Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr. said last week that he would be aggressive this offseason, and he did just that, as he signed free agent outfielder Marlon Byrd to a two year, $16 million deal earlier today.
Tonight, Howard Eskin from Fox News in Philadelphia, is reporting that the Phillies are working on a major trade involving Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista and Phillies outfielder Domonic Brown. Eskin did not mention other players being discussed, but I am sure if Brown is involved, the Phillies would be getting a few more players, possibly catcher J.P. Arencibia.
Here are a few tweets from Eskin:
Jose Batista fits 4 #phillies. Under contract for 2 more yrs. Phils would have more balance from right side also after signing Marlon Byrd— Howard Eskin (@howardeskin) November 13, 2013
I really cant believe Amaro Jr. would make this deal, but do understand he wants to balance his lineup with a few more right handed hitters to team up with Ryan Howard and Chase Utley.
Dealing for the 33 year old Bautista definitely makes the Phillies an older team, and Bautista certainly hasn't been the picture of health over the last few seasons, as he missed 70 games in 2012, and 44 games in 2013. Bautista provides the Phillies with a solid right handed power bat to team with Byrd, but he is coming off a hip injury, so how that injury impacts his power remains to be seen. It was recently reported that he was cleared to begin working out.
Bautista's fantasy value improves a bit as a result of this deal as he moves to a slightly better hitters park, as Citizen's Bank Park was the best hitters park for home runs in 2013, increasing home run output by 52%, while the Rogers Centre increased home runs by 29% last season.
Brown had a break out season in 2013, so his fantasy value remains the same for me, as he finally got the chance to play every day, and put up a solid season in his first full season in the big leagues, hitting .272 with 27 HRs, 65 runs, 83 RBI and 8 stolen bases.
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