Phillies still trying hard for Hunter Pence

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While there’s some thought out there that they’ve soured on a potential Carlos Beltran deal, the Phillies have been the most aggressive suitors for Houston’s Hunter Pence, FOXSports.com’s Ken Rosenthal reports.

Rosenthal also tweets that the Red Sox have inquired about Pence, but that they’ve had a tough time finding a match with the Astros, and that the Braves aren’t currently involved in the chase.

The Astros will want an awful lot for Pence, but the Phillies have exactly the type of player Houston should desire in return in Domonic Brown.  The Phillies won’t part with Brown for two months of Carlos Beltran, but two years and two months of Pence could be a different story.  Pence will get expensive in arbitration, but he’s not going to be a free agent until after the 2013 season.

Pence has hit .308/.356/.470 with 11 homers and 62 RBI this season.  With his name involved in trade rumors, he has struggled since the All-Star break, going 6-for-36 in 10 games.

 

Report: Blue Jays and Royals making progress on a Francisco Liriano trade

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Jon Morosi reports that the Blue Jays and Royals are making progress on a trade involving starter Francisco Liriano. Morosi notes that other teams are still involved with the Jays on Liriano as well.

Liriano, 33, has struggled mightily this season. He carries a 5.99 ERA with a 70/42 K/BB ratio over 76 2/3 innings. By most metrics, this is one of the worst seasons of the lefty’s career.

The Royals acquired a trio of pitchers earlier this week from the Padres: Brandon Maurer, Ryan Buchter, and Trevor Cahill. Adding Liriano would bolster the team’s rotation depth but might not do much beyond that.

Despite a sluggish start to the season, the Royals went 17-9 in June and are 14-8 in July to put themselves right back in the thick of things in the AL Central. They’re just one and a half games behind the first-place Indians, which explains their aggressiveness leading up to Monday’s non-waiver trade deadline.

The Marlins are open to trading starter Dan Straily

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Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports reports that the Miami Marlins are “now open to trading” starter Dan Straily.

Straily is controllable through 2020 and is a solid mid-to-back rotation starter, so you’d think the Marlins would want to hang on to him, but given that all of the starting pitching available right now comes with a high price tag, the Marlins could probably get a lot in return if they were to deal him.

Straily has a 3.84 ERA and a 107/33 K/BB ratio in 117 1/3 innings this season.