Photo by Cheryl Pursell
Henderson Alvarez hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2015, but he’s set to return as soon as this weekend as the newest member of the Phillies rotation. The Phillies signed Alvarez, who had been pitching for the Long Island Ducks in the independent Atlantic League, last month and assigned him to Lehigh Valley. On Wednesday, the Phillies purchased his contract and put outfielder Daniel Nava on the 60-day DL with a back injury.
With Lehigh Valley, Alvarez made three starts, going 2-0 with a 2.84 ERA. The 27-year old threw 19 innings, allowing 19 hits and six walks with eight strikeouts. Opponents hit .268 against him.
Alvarez was an all-star for the Marlins in 2014 when he made 30 starts with a 12-7, 2.65 mark with Miami. The following season, he made just four starts and underwent shoulder surgery. He later underwent a second shoulder injury and many thought his career was finished, but he resurfaced this season with Long Island.
By auditioning Alvarez, the Phillies will have an opportunity to evaluate him for a possible spot in the rotation next season. The Phillies will likely look to add at least one, and most likely, two veterans to the staff that was filled primarily by young pitchers this past season.
Nava wound up on the DL for the fourth time this season and possibly ends his Phillies career having played in 80 games with a line of 4-21-.301/.393/.421 this season. Initially, Nava signed a minor league deal with the Phillies, but was added to the 40-man roster. The 34-year old outfielder is eligible for free agency following the season.