What should be done with Ryan Howard?

The Phillies are in a real dilemma this year - they still have Ryan Howard on their roster.  They've offered him as available in trade for almost nothing and yet there still have been no takers thus far.

That's not hard to believe if you watched him every day last year.  He appears to be done and it looks like he won't bounce back, well, at least it's not likely at his age.  He did manage to end up with some decent numbers last year; 23 homers is not terrible and 95 RBI's is a good year for most but if you watched him closely, you know those numbers are hollow.  A typical Ryan Howard year, when in his prime, he could have had 150 RBI's easily.  He left many men on base last year in critical situations.  Phillies fans wonder how he got to 95 RBI's.

The real dilemma for the Phils is that they owe him $60 million.  Nobody wants to pay that kind of money for a guy whose strikeout ratio is going up instead of down, as it should be this stage of his career.  The Phils are surely willing to pay some (read most) of his salary if someone wants to take a chance on him.
The Nationals just gave $215 million to Max Scherzer, so they seem willing to spend like money is no object.  Plus, they let Adam LaRoche walk, so it would make sense that they need a first baseman.  Ruben Amaro should be able to talk them into taking him, right??

Surely there's an American League team that needs a DH?   The Yanks have money as always and they're paying Alex Rodriguez a ton of money this year for nothing... at least Ryan could hit a bunch of home runs in that park (25 home runs would be the floor, I would think).  Of course, you'd have to bat him against righties only; otherwise, the Yankee fan base would notice how much he has lost.

Now don't get me wrong, I'm not bashing Ryan Howard.  In fact, he's one of my favorite Phillies of All-Time (he's a member of our All-Time Phillies team).  At one time he was on a Hall of Fame pace in his career.  500 home runs looked like a sure thing.  RBI's?  1,500 easily.  He helped the Phils win a championship and took them to the World Series 2 years in a row, which as a lifetime Phils fan, I never thought I would see that.  I'm grateful for what Ryan Howard has done for my team.  I want to remember him for the great player he was.  I don't want to watch another year of him struggling and looking bad.  Remember how awful we all felt watching Willie Mays stumbling and falling with the Mets?  That's how I feel watching Ryan Howard now.
As a fan, I would like to see him retire, but I understand he has a lot of money coming to him and I wouldn't quit either if I was him.  It doesn't look like anyone has any interest in him either.  So, to the Phillies I ask you to let him go home and just pay him his money.  He doesn't deserve to be embarrassed anymore.  He was a hero in this town, let him stay that way, please.


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