The Phillies have acquired lefty reliever Luis Avilan from the White Sox in a waiver-wire deal, as the team announced Wednesday morning:
#Phillies have acquired LHP Luis Avilán from the Chicago White Sox in exchange for minor league RHP Felix Paulino. pic.twitter.com/1HMel07SA3— Philadelphia Phillies (@Phillies) August 22, 2018
Right-handed pitching prospect Felix Paulino heads to the White Sox in return.
Avilan has been one of the most consistent left-handed relievers in the game since arriving in the big leagues back in 2012. Over seven major-league seasons, Avilan has a 3.09 ERA and 1.22 WHIP over 387 appearances. In 58 games for the White Sox this year, the lefty specialist has a 3.86 ERA and 1.36 WHIP with 46 strikeouts and 14 walks over 39.2 innings.
This is the second time that the 29-year-old Avilan has been traded since the beginning of 2018. He was part of a three-team, seven-player trade that sent him from the Dodgers to the White Sox in early January, and with him being a free agent after the 2019 season (next year is his final arbitration year), it seemed as if the White Sox’s plan all along was to get some value back for Avilan, just like they did with the other reliever they acquired in the trade, Joakim Soria. They dealt Soria to the Brewers on July 26 for pitching prospects Kodi Medeiros and Wilber Perez.
Avilan joins a Phillies bullpen that features a sufficient amount of intriguing youth — arguably the league’s best rookie reliever, Seranthony Dominguez, and two of the top breakout bullpen arms in Edubray Ramos and Victor Arano — but also a ton of experienced depth with 12-year veteran Pat Neshek, 11-year veteran Tommy Hunter, six-year veteran Leury Garcia, five-year vet Hector Neris, and four-year vet Adam Morgan.
Paulino, 23, has posted a 3.91 ERA and a 1.45 WHIP with 74 strikeouts and 34 walks in 92 innings this year. He’s started nine of his 31 games between High-A Clearwater and Double-A Reading. He was not ranked among Philadelphia’s top 30 prospects by MLB Pipeline.