The Philadelphia Phillies have lost eight games in a row. They have slipped to 11.5 games behind the Atlanta Braves in the National League East. There's no question, then, they should be in selling mode.
Teams around the majors still in contention have begun to inquire about the availability of a few Phillies players, since there are still several talented players throughout the roster that can help some good teams get over the hump and make a serious postseason push.
Here's the latest on those players who Philly might consider dealing before the deadline.
Cliff Lee Is Coveted
Per Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, Cliff Lee is on the wish list of a few contenders, but the Boston Red Sox may be at the front of the pack. He's owed $70 million through 2015, which includes a $12.5 million buyout for 2016.
It is clear to see why teams fancy Lee. He's 10-4 this season with an ERA of 3.05. He's pitched over 200 innings each of the last three seasons and is on pace to equal that again this season.
Perhaps more appealing is Lee's stellar work in the postseason. Even with an uncharacteristically bad postseason showing in 2011, Lee is still 7-3 with an ERA of 2.52 in the second season.
These qualities may even have the Phillies considering holding on to Lee for another run next year. MLB.com's Todd Zolecki tweeted:
Amaro on @MLBNetwork said he does not expect Lee to be traded. Keep in mind: Plenty of time left before deadline. Things change quickly.— Todd Zolecki (@ToddZolecki) July 30, 2013
With information flying in all directions, it's anyone's guess what happens with Lee at this point. But one thing is for sure: if Lee does get moved, Philadelphia would like see a huge return.
Michael Young's No-Trade Clause Is a Major Hurdle
Even if the Phillies desperately wanted to move Young, his no-trade clause is an issue. Per Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports and Joel Sherman of the New York Post, Young is only willing to go back to the Texas Rangers or possibly to the Boston Red Sox.
That significantly handicaps the Phillies in a deal, thus it seems unlikely Young moves on—unless he has a change of heart.
The veteran infielder is having another steady season at the plate, and without many quality third basemen available, Young's situation is going to be a key storyline through Wednesday.
Kevin Frandsen Drawing Interest
The Kansas City Royals have won six in a row, and that surge may have them thinking wild card. Danny Knobler of CBS Sports reports that the Royals may have some interest in Frandsen to play second base.
He's hitting .280 with three home runs in 118 at-bats this season.
The Royals are now at .500, and while a run at the wild card still seems a bit of a long shot, Frandsen could be an upgrade at second over Chris Getz who is hitting .209 this season.
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