The Philadelphia Phillies have acquired first baseman Justin Bour in a waiver trade from the Miami Marlins. That news first broke on Friday afternoon from multiple sources, most notably by MLB insider Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic.
Bour turned 30 years of age back on May 28. He was originally chosen by the Chicago Cubs with their 25th round pick in the 2009 MLB Amateur Draft. In December 2013 he was selected by Miami after the Cubs had left him unprotected for the Rule 5 Draft.
Bour would finish fifth in the 2015 NL Rookie of the Year voting after hitting .262 with 23 home runs and 73 RBI as the Marlins starting first baseman.
That is the lone defensive position played by Bour during his big-league career. He has appeared in 413 games at first base across parts of five seasons. The Marlins also used him as their DH during Inter-league games on 10 occasions.
Bour leads the Marlins this season with 19 homers and 54 RBI. He also has 23 doubles, giving him a .412 slugging percentage. While he is hitting just .227, Bour also has a .347 on-base percentage thanks to his 69 walks.
Miami made Bour available on waivers. He was claimed by Phillies GM Matt Klentak, who then worked out the trade details. Headed to the Marlins organization will be 22-year-old pitcher McKenzie Mills. To make room on the roster for Bour the Phillies have DFA’d pitcher Jake Thompson.
A left-hander originally drafted by the Washington Nationals with their 18th round choice in the 2014 MLB Amateur Draft, Mills was acquired by the Phillies from the Nationals in exchange for veteran outfielder Howie Kendrick last July.
Bour owed about $900K, the balance of his $3.4M salary. Two years of control after this, so #Phillies might trade or non-tender him. #Marlins could have simply let him go on trade waivers, but included cash in deal to acquire minor-league pitcher. Not simply giving him away.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) August 10, 2018
Phillies fans can expect to see Bour as a pinch-hitter, especially late in the game against right-handed relievers. He will also likely give Santana the occasional breather at first base.
It’s a role that Bour found success with back on May 1st against the Phillies when he clobbered a pinch-homer off Zach Eflin at Marlins Park to tie that game at 1-1 in the bottom of the sixth. The blast helped Miami to an eventual 2-1 walkoff victory in 10 innings.
The Phillies have now added three veteran hitters to their mix over the last couple of weeks as they attempt to hold on to first place in the National League East Division. The addition of Bour follows those of infielder Asdrubal Cabrera and catcher Wilson Ramos.
As the Phillies enter a three-game weekend series beginning Friday night in San Diego, they stand a game up on the Atlanta Braves in the division. The Phillies and Braves are tied in the loss column, with Atlanta holding two games in hand. The Washington Nationals are now 5.5 games back.
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