Free Agent Options: Shortstop

The Phillies will be involved in the free agent market to fill some holes and upgrade some other positions. 

Everyone expects the Phillies to be players in the shortstop free-agent market.

You can view the most recent stats for shortstops are attached here.

The shortstops are listed alphabetically.  Elvis Andrus splits for the two teams he played for are listed.  I may remove them at some point.  The blue highlighting is for my benefit.

The most attractive guys are – Xander Bogaerts, Carlos Correa, Trea Turner, and Dansby Swanson.  They are all young and will play their 2023 season in their age 30 seasons or younger (30, 28, 30, 29).

Turner is supposedly the Phillies’ target.  His biggest wart is his .969 fielding percentage (16 errors), the worst among the four favorites.  Swanson’s .986 is the best among the four, but his 182 strikeouts are a bit off-putting.  Bogaerts or Correa might be the better all-around picks.  A dark horse might be Elvis Andrus if salary matters.  His .982 fielding percentage is good although his bat leaves a bit to be desired with just a 103 OPS+.

Hopefully, the Phillies settle on one and sign quickly so they can attack the pitching free-agent markets before the most attractive and best fits have signed.

This is the final article in this series.  I’m not going to pin them.  But, I am going to add an Offseason tab on the menu bar for all offseason articles and sheets.

28 thoughts on “Free Agent Options: Shortstop

  1. We don’t need another 182 Ks so Swanson is definitely 4th of the big 4. I’m confident that we’re chasing Turner, close friends with Harper. He’s the type of player who looked longingly at the Phils’ close locker room celebrations and wants to win again. I’m thinking it will take 8/$260M.

    1. To me, it’s a Big Three. I don’t think Swanson is of the same caliber.

      Now, all three are excellent and had excellent years in 2022. And we don’t want to make too much of one year, but is there any concern that the two oldest, Turner and Bogaerts, had their worst OPS years since 2018 and 2017, respectively?

      Just slightly concerned after being burned by Castellanos, and all of the discussion here about aging shortstops.

  2. Juan Segura average fielding percentage last three years: . 963 -worse than Turner, but the eye test (to me) was Segura’s fielding was pretty good.

    By contrast JP Crawford (who had a batting average under 245 last year) had fielding percentage last three years around .977 and (somehow) won the AL Gold Glove in 2020 despite, or perhaps due to, only playing in 53 games. The previous year, 2019 his fielding percentage was 0.970
    Perhaps fielding percentage isn’t the biggest thing to get worked up about.

    1. Fielding Percentage is only a fairly small scope when it comes to determining defensive accumen. If a shortstop always stands still, but perfectly plays the few balls hit directly to him, he’ll have a 1.000 fielding percentage, but also be contributing very little on defense. On the flip side, a short stop could have such ridiculously good range that he knocks down a ball that would otherwise be a double, but then has to rush the throw and misses. He’d lower his fielding percentage, but in a vacuum actually saved his team an extra base hit.

      Those are extreme examples, but all stats only tell a part of the story, so it’s important to get as much information as possible from multiple perspectives.

      As for 2020, that was the shortened season. So JP didn’t, “just” play 53 games. He played in 88% of his team’s games. And yes, he’s an excellent defender.

  3. Oddly…Turner’s 16 errors ties him with Brendon Crawford of the Giants for 2nd among all shortstops. Both have been noted in the past for their defensive excellence.

    1. He’s fast, it’d make sense that his range is exceptional (fangraphs has him 2nd in all of baseball for range runs last year, for what it’s worth). And errors aren’t the most objective stat in baseball, so it really doesn’t surprise me that someone covering that much ground would be credited a lot of them.

    1. Good GMs always have a back up plan. So I am sure this is true. I am sure that we have real interest in Xander. He is extremely talented and would also fit our team perfectly. I still expect Turner to be the primary target due to the relationship with Harper. But Xander would be a great second option

  4. Bogaerts makes some sense because of the DD connection and the fact that he may eventually end up @ 3B. But I think it’s pretty clear that Turner and the Phillies are headed towards a coming together. Middleton has no problem spending money, Harper loves/wants him, Turner has a great relationship with Kevin Long (who was just extended), and Turner’s wife is from NJ (50 miles outside of Philly).

    1. Bogaerts also has two rings on his hand and that matters a lot to Dombrowski. He wouldn’t solve the leadoff spot but he’d fit in nicely at #2 in the lineup between Schwarber and Harper if they want to keep Kyle at the top of the lineup.

      1. I think Dombrowski will defer to Harper’s wishes, and try to get Turner, though he probably prefers Bogaerts by a tick or two..

        1. If he prefers Borgarts that’s who he will try to get – and he will be quite a bit cheaper I believe

          1. Comparing their performances the best I could, it seem boegar is the better player defensively, relatively equal offensively with boegar getting the not in obp, even stolen base success % is relatively equal, except for third base. Range factor favors boegarts too. He might come with less of a long contract demand?

            1. De la Cruz is interesting. 6’8 1b and spot cf? Aaron Judge who? Frank Howard who? Ron Kittle who?

    2. What if they do not sign any of the big 4 and Segura has also signed elsewhere? Supposing 2 of them resign with their former teams and 2 plus Segura sign elsewhere? Would Villar, Maton, Gunthrie or even lee be options? Would any of them give similar production as Sugura?

      1. The next level is Inglesias, Andrus, and Simmons. All are good fielders and have potential on offense with various warts. The team could take a flier on one of them to pair with Sosa, Maton, Guthrie, and company but could easily just go with who is on the roster already and possibly get similar production. IMO Maton is intriguing option.

  5. AFL Championship Game……… of the stand-outs.
    …..Francisco Morales, RHP, Phillies
    “Morales entered the game in the seventh and immediately blew away Matt McLain with three straight upper-80s sliders, a prelude to striking out the side for Surprise. He notched two more whiffs in the eighth, both on sliders, and topped out at 96 mph with his fastball. He left with the bases loaded and two out, but center fielder Carlos De La Cruz (Phillies) rescued the Saguaros with a running catch of a Noelvi Marte (Reds) liner.”

      1. That is his biggest shortcoming…..control…..38 pitches, 19 strikes.
        Now we can never know how the yuong umpire called the game…since they are also ‘prospects’, so that is out there…93 batters in the game , 11 BBs produced.
        Anyways….if the Phillies can get him to make the necessary corrections in his control he could be a dynamite reliever with that slider..

    1. I watched him pitch , I never saw him before, Morales much be hard to pick up, cause he got guys to swing, at some really bad pitches Stays on outside of plate, i saw 94 mostly, never saw higher, but my eyes aren’t great, That Kid De la cruz is really big, The announcer said look at him , next to the first base coach, he singled to right the one at bat i saw, A lot of talk on the dodgers how they keep getting studs, and developing them

      1. rocco…Dodgers seem to come up with and develop very good Latin kids…that Pages is a hitter, a little hefty around the waist but still can hit…..then they have Cartaya and Vargas , who were not in Arizona, but are both moving up fast.
        I really do not know how they keep doing it.

  6. I was envious of the Braves signing of Nick Anderson. Hope the Phillies come up with similar. Probably need two more starting pitchers, any one of which might be perhaps not as important, but more difficult, than finding a shortstop.

    1. Matt you can send comments to 2348 allways drive, Frazier Pa, its Romus house, he will forward them

      1. rocco…..when Jim bans you again, I think you will set the Phuture Phillies record. That is something to hang your hat on! 🙂

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