Normally, the Phillies wouldn't consider trading one of their best players, but the team is in last place in the National League East and while it's only six games they trail heading into Tuesday's action, Philly doesn't have a whole lot of hope in 2014 with their aging and declining roster.
As a result, the Phillies will surely consider blowing things up and trading some of their more valuable pieces like Utley in order to build for the future.
Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Enquirer recently reported that Phillies president David Montgomery was open to the idea of dealing his veteran players, namely Utley:
"Is that something we are prepared to do? If that's the best thing for us, of course. Of course," Montgomery said. "The way he plays the game and everything, I'd love for him to to be wearing that uniform 20 years from now in some capacity."
While Montgomery certainly appears to want Utley to remain in Philly forever, simply opening the door to trading his second baseman like he did is evidence enough it will be possible to attain him. It can also be said that Montgomery's admiration for his player may mean the team's president will want to send Utley to a team with a much better chance to win than his own.
The 35-year-old saw his overall stock drop considerably after battling injuries from 2010-12, but he rebounded nicely to play in 131 games in 2013 and he's continued his healthy roll by playing in 71 of his team's 75 games in 2014.
Now that he appears healthy, there isn't much to worry about when it comes to the veteran infielder.
Utley is producing with five homers and 33 RBI while posting a .295 average to go along with his solid defense. Not to mention, Utley is a left-handed bat and would abuse the short right-field porch at Yankee Stadium.
By comparison, the Yanks have been sending Brian Roberts to second base every day, who is hitting just .239 with two homers and 14 RBI. Utley would be an instant upgrade for New York and he'd be a great fit as a veteran joining a veteran ballclub.
— connor (@connorgucci69) June 20, 2014
The important question: how much will he cost?
A package with some mid-level to lower-level prospects would likely get it done, although nothing is for certain when factoring in other teams that will be in the mix. Nevertheless, Utley is an option the Yanks should explore, at least.
Utley's contract runs through 2015 with some vesting options in the years to follow, so even if the Yanks have to give up something to get him, Utley won't be bolting anytime soon unless his body gives out on him.
Bats will be scarce at the trade deadline—or at least those that can make a serious impact—and the Yanks would be wise to jump on this potential opportunity if it presents itself. Roberts isn't cemented in at his position because he simply hasn't cut it offensively this season and Utley would be the right man to replace him.
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