Phillies tried to slip Ryan Howard into a Marlon Byrd trade with the Orioles

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It was no secret that the Phillies were trying to move outfielder Marlon Byrd when front office personnel and the media descended upon San Diego earlier this week. The Phillies also tried, to no avail, to move first baseman Ryan Howard. MASN’s Roch Kubatko notes that when the Phillies discussed a potential Byrd trade with the Orioles, they tried to attach Howard in the deal as well.

Howard, 35, ranked among the game’s least valuable players in 2014 and is still owed $60 million through 2016. The Phillies would no doubt need to pick up a healthy portion of his remaining salary in order to entice another team to acquire the former MVP.

Byrd, 37, is under contract for just the 2015 season at $8 million, but his 2016 option can become guaranteed at the same price if he accrues 550 plate appearances next season. Other options for the Orioles include Delmon Young, Michael Morse, and Melky Cabrera.

Marlins give Don Mattingly two-year extension

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The Marlins have announced that they have inked manager Don Mattingly to a two-year contract extensions. There’s a third year in the form of a mutual option.

Mattingly is finishing up the final year of the four-year contract he signed with the Marlins prior to the 2016 season. He’s 272-364 in that period and the club has lost 99 games already this season. The current bad run, however, obviously corresponds with a massive rebuild the team began undertaking following the 2017 season and the team’s change in ownership. Mattingly has not had much to work with over the past two seasons but he has likewise, largely, kept the team on as even a keel as one could hope under the circumstances. He has certainly impressed the Marlins’ brass enough to take the unusual step of keeping on a manager they inherited from a previous ownership and front office group.

In other news, the Marlins also announced a two-year contract extension for shortstop Miguel Rojas valued at $10.25 million. There’s a vesting option for a third year. The deal buys out Rojas’ final year of arbitration eligibility and one year of free agency, plus that option.

Rojas, 30, is hitting .285/.335/.383 (OPS+ 92) this year.