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December 17, 2018

Live updates: Manny Machado is visiting the Phillies this week, plus other free agency news and trade rumors

With star free agent Manny Machado set to embark on his recruiting tour this week, you can certainly expect the hot stove chatter to intensify all around Major League Baseball, especially in Philadelphia, which is reportedly one of the three stops the former Orioles and Dodgers infielder will make before deciding where to sign his next contract. 

And while he's not the only top-tier free agent on the market, he is, by all accounts, the player the Phillies would prefer to land this offseason. Here's more from Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia:

Machado will be in town Thursday for a recruiting visit with Phillies officials, according to a person with knowledge of the situation.

The trip to Philadelphia is part of a busy week for the star infielder. Chicago-based baseball reporter Bruce Levine has reported that Machado will be in that city to visit with White Sox officials this week and George King of the New York Post reports that Machado will visit the Yankees in New York on Wednesday. ...

Though the Phillies favor Machado over Bryce Harper, this winter's other mega free agent, they remain interested and engaged with Harper and pursuit of the outfielder could intensify if they don't land Machado.  []

Of course, the Phillies just traded for All-Star shortstop Jean Segura, so in addition to making the money the work, Matt Klentak and Co. will either need to convince Machado to move back to third base — he's played that in the past, but prefers shortstop — or outline a plan in which Segura moves to second — he's played that in the past, but has spent the majority of his career at shortstop — and Machado takes over at his natural position.

In the meantime, the Phillies could make some other moves. They've also been linked to free agent pitchers Andrew Miller and Craig Kimbrel, as well as a few others, so we've got you covered with all the latest trade rumors and free agency news in one place.

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