Phillies: 4 Reasons the Universal DH is Great News

Alec Bohm and Bryce Harper of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)
Alec Bohm and Bryce Harper of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images) /
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Joe Girardi, Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

#3. More Options for Phillies manager Joe Girardi

Between Jay Bruce, Josh Harrison, and Kyle Garlick, the Phillies have a healthy amount of players on the roster who are *almost* good enough to be everyday starters in today’s MLB. Initially projected to all be bench bats, for the most part, the new DH rule now gives Joe Girardi the chance to utilize them as everyday contributors.

When healthy, Jay Bruce was an absolute force for the Phillies in 2019. He hit 12 HRs and knocked in 31 RBIs while primarily playing a limited role. At 33 years old his fielding has obviously started to decline, so the potential of him playing a regular role in the outfield is lowered. However, having Bruce as a regular in the DH spot showcases the best of his abilities.

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A 2x All-Star, the signing of longtime Pirate Josh Harrison somewhat went under the radar this past offseason. Signed to a minor-league contract to compete for a bench spot, the application of the DH makes his value that much greater. If Harrison is swinging the bat well and having a good stretch of games, having him as the team’s ninth starter is a huge addition.

Acquired via a trade with the Los Angeles Dodgers, Kyle Garlick is another sleeper player who will benefit from this new rule. Garlick absolutely dominated the minor leagues in 2019. Across 81 games in AAA, Garlick hit .314, launched 23 homers, and knocked in 25 doubles. One extra spot in the starting lineup gives Garlick that much more of a chance to show off his power in 2020.

Other guys like Nick Williams and possibly even Deivy Grullon could also see increased action in 2019 due to the new DH position. In general, Girardi is one of the brightest minds in baseball, and giving him more chances to flex his managerial skills will always benefit the Phillies.