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Friday, August 21, 2020

Phillies acquire relievers Brandon Workman, Heath Hembree from Red Sox for Nick Pivetta, Connor Seabold

After watching their bullpen implode twice in Thursday’s doubleheader loss to Toronto, the Phillies made two trades Friday that they hope will improve that battered unit.

The team acquired right-handed reliever David Hale from the New York Yankees for minor-league reliever Addison Russ.

Later Friday night, the Phils acquired relievers Brandon Workman and Heath Hembree from the Boston Red Sox for pitchers Nick Pivetta and Connor Seabold.

The Phillies also received cash in the deal with Boston. That should help keep the Phillies under the luxury-tax threshold. The Phillies will also acquire a player to be named later or additional cash.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 21, 2020 at 11:33 PM | 20 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: brandon workman, nick pivetta, phillies, red sox

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   1. villageidiom Posted: August 22, 2020 at 11:25 AM (#5971476)
Phillies fans, you're getting a great pitcher in Brandon Workman. You're also get a pitcher you'll never be able to tell if he's great or horrible in Heath Hembree. I'm really gonna miss Workman.
   2. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: August 22, 2020 at 02:48 PM (#5971495)
Easy joke - the Phillies are concerned about their bullpen, and their solution is to trade for Red Sox relievers?

Workman actually is quite good though. 3.2 bWAR last season in 71 innings.
   3. Captain Joe Bivens, Elderly Northeastern Jew Posted: August 22, 2020 at 03:00 PM (#5971499)
I like Pivetta.
   4. Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer Posted: August 22, 2020 at 03:20 PM (#5971502)
Heath Hembree ended up being a pretty good result of a deadline deal - trading Jake Peavy to the Giants for a couple of pitchers, one of them Hembree. He gave the Red Sox about 250 appearances at above-average performance, but he wasn't going to do us much good between now and the end of 2021.

Workman's career has been interesting. He came up with some fanfare in 2013, was a starter that was turned into a reliever for the purpose of adding depth in the bullpen for a playoff run...and ended up being a *very* important part of a World Series champion. He was a bridge guy in the 2013 playoffs who appeared in three games in the WS, and three in the ALCS: 8 IP, no earned runs. Basically, Koji Uehara was on an historic run as a closer, probably the cloest thing to untochable I've ever seen for about a three month stretch, and the team knew if it could give him the ball with a lead, the game was over. Workman ended up being a big part of building the bridge between the starters and Uehara. In a generation of Boston sports teams winning a crazy number of championships, the 2013 Red Sox were one of the most unexpected of the whole generation.

The problem for Workman was that he came into 2014 with pretty high expectations, and was stunningly bad.Started 13 games, 1-10, ERA of 5.17. He was awful in 2014, and we didn't see him again in the bigs until 2017, purely as a reliever. I think most fans were surprised that he made it back to the bigs, but to the Red Sox credit, they stuck with him, and he has been an excellent reliever since he came back up in 2017. He still walks more guys than you'd like, but the Ks are up, too (like they are for pretty much everybody), and he is a free agent at the end of the year.

I really liked Workman - a guy who has been to the mountaintop, then crashed big time, then did the work, stuck with it, and is now back at a really good place, is going to probably make himself some pretty good money this off-season for his efforts.

All that said, I'm glad we traded him - his talent was wasted on this team in 2020, and Seabold and Pivetta both (in different ways) have a chance of being good bullpen pieces when it matters again.
   5. puck Posted: August 22, 2020 at 03:22 PM (#5971503)
It's weird when two teams with bad pitching exchange pitchers.

Is the idea for Boston that they get a prospect? Pivetta I guess is a modern innings eater, in that he literally appears to stand on the mound, but he doesn't seem like he's had a lot of success. Meanwhile the Phillies get the one actual good pitcher in Workman?

Maybe there are salary considerations as well, but then Boston's also sending money.
   6. ramifications of an exciting 57i66135 Posted: August 22, 2020 at 03:54 PM (#5971509)
fun fact:

workman was originally drafted by the phillies out of high school.
   7. Where have you gone Brady Anderson? Posted: August 22, 2020 at 03:59 PM (#5971510)
There’s some talk that Pivetta has talent but has underachieved, so there’s hope that with a change of scenery he could become a useful back of the rotation guy.
   8. ramifications of an exciting 57i66135 Posted: August 22, 2020 at 04:25 PM (#5971514)
There’s some talk that Pivetta has talent but has underachieved, so there’s hope that with a change of scenery he could become a useful back of the rotation guy.
that's not inaccurate.

the phillies have done a terrible job of developing talent over the last decade.
   9. Jose Needs an Absurd Ukulele Concert Posted: August 22, 2020 at 08:00 PM (#5971542)
Hembree is a good guy to have around, as vi says you never know what he’s going to do. He’s the bullpen equivalent of Mark Reynolds, all or nothing. You don’t want him as your primary set up man but on a day when the bullpen needs another arm because of a short start or a long game he is fine.

Workman I love but never really bought as a great pitcher despite results. I’m a bit wary of curveball throwing relievers. The potential to hang one always sort of sits there like a sword of Damocles.
   10. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: August 22, 2020 at 08:13 PM (#5971543)
I like Pivetta.


Prepare to be disappointed.
   11. ramifications of an exciting 57i66135 Posted: August 22, 2020 at 08:33 PM (#5971546)
Prepare to be disappointed.
this is also not inaccurate.
   12. Rough Carrigan Posted: August 22, 2020 at 09:57 PM (#5971562)
Workman throws a really good 12-6 type curve and spots his fastball. Hembree has a decent fastball and not much else. He's up to it mentally but doesn't have enough fastball or enough of any other pitch. Workman was only going to be around another month so this is probably a good idea for the Sox.
   13. Howie Menckel Posted: August 22, 2020 at 10:59 PM (#5971567)
Workman entered with 2 out in the 8th and the Phillies up 4-3, and he whammied rival Neris by waving both runners home to Neris's ERA.

the Phillies tied it in the top of the 9th, but Workkman proved himself a "true Phillies RP" by making a mess of bottom 9 and losing the game.
   14. flournoy Posted: August 23, 2020 at 11:22 AM (#5971591)
I wouldn't say that Workman is a true Phillies reliever just yet. His 6.75 ERA is well short of the 8.32 by the rest of the bullpen. Give him time though, I'm sure he can do it.
   15. Captain Joe Bivens, Elderly Northeastern Jew Posted: August 23, 2020 at 02:00 PM (#5971629)
Prepare to be disappointed.


After this year, it will take a lot to disappoint me any further.
   16. villageidiom Posted: August 23, 2020 at 02:33 PM (#5971648)
After this year, it will take a lot to disappoint me any further.

(Enters like Lenny & Squiggy) Hello!
   17. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: August 24, 2020 at 11:40 AM (#5971833)
I was not surprised to see Brandon Workman was pitching for the Phils on Saturday even though I didn't hear about the trade. "Hey, it's that guy who was on the Red Sox. He must have had some problems last year and gotten waived. Probably a good guy to take a chance on." Likewise I expected him to blow the game.

Then it turns out he had a GREAT year last year, and far from being a repeat of Jared Hughes's stint with the Phillies, we got him in a TRADE for a guy who isn't in the rotation anymore! And Connor Seabold. Sounds good.

He got the save last night BTW.
   18. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: August 24, 2020 at 11:50 AM (#5971834)
Is the idea for Boston that they get a prospect? Pivetta I guess is a modern innings eater, in that he literally appears to stand on the mound, but he doesn't seem like he's had a lot of success. Meanwhile the Phillies get the one actual good pitcher in Workman?

That's how I see it. Pivetta has been on the fringe of the Phillies rotation for a while. He started 58 games in 2017-18 but by the end of that season was clearly #4 or #5. Then he lost his rotation spot in 2019 when Jerad Eickhoff briefly returned from his mystery injuries. Then he was starting again until they decided to trade for Drew Smyly and Jason Vargas in their half-assed playoff push. So that was it for him in the rotation, even though the rotation still contains Vince Velasquez.

Being an innings eater again seems unlikely, but the Red Sox might be able to do it. Is it possible that being in the Red Sox rotation is a low-pressure situation now?
   19. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 24, 2020 at 11:55 AM (#5971835)
I thought Pivetta was a "great stuff, no results" guy that everyone has been saying should perform better in the pen because he's a one-pitch pony.
   20. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: August 24, 2020 at 12:06 PM (#5971841)
Being an innings eater again seems unlikely, but the Red Sox might be able to do it. Is it possible that being in the Red Sox rotation is a low-pressure situation now?


The only pressure on the Sox starters is to not have the worst collective ERA ever. Other than that, losing is a plus. Might as well go for the #1 pick while you can.

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