It took the entirety of spring training for the Philadelphia Phillies to reveal which center fielders would make the team’s Opening Day roster.
But, after the final out of team’s 28-game 2021 Grapefruit League schedule was recorded early Monday evening, the “winner” of the seemingly never-ending competition was finally revealed.
And, it’s not necessarily one “winner” that came out on top, as a platoon will very much be a factor at the center field position.
Adam Haseley and Roman Quinn join Matt Joyce in the Phillies center field mix.
The Phillies announced that former first-round pick Adam Haseley has made the Opening Day roster — along with speedy outfielder Roman Quinn — and that non-roster invitee Odubel Herrera will report to the alternate training site at Triple-A Lehigh Valley.
Matt Joyce, a fellow non-roster invitee, was previously announced to have made the Opening Day roster. Joyce, Haseley, and Quinn will likely all see playing time at center field, at least early on in the regular season.
Haseley finished spring training on a tear, collecting three hits in seven at-bats, including a double — along with four RBI, one stolen base, and just one strikeout. He began spring training on just as impressive on a pace, including launching the team’s second pitch seen at the plate for a home run. However, a groin injury that was first thought to sideline Haseley for the remainder of spring wound up not being as serious, and he returned earlier than expected.
Herrera, who remains surrounded by a controversial “cloud” due to his domestic violence suspension two seasons ago, finished the spring hitting just .231 with a .245 on-base percentage. His best game came on Saturday against the Tigers, going 3-for-4 with a double and home run. However, Herrera went hitless in his final five at-bats.
As The Athletic’s Jayson Stark notes, Herrera did not force the Phillies’ hand. So much so, not even to put him on the roster over Quinn — who slashed .270/.341/.405 this spring with a pair of doubles, one home run, four walks, and 15 strikeouts through 37 at-bats. Quinn successfully stole each of his four attempts.
The Phillies Opening Day roster is now complete and ready to go for Thursday’s matchup opposite the Atlanta Braves. Whether their baseball decision to keep Haseley, Quinn, and Joyce over Herrera will be a good one remains to be seen.