Eduardo Escobar, Los Angeles Angels
An intriguing candidate for the Phillies to consider is Eduardo Escobar of the Los Angeles Angels. As one would recall, Escobar was just traded last month by the New York Mets to the Angels in exchange for two pitching prospects. With the Angels faltering a bit away from playoff contention in recent weeks, along with the injury to Mike Trout, it could be enough for the Angels to become sellers as the trade deadline approaches. If that is the case, Escobar could potentially be flipped to another contending team to recoup back some of the assets that they lost to the Mets and the Phillies definitely have the prospect capital to satisfy that request for sure
For Escobar, he has been having a somewhat down year so far in 2023, as he was used in a platoon role with Mets rookie Brett Baty while with New York. For the season, between the Mets and Angels, he has hit .241 with an OPS of .652, with 24 runs scored, four home runs and 21 RBI in 56 games played. But don’t forget that he is only two years removed from his All-Star season back in 2021 when he clubbed 28 home runs and 90 RBI playing for both the Arizona Diamondbacks and Milwaukee Brewers. So he has definitely been moving around quite a bit, but usually to contending teams each time, meaning that he must be a valuable asset in the eyes of a contender. For someone that can usually average over 20 home runs and 70 RBI a year, he may be worth a shot for the Phillies.
Jeimer Candelario, Washington Nationals
For Jeimer Candelario, his name may not jump out of the page right away for the casual baseball fan, but he has quietly put together a solid MLB career in recent years after becoming a part of the Detroit Tigers’ organization. His best season came in the 2020 COVID-shortened year in which he hit close to .300, with an .872 OPS along with 30 runs scored, 11 doubles, three triples, seven home runs and 29 RBI in just 52 games. He followed it up the next season by leading the AL in doubles with 42 in 2021.
In part, Candelario is good for 15-20 home runs and 50-60 RBI each year, but he appears to have found his power productive stroke for 2023, as he is on pace for over 25 home runs, over 80 RBI, and over 80 runs scored, while maintaining a batting average above .260 and an OPS above .820. With that kind of production, the Phillies should definitely check in on Candelario, and the cost to acquire him will most likely be minimal compared to some of the other potential candidates, leaving the Phillies potentially with a better hand to deal with for other trade possibilities.