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December 14, 2009 at 7:19 PM

ESPN: Phillippe Aumont and Tyson Gillies…to the Phillies

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Talk about a day of twists and turns, which still isn’t quite done yet. But this piece by ESPN columnist Jayson Stark (a longtime Philadelphia beat writer) does a good job of explaining what’s been going on.
As suspected, this deal was still in the fluid stages all afternoon, with the Blue Jays wanting outfielder Domonic Brown from the Phillies, but being told they could only have Michael Taylor. Prior to that development, Stark writes, the idea was to send Mariners pitching prospect Phillippe Aumont back to his homeland to play for Toronto.
But now, with Brown off the table, the deal has been reworked and catching prospect Travis d’Arnaud is going to the Jays along with Taylor and one of two pitching prospects — J.A. Happ or Kyle Drabek.
On the M’s side, he reports that M’s Class A outfield prospect Tyson Gillies (photo above, light blue shirt) will be joining Aumont in Philly. Gillies is also a Canadian and would make sense for Toronto, but he’s one heckuva ballplayer and will draw attention on either side of the border. Looks like he’s staying south.
If this is it from a Mariners perspective, that’s one great deal pulled off by GM Jack Zduriencik. Yes, Aumont is a No. 1 pick and Gillies has upside and was named to the Futures Game this past summer.
But folks, both were blocked in Seattle’s system.
Aumont had several closer-type candidates either right with him or ahead of him, including David Aardsma, Mark Lowe, Shawn Kelley and Josh Fields.
In the outfield, the M’s have Ichiro, Franklin Gutierrez, Michael Saunders and whoever else they bring in this winter. Let’s not forget down in the minors, where Greg Halman is in Class AA. So, good as Gillies is, he’d face a tough time cracking the lineup even in a couple of years.
Like I said, if this is it, the M’s just managed a serious upgrade for 2010 while keeping several top prospects in-hand to possibly do another deal with. And if Lee leaves after 2010, you collect two Type A compensation picks for him (provided he has a good year). Or, you trade him next July.
But let’s see if this is all that was given up.

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