SUNDAY: Irvin’s officially up in place of Davis, the Phillies announced.
SATURDAY: The Phillies announced that they’ve placed Vince Velasquez on the 10-day injured list with a right forearm strain. In a corresponding move, the club recalled lefty Austin Davis from Triple-A Lehigh Valley. However, the Phillies will select southpaw Cole Irvin from Triple-A to start in Velasquez’s place Sunday in Kansas City. Irvin will take the last open spot on the Phillies’ 40-man roster.
This is the latest in a long line of arm injuries for Velasquez, who has logged IL time in the past for a biceps strain and a flexor strain, among other problems. Moreover, it’s worth noting a forearm strain sent budding Rays ace Tyler Glasnow to the shelf for four to six weeks on Saturday. Velasquez suggested this isn’t nearly as serious as Glasnow’s injury, though, telling Scott Lauber of Philly.com and other reporters that he only expects to miss one start.
Velasquez, 26, hasn’t turned into the front-line starter the Phillies wanted when they acquired the then-prospect in a 2015 blockbuster with the Astros, though he has generally been a capable rotation piece. But Velasquez did endure back-to-back subpar starts prior to his IL placement, and most of his production this year hasn’t been nearly as encouraging as the 3.99 ERA and 9.2 K/9 he has put up over six starts and 29 1/3 frames. Along with those numbers, Velasquez has notched a horrid 5.81 FIP with 4.6 BB/9 and, compared to 2018, seen his swinging-strike and contact rates go in the wrong direction. He’s also yielding more than two home runs per nine and benefiting from a .250 batting average on balls in play and a 90.1 percent strand rate.
With Velasquez down, the 25-year-old Irvin will make his big league debut three seasons after the Phillies chose him in the fifth round of the 2016 draft. The former Oregon Duck had been enjoying his second straight sub-3.00 ERA season at the Triple-A level before his promotion, though the rest of his numbers have gone backward since 2018. While MLB.com ranks Irvin as the Phillies’ 16th-best prospect, lauding “his ability to use his four-pitch mix well to keep hitters guessing and off-balance,” the outlet adds that he only features one above-average offering (a changeup).
VV gives you 5 innings a week so just put him in the pen. It’s been 4 years now
I don’t think there’s a starting pitcher out there that makes more sense to move to the bullpen than Velasquez.
Irvin never really got much of a play from the prospect rankings for some reason. Not a big K guy, but it’s worked for him so far. i think he could be a pretty solid SP.
Because, as noted, his raw tools are pretty unimpressive. He’s an overachiever, and easy to root for.
Gotta bridge 3 weeks to Dallas K
Even when they were both healthy, Velasquez reminded me a lot of Danny Salazar. Electric stuff and huge strikeout numbers but neither could ever manage to pitch deep into games. They’ve both dealt with a lot of injuries too.
I’ve wanted the Indians to put Salazar in the bullpen for a while (and since he hasn’t been healthy since 2017, they might be forced to), and I think Velasquez should be there too. They’ll probably keep getting looks to see if they can completely put it together in the rotation, but they’d each be devastating in relief.
Compairing the two is a disservice to salazar. VV’s best stretches have lasted about 5 games. Salazar was one of tye best pitches from 2015 to the all-star break in 2016.
Oh I definitely agree that Salazar is better (at least at his peak), but there are at least some strong similarities between the two
Side note I really hope Salazar can get Back on the field and be effective for the Indians this year. He could be the multi inning or late inning difference maker that helps them win the division if he’s right. Guy could be filthy in shorter stints assuming he still looks the same after all these injuries. They’re going to have to hope he is actually because the Twins aren’t a pushover.
Irvin could be the lefty the phillies need in the rotation instead of trading for Bumgarner or signing Keuchel.
Velasquez is Brett Myers version 2. I’d like to see how he does as a reliever and possibly a closer.
What a debut for Irvin, I don’t think they need to go get Bumgarner or Keuchel. He should fill the void.Either trade Vinny V or put him in the bullpen. He don’t have an options left.
bro that was one start against the KC royals. That’s not exactly an offensive juggernaut.