For veterans Neil Walker, Logan Forsythe, and Francisco Liriano, Summer Camp 2020 was their opportunity to prove they still had it. The Phillies invited the veterans to Spring Training in March with the intention of adding veteran depth into their potential roster pool. Philadelphia had until Saturday to inform them whether they made the 40-man roster for the season.
INF Neil Walker was informed yesterday that he has made the Phillies’ Opening Day roster. Meanwhile, INF Forsythe and LHP Liriano were released, and are free to either renegotiate with the Phillies or sign with another team.
Walker impressed many during the recent intersquad games. On Friday, he had three hits including a deep home run to center field. Walker, 34, began his career in 2009 with the Pirates, where he played through 2015. Since 2016, he has been a journeyman playing for the Mets, Brewers, Yankees, and Marlins. He owns a career batting average of .267. Last year in Miami, he went .261 with eight home runs in 281 plate appearances.
The Phillies plan to use Walker in a utility role, earning spot starts across the infield to give the starters rest. He has played a vast majority of his career at second base but also has experience at first base, third base, and the outfield.
The Phillies’ starting infield appears to be a lock with Rhys Hoskins, Scott Kingery, Didi Gregorious, and Jean Segura as the starters. Walker will join a Phillies’ bench that could potentially include other infielders such as Alec Bohm, Phil Gosselin, and Ronald Torreyes.
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