The Philadelphia Phillies have a lot of aging veterans to consider trading leading up to the MLB trade deadline. In the mix: Chase Utley.
Comcast SportsNet in Philadelphia considers Utley, 35, the player that can bring back the most prospects to replenish the Philadelphia Phillies’ farm system.
Utley is batting .314 with four home runs and 30 RBI, and if he’s willing to waive his 10-and-5 rights and approve a trade, he’s the Phillies’ most valuable asset on the trade market.
With Cliff Lee sidelined, Utley provides the Phillies the best chance at replenishing a barren farm system. He’s playing at an MVP level at a premium position and has a manageable contract moving forward.
So long as Utley is willing to waive his 10-and-5 rights and accept a deal, the Phillies must move him to begin the rebuild, or retool, or whatever you’d like to call it.
Utley may end up being the best bat on a seller’s market. At the moment, only six teams appear to be nearing sell mode: the Phillies, Cubs, Padres, Diamondbacks, Astros and Rays. And none of those teams will be shopping a hitter the caliber of Utley.
CSN Philly names the St. Louis Cardinals, Atlanta Braves, San Francisco Giants, Baltimore Orioles, Colorado Rockies, Texas Rangers, and Toronto Blue Jays as potential landing spots, citing their lack of production from the second base spot.
The report uses the Hunter Pence trade in 2012 and the Cliff Lee deal in 2009 as the standards for compensation. Pence was traded in exchange for Nate Schierholtz and two minor-league prospects. The Phillies sent Lee to the Seattle Mariners for three minor-league prospects and Roy Halladay from the Blue Jays.
Another team that is reportedly eyeing Utley is the Oakland Athletics.
Oakland’s second basemen are batting .218, the worst in the Majors, but the team may not have the necessary ammo to assemble a package for Utley.