Late Sunday night, reports surfaced that the Phillies were internally discussing a reunion with right-handed reliever Pat Neshek. Neshek, 37, appeared in 43 games for the Phillies before they dealt him to the Rockies for prospects. It appears that reunion will take place.
Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports was the first to report that the Phillies had finished a free-agent contract with Neshek. Bob Nightengale of USA Today was the first to post the exact figures of the two-year deal:
Pat Neshek offficial contract with #Phillies: 2 years $16.25 million. $4 million signing bonus, $5.75 million in 2018, $5.75 million in 2019: $7 million or $750,000 buyout in 2020— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) December 11, 2017
Neshek was hands down one of the top - if not the best - relief arms for the Phillies in 2017, posting a 1.12 ERA and 0.82 WHIP during his time in red pinstripes. Neshek struck out 45 batters and walked just five, so adding him back into the mix would surely make the Phillies bullpen stronger at this point. Sports Talk Philly's Tim Kelly wrote about the reports of the Phillies discussing a reunion with Neshek early this morning. Neshek always considered Philadelphia as a place he'd like to return to:
Following his trade to the Rockies, Neshek talked about how he enjoyed his time in Philadelphia and brought up the idea of potentially returning if the opportunity presented itself.
"I felt really comfortable [with the Phillies] - my family loved it [Philadelphia], we loved where we lived," Neshek told the collective media after being informed he was traded. "I enjoyed all my teammates, more so that a lot of places. So, I'd love to come back, maybe."
The Phillies got strong value for Neshek, acquiring a trio of prospects in return - Alejandro Requena, Jose Gomez and J.D. Hammer. Hammer had an impressive season in Clearwater during 2017, posting a 0.57 ERA in 15.2 innings of work. Hammer was named to the Arizona Fall League All-Prospect team after allowing just one run while striking out 11 in 13.2 innings of work.