Two things are clear from Jon Paul Morosi’s latest MLB rumor column over at Fox Sports. First, the Philadelphia Phillies are interested in potentially adding Royals outfielder Melky Cabrera at the deadline to secure another bat for the stretch run. Second, Cabrera is closer to Carlos Beltran’s numbers than you might believe. Uh, what?
I’m not sure what Morosi is smoking, but let’s be honest here on a couple of counts. First of all, Beltran was an All-Star outfielder just last week (or so) who has a .917 OPS and leads the major leagues in doubles with 30. He’s hitting .293 and slugging .528 and is the best bat available at the major league deadline.
On the contrary, Cabrera is hitting a respectable .294, but he’s slugging at 80 points less and has a .787 OPS. Again, his totals are certainly respectable and a much better economical buy than Beltran at the deadline, but there’s no way a team willing to go hard after a major attraction like Beltran is going to feel okay winning second place. The two outfielders aren’t even in the same category.
As for the Phillies, any indication that they’re in a must-buy mode is a bit off, given their current scenario. Raul Ibanez has been hitting better in the last month, as has Dominic Brown and Shane Victorino just came off of the DL. They could certainly use another hitter for some help, but they’re not the desperate club they’re made out to be in the media since their hitters have been better than advertised over the last four weeks.
Melky Cabrera might get traded in the end, and the team that scores the center fielder should be pleased as the Royals have been so far this season. But any ideas that they’re getting a solid Beltranesque player are simply unfounded, and it’s ridiculous to say so in the first place.