The Phillies introduced this morning that outfielder Brandon Marsh underwent arthroscopic surgical procedure after feeling discomfort in his left knee. With a 3-4 week restoration timetable, he’s nonetheless anticipated to be prepared for Opening Day. Because of this, president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski downplayed the probabilities of going exterior the group for outfield assist.
“We nonetheless suppose we’re the identical approach we have been beforehand, relating to Opening Day,” he informed reporters this afternoon (hyperlink by way of Todd Zolecki of MLB.com). “[Free agent outfielders] need ensures, and we’re simply not capable of give them these ensures. … We speak to individuals on a regular basis. The truth is that we don’t have assured taking part in time that some individuals need. We simply don’t have that. It’s not likely even a greenback problem as it’s taking part in time.”
Assuming Marsh’s restoration proceeds as anticipated, he’ll slot into left area on Opening Day. Defensive stalwart Johan Rojas is about to open the yr in heart area whereas Nick Castellanos mans the nook reverse Marsh. Cristian Pache and Jake Cave challenge as the highest depth choices.
Rojas has a restricted MLB monitor document, having appeared in solely 59 profession video games. Paired with Philadelphia’s willingness to spend and Dombrowski’s historical past of pursuing star expertise, that has led to free hypothesis concerning the Phils as a attainable suitor for Cody Bellinger. The entrance workplace chief has mentioned a number of occasions he anticipates Rojas being the beginning heart fielder — a sentiment he repeated earlier this week — making a Bellinger pursuit unlikely. Zolecki stories that the Phils additionally don’t anticipate touchdown both of the highest two beginning pitchers nonetheless obtainable, Blake Snell and Jordan Montgomery, barring a major change of their respective markets.
Dombrowski additionally shot down the notion the Phillies are on the verge of buying and selling for bullpen assist. Unsubstantiated stories have linked them to Pink Sox nearer Kenley Jansen and Guardians star Emmanuel Clase in current days. Whereas Dombrowski didn’t deal with both participant particularly, he mentioned the Phils usually “wouldn’t have any ongoing conversations for bullpen guys” (by way of Zolecki).
Whereas that doesn’t rule out the potential for the Phils leaping into the combination in some unspecified time in the future, the veteran government identified that there’s not a ton of room within the season-opening bullpen. Every of José Alvarado, Matt Strahm, Gregory Soto, Jeff Hoffman and Seranthony Domínguez is locked into the aid corps. The Phils have effusively praised Orion Kerkering, a 22-year-old who debuted late final season after hanging out practically 38% of opponents within the minor leagues.
If all six of these pitchers are on the Opening Day roster, the Phils would probably have two bullpen spots remaining. Dombrowski indicated a kind of would go to a protracted reliever — fairly probably out-of-options righty Dylan Covey. That leaves one job up for grabs (assuming the Phillies aren’t dedicated to carrying Connor Brogdon, who can be out of choices). That opens the likelihood for one more acquisition, but it’s not stunning Dombrowski mentioned they’d solely purchase a pitcher they take into account a significant improve over their in-house candidates.
“It solely leaves one different spot, and if you happen to go get a veteran man, he must be an improve. As a result of the fact is the one one there that may be optioned in that group is Kerkering. And we might not need to be optioning him,” he mentioned. Maybe the chance for a transparent improve comes obtainable or a Spring Coaching harm adjustments the calculus, nevertheless it doesn’t appear the Phils anticipate an imminent bullpen pickup.