I don’t know about all you, but I for one am tired of hearing the Phillies won’t, wouldn’t, or shouldn’t sign or trade for a player due to “not being in contention” for another year or so.
Recently, two stories have stuck out to me. Signing Jake Arrieta and trading for Manny Machado. I am not trying to take anything away from the 2-year deal for Pat Neshek. I am actually a big fan of Neshek and the signing.
Contention? How does one team improve to become contenders? Call me crazy, but along with growing your farm club shouldn’t all outlets be considered for improving? We are talking about adding a solid pitcher behind Aaron Nola and a 25-year-old All Star 3rd baseman. Let’s face it, Franco is mediocre. How do those two additions not get you closer to contending? In fact, how doesn’t that make you a contender now?
Trading for Machado of course does come with some big question marks. Will the team be able to extend Manny to a long-term deal? How many prospects along with a possible Galvis/Hernandez will it take to get Manny? The answers to those questions could be deal breakers in the end. If no extension, no trade. If the price tag is too steep, no trade. Let us not forget Machado is a free agent following the 2018 season. The Phillies could keep all their prospects and just throw money at the situation. Which isn’t a bad idea in theory. But that doesn’t guarantee that you get your player of choice.
Signing Arrieta is a low risk, high reward type of move in my eyes. Nola and Arrieta going back-to-back could solidify the top of your rotation. This, to me, is a no brainer at the right price.
Think of this, just as a business opportunity. You get a pitcher 2 years off of winning a Cy Young in Arrieta, and a stud 3rd baseman in Machado. Along with up and coming star Rhys Hoskins and Ace pitcher Aaron Nola, tickets sales and merchandise will skyrocket!
In my opinion, when these opportunities come along, you take advantage of them. Although, agreed, there are hurdles along the way to make sure you’re bettering the team long term verses not just adding rental pieces. These are moves you must take a good hard look at before pulling the trigger. If this is not happening, then what in the hell is Matt Klentak even doing at these Winter Meetings anyway?