Though the closer and reliever-hungry team were reportedly close to a four-year deal with $44 million, Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated reports that the man who signs the checks is dragging his feet when it comes to his signature.
Scott Miller of CBS Sports has more:
The deal, negotiated between Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. and agent Scott Boras, was said to be reaching its final stages. Then it went upstairs to Phillies' CEO David Montgomery, and the club hit the brakes.
This doesn't necessarily mean the Phillies will not sign Madson, who converted 32 of 34 save opportunities in 2011. But it does mean that if they've got pause on the price tag, they might decide to investigate other options — Jonathan Papelbon? Heath Bell? — before finishing the deal.
So what's the deal here? Is Montgomery having the good fortune to experience buyer's remorse before actually buying Madson's services? Realizing that there's no reason for the Phillies to set the market that high when they're the first ones to jump into the closer pool? Remembering that these big-money contracts for closers are rarely worth it?
Whatever the case, you have to imagine that Madson and Boras aren't going to be pleased if this is more than just a matter of Montgomery forgetting to check his messages. They would have gladly run with that $44 million that was rumored to be offered, but you'd have to think they'd also check their other options if the Phils want an unexpected discount.