After winning his requested arbitration amount of $10 million last off-season, a record figure for a first year of eligibility, Ryan Howard is asking that the Phils pay him $18 million next season. Earlier today, the Phils inked Joltin' Joe Blanton to a 1-year deal worth $5.475 million, adding him to the rapidly growing list of eligible Phillies who will avoid arbitration. So far, it looks like Howard is headed to the table, although Ruben Amaro has been effective at settling out of court so far.
Thoughts on the Howard amount? He did lead the majors in homers and RBIs again last year, improving on the numbers he put up in 2007.