The Philadelphia Phillies have hit a bit of a skid of late, losing four in a row against the Brewers and Guardians respectively but are still 52-46 on the season. With them being six games over .500 the Phillies find themselves one game back of the final Wild Card spot.
The Phillies are going to be in a battle until the end for a playoff spot. For them to find a way to get ahead of the pack, they'll need to be active at the trade deadline to improve this roster's deficiencies.
The trade deadline last season saw Philadelphia be extremely active landing Brandon Marsh, Noah Syndergaard, David Robertson, and Edmundo Sosa. All four of these players had big moments down the stretch and in the postseason. With Dave Dombrowski likely to do more wheeling and dealing, here're some ways he can screw up at this year's deadline.
The Phillies can screw up the trade deadline by not trading for a starting pitcher
Starting pitching should be the number one concern for the Phillies heading into the deadline. You can argue that a rotation of Zack Wheeler, Aaron Nola, Ranger Suarez, and Taijuan Walker is good enough for the postseason, but you cannot argue that they need a fifth starter to help them get them there to begin with.
Cristopher Sanchez is not that guy. He's pitched well but is a much better fit as a potential sixth starter or long reliever than as a guy you rely on every fifth day in a postseason race. Think of him as this year's Bailey Falter.
I'm not saying the Phillies need to land someone like Blake Snell or even Shohei Ohtani to add to their rotation. It'd be great if they did, but the Phillies have a ton of talent in the front of their rotation already. What I am saying is adding a proven fifth starter is needed. Adding one who can step in and start a big postseason game for you would be great as well.
I like Cristopher Sanchez, but I don't think it's fair to him or to the Phillies to expect a guy who came into the year with a 5.47 ERA in 22 MLB appearances (four starts) to be starting massive September games. If a pitcher goes down with injury or if the Phillies need him to start a doubleheader game so be it. Don't force yourself to rely on an unproven commodity when you have the ability to upgrade a weakness.