Hot Stove: 2012 Winter Meetings, Tuesday Afternoon – Phillies Nation
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Hot Stove: 2012 Winter Meetings, Tuesday Afternoon, Mariners In On Bourn

Per Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, the Phillies are “in” on Michael Bourn. It was also reported today that the one major free agent the Mariners had not been interested in, Bourn, was contacted through agent Scott Boras today. In the recap from yesterday, the suddenly-aggressive Mariners had been linked to just about everyone. We also learned today that the Mariners have touched base with the Diamondbacks regarding Jason Kubel.

Hamilton Close with Rangers, Mariners Still in Mix

Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports Tweeted Josh Hamilton and the Rangers are getting closer on a four-year agreement, noting that it is possible another team could still beat their offer. Danny Knobler of CBS Sports Tweeted the Mariners still believe they have a chance to sign Hamilton.

Red Sox Lead Three Team Pack to Sign Victorino

The Red Sox have emerged as favorites to sign Shane Victorino via Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe. Victorino has reportedly been offered a three year deal worth $38 million from the Red Sox. The Indians and an unknown team are also heavily in the mix.

Nats Get Deeper Staff, Sign Haren

The Nationals added Dan Haren today on a one year, $13 million deal. Haren, 32, is coming off an uncharacteristically average 2012 but adds further depth to the reigning NL East champions.

Giants Seek Affordable Corner Outfielders

Ken Davidoff of the New York Post reported that now that the Giants have secured the services of Angel Pagan, their attention has turned to Nick Swisher. Davidoff notes that Swisher may be out of their budget so the Giants may turn to more affordable options like Jerry Harriston or Ryan Ludwick.

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  1. Double Trouble Del

    December 4, 2012 at 4:35 pm

    I still have reservations about Bourn and any kind of reasonable contract being hammered out. I have a sense that RAJ and the Phils come away from the Winter Meetings empty handed and I’m OK with that. A healthy Utley and Howard will mean more to this team than any free agent they can add to the mix. If either of the two fails to start the season or if Doc is not healthy there is no single FA that will make this team seriously competitive. See what Spring Training tells us and go forward from there. Add a piece at the deadline if warranted.

    • wbramh

      December 4, 2012 at 4:54 pm

      I hope you’re right, but my gut tells me that a healthy Howard and Utley can no longer lead this team to an NL pennant. The rest of the team is replete with has-beens, won’t bes and maybes, and frankly, I’m not convinced that either Utley or Howard will ever return to form. A Still a guy who can’t hit lefties at 1st (has to be platooned and is getting injured easily), a big ongoing question at 2nd and short, nobody to play 3rd, nobody i(IMO) in the outfield (at least nobody good enough to be set), a great catcher sitting out the beginning of the season, two of three aces coming off sub-par seasons, no set-up man, no base speed, no plate discipline. Oy.
      They won’t win with that many components in question. If RAJ holds tight, I suspect that 3rd or 4th place in the East could also be a lock – if they’re lucky.

      • Double Trouble Del

        December 4, 2012 at 5:04 pm

        I just wanted to point out that no signing or trade will matter if Utley and Howard contribute at the same levels they did last year.

      • schmenkman

        December 5, 2012 at 7:34 am

        “I’m not convinced that either Utley or Howard will ever return to form.”

        I AM convinced that neither Utley nor Howard will see anything close to their best years again. But I don’t think that’s necessary for the Phillies to win, either. They did play at a 95-win pace in the 2nd half this year.

        For at least 2013, I do expect Utley to remain one of the 2-3 best second basemen in the game, as he was in 2012.

        I also expect that Howard will return to close to 2011 form, which, while not among the best at his position, is still ~.820-.830 OPS (better than that with RISP), and 100+ RBI.

      • hk

        December 5, 2012 at 8:06 am

        “…a big ongoing question at 2nd and short…”

        2B: With 362 PA’s Chase Utley was the 9th best 2B in MLB last year (8th if you count Ben Zobrist as a SS). If he can play 130 games – and he claims that his new workout plan has his knees feeling better – he’ll be top 3 at the position.

        SS: Jimmy Rollins was the 3rd best SS in MLB last year (2nd if you count Ben Zobrist as a 2B).

        Yes, Utley’s health is an ongoing question, but if his knees have in fact improved – I think he started something like 74 out of 75 games in one stretch – the Phils will be much better at 2B in 2013 than they were in 2012. And, how exactly is SS a big ongoing question?

      • schmenkman

        December 5, 2012 at 8:26 am

        (or if count Zobrist as a RF, where he played the most last year).

        Yeah, meant to cover SS as well. I don’t get that either.

  2. rc

    December 4, 2012 at 4:47 pm

    can’t believe Victorino’s deal , don’t think I want Bourn and you give up a pick.

  3. rc

    December 4, 2012 at 4:53 pm

    Posted Today, 04:45 PM

    @pedrogomezESPN Phillies and Diamondbacks are discussing Justin Upton for Cliff Lee. $$ coming to AZ would also be involved.

    • Chuck A.

      December 4, 2012 at 5:03 pm

      An update on MLBTR states that the report is “off-base” and that they are NOT discussing it.

  4. LakotaKeya

    December 5, 2012 at 5:18 am

    If we’re giving up top notch talent via trades, I say target Giancarlo Stanton. He’s already asking to be traded. At only 23, his big right handed bat and 290/361/608 would b a great player to start a new core group around. Instead of over paying for Bourne, sign McLouth in center on a one yr, Brown/Ruf platoon, big improvement over last years outfield and still allows RAJ the ability to add a bullpen guy or two. Am I dreaming???

    • hk

      December 5, 2012 at 8:08 am

      Yes, you’re dreaming. The Phils don’t have the cheap, young talent that Miami would want if they decide to trade Stanton. In addition, it is unlikely that Miami would trade him within the division and have to remind their fans – if any fans remain after they trade Stanton – 19 times per year that they traded the guy.

  5. Jeff

    December 5, 2012 at 7:19 am

    Looks like the aren’t going to do anything and Lee for Upton would be crazy

    • hk

      December 5, 2012 at 8:13 am

      Why would Lee for Upton be crazy, especially if it is one-for-one? Let’s say that making that trade would enable them to sign Anibal Sanchez to replace Lee instead of signing Nick Swisher to fill a corner OF spot. What combination of an SP and a corner OF would be better, Lee + Swisher or Sanchez + Upton for the next 3+ years? When considering that Lee is 6 years older than Sanchez and Swisher is 7 years older than Upton, I think there’s a compelling case to be made that Sanchez + Upton > Lee + Swisher.

      • schmenkman

        December 5, 2012 at 8:28 am

        One worry about Upton is his .731 career OPS away from hitter-friendly Chase Field.

      • brooks

        December 5, 2012 at 8:50 am

        Pitching is the warm cozy for us al. The Phils have had the best starting pitching staff in the ML for a few years now, giving that up would be a huge mistake.

  6. brooks

    December 5, 2012 at 8:48 am

    $39 mil for Vic? Glad we did not go there as much as I wanted him.

    Just when I thought it could not get worse, the price war is going crazzzy

    • hk

      December 5, 2012 at 11:26 am

      When considering factors like salary inflation and the improved economy over the past 4 years, not to mention their relative ages and skills, Boston’s Victorino deal is much better than the $31.5M the Phils paid Raul Ibanez for his age 37-39 seasons.

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