The Philadelphia Phillies' search for a closer will continue as the Los Angeles Angels reportedly re-signed their closer Raisel Iglesias to a four-year, $58 million deal on Nov. 30.
And with the departure of Héctor Neris, who inked a two-year, $17 million deal with the Houston Astros, signing a closer is paramount. Although Neris struggled in the closer's role while with Philadelphia, there is no pitcher currently in the Phillies bullpen that would be able to properly satisfy the position.
President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski knows this, and has went on record saying how vitally important it is for the Phillies to bring in a proven arm that can close out games for them, as the bullpen has been a thorn in the team's side for quite some time.
"We need somebody to close a game for us," Dombrowski told NBCSP's Jim Salisbury on Nov. 11. "If I had to say one thing, I'd probably say I'd like to have somebody that can close a game for us, and count on it."
While Iglesias would have been more than capable of fulfilling that role in red pinstripes, the deal he agreed upon with Los Angeles is a bit out of the Phillies' price range. MLB Trade Rumors projected a four-year, $56 million deal for Iglesias, so it was about right in line with what the right-hander landed.
After rejecting the Angels' $18.4 million qualifying offer, it became evident that the closer was looking to get paid, and that's not entirely in the Phillies' cards right now. Because in that same press conference with Dombrowski on Nov. 11, he stated "We have to have somebody to play left field. We have to have somebody to play center field. Those are complete necessities."
So, add those to Philadelphia's wish list, who in an ideal world, can also fill the lead-off spot and middle-of-the-order bat the team desires. Some names that have been flying around in connection to the Phillies are Kris Bryant and Nick Castellanos, who would come at a steep price, or cheaper options Kyle Schwarber and Chris Taylor. It all depends on the amount of money Philadelphia is willing to spend on who they wish to pursue.
Plus, even with a multitude of free agents flying off the board due to the CBA deadline, there are still a plethora to be signed. And among them are essentially all of the names the Phillies have supposedly been targeting. Iglesias was never a noted target for Philadelphia—but Corey Knebel, Mychal Givens, and Josh Hader have reportedly been on their radar. But as time winds down on Dec. 1, it's looking more and more like a deal won't be made until after the impending lockout.
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