Handicapping All 25 Philadelphia Phillies Odds of Being on the Roster in 2013

Greg PintoCorrespondent IJuly 25, 2012

Handicapping All 25 Philadelphia Phillies Odds of Being on the Roster in 2013

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    There are more than a few words in the English dictionary that don't appeal to fans of the Philadelphia Phillies, but if you had to pick a single word that was venomous to the ears, how about turnover.

    That's a loaded baseball word if there ever was one, but Phillies fans know all about that. After more than 10,000 losses and five straight National League East crowns, it is a word that most fans never wanted to hear again.

    But as the 2012 trade deadline rolls into focus, the Phillies are ready to party like it's 1999. That's not a good thing. A 1999 Phillies party involved selling off everyone of value at the trade deadline, as the club cashed in early on yet another season.

    There were more than a few years like that for Phillies fans. That's why they don't want to hear that this team could have a major turnover, or that they could rebuild, or re-tool or have a fire-sale.

    Enough is enough.

    So as we approach yet another uncertain deadline for the Phillies, it's about time we took stock of the future, not only after this season's deadline, but after the off-season as well.

    How many members of this current Phillies club will return in 2013? Time to find out.

Antonio Bastardo

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    Odds: 100 percent

    Who would have thought that, in the year after the Phillies parted ways with former closer Brad Lidge, fans would still be holding their breath every time the bullpen touched the ball?

    But that's been the case for the Phillies lately. The bullpen will be, without a doubt, a major area of focus in the off-season.

    That's why you can expect Antonio Bastardo back. Even 26-years-old, he is one of the most experienced relievers in the Phillies bullpen right now and will be counted on as the set-up man, at least from the left side, in 2013.

Joe Blanton

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    Odds: 5 percent

    It would certainly be a surprise for Joe Blanton to return to the Phillies next season, but you won't find any odds on this slideshow being zero. Baseball is a funny game and there is no way to say with any certainty that the Phillies won't bring certain guys back.

    Blanton is a fine example. The right-handed starter's contract will expire at the end of the season and he will most definitely test the free agent market.

    The Phillies, who have internal options like Kyle Kendrick and Tyler Cloyd under control for next season, are likely to pass. However, they could throw a small amount of money his way and he see if he bites.

    Odds are, that won't be happening.

Jake Diekman

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    Odds: 100 percent

    Jake Diekman is clearly still adjusting to pitching at the MLB level, but make no mistake about it, this guy is going to be a huge part of the future of this bullpen.

    The 25-year-old is a power pitcher from the left side and those kind of relievers don't come around all that often.

    He'll need to continue to improve upon his command and control, but the strikeout numbers could be eye-popping for years to come. He'll be a valuable weapon for the Phillies next season.

Mike Fontenot

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    Odds: 55 percent

    Mike Fontenot is a guy the Phillies will probably keep around for next season, but that's not something I can say with any kind of certainty.

    Fontenot has done a nice job off of the Phillies bench, providing a few spot starts and some quality at-bats against right-handed pitchers.

    He'll be eligible for arbitration for a third time next season, but shouldn't get a huge raise on the $1.05 million he's earning this season.

    Of course, with Pete Orr lurking in Triple-A, he's also very replaceable. The Phillies could easily non-tender him and move in a different direction.

    This one could really go either way.

Roy Halladay

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    Odds: 100 percent

    Roy Halladay isn't going anywhere.

    The Phillies made a commitment to him when they sent several top prospects to the Toronto Blue Jays prior to the 2010 season, and Halladay made a commitment to the Phillies when he signed a below-market value contract to play in Philadelphia.

    The 2012 season has been a huge concern for the future of the Phillies ace, but regardless of what happens, "Doc" will be on the mound wearing red-pinstripes for the Phillies in 2013.

Cole Hamels

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    Odds: 100 percent

    So I had this slide all written out prior to Wednesday morning going on a rant about how the only person who knew what was in store for Cole Hamels' future was, well, Cole Hamels.

    And now, Cole Hamels has made up his mind. He wants to be a Phillie.

    Several news outlets, including Buster Olney of ESPN, reported late last night that Hamels would agree to a new contract extension with the Phillies for six years and $144 million with a vesting option.

    That is a ton of money to throw at a starting pitcher. The only team to ever throw more money at a starter was the New York Yankees, and their hands were kind of tied with CC Sabathia.

    The Phillies, after two straight poor starts from Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee, apparently decided that Hamels was the future.

    He makes his first start as an incredibly rich man on the road in Atlanta, where the Phillies will try and claw their way back into contention against the rival Braves.

Jeremy Horst

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    Odds: 99 percent

    When the Phillies sent Wilson Valdez to the Cincinnati Reds over the off-season, it was viewed as a small, relatively unimportant deal. That's because it was.

    The Phillies received a Triple-A pitcher by the name of Jeremy Horst, and the best thing going for him at the time was the fact that he was left-handed.

    But it's been the kind of season where the Phillies will try anything and everything to get on a roll, and one of those last resort options was to shake up the bullpen. Horst got his opportunity and has made the most of it.

    He won't be eligible for arbitration next season, so the chance of him pitching outside of the Phillies organization is very small.

Ryan Howard

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    Odds: 100 percent

    Right now, I'd say there's a better chance of me being struck by lightning during a shark attack than Ryan Howard playing with a different club in 2013 (and I don't do much swimming).

    The obvious reason is the mammoth contract. Howard will earn $20 million next season before receiving $25 million annually from 2014-16. Not many teams can afford that kind of contract.

    Howard is also recovering from a torn Achilles tendon, and while the first few weeks back have been promising, no one knows what the future holds just yet.

    He'll be playing first base for the Phillies in 2013.

Kyle Kendrick

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    Odds: 51 percent

    Kyle Kendrick is a guy that the Phillies should make available at the trade deadline (and in the off-season, for that matter), but the club hasn't given up on him at his worst, so why would they during one of the best stretches of his career?

    Sure, you could "sell high," but you won't be getting much for a guy like Kendrick—a mediocre pitcher bouncing back and forth between the starting rotation and the bullpen.

    The Phillies will definitely try to trade him, but he's been good in the bullpen—an area where the Phillies have struggled this season.

    The uncertainty of the starting rotation in the future will also be a likely factor in keeping him around.

Erik Kratz

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    Odds: 85 percent

    Erik Kratz has been a depth player for the Phillies this season, but there's a good chance that he'll be the club's back-up catcher on a full-time basis starting next season.

    Unless the club brings in a veteran back-up that excels in the defensive aspects of the game, I wouldn't be surprised to see the Phillies part ways with the oft-ineffective Brian Schneider to give Kratz the job.

    Kratz has handled the bat better over the last couple of seasons and is less of a health risk at this stage in each catcher's respective careers.

Cliff Lee

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    Odds: 95 percent

    I find it extremely unlikely that the Phillies would Cliff Lee both now or in the off-season, but it crazier things have happened in Ruben Amaro Jr.'s tenure as general manager (like bringing Lee back in the first place, for example).

    There are just so many variables here. For starters, Lee has a 21-team no-trade clause that he can use every season.

    Adding that to the fact that only a handful of teams can absorb his contract (something that the Phillies would require) certainly complicates things.

    There's also a personal aspect. You risk alienating many fans, and the pitcher himself, by dealing him just two years into a deal that he took in spite of the fact that two other teams had more money on the table.

    The Phillies want to compete in 2013. Unless a team blows them away with an offer (taking on his salary and sending the Phillies top prospects), I see him staying.

John Mayberry Jr.

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    Odds: 95 percent

    Given some of the comments I've received over the last three months or so, this prediction probably won't appease many people, but John Mayberry Jr. is going to be back for the 2013 season. There's a couple of reasons for that.

    The main reason is that he's a quality right-handed bat on the cheap. 2012 has been a major disappointment for the outfielder / first baseman, but Mayberry has shown off some power and won't even be eligible for arbitration this off-season.

    Given the state of their payroll, those are a pair of valuable aspects for the Phillies.

    The second is less factual and more observational. The Phillies haven't given up on Mayberry in his worst when they were contending. Why would they give up on him now when they're not?

    There is a small chance of a trade. Mayberry is out of minor league options and it wouldn't be surprising to see the Phillies trading him to a team with another out of options player that they've lost favor with, but who's available in that kind of deal?

    Alberto Callaspo? Mat Gamel? Nate Schierholtz? Jack Hannahan?

    I think he stays.

Laynce Nix

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    Odds: 100 percent

    Laynce Nix is going to be a big part of the Phillies 2013 club, believe it or not.

    He's one of the few players on this club that is both affordable, has been productive, and is in good health.

    The last part of that previous statement may seem a little humorous given the way the 2012 season has gone for Nix, who missed more than 50 games with a serious calf strain, but I'm willing to chalk that up as a fluke injury, seeing as how Nix has never had calf issues before. He'll be good to go next season.

    He may also see a larger role. Without Jim Thome in the mix, he'll be the club's primary left-handed power threat off of the bench, unless they bring in another bench player for that role. He also has the ability to play left field and first base, and should make a few spot starts in those positions.

    The best part for the Phillies? He'll only make $1.35 million next season.

Jonathan Papelbon

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    Odds: 100 percent

    The last two weeks or so have marred what has been a spectacular season for new Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon.

    Then again, I'm not ready to throw all of the blame on him, seeing as how both Charlie Manuel and Rich Dubee have done a horrible job of managing their bullpen this season, Papelbon included.

    2013 will be just the second year of Papelbon's four-year deal with the club, so he'll be back and at the back end of the Phillies bullpen next season, without a doubt.

Hunter Pence

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    Odds: 51 percent

    When I first outlined this slideshow, I had the odds of Hunter Pence returning for the 2013 season much higher than this—at about 85 percent. While the Phillies are likely to sell off some pieces, I figured they would keep Pence around, seeing as how he's under team control for next season.

    This report from Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports changed my mind pretty quickly.

    The Phillies are indicating to other teams that they’re eager to move Hunter Pence. The right fielder will remain under team control through 2013, when he’s expected to obtain a raise and earn $13-14MM.

    The Phillies being "eager" to move Pence certainly doesn't sound as though it bodes well for his future in Philadelphia.

    With that being said, however, I'm not sure that moving him is going to be so easy. Sure, he'll definitely be one of the top outfielders available this summer, but the situation is much more complicated than that.

    Pence is going to cost a pretty penny next season, and teams rarely take on an expensive player like Pence and give up top prospects.

    Even if the Phillies absorb some of his salary this season, they're not going to move Pence unless they get a couple of top prospects in a package. I'm not sure that happens.

    His situation is really up in the air right now, but at the moment, I'm still on the "he stays" side of the fence.

Juan Pierre

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    Odds: 10 percent

    It sure looks as though Juan Pierre's Phillies career will be a "one and done."

    The speedy left-fielder was, without a doubt, one of the best minor league signings of the winter, but Pierre just doesn't fit into the Phillies plans. He's drawn plenty of trade interest leading up to the deadline and more likely than not, won't even spend the last few months of the season with the Phillies.

    The only reason that I have his odds at higher than 5 percent is that Charlie Manuel seems to have a strange love affair with the slap-hitter. It wouldn't surprise me to see him push to bring Pierre back in a small role next season, but I don't like those odds.

Placido Polanco

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    Odds: 5 percent

    Placido Polanco probably won't be returning to the Phillies next season.

    When the club signed Polanco to be their everyday third baseman, the circumstances were different. They could stomach having an elite defender, but light-hitter at a normally offensive-oriented position because Chase Utley brought some thunder to second base.

    Things have changed. Utley's knees have sapped some of his offense and the Phillies simply need more production out of their third baseman, something that Polanco just can't provide.

    In an ideal situation, the Phillies would be able to move Polanco at the deadline so that they don't have to worry about his contract option. The Baltimore Orioles have shown interest in him and the O's, who have a thin farm system outside of their top five prospects or so, could be inclined to acquire him. He won't cost much.

Joe Savery

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    Odds: 100 percent

    Baseball teams tend to like a lot of things, but one of their favorites is young, controllable and cheap pitchers that are left-handed. Joe Savery has all of those things going for him.

    At 26-years-old, he's no spring chicken, but Savery is still relatively young and has a lot of miles left on that left arm.

    He's definitely controllable. Savery won't even sniff arbitration until after the 2015 season. That's three years of league minimum salary owed to him by the Phillies, so he's cheap too. 

    Savery may not be the most productive reliever (then again, he shouldn't be pitching as a long reliever either), but he'll help out in the future.

Michael Schwimer

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    Odds: 100 percent

    Remember everything I just said on that slide about Joe Savery? Well the only difference between he and Mike Schwimer right now is that the latter is right-handed. Of course, Schwimer also has a much higher ceiling out of the bullpen than Savery, but I digress.

    Schwimer, 26-years-old, should be a huge part of the Phillies bullpen moving forward after emerging as somewhat of a right-handed for Charlie Manuel post-Chad Qualls. (Of course, that was kind of a "thrown into the fire" thing, but sometimes that's how these things happen).

    Schwimer won't be eligible for arbitration next season, so he has the potential to be one of the club's best relievers on the cheap.

Jimmy Rollins

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    Odds: 65 percent

    I don't think the Phillies will move Jimmy Rollins at the trade deadline, but I do think that the chances of them moving him in the off-season could be significantly higher.

    You wouldn't think that would be the case. In the off-season, the Phillies focus will shift from being a seller at the trade deadline into being a contender for the 2013 season.

    But if this club wants to be a contender, they'll need to move salary. Shortstop is one of the few positions on the diamond that the club could realistically move salary and not take a huge hit.

    They could trade Rollins and replace him with Freddy Galvis. Defensively, they're pretty much the same player. Offensively, Rollins is the better player, but you would hope that Galvis takes a big step forward in his second season at the MLB level.

    Of course, this type of scenario has a lot of variables. Do the Phillies add offense elsewhere? Do they re-sign Cole Hamels? Do they really consider moving Cliff Lee? And so on.

    All things considered, I think Rollins is playing shortstop for the Phillies on Opening Day 2013.

Carlos Ruiz

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    Odds: 100 percent

    Carlos Ruiz isn't going anywhere.

    I've received a few comments over the last few weeks suggesting that the Phillies sell high on their catcher at the trade deadline, but that's really not feasible. First and foremost, you'd be trading one of the organization's most popular players.

    More importantly, however, no one is ready to step in and replace him. The club's top catching prospect, Sebastian Valle, is still probably about two years away—and that's a minimum. 

    Instead, the Phillies will do one of two things with Ruiz: a.) They will exercise his contract option, or b.) They will sign him to a contract extension.

    The first will definitely happen. The second is extremely plausible.

Chase Utley

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    Odds: 100 percent

    Chase Utley is another guy that some fans seem to have given up on, but won't be going anywhere in the near future.

    The Phillies are determined to see what they can get out of their second baseman. He may not be the same guy that threatened to win the MVP Award in every season from 2005-09, but even a less-than-100 percent Utley is better than most second basemen in this league. That's saying something.

    The Phillies won't trade him. Trading the most popular player on your club and one of the most respected players in the history of your franchise just isn't smart.

    Would the Phillies consider parting ways with him after the 2013 season, when his contract expires? That's a different story and certainly a possibility.

    But for now, Utley is the Phillies second baseman.

Shane Victorino

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    Odds: 15 percent

    Shane Victorino's days are numbers.

    I'm sure most of the Phillies front office let out an audible gasp on Monday night when Victorino left the game with an elbow contusion, but the injury is reportedly minor and the center fielder should be good to go.

    Who he's playing for at the trade deadline is a different story. I increased the odds a little bit since the Phillies really want to move Hunter Pence and I would be surprised if they traded both, but I can't see them keeping Victorino past the deadline.

    "The Flyin' Hawaiian" will be a free agent at season's end and gives the Phillies an opportunity to add a quality prospect, even in a down year.

Ty Wigginton

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    Odds: 49 percent

    Ty Wigginton's status for the 2013 season is up in there.

    He was a great acquisition for the Phillies this season, but that was because the Colorado Rockies were on the hook for half of his salary. The Phillies have a club option for the 2013 season on Wigginton, but would be paying all of the $4 million he is owed.

    Comparatively, that isn't a huge amount of money, but the Phillies, more likely than not, would rather turn down that option and spend the resources elsewhere.

    Of course, that is assuming that Wigginton even survives the trade deadline, which is another unknown.

    Whether he is traded or has his option turned down, it wouldn't surprise me to see the Phillies reach out to his agent in the off-season in hopes of bringing him back at a lesser rate, however. He played a valuable role for the Phillies this season.

Vance Worley

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    Odds: 100 percent

    Let's play a little game of trivia. Starting with the 2013 season, what will Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, and Cole Hamels all have in common?

    I know what you're thinking right now. That's an easy one! The answer is simple: They'll all be earning at least $20 million. That's a lot of change tied up into a starting rotation, whether the Phillies retain Hamels or not.

    They'll be looking to add some quality pitching to that rotation at a much cheaper rate to round it out, and that's where Vance Worley, who won't even be eligible for arbitration yet, comes into play.

    A quality arm that will be cheap and under team control? Music to the collective ears of the Phillies front office.

    The "Vanimal" will definitely be back.