MLB Winter Meetings: Phillies content without making a splash, Rob Thomson didn’t watch the World Series, and MLB Rule 5 Draft update
MLB Winter Meetings are underway in Nashville, Tennessee and I have a few updates for…
Dave Dombrowski spoke to the media today and addressed the Philadelphia Phillies upcoming free agents, offseason priorities, and what the starting rotation could look like entering 2024 Spring Training.
The Phillies will have four players entering free agency, eligible to sign with any team five days after the end of the 2023 World Series.
Aaron Nola is the top priority for Dave Dombrowski. Nola has been an absolute workhorse for this baseball club and hasn’t missed a single start over the last six seasons. Of course, with Nola, comes some inconsistencies.
Regardless, Nola has proven that he can rise to the occasion and perform well on Major League Baseball’s biggest stages. He will almost certainly be one of the top pitchers in the free agent market this offseason, joining Blake Snell and Sonny Gray.
Along with the Phillies, keep an eye on the Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis Cardinals as potential suitors for Nola. Here’s what Dombrowski said today to the media in regards to Aaron Nola being the Phillies’ top priority this offseason.
“He’s our priority to try to sign,” president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski said Thursday afternoon. “Unfortunately, and I don’t mean this as a negative or a positive, it’s just the reality, we didn’t sign him in spring training. We would have liked to do that but we didn’t get it done. So I can’t tell you we’re 100 percent confident we’re going to get it done, but we would like to sign him and will be aggressive in trying to make that happen.” (via NBC Sports Philly)
Dombrowski spoke candidly about Rhys Hoskins today as well, unsure on his future in Philadelphia. This was somewhat expected given the fact that Harper excelled at first base over the final three months of the 2023 season.
Kyle Schwarber is likely to be the Phillies’ designated hitter, leaving Bryce Harper at first base with an outfield that consists of Brandon Marsh, Johan Rojas, Cristian Pache, and Nick Castellanos.
That being said, there’s really not a spot for Rhys Hoskins on this roster. The only option for Hoskins to re-sign in Philadelphia would be if Bryce Harper was ready to return to the outfield, something that Dombrowski said he would discuss with Harper, but ultimately make the decision himself.
I think it’s safe to say that both Kimbrel and Lorenzen have played their final games in Philadelphia. There’s no shot that the Phillies re-sign either pitcher after what happened in the final months of the regular season and postseason.
Outside of re-signing Nola and securing the starting rotation for 2024, I would expect the Phillies to target a right handed power hitter and obviously, some help in the bullpen with a specific focus on an elite reliever to be this team’s everyday closer.