Phillies, A.J. Burnett decline $15 million mutual option

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According to the Associated Press, via the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Phillies and veteran right-hander A.J. Burnett have each declined their halves of a $15 million mutual option for the 2015 season.

It was an expected move. Now we’ll see whether Burnett exercises his $12.75 million player option for 2015. The deadline for that decision is Monday.

Burnett talked about retiring last offseason and went on to post a rough 4.59 ERA (81 ERA+) across 213 2/3 innings in 2014, but it doesn’t make much sense to leave nearly $13 million on the table. Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr. said last month that he is expecting the option to be exercised. Burnett will be 38 years old at the start of next season.

Giancarlo Stanton to make return from IL this week

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Per The Athletic’s Lindsey Adler, Yankees manager Aaron Boone said outfielder Giancarlo Stanton may be activated from the injured list on Wednesday. Stanton will “certainly” be activated on Thursday.

Stanton, 29, has appeared in all of nine games this season due to knee and calf injuries. The calf injury struck first during the opening week of the season. He wouldn’t return until June 18, then played in a whopping six games before a strained PCL in his right knee sent him back on the IL. But if there was ever a time for Stanton to make his triumphant return, it’s right before what the Yankees hope is a deep postseason run.

In the nine games Stanton has appeared in this season, spanning 38 trips to the plate, he has hit .290/.421/.419 with a double, a homer, seven RBI, and four runs scored.