New CBA Penalizes Phillies for Signing Papelbon

Posted by Pat Gallen, Sat, November 19, 2011 06:50 PM | Comments: 28
Analysis, News, Opinion, Posts

(PHOTO: NJ.com)

Under the new terms of MLB’s Collective Bargaining Agreement, teams that make future moves for Type-A free agent relief pitchers will not be forced to part with a first-round pick in the draft, according to Ken Rosenthal of FoxSports.com.

This means teams can sign Ryan Madson, Francisco Rodriguez, Heath Bell, and other top relievers this offseason without penalty.  The measure is not retroactive, however, meaning that the Phillies will still surrender their first-round pick for signing Jonathan Papelbon.

That being said, the Phillies will still receive a compensatory pick of some sort if/when Ryan Madson signs elsewhere, just not the team’s first-round pick that he signs with. Under the new system, the top free agents will be subject to compensation if teams make them qualifying offers north of $12MM. They will no longer go by the Elias free agent rankings using Type-A or Type-B status.

This is kind of a tough pill for the Phillies to swallow as they’re being penalized for moving quickly in free agency. Not only are they giving Papelbon $50 million or more – which really wasn’t the best move in the world, in my opinion – but now they are kind of getting screwed by the system.

Also under the terms of the new CBA, two teams from the same division will be able to play each other in the Divisional Round.

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About Pat Gallen

Pat Gallen has written 1709 articles on Phillies Nation.

Pat is Editor-in-Chief of Phillies Nation. He also covers the Phils for 97.5 FM in Philly.

  • Posts: 0 NJ

    I thought this was the right move for the Phils to make but now it looks very very stupid, the Phils set the market but at the wrong time. I believe the Phils were always going to be the team to give that big deal to a closer which is why the timing seems premature now in light of the fact the Phils just did the Red Sox and the rest of the league a massive favour.

  • Posts: 222 tavian

    Avatar of tavian

    Ah Ruben, Ruben, Ruben….The Bishop of Boneheadedness……The Can’t Wait Cowboy………………….The Hurry Up Yuppie. Patience is a virtue you need to develop.

  • Posts: 1135 EricL

    Avatar of EricL

    lol. Rube is a rube.

    Seriously, by not waiting another 10 days Ruben just cost the Phils their first round draft pick this season. Way to go!

    If this is even remotely a possibility you can’t sign someone else’s Type-A free agent until the CBA is finalized. It’s just ridiculously irresponsible on Ruin Tomorrow Jr.’s part.

  • Posts: 1190 Manny

    Avatar of Manny

    Nicely done Ruben. Such vision!

  • Posts: 0 George

    This is not Amaro’s fault. It’s totally unthinkable for the stupid agreement not to be retroactive to the beginning of this year’s free agent market or have the thing start next year. It’s totally unfair.

    I suspect that this agreement was worked out in the days SINCE the Papelbon signing just to penalize the teams with balls enough to get things rolling. There was probably no way for Amaro to know about this garbage before he approached Papelbon because the parties involved were very secretive in their dealings.

    Just another reason to hate Bud Selig and his sycophantic little pitchfork wielding imps.

    • Posts: 0 phil in Brig

      Unfortunatly it is Amaro’s fault. He is upper managment and should know the agreement inside out. If he did he would have known wether or not it was retroactive.

  • Posts: 9 jjfritz

    Avatar of jjfritz

    So. Is it just free agent relief pitchers who are affected, or does it affect more free agents? And, is it definite that it won’t be retroactive to the beginning of this off-season? I really don’t think the Phillies should have to be the sacrificial lambs here and be the only ones penalized this year… just doesn’t seem fair to me. I’m sure the team is probably looking into it….

  • Posts: 1435 Pat Gallen

    Avatar of Pat Gallen

    It does seem pretty unfair, because I assume if Ruben had known this (or any GM for that matter) that no one would have been signed until the new CBA had been signed. Doesn’t make any sense, but that’s the way it is. Phillies should fight it.

  • Posts: 1135 EricL

    Avatar of EricL

    How could the GMs not have any inkling that this was coming? How in the world would they not be having ongoing discussions with owners representatives in the negotiation process? The labor negotiations have been going on for months, and I can’t imagine that they just sprung this rule into place at the last minute. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that no other GM has signed any type-A free agents to this point, unless they all had some understanding that such a rule was being proposed.

    Really, the teams have to be aware of the subjects that were being discussed during the negotiations, and so this, IMO, cannot have come as a complete surprise to everyone. I think it’s much more likely that Ruben was impatient and assumed any changes would be retroactive, rather than that this rule was thrown in at the last minute to the surprise of every GM in the league.

    Of course, we’re getting all this information from Ken Rosenthal’s tweets, so who knows if it’s actually correct, but I’m just going to assume it is.

    • Posts: 1435 Pat Gallen

      Avatar of Pat Gallen

      If he did know this was the case, then it’s inexcusable. Just a terrible move if that’s the case. But if they thought it was going to be retroactive, then I understand, and the Phillies should be upset about it. But who knows until all the info comes out.

    • Posts: 1190 Manny

      Avatar of Manny

      Definitely agree with Eric. Amaro HAD to be aware of this, at least to some degree, and he went ahead and signed Papelbon for four/five years….

    • Posts: 84 Tom

      Avatar of Tom

      Don’t be so quick to judgement about RAJ in this situation…it would not surprise me one bit if Selig did not share the details of the CBA and is subsequently not willing to make it retroactive!! Bud has proven time and again that he is a complete douche when it comes to decisions like this one!! How about agreeing to allow Jerry Meals and Angel Hernandez to not only be post season umps but allowing them to be on the same crew and assign them to the Phils Cards series!! Not to mention dragging his feet on the further institution of replay!! Bud proves day in and day out that he is a complete self serving putz who has no qualms about screwing a team to get what he wants!!

  • Posts: 5530 Lefty

    Avatar of Lefty

    I knew this was coming. Rosenthal said so on MLB network. He said the FA signings would get off to a slow start until the new CBA was completed for just this reason.

    @Publuis- I told you this could happen, and you and others shot me down.

    Thank goodness they got rid of the stupid divisional rule, it was stupid to penalize a division winner because the WC comes from their own division.

  • Posts: 0 bacardipr05

    Tough break for us, if Rube would of just waited a few days. Perhaps, this will teach a lesson on patience later down the road. With our luck that new pick will turn out to be the next Roy H. They should try and appeal this somehow because it kind of sounds a bit unfair as well.

  • Posts: 0 Mazinman

    Lets not be too quick to bash Ruben over this. There is always the chance that if the teams knew that Papelbon would not cost them a first round pick then there would be more intense bidding. One never knows.

    In any case, I am sure the Phillies will file a complaint with MLB that this only punishes them and that they will receive a special draft pick in compensation. Selig is probably just asking them to be quiet and play along for the time being so they can wrap up the CBA first.

  • Posts: 0 Maskman

    Is it possible that even if Ruben knew that there was this provision in the new CBA that he wasn’t really worried about it.? Is it possible that the scouting staff knew that their first round pick in the amateur draft next year was more or less worthless? And, as someone else mentioned maybe he also knew that the provision would have set off a bidding war. Apparently the Phillies minor leagues aren’t in as much a shambles as everyone says…after all, the Iron Pigs made the playoffs. Let’s give this one time to play out, and see how good the potential 32nd pick in the draft will be. I’m assuming that that will be their first rounder as their record was the best in baseball this past season.

  • Posts: 0 jim

    I have an idea, let’s trade papelbon and get some bat’s..then resign madson…

  • Posts: 0 Andrew from Waldorf

    @ Ruben
    None of this is your fault.
    The 25,000,000.00 for the contract.
    The Blanton contract.

    The bad deals. The bringing back all the old guys.

    The bad line up. You have numerous GMs here to tell you how its all good.

    You had the best team. But you lost. It happens.
    You fielded the best team 4 years in a row and lost.
    Making it less furthur every year.

    Donny wiill come in here in the morning and tell you how great it all is.
    You had your hands tied.
    Rollins ? ( give him whatever he wants)
    You have to. He is a legacy.

    @ Rube throw the kitchen sink at Jimmy
    The Phillies cant compete without him.
    Its what you do.

  • Posts: 0 Andrew from Waldorf

    @ Donny
    You really seem dedicated to justifying all the shit.
    Beyond calling out grammar.

    Instead of justifying the $25,000,00.00

    So the GM doesn’t understand basic rules?

    You had 3 of the top 5 Cy Young award winners
    But lost in a 5 game series with Halladay going in games 1 and 5?

    The first baseman drove in 116 runs.
    The second baseman is an all timer.
    The SS is a former MVP.

    3B won a gold glove
    RF is an all star.
    CF is MVP candidate
    C is the best defensive catcher in the majors

    What more do you want?

    The best team lost

    When they fail to make the playoffs next year or be a WC? They are the best?
    Trade in the fan card and go here. Click it. They have 12 pro bowlers every year and finish 5-11.
    Its home for you.

    Paper chamions always trump the real ones.

  • Posts: 5530 Lefty

    Avatar of Lefty

    I have to agree with Mazinman above- As I stated above I knew this was going to happen.

    I saw Rosenthal on MLB Network mention several weeks ago that the FA signings would get off to a slow start for just this reason. If I knew, Ruben knew.

    So that leaves us with- Since he knew, what motive did he have to get this deal done so quickly. Ruben’s not the brightest GM, and I almost never defend his moves, but there’s more to this than meets the eye. There had to be a reason, perhaps to avoid a bidding war that he knew would drive the price up once teams realized they could sign Papelbon without loss of a pick?

    I don’t know, maybe none of us will ever know. But trust me, if I knew just by watching Hot Stove that this could happen, he knew too.

  • Posts: 0 Sean

    I really do not think it matters al that much becaue I am sure all of here could list at leadt 10 firt round picks the phils have made in the last 10-20 years that have been busts…..just becuase it is a first round pick does NOT guarntee that player is going to perform like a first round.

  • Posts: 0 TheDipsy

    Bad move by Ruben. I think that what you do in that situation is agree in principle to a deal with Papelbon and then sign it when the CBA gets ratified. Agents and teams do not back out of contracts once there is an agreement in principle unless an undisclosed injury issue arises. Its bad business.

    The Dipsy

  • Posts: 0 George

    Just because “Hot Stove” pundits were claiming GMs wouldn’t bid right away doesn’t mean that they had any idea that this crap would happen–if, indeed, it really has. It’s an assumption, and assumptions are not fact. Some of those GMs may have been slow simply because that’s their usual modus operandi.

    It’s quite possible that Amaro had an inkling of the final agreement, but I seriously doubt anyone could have suspected any FA changes would start midway through the process, just because it’s so completely unfair. It’s also stupid to single out relievers; some other type A free agents aren’t any better than Papelbon or Madson and will still cost the signing team a pick.

    It’s also possible the new CBA is only faintly like what’s being reported so far. The reporters so far have been making more wild claims and idiotic decisions than Jerry Meals.

  • Posts: 5530 Lefty

    Avatar of Lefty

    I agree with the Dipsy, because he had to know there was a chance of this occurring. Therefore why not an agreement in principle to be signed after the CBA agreement was announced.

  • Posts: 0 davehist

    Bud Selig is a stupid ass, but not making this change retroactive is too stupid even for Selig. I think Amaro should make a perfectly reasonable request to have this rule change, if it is what has been reported, retroactive to the day after the World Series ended.

  • Posts: 0 Jeff Dowder

    RAJ knew that the new CBA was imminent. This is just another case of his impatience hurting the team. He’s not a good GM, sorry folks.

  • Posts: 0 George

    Nobody in his right mind would think MLB would mandate a change in the MIDDLE of the free agent period and not make it retroactive to the beginning of that period.

    Even if Amaro knew, is it all that bad of a business decision to lose the very last first round pick and get a sandwich pick a few slots further down in order to sign the best closer available?

    I’ve read that there are a lot of other team execs angry over this new CBA, so it looks to me like there were a whole crapload of GMs who were probably taken by surprise. And then, there’s the fact that NO ONE YET knows all the details, except the buttholes who ratified the thing.

    Enough said for now. Come midweek, we’ll be able to read the actual truth, and not Ken Rumor-thal’s reports. Then, maybe we’ll have legitimate complaints.

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