The issue of Raul Ibanez in left field was an obstacle that the Phillies' management new would come up soon.
Despite his recent success, we all know that Ibanez' time is coming to an end fast. Ibanez is a 39-year-old veteran who is on a hot surge as of late, but realistically this won't last for too long.
In his last year of his contract at an old age, it will be very hard for Philly to find a suitor for him.
In the following slides, we'll go through possible trades that could happen between the Phillies and other teams. All of them will involve the Phillies giving up prospects, but that's just the way deals work in the MLB.
Considering it is early in the season, this is much more of a prediction/educated guess of the future, because not many rumors have been spread about Ibanez and the Phillies thus far.
Phillies Get: Garrett Jones
Pirates Get: Prospects
The Pirates have a history of giving up their valuable players, because Pittsburgh is never in playoff contention.
Jones is a solid player who can hit for both power and average, respectively. However, he is a left-handed hitter and the Phillies are not really looking for that.
Although I don't believe he is the best player out there for the Phillies, he may be in the running for a trade.
Phillies Get: Josh Willingham
Athletics Get: Prospects
I've always liked Josh Willingham and, for some reason, I think people seem to forget his above-average days with the Washington Nationals.
Willingham has been in the NL East before and I think he would perform quite well in a hitter's park like Citizens Bank.
He is another right-handed bat that the Phillies could express a lot of interest in. He did a solid job in the division before, so why not again?
Phillies Get: Carlos Lee
Astros Get: Prospects
Carlos Lee is not having the best season, and he is up in there in age as well. However when talking about Phillies trades, how can you not mention a player from Ed Wade's squad?
Although Lee is not the greatest option, he is a realistic option who could also add power to a lineup that is searching for someone else besides Ryan Howard to take on that workload.
Lee could be a nice right-handed bat to add to the lineup.
Phillies Get: Jeff Francoeur
Royals Get: Prospects
Jeff Francoeur's name has popped up the most when it comes to trade rumors surrounding Philadelphia.
The Royals are currently off to a hot start, but if that slows down and if they ease out of playoff contention, they just might be shopping Francoeur.
He is just 27 years old and off to a very good start this season. Francoeur is hitting over .300 and would be a great addition to the Phillies as a power hitter, younger fielder and right-handed bat.
Phillies Get: Carlos Quentin
White Sox Get: Scott Mathieson and other prospects
Carlos Quentin is definitely the biggest name on this list. Chicago has been rumored to be shopping him in the past and I think that Amaro just may take a stab at going after him.
He is just 28 years old and is good for power and contact. Plus, he bats right which is what the Phillies have been looking for ever since they lost Jayson Werth.
Chicago is need of a good reliever and Mathieson is a potentially-solid set-up man, or maybe even closer, in the league. Not only that, but White Sox hurler John Danks is up for arbitration at the end of the season.
However, Quentin is probably the most pricey trade wise and salary wise. He's a very good player without a doubt, but what it really comes down to with him is if he is worth the risk or not.
In my mind, he would be a great fit here, but the Phillies do have other options that are cheaper and more efficient.
Hey, who said we had to trade Ibanez? Can't we just wait on Dominic Brown and John Mayberry Jr.?
Brown and Mayberry are both young prospects with a lot of potential to be good in the majors. They have had a scattered amount of experience in the big leagues and the Phillies may just be planning on platooning them in right field.
Brown is currently coming back form an injury, but the Phillies could let Ibanez finish off this year and then retire. Afterward, they would platoon both young players and have Ben Franciso remain in right.
Granted, it is not the strongest outfield out there. However, they still have a Gold Glove in Shane Victorino and the best starting-pitching rotation in baseball.
But even if they take this route, who says Ruben can't find a way to deal for a right fielder instead? Anything is possible with him at the helm.
To be honest, it's very hard to see which outfielders the Phillies will target considering it is very early in the season. So take these as more of predictions instead of actual rumors that have been started.
But all in all, every player will reach a dead end at some point in his career, and Ibanez's is right around the corner.