3 moves the Phillies still need to get done after dud Winter Meetings

The Phillies still have decisions to make with their roster after not making any moves during the Winter Meetings.

Zack Wheeler, Philadelphia Phillies
Zack Wheeler, Philadelphia Phillies / Sean M. Haffey/GettyImages
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The Phillies need to sign another outfielder

Dombrowski mentioned that outfielder Johan Rojas is not guaranteed to begin the 2024 regular season with the Phillies. Following his disappointing offensive performance last postseason, with a line of .093/.114/.163 in 13 playoff games, the 23-year-old needs to make the necessary adjustments to become an improved hitter next season.

Philadelphia will consider adding a veteran outfielder on a one-year deal for depth purposes. Tommy Pham is an experienced player who could be a fit for the Phillies. He can play at all three outfield positions but has primarily played in left field during his 10-year career in the Majors.

If they sign Pham this winter, he could play in left. Assuming Rojas begins the year in Triple-A with the Lehigh Valley IronPigs, Brandon Marsh would play in center, and Nick Castellanos would start in right field. If Rojas is on the Phillies roster, he would play center with Pham in left and Marsh starting in right.

There are several lineup possibilities with who could be their designated hitter in the outfield during the course of the season. Kyle Schwarber, Castellanos, and Pham, or another free agent at the position, are the prime candidates for the DH role if manager Rob Thomson wants an outfielder to hit at that spot.

Other potential candidates the Phillies could sign for outfield depth include Eddie Rosario, Adam Duvall, Robbie Grossman, and David Peralta. Philadelphia has several options to consider if they want to add a free agent outfielder this offseason.

The Phillies need to re-sign Zack Wheeler

The Phillies ace continued to pitch well for Philadelphia in his fourth year with the club. Zack Wheeler's current contract is due to expire following the 2024 season. He emerged as their best pitcher this season, with Nola dealing with bouts of inconsistency throughout the year. The 33-year-old won the first Gold Glove Award of his career in November.

In 32 starts, Wheeler had 212 strikeouts in 192 innings pitched, a 1.08 WHIP, and hitters had a .229 average against the right-hander. He allowed the most earned runs (77) and home runs (20) in a season since 2019, but other than that, he did very well during the regular season.

The right-hander continued his excellence in five appearances and four starts during the postseason. Wheeler went 3-0, had a 1.95 ERA, 35 strikeouts, and only three walks. Batters had a .170 average against him and a 0.72 WHIP in 27 2/3 innings pitched. He threw 1 2/3 innings in a relief appearance against the Arizona Diamondbacks in Game 7 of the National League Championship Series.

Considering that he doesn't appear to be slowing down, the Phillies should consider offering Wheeler an extension this winter to prevent him from becoming a free agent next offseason. Nola doesn't appear to have the consistency to merit consideration as Philadelphia's top starter, which Wheeler has exhibited during his four-year tenure with the franchise.

The Phillies could offer Wheeler an extension for up to three seasons with a player option for the fourth year. He has shown his value to the club's rotation, and it would be challenging to find a replacement for him on the current roster or in free agency next year if he signs with another team.

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