Now that the Phillies have signed Jake Arrieta , the perception of the team shifts with Aaron Nola and Arrieta as the team's top two starters.  The 2018 season will feature the first season that top prospects Rhys Hoskins, Jorge Alfaro, and Nick Williams are expected to be apart of the lineup opening day and they are supported by veterans Carlos Santana and Cesar Hernandez to give Philadelphia a balanced offense.  Also do not overlook the importance of the addition of Tommy Hunter and resigning of Pat Neshek for the stability of the team's bullpen.

Philadelphia Daily News Sports Columnist Marcus Hayes joined The Locker Room with Billy Schweim live from Spring Training on Saturday with his perspective on the expectations for the Phillies in 2018:

“There’s no reason this team can’t be a Wild Card Contender.  I don’t mean to diminish the National League East but there is no, except for Washington (Nationals), there’s no ‘Powerhouse’.  For me it really comes down to Starting Pitching – They have starting pitching depth and options so if guys get hurt, like Eickhoff is hurt right now, that might be the best thing for all of them….Might be a blessing in disguise come September…maybe (Eickhoff) arm is more alive because he’s starting out a little bit later and you got five or six guys you can chose from (for the rotation).  It really does come down to starting pitching especially at Citizens Bank Park where if you keep the ball down you can be in every game.”

Hear what Hayes had to say about the impact of signing Jake Arrieta, Cesar Hernandez value to the team, and his perspective on the Eagles releasing Vinny Curry

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