The Philadelphia Phillies acquired reliever Jack Taschner from the San Francisco Giants on Friday for catcher Ronny Paulino.
Taschner was 3-2 with a 4.88 ERA in 67 games last season. He gives the Phillies another left-hander in the bullpen to go with Scott Eyre. J.C. Romero was suspended the first 50 games for using a banned substance.
An initial glance at Taschner’s career statistics doesn’t give you any reason to get excited, and a look at his splits reveal no noticeable difference against left- and right-handed hitters.
Against Taschner over his career, lefties have a .345 BABIP as opposed to the .288 BABIP of right-handed hitters. Factor in that he is moving from a very spacious ballpark to a smaller park, and that he will have baseball’s best defense behind him, and that BABIP should regress quite a bit.
The Phillies definitely accomplished their goal of acquiring a lefty to take Romero’s place for the first 50 games of the regular season, and it didn’t cost them anything but an expendable catcher. It may have been wiser to simply sign free agent Will Ohman (who still doesn’t have a home) but GM Ruben Amaro repeatedly said that they didn’t have the funds available to do so.
UPDATE: The Giants turned right around and traded Paulino to the Florida Marlins. Per the San Francisco Chronicle:
[...] the Giants traded just-acquired catcher Ronny Paulino to the Florida Marlins for 21-year-old right-hander Hector Correa, Florida’s fourth-round draft choice in 2006.
Paulino must be having a lot of fun over the past few months. Pittsburgh to Philly to San Fran back to the East coast to Florida.