Report: Everybody Loves Michael Young

Report: Everybody Loves Michael Young

We’ve already heard a report that the Red Sox might be interested in trade for Phillies’ third baseman Michael Young, and also that the Yankees could be a fit as well. Well if Ken Rosenthal is correct, there are a dozen or so teams that could be trying to swing a deadline deal to acquire the seven-time All-Star’s services.

In a report filed to FOXSports.com, Rosenthal described the interest in Young around the league as “intense” on Tuesday, adding the number of teams that have already contacted the Phillies has reached double digits. Here’s more:

Young, 36, is batting .288 with a .759 OPS after joining the Phillies in an offseason trade from his longtime team, the Texas Rangers. The Red Sox would play Young at third base. The Yankees, another interested team, could play him at third and first. Other clubs, sources say, would use Young at least part-time at second, which he last played in 2012 and last played regularly in ‘03.

The demand for Young is rising in part because of the shortage of quality right-handed hitters on the trade market. The Phillies, however, have no obvious internal replacement for Young, particularly if they plan to overtake the Braves in the National League East.

Aside from his right-handed bat, it’s clear Young is also attractive to buyers because of his versatility in the infield. Besides being able to play second and third, he’s also made a few appearances at first base for Philadelphia in 2013.

As for Rosenthal’s claim that the Phils have no obvious replacement for Young, that may not be entirely true. Kevin Frandsen has been an absolute treat coming off of the bench this season, and even going back to his call-up last summer. Over at The Good Phight, the argument has been made Frandsen is actually having a better season than Young at the plate.

That’s difficult to dispute, although I would be concerned about how Frandsen would hold up playing every day over the remainder of the season. His gritty style of play can be very punishing on his body. If Frandsen were to become an everyday player, it also shortens the Fightins’ bench, unless Freddy Galvis can recapture his stroke from earlier this season.

That said, if the Phillies want to give it one last shot with this core, the front office may have to get creative. Their relief pitching simply is not good enough to go deep, but most would say Ruben Amaro Jr. isn’t in a position to be moving certain or (m)any prospects at all, while there are few if any tradable commodities on the 25-man roster who have viable replacements. Moving Young might be their best chance at patching up up the bullpen for a postseason run.

Young also has a full no-trade clause, so we don’t know how that will come into play.

Of course, what happens in the less-than two weeks to follow the All-Star break could determine the Phillies’ course of action anyhow. One thing is for certain right now though, and that is Michael Young is in demand.

>> Young drawing heavy trade interest [FOX]

Rookies Keegan Rosenberry, Fabian Herbers help Union top Crew

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Rookies Keegan Rosenberry, Fabian Herbers help Union top Crew

BOX SCORE

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Rookies Keegan Rosenberry and Fabian Herbers scored to help the Philadelphia Union beat the Columbus Crew 2-1 on Wednesday night.

Rosenberry gave the Union (10-9-7) a 2-1 lead in the 74th minute. Tranquillo Barnetta one-timed a feed to Rosenberry who trapped it with his right foot and blasted a left-footer through a pair of defenders and past goalkeeper Steve Clark.

Herbers, making his fifth start of the season, opened the scoring in the 60th. Chris Pontius tapped it to Herbers who, from the top of the box, had a shot blocked by Hector Jimenez before side-netting the rebound. Both of his two career goals have come against Columbus (4-9-11).

Adam Jahn tied it in the 73rd minute. Tony Tchani's header, off the corner by Federico Higuain, was deflected off the crossbar by goalkeeper Andre Blake and -- after a failed clearance by the Union -- Jahn tapped it in from close range.

It was the Union's third consecutive home win.

Columbus has one win in its last 11 matches.

Source: Phillies have gotten trade 'nibbles' on Carlos Ruiz

Source: Phillies have gotten trade 'nibbles' on Carlos Ruiz

CHICAGO — Another trade deadline arrives next Wednesday.

Could a Phillies veteran such as Ryan Howard or Carlos Ruiz, the lone holdovers from the 2008 World Series championship team, be on the move?

ESPN reports that both players have cleared waivers, which would make them eligible to be dealt. Players traded after Aug. 1 must first clear waivers. They have to be on a new team’s roster by Sept. 1 to gain postseason eligibility. Players traded after Sept. 1 are not eligible for the postseason.

Howard has been available for a trade for a couple of seasons, but there has been no interest. Even now, with him hitting .339 with seven homers, 16 RBIs and a .742 slugging percentage since the All-Star break (entering Wednesday), there remains little interest, according to sources. Howard is still owed about $16 million in the form of salary and a $10 million contract buyout for 2017, but that would not be an impediment to a deal as the Phils would eat that. Still, it’s unlikely he will be traded because most of the American League contenders are set at designated hitter, which would be his optimal role.

So, Howard, 36, is likely to play out the final year of his contract with the Phils, take his well-earned bows and exit either to retirement or a new team next season. He says he wants to keep playing.

Ruiz, 37, is also in the final year of his contract. Like Howard, he has swung the bat well recently, hitting .298 with a .433 on-base percentage in his last 26 games. He’s a backup catcher at this stage of his career, but that could appeal to a team like Cleveland or Boston, contenders who could be in the market for catching depth.

A baseball source said the Phillies have received some recent “nibbles” on Ruiz. It’s unclear if a deal will reach the finish line.

As players with 10 seasons in the majors and five consecutive with the same team, Howard and Ruiz both have the power to block a trade. It’s doubtful that either would because both have stated that their goal is to play in the postseason again.

“I’m still happy here,” Ruiz said. “We’ll see what happens. If that happens, it happens. If it doesn't, I'm going to play.”

Howard has taken the same attitude.

“Those are situations where I guess you’ve got to see what presents itself,” he said. “You know me. The last 12 years I’ve just been focused on playing ball. If it presents itself, it presents itself. You handle that situation. Otherwise, I just try to stay in the moment, stay in the now and prepare for the game.”

Trace McSorley named Penn State's starting quarterback

Trace McSorley named Penn State's starting quarterback

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. — Trace McSorley will start at quarterback for Penn State when the Nittany Lions open against Kent State on Sept 3.

Coach James Franklin settled on the sophomore after McSorley battled redshirt freshman Tommy Stevens for the job through the spring and summer.

"We're excited what he brings to our offense," Franklin said Wednesday. "I think the biggest thing is he's been the backup quarterback for two years. He has game experience and there's value in that. You've been able to see it already, you're not projecting as much."

McSorley will make his first career start at home against Kent State.

"It's a lot of weight off my shoulders," McSorley said. "Over the whole offseason, Tommy and I were pushing each other. This team will be better because of how this competition went with us pushing each other."

Both quarterbacks are strong runners, but McSorley's experience gave him the edge.

His shiftiness was utilized in practice throughout his tenure as Christian Hackenberg's backup. He usually led the scout team against the top defense, offering a similar look to the opposing running quarterbacks Penn State would play.

Although he's played sparingly on Saturdays in that time, McSorley saw meaningful snaps in Penn State's bowl game in relief of an injured Hackenberg. Then, McSorley completed 14 of 17 passes for 142 yards and two touchdowns, ran seven times for 31 yards and nearly led a comeback against Georgia.

Now, McSorley will try and turn around a unit that's ranked 105th and 114th in total offense the last two seasons. He'll do so in a spread-based offense designed for a mobile quarterback and led by new offensive coordinator Joe Moorhead.

"I think the best thing about the way he runs the ball is he's savvy," linebacker Jason Cabinda said. "He sets up his cuts. You play a guy who's a statue in the pocket and you cover well, he gets sacked. Now we have another element. Not only do you have to worry about covering guys, but when that four or five seconds is up there's that option of scrambling, another aspect of the play you have to worry about."