Philadelphia Phillies: Top 4 Things Phils Need to do Before 2020 Season
The Philadelphia Phillies are still in the hunt for the second wild-card spot in the National League. Although, this team has underachieved. It looks unlikely that they can make a run with less than two weeks remaining in the 2019 season.
It’s time to look at the upcoming offseason for the Phillies and examine what they need to do before 2020 begins.
Find a new skipper
I’ve seen enough. Gabe Kapler looks clueless in his second year as the Phils’ manager.
Whether it’s taking his starters out of games too early or overthinking matchups in pinch-hitting situations, Kap just doesn’t have it.
He doesn’t belong in Philly, maybe in LA in a different role or in KC where expectations are low.
Joe Maddon, Joe Girardi, and Mike Scioscia would be great upgrades over Kap and since the Phils are trying to develop more of a winning atmosphere, why not go with one of these guys. After all, all three of these skippers have won a World Series.
Find a pitching staff!
Aaron Nola was by far the best Philly starter this season and then there were four other spots being filled by scrubs — there’s no other way to slice it.
General manager Matt Klentak has made a ton of moves since being named GM in Philly, but he knew coming into this season that the Phils needed arms and he elected to roll with Zach Eflin, Nick Pivetta and Vince Velasquez. Let’s not forget Jake Arrieta who clearly is on his last legs in the MLB and therefore, it is time to let him go.
Gerrit Cole will be a free agent, but Philly doesn’t necessarily have to throw money at him. They could trade for Arizona’s Robbie Ray or Detroit’s Matthew Boyd. Tanner Roark, Cole Hamels, and Dallas Keuchel will hit the open market and if they are willing to take good bargain deals, then I think Klentak signs one or two of them at least.
The Phils’ bullpen was rough as well. Every time Kap made a call to the pen to shut the door on the opposition, I’ll admit I ran away from the TV in terror.
Jose Alvarez is the one guy who deserves to keep a spot in the pen, but everyone else should look to get released or moved in some way.
Phils should look into Aroldis Chapman if he attempts to leave the New York Yankees; if the Phils can sign Yusmeiro Petit and Will Smith that also adds experience and guys who can shut down the 7th and 8th innings.
Solidify the hot corner
Rumors have connected the Phillies to Washington Nationals’ third baseman Anthony Rendon, but the Phitins don’t need to focus on him specifically.
Mike Moustakas could be a free agent if his mutual option is not picked up and a $3 million buyout is exercised.
Scott Kingery may have to play third base if all three outfield spots are taken, but it might be best to have him move around and be a big piece off the bench.
A big thing to keep in mind is whether or not the Phils elect to keep Cesar Hernandez. Sure, he’s put up solid numbers and was productive this season. Nonetheless, at the age of 29 the second baseman will be up for arbitration this offseason and who knows if Klentak will want to throw money at him.
If Kingery became the everyday second baseman in Philly and the Phils let go of Hernandez, the world would not end.
Figure out the outfield
It would be great to keep Corey Dickerson, but the left fielder has dealt with some injuries during his career and it might be more beneficial for the Phils to get Starling Marte if he hits the open market or trade for another outfielder.
Depending on how the outfield shapes up, the Philadelphia Phillies should have a stronger bench next season. For example, if Philly acquires Starling Marte the Phils’ starting lineup could look like this.
3B Anthony Rendon
1B Rhys Hoskins
C JT Realmuto
SS Jean Segura
Backup catcher, whoever that is (please not Andrew Knapp)
The Philadelphia Phillies are still a team to watch. They have improved. However, they need to trend upward and figure out a way to reach the playoffs and make a big run.
Signing Realmuto is a main priority also, but it doesn’t look like a guarantee after what transpired this season.
There’s plenty of work to do, but it will at least be intriguing to see this franchise pursue greatness once again.
What do the Philadelphia Phillies have to do this offseason? Leave a comment below.
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Fiuza is on Twitter @MakinItBig1.