Phillies, Utley Discussing Two- Or Three-Year Extension

WEDNESDAY: The two sides are discussing a three-year deal or two-year deal (plus a vesting option) for around $13MM per season, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports. The Phillies consider Utley to be their franchise player and have every intention of keeping him around.

MONDAY: Two GMs with interest in Utley were informed he's unavailable, reports Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.  Heyman confirms the Phillies are trying to sign him to an extension.

THURSDAY: The Phillies had recent talks with Chase Utley's representation about a contract extension, reports Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com.  Salisbury also notes that the Phillies are not listening to trade offers for their second baseman, they did include him in a post-trade deadline promotion, and GM Ruben Amaro Jr. has "recently been spotted huddling for private conversations at the ballpark" with Utley.

Utley, 34, hovered right outside our top ten free agents in a mid-July power rankings update.  He's hitting .286/.346/.520 with 13 home runs in 298 plate appearances.  Despite missing a month with an oblique injury, he seems primed to play 125 games for the first time since '09.  I imagine the Phillies would be willing to make a qualifying offer after the season if they don't extend or trade Utley, as the sticking point in negotiations could be more about years than salary since he will play next year at age 35.  Utley was drafted and developed by the Phillies and could have a Hall of Fame case if he finishes his career strong.

The trade market for second basemen is light without Utley, as you can see from Steve Adams' analysis earlier this month.



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