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August 1, 2013

Skewed Left

The Last Time the Phillies Considered Selling

by Zachary Levine


And here I was ready to write an obituary for the Phillies dynasty.

It’s been more or less over for a while, and “dynasty” might be a little linguistically liberal for a team that won five consecutive division titles and the 2008 World Series. This group will always be the one that brought crowds in the 40,000s to Citizens Bank Park and gave the Phillies a place in their city’s sporting landscape to ensure financial security and then some in the looming television negotiations.

Anyway, I had the obit all planned out for when they moved Chase Utley, shipped out Michael Young, maybe even Cliff Lee too, and set about rebuilding a farm system that had been depleted by trades in the other direction.

Problem was that a year after extending Cole Hamels rather than starting the process then, they held on once more, and on a deadline day of relative silence around baseball, theirs may have spoken the loudest. They weren’t quite ready to give this up despite a 50-56 standing as of 4:00:00 p.m. Wednesday afternoon.

So there will be no marked end of the Phillies dynasty, such as it is, at least this year, which is a far cry from how it began. It was at the trade deadline seven years ago when the Phillies last embarked on a teardown process, only to tear down the teardown less than two weeks later and get right back into go-for-it mode.

For as much as the 2007-11 teams did to capture headlines, none had a month as fascinating as the 2006 team, which both set the stage for the sustained run of success and may explain some of the reluctance to sell by this year’s teams.

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<< Previous Article
Premium Article The Prospectus Hit Lis... (08/01)
<< Previous Column
Premium Article Skewed Left: The Dodge... (07/25)
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Premium Article Skewed Left: Fisking a... (08/08)
Next Article >>
Manufactured Runs: The... (08/01)

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