THE PHILLIES had the worst record in baseball (22-39) going into yesterday's docket of major league games.

They have scored the fewest runs (194) and they have the lowest team OPS (.645).

Their starting pitching had the highest staff ERA (4.83) and their relief corps had the highest WHIP (1.45) among baseball's 30 teams.

None of this should be considered too surprising. What would be surprising would be a repeat of last July, when general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. shockingly held on to every single one of his veteran players at the trade deadline.

Let's assume that, this year, they are able to trade every veteran that has at least some value on the open market. What are the best-case scenarios and most likely destinations?

Jonathan Papelbon

The Phillies have been attempting to trade their volatile closer going on three years now. The good news? It's much easier to trade him with each passing day, as the money from his record contract becomes more manageable.

Is about $7 million remaining this year and $13 million next year (an option he'd most likely want picked up from his new team) an exorbitant cost for a closer? You bet.

But, as the Phillies front office has said for some time, and as was repeated in multiple reports this week, the Phils would be willing to take on some of that future salary to help facilitate a trade and ensure they get a useful prospect in return.

The aforementioned recent reports - first from FoxSports.com - had the Phillies in recent discussions with the Cubs and Blue Jays. Toronto has been interested in Papelbon for some time and the All-Star closer would probably thrive in a return to the American League East. Factor in a strong farm system, and the Blue Jays appear to be the best fit.

Ryan Howard

In the last seven weeks, beginning April 21, Howard has hit .256 with an .830 OPS, 11 home runs and 11 doubles in 44 games. If he could continue that for the next seven weeks, he might have some trade value.

But Howard is, and will always be, the most difficult of the Phillies players to deal because of the money he is owed. Yes, like Papelbon, the money shrinks with each passing day. But unlike Papelbon, Howard isn't still among the best players at his position, and he's owed a minimum of $35 million through 2016 after this year.

Still, we began this exercise by saying "best-case scenarios," so let's assume you can trade him. The Los Angeles Angels would be a unique fit.

No, the Angels likely wil not be too eager to acquire one guy who once signed a five-year, $125 million contract (Howard) since they recently rid themselves of another with the same deal (Josh Hamilton). But the Angels offense has been dreadful (.682 OPS, third worst in the AL) and their production from the designated-hitter spot has been damning (four home runs, an AL-worst .617 OPS).

If the Phils are willing to pay a large part of the freight, in exchange for a lottery ticket-type prospect, you could do worse things than chance sliding Howard into a lineup where he wouldn't have to be the big piece, but just a nice, lefthanded complementary piece to the likes of Mike Trout and Albert Pujols.

Chase Utley

Not applicable. Poor performance (hitting .220 over the last 12 months) plus complicated, cumbersome contract makes him more untradeable than Howard. Really. You can probably put Carlos Ruiz into the same category, too.

Aaron Harang

The shine has surely worn off from when Harang was an attractive alternative to the premium starting pitchers on the market. He's given up 13 runs in his last two starts, albeit to the same Cincinnati Reds team.

Still, Harang will be traded. Heck, the Phillies found a taker for Roberto Hernandez last year. Teams always need pitching, regardless if it's top-, middle- or bottom-of-the-rotation types.

Two possible destinations for Harang: Kansas City and Houston. Both are young teams that could benefit from adding a capable veteran to rotatations needing just that kind of guy. There are also teams that don't seem as likely (they simply don't have a Red Sox' or Dodgers' budget) to enter the bidding for the bigger names on the market.

Ben Revere

Both the Angels and Mariners have been mentioned as possible suitors for Revere, as they each have struggling offenses that could use a boost in the outfield. But here's another club to consider: the Dodgers.

A week rarely goes by when the admittedly deep Dodgers don't have an outfielder on the disabled list (hello, Carl Crawford). Revere seems to be a perfect fit for a team like the Dodgers - he can get semi-regular at-bats either in a platoon-type situation or when someone is out with an injury.

And, come playoff time, Revere would be a very useful weapon off the bench. Just ask any Boston fan about Dave Roberts' place in Red Sox history.

Cole Hamels

This is the deal the Phillies cannot get wrong. Luckily, there are going to be more than a couple intriguing destinations for both the pitcher and the Phils front office.

The Red Sox have long been linked to Hamels and the Dodgers can't ever be ruled out, either.

But we'll steer away from the obvious and pick two others: the Yankees and Cubs. Both have already expressed interest in Hamels within the last year. Both also have promising sluggers (Yankees' Aaron Judge, Cubs' Kyle Schwarber) who aren't far from the major leagues.

Perhaps the Yankees, who just lost closer Andrew Miller to an injury, would take a Hamels-Papelbon package. In addition to Judge, a righthanded hitter built like Giancarlo Stanton, rising, 21-year-old righthander Luis Severino would be an impressive get for the Phillies.

Blog: ph.ly/HighCheese