Phillies Notes: Phils add well-traveled lefty in Michael Young trade

Michael Young. (Laurence Kesterson/AP)
Michael Young. (Laurence Kesterson/AP)
Posted: September 03, 2013

CHICAGO - Forty minutes before midnight Saturday, Ruben Amaro Jr. thought Michael Young would be spending the final month of the season with the Phillies.

"At about 11:20 Eastern, I thought the deal was dead . . . because we had not agreed on players," the Phillies general manager said. "And then it got revived."

Rob Rasmussen, a lefthander who was taken in the second round of the 2010 draft by the Florida Marlins, was the player who convinced Amaro to pull the trigger on the deal that sent Young to the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Phillies also sent cash to the Dodgers in the deal, which the team announced early Sunday morning.

"Rasmussen is a smaller lefty with a big arm," Amaro said. "He's starting now, but he could be a guy later on who could pitch in the bullpen. Lefthanders are always valuable. He's viewed as a really strong makeup kid with a big arm."

The Phillies are Rasmussen's fourth organization since he was drafted out of UCLA. Rasmussen was traded to Houston by the Marlins in July 2012 and to the Dodgers from Houston in December.

The 5-foot-9, 160-pound lefty opened this season with the Dodgers' double-A Chattanooga team and went 3-3 with a 2.40 ERA in 12 starts, which earned him a promotion to triple-A Albuquerque. After going 0-7 with a 6.46 ERA at triple A, the 24-year-old pitcher was sent back to Chattanooga in August.

Amaro said righthander Nefi Ogando, the 24-year-old reliever the Phillies acquired from Boston Saturday for veteran infielder John McDonald, also has a big arm.

"He can throw up to 97" m.p.h., the general manager said. "I guess one of our scouts saw him up to 100 once or twice, but he has a big arm and we'll take a chance on a big arm."

Neither player is on the 40-man roster, but they will have to be added after the season if the Phillies do not want to risk losing them in the Rule 5 draft at the winter meetings.

Because Young was dealt before midnight Saturday, he will have an opportunity to be part of the Dodgers' postseason roster. It will be the fourth straight year he has participated in the postseason, which included two disappointing World Series losses with the Texas Rangers.

Young, 36, waived his no-trade clause to play for the team he grew up rooting for as a native of Southern California.

"I had a blast playing in Philly," he said in a statement. "Obviously we're all disappointed with how the season unfolded, but Philly is an incredible place to play. Great fans and a great environment. I consider myself fortunate to have played for Chuck [Charlie Manuel] and Ryno [Ryne Sandberg]. Ruben was always up-front and honest with me. I'd recommend it in a heartbeat to any player out there."

Two additions

The Phillies filled the roster spots vacated by the trades of Young and McDonald by recalling Cesar Hernandez and Michael Martinez from triple-A Lehigh Valley.

Hernandez, 23, had primarily played second base during his minor-league career and got his first big-league exposure at the position earlier this year when Chase Utley went on the disabled list with an oblique injury.

In early July, however, Hernandez started playing center field as the Phillies worked out a contract extension for Utley.

If Hernandez is going to crack the big-league roster next season, it will likely be as a utility player. In 116 games at Lehigh Valley, double-A Reading and with the Phillies, Hernandez has batted .310 with 14 doubles, nine triples and two home runs this season. He also has stolen 33 bases in 41 attempts.

The switch-hitting Hernandez missed a little more than two weeks this season because of a wrist injury. After returning to the lineup, he played primarily in center field but also started four games at second base, one in left field and one in right field. He hit .315 in 15 games after returning from the injury.

Brown to have MRI

Domonic Brown was out of the starting lineup for the second straight game and the sixth time in eight games because of a sore right Achilles tendon. He popped out as a pinch-hitter in the seventh inning.

Sandberg said Brown would have an MRI exam on Monday.


 

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