The Phillies are 7-6-1 through 14 Grapefruit League continues. They are in the midst of a three-game winning streak. But, the focus right now is on the injuries to some key players.
Last week, Adam Haseley came up lame with an injury that will likely cause him to miss Opening Day and cost him a platoon in CF. This week, Brad Miller was sidelined with an oblique-like symptom that may cost the Phillies their number one bench player for some weeks. An MRI on Sunday will provide the team with more information. Matt Joyce played the game under instructions to not run hard a day after taking a number of ground balls in practice. And during the Pirates’ game, Connor Brogdon was pulled after nine pitches. He has a condition where a rib will pop out of place. He can just pop it back in and continue, but Joe wanted to play it safe. Afterward, Brogdon did his running. So, hopefully, he’s fine.
With two weeks remaining before Opening Day, the competitions in camp for CF and the bench should heat up. The team slash of .225/.297/.408/.705 is still among the league’s worst but is an improvement over the .217.295/.403/.698 slash of last week.
Their pitching has improved to among the top 5 or 6 in the National League. They are tied for second with 4 saves (in five save opportunities). Matt Moore and Chase Anderson look like the front runners for the back of the rotation. Vince Velasquez remains in the hunt. Spencer Howard has posted some great numbers, but we still don’t know how the Phillies plan to utilize him.
The bullpen looks like a battle among 12-14 pitchers for eight spots – Alvarado, Bradley, Kintzler, Brogdon, Hale, Neris, Rosso, Coonrod, Watson, Romero, plus the aforementioned Velasquez and Howard, with dark horses Mitchell and De Los Santos.
If none of the players with opt outs exercises them, the Phillies will have a strong contingent of depth in Lehigh Valley.
The Phillies have optioned seven players back to the Mini Camp – Dohy, Falter, Jones, Llovera, Medina, Morales, and Muzziotti. Dohy, Llovera, Morales, and Muzziotti saw no action in Grapefruit League games. All are on the 40-man roster.
To date, 157 Mini Campers have been invited to Grapefruit League games, and they have made 101 appearances. They are starting to get fewer at bats as the regulars are being stretched out to 3 or more at bats.
The young guys had looked good, but their inexperience is beginning to show as they accumulate strike outs.
Herrera has looked steady and the Phillies may actually be considering him in the CF mix. But that would necessitate a fourth 40-man, assuming Kintzler, Watson, and Joyce are assured spots on the 40-man roster. A move that wouldn’t require a 40-man move would be to elevate Mickey Moniak to the starting lineup. He’s certainly playing himself into the mix. He’s done most of his damage later in games as a replacement (so, against presumably weaker pitching) but he has hit lefties well. If Kingery and Quinn keep failing to put balls in play (Kingery 10K/22AB, Quinn 8K/17AB), maybe he makes the opening day roster. He’s certainly deserving of consideration. BTW, he has only struck out twice in 14 at bats and is slashing .429/429/1.143/1.571 with 2 doubles, a triple, and 2 HRs among his 6 hits.
But, yes, it’s early.
The Phillies’ playoff hopes do NOT hinge on center field. If they receive at or near replacement level performance from center field, they should be fine. What must happen is that six other players play up to their contracts (Realmuto, Hoskins, Segura, Gregorious, McCutchen, and Harper).
Yes, I omitted Bohm. He should be able to develop into the player he will become. There may or may not be some sophomore year slippage. I think not, but he should not be expected to maintain the very good numbers he posted last season. Yes, he might. He seems to be that good. But, he shouldn’t be expected to be one of the guys carrying the team. That’s not his job, yet.
Only one other transaction, Jose Conopoima was released.
The Phillies’ running payroll is $186,909,462.
The Phillies’ salary against the competitive balance tax is $198,272,282.
The Phillies’ margin under the CBT threshold of $210M is $11,727,718. (see spreadsheet)
This is the Phuture Phillies Open Discussion for Phillies and other baseball topics.
- March 24, 2021 – Opt out date for Brandon Kintzler, et alia
- April 1, 2021 – Phillies’ home opener v. Braves
- April 2021 – ST for Double-A and Single-A begins
- May 2021 – Opening day for Double-A and Single-A
- June 25, 2021 – Close of the 2020 international signing period
- July 11-13, 2021 – 2021 Amateur Draft
- October 2, 2021 – Phillies clinch a playoff berth in Miami
The rosters and lists are up to date as of March 7th … 337 players in the org
3/13/2021 – Phillies optioned Kyle Dohy to minor league camp
3/13/2021 – Phillies optioned Bailey Falter to minor league camp
3/13/2021 – Phillies optioned Damon Jones to minor league camp
3/13/2021 – Phillies optioned Mauricio Llovera to minor league camp
3/13/2021 – Phillies optioned Adonis Medina to minor league camp
3/13/2021 – Phillies optioned Fransisco Morales to minor league camp
3/13/2021 – Phillies optioned Simon Muzziotti to minor league camp
2/23/2021 – Phillies released RHP Jose Conopoima
2/22/2021 – SS Luis Garcia assigned to Phillies
2/17/2021 – Phillies placed RHP Seranthony Dominguez on the 60-day IL