Phillies Top Ten Trades, Signings, and Roster Moves of 2016
By John Town
No. 10: Signing Reliever Joaquin Benoit
The first move on this top-ten list is a recent one. The lone move of impact the Phillies made at this year’s winter meetings was inking reliever Joaquin Benoit to a one-year, $7.5 million deal.
Benoit spent 2016 with the Mariners and the Blue Jays and had quite the Jekyll and Hyde season. In 26 appearances with Seattle, he had a 5.18 ERA, but he posted a 0.38 ERA in 25 appearances with Toronto after a midseason trade. The Phillies are rolling the dice on Benoit, hoping that he will perform like the second-half Benoit and not like the first-half Benoit.
If Benoit can perform like he did in the second half in 2017, he will better a bullpen that struggled mightily in 2016. Philadelphia’s bullpen was notoriously bad, especially in the last month of the season. In addition to other moves, Klentak believes the bullpen will be better in 2017: [quote via Stephen Gross of Allentown Morning Call]
"“I think one of things that as appealing to us about Joaquin is he has pitched the sixth, he’s pitched the seventh, he’s pitched the eight, he’s pitched the ninth, and he’s been good in all of those roles at various times throughout his career. We feel better today than we did a few days ago that we have several players in our bullpen that can compete for the ninth, the eighth, the seventh, the sixth. We made our bullpen better.”"