Philadelphia Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard is usually the first person you hear Philly fans complain about, but it’s second baseman Chase Utley who is getting more of the blame these days. He has struggled mightily from the plate this season and his value on the field and on the trade market has not been lower than what it is right now.
That being said, Utley is “more open” to waiving his no-trade rights in order to facilitate a deal to a team in California, according to a report from Jayson Stark of ESPN.com.
As stated above, Utley’s value right now is at an all-time low and it may make him untradeable. Utley is likely to find his swing and get back on track, so it could make him an intriguing buy low option for a contending team in California.
A possible trade partner is the San Diego Padres, who are making plenty of moves in general manager A.J. Preller’s first season with the team. Their current starting second baseman, Jedd Gyorko, is hitting only .163 with zero home runs and three RBI. If he’s able to get back on track, Utley would be a huge upgrade for a Padres team with World Series aspirations.
The Giants and Dodgers have both been mentioned as potential suitors for Utley but it’s unlikely either team would heavily pursue a deal for him given their current situations at second base.
If Utley is able to turn it around, it’s very easy to see a deal happening. If he is unable to turn it around, it’s very unlikely a trade goes through. It is clear that general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. may have just missed out on a prime opportunity to get the Phillies one step deeper into the rebuilding process.
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