When the Phillies traded pitchers Cole Hamels and Jake Diekman to the Texas Rangers, one player the Phillies got in return was not a prospect.  That was veteran starter Matt Harrison, who was battling injury.   Harrison pitched six innings on July 27, 2015.  July 30, the Phillies made the deal and it seemed Harrison could pitch that very weekend on his usual turn.  He never did, and it looks now that he will never throw a pitch for the Phillies.

The Phillies announced Tuesday that they have released Harrison.

Harrison was never really meant to be an asset in the package.  Instead, the Phillies taking Harrison represented salary relief.   Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly is reporting that the Phillies worked out a deal with the insurance company who insured Harrison's contract, minimizing the financial repercussions.   The Phillies have catcher Jorge Alfaro, outfielder Nick Williams and pitchers Alec Asher, Jerad Eickhoff, and Jake Thompson to show for the deal.

The move means that the Phillies have now 32 players on their 40-man roster.   They have several players who would be eligible for the Rule 5 draft if not protected including Williams and several other prospects who could be taken in the Rule 5 draft.  The Phillies could look to slip players such as David Buchanan, Luis Garcia and Michael Mariot through waivers to make additional space.

The Phillies have until Friday to set their 40-man roster for the Rule 5 draft.   The draft will be held December 4-8 in Washington, D.C.