Phillies Mailbag: Center Field, Rounding Out the Roster, Playoffs?
We are back with an Opening Week edition of the 97.3 ESPN Phillies mailbag. Each week we take your questions and answer them on the Sports Bash with Mike Gill, Tuesday afternoons. Send a question any time to @FrankKlose on Twitter. Tune in and hear your question answered on the air.
Word, if Mickey Moniak catches fire, is Obdubel number three in center field? Will Joe Girardi go with Matt Vierling or Moniak in center field opening day?
I still believe the plan for center field is a platoon. With the recent trade of Sean Manaea by the Oakland Athletics, Frankie Montas will make the Opening Day start. Montas is a right-handed pitcher, so I believe we will see Mickey Moniak in center.
The question about whether Moniak sticks around will probably be decided by how well he plays during this apparent opportunity.
That does not mean that Herrera will not get an opportunity once health. The Phillies might to decide if they have anything there before cutting him. If Matt Vierling is not producing, they could ultimately move off of the platoon and have a left-handed back-up in center field.
One thing I think is clear, though: the Phillies as constructed now do not have room for three center fielders. Vierling can be optioned. Alec Bohm could eventually be optioned. We will have to see how it plays out.
Hey Frank, do you think the Phillies would entertain making a deal for another starter such as Frankie Montas from the A’s, and using Ranger Suárez as a Swiss Army knife pitcher that can pitch in high leverage situations or start depending on the teams needs moving along deeper in the season?
I think that the Phillies would love to have someone like Frankie Montas in their starting rotation. But, so would many other teams. If there is a deal to be made, the trade will be made with the team who has something to offer.
I keep hearing Alec Bohm's name thrown out as someone the Phillies could trade to the Athletics. However, that does not mean that Alec Bohm would be close to enough to what the Athletics would need for Montas.
Montas has two more years of control: this season and next. Either now or at the trade deadline he could be a very attractive piece to a contender willing to trade prospects. Unfortunately the Phillies: they simply don't have any beyond pitcher Mick Abel and Andrew Painter, who they are going to need down the line.
Pretty basic … do we FINALLY grab a playoff spot? I survived the Ed Wade era. I can’t take much more.
Ron, I think that you'll finally get it. The Phillies did not go over the competitive balance tax to not try to win this year. The rationale is pretty simple: Bryce Harper, Aaron Nola, Zack Wheeler, and J.T. Realmuto are all in their primes, and if you don't win now, then when?
Therefore I think I can see the Phillies being aggressive at the July 31 trade deadline to get whatever reinforcements they need to get them over the hump.
Also of assistance are the extra playoff spots. The Phillies should be improved from their 82 win total last season, which would have been good enough for the playoffs then. If they win 87 or 88 games, which is in the realm of possibility, I think they can hang in there and make the playoffs.
But, as we see with the Mets and Jacob deGrom, injuries can derail a team quickly. So let's hope for good health.