Yesterday evening, the Phillies announced that they avoided two years of arbitration and one year of free agency by signing Brett Myers to a three year, $25.75 million deal.
Myers will turn 27 towards the end of the 2007 season, so he is still considered relatively young and for the past two seasons his ERA has been approximately 20% above the league average while among the league leaders in strikeouts.
The deal is not without risk for the Phillies however, as Myers had a well-publicized run-in with the Boston police in June. All reports indicate that Myers has his home-life in order, but this history may be one reason why the deal is only for three years.
- Phillies press release
- Further analysis at Balls, Sticks, & Stuff
- Myers’ June arrest in Boston
With the Eagles’ fate decided at the hands of the New Orleans Saints, the Flyers and 76ers bottom feeding in their respective leagues, and the Barbaro Watch brought to a resolution, the city of Philadelphia is beginning to look for a team to get behind.
Enter the 2007 edition of the Philadelphia Phillies.
Though no franchise in the four major professional sports has lost more games than the Phillies, the team’s players and fans are both strikingly optimistic.
During the team’s recent public relations-oriented Winter Caravan, Jimmy Rollins has said the Phillies are the team to beat in the NL East, providing bulletin board material for the other four teams while forgetting that the Phils finished 12 games behind the Mets in 2006. Other players such as NL MVP Ryan Howard and Cole Hamels have also expressed an eagerness to get the season started, liking the teams chances.
Also fueling willingness to look on the bright-side is the news of the team inking Chase Utley to a seven-year, $84 million dollar contract. Utley has said in recent interviews after the signing that he hopes to retire a Phillie.
For a city looking to have an athlete it can fully embrace while winning a championship, the news of Utley’s future plans couldn’t have rang louder if they were shouted from inside the Liberty Bell.