The Philadelphia Phillies have checked in on Baltimore Orioles premiere reliever Zach Britton as Orioles trade rumors heat up ahead of the 2018 MLB trade deadline.
After the Baltimore Orioles traded their All-Star shortstop Manny Machado, another cornerstone piece of the Orioles roster Zach Britton is likely to be traded before the MLB trade deadline 2018 on July 31. The Philidelphia Phillies are one of a growing list of teams interested in acquiring the former All-Star closer.
The Orioles trade rumors regarding Britton comes after missing almost half of the 2017 season and about the first half of the 2018 season from a ruptured Achilles tendon. As a result, Britton was forced to undergo offseason surgery.
Since returning in June, Britton has tossed a total of 14 and 2/3 innings with a 3.68 ERA and four saves. He, however, recorded a blown save on June 27 in the Orioles 7-8 loss against the Seattle Mariners.
Once the calendar turned to July, Britton has been scorching hot by not allowing an earned run in six appearances with six strikeouts and a .158 opponent batting average.
His captivating sinker continues to improve since his return and has increased in velocity by averaging 94.2 mph in June to 95.5 mph in July. His curveball has also gained an uptick in velocity from averaging 80.4 mph in June to 81.7 in July. Britton’s sinker has topped out at 97 mph in July after his max release speed in June was 96.4 mph according to BrooksBaseball.net.
The Philadelphia Phillies, Houston Astros, Boston Red Sox, and New York Yankees are among a collection of teams that have shown interest at some point this season in making a trade for the 31-year-old closer.
In return, the Orioles will look to add more prospects as they undergo a massive rebuild. Fortunately for the Orioles, Britton’s trade value has increased over the past few weeks after Britton has shown flashes of returning as the best closer in baseball.