The biggest move the Phils made at the meetings this year was signing relief pitcher Joaquin Benoit to a one-year, $7.5 million deal. The 39-year old reliever spent time with both Seattle and Toronto in 2016, posting a 2.81 ERA in 48 innings. Benoit is poised to be part of what could be an intriguing battle for the closer job next season in spring training.
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Overall, the Benoit signing was a good one. He adds a veteran presence to a young and inexperienced bullpen, yet it also has plenty of potential. Even if he doesn’t pan out, his one-year contract means that he won’t bog down the Phillies in the long-term.
However, general manager Matt Klentak and the team fully believe that Benoit will succeed. Klentak told Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly:
"“[A]s we drilled down into the data — strikeout rates, walk rates, batted-ball tendencies — there are some underlying things that he’s always done in his career that we think make him a pretty good candidate to have another good year.”"