Blue Jays: Phillies emerge as possible suitor for J.A. Happ

TORONTO, ON - JULY 9: J.A. Happ #33 of the Toronto Blue Jays delivers a pitch in the first inning during MLB game action against the Houston Astros at Rogers Centre on July 9, 2017 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - JULY 9: J.A. Happ #33 of the Toronto Blue Jays delivers a pitch in the first inning during MLB game action against the Houston Astros at Rogers Centre on July 9, 2017 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images) /
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It appears the Philadelphia Phillies may also be throwing their name into the hat as possible suitors for the services of Toronto Blue Jays hurler J.A. Happ.

According to Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports, the Phillies have a definite interest in Blue Jays hurler J.A. Happ and furthermore, the Jays have also invested a considerable amount of time scouting the Phillies farm system. Salisbury opines that Manny Machado and Zach Britton are ahead of Happ on the Phillies wish list but they have had internal discussions in regards to bringing the southpaw back to Philadelphia.

The Phillies sit a half-game ahead of the Atlanta Braves for the top spot in the National League East with a 53-42 record. The Blue Jays could also package in relief help to the deal to sweeten the pot in a potential deal. The Jays have the likes of John Axford, Tyler Clippard, Seunghwan Oh and Aaron Loup who could all be potentially moved.

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Happ was on pace for a career year, however, his last three starts have inflated his earned run average north of four. In 19 starts the 35-year-old sports a 4.29 earned run average while fanning 121 in 109 innings of work this season. The southpaw is also the only Blue Jays representative at tonight’s All-Star game in Washington.

The big lefty is no stranger to the City of Brotherly Love as the Phillies selected Happ in the 3rd round of the 2004 amateur draft. He would spend four seasons in Philadelphia before being shipped to the Houston Astros in the Roy Oswalt trade.

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The Yankees and Mariners have also been linked to Happ in the past weeks as the veteran pitcher is one of the more accomplished players believed to be available at the deadline. With the Jays in full rebuild mode, look for Happ and others to be dealt in the coming days and weeks leading up to the July 31st non-waiver trade deadline.