The 36-year-old Vargas is making $8 million this season, with over $2 million still owed, while also holding an $8 million club option for the 2020 campaign. He has appeared in 19 games this season, starting 18 of them, going 6-5 with a 4.01 ERA. He has overcome a struggling start, going 5-3 with a 3.34 ERA over his last 12 starts, while also moving past an unfortunate incident where he reportedly threatened a Mets reporter after a game. He was suspended for that incident, but now joins a Phillies team that is 6.5 games behind the Atlanta Braves in the NL East Division. Their starting pitching has been cause for concern this year, posting a 4.59 ERA, which is the fifth-worst in the league.
Another team that has been needing more starting pitching all season long is the Milwaukee Brewers, who are in the middle of a tight NL Central race, with hopes of repeating as division champs. They were able to add a starter on Monday, bringing back pitcher Jordan Lyles in a trade with the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Bucs were hoping to contend in the tight division, but have fallen off in a big way since the All-Star break. They did receive pitching prospect Cody Ponce in return, as they part ways with Lyles, who has struggled this summer.
After coming out of the bullpen last season for Milwaukee, he was placed in the rotation for Pittsburgh, and after winning five of his first six decisions, has posted a 9.58 ERA in his past eight starts. He now sits with an overall record of 5-7 with a 5.36 ERA for the season, but was very effective in the Brewers' run to the NLCS a season ago. In 11 appearances for the Brew-Crew, he recorded an ERA of 3.31, but immediately hit free agency in the winter. He joined the Pirates on a one-year contract in the off-season, meaning no matter how Milwaukee uses him this time around, he will be heading right back on to the market at season's end.