Phillies Not Done Dealing
This morning on XM’s MLB Home Plate, Phillies GM Pat Gillick admitted that he is still heavily involved in discussions to further improve his team. In other words, the Joe Blanton acquisition was the beginning, rather than the end, of his dealing.
Somewhat surprising, since the Phils don’t have much to offer from their farm system, but Gillick let the cat out of the bag, mentioning that Philadelphia has two of the brightest backstop prospects in all of baseball — Lou Marson and Jason Jaramillo. The guy he didn’t mention was a third catcher named Travis D’Arnaud, a 2007 first-rounder who is currently buried in Rookie ball and hitting .330. And while the Phillies may not have any exciting blue chippers to offer, how many other teams have young, talented catchers to deal?
Gillick specifically identified pitching and an outfielder as targets. Could he possibly pull off a deal to pry away Matt Holliday and Brian Fuentes from Colorado? Jason Bay and Damaso Marte from Pittsburgh? If a main chip is a catcher, I’d think the Orioles are out of the running — they’re looking to move Ramon Hernandez to make room for phenom Matt Wieters.
Meantime, Omar Minaya as usual kept his cards close to his vest in an interview yesterday on 1050 ESPN Radio, giving the old “we’re always looking to improve our team” line, but also saying that he had complete confidence in Fernando Tatis keeping up his hot hitting.
As mentioned earlier this week, I think the outcome of this series could affect what the Mets do before the trading deadline. If the Mets win one or two, they’ll continue to go after someone like Casey Blake or a Billy Hall type. But if they get swept, a panic move could be made that brings in a Jason Bay, Huston Street, or Matt Holliday – level player. Such a high-impact trade would become more realistic if the Phillies sweep AND make another major deal.
Time will tell.