The Phillies are angling to make one or even two reasonably significant free agent position player additions, according to Jon Heyman of Fan Rag. Martin Prado of the Marlins and Ian Desmond of the Rangers are among the possible targets, per the report.
There’s an understandable balancing act at play for Philadelphia, which doesn’t necessarily appear to be readying for a push at the postseason in 2017 but wants to bolster its everyday lineup. Heyman says that the organization is mostly interested in finding quality hitters who deliver a good clubhouse presence and are perhaps young enough to represent a bridge to a new era of contention.
In that regard, there’s some logic to both Prado and Desmond. While the former is older (he’ll be 33 next year) than the latter (31), he’ll command a shorter deal for the same reason. Both offer positional versatility as well as reputations as leaders and grinders. Signing up a player who is capable of playing multiple positions (infield and outfield) would make for a more flexible investment as the Phils wait to see how their roster shakes out over the years to come.
Neither player figures to be cheap — they are both posting strong all-around seasons — but they also aren’t top-of-the-class earners. And salary (at least if it’s front-loaded) shouldn’t pose much of a limitation for an organization that has virtually nothing on the books despite its huge spending power. Both are qualifying offer candidates, though, with Desmond especially appearing to be a likely recipient. While the Phillies’ top pick will be protected, the club will surely be hesitant to part with any draft power.
Then, there’s the matter of convincing such players to sign in Philadelphia. Some veterans will surely prefer to go to an organization with greater near-term hopes of contending. But it is hardly unprecedented for a significant free agent to join a club that isn’t pushing the pedal to the floor for the season to come, with Jayson Werth’s pre-2011 signing with the Nationals representing one notable example.
It figures to be a similar sales job for Phillies GM Matt Klentak, who will be able to present any free agent targets with a vision that includes star treatment in a major media market and a rising, high-ceiling payroll to accommodate more additions down the line. Needless to say, it’ll be interesting to see how things proceed.
I don’t know how I feel about this. We have multiple prospects coming up at nearly every position. Why block them with a big contract. I would do an outfielder on a 1-year deal or maybe a bench infielder- but I don’t like the idea of pulling the trigger on that just yet.
Never rely on your prospects panning out. Take care of your MLB team, and if a prospect develops, he will find a way through.
Any team choosing not to fill spots with quality players on the MLB roster, because of the notion that they are blocking a player who isn’t even ready yet, is setting themselves up for failure.
I understand what youre saying. I was just saying go for 1 year guys over guys like Prado or Desmond so that they didnt have a guy with a big contract blocking a prospect that did happen to work out.
those guys can play multiple positions and if I’m not mistaken, the Phils also have 1b as an option to fall back on
That’s exactly why they’re going after multiple-position players like Desmond (SS, CF, OF) and Prado (2B, 3B, OF). If they find a young player with upside they can move their veteran with a consistent bat and leadership around, as necessary.
Save your money for 2018. 2017 is the weakest Free Agent Class in years. Only the reliever market is strong in 2017.
Potential 2018 class:
And more…this is really a no Brainer for the Phillies. Why tie up money in Prado when you could land Machado and shift Franco to first? Franco would then be an above average defender at 1st, Galvis could potentially be the best defensive second baseman in the league with 15 homer power. Crawford would be at short with Machado being a beast at third.
On a separate note, not really getting why people want to ship out Rupp. He’s having a great last couple of years and would provide tremendous value even as a back up catcher.
Potential moves I would consider:
–all figure to be great guys who the Phillies could sell if they are totally out of it by July, but would allow for them to make a postseason run.
Also, some projected minor league free agents I would shoot for: Nicky Delmonico, Victor Payano, Myles Jaye, Dovydas Neverauskus, Alejandro Chacin, Henry Ramos and Orlando Calixte. All could be contributors for a long time if things go right.
I’ll take Jon Jay or Eric Thames, I’d like to see both. If Thames can have his power he’s shown overseas transfer to the bigs he would be an awesome addition
I think Jon Jay would be a great fit. Won’t break the bank, sign for no more than 3 years, and a great clubhouse presence.
I don’t think him staying with the Padres is the best fit with the team.
Makes me think Phils are moving on from galvis, Herrera and Hernandez. All 3 are horribly frustrating to watch. Poor plate discipline bad base running etc. Desmond could play center and Prado 2nd
How is Herrera disappointing?
Herrera has solid pitch recognition/OBP skills. Ditto Hernandez. Maybe Franco is in jeopardy of being moved?
I can definitely understand how Herrera could be a frustrating player to watch. He has all the necessary skills to be a star but he has a tendency to have major mental lapses. Also, almost 40% of his BB’s came in April alone. Regardless, he has a very bright future if he can get a handle on the mental side and improve his consistency.
Signing these two players make no sense for me, unless they envision trading their middle infield prospects (Crawford, Kingery, etc.). Why block them? Maybe they hold Crawford out until 2018? Phillies need players who can get on base big time though…
Because 2B and 3B could even be open. Franco could move to first and Kingery won’t be up until earliest 2018. If they want Crawford to be the SS, he will be, regardless of a Prado/Desmond signing.
Neither of these guys is really a middle infielder right now.
You have Franco who deserves PT and then Crawford whenever he comes up. Who are these guys blocking there? Prado plays 2b/1b/lf or desmond plays 3b/ss/2b/1b/lf/rf/cf
Slightly overstating Desmond’s versatility there, Crazy Chester!
Not a chance I sign in philly. The pitching staff is weak at best.
Right now it is, but that could change quickly. Nola, Velasquez, and Thompson all have potential. Eickhoff has done a fine job.
Sure, the pitching staff is weak in 2017, but there will be pieces to sign and or trade for in the offseason (next offseason that is).
Plus two, money talks
I expect the Phils to have an offseason similar to that of the Astrod prior to 2015
Phillies will seek to replace roster spots that were held by Howard, Ellis, Bourjos, Goedell, D. Hernandez, Hellickson and a couple RP slots.
I think Gomez, Rupp, Morgan and Asche will be used as trade bait – even Nick Williams and/or Altherr.
Signing Desmond would be a good boast to our horrible offense. I think Joseph still needs a lefty to platoon with., and the Phils said they want an experienced back-up Catcher for Alfaro or Rupp.
I like Prado, but he bats right – and i don’t see the point in having him as our utility 1B/2B/3B
I do see lefties Luis Valbuena and Chris Coghlan as nice pieces that play multiple positions and bat left-handed. As far as a back-up Catcher – AJ Pierzynski or Jared Saltalamacchia would seem to be fits as well.
for the Bullpen, I can see them signing Travis Wood and Greg Holland.
So… Perhaps the 2017 Phillies can look like this:
1B) T. Joseph
2B) C. Hernandez
SS) F. Galvis
3B) M. Franco
C) J. Alfaro
LF) O. Herrera
CF) R. Quinn
RF) I. Desmond
Bench – Valbuena / Coghlan / Perzynski / Blanco / Altherr
SP) via trade
SP) A. Nola
SP) J. Eickhoff
SP) V. Velasquez
SP) J. Thompson
with Asher / Lively / Eflin / Pivetta in the wings.
RP) G. Holland
RP) H. Neris
RP) E. Ramos
RP) T. Wood
RP) S. Gonzalez
RP) J. Gomez
RP) E. Araujo