This time last year, the Philadelphia Phillies were one of the bottom dwellers in the N.L. East with a record of 24-50. However, things have completely turned around this season under new manager Gabe Kapler.
Heading into the final game of their three-game series with the Washington Nationals, the Phillies have a record of 41-33 and are 1.5 games out of first place in the N.L. East. They have also won four consecutive series in the month of June.
One of their reasons for success as of late has been the play of third baseman Maikel Franco. The 25-year-old slugger struggled to begin the season, but in the Phillies last seven games, he is slashing .389/.450/.611 with a home run and five RBI.
With that being known, other teams around the majors may want possibly look at acquiring the young third baseman. One of those teams could be the San Diego Padres, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.
Rosenthal mentioned that the Padres are interested in Franco, but the Phillies would need to acquire someone else to play shortstop or third base. This season, Franco is batting .255 with nine home runs and 37 RBI.
Last week, Jon Paul Morosi of MLB.com reported that the Phillies along with the Cleveland Indians are interested in the services of Texas Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre. Even though he is 39-year old, Beltre is still playing at a high level, slashing .314/.365/.456 with four home runs and 25 RBI.
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Morosi added that the Phillies officials value Beltre's professionalism, production and see him as a long-term value for the young squad.
Just like San Diego, the Rangers are struggling this season too and could be looking to acquire young talent at next month's trade deadline.
Nevertheless, it should be interesting to see what the Phillies do in terms of next month's deadline. With the way they are playing, all signs point to them being a buyer as they have a shot at winning the N.L. East or a wild card spot.
The question that remains, however, is what will they have to give up to acquire an extra bat or an arm in the bullpen?