HOT STOVE: How the Phillies Can Fill Their Needs

MLB: AUG 30 Red Sox at Angels
ANAHEIM, CA – AUGUST 30: President of Baseball Operations for the Boston Red Sox Dave Dombrowski looks on during batting practice before a MLB game between the Boston Red Sox and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim on August 30, 2019 at Angel Stadium of Anaheim in Anaheim, CA. (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire)

Ever since the season ended, Phillies President of Baseball Ops. Dave Dombrowski has made it obvious where the Phillies need help: Leftfield, Centerfield, and a closer. The Phillies will obviously look outside the organization after declining the options of Andrew McCutchen and Odubel Hererra. Ian Kennedy, the club’s former who was acquired with Kyle Gibson at the deadline has entered free agency also.

Shortstop is another position up in the air for the Phillies. With Didi Gregorius being told he is not guaranteed to be the club’s Opening Day shortstop, and top prospect Bryson Stott knocking on the after setting the Arizona Fall League on fire, healthy competition should commence come spring training.      

With most of the team returning, these are all outside options to fill the Phils’ needs.

Sign Kris Bryant at 8 years, $255 Million

Kris Bryant in red pinstripes is the most obvious move the Phillies can make. Bryant and 2021 National League MVP Bryce Harper are very good friends and would love to play together. Bryant can play basically every position on the field except for catcher and hit for power.

With the designated hitter more than likely making its way to the National League, Bryant’s versatility can give the Phillies options at DH. He can also provide some much-needed protection for Harper in the Phillies Lineup. The Phillies should outbid anyone and everyone for Bryant. He brings versatility and Postseason experience to a Phillies club that lacks both.

Sign Kyle Schwarber at 5 years, $110 million

Kyle Schwarber was the hottest hitter in baseball during the month of June, clubbing 16 home runs with 30 RBIs while slashing .280/.363/.760, before a hamstring injury in early July took him out for six weeks. He will be entering his age 29 season in 2022.  

Schwarber was a deadline rental for the Red Sox following his injury. He finished the season slashing .266/.374/.493 with 32 home runs and 71 RBIs. Schwarber can come into Philadelphia and play left field while batting leadoff for the Phillies, killing two birds with one stone. New hitting coach Kevin Long hinted at the Phils’ pursuit of his former star pupil.

Sign Starling Marte at 4 years, $74 million

The Phillies have been linked to Starling Marte since the trade deadline. Marte, entering his age 33 season is coming off a career year slashing .310/.383/.458 in 120 games. Marte is known to rake at Citizens Bank Park, getting to play there 81 times a year could pay dividends for both Marte and the Phillies. His market is “very hot” according to Jon Heyman, with multiple teams interested in the star outfielder. The Phillies may be in a bidding war for his services, but the spoils will be well worth it in the long run.

With all things considered Marte is a bigger risk than Bryant and Schwarber due to age alone. Marte has 3-plus years on both players and may not have as much time left playing as the other two.

Byron Buxton is another name linked to the Phillies and is an option for them, but injuries make him less desirable than these options.    

Phillies Trade Francisco Morales, Luis Garcia, Adam Haseley, and Simon Muzziotti for Craig Kimbrel

Before we go into the arms the Phillies can acquire to bolster the ‘pen, let’s assume the Phillies re-sign longtime reliever Hector Neris to a team-friendly deal…

Craig Kimbrel has a history with Dave Dombrowski from their time together in Boston. With the White Sox picking up Kimbrel’s option for 2022 and their already impressive cast of arms- he is a prime trade candidate.

Posting a 2.26 ERA with 24 saves in 58 2/3 innings pitched and 100 strikeouts. Not an ideal year Kimbrel is used to, but a great opportunity to bounce back The Phillies desperately need a proven closer. This is a match made in heaven for the Phiten Phils.

Kimbrel, who will turn 34 in 2022 is that proven closer. The Phillies can trade for him for anyone not named Abel, Stott, Painter, or O’Hoppe and sign him to an extension somewhere in the 2-4 years, $35-$50 million range. Kimbrel, much like Bryan and Schwarber brings a winning pedigree and Postseason experience and could be a big-time contributor to a Bullpen who tied a major league record for blown saves a season ago.

Sign Jon Gray at 1 year, $10.5 million, with a club option for 2023

Jon Gray was looked at by many teams around the trade deadline. Gray, 30, had a down year in 2022, going 8-12 with a 4.59 ERA on a Rockies team that finished 74-87 good for third in a strong NL west. Giving Gray a prove it deal is a great low risk, high reward for the Phillies, especially with Zach Eflin’s status being unknown for most of 2022.

2022 Phillies Roster

With all that, here is what I believe the Phillies 2022 lineup and rotation can look like:

Starting Nine:

Schwarber LF

Segura 2B

Harper RF

Bryant 3B

Realmuto C

Hoskins DH

Stott SS

Bohm 1B

Vierling CF

Rotation:

The Rotation can shape up like this for the Phillies, not including Eflin:

Wheeler

Nola

Gibson

Suarez

Gray

Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire

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