MIAMI, FLORIDA - JULY 05: Noah Syndergaard #34 of the Los Angeles Angels delivers a pitch during the third inning against the Miami Marlins at loanDepot park on July 05, 2022 in Miami, Florida.

The Phillies had a busy trade deadline day. While they did not make the huge splash some fans were waiting for, they made several smaller splashes. They added 3 players yesterday and cut two loose ends.

The first move to come down was the trade for Brandon Marsh with the Angels. It cost the Phillies prized catching prospect Logan O’Hoppe, but in exchange, they got back a centerfielder with a great glove, under team control for 5 more years. Next, they landed David Robertson from the Cubs. David Robertson was of course already with the Phillies before, but hopefully, this time around will go better for both sides. He barely played the last time after getting Tommy Johns. The Phillies parted ways with pitching prospect Ben Brown to acquire him.

And then just when you thought the Phillies were done, they brought in former Mets phenom Noah Syndergaard, in another trade with the Angels. They sent former no. 1 overall pick Mickey Moniak back to the Angels in the deal. And what is likely an addition by subtraction, the Phillies also designated both Odubel Herrera and Jeurys Familia for assignment after making these deals.

Unless you were glued to Angels and Cubs baseball this season, and why would you be, you probably weren’t 100% aware of how these 3 new Phillies have done so far this year. But here is your chance to catch up. I dived into some of the numbers around their seasons, to share them with you here. Without further ado, here are the 3 Phillies trade deadline acquisitions, by the numbers.

  • Brandon Marsh

    The first thing a lot of people noticed with Brandon Marsh, is that his numbers at the plate have not been very good this year. He is hitting just .226/.284/.353/.637, which is obviously pretty bad. But even as mediocre as those numbers are, they are an improvement over what the Phillies had been getting out of centerfield. On the season, the Phillies Cenetfielders have combined to hit .201/.253/.287/.540. So right off the bat, even if Marsh’s production stays the exact same as it was with the Angels, it would be a not insignificant improvement.

    And there is some reason to hope for improvement. Marsh was the 53rd-ranked prospect in all of the MLB before the 2021 season and the top prospect in the Angels system. Across 6 teams, and 4 seasons in the minor leagues he hit .288/.371/.440/.811. Scouts felt he had a plus bat, a great eye, and good speed. The power was never really there, but he got on base. Here is what it said on his MLB.com scouting report.

    “While Marsh has always shown a good feel to hit, he took a big step forward in his overall approach and set up at the plate in 2019. He worked with the Angels to stand more upright from the left side of the plate and that enabled the rest of his swing to click into place. That resulted in a .357/.429/.520 August and carried over into his .328/.377/.522 AFL campaign. He’s always been willing to draw walks, but he cut down on his strikeout rate and had an above-league average 19 percent miss rate in 2019. That not only will help him continue to hit for average but will also allow him to keep getting to his power more consistently, as he did late in the season.”

    But the reason the Phillies coveted him, was his glove. He is 6th in the MLB among outfielders with at least 500 innings played in Total Runs Saved (TRS) with +8. His +8 is immediately the best among all Phillies. Not just in the OF, but at any position. Ranger Suarez is the next best at +6, and JT Realmuto has the next highest among position players at +5. The rest of the Phillies OF has a combined TRS of -22. He is going to step in and immediately be the best fielder on the team.

    It needs to be mentioned that the -8 is among all 3 OF positions. In just centerfield, his total TRS between the two seasons is -3. But that is in a very small sample size. He played a stellar centerfield all through the minor leagues. He only moved because obviously CF was blocked by Mike Trout. Now that he is a full-time CF, he should be expected to be just as great as he was in LF.

     

     

  • David Robertson

    David Robertson is back in Red Pinstripes! You’d be forgiven if you forgot the first time he was here. He didn’t pitch very much. Unfortunately, after 6 innings pitched he got injured, and never pitched again for them after Tommy Johns surgery. But now he has a second chance here.

    Robertson has regained his old Yankees form this year with the Cubs. His ERA is 2.23, with a  1.04 WHIP, and 51ks in 40.1 innings. He has given up a run in only 8 of 36 appearances this season. So 78% of the time he goes out there, he is going to get out of the inning without giving up a run. And he’s joining a bullpen with several guys with an even higher success rate. The Phillies now have 5 guys who go scoreless at least 75% of the time, and 3 who do so over 80% of the time. What used to be the Phillies’ biggest weakness, is now a strength.

     

  • Noah Syndergaard

    The common feeling around Noah Syndergaard is that he has lost his stuff. And in one sense, that is true. This is the first season ever where his ks/9 is under 9.0. In fact, it has fallen all the way down to 7.2. He is not the high-powered flame thrower mowing people down he was with the Mets. But that does not mean he isn’t good anymore.

    While he has certainly taken a step back, he is still a reliable pitcher. He has given up 4 or more runs only 3 times this year. And he has 9 starts with two or fewer runs given up. But he doesn’t go 7 innings all that often anymore.

    His 3.83 ERA is better than both Kyle Gibson, and Zach Eflin. He makes it so the Phillies have 4 starters with a sub-4 ERA. The Phillies are now one of just 7 teams who can say that about their rotation. The other teams are the Yankees, Dodgers, Mets, Astros, Mariners, and Padres.

    So while he is not the dynamic pitcher he used to be, he is still a solid pitcher. If they were asking him to be a top-end starter, it would be a problem. But with Zack Wheeler, Aaron Nola, and now Ranger Suarez pitching well (2.54 ERA in last 40 IPS), you don’t need Syndergaard to be amazing. He is your 4th starter. Adding him bumps Kyle Gibson down to the 5th spot, Bailey Falter as an emergency fill-in, and hopefully takes the bullpen starts out of the rotation entirely.

    This could be a very formidable playoff rotation. Is it the best? Maybe not. The Mets are probably better with a healthy DeGrom. But combine this rotation, with the bullpen, and they have one of the strongest pitching staffs in the entire MLB.

     

     

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