Phillies rumor: J.A. Happ a potential trade deadline target

DENVER - APRIL 10: J.A. Happ #43 of the Philadelphia Phillies pitches in relief against the Colorado Rockies during MLB action on Opening Day at Coors Field on April 10, 2009 in Denver, Colorado. The Rockies defeated the Phillies 10-3. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
DENVER - APRIL 10: J.A. Happ #43 of the Philadelphia Phillies pitches in relief against the Colorado Rockies during MLB action on Opening Day at Coors Field on April 10, 2009 in Denver, Colorado. The Rockies defeated the Phillies 10-3. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit

The latest Phillies rumor suggests they could reunite themselves with one of their homegrown talents

Amind the Phillies rumors surrounding Orioles shortstop Manny Machado, the team has had conversations with the Toronto Blue Jays regarding veteran pitcher J.A. Happ, according to NBC Sports Philadelphia’s Jim Salisbury. 

The 35-year-old lefty is in the final year of his deal with Toronto, and could add both experience and diversification to the Phillies already strong starting rotation.

Philadelphia drafted Happ back in 2004 out of Northwestern in the third round, and the lefty made his debut in 2007 with the club. After making nine appearances in 07-08 with Philadelphia, Happ finished second in the 2009 Rookie of the Year voting behind a strong 12-4 season with a 2.93 ERA.

As the prospects of another World Series ring came into view, the Phillies traded Happ to Houston for Roy Oswalt during the 2010 season.

Happ has since played for Houston, Seattle, Pittsburgh, and has had two stints with Toronto since 2010. He’s been among the top names in trade rumors this year with a 10-6 record leading to his first All-Star selection.

The Phillies rotation has been one of the best in baseball behind Cy Young candidate Aaron Nola. Not having Jerad Eickhoff all season due to numbness/tingling in this pitching fingers has hurt, but Zach Eflin has stepped up in his place.

Eflin is currently on the disabled list with a blister on a pitching finger but isn’t expected to miss an extended period of time.

Vince Velasquez has been on the disabled list with an arm contusion, and prospect Enyel De Los Santos performed well in his first of two starts.

Nick Pivetta has been the question mark lately after a very strong first quarter of the season. After starting the year 8-2 with a 3.23 ERA in his first 10 games, the former Nationals prospect has slipped considerably.

In his last 10 starts Pivetta is 4-6 with a 6.23 ERA and hasn’t pitched out of the third inning in three of his last four starts.

Next: Phillies: Power Ranking Players from 2008

Happ could take a starting job from Pivetta if he doesn’t show improvement coming out of the All-Star break and into the deadline. Much of the Phillies plans revolve around Machado and the health of their rotation going forward.