The Philadelphia Phillies will promote pitcher Aaron Nola to make his major league debut Tuesday against the Rays, the team announced today:
Nola made just six starts at Triple-A Lehigh Valley prior to his promotion, with a 3.58 ERA and 1.44 WHIP in 32⅔ innings, walking nine and striking out 33. The move to Triple-A came after Nola dominated Double-A, posting a 1.88 ERA in 72⅔ innings with nine walks and 59 strikeouts. Nola had a 2.93 ERA in 55⅓ innings between High-A Clearwater and Double-A Reading in his first professional season in 2014.
Nola joins a Phillies rotation that has been in a state of flux all season, with 11 different players having made starts so far. Just one of those 11, Cole Hamels, has an ERA below 4.00 and Hamels will likely be on the move at some point before the trade deadline in two weeks.
The seventh overall pick in 2014, Nola was a consensus top 50 prospect in baseball before the 2015 season, and ESPN's Keith Law ranked him No. 38 on his recently-released midseason top 50 list, saying Nola "would be the Phillies' No. 3 starter if they called him up today."
With Hamels almost certainly on the move and Aaron Harang and Jerome Williams on the disabled list, there is certainly room for Nola in a Phillies rotation that currently includes Chad Billingsley, David Buchanan and Adam Morgan along with Hamels.
Along with fellow top prospect J.P. Crawford, Nola represents the future in Philadelphia and as seems to be the case in so many places around baseball in 2015, the future appears to be now.