Sources: Phils get Halladay, trade Lee

BY foxsports • December 14, 2009

When the trade becomes official, it will go into the books as one of this decade's biggest offseason trades.

Roy Halladay is heading to the Phillies. Cliff Lee is going to the Mariners. And in the end, it will be even bigger than that.

Multiple major league sources indicated late Monday that eight players will be involved in the blockbuster. The specifics, as described to, are as follows:

... Seattle gets Lee.

... Philadelphia gets Halladay from Toronto, along with right-hander Phillippe Aumont, outfielder Tyson Gillies and hard-throwing right-hander Juan Ramirez from Seattle.

... Toronto gets right-hander Kyle Drabek, outfielder Michael Taylor and catcher Travis d'Arnaud from Philadelphia.

In a development first reported by, one source confirmed late Monday that the Blue Jays will send $6 million in cash to the Phillies, to help defray Halladay's $15.75 million salary for 2010. was the first to report the existence of an agreement on Monday afternoon. The three-team possibility with Lee going to Seattle was first raised in a column posted Saturday.

One source said the Phillies have been granted a 72-hour window to discuss an extension with Halladay, beginning Sunday and concluding Wednesday. Halladay is willing to accept a below-market extension in order to make the finances balance for the two-time defending National League champs; he was in Philadelphia Monday to negotiate the new contract, take a physical exam or both.

Lee, signed for one more year at $9 million, will be a free agent after next season. The Phillies had been uncertain of whether they could sign him, but by acquiring Halladay -- and locking him up with an extension -- they are securing an ace long-term.

When considering that the Phillies will save Lee's $9 million salary, and receive $6 million from the Blue Jays, the trade is virtually cash-neutral for them in 2010. There is only a $750,000 difference between Halladay's salary and the Phillies' cash saved/received next year.

The agreement comes at a difficult time for the Angels, who are looking for a top-of-the-rotation starter such as Halladay or Lee. The Angels also recently lost Chone Figgins to the Mariners and are on the verge of losing John Lackey to Boston. The Angels have reportedly reached an agreement with designated hitter Hideki Matsui.

As the blockbuster nears completion, the Braves are an interested bystander. The Angels now appear to be among the favorites to acquire Derek Lowe. They could offer outfielder Juan Rivera, who is the type of right-handed run producer that Atlanta is seeking.

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