The Phillies have made a minor trade going into the All-Star break
The Phillies have made a trade, but it’s not for Manny Machado or an All-Star pitcher. Instead, they have sent lefty Hoby Milner to the Tampa Bay Rays for cash considerations.
NBC Sports Philadelphia Phillies Jim Salisbury first reported the deal Saturday night before the team made the official announcement.
Milner had been designated for assignment last week after struggling in 10 games this season. He showed tremendous promise as a rookie with a 2.01 ERA in 37 games, and looked to be the long-term lefty option out of the bullpen.
Last year, Milner had a 21 game stretch when he didn’t allow a run and only walked seven batters.
Philadelphia still hasn’t found their long-term bullpen southpaw with Adam Morgan and Austin Davis sharing the duties for most of the season. Davis did have a strong performance in Saturday’s loss in Miami, going 1.1 shutout innings with a strikeout.
Morgan has a 5.18 ERA in 38 appearances this year with four home runs allowed in 24.1 innings this season.
Tommy Hunter has been touted by Gabe Kapler for his effectiveness against lefties, and has held them to a .250 batting average compared to a .355 batting average against righties. He also is fourth in baseball with 19 holds despite a 4.80 ERA.
A left-handed reliever could be on the Phillies radar at the trade deadline with their current bullpen issues. Even a righty such as Brad Hand, who has had success against lefties this year, could help, but his price could be too high, especially if a deal is made for Machado.