The Phillies made two trades to start the week, claiming utility man Diego Castillo off waivers from the Yankees and trading cash considerations to the Cubs in exchange for right-handed reliever Michael Rooker.
There were 39 players on the Phillies' 40-man roster before the moves. Castillo and Rucker were added and reliever Andrew Pilati was designated for assignment to free up the final spot.
The 26-year-old Castillo, not to be confused with the Rays/Mariners setup man of the same name, played 96 games for the 2022 Pirates. He had just one at-bat in 2023 with the Diamondbacks. He hit .205/.250/.380 with 11 home runs and 13 doubles in 284 games. He has a .296 batting average and a .410 on-base percentage in 177 games at Triple A and has played every position, getting the most work at shortstop.
Rocker was DFA'd by the Cubs last week when they signed Hector Neres. He appeared in 76 games for Chicago the last two seasons, pitching to a 4.36 ERA and 1.35 WHIP in 95 innings. He will turn 30 in late April. Rocker throws six different pitches, but he has mostly been cutting fastballs in 2023, throwing them a combined 66.2 percent of the time.
Most importantly, Rocker has one minor league option remaining, meaning he could be sent to the minors without going through waivers.
Pilati, who no longer has minor league options, has been with the Phillies since November 2021. He was one of the most surprising contributors in 2022 with a 3.31 ERA and 78 strikeouts in 54⅓ innings. Last season didn't go well. Pilati suffered a triceps injury in April and May, pitching as many games in Triple A as he did in the majors, ultimately finishing with a 5.11 ERA. He could become a free agent if no team claims him on waivers.
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