Phillies Reportedly Agree to Sign Carlos Santana
The Phillies made a free agent splash Friday afternoon that will dramatically boost their offense. According to Jon Heyman of Fan Rag Sports, the Phillies and first baseman Carlos Santana have agreed to a three-year, $60 million deal. The deal gives the Phillies a legitimate switch-hitting bat at first base.
The move means that Rhys Hoskins appears to be the Phillies left fielder going forward. The Phillies put Hoskins in the outfield last season almost expecting him to be marginal in the field. However, Hoskins appears to have impressed the Phillies enough that the Phillies feel comfortable using Hoskins in the outfield.
The move also means that it appears that Nick Williams and Aaron Altherr could find themselves in a platoon of sorts, provided both remain on the roster along with center fielder Odubel Herrera. The Phillies could mix and match days off for Hoskins and the remaining outifelders. Santana will likely serve as a designated hitter in the American League road games.
Santana originally came up as a catcher, but his bat proved too valuable for the Cleveland Indians to subject to the wear and tear of the position. Santana started 140 games for the Indians at first base last season, while starting seven games in right field during interleague play in National League parks. Santana has 26 games at third base in 2014, too.
Santana will bring the Phillies 25 or so home runs, a high on base percentage, and a greatly-needed left-handed bat option in the middle of their lineup. Paired with Hoskins, Santana could do a great deal of offensive damage. While Altherr and Williams are nice players, they will not provide the power or on base percentage that Santana will bring.
The move also likely means the Phillies will move on from Tommy Joseph. With no other position to play other than first base, the Phillies simply will not be able to carry his bat on the roster as a pinch-hitter, particularly if the Phillies carry three catchers, as they have stated they might.
In case you were wondering, Santana is of no relation to rock legend Carlos Santana.