Report: Halladay, agent check into Philly hotel

According to a report by the Philadelphia Inquirer, Roy Halladay and his agent have checked into a Philadelphia hotel.

Could a trade between the Phillies and Jays be imminent?

It is not known if a trade sending Halladay to the Phillies is imminent, but if Halladay and the Phils are negotiating–as is indicated by the pitcher’s presence in Philadelphia–that would suggest that the Phils and Blue Jays are far enough along in talks for Halladay to discuss a potential contract extension with the Phils. Halladay has one year remaining on his contract before becoming a free agent.

The Phils have long been linked to Halladay, and were actively involved in trade talks last July, before the team acquired lefthander Cliff Lee from Cleveland.

Allow me to get ahead of myself for a moment: Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels…NL hitters everywhere just crapped themselves.

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Phillies: Jays want too much for Halladay

According to a report by the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Phillies can have Blue Jays ace Roy Halladay. All it would cost them is young major league pitcher J.A. Happ, top pitching prospect Kyle Drabek, high-ceiling outfield prospect Dominic Brown, the International Space Station, Citizens Bank Park, the moon, a fighter jet, an HD copy of Erin Andrews’ peephole video and a rare (never been heard) collection of Guns N’ Roses songs on vinyl.

Shockingly, the Phillies don’t want to part with all of that:

According to an executive of one team that has spoken with the Phillies’ brass, the Phillies are adamantly opposed to giving up both Happ and Drabek. There are indications they would like to substitute pitching prospect Carlos Carrasco for one of those two, preferably in place of the highly regarded Drabek.

Blue Jays officials have told other clubs that Philadelphia still hasn’t informed them it was unwilling to include both pitchers in a package for Holliday. But another source said the two sides are currently discussing “a list of seven or eight names” that will constitute the framework of a 3-for-1 or 4-for-1 deal.

Drabek, Happ and Brown are on that list, along with Carrasco, outfielder Michael Taylor, catcher Lou Marson and shortstop Jason Donald. It’s believed that hard-throwing Class A righthander Jason Knapp was also on the list at one time. But Knapp just went on the disabled list with “shoulder fatigue.” So, according to one source, talk about him has “cooled.”

Now that the Blue Jays have finished scouting the Phillies’ system, the two sides have reached the stage where they are swapping names back and forth, according to multiple sources.

What’s interesting about this situation is that it appears that both of these teams are somewhat close to striking a deal for Halladay. But Toronto is going to have to back off its demands a tad (maybe they don’t go after Drabek and the space station) in order to complete a deal.

A package of Happ, Carrasco and Brown for Halladay seems like a fair deal for both sides. It would still be a steep price to pay for Philadelphia, but Halladay is as close to a guarantee as you’re going to get and he would dramatically raise the Phillies’ chances at getting back to the World Series.

If the Phillies sign Pedro, does it take them out of the Halladay sweepstakes?

There’s an interesting situation developing in Philadelphia, where the Phillies are in serious talks with free agent Pedro Martinez, but have also been linked to Blue Jays’ ace Roy Halladay.

According to a report by’s Jon Heyman, the Phillies and Martinez may have already agreed to a $4 million contract, which would be a hefty price for a club that has also been linked to Halladay. If they take on a $4 million contract with Pedro, would the Phils still be willing to pursue Halladay, who’s owed $14.25 million this year and $15.75 million next year?

My guess would be no, unless Philadelphia has another trade scenario in their back pocket involving another pitcher. A likely candidate would be J.A. Happ, a 26-year old who has pitched incredibly well this season, posting a 5-0 record with a 3.04 ERA and 1.20 WHIP.

Maybe the Jays would be interested in a package that involved Happ and a couple of minor league prospects. If so, a rotation that included Halladay, Martinez and Cole Hamels would be awfully tough to beat in the second half of the season, although Hamels has struggled a bit this year.

We’ll see if the Phillies go through with the signing of Martinez and then if they drop out of the Halladay-running soon thereafter.

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