The Philadelphia Phillies have been looking to add another right-handed bat for their outfield this offseason but general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. has stressed that he does not want to go over the luxury tax threshold.
When the Los Angeles Angels acquired Josh Hamilton, Jon Heyman reported that they would begin looking to shop one of their excess outfielders to other teams in order to fill other needs. One name that was thrown around in rumors with the Angels and Phillies was Vernon Wells.
The transactions that Amaro has made this offseason, such as adding Michael Young and others with the current roster, would make the Phillies an instant World Series contender – if it was the 2007 season.
If the Phillies were to acquire Wells from the Angels, they would be getting a 34-year old outfield who has not lived up to his seven-year, $126 million contract. In his two seasons in Los Angeles, Wells has played in 208 games, in which he hit .222 with 36 home runs, knocking in 95 runners, and had an OPS of .667.
Wells could be a possible upgrade if he pans out on the plus side on the remainder of his contract, especially when compared to the Phillies current outfield of John Mayberry Jr., Laynce Nix, and Domonic Brown.
This morning on MLB Network’s Hot Stove, Amaro talked about how the Phillies do not know if Brown and Mayberry are everyday outfielders just yet. He also added that he does want to win now, which means that there may not be time to see if Brown and Mayberry can develop into everyday players.
Acquiring Wells would definitely be a huge risk for the Phillies, but is Amaro willing to take the chance if the Angels eat up most of the salary that he is owed? Many questions remain as to what Amaro may do. What the league does know is that Amaro and the Phillies work under the radar, which means that a signing or a trade may appear out of no where, when no one expects it.