The Marlins have traded reliever David Phelps to the Mariners for outfielder Brayan Hernandez and pitchers Brandon Miller, Lukas Schiraldi and Pablo Lopez, as first reported by Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports. Joel Sherman of the New York Post reported the whole return.
Seattle was known to be in talks to acquire a reliever late last night, with Phelps emerging as a candidate then. The 30-year old righty is one of a few relievers Miami was known to be shopping on the market, along with A.J. Ramos and Kyle Barraclough, and joins Adeiny Hechavarria as veterans to have been shipped out of Miami in trades this season.
Phelps, 30, has pitched to a 3.45 ERA and 9.8 K/9 in 47 innings for the Marlins in his third season with the club. He’s earning $4.6 million this year and is under club control for the 2018 campaign before hitting free agency.
Phelps will join righties Steve Cishek, Tony Zych and Nick Vincent and lefties Mark Rzepczynski and James Pazos in the M’s bullpen ahead of closer Edwin Diaz. He has served as Miami’s setup man for Ramos this season.
Though they were previously thought to be on the fence, the Mariners have signaled they will in fact be buyers as we approach the deadline. The club currently sits just 1.5 games out of a wild card spot, chasing the Rays, Yankees and Twins, and could look to add controllable starting pitching as the deadline approaches.
Miami’s haul consists of more quantity than quality, with four players coming back instead of a higher-end prospect like Max Povse. Both Seattle and Miami are considered to have weak farm systems.
Hernandez, 19, is a 6-foot-2, 175-lb. outfielder currently ranked as the Mariners’ 9th-best prospect, according to BA. He has hit .259/.310/.407 with two homers and five steals in 31 games split between Lo-A Everett and Triple-A Tacoma so far this year. Hernandez is regarded as a projectable five-tool player who is years away from the majors.
Miller, 22, was Seattle’s 6th-round pick in last year’s draft. He has made 18 starts for Single-A Clinto so far this year, posting a 3.65 ERA and 8/4 K/9. He came into the year as Seattle’s 16th-best prospect (per MLB.com), projecting as a potential back-of-the-rotation starter in the majors.
Schiraldi, the son of former major-league closer Calvin, is a 23-year old reliever. He has posted a 4.58 ERA in 37.1 innings for Hi-A Modesto, but has a 15.2 K/9 rate. He is not ranked among Seattle’s top 30 prospects, likely because of his control struggles.
Lopez, 21, has also spent the season with Modesto, pitching to a 5.04 ERA in 19 appearances (18 starts). He entered the season as the 22nd-best minor-leaguer in Seattle’s system (by MLB.com).
MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand was first to mention the talks between the clubs.