A surprising name has come up as a new Phillies trade rumor this summer.
Any Phillies trade rumor will perk the ears of fans, but the latest one dished out by former Reds and Nationals general manager Jim Bowden, now of Sirius XM, was a surprise to say the least.
Boyd is a name constantly thrown out not just as a Phillies trade rumor but for any team looking for a young starting pitcher. This is the first time I have heard Smith’s name thrown around as a trade chip for the floundering Marlins.
"“Definitely starters for me, a Matt Boyd, a Caleb Smith. That’s the kind of targets that you need. I don’t know if I want a rental in Philly… I’d much prefer a controllable piece.”"
Smith is currently on the injured list with a hip injury after a strong start to his second season in Miami. Through 12 starts Smith has a 3.41 ERA with 82 strikeouts and a 1.2 WAR in 66 innings.
It’s not entirely clear why Miami would want to move a very young starting pitcher with several years of control remaining. Smith has one more year of making the league minimum before his three arbitration years kick in, which would take him until his 30th birthday in 2023.
Miami has a lot of solid pitching, something the Phillies have seen in this recent series. Why would they move on from one of their top young players unless they get an astronomical return?
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While the Marlins have traded stars like J.T. Realmuto, Giancarlo Stanton, Marcell Ozuna, and Christian Yelich, they have largely held onto their young players who are still developing into stars.
Acquiring Smith, assuming he’s healthy, would take a lot from the Phillies, who already sent top prospect Sixto Sanchez to Miami for Realmuto. The Marlins reportedly coveted Spencer Howard, now the Phillies second-best pitching prospect.
Howard and another top-10 prospect would surely go to Miami in any deal for Smith, a price I wouldn’t feel comfortable meeting.
Philadelphia is better suited to acquire a veteran pitcher, possibly one with postseason experience. Smith is largely unproven, especially while pitching in a small market, and Philadelphia can save their top prospects for much bigger fish.