Shane Victorino. Yes, he had a good road trip. More importantly, he has been much too worried about his contract all year. He'll command about nine to twelve million per year instead of 12-18 million because of his down year. My call: I'm leaning toward trading once Nix returns (COMING SOON!) and we see if Mayberry and Pridie can platoon in center. However, he's worth keeping on an arbitration-only deal as we develop players, including Brown. Next year, Manuel might try a platoon of Brown and Mayberry in center and left field along with Nix who signed a two-year deal last offseason. Speaking of Nix, he is close to returning.
Hunter Pence. Easy call: you keep him. Why? We got rid of FOUR good prospects to get him and he is under arbitration for another year. He had a stellar road trip: two clutch, two-run singles with the bases loaded. That's what he failed to do in the first half of the season, especially before Utley came back. You cannot trade a guy that quickly and he's a great piece to have in the five & six spot the rest of the year.
Joe Blanton and Kyle Kendrick. Joe's owed $3.6MM the rest of the year. KK's owed about $4MM this year and next. I'd say give a spot start or two to Cloyd (HE IS READY!), and if he passes, trade one of these guys for a prospect. You can add Victorino to the mix and get three prospects. This trade would function to make the team younger and it might free-up about $3MM in salary cap space. Heck, the plan is to say bye to Joe this winter, so why not get prospects and give Cloyd a shot?
Cliff Lee. Here's a challenge. Send him back to Texas? No way, but if you can get Mike Olt as part of a major package, the least the Phils should do is listen. Ultimately, Im against it, but I consider (1) the age - Lee is 34 and Hamels is 28 - and (2) that Halladay is 35 and just finished a seven-week stint on the DL. Hamels would be 34 or 35 when his deal is up. I wouldn't be too happy, but if you are able to sign Hamels right now and get Olt, then the Phillies should consider it.
Cole Hamels. Catch-22: Are you able to resign him in the off-season? Predict the future and make the right call, Ruben and you'd be a hero. This is touchy. My call: keep and resign is more likely but I'd like to get some more out of it than two extra picks in the first two days. If you extend him, it;s over. If not, begin negotiating for a large package and get the deal done by 7/27. A large package is probable.
Forgot Rollins and Polly. Not sure there.