Philadelphia Phillies: 6 Players Who Have Trade Value
Papelbon should pitch for a contender this season
There are a variety of players on every roster who are appealing to other teams. The Philadelphia Phillies are likely to trade some pieces from their red pinstriped puzzle this summer, regardless of whether they believe a playoff run is likely, unlikely or uncertain.
General manager Ruben Amaro, Jr. was an active trader during his first three seasons (2009-2011) on the job during the month of July. Last season, in contrast to his first three, he was a trade deadline seller.
July 29, 2009: Amaro sent a package of four prospects (as subjective a term in the sport as any): Jason Knapp, Carlos Carrasco, Jason Donald and Lou Marson to the Cleveland Indians for Cliff Lee. The Phillies appeared in the World Series that season against the New York Yankees.
July 29, 2010: Amaro traded three prospects: J.A. Happ, Anthony Gose and Jonathan Villar to the Houston Astros for Roy Oswalt. The Phillies appeared in the National League Championship Series that season against the San Francisco Giants.
July 29, 2011: Amaro traded three prospects: Jonathan Singleton, Jarred Cosart and Josh Zeid to the Astros for Hunter Pence. The Phillies appeared in the National League Division Series that season against the St. Louis Cardinals.
July 31, 2012: Amaro traded Pence to the Giants for outfielder Nate Schierholtz and prospects Tommy Joseph and Seth Rosin. On the same day, he also traded Shane Victorino to the Los Angeles Dodgers for pitcher Josh Lindblom and prospect Ethan Martin. Prospect Stefan Jarrin was sent to the Phillies in September as the player to be named later in the Victorino deal.
At this point it's unclear if the Phillies should sell, buy, or stand pat, as their iconic former general manager Pat Gillick did so often during his career.
A cursory review of the 'prospects' exchanged in past seasons does give cause for a June pause. In considering the present moment and the choices that must be made, here are six Phillies (which includes Jonathan Papelbon, whose lead image appears on this page), who have varying levels of trade value:
Lee has been traded four times in his career
Cliff Lee deserves an appointment to the United States Government's Federal Trade Commission after his playing career ends, because this terrific left-hander continues to be at the center of speculation during many baseball trade deadlines.
A dominant starting pitcher in his prime is always deeply coveted by many teams.
Rollins holds the option on his future
Jimmy Rollins has been an iconic member of his team for many years. While he would have to approve a trade to another employer, it's conceivable to think that the opportunity to win a second championship might entice him to approve a deal.
However, 'J-Roll' would likely want (and surely deserve) an extension to his current contract, which is guaranteed through next season.
Young's bat is still valuable
Michael Young still has some swing left in his bat, as evidenced by the 70 hits that he's generated so far this season.
He won a Gold Glove in 2008, while playing shortstop for the Texas Rangers. Currently lacking fielding range, an American League suitor would best benefit from his offensive abilities and leadership skills.
Ruiz' addition would improve any team's pitching staff
Trading Carlos Ruiz doesn't seem like a good bet, due to the Philadelphia Phillies lack of major league-ready catching talent in the minor leagues. But, it's possible Ruben Amaro, Jr. could deal 'Chooch' and hope to re-sign the veteran receiver when he becomes a free agent in the off-season. Of course that assumes Ruiz' new team wouldn't negotiate an extension and prevent his first free agent foray.
Utley's loss would be met with deep emotion
Philadelphia Phillies' fans understand why Chase Utley might be traded. But, they would also weep in the streets this summer if that actually happens.
Memories of who number 26 was have remained fresh in the minds of the faithful during his past four injury-affected seasons. How long can he remain healthy during this, or any subsequent, season?
The mind knows that he should be dealt, while the heart feels otherwise. Which competing force will rule Ruben Amaro, Jr.?