The Philadelphia Phillies are reportedly targeting Texas Rangers starting pitcher, Mike Minor, as a trade candidate. Negotiations make sense for each side.
Despite a few veteran free agent signings, shaping the team for the future remains the Texas Rangers’ #1 priority this offseason. That’s why you’ve heard household names like Jurickson Profar, Nomar Mazara and Mike Minor mentioned in recent trade rumors.
Minor to the Philadelphia Phillies is a rumor that surfaced yesterday afternoon via the Philadelphia Inquirer. The left-hander is on track to be the Rangers’ opening day starter; however, there is as good a chance as there isn’t that he does not begin the year with Texas due to trade demand.
Mike Minor should be in high demand, as he can fill all sorts of needs for a given team’s pitching staff. He can provide balance to a primarily right-handed group of starters, he would bring with him both starting and relief experience, and he would make for a very solid fourth or fifth man in a contending team’s rotation.
It just so happens the Philadelphia Phillies have voids in all of the areas that Minor would help. Their projected rotation consists of all right-handers, three of which finished the 2018 season with ERAs over 4.30. The backend of their rotation struggled mightily with consistency last season.
Nick Pivetta, Vince Velasquez and Zach Eflin posted WHIPs of over 1.300. Pivetta closed out September with an 0-4 record and a 5.48 ERA, Velasquez finished with an 0-3 record and a 10.70 ERA, and Eflin finished with a 2-3 record and a 6.14 ERA. Those are not the type of contributions a playoff capable team expects from three of its starting pitchers.
Mike Minor finished the year with a 2-1 record and a 3.27 ERA. Sure, he wasn’t pitching for a playoff capable team, but he didn’t seem to waver one bit from the start of the season to the finish. His 2018 numbers backup that statement.
The Phillies are doing all they can this offseason to establish a true contending roster for 2019. They already acquired shortstop Jean Segura from the Seattle Mariners and signed outfielder Andrew McCutchen to a three-year contract. Philly is also expected to be big players in the Bryce Harper/Manny Machado sweepstakes.
Minor may not be as well-known as those guys, but he could certainly help improve the Phillies’ roster.
From the Texas Rangers’ perspective, they are negotiating with an organization that has plenty of prospect talent to offer. Six of Philadelphia’s top ten prospects are pitchers, and 11 of their top 20. The Rangers need young pitching, and the Phillies may very well end up sending some their way.