The Philadelphia Phillies and Boston Red Sox have each won six of their last seven games. Even so, each club currently finds itself in the basement of their respective division. Due to the makeup of the Red Sox and the Phillies and because of their slow starts, Jim Bowden of ESPN makes the case that each club should look to sell rather than buy this trade deadline.
Each team would seem to have several tradable players that would draw interest from outside clubs. The Phillies have a pair of free-agents to be that would garner trade interest; Cole Hamels and Shane Victorino. The Red Sox have Kevin Youkilis and some say the team should look to part ways with starting pitcher Josh Beckett.
But would it be wise for either club to look to trade away veterans for either prospects or in order to plug current holes on their major league roster?
The Phillies are obviously a team that is built for now, not later. Cliff Lee and Roy Halladay are on the wrong side of 30 and aren’t going to be around forever. The offense has already shown signs of age, and the projected starting infield of Ryan Howard, Chase Utley, Jimmy Rollins and Placido Polanco are all on the decline.
The Phillies have made all indications that they are interested in locking Cole Hamels up long-term. As a younger, top-of-the-rotation starter, Hamels is poised to eventually take the torch from Lee and Halladay and lead the Phillies rotation. It seems unlikely that the club would deal him at this point.
Shane Victorino’s next contract probably won’t be extremely favorable for whichever club signs him. The Flyin’ Hawaiian will be 32 next season and plays a position and style that rely on speed, something that is one of the first things to go as age climbs.
That being said, if the Phillies have any hope of competing this year or next they can ill afford to subtract offense. Victorino wants to stay in Philadelphia enough that an extension is likely, at least enough that the Phillies probably won’t consider trading him this summer.
The Red Sox are a bit of a different story, especially with Kevin Youkilis. Boston has their third baseman of the future, Will Middlebrooks, ready to go now and showing that he can already be productive at the major league level. Boston also has several other areas of need, namely pitching, and Youkilis could be traded for either prospects or a pitcher that can help the Red Sox now.
Josh Beckett is another thing. Based on his recent performance and attitude and the money still currently owed to him, there doesn’t seem to be any way a trade happens this season.
What do you think, should either the Phillies or the Red Sox look to be sellers this summer?