A look at which players the Philadelphia Phillies should include on their taxi squad of three players allowed on road trips beyond the active roster.
The Philadelphia Phillies will have some decisions to make with the return of baseball having a scheduled date.
In the league’s 101-page operations manual, the details for rosters are laid out – 40-man rosters with an active roster that will reduce from a maximum of 30 to 26 as the season progresses, and an additional 20 players to make up a “club player pool” of 60, who are eligible to participate during the season.
The manual also includes “permissible taxi squads.” Teams are allowed to bring three additional players beyond their active roster on road trips. The players will not receive major league service and will be paid at the minor league rate, plus allowances. These players are allowed to workout with the major league club and any catchers can serve as bullpen catchers.
The taxi squads must include a catcher if a team elects to bring the maximum of three, while one catcher can remain on the taxi squad to serve as a bullpen catcher for home games as the others return to an alternate training site.
So, what are the benefits of a taxi squad for the Phillies?
It can allow prospects and players with limited major league experience to travel with the club and spend time with the team (distancing of course), while keeping these prospects nearby if needed. This could also give the team extra time with players from the 40-man roster who they’re thinking of moving to the active roster.
Since the taxi squad is more of a backup option, it can also serve as a way to bring veterans who would typically be sent to the minor leagues, but will now remain part of the club player pool. These veterans have the experience to serve as last-minute backups if needed.
While things can and likely will change when the Phillies submit their rosters, here are two groups of players not currently on the active roster who could be used on the Phillies’ taxi squad.