The Untouchables: Start with Drabek

Would the Phillies be willing to give up pitching prospect Kyle Drabek in a potential trade? (File photo)

Just got back upstairs to the press box from an interesting hour, during which general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. and manager Charlie Manuel both addressed the media.

The dominant topic, of course, was the trade market, specifically Roy Halladay. Amaro does not address specific trade possibilities, so most of the questions were phrased in a general sort of way. Like, "Let's say there was a pitcher available, and let's say he was about 6-foot-6, threw the ball right-handed, and won the Cy Young in 2003. . ."

But Amaro and Manuel both shed some light on the organization's tack right now. The most interesting thing to come out of the news conferences was the fact that Kyle Drabek is apparently not going anywhere, even if Cy Young himself descends from the heavens as the result of God looking to shed a little payroll.

Amaro did not mention Drabek by name, but did say there are some players in the Phillies system whom he would not trade, regardless of circumstances. And Manuel said that he himself would not trade Drabek.

"There are some untouchables in our system," Amaro said. "We feel that we are building a pretty strong farm system. I think Marti's done a pretty nice job in that regard and our player development people have done a good job of developing, especially this year, it's gone really well, which puts us in a decent position (in the trade market). That said, we have to be prudent about what our future is about. It is important to win now, and we understand the importance of that. But that said, there are players that we would like to keep for our future and I would say that they are not untouchable as others."

Asked if there were players whom he would not trade under any circumstance, Amaro replied "There are."

Manuel was asked if there were any minor leaguers that he would not trade, even if it meant sacrificing some immediate gains on the big league club.

He said yes. Kyle Drabek, the 21-year-old righthander currently tearing up Double-A.

"It'd be tough for me to trade Drabek," Manuel said. "I like Drabek because he's strong in his legs and his hips and he's a drop and drive kind of pitcher. I'm not a pitching coach but I like his mechanics and I like where he comes from and he's a strong-bodied kid, like  Tom Seaver type or a Bartolo Colon, and he's got that kind of stuff. And he's young, and I think he has a big upside to him."


Amaro declined to discuss specifics about the Phillies' scouting of Pedro Martinez.

Here is what he did say:

"We did see Pedro. I really don't want to comment much about it, other than we are trying to do what we can to add to our club and if we feel at the end of the day that Pedro is going to help us, then we'll make a run at him."

And if they are considering Pedro, they are doing so as a starter. That's not big news, but Martinez did begin his career as an electric set-up man, so I figured it was worth asking.