Whereas the New York Yankees and Los Angeles Dodgers might be the sexiest names in the Manny Machado sweepstakes — simply in light of them being the Yankees and Dodgers — few teams in postseason contention could benefit from acquiring the All-Star shortstop as greatly as the Philadelphia Phillies.
And although they’re still not the favorites for Machado, the Fightin’ Phils reportedly haven’t given up.
The Phillies “have increased their offer” to the Baltimore Orioles for Machado, The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal tweeted Friday, citing his sources. He added that the Dodgers and Yankees still are strongly in the mix, with the Milwaukee Brewers apparently “fading.”
The Phillies’ interest in Machado makes sense. Despite third baseman Maikel Franco’s recent hot hitting, the left side of their infield has been a black hole for most of the season. Scott Kingery and J.P. Crawford, who have shared the bulk of the time at shortstop, are hitting .233 and .194, respectively, and the streaky Franco has been cold far more often than he’s been hot this season.
It’s not clear what Philadelphia specifically could offer the Orioles in a potential deal, but the NL East-leading Phillies hold a number of young, controllable pitchers and position players that could entice the rebuilding O’s.