Before I start this off, if you haven’t read part one of this series, I strongly suggest you go do that before reading this one. With that being said, as I did in the last article, i will breakdown and grade every trade Matt Klentak has made as the General Manager of the Philadelphia Phillies. Picking up right where I left off last time, with the beginning of the 2018 calender year.
July 15th, 2018:
Phillies Trade RP Hoby Milner to Tampa Bay for Cash Considerations
Hoby Milner was called up by the Phillies during the second half of the 2017 season. He showed some signs of promise, and possibly a role as a future piece to the bullpen during that time, as he posted a 2.01 ERA over 31.1 innings of work. Most Phillies fans will remember Hoby for allowing a home run to Freddie Freeman on opening day of 2018 after rookie manager Gabe Kapler pulled Aaron Nola a tad prematurely. Milner didn’t find the same success in 2018. He only pitched in 14 games for the Phillies, and over those 14 games, he pitched to a 7.36 ERA and a 6.80 FIP.
Grade: C (Didn’t lose or gain much)
July 27th, 2018:
Phillies Trade SP Franklyn Kilome to the New York Mets for SS Asdrubal Cabrera
The first real move the Phillies made at the 2018 trade deadline was the addition of Asdrubal Cabrera. The Phils brought in Cabrera with the hopes of him stabilizing the lineup a bit, as the Phillies were prepared to make their first playoff push a quite some time. When the Phillies traded for Cabrera he was slashing .277/.329/.488 with an .817 OPS. So by most accounts, this was a guy who could come into the middle of the lineup, and really make an impact on offense. Well that didn’t happen. Cabrera slashed .228/.286/.392 with a .678 OPS. Cabrera obviously walked at the conclusion of the season and signed a one year contract with Texas. As for Kilome, when the Phillies traded him to the rival New York Mets, he was the Phillies number 10 prospect. Kilome posted a 4.18 between the Phillies and Mets AA affiliates. After the 2018 season had ended, the Mets announced that Kilome was undergoing Tommy John surgery, and missed the entire 2019 season. Kilome will most likely begin the season in AAA in 2020, and it’s very possible that he sees some time in the MLB this upcoming season, as he is currently on the Mets 40 man roster. How well he is able to rebound from the TJ surgery is TBA.
July 31st, 2018:
Phillies trade Jacob Waguespack to Toronto for Aaron Loup
When the Phillies traded for Aaron Loup, they were hoping to add an effective lefty to the bullpen to help them make a strong push for a wild card spot. Loup pitched in nine games for the Phillies after they picked him up at the 2018 deadline. Over those nine games, he recorded a 4.50 ERA and a 3.66 FIP. As for Jacob Waguespack, he made his MLB debut for Toronto the following season and posted a 4.38 ERA and a 4.91 FIP over 13 starts. Obviously these aren’t fantastic numbers by any means, but Waguespack is only 25 years old, and someone like that in the Phillies rotation last year after losing Jake Arrieta for the season, and the struggles of Vince Velazquez and Nick Pivetta, would have been a great help for the Phils.
Tampa Bay Trades Wilson Ramos to Philadelphia for Cash Considerations
Not a lot of people were expecting the Phillies to go out and get a catcher at the 2018 deadline, but that’s what they did. Jorge Alfaro was one of the weaker spots in the lineup at the time and the Phillies decided they were going to make a change. Wilson Ramos came over and immediately made a huge impact for the team. He slashed .337/.396/.483 over the two months on the Phillies. Obviously the Phillies ended up falling short of their postseason aspirations, but that was no fault of Wilson Ramos. The most astonishing part of this trade, is the fact that it didn’t cost the Phillies a single prospect.
August 10th, 2018:
Marlins trade Justin Bour to Philadelphia for Mckenzie Mills
The Phillies were relatively busy throughout August before the waiver trade deadline in 2018. They started off, by acquiring 1B Justin Bour from the Miami Marlins. Bour is a guy that has some great seasons with the Marlins, including 2017, where he posted a .902 OPS, and participated in the home run derby. When the Phillies traded for Bour, they were hoping to sure up their bench, which was pretty weak for the most part. Bour slashed .227/.3447/.412 while with Miami in 2018, and .224/.296/.347 while with Philadelphia. Bour was non tendered after the 2018 season, and signed a 1 year contract with the Angels for the 2019 season. As for Mckenzie Mills, he was listed as the 23rd propsect in the Phillies system. Mills was acquired from the Nationals in the Howie Kendrick trade a little over a year prior. Mills made 23 starts for the Phillies High-A affiliate and pitched to a 3.29 ERA. In his first year in Miami, he pitched in both High-A , and AA, recording a 4.23 ERA over 20 starts between the two levels. Mills appeared in 28 games in 2019, but only made 9 starts for the Marlins AA affilate in 2019. Mills recorded a 5.36 ERA over those 28 games. He’s still only 23 years old, and has time to get back on track. Mills could see the AAA level at some point in the near future.
August 22nd, 2018:
White Sox trade RP Luis Avilan to the Phillies for Felix Paulino
The Phillies weren’t done at the waiver trade deadline after adding Justin Bour. They looked to the Chicago White Sox to help sure up the bullpen, and add another lefty to compliment Adam Morgan and Aaron Loup. Avilan had a 3.86 ERA and a 2.71 FIP for Chicago at the time of the trade. Luis was used as more of a lefty specialist in his time with Philadelphia, getting into 12 games, and pitching to a 3.18 ERA. The goal in acquiring Avilan was to add more lefty depth in the pen, and he did just that for the Phils. Felix Paulino on the other hand, was sent to Chicago, after recording a 3.18 ERA in High-A for the Phillies, and a 5.11 ERA in AA over just three appearances. Paulino reached as high as AA for the White Sox in 2019, where he was able to log a 3.86 ERA over the duration of the 2019 season. It is possible that the 25 year old will see some AAA action for the White Sox this upcoming season.
August 28th, 2018:
New York Mets trade Jose Bautista to the Phillies for Cash Considerations
The final trade the Phillies made at the 2018 waiver deadline, was perhaps the most fun one as well. If you know anything about the sport of baseball, you know that Jose Bautista was one of the most fun, electrifying players in recent memory. So when the Phillies added him to the roster at the waiver deadline, it was a very cool experience. Obviously Jose’s best days were behind him, but that didn’t stop him from being very productive for the Phillies throughout the final month of the season. Bautista slashed .244/.404/.467 over just about 60 at bats for the Phillies. On top of his solid production, and his .404 on base clip, the fact of adding a face like Jose Bautista to a relatively younger club was something that made a lot of sense.
December 3rd, 2018:
Seattle Mariners trade Jean Segura, Juan Nicasio, and James Pazos to the Phillies for J.P. Crawford and Carlos Santana
The first major move of the Phillies 2018-2019 offseason was one that got the fanbase excited. The Phillies were adding a true contact bat in Jean Segura. The Phillies had signed 1B Carlos Santana to a 3yr/60M contract the prior year, a move that never really made a ton of sense, as it moved one the Phillies biggest blue chip players in Rhys Hoskins to left field. Santana went on to be flipped to Cleveland a few weeks after this trade, and had a fantastic season. A lot of Philadelphia fans weren’t happy with the Santana trade after seeing him have an all-star season with the Indians. Although, its highly unlikely that Carlos had that type of season in Philly for a few reasons. The main one being the fact that he is just far more comfortable in Cleveland. Another being the fact that the situation for him in Philadelphia wasn’t the best from the jump, and the Phillies were able to clear up his rather large contract to make some other large moves in the offseason. As for J.P. Crawford, it was sad to see him go. Not because he was a great player, or because his absence would hurt the team in a negative way, but because he was the clubs #1 prospect for so many years, and at a point in time, was the number two prospect in all of baseball. This trade officially meant that he would never live up to that title with the Phillies. Moving him however, was the right thing to do, since he still had decent value. Jean Segura didn’t have the best of seasons in his debut season for the Phillies, slashing .280/.323/.420, but his track record speaks for himself. Not to mention all the mental hurdles Jean had to endure during the season. Jean admitted that the loss of his grandmother, who played a fundamental part of his upbringing, really took a toll on him mentally. Jean also was held responsible by some for the injury to Andrew McCutchen, which is a blasphemous thing to even suggest, but it did take a toll on him. Jean came into camp with a clear mind, a good attitude, and in great shape. His track record speaks for himself, and Jean can and should have a very positive bounce back campaign during the upcoming season. I for one, am excited to watch a new and improved Jean Segura in 2020. Also apart of this deal, were RPs Juan Nicasio, and James Pazos. Nicasio made 47 outings for the Phillies and posted a 4.75 ERA over those 47 outings. Nicasio walked away in free agency at the seasons end and signed a MILB deal with the Texas Rangers. As for James Pazos, he didn’t make the team following the end of spring, and was traded by the club after a short stint for the Iron Pigs (AAA). Pazos was traded to the Rockies, where he still plays. Some may grade this trade a little lower than me. But with the strong possibility of a bounce back season from Jean Segura, and the underwhelming major league play of J.P. Crawford, as well as the unlikelihood that Carlos Santana found much success comparable to his season in Cleveland, this trade isn’t bad at all in my eyes. Jean Segura should play a major role in the Phillies offense this upcoming season, and it should be fun to watch.
Grade: C+ (with the potential to be a B- or B)
December 6th, 2018:
Angels trade Jose Alvarez to the Phillies for Luis Garcia
The Phillies absolutely robbed the Angels in this deal. There isn’t really any other way around it. Garica posted a 6.07 ERA in 2018 for the Phillies. But the thing the Angels saw, was his pretty good 3.51 FIP, showing that Garica was pretty unlucky throughout the 2018 season. This also came after his 2017 where he posted a 2.65 ERA and a 3.12 FIP. So I see why Billy Eppler might have made this move. Garica posted a 4.35 ERA and a 5.94 FIP for LAA in 2019, while Jose Alvarez posted a respectable 3.36 ERA for the Phillies in 2019. Alvarez is truly a model of consistency out of the bullpen over the years. In 2018, he was the best RP on the Angels, posting a 2.71 ERA for the club. This comes after a 3.88 ERA in 2017, a 3.45 ERA in 2016, and a 3.49 ERA in 2016. Finding a consistent lefty out of the pen can be difficult, and the fact that the Phillies were able to do that, is key.
February 7th, 2019:
Marlins trade J.T. Realmuto to the Phillies for Sixto Sanchez, Jorge Alfaro, and Will Stewart
Without a doubt, the JT Realmuto trade is the biggest trade that Matt Klentak has made as the general manager of the Phillies. The Phillies sort of snuck out of nowhere in the Realmuto sweepstakes, as teams like ATL, SD, CIN, TB, and LAD all were rumored more heavily than the Phillies for most of the offseason. The Phillies made upgrading at catcher a priority at the 2018 deadline as well, so the need for an improvement at catcher seemed to be something the Phillies were determined to make happen, and by adding the most well rounded catcher in baseball, they did just that. Obviously adding an elite talent like Realmuto comes at a steep price. The Phillies had to part ways with one of their top prospects, and top 100 MLB prospect Sixto Sanchez. Sanchez pitched in 18 games for the Marlins AA affilate, and recorded a 2.55 ERA, 2.69 FIP, and 2.96 xFIP. The loss of Jorge Alfaro is less significant however. Sure, Jorge has a lot of potential, and could be the catcher of the future in Miami, but when you replace him with JT Realmuto, losing Alfaro doesn’t seem like a huge deal. Alfaro slashed .262/.312/.425 in 2019 with Miami. Will Stewart, was the final piece of the deal. Stewart was never considered a top prospect when he was in the Phillies organization, but he quietly put up some great numbers. In 2018, while with the Mid-A Lakewood Blueclaws, Stewart recorded a 2.06 ERA, 3.09 FIP, and a 3.21 xFIP. When he was traded to Miami, hes spent the entire season in the Marlins High-A affiliate, pitching to a 5.43 ERA and a 4.43 FIP. Realmuto, had yet another elite season, both offensively, and defensively in 2019. Leading the MLB in runners caught stealing by over 20. He also slugged just under .500 and had an fWAR of 5.7, the highest in the MLB among catchers. Realmuto will be a free agent at the conclusion of the 2020 season, and both the Phillies, and Realmuto have both expressed their desire to work out a long term extension.
April 26th, 2019:
Phillies trade James Pazos to Colorado for Hunter Stovall
After not making the team out of camp, Pazos made a brief stint for the AAA Iron Pigs before being traded to the Colorado Rockies. Pazos spent most of the season in the Rockies AAA affiliate, but made 12 outings at the major league level as well. Pazos recorded a 1.74 ERA, 3.70 FIP, and 3.40 xFIP over those 12 outings. In 2018 with Seattle, Pazos logged a 2.88 ERA, 3.60 FIP, and 4.15 xFIP, over 50 innings. And going back even further to 2017, Pazos had a 3.86 ERA, and a 3.65 xFIP. So Pazos has been a decently solid RP over the past three seasons. The Phillies never really gave Pazos a chance, and traded him before he could really settle in. The return for Pazos, was 23 year old 3B, Hunter Stovall. Stovall slashed .242/.329/.333 during the 2019 season, while reaching as high as Mid-A Lakewood. Giving up on a guy like Pazos, who has put up respectable numbers throughout his career didn’t, and still doesn’t make much sense to me, and the return doesn’t make up for the questionable move.
June 2nd, 2019:
Mariners trade Jay Bruce to the Phillies for Jake Scheiner
The Phillies were forced to make an early season trade due to an extremely unproductive bench. Jay Bruce was supposed to come over, and become the main guy off the bench, and occasionally make a start or two in the outfield. When Andrew McCutchen tore his ACL and missed the rest of the 2019 season just days after Bruce was acquired, Bruce’s role changed dramatically. From then, to the trade deadline, he would start regularly in left field. Bruce put up a SLG of over .500 in 2019 for the Phillies, and made his presence known with a big grand slam in his first start as a Phillie. Bruce proved to be a very valuable piece during 2019, and will do the same in 2020 in a bench role. Jake Scheiner slashed .266/.325/.451 between the Phillies and Mariners High-A teams. The only downfall to Jake is the fact that he is 23, and is yet to play in AA, which he will most likely do this upcoming season. The odds of Scheiner making a larger impact than Bruce has for the Phillies are unlikely. All in all, this was a solid trade.
June 13th, 2019:
Yankees trade Brad Miller to Philadelphia for Cash Considerations
The acquisition to acquire Brad Miller was the biggest under the radar move that Matt Klentak has ever made as GM of the Phillies. Miller came over to the Phillies and immediately became a fan favorite. He started the entire ‘bamboo’ craze when the Phillies were in a cold spell, and he was a big reason the team got hot again shortly after that. His energy was something the Phillies really needed. Miller also was super productive with the bat, slashing .263/.331/.610 over 118 at bats with the Philles. In September, Miller went on an absolute rampage. He had three games in which he hit two home runs in a matter of a week. 12 of his 31 hits were home runs, and between Bruce and him, the Phillies bench was the strongest it had been in quite some time. The Phillies were unable to resign Miller at the end of the 2019, as he was looking for a situation where he could play more frequently, so he signed with the St. Louis Cardinals, where he could platoon with Matt Carpenter.
July 20th, 2019:
Twins trade Mike Morin to the Phillies for Cash Considerations
The first trade of the 2019 trade deadline began with the Phillies acquiring a much needed pen arm. When the Phillies traded for Mike Morin, he had a 3.18 ERA and 4.49 FIP with Minnesota. Morin wasn’t unable to find the same success with Philadelphia, recording a 5.79 ERA over 29 outings. Even with Mike Morin struggling badly for the Phillies, the fact that the Phillies didn’t give up hardly anything in return, the trade still isn’t too awful.
July 27th, 2019:
Padres trade Jose Pirela to the Phillies for Cash Considerations
Another small depth deadline deal, as the Phillies grab a decent utility player in Jose Pirela. Pirela missed most of the 2019 season due to injury with San Diego, but was posting monster numbers in the minors. In 2017, Pirela had a very nice season for the Padres, posting an .837 OPS. The Phillies took a flyer on Pirela hoping he could be a solid bench piece to help join a bench that included Jay Bruce, Brad Miller, Sean Rodriguez, and Andrew Knapp. Pirela slashed .235/.316/.471 for the Phillies over just 20 at bats. The highlight of his time with the Phillies, has a monster home run vs the Braves to give the Phillies the lead. The Phillies released Pirela at the end of the 2019 season, and he signed a multi year contract in the Nippon League.
July 29th, 2019:
Mets trade Jason Vargas to the Phillies for Austin Bossart.
It was almost a guarantee that the Phillies would add some sort of starting pitching at the 2019 deadline. The Phillies did just that in the form of Jason Vargas. The reasoning for not going after some of the bigger name starting pitchers on the market was simply the fact that the Phillies were more than one piece away from being a contender, and blowing up the farm for a big name starter that still wouldn’t put the team in a spot where they could contend for a championship isn’t smart. When the Phillies traded for Vargas, he had a 4.01 ERA over 19 starts, and had a 3.55 ERA over his has 10 starts. It seemed like Vargas would add some much needed stability to the Phillies rotation. Vargas started out pretty solid for the Phils. But by seasons end, he pitched to a 5.37 ERA over 11 starts. Austin Bossart, the return for Vargas, slashed .196/.303/.327 over the duration of the 2019 season in AA. Bossart is also 26, and although he is an elite defensive catcher, his offense isn’t going to cut it. Vargas didn’t really do too well for the Phils, but they also did not lose much capitol at all.
July 31st, 2019:
Pirates trade Corey Dickerson to the Phillies for Cash Considerations
The Phillies final trade at the 2019 deadline was also their biggest. Corey Dickerson was brought in to fill the void left when Andrew McCutchen went down with a torn ACL and missed the rest of the 2019 season. Dickerson missed some time in the first half of the season with the Pirates, but when he came over to the Phillies he slashed .293/.307/.579 with eight home runs. Dickerson really was one of the staples of the Phillies linuep throughout the later months of the year. Dickerson’s contract expired at the end of the 2019 season, and he signed a multi year deal with the division rival Miami Marlins.
November 20th, 2019:
Tampa Bay Rays trade Cristopher Sanchez to the Phillies for Curtis Mead
The Phillies swapped prospects with Tampa Bay right before the 40 man roster period, due to the fact that the Rays were unwilling to add Cristopher Sanchez to their 40 man, but didn’t want to lose him in the Rule 5 draft for nothing, so they send him to Philadelphia for Curtis Mead. Sanchez pitched in three different levels in 2019 for the Rays, posting a combined 2.26 ERA across the three. Most of his time was spent in AA, and he saw a couple of innings in AAA. Sanchez is a tall, strong, hard throwing right hander that could see some action in AAA this year, and depending on his performance, could be up on the big league roster at some point in the near future due to the fact that he is on the 40 man roster. The Phillies swapped Sanchez for Curtis Mead, a 19 year old infielder who spent time in the Phillies GCL league in 2019. Mead slashed .285/.351/.462 with four home runs and a .813 OPS. Mead could see some Low-A action in 2020 with the Rays.
February 15th, 2020
Los Angeles Dodgers trade Kyle Garlick to the Phillies for Tyler Gilbert
Right before thee start of Spring Training, the Phillies acquired OF Kyle Garlick to provide some more outfield depth. Garlick made his MLB debut in 2019 for the Dodgers slashing .250/.321/.521 with three home runs over 48 at bats. Garlick spent most of his time in 2019 in AAA where he slashed .314/.382/.675 with a 1.057 OPS and 23 home runs in 271 at bats. Tyler Gilbert on the other hand, has yet to make his MLB debut at 26 years old. He spent the entire 2019 season in AAA where he posted a 2.83 ERA over 36 outings and 47.2 innings pitched. It’s likely that both Garlick and Gilbert see time in the majors this upcoming season. But the Phillies get a 28 year old with an extreme power bat that should be exciting to watch.