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Philly.com reporting that Phillies have signed Raul Ibanez


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Say Goodbye to Elvis

By Lee Russakoff

Fri, 12 Dec 2008 15:48:41 GMT

It looks like Blue Martini just lost its best customer.

Philly.com is reporting that the Phillies have agreed to a three-year, $30 million contract with left fielder Raul Ibanez.

Ibanez's signing likely closes the Pat Burrell era in Philadelphia.

Ibanez, 36, hit .293 with 23 home runs and 110 RBIs last season for the Seattle Mariners. He has 338 RBIs over the past three seasons, which ranks 12th in baseball. Interestingly, Ryan Howard ranks first (431) and Chase Utley ranks 20th (309), which means the Phillies have three of the top 20 RBI-men over the past three years in their lineup.

Unfortunately, they're all lefties. Say what you want about Pat's inconsistency, he did provide the Phillies with a right-handed power bat (and he hit that moonshot in Game 5). An asset the '09 Phils are clearly lacking as of today.

It was somewhat of a liability having two lefties in a row in the lineup last year--at least it made life easier for opposing managers late in the game. Now, the Phils may put three lefties back-to-back-to-back. And while Ibanez hit better against lefties (.305) than righties (.288) last year, I'm not sure that's a stat you want to bet your season on.

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