Michael Young approves trade to Phillies

Mark Townsend

The long rumored deal that had the Texas Rangers sending veteran infielder Michael Young to the Philadelphia Phillies was finally completed on Saturday, according to a tweet from Bob Nightengale.

Young, 36, had earned 10-and-5 rights as a player giving him the power to veto any trade in which he's involved. He decided to waive that right after consulting his family and accepting $1.2 million in undisclosed benefits from Philadelphia.

He's also already informed the Phillies he's not willing to work on an extension beyond the 2013 season, which clearly didn't deter them from finalizing the deal.

Young, who became the Rangers all-time hitter in 2010, will finish his 13-year career in Texas with 2,230 hits, 177 homers, 415 doubles, 984 RBIs, which ranks third in franchise history, and a .301/.347/.444 line overall. He was the very definition of a hitting machine during that 10-year stretch in the prime of his career, but he was headed for reduced playing time in 2013 after posting a .277/.312/.370 hitting line — the worst in his career since his first full season in 2002.

[Related: Michael Young agrees to trade to Phillies]

There is a precedent for Young bouncing back from, by his standards, down seasons offensively. In 2008 and 2010, he hit .284 each season. He would bounce back with .322 and .338 averages respectively, and even posted a career-high 106 RBIs in 2011 despite only 11 home runs. There should be much more concern this time around, however, as Young's bat seemed to slow down considerably.

He's also almost certainly going to prove to be a defensive liability in Philadelphia, where they're going to ask him to play everyday at third base. The last time he played there regularly was 2010, and that season he showed very limited range while committing 19 errors. In fact, according to Fangraphs, Young has always been a negative defender at the position, and that's simply not going to change at this point in his career.

I think what I'm trying to say is this would appear to be a poor fit for the Phillies on paper, but I guess for a one-season rental in an offseason where multi-year deals are being handed out left and right to plus-30-year-old free agents with seemingly declining skills or capped upsides, it's not the worst gamble they could take.

By the way, heading back to Texas will be 25-year-old right-handed reliever Josh Lindblom, whom the Phillies acquired in the Shane Victorino trade with the Los Angeles Dodgers. He posted a 4.63 ERA in 26 appearances for Philadelphia. Also going will be 22-year-old Lisalverto Bonilla, a right-handed pitching prospect who split time in 2012 between Single-A Clearwater and Double-A Reading.

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