HBT Weekend Wrapup

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The trade deadline was redonkulous — we here at HBT had over 100 posts between Friday and Saturday — but you can at least begin to scratch the surface by checking out a handy dandy rundown of all the deals as well as our take on the deadline’s winners and losers.

Beyond trade deadline insanity:

  • What they’re saying about the Lance Berkman trade. You’ll be shocked to learn that Lupica is angry that the Yankees didn’t make a deal that would be easier for him to write about.
  • Alex Rodriguez got a day off from the chase for home run number 600 (well, he pinch hit). I continue to find it delicious that New York writers who did nothing but complain about A-Rod’s alleged me-first attitude for years are now growing increasingly annoyed that A-Rod has not achieved a purely personal statistical milestone as fast as they’d like him to.
  • 400 career stolen bases for Carl Crawford. His more valuable contribution to society: he’ll one day be the guy that those filming documentaries about the Tampa Bay Rays dynasty go to in order to talk about the “Devil Rays” era.
  • History is not on the Red Sox’ side. Which, if form holds, will just be the latest excuse Red Sox fans will use to justify launching into their patented “nobody believes in us” claptrap.

And now, without further ado, let us begin the week.

Report: Phillies close to signing Joaquin Benoit

ANAHEIM, CA - SEPTEMBER 15:  Joaquin Benoit #53 of the Toronto Blue Jays pitches during the seventh inning of a game against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim  at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on September 15, 2016 in Anaheim, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images
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Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly reports that the Phillies are close to signing free agent reliever Joaquin Benoit. An announcement is expected before the winter meetings end on Thursday.

Benoit, 39, has quietly been among the better relievers in baseball over the past seven years. This past season with the Mariners and Blue Jays, the right-hander put up an aggregate 2.81 ERA with a 52/24 K/BB ratio in 48 innings. That included a 0.38 ERA in 23 2/3 innings after the Jays acquired him from the Mariners.

Benoit suffered a torn calf muscle during a benches-clearing brawl with the Yankees near the end of the regular season. He’s expected to be healthy for spring training.

The Phillies have now added three relievers this offseason with Benoit, Pat Neshek, and David Rollins.

Report: The new collective bargaining agreement reduces players’ meal money

ADVANCE FOR WEEKEND EDITIONS, JAN. 18-19 - This Jan. 15, 2014 photo showing new baseball union head Tony Clark during an interview at the organization's headquarters, in New York. Clark has big shoes to fill _ and not just as Michael Weiner's replacement as head of the baseball players' union. Moving from Arizona to New Jersey, the former big league All-Star also needed to find size 15 snowshoes.  (AP Photo/Richard Drew)
AP Photo/Richard Drew
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ESPN’s Pedro Gomez provides a previously unreported detail of the new collective bargaining agreement, agreed to by the owners and the players’ union last week. Players’ meal money for road games is being reduced from $105 to $30 per day. Teams are providing pre- and post-game meals in the visitors’ clubhouse to offset some of the decrease in meal money.

Gomez quotes an unnamed player who said, “I doubt many guys know about the money going down, nor would they have agreed to it.” All of the players Gomez contacted said they were unaware of and unhappy about the change.

Clubhouse attendants are certainly unhappy about this change, too. As Gomez notes, the attendants previously provided food for visiting teams which earned them tips from the players.

EDIT: It’s worth clarifying that chefs are required in clubhouses now as part of the new CBA, so it’s not a complete loss for the players.