Report: Red Sox Interested in Trade for Michael Young, Yankees a Fit

Report: Red Sox Interested in Trade for Michael Young, Yankees a Fit

As we get set to turn the calendar over to July, expect trade deadline discussion to intensify over the course of the next few weeks. The Phillies are still 7.5 games out of a playoff spot, and appear increasingly incapable of shifting out of neutral, losing again Saturday night 4-3 to the Dodgers.

One team that’s clearly looking to add at the deadline is the Red Sox. They’ve already been linked to Jonathan Papelbon, expensive closers being a luxury for sub-.500 ball clubs. Now the latest news has them in pursuit of Michael Young. According to George A. King III for the New York Post (via SB Nation), the Sox are “very interested” in the veteran infielder if he becomes available.

“They want him badly,’’ an industry source said of the Red Sox, who demoted the struggling Will Middlebrooks to the minors and are playing Jose Inglesias at third base.

Despite Boston’s seemingly high level of interest in Young, the story tends to focus on the Yankees, who also might be in the market for a third baseman. New York is mentioned here as a possible destination for Carlos Ruiz as well.

King says the Phillies had two scouts at Yankee Stadium last week, so it sure sounds like there could be some action there.

The Phillies acquired Young from Texas as a stopgap at third base after they declined to pick up Placido Polanco’s option. Young is a free agent at the end of the season, and the organization has prospects in the farm system – Cody Asche at Lehigh Valley and Maikel Franco at Reading.

In other words, if they aren’t making a run at the postseason he becomes expendable.

The Rangers agreed to pay all but $6 million of Young’s salary, so he’s attractive from a value standpoint. He does have a no-trade clause, but waived it once already to come to Philly.

What another general manager would be willing to part with to obtain the 36 year old is another matter. Kevin Cooney writes in today’s Courier Times that he may not fetch much in return. The Phillies sent relievers Josh Lindblom and Lisalverto Bonilla to Texas in the deal for Young.

Young has performed to about the level of expectations coming into this season. His .287 batting average is good for second in the clubhouse – one point behind Ben Revere – to go with five home runs and 21 runs batted in through 75 games. He is second in the National League with 16 groundout double plays however.

While GMs are leisurely pushing their shopping carts around the Phillies roster, much of what happens will be determined over the next few weeks. But once Ruben Amaro determines his team is out of contention, Michael Young should be high on the short list of players who can move.

>> Red Sox, Yankees eyeing Phillies’ Young [NY Post]
>> The Market Report: Will Phils wheel and deal? [Burbs]

The Phillies season in one video: 'Phanatic tries to comfort crying baby'

The Phillies season in one video: 'Phanatic tries to comfort crying baby'

What is there to say about the Philadelphia Phillies?

In doing my usual postgame perusal of the Internet after their 7-2 loss on Wednesday night, I visited Phillies.com to see what kind of "highlights" they could have possibly posted from another crushing defeat at the hands of the Colorado Rockies.

Thankfully, the first thing that caught my eye was a video titled, "Phanatic tries to comfort crying baby."

It was not Larry Andersen in the Phanatic's arms. Nor me.

And that's the Phillies season in a nutshell.

"You gotta question the parenting skills here," John Kruk said on the telecast. And he's right! What kind of parent would raise their kid to be a Philly sports fan?!?

The Phillies now have the worst record in all of baseball. They're 4-20 in their last 24 games. It's their worst start to a season since 1960.

Even the Phanatic doesn't have enough popcorn to mask all the pain.

If you want to read about the upbeat approach Pete Mackanin is taking, go give this a gander.

"In a long season, these things sometimes happen," Mackanin told reporters. "I remember Atlanta, the first half last year, was terrible. They had a real good second half. I believe we just need to get something going. We're going to put something together. I believe that."

That makes one of us.

Highly ranked 2018 recruit Brandon Slater verbally commits to Villanova

Highly ranked 2018 recruit Brandon Slater verbally commits to Villanova

The future of Villanova basketball just got brighter.

Brandon Slater, a 6-foot-6 wing and highly touted 2018 recruit, told Scout.com on Wednesday night that he has verbally committed to the Wildcats.

He later made the announcement on Twitter.

Among the 2018 recruiting class, Slater, a product of Paul VI Catholic High School in Fairfax, Virginia, is ranked in the top 30 by Scout.com and top 50 by ESPN.com. He's slated as a four-star talent by both media outlets.

Per ESPN, Slater had offers from Louisville, Maryland, Miami, Syracuse, USC and Virginia Tech. He is Villanova's first commitment for 2018.

"Going up there it just feels like a second home," Slater said, via Evan Daniels of Scout.com. "It gives me a good vibe. It's nothing like all the other schools. I just feel like a Villanova guy. It feels like PVI. It's already home."

Slater and Villanova head coach Jay Wright expressed their excitement on Twitter.