It didn’t seem that long ago that Phillies owner John Middleton was quoted as saying he was going to spend “stupid money.” The year was 2018, and Middleton wasn’t lying. The team gave Bryce Harper a $330 million dollar contract. Andrew McCutchen was handed $50 million. And David Robertson (remember him)was given $23 million. Even the next season the Phillies spent big money. Last season was no different. The past 3 offseasons the Phillies have spent “Stupid Money.” But all of that has changed in 2021.

You (yes YOU!) have probably spent more money today than the Phillies have spent this offseason. Gone to Wawa for coffee? You spent more than the Phillies. Did you get something out of the vending machine at work? Than you spent more than the Phillies. Because while the rest of the division has been VERY active, the Phillies have been MIA

So whats going on? The Phillies have been “linked” to the likes of Kyle Schwarber and Nick Castellanos but there hasn’t been any substantial talks. This isn’t what we have grown accustomed to. But then again, we aren’t accustomed to having a lockout. A lockout is all but a forgone conclusion according to reports. December 2nd the owners will lock the players out as CBA talks continue. The owners would like to implement a salary cap, which would avoid contracts like the one that Max Scherzer just signed. While I dont think the owners will get it, I do think the possibility of a salary cap is keeping the Phillies from being active.

John Middleton has spent$685,350,000 in the last 3 offseasons. But the Phillies are STILL in the midst of a playoff drought. Has John Middleton decided that the bank is no longer open? Has he told Dombrowski and GM Sam Fuld to go in a different direction because spending “Stupid Money” hasn’t worked? OR does he simply NOT want to have to give a guy a $25 million per season contract because if a salary cap is implemented that contract would look WAY more affordable? I think its the latter

I dont think the Phillies are going to spend a dime until a CBA is agreed upon. IF a salary cap is implemented in MLB then the current contracts will be grandfathered in. But I think in the past John Middleton looked at the phrase “stupid money” as “a lot of money.” Where as this offseason I think John Middleton looks at the phrase “stupid money” as “spending money unwisely.” Because the Phillies/Middleton could very well be looking at it like “sign a guy now and spend $25 million per. But sign him after a CBA is agreed upon and a salary cap is put in place then that same guy is now a $15 million per player.”

The lockout is looming. The bank is closed. The Phillies just arent going to spend “stupid money.”