Phillies: Five MLB Trade Deadline Takeaways
Takeaway One: Matt Klentak has arrived.
To me, Klentak established himself to the fan base and to Major League Baseball this week. As a new general manager in a very difficult sports town, the rookie GM was stuck between the proverbial rock and hard place. He had an anxious group of fans breathing down his neck for a prospect in return for Jeremy Hellickson, and on the other side, veteran GMs trying to rob him blind.
Klentak made it very clear that he would not deal Hellickson for any less than a top five organizational prospect. He had valid reasons (see below) and never wavered from them. If he folds in his first deadline, and settles for a middling prospect, he may be seen as the young GM with no spine.
In addition, he made it clear to the Texas Rangers that he wanted a major league ready bat and another that was close if he was going to trade Vincent Velasquez. And again, there is nothing wrong with placing that value on a 23-year-old with upside.
The Phillies have a plethora of young right-handed arms in their system, and Klentak was willing to deal from that strength to get youthful, impact bats. My guess is he asked for Nomar Mazara and Lewis Brinson. Possibly Jurickson Profar. When the Rangers balked, Klentak moved on from the talks.
In both cases, he stuck to his word and refused to settle. Moving forward, Klentak will be seen as someone who values his players in multiple ways. In the case of Velasquez, he put stock in the youngster’s ability and stuff. Some may argue he overvalued Hellickson, but he valued the right-hander’s contract situation and used it to his advantage.
And it will prove to be smart…and a perfect transitional segue.
Next: Takeaway Two: Jeremy Hellickson is still a Phillie, and that's fine.