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Before Chase Utley, it was Abreu who was penciled into the 3-hole every day
This one may be one of the most controversial among Phils fans. There are two schools of thought when it comes to the Abreu deal.
One school says that it was addition by subtraction. These detractors often point out Abreu's apparent fear of the outfield wall and the relative ease with which he was willing to take a walk instead of being aggressive in clutch situations.
Further evidence is the Phillies' season transforming after Abreu's departure on July 30th, 2006. With Abreu, the team had just a 48-54 record. After trading him they seemed to catch fire, going 37-23 down the stretch and falling a mere three games shy of the Wild Card.
On the other side of the coin are the fans who point out that the Phillies got nearly nine years of All-Star production from the right fielder. He was a 30/30 player and one of the toughest outs in baseball. The Phils made other moves to improve the team after the deal, including the acquisition of Jamie Moyer.
Furthermore, correlation does not imply causation. Just because the Phillies went 18-11 in each of the final two months does not mean that Abreu's departure was the reason. The Phils also went 17-11 in May of that season—with Abreu on the team.
Instead, it was a June swoon that buried the team with a losing record; they had already started playing better prior to Abreu's departure in July. Abreu's presence on the team very well could have been the difference between making the Wild Card and staying home that October.
At any rate, Abreu being dealt as a pure salary dump meant the Phillies received virtually no assets to speak of in return. Jesus Sanchez toiled for years in the Phils farm system before moving to the mound and seeing some success. He is now in the Milwaukee Brewers organization.
C.J. Henry had so little success that he was last seen playing college basketball for the Kansas Jayhawks.
Carlos Monasterios never made it to the Majors with the Phils, although the Dodgers did use a Rule Five draft choice on him.
Matt Smith is the only player from the trade to play with the Phillies; he had a short-lived cameo before arm surgeries effectively ended his career.