Josh Hader, San Diego Padres
Finally, none other than probably the best premium closers in the game today in Josh Hader. He is practically the modern-day version of Mariano Rivera, but with crazy strikeout ability, as games basically feels like a guaranteed win whenever he shows up in the ninth inning. Other than one huge outlier year last year in which he pitched way below his usual career standards, Hader has been lights out ever since beginning his career with the Milwaukee Brewers back in 2017.
For the 2023 season, Hader is currently in the midst of his best year in his career, toying with a 0.97 ERA, 0.95 WHIP, giving up only four earned runs all year, with 19 walks and 55 strikeouts in 37 innings pitched. He has also tallied 24 saves, adding to his total of 156 for his career. Not only that, he has also come up big during the postseason, as in 16 games, he has complied a 1.37 ERA, 0.71 WHIP, giving up only 10 hits, three earned runs, four walks and a whopping 33 strikeouts in just 19.2 inning of work.
If the Padres finally decide to be sellers in the coming week, Hader will be one of the most coveted pieces by any contending team for the trade deadline, and could perhaps get into a bidding war between teams as they fight for his services, making him potentially a costly acquisition. But if the Phillies somehow manage to pull it off, he will instantly transform the Phillies team into strong contention status and they should be pretty much set for a long postseason run as well.
Hopefully, the Phillies will be able to add a reliever or two to round out their bullpen for the stretch run, making way for a fun and competitive ride for the team right to the postseason.