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Phillies Shave Off The Beard

Posted by Brian Michael, Tue, November 17, 2009 01:13 PM | Comments: 108
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Today the Phillies removed Eric Bruntlett from their 40-man roster to make room for some minor leaguers to be added to protect them from the Rule 5 draft.  This essentially means that Eric Bruntlett will not return to the Phillies in 2010.  Tyler Walker, Paul Hoover, Andy Tracy and John Ennis were also taken off the roster, though there is a chance Hoover, Tracy and Ennis could return next season.

In two seasons with the Phillies since coming over from Houston in the Brad Lidge deal, Eric hit .202 with a .550 OPS on top of two homers, 22 RBIs and 20 stolen bases.  Looking at those numbers, especially on the heels of a dismal 2009 campaign,  it’s surprising he even lasted this long.  However his contributions during the 2008 season – filling in for an injured Chase Utley – combined with his efforts in the post-season will remain his best memories in red pinstripes.

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  • Posts: 0 Don M

    I’m positive that Blue Jays don’t care if Halladay plays in the AL EAST.. if the Yankees or Red Sox are the team that trades them the best or the most prospects..

    The Blue Jays asked for Drabek and Brown … so you can’t give them Happ and Taylor and expect them to say YES

    And why trade those guys away, when in 12 months, you can get Halladay without giving up prospects … is it worth that one World Series ring in 2010 to mortagage your future beyond 2011

    I think this is about the same thing it was when we traded for Cliff Lee INSTEAD of Halladay … lets put the best team that we can on the field, while still maintaining a strong core of prospects

    that is the only way to stay competitive for a long stretch of time.. and by keeping your prospects, you at least have a chance to manage your payroll

     
  • Posts: 0 Manny

    Omar Vizquel. VERY INTERESTING. Goes along with what Amaro said about defense over offense…. from MLB TRADE RUMORS:

    “You could hardly think of two more dissimilar players than Omar Vizquel and Nick Johnson, but Evan Brunell of The Hardball Times took a look at where these two free agents may end up playing in 2010.

    First, Vizquel. Brunell thinks that Vizquel’s desire to play for a higher-profile club than Texas may stem from the fact that playing for a big-market team may improve Vizquel’s chances of being voted into the Hall of Fame when his career is over. There’s also the fact that the 42-year-old shortstop would no doubt love to get another chance at a World Series title after coming so close with Cleveland in 1995 and 1997.

    With these factors in mind, Brunell feels that Philadelphia is the ideal destination for Vizquel, as he can serve as a backup to Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley and whomever the Phillies get to play third base. Vizquel’s presence as a late-inning defensive replacement would also mean that the Phils could focus their third baseman search on finding a solid hitter, not necessarily a top gloveman.”

     
  • Posts: 0 Don M

    While I like the idea of Vizquel as a backup..

    I find it hard to believe that the Phillies want to get themselves into a situation where they have both an OFFENSIVE and a DEFENSIVE 3b

    If you get Beltre, he can play solid defense at 3b


    Also on that page somewhere it said that multiple teams are interested in Mark DeRosa .. so the idea that we could get him cheap to be a Bench-Player should stop .. and he can’t play everyday at 3b .. so I think he should be officially off our radar

     
  • Posts: 0 Geoff

    The more and more I think about it. Beltre is our guy. Has to be. Vizquel is long in the tooth. I want someone younger who can sub adequately defensively for extended periods of time if needed. He has to be able to hit better than bruntlett, but not necessarily that much better really. Because if he can hit well then he wouldnt be a backup.

     
  • Posts: 0 Geoff

    Figgins is a good player, but not worth 10M a year. But if they feel taht they can afford it Im not opposed to him. However, WHEN Figgins loses his speed he will become a bad contract on the books. Be wary of that. DeRosa will get paid somewhere to start. Beltre is the guy for this team. He would slide right in confortable.

    As far as a backup utility man, If he HAS to have played SS recently, why not bring in Juan Uribe? He can handle a glove still.

     
  • Posts: 0 psujoe

    Figgins $$$ just isn’t going to happen. Todd Zalecki says the Phils are the favorite to land Derosa. If the Phils could land him for $10 million over 2 years why not? The combination of Derosa and Vizquel would give Charlie a ton of fleaibility. Derosa won’t need to play 150 games with Dobbs and Vizquel on the bench.

    Can Endy Chavez field? Decent left handed hitter as a potential 5th outfielder.

    Derosa and Uribe are both starters in their minds so I don’t see either as a utility player.

     
  • Posts: 0 psujoe

    I like the idea of waiting on Halliday. It’ll be tough to outbid the Yanks and Sox $$$ wise but with Lee and Moyer’s money off the books that’s 17 million so going 3 years $60 million isn’t out of the question.

     
  • Posts: 0 jman

    Don M, You are quite a Bruntlett apologist. Nobody but you has said that fans want bench players to hit .300. Most of us would be happy if he could just out-hit the pitchers he’s pinchhitting for. And make no mistake, although Bruntlett SHOULD have only been used for defensive emergencies, Manuel had him in the regular pinch-hitting role for much of his time here. He strikes out far too often to be used as a pinchhitter. (And don’t excuse him with the old “how’s he supposed to hit well if he doesn’t play much?” argument. Other players have done well as pinchhitting specialists over the years.) You would think a 2-time NL champion team could find sonmeone interested in filling that role here!

     
  • Posts: 0 pb

    I think Derosa and Scutaro will comand pretty similiar salaires and years, I’d perfer Scutaro. Signing Scutaro would remove the need to find that light hitting solid middle INF for the bench instead sign a guy like Joe Crede to play occasionally. (which would hopefuly keep him healthy all year if he was only used twice a week)

    scutaro, vic, and rollins are interchangeable hit them were you like

    utley off rollins off howard off
    3b scutaro 2b scutaro ss scutaro 2b scutaro
    cf vic cf vic cf vic cf vic
    2b utley lf ibanez 2b utley 1b utley
    1b howard 1b howard 1b howard rf werth
    rf werth rf werth rf werth lf ibanez
    lf ibanez ss rollins lf ibanez ss rollins
    ss rollins 3b crede 3b crede 3b crede
    c ruiz c ruiz c ruiz c ruiz

     
  • Posts: 0 Don M

    Pinch-hitting specialists … which was never, and will never be Bruntlett’s role
    That is what Matt Stairs, and Greg Dobbs are

    As for the “how’s he supposed to hit well if he doesn’t play much?” arguement

    You don’t think that has an effect on guys???

     
  • Posts: 0 pb

    sorry lineups would look like this

    3b scutaro
    cf vic
    2b utley
    1b howard
    rf werth
    lf ibanez
    ss rollins
    c ruiz

    (utley off)
    2b scutaro
    cf vic
    lf ibanez
    1b howard
    rf werth
    ss rollins
    3b crede
    c ruiz

    (rollins off)
    ss scutaro
    cf vic
    2b utley
    1b howard
    rf werth
    lf ibanez
    3b crede
    c ruiz

    (howard off)
    2b scutaro
    cf vic
    1b utley
    rf werth
    lf ibanez
    ss rollins
    3b crede
    c ruiz

     
  • Posts: 0 shag beta sigma delta

    Why could we not sign Lee to a 3 year extension this year. Is that so out of the question. That is what I would look for instead of paying Doc. Plus he will not make it to the off season, if he is not traded before the season starts the Jays will trade him at the deadline to get something for him. Lee Hamels Happ Blanton(one more year) then the #5 guy from Moyer, Kendrick, Bastardo, Pedro, Carpenter, or a guy like Lopez who pitched well until he got hurt. Then by 2011 Drebek.

     
  • Posts: 0 Don M

    Lee is said to be seeking AT LEAST a 5 year deal.. there have been reports that his agent will not give any home-town discounts, or discounts of any kind.. and that he will be seeking a CC Sabathia type contract

     
  • Posts: 0 shag beta sigma delta

    Those line ups are nice but you forget Charlie will not move JRoll out of the lead off, he will not hit 7th, That is one reason you will not see Figgins in Red Pinstripes. Get used to it, JRoll is the lead off hitter for 2010 and probably 2011.
    The big reason you need a guy who can play once a week is because DeRosa, Beltre, or Feliz, need time off during the year as well as Utley. That is why if you can get Feliz to re sign for 4 million, you can use the extra 1.5 million you saved on a decent bench guy that can play infield for 50 or so games during the year. And fill in if injuries occur

     
  • Posts: 0 Chuck

    “Manuel had him in the regular pinch-hitting role for much of his time here.”

    Huh??…..Last I checked, last year Bruntlett’s primary role was filling in for Chase and being Pat Burrell’s late-inning defensive replacement….two roles where he did an adequete job.

    I guess I’m “apologist” too but cut the guy some slack….he did what he was asked to do….without moaning or complaining….and did it with as much desire and hustle as anyone could in that role. Are there better options?? Sure, of course.

    I appreciate what Eric Bruntlett did to contribute to this team and hope he has future success.

     
  • Posts: 0 shag beta sigma delta

    I still think if Lee pitches well in Philly and say they go deep into the playoffs again next year, I do not care what they are saying now, it will change, Even the Yankees only have so much money. Even though I do not think any pitcher should get a 5 year deal, I would give one to Lee against my better judgement.

     
  • Posts: 0 Manny

    If we don’t get Figgins or Beltre, we should seriously consider bringing back Feliz. He’s still a better option than DeRosa and all the other “third-basemen” who will cost us defensively.

    Figgins and Beltre are the only upgrades… if we can’t get either, please bring back Feliz the Glove.

     
  • Posts: 0 Don M

    How much can we offer Lee.. when we also have Ryan Howard, Chase Utley, Jimmy Rollins etc all coming-up from their contracts in a few years

    The CHEAPEST you could get Lee would be $20 Million per year.. and that is probably a low figure..

    He’s gone after next season..

     
  • Posts: 0 Chuck

    Thing is….and I like J-Roll…..but are his numbers declining enough and will continue to do so to consider NOT bringing him back??….to free up payroll dollars….

    My argument is… where are the priorities with payroll..??…with a Cy Young-type pitcher the likes of Cliff Lee or with the Jimmy Rollines and Chase Utleys and Ryan Howards??…Obviously, you can’t sign them all..

    I don’t know…just thinking here…

     
  • Posts: 0 Geoff

    You still have to try to lock him up. See what happens.

    Crede? Scutaro? Scutaro wants to be well paid and they wont spend all that money on a backup. I would stay as far away from Crede as possible. Boras client, injury history, attitude history, etc.

     
  • Posts: 0 shag beta sigma delta

    Don you have to have a little faith in the fact that maybe he likes playing here, and if they continue to via for a WS title every year he will stay. Not everyone is a money grubbing whore. I’ll give you Chase and Ryan, but JRoll will not cost an arm and a leg on his next contract, plus they may all give home town discount to be in the series every year don’t you think. I do not care that his agent is now saying there will be no home town discount, winning changes a lot of minds

     
  • Posts: 0 Georgie

    This is the part I hate, you’re ruining the little fantasy I have going that Cliff Lee is the perfect man. I just fell in love with him this season, always looked forward to the games he started, and you knew you weren’t in for a 4 hour game, quick-hand Cliff is on the mound! The fact that he’s hot doesn’t hurt, oops, tmi. But now you’re telling me he’s just going to go with the team that gives him the biggest contract? I really thought he might be different and stay where he will be appreciated for his amazingness and always pitching to a full house with fans who support him 100%. Maybe you’re wrong Don, maybe he’ll tell his agent to stuff it, and give us a home town discount.

     
  • Posts: 0 shag beta sigma delta

    Hey for once I agree with Geoff, You have to try an lock him up for 3 and if you have to 5 years, I am not saying you trade JRoll or not resign him, I am just saying he will not be a top dollar guy in 2 years. Chase and Ryan will give home town discounts to a degree if they keep showing they are willing to pay to win, including locking up guys who are proven winners. I say you give Lee 3 years 55 million with an option for the 4th even if you go to 60 million it would be worth it, and the extra income from the playoffs will pay for it.

     
  • Posts: 0 Don M

    The teams that pay those huge contracts.. are usually the same teams that are also making playoff-runs every year

    TOP Free Agents get to choose between:
    Red Sox, Yankees, Mets, Phillies, Cubs, Cardinals, Dodgers, Giants, Angels …probably missing a team or two

    But I promise you that Ryan Howard isn’t giving a home town discount, since in his mind.. he’s already short a few million dollars based on them holding him in the minor leagues

    If you listen to Jayson Stark.. he said last week that Cliff Lee WILL NOT sign the 3 year deal similar to what we gave Brad Lidge

    he will be seeking AT LEAST 5 years … with his agent looking for CC SABATHIA type dollars.

    I’m not making this stuff up to argue with people, or to shoot down ideas .. Im just saying what will and will not happen

    Cliff Lee MIGHT resign with the Phillies.. if we are willing to greatly overpay him for more years than we would want to

     
  • Posts: 0 Chuck

    3yrs/60 mil with a 4th year option is a nice contract….will Lee take less than a guaranteed 5 years, though?…

    Money has a way of getting to players…even Cliff Lee….and is he wrong for wanting to get the most he can??…

    Hopefully, Ruben can get something done with him BEFORE the end of the season…because anything relatively close to the kind of season he had this year and his value skyrockets…to the point where he’s then unsignable.

     
  • Posts: 0 Georgie

    Don, I’m sticking my tongue out at you now, just so you know…

     
  • Posts: 0 Don M

    Cliff Lee would get AT LEAST

    5 years, $100 Million as a Free Agent .. he’s not going to leave any money on the table to stay in Philadelphia

    the teams trying to land him will be the contending teams: Boston, NY, Philly, etc..

    So its not like he’s going to take some crazy contract from the Nationals just to play there.. he would take the next best thing for a contending team

    Next year, Cliff Lee will be 32 years old… and with his one chance to sign a contract that will set him and family up financially for the rest of their lives

    I would LOVE if we could get him for 3 years, $60 Million … but he’s not going to leave $40-50+ Million on the table just to stay in Philadelphia

    Next Year, a 3 year- $60 Million contact could easily land us Roy Halladay

     
  • Posts: 0 Don M

    I’m really not trying to rain on everyone’s parade here, but people need to get in touch with Baseball-reality … which tells you that Cliff Lee is going after a HUGE contract

    How many $15-20 Million per year players can we afford to have on our roster??

    Technically, we can sign anyone.. but I like being able to afford going to 10-15 games per year .. and I don’t feel like paying $65 to sit in the 400-level at Citizen’s Bank Park

    Keep the team, payroll, and ticket prices competitive for years to come..

     
  • Posts: 0 Manny

    If Cliff Lee has a “down” year (I’d say that is somewhat likely given the incredible number of innings he pitched in 2009), we could offer him an extension mid-season… and lock him up that way?

     
  • Posts: 0 Manny

    Nah Don.. you’re not raining on our parade… you’re taking a dump on it!!

     
  • Posts: 0 shag beta sigma delta

    Don you are missing the point what people say now does not mean anything, Ryan did not go to arbitration last year and up till he signed everyone out there was saying there is no doubt he is going to arbitration. Well he didn’t. If Cliff has a year like he did last year, you mean the guy that was in Cleveland, and the first 4 starts in Philly, or the guy who was very hittable in his next three starts, or his playoff run. I am no means dissing the man he was awesome and would love to see him in Philly for a long time. Just saying again even the Yankees and Red Sox only have so much money. And what an agent says in November really does not mean anything.
    I say winning and being in a City that supports theirs team, and fills the ball park every f’in day can change some peoples minds.
    So you can believe what you want. All I am saying is you got to try, and if you over pay a guy like Lee for the last year of a 5 year deal it is worth it, as long as you do not sell the farm along the way.

     
  • Posts: 0 Don M

    There is a huge, huge, huge difference between an Arbitration eligable player…

    and a Free Agent…

    Manny,
    If Lee is having a down-year … do we want to re-sign him, or do we want to wait a few more months and get Roy Halladay instead??

     
  • Posts: 0 shag beta sigma delta

    So 60 million or so for 3 years and anther 20 for four years is not going to set this guy and his familly up for life, where do you live Don. Plus he is 32 and unlike the steriod guys like Clemens and Petite, can this guy pitch till he is 38 or 40 at a 20 million dollar clip. Other than the Yankees, and Maybe the Red Sox I do not see many teams comiting that kind of money in the next few years for guys. Other than CC and AJ to the Yanks what team overed paid any player, even a pitcher.

     
  • Posts: 0 Georgie

    Boooo, Don’s taking a dump all over our Cliff Lee parade!

    I know Don, you’re speaking logically, but that doesn’t mean I have to agree or like it, no offense.

     
  • Posts: 0 Chuck

    Dude…your not raining or even crapping on my parade…I agree with you…

    And people need to realize that Cliff Lee is just like any other player is wanting to get the best deal he can…

    He’s not being as a$$hole for doing that..

    All that said….Ruben SHOULD try to sign him to the best deal HE can….within reason….

     
  • Posts: 0 jman

    Don, Again, I’m not sure you and I have watched the same Phillies season: In a World Series game, the Phillies were down by a few runs and Ruiz was on 1st. Who pinch=hit for the pitcher? BRUNTLETT. That is who Manuel turns to at an important point of an important game? BRUNTLETT?

    Yes, playing everyday keeps a player in tune, but there are many guys who pinchhit that can maintain a .240 and above average. BRUNTLETT IS NOT ONE OF THEM!

    All of your comments either excuse Bruntlett’s offensive shortcomings because he’s some kind of defensicve wizard (he’s not), or that a team should be satisfied with a 25th man that’s a Mendoza-line stiff that can merely avoid making errors in the field (not Bruntlett EITHER, as his 2 errors set up his triple-play opportunity). Maybe the Nationals should aspire to such a 25th man, but the Phillies can (and should) do better. Their starting 8 (7 anyway) are good, let’s now address the rpoblem of impotent pinchhitting.

     
  • Posts: 0 Chuck

    The Phillies will “do better”…..Bruntlett’s gone…

    Let’s just move on…

     
  • Posts: 0 Don M

    Listen to Jayson Stark.. on with Mike Missanelli (Larry Bowa, and Ricky Botalico too)

    http://950espn.com/Audio/tabid/183/articleType/ArticleView/articleId/5084/Philadelphia-Phillies-Round-Table-Discussion.aspx

    At the 44 minute mark.. they start talking about Cliff Lee

    “They are going to try to extend him .. they have NO CHANCE”

    If anyone has lots of time to listen while working.. its a very interesting discussion.. Stark touches on Polanco being a great-fit in terms of years and dollars, and he doesn’t strike out a lot, etc..

    lots of good info there

     
  • Posts: 0 jman

    Chuck, you said:
    “Huh??…..Last I checked, last year Bruntlett’s primary role was filling in for Chase and being Pat Burrell’s late-inning defensive replacement….two roles where he did an adequete job. ”

    Filling in for Chase and Burrell? Chuck, that was 2008. Let’s get up to date. Bruntlett was horrible in 2009 in the roles Manuel had him in:

    1. Occasional starts with multiple at-bats per game.
    2. Pinch-hitting in crucial situations when better hitters were still on the bench.

    To me, the only times we should be seeing Bruntlett are:

    3. Late-inning defensive replacement, where he got minimal at-bats.
    4. Pinch-running.

    Based on some descriptions by you guys here, this is how you characterized his 2009 role. It’s roles 1 & 2 where he (actually, ultimately Manuel) killed us.

    I don’t fault Bruntlett for doing the best he can, and hanging around as long as he did. I fault Amaro & Manuel for having such a player on a Phillies roster this year. The Phillies of 1994-2005? Yes; The Nationals or Pirates? Yes; But a Phillies team of this calibre can to better (even with their 25th man!)

     
  • Posts: 0 Don M

    Bruntlett only played in two playoff games this year..

    The game where he got to Pinch-Hit…

    The Phillies were trailing at the time, by two runs, with Andy Pettite on the mound for the Yankees

    in the 6th innings, Happ (who had replaced Hamels) was lifted for a pinch-hitter

    with two outs already, and a LHP on the mound.. the Phillies went with Bruntlett.. he flew out to Right-Center

    Our Bench was: Matt Stairs, Greg Dobbs, Eric Bruntlett, Ben Francisco, and Paul Bako

    In hindsight, Francisco should have been used… but when you still have the 7th, 8th and 9th innings to play, you should save the better players for the more important situations, which Manuel did

     
  • Posts: 0 Chuck

    jman….what I said was LAST YEAR that’s what his primary role was…and he was fine LAST YEAR…

    He had a different role this year and didn’t do as well….and I do agree that more at-bats and more playing time would have benefited him to the point that he would have hit at least .200…maybe higher..

    Enough with the Bruntlett thing…let’s move on…

     
  • Posts: 0 shag beta sigma delta

    yea I am going to listen to guy like Stark who is wrong more than he is right, and a bunch of talking heads in November on what may or may not happen in Feb. or March or for that matter June or July. I really do not think you give some of these guys credit, the total amount of a contract is not all they look at. Yea you got guys like A-Roid who blew out of Seattle for Texas for a gazillion dollars. But you also have guys that will leave 10 mil on the table to win, and be in a place they like and go to the playoffs every year. And not everyone wants to go to NY or can play in NY, Randy Johnson any one.
    You put a good contract in front of the guy, that over pays him for the 4 and or 5 year of the contract and say sign if he says no so be it. Is there really that much difference between 85 mill and 100 mill. You want to go to just for 15 million of which you could never spend in your life time. Come some players have a little more heart and would rather win than that. I am not saying Lee will stay, but you have to give it a shot.
    And it does make them greedy whore a$$holes if all they look at is the money.

     
  • Posts: 0 Don M

    Jayson Stark is one of the most dead-on baseball guys out there….

    “OVERPAY for 4-5 years” ????

    Doesn’t that bother you.. the fact that you would have to OVERPAY for anyone

    Wouldn’t it make so much more sense to get Halladay next year as a Free Agent? Especially since Halladay would balance the rotation, and would be much more willing to sign a contract that is team-friendly in YEARS and DOLLARS ??

     
  • Posts: 0 Don M

    I like how the “talking heads” are a former manager of our team.. and now a coach for the team we played in the NLCS the past two years

    and a guy who used to pitch for the Phillies, then work for our AAA team, now covers the Phillies everyday as an analyst

    these guys know more than the rest of us combined..

    But you don’t want to pay any attention to what they say.. you spend time talking about YOUR ideas for next season, but you don’t think that their educated-opinions and ideas hold any weight? Interesting..

     
  • Posts: 0 psujoe

    Lee is not signing an expension so let’s hope nobody gets Halladay in a deal so we can offer 3/60 next year. At his age that should get it done and it won’t kill the payroll with Lee and Moyer off the books.

    What’s the status of verlander and Hernandez in 2011? Are they still under team control?

     
  • Posts: 0 Manny

    My prediction is that we won’t sign either since Hamels will win CY Young next year and we’ll sign him for 2 extra years… booya!

     
  • Posts: 0 psujoe

    Manny, I do think Hamels will come back strong. we’d still have a void in the rotation though.

    Hamels
    Happ
    Drabek
    ?
    ?

     
  • Posts: 0 shag beta sigma delta

    No it does not bother me to over pay a guy at the end of his contract if he brings titles and rings to the city in the begining of his contract. It is called paying for past perfromace. I would rather overpay a guy at the end then sign a kid to 8 years and pay someone who has done nothing for this team. My point about the talking heads is that is what they do they talk. And at this point in the year no one knows what anyone is thinking. Did Manny think he was getting a big deal last November YES, did he no, what he get one year with play option. That is the point it is November, so to say some team has no shot at re signing a guy or getting a FA is just that talk.

     
  • Posts: 0 Don M

    Manny got $45 Million over two years… that’s a big contract..

    he’s also been a Free Agent before, and already had his MONSTER contract when he signed with the RedSox before

    When guys get their first shot at Free Agency, they usually chase the money.. the fact that comments from his agent agree with that.. tell me that he’s not going to want to accept any contract for less than he feels he’s worth

    And if I’m him.. I become a Free Agent, and tell the Phillies i’m still interested in playing in Philadelphia, if you are willing to pay me market value

     
  • Posts: 0 Chuck

    Yo Manny…..I like your position on Cole…..Hey, we gotta think positive!!

    booya!!!!!

    ____

    Seriously, I DO think he’ll rebound…maybe not to 2008 levels but probably MUCH better than 09….still….what to do with Lee is critical…if we can get him, fine…but everyone needs to realize what that will cost and whether or not that’s worth it moving forward.

    We all still have stars in our eyes from his performance this year…..now reality sets in and that reality isn’t necessarily very attractive…..

     
 
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