Phillies rumors: Club can still make a splash for Bryce Harper or Manny Machado

BALTIMORE, MD - JULY 10: Bryce Harper #34 of the Washington Nationals and Manny Machado #13 of the Baltimore Orioles talk during their game at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on July 10, 2015 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
BALTIMORE, MD - JULY 10: Bryce Harper #34 of the Washington Nationals and Manny Machado #13 of the Baltimore Orioles talk during their game at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on July 10, 2015 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) /
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The Phillies have made some major upgrades, but the latest Phillies rumors say they aren’t out on the big bats

Almost immediately after the Phillies signed outfielder Andrew McCutchen to a three-year contract the Phillies rumors began regarding their interest on Bryce Harper.

According to multiple beat writers, the Phillies are still in on signing Harper this offseason.

A similar message was dealt regarding free agent Manny Machado after the team acquired shortstop Jean Segura from Seattle.

phillies trade rumors
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – JULY 10: Andrew McCutchen #22 of the San Francisco Giants bats against the Chicago Cubs in the first inning at AT&T Park on July 10, 2018 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /

Philadelphia has yet to spend “stupid money” this offseason, something the owner has said they’re willing to do. While $50 million is a lot for McCutchen it doesn’t preclude John Middleton from keeping his checkbook open and signing a superstar.

The Phillies need a left-handed power bat to balance the lineup in 2019.

Their only projected left-handed position players are Nick Williams and Odubel Herrera, neither of whom has proven to provide consistent power.

Here’s a look a projected Phillies opening day lineup as it currently stands:

Philadelphia Phillies
Philadelphia Phillies /

Philadelphia Phillies

  1. Cesar Hernandez, S
  2. Jean Segura, R
  3. Odubel Herrera, L
  4. Rhys Hoskins, R
  5. Andrew McCutchen, R
  6. Nick Williams, L
  7. Maikel Franco, R
  8. Jorge Alfaro, R
  9. Aaron Nola, R

That’s incredibly right-handed heavy, and it’s clear they lack a southpaw power bat.

Here’s a look at a projected lineup with Harper in it:

  1. Cesar Hernandez, S
  2. Jean Segura, R
  3. Bryce Harper, L
  4. Rhys Hoskins, R
  5. Andrew McCutchen, R
  6. Odubel Herrera, L
  7. Maikel Franco, R
  8. Jorge Alfaro, R
  9. Aaron Nola, R

Yes, it’s still just two left-handed bats in the lineup, but Harper can realistically double William’s production.

The middle of that lineup looks scary and could put up 100 home runs alone next year if someone tops 40. Last year Hoskins and Harper each hit 34 home runs and McCutchen added 20. An advantage for McCutchen will come now that he’s out of San Francisco’s massive park.

A lot of Philadelphia writers have pushed that they think Machado is Matt Klentak’s white whale who is number one on their board. Machado would push Franco out and replace his right-handed bat and provide just as much pop as Harper, but the lineup would remain unbalanced.

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