Over the last few years the Phillies have been very active at the trade deadline looking to add pitching depth to their rotation.
In 2008, the Phillies added Joe Blanton from Oakland. Although Blanton wasn’t the big name on the market, he was instrumental in getting the Phillies back to the playoffs and winning a World Series. In 2009, after trying to trade for Roy Halladay, the Phillies landed Cleveland’s ace, Cliff Lee. In 2010, after trading Lee in the off-season and finally landing Roy Halladay, the Phillies brought in Roy Oswalt from Houston.
The problem for the Phillies is Halladay, Lee, Oswalt and Blanton do not come cheap… or do they?
Clearly, the Phillies have unloaded a lot of prospects to land these pitchers over the last three seasons, but after looking at the talent the Phillies have dealt, it doesn’t hurt so bad.
Trade 1: Joe Blanton for Josh Outman and Adrian Cardenas
Blanton went 6-0 after being acquired in 2008 (including the playoffs) and helped lead the Phillies to a world championship.
Outman, since being dealt to Oakland, is 5-3 with a 3.7 7 ERA, but has missed the 2010 season after Tommy John surgery.
Cardenas has bounced between AA and AAA, and he is hitting .228 this year in AAA.
Trade 2: Cliff Lee for Carlos Carrasco, Lou Marson, Jason Donald and Jason Knapp
Lee dominated in a Phillies uniform and helped the Phillies go back to the World Series in 2009.
After getting shelled in the majors, Carrasco was sent back to AAA this year where he is posting a 4.00 ERA.
In 45 games, Marson is hitting .191 with one homer for the Indians.
Best known for being called safe and breaking up Armando Galarraga’s perfect game, Donald is hitting .267 with 18 RBI with Cleveland.
Knapp, the top prospect in the Lee trade, had surgery to remove lose bodies in his pitching arm and hasn’t moved past A ball.
Trade 3: Roy Halladay and $6 million for Kyle Drabek, Michael Taylor, Travis D’Arnaud
Roy Halladay, in his first season with the Phillies has a 2.21 ERA and a perfect game.
Drabek, the coveted prize of this blockbuster trade is 10-9 with a 3.12 ERA and a no-hitter in AA. Drabek is the best prospect the Phillies have lost in their deals.
Taylor, traded to Toronto in the Halladay deal was immediately flipped to Oakland in a separate deal, is hitting .269 with 5 homers in AAA.
D’Arnaud, playing A ball in Dunedin, is hitting .260 with 6 home runs.
Trade 4: Phillippe Aumont, Tyson Gillies and JC Ramierz for Cliff Lee
This is the most controversial trade the Phillies have made in some time. Why not keep Lee and pair him with Halladay and Hamels? Well, the Phillies logic was that they needed to replenish the farm system and save some money by dealing Lee. General Manager Ruben Amaro, Jr. says the Phillies wouldn’t have Halladay if they didn’t deal Lee. Despite the questionable logic, the deal is done.
Aumont started the year in AA Reading. After struggling, he was demoted to A ball. In Clearwater, Aumont is 1-1 with a 4.45 ERA.
Ramirez, is struggling in AA Reading with a 2-2 record and a 4.80 ERA.
Gilles is hitting .238 with 2 homers and 6 RBI in 26 games in AA.
Lee, now pitching for Texas, is having another dominant year, after being traded for the second in as many seasons.
Trade 5: Roy Oswalt and $11 million for J.A. Happ, Anthony Gose and Jonathan Villar
Oswalt, a three-time All Star, will make his Phillies debut tonight in Washington, but he has been a dominant pitcher over the last 10 years in Houston.
Happ was a critical member of the Phillies run to the World Series in 2009 and finished second in the NL Rookie of the Year voting last year. Happ is the best major-league player the Phillies have lost by making these trades.
Gose, flipped to Toronto after the trade become official, is a young, speedy outfielder hitting .263 in A ball.
Villar, playing low-A ball in Lakewood was hitting .272 at the time of the trade to Houston.
Say what you will about how the Phillies should have kept Lee, but the Phillies made out pretty well in all of this wheeling and dealing.
Let’s say they kept Lee and never made the deal with Houston. Sure, the Phils would have Halladay, Lee and Hamels, but that would end this year as Lee’s agent made it clear the Phillies don’t have the money to resign Lee to a long-term deal. Instead, they have Halladay, Oswalt, and Hamels for the 2010, 2011 and possibly 2012 season at a reasonable price given the fact that Houston kicked in $11 million of Oswalt’s guaranteed $23 million.
To make things better, most of the prospects sent out of town to make these deals possible have not yet become success stories. It certainly makes dealing the top prospects in your farm system for proven aces a little easier to swallow.
Oh, and what about everybody’s new favorite Phillie, Domonic Brown? The Phillies were about to land Halladay, Lee and Oswalt in a one year period without giving up their best prospect… not bad.