Phillies make 7 more camp cuts, spring roster down to 31 healthy players


Phillies make 7 more camp cuts, spring roster down to 31 healthy players originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

The Phillies whittled down their spring training roster by seven more players with Opening Day less than a week away.

Outfielders David Dahl and Cal Stevenson and utilityman Scott Kingery were reassigned to minor-league camp on Friday afternoon. Earlier in the day, infielder/outfielder Weston Wilson was optioned to Triple A, while right-hander David Buchanan, outfielder Jordan Luplow and catchers Aramis Garcia and Cam Gallagher were reassigned to minor-league camp.

Wilson, who was hit on the hand by a 95 mph fastball on Thursday, had been a longshot candidate to fill the Phillies’ final bench role. His power from the right side and ability to play essentially every position other than catcher should give him a chance to help the Phils at some point in 2024, as he did in 2023.

Dahl, a former first-round pick and All-Star, has hit at Triple A the last two seasons and could be the first corner outfielder up if an injury takes place. The Phillies like Stevenson’s defense in center as a depth guy. Luplow was signed to a minor-league deal last week after he asked the Braves to release him so he could pursue a better opportunity.

The composition of the Phillies’ bench will be affected by whether Johan Rojas makes the team. If he does, the bench is likely Whit Merrifield, Edmundo Sosa, Garrett Stubbs and either Cristian Pache or Jake Cave. In that scenario, Cave might have the upper hand to give the Phillies a left-handed pinch-hitting option. If Rojas does not make the team and starts the season at Triple A, both Pache and Cave would be likely to make the Opening Day roster.

It was a strong showing in camp for Garcia, who is ostensibly the Phillies’ third-string catcher right now as Rafael Marchan rehabs a back injury. The 31-year-old hit .393 with five doubles, a home run and seven RBI in 32 plate appearances.

Buchanan was in the mix for the Phillies’ long relief job. There aren’t many candidates left for that spot as Kolby Allard, Max Castillo and Nick Nelson have also been optioned to Triple A and Dylan Covey is sidelined by a shoulder injury.

That leaves Spencer Turnbull, who signed a one-year contract worth $2 million with incentives, as the apparent favorite for the long relief role. The possibility exists that the Phillies ask Turnbull to begin the year at Triple A so he can start and be stretched out in case a rotation need arises in the majors, but Rob Thomson has said multiple times this month that the Phils need someone in the ‘pen capable of giving them length. And if they reach a point where Turnbull isn’t being used and a few weeks in the minors starting every fifth or sixth day would be deemed worthwhile, they could revisit the idea.

Matt Strahm is too useful in other roles to be that guy. Jose Ruiz has never pitched more than two innings in a game. Turnbull looks to be the long reliever/sixth starter. There is also a chance he’s needed for an early spot start or opener-type appearance, depending on when Aaron Nola goes on paternity leave. Nola’s wife, Hunter, is due on April 4.

The Phillies’ spring roster is at 35 players, 31 of which are healthy.

Pitchers (19)

Zack Wheeler
Aaron Nola
Ranger Suarez
Taijuan Walker
Cristopher Sanchez

Jose Alvarado
Gregory Soto
Matt Strahm
Jeff Hoffman
Seranthony Dominguez
Spencer Turnbull
Yunior Marte
Connor Brogdon
Andrew Bellatti
Luis Ortiz
Jose Ruiz

Orion Kerkering (unlikely for Opening Day – flu)
Dylan Covey (injured – shoulder)
Michael Rucker (injured – finger)

Catchers (3)

J.T. Realmuto
Garrett Stubbs
Rafael Marchan (injured – back)

Infielders (6)

Bryce Harper
Bryson Stott
Trea Turner
Alec Bohm
Edmundo Sosa
Kody Clemens

Outfielders (6)

Nick Castellanos
Brandon Marsh
Kyle Schwarber
Johan Rojas
Cristian Pache
Jake Cave

Utility

Whit Merrifield



Source link

About The Author

Scroll to Top