Phillies GM Ruben Amaro says he will tender Kyle Kendrick a contract

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Phillies starter Kyle Kendrick the second of his two-year, $7.5 million extension signed in February 2012. He’ll be eligible for his fourth and final year of arbitration.

Coming off of a disappointing season —  he has a 4.70 ERA in 182 innings — there was some speculation that he would be non-tendered, but GM Ruben Amaro says the right-hander will be back with the team in 2014, reports CSN Philly’s Jim Salisbury:

The team will offer pitcher Kyle Kendrick a contract for 2014.

“Yes,” general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said when asked the question Saturday evening. “I don’t know why people are asking about that. We will.”

Amaro also recently expressed interest in bringing Roy Halladay back despite his age, injury history, and declining performance. Via Ryan Lawrence of the Philadelphia Daily News:

“I guess I don’t think that way,” Amaro said. “I try not to think in absolutes with him. If we think he’s going to be a viable possibility for us, we’d like to try to bring him back. I’d like to think it’s not the last we’ll see of Doc.”

The Phillies, of course, will have Cole Hamels and Cliff Lee at the top of the rotation, will audition Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez, and still have to decide whether or not they will tender John Lannan a contract, so they certainly have starting pitching depth.

Rays lose, clinching postseason berth for Athletics

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The Rays lost 4-1 to the Yankees on Monday night, which clinched a postseason berth for the Athletics just as they began their own game against the Mariners. For the 94-62 A’s, it’s their first postseason appearance since 2014 when they lost the AL Wild Card game to the Royals.

Major League Baseball celebrated the Athletics’ achievement by tweeting this fact: The A’s are the first team since 1988 to make the postseason with baseball’s lowest Opening Day payroll ($66 million).

Yay?

John J. Fisher, who has owned the A’s since 2005, has a net worth approaching $3 billion. The Athletics franchise is valued at over $1 billion. Yet the A’s have never had an Opening Day payroll at $90 million or above and have consistently been among the teams with the lowest payrolls. The cultural shift towards embracing analytics has allowed the A’s to get away with investing as little money as possible into the team. Moneyball helped change baseball’s zeitgeist such that many began to fetishize doing things on the cheap and now the league itself is embracing it.

What the fact MLB tweeted says is actually this: John J. Fisher was able to save a few bucks this year and the A’s still somehow made it to the postseason.

The Athletics’ success is due to a whole host of players, but particularly youngsters Matt Olson, Matt Chapman, Sean Manaea, Daniel Mengden, Lou Trivino, among others. All are pre-arbitration aside from Manaea. When it comes time to pay them something approaching what they’re actually worth, will the A’s reward them for their contributions or will they do what they’ve always done and cut bait? After reaching the postseason in 2014, the A’s traded away Josh Donaldson, Brandon Moss, Jeff Samardzija, and John Jaso. Each was a big influence on the club’s success. Athletics fans should be happy their favorite team has reached the postseason, but if the team’s history is any precedent, they shouldn’t get attached to any of the players. Is that really something Major League Baseball should be advocating?