There has been much conjecture regarding what changes the Philadelphia Phillies will make this summer in order to become World Series winners. One thing is certain: they will be in the market for starting pitchers.
Dave Dombrowski stated that re-signing Aaron Nola is their first goal, but if they do lose him, they will need to replace his output. To do this, the Phillies may seek a blockbuster trade with the Cleveland Guardians to get Shane Bieber. The Guardians’ ace is anticipated to be available this offseason, according to USA TODAY’s MLB Insider Bob Nightengale.
Bieber won the American League. After earning the Triple Crown for starting pitchers, with the lowest ERA (1.63), most wins (8), and strikeouts (122), he was named Cy Young in the COVID-shortened 2020 season. Injuries cut his 2021 and 2023 seasons short, which may worry teams wanting to trade for the right-hander.
If Philadelphia decides to trade for Bieber, this is a judgment that must be correct. Replacing Nola is about more than simply skill; it’s also about the amount of innings and starts he’s provided this team every year.
When the Phillies signed Zack Wheeler, he was in a similar scenario as Bieber is now. Injury-plagued seasons raised concerns about durability. Wheeler has been a workhorse in Philadelphia since his arrival. If they opt to strike a trade for the ace, they will need the same thing from Bieber. Overall, the 28-year-old doesn’t have much miles on his arm, which may be beneficial during this stage of his career.
Since his MLB debut, he has thrown 831 innings and over 12,000 pitches. In comparison, Nola has thrown 1,422 innings and almost 22,000 pitches.
Even if the Phillies lose their ace this winter, a blockbuster trade for Bieber would put them in good position to win the World Series.