Phils could trade to make room for Altherr

Outfielder making progress in Minor League rehab assignment

July 18th, 2016
Aaron Altherr's return to the Majors is getting closer, as his rehab assignment was transferred to Class A Clearwater. (AP)

PHILADELPHIA -- Phillies outfielder took another step Monday in his return to the big leagues, which means the Phillies are getting closer to making room for him on the 25-man roster.

Altherr had his rehab assignment transferred to Class A Clearwater from the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League Phillies. Altherr, who tore a tendon in his left wrist in March, began his rehab assignment on July 8, which means the Phillies must activate him from the disabled list on July 28 if he is healthy.

"I'm anxious to see where he's at in another week or two," Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said. "This was an important year to see how good he could be. Let's say he finishes the last two months of the season, that could give us a better indication. But it's a shame we couldn't find out watching him play the whole year."

The Phillies could trade before the Aug. 1 non-waiver Trade Deadline to make room for Altherr. Bourjos is a free agent after the season, which provides the Phillies some motivation to move him. But teams could be motivated to acquire him, too. Bourjos entered Monday's series opener against the Marlins at Citizens Bank Park hitting .381 (37-for-97) with seven doubles, four triples, three home runs, 10 RBIs and a 1.052 OPS in 29 games since June 12.

"I've read where there's interest in [Jeremy] Hellickson, and there might be interest in some other players, but it's so much out of my hands that I don't even worry about it," Mackanin said. "We'll make adjustments when we have to and I'm sure, depending on if and when they make moves, then immediately we'll discuss who takes their place and it'll happen overnight whether it's a callup or whatever, or part of a trade."