The Phillies have other options besides Roy Halladay, most notably the Cleveland Indians left-hander Cliff Lee, writes Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com
Rosenthal says that while Halladay is still of course the Phillies main target he still believes the team is keeping their options open. When asked if the Phillies were still interested in Cliff Lee a Phillies official said, "We have many balls in the air. And we are still looking for top-of-the-rotation help."
- The Phillies don't seem interested in second tier starters (i.e. Doug Davis & Erik Bedard)
- Halladay on the surface may be far less attractive than Lee simply because he is owed twice as much money
- The Indians know without Lee they won't be able to compete next season. In order for them to move him it would have to be a "knock out" deal.
- A deal for Lee would have to start with a major league ready pitcher, possibly J.A. Happ.
- The Phillies shouldn't be fooled by their commanding lead in the N.L. East, they rank 13th in the NL in rotation ERA.
- Don't believe the idea that the Phillies can't make a deal without Kyle Drabek or Dominic Brown. Some scouts believe Class A right-hander Jason Knapp is better than Drabek. The same scout said he would be comfortable taking Class A outfielder Anthony Gose or Class AAA outfielder Michael Taylor, if they couldn't get Brown.
- Another scout said of Taylor, "Michael Taylor is a beast. 6-foot-6, 250 pounds of athleticism and strength. Smart. Competitive. Throwback. Teammates call him 'The Renaissance Man.'"
Rosenthal also talks about the Reds, saying they are probably going to try to move some pitching before the deadline.
- Possible trade pieces include Bronson Arroyo, Aaron Harang and Francisco Cordero.
- All three will be difficult to trade because of expensive contracts. Harang and Arroyo are signed through 2010 and Cordero through '11 at salaries ranging from $9.5 million to $12 million.
- Right-handed reliever David Weathers ($3.9 million) and lefty Arthur Rhodes ($2 million this season and $2 million in '10) are more reasonably priced, however, each is going to turn 40 this year.
- Reds more likely to move someone like Arroyo in the offseason
- A Reds scout attended a Dodgers Single-A game Monday night. The Dodgers are knowingly seeking bullpen help.
Here are some other random news and notes from Rosenthal.
- A's right-hander Michael Wuertz and Indians right-hander Rafael Betancourt are drawing some serious attention.
- The Giants might be a good fit for Matt Holliday.
- A's shortstop Orlando Cabrera recent revival makes him a possible trade candidate.
- The Mariners are a team that will most likely wait till the August waiver deadline before making a deal.
- The Phillies will continue to pursue a right-handed hitter, maybe the Rockies Ryan Spilborghs.