As the trade deadline nears, there has been no shortage of rumors surrounding the Philadelphia Phillies.

The team is in desperate need of a right-handed bat and a relief pitcher. For today's sake, we will take a look at every hitter that has been involved in rumors and see who is a right fit for the team.

Each player has his strong points, but most come with a few flaws.

Charlie Manuel has already made it clear that he wants a difference maker on this team. Jim Salisbury of csnphilly.com states that the Phillies have just $3 million to work with before they exceed their $178 million payroll, which will trigger a luxury tax.

By the end of this slideshow, we'll get to the bottom of who is the right fit for the Phillies and who they should stay away from.

Now it's time to take a look at the potential trade targets...

Hunter Pence: Too Expensive

Hunter Pence is probably the most talented and well-rounded player of all potential targets. However, his price tag is a bit too high for the Phillies at this point.

Even though earlier this week it was rumored that the  Phillies and Astros were talking, I still believe he is too expensive for a deal to be made.

Carlos Beltran: Not Worth the Asking Price

Sadly, the Phillies are one of the favorites to land Carlos Beltran.

Although he seems like a great option to contribute for the stretch run, he comes with a handful of flaws and actually may make things worse in the long term.

First off, the asking price for Beltran is just way too high. Reports have stated that the Mets are demanding Domonic Brown and more, which is just plain ridiculous.

Why would the Phillies trade away their best young player for a one-year rental?

Plus, if the Phillies acquired him, it is highly unlikely he'd be re-signed, which would then create two holes in the outfield.

Don't get me wrong, he is good player and perhaps just the difference maker Manuel is looking for. However, the addition of Beltran could jeopardize the long-term outfield stability.

Not to mention, he demands over $18 million.

Ryan Ludwick: They Are Better Options

Ryan Ludwick is putting together an OK season, but there are definitely better options out there.

The bad thing about Ludwick is that he is 33 years old. Although his 11 home runs and 61 RBI look attractive, he is hitting just .244 and the Phillies would not re-sign him, given his age.

There is no question that he would add some power behind Howard, but he has shown that he can be a streaky player which is something the Phillies do not need.

There are definitely better options out there that will provide the same—if not better—power along with more consistency and a higher batting average. 

Josh Willingham: Ok, but Not the Best

Josh Willingham is another power hitter the Phillies seem to be interested in.

Willingham, 32, has been in the NL East his whole career besides this season. He has hit over 20 home runs three times and would have bested that number twice more had he not suffered a couple of injuries.

In my opinion, Willingham is the second best option out there. The bad thing about him is that he is 32 years old and apparently the Oakland Athletics are asking too much for him.

Melky Cabrera: Great Fit, Cheap Price

It was reported yesterday by Jon Paul Morosi of Fox Sports that the Phillies and Royals were discussing a trade involving Melky Cabrera.

Melky Cabrera is by far the best option the Phillies have to choose from, considering his many strong points.

First of all, he is under contract for one more season and is only owed $1.25 million per year, which is extremely cheap.

Not only does Cabrera come at a cheap price, he is just 26 years old (one year younger than John Mayberry Jr.) and is having a great season—.294 BA, 12 HR and 54 RBI. Not to mention, he is also a threat as a base stealer with 14 thus far.

Cabrera also has a lot of postseason experience after being with the Yankees for five seasons.
By acquiring Cabrera, the Phillies would not have to pay a luxury tax and would be primed for a stretch run without having to add an aging veteran player.

--Michael Fogliano 


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