MLB Hot Stove Signings: Phillies close to bringing back Pat Neshek

The Philadelphia Phillies, despite losing 96 games in 2017, and prepared to invest in their bullpen. The club is close to bringing back veteran setup man Pat Neshek on a two-year contract.

The Houston Astros traded Neshek to the Phillies last offseason, and he started the season with Philadelphia before being flipped to the Colorado Rockies for prospects at the trade deadline. Neshek was the Phillies' lone All-Star Game representative in 2017.

Neshek, 37, threw 62 1/3 innings with a 1.59 ERA (286 ERA+) this past season, including 40 1/3 innings with a 1.12 ERA (381 ERA+) with the Phillies before the trade. The sidewinder has been a workhorse the last four seasons, appearing in at least 60 games each year from 2014-17.

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Pat Neshek is close to returning to the Phillies. USATSI

It would seem strange that a rebuilding team like the Phillies would spend top of the market dollars on a setup man, but there is something to best said for respectability. In fact, the 'Stros originally signed Neshek back in 2014, when they were coming off a 92-loss season. Changing the culture from losing to winning has to start somewhere.

CBS Sports Writer

Mike Axisa joined CBS Sports in 2013. He has been a member of the BBWAA since 2015 and has previously written about both fantasy baseball and real life baseball for MLBTradeRumors.com, FanGraphs.com, RotoAuthority.com,... Full Bio

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