Hans Crouse, the pitching prospect the Phillies acquired from the Texas Rangers with Kyle Gibson in the Spencer Howard trade, had his contract selected Sunday and made his MLB debut.
The 23-year-old right-hander started the Phils’ final home game of the regular season Sunday afternoon against the Pirates. They have been using their bullpen in the fifth spot of the rotation.
Crouse went three innings and allowed a run on two hits, walking four and striking out one. He gave up a home run to Cole Tucker on the first pitch of his major-league career and threw just 32 of his 59 pitches for strikes but stranded five runners.
In a corresponding 40-man roster move, the team designated Matt Joyce for assignment.
Crouse had a 3.18 ERA in seven starts in the Phillies’ system -- six at Double A and one at Triple A. He's struck out 44 and walked 15 in 34 innings. He is the fourth-ranked prospect in their farm system, according to MLB.com.
Getting Crouse in the deadline deal that brought Gibson to Philadelphia was necessary for the Phillies to part with Howard, their former top pitching prospect.
"It was really important if we were going to talk about Spencer, we wanted to get another young pitcher in return that we liked a great deal," president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski said after the deadline. "We would not have made the trade, trading that caliber of player, unless we got Crouse back in the deal.
"You look at Crouse's numbers and his pedigree, he's a good pitcher, a good prospect. ... We just think with what we were trying to do, we were willing to give up potential there, replacing it with Crouse."