When your bullpen puts together a combined 5.05 ERA, you have to know there are going to be changes. The first of those changes came with the acquisition of right-hander Pat Neshek, who was acquired for cash or a player to be named later from Houston. The Astros were facing a Saturday deadline to pick up Neshek's option for 2017 and worked the deal with the Phillies, who immediately picked up the option. The option will pay Neshek $6.5-million in 2017.
Neshek is eligible for free agency following the upcoming season and will likely be a one-year addition to the Phillies roster. It's also possible that he could be dealt at mid-season to acquire a younger player, if things go right for Neshek and the Phillies are so inclined to make such a deal.
GM Matt Klentak has stated that reworking the bullpen is a priority for the offseason and reiterated that following the addition of Neshek.
"I think last year we saw for much of the season we were really competitive in save situations in the seventh, eighth and ninth, with Ramos, Neris and Gomez. It's a goal of ours this year to really try to be competitive with the entire bullpen," Klentak told reporters.
Neshek was an all-star in 2014 when he pitched for the St. Louis Cardinals. That season, he pitched to a 1.87 ERA in 71 games with St. Louis and went 7-2 with six saves. Over ten seasons in the majors, Neshek has a career ERA of 2.93 in 423 games, all of them as a reliever. The 36-year old is a sinker/slider pitcher with a sidearm delivery. After making his MLB debut with the Twins in 2006, Neshek has also pitched for San Diego, Oakland, St. Louis and Houston in his career.