When it comes to Giancarlo Stanton, the Philadelphia Phillies are about as persistent in trying to trade for him as one political party is about repealing a certain health care act. “We tried to trade for him at least 10 times,” Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr. said earlier this week of the Miami Marlins star.
That doesn’t mean the Phillies won’t stop trying this offseason. Amaro said on his radio show earlier this week that the availability of free agent outfielders who could also hit right-handed was not appealing, and that the team “might have to trade if [they] want to upgrade [their] outfield situation.”
When asked if he wanted to upgrade, Amaro said yes.
Stanton would fit all of the criteria Amaro is looking for: he’s young (23). He can hit — and hit with power. He’s right-handed and he’s an above-average outfielder. He can play either corner position and, although the Phillies might have a preference to move Ben Revere to left because of his sub-par arm, they could live with keeping Revere in center if they had someone with Stanton’s power at one of the corner spots.
Even though he’s hitting only .251 this season, his power numbers are superb once again: 23 home runs and 55 RBIs in just 108 games. Last year, in 123 games, he had 37 home runs with 86 RBIs and a .290 average, numbers that would likely rise in hitting-friendly Citizens Bank Park.
The difference between this time and the previous trade attempts is that the Phillies finally have something the Marlins might want. They have two outstanding third-base prospects in current starter Cody Asche and their minor-league system Player of the Year in Maikel Franco. The Phils would like to keep Franco, who has a higher upside but might be a year or two away. Asche is ready now, and if the Phillies throw in a pitching prospect, their long-time persistence just might pay off.