Trying to Pin Down a Possible Chase Utley Trade Return

Chase Utley - Philadelphia PhilliesYesterday, Jim Salisbury noted that the Yankees had scouts at the Phillies games over the weekend. Salisbury confirmed that the Yankees have discussed trading for Carlos Ruiz internally, but also speculated that the Yankees may be interested in Michael Young and Chase Utley as well. Today, we’ll begin our series of finding comparable trade returns for some of the players the Phillies may look to deal at the deadline.

The Backdrop

Chase Utley is a 34-year old second basemen who, from 2005-2009, was the best second baseman in baseball according to fWAR by over 15 wins. He is coming off knee injuries that limited him to 511, 454, and 362 PA in the last three seasons. In limited time, Utley has been among the upper tier of second basemen.  Despite his injuries, and being between 450 to 700 PA short of those in front of him, Utley has been the sixth-most productive second baseman in all of baseball from 2010-2012. This year, Utley has battled ribcage and oblique injuries but has remained firmly in the second-tier of second basemen for 2013, joining a group that includes Robinson Cano and Ben Zobrist, hitting .268/.335/.469 with 8 HR and 6 SB.

Comparable Players

Through age 34, Utley compares to Joe Gordon, Jeff Kent, and Vinny Castilla, according to Baseball Reference. Gordon was traded before his age 32 season in exchange for Allie Reynolds, who was already established as a fine Major League pitcher. Kent and Castilla were both free agents around their age 34 seasons and were not traded. No luck there.

There have been recent deals, however, that provide a bit of a framework for what the Phillies may look for.

Take for example the 2008 trade deadline deal of Casey Blake to the Dodgers for Carlos Santana. Blake, a late bloomer, put up 11.9 fWAR in the five seasons leading up to 2008 – Utley has put up quite a bit more (28.1) over the last five seasons but is seen with injury concerns and a downward slope. Blake netted Santana and Jon Meloan. Santana was 22 and in the midst of hitting .323/.431/.563 in a breakout minor league campaign that put him on the map and landed him at the #26 spot on the 2009 Baseball America preseason Top Prospects list and then #10 on the 2010 Baseball America preseason Top Prospects list.

Another comparable is the trade that sent Carlos Beltran to San Francisco for Zack Wheeler. Beltran, like Utley, was in his age 34 season, and like Utley, was in the last year of his contract. Beltran was in the middle of a bounce-back type season where he was hitting .289/.391/.513 with 15 HR for the Mets before being traded.  Wheeler was ranked #55 by Baseball America headed into the 2011 season. Wheeler, of course, is now just 23 and pitching for the Mets with 8 Ks in 11.1 IP so far and was the preseason #11 Baseball America prospect. Not too bad.

Picking a Trade Target

There have been a handful of teams loosely linked to the Chase Utley sweepstakes. But before getting into that, let’s define what the Phillies should reasonably expect and target in this process. In the two most recent, comparable deals, one team acquired a piping hot 22-year old catcher who may have been a bit old for his level and the other, a noted prospect with seemingly no place to fit long term in a rotation that was stacked with talent. Is there anybody out there who fits that description from the teams most likely to pursue Utley?

Let’s begin first with the Yankees. The Yankees do not have an immediate need at second base but Utley could fill in at first for Mark Texeira, who is now out for the season, or be used as their DH.

The Yankees have Mason Williams (#31), Gary Sanchez (#57), Slade Heathcott (#63), and Tyler Austin (#77).  Williams, 21, is a speedy outfield who gets all of the power he can out of his 6’0″, 160 lbs frame. After handling the promotion from Charleston (A) to Tampa (A+) well last year, Williams is repeating Tampa but has not had breakout success. Sanchez, 20, is a catcher from the Dominican Republic who has 12 HR in 278 PA in Tampa. Sanchez’s stock is rising and may be promoted to Trenton this year. Heathcott, 22, has not made the jump from Tampa to Trenton successfully – one of his best tools, speed, has failed him, completing only 7 out of 13 SB attempts safely. He is hitting just .237 and has struck out in nearly a third of his PA. Finally, Austin, 21, is a 6’1″, 220 lbs outfielder who is making short order of Double-A Trenton this year. After a double jump last season, Austin is hitting .275/.367/.397 with 5 HR.

Do the Yankees have any sleepers? Jose Ramirez, 23, has used smoke and mirrors to advance to Triple-A, compiling a 2.76 ERA that translates to a 4.26 FIP in Double-A to earn his promotion. While his 95 MPH four-seamer is tempting, I would avoid Ramirez. If the Phillies and Yankees engaged in a deal for Utley, I would ask for Sanchez but settle for Austin and a PTBNL.

The Orioles are another team that may fit the bill. Brian Roberts is completing a rehab assignment but in the meantime, the O’s have been using a heavy helping of Ryan Flaherty and Alexi Casilla. The Orioles pantry has been wiped dry of top prospects in recent years as they have reached the Majors but there are a few names to watch out for. Infielder Jonathan Schoop, 21, has been limited to just 34 games for Triple-A Norfolk this year but is on the path (.268/.331/.386, 3 HR) to bouncing back from a rough year at the plate last year. Schoop primarily plays second base but has also seen time at shortstop. Would they sacrifice the heir apparent to second base to acquire a top tier second baseman right now? Schoop is, of course, blocked at the Major League level at both second and shortstop by Roberts and J.J. Hardy but with Roberts’ health remaining a giant question mark, it wouldn’t surprise me if the Orioles hopped in the Utley sweepstakes as well. Discussions with the Orioles should start and end with Schoop’s inclusion.

Finally, the Toronto Blue Jays, suddenly just 3.5 games out of the Wild Card, find themselves with the 29th-worst production from second base in the Major Leagues. The Jays have gone from sure sellers to possible cautious buyers. The Jays have ran out Emilio Bonafacio, Mark DeRosa, and Macier Izturis to second this year for a combined -1.9 WAR, or a .220/.265/.345 line. Like the Orioles, the Jays are pretty bare in the top prospects department but Aaron Sanchez is a name I really like. Sanchez was ranked #65 in Baseball America’s preseason rankings and turns just 21 on July 1. Sanchez is a 6’4″ lefty with a plus-plus fastball and has a 2.96 ERA in 45.2 IP in High-A Dunedin.

The Yankees, Orioles, and Blue Jays are three teams who will likely be in the thick of the Chase Utley trade sweepstakes. The Phillies, if they play their cards right, could end up with a very nice young player, but should not trade Utley just to trade him. With good health and it being the final year of his contract, Utley could net a Top-100 type prospect.




  1. Pamikedc

    June 27, 2013 at 7:57 am

    Good write up. But, going forward, if the Phils do not trade him- do they let him just walk away for nothing ala the Wash Nats w Alfie Soriano? Or what would they re sign Chase to? Cesar Hernandez looked okay when up here for a brief stint. Freddy is good for D, but his O is lame.

    Tough call. Either way I’m sure everyone will complain. Go Phils

  2. Cs

    June 27, 2013 at 7:59 am

    Or we can buy and play this out.

  3. Bob D

    June 27, 2013 at 8:19 am

    It may be tempting, but if the team bought a RF, and maybe a starter and reliever they could be a contender in the NLeast. Utley is still a top hitter on the team and Hernandez / Galvis / Frandsen would be a down grade with Frandsen being close offensively. Looking long term, I feel Utley could still remain with the team and the team be a contender. Almost rather see Rollins traded first despite Galvis as the only true fill in. But if Utley does go at least Hernandez / Frandsen would be good players at 2nd as Galvis remain Utility IF.

    But being 8 games out doesn’t bode well as they likely would need to win the division as WC is likely harder.

    Then if they keep Utley through the year, do they make him an offer and if he leaves get the draft pick compensation? Or just let him play the field this offseason? There is more than one way to get a prospect in return to him (or Ruiz, Halladay, Young) leaving.

  4. Alex M.

    June 27, 2013 at 8:53 am

    I think in a deal with the Yankees we would include Ruiz in the trade since they have a need at catcher and have already been rumored to be pursuing Ruiz. So Utley and Ruiz for a return of Heathcott, Betances and a PTBNL (I would love to get Greg Bird or Ben Gamel). I know Austin is an option but Heathcott is a much better prospect, he has 5 tool potential with the ability to hit for average, power, great speed, good arm and good defense. He has had some issues of late but maybe a fresh start and a few tweaks to his game and we could have a superstar player in the near future. Betances is a player that they Yanks thought would be a superstar, well that did not happen. He is starting to become a very effective reliever in AAA (posting an ERA below 2.00 in his last 10 appearances), who could come in and give us another option out of the pen with a fastball that sits between 94-97. I think those two would make a ton of sense in a trade. However, I would prefer to retain Chase or let him walk via FA and get a pick in return.
    Baltimore is a bad system and Schoop is not that great of a prospect. I honestly have no idea why everyone loves him, his tape is not great. Watch the prospect highlight on him from the first video is him grounding out to 3rd but since the 3B makes a throwing error he is safe. Wow, could they not find any other video? He is slow and does not posses any tool that would stand out in the majors, honestly I would take Hernandez over him in a heart beat. The Orioles a better deal for us from the O’s would be….Nick Delmonico, Josh Hader and a PTBNL

    As for the Blue Jays I would ask for Anthony Alford, A.J. Jimenez and a PTBNL. I cannot see them giving up their best prospect in Aaron Sanchez, although if they would he would be great in the Phillies organization. .

    • Schubee2

      June 27, 2013 at 11:27 am

      great comment. I too would prefer that the phils let it ride and provide an offer at the end of the season so that the phils would get a pick if he were to leave. hate to see teams bust on trading a great player to get garbage in return. You’re right about the Orioles farm system… anyway, I’d make a team friendly offer. if he takes it, great, he’s here for the long haul and we get a declining HOF caliber player for another two years with maybe an option for a third year on the cheap. if not, we get a pick that you can control instead of taking another GM’s word for it in a trade. Compare this guy to carlos beltran… since he left the NYM, he’s been BETTER than he was in new york. Chase utley still has gas in the tank, but on the flip side, gotta be careful to not end up like houston after biggio and bagwell played out their time there… Houston is STILL in the gutter. tough choice.

  5. George

    June 27, 2013 at 9:10 am

    I really wonder how interested the Yankees would be. Their primary need is right handed power to replace all the righties they’ve lost to injury. They may actually be more interested in Ruiz, who would be a definite upgrade to their lousy catching. Despite a lack of power, M. Young could also interest them rather than Utley, because he is right handed, hits decently if not spectacularly, is cheaper, and can also play 1st, as well as other infield poitions like 3rd where the Yanks have a need. Baltimore is most interested in pitching and has very little to trade, so I think they’re out, too.

    As far as keeping Utley, the Phils most likely would not get any compensation. The qualifying offer this year will be arounf $14M, and I’m really not sure they’d go that high. Tied to a draft pick, I’m not sure any other team would, either.

    Pamikedc has it right, though. No matter what happens, people will complain.

    • hk

      June 27, 2013 at 10:41 am

      “No matter what happens, people will complain.”

      Of course, people will complain if they trade Utley. He’s probably the most beloved Phillie. Also, with this front office’s track record, particularly this past off-season, why wouldn’t you complain if you felt the return was insufficient on any deal. The complaints about this past off-season’s Adams, Durbin, Schierholtz and Delmon Young transactions have turned out to have been warranted. School is still out on the Lannan, Revere and Michael Young transactions, but the results on those have turned out to be mediocre at best.

      • wbramh

        June 27, 2013 at 12:45 pm

        To even imagine this team moving Utley while leaving Delmon Young and company to become the new face of this team makes me want to puke.

        Yet the brass dances with the idea of ridding themselves of the heart and brains of the team while keeping the guy who grounds into double plays, keeping the guy who pops out to the infield, keeping the guy who strikes out 3 times a game, keeping the guy who boots balls in the outfield, keeping the guy who can’t throw to a cut-off man in less than three hops and a dribble and keeping a half dozen pitchers who can’t keep the ball off the middle of the plate.

        I wonder if that seems reasonable to Ruben.
        It doesn’t to me.

    • George

      June 27, 2013 at 1:43 pm

      “No matter what happens” obviously means that if the Phils DON”T TRADE Utley they’ll aqlso get complaints.

      No one would be stupid enough to believe they won’t get complaints if they DO trade him.

  6. Jay

    June 27, 2013 at 9:25 am

    How can you say that the Orioles are a bad system. Manny Machado, Matt Wieters, Nick Marakasis are all solid pros. They got Adam Jones for Erik Bedard.

    Baltimore seems like a better fit vs the Yankees prospects. Another place to look could be Kansas City.

    I would rather see the Phils try to move Jimmy and resign Utley to a 2 year deal with a third year mutual option. He still can hit. This last injury was a freak injury, I think he has figured out how to handle his knees. Galvis is a solid defensive SS but if u start him you need the rest of the line up to protect his bat. Roman Quinn and Crawford seem to be the future at SS/2B. Moving M.Young should also force the Phils to call up Asche. No time like the present to see what this kid has. I dont think the young catchers are ready so moving Ruiz doesnt make sense.

    • schmenkman

      June 27, 2013 at 9:32 am

      You’re right, those are all very solid products of the Orioles’ farm system, but they’ve now graduated to the majors and as of now, their system doesn’t rank very highly. And the news that their top prospect (Bundy) is having Tommy John surgery isn’t going to help that.

  7. tom

    June 27, 2013 at 9:34 am

    You left out the part where they trade Papelbon and some cash to Detroit for castellanos. Or is that just crazy talk thinking ruben would make a good trade.

    • dan

      June 28, 2013 at 5:14 pm

      I really don’t think Papelbon will net that kind of return. He was among Amaro’s many bad signings. I mean, this guy is the worst GM in baseball, hands down, and has been for a few years now. It just took a while for the dedicated, but slow, Phils fans to get it.

      Anyway, Papelbon’s stuff is declining and he’s way overpaid for the closer market. There are some desperate teams who might trade a solid B prospect for him (like the O’s with Schoop), but there’s no chance in Hades that Detroit would trade Castellanos for Papelbon. Maybe if the Phillies threw in a C+ type arm AND another pen arm as depth AND paid 50% of his salary that could happen. But that would require desperation that the Tigers don’t currently have, a non-existent rp market, and various other elements.

  8. hogey's role

    June 27, 2013 at 9:38 am

    I’m not ready to start selling yet, and I don’t wanna trade Utley or papelbon anyway… but moving forward if we’re looking to buy who is an impact player we can pick up?

    • dan

      June 28, 2013 at 5:23 pm

      The Phillies have a relatively barren farm system, at least in terms of near ready talent, so trading for players is going to be very difficult.

      Unfortunately, the Phillies have let baseball’s worst GM run this thing into the ground and there just aren’t any realistic solutions other than to blow the thing up. Even then, you’re kinda screwed. Ryan Howard’s contract was the second worst extension given in the history of the sport and was nationally panned the day it was given out and the Phils are just stuck eating that one b/c he’d be a risk for another team to take on at $12 mil, much less $25 per long term.

      Utley is old, should have been moved to 1b a couple of years ago to spare his knees, when the Phils should have sold on Howard but both the fan base and GM were ignorant to the obvious realities of a team in decline that needed to focus on intelligent rebuild and youth rather than sacrifice the farm to go all in on mediocre vets. As is, his value is probably less than what is suggested here. A top 100 prospect may be too much for a guy with his history, injury this season, and no long term value. You’re probably looking at a couple C+ guys (players in the 200-300 range) for him. And Papelbon’s contract is outrageous and with his declining talent, he’s not the answer to a rebuild problem either. Cliff Lee is their only really good trade piece. He could go anywhere and get a nice package in return, again, assuming the Phils eat some cash. Obviously they’ll get a better deal by eating some money and since they’re going nowhere fast and are probably looking at a 5-7 year rebuild, why not pay for superior prospects.

      Best thing the Phils can do is wait, pounce on the best offers given in terms of talent exchange and eat whatever amount of money on the contracts they have to in order to receive decent talent back. but buying? buying shouldn’t be an option. Realistically, this team has performed exactly as expected, has too many holes, bloated payroll, and neither the prospects, money, or leadership to fix the problem in the near future.

  9. hogey's role

    June 27, 2013 at 9:41 am

    I heard rumor the brewers were shopping aramis Ramirez anyway we pick him up and trade young, Idk if its any upgrade but he’s got pop and could protect Howard or Brown…

    • schmenkman

      June 27, 2013 at 9:47 am

      He’s hit ok so far, but both fangraphs and bb-reference agree that defense and base running have given away any value that his bat has provided so far, making him a replacement-level player.

      • hogey's role

        June 27, 2013 at 9:59 am

        would he be an upgrade over young though?

        What about picking up Michael Morse when he’s healthy to play left or right field?

      • Cole

        June 27, 2013 at 10:40 am

        Michael Morse is a blunder on defense

      • Hogey's Role

        June 27, 2013 at 10:54 am

        Better than delmon

  10. Philaflava

    June 27, 2013 at 9:52 am

    Why aren’t there more articles about why we shouldn’t TRADE Utley? For starters not since MJS has there been a Phillies leader like Ut. He gives 110% regardless of his health and is still a fine 2B option. He is an intricate part of the team. Nobody can say we lose because of Utley.

    WHY aren’t people up in arms when these articles are almost suggesting we trade him for some prospects? Why because he is a FA? Why can’t we resign him for 2 years? Do you know what happens when the core loses its best player? Good luck selling tickets too.

    You want to win, first lets get some legit OF help. Let’s look to find a power hitting 3B. Let’s get some respectable young pieces in the bullpen and lets look to find a fair priced SP that can do what Blanton did for us in ’08. I hate to say it but the players called up so far don’t seem to be the answer. Maybe Ruf splits time in OF but we’re still a few good years away before our good prospects take the field in CBP.

    • Don M

      June 27, 2013 at 10:08 am

      Because he’s missed 214 games … since the start of the 2010 season.

      of their 565 games played since then, they’ve been without him for 38% of them… and he’s 34-years-old… and he’s a Free Agent…

      It’s great that he plays hard. Phillies fans love him and always will. but giving it 100%, in 60% of your team’s games isn’t something that deserves another contract.. .when the reality is that Utley isn’t guiding the Phillies to anything. He isn’t the reason that we lose … but he alone isn’t causing us to win, either.

      It’s time to cut ties with the 2008 Phillies…. time to start a new era

      • Philaflava

        June 27, 2013 at 10:35 am

        You can’t cut ties because many of those players are still under contract or have contracts that are simply unmovable. The Utley injuries, while frequent have also been a bit freakish. Do I think he is capable of playing 145 games year in year out? No. But even if he plays the 130 that is still very good for what he gives you. Galvis, Franden or Hernandez (who I’m not sold on) can fill in. What he does give you is heart. This team has none. What he gives you is energy. This team barely has a pulse. What he gives you is smart base running and play making ability. This team rarely shows it.

        There is a value there and it’s not all sentimental. If you think every prospect is a Zach Wheeler then you’re not realistic. He is our Jeter and sometimes you have to do the right thing and that is keep him.

      • schmenkman

        June 27, 2013 at 10:47 am

        Except Utley gives you more value/production in 60% of the games than any viable replacement would in 100% of the games.

        Since the start of the 2010 seasons, here is a complete list of second basemen who have produced more than Utley’s 60%:

        Cano, Pedroia, Zobrist (if you count him as 2B), Kinsler, Phillips.

        That’s it. Unless the Phillies had been able to somehow pry one of these 6 (or 5) from their respective teams, they would not have improved on that 60%.

      • Don M

        June 27, 2013 at 11:01 am

        That’s fine … my point is.. is anyone here willing to give Utley millions of dollars in a multi-year deal? I wouldn’t … He’s aging, and injury prone. If you can get him for a 1 year deal with an option, i’d consider it.. but if he hits Free Agency – you have to think there is a team or teams willing to go 2-3 years guaranteed … and I don’t think the Phillies should get into a contract war with other teams over Utley.

        Utley’s a great player… though we could probably play sub-.500 ball without him, no?

        If you’re not going to contend this year or next.. what’s the point of retaining Utley when you could POTENTIALLY get a young talent in return

      • schmenkman

        June 27, 2013 at 11:05 am

        I at least give the qualifying offer, which I hear will be around $15 M.

        But I also consider something like 3 yr/ x $10M per, because 1) I think he will easily earn that, and 2) I expect to contend.

      • marlene

        June 27, 2013 at 11:14 am

        We need to resign Utley, I agree with the guy who talks about his heart and what he gives you when he is playing, We need to keep our former Champs till the youngsters can be ready to play. They are playing better since his and carlos’s return

      • Hogey's Role

        June 27, 2013 at 11:15 am

        Yeah I would go 2 year 20 million with incentives with a third year option at 8 million with incentives… maybe incentives to put the total at 15 per season…

      • wbramh

        June 27, 2013 at 11:33 pm

        Then again, most of Chase’s lost time has revolved around his knees which I suspect were victims of questionable medical opinion.
        His recent DL was a disappointment but then again there have been a lot of young guys on the DL around the league these last few years and guys with giant contracts.

    • Philaflava

      June 27, 2013 at 11:20 am

      Dom you can’t replace the entire team even if they don’t advance this year. Utley is a great player to have contending or not. He isn’t the problem. The problem is we have question marks and inconsistency on both ends of OF. We have a stop gap 3B who has an empty BA and loves to hit into DP. We need a power 3B finally.

      I doubt many will be interested in Rollins, maybe one of the Bay Area teams but he still plays a tremendous SS. His problem is he bats in the lead-off or 3 hole and should be no higher than 7.

      Phillies problems is run scoring. We lose the power we once had when we scored 5+ runs a game. We need two power bats which good OB%.

      • Don M

        June 27, 2013 at 12:30 pm

        If Utley is a great player to have … then surely he would be valuable to another team, right? I’m not saying give up Chase Utley for nothing . . . . but if you can trade him for what you think is a sure-thing talent.. do it.

        If Utley is surrounded by so many question marks, and so much inconsistency here… do you think that can all be figured out in the length of time you’d sign him to a new contract? I don’t see the Phillies contending for at least another 2-3 years.. and I wouldn’t sign Utley to a contract extension of that length. I’d see what the offers are at this year’s trade deadline, and if there was a solid one, I’d accept it.

      • George

        June 27, 2013 at 1:54 pm

        If the outfield is inconsistent, and you want to get better players, someone has to go, because this time of year you can’t upgrade with free agents.

        I’m with Don, here. If a viable trade comes along, you trade Utley. He’ll be a free agent at year’s end, and he could conceivably be re-signed then if he’s still uninjured and productive.

    • dan

      June 28, 2013 at 5:35 pm

      Finding OF help, a power hitting 3Bman, better bp pieces, and cheap starting pitching…that’s it, huh? They’d have a better chance of finding a unicorn and seeing what performance enhancers can be made out of its antlers. Or performing some dark magic at the graves of Babe Ruth and Cy Young.

      The Phillies are finished. Ruben saw to that. He’s been the worst GM in baseball for years but the Phillies phaithful were to blind to see it. Bad contract with extra years here (Polanco), second worst extension in the history of the sport there (see Ryan Howard), creating a barren farm system and there you have it. A team with no hope of success. There are too many holes and too few resources to fill them. The ONLY option is to blow it up and add some young talent while you hope the young, toolsy prospect the Phillies already have develop.

      But for now, there is no hope. None. For this Phillies team. 2013 is over. 2014, 15, and 16 are as well, most likely. You’re looking at a 5-7 year rebuild if you start TODAY. If the Phillies are competitive again before 2018, that’s a win!

      • schmenkman

        June 28, 2013 at 5:49 pm

        That’s one rather dark, glass all-the-way-empty view.

        Another is that the division is weak enough that with Hamels pitching at his career-worst, and the league’s worst bullpen, they have the best record in the NL East for the past two months.

        And looking ahead, the farm system is probably average, at best, but it’s far from barren. And with a TV deal about to be negotiated, they would be shooting themselves in the foot if they didn’t spend close to the luxury tax threshold to keep the team competitive.

        That’s why I don’t think there will be a full rebuild at the trade deadline, no matter where they are in the standings.

  11. Don M

    June 27, 2013 at 9:59 am

    @ Bob D …

    From our already-thin Farm System.. who are we giving up to get a RF, SP, and RP ?

    If the Phillies kept Utley, they could offer him Salary Arbitration.. essentially a one-year contract. If he accepts it.. cool . . . . he likely would NOT accept that, and the Phillies, and any other team could then try to sign Utley to another deal. If another team signed him, the Phillies would receive a draft pick for offering Utley arbitration.

    I personally don’t think it would be wise for the Phillies to go more than 1 year with Utley.. and I’d imagine that an AL team would easily go 2-3 … as Utley can play 1B, 2B, DH.. the SMART move in my opinion to to trade Chase at the deadline and take what you can get.

    • Bob D

      June 27, 2013 at 1:39 pm

      That is what the GM is for, but a team selling with an RF may take one on the AAA/AAAA/ML bullpen arms, Cloyd, Valle, OF prospect for some one. If this team goes into sell mode, Utley is one that may just be worth more holding on to for a Supplemental round draft pick (30’s-40’ish) than what may be available. But who knows, maybe Detroit or someone would step up and make an offer you can not refuse. Do trade just to make a trade

  12. DJ

    June 27, 2013 at 10:05 am

    I think the next week or so is crucial. If Phils can get back to .500, then I don’t think they begin to sell. If they drop a lot games to Dodgers, Braves, and so on then we will see some major trade talk, no matter what Ruben says.

    It really sucks, this team is back where it was last year. Although I was impressed by the bullpen last night, let’s not kid, they’re awful. It has cost this team numerous games this year, just like it cost the team 15-20 last year all by itself. The team has its issues, but nothing bigger than the bullpen.

    • George

      June 27, 2013 at 2:01 pm

      The BP last night was mostly guys who were recently brought up. The real duds are on the DL, in the minors, or released now.

      Not saying that means it’s now a better group, but I think a few more games should seen before condemnations are made.

  13. bacardipr

    June 27, 2013 at 10:14 am

    I would say no on Aramis the guy can barely run at this point. This is exactly what we dont need. Another older player who is injured. M. Young although old and slowing down is still healthy as far as we know anyways. They about equal offensively at this point in the season. Im not sure what they can trade or what kind of package they can make up to get that OF and bullpen help. For that matter if they get those pieces is it enough. This team often looks like they are in state of comma.

  14. Don M

    June 27, 2013 at 10:28 am

    *** on CNNSI

    The Phillies are a team in transition, already, and it’s a matter of just how much change the franchise has in store. The Phillies certainly were sellers a year ago, trading outfielders Shane Victorino and Hunter Pence before the deadline and right-hander Joe Blanton during the August waiver period. The club’s trade candidates this season are more prominent. … Yet, this isn’t just about baseball. … “Our fans like the players not just as players but as people,” [Phillies’ CEO David Montgomery] said. “These guys have been great being part of the community. That becomes an element. There is no question. Do we factor the fan support that we’ve gotten into this? Yeah. Do we believe fan identification trumps winning? No.”

  15. Nick Marmarou

    June 27, 2013 at 11:26 am

    If they deal with the Yankees I would be all over Rafael De Paula. He is playing in the futures game and I bet his status as a prospect is going to shoot up fast. I would want him included in any deal with the Yankees (not a centerpiece, but a piece)

  16. Fritz

    June 27, 2013 at 11:37 am

    I hate the Utley trade but thought we were in a rebuilding process. I guess it depends on Amaro, can he get the additional players to contend? If he feels he can then I want Chase on the team.

    • schmenkman

      June 27, 2013 at 11:41 am

      Given the upcoming TV deal, “reload” is probably a more appropriate term for what the Phillies will be doing.

  17. bacardipr

    June 27, 2013 at 11:39 am

    Looking forward to a Quintero/Lerud catching combo Oh boy!

  18. Pamikedc

    June 27, 2013 at 12:27 pm

    @George, thanks!

    We sign Chase to a JRoll esque deal (3years) and like I said w my first comment- everyone complains!!

    EVERYONE- face the music- she’s singing!!
    We are old. It’s over. Time to start rebuilding.

    Is their Hope?- yes!! Our President won on Hope! Will their be Change?- YES!! We can win a WC spot- bc some of these teams will fade.
    BUT- playing (hope u like this PN:) “goosey-goo” every night with the 7,8 innings will get real old. Unless we some how can “create” our BP late year magic- hardly.

    Utley at $15mil for 2014- is badddd. ONLY bc he is injury prone. That’s obviously the only reason. And this season was a ‘test’ for him.

    But I know that I don’t have a response to anyone bc I have no clue who to trade him for.

    Beat the Dodgers!!! Tough one vs Greinke tonight. Maybe we should just hit him and he can try and football style tackle us

    • schmenkman

      June 27, 2013 at 12:42 pm

      If this season was a test for Utley, so far he is passing and earning the $15 million.

      • Don M

        June 27, 2013 at 1:14 pm

        I don’t see how what Utley’s given us in his 50 games played (of 79 team games) is worth $15 M …

        He’s 10 in WAR among 2B with 200 plate appearances (he has 206), behind Marco Scutaro, Omar Infante, and Jedd Gyorko)

        He’s 10th in wOBA.. though ahead of Infante

        5th in Fielding according to Fangraphs.

        The argument to trade/keep Utley is more about the Phillies future, and the value you could get for him outweighing the value he gives you now – when the team as a whole is likely going to miss the playoffs. They’d need to win 60% of their remaining games just to get to 88 wins … and that probably still falls short of a playoff berth. 65% will win you 92 games… I haven’t seen anything to make me think that this roster is capable of playing that well from this point on

      • schmenkman

        June 27, 2013 at 1:29 pm

        I agree that he’s probably not going to help this year (because the Phillies won’t come close enough to the postseason), and that while I’d hate to see him go the Phillies need to listen to offers and if they’re offered a quality prospect than go for it.

        All I’m saying is that
        1) he is still a very productive player (even with the missed time), and that he is earning the $15 million.
        2) therefore it will be difficult to even replace his production

        I also don’t see the Phillies going into all-out rebuilding mode. With the new TV deal coming up, I believe they will trade expiring contracts, and maybe Papelbon, for prospects, but continue to try to field a contending team, so I would be fine offering him 3 x 10M to keep his production, even if it means only 80-130 games a year.

      • Don M

        June 27, 2013 at 1:36 pm

        I agree.

        I think where the new TV deal will help them.. is you rebuild as solid a young-core as you can … and with the extra money… you buy Free Agents at key positions. you can’t BUILD a team solely around Free Agency, in large part because those players are likely to be what, 30-years-old?

      • Lefty

        June 27, 2013 at 1:53 pm


        Your argument that Utley is still a very productive player whose production would be hard to replace is the reason why he is a great trade candidate. If other teams read it the same way (and why wouldn’t they) he has potential to bring a good return.

        I don’t believe it is necessary “blow it up”, I don’t believe everyone should be traded. But I strongly believe that every player in the organization should be on the table.

      • schmenkman

        June 27, 2013 at 1:56 pm

  19. Pamikedc

    June 27, 2013 at 12:56 pm

    @Schmenkman, why do u say that??

    Not arguing it. Just curious why you feel that way. Bc I respect your posts and knowledge is awesome.

    • schmenkman

      June 27, 2013 at 1:09 pm

      Well, I look at his production so far this year, combining hitting, defense, and baserunning, and this is what I see, even with the missed time:

      1) he’s been the Phillies’ best position player so far
      2) he’s been one of the best second basemen in the NL (Matt Carpenter is the only one clearly better this year, even with Utley’s missed time)

      His 1.7 WAR projects to about 3.4 for the year, which would be worth more than the $15 M on the free agent market

      • Don M

        June 27, 2013 at 1:16 pm

        Maybe my argument should be, if the Phillies don’t have enough talent around him .. . . is it worth paying Chase Utley $15 M over the next few years … or trying to trade him to bring in young, cost-controlled talent to speed-up any rebuild

  20. bacardipr

    June 27, 2013 at 2:17 pm

    Not for 3 years…2 years w a option for a 3rd.

  21. Pamikedc

    June 27, 2013 at 2:41 pm

    Agree w you @bacardipr. But wouldn’t Chase want what JRoll wanted (initially) 4-5?

    Def not comparing the 2 either

  22. T. Martin

    June 27, 2013 at 3:10 pm

    If the Phils are moving veterans the first thing they need to look for is a guy who can step in and man either CF or RF. The Blue Jays have a glut of OFers and Moises Sierra should be a guy they ask about. 24 years old, controllable and good for a .280 avg & 20 HRs off his AAA numbers. Maybe more by the time he’s 27 or 28.

  23. Dylan

    June 27, 2013 at 5:24 pm

    Michael Young and Carlos Ruiz- to the Yankees
    Chase Utley- To the Orioles
    Jonathon Paplebon- To the Tigers
    Delmon Young- to the Atlantic City Surf

    • G7

      June 27, 2013 at 7:22 pm

      Trade Rollins, keep Utley..dump DYoung and Zambrano.

    • dan

      June 28, 2013 at 5:43 pm

      Sounds good! That probably nets you two C to C+ prospects from the Yankees, a B- or B type from the O’s (Schoop would be a dream for the Phils, built is unrealistic), and you’d likely net a B from the Tigers. You pay whatever in salary you have to, but if you can infuse this miserable farm system with a couple of C prospects and B prospects right now, you do it. Get the ball rolling. Finish it off by trading Cliff Lee and get that A prospect the team needs to build around. He’s been swapped for trash by the Phillies once, let’s hope they’ve learned their lesson after they saw him swapped for Justin Smoak (at the time an A prospect) soon thereafter.

      If the Phillies can unload everything with some value and infuse the farm with an A, couple B, couple C prospects…maybe another C+/B- guy for Rollins, they have to do it. They simply have to fire Ruben, get somebody in there who has a clue, and bit the bullet and start the rebuild. Why flounder for a few more years with a huge payroll and unwatchable team when you can start the 5-7 year rebuild right now and get the farm rebuild going. Injecting some young talent and setting themselves up for a top draft pick asap is how you do it.

  24. Philaflava

    June 28, 2013 at 9:48 am

    BEST PLAYER ON OUR TEAM. Let’s trade him.

  25. Mike in NJ

    June 28, 2013 at 9:51 am

    I’d trade any player on this roster if we had a major league level GM, which unfortuantely, we don’t. I’ve got zero confidence in Amaro after the last two seasons where not a single move has worked out. Papelbon? OK but they waaaay overpaid him and gave him too many years.

  26. Tim A

    June 28, 2013 at 4:48 pm

    The A’s would be interested I believe, but temper expectations against cited deals, there would no longer be compensation for Utley leaving the new team, and both those deals are cherry picking a little, since the prospects took big leaps forward after the trades. I know they both were less well regarded, and less valued at the time of those deals. You can also look at the Seattle Lee deal as a cautionary tale. I think when you combine the injury factor in with it all getting a top ten with upside, and a top twenty prospect in the deal, or one blocked top five would be a solid get. The fact that he only might be able to help a team with his track record health wise will hurt the market I think.

    • schmenkman

      June 28, 2013 at 5:17 pm

      Considering that he has helped his team with at least 3 WAR each of the last two years (and trending there again this year), and that the time he missed this year was not related to his knees, I don’t know that the risk that he only “might” help a team is significantly more than any other 34-year-old player who’s among the best at their position.

      I’d rather hold onto him and offer a QO in the offseason.

  27. Dave

    June 28, 2013 at 7:11 pm

    I love the part where you ask the Yankees for Sanchez. Hahaha Keep dreaming.

  28. Al Dattolo

    July 28, 2013 at 7:39 pm


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