Shane Victorino and Joe Blanton have signed one-year deals, avoiding arbitration hearings. Victorino will get $3M and change; Blanton will get $5M in change.
Ryan Howard is reportedly asking for $18M in arbitration, while the Phillies have come in at $4m, the greatest disparity between offers thus far (not to mention Howard’s demands being second only to Derek Jeter’s in 2001 and Roger Clemens’s in 2005 since the arbitration process was instituted some 30 years ago).
All that does is strengthen the case for trading Howard, though whether that occurs at this year’s trade deadline or after the season is of little consequence. I’ll have more on that at a later date.