Phillies Updates: Jean Segura, Zach Eflin, and where to focus at the MLB Trade Deadline
According to reports yesterday evening, Jean Segura hopes to begin a rehab assignment next week and is optimistic about returning to the Phillies lineup the first week of August.
Segura believes that he could rejoin the Phillies following their 6-game road trip against the Pirates (4 games) and Braves (2 games), meaning that he would be available on Thursday, August 4th when the Phillies return home to face the Washington Nationals at Citizens Bank Park.
I wouldn’t be surprised, however, if it took a little bit more time than that.
With Segura on track to return in early August, it gives the Phillies front office the ability to focus on the starting rotation before the August 2nd trade deadline. While Segura’s progress is great and any update on Bryce Harper’s return remains positive, Zach Eflin’s injury status is the complete opposite.
According to Matt Gelb of The Athletic, Zach Eflin is now dealing with what the Phillies are calling “right patellofemoral pain”. I have no idea what that even means but the fact remains that there is no timetable for him to even throw on a mound, let alone rejoin the Phillies starting rotation over the final few months of the regular season.
That said, the Phillies will almost certainly be looking for a fifth starter in their rotation at the trade deadline. Noah Syndergaard has been rumored to be linked to the Phillies come trade deadline already. Luis Castillo and Frankie Montas will be the hottest names on the trade market, but I don’t see Dave Dombrowski unloading enough top prospects to land either pitcher so we can probably rule them out of discussions.
Outside of that, the Reds are shopping Tyler Mahle, Jordan Lyles in Baltimore has been rumored to be on the trade block, and veteran lefty Jose Quintana in Pittsburgh will likely be available because, well, everyone in Pittsburgh is always available.
It really all comes down to how much the Phillies are willing to trade in order to get a productive fifth starter at the deadline. Any significant trade will have to include a package featuring top prospects in the minor league system.
- Mick Abel
- Andrew Painter
- Logan O’Hoppe
- Griff McGarry
Outside of that, once Segura returns to the lineup, the Phillies will need to decide on what to do with the middle of their infield. Didi Gregorius, Jean Segura, and Bryson Stott will all be looking for playing time, and I hate to say this, but Stott is the odd man out in that situation.
I don’t think that the Phillies will trade Bryson Stott. Although his batting average is dog shit, he’s been productive in the field and has shown some significant flashes at the plate. Segura and Gregorius give the team the best chance to win ball games this year, but will likely both be finding new homes after this season, meaning Stott is still slated as the future shortstop of the Phillies.
Of course, things will get much easier over the next week if the Phillies continue to lose baseball games to bad teams like they did last night, falling 15-2 to the Chicago Cubs. It’s important that they remain in the Wild Card hunt leading up to the deadline, and really, until Bryce Harper can return mid-to-late August.