Welcome to MLB trade deadline day and for the first time in seven years, the Phillies figure to be buyers.
The Phillies are 58-48 and despite losing four straight games, they have a 1/2-game lead over the Braves in the NL East.
Having already acquired Asdrubal Cabrera from the Mets, Phillies general manager Matt Klentak is still seeking upgrades at the trade deadline.
On Monday night, Jim Salisbury reported the Phillies have continued to monitor the starting pitching and outfield/bench market (see story). Some names Salisbury mentioned: Rangers LHP Mike Minor, Orioles OF Adam Jones and Blue Jays OF Curtis Granderson.
Corey Seidman broke down some other potential options here.
Stay with us as we round up all the Phillies trade rumors before the 4 p.m. deadline.
Complete coverage of the Fightin' Phils and their MLB rivals from NBC Sports Philadelphia.
Have the Nationals thrown in the towel? Perhaps. The Nationals are 5 1/2 games behind the Phillies in the NL East and Harper will be a free agent this winter.
According to MLB.com's Mark Feinsand, the Nationals have made former NL MVP and six-time All-Star available. From Feinsand:
"According to a source, the Nationals have let it be known that All-Star Bryce Harper is indeed available via trade, setting up what could be a wild race for the superstar with the 4 p.m. ET non-waiver Trade Deadline just hours away.
To be clear, this by no means indicates that the Nationals are committed to trading Harper today, though their willingness to listen to offers is a clear indication that general manager Mike Rizzo could become a major seller in the final hours leading up to the Deadline."
For what it's worth - probably not much - Fancred's Jon Heyman tweeted:
Harper still seems unlikely to be traded, but some rivals suggest the team to go for it should be Philly: 1. they have the $, threshold space. 2. they tried for Adam jones and other OF. 3. they are in 1st place. 4. they're expected to go hard for harper and/or machado this winter— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) July 31, 2018
Before we get carried away, it would take a king's ransom to acquire Harper. The Phillies chased Manny Machado before the Orioles traded him to the Dodgers, but Klentak made it clear the rental market isn't where he likes to shop (see story).
The Phillies have long desired Machado and there has been speculation that they'll chase both Machado and Harper this winter. If there is any credence to that, it would make sense for the Phillies to at least gauge Harper's availability today.
With all that said, Nationals GM Mike Rizzo has already dismissed those rumors - not that he'd be the first general manager to say he wasn't trading a guy right before trading a guy.
Mike Rizzo just reached out with this message:
"Bryce is not going anywhere. I believe in this team."— Chelsea Janes (@chelsea_janes) July 31, 2018
But let's not get our hopes up. Harper to the Phillies, at least today, seems like a very enjoyable pipe dream.
Per MLB.com's Jon Paul Morosi, the Phillies are one of three teams that have "varying levels of interest" in acquiring McCutchen from the Giants.
This one could actually make sense for the Phillies for a couple reasons (see story).
For one, the Phillies were interested in Jones but the Orioles outfielder wasn't ready to waive his no-trade rights. McCutchen does not have those rights. Both are in the final year of their contracts.
And secondly, while Nick Williams' emergence has shifted the Phillies' deadline needs, they still very much need a fourth outfielder.
McCutchen isn't the player he was when he won the NL MVP in 2013 and made five All-Star teams from 2011-2015, but he's a veteran bat who would be an instant upgrade to the Phillies' outfield and bench.
He would provide Phillies manager Gabe Kapler a potential platoon option with Odubel Herrera in center field and a right-handed bat off the bench with some pop.
McCutchen's 2018 stat line: .258/.352/.407, 10 home runs, 43 RBI and 24 doubles. He's played just right field with the Giants but spent the majority of his career in center.
Diekman, now 31, has a 3.69 ERA this season, with 37 scoreless outings in his 47 appearances. The former Phillie has reverse platoon splits this season. Lefties have hit .273 with a .429 OBP against Diekman this season while righties have hit .190.
Diekman is a free agent after the season.
Phillies are one of the teams to check in on Joey Bats. Mets won't trade him for nothing, however, as he's been a plus for them— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) July 30, 2018
Bautista, who was released earlier this season by the Braves, would an interesting fit as a fourth outfielder. He shouldn't cost much as far prospects and he isn't owed much for the rest of the season. The Mets already helped the Phillies out by sending over infielder Asdrubal Cabrera for prospect Franklyn Kilome, but will they help them again?
The 37-year-old hit just .143 with the Braves, but has been a little better with the Mets, hitting .233/.382/.421 with six homers and 24 RBI in 159 at-bats. He'd add some pop and is good at making pitchers work, something the Phillies value.
The Phillies acquired Ramos from the Tampa Bay Rays for a player to be named later or cash considerations. Corey Seidman has what the acquisition of Ramos means for the Phillies here.