When the Phillies traded Jimmy Rollins to the Dodgers in 2014, Zach Eflin was considered the major return in the trade. Most expected him to be a major-league starter. I was higher on him than most, seeing the potential for a No. 3 starter in him. Boy, was I wrong.
More from That Balls Outta Here
- What can Philadelphia Phillies expect from Bryson Stott in 2023?
- 3 Reasons to get excited for Phillies’ Craig Kimbrel signing
- 11 Free-agent deals the Philadelphia Phillies wish fell through
- Phillies-Mets owners’ rivalry grows after shocking Carlos Correa deal
- Could Rich Hill become ‘Jamie Moyer 2.0’ in Phillies rotation?
Every time Eflin starts to perform well in the majors, he takes a step back and falls victim to injury. He started off 2017 well with five strong starts before getting completely annihilated in his next three. He was sent down to Triple-A before missing a month of action due to swelling in his elbow. He came back for a few more starts before another injury, a shoulder strain, took him out for the season.
Eflin came into this spring with a chance to earn a rotation spot. His 5.79 ERA in five appearances did little to show he deserved it. He was sent back to Triple-A Monday as the job instead went to Ben Lively.
Eflin may get another chance to prove himself this season if and when injury strikes the rotation. If he continues to struggle or gets hurt again, his valuable 40-man roster spot may become someone else’s