On Monday, as expected, the Philadelphia Phillies placed several players on waivers with the possibility that they could be claimed.
On waivers today: Rest of the relevant #Phillies: Byrd, Papelbon, Rollins, Utley, Hamels, Ruiz. They will clear (or not) on Wednesday.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) August 4, 2014
Two of those players the Yankees had strong interest in last month at the trade deadline; Hamels, who was offered by the Phillies to the New York Yankees for at least several prospects, and Byrd, whom the Phillies wanted top outfield prospect Aaron Judge for and were told no on.
Now, those two guys are on waivers today, or at least until Wednesday before they clear and could be traded at anytime and given the Yankees need for both pitching and offense, they could be in the market to claim both of these guys. The only question is now; do the Yankees try to make claims on both players?
Hamels makes all the sense for their rotation for right now and for the future, although the issue is if another team with a worse record (Boston Red Sox) or in the National League (Los Angeles Dodgers) beat the Yankees to it and try to claim him first; both Boston and Los Angeles were offered Hamels by Philly and rejected the offer as well, so if the Yankees could get away with claiming him and offered to take on the rest of his $103 million contract without giving up prospects, they might be for it.
Byrd could be a realistic target to get claimed too, although it's not sure if other teams would be interested in dealing for him as well. Last year, Byrd was dealt in August from the New York Mets to the Pittsburgh Pirates as they were loading up for offense for the postseason, so it could be a bit of deja vu all over again if Philadelphia deals him to the Yankees if he is claimed on waivers by them.
With both of these players, if it's a matter of eating salary, that's not an issue for the team, but it's prospects that complicate things because the Yankees are hesitant on dealing what they have and don't have as strong of prospects as other teams do on the market, so for the Yankees sake, if they want Hamels and/or Byrd, they can only hope the Phillies are looking to just dump salary going forward.
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