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Phillies Rumors: Club interested in Adrian Beltre

By Tim Kelly, Sports Talk Philly editor

Even after their offseason additions of Carlos Santana and Jake Arrieta, the Philadelphia Phillies have the youngest roster in the majors. Yet, Gabe Kapler's 39-33 squad is currently tied with the Washington Nationals for the National League's second Wild Card spot. Seven of the team's next 10 games are against the Nationals, with the other three slated to come against the New York Yankees. If the Phillies make it through that stretch still in contention, it may make sense for them to add another veteran to their roster. 

According to Jon Morosi of MLB.com, the Phillies have interest in future Hall of Fame third baseman Adrian Beltre: 

The Phillies also have interest in Beltre, sources say, as much for his professionalism as his production. The Phils have the youngest group of position players in the Majors, and team officials see long-term value in Beltre's influence on an emerging core. Plus, the recent injury to J.P. Crawford has opened up more at-bats on the infield.

This isn't the first time that the Phillies have been connected to Beltre. Nearly a month ago, Nick Cafardo of The Boston Globe wrote that the Phillies were among a trio of teams that would "love to have" Beltre. At the time, I wondered if Cafardo wasn't connecting dots more than anything, but given this development, that may have been him reporting that the Phillies were interested in Beltre.

Though Beltre is less than a year away from his 40th birthday, he continues to hit. A career .287 hitter, Beltre is currently slashing .302/.357/.428 with three home runs and 22 RBIs in 159 at-bats. In 2017, Beltre batted .312 with 17 home runs and 71 RBIs in just 340 at-bats, while posting a 3.1 fWAR. When he's been on the field over the last two seasons, Beltre has remained very productive. 

Related: Matt Klentak Says "There's A Chance" Phillies Will Trade For A Rental Piece

The problem for Beltre has been remaining on the field. Beltre's been on the disabled list twice this season with a hamstring strain. A calf injury was among those that limited the Dominican born third baseman to just 94 games a year ago. With the non-waiver trade deadline on July 31, the Phillies would have to feel comfortable not only about the production that Beltre would bring to the lineup, but also about his ability to consistently remain in the lineup. 

A free-agent-to-be, Beltre would have to sign off on any trade, as he has a no-trade clause. The 32-44 Rangers certainly won't give him a chance to play in the postseason this year, but that doesn't necessarily mean the Phillies would either. They would give him a better chance, certainly, but he would have to weigh whether he believes it is enough of a chance that it is worth waiving his no-trade clause. 

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