Phillies Spring Training still has several weeks to go, but that won’t stop the rumor mill from spinning
Few jobs remain available on the Phillies roster heading into the 2017 season. The lone exceptions come in the bullpen and on the bench.
Backup catcher is the one job on the bench that is still up in the air at this stage of spring training. Prospect Andrew Knapp is battling with veterans Ryan Hanigan and Bryan Holaday getting their own opportunities.
Hanigan has gotten an increased amount of time behind the plate as of late, including two starts against the Tigers, including the Phillies 11-6 win on Tuesday.
Comcast SportsNet Phillies Insider Jim Salisbury believes the fact Hanigan played in back-to-back games against the same team is no coincidence.
"“It sure looks as if the Phils have been showcasing (Hanigan) to the Tigers”"
Knowing Phillies general manager Matt Klentak the possibility of Hanigan being “showcased” to Detroit is no surprise.
Klentak is always willing to make a deal if the outcome gives the Phillies the chance to add young talent. While Hanigan will certainly not net you one of the Tigers top prospects.
At best you can look for a Triple-A pitcher Detroit is willing to pass up given a lack of success or recent exhaustion.
Hanigan, 36, has played in only a handful of games with Philadelphia in spring training, which makes the increased playing time more peculiar than usual. He’s recorded four hits in just seven games this spring.
If Hanigan is moved the Phillies could be signaling towards Andrew Knapp having won a major league job. Expect him to potentially split at-bats with Tommy Joseph at first base while getting the occasional start behind the plate to give Cameron Rupp time off.
Spring training continues for the Phils Wednesday against the Braves in Orlando.