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Millwood accepts arbitration, stays with Phillies.


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Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA -- Kevin Millwood accepted the Philadelphia Phillies' offer of salary arbitration on Friday.



Millwood, who made $9.9 million in his first season with the Phillies, had been seeking a five-year contract worth about $15 million per season. By accepting the offer, he is considered to be a signed player under baseball's rules. If the sides can't work out an agreement, his salary would be determined by an arbitration panel in February.



The Phillies offered the right-hander a three-year deal believed to be worth $30 million with an option for a fourth year. Millwood rejected the offer, which the Phillies withdrew when they acquired former All-Star Eric Milton from Minnesota earlier this month.



It was a surprise when the Phillies made the arbitration offer Dec. 7, but general manager Ed Wade said the team was willing to take on Millwood's salary for one year, even though it would put them "significantly over budget."



Millwood figures to earn about $11 million next season. He had until midnight Friday to accept arbitration.



The Phillies already have added All-Star closer Billy Wagner, who will make $8 million in 2004, and Milton, due to make $9 million in the final year of his contract.



Millwood will anchor a rotation that could be one of the best in baseball. Randy Wolf, Vicente Padilla, Milton and Millwood have been All-Stars, and Brett Myers could even be better.



Phillies manager Admin Bowa already has said that Millwood will start on opening day for the second consecutive season.



Millwood went 14-12 with a 4.01 ERA for the Phillies last year, and pitched a no-hitter against San Francisco on April 27.



He had a poor finish, going 0-3 with two no-decisions in his last five starts, including two disappointing outings against eventual World Series winner Florida with the wild card at stake.



In his last start, he left the field at Veterans Stadium in a strange moment, throwing his glove and hat into the stands as many fans booed.



Millwood was acquired from Atlanta for catcher Johnny Estrada a year ago in a cost-cutting move by the Braves. The Phillies had hoped to sign Millwood to a contract extension, but talks broke off early last season.



Millwood, who turns 29 on Dec. 24, is 89-58 with a 3.78 ERA. He won 17 games in his first full season in 1998 and twice has won 18 games.



The Phillies won 86 games last season, but finished 15 games behind Atlanta and five behind Florida. They had a half-game lead over the Marlins with eight games left, but were eliminated after losing the next six games.



Philadelphia has spent a lot of money the last two years, beginning with the signings of free agents Jim Thome ($85 million over six years) and David Bell ($17 million over four seasons) last year.



The Phillies are moving into a new ballpark in April and expect to generate more revenue. They could enter spring training as the favorite to win the NL East.

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"Millwood will anchor a rotation that could be one of the best in baseball. Randy Wolf, Vicente Padilla, Milton and Millwood have been All-Stars, and Brett Myers could even be better."


Cubs only have Prior, Wood and Zamz

Marlins only have Beckett, Aj, and D.Train


clearly the phillies pitching staff is as good as the yanks pitching staff.....



awwwwwwww man the Phillies are gonna be tough this year.. rmemeber we beat em like 8 in a row we owned em last year!!!


this year could be a bit differnt

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clearly the phillies pitching staff is as good as the yanks pitching staff.....

I don't know if I agree with that.


Brown was the 3rd best starter in the NL this year.

Mussina will give you about 210 IP and a 3.5 era every year

Vazquez might be the 4th or 5th best starter in the NL this year. his career era against the AL is 4.60, but remember, most of his career is about there anyhow and no one now doubts his expertise.

Lieber is throwing 94 mph now and is coming of seasons with less than a 4 era as a starter.

Contreras has less than 2.5 era as a starter this year

Wells has had the best K/bb ratio in the modern history of baseball as a starter, and he's the worst pitcher on our staff with a 4.14 era.


The Yankees rotation is stacked...more so than the phillies. That's what a kajillion dollars buys you, but at least Wells and Lieber are relatively cheap.

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Das was wrong on this even though he guaranteed it.(Sorry I had too :p )


Everyone can bash all they want but The Phillies are a much better team with him than without him add Milton, Wagner, and Worrell and you have an improved team.


Also every one of the BBTN guys was asked who is the most improved team, everyone said...


Yeah you know

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Yay! Millwood signs and now the Phillies are everybody's favorites. How is their ofeense any better than the Braves or ours? Unless you project that Burrell stops striking out and get some hits. Which may happen but is just as likely as Miggy or Choi making up the difference. And their pitching? Wow, they strengthened their bullpen! Whoppie-doo! The whole second half their entire pitching staff stunk it up. But as long as the scapegoat gets fixed..


The Marlisn will sneak up again.

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