In my opinion, either Hunter Pence or Carlos Beltran would be a great addition to the Phillies roster as they push for a World Series championship. Charlie Manuel has said over and over he'd want somebody who is a clear upgrade. Beltran rumors today point toward him landing with the Giants, which leaves Pence as the Phillies prime target.
The problem there, as we've surmised all along, is that the Astros don't really want to deal him. Which means they want to be blown out of the water. Jayson Stark reports what he believes the Phillies offered:
"But if they're offered a package built around high-end young pitching, they'll listen. So it's believed the Phillies structured a deal around their best hitting prospect, first baseman Jonathan Singleton, and their best pitching prospect, Jarred Cosart -- both of whom are playing for Single-A Clearwater -- plus another second-tier pitching prospect. But the Astros have been telling clubs they need four sure-thing players if they deal Pence. And the Phillies haven't shown a willingness to strip their system that bare, or to include rookie starter Vance Worley in any trade."
That's a pretty hefty bunch of prospects with Cosart and Singleton, two guys highly regarded in the Phillies system. But at the end of the day, they're just prospects. Prospects are never a sure thing in the bigs.
Pence seems like a longshot based on Stark's analysis, but Jim Salisbury believes Ruben Amaro Jr. is under tremendous pressure to win it all now, and that he may need to go the extra mile to get a deal for Pence done.
Adding Pence sounds nice and easy, but it is not. He will cost big
talent, young talent, the kind that can come back and bite a team in the
backside down the road. But it is a sacrifice that must be made because
Phillies management has to do everything it can to ensure that this
team is in position to bring home a title in October. It’s all up to the
players in October, but management has to make sure it puts the best
possible players on the field.
Ahhh, I don't know what to think. Singleton, Cosart, and even Dom Brown seem to have such a bright future in Philadelphia. But, that's the future. What about October?
The pressure is on. How much are you willing to give up for Pence?