Phillies “actively trying to move” Placido Polanco

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Reports that the Phillies are strongly pursuing free agent third base Aramis Ramirez apparently have some legs, because according to Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com they’re “actively trying to move” incumbent third baseman Placido Polanco.

Polanco still has $7.25 million remaining on a three-year, $18 million contract that was widely panned at the time and is coming off a career-worst season in which he missed 40 games with various injuries. He’s also 36 years old, so the Phillies would likely have to eat at least some of his salary and take back a marginal prospect to get a deal done.

From a purely on-field standpoint keeping Polanco around in a utility role would make sense even after signing Ramirez, but obviously a $7.25 million part-time player is a tough fit for even the Phillies’ massive payroll.

The Mets expect Tim Tebow to come back next year

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Mets assistant general manager John Ricco told Newsday today that he expects minor league outfielder Tim Tebow to return for a third season in professional baseball.

Tebow, 31, broke the hamate bone in his right hand while swinging a bat in late July, ending his season. It was a fairly successful season for him all things considered. After being promoted to Double-A Binghamton to start the year he hit .273/.336/.399 with six home runs, a stolen base and a .734 OPS in 298 plate appearances and made the Double-A All-Star team. That’s not the stuff of a top prospect — he strikes out far too much and the power numbers aren’t fantastic given that power would figure to be his strongest tool — but it’s pretty respectable for a guy his age and with his relative lack of baseball experience. As I said back in July, you can believe the Mets’ interest in Tebow is more marketing than baseball, but that does not preclude you from giving the guy a deserved tip of the cap for working hard and sticking it out in the bush leagues.

Assuming he does come back, the Mets are likely to start him at Triple-A Syracuse in the hopes that he’d eventually get to the bigs as a late season callup if the Mets aren’t in contention. Indeed, many believed that was the plan for him this year had he not been injured.