The Phillies have re-signed right-hander Blake Parker to a minor league contract with an invitation to Major League Spring Training, per a team announcement. The Phillies also confirmed their previously reported minor league agreements with veteran infielder Logan Forsythe and right-hander Anthony Swarzak.
Parker, 34, opened the 2019 season as the Twins’ closer but lost both his handle on that role and his roster spot in Minnesota after showing some troubles with his control — particularly when it came to his splitter. Parker notched a 4.21 ERA and 10 saves in 36 1/3 innings as a Twin but also turned in a lackluster 34-to-16 K/BB rate in that time. Beyond walking too many hitters, Parker also plunked a pair of batters and snapped off four wild pitches before being cut loose.
In some regards, things worsened in Philadelphia. Parker’s bottom-line run prevention numbers took a turn for the worse (5.04 ERA in 25 innings), and he proved to be more homer-prone with his second club of the year. On the other hand, Parker rediscovered the handle on his split and registered an impressive 31-to-6 K/BB ratio. His 90.8 mph average heater was down considerably from the 92.4 mph he averaged in Minnesota, but Parker did seem to have better control of his arsenal.
There’s little risk for the Phillies in taking another look at Parker this spring. He is, after all, a seven-year MLB veteran who has enjoyed his share of late-inning success — particularly in 2016-17 with the Angels. In all, Parker has 285 2/3 innings in the Majors, during which time he’s logged a 3.56 ERA and recorded 34 saves while averaging 10.1 K/9 against 2.8 BB/9. He becomes the latest in a dizzying slate of veterans to land non-roster invitations to Phillies Spring Training; also in camp will be Anthony Swarzak, Drew Storen, Francisco Liriano, Bud Norris, Neil Walker, Logan Forsythe, Josh Harrison, Ronald Torreyes and Phil Gosselin.