Phillies DFA World Series standout after shocking fall from grace, add Venezuelan MVP

Connor Brogdon is off the 40-man roster in favor of Ricardo Pinto.

Philadelphia Phillies relief pitcher Connor Brogdon was designated for assignment on Tuesday
Philadelphia Phillies relief pitcher Connor Brogdon was designated for assignment on Tuesday / Rich Schultz/GettyImages

It seemed like it was only a matter of time before the Philadelphia Phillies moved on from Connor Brogdon. After a rough start to the reliever's 2024 season, the team didn't waste any time deciding on a course of action after his disastrous game on Monday night — it was the straw that broke the camel's back if you will.

Per's Todd Zolecki, on Tuesday the Phillies designated Brogdon for assignment. The 29-year-old is out of MiLB options, so DFAing the once highly thought-of right-hander was the only option for a team desperate for usable bullpen arms early in the season.

In a corresponding move, the Phillies selected the contract of right-hander Ricardo Pinto from Triple-A Lehigh Valley, adding him to the 40-man roster and the active roster in the major league bullpen. The team signed the 30-year-old to a minor league deal in February.

Connor Brogdon's shocking fall from grace

Brogdon was a stud in 2022, especially in the postseason. In the regular season that year, he made 47 appearances, pitching to a 3.27 ERA with 50 strikeouts over 44 innings. But the playoffs were where he really shined. He threw 8 2/3 innings across seven games in the Phillies' run to the World Series, with a stingy 2.08 ERA, 0.92 WHIP and 13 strikeouts.

In the Fall Classic, he pitched four innings against the Houston Astros, striking out seven with zero walks.

After throwing only 29 innings with a 4.03 ERA in 2023, Brogdon hit rock bottom this season. In three appearances (two innings) in the young campaign, he gave up six earned runs (seven total), on three hits (two home runs), with six walks and only three strikeouts. The final nail in the coffin for Brogdon was his dismal performance in Monday's game, in which he walked three and gave up a grand slam in the 10th inning in a 6-3 loss to the Cincinnati Reds.

Phillies add a familiar face to the bullpen

The Phillies originally signed Pinto as an international free agent in 2011. In 2015, he won the Phillies’ Paul Owens Award as the top pitcher in the system. He then appeared in 25 MLB games for the Phillies in 2017, with a 7.89 ERA in 29 2/3 innings.

The native of Venezuela played overseas in the KBO in 2020 after spending time in the Chicago White Sox and Tampa Bay Rays organizations. He came back to North America in 2021 and spent two seasons in the Detroit Tigers system.

Most recently, Pinto pitched in Mexico and Venezuela in 2023. He earned MVP of the Caribbean Series finals, leading Venezuela to a championship with a 0.84 ERA and 14 strikeouts in 10 2/3 innings over two dominant starts.