DENVER -- The team most linked and perhaps best positioned to acquire Cole Hamels has an interesting representative here at Coors Field to watch the Phillies lefthander pitch against the Colorado Rockies.
The Texas Rangers sent scout Don Welke, a name you might recognize because he used to work under former general manager Pat Gillick with the Phillies. Welke's official title is senior special assistant to Rangers general manager Jon Daniels and when he shows up somewhere it is a definite signal that Texas has a keen interest in a player.
Ruben Amaro Jr. has made it clear more than once that his primary goal is to keep Hamels in Philadelphia, but the Phillies general manager is sure to listen to some interesting offers for the lefty before the July 31 trade deadline.
The Phillies' farm system has been depleted in recent years by trades for Roy Halladay, Roy Oswalt and Hunter Pence and Texas has enough quality players in their system to help compensate for some of those losses.
Perhaps the most interesting Rangers prospect is power-hitting third baseman Mike Olt because that is such a position of need for the Phillies.
Teams will also be looking at Phillies center fielder Shane Victorino as the deadline approaches and he talked about being on the trade block after contributing a double and triple to Saturday night's 8-5 win over the Rockies.
"I can't control what goes on off the field," Victorino said after picking up his first two extra-base hits in more than a month. "I can only control what goes on on the field. I don't even look at that. I don't pay attention to that and I never will pay attention to that. I just collectively stay focused and I'm a Phillie and I want to go out there and win as a Phillie."
Halladay will start Tuesday
The Phillies made it official that Roy Halladay will return from the disabled list and pitch Tuesday against the Dodgers in Los Angeles. It will be his first start since May 27 in St. Louis when he left the game with soreness in the back of his right shoulder.