Throughout the days leading up to the trade deadline, Sports Illustrated's Jon Heyman was reporting that the Phillies and Marlins were the most likely destinations for Manny Ramirez. Here, he gives an "inside look" at how the deal went down.
I'm still skeptical as to how serious of a play the Phillies made for the Red Sox slugger. Publicly and privately, the Phillies denied having much interest in Ramirez. "We have no place to play the guy," Pat Gillick told a member of the New York media. A high-ranking Red Sox official told the Daily News that the Phillies didn't seem to have strong interest in acquiring Ramirez.
Heyman doesn't have much dirt on the Phillies' supposed interest. This is about the extent of it:
"The Phillies were a team said to excite Ramirez. They have a great lineup and an even better ballpark for him to put up big second-half numbers and enhance his free-agent value. The Phillies had interest but were apparently offering even less than L.A. They may have had concerns about how Ramirez would fit into the same outfield with Pat Burrell."
Those are legitimate concerns. Obviously, Ramriez's bat would have instantly upgraded the offense. Just look at what he is doing right now in Los Angeles. But where would he have fit? The Phils committed to Geoff Jenkins in the offseason, and they've got to find playing time for Jayson Werth. One way or another, one of those guys is going to go to waste if Ramirez is added. And that's assuming Manny could play right field, which isn't a given. Safe to say, defense is not his forte.