Hellickson will join a Phils pitching staff that included three rookies by season’s end and is in need of some established durability. In the last five years, the Iowa native has averaged 150 innings per season.
The 28-year-old sports a 49-48 record along with a 3.94 ERA in 142 career MLB outings. Hellickson was a 4th round pick by Tampa Bay in 2005 and was the American League Rookie of the Year in 2011 when he posted a 2.95 ERA in 29 starts in his first big league season. He also won a Gold Glove Award for his defense in 2012.
McWilliams, 20, was an 8th round draft selection by the Phillies last year. In his time as a pro, the righty sported a 2-5 record with a 4.19 ERA and a 4.8 K/9 mark in 16 games (12 starts).
Klentak took over as the team’s GM last month. During his tenure, the Phils have acquired two other hurlers, claiming Dan Otero off waivers from Oakland and signing James Russell to a minor league deal.
Analysis: McWilliams would not have ranked in Phillies Nation’s top 25 prospects this off-season and would not have been close. With considerable pitching depth at the upper levels of the organization’s developmental ranks, McWilliams, who has not pitched above the rookie level Gulf Coast League (two levels below Class A Lakewood), is very expendable. Acquiring a proven big league arm for this youngster is a steal for the Phils.