Where they are, variables and where they could still upgrade – The Athletic


CLEARWATER, Fla. — The definition of “ready” is a moving target in Major League Baseball this year. Ready, for a starting pitcher in 2022, could mean he can pitch three innings. Ready, for a reliever, could mean he’s made two or three Grapefruit League appearances. Ready, for someone who signed after the start of this abbreviated spring training, could mean a few manipulated backcourt plays to maximize at-bats.

It’s early to think about a potential opening day roster, but there are only 16 days left until the start of the season. All of this happens quickly. And, after a flurry of deals, the Phillies have chosen the bulk of the squad they will bring to Philadelphia.

That said, there are still uncertainties. By the end of the week, three-fifths of the planned starting rotation will still not have appeared in a Grapefruit League game. Odúbel Herrera has a ribcage injury that could prevent him from making the club.

Even before this revelation, the Phillies had been looking for a possible bench upgrade through a trade. Rival teams in communication with the Phillies said the Phillies were looking to clear some space at the bottom of their 40-man roster.

“We also interacted with other clubs,” President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski said earlier this week. “They have now made their free agent signings, almost all of them. And I think that will lead to continued trade conversations in the next period. Will it lead to anything? I don’t know, but of course we will try to improve.


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