Monday, July 28, 2008

Manny Being Manny vs. Man or Machine?

So, word on the street is that the hated Boston Red Sox are looking to part ways with All-Star left fielder Manny Ramirez, one of the cornerstones of the potent BoSox line up. Apparently, Manny and manager Terry Francona, noted for his impotence while managing in Philly, have some beef, yet again. No surprise there, but the RUMOR has it that Manny may only accept a trade to Philadelphia, reuniting him with ol' Cleavland Indians hitting coach and manager, Uncle Charlie Manuel.

The hated New York Mets are of course after him as well, much in need of a left fielder with Moises Alou out for the year, possibly forever. But the Mets have been burned in the Manny-hunt in the past and aren't likely to go whole-hog. So, IF the trade talk isn't all balderdash, and IF something blockbuster could really be worked out, and IF Philly agreed to the 20 million in 2009 option AND the contract extension it's believed Manny will want, and IF this isn't just the perennial Manny dick-tease... then do we really want him?

Well, who would we have to give up and what would the line-up look like afterwards? Since the trade is based on Ramirez' personality and not any particular Boston team needs, would they be after prospects or some of our most beloved Phils? Well, with All-Star Kevin Youkilis at first base for the Sox, the Big Man, Ryan Howard should be safe in Philly. They got that puss Dustin Pedroia at second, so Chase Utley remains untradeable. J-Roll stays at short forever, and Boston's Mike Lowell outclasses the Phils three-way third base jam-up. Would they be after our outfield? Well, a Manny/Pat Burrell trade would be shockingly even, but why would Philly do it? Burrell has matured to a very important part of the team, more consistent than ANYONE else in the line-up with a .985 on base plus slugging percentage, second among major league outfielders while Manny's down at ninth with .932. Pat's offensive stats are regularly a little better than Manny's this year, and he has earned his place in Philadelphia.

Trading Pat for Manny would be crazy. BUT, what if we moved Burrell to right field, opening up left for Ramirez? Ditching Geoff Jenkins would be great. He's the biggest hole our line-up offers, with that barber-pole swing, but he's not exactly a throw-away player, costing too much. Any team scouting the Phillies wants either Shane Victorino or Jayson Werth, the two speedy outfielders have proven themselves to be clutch and won so many games for the Phils with their bats, gloves, and intangibles. Normally, I would say HELL NO to either player getting traded, but with the potential of Ramirez' bat... we might be able to part with Werth... if they take Eaton too! We don't wanna lose any more minor league pitching though... Joe Blanton cost us, among other things, number 2 prospect Josh Outman. I and most other Phils fans would much rather see our boys (i.e. Carlos Carrasco) get a shot at the majors than waste them on question marks like Blanton who is already in his late twenties.

On Eaton... yesterday's shitty two innings solidified what we already knew. Adam Eaton should not be a major league pitcher, let alone a Philadelphia Philly. Along with odd-man-out Rudy Seanez, Eaton will be moved before the July 31 trade deadline. Either demoted to the minors, but out and out released if a trade can't be found. J.A. Happ was pulled from his triple-A start after just two and two thirds innings yesterday, fueling speculation that he is either a chip in the possible Ramirez deal or just that Eaton is gone and we need the bullpen help.

So trade Jenkins/Werth and some pitchers for Ramirez and you get...

Jimmy Rollins SS
Chase Utley 2B
Manny Ramirez LF
Ryan Howard 1B
Pat Burrell RF
Shane Victorino CF
Pedro Feliz/Greg Dobbs 3B
Chris Coste/Carlos Ruiz C

Tell me that line-up isn't sick.

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