MLB Trade Rumors: Phillies Working Hard For Hunter Pence; Braves Not

It seems like our last dozen updates on Hunter Pence have involved the Phillies in some way, and there's a reason for that: the Phillies are intent on landing an offensive upgrade, and after missing out on Carlos Beltran, they've turned their attention to a younger, more expensive alternative.

Nothing between the Phillies and Astros appears to be imminent, but Jon Heyman gives an idea of how things are going:

seems like philly will do whatever it takes to land pence. may even try to involve 3rd team to get it done.

And more, from Jayson Stark:

So that leaves the Phillies, who have made Pence far and away their No. 1 target. But because the Phillies and Astros haven't been able to agree on players beyond the Phillies' initial offer, other clubs reported Friday they're now exploring potential three-team deals to put the pieces together.

I'm not going to say the Phillies are desperate, because they aren't; they do, after all, own baseball's best record. But from the sounds of things, they're going to exhaust every last possibility on Pence. The Astros reportedly turned down an offer that included the Phillies' best hitting prospect and their best pitching prospect, but one figures they can't possibly be looking for much more than that.

Why are the Phillies so far out in front of these negotiations, you ask? Because other teams have dropped out and because, while the Astros like pitching and therefore like what the Braves could offer, the Braves are reluctant to part with their abundant riches. Buster Olney:

There continues to be zero enthusiasm within Atl org. about giving up any of the core 4 pitching prospects-Teheran, Vizcaino, Minor, Delgado

Joel Sherman confirms that the Braves don't want to give up what the Astros want. So boring, those Braves. So boring and responsible.

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