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With all of the Roy Halladay rumors going around, one could get the impression that the Phillies and the Toronto Blue Jays are getting further apart than they would like.
There is reasonable cause for the sudden rift in negotiations, and I think it stems from the outrageous demands made by Blue Jays general manager, J.P. Ricciardi.
Ricciardi has asked for Kyle Drabek, J.A. Happ, and outfielder Dominic Brown. While trading Brown does not seem like that big of a deal right now, parting with both Drabek and Happ would be a dynamic blow. The Blue Jays cannot simply demand that we give up our top two pitching prospects, in the same trade, along with one of our best fielding prospects!
I could see us trading away maybe Happ or Drabek along with Carlos Carrasco substituting as the other pitcher in the deal, and adding Brown along with maybe shortstop Jason Donald, or heck, even Michael Taylor instead of Brown.
The Jays have even less reason to demand such a lopsided deal because if they fail to trade Halladay within the week, they lose all leverage that they have over potential trading partners, and instead of getting three stud prospects, they get maybe one, and one or two decent prospects.
To top it all off, is the rumors that the Los Angeles Angels and Dodgers are talking to the Jays about Doc, and that they are in the same place as the Phils are in terms of negotiations.
First off, if the Jays want to trade Halladay to the Dodgers and the Angels, they can, but I can assure you that it will not happen simply because that the Jays will always be looking over their shoulder to see what the Phillies will offer. The Phillies have the best prospects, and the most good prospects to offer, while the Angels do not like trading away their young studs, which they would have to do.
Meanwhile, the Dodgers would have to give up most of their young pitching, which would leave them with a depleted starting rotation, because most of their top prospects are in the majors already. The Dodgers would likely have to involve Clayton Kershaw, or Chad Billingsley in a deal, which might include both of them. The Dodgers have a lot of talent, they just have a lot f talent that is already in the majors, thus would be a bad fit in the trade for Halladay because the trade would require both of the Dodgers best pitchers right now, and a top fielder or two.
The Phillies have flat out told the Jays that they will not give up both Drabek and Happ in the same deal. So you would think that Ricciardi would get a clue and start discussing some other names to plug into the trade.
The Phils and the Jays are still in negotiations with each other, and are discussing 7-8 names that include Taylor, Lou Marson, Donald, Drabek, Happ, Brown, Carrasco, and other prospects, to get the framework going around what the Jays might want. Here is what one talent evaluator who is familiar with the situation has said about the situation:
“The Phillies are going to have to step up if they want him,” said one talent evaluator involved in Halladay discussions. “Happ is OK [as a prospect], and Drabek is a good prospect, but neither of those guys is ever going to be what Halladay is. They’re prospects, and Halladay is Halladay; he’s the best. If Happ and Drabek are not both in the deal, it’s not going to happen.”
Also, here is Ricciardi’s statement on the trade negotiations:
“The ball is in their court”
What that means I guess if that Ricciardi has seen our prospects, and is drooling over them. The Angels and Dodgers have sent in their trade proposals, and there has been no word on what the Jays are going to do. But the only way that I do not see this trade happening would be simply because Mr. Ricciardi has decided that he wants to puff his chest out and be nominated for GM of the Year.
There is no way that Ruben Amaro should pass on Halladay because then, he would be one of the most hated men in Philly for a long time, especially if the Phils do not win the World Series in the next two years.
The Phils are on a timeline, and so are the Blue Jays, because if they fail to trade Halladay, then they will lose just about everything. They will definitely lose Halladay, and they would definitely lose out on two or more top prospects that would be included in the deal right now.
So J.P. Ricciardi, let up a little, and instead of acting like a total prick, here what the Phillies have to say, because they have the best prospects that you can get, and they have the most of them. All you have to do is offer them a reasonable deal, and they will at least consider it.
Come Tuesday or Wednesday, the Phillies might be able to negotiate Dominic Brown, their best prospect, out of the deal, and substitute him with Michael Taylor, and throw in Jason Donald as well. The trade would then look like this:
Blue Jays get: Kyle Drabek, Michael Taylor, Carlos Carrasco, and Jason Donald.
Phillies get: Roy Halladay, and Jason Frasor.
That seems like a reasonable deal. The Phils get to keep Happ, and the Jays get more prospects. The Phillies also have a chance to address their bullpen problem in the same deal. If the Jays are looking to extend the deal even more, the Phils would be looking to trade for Marco Scutaro, and would give up Eric Bruntlett. Here is what the dream trade would look like:
Blue Jays get: Drabek, Carrasco, Taylor, Donald, and Bruntlett, or Greg Dobbs.
Phils get: Halladay, Frasor, and Scurtaro.
That looks like a reasonable trade right now, and as the deadline for trading Halladay approaches, the Jays will only get more desperate, which is exactly what the Phillies want right now.