The Philadelphia Phillies have found their groove as the season has gone on. That has been crystal clear as they have boasted a record of 26-12 since the calendar flipped to June. Such an exceptional winning run allowed the team to pull themselves as close as a half-game back of the first Wild Card spot as of this writing.
Improved play and winning are warmly welcomed, but with that winning comes a more magnified look at the team’s roster. That look is intentional to weed out the weaknesses in the clubhouse and a standout one is the first base position. A first baseman is typically a slugger’s position for a player to produce runs by using his power. That is why the club should target these three first basemen at the MLB Trade Deadline.
Candidate number one is Joey Gallo. Gallo is a 29-year-old who will hit free agency this upcoming winter. The left-handed power hitter is in his ninth year of MLB service. The once building block of the Texas Ranger and two-time all-star has begun to bounce just a tad around the league as he’s played for three teams in the past two seasons. He has suited up as a member of the New York Yankees, Los Angeles Dodgers, and Minnesota Twins.
This season Gallo has bounced back after two disappointing campaigns. In his 72 games with the Twins, he has tallied a .187 batting average, .310 on-base percentage, .473 slugging percentage, 38 hits, 31 runs batted in, 29 runs scored, 16 home runs, eight doubles, 34 walks, and 97 strikeouts in 239 total plate appearances. The extra power would greatly benefit the Phillies. They are tangled in a three-way tie with the Seattle Mariners and Toronto Blue Jays for the 15th-most home runs in baseball. Think about dropping Gallo’s bat in the lineup in the midst of Trea Turner, Bryce Harper, Kyle Schwarber, and Nick Castellanos. That should certainly create more Phillies dingers.
The catch that comes with trading for Gallo is that he is a free agent at the end of the season and the Minnesota may not want to part with a run producer like Gallo when they still have a conceivable chance to win the AL Central. Also, he is making a salary that totals eleven million dollars which brings up the luxury tax question and if the Phillies will go over it again. It’s not safe to assume so but all of the team’s moves since last season’s deadline indicate that would do it again to finish the job of winning a World Series.