Now whether we like it or not, players have to be moved. But which ones? Should the Phillies have a complete fire sale? Every player move and non-move will be heavily criticized no matter what the return is. Here's what I would do if I were given the keys to this trade machine. And here...we...go
Young was a rental and we knew that coming into this season, and now he may actually turn out to have a lasting impact on this organization for years to come. Not Michael Young himself, but the players, and superior, young, quality players that he can bring in a trade. The time to move him is now, and there are plenty of suitors out there looking for his bat.
Destinations: AL East contenders: Boston, New York.
Oh God please get him out of here. Just anywhere really. If a player is signed with a weight-loss incentive, well thats bound to turn out to be a big, fat problem. He's 27 but has the body and agility of a 40 year old. Now surprisingly, his hitting hasn't been all that bad. Young, batting .274/.320/.414 through 69 games isn't terrible and you honestly thought it was going to be much worse; I know I did. But he is a defensive liability every single time he runs/waddles out to right field. It's simply terrifying to watch him play. He can bring a slight improvement to some outfields and lineups out there believe it or not.
Destinations: New York. Pittsburgh
This is a tougher choice. But we may be running out of time to get a return on Jimmy Rollins (not that he hasn't produced). The longest tenured Philadelphia athlete has been absolutely incredible to this city. MVP, World Series win, and not to mention the best fielding shortstop I have ever seen in my lifetime. This pick may not be as popular but Jimmy is in the twilight of his career. He's 34, will turn 35 this off-season. If you tank the season, and have a huge sale on players, it's hard to say who will go, but I think either this year or next might be smart to deal Jimmy before his contract expires in 2015.
Destinations: San Francisco, Oakland
$58,000,058.00 Just loves that number I guess. Although he has been inconsistent as of late, Papelbon and his services will always be needed. There are many teams, contenders, who need to sure up the back end of their bullpen come stretch time. I like Pap because the guy is always fired up, no matter what game it is. That sort of intensity/borderline insanity, can be good on a team. But more recently, it is clear that Papelbon is not happy with the Phillies production this year and has been calling out his teammates. A new team has popped up on the radar as in need of a closer. The Pirates just lost Jason Grilli with a forearm injury. Hopefully the Buccos, with their many many years of losing seasons can realize this golden opportunity to give us Starling Marte- just saying...
Destinations: Detroit, Pittsburgh
AND THEY ARE LISTENING TO ME! Reports came out this week that the Phillies were looking to extend the contract of Chase Utley. I love this. He is a guy you absolutely always always always want on your team. I sound like Mac from always sunny right now, but it's true, he is the one guy who will always play the game the right way no matter what.
Never leave Chase, never.
The most popular talking point for trades this year from the Phillies is Cliff Lee. Obviously it's because everybody wants him. Why wouldn't you? But that is just the reason why you have to keep him. Yes, he has a big contract that eats up a ton of payroll, but he's worth it.
Unless the best deal in the history of deals comes across Ruben's desk, I say Lee stays. It would take something of titanic proportions in order for me to move Cliff.
Where do I begin. Ryan needs to trade nicknames with the legend Frank Thomas. Howard is the big hurt. As in YOU'RE KILLING ME MAN! Injuries will always be an issue with Howard from now and the destination of a American League DH seems to be where he is headed. When Howard is/was healthy, he strikes out a lot. And at least to me, that's okay. He can strike out 150+ times as long as he gets his 35+ HRs and 120+ RBIs. But now theres no production with those strike outs and pitchers just aren't afraid to pitch to him anymore.
Destinations: Bos, NYY. Bal, Tor, TB, Det, Chw, Min, KC, Cle, Oak, Tex, Ana, Sea, Hou :)
Follow Tristan on twitter: @tshope122