Phelps was one of several MLB players that was left searching for a new agency after parting ways with Jason Wood and Career Sports Entertainment. Wood was fired by CSE and suspended by the MLBPA following allegations of misconduct against his own clients.
The 31-year-old Phelps has already avoided arbitration, agreeing to a $5.55MM deal with the M’s. But he’ll soon be in need of further negotiating assistance, as he’s slated to reach the open market at season’s end.
Phelps’s future earnings outlook is rather unclear at present. Notably, Phelps made only ten appearances in Seattle following a mid-season swap. His 2017 season ended with elbow surgery, perhaps removing any possibility that Phelps might return to the rotation, though the hope is that Phelps will be ready for a full 2018 campaign.
So long as Phelps can return to health, there’s good reason to think he’ll be one of the most sought-after set-up men on the market next winter. Since the start of the 2016 season, after all, he has thrown 142 1/3 innings of 2.72 ERA ball with 11.1 K/9 and 4.0 BB/9. It certainly doesn’t hurt that Phelps has a background as a starter, making him a potential multi-inning weapon.
As always, you can keep tabs on the latest agency movement with MLBTR’s Agency Database.