Sep 21, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Cincinnati Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips (4) makes a throw on a ball up the middle in front of shortstop Zack Cozart (rear) against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the first inning at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Brandon Phillips Trade Rumors Need To Stop


As it stands today, Cincinnati Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips is just that, a Cincinnati Red. There’s been much speculation this off season as to the supposed uncertain future of Phillips. When the Pittsburgh Pirates ended Cincinnati’s season in the one-game playoff, Brandon wearing Cincinnati Red the following season wasn’t a given.

Rumors began to swirl that general manager Walt Jocketty was looking to ship Phillips out of town. It only gained more steam as time went on. But as October melted into November and November met December, those rumors began to quiet down. Having said that, however, they aren’t gone all together. The Brandon Phillips trade saga just won’t die.

Let’s say the rumors are true. Let’s say Jocketty is trying to bring some new pieces in to the Queen City and getting rid of “DatDude” is the only way to do it. I, then, only ask one question: is it worth it?

Brandon Phillips is, without a doubt, a crucial part of this team. But it doesn’t end there. He’s valuable to the organization as a whole, and to the city in general. I doubt Phillips wants out. He has expressed his love for Cincinnati and its fans. He’s a fan favorite. And not just for his outwardly gestures.

Phillips is valuable for the most obvious reason: he’s kinda good. I don’t care if his statistics were off .01257 in one category with runners on third in the sixth innings of day games in July. For being as big of a baseball fan as I am, I’m not into statistics. They’re fun. Hey, I’ll admit they’re valuable. But I want to let common sense have its day.

Brandon Phillips passes the eye test! He’s a damn good baseball player, both offensively and defensively. This may not seem like breaking news, but I think it needs to be re-stated. So many times we by pass common sense to “analyze” one thing or the other. Phillips being traded? There’s no analyzing involved. Its a dumb move.

But let’s say he is moved. Jocketty trades Phillips for “future baseball star Bob.” Okay, great, I hope Bob does great thing as a Red in four years. But you know what we would need? You know what we would be missing? You know what Jocketty would have to turn around and trade for? I think you know where I’m going with this.

Yes, the Reds could ship Phillips for some up and coming star. But they already have that star. His name is Brandon Phillips. If he left, we would be missing a consistent bat and the best second baseman in the majors. And even if “Bob” turns out to be an even better second baseman and hitter, he isn’t now. So why give up what we have already for what we are hoping for? Why give up a 5 star player for a guy you hope turns into a 5 star player?

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  • rhayex

    Because he’s NOT a 5-star player. He’s nowhere close to the best second baseman in the league, and if the Reds truly feel that they could upgrade the club as a whole by trading him, they can, should, and will trade him.

    • Jesse Borek

      Nowhere close to the best second baseman in the league? Who in the heck is that far ahead of him that you could claim that?

      • Josh Bresser

        Matt Carpenter? You know, the guy who finished 4th in MVP voting? Better than Phillips and his below average OBP…

        • Jesse Borek

          The same guy that is not even a second baseman? His defense is below average, and they even traded David Freese to allow Carpenter to move back to third base. Even if Carpenter was an everyday second baseman, I’d A.) say that Phillips’ defense is so superior to his that the two are a virtual coin flip, not “nowhere close” and B.) like to see him produce for as many consecutive seasons as Phillips before we anoint him in another league of a guy who has proven to be the gold standard of National League second basemen.

          • rhayex

            Purely in terms of WAR, there were 11 second basemen ahead of Phillips. They were Matt Carpenter, Robinson Cano, Dustin Pedroia, Super Ben Zobrist, Jason Kipnis, Chase Utley, Daniel Murphy, Brian Dozier, Neil Walker, Marco Scutaro, and Howie Kendrick.

          • Jesse Borek

            And 5 of those are NL’ers. Carpenter is not a second baseman and he won’t be seeing significant time there next season. If you can say you would rather see Chase Utley, Daniel Murphy, Neil Walker or Marco Scutaro as the Reds second baseman, I cannot help you. WAR is simply one statistic, it is not the end all, be all. It cannot measure the fact that Phillips is the best defensive second baseman in the game alongside Pedroia and Cano, along with being consistent year in, year out, or his incredible flexibility to hit anywhere in the Reds lineup.

          • rhayex

            Dustin Pedroia, Ben Zobrist, and Darwin Barney graded out as better defensively than BP. I’m not saying that BP isn’t a good player, but there ARE better players out there. If a deal that improves the Reds team as a whole comes along, I think it only makes sense that the Reds would take it.

          • Jesse Borek

            Pedroia and Zobrist would be improvements, but it’s not a realistic possibility. Those organizations would not part ways with those guys. I agree with you, if an amazing deal that blows everyone away comes along, you have to take it. Don’t hold your breath though.

          • rhayex

            If someone came offering a top prospect 2b in a reasonable trade (probably including Phillips), I would take that too. I understand that potential != productivity, but sometimes it’s worth it to take a gamble on the potential. That’s what the Reds did with Stephenson in the draft and Latos in the trade (albeit Latos DID have GOOD ML experience under his belt, it was after he came to the Reds he developed into a more mature pitcher, less prone to mental breakdowns).

          • NoBSLeague

            There’s really one significant issue with Phillips and that’s his contract and the money owed to him. He’s a very good player, but the Reds are overpaying for him.

  • Paul

    I agree he is what teams wish they had.. I’m glad he is in cinn and he has done things for us to win every year..

  • beeker

    Now that Cano has signed that insane deal with Seattle, I am curious whether the Yankees will go hard after Phillips.

  • Ryan Ritchey

    Offense trumps defense any day of the week. Phillips may be good defensively, but his inability to consistently get on base is an issue. Cool, he had 100 RBI, put Zack Cozart in the four hole behind Choo and Votto and he could have 80+. Phillips is a bad offensive player, just face it. If the Reds could get an upgrade offensively, no matter the player really, the defense wouldn’t be that much worse.

    • Jesse Borek

      Offense does indeed trump defense, I wholeheartedly agree. But, I must say that Phillips is a rare breed. He is a phenomenal defensive player who has no equal who is an active player and offensively, has been one of the most consistent players in the game. Since 2006, he’s had at least a .260 average along with 17 homers and even had a 30/30 season sprinkled in there. I get the resentment towards him, but sometimes you have to have a little give and take, the grass is not always greener.

      • Ryan Ritchey

        Since 2011 he is the 7th best second baseman in baseball. Not to mention he is out of the top 11 in every sabermetric offensive category worth using. .260 is not very good, I don’t know how you think that is good. The Reds could find a better second baseman on the market if they really wanted to.

        • Jesse Borek

          What allows you to believe that the 6 second basemen rated in front of him since 2011 would be available? I would say, in no order, guys that I would rather have: Pedroia, Cano and Zobrist. Those guys are not going anywhere, especially for a guy with a hefty contract such as Phillips.

          • Ryan Ritchey

            What about Howie Kendrick? He could be available. He is also two years younger than Phillips.

          • Matthew Houstoun

            Your clueless if you think Kendrick is actually good.

          • Ryan Ritchey

            Well Kendrick has been better than Phillips overall since 2011 so apparently you’re clueless. Check the stats other than rbi and you will see that

          • Alderson Smith

            And, couldn’t grab his a** with both hands.

  • Alderson Smith

    Talk of trading Phillips is a sign of stupidity. Phillips will NOT be traded. Jockety is not that stupid.