Phillies Sign Seranthony Dominguez, Who Won’t Pitch in 2021
The Phillies are facing some tender decisions leading up to the Wednesday, 8:00 p.m. deadline to tender contracts to arbitration-eligible players. The Phillies had to make decisions on three players likely on the bubble: relievers Hector Neris and Seranthony Dominguez, as well as pitcher Vince Velasquez. One of those contract situations appears to be resolved. Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia is reporting that the Phillies have agreed to terms with Dominguez, with an eye on him contributing in 2022.
Salisbury reports that Dominguez will earn $727,500 with the Phillies in 2021, though he will not pitch. Dominguez, recovering from Tommy John surgery over the summer, is not expected to take a mound for months. By investing the money now, the Phillies are hopeful that he will contribute in a meaningful way in 2022. He will need another contract for that season; if the Phillies do not like his progress, they can non-tender Dominguez next season. But even in a pandemic, the reportedly cash-strapped Phillies have determined Dominguez is worth it.
Neris, meanwhile is worth watching today. The Phillies did not pick up a $7 million contract option on Neris, which meant he was headed back to the arbitration process. Will the Phillies work out a contract for a lesser amount with Neris? Or was their intention all along to non-tender Neris and spend the money elsewhere? It is hard to say, as the Phillies budget is not really known.
Velasquez has been a model of inconsistency for the Phillies. Despite an inconsistent 2020, Velasquez could earn as much as $5 million in arbitration. The Phillies may not wish to make that kind of investment for inconsistency. We will know more today.
Catcher Andrew Knapp and starter Zach Eflin are also arbitration-eligible, but they are widely believed to be tendered contracts today.