So it appears a deal sending Cole Hamels and Jake Diekman to the Texas Rangers is coming together quickly. Right now the critical pieces are OF Nick Williams, C Jorge Alfaro, RHP Alec Asher, RHP Jake Thompson and RHP Jerad Eikoff along with the contract of Matt Harrison. It appears there are more pieces involved so I will update as they come in. The top 3 players likely slot in right before J.P. Crawford on the Phillies top prospect list (coming on Monday)
2015 Stats: .300/.357/.480 13 HR 10 SB 7.5% BB% 18.7% K%
Williams hits. Before this year that was all he did. Now he hits, hits for power, draws some walks, strikes out less, and play center field better. He is a guy that some evaluators absolutely love, and he showed more power potential than anyone thought at the Futures Game. He has a lot of helium right now and was rated the #21 prospect in baseball at the midseason mark by Baseball Prospectus. Nick’s final home is probably left field, but he is a guy who could threaten .300 with 20 HRs while playing very good defense in a corner.
2015 Stats: .253/.314/.432 5 HR 2 SB 4.3% BB% 29.5% K%
Alfaro has been on the Phillies’ radar for a while now. He is an ultra athletic catcher, with an 80 arm, plus raw power, and above average speed. His recieving has been rough, despite the athleticism, though the tools are there to be average long term. He is out for the year with an ankle injury, but it shouldn’t affect his long term value. He is a bit of a risk, but the bat could play at third base or in the outfield. If Alfaro can catch, he is a first division regular or better at the position.
87.2 IP 4.72 ERA 0.7 HR/9 3.1 BB/9 8.0 K/9
Thompson was the headliner in the deal that sent Joaquin Soria to Detroit a year ago. He is a big right handed pitcher who will flash a plus fastball and plus slider. The changeup has above average potential as well. He has struggled a bit in AA, but he profiles as a #3 starter with an outside chance as a #2 if he can refine his pitches.
AA – 43.0 IP 3.98 ERA 0.6 HR/9 3.8 BB/9 9.0 K/9
AAA – 64.2 IP 4.73 ERA 2.2 HR/9 2.6 BB/9 7.5 K/9
Another big high minors RHP. Asher has been more of innings eater and lacks a dominant pitch. He will sit in the low-90s and will get to 95-97 with his fastball. He is near major league ready, but there are some who think he fits better in a bullpen role going forward.
96.2 IP 4.47 ERA 1.1 HR/9 3.1 BB/9 8.4 K/9
Another big high minors RHP (sensing a trend). Big fastball, up to 97, but more 92-95 with life. He brings a slider, a curveball, and changeup all which flash average. He has been a bit homer prone in the PCL, but is on the 40 man roster and could provide help down the stretch. There is enough ceiling to be a #3 starter, but it is likely more back end starter or late inning reliever.
Rather than pay some more money, the Phillies take back Harrison’s deal for the next two seasons. Harrison has not been good since returning from injury but has some upside and good get some innings for the Phillies while other guys come up.