Both the Philadelphia Phillies and closer Jonathan Papelbon want for him to be traded. However, that no longer seems like a legitimate possibility with just over a week left until the non-waiver trade deadline.
According to Jayson Stark of ESPN, the three teams he considered to be the likeliest to acquire Papelbon, the Dodgers, Cubs, and Blue Jays, are no longer actively pursuing him.
Stark adds that the team was close to dealing him last month, to the point where they asked teams to make their best offer. However, they, out of nowhere, pulled back, presumably waiting for the hire of Andy MacPhail as new team president.
The Dodgers, Cubs, and Blue Jays have moved their focuses away from Papelbon, says Stark. He notes that the Dodgers are focusing in on starting pitching, the Cubs have added Rafael Soriano, and the Blue Jays have moved Aaron Sanchez to their bullpen.
It's still hard to believe that Papelbon has not been able to draw that much interest. He's having by far the best season he has had with Philadelphia, pitching to a 1-1 record with a 1.72 ERA and a perfect 16-for-16 in saves. His 2.95 FIP suggests that he's been a little lucky, but by no means has he been "bad" this season.
The only apparent obstacle for the Phillies is figuring out how to move his contract. The All-Star right-hander is owed $13 million in a vesting option next season, which will almost absolutely vest. However, it's hard to think a team wouldn't give him a one-year, $13 million deal if he became a free agent.
So, it still seems like as the deadline inches closer, a trade could happen, but for now, it is still far from being a sure thing.
Barry I. Faden
7/23/2015 08:12:26 am
Papelbon and Hamels would be a good fit with the the young phils' pitchers for 2016. Howard, Utley and Ruiz are yesterdays' news.
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