Report: The Phillies bought Ian Kennedy, Kyle Gibson, other prospects from the Rangers for Spencer Howard
renew [5:00 p.m.] -The Phillies have reached an official deal with the Rangers for Kyle Gibson and Ian Kennedy. They also told reporters before the game that Gibson might make his debut for the Phillies in Sunday’s game against the Buccaneers.
The Phillies have acquired right-handed pitchers Kyle Gibson, Ian Kennedy and Hans Krauss and cash consideration from the Texas Rangers in exchange for right-handed pitchers Spencer Howard, Kevin Gaudi and Josh Gesner. pic.twitter.com/9PTbzANO9K
-Philadelphia Phillies (@Phillies) July 30, 2021
Dave Dombrowski promised that the Phillies will become buyers before this year’s MLB trade deadline, and it seems that he is not lying. According to multiple reports, the Phillies have acquired a pair of pitchers from the Rangers-starting Kyle Gibson and closer Ian Kennedy-in exchange for three prospects, led by former top pitcher prospect Spencer Howard .
Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic was the first to report on this transaction.
Shortly after 1pm on Friday, Mark Feinsand of MLB.com reported that the Phillies were making a “strong push” against Gibson. In the next 30 minutes, there were reports that the Phillies were also interested in Kennedy. And this may eventually become a package deal including Spencer Howard, which is the final result when an agreement is reached more than two hours later.
The Phillies need help in two areas, starting rotation and bullpen. Both Gibson and Kennedy have performed well this season, so on the surface, this deal seems reasonable.
But things are not so simple.
Gibson is 33 years old, with one year remaining on the 2022 contract, worth 7 million U.S. dollars, which is very reasonable. Despite his age, the right-handed starter has a career year, 2.87 ERA and 1.177 WHIP, both of which are career best results. The 0.224/.300/.326 slashes of his opponent are also the lowest in his career, and his 2.29 strikeout rate is the best in his career. Oh, he also participated in the first All-Star game of the season.
The problem is that in addition to his 33-year-old, injury and age are increasingly becoming a factor in the later stages of his career as a pitcher, he has also been regressing in the last month of the season. In the past three games, he has scored 17.1 innings. Abandoned 16 games. Perhaps this shows that his excellent start to the season is more of an outlier. His career self-report rate was 4.42, last season’s self-report rate was 5.35, and the previous year was 4.84. Therefore, apart from the heat of the earlier months of the season, he has not really moved in the right direction.
To complicate matters more is that Gibson relies heavily on ground ball, and the Phillies have one of the worst defensive infields in baseball, if not the worst. But he is still a much-needed upgrade in the second half of the rotation, and the Phillies will let him come back for another season. In a vacuum, this is not the worst move for the Phillies.
Then Ian Kennedy, he is another upgrade for the Phillies in their area real Need it: their bullpen. He is likely to take over for a closer role, as he has 16 saves this season and a self-blame rate of 2.51. Unfortunately, he is even older than Gibson (36 years old), and he does not have control over his contract for an additional year. But if the Phillies hope to enter the playoffs and end their ten-year drought, he will solve their greater needs, because rescue pitchers are crucial in the playoffs. Of course, if he pitches well, the Phillies can reduce his rent, and they decide to take him back to another season, but we haven’t got there yet.
The Phillies also got 22-year-old pitcher prospect Hans Klaus, who was drafted in the same draft as Spencer Howard, and has an ERA of 3.35 in 13 double-A starts this season.
They are not blockbuster moves, but they will definitely improve the Phillies in the short term. Are they enough to make them surpass the Mets, and they have made some deadline upgrades themselves, and enter the NL East lead and eventually enter the playoffs? It remains to be seen. The Phillies are currently 3.5 games behind and have a +400 chance of winning the division. According to Pickswise.
The problem then becomes the price the Phillies paid for this deal. This is the complete package sent to Texas.
This transaction is final. The Phillies sent Spencer Howard, Kevin Gaudi, and Josh Gusner to Texas, looking for starter Kyle Gibson, closer Ian Kennedy, and pitcher rookie Krauss.
— Matt Brin (@matt_breen) July 30, 2021
Your opinion on this transaction may depend on how you evaluate Howard. However, it doesn’t matter how you evaluate your former top potential customers. What matters is how valuable he is to other teams in the league-considering the rewards the Phillies have received for him, this is obviously not that high compared to what they might have received a few years ago.
Under the old regime, it might be easier for the Phillies to be looted here, but this front desk is now managed by Dave Dombrowski instead of Matt Klentak. Therefore, it is easier for the club to benefit from suspicion when it comes to their trading returns.
Considering Howard’s injury history, his innings limit, and his overall lack of success at the major league level at the age of 25, this may have to do with his value rather than the original deal the Phillies won. But only time will tell.
Oh, and this…
Please stay tuned, as we will provide more information about the Phillies trade deadline later on Friday.
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