Phils, Cardinals No Match As Trade Partners

For a while there, it seemed that the Phillies and Cardinals might have some common ground for working out a deal. Now though with the season a week away, that common ground is quick sand. Read and hear why.

The Phillies and St. Louis Cardinals were thought to be potential trade partners not too long ago. As each team has gone through some changes though, there is now little ground to make a deal.

The prime interest originally was in a deal that would bring young outfielder Chris Duncan to the Phillies. Duncan, it was thought, would be a good fit for a bench that could use some power. That was in the days before Jayson Werth proved that he was healthy, Michael Bourn looked ready to help the Phillies and Karim Garcia started to look like a viable candidate for a bench job. Now, with each of those players doing enough to impress the Phillies, the interest in Duncan has cooled from where it was.

In a lot of ways, Duncan is somewhat of a Pat Burrell clone. He has trouble hitting pitches that are down and away and his outfield skills leave something to be desired. But, when he gets his pitch, he looks like a true budding superstar. A guy who can give a team all the offense it could need; you know, much how Pat Burrell can look on a good day.

With Duncan's holes in his game and the Phillies no longer concerned about their outfield depth, or their bench for that matter, the deal is far off the burner.

Chris Ducan was a guy who the Phillies had some initial interest in this off-season, but that interest has cooled greatly.
Next up was a deal that looked to have a lot of viability. Word was the Phillies were dangling Jon Lieber to help out the Cardinals starting rotation, while St. Louis appeared to be considering giving up Braden Looper to get the deal done. The Cardinals bullpen appeared set, to the point where they were trying Looper as a starter this spring. Wouldn't you know it, the plan worked and Looper has pitched well as a starting pitcher and has been named the team's starter for their third game of the season against the New York Mets. As for the Cardinals supposed strong bullpen, they are now rumored to be looking for help after Josh Kinney blew out an elbow, Adam Wainwright took over a spot in the rotation and Looper also made the transition.

In Philadelphia, there are now concerns about Lieber's health and he may start the year on the disabled list. Needless to say, the convergence of events has put that deal in the dead pile.

Meanwhile, GM Pat Gillick insists that he's still looking around, but is cautioning against holding out hope that anything will happen by opening day. There are still a few embers burning for an Aaron Rowand to the White Sox for Mike MacDougal, but that deal is on life support thanks to the return of a healthy Scott Podsednik in center field for the Cardinals.

Hear Chuck Hixson and Brian Walton, Managing Editor of 'The Birdhouse', talk about the potential for a deal between the two teams.

  • Why Lieber for Looper won't work:
  • Brian Walton's scouting report on Chris Duncan:

Philly Baseball Insider Top Stories