By Sam Bush
The Phillies are still two games out of the wild card after last night’s loss to the Braves.
But their postseason chances would have been a lot better if they had pulled the trigger three months ago and signed pitcher Dallas Keuchel, who threw six innings of one-run ball in Atlanta’s 3-1 win.
“If you don’t come calling, what is there to be mad about?” Keuchel told reporters after the game when asked if he had any extra motivation to beat a Phillies team that decided not to give him a deal. “I think a lot of those guys over there in that front office are second-guessing themselves. And I would, too.”
Keuchel went unsigned over the offseason and was available until after the MLB draft in June. At that time, the Phillies trailed the Braves in the National League East and were in clear need of pitching.
The Braves, though, were the team to sign Keuchel to a one-year, $13 million deal. The Phillies stood pat at the time and eventually added Jason Vargas in a deal before the trade deadline.
Keuchel has gone on to be solid for the Braves (8-5, 3.35 ERA) while the Phillies are currently out of a playoff spot.
And, just to add insult to injury, Keuchel is 1-1 with a 2.08 ERA in two starts against the Phils and he also gives the Braves an experienced playoff starter for a potential World Series run.