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Phils protect 3 prospects from Rule 5 Draft

Medina, Gamboa, Garcia placed on club's 40-man roster
MLB.com

PHILADELPHIA -- The Phillies protected three players from next month's Rule 5 Draft, including one of MLB Pipeline's Top 100 Prospects.

The team announced Tuesday evening that it had placed right-hander Adonis Medina, shortstop Arquimedes Gamboa and right-hander Edgar Garcia on the 40-man roster. Medina is ranked by MLB Pipeline as the No. 64 prospect in baseball and the Phillies' No. 3 prospect, behind right-hander Sixto Sanchez and third baseman Alec Bohm.

PHILADELPHIA -- The Phillies protected three players from next month's Rule 5 Draft, including one of MLB Pipeline's Top 100 Prospects.

The team announced Tuesday evening that it had placed right-hander Adonis Medina, shortstop Arquimedes Gamboa and right-hander Edgar Garcia on the 40-man roster. Medina is ranked by MLB Pipeline as the No. 64 prospect in baseball and the Phillies' No. 3 prospect, behind right-hander Sixto Sanchez and third baseman Alec Bohm.

Gamboa is the Phillies' No. 11 prospect.

The Phillies did not protect Triple-A Lehigh Valley right-hander Tom Eshelman, who was the organization's 2017 Minor League Pitcher of the Year and ranks 27th on the Phillies' Top 30 Prospects list. Other Phillies top prospects not protected include second baseman Daniel Brito (No. 12) and infielder Jose Gomez (No. 16).

Medina, 21, went 10-4 with a 4.12 ERA in 22 games (21 starts) with Class A Advanced Clearwater, posting a 3.54 ERA from May through the end of the season. He struck out 123 batters in 111 1/3 innings and pitched for the World Team in the All-Star Futures Game in July. The Phillies signed the Dominican as an amateur free agent in May 2014.

Gamboa, 21, has tools, particularly defensively, but he hit just .214 with a .582 OPS in 497 plate appearances with Clearwater. The Phillies signed him in July 2014.

Garcia, 22, went a combined 7-3 with a 3.64 ERA and eight saves in 52 relief appearances between Double-A Reading and Lehigh Valley. He struck out 72 in 64 1/3 innings. The Phillies signed him in May 2014.

The Phillies have 38 players on the 40-man roster.

Todd Zolecki has covered the Phillies since 2003, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow him on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Philadelphia Phillies, Arquimedes Gamboa, Adonis Medina

Pipeline names Phillies' Prospects of the Year

MLB.com

PHILADELPHIA -- The Phillies' outfield in 2019 could be almost entirely different than the group that opened the season in March.

That foursome included Rhys Hoskins, Odubel Herrera, Aaron Altherr and Nick Williams. The 2019 group could include free agent Bryce Harper, whom the Phillies will pursue this winter. It might be without Hoskins, who could move back to first base, and Herrera, who could be traded to make room for Roman Quinn in center field. But as general manager Matt Klentak contemplates any roster moves this winter, Double-A Reading outfielder Adam Haseley will be in the back of his mind. He could join the big league roster sometime next season.

PHILADELPHIA -- The Phillies' outfield in 2019 could be almost entirely different than the group that opened the season in March.

That foursome included Rhys Hoskins, Odubel Herrera, Aaron Altherr and Nick Williams. The 2019 group could include free agent Bryce Harper, whom the Phillies will pursue this winter. It might be without Hoskins, who could move back to first base, and Herrera, who could be traded to make room for Roman Quinn in center field. But as general manager Matt Klentak contemplates any roster moves this winter, Double-A Reading outfielder Adam Haseley will be in the back of his mind. He could join the big league roster sometime next season.

:: Complete prospect coverage ::

MLB Pipeline named Haseley the Phillies' Minor League Hitting Prospect of the Year. Haseley is the organization's No. 4 prospect. MLB Pipeline also named Class A Clearwater left-hander David Parkinson the organization's Pitcher of the Year. He is the Phillies' No. 19 prospect.

Each team's Hitting and Pitching Prospects of the Year were chosen by the MLB Pipeline staff. To receive consideration, players must have spent at least half the year in the Minors and appeared on the team's Top 30 Prospects list.

Haseley, whom the Phillies selected with the eighth overall selection in the 2017 Draft, hit .305 with 17 doubles, five triples, 11 home runs, 55 RBIs and a .795 OPS with Clearwater and Reading. But Haseley hit his stride in Double-A. In 159 plate appearances with Reading he hit .316 with four doubles, six home runs, 17 RBIs and an .880 OPS. After walking 19 times and striking out 54 times in 354 plate appearances with Clearwater, Haseley walked 16 times and struck out 19 times with Reading.

Video: Top Prospects: Adam Haseley, OF, Phillies

It is an encouraging development, although it remains to be seen if Haseley will hit for enough power to play the corners on an everyday basis.

The Phillies selected Parkinson in the 12th round of the 2017 Draft. He went 11-1 with a 1.45 ERA in 22 appearances (21 starts) with Class A Lakewood and Clearwater. His ERA (20 earned runs in 124 1/3 innings) was the lowest in the Minor Leagues among qualifying pitchers. He struck out 141 and walked 35, holding opponents to a .202 batting average.

Watch: MiLB Video

"I always have had pretty good fastball command, but I didn't have a strong command on a secondary pitch," Parkinson said late last month.

Parkinson improved his offspeed pitches this season. He also learned to stay even keel.

"Just trying to do the same preparation I was doing for every game," he said. "Not trying to make too big of a deal out of anything."

Todd Zolecki has covered the Phillies since 2003, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow him on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Philadelphia Phillies

Top prospect Sanchez to miss AFL with injury

MLB.com

PHILADELPHIA -- The Phillies hoped Sixto Sanchez, their top prospect by MLB Pipeline, could make up for lost time in the Arizona Fall League, but he was recently set back due to problems with his collarbone and will not pitch again until Spring Training.

A Phillies source said team doctors are not concerned.

PHILADELPHIA -- The Phillies hoped Sixto Sanchez, their top prospect by MLB Pipeline, could make up for lost time in the Arizona Fall League, but he was recently set back due to problems with his collarbone and will not pitch again until Spring Training.

A Phillies source said team doctors are not concerned.

Sanchez is the No. 21 prospect in baseball. He has not pitched since June because of inflammation in his right elbow. The Phillies' window to get him stretched out and ready to compete this fall did not allow for setbacks, but Sanchez recently reported soreness in his clavicle. The source said the Phillies then decided to be conservative and remove him from the AFL roster.

The Phillies expect him to be 100 percent healthy and ready to compete next spring.

Jonathan Hennigan, a left-handed reliever, is replacing Sanchez on Scottsdale's roster.

Splitting the 2018 season between Class A Lakewood and Class A Advanced Clearwater, Hennigan compiled a 2.39 ERA with 46 strikeouts and a 55 percent ground-ball rate over 52 2/3 innings (37 appearances). He enjoyed most of his success against left-handed hitters, whom he held to a .187/.275/.253 line in 103 plate appearances. 

Hennigan, 24, was selected by the Phillies in the 21st round of the 2016 Draft out of Texas State University. He's made 80 relief appearances in three professional seasons, posting a 3.79 ERA with 132 strikeouts, 53 walks and a .234 opponents' average. 

Todd Zolecki has covered the Phillies since 2003, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow him on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Philadelphia Phillies

Kapler meets with Phils' brass to discuss '18

MLB.com

PHILADELPHIA -- Gabe Kapler spent much of Friday at Citizens Bank Park in meetings with Phillies managing partner John Middleton, president Andy MacPhail, general manager Matt Klentak and others from the front office and coaching staff. The meetings served as a postmortem on a once promising season and a look ahead at ways to avoid another late-season collapse in 2019.

"Just normal, end-of-the-season meetings," Kapler said before Friday's series opener against the Braves. "Nothing in particular."

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PHILADELPHIA -- Gabe Kapler spent much of Friday at Citizens Bank Park in meetings with Phillies managing partner John Middleton, president Andy MacPhail, general manager Matt Klentak and others from the front office and coaching staff. The meetings served as a postmortem on a once promising season and a look ahead at ways to avoid another late-season collapse in 2019.

"Just normal, end-of-the-season meetings," Kapler said before Friday's series opener against the Braves. "Nothing in particular."

View Full Game Coverage

A little more than a week ago, the Phillies hoped Friday would be the beginning of a series with National League East title implications. Instead, the Braves eliminated the Phillies from the postseason last weekend in Atlanta and the Phillies are playing out the string, hoping to snap a season-high eight-game losing streak and maybe finish .500.

"I've been spending a lot of time thinking about it," Kapler said of the team's skid. "And I think, quite simply, we can prepare better to be prepared for August and September and being strong through those months. I thought we did a really good job of being a really good version of this club for the first four months of the season. And I think, going forward, spending this offseason right now beginning to prepare for next year's August and September is the adjustment that has to be made and we're very excited to get to."

But what does that mean exactly?

"I think from a mental-preparation standpoint, it's acknowledging the difficulty of getting to August and September, and then understanding once it gets there, it becomes even more challenging," Kapler said. "So I think the preparation is having the conversation about what might come up. I'll tell you what, the fact that we went through this once in August and September, and a lot of our young, developing players experienced the pressure and the magnitude of the situation, they are better equipped to handle it next year in 2019."

Kapler's job performance has come under scrutiny the past several weeks. He knows it, but he also does not believe he will give free agents any reason not to consider coming to Philadelphia. He is not wrong. If the Phillies show players the money, they will sign.

"We have a tremendous amount of resources with the Philadelphia Phillies," Kapler said. "I think the players, if nothing else, will tell you how deeply I care for them and how much effort and energy I put into putting them to be in a position to have success. I think we run a clubhouse where players feel like they can be themselves. They don't have to put on any acts. So for all of those reasons and the obvious [one] that we are going to get more competitive, that we are going to make adjustments, that we are going to be better in 2019 than we were in 2018, I think this is as attractive a destination as there is in baseball."

Paul Owens winners receive award
Prior to Friday's game, the Phillies honored their top Minor Leaguers by awarding left-hander David Parkinson and infielder/outfielder Austin Listi with the 2018 Paul Owens Award.

Parkinson's 1.45 ERA (20 ER, 124 1/3 IP) was the lowest of all qualifying Minor League pitchers in 2018. In 22 games (21 starts) between Class A Lakewood and Class A Advanced Clearwater, he went 11-1 with 141 strikeouts while holding opponents to a .202 batting average. The 22-year-old said that being on a Lakewood team that posted a 2.74 ERA -- lower than any other full-season Minor League club -- led to "friendly competition" among the pitching staff.

"We definitely fed off each other," said Parkinson, the Phillies' No. 19 prospect according to MLB Pipeline. "We learned from each other a lot, too. I picked their brains, they picked my brain."

Video: ATL@PHI: Parkinson talks leading Minors in ERA

Listi, 24, slashed .312/.412/.502 with 25 doubles, 18 home runs, 84 RBIs and 62 walks in 123 games between Clearwater and Double-A Reading. He played both corner-infield spots and both corner-outfield positions. Next week, he'll head west to play against other top Minor Leaguers in the Arizona Fall League. He is "fired up" about it.

Video: ATL@PHI: Listi discusses terrific season in Minors

Is Triple-A waiting in 2019?

"I'm confident in my ability to perform and compete." Listi said. "I think I will be [in Triple-A]. That's up to the Phillies and what they plan on doing with me. I don't try to think about it. I just try to stick to my game and go out there and compete."

Todd Zolecki has covered the Phillies since 2003, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow him on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Joe Bloss is a reporter for MLB.com based in Philadelphia.

Philadelphia Phillies

Phillies Minor League review: Aug. 27-Sept. 3

MLB.com

Players of the Week

Player - SS J.P. Crawford, Lehigh Valley… Crawford, 23, batted .385 (10-26) with a double, triple, homer, five RBI, two walks, a stolen base and a 1.044 OPS in seven games. He registered four multi-hit efforts, and hit safely in all six contests in which he had a plate appearance. Crawford was selected by the Phillies in the first round (16th overall) in the 2013 draft.

Players of the Week

Player - SS J.P. Crawford, Lehigh Valley… Crawford, 23, batted .385 (10-26) with a double, triple, homer, five RBI, two walks, a stolen base and a 1.044 OPS in seven games. He registered four multi-hit efforts, and hit safely in all six contests in which he had a plate appearance. Crawford was selected by the Phillies in the first round (16th overall) in the 2013 draft.

Co-Pitcher - RHP Tyler Viza, Reading … The 23-year-old Viza struck out 16 batters in 15.0 innings over two starts, allowing three runs (one earned), eight hits and just one walk. He tossed 7.0 scoreless innings with 11 strikeouts on Aug. 27, and followed that with his first complete game of the season in his final start of 2018. In 11 starts for Reading, he posted a 2.06 ERA. Viza was seleted by the Phillies in the 32nd round of the June 2013 draft.

Co-Pitcher - LHP Zach Warren, Lakewood… Warren, 22, made three scoreless relief appearances, striking out nine batters and allowing two hits in 4.0 innings of work. He converted both of his save opportunities, improving to 15-for-16 on the season for Lakewood. The southpaw finished with exactly 100 strikeouts, retiring 44.4 % (100 of 225) of the batters he faced by strikeout. Warren was selected by the Phillies in the 14th round of the June 2017 draft.

Lehigh Valley IronPigs - International League North Division… 84-56, 1st place… After dropping the final game of a series against Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, the IronPigs finished the regular season with series victories over Pawtucket and Rochester. Lehigh Valley will begin postseason play today with the first game of a five-game series against the RailRiders in the Governor's Cup Semi-Finals.

Top hitting performers - SS J.P. Crawford batted .385 (10-26) with a double, triple, home run, five RBI, two walks and a stolen base, earning Phillies Minor League Player of the Week… 1B/OF Joey Meneses doubled twice, homered, drove in five runs and scored five more, capping his International League MVP and Rookie of the Year-winning season… OF Dylan Cozens drove in a team-high nine runs, batting .444 (8-18) with a double and a pair of homers.

Top pitching performers - LHP Cole Irvin tossed 6.0 scoreless innings, allowing three hits and a walk while striking out five. He was named International League Pitcher of the Year at the beginning of the week … LHP Ranger Suarez made two starts and combined to toss 12.1 innings and allow three runs on just nine hits… LHP Tom Windle struck out five in 2.1 innings over four scoreless relief appearances.

Reading Fightin Phils - Eastern League Eastern Division… 64-73, 4th place… Reading took two of three from Richmond to start the week before being swept by the Trenton Thunder to finish the regular season.

Top hitting performers - 1B Darick Hall hit two home runs, including one in his final game of the season, to bring his Reading total to 15 in 80 games played. He also doubled, walked and drove in six runs last week… 2B Drew Stankiewicz batted .278 (5-18) with a double and three walks.

Top pitching performers - In two starts, RHP Tyler Viza allowed only one run across 15.0 innings of work, striking out 16 batters, walking one and earning Co-Phillies Minor League Pitcher of the Week honors … RHP Luke Leftwich struck out nine batters in 5.1 innings during his only start of the week. He allowed just one run on three hits… RHP Harold Arauz allowed two runs (one earned run) over 10.1 innings in his two starts… In two relief appearances, RHP Seth McGarry tossed 5.0 shutout innings and recorded five strikeouts.

Clearwater Threshers - Florida State League North Division… 45-24, 1st place, 77-60 overall… Clearwater won three of four games from Jupiter, outscoring them 22-8. The Threshers then ended their regular season with another series win over Fort Myers. Clearwater began postseason play last night with a win in the opener of a best-of-three series against Daytona.

Top hitting performers - OF Mickey Moniak ended his season batting .500 (7-14) with two RBI, a walk and three runs scored in three games… C Edgar Cabral homered and drove in four runs while batting .333 (6-18)… 2B Daniel Brito hit safely in six of his seven games, doubling twice and scoring five runs.

Top pitching performers - RHP Ramon Rosso tossed 9.0 scoreless innings and struck out 12 batters over two starts, lowering his season ERA to 2.91 with the Threshers (2.04 overall)… In his only start of the week, RHP Mauricio Llovera struck out nine over 6.0 innings, yielding two runs (one earned)… LHP David Parkinson also struck out nine and allowed one earned run in 6.0 innings. He posted a 1.24 ERA in five starts with Clearwater.

Lakewood BlueClaws - South Atlantic League Northern Division… 46-23, 1st place, 87-51 overall… Lakewood swept a four-game set with Greensboro and then split four games with Delmarva to finish the regular season with 87 wins, the most ever by a BlueClaws' team. Lakewood's opening-round playoff series with Kannapolis begins tonight.

Top hitting performers - C Gregori Rivero was 5-for-13 (.385) with a double, home run, RBI and three runs scored in three games… 1B Madison Stokes recorded two three-hit games, batting .321 (9-28) for the week with a pair of doubles and five RBI… OF Simon Muzziotti went 9-for-30 (.300), drove in three runs, stole a base and ended his season with a hit in each of his final five games.

Top pitching performers - LHP Zach Warren tossed 4.0 scoreless innings in three relief appearances, converting both of his save opportunities. He was named Co-Phillies Minor League Pitcher of the Week… RHP Spencer Howard struck out nine batters and walked none in 5.0 innings during his one start. Howard led all Phillies minor leaguers with 147 strikeouts this season… In two appearances (one start), LHP Damon Jones combined to allow two runs over 9.0 innings, striking out 10 batters.

Williamsport Crosscutters - New York-Penn League Pinckney Division… 32-44, T-5th place… The Crosscutters began their week finishing a series win over Mahoning Valley, then split four games with Auburn before dropping two of three with Williamsport to finish the season.

Top hitting performers - OF Ben Pelletier recorded three multi-hit games, driving in five runs while walking twice… 3B Jake Holmes reached base nine times in 26 plate appearances (.371 OBP).

Top pitching performers - LHP Manuel Silva did not allow a run and surrendered only four hits in 9.0 innings over two appearances (one start)… In his final start of the season on Sept. 1, LHP Ethan Lindow threw 6.0 innings, surrendered one unearned run, allowed only three hits and did not walk a batter.

Philadelphia Phillies

Phils add Altherr, 5 more as rosters expand

Reinforcements provide Kapler depth off bench, in bullpen
MLB.com

PHILADELPHIA -- Aaron Altherr on Saturday had a locker in the Phillies' clubhouse for the first time since his July 23 demotion to Triple-A, and with his return came a message from Gabe Kapler.

"Be ready at all times," the Phillies' manager said he told Altherr.

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PHILADELPHIA -- Aaron Altherr on Saturday had a locker in the Phillies' clubhouse for the first time since his July 23 demotion to Triple-A, and with his return came a message from Gabe Kapler.

"Be ready at all times," the Phillies' manager said he told Altherr.

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Rhys Hoskins is not sitting. Roman Quinn has earned more playing time. And Jose Bautista, Odubel Herrera and Nick Williams aren't going anywhere, so Altherr must be prepared to contribute in ways outside of the type of regular at-bats he had been given over the past six weeks with Lehigh Valley.

Flexibility and creativity will be the norm for the Phillies as they venture into September two games behind the Braves for first place in the National League East. Major League Baseball rules allow for active rosters to expand from 25 to 40 players in September, and the Phillies took advantage Saturday with a flurry of moves to bring their group to 31. That's a welcome change for Kapler, who since the season opener has not been hesitant to go deep into his bullpen and bench.

"It gives coaching staffs a little bit of a breather, to some degree," Kapler said. "It's like, you're not in the dugout worrying about running out of position players or using a pitcher to run or a position player to pitch."

Altherr, fellow outfielder Dylan Cozens and right-hander Yacksel Rios were recalled from Lehigh Valley. Relievers Austin Davis and Edubray Ramos were activated from the 10-day disabled list. Pedro Florimon was activated from the 60-day DL.

Because Florimon's move adds him to the 40-man roster, infielder Jesmuel Valentin was designated for assignment to make room. Mark Leiter Jr., who was designated for assignment Tuesday to make room for Bautista, was claimed on outright waivers by the Blue Jays.

"One of the hazards of being a much better baseball team is that you DFA good players," Kapler said. "And you sometimes lose those good players."

Saturday's transactions notably lacked Jerad Eickhoff and J.P. Crawford. Eickhoff is healthy but made a rehab start Thursday. He won't be available again until early next week. Crawford, it appears, is better off in Lehigh Valley at the moment. He's hit .227 with three extra-base hits in 12 games since being optioned on Aug. 14.

"We're still considering a number of things around both of those guys," Kapler said.

The players here, though, provide options as the Phillies push for their first division title since 2011. Altherr, despite hitting .171 in 248 plate appearances before being optioned in July, immediately becomes one of the top fielding outfielders on the team and could be used as a defensive replacement late in games. Kapler said Altherr is someone he can use in a double switch or as a bench weapon against left-handed pitching.

"I'm getting closer," Altherr said of his progress after slashing .244/.321/.336 in 34 games at Triple-A. "It was just a matter of getting the at-bats and getting the timing back. I was able to get that down there, and I feel like I'm ready to contribute to the team."

Cozens, who is ranked as the Phillies' No. 16 prospect by MLB Pipeline, went 2-for-20 in his first extended Major League stint earlier this year but provides a combination of speed and power in a reserve role.

Davis, now one of three left-handers in the bullpen, has been a pleasant surprise this season, and Ramos has posted a 2.00 ERA in 36 innings in the Majors this year. Both give the Phillies another matchup to consider as they navigate the final month of the regular season.

More reinforcements are not far behind. Andrew Knapp will return to be a third catcher once his 10 days since last being optioned are up, and general manager Matt Klentak said this week that a second wave of callups -- which could bring pitchers like Enyel De Los Santos and Ranger Suarez back to Philadelphia -- will arrive when Lehigh Valley's playoff run ends.

"I think the more players you have around, the more tactical you get to be," Kapler said. "And I think that's kind of fun."

Joe Bloss is a reporter for MLB.com based in Philadelphia.

Philadelphia Phillies, Aaron Altherr, Dylan Cozens, Austin Davis, Pedro Florimon, Edubray Ramos, Yacksel Rios

Top prospect ready for AFL after elbow injury

Sanchez has been limited to 8 starts in High-A ball this year
MLB.com

PHILADELPHIA -- Most of the chatter around Sixto Sanchez this summer has focused on the fact that the Phillies refused to include him in trade talks for Manny Machado a month ago. The top prospect has not appeared in a game since early June because of right elbow inflammation. That will soon change.

Sanchez, the Phillies' No. 1 prospect and No. 17 in baseball according to MLB Pipeline, will be among the Phillies' eight Minor Leaguers to play for the Scottsdale Scorpions of the Arizona Fall League in a little more than a month, it was announced Thursday. Phillies general manager Matt Klentak hinted this week that Sanchez was in consideration after the right-hander missed most of the season.

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PHILADELPHIA -- Most of the chatter around Sixto Sanchez this summer has focused on the fact that the Phillies refused to include him in trade talks for Manny Machado a month ago. The top prospect has not appeared in a game since early June because of right elbow inflammation. That will soon change.

Sanchez, the Phillies' No. 1 prospect and No. 17 in baseball according to MLB Pipeline, will be among the Phillies' eight Minor Leaguers to play for the Scottsdale Scorpions of the Arizona Fall League in a little more than a month, it was announced Thursday. Phillies general manager Matt Klentak hinted this week that Sanchez was in consideration after the right-hander missed most of the season.

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Joining Sanchez will be right-handers Luke Leftwich, Seth McGarry and Tyler Viza, infielders Arquimedes Gamboa (No. 11 Phillies prospect), Darick Hall and Luke Williams, and outfielder Austin Listi. Aaron Fultz, the pitching coach for Class A Advanced Clearwater, is on the Scottsdale staff as well.

Sanchez, 20, posted a 2.51 ERA with 45 strikeouts in eight starts (46 2/3 innings) with Clearwater before he was shut down with the elbow injury. This followed a dominant 2017 at Class A Lakewood in which he posted a 7.11 strikeout-to-walk ratio and allowed just one home run in 67 1/3 innings before a late-season promotion to Clearwater.

The Phillies have taken the safe route with Sanchez because his combination of velocity and command give him the potential to become a front-line starter. He didn't start on Clearwater's active roster as they eased him into the season. They were careful when the inflammation flared up in June by shutting him down. Lately, Sanchez has thrown to hitters in batting practice and "feels great," Klentak said. Instructional league, which happens before the AFL, is a possibility, too.

The Fall League will allow Sanchez to make up for development lost to a summer of downtime. Now in its 27th season, the AFL has long been a place for elite prospects to take their next steps toward the big leagues. All 30 MLB teams supply players for six rosters. Joining the Phillies' contingent in Scottsdale will be prospects from the Mets, Giants, Reds and Astros.

Scottsdale will play its first game Oct. 10, with the season running until a Nov. 18 championship.

Kapler ready for roster expansion
Phillies manager Gabe Kapler said he knows exactly who will arrive when rosters expand from 25 to 40 players on Saturday for September. Some choices are easy. Some are not.

Kapler must balance the conflicting interest of developing younger players as Triple-A Lehigh Valley enters the International League playoffs as a first-place club -- something that aligns with the effort of "trying to foster a culture, an environment of winning" -- while a deeper bench would allow him more creativity deep in a game.

"We're going to have plenty of bodies," Kapler said. "But what if we had not the greatest matchup and we decided to leave that guy in Lehigh for the Triple-A playoffs instead of having him around? I think that would, like, haunt me forever. So those are the things that we are considering here coming up."

Members of the 40-man roster currently at Triple-A include Aaron Altherr and J.P. Crawford, who could be back in Philadelphia as early as Saturday, and Andrew Knapp, who should return once his 10 days since being optioned on Tuesday are up. Kapler said the club has not ruled out going beyond the 40-man.

"We will have a second wave that comes here after the Triple-A season is over, but we don't know that date yet," Klentak said.

Many of the expected additions, though, are already here. Relievers Austin Davis, Edubray Ramos and Aaron Loup are on the 10-day disabled list, and will soon bolster the bullpen without bumping someone from the active roster.

Jerad Eickhoff, after pitching another lengthy rehab start Thursday night, is healthy and will be activated from the 60-day disabled list.

"He's now going to be part of our club and probably, most likely part of our bullpen to start," Kapler said. "And the way I see using Eickhoff is in kind of a length role at first, looking for a stretch of innings to give him, but also not ruling out any starts at some point."

Justin Bour took swings off a tee for the first time since straining his left oblique. Although that can sometimes be a nagging injury, Kapler said fans can expect to see Bour "soon," possibly a day or two after Monday, when he is eligible to return.

Joe Bloss is a reporter for MLB.com based in Philadelphia.

Philadelphia Phillies, Sixto Sanchez

Phillies Minor League review: Aug. 20-26

MLB.com

Player -- INF/OF Jake Scheiner, Lakewood. The 23-year-old hit safely in each of his six games, batting .429 (9-for-21) with two doubles, two homers, six RBIs, five runs scored, three walks and a 1.348 OPS. He has hit safely in 16 of his 17 games this month, batting .339 (21-for-62) with a 1.035 OPS. The California native was selected by the Phillies in the fourth round of the June 2017 Draft.

Pitcher -- RHP Francisco Morales, Williamsport. Morales, 18, fanned a career-best 11 batters and allowed just one run on three hits over six innings in his start on Aug. 21 vs State College. It was his second double-digit strikeout start of the season. A native of Venezuela, he was signed by the Phillies as an amateur free agent on July 2, 2016.

Player -- INF/OF Jake Scheiner, Lakewood. The 23-year-old hit safely in each of his six games, batting .429 (9-for-21) with two doubles, two homers, six RBIs, five runs scored, three walks and a 1.348 OPS. He has hit safely in 16 of his 17 games this month, batting .339 (21-for-62) with a 1.035 OPS. The California native was selected by the Phillies in the fourth round of the June 2017 Draft.

Pitcher -- RHP Francisco Morales, Williamsport. Morales, 18, fanned a career-best 11 batters and allowed just one run on three hits over six innings in his start on Aug. 21 vs State College. It was his second double-digit strikeout start of the season. A native of Venezuela, he was signed by the Phillies as an amateur free agent on July 2, 2016.

Lehigh Valley IronPigs -- International League North Division. 79-53, 1st place. The IronPigs captured their first ever International League North Division title after earning their 11th walk-off win of the season on Saturday against Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. They won both of their series last week, finishing with a 4-2 record.

Top hitting performers -- OF Danny Ortiz doubled, homered twice and drove in four runs in six games. C Logan Moore went 3-for-11 (.273) with a homer and two RBIs.

Top pitching performers -- RHP Enyel De Los Santos made one start in which he surrendered one unearned run in six innings. LHP Cole Irvin earned a win after allowing one run and one walk over six innings in his only start. Through games as of yesterday, De Los Santos (2.43) and Irvin (2.67) ranked first and second in ERA, respectively, among all qualifying International League pitchers. RHP Pedro Beato made four scoreless relief appearances (4 1/3 IP) and converted all three of his save opportunities. RHP Jerad Eickhoff scattered four hits over six scoreless innings in a rehab start.

Reading Fightin Phils -- Eastern League Eastern Division. 62-68, 3rd place. Reading went 3-3 last week, winning three of their first four games.

Top hitting performers -- 1B/OF Austin Listi hit safely in all six of his games, posting a .429/.538/.619 slash line, going 9-for-21 with a double, home run, nine RBI and five walks. OF Jose Pujols collected 15 total bases over six games, batting .364 (8-for-22) with a double, two home runs, seven RBIs, seven runs scored, six walks and a 1.182 OPS. OF Cornelius Randolph hit .438 (7-for-16) with two doubles, four RBI and three walks in four contests. OF Adam Haseley went 6-for-17 (.353) with a homer, three RBI, four runs scored and two walks in four games.

Top pitching performers -- LHP Josh Tols struck out six batters and allowed one run on two hits over 5.0 innings of relief, which spanned three games. RHP Ranfi Casimiro notched a quality start in which he allowed one run with five strikeouts over six innings.

Clearwater Threshers -- Florida State League North Division. 40-22, 1st place, 72-58 overall. The Threshers dropped two of three against Dunedin before taking two of three against Charlotte to end the week. Clearwater's pitching staff currently ranks second in the league with 1,140 strikeouts this season.

Top hitting performers -- INF Raul Rivas doubled, homered, knocked in two runs and hit .308 (4-for-13) in four games. OF Mickey Moniak collected two doubles, two RBIs and batted .261 (6-for-23) in six contests. He entered play today with 28 doubles, which ranked tied for second in the Florida State League.

Top pitching performers -- RHP Mauricio Llovera fanned a career-high 11 batters in his first professional complete game (seven innings) on Sunday vs Charlotte (game 1 of doubleheader). It was his second double-digit strikeout performance of the season. RHP Trevor Bettencourt struck out six batters and walked none in two relief appearances (four innings). RHP Alejandro Requena allowed one run and zero walks over seven innings to earn a win in his only start.

Lakewood BlueClaws -- South Atlantic League Northern Division. 40-21, 1st place, 81-49 overall. The BlueClaws won three of their last four games to finish the week at 3-3. All three of their losses were by two runs or fewer.

Top hitting performers -- INF/OF Jake Scheiner, the Phillies Minor League Player of the Week, posted a .429/.538/.810 slash line, going 9-for-21 with four extra-base hits, six RBIs, five runs scored and three walks in six games. OF Matt Vierling collected multiple hits in three of his five games, batting .318 (7-22) with a double, two home runs, four RBIs and four runs scored. INF Madison Stokes went 6-for-22 (.273) with two doubles, one triple, two RBIs and three walks in six games.

Top pitching performers -- RHP Julian Garcia (seven IP, 2 ER), RHP Gustavo Armas (eight IP, ER) and RHP Spencer Howard (six innings, ER) all notched a quality start and earned a win in their outings. Each of these three pitchers struck out at least seven batters and walked one or none in their respective starts. Additionally, Armas surrendered just one hit in his outing on Aug. 23 at Hickory. RHP Connor Brogdon recorded seven strikeouts across two scoreless relief appearances (three IP). LHP Zach Warren struck out nine batters in three innings of relief over two games. He is averaging 15.55 SO/9 IP (91 SO, 52 2/3 IP) this season.

Williamsport Crosscutters -- New York-Penn League Pinckney Division. 29-39, 5th place. The Crosscutters went 4-5 and combined to outscore their opponents, 30-6, in their four victories.

Top hitting performers -- OF Ben Aklinski collected 16 total bases in seven games. He batted .296 (8-for-27) with a double, two triples, one home run, five RBIs, six runs scored and a .937 OPS. INF Matt Kroon tripled, homered, drove in four runs, walked three times and hit .385 (5-for-13) in four games. He slugged a grand slam yesterday vs. Mahoning Valley. C Rafael Marchan hit .412 (7-for-17) with two doubles, two RBI and four runs scored over four contests.

Top pitching performers -- RHP Francisco Morales, the Phillies Minor League Pitcher of the Week, recorded a career-high 11 strikeouts over six innings in his start on August 21 vs State College. RHP Austin Ross fanned 10 batters across three relief appearances (seven IP). He allowed just one unearned run and notched a save. LHP Ethan Lindow made one start in which he struck out nine batters, walked none and tossed six scoreless innings. LHP Manuel Silva logged a quality start, allowing two runs (one earned) in six innings with eight strikeouts.

Gulf Coast League Phillies East -- Gulf Coast League Northeast Division. 30-24, 1st place. The GCL Phillies East have completed their season after dropping their semifinal game yesterday at the GCL Cardinals.

Top hitting performers -- OF James Smith went 4-for-13 (.308) with two doubles, three RBIs and two walks. OF Julio Francisco hit .294 (5-for-17) with two doubles and two stolen bases.

Top pitching performers -- RHP Dominic Pipkin tossed four scoreless innings and did not walk a batter in his only start. RHP Carlos Francisco recorded five strikeouts and allowed just one hit in four scoreless innings during his lone start.

Gulf Coast League Phillies West -- Gulf Coast League Northwest Division. 30-24, 2nd place. The GCL Phillies West have completed their season.

Top hitting performers -- SS Luis Garcia batted .467 (7-for-15) with a double, eight RBIs, four runs scored and three steals. He finished the season with a .369 batting average, which was tops among all qualifying hitters in the GCL. C Logan O'Hoppe went 5-for-11 (.455) with two doubles, one RBI and two walks. OF Luis Rojas hit .500 (6-for-12) with two RBIs and five runs scored.

Top pitching performers -- RHP Jose Conopoima allowed two earned runs and one walk over seven innings combined across two games (one start). RHP Victor Vargas surrendered two runs on four hits with no walks over five innings in his one relief outing.

Philadelphia Phillies

Quinn's 1st HR unable to halt Phils' struggles

Outfielder sparks 4-run 6th, but 'pen gives it right back vs. Nats
MLB.com

WASHINGTON -- The Phillies learned Tuesday afternoon that the Nationals had traded Daniel Murphy and Matt Adams to contenders outside the National League East. They placed Bryce Harper on revocable waivers, too, although they pulled him back once the Dodgers reportedly claimed him. The trades meant the Nationals had raised the white flag on their season.

Theoretically, the trades meant the Phillies had a clearer path to the postseason.

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WASHINGTON -- The Phillies learned Tuesday afternoon that the Nationals had traded Daniel Murphy and Matt Adams to contenders outside the National League East. They placed Bryce Harper on revocable waivers, too, although they pulled him back once the Dodgers reportedly claimed him. The trades meant the Nationals had raised the white flag on their season.

Theoretically, the trades meant the Phillies had a clearer path to the postseason.

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But the Phillies lost to Washington in Tuesday's series opener, 10-4, to fall two games behind the first-place Braves in the NL East. The Phillies are 5-9 since they beat the Marlins on Aug. 5 to move a season-high 15 games over .500. They are 10-13 over their past 23 games, despite trades that brought them Asdrubal Cabrera, Wilson Ramos, Justin Bour and Aaron Loup to improve the offense and bullpen.

"There's a lot of baseball left. I don't think there's any reason to hit the panic button right now," Phillies right-hander Vince Velasquez said. "I trust in our team. I think we'll just keep moving forward. I don't think there's anything to be worried about."

The Phillies must beat Stephen Strasburg on Wednesday and Max Scherzer on Thursday to win the three-game series against the Nats. The Phillies have not won a series since they swept the Marlins in a four-game set from Aug. 2-5.

"I would say that the Nationals have been a dangerous team since Opening Day and they will be a dangerous team until the last game of the season," Phillies manager Gabe Kapler said. "That lineup is really good from top to bottom and they demonstrated that tonight. But we never would take them lightly, whether they have Matt Adams and Daniel Murphy on the bench or they're rolling out the lineup that they had tonight."

Video: PHI@WSH: Kapler talks about loss, recent results

The night looked promising entering the bottom of the sixth inning. Roman Quinn hit the first homer of his big league career to tie the game in the top half of the frame. It sparked a four-run rally as the Phillies took a 4-1 lead.

But the Phillies' bullpen imploded. It had the best ERA in baseball since July 1, but nobody could hold off the Nationals. Victor Arano allowed back-to-back homers to pinch-hitter Andrew Stevenson and Wilmer Difo in the sixth as the Nationals scored five runs to take a 6-4 lead. Adam Morgan allowed one run in two-thirds of an inning. Edubray Ramos allowed one run in one inning. Yacksel Rios allowed three runs in one inning and was optioned to Triple-A Lehigh Valley after the game.

Video: PHI@WSH: Nats retake the lead with a 5-run 6th inning

The Phillies, meanwhile, could not score after the sixth. They left the bases loaded in the eighth.

"I think very similarly to what we have said all year, we are going to go through some tough stretches," Kapler said. "This is a bit of a prolonged stretch and we need to pay very close attention to it and we need to be responsive to the little things that we see that we can improve, and we will. But certainly we understand that really good teams go through tough stretches, and this has been one that has been difficult."

VELASQUEZ RETURNS AFTER LONG DELAY
A one-hour, 42-minute rain delay in the middle of the third inning could have cut Velasquez's night short, but he returned to pitch the third and fourth innings. Velasquez allowed three hits, one run and one walk. He struck out three. Scott Kingery pinch-hit for him with a runner on first and two outs in the fifth.

Video: PHI@WSH: Velasquez K's Rendon to end the 3rd

"We've done a lot of work on this one," Kapler said. "There's not a lot of evidence that says it's a certain threshold -- 45 pitches, 45 minutes, an hour and a half, two hours. There's no real threshold. The one thing we know is if we keep simulating the ups and downs during the delay by working in the cage, keeping the body moving and delivering some pitches, and you count those pitches, you can send your starter back out there."

SOUND SMART
Arano allowed a game-tying two-run homer in the sixth to Stevenson, who hit an 0-1 slider. It was the first homer Arano surrendered on a slider in his big league career. The whiff rate on his slider (44.2 percent) ranked 34th out of 147 relievers in baseball.

Video: PHI@WSH: Stevenson drives in 2 with 1st career homer

YOU GOTTA SEE THIS
Phillies center fielder Odubel Herrera made a four-star catch to end the fourth inning. Herrera traveled 47 feet in 3.4 seconds to make the diving catch. The ball had a 42 percent catch probability, according to Statcast™.

Video: PHI@WSH: Herrera hustles in to make sliding catch

HE SAID IT
"It was a good feeling. But I'm still a little upset about bases loaded, going down swinging right there, key situation in the game. I had a chance to make something happen right there, but I didn't come through." -- Quinn, on his first homer. He later struck out with the bases loaded to end the eighth. The Nationals held a 7-4 lead at the time.

Video: PHI@WSH: Suero escapes a bases-loaded jam in the 8th

UP NEXT
Phillies right-hander Zach Eflin will be recalled to face Strasburg on Wednesday at 7:05 p.m. ET in the second game of a three-game series at Nationals Park. The Phillies optioned Eflin two weekends ago after he started in San Diego in an effort to find "value at the margins," giving them an extra bench player while knowing he would not miss a start because he would be the team's 26th man last Thursday in a doubleheader against the Mets.

Todd Zolecki has covered the Phillies since 2003, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow him on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Philadelphia Phillies, Roman Quinn

Mets land Phils prospect Kilome for Cabrera

MLB.com

PITTSBURGH -- The Mets traded veteran infielder Asdrubal Cabrera to the Phillies on Friday for Double-A right-hander Franklyn Kilome.

Kilome has made 19 starts for Reading in 2018, recording 83 strikeouts to counter 51 walks while accumulating a 4.24 ERA and 1.44 WHIP over 102 innings. The 23-year-old will join the Mets farm system that landed four prospects on MLB Pipeline's updated Top 100 list on Thursday.

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PITTSBURGH -- The Mets traded veteran infielder Asdrubal Cabrera to the Phillies on Friday for Double-A right-hander Franklyn Kilome.

Kilome has made 19 starts for Reading in 2018, recording 83 strikeouts to counter 51 walks while accumulating a 4.24 ERA and 1.44 WHIP over 102 innings. The 23-year-old will join the Mets farm system that landed four prospects on MLB Pipeline's updated Top 100 list on Thursday.

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Kilome was signed by the Phillies out of the Dominican Republic in 2013 and was the Phillies' No. 10 prospect. He is now listed as the No. 5 prospect in the Mets organization following the trade.

"He's a little bit raw, but there is a lot of potential there," Mets assistant general manager John Ricco told reporters on a conference call on Friday. "We're really excited to bring him to an organization that prides itself on developing pitching talent."

The right-hander stands at 6-foot-6 and has a fastball that reaches the upper-90s, complimented by a curveball that MLB Pipeline states "often flashes plus."

Video: NYM@PIT: Cabrera on trade to Phillies, time with Mets

Cabrera, 32, played one of his best games of the season on Thursday night as he collected three extra-base hits and produced a season-high four RBIs against the Pirates at PNC Park. He appeared in 98 games with the Mets in 2018, slashing .277/.329/.488 with 58 RBIs and 18 home runs. He is set to be a free agent after this season.

"I feel good," Cabrera said when discussing the trade with reporters before Friday night's game, a 5-4 loss. "It's part of the game. I'm really happy because I leave with my head up because I did my best for the Mets."

Cabrera played in 374 games with the Mets over 2 1/2 seasons after signing with the club as a free agent in December 2015. New York will now turn an eye toward the future, as Ricco indicated to reporters that 26-year-old rookie Jeff McNeil will see a lot of time at second base in the wake of the trade.

Video: SD@NYM: McNeil singles on 1st pitch he sees in career

Mason Wittner is a reporter for MLB.com based in Pittsburgh.

New York Mets, Philadelphia Phillies, Asdrubal Cabrera, Franklyn Kilome

7 contenders with prospects to make a big deal

MLB.com

At this time of year, when buyers are competing to bolster their rosters for the stretch run and sellers are looking to next season and beyond, arguably nothing is more important than the prospects contenders have -- and are willing -- to trade.

While much attention is paid to the top name or two in each team's farm system, depth matters too.

At this time of year, when buyers are competing to bolster their rosters for the stretch run and sellers are looking to next season and beyond, arguably nothing is more important than the prospects contenders have -- and are willing -- to trade.

While much attention is paid to the top name or two in each team's farm system, depth matters too.

Catch up on the Latest Trade Talk

Just look at the Dodgers, who were able to acquire Manny Machado from the Orioles without giving up their top two prospects, outfielder Alex Verdugo (No. 29 overall, per MLB Pipeline) and catcher Keibert Ruiz (No. 38 overall). They also held onto right-hander Dustin May (No. 83 overall), whom Baltimore reportedly coveted.

And yet, Los Angeles' five-player package, which was headlined by outfielder Yusniel Diaz, was enough to get a deal done. Diaz was the Dodgers' No. 4 prospect at the time of the trade, and he now tops the O's system while ranking 57th overall.

:: Complete prospect coverage ::

So which clubs are in the best position to make a trade like that between now and Tuesday's 4 p.m. ET non-waiver Trade Deadline? Here are seven teams with the prospects to swing a summer blockbuster, ordered based on the number of prospects they have on MLB Pipeline's Top 100 list.

Note: Prospect Points are determined by assigning a numerical value to each spot in the Top 100, giving 100 points to No. 1, 99 points to No. 2, and so on. A team's total is calculated by adding the values assigned to each of its Top 100 prospects.

1. Braves
Top 100 prospects (8): Right-hander Mike Soroka (No. 15 overall, per MLB Pipeline), right-hander Kyle Wright (No. 25), right-hander Ian Anderson (No. 40), third baseman Austin Riley (No. 44), catcher Cristian Pache (No. 58), left-hander Luiz Gohara (No. 63), right-hander Touki Toussaint (No. 78), left-hander Kolby Allard (No. 93)
Prospect Points ranking: 3rd
The Braves' system is stacked, as the club has four more prospects in the Top 100 than any other team on this list. With Atlanta in rebuilding mode over the past several years, the club hasn't made a major Trade Deadline acquisition since Michael Bourn in 2011, and that was under a different regime. Braves general manager Alex Anthopoulos was at the helm in Toronto when the Blue Jays picked up David Price from the Tigers for Matthew Boyd, Daniel Norris and Jairo Labourt in July '15, but Anthopoulos has expressed his reluctance to trade young assets for a rental player this time around. If the Braves do deal from their wealth of Top 100 prospects, it will likely be for controllable talent. They are believed to be in the market for relief help and have also been linked to Toronto starter Marcus Stroman, who is under team control through '20.

2. Yankees
Top 100 prospects (4): Left-hander Justus Sheffield (No. 28 overall), outfielder Estevan Florial (No. 47), right-hander Jonathan Loaisiga (No. 77), right-hander Albert Abreu (No. 79)
Prospect Points ranking: 12th
The Yankees' farm system remains among the best in the game without even taking into account Gleyber Torres and Clint Frazier, who have both lost their prospect status. The club's system has also been heralded for its depth, even beyond the players in the Top 100. Though the Yankees made a bid for Machado and have discussed Jacob deGrom and Noah Syndergaard with the Mets, general manager Brian Cashman seemingly has been hesitant to raid the farm for a big-name player. New York has already acquired Zach Britton and J.A. Happ without moving any Top 100 prospects, and there's a chance it won't make any other major moves, even with Aaron Judge sustaining a chip fracture in his right wrist on Thursday and the Yankees sitting 4 1/2 games behind the Red Sox in the American League East entering Friday.

Video: Yankees acquire J.A. Happ

3. Dodgers
Top 100 prospects (4): Verdugo, Ruiz, catcher/third baseman Will Smith (No. 74 overall), May
Prospect Points ranking: 11th
Yep, even after acquiring Yu Darvish last July and Machado on July 18, the Dodgers still possess an impressive collection of youngsters in the Minors. But it remains to be seen if president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman and general manager Farhan Zaidi are looking to make another big transaction. On one hand, the Dodgers' World Series window is open now, and adding a big-name pitcher such as deGrom or Chris Archer could be the move that brings home a title. Furthermore, it would give the club an insurance policy if Clayton Kershaw decides to opt out of his contract in the offseason. On the other hand, the Dodgers have an incredibly deep roster, six healthy starters and a bullpen that could get Josh Fields and Tony Cingrani back from the disabled list soon.

4. Phillies
Top 100 prospects (3): Right-hander Sixto Sanchez (No. 17 overall), third baseman Alec Bohm (No. 46), right-hander Adonis Medina (No. 73)
Prospect Points ranking: 14th
Another surprise contender in the National League East, the Phillies have been consistently featured in Trade Talk throughout July, and their reported willingness to part with right-hander Medina made them a finalist for Machado. But after falling short in their pursuit of Machado, Philadelphia has turned its attention to lower-cost players. Meanwhile, the club has remained steadfast in its refusal to deal the crown jewel of its farm system, Sanchez, who has recorded a 2.51 ERA in Class A Advanced this season. Still, even if Sanchez remains off the table, the Phils have the pieces to make a Trade Deadline splash should the club's front office decide it is one big acquisition away from emerging as the favorite in a wide-open NL.

5. Brewers
Top 100 prospects (3): Second baseman Keston Hiura (No. 27 overall), right-hander Corbin Burnes (No. 53), right-hander Freddy Peralta (No. 82)
Prospect Points ranking: 17th
Milwaukee was a Trade Deadline seller in general manager David Stearns' first season in charge, sending Jonathan Lucroy and Jeremy Jeffress to the Rangers and Will Smith to the Giants in 2016, and Stearns held off on making a notable deal last July despite being in contention for the postseason. It's been a different story this year, with the Brewers landing reliever Joakim Soria and third baseman Mike Moustakas, though the highest-ranked prospect they moved in those transactions was outfielder Brett Phillips, who was 10th on Milwaukee's list before being sent to Kansas City for Moose. That leaves Stearns with a strong system to trade from as he looks to address the rotation, which remains the club's biggest area of need. Peralta has already made a significant impact in the Majors, posting a 3.74 ERA with an 11.8 K/9 rate in eight starts, so it's unlikely the Brewers would move him for another starter. Meanwhile, the belief around baseball, according to The Athletic (subscription required), is that Milwaukee won't trade Hiura, who has recorded an .868 OPS in the Minors this season. But Burnes could be in play as the headliner in a blockbuster deal.

Video: Joel Sherman on possible Trade Deadline stories

6. Astros
Top 100 prospects (3): Right-hander Forrest Whitley (No. 7 overall), outfielder Kyle Tucker (No. 8), outfielder Yordan Alvarez (No. 42)
Prospect Points ranking: 6th
After winning the 2017 World Series championship with former highly rated prospects such as Carlos Correa, George Springer, Alex Bregman and Lance McCullers Jr. playing key roles and trading for Gerrit Cole in the offseason, the Astros still have a good deal of promising youngsters on the farm. But Houston's MLB roster is so talented that the club likely won't need to move any of its top prospects for a substantial upgrade. Of course, if Astros president of baseball operations and general manager Jeff Luhnow does want to bring in, say, the Reds' Raisel Iglesias or the Marlins' J.T. Realmuto, he likely could make it happen by dangling Whitley, Tucker and/or Alvarez.

7. A's
Top 100 prospects (3): Left-hander Jesus Luzardo (No. 12 overall), left-hander A.J. Puk (No. 39), catcher Sean Murphy (No. 54)
Prospect Points ranking: 10th
Although the A's financial restrictions are well documented, executive vice president of baseball operations Billy Beane hasn't been averse to dipping into the farm system to make a trade when the club has been in contention in the past. In July 2014, Beane sent top prospect Addison Russell along with youngsters Billy McKinney and Dan Straily to the Cubs for Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel. The A's supplemented their system by trading Sonny Gray to the Yankees and Sean Doolittle and Ryan Madson to the Nationals last summer, adding Luzardo, Jorge Mateo (Oakland's No. 7 prospect), James Kaprielian (No. 9), Sheldon Neuse (No. 10) and Dustin Fowler in those deals. Luzardo may be off the table, but Beane still has plenty to work with here.

Thomas Harrigan is an editor for MLB.com.

Milwaukee Brewers, Atlanta Braves, New York Yankees, Philadelphia Phillies, Oakland Athletics, Los Angeles Dodgers, Houston Astros

Suarez wins debut; Hamels-Phils reunion no-go

Phillies No. 8 prospect optioned after five-plus; veteran headed to Cubs
MLB.com

CINCINNATI -- Cole Hamels will not reunite with the Phillies for a run at their first National League East title since 2011.

Sources told MLB.com on Thursday night that the Rangers will trade Hamels to the Cubs, pending the exchange of medical information. Many Phillies fans dreamed about Hamels -- the 2008 World Series and National League Championship Series MVP -- rejoining the Phillies for the stretch run. But while the Phillies had scouts at some of Hamels' recent starts, sources said the front office had minimal interest in him.

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CINCINNATI -- Cole Hamels will not reunite with the Phillies for a run at their first National League East title since 2011.

Sources told MLB.com on Thursday night that the Rangers will trade Hamels to the Cubs, pending the exchange of medical information. Many Phillies fans dreamed about Hamels -- the 2008 World Series and National League Championship Series MVP -- rejoining the Phillies for the stretch run. But while the Phillies had scouts at some of Hamels' recent starts, sources said the front office had minimal interest in him.

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Hamels, 34, is 5-9 with a 4.72 ERA in 20 starts this season. His 4.17 xFIP is 47th out of 80 qualified pitchers. But Hamels has pitched much better outside Arlington, Texas. going 4-2 with a 2.93 ERA in 10 road starts.

The Phillies like their rotation. It entered the night with a 3.78 ERA, which ranked ninth in the Majors. Its 3.56 FIP ranked third. The Phillies might be better served upgrading the offense or bullpen.

Phillies left-hander Ranger Suarez won his big league debut in Thursday night's 9-4 victory over the Reds at Great American Ball Park. Suarez, who is the organization's No. 8 prospect per MLB Pipeline, allowed four runs and six hits in five-plus innings. He walked one, struck out three and allowed two homers.

Video: PHI@CIN: Suarez records first big league strikeout

Suarez was optioned afterward to Triple-A Lehigh Valley. He got the spot start because the Phillies used both Nick Pivetta and Vince Velasquez in Sunday's doubleheader against the Padres.

"It feels great to win your debut," Suarez said through an interpreter. "I really have to give it to the guys. The offense was behind me the whole time."

Todd Zolecki has covered the Phillies since 2003, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow him on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Philadelphia Phillies, Ranger Suarez

Three Phillies rank among Top 100 prospects

Sanchez, Bohm, Medina identified by MLB Pipeline
MLB.com

CINCINNATI -- MLB Pipeline updated its prospects rankings Thursday, including its Top 100 and organizational Top 30.

Right-hander Sixto Sanchez (No. 17), third baseman Alec Bohm (No. 46) and right-hander Adonis Medina (No. 73) rank in the Top 100. Sanchez is the fifth-best right-handed prospect. Bohm is the fourth-ranked third-base prospect.

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CINCINNATI -- MLB Pipeline updated its prospects rankings Thursday, including its Top 100 and organizational Top 30.

Right-hander Sixto Sanchez (No. 17), third baseman Alec Bohm (No. 46) and right-hander Adonis Medina (No. 73) rank in the Top 100. Sanchez is the fifth-best right-handed prospect. Bohm is the fourth-ranked third-base prospect.

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The Phillies just selected Bohm with the third overall pick of the 2018 Draft.

Video: Top Prospects: Alec Bohm, 3B, Phillies

Bench looking for help

The Phillies continue to search for an offensive upgrade before Tuesday's non-waiver Trade Deadline, but at the very least they could have a fourth bench player on Friday at Great American Ball Park: Triple-A outfielder Roman Quinn could be that guy.

"We've been discussing various names and Roman has come up as a possibility," Phillies manager Gabe Kapler said before Thursday night's series opener against the Reds.

The Phillies optioned infielder Mitch Walding and recalled right-hander Jake Thompson on Wednesday following Tuesday's 16-inning victory over the Dodgers. It left the Phillies with only three bench options Wednesday and Thursday: backup catcher Andrew Knapp, infielder Trevor Plouffe and infielder Jesmuel Valentin.

Quinn missed significant time this season following surgery to repair a ligament in his right middle finger, and he returned to action on July 19. At the very least, he could help the team because of his speed and defense.

Video: TB@PHI: Quinn swipes second base in the 3rd inning

The Phillies optioned outfielder Aaron Altherr on Sunday. The only other player on the 40-man roster eligible to be promoted at this time other than Quinn is Triple-A outfielder Dylan Cozens.

The Phillies have been connected to some veteran outfielders from other organizations with the Trade Deadline approaching: the Orioles' Adam Jones and the Blue Jays' Curtis Granderson. They also have been linked to infielders like Eduardo Escobar, Mike Moustakas, Whit Merrifield and Asdrubal Cabrera.

Injury updates

• Infielder J.P. Crawford (broken left hand) is in Clearwater, Fla. He hit inside the batting cage on Thursday.

• Infielder Pedro Florimon (broken right foot) took ground balls with the team.

• Right-hander Jerad Eickhoff (nerve issue in right fingers) threw 40 pitches in an "up and down" bullpen session.

Todd Zolecki has covered the Phillies since 2003, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow him on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Philadelphia Phillies