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Phillies Acquire Minor League Outfielder from the Rays for Cash Considerations

The Tampa Bay Rays have traded Ruben Cardenas to the Philadelphia Phillies on Thursday in exchange for cash, Kiley McDaniel of ESPN reports. Cardenas has spent all season in Triple-A Durham, hitting .281/.346/.530 with 11 home runs and 28 RBI across 205 plate appearances. The outfielder will report to  Triple-A Lehigh Valley upon joining the Phillies. He could make his MLB debut later in the season if he continues to be productive at the plate.

Ruben Cardenas Shipped to the Phillies

Cardenas, 26, was a sixth-round selection of the Cleveland Guardians in 2018. He went to the Rays a year later and prior to the 2019 deadline, he was sent to Tampa Bay as Hunter Wood and Christian Arroyo went the other way. Cardenas has been moving up the minor league ladder since the trade. He spent time between High-A and Double-A in 2021, hitting 25 home runs in 441 plate appearances. He went to Triple-A in 2022, hitting 16 home runs while slashing .208/.289/.440. He stayed in Triple-A last year, with slight improvements. Cardenas hit 22 home runs with a .269/.358/.475 batting line.

This season, Cardenas remains in Triple-A and the power is still there. He has 11 home runs in 49 games, leading to a robust .281/.346/.530 line. For someone who isn’t a highly-touted prospect, but he certainly plays like one.

The Phillies Injury Woes

The Phillies acquiring Cardenas comes after the club lost Brandon Marsh and infielder/outfielder Kody Clemens to the injured list. Philadelphia has since turned to David Dahl to play with Nick Castellanos and Johan Rojas. Cristian Pache and Whit Merrifield have seen some brief playing time in the outfield when needed. Even though the Phillies sit atop the National League East standings, the outfield is the weakest part of their roster. Cardenas will give them extra depth without taking up a roster spot.

Main Photo: © Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

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