The Phillies avoided arbitration with right-handed starter Kyle Kendrick. Kendrick will make $2.45 million in 2011. It is a similar figure to what Yankees starter Phil Hughes will be making next year.
Assuming the Phillies trade Joe Blanton to shed some salary, Kendrick will compete with Vance Worley for the fifth spot in the rotation. He was 11-10 with a 4.69 ERA in 31 starts. With four aces in front of him, Kendrick is a very servicable fifth starter. It will be interesting to see if he can nail down the job in spring training. If not, he will likely pitch long relief out of the bullpen.
With the addition of Kendrick’s salary and Ben Francisco’s $1.75 million deal to avoid arbitration on Saturday, the Phillies payroll is in the $164 million area.
The big question now is whether or not they will hold onto Blanton, who’s salary along with the $11 million from Houston included in the Oswalt deal should bring the Phils back down to a manageable $145 million salary that is very similar to last season.