The Phillies have acquired lefty reliever Aaron Loup from the Blue Jays, Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith reports. The Jays will receive minor league pitcher Jacob Waguespack in return, per MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand. Loup is a free agent after the season, so this is purely a rental for the Phillies.
Loup, 30, has been in the league seven years, putting together a 3.47 ERA over 318 2/3 innings. This year has been among the worst of his career, as he stands with a 4.54 ERA and a 42/13 K/BB ratio in 35 2/3 innings. Loup certainly handles lefties better than righties, so Phillies manager Gabe Kapler will almost certainly use him in situations that give the team the platoon advantage.
The Phillies already have two lefties in the bullpen in Austin Davis and Adam Morgan. The Phillies designated infielder Trevor Plouffe for assignment to make room on the 25-man roster for Loup.
Waguespack, 24, has split his season between Double-A Reading and Triple-A Lehigh Valley. Combined, he put up a 4.68 ERA with 79 strikeouts and 36 walks in 82 2/3 innings across 15 starts and six relief appearances.
Another big free agent domino has fallen at the Winter Meetings in San Diego. Third baseman Anthony Rendon is signing with the Angels on seven-year, $245 million contract, per Jon Heyman.
Rendon, 29, was the top free agent position player. He’s coming off of a season in which he helped the Nationals win their first championship, batting .319/.412/.598 with a league-high 126 RBI and an NL-best 44 doubles along with 34 home runs and 117 runs scored in 646 plate appearances. Rendon also continued to play solid defense at third base. During the postseason, Rendon hit .328/.412/.590 with seven doubles, three homers, 15 RBI, and 11 runs scored in 75 trips to the plate.
The Angels badly needed to make a big free agent splash this offseason, and third base was as good a place as any to do it. Rendon will now slot easily into the middle of the Angels’ lineup along with Mike Trout. It remains to be seen if the Angels are done making moves, but they could use a corner outfielder and another starting pitcher.
Humorously, Rendon has said he’d like to retire by age 35, as Jesse Daugherty of the Washington Post alluded to on the Nationals Talk Podcast. This contract will take him through his age-36 season.