In a trade of two minor league players, the Phillies and Tampa Bay Rays came together on a deal that sends left-hander Cristopher Sanchez to the Phillies in exchange for minor league infielder Curtis Mead. Following the trade, the Phillies added Sanchez to their 40-man roster to protect him in the Rule 5 Draft, which will take place during the Winter Meetings in San Diego next month. Major league teams had until 8 p.m. eastern time Wednesday to protect players. Sanchez had to be added to the 40-man roster because he has pitched in the minors for five or more seasons.
Sanchez turns 23 next month and has moved slowly through the Rays organization since being signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2013. This past season, Sanchez pitched in 11 games for Bowling Green in the Midwest League (A-ball) and 12 games with High-A Charlotte, while adding one game with Triple-A Durham. Of his 24 minor league games, 10 were as a starter. Overall, he posted a 4-1, 2.26 line with 3.1 walks per nine innings and 8.7 strikeouts per nine and a WHIP of 1.110 in the minors. In High-A ball he posted a 1.85 ERA in 34 innings. In his minor league career, Sanchez is 17-16 with a 4.53 ERA in 90 games, 40 of which were starts.
As a starter, Sanchez was 2-0 with a 2.36 ERA and 36 strikeouts in 42 innings of work. Coming in out of the bullpen, he went 2-1 with a 2.14 ERA and 37 Ks in 33 2/3 innings.
While Sanchez will occupy a spot on the 40-man roster, he’s not close to pitching in the majors, with only 1 1/3 innings of work above the High-A level. He was called up to Durham where he made one relief appearance and was hit for three earned runs. A good performance in major league camp could push Sanchez to Double-A Reading to start the 2020 season.
The 19-year old Mead is out of Adelaide, Australia and signed with the Phillies for $200-thousand in May of 2018. He spent two seasons with the Phillies Gulf Coast League teams, playing in 46 games with a 4-19-.280/.344/.451 line. Defensively, he played second, third and shortstop in the GCL and is thought of as a solid, if not spectacular infielder.
The Phillies 40-man roster currently stands at 39 players.