OMG! Stop the presses! Quit rubbing your eyes! You read it correctly; avoiding arbitration, today Ryan Howard signed a THREE-year deal worth $54 Million dollars! The actual yearly breakdown has not yet been disclosed, but it is basically $18 million per year, which is what Howard asked for in 2009. The good news here is that both Howard and the Phillies do not have to worry about this again until he becomes a free-agent in 2011.
Plus, if Howard had won in arbitration, getting $18 million this year, you can be sure he would want even more in 2010. So this multi-year deal likely saved the Phillies some money, assuming Howard stays healthy and continues to produce.
Howard, in only 3 seasons in the Majors, has produced a Major League leading 153 home runs, 431 RBI’s and garnered majors awards; 2005 NL Rookie of the Year, 2006 NL MVP and toss in a Home Run Derby championship, just for fun. He’ll be laughing all the way to the bank, but hopefully, Phillies fans will be cheering him on at the ballpark. Without any distractions in sight, the Phillies can kick off Spring Training in a VERY positive light. New GM Ruben Amaro, Jr. should be commended on his perseverance and for getting ALL 10 arbitration eligible players on board before the start of camp.
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