As expected, the Phillies were active at the trade deadline this year. They made the obvious and long-rumored trades of Jonathan Papelbon and Cole Hamels as well as a slightly more surprising one in dealing Ben Revere to Toronto. Trades are typically evaluated on a framework that takes into account how the move affects a team's ability to win both immediately and in the future. As I noted, though, we're nearly a week removed from the deadline, so those evaluations have been done at various outlets.
It is a well-established internet truth that power rankings generate mad clicks. With that fact in mind, I noticed a surprising lack of power rankings as related not only to the Phillies trade deadline moved, but the trade deadline in general. As a Phillies-specific website, we can only address one small part of that dearth, but address it we will. What follows are some power rankings related to the Phillies' activity at the trade deadline.
Saddest To See Go:
5. Jake Diekman
4. Cash Considerations
3. Ben Revere
2. Jonathan Papelbon
1. Cole Hamels
Jake Diekman was fine and showed promise as a LOOGY, but those players are largely fungible. It's always sad to see cash go away, but let me ask you this: how many WAR does cash have? Happiness permeated Ben Revere's game from his infectious smile to his early 2014 walk-up music, but he was a pretty replaceable centerfielder. I feel Jonathan Papelbon was really just coming into his own as a
horse Phillie in his final weeks/year with the team. From the crotch grab that got him suspended for seven games to the drunken cigar chomping on College Gameday to his discussion of the Phillies' organizational bowel movements he was becoming, at the very least, a welcome distraction from the horror of watching the 2015 Phillies play actual baseball. At best, he was a refreshing instance of an athlete speaking his mind. Cole Hamels is obviously the saddest and deserves no further explanation.
Height of Players Leaving:
5. Ben Revere
4. Cash Considerations
3-1. Cole Hamels, Jonathan Papelbon, Jake Diekman
Ben Revere, at 5' 9" is pretty short by professional athlete standards. Cash, depending on the quantity and the denominations in which it is delivered, can get pretty darn tall. Assuming the cash considerations are on the order of a couple million (2 commas!) and delivered in denominations of $20 or lower, that pile will probably be taller than Ben Revere and would probably cover more ground in the outfield. Hamels, Papelbon, and Diekman are all 6'4".
Most Injured Returning Player
9-3. Pivetta, Tirado, Cordero, Eickhoff, Asher, Williams, Thompson
2. Jorge Alfaro
1. Matt Harrison
The guys ranked 9 through 3 are all, to my knowledge, not injured. Jorge Alfaro has an ankle injury and could miss the rest of 2015. Matt Harrison is the only player in history to come back to pitch from a spinal fusion. He's currently on the DL, but, even if he weren't, he would still be the most injured. Spinal fusion doesn't sound like something a non-injured person would have.
Best Baseball Prospectus Annual Blub
14-11. Cash Considerations, Jerad Eickhoff, Nick Pivetta, Jimmy Cordero: No entries.
10. Alec Asher: "...is a 2012 fourth-rounder who lost some of his prospect luster last year as both his performance and raw stuff took a step back at Double-A, but you can never have too many up-and-down starter types.
9. Alberto Tirado: "...went from being our no. 3 Blue Jays prospect to heading our "Season's Most Disappointing Prospects" list last September; that's what eight walks per nine innings and demotions to (a) short-season ball in June and (b) the Vancouver bullpen will do. Dare you to look up Spanish-to-English definitions of 'tirado.'"
8. Matt Harrison: "It's hard enough for a pitcher to come back from either thoracic outlet syndrome surgery or spinal fusion surgery; Harrison is trying to navigate with both in his rear view..."
7. Jake Diekman: "...It's odd to suggest situational work for a pitcher who struck out 13 batters per nine with a 98 mph fastball, but unless he tightens up his breaking pitch--and keeps righties from continuing to slug over .500 against it--or comes up with a reliable changeup, or discovers untapped ambidextrousness, he'll travel dangerously in a right-handed world."
6. Jake Thompson: "...With a body built for black ink in the innings column, Thompson took a step forward over the course of the season, both in terms of results and stuff..."
5. Jonathan Papelbon: "...why does the $37 million they've already spent feel like such a waste? Partly it's that they're the classic example of a team that's about seven other moves away from needing a great closer. ...Partly it's that no fan south of the Bronx has ever thought his closer was anything but a drunk on a wobbly ladder, and partly it's that the dude just flat out isn't likable..."
4. Cole Hamels: "...there's virtually no knock on Hamels as a pitcher... His peripherals have been among the game's most consistent over the past half-decade... That puts him in a tier slightly below the Kershaws of the world--well, the Kershaw of the world--but it also makes him one of the best multi-year pitching investments a team has made this century, and a very quiet Hall of Fame candidate."
3. Jorge Alfaro: "If most catching prospects are Ferris wheels, Alfaro is a funhouse, but his distortions are less amusing than they are downright dangerous..."
2. Ben Revere: "...It isn't wrong to say that Revere had a massive power surge in 2014, in the same way that Sochi had a massive surge in Olympic hostings, and that Princess Leonore, Duchess of Gotland, had a massive surge in instances of being born...."
1. Nick Williams: "...he's a naturally gifted hitter with the Adam Jones starter kit at the plate. Unfortunately, the instructions are in Aramaic, the pages are out of order and his go-go approach isn't conducive to remedying those problems..."
Physical Attractiveness of Players Dealt:
14. Jake Thompson
13. Jake Diekman
12. Jimmy Cordero
11. Alec Asher
10. Nick Pivetta
9. Matt Harrison
8. Cash Considerations
7. Alberto Tirado
6. Nick Williams
5. Jonathan Papelbon
4. Jorge Alfaro
3. Ben Revere
2. Jerad Eickhoff
1. Cole Hamels
The Jakes bring up the rear due largely to ill-advised facial hair decisions. Jimmy Cordero has a really awkward-looking smile. Asher, Pivetta, and Harrison are inoffensive looking, but nothing to write home about. Cash looks pretty good. Tirado is a lesser Ben Revere in terms of cuteness and his lovable smile. Jorge Alfaro also has a fun and natural smile. Cole Hamels is Cole Hamels. In summation, the Phillies got a lot less attractive with their deals.
I think that covers all the important metrics necessary for properly evaluating the Phillies performance at the trade deadline. What other metrics do you consider important in understanding the myriad moves of the last week? Please add your own rankings in the comments.