Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The Art of the Deal?

Welcome to August Bunters!

After spending the past week on the beaches of Sea Isle City, I am ready for all things fall. I don’t know about you, but I am SICK of this damn heat.

But enough of my bitching, lets get down to ‘bidness.
What a wild and wonderful 2 weeks it has been since we last met! Between the MLB trade deadline and the NFL opening camp, keeping up with the newest team additions in Philadelphia has been quite a lot of fun - if not time consuming. I have to thank the heavens for the invention of Twitter, because it kept sitting on the beach for hours without my Kindle entertaining. My timeline was filled with rumors of where Carlos Beltran was heading or what offer Ed Wade declined in a move for Hunter Pence. It’s funny when you look back, reading what the “insiders” were revealing and even more so when you realize how much of the reporting must have been bullshit to stoke the fire for a trade.

My dad had called me over a week ago saying that the St. Pete Times sports writers all but had B.J. Upton in Phillies pinstripes. “It’s a done deal, Squeak” he said. Adding Upton to the roster definitely would have been a positive pick up for the Phillies, but I hadn’t heard Upton’s name discussed seriously in the Philly papers or amongst the ESPN insiders . I kept insisting that RAJ was after Beltran or Pence – not Upton – but my dad was so adamant that I had to wonder if there was something behind the scenes, maybe a failsafe offer should Beltran or Pence not become a feasible acquisition. Who knew what Ruben could pull off prior to 4:00 PM Sunday, July 31st.

As the week progressed, Phillies fans would learn that Carlos Beltran would sign with the Giants, leaving Hunter Pence as THE righty to go after. After Houston rejected the first offer for Pence, it looked that the Phillies front office had lost in the race for #9 and began to “look elsewhere” for a suitable RH bat to add to the roster. Suddenly, another name had popped up on the radar of ESPN insiders like Jon Heyman and Buster Olney: The Phillies were to go after B.J. Upton of the Tampa Bay Rays. “Ain’t THAT some shit” I said to myself.

It seemed suspect at first, as the Rays front office is known to be notoriously quiet. I don’t exactly have much esteem for the St. Pete Times sports writers (really, they suck) but how would they have gotten hold of this story so early in the week when the Phils were very vocal on talks for Beltran or Pence? What the heck was Ruben up to? Did the Phillies ever really consider trading for Upton or did the mere rumor of talks with the Rays help reignite the fire for a trade for Pence?

Who knows what happened behind closed doors that Friday afternoon/early evening. While I sweated my ass off that night at the Union’s PPL Park in Chester, I just happened to take out my blackberry and log into my Twitter. I must have immaculate timing because within one minute of perusing my timeline the ESPN guys began to tweet that Hunter Pence was now a Phillie.  All I could think to myself was “Damn, Ruben strikes again!” The Discovery Channel may have scheduled ‘Shark Week’ to be this week, but Phillies fans can agree that Shark week began in Philadelphia on Friday, July 29th.

There was a really good article last week in the Daily News by former Governor Ed Rendell regarding the place of rumors in not just politics but in sports. To paraphrase, Rendell stated that sometimes it is necessary to start false rumors to achieve what a politician or sports team really wants. I couldn’t help but to think that maybe this was something the Phillies had tried to do. Maybe they never planned on looking elsewhere. Maybe the rumor of potential talks for Upton was enough to get Houston willing to renegotiate a trade for Pence. However it happened, Hunter Pence to the Phillies allowed Ruben to close out the 2011 trade deadline with a career 3 for 3 record of getting his man. In Ruben we trust.

I was fortunate enough to spend my 33rd birthday at CBP Saturday, welcoming Hunter Pence to Philadelphia as I sat 8 rows off 1st base. Though Pence was unfairly called out at 1st,  the smile he had on his face was intoxicating. You couldn’t help but feel as excited FOR him as we were to HAVE him. In the words of Roy Halladay, the season is only about to get FUNNER. Oh yeah, and sweeping those dang Pirates was pretty exciting too J

Have a great week!
PS… YES. My dad calls me Squeak. That doesn’t mean I am allowing anyone else too.


  1. I'm glad they didn't get Upton. He is a lazy fuck.

  2. HouseOfFunkhausersAugust 2, 2011 at 4:19 PM

    Same thoughts bout Beltran ^^^^

  3. HOF, most seasons yes but he wants to get paid so hes motivated but i do think people are giving Beltran too much credit. they act like he's headed for the triple crown.

  4. Nice to see you again DiamondGirl! I thought you were going into witness protection like Casey Anthony! LOL!

  5. Nice piece Squeak... ;)

    Bill S/aka netfather