Phillies: 5 lessons to learn from 2019 World Series
3. It’s hard to buy a winner
Looking back at past years, World Series winners include mostly home-grown players. The Nationals won with Juan Soto, Ryan Zimmerman, Stephen Strasburg, among others. The Red Sox won with Mookie Betts, Xander Bogaerts, Andrew Benintendi, and Jackie Bradley, Jr. You could say similar things about the Astros, Cubs, Royals, Giants, Cardinals, Yankees, and even the 2008 Phillies.
Free-agency and trades are designed to add-in supplementary pieces to help you win. That’s where players such as Zack Greinke, Justin Verlander, Max Scherzer, Patrick Corbin, and Chris Sale come in play over the last two to three years.
The only true core player on the Phillies who has spent his whole career in the organization is Aaron Nola. One could question the season he had, particularly toward the end of 2019, but I think he is still an elite talent.
I don’t like Rhys Hoskins or his approach. I think he needs a change of scenery. The Gabe Kapler style of drawing walks over all else has seemed to severely affect his production. In the second half of 2019, he hit .180 with 9 HR and 26 RBI, compared to .263 with 20 HR and 59 RBI in the first half.
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The only players in the farm system with respectable hopes of becoming high-level performers are Alec Bohm and Spencer Howard, and I don’t think you’ll see either of them in the majors come April.
So, while the Phillies have the potential to add some players via trade or free agency, I believe that their laundry list is just too long. And while John Middleton has money to spend, I don’t think that’s going to cut it.
On a more positive note, though, if the team makes the right moves, I could be pleasantly surprised. I certainly hope that is the case.