Trade deadline possibility will be 60 feet, 6 inches away from Phillies Friday originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia
PITTSBURGH – The trade deadline is coming fast. The Phillies are hell bent on adding a starting pitcher.
Friday night, they will get an up-close look at a potential addition.
Veteran lefty Jose Quintana will be the opposing pitcher when the Phillies play the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park. Lefty Bailey Falter will start for the Phillies.
Falter has been filling the rotation spot vacated by the injured Zach Eflin. For the second year in a row, the Phillies are seeking to bolster the rotation for the stretch drive. Last year, they added Kyle Gibson at the deadline.
Quintana, 33, is a strong candidate to be dealt before Tuesday afternoon’s deadline. He has postseason experience with the Chicago Cubs in 2017. He is having a solid season for the Pirates with a 3.70 ERA and 1.28 WHIP in 19 starts and will be a free agent after this season. He is making only $2 million this season, so he would not put much of a dent in the payroll, though that’s not likely to be a serious issue for the Phillies who are already spending at a franchise-record clip and are in full playoffs- or-bust mode.
The Phillies do not have a deep farm system, but they do have quality and players other teams like. That said, the Phillies will be very protective of their young pitching so that probably takes them off the top of the market and pursuit of Cincinnati’s Luis Castillo and Oakland’s Frankie Montas. It’s highly unlikely the Phils would part with Mick Abel or Andrew Painter. Many teams like Griff McGarry, but it’s difficult to envision the Phillies parting with him as he’s seen as an electric-armed talent who could rise to the majors quickly. The Phillies could potentially listen on Ben Brown, a very projectable, hard-throwing righty who’s had a breakthrough season at High A. They would likely listen on catching prospects Logan O’Hoppe and Rafael Marchan, outfielder Johan Rojas and some of their other positions -player prospects and 40-man roster players such as Mickey Moniak and Jhailyn Ortiz.
Similar to what he did with Gibson last year, president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski would love to make a move that helps the Phillies beyond this season. There are a couple of intriguing starters on the market who are under control beyond this season. One of them is Pablo Lopez of the Miami Marlins. The other is Jose Urquidy of the Houston Astros. The price for both would be steep, but the Phils would have to consider both.
Lopez, a 26-year-old right-hander, won’t be a free agent until after the 2024 season, meaning a team could have him for three pennant races. That, and his performance the last three seasons – he has a 3.16 ERA in his last 51 starts – will make him expensive in terms of prospect capital. The Marlins are looking for offense and that might prevent the Phillies from being a good fit. Lopez is coming off an 11-strikeout effort against Cincinnati on Tuesday night and lines up to make one more pre-deadline start Sunday against the New York Mets. A lot of eyes will be on him.
Urquidy, a 27-year-old right-hander, is available because the Astros have a surplus of pitching. They, too, are looking for offense and potentially catching help. Urquidy is a strike-thrower who has racked up eight straight quality starts. He won’t be a free agent until after the 2025 season so there’s plenty of control there, but the cost will be high. Nevertheless, this is a pitcher, like Lopez, that the Phils need to think about.
The market for available starters who could be a fit for the Phillies includes Baltimore’s Jordan Lyles, the Angels’ Noah Syndergaard and Cincinnati’s Tyler Mahle, who is under control through next season. Mahle will have a lot of eyes on him when he makes his final pre-deadline start Saturday night against the Orioles.