Even though Ruben Amaro admitted just a few days ago that the Phillies would listen to any phone calls they got prior to the trading deadline, it doesn’t seem like they are eager to trade Cliff Lee.
PHI has reached out to other teams to let other teams know that players are available, including Michael Young. Cliff Lee not on the list.
— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) July 28, 2013
So as many, including me, suspected, the Phillies don’t have any real intentions to trade Cliff Lee. But as Olney points out the Phillies have made Michael Young available to other teams, and Olney says the Phillies made “players” available.
I’m just speculating, but I would assume those players are Carlos Ruiz, Jonathan Papelbon, Delmon Young, and maybe even Chase Utley. And I think the Phillies would listen to offers for Jimmy Rollins.
Let’s take a look at the first four’s trade value, and asses what it means to Michael.
- Ruiz is batting .259 and doesn’t have a homerun to his name in 2013. A team may value his experience, but the Phillies would get a very small return for the impending free-agent. Ruiz seems more likely to be an August waiver deal or return to the team on a low-risk contract next year than to be traded before July 31st.
- Jonathan Papelbon doesn’t seem to have any real interest to make it worth trading him. The Tigers don’t seem to be willing to take on his salary, and anyone you hear from says that the Red Sox have zero interest in re-uniting with Papelbon. He has two seasons left on his deal, so to try to give him away just for the sake of trading someone doesn’t make much sense.
- Delmon Young, well I don’t think I need to go into much depth about him. If you can get anything for Young, then go ahead and do it.
- Chase Utley is still a guy that I get the sense Amaro would rather lock up long-term, than trade. But, Olney doesn’t list Utley as someone who the Phillies won’t trade, so they will listen to calls on Utley. Trading Utley would bring back a medium return, and salary relief.
- Michael Young is an impending free-agent, and with Cody Asche waiting in the wings it is virtually a lock Young won’t return to the Phillies next season. It’s hard to asses Young’s exact value, but he could be used as a piece to help acquire someone to replenish the farm system. Gordon Edes says that the Rangers, Red Sox, and Orioles all have checked in on Young. We heard last night, from MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan that the Rangers weren’t serious about a re-union with Michael Young.