International slot money has become a true currency among Major League Baseball teams. The Phillies added an undisclosed amount of slot money for the upcoming signing period when they traded right-hander Tom Eshelman to to the Orioles.
Orioles GM Mike Elias is familiar with Eshelman, having worked as a front office adviser with the Astros when they drafted Eshelman in the second round of the 2015 Draft. Houston later dealt Eshelman, former number-one overall pick Mark Appel and three other players to the Phillies for reliever Ken Giles and a minor leaguer.
After being named the Paul Owens Award winner as the Phillies top minor league pitcher in 2017, Eshelman hit on hard times and was taken off of the 40-man roster. He opened the season with Double-A Reading and was promoted to Triple-A last month where he made four starts for the Lehigh Valley IronPigs. In his last three starts with the ‘Pigs, Eshelman went a combined 1-1 with a 2.14 ERA.
— Thomas Eshelman (@ThomasEshelman) June 10, 2019
Eshelman credited working with advanced video techniques that was able to show him slight variances in his delivery with helping to get himself straightened out on the mound. “It’s good and it’s working for me,” said Eshelman a couple of weeks prior to being traded. “I also have something to go back to and compare what I’m doing.”
The international signing period begins July 2nd.