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June 19, 2023

Three mock trades the Phillies could, should consider this summer

From an extremely unlikely home-rung swing for Shohei Ohtani to more practical ideas for the rotation and outfield.

It's essentially trade season across the sports world, with MLB's trade deadline fast approaching on August 1, the NBA and NHL offseasons in full swing, and the NFL heading into training camp.

All four local teams could be making splashy (or marginal) moves over the next few weeks, so here at PhillyVoice we went into armchair GM mode ourselves. We came up with three trades we think each of the Phillies, Flyers, Eagles, and Sixers should strongly consider making over the next few weeks.

One of them — admittedly — for each team will be a bit of a big swing. The other two we'll keep in the realistic category.

We'll start with the Phillies, who are in need of a starting pitcher and perhaps a right-handed outfielder:

The home run swing

Phillies get: Shohei Ohtani; Angels get: Mick Abel, Griff McGarry, Simon Muzzuotti, Hans Crouse

The Ohtani situation is a tough one for the Angels. He's about to be a free agent and is going to get an absolutely insane contract from whatever team he signs with. L.A. would probably be best served bringing in a king's ransom for him in prospects — assuming he walks — and the Phillies should really consider throwing every good prospect the Angels want (save for Andrew Painter) at them to try and bring in Ohtani as a rental. He could literally be the missing ingredient for a World Series win.

After that, John Middleton and the Phils ownership should not hesitate to spend as much as it takes to keep the two-way superstar in town. This is extremely unlikely, and is certainly a big swing, but hey, these are mock trades. And this one mock wins the Phillies a championship.

The duct tape fix

Phillies get: Lucas Giolito; White Sox get: Griff McGarry, Rickardo Perez

We mentioned how McGarry is pitching really well in the minors this season and pairing him with a player positionally blocked in Perez, who is the best catcher in the farm system, is a nice package to send the lowly White Sox for their best starter.

Giolito is going to be a free agent next season but he's been very good in 2023 with a 3.54 ERA, and at just 28 years old, he might be worth an extension at the end of the season. Adding him to a rotation led by Zack Wheeler, Aaron Nola, a surging Ranger Suarez, and Taijuan Walker suddenly has the starting five among the NL's best. The Phillies cannot head into the stretch of August with a bullpen game every fifth day.

The luxury upgrade

Phillies get: Lane Thomas; Nationals get: Jhalyn Ortiz, McKinley Moore

Rumors have swirled all season that the Phillies want to bring in some outfield help. They don't have a lot of depth — nor do they have right-handed options — aside from Nick Castellanos. Bryce Harper will return to right field eventually but he's a lefty, as is Kyle Schwarber (who is best as a DH) and outfielder Brandon Marsh.

If the Phillies can take advantage of the struggling Nationals, they should, and Lane Thomas has been a rare plus for Washington. Hitting .287 with 11 homers as of Sunday, the righty corner outfielder will hit arbitration next season and is one of the few attractive trade assets the Nats have right now. He is 27 and having a breakout season.

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