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Blanton, Phils Avoid Arbitration

Joe Blanton agreed to a three-year, $24 million contract with the Phillies. The deal comes at a perfect time since Blanton was scheduled for arbitration next month.

I’m going to be completely candid; Blanton got a very good deal here. According to, he is compared to Justin Verlander of the Detroit Tigers. In 2009, Verlander went 19-9 with a 3.45 ERA and he led the AL with 269 strikeouts and 240 innings pitched. Blanton went 12-8 with a 4.05 ERA and served 163 strikeouts in 195.1 innings pitched.

Verlander is arbitration eligible and is asking for $9.5 million while the Tigers countered with $6.9 million. The point is that Verlander performed very well in an arguably more talented AL and may get paid the same or a bit more than Joe Blanton. In the case of Verlander, I think he will win his hearing.

5 replies on “Blanton, Phils Avoid Arbitration”

Dominic- I have to agree with some of Mr. Cashman’s comments. The aribitration process is quite unique. Can you tell us what are the specific criteria used to determine salaries (albeit at a hearing, but also used during negotiations prior to a settlement)? Isn’t Verlander a second-time eligible player and Blanton a third-time? How can you compare what Verlander might get to Blanton, who signed a multi-year deal? What are some comparables for Verlander, arguments his agent might make, and arguments the team might make? Does the service time differential make a difference? Didn’t Blanton sign a 3-year deal buying out two free agent years? Did he get security but potentially give up the chance to sign a large free agent deal next off-season? Are W-L and strikeouts the best numbers to look at for these pitchers’ values? Darren – your site is great and I appreciate you always being candid about the industry and keeping people informed; you have a bright future, good luck with your symposium; try to keep other posters on your level; not meant to criticize rather to get others to really do research and analysis like you do. Thanks.


You ask Dominic some great questions. I also appreciate your comments towards me and your praise for this site. From the moment I started talking to Dominic, I really liked his drive. I think he needs to focus on 1-2 posts per week and work on a quality analysis instead of focusing on quantity. Dominic- I am sure you will read this comment. Remember what we talked about months ago. I am much happier with you contributing less if it means that you will blow away our readers with your in-depth analysis.

Please remember guys that the player must sit in on the hearing. Many players are not cut out for hearing how they are not worth what they think they are whether they win the case or not. Many times it is best to avoid arbitration at all cost because many times the player is left feeling bitter and angry towards the organization.

It is my understanding that players do not have to sit in, but that it is common practice to have players sit in. That said, common practice is a very small sample as most players sign before ever making it to a hearing. I agree with your other statements, though.


Do you mean to tell me that you have been less than candid with us in the past? Please say it isn’t so as this is the only source I go to for contract analysis.


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