Phillies Claim Deolis Guerra, Designate JD Hammer

The Phillies have claimed right-handed reliever Deolis Guerra and designated RHP JD Hammer to make room on the 40-man roster.

The Philadelphia Phillies appear to be far from finalizing their spring training roster, and that became more evident on Wednesday.

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According to the team, they have claimed right-handed relief pitcher Deolis Guerra off waivers from the Milwaukee Brewers; as a corresponding move to make room on the 40-man roster, they have designated fellow right-hander JD Hammer for assignment.

Guerra, 30, is a four-year veteran reliever that has played for the Pittsburgh Pirates (2015), Los Angeles Angels (2016-17) and Brewers (2019). Last season, the right-hander only faced six batters and recorded two outs en route to a 54.00 ERA, however as an Angel he recorded a combined 3.68 ERA and 1.162 WHIP across 63 relief appearances, 16 of which finished a game.

The Brewers designated Guerra for assignment last week to make room for RHP David Phelps. The Phillies, meanwhile, are designating Hammer off of their 40-man roster. The 25-year-old notched a 3.79 ERA, 13-12 strikeout-to-walk ratio and 1.421 WHIP as a rookie last season spanning his 20 appearances, seven of which finished a game.

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Hammer was dealt to the Phillies in July 2017, along with fellow minor-leaguers Jose Gomez and Alejandro Requena, in exchange for RHP Pat Neshek. Fans grew to like Hammer for his appearance on the mound, especially his glasses. Their only remaining “hope” is a team does not claim him, and he will report to minor-league camp come time for pitchers and catchers.

The Phillies also announced on Wednesday that right-handed relief pitcher Trevor Kelley, who was designated for assignment last Friday to make room for RHP Reggie McClain, has cleared waivers and has been outright to Triple-A Lehigh Valley.

Kelley and fellow minor leaguers INF Logan ForsytheRHP Anthony Swarzak, and RHP Blake Parker all had their deals announced and that they were invited to big-league camp. Parker’s deal was not previously reported before the larger announcement; he re-signs with the Phillies after posting a 31-to-6 strikeout-to-walk ratio over 25 innings for the team in 2019.

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