Cuddyer next on Phils list

The Phils are making themselves extremely active at the start of free agency.

Instead of making big splashes like teams such as New York, Chicago, Boston and Texas will be looking to make, the Phils are looking to make what they already have stronger.

The first two moves were for depth: utility infielder Pete Orr and first baseman Jim Thome. Now, one of Thome’s former teammates is on general manager Ruben Amaro’s list.

Michael Cuddyer could be an incredibly valuable asset to the Phillies. The Phils are reportedly pursuing Cuddyer to play some first base in the absence of Ryan Howard as well as left field.

Cuddyer’s versatility alone makes him valuable but he also brings a big bat that could give the Phils offense a boost.

Cuddyer spent his entire 11-year career with the Twins where he hit .272 while hitting 141 homers. Cuddyer is a guy who can average 20 homers and 82 RBIs a season, and that production is for the Phils offense that lacked fire power.

As mentioned, Cuddyer can be inserted anywhere defensively, which will allow certain players a break. Cuddyer is a corner outfielder as well as being able to play first and third base. This is essential for the Phils, who will be starting the 2012 season without Ryan Howard, who ruptured his Achilles in Game 5 of the NLDS.

After Cuddyer, the Phils will need to address some of their own players, which include free agent reliever Ryan Madson and short stop Jimmy Rollins as well as avoiding arbitration and giving Cole Hamels the long-term deal he deserves.

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