Phillies Notes: Amaro is OK with Papelbon's comments

Celebrating the sweep are Phils outfielders (from left) Tony Gwynn Jr., Ben Revere and Marlon Byrd. MIKE McGINNIS / Getty
Celebrating the sweep are Phils outfielders (from left) Tony Gwynn Jr., Ben Revere and Marlon Byrd. MIKE McGINNIS / Getty
Posted: July 12, 2014

MILWAUKEE - Ruben Amaro Jr. grabbed a pack of jalapeño sunflower seeds Thursday afternoon and found a spot on the wooden dugout bench. There were three weeks until the July 31 trade deadline and this was a moment for more reality.

Jonathan Papelbon, the Phillies' closer, made it clear Wednesday night he would welcome a trade to a contender - his partial no-trade clause will not be an impediment - and questioned why players would want to remain on a losing team.

"I think that's a no-brainer," Papelbon said. A day later, his boss agreed.

"He never expressed to me that he's been unhappy," Amaro said. "Why wouldn't players want to play on a contending team? It's really rather simple."

Cole Hamels, the team's $144 million ace and a possible - but unlikely - trade chip, sauntered by Amaro in the dugout.

"He wants to play on a winning team," Amaro said, pointing to Hamels. "Why wouldn't he?"

The Phillies general manager said he did not interpret Papelbon's comments as negative toward the organization. They were, in effect, a moment of honesty that is uncommon among professional athletes in Papelbon's position.

Amaro, when asked if he would honor Papelbon's wishes, declined to answer. The closer has not demanded a trade. And Amaro would not say whether teams have expressed interest in Papelbon.

The Phillies will have to pay a majority of the $19 million owed to the closer in a trade, which is an expected conclusion at this point.

Papelbon has a 1.24 ERA with 22 saves in 24 opportunities.

"He's been outstanding," Amaro said. "Is there anybody better right now? Stuff-wise there might be a guy better, but he's doing his job. He's been phenomenal. He's been outstanding for our kids in the bullpen. I mean, he's been really good with them back there. That means a lot."

Revere is sore

Ben Revere played Wednesday with a noticeable limp, one caused by soreness in his surgically repaired right ankle. There are two screws in the ankle - due to be removed at some point after the season - and the pain comes when Revere decelerates.

He will play through it, although manager Ryne Sandberg decided to use Tony Gwynn Jr. in center on Thursday. Revere pinch-ran in the eighth inning and later singled.

"I'll just have to play through it," Revere said. "Nothing can get worse. It'll be fine."

Extra bases

Cliff Lee was transferred to the 60-day disabled list to clear 40-man roster space for Grady Sizemore, whose contract was purchased from triple-A Lehigh Valley. Lee can be activated July 18; he is expected to pitch July 19 in Atlanta. . . . The Phillies are 14-1 in their last 15 games when scoring four or more runs. . . . The team released outfielder Steve Susdorf. Susdorf, 28, hit .299 in seven minor-league seasons with the Phillies. He had a three-game stint last summer in the majors.

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