The Phillies would have to eat most of the remaining $60 million owed Ryan Howard in order to pawn him off on an AL team.
By Jack Ryan
So Andy MacPhail isn’t starting his job as new Phillies president until October (evidently so he can avoid having any of the stink from this historically bad season on his resume).
So that leaves in-over-his-head GM Ruben Amaro Jr. in charge of trades.
What am I missing?
The Phillies have new leadership, but that doesn’t mean it’s a slam dunk that Cole Hamels will be traded. MacPhail made one of the best trades of his career when he ran the Baltimore Orioles, getting a package from the Seattle Mariners that included Adam Jones and Chris Tillman for starting pitcher Erik Bedard. That was an organizational game-changer for the O’s. MacPhail will look to do the same thing here, and won’t deal Hamels unless he gets the package he wants, even if he has to wait until the deadline.
Meanwhile, Jonathan Papelbon, Aaron Harang and Ben Revere are also on the trade block for the Phils, who are expected to be in full rebuilding mode under new leadership. The latest on the trade candidates:
Cole Hamels, LHP: He’s the No. 1 starting pitcher available. In fact, he has the most trade value of any player on the trade market because of the years of team control and his successful postseason track record.
Jonathan Papelbon, RHP: An impact ninth-inning closer. The Cubs and Blue Jays are the front-runners to get him.
Aaron Harang, RHP: More of a back-of-the-rotation type for a contending club looking for depth.
Ryan Howard, 1B: Philly would have to pay most of his remaining salary, but Howard still has enough power to help a contending American League club at DH and part-time at first base.
Ben Revere, OF: His dynamic speed would fit well with the Mariners or Angels.
Chase Utley, 2B: This one is a long shot. Given his decline, injuries and seemingly unwavering desire to not be traded, Utley likely will retire as a Phillie.