The trade deadline is still a ways off, but the Phillies could be looking to pick up a few players to make a playoff push. Assuming they are buyers, he are five potential big-name targets the Phillies could look to add.
Zach Britton, RP, Baltimore Orioles
Britton, the long time closer for the Orioles, was activated off the 60-day DL just last Monday and seems like he’d be a very good fit for the Phillies. Since the start of the 2014 season, Britton has collected 135 saves for Baltimore. In terms of the Phillies’ bullpen, Britton checks off two major boxes: late game closer and a lefty arm. The Phillies currently have a closer by committee or closer by matchups as Gabe Kapler so nicely puts it. Kapler loves to play matchups with relievers and the Phillies’ only left-handed reliever right now is Adam Morgan, who has a career ERA of 5.19, so Britton would definitely help the Phillies.
J.A. Happ, SP, Toronto Blue Jays
Happ, a 35 year-old starter, has been a journeyman in the MLB after being drafted by the Phillies back in 2004. Happ has been solid for an underwhelming Blue Jays team this year with a 7-2 record, 3.71 ERA, and a 1.08 WHIP. The Phillies have a strong rotation but Happ would definitely be an upgrade over Vince Velasquez in the back end of the rotation. Philly also doesn’t have a left-handed starter in their rotation, so Happ would be a nice pickup, returning to the team he won a ring with back in 2008.
Wilson Ramos, C, Tampa Bay Rays
Ramos has been very injury-prone throughout his career and has not played a full season since he was called up to the bigs in 2010. That being said, Ramos would help the Phillies at catcher. Starter Jorge Alfaro is one of the best defensive catchers in the MLB so Ramos might not be the starter right away. However, on offense Alfaro is inconsistent and strikes out at an alarming 42.4% rate. Backup Andrew Knapp has been terrible as he has an OPS of .465 and has made 6 defensive errors in 179.2 innings at catcher. The Phillies have very little depth at catcher in the minors so a trade for Ramos could help them out.
Brad Hand, RP, San Diego Padres
Similarly to Britton, Hand is another late-inning, left-handed reliever who would fill the closer void for the Phillies. Hand has been great for the Padres as their closer this season, with 19 saves, an ERA+ of 205 (league-average 100), and an FIP of 2.74. Hector Neris, Luis García, Seranthony Dominguez, Tommy Hunter, and Edubray Ramos have all gotten saves this year but Hand is better than all of those players except arguably Dominguez. Either way, Hand would be a big pickup for the Phillies’ bullpen as the closer.
Manny Machado, 3B, Baltimore Orioles
Since the start of last offseason, there have been a lot of trade rumors floating around Machado’s name. Machado would obviously be a huge pickup for the Phillies as Maikel Franco has not been very good for them this season. Machado has an OPS of .971 while Franco’s is down to .704. Franco has been splitting time at third base with J.P. Crawford; neither has been great. While the trade for Machado has a huge upside, the Phillies would likely have to give up a good deal of talent to make it happen and Machao will be a free agent next season so the Phillies may wait until the offseason to make a play for him.