It seems hard to imagine that general manager Ruben Amaro, Jr. won't try to make another 'big move' during this offseason. The Philadelphia Phillies' front office boss knows that his job is on the line if this formerly elite team's descent continues next season.
Despite the current quandary that was created by the corporate culture within (and because of) Citizens Bank Park, Amaro still can leverage some assets if he plays his baseball cards right.
Among the big money men, Cliff Lee surely has value. But, it would be a major risk to deal one of the two remaining starting aces.
Kyle Kendrick apparently will be offered arbitration. However, 'KK' could then be used as trade bait, instead of paying a .500 pitcher somewhere north of $7 million per season.
Jonathan Papelbon could find his way to another team if the Phillies are willing to eat some of the $26 million that he's owed through 2015.
Jimmy Rollins will be in red pinstripes through at least the 2014 season. He's previously stated that he won't approve any trade. Possibly his opinion can be adjusted if another team is willing to give him a multi-year extension.
The name of Ryan Howard won't be offered as a movable option, which has as much to do with his $25 million salary as it does with the veteran's need to prove that he's healthy again.
None of the above options are easy to pursue, yet Amaro will surely try to explore every tough avenue. Simply subtracting one player who carries a higher salary, without accepting another via the same trade, would create needed roster flexibility.