Blog Entry

Trade Deadline Primer: NL East

Posted on: July 21, 2011 4:43 pm
Edited on: July 21, 2011 5:07 pm
By Eye on Baseball team

Leading up to the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline, the National League East has an actual race -- as well as a team with a bloated payroll and no hope -- which leads to a great chance of some pretty interesting trades to and from the division. Here's a look at the five teams in the NL Eeast:

Philadelphia Phillies

Status: Buyers

Needs: Bullpen, RH bat

Notes: Manager Charlie Manuel said he'd love a right-handed bat (Philadelphia Daily News), probably in the outfield, but this is the Phillies and expect the team to focus on pitching -- at least that's what history tells us. And because their rotation is pretty good (you may have heard about some of these guys), they focus on relievers, likely ending a streak of five years of adding a starter midseason. The team is likely one of the many suitors for Padres closer Heath Bell, although some suggest the Phillies prefer Mike Adams. Padres owner Jeff Moorad has reportedly told Adams he won't be traded. However, according to Tom Krasovic of Inside the Padres, the Phillies are willing to give up Class A first baseman/left fielder Jonathan Singleton in return for Adams.

Another bullpen trade partner could be the Orioles,'s Danny Knobler said. The Phillies could be interested in Jim Johnson or Koji Uehara.

MLB Trade Deadline

As for the right-handed bats, the Phillies are in on the same folks everyone's chasing -- Ryan Ludwick, Carlos Beltran, Hunter Pence and maybe Jeff Francouer. The biggest hurdle of all for the Phillies is money, as in they've already spent it and they're worried about the luxury tax. The team has just between $2 and $3 million to spend and avoid the luxury tax.

According to Jon Paul Morosi of, the Phillies and Royals have already exchanged names in a possible Melky Cabrera trade. Cabrera is a cheaper, younger switch hitter for those who fall short in the Carlos Beltran sweepstakes.

Now, if they're going big and bold, Buster Olney of, tweeted the Phillies could go for Pence, centering the deal around right-hander Vance Worley.

Atlanta Braves

Status: Bargain shoppers

Needs: Right-handed bat

Notes: The Braves need a right-handed bat like Roy Halladay needs air conditioning. Atlanta looks like the front-runner for the National League wild card, but don't have much money to spend. The biggest issue right now for Atlanta is its inability to hit left-handed pitchers. Braves hitters are hitting just .211/.285/.337 against lefties, with Jason Heyward, Nate McLouth and Jordan Schafer all below the Mendoza line against southpaws. That's why Jon Paul Morosi's report of the Reds' Jonny Gomes drawing the interest of the Braves makes sense, Gomes kills lefties to the tune of a .340/.446/.547 slash line this season and .281/..377/.510 in his career. There's also the regular names such as Ludwick and Beltran.

To make room for more payroll, the team could trade right-hander Derek Lowe, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution's David O'Brien wrote. The Tigers could be interested in Lowe, but would have to take up the rest of the $20 million he's owed through 2012.

New York Mets

Status: One-stop shopping

Needs: Young talent under team control; pitching

Notes: Outfielder Carlos Beltran is the top position player on the market, but his future is clouded by the number of teams that could use an upgrade in the outfield and the fact that he's not for sale, he's for rent. Whatever team gets him won't even get compensation picks if he leaves as a free agent after the season.

The Mets would reportedly rather pay Beltran's salary and get a good young player or top prospect in return. They could unload him to a team willing to pay the roughly $8 million left on his contract, but then they wouldn't get much in return. The Mets would prefer big-league ready pitching talent. New York seems confident it can re-sign Jose Reyes, meaning they're not ready to throw in the towel and go full-on rebuilding anytime soon. 

Beltran, however, does have a no-trade clause. According to Tim Brown of Yahoo!, Sandy Alderson gave Beltran a short list of teams interested -- the Phillies, Red Sox, Braves, Giants, Brewers and maybe the Yankees -- and Beltran hasn't ruled any of them out.

It's pretty certain now that the Mets won't deal Reyes, but it appears they may be holding on to Jason Isringhausen, too, Sports Illustrated's Jon Heyman tweets.

Washington Nationals

Status: Listening to all offers

Needs: Leadoff man/center fielder of the future

Notes: The Nationals have pieces to deal -- from catcher Ivan Rodriguez to relievers Tyler Clippard, Drew Storen, Todd Coffey and Sean Burnett, plus starters Jason Marquis, Livan Hernandez and Tom Gorzelanny. In short, they're open for business, with GM Mike Rizzo saying no player is "untouchable" -- but then following that up with "we're not going to touch our core." That means, "after a while, they don't ask for [Danny] Espinosa," Rizzo told the Washington Post's Adam Kilgore. Ryan Zimmerman is also likely untouchable, as well as catcher Wilson Ramos.

One name to watch is shortstop Ian Desmond, but that would take quite the return for the team to move the 25-year-old.

More likely to go are some of the team's relievers. The Nats are deep in the bullpen and it's a position that's always in demand. The top tier would be Clippard or even Storen, but that would require Washington receiving a leadoff-hitting center fielder in return, someone like B.J. Upton, Michael Bourn, Colby Rasmus or Denard Span,'s Ken Rosenthal writes.

Florida Marlins

Status: Sellers

Needs: Third baseman, starting pitchers

Notes: The Marlins have starting pitchers that would interest many teams, but they may not part with them. Next year they rename themselves the Miami Marlins when they move into a new stadium and ownership would like a competitive team on the field when that happens.

Ricky Nolasco is the top starter to be had, but Knobler says they'd have to get a younger, cheaper starter in return for the 28-year-old right-hander.

The one the team may part with is Javier Vazquez, but it's not really their decision. Vazquez has a full no-trade clause and isn't in any hurry to leave South Florida. There are few places he'd accept a trade.

Sure to be gone is closer Leo Nunez. The Phillies are interested in Nunez. The other teams desperate for bullpen help -- like the Cardinals and Rangers -- are likely to at least inquire what it may take to get him.

Randy Choate has been verbal this week about his problems with current manager Jack McKeon and could get shipped off for not being a good soldier.

Also on the block are free-agents-to-be Greg Dobbs and Omar Infante. Infante's value is a lot less than it was a year ago.

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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 21, 2011 3:52 pm
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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 19, 2011 10:44 am
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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 8, 2011 10:54 pm

Trade Deadline Primer: NL East

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Since: Sep 6, 2006
Posted on: July 24, 2011 8:09 pm

Trade Deadline Primer: NL East

Spottie said..."Phils should part ways with Ibanez or Fransisco or worley and get Upton he would be the bat they desire or for the future not Beltran he would only be a 1 or 2 year guy Upton could be the future in left field with victorino in center and Brown in right Pence would be nice we all know the relationship they have with Wade"



Sorry, but Ibanez is done.  And he is overpaid.  Although Upton is inconsistent, and having a down year, there is a ton of talent there (and a bubblegum mind, sorry to say), so he will not go for an over the hill, overpaid guy like Ibanez (who is a free agent after this season).  Francisco is a 4th or 5th outfielder, and a nice pinch hitter, but he is not enough for Upton.  He is a throwin sort of guy (which is how we got him in the original Lee deal).  Worley for Upton might work for the Rays, as they would want youth and, they would probably want another pitcher to fill in for Shields, who they seem to be shopping, and not another outfielder, as they want to bring up a hot prospect to play in Upton's spot anyway.  But I don't think that the Phillies want Upton anyway.  I would bet you that they get Francouer or Ludwick, but that is just my opinion.  I think that they will go for a cheap role player who can hit lefties and can platoon with either Ibanez or Brown, depending on who is hotter at the time, and try and win with that now and save Brown for the future.  Worley may be the guy that goes, but I think if they settle for Francouer that it is one of those "baby aces" that they have in Single A, but not Cosart. 

Since: Jan 1, 2008
Posted on: July 23, 2011 10:59 am

Trade Deadline Primer: NL East

They won't deal Worley for a two month rental. I've also heard Ed Wade said any deal involving Pence needs to be centered around Dom Brown with Worley as the backup plan. Can't wait to see what happens. Should be as interesting as NFL Free Agency when it begins!

Since: Jan 1, 2008
Posted on: July 23, 2011 10:55 am

Trade Deadline Primer: NL East

Hanley? C'mon man. They signed him long term and they are moving into a new stadium. Some people just don't get it

Since: Jan 1, 2008
Posted on: July 23, 2011 10:53 am

Trade Deadline Primer: NL East

What makes you think ANY team would want Ibanez or Frnacisco? If ANY team would have wanted these guys, they would have been dealt LAST year. Worley,IMO, should start packing his bags now, his value will never be higher than it is at the moment.

Since: Feb 4, 2007
Posted on: July 23, 2011 12:58 am

Trade Deadline Primer: NL East

Phils should part ways with Ibanez or Fransisco or worley and get Upton he would be the bat they desire or for the future not Beltran he would only be a 1 or 2 year guy Upton could be the future in left field with victorino in center and Brown in right Pence would be nice we all know the relationship they have with Wade

Since: Aug 24, 2006
Posted on: July 22, 2011 9:19 pm

Trade Deadline Primer: NL East

Why don't the Braves go for the gusto and trade for Hanley? He is familiar with Atlanta's manager, he is a right handed bat, he could hit leadoff if needed. A perfect fit. The Brave's shortstop, is average at best. This would be the piece that could put Atlanta over the top. I really think that a change of scenery would to Hanley wonders. The Braves have several players that the Marlins could really use. Perhaps even make it a blockbuster and go after one of their young outfielders also? If dreaming, set the standards high.

Since: Aug 18, 2006
Posted on: July 22, 2011 8:30 pm

Trade Deadline Primer: NL East

And if people think Nolasco is a top starter then they are being fooled. Nolasco is the most unstable pitcher in the game. He can go out there and pitch 9 incredible innings then go out his next start and be out of the game by the 3rd inning. If you pick him up he better be your 4th or 5th starter, not your 2nd or 3rd, because come playoff time he's going to get hammered.

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