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Tackling the trade deadline: Philadelphia Phillies

Jul 13, 2011, 12:00 AM EDT

Philadelphia Phillies Reuters

Philadelphia Phillies
First-half record: 57-34
Standings: 3 games up on Braves in NL East

Needs

Bullpen: Ryan Madson should return to form after he comes back from a hand injury, but the Phillies can’t rely on either Brad Lidge (shoulder, elbow) and Jose Contreras (elbow).  Adding another late-game reliever should be this team’s priority.  Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be an experienced closer, not with the way that Madson has stepped up.

Outfield: I think the Phillies can pass on an adding an outfielder.  Rookie Domonic Brown is hitting .371/.436/.400 through 35 at-bats this month, and even when he has struggled at the major league level, he’s never looked overmatched.  It wouldn’t hurt to bring in another part-timer — preferably a backup center fielder who could also serve as a defensive replacement for Raul Ibanez in left — but Ben Francisco and John Mayberry Jr. make for a nice pair of backups as is.

Infield: I’d rather see the Phillies go get themselves a legitimate backup for Chase Utley and Placido PolancoWilson Valdez is a nice defender, but he’d be an awfully weak option as a regular if either Utley or Polanco gets hurt at the wrong time.  Omar Infante would be a great pickup if the Marlins decide they’re out of it.  Jeff Keppinger and Mike Aviles would also work.

Target

Luke Gregerson (RHP Padres): Gregerson makes more sense for the Phillies than Heath Bell: he’s an extreme groundball pitcher and he wouldn’t stretch the team’s budget.  He certainly won’t come cheap, not when he’s under control through 2014, but the Padres figure to be open to moving him if the right offer comes along.  They have plenty of needs, and they’ve never been shy about trading relievers to fill them.

Proposed deal

Gregerson for RHP Brody Colvin

Colvin entered the year as the Phillies’ top pitching prospect, but he’s fallen behind Jarred Cosart while missing some time and amassing a 4.16 ERA and a 43/22 K/BB ratio in 62 2/3 innings for high-A Clearwater.  He’d still be a really nice get for the Padres here, and he could be part of a promising 2013 rotation that’d also potentially include Cory Luebke, Casey Kelly and maybe Simon Castro, with Keyvius Sampson and Joe Ross on the way up.

  1. cup0pizza - Jul 13, 2011 at 12:19 AM

    They’ll try to buy a championship. We all know that. No teams should trade with these thieves.

    • pisano - Jul 13, 2011 at 12:27 AM

      I think they’ve pretty much done that. If it comes down to them and Boston you might just as well give them the WS.

    • Utley's Hair - Jul 13, 2011 at 12:32 AM

      Well, looky here—it must be a Phillies post, ’cause there’s cup0pizza.

      • skerney - Jul 13, 2011 at 12:57 AM

        cup0pizza is this next months purdueman

      • Utley's Hair - Jul 13, 2011 at 1:12 AM

        Nah…cup0pizza’s classless and pitiful, but he’s not the pathetic slug that purdueman is—at least not overtly on here, anyway.

      • cur68 - Jul 13, 2011 at 1:27 AM

        @Hair; you forgot to mention that ’0pizza sucks. Because he does. Otherwise totally agree.

        I like the deal Matthew proposed, though. It’s never ideal to give up hot young talent. With some coaching, experience and seasoning Colvin could be real good, so trading him away isn’t any other teams first choice but the Phillies clearly have a ‘win this year’ thing going on. As such I say embrace it, trade the kid and get your sure thing reliever and fill a hole in the bullpen that the Phillies surely have (if the whining on HBT is anything to go by, that is).

      • Utley's Hair - Jul 13, 2011 at 1:32 AM

        I don’t know, cur. The Pharm is pretty damn depleted, and Rube is on record as saying they won’t be venturing much farther north in payroll—but, then again, he is Ruben Amaro NinJunior.

      • cur68 - Jul 13, 2011 at 1:40 AM

        Didn’t know that about the Pharm being thin. Maybe its a bad idea then? In that case maybe keep Colvin, promote him to the bullpen and takes ya chances? Can’t be any worse than calling in Báez, right?

      • Utley's Hair - Jul 13, 2011 at 2:04 AM

        The Pharm’s been thin since they shipped off a bunch in Cliffy.01, and then with Doc coming to town, which necessitated Cliffy being jettisoned to Puget Sound, so they could pick up a few hands to replenish the system.

        Well, I guess there are a few options here, but the payroll is still up there in the Yukon.

    • cktai - Jul 13, 2011 at 5:19 AM

      5 out of the 8 regular day players for the Phillies are draft picks, a 6th is a rule 5 pick.
      3 out of 5 current starting pitchers for the Phillies are draft picks.
      The current closer and set up guy are draft picks.
      The previous closer is a draft pick.

      • uyf1950 - Jul 13, 2011 at 8:24 AM

        I’m sure you are correct. Personally I have absolutely no problem with a team doing what they must to win games and achieve the ultimate goal of winning the World Series. But in reality 4 of the 5 starters the Phillies are counting on to take them to the World Series played much of their careers for other teams (Halladay, Lee, Oswalt and Blanton). Also, Polanco and Ibanez played most of their careers in other cities. In fact just these 6 players account for about $80M of the $170M Philadelphia 2011 payroll. Again, in my opinion their is nothing at all wrong with that. In fact again in my opinion it’s criminal if teams don’t do everything within their means and within MLB rules to accomplish their goals. Just telling it like I see it.

      • 12strikes - Jul 13, 2011 at 9:09 AM

        @uyf1950…
        Halladay and Lee, yes, but Oswalt is out, and Blanton has been out for some time. Both of them have been replaced by Vance Worley (3rd round pick in 2008 by the Phillies) and Kyle Kendrick (7th round pick in 2003 by the Phillies)
        Polanco yes, but Ibanez has been, streaky and mediocre for most of the season.

      • uyf1950 - Jul 13, 2011 at 9:47 AM

        12strikes – I understand that about both Oswalt and Blanton. My only point was that these 4 pitchers (the ones I mentioned) at the beginning of the season were ones that the Phillies organization were counting on to take them to the World Series and that they came from other teams other then the Phillies farm system. Injuries notwithstanding. As for the 2 position players I referenced again my point was that those players came from outside the organization. Combined those 6 players are some of the most highly paid players on the Phillies, and that if not for those players the Phillies would not be in the position they are in today. Just like most other “successful” teams.

      • cktai - Jul 13, 2011 at 10:14 AM

        Personally I think Utley, Rollins, Howard, Victorino and Ruiz are at least as important and probably more important than Ibanez and Polanco for getting the Phillies where they are now.

        But more to the point, what other ‘successfull’ team has spend half its payroll on drafted players like the Phillies have.

      • CJ - Jul 13, 2011 at 10:52 AM

        Wasn’t polanco a Phils prospect, made it to the bigs with the team, left and then returned? or doesn’t that count?

        Also, it’s not like they bought the championship last time they won it a couple years back. They built this team in house, and once they got good enough to win with it they’ve spent what they had to to keep it that way. Just like any sensible team would to maximize their value.

        I’ll readily admit that in 4-5 years, unless they hit on every single top prospect they have, which admittedly isn’t likely, they’ll be back to mediocrity again and looking up at teams with young stars like the Braves and Marlins. I don’t think we’re looking at a team trying to become the next Yanks or BoSox. I think we’re looking at a team that had a perfect storm of talent rise through the system at the right time, and will spend what it takes to keep that run going as long as possible. But once it’s over, I wouldn’t expect them to keep cranking out a 175MM payroll year in and year out.

      • CJ - Jul 13, 2011 at 10:54 AM

        sry, meant to check the polanco thing myself before submitting. where’s that EDIT FUNCTION? :) Polanco got is start with the Cards but did spend parts of 4 seasons with the Phils before Detriot.

      • uyf1950 - Jul 13, 2011 at 11:14 AM

        To cktai – I have no doubt that the players you mention are at least if not more valuable than Polanco and Ibanez. But the point of the post that both you and I responded to was the Phillies “buying” talent to achieve their goals. I doubt that anyone would contend that getting Halladay, Oswalt, Lee, Polanco and the others from “other” teams doesn’t go a long way towards achieving that goal. That’s my only point. I’ll say it one more time I don’t see a problem with that. But let’s not pretend that teams that are consistently successful don’t rely on “hired help” to remain successful.

      • FC - Jul 13, 2011 at 1:13 PM

        “Personally I think Utley, Rollins, Howard, Victorino and Ruiz are at least as important and-” SNIP

        Victorino was a Rule 5 Acquisition from LA. The Team even offered him back, LA declined… SUUCCCKKEERRRSSSSZZZZ

      • FC - Jul 13, 2011 at 1:15 PM

        BTW, my point was to diss on LA, and to a point SD… they Rule 5 Picked Victorino as well but sent him back to LA.

  2. shawnuel - Jul 13, 2011 at 12:46 AM

    How about Seattle sending Brandon League and Jack Wilson (or Adam Kennedy) to Philly for prospects, Sebastian Valle, C and Jiwan James, OF and another useful part? Biggest needs for the Mariners are LF, C and 3B. League is also a groundball pitcher who has done very well this season minus a 4 game blip in May and Wilson could regain some luster back in the NL.Kennedy is a possible substitution for Wilson and a more potent bat.

    • marinersnate - Jul 13, 2011 at 12:51 AM

      How about no….

      • CJ - Jul 13, 2011 at 11:00 AM

        agreed. that makes sense for absolutely no one. Valle is untradable, and League will cost far to much to get. A guy like Kennedy would be ok to have off the bench, but with MAdson coming off the DL soon, Bastardo proving he can close in a pinch and Stutes being an adequate set up man, they don’t need a set up man or closer. They just need depth.

        And with Seattle’s rotation combined with League they have a very competitive team, they’d be idiotic to break that up. Now if only they could put together a lineup that can score some runs, they’d be dangerous.

    • drunkenhooliganism - Jul 13, 2011 at 7:26 AM

      The Phillies can’t trade Valle for that mess. he’s the only catcher prospect they have and he’s really good.

      Jack Wilson and/or Adam Kennedy aren’t worth anything in a trade.

      • drunkenhooliganism - Jul 13, 2011 at 7:27 AM

        Edit Function.

        Or maybe I should just proofread.

  3. bleedgreen - Jul 13, 2011 at 8:51 AM

    I think they’ve proven they can hang/beat the best in the league taking 2/3 from the BoSox and the Braves. And they more than likely would have swept the BoSox if Cole doesn’t leave the game. Is there room for improvement? Absolutely. The middle relief is god awful… but only because Contreras, Madson, Blanton, Oswalt and Lidge are out, meaning we need to use Kendrick in a starting role when he should be middle relief. If Cole comes out of that game, and Kendrick comes in, its not a lock, but its a MUCH better matchup than David Herndon and Danys Baez.

    If we think all the pitchers are coming back healthy, we don’t need to trade for ANY pitching.

  4. Jonny 5 - Jul 13, 2011 at 9:05 AM

    Amaro will do something. And you know as well as I know that it will be something that nobody expected, will make you sit back and think “hmmm?”, then nod your head in approval.

    I would love to see them pick up a RHP for the pen, a decent one, it doesn’t have to be Bell. And as much of a good guy Baez is, he must go to make room for a useful reliever.

    But don’t count out a rh bat either.

  5. foreverchipper10 - Jul 13, 2011 at 10:31 AM

    So long as they don’t get Hunter Pence I won’t concede the division just yet.

    • Utley's Hair - Jul 13, 2011 at 12:13 PM

      Ruben Amaro NinJr.: Michael Martinez and KK for Pence, Bourn, and oodles of cash.
      Eddie Wade: Sounds like a great deal to me.

      • FC - Jul 13, 2011 at 1:17 PM

        I quite often think the Astros have been converted into a Philly AAA Affiliate in recent years…

  6. seanmk - Jul 13, 2011 at 10:48 AM

    i would love if the phillies got Mike Aviles, he’d be an improvement over wilson valdez in terms of his bat and can play all the infield positions. Luke Gregerson hasn’t been Luke Gregerson this year so not so sure on that one, but the idea of trading colvin to get him, seems like fair enough value for the years you get back.

  7. Jonny 5 - Jul 13, 2011 at 11:20 AM

    One guy I hope they don’t trade. Check out this 0-2 hook. Damn!

    http://imgboot.com/images/tonyisdynamic/cosart.gif

    • mox19380 - Jul 13, 2011 at 11:38 AM

      I doubt they’ll trade Cosart he’s among the 50 best prospects and with a bullpen (contreras, baez, lidge) that will be going through a major transition soon he is a Diamond they can’t afford to lose

      It’s interesting going into the break Michael Martinez and John Mayberry Jr looked like legit threats on the team. Mayberry is an excellent outfield and potential 5-tool player while Martinez is (if he can hit) would be similar to a Martin Prado, a fast utility player… If those guys continue to produce throughout the end of the month I almost feel as though the Phillies can stand pat and not make any moves.

      …but thats a big IF

      • Jonny 5 - Jul 13, 2011 at 12:31 PM

        I agree on all counts, besides M.M. he’s a dud. Good Defense, but his bat kinda sucks.

        Cosart was pretty awesome at the futures game, hitting 97 with the fastball, 87 with the change, and a hook like that. Nasty.

  8. jeffro33 - Jul 13, 2011 at 11:20 AM

    For the post alleging that the Phillies will “buy a championship”….

    I have to give much respect to the Phillies organization and their fans for taking a team that was a self-proclaimed “small market team” with an absolute dump of a ballpark lucky to draw 25,000 fans into what it is today.

    The Phillies have done it right. Built a beautiful ballpark and turned it into one of the best atmospheres in MLB. They’ve sold out a majority of their games since it opened, created a huge popularity surrounding them, and have taken their earnings from this and memorabilia and re-invested it back into the team.

    Almost every MLB team (sorry, FLA, TB) is in a position to have this type of success. It has already started in Pittsburgh.

    Don’t hate on the Phillies for being successful enough to add pieces where they need them. Their fans support them as much as any in all of baseball.

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