At Baseball Daily Digest, I recall the three biggest blunders made under the watch of J.P. Ricciardi.
There is no doubt that when this season ends, Halladay will be named one of the best pitchers of the decade. He is one of the few for-sure aces left in the game. However, when the Jays hit the skids in July (they went 8-16), it made mounds of financial sense for the Jays to move Halladay to a post-season contender to clear up some cash for the 2010 season.
They were not without potential suitors. Several teams made inquiries to Ricciardi, but the defending World Series champion Philadelphia Phillies pursued Halladay the most. The Phils offered Carlos Carrasco, Jason Donald, Michael Taylor, and J.A. Happ, their #2, 4, 6, and 9 prospects according to Baseball America’s pre-season rankings. Ricciardi turned it down because Kyle Drabek, the Phillies’ most-coveted pitching prospect, was not included. As I detailed at the time, Ricciardi didn’t exactly have a lot of leverage with which to bargain, so his refusal was mind-boggling then just as it is now.