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DONE DEAL: Oswalt goes to Philadelphia for Happ, two prospects

Jul 29, 2010, 3:11 PM EDT

A major coup for the Phillies: Roy Oswalt is coming to town.

Roy Oswalt has waived his no trade clause and has agreed to go to the Phillies.  The prospects have been agreed upon.  The money has been too. This deal is done.  The Phillies just got much, much better. The Astros basically dumped salary.

The Phillies won’t be giving up much in this deal: starting pitcher J.A. Happ and prospects Jonathan Villar and Anthony Gose.  The Astros are sending Philly Oswalt and $11 million cash.  The Phillies will not be guaranteeing Oswalt’s 2012 option. Instead, the Phillies have agreed to raise the buyout of that option from $1 million to $2 million.

Villar is a 19 year-old shortstop prospect currently hitting .272/.332/.358 in the Sally League.  Unless there’s a misprint on his Baseball-Reference.com page,
he has [gulp] 42 errors this season.  Gose, an outfielder, turns 20 on August 10th. He’s currently hitting .263/.325/.385 in
high-A ball. Which is basically what he did over the last two years in
Rookie and low-A.  He’s apparently fast — he stole over 70 bases last
season — but this year he’s been caught 27 times against 36 steals. That’s not good.  Though they could each bloom later, at present, neither Villar nor Gose project to be fabulous major leaguers.

This deal is a coup for the Phillies.  They got a starter who would slot in as a number one on a great many teams and they got him for very little, both in terms of money and in terms of talent.  Happ is a decent pitcher, but he’s certainly not a special talent. He’s a fly ball-prone lefty who, in Houston, will give up an awful lot of home runs into the Crawford Boxes. Gose and Villar are not special talents. 

The Phillies have dug themselves a bit of a hole in the NL East, but they’ve been climbing out of it slowly but surely over the past week.  Getting Roy Oswalt just gave them a big boost.  If they make the postseason, the 1-2-3 of Roy Halladay, Oswalt and Cole Hamels will be the toughest in the National League.

  1. Philip P - Jul 29, 2010 at 1:17 PM

    I suspect now we will see the likes of Lilly, Westbrook and others move as anyone who had hoped to grab Oswalt will now jump on the alternatives.

  2. evolutionary - Jul 29, 2010 at 1:24 PM

    I’m just not convinced that this is that big of an upgrade. 2005 Oswalt? Sure. But this older version, plus Happ being up and coming, and considering the Phils biggest problem has been bullpen arms to main leads once handed to them, makes me question the deal. With the exception of the four and five spots on our rotation, which every team is dicey on, their starters have been solid. Am I being too Negadelphian?

  3. Chris Fiorentino - Jul 29, 2010 at 1:25 PM

    Extra million in the buyout for 2012. Gose and Worley plus Happ? That’s a pretty good haul for Ed Wade.

  4. Chris Fiorentino - Jul 29, 2010 at 1:29 PM

    You aren’t…but you are SEVERLY undervaluing Oswalt. Roy Oswalt is still a great pitcher. His stuff is amazing. 3.5 K/BB. He might be the best #2 pitcher in baseball right now.

  5. Chris Fiorentino - Jul 29, 2010 at 1:29 PM

    And if you choose to look at it this way, he IS the best #3 pitcher in baseball.

  6. Benny Blanco - Jul 29, 2010 at 1:40 PM

    I wonder if the players sent to Houston for Oswalt will be considered better than the players received from Seattle for Lee?

  7. Preston - Jul 29, 2010 at 1:42 PM

    This makes a lot of sense – if Oswalt had reservations about coming to Philadelphia, it makes you wonder if he would actually want that extra year of the option exercised. I could have seen it being changed to a player option as well, but maybe the Phillies didn’t want to go for that. Regardless, Oswalt still should have a good shot at something like a 3 year, $30 million contract when this one runs out – assuming he wants to keep pitching; I remember rumors from a couple years ago that he would consider retiring at the end of his contract.

  8. FlyEaglesFly - Jul 29, 2010 at 1:47 PM

    Yes.

  9. Old Gator - Jul 29, 2010 at 1:52 PM

    zzzzzzzz..huh…wha…(sniff)….what time is it?

  10. Chris Fiorentino - Jul 29, 2010 at 1:54 PM

    A bag of fresh new baseballs would be better than the players Ruben got in the Cliff Lee deal.

  11. Jonny5 - Jul 29, 2010 at 1:54 PM

    Happ isn’t “up and coming” He up and came, has been out most of the season and still doesn’t look like a shadow of what he was last season. It’s still a good deal for both teams. They both get what they need.

  12. Jonny5 - Jul 29, 2010 at 1:56 PM

    gose ,worley, and Happ. I hear no singleton.

  13. CJ - Jul 29, 2010 at 1:58 PM

    Is that the actual deal? I haven’t found the names of the guys we gave up confirmed anywhere. Source?

  14. CJ - Jul 29, 2010 at 2:09 PM

    If Brown ultimately replaces Werth, then Gose would ahve been the guy set to replace Ibanez when he’s done. That hurts but to get someone like Oswalt you have to give up something. Worley’s a good prospect and Happ is a #4 starter for a solid NL team. I’d say it’s a good deal for both sides. Just a shame they didn’t take Mayberry or the OF from the Lee deal instead.

  15. smokehouse - Jul 29, 2010 at 2:24 PM

    God, I can’t believe what has happened to the Phillies. Two straight NL pennants, a world series win and rock solid at every position. The lineup reminds me of the 1950’s Dodgers when they had super players in their lineup, from top to bottom. Roy Campanella often batted 8th for gosh sakes. He did in Larsen’s perfect game. This is not the Phillies I knew growing up near Philly. No front office, last place year after year after year. It all started to change in the era of Carlton and Schmidt. They have really become one of the elites in the major leagues, along with the Yankees and Red Sox.

  16. Trevor - Jul 29, 2010 at 3:27 PM

    Judging a 19 year old by number of errors as a measure of his defense? Come on.

  17. lar @ wezen-ball - Jul 29, 2010 at 3:28 PM

    The stats page of Villar’s minor league team shows him with 42 errors as well, so I’m thinking it’s probably true. Wow.

  18. Craig Calcaterra - Jul 29, 2010 at 3:35 PM

    Not saying it’s the be-all, end-all, but errors aren’t meaningless when there are that damn many of them. 20 of them are throwing errors, so it’s not just some bad official scorer’s choices and a guy extending his range to the end of the earth.

  19. SDelMonte - Jul 29, 2010 at 3:38 PM

    All I can say is, Roy Vey! Halladay and Oswalt, and the rest of the summer and the next two years just got longer for the Mets.

  20. Trevor - Jul 29, 2010 at 3:42 PM

    Well he has some stuff to work on, don’t get me wrong, I guess I’m just saying that it’s not particularly valuable at this point in time to look at his errors. Now if he was 23 or 24 and in AAA, then yeah, then we might have a problem.

  21. Old Gator - Jul 29, 2010 at 3:48 PM

    You’d need to recalculate the length of this summer in terms of quantum mechanics to make it any longer for the Mutts than it was already going to be. Will the season expand forever, or will it reach a point of gravitational metastasis and then implode like a typical Mutts September? This is a job for the theoreticians, not for the fans.

  22. Jonny5 - Jul 29, 2010 at 3:54 PM

    Well this deal couldn’t get any better for the Phills imo. They don’t even have to give up Worely or Singleton. Pachawwww!!!!
    Now what’s next??? Miquel Tejada? Bloomquist?
    WE NEED ARMS IN THE PEN
    Is Lowell getting picked up by Texas or what? It’s almost sickening to see him hitting 3 home run games in AAA.

  23. nps6724 - Jul 29, 2010 at 4:04 PM

    Geez, how many times can teams just give the Phillies good players?

  24. JF-281964 - Jul 29, 2010 at 4:09 PM

    It is absolutely shocking to me that just about any other team in the league didn’t come up with a better offer than this. The Dodgers are in desparate need of pitching and could have given up 2 better prospects along with Kuroda. Kuroda is a better pitcher than Happ, and the Dodgers rotation would have improved significantly. The Dodgers also have the money, if they’d only spend it, to re-sign him for a 3-4 year deal for 9 – 10 million, or more.

  25. Omega - Jul 29, 2010 at 4:31 PM

    The Dodgers don’t have the money right now, or more to the point are hesitant to spend anything until the owner’s divorce is settled.
    I am sure he would have negated any trade to the Dodgers with his no trade clause. And I can’t blame Oswalt for going to the Phillies, in the NL that is his best chance to win a World Series.

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