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Philadelphia Phillies linked to Byron Buxton in rumors leading up to trade deadline

It was earlier on Sunday that reports surfaced surrounding Minnesota Twins star outfielder Byron Buxton. With less than a week to go before the MLB trade deadline, Dan Hayes and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reported that Buxton and the Twins were unable to come to terms on a contract extension.

Buxton, 27, is set to become a free agent following the 2022 season and could now be on the move. According to the aforementioned report, Minnesota’s initial offer to Buxton was $73 million over seven years. The Twins ultimately increased said offer to $80 million, but it was unable to move the needle.

While a winter trade seems more likely, Jon Heyman of MLB Network is now reporting that the Philadelphia Phillies have interest in Byron Buxton.

Byron Buxton as a fit for the Philadelphia Phillies

philadelphia phillies interested in byron buxton
Jun 20, 2021; Arlington, Texas, USA; Minnesota Twins center fielder Byron Buxton (25) rounds the bases after hitting a home run in the first inning against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Philadelphia found itself at 48-49 and in second place in the National League East heading into Sunday’s action. It has an obvious need at center field with veteran Odubel Herrera having struggled to the tune of a .237 average with a .675 OPS thus far this season.

The idea of teaming Buxton up with Bryce Harper and Andrew McCutchen in the outfield has to be seen as appealing. The question here becomes compensation and Minnesota’s willingness to trade Buxton with just a few days to go before the MLB trade deadline.

In the initial report indicating that Buxton and the Twins failed to come to terms on an extension, it was noted that Minnesota still wants to contend next season.

If so, the team might just hold on to Buxton and potentially look to move him during next year’s trade deadline should said aspirations fail to become realized. If a move is made over the next few days, it’s safe to assume that Minnesota will want some MLB-ready talent. Whether Philadelphia has that to offer up remains to be seen.

All of this is complicated by the fact that Byron Buxton is seen as injury-plagued. He’s appeared in more than 92 games just once since making his MLB debut back in 2015. Thus far this season, the former Gold Glove winner has appeared in all of 27 games — hitting .369 with 10 homers and 19 RBI. He’s currently on the injured list.

As for the Twins, they must find a happy medium between blowing it all up and looking to contend next season.

Minnesota entered Sunday’s action with a 42-57 record and in last place in the American League Central. It just moved star designated hitter Nelson Cruz to the Tampa Bay Rays and has a plethora of other veterans on the trade block. That includes the likes of Josh Donaldson, Andrelton Simmons, Jose Berrios and Taylor Rogers.