Rollins Speaks [AUDIO]
Shortstop Jimmy Rollins – the longest-tenured professional athlete in Philadelphia – signed a three-year, $33 million contract with the Phillies, Senior Vice President & General Manager Ruben Amaro Jr. announced today. The contract includes a vesting option for 2015 at $11 million that, if not vested, could be a club option at $8 million or a player option at $5 million.
Rollins, 33, has spent his entire professional career in the Phillies organization since being selected by the club in the second round of the 1996 draft. This past season, he batted .268 with 16 home runs, 63 RBI and 30 stolen bases in 142 games. He had the second-most home runs among National League shortstops and finished among the top four in runs (87), hits (152), RBI, walks (58), stolen bases, total bases (226) and times on base (211). Defensively, Rollins finished with the second-best fielding percentage (.988) among NL shortstops, committing just seven errors. With runners in scoring position, he batted .322, including .400 from June 9 through the end of the season.
Rollins is a three-time NL All-Star (2001-02; 2005), a Silver Slugger winner (2007), a three-time Gold Glove winner (2007-09) and was the starting shortstop for Team USA in the 2009 World Baseball Classic. He won the NL MVP Award in 2007 after hitting .296 with 38 doubles, 20 triples, 30 home runs, 94 RBI and 41 stolen bases, becoming just the seventh NL shortstop in history to win the award. In the last eight seasons (2004-11), Rollins had the second-most hits (1,348) among NL players. Only Albert Pujols (1,482) had more over that span.
“Jimmy has been an integral part of this franchise’s recent success and is arguably the best shortstop in club history,” said Amaro. “He also stands to be one of the Phillies’ all-time greatest players. This contract ensures that he will be with us at a time when we hope to continue this recent run of division titles. Jimmy clearly gives us the best chance to bring a World Series title back to Philadelphia and we are looking forward to the next several years with him at his home at the shortstop position.”
Over his 11-year major league career, Rollins has a .272 batting average with 170 home runs and 725 RBI in 1,636 games. He is one of only two Phillies in franchise history to have a 30 home run/30 stolen base season, owns the club record for most leadoff homers (37) and established a Phillies record with a 38-game hitting streak that stretched over the 2005 and 2006 seasons.
Entering the 2012 season, Rollins ranks in the Phillies’ all-time top five in games (1,636 – 5th), at-bats (6,858 – 3rd), runs (1,080 – 4th), hits (1,866 – 4th), doubles (388 – 3rd), triples (100 – 4th), extra-base hits (658 – 3rd), stolen bases (373 – 4th), total bases (2,964 – 4th) and multi-hit games (543 – 3rd).
(From Phillies Press Release)
[Audio from CSNPhilly]