Baseball sources cited by Inquirer scribe Jim Salisbury believe Ruben Amaro has turned his attention toward the free agent trifecta of Placido Polanco, Mark DeRosa and Adrian Beltre. Chone Figgins and Miguel Tejada are expected to command too much for the Phillies to cover. [Link]
Beerleaguer: Polanco, at the center of this report, would not be my first choice, and I'm uncertain that a move to third, after winning the Gold Glove at second, would be the best move for Polanco. There's no question that the Polanco of two seasons ago - the one who hit .344/.388/.458 - is exactly the type of contact, situational hitter this lineup needs, but his numbers have been in decline the last two seasons, posting a mediocre .285/.331/.396 in 2009, raising a red flag, in a contract year, at age 34. Plus, it's unknown whether he has enough arm to withstand the rigors of third base; he hasn't been a regular third baseman in ages. I'm also concerned about the "you can't come home again" syndrome that seems to infect past players who tried to come back.
As much as the Phillies think they can improve the lineup by upgrading third base, I'm skeptical of all three of the aging options topping the Phillies' free agent list. Nevertheless, the Phillies have little choice but to commit to one of them, unless they can work out a trade. San Diego's Kevin Kouzmanoff, Colorado's Garrett Atkins and Pittsburgh's Andy LaRoche have been speculated upon in reports. According to the Denver Post, the Rockies may actually release Atkins if they can't find a trade partner.