Though Phillies righty Aaron Nola tells Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer that he hasn’t thought much about the potential of signing a long-term deal with the Phils, Gelb opines that Nola is a prime extension candidate for the team this winter. The 24-year-old’s recent arm troubles present some risk in approaching him about a long-term pact, but there’s inherent risk when extending any pitcher, and Nola has established himself as an above-average starter over his two-plus seasons of work, Gelb argues. With Nola still a year away from arbitration eligibility, the Phils could look to strike now in hopes of securing control over one or more free-agent years, as they did with center fielder Odubel Herrera in the 2016-17 offseason. Gelb’s piece includes a number of potential comparables as well as quotes from Nola and teammate Clay Buchholz, who signed a long-term deal himself at a similar point in his career.
- FanRag’s Jon Heyman writes that one reason the Phillies might’ve made the surprising decision to remove Pete Mackanin as manager just months after giving him an extension was that the arrival of players like Rhys Hoskins, Nick Williams and other young talents may have somewhat accelerated the team’s timeline. Heyman writes that the Phils viewed Mackanin as “more of a caretaker” than a long-term solution, and they may now look for a skipper who’ll hold down the fort for years to come. Heyman notes that having a more concrete manager in place could be a selling point next winter when the team could pursue multiple top names in free agency.