Just like last year, the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline is fast approaching and the Phillies are standing motionless, arms akimbo, a plethora of marketable assets to either side. GM Ruben Amaro could have gotten value out of soon-to-be free agent Carlos Ruiz, third baseman Michael Young, outfielder Delmon Young, reliever Mike Adams, and bench players John Mayberry and Kevin Frandsen. It wasn’t until the final day of August, the waiver trade deadline that Amaro finally sprung into action, swapping Young for Dodgers minor league pitcher Rob Rasmussen and utility infielder John McDonald for Red Sox minor league pitcher Nefi Ogando.
Would the Phillies likely have received any franchise-defining players if Amaro had traded all of the aforementioned players? Probably not, but you always take a lottery ticket if it’s free. Instead, the Phillies released Delmon Young on August 14 and Frandsen at the end of spring training this year, getting nothing instead of something. Ruiz was signed to a questionable three-year deal and Adams stayed around only to suffer a predictable injury. The Phillies were actually hurt by Amaro’s statuesque performance at the deadline last summer.