Trade Rumors

Deadline Rumor: Royals interested in Burnett

Posted by Jay Floyd, Thu, July 31, 2014 11:57 AM Comments: 49

Happy trade deadline day, Nation. Not much cooking on the Phillies front, on a day that began with a blockbuster announcement for a deal between Boston and Oakland.

Ken Rosenthal, of Fox Sports and MLB Network, tweeted this morning that Kansas City has been in touch with the Phils regarding righty hurler A.J. Burnett.


The 37-year-old Burnett sports a 6-10 record with a 4.15 ERA this season in 23 starts for the Phils.

Many thought the Phillies would be a big player today with several teams interested in the services of OF Marlon Byrd.

Byrd, who turns 37 next month, has been the Phillies’ top offensive producer, tallying 20 home runs with 60 RBI and a .270 average in 106 contests this season.

No deals to report yet. Stay tuned to PhilliesNation.com for updates as they happen.


Yankees In On Bastardo and Byrd

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Wed, July 30, 2014 05:13 PM Comments: 21

According to ESPN’s Jayson Stark, the Yankees have interest in both left-handed reliever Antonio Bastardo and right fielder Marlon Byrd. Bastardo, 28, has struggled at seemingly just the wrong time for the Phillies,  seeing his ERA jump by nearly a point and a half since June 28 with opponents getting on base at a .390 clip since that date. Bastardo appeared to be headed toward another solid season but has certainly sputtered while on his way to the highest innings’ pitched total of his career.  Byrd, meanwhile, is one of just two National League outfielders with 20 or more homers and would immediately improve a Yankees’ right fielding corps that ranks 29th in fWAR with an AL-worst .281 OBP.


Don’t Expect Cole Hamels To Go Anywhere

Posted by Jonathan Nisula, Tue, July 29, 2014 11:53 PM Comments: 16

As the MLB trade deadline approaches, the buzz about who the Phillies might or might not trade gets louder and louder. And of the many trade pieces that the Phils possess, Cole Hamels might be the most appealing, and may produce the highest potential return. He is an ace, left-handed pitcher in his prime, and has plenty of playoff and World Series experience.

Jon Morosi reported that Hamels was officially on the trading block. However, Phils GM Ruben Amaro Jr. reportedly set the price tag very high for Hamels.

Because of that, it is looking more and more likely that Hamels, at least for now, will stay put in Philadelphia. Ken Rosenthal reports that the Phillies have received no real offers for the lefty and cites a source claiming that Hamels is the least likely candidate to be traded.

The market for Hamels right now might not be strong with other top lefties David Price and Jon Lester on the trade market. And Hamels, more so than any other player on the Phillies, is a guy you absolutely need to sell high with, unlike some other players like Marlon Byrd, Jonathan Papelbon, and A.J. Burnett, to name a few. The return for him needs to be outstanding. There will be more–and potentially better–opportunities to trade him in the future.


Report: Hamels is On the Block, Dodgers Kicking Tires

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Mon, July 28, 2014 04:13 PM Comments: 7

Update: ESPN’s Jayson Stark reports the Phillies are only willing to eat about $10 million of the approximately $90 million that remains on Hamels contract. According to Stark, the Phillies are asking for teams’ three or four best prospects in one shot for Hamels while teams have been turned off by the amount of money left on Hamels’ contract.

Be sure to tune into 97.5 the Fanatic tonight at 6 PM to hear Stark and our Pat Gallen discuss Hamels and, I’m sure, much more.


Is he or isn’t he? Just three days away from the MLB trade deadline, nobody seems to know.

Per Jon Morosi of Fox Sports, LHP Cole Hamels is reportedly on the trading block. Morosi reports that the Phillies price tag is currently very high and other outlets have reported that the Phillies are looking for at least three pieces in return for Hamels.

Despite starting the season on the disabled list, Hamels is having one of the best seasons of his career, posting a 2.72 ERA in 122 1/3 IP. Hamels has been among the best pitchers in the National League since 2006, leading the NL in fWAR in that time period.

Morosi notes that the Dodgers are interested in the Californian lefty and that they are one of nine teams Hamels can be traded to without his consent.

Analysis: Any trade for Hamels would likely have to include Joc Pederson and maybe even Corey Seager, two blue-chip prospects that the Dodgers have been reportedly unwilling to move in trades. 17-year old LHP Julio Urias could be a name to watch out for in a potential Hamels deal as well as the Mexican-native has seen his stock skyrocket in 2014.


Papelbon Won’t Go to Team Unless He is a Closer

Posted by Pat Egan, Mon, July 28, 2014 01:53 PM Comments: 10

Papelbon unwilling to be a set up man

Papelbon unwilling to be a set up man

As if there weren’t enough obstacles for the Phillies in regards to trading closer Jonathan Papelbon, “Cinco Ocho” just added one more. Joel Sherman of the New York Daily News is reporting that Papelbon is unwilling to waive his no-trade clause to go to a team who plans on using him as anything but a closer.

The good news is Papelbon can only veto trades to eight different teams. The bad news however is that there aren’t many teams looking for closers. Even with Papelbon’s solid season, his contract could present an issue. Papelbon is owed $13 million next season, with an obtainable vesting option for 2016. Combine his demands to be a closer for a perspective team, and his contract, it could be difficult for the Phillies to move Papelbon before the July 31st non waiver deadline.

The Phillies closer has gone on record as criticizing fellow teammates for not wanting to waive their no-trade clauses to go to a potential winner. So while Papelbon wants to go play for a winner, he wont do so as a set up man. The Phillies are most likely chomping at the bit to get rid of the five time All Star and begin the Kenny Giles era. I think the Phillies best chance to get rid of Papelbon will come after July 31st during the waiver trade deadline.


Are the Phillies Willing to Sell?

Posted by Pat Egan, Mon, July 28, 2014 10:10 AM Comments: 21

If you were banking on the Phillies selling everyone, which you know…. would make sense, you may want to sit down for this. ESPN.Com’s Buster Olney had a series of interesting tweets Sunday night.



Ruben Amaro is a man who likes to give 35-year old players two year deals with obtainable vesting options. So it should come as no real surprise that Ruben Amaro is overvaluing his players and doesn’t want to sell.


Phillies Trade Notes: Hamels and Byrd

Posted by Pat Egan, Fri, July 25, 2014 08:30 AM Comments: 34

Could Cole  Hamels be shipping up to Boston?

Could Cole Hamels be shipping up to Boston?

Put this into the “where there is smoke, there is fire” category of sports. The Phillies continue to say that they are not trading starter Cole Hamels, but the Phillies scouts picked an interesting game to attend Thursday night. Jayson Stark of ESPN is reporting that the Phillies sent scouts to the  Boston Red Sox AA (Portland Sea Dogs) game Thursday night after the Red Sox inquired about Cole Hamels. Maybe its all a coincidence? Maybe the Phillies scouts just happened to be in the area? Well that would be one hell of a coincidence considering who was pitching for Portland.

Pitching for the Sea Dogs Thursday night was the Red Sox number one prospect Henry Owens. The 22-year old California native was the starting pitcher for Team USA in the 2014 MLB Futures Game this year. Owens didn’t have his best stuff on Thursday surrendering five earned runs, on five hits, in just four innings of work. The big lanky lefty did manage to fan six batters though. Owens has a 13-4 record for Portland this season with an impressive 2.56 ERA. Opposing hitters are batting just .197 off of him this year, and he is striking out over a batter an inning (123 K in 116 IP).

The only other player for Portland Thursday night, who is also a top 10 prospect for the Red Sox, was catcher/DH Blake Swihart. The switch hitter, and former first round pick in 2011, went 2-4 at the plate while scoring the Sea Dogs only run. Swihart posses a slash line of .298/.353/.489 in his first season at AA. The 22 year old has 11 home runs with 53 runs batted in. With Tommy Joseph‘s catching career in question Swihart would be a nice piece to have.

While the Phillies have said that they are not going to trade their 30 year old ace, you have to assume that there is something to these rumors. The Red Sox current ace Jon Lester has tabled contract talks to the offseason after both sides were unable to come to an extension. The Red Sox could fear that Lester wont be back, and look to add Hamels as a comparable replacement. If Thursday night was Cole Hamels last start in Philadelphia he certainly went out strong. The lefty went eight innings, giving up just one earned run while striking out 10. He even managed to ramp up his fast ball to 96 MPH.

While any trade for Cole Hamels would be sure to yield a great return for the Phillies, a trade for outfielder Marlon Byrd probably would not. On Thursday the Seattle Mariners, who were said to be interested in Byrd, decided to bring back Kendrys Morales. Morales, who has a little over two months left on his contract, brought the Twins back a 25-year old AAA relief pitcher named Stephen Pryor. Pryor was not in MLB.Com’s top 25 prospects for the Seattle Mariners, and he likely wont be in the Twins top 25 next season. The right handed reliever posted a 4.65 ERA in 31 innings of work.

Marlon Byrd is obviously having a stronger season than Kendrys Morales, but Morales is five years younger than Byrd, and isn’t signed for next season. Byrd also has a…. wait for it….. vesting option for 2016 when he will be 38-years old. If the Phillies end up finding a buyer for Marlon Byrd then you are probably looking at a Jeremy Horst type player in return.


Phils Exploring Options with Howard

Posted by Ian Riccaboni, Wed, July 23, 2014 06:06 PM Comments: 68

In what was already a busy day, full of transactions for the Phillies, John Clark of CSN Philly tweeted this bombshell:


There may be smoke where there is fire in what is likely informed speculation by both Clark and Salisbury. My PNTV colleague Corey Seidman wrote at CSN Philly today that “enough is enough” with Howard, and I’m not sure there is anyone that would disagree. Howard is due $25 million per year through 2017 and will receive either $23 million in 2018 or a $10 million buy out. For his price tag, Howard has ranked 32nd out of 32 qualified first baseman according to fWAR.

What created this speculation, you ask? Well, it was likely a series of comments made by manager Ryne Sandberg as reported by Salisbury:


We will certainly keep an eye on this situation. It is worth noting that the recently recalled Darin Ruf is tonight’s starting first baseman.


Antonio Bastardo Garnering Trade Interest

Posted by Pat Egan, Wed, July 23, 2014 01:45 PM Comments: 12

Jim Salisbury of CSN.Com is reporting that Phillies left hander Antonio Bastardo is drawing the most trade bastardointerest at this current time. Teams that are linked to Bastardo are the Royals, Tigers, Pirates, and Blue Jays. The Reds had some interest earlier this month as well. Bastardo is signed for $2 million dollars this year, and is under team control next season. The lefty specialist is also one of the few Phillies who does not have a ridiculous vesting option in his contract. All of these things make Antonio Bastardo a very attractive piece for teams needing relief help.

Bastardo is having a solid season compiling a 3.27 ERA with a 10.8 K/9 rate. Bastardo is not only having success against lefty hitters, but righty’s as well. righty’s are hitting just .175 off the 28-year old while lefty’s are hitting just .140. The Royals, Tigers, Pirates and Blue Jays all have scouts in Philly scouting the series with the Giants. Because of his team friendly contract, age, and success this season, Antonio Bastardo could be the first, and possibly the only Phillie moved by the July 31st trade deadline.


Pittsburgh Emerging as Front Runners for Burnett

Posted by Pat Egan, Tue, July 22, 2014 02:00 PM Comments: 85

It is looking as though the Pittsburgh Pirates are emerging as a favorite to land Phillies starter A.J. Burnett. Ken Rosenthal of Foxsports.Com tweeted Tuesday that Burnett would prefer to return to Pittsburgh. Burnett, in his first year with the Phillies, pitched for the Pirates during the 2012, and 2013 seasons. Burnett had a great year in 2013 posting a 10-11 record with a 3.30 ERA. Those numbers helped land Burnett a $15 million dollar deal with the Phillies in the offseason.

Tom Gannam Associated Press

Tom Gannam Associated Press

Burnett’s tenure in Pittsburgh ended on a sour note. When Pirates manager Clint Hurdle elected to go with Gerrit Cole instead of Burnett for the series deciding game five NLDS game Burnett was said to have felt disrespected. The game five slight was one of the main reasons why Burnett chose to leave Pittsburgh and not resign. But the bad blood between Burnett and Pittsburgh is said to have been overblown.Rosenthal also said that while Burnett wants to rejoin the Buccos the feeling seems to be mutual with Pirates players lobbying the front office for his return. One snag in the deal could be, and stop me if you’ve heard this before, Burnett’s vesting option for 2015. Burnett has made 21 starts this season for the Phillies. At 24 starts his option would cost $8.5 million. At 27 starts that number gets bumped up to $10 million. At 30 starts it would be $11.75 million and his option would max out at $12.75 million if Burnett were to make 32 starts this season.

Burnett isn’t having the year the Phillies had hoped for this season. He currently has a 6-9 record with a 4.03 ERA. In his last start the righty got rocked, to the tune of six runs in five innings of work. It should be noted that Burnett is pitching through an inguinal hernia this season.

Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.Com tweeted Tuesday that Burnett has left the Pirates off his no trade list. Burnett, like fellow starter Cliff Lee, can reject a trade to 20 teams. Crasnick tweeted that the nine teams that can trade for Burnett without the righty’s permission are; Pirates, Red Sox, Orioles, Royals, Reds, Mets, Cardinals, Yankees, and Nationals. The Orioles are another team that are said to be in on Burnett.

The Pirates currently sit two and a half games out of the division lead, and two games out of a wild card spot. Pittsburgh could certainly use pitching help as their starters have a 3.92 staff ERA which ranks 16th in Major League Baseball. Burnett isn’t going to fetch a top prospect so if a deal does get done don’t expect to hear names like Josh Bell, Austin Meadows, or Reese McGuire.

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