Phillies set goal to compete and win, not ‘transition’
By Matt Rappa
The Philadelphia Phillies are far from satisfied at just aiming for the status quo, or even their first winning season in recent memory.
Despite undergoing the transition this offseason from Andy MacPhail and Matt Klentak making significant roster decisions to two-time World Series champion executive Dave Dombrowski, the Phillies are still shooting for the stars heading into their second season under manager Joe Girardi.
Don’t count out the Dave Dombrowski-led Phillies this coming season.
“The way I look, there are just too many good players on the Philadelphia Phillies baseball team to think about a ‘transition,'” Dombrowski said during the introductory virtual press conference for free-agent signee reliever Archie Bradley. “We’re thinking about winning. That’s what we’re going to try to do. We are going to try to do what we can.”
If you need any evidence that the Phillies are doing everything they can to try to compete, consider them achieving what was long thought to be an improbable feat this offseason. The Phillies not only were able to re-sign their star catcher J.T. Realmuto to a record average annual value deal for catchers, but also slugging shortstop Didi Gregorius to a multi-year pact.
The offense may appear the same from the 2020 season, but the bullpen has an overall much-improved outlook on paper. The Phillies acquired hard-throwing arms Jose Alvarado and Sam Coonrod from the Tampa Bay Rays and San Francisco Giants respectively. In addition to Bradley, the Phillies also made low-risk, potentially high-reward deals, such as adding former Giants southpaw Tony Watson to a minor-league deal with a spring invite.
“I think we have some work ahead of us,” Dombrowski continued. “I don’t mean that we’re mortgaging our future at this particular time. I don’t think that we’re at that place by any means. I think we’re in a position where if we can make a couple of moves, in particular, with some of the players that we have.”
“I don’t know why we can’t compete to win,” Dombrowski said. “Our goal is to try to win.”