Phillies trade deadline recap: Moves met with disappointment

PITTSBURGH, PA - JULY 20: Corey Dickerson #12 of the Pittsburgh Pirates in action against the Philadelphia Phillies at PNC Park on July 20, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - JULY 20: Corey Dickerson #12 of the Pittsburgh Pirates in action against the Philadelphia Phillies at PNC Park on July 20, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images) /
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How’d the Phillies do at the MLB trade deadline after weeks of hype?

Phillies fans held out hope that their team would pull off a couple of trades or potentially a blockbuster that would help the team not just this year, but also next.

Team President Andy MacPhail and General Manager Matt Klentak told fans to expect deals similar to those made in 2008 (Joe Blanton, Matt Stairs) instead of the blockbusters made when the team was contending (Cliff Lee, Hunter Pence).

The team fell right in line with the type of deals made at the trade deadline, adding two players on the final day and a couple of others in the days prior.

A quiet part of the trade deadline was that Dylan Cozens, once a top-10 prospect for the Phillies, was designated for assignment. Cozens wowed fans with a 40 home run season in a batter-friendly Reading ballpark, but he never materialized when given the opportunity to play in the big leagues.

Cozens is also battling an injury that could cost him the season and was hitting .167 for Reading.

Reliever David Robertson was also ruled out for the season with a flexor strain that could require Tommy John Surgery. One of the Phillies biggest offseason acquisitions turns out to be an unfortunate bust who may never play for the Phillies again.

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Here’s what happened in the waning hours of the trade deadline:

The Phillies added another outfielder, their fourth starting outfielder since the offseason. Dickerson is coming off a groin injury, but Philadelphia hopes to see him play both left and center field.

Hitting .317 for Pittsburgh Dickerson was a slightly surprising move considering he’s another left-handed outfielder. Jay Bruce is returning from an oblique injury in the near future and the tandem of Scott Kingery and Adam Haseley in center field has held up.

Getting a player who can hit like Dickerson certainly gives the offense a boost and provides depth in the outfield that was previously covered by Nick Williams and Roman Quinn.

A move that was widely missed by national insiders was the Phils adding Dan Straily from the Orioles. Straily has struggled all season with an ERA over nine in Baltimore, and he’ll report to Lehigh Valley.

This moves simply gives Philadelphia more rotation help should something happen at the big league level. Don’t expect much, if anything, from Straily.

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Those were the moves made today at the deadline, but don’t forget that Klentak did make a couple of other moves leading up to it.

Philadelphia gave up a 26-year-old minor league catcher with little upside to add a veteran starting pitcher to stabilize the starting rotation. While Jason Vargas isn’t as flashy as Zach Greinke or the other starters available this year he’ll be a modest improvement over what the Phillies were throwing out there.

Jose Pirela reported to Lehigh Valley after hitting .353 with 18 home runs for the Padres Triple-A club this year. He’s a career .258 hitter in the big leauges with position versatility, but the Phillies would have to designate another player for assignment. Pirela is decent infield depth for Philadelphia, but nothing more.

Philadelphia gave out a lot of cash at the trade deadline. Their first July deal was for reliever Mike Morin, who had a 3.18 ERA in 23 appearances this season with the Minnesota Twins. He walked just two batters and struck out 11 in 22.2 innings in his first season for Minnesota, and has pitched three innings for the Phillies since the deal went down.

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These weren’t the deals Phillies fans were looking for, but they’re the ones the front office warned of. Not knowing the conversations that were had, it was a relatively smart but safe deadline for the team after seeing their aggressiveness during the offseason.

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