Phillies Officially Decline Ryan Howard and Charlie Morton Contract Options

Baseball’s offseason has officially begun, and the Phillies have wasted no time making their first pair of major moves towards the future

Phillies general manager Matt Klentak officially declined the contract options of Ryan Howard and Charlie Morton. With that, the Ryan Howard era in Philadelphia is officially, officially over.

Howard had a $23 million team-option for next year, but will instead receive a $10 million buyout.

Morton was owed $9.5 million next season, but will receive a $1 million buyout from the Phillies.

The Phillies essentially acknowledged Howard’s time with the team was over, severing off the final piece of the 2008 World Series team.

Howard played 13 years in Philadelphia, and leaves as one of the greatest home run hitters in franchise history.

Charlie Morton on the other hand had a sip of coffee in Philadelphia after being traded by Pittsburgh last year. Morton was expected to be the veteran in the Phillies rotation, but tore his hamstring running to first base on April 23.

Morton started four games for the Phillies, compiling a 1-1 record with a 4.15 ERA. After a rough season debut where he allowed six runs in less than four innings, Morton pitched back-to-back six inning games where he allowed one earned run and struck out 13 batters combined. He would pitch just one inning before suffering the injury on the base pads.

General Manager meetings will commence next week, where Matt Klentak will begin his quest to build a World Series contender.

This article originally appeared on