think this was the right move the phillies had to make. Next year they need to go after Keuchel & Machado and maybe Charlie Blackmon.
I agree with everyone who likes the deal lol As a Phillies fan, it is the bigger picture. People trash it and say they’re not close, etc.. if people really would dive into their roster then they are only a few good pieces away. Santana, Crawford, and Hernandez are going to have some of the best obp and walk rates in the league. That is fact. Kingery is a fireball ready to launch and is a better prospect than non Phillies fans know – Aaron Altherr and Herrea are better than people know. They have several young pitchers, who with the right coaching etc could develop – even if just one or two develop then they have a solid rotation. Pivetta throws 98, Velequez, Eickhoff, Lively, and about 5 other starters have solid potential, plus Sanchez will be up next year. I believe they are a Chris Archer, A Machardo or Harper and a closer away from WS contention. Archer at the deadline, the bat in free agentcy and the closer – either Kimbrel next off season or at next year’s deadline and they are right there. Ppl act like they’re half a roster away from contention. These are ppl who don’t know the roster. Now, these are different players…but in 92 they finished last. Had the young group that included Curt Schilling, Dykstra and Kruk had the obp, as did Hollins, and by the next year they were in the world series. Yes later they added thome, Millwood after being last – soon they had Utley, Howard, Rollins, hamels, etc developed and won it all. Nola hasn’t reached his potential yet and if he puts it together is a future 20 game winner. This year they are going to shut alot of ppl up.
I did not see mention of a No Trade Clause. If Arrieta performs this year or next, he can actually be traded for younger players/prospects with little risk.
Phillies are going nowhere this year or next, so why not take a chance pay the 30 mil and hope he finds his form again and trade him at the deadline to the Nationals, who may have to overpay in order to win it now.
Still don’t understand why people are confused by the phillies spending and thinking they can’t contend. They need to win more games this year, period. To entice free agents next year and just to get some positive momentum going in their rebuild. Carlos Santana and Arrieta will make everyone around them better. This is just like when the Nationals signed jayson werth. Do I think they make the playoffs? No. But I don’t understand how people think it’s so far fetched that they will be playing meaningful games in September given all of the talent they have. If Hoskins, Alfaro, Altherr, Williams and Crawford continue to progress to their potential then why not? They’ve already got Santana, Herrera and Hernandez in that line up., a solid 1-2 atop their rotation and a good bullpen.
Arrieta to Rupp. Plano, TX to Plano, TX.
not for long, quite possibly. Alfaro/Knapp may be his battery mates.
Arrieta was born in Farmington, Missouri ! Then moved to Texas when he was young.
2018 FA pitching class is garbage. This makes sense
Can’t wait to see the Philly fans booing his overpaid schtick. A jerk in the clubhouse and average on the field. Prepare for disappointment Philadelphia.
All i can say is its aboit time the phillies spent some money. This is why mlb needs some sort of minimum payroll requirements. That a team with phillies resources has been running a sub 50 million paroll is rediculous. Just like houston, and the cubs before them this tanking phenomenon in baseball is rediculous.
I think mlb should have a payroll floor based on a teams market size to keep tanking to a minimum.
Except that you’re totally wrong.
The Phillies haven’t run a sub 50 million PAYroll for 17 years. The last time it was under 100 million was 12 years ago.
I suggest you learn what you’re posting about before you post.
I think it’s hilarious that the Philolies fans think that signing Arrieta somehow makes them the clear favorite behind the Nats in the division. I might be biased, but I think at best they’re now contending with the Braves for third place. The Mets had a quietly good off-season and have improved their team. Barring another year of super bad luck with their pitching they are going to battle the Nats for first place.