Phillies looking to lock up Victorino
Club reportedly hoping to sign outfielder to multiyear deal
The Phillies exchanged potential arbitration figures with three players on Tuesday, with hopes of agreeing with each of them on a 2010 contract. But according to CSNPhilly.com, Philadelphia wants more for Shane Victorino.
Sources indicated to the Web site that the Phillies are discussing a multiyear deal with their 29-year-old center fielder. The potential contract would be for at least two years, which would take Victorino through the remainder of his arbitration years.
CSNPhilly.com wrote: "If the Phils reach a deal with Victorino, it could come down this week."
Signing arbitration-eligible players long-term is nothing new for the franchise, which believes doing so gives it a better feel for how the team's payroll will look beyond the upcoming season. Last year, the Phillies had 10 arbitration-eligible players, and five signed multiyear deals -- Ryan Howard, Cole Hamels, Ryan Madson (three years each), Jayson Werth and Greg Dobbs (two years each).
Asked specifically about negotiations on a long-term deal with Victorino on Tuesday, Phillies assistant general manager Scott Proefrock refused to comment. GM Ruben Amaro Jr. is currently out of the country.
In the figures exchange, Victorino -- who made $3.125 million in 2009 -- seeks $5.8 million, while the club is offering $4.75 million. Arbitration hearings will be scheduled from Feb. 1-21, and clubs can negotiate up until their respective hearings.
If Victorino and the Phillies cannot agree on a contract -- either for one year or more -- a panel of arbitrators will select one of the two figures submitted.
The Phillies also have starter Joe Blanton and catcher Carlos Ruiz as remaining arbitration-eligible players. As of now, Blanton and the Phillies stand nearly $3 million apart. The 29-year-old right-hander seeks $10.25 million, but the Phillies are offering $7.5 million.
Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.