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The Phillies are the latest team to be linked to free agent starting pitcher Jake Odorizzi.
The Philadelphia Phillies are already spending a lot of money in 2021 as they once again try to break a postseason drought that began in 2012. Both J.T. Realmuto and Didi Gregorius are back on new deals to team with Bryce Harper and get the Phillies out of the land of mediocrity.
The starting rotation could always use another upgrade and the Phillies are reportedly interested in the top remaining starter on the market. That would be 30-year-old Jake Odorizzi, who is surprisingly still without a deal for 2021.
Phillies can cap off a great offseason with Jake Odorizzi
One reason the veteran starter may remain on the market is because of his letdown of a year in 2020. He only made four starts due to injuries and posted a 6.59 ERA in that limited action.
However, he was an All-Star in 2019 and 2020 was a tough year for players all over MLB given the reality of playing a shortened season during the COVID-19 pandemic.
A rough year for Odorizzi may drive down his value and the Phillies can get a steal of a deal, even if he only wants to sign for one year to prove he deserves a big payday in 2022.
Aaron Nola and Zach Wheeler are the big names at the top of the starting rotation. Next up is Zach Eflin, followed by Chase Anderson and others looking for an opportunity to shine. Odorizzi could easily step in and give the Phillies a complete rotation right away.
He has a career ERA of 3.92 and logged at least 143 innings each year from 2014-2019. A down year during the bizarre 2020 season shouldn’t have teams scared to sign him, and it appears the interest is real outside of Philadelphia.
Waiting too long could lead the Phillies to miss out and have fans wondering if the team is constructed well enough to not only make the postseason but make a deep run in October.