Barring another acquisition, the Phillies appear to be placing trust in Alec Bohm and Rhys Hoskins as their long-term corner infielders.
The 2020 Philadelphia Phillies infield appears to be set.
This comes after reportedly signing former New York Yankees shortstop Didi Gregorius to a one-year, $14 million contract, and being reported to be “out” on signing free-agent third baseman Anthony Rendon.
Barring another signing or trade, Gregorius and Jean Segura will likely assume either the shortstop or second base positions, Rhys Hoskins at first base, and Scott Kingery at third base.
Yet, this is only the outlook for 2020 and not long-term.
The Phillies have top prospect Alec Bohm “waiting in the wings”; he will get his first experience at the Triple-A level to start the season, and from there, it may not take long until the Phillies deem he is major-league ready.
Among Odubel Herrera, Adam Haseley, and Roman Quinn, neither are sure-locks to becoming the Phillies everyday center fielders throughout the entirety of next season. There really are not any prospects ready to step into that role, either.
If Bohm rises fast and is promoted within the first few months of the season, Kingery could then move to center field to allow him to play at the hot corner alongside Gregorius, Segura and Hoskins in the infield.
This flexibility for Bohm to be easily placed into the Phillies lineup is made possible through their one-year signing of Gregorius. Also, not committing to an infielder, such as Rendon, long-term means Bohm can still play at third and not be moved to first base, hence keeping a fielding spot for Hoskins.
Bohm and Hoskins have had their fielding woes, and there is still time for them to prove, particularly Bohm as he will field closer-to-major-league-ready hitting for the first time at Triple-A.
While Bohm has hardly had a gap of not delivering at the plate, Hoskins sure did last season … yet, under new manager Joe Girardi, there appears to be optimism that the slugger can recapture the magic of his rookie season.
Given the Phillies are closer than ever to the luxury tax, they are now being smart with how they spend. While there is financial caution, still signing Gregorius to only a one-year deal says a lot for their commitment to Bohm and Hoskins on the roster for not just 2020, but also 2021 and beyond.