The Philadelphia Phillies need another starting pitcher. Brett Myers might be out for the season, Jamie Moyer lost the magic that he had last year, and Antonio Bastardo only has one good pitch, and batters know it.
So who can the Phils get to strengthen their rotation? The Phils were thought to be interested in Jake Peavy, but now that he is out for a couple more weeks, you can forget the Phils gambling on him being back to his old self. Roy Halladay? He too is now on the Disabled List. So you can take him off the list. Roy Oswalt? Maybe.
Oswalt is the Phils only real option right now. Even of the Phils would want to wait for Peavy to get healthy, it would cost them a lot, and they would likely have to sign him to an expensive extension. They would also have to trade two or more of their high end prospects such as Carlos Carrasco, Bastardo, or Kyle Drabek, just to get the San Diego Padres interested in talking to the Phils.
Oswalt would also be much, much cheaper in that the Phils would only have to trade away one of their pitching prospects such as Joe Savery or Carrasco. So far this year Oswalt is 3-3 with a 4.37 ERA and has let up Earned Runs so far this year. Those are pretty good numbers compared to about half of Phillies starting rotation like Moyer, and even Joe Blanton. Moyer’s ERA is 6.35, while, Blanton’s is 5.17.
Those are not mouth-watering numbers, in fact, those numbers are so bad that manager Charlie Manuel has called for “a horse, somebody … that we’re going to put out there and he’s definitely going to help us.”
The fact that Manuel is calling for a pitcher that can propel the Phils into the play-offs right now, and take some of the pressure off of current ace Cole Hamels makes the possibility of the Phightins making a move for a guy like Oswalt, Peavy, Halladay, or even Erick Bedard, or Brad Penny all the better. Despite these comments from general manager Ruben Amaro Jr., “Pretty please, trade this player to us,’” and, ”It’s just not how it works. It takes two or three — nowadays, four — teams to tango.”, the Phils quest for an A-List starter has heated up.
The ideal trade for the Phils would be to get a guy like Oswalt, and then from another team involved, get a solid reliever to solidify their tired bullpen. The fact that a team needs 3 or 4 teams to complete a deal like this is not a bad thing in this case, as the Phils can add more pieces to the puzzle through some other teams.
Getting another pitcher for the bullpen is not a certain though. If the Phils would pull off a trade for a starter, then the Phils could put Bastardo in the bullpen if they felt the need.
The Phils have a lot of options here, but not necessarily a lot of time to make a trade, as the trade deadline is July 29th. Amaro now has some pressure on him to make a deal, but whether or not that happens remains to be seen.