Phillies Cut Veterans Forsythe, Liriano as Roster Starts to Take Shape
With less than a week away from Opening Day against the Miami Marlins in Philadelphia, the Phillies took some steps towards finalizing their 30-man roster. One player was told he did indeed make the team. Meanwhile, two veterans were released by the Phillies.
Veteran utility infielder Logan Forsythe was given his release by the Phillies. Forsythe was one of many infielders competing for a spot on the Phillies roster. One of those infielders who beat out Forsythe for a spot was Neil Walker, who was informed that he made the team, reports Todd Zolecki of MLB.com.
But beyond Walker, Forsythe had to contend with Josh Harrison, Ronald Torreyes, Phil Gosselin, and the reality that Alec Bohm will factor into the Phillies infield plans sometime soon. Forsythe hits from the right side, something the Phillies have in Harrison, Torreyes, and Gosselin. Walker is a switch-hitter, a factor that could have had him make the bench.
Somewhat surprisingly, the Phillies released veteran pitcher Francisco Liriano. Liriano is a veteran lefty arm who had success in 2019 in his first year as a reliever with the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Phillies have left-handed relievers Adam Morgan and Jose Alvarez on their roster, as well as Austin Davis, Cole Irvin and Ranger Suarez.
Suarez is likely not available immediately, but the Phillies could get a longer outing out of Irvin and eventually Suarez than Liriano might provide.
Finally, the Phillies released veteran reliever Bud Norris. Norris was competing for a bullpen spot, but the Phillies have plenty of right-handed options in their bullpen. One or both of Vince Velasquez and Nick Pivetta could find their way into the bullpen, and the Phillies have closer Hector Neris and Tommy Hunter as veteran right-handed options.
Of course, the season will begin with 30 players. That could mean the Phillies would rather keep someone like Enyel De Los Santos around, who can be optioned to the minor leagues.
The Phillies currently have 39 players on their 40-man roster and will need to find a roster spot for any players beyond Walker. That likely includes at least one more reserve infielder, and if the Phillies add Bohm or starter Spencer Howard, they will have to find extra space.