Philadelphia Phillies GM Matt Klentak may be close to sending closer Ken Giles to the Houston Astros.
Klentak has recently reiterated his position that the Phils are in no hurry to move their young closer, unless some team should come along and blow them out of the water with an offer. Houston is one of the few teams who appear to have the will and the way to make such a quick deal come together.
Any deal for Giles would have to include a pair of top prospects coming back to the Phillies. Houston, with one of the top young lineups in the game, also has one of the game’s best minor league systems.
The most recent hot rumor, coming within the hour from the most reliable Phillies insider source, Jim Salisbury, has three young arms possibly coming back to the Phils in exchange for Giles.
Klentak would have to seriously consider pulling the trigger on a deal that would bring, say, Vincent Velasquez, Lance McCullers, and Brett Oberholtzer back to the Phillies. Those are three names that seem to have been floating around over the last day or so.
Sep 28, 2015; Seattle, WA, USA;
McCullers is another arm who could come in a Giles deal.
(Photo Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports)
If Velasquez is indeed the lead piece in a Giles deal, he would bring the Phils a hard-throwing, 23-year old righty who was Houston’s 2nd round selection in the 2010 MLB Amateur Draft out of Garey High School in California. He made his big league debut this past season on June 10th at Chicago against the White Sox.
In all, Velasquez appeared in 19 games for the Astros, the first seven of those as starts. He was switched to the bullpen just before the trade deadline, and remained there for the rest of the season. He allowed 50 hits in 55.2 innings, with a 58/21 K:BB ratio.
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Besides McCullers and Oberholtzer, other arms who could be in a three-pitcher mix as part of a package to the Phillies would probably include Michael Feliz, Joseph Musgrove, and Thomas Eshelman. Feliz is more likely to end up in the bullpen, and could become the heir apparent at closer.