Phillies ICYMI Monday: 12/05/16

Welcome back to our weekly Philadelphia Phillies ICYMI Monday update.  To harken back to the sports show of my youth we have a wide variety of topics to cover this week.

Staying  and Coming in the Phillies Booths:

To begin the week, on Monday, SportsRadio WIP announced that they would continue to air Phillies broadcasts through the end of the 2017 season. The current team of Scott Franzke, Larry Andersen and Jim Jackson will return. Franske also received a  five-year contract extension. The announcement was made by David Buck, the Phillies’ Senior Vice President of Marketing and Advertising Sales.

Franzke – who has twice earned the PA Sportscater of the Year awared (’10 and ’15) – will be in his 12th year with the Phillies and his 11th as the club’s main PBP guy. He and Andersen, his partner since the beginning, were honored at the Philadelphia A.I.R. (Achievement in Radio) Awards with the Best Live Sports Event Coverage in 2007 and 2008 honors.

“We couldn’t be happier to extend our relationship with Scott,” said Buck. “He and Larry Andersen have been entertaining Phillies fans for over a decade and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.”

“My family and I are very excited and I just can’t imagine doing this job anywhere else at this stage of my career,” said Franzke. “I’m humbled and thankful to the Phillies for wanting this relationship to continue for another five years.”

Later in the week the Phillies also confirmed that John Kruk would be joining the Phillies broadcast team. You can read more about that here.

New Scouting Guy:

On Wednesday the Phillies announced the  hiring of former Minnesota Twins GM Terry Ryan to serve as a special assignment scout.

Ryan, 63, was Minnesota’s GM twice, 1994-2007 and 2012-16. During that time the club won four AL Central Titles. He was also twice named Sporting News Executive of the Year. Ryan also served as Minnesota’s scouting director from 1986-91, a period when they won two World Series rings. The Twins let Ryan go in July.

“I have known Terry for more than a decade and have enormous respect for all that he accomplished during his tenure with the Twins,” Phillies general manager Matt Klentak stated in an official release. “Terry’s work ethic, loyalty and track record as a talent evaluator are simply unparalleled in our game.”

“I’m very happy to be joining the Phillies and have the opportunity to provide some impact and evaluation,” Ryan said. “This is an exciting time for the franchise, as they have what many in the industry consider to be one of the top farm systems in baseball.

New CBA:

Beating the deadline Thursday, it was announced that MLB and the MLBPA have agreed to a new CBA. To jump right to the provision that most directly affects the Phillies now is that players cannot be tied to a qualifying offer more than once in their careers. In the Phillies case, Jeremy Hellickson, who accepted a qualifying offer from the Phils, will be an unrestricted FA after the 2017 season. The Phillies will receive no compensation for losing him — unless he is traded at the deadline in July.

Now on to a few of what I believe to be the most salient and understandable parts of the deal important to most fans.

The first bit of news that came out about the new CBA was that the All Star Game will no longer “count”, and the WS HFA will for the first time in modern baseball be decided by best record. Before being decided by the ASG, it rotated every year. Now the full regular season will have more meaning.

The other issue that this writer was keyed on was not touched upon this time out. The Rosters will stay at 25, some were lobbying for a 26 man roster which most saw as a grab for another reliever to get a job, but could have been used for anything. The disappointing part for me was that at the same time nothing was done about the 40 man September expansions. Something needs to be done to end the Jim Rigglemanesque madness that can be a late September game when managers can match up to their hearts delight, because they can, and not because it is necessary for the team’s playoff chances, record, or the fan’s enjoyment of never ending innings.

The DL will now drop from a minimum of 15 days to 10.  This will get many players back in the game earlier, which in most cases is probably a good thing.

International signing $ pools will no longer be keyed to a team’s record. Instead each team will have a hard cap, reportedly close to $5 million. In 2016 the Phillies, parlayed their worst record in 2015, for $5.6 million to spend on international amateurs. While limiting $ spent for the owners, at the same time it could also deter “tanking” to have more to spend.

Non-tender Arby Deadline:

The Phillies had until 8:00 PM Friday to tender contracts to arbitration-eligible players. Each could accept or decline, and a decline meant the player and team would head to arbitration. But if the Phils didn’t extend a contract offer, the player would become a free agent. They wound up tendering IFs Freddy Galvis and Cesar Hernandez, as well as RHP Jeanmar Gomez. They DFA’d and then outright released Cody Asche.

Galvis and Hernandez were certainly expected moves, and Hernandez could still be trade bait before or during 2017. Gomez was a bit less certain, as he most likely will not be back as a closer, but those stats (37 S in 43 opps) wracked up last season will increase his arbitration salary $. The release of Asche was also not a surprise. Like Domonic Brown before him, he was given multiple opportunities to earn a place as a regular on this team either in LF or as a utility IF. Hopefully a change of scenery will help his career.

Winter Meetings:

As noted last week the winter meetings begin tomorrow and end Friday unofficially with the Rule 5 draft. Stay tuned to your favorite social media platform for all the rumors, outrageous and real. One of those rumors involves the Phillies signing veteran reliever Joaquin Benoit. Benoit, 39 pitched in 51 games for Seattle and Toronto in 2016 with a 2.81 ERA. He was especially good after being traded to Toronto in July where he allowed just one run in 23.2 innings over 25 games, but did not pitch in the postseason after suffering a torn calf muscle in late September. The well travelled RHP has a lifetime 3.79 ERA in 712 games.

Check out @brett5355 and/or @pattisavenue on twitter regularly for any breaking news. I will be back to update here next Monday.

Lastly thanks to my wife and best friend of some 30+ years for this feature’s new graphic.  I hope you all like it as much as this admittedly biased writer does.

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