Phillies Release Utility-Man Chris Coghlan
Phillies general manager Matt Klentak continues to trim the roster with less than a week until opening day in Cincinnati
With nearly all the everyday jobs on the Phillies 25-man roster already established the focus in spring training has been on the bench players. Fans thought they’d figured out the finalists for the utility roles, but general manager Matt Klentak had other ideas.
After surprisingly cutting catcher Ryan Hanigan in favor of underachieving prospect Andrew Knapp, Klentak cut another veteran who seemed destined to make the 25-man roster.
Klentak made another surprising move that clears space on the bench by releasing World Champion utility player Chris Coghlan.
The decision was announced on the team’s Twitter account Tuesday afternoon prior to the squad’s game against Toronto.
Through 19 games wearing Phillies red in spring training, Coghlan hit .231 with only two extra-base hits. His spring was highlighted by a five-game hitting streak in the first half of March, but finished 0-6 in his final at-bats of the camp.
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Coghlan was a budding star with the Marlins in 2009, winning the Rookie of the Year after hitting .321 with 162 hits in 128 games. Injuries and the disappearance of his bat has thrown a curve into his career, sending him to Oakland and two separate stints with the Cubs.
Last year Coghlan played 48 games for the World Champion Cubs, and appeared in four games during the Fall Classic.
With Coghlan now out of the mold the possibility of Brock Stassi and Daniel Nava making the major league roster takes another step up.
Stassi has been the biggest surprise of spring training by leading the club with five home runs and a .320 batting average.
Should he make the roster, Nava stands to be the third switch-hitter on the Phillies bench assuming Andres Blanco and Andrew Knapp remain available. Nava has had an under the radar spring hitting .361 in 36 at-bats.
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Philadelphia has just five spring training games remaining on their schedule, and will play the Blue Jays Tuesday night in Clearwater.