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December 9 2006

The Rangers signed former Phil Marlon Byrd.  Byrd could help Texas, who has been considered a potential trading partner in a Rowand deal,  in center field.  Byrd's .327 career on-base percentage (or his .373 career slugging percentage) could contribute to Texas still feeling they need help at the position.

Consensus seems to be that the Phillies will hold onto Rowand now that they managed to land Garcia without having to give him up.  That doesn't make sense to me if you believe that three days ago they were looking to deal Rowand in a sequence of moves that had them winding up with Garcia, pen help and a right fielder.  They still need pen help and a right fielder.  Shane Victorino would still be among with worst offensive players in the league at right field, and a cheaper and perhaps better option than Rowand in center.  So I'm guessing we haven't heard the last of the trade rumors about Rowand.

Either way, it's nice to see some of the potential center fielders scooped up in a market where they're scarce.  Jay Payton is another one who may be off the table, he looks headed to Baltimore.  Willy Taveras is one of those still on the table.

Charlie Manuel and Dallas Green are apparently dramatically not on the same page about Pat Burrell among other things.  That article also says that a Ryan Church deal with the Nats was a no-go because Washington wanted Gio Gonzalez. 

How 'bout the Phillies keep the six starters they have and move Cole Hamels to the pen until someone gets hurt?  It's not likely, but I don't think it's a terrible idea if they can't get value for Lieber.  They need a lefty in the pen and Hamel's age and his workload last season has to scare you.  Even if they're not going to do it they might as well say they might.

This piece points out that you couldn't really put Eaton in the pen after promising him a role as a starter.  And I don't think there's any way they would put anyone with the experience of Moyer, Lieber, Myers or Garcia there either.  Hamels is a different story.

You have to wonder if everyone knowing the Phillies have one too many starters and have to trade one is going to make it harder to find a good deal.  The problem is that whether everyone knows it or not, they do need to make a trade.  They've got issues they still need to address in the pen, in right and at catcher, and the free agent market is drying up.

Ken Williams wants everyone to remember he's made some good trades, too.

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