The Boston Red Sox are among the teams rumored to be scouting Philadelphia Phillies All-Star reliever Pat Neshek leading up to the MLB Trade deadline.
Cafardo also mentions the New York Yankees among the trio of teams interested in the right-hander, so we may be in for a bit of an arms race between the division rivals as the MLB trade deadline approaches.
Neshek has been selected to the National League All-Star roster for the second time in his career. The 36-year old owns a 1.31 ERA, 0.90 WHIP and has struck out a tick under a batter per inning this season. His deceptive sidearm release has been effective against both lefties (.188 batting average against) and righties (.233).
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He relies primarily on a sinker-slider combo with a delivery that hitters have trouble picking up. Neshek’s modest fastball has never had much velocity, although that may negate some of the risk of decline as ages. He’s not the power arm that Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski is typically enamored with, but Neshek is a quality pitcher who could bolster the back end of the bullpen and be used in a variety of situations.
The last place Phillies are expected to be open to dealing Neshek, who is in the final year of his contract. Philadelphia acquired him from the Houston Astros last November.
Boston’s bullpen ranks second in the league with a collective 3.00 ERA entering Sunday. An All-Star reliever may not seem like a pressing need, although you can never have too much pitching. Dombrowski will gauge the market on impact relievers such as Neshek to see who can be obtained for a reasonable price.