3 Phillies starting pitcher trade options if Aaron Nola leaves, and 1 starter to avoid

How would the potentially available starters on the market fit in Philadelphia? Who should the Phillies stay away from?

Corbin Burnes of the Milwaukee Brewers could be a trade target for the Philadelphia Phillies
Corbin Burnes of the Milwaukee Brewers could be a trade target for the Philadelphia Phillies / Michael McLoone-USA TODAY Sports
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Shane Bieber, CLE

Another starter with one year of control left, Shane Bieber looks like a player who will be on the move. At least that's what Joel Reuter of Bleacher Report thinks, naming the 28-year-old the Cleveland Guardians' most-likely-to-be-traded player.

The righty has been in the league since 2018, won the AL Cy Young in 2020, and finished fourth and seventh in voting on two other occasions. The two-time All-Star most likely would have been traded midseason, but a trip to the IL with elbow inflammation forced the Guardians to hang on to their homegrown talent.

While this isn't the same Bieber who won the Cy Young in 2020, he's still effective. In that award-winning season, he struck out 122 hitters in 77 1/3 innings for a ridiculous 14.20 K/9 with a 94.1 mph four-seam fastball. In 2023, that velocity dropped to 91.3 mph, but he still managed a 3.80 ERA through 128 innings.

One wonders how much his elbow problem affected his results this season. He had the same velocity in 2022 but pitched to a 2.88 ERA with 198 strikeouts in 200 innings. He obviously knows how to pitch with that 91 mph fastball.

If the Phillies are looking for a shrewd, under-the-radar type deal that won't break the bank, Bieber might be the way to go. MLB Trade Rumors projects Bieber's arbitration raise at $12.2 million.