Phillies consider signing Michael Cuddyer a “middle priority”

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The Phillies met with free agent outfielder Michael Cuddyer a few days ago in the City of Brotherly Love, giving him a tour of Citizens Bank Park and taking him out to a lunch attended by multiple front office officials. But their interest in signing him to a long-term contract is not as high as you might think.

Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe spoke this weekend to a source with knowledge of the Phillies’ offseason strategy. And that source said this:

“[Cuddyer is] about a middle priority. They’d love to have him, but the Phillies aren’t going to go crazy to make it happen, either.’’

In other words, that meet-and-greet was more of a feeler than anything. If Cuddyer’s market isn’t flush with suitors and his asking price drops, the Phillies might pounce and make him their new starting left fielder (and part-time first baseman). But for now they’re simply monitoring talks. Cuddyer, who turns 33 in March, batted .284/.346/.459 with 20 homers and 70 RBI in 584 plate appearances this past season for Minnesota.