As I write this the Phillies are sitting at 50-47 on the season after splitting a four game series with the Los Angeles Dodgers. They are 7.5 games back in the division to the Braves and are tied with the Cardinals and Brewers for the second wild card. We are 13 days away from one of my favorite days of the year, the MLB trade deadline. I believe the Phillies will be buyers come the trade deadline unless they lose 7 or more games until then.
So to start off, what exactly are their needs? It might be an easier answer saying what aren’t their needs honestly.
Anyway, the Phillies need at least one starter (ideally two), they need at least one reliever (again ideally two), they could use an upgrade at either second base, third base or center field, and possibly the bench could use an addition.
The most Philadelphia baseball player in the sport has to be Marcus Stroman. This might be biased since I absolutely love the guy, but he’s got juice. The entire city of Philadelphia would get behind Marcus day one he steps on the mound. He’s a very expressive guy, he’s a great twitter follow and he honestly reminds me of a mix of Mike Scott and Jimmy Butler. The hive Philadelphia would give him is just like the one you see with Mike Scott. He also isn’t just a dream of mine because of his personality, he’s also a stud of a pitcher. He’s got nasty stuff, featuring his 3.25 ERA while pitching in the AL East with teams like the Yankees, Red Sox and Rays. He also has experience pitching in the playoffs and is still under team control through 2020. To get Stroman it would cost you a decent haul. I don’t see the Phillies trading Alec Bohm, Spencer Howard or Bryson Stott, but to get Stroman you’d probably have to trade Adonis Medina plus a other pieces. Trading Medina hurts, but I don’t see him ever being the pitcher Stroman is. The Phillies have also been rumored to have done some scouting at at least three of Stroman’s starts the last month and some change.
Maybe the best pitcher available on the market is Mike Minor sitting with his 2.73 ERA this year. If he were to stay with the Rangers he’d finish top 5 in the CY Young votes most likely. He’s also under team control through 2020 making just under $10 million next year. Like Stroman, getting Minor might cost you Adonis Medina, but once again I don’t see Medina being a better pitcher in the long-run. The Phillies also need a left hander starter, and Mike Minor is one of the best in the game. Minor has faired well against the Braves, Dodgers and Nationals in his career to make things even better.
If this were five years ago Zack Greinke would be the talk of the trade deadline, but at 35 and with around $85 million left on his contract Greinke isn’t the hot name. The Diamondbacks seem like they want to get him off their books and aren’t willing to pay off his deal. The Phillies have money to spend, and while Greinke might be 35 he’s still really, really good. He has a 2.95 ERA, and has a tremendous track record against the Nationals and Braves in his career. To get Greinke feels like it would take almost nothing as long as you’re willing to take on that contract for the next 2 1/2 years. The Phillies should be willing to take on that contact considering they sat out on the Dallas Keuchel sweepstakes and watched it backfire drastically. Side-note: Greinke would also have to waive his no-trade clause to come to Philly. That might not be a guarantee.
Another lefty and another pitcher that isn’t a rental. Robbie Ray is a good pitcher and is better than 4/5ths of what the Phillies have in their rotation, but that doesn’t mean he’s flawless. Ray has struggled against the Braves and Nationals in his career. He does have a 2.97 ERA against the Dodgers in 18 career starts. It’s not a shock that he fairs well against the Dodgers since he is a lefty, and this something the Phillies need if they want to compete with LA next year at least. Ray won’t draw a Medina, Bohm, Howard or Stott type of prospect, but a Mickey Moniak and Nick Mason with another piece might be able to get it done.
I’m almost completely out on Madison Bumgarner being a Phillie. He seems too much like Jake Arrieta to me, and he’s a rental. I think what Bumgarner gets traded for will be a massive overpay. It’s not that Madison is bad because he’s not. He’d still be the Phillies second best pitcher by a long shot. The thing that scares me is the same thing with Manny Machado last year. That is trading a big name prospect for a guy that could and likely will walk two months later plus the threat of not even making the playoffs with him. I don’t think it’s worth it unless the asking price is lower than expected.
Those that know me and follow me on twitter will tell you that I’ve been high on the Tanner Roark to Philly campaign. It’s not that I think Tanner is this stud pitch that is waiting to breakout in Philly, it just isn’t. I just think Roark is going to be extremely cheap and fits what the Phillies need. When I say cheap I’m talking Nick Williams for Tanner Roark straight up cheap. I make this trade 10 out of 10 times and you’re talking to a guy that owns a Nick Williams jersey… don’t ask. Roark is a rental so you aren’t locked into him after this year, and trading for him will still allow you to get another arm like one that I mentioned up top. You can do a lot worse than having Tanner Roark as your third maybe fourth pitcher in your rotation.
I don’t even want it, I need Will Smith to come out of the bullpen in the ninth to the Fresh Prince of Bel Air theme song in the playoffs. I’ve thought about this moment way too much. It’s unhealthy. I need help. On a baseball note, Will Smith is a nasty lefty reliever that has experience closing the last two years. If the Phillies were to trade for one reliever my number one choice would be Will Smith.
I am a fellow fan of the run it back term and what’s better than a Miles Giles comeback story? He’s under team control for next year as well so there’s no rental worrying here. The Phillies need a closer and while Giles might have a shaky track record in the playoffs he’s still a better option than Hector Neris. The Phillies could include Giles in a Stroman deal and I will start to grease the polls on spot.
Sidenote: Giles is on the IL and that might make him cheaper. Reminder that the Phillies traded for Wilson Ramos last year when he was on the shelf.
Kirby is the best reliever on the market, but he will not be a Phillie. The Phillies do not have the system to get a Kirby Yates. They won’t trade Bohm, Medina, Howard or Stott for a closer, even if he’s elite. Next
I’m a fan of Mychal Givens and I think you can get him for pretty cheap. The Orioles are selling off whatever they have of worth and Givens is one of those pieces. Givens has struggled this year, but he’s been good as a step-up man. The Phillies need bullpen arms that aren’t named Edgar Garcia, JD Hammer, Yacksel Rios… you get the point. I’ll take Givens for a prospect in A ball.
The debate is still out there on Shane Greene being good. He’s having a tremendous year for the Tigers who will get a nice package for him. Greene has a 1.06 ERA this year which is crazy to even think about considering he’s in the American League and he’s thrown 34 innings already. I don’t see the Phillies trading for Greene and I think it’s a smart thing to do.
The Mariners and the Phillies have already made two trades this year so there seems to be a relationship with each other. I know I might be reaching here, but like in fantasy sports I make trades with usually two or three of my closer friends. If the Phillies come knocking on Seattle’s door for Elias I can see them making a deal fairly quick. Elias is also under team control for two more years. I think he’ll actually cost the Phillies something like a middle end prospect.
Another run is back fellow that makes sense for the Phillies considering he’s a legit reliever and a lefty. He’s having the best year of his career featuring a 17.3% swinging-strike rate. Having him, Alvarez and Morgan in the pen would give the Phillies three really good lefties. I’m here for this and he isn’t a rental. A low end prospect in A ball should be able to get it done. All depends on the Phillies being willing to do so.
Sam Dyson and Tony Watson
The two other relievers from the Giants are Dyson and Watson. Watson is a lefty and Dyson is a righty. Dyson was never a very high strikeout guy, but this year he has 44 in 46 innings. He has great ground ball rates and isn’t a rental. As for Watson he likely a rental since he has a $2.5 million player option next year. They are relievers so they won’t require a big haul to get. A low end single A prospect should get it done.
You’ll likely see Crick pitch this weekend in Pittsburg against the Phillies. Crick is a former top pitching prospect that couldn’t make it as a starter because of command issues. He still has those issues today. His walk ratio is very concerning, but he’s only 26 and isn’t a free agent until after the 2022 season. I don’t know what the Pirates would want for him, but I could see a middle end prospect like Arquimedes Gamboa getting it done.
My favorite bat on the market. Whit drew interest from the Phillies last year if you could recall so I think there is still some interest in the air there. It will be hard to get him from the Royals since he just signed maybe the best deal of the offseason. That extension takes him to all the way to 34 years-old. I don’t see a way you could get him without trading a Alec Bohm or Spencer Howard. You could try a Medina, Moniak, Ortiz package, but I don’t see them pulling the trigger. Whit and Scott Kingery together would be a treat to watch. Both are essentially the same player. Whit could be your starting center fielder or second baseman and lead off hitter for the next 5+ years.
Yet another run it back moment here in the piece! The Phillies need to add a bat to the roster and if they were to trade for Mike Minor… they might as well include Hunter Pence in there. Pence could play left field and you could put Jay Bruce on the bench where he should be. Pence was an All Star this year for the Rangers, but is a rental. If you include him in the Minor trade it wouldn’t take much more to get it done I feel. The Rangers apparently “love” the Phillies farm system and they’ve been scouting it for most the year. Bring Pence back with the Zigtech cleats!
The Phillies had a trade in place for Adam Jones to be a Phillie last trade deadline, but he declined to waive his no-trade clause. Adam Jones talked about that, and he said it wasn’t because of Philly. He apparently wanted to be in Baltimore for the rest of his career. Than in the offseason the Orioles didn’t offer him a contract so he signed with the Diamondbacks on a one-year deal. It wouldn’t take much to get him, and just like Pence you could include him in a Ray or Greinke deal as a sweetener.
Another player on here I always wanted on the Phillies! I remember watching Dee Gordon make his debut against the Phillies and I was saying to myself, “This kid is going to be a star.” 8 years later and a PED stint, he’s still a really good player. He wouldn’t be a rental, Seattle will want nothing back for him, why not do it? You could put him in center or at second for this and next year while also being able to trade Cesar Hernandez. It’s a win-win trade. Do it!
The Pirates want to sell off pieces and Corey Dickerson is a prime candidate for the Phillies. He will be cheap since he’s been hurt most the season and he’s a rental. Dickerson and Bruce could platoon in left field. This move is a low-risk move that would at least improve the bench. He’s better than Nick Williams. That’s all I got to say.
Jake Arrieta may have said he’d put a dent in Frazier’s skull a week ago, but the two would be able to get over that beef I think. Both are winners, they won’t let this affect the good of the team. The Phillies made a trade with the Mets last trade deadline for Asdrúbal Cabrera and this move would be about the same thing. Taking Franco out of the lineup and putting him on the bench or even trading Franco then would be a huge plus.
I don’t really want anything to do with Starlin Castro because I don’t think he’s a good baseball player. I say this realizing that he has been available in my 14 team dynasty league since the second week of the season. If that doesn’t scream “THIS GUY STINKS” I don’t know what will.
I really don’t know what you would do with Puig in Philly. Just imagine telling your 2015 self that in 2019 the Phillies will have Bryce Harper, Yasiel Puig and Jake Arrieta??? I’d be thinking they were the best team in baseball. LOL don’t trade for Puig, Phillies. Please!
A low-risk, low-reward move. He’s going to be traded for nothing, he’s not good, but he’s veteran utility guy. I don’t want him, but if Sean Rodríguez is still hurt and Brad Miller gets hurt in the next week… the calls for Derek Dietrich might be thing.
Another rental and another bad baseball player on the market. He will be cheap to get, at least I think? The move would help of the bench since he would start over Bruce when he comes back off the IL. I guess if everything else drys up…
Just like the Puig thing, imagine telling your 2015 self the Kung Fu Panda was Phillie??? I can’t believe I’m saying this, but Pablo is better than Maikel Franco. How sad. This move will cost nothing of value, but I still wouldn’t do it. I don’t know why I included him in here, please don’t sue me.
Featured Image: Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images
Currently a junior at Penn State. Broadcast Journalism Major. Processor enthusiast, Carson Wentz is my dad.