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Phillies Trade Rumors: Andrew Benintendi 'Name to Watch' After Bryce Harper Injury

Tim Daniels@@TimDanielsBRFeatured Columnist IVJune 29, 2022

Nick Tre. Smith/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Kansas City Royals outfielder Andrew Benintendi is reportedly a potential target if the Philadelphia Phillies dip in to the trade market to help replace Bryce Harper, who's out indefinitely after suffering a broken left thumb on Saturday.

Jon Morosi of MLB Network reported Wednesday that Benintendi is a "name to watch" given the limited financial impact of his expiring contract and his connection to Phillies president Dave Dombrowski after four years together with the Boston Red Sox.

A single trade isn't going to fill the massive void left by Harper. The reigning National League MVP was putting together another terrific season with a .318/.385/.599 slash line, 15 home runs and nine stolen bases through 64 games before the injury.

That said, Benintendi could provide a stabilizing force for a Phillies lineup that lacks depth.

The 27-year-old Cincinnati native posted his best season with the World Series-winning Red Sox in 2018 when he compiled a .830 OPS with 16 homers and 21 steals in 148 games en route to a 5.0 WAR, per FanGraphs.

He's lacked that type of all-around production with the Royals this season, tallying just three long balls and one swipe in 72 appearances, but he's maintained a .303 average and .368 on-base percentage.

Benintendi could slot in nicely in the second spot in the Philly order behind leadoff hitter Kyle Schwarber (.344 OBP) to give the club a pair consistent on-base threats ahead of Rhys Hoskins and J.T. Realmuto.

The 2021 Gold Glove Award winner may also be available at a reasonable cost since he's set to become a free agent at season's end and the Royals are already fading from playoff contention with a 26-47 record.

Philadelphia is in the thick of the playoff race as the campaign approaches the halfway mark with a 39-36 record, which is third in the NL East and three games behind the final wild-card spot.

The goal is trying to remain within striking distance of a postseason berth with the hope Harper can return at some point in the second half for a late-season charge.

Benintendi would help in that quest, though trying to find another power bat would still remain on the Phils' to-do list ahead of the Aug. 2 MLB trade deadline.

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