Phillies Target Lefty Mike Minor for Rotation
The Phillies would not go six years with left-handed starter Patrick Corbin and would not go three years with starter J.A. Happ. As Corbin heads to Washington, D.C. and Happ heads to the Bronx, the Phillies remain without a left-handed starter. One name that has emerged in recent days has been left-handed pitcher Mike Minor.
Though on the surface it appears underwhelming, the Phillies could see some upside.
One may pause when looking at at Minor's 2018 numbers: 12-8 with a 4.12 earned run average. That is not the level of competition one would expect, given their previous interest in Corbin and Happ. But looking more closely But Minor excelled down the stretch, pitching to a 2.55 earned run average in August followed by 3.27 in December.
Phillies fans my remember Minor from his time with the Atlanta Braves from 2010 through 2014. After missing all of 2015 and 2016, Minor returned to the big leagues as a reliever with the 2017 Kansas City Royals. After heading to the Rangers in 2018, the Rangers used Minor as a starter and he appeared to gradually hit his stride, finishing the season with a 3.7 WAR.
Minor signed a three-year, $28 million deal with the Rangers prior to last season. Therefore, the Phillies would have two years of control should they put together a trade for the lefty. The Phillies might feel better about such a deal compared to the alternatives.
Left-handed starter Dallas Keuchel remains on the free agent market. The Phillies have been said to have interest in the past, but there has been little activity around the former Cy Young winner. According to a report, Keuchel is not going to sign until late in the offseason. The Phillies may not wish to wait.
Some have speculated that the Phillies could use Minor as a bullpen arm or as a swing arm. So that would not preclude another addition. But the Phillies probably will look to address other needs, such as a closer and a bat (such as Manny Machado).