It’s hard to believe the Philadelphia Phillies are only a little more than two weeks away from the end of their regular season, but 2021 has flown by.
While the Phillies haven’t officially ruined their postseason chances yet, there are several underperforming players whose Phillies’ time is short. As I was writing this, the Phillies announced that Vince Velasquez, who had been designated for assignment earlier this week, had been released.
As the sand runs out of their hourglasses, let’s take a look at some other Phillies who have almost guaranteed they won’t be in red pinstripes next season.
Ian Kennedy probably won’t be a Phillie next season
Kennedy, a 15-year MLB vet, has struggled immensely since being traded to the Phillies at the deadline.
In 32 games with the Rangers to start the season, Kennedy had a 2.51 ERA, 25 games finished, and 16 saves. He’d struck out 35 batters over 32 1/3 innings, and only issued seven walks, dream numbers for a Phillies team with an abundance of walk-happy bullpen arms.
But instead of being the solution to a struggling bullpen/closer situation, Kennedy joined the ranks of Phillies bullpen arms who suddenly could not close. He has a 6.14 ERA over 15 games for his new team, with 12 games finished and six saves. He’s still struck out 19 batters over 14 2/3 innings, but he’s allowed more earned runs and home runs here in less than half the innings he pitched in Texas.
Thankfully, Hector Neris rebounded from a 6+ ERA in July to an ERA under 1.00 in August. And yes, that’s as insane as it sounds.
Unlike Gibson, Kennedy is a free agent at the end of this season, and it would be absurd for the Phillies to bring him back rather than go for younger bullpen options.
If the choice comes down to Kennedy or Hector Neris, who is also an impending free agent, bring back Neris.