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Phillies Trade Rumors: Reportedly Selling "Soon" Despite Protests

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Apr. 23, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Roy Halladay (center) watches from the bench alongside Chase Utley in the first inning against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE
Apr. 23, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Roy Halladay (center) watches from the bench alongside Chase Utley in the first inning against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE

Despite several public statements from Philadelphia Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro downplaying trade rumors, the team has privately told rival executives they will sell soon, reports Danny Knobler of CBS Sports:

"They told me, 'If we lose any more games, we could be selling soon,'" one rival club official said Monday, after talking to a high-ranking Phillies official.

Amaro has held firm in his statements to the press that the Phillies will wait until Ryan Howard and Roy Halladay return before moving any big pieces, but their private interactions with other teams seem to point to the contrary. While most of the speculation has centered on left-hander Cole Hamels, he's not the only one who may be on the move according to Knobler:

Teams that have spoken to the Phillies think that center fielder Shane Victorino is even more likely to go, and that pitcher Joe Blanton and third baseman Placido Polanco would be available, as well.

At 36-46, the Phillies now stand a season-worst twelve games out of first place and only have a 1.6% chance of making the playoffs.