Before you get too excited, the Philadelphia Phillies have not traded for any pitchers to bolster their bullpen.
In fact, it’s the opposite.
The Phillies’ first move ahead of the deadline is to finally complete a trade they began back in January. Early in 2021, the Phillies acquired infielder C.J.Chatham from the Boston Red Sox for a player to be named later. Today, they’ve completed their end of the deal, sending a pitcher to the Sox.
That player, according to the Boston Globe’s Alex Speier, is Victor Santos.
Victor Santos signed with the Phillies in November 2016, and had been in Double-A Reading prior to being traded. In 13 games this season, the starting pitcher posted a 2.20 ERA over 41 innings with 40 strikeouts and a 1.05 WHIP. Santos was quite young when he joined the Phillies organization; he only turned 21 on July 12.
Meanwhile, Chatham was Boston’s second-round pick in 2016, and has hit .296/.338/.399 with a .736 over 286 minor league games. He was doing well in Triple-A Lehigh Valley this season, slashing .269/.351/.343 with a .694 OPS over 20 games, but has been on the Injured List since early June due to a hand fracture.
At the time of the trade, MLB.com had ranked Chatham as Red Sox’ 14th-best prospect. Ironically, that spot now belongs to Connor Seabold, the former Phillies pitching prospect who was packaged with Nick Pivetta in the trade for Brandon Workman and Heath Hembree. Hopefully, this deal with Boston turns out better for the Phillies than that one.
While both prospects’ futures are uncertain, it certainly seems at the outset that the Phillies have once again been fleeced by Chaim Bloom. Santos has been praised for “impressive control” and excellent strikeout rates and his ability to limit walks. While he was still a ways away from making his major-league debut, the Phillies are currently in desperate need of an influx of pitching – for both their rotation and bullpen – and have struggled to develop top pitching prospects like Spencer Howard.
The Phillies used their 20 rounds of this year’s draft to primarily select pitchers, but of course, they’ll be even farther away from the big-league level than Santos.