The Phillies sign seven-year veteran reliever Chris Devenski to a MiLB deal.
Less than 24 hours removed from their complete pitching meltdown against the National League West’s Arizona Diamondbacks, it appears Philadelphia Phillies President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski is far from satisfied with leaving the roster as is for the final stretch of the season. So much so, Dombrowski inked a former bullpen arm of the team that scored 13 unanswered runs against the Phillies, erasing their once-commanding 7-0 lead.
Tuesday afternoon, the Phillies signed veteran reliever Chris Devenski to a minor-league deal, reports The Athletic’s Matt Gelb. Devenski will report to Triple-A Lehigh Valley. The 31-year-old has pitched for two different teams since his April 2016 debut — the Houston Astros (2016-20) and Diamondbacks (2021-22).
The Diamondbacks designated the former 25th-round draft pick for assignment on Friday, before releasing him altogether before Monday’s series opener against the Phillies.
Devenski missed most of the last two seasons during his Diamondbacks tenure due to recovering from Tommy John surgery. The Phillies will hope they can help the right-hander revert back to some of his earlier career numbers, such as in 2016 — when he finished fourth in the American League Rookie of the Year race after posting a 2.16 ERA, 0.914 WHIP, and 104-20 strikeouts-to-walks ratio spanning 48 appearances and 108 1/3 innings.
The following year, in 2017, Devenski was named an All-Star and recorded a 2.68 ERA, 0.942 WHIP, and 100-26 strikeouts-to-walks ratio spanning 62 appearances and 80 2/3 innings. His last few seasons in the majors have been different stories — recording a 4.18 ERA in 2018, 4.83 ERA in 2019, 14.73 ERA in 2020, 8.59 ERA in 2021, and 7.59 ERA this season spanning 10 appearances and 10 2/3 innings.
Devenski has pitched in some high-leverage games throughout his seven-season career — such as 10 games in the 2017 postseason, including five games and five innings in that year’s Fall Classic against the Los Angeles Dodgers. He helped the Astros win the 2017 World Series, including earning the winning decision in the 11-inning Game 2 contest.
In August 2019, Devenski recorded the final three outs in the Astros’ combined no-hitter against former Phillies infield prospect J.P. Crawford and the Seattle Mariners. That fall, the California native logged three appearances and as many innings in the World Series opposite the eventual-champion Washington Nationals.
Devenski may very well be relief depth for the Phillies and never make it to the majors in red pinstripes this season. Regardless, it is nice to have another player in the organization who has some postseason experience under his belt.