Oh, yeah? "Trades?" I don't remember that in the baseball handbook. Chris Humphreys-US PRESSWIRE

Phillies Sparking Trade Rumors Faster Than the Speed of Blogs

Anybody trying to keep up with this nonsense today is going to wind up tasting blood by dinner time.  So let’s break this down for a real quick mid day rehash.

Hunter Pence

How will they trade me if I refuse to give up my BAT?! Ha ha ha. Gary A. Vasquez-US PRESSWIRE

Status:  Not a Giant

Early this morning, we were greeted with the “news” that Hunter Pence was a “Giant” in exchange for “???”  As the most aggressively dangled Phillie, it’s becoming easier and easier to believe that Pence is on his way out, despite the knowledge that there is no way in every circle of baseball hell that the Phillies can make back what they lost when they traded for him.

He’d be a salary dump, as would all of these moves, that’s kind of the point, but the absence of functioning outfielders in the Phillies’ roster makes this move kind of a cartoonish harbinger of doom for the remainder of 2012.  Which is what a lot of people imagined anyway, baseball or otherwise.

So, the rumors were denied and–oh wait.  No, now they’re true.  Or like, partially true.

Joe Blanton

Status:  Definitely traded from the Phillies, again

Remember that time the Phillies were dealing Blanton to the Red Sox since they re-got Cliff Lee?  Remember what an exciting front office time that was?  This is different.  Mainly because now rumors swirl of both Blanton and Lee being dealt.  Ha, ha, ha.

The Orioles are sniffing around Joe Blanton, and like with the Polanco-sniffing they were doing not too long ago, the Phillies hold the cheapest option to fill an Orioles’ need.  They’ve taken their top two prospects off the table, so maybe we can see Jim Thome return to Philly!

According to Orioles’ beat writing, the O’s are “casting a wide net,” but fortunately, that’s the only kind of net that could catch Joe Blanton.

That was so horribly mean and unnecessary, I don’t even respect myself anymore.  But these are turbulent times and we’re all saying things we don’t mean.  Like, “the Phillies are shopping Cliff Lee.”  That’s obviously untrue.

Cliff Lee

Status:  Do we have time to say good bye?  No?

Hey, great.

Well, this would be about money, like I said.  Hopefully it’s not about thinking Cliff Lee just isn’t Cliff Lee anymore.  But maybe the Phillies aren’t trying to be at pitching-heavy anymore.  Maybe they realize what they could do with an improved, younger team and Roy Halladay/Cole Hamels leading the rotation.

Who knows.  What we do know is that these guys might know something we don’t.  A Cliff Lee-back-to-the-Rangers deal could get us the trendy name of the year, 3B prospect Mike Olt.  But why would that happen?  The Phillies have said they are leaving their rotation alone.

What’s that?  They might do it anyway?  By tomorrow afternoon?

But…

Juan Pierre

Status:  A wanted man.  It seems.

Okay so the Reds think Pierre is a “great fit” for their clubhouse and “perfect” for their stretch run.  Apparently this has been going on since June.  Apparently they don’t want to be able to throw guys out or run as fast as they used to during their stretch run.

Well, you know what?  With all the mystery still surrounding the trade deadline–and really the only mysteries left on the season–it’s nice to know one thing for certain:  The Phillies are sellers at the trade deadline.  Which we can say now that the trade deadline is basically here.

Hey, anybody else taste blood?

UPDATE, LITERALLY 20 SECONDS LATER:  Phillies want Shin Soo-Choo now.

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