Despite previous statements in which he was boldly against trading his best players, Philadelphia Phillies GM Ruben Amaro seems to be changing his tune a bit.
In an interview with the Philadelphia Daily News, Amaro was quoted as saying:
“Even though (Utley) might be the most popular player, if there are things we have to do with some of these popular players that make our club better, then we have to keep our minds open.”
While this is a far cry from saying that Utley is definitely on his way out, the writing on the wall points to the definite possibility. Utley will be a free-agent at the end of the season, and if the Phillies can get any future value out of him, this would be the time to do it. Philly is currently 9.5 games behind the Braves in the NL East with a less-than-stellar 39-44 mark, and frankly, it’s not a roster that is likely to compete for a Wild Card spot into the fall.
There have been whispers around the league of interest in Utley from other teams, and teams like the Dodgers (with their unlimited payroll) could be looking to add an impact bat for the stretch run. Utley is still a fantastic asset when he’s healthy (.284/.348/.517 this season), and with that, he’d look great in basically any uniform.
The dynastic run in Philly is almost certainly finished, at least with the current core, and it’s time for Ruben Amaro and company to move on. Stay tuned.