Phillies 2016 Rotation: An Early Prediction

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Jun 16, 2015; Pittsburgh, PA, USA;

Former Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher Morton (50) pitches against the Chicago White Sox during the first inning in an inter-league game at PNC Park.

(Photo Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports)

CHARLIE MORTON – LIKELY

New Phils general manager Matt Klentak acquired another veteran righthander when he acquired Charlie Morton from the Pittsburgh Pirates for minor league pitcher David Whitehead earlier this month.

Morton was a dependable starter for the Buccos for a majority of his seven years in Pittsburgh. After going a combined 7-21 in the 2009 and 2010 seasons, he became one of Bucs’ pitching coach Ray Searage’s reclamation projects after Searage took over the role following the 2010 season.

In 2011, Morton won 10 games and posted a 3.83 ERA, just one year after winning only two games in 17 starts. His best season came in 2013, when he went 7-4 with 3.26 ERA across 20 starts.

While Morton struggled last season to a mediocre 9-9 record and 4.81 ERA, he still has one year remaining on his contract worth $8 million with a mutual option for 2017. It is hoped that Morton will prove to be a dependable workhorse for the Phils, and would certainly appear to be an upgrade over those who filled the role in 2015, Harang and Jerome Williams.

As is the case with Hellickson, if Morton has a strong first half of the year, the Phillies could likely flip him for a low-level prospect from a team looking for a veteran arm.

Next: Phillies Rotation: Likely

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