By Sally Fahey
The Athletics have traded outfielder Cristian Pache to the Phillies for minor league right-hander Billy Sullivan, after the Phils opened a spot on the 40-man roster by placing first baseman Rhys Hoskins on the 60-day injured list.
Once one of the sport’s top-ranked overall prospects, the now 24-year-old Pache is an elite defender whose bat has yet to develop. He’s also out of minor league options and has been leapfrogged on Oakland’s depth chart by offseason trade acquisition Esteury Ruiz, which led manager Mark Kotsay to announce earlier in the week that Pache wouldn’t make the roster and that the front office was exploring potential trades.
The Phils will use Pache as a reserve outfielder and perhaps a righty-swinging complement to left-handed-hitting center fielder Brandon Marsh. Pache is a particularly logical fit for the Phils, given that he can provide a late-game defensive upgrade over either Kyle Schwarber or Nick Castellanos (either by playing a corner himself or by stepping into center and pushing Marsh to a corner).