Phillies trade struggling catcher to Cubs

The minor move sees William Simoneit’s time with the Phillies come to an end.
Philadelphia Phillies v Miami Marlins
Philadelphia Phillies v Miami Marlins / Rich Storry/GettyImages

The Philadelphia Phillies have had big shoes to fill since catcher J.T. Realmuto was placed on the IL after requiring surgery to clean up damage to the meniscus in his right knee. The injury came at a tough time for the Phillies, as Realmuto had a remarkable stretch hitting in the second spot in the batting order following an injury to Trea Turner in May.

While Realmuto works his way back from what is estimated to be a four week absence, the Phillies have settled on a platoon of Garrett Stubbs and Rafael Marchán, who was recently recalled to take Realmuto's place on the 26-man roster, and has provided the team with some timely hits through his first four games in MLB since 2021.

While Realmuto's injury has presented the latest challenge to the Phillies organizational depth, it was assumed that the Phillies could try to acquire another catcher to stash away at the upper minor league levels until Realmuto returns. That could still be the case, but in a surprise move, the Phillies recently traded away a minor league depth piece in an under-the-radar deal that took place on Tuesday.

Phillies trade struggling catcher to Cubs

While trade rumors regarding the Phillies have begun to pick up steam recently with the MLB trade deadline just over a month away, the deal the Phillies made this week sending catcher William Simoneit to the Chicago Cubs didn't exactly send shockwaves rippling through the MLB universe.

The Phillies traded the 27-year-old backstop to the Cubs for cash considerations, a minor deal that only comes as a surprise due to the Phillies current situation with Realmuto on the shelf. Simoneit's time in the Phillies organization was brief, as Simoneit was signed this past offseason to a minor league contact after spending the past four seasons as a member of the Oakland Athletics farm system.

Simoneit appeared in 20 games split between Double-A Reading and Triple-A Lehigh Valley this season for the Phillies organization, and struggled to get anything going at the plate at both minor league levels. In 62 at-bats, Simoneit hit .145 with two home runs, eight RBI, and struck out 28 times over that span. The Phillies felt they had clearly seen enough with those uninspiring numbers, and Simoneit was sent packing to the Cubs to seek new opportunities.

The Phillies could still be in the market to add some depth to the catching position in the near future, but for now, the team seems content with Stubbs and Marchán handling duties at the MLB level, with Lehigh Valley catcher Aramis Garcia likely being the next man up if injuries force further roster moves. With J.T. Realmuto expected back in July, the Phillies will have to make due with the current situation at catcher while the former All-Star rehabs his way back into the lineup.