Another Phillies trade target in center field is off the market

The Phillies’ options to full their gaping hole in center field continue to dwindle. The Minnesota Twins have agreed to a seven-year, $100 million extension with center fielder Byron Buxton, according to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic.

Byron Buxton is staying in Minnesota. (Nick Wosika/Icon Sportswire)

The Phillies reportedly pursued Buxton at the trade deadline in July and could have renewed their interest in the former No. 2 overall pick in 2012 if the Twins made him available in a trade. He won’t be leaving Minnesota anytime soon as the deal includes a full no-trade clause.

After missing out on Starling Marte, it’s very likely that the Phillies’ next center fielder will have to be acquired via trade. Kris Bryant and Chris Taylor, two free agents with positional flexibility, could be signed to play center field, but the market lacks any true starting center fielders.

The Tampa Bay Rays’ Kevin Kiermaier and Manuel Margot as well as Oakland’s Ramon Laureano are possible trade targets for the Phillies. They could take a big swing and land Pirates center fielder Bryan Reynolds, but the Phillies probably don’t have the prospect capital to pry Reynolds away from Pittsburgh.

As previously mentioned in Phillies Nation’s latest mock offseason, Buxton has battled numerous injuries throughout his career, but when he is available, he is capable of playing at an MVP level. In just 61 games played in 2021, Buxton slashed .306/.358/.647 with 19 home runs, 32 RBIs and 4.2 FanGraphs wins above replacement (fWAR).

According to Dan Hayes of The Athletic, the Phillies were “by far the strongest suitor” at the trade deadline for Buxton, but the Twins believed that the Phillies did not have a strong enough prospect to headline a potential deal.


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  1. Jeff

    November 28, 2021 at 10:41 pm

    Phils better have something in the wind, maybe they aren’t ready to say. I’ve been saying Bryant for a year and a half. Maybe they can make it happen now

    • Matt

      November 29, 2021 at 12:15 am

      At this point they probably have to. The Braves are defending world champions. The Mets just got a large haul. Even Marlins are making their move. They need to get going before it’s too late.

  2. Matthew J Staub

    November 29, 2021 at 2:51 pm

    Just fire Girardi,he probably cost them 15 wins. Or maybe we can just have bullpen starts every 5th game

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