The Phillies were set to acquire Tyler Anderson from the Pirates, but when a medical issue stalled the trade, the Mariners swooped in and took him.
Heck, the Phillies haven’t even confirmed the trade, but the vibes were strong in Philly on Tuesday afternoon.
Anderson was being compared to fellow midseason acquisition Joe Blanton, who went on to become a postseason hero for the Phillies.
Anderson was appealing to the Phillies in large part because of the fact that he is able to pitch much deeper into games than most of the current Phillies starters. He’s thrown at least five innings in each of his 18 starts this year. By comparison, Vince Velasquez has gone five or more innings only eight times in 16 games.
How do Anderson and Blanton actually compare at the times of their trades?
Interestingly enough, Blanton and Anderson’s seasons at the time of their respective trades are very similar. In 20 starts for the Oakland A’s in the first half of the 2008 season, Blanton had posted a 4.96 ERA over 127 innings. Anderson currently has a 4.35 ERA over 18 starts totaling 103 1/3 innings pitched.
Once Blanton joined the Phils, he posted a 4.20 ERA over 13 regular-season starts. The righty went 4-0 in the regular season and 2-0 in the postseason, helping bring the franchise its second World Series championship and four consecutive division titles. He even homered in the World Series.
In retrospect, the Blanton trade is one of the best midseason acquisitions in franchise history. But it was actually viewed as largely underwhelming at the time. Social media was barely used then, but Anderson was getting a much warmer reception at the outset. It was nice to see Phillies fans excited about the future.
Unfortunately, the Phillies were unable to complete the deal. When a medical issue with one of the prospects arose during physicals, the trade stalled, though it was assumed that the issue would be resolved somehow. Instead, late Tuesday night, the Seattle Mariners announced that they would be the ones acquiring Anderson. A night that had started out with so much promise and excitement ended in embarrassment and frustration.
Phillies fans will have to find another pitcher upon whom to pin their postseason hopes and dreams.