3 Phillies players heading into the regular season hot, and 2 who are not

Spring training is the time of year when players work off some rust and hone their skills — some look to be in midseason form, while others are still working to get where they want to be.
Philadelphia Phillies designated hitter Kyle Schwarber
Philadelphia Phillies designated hitter Kyle Schwarber / Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports
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Phillies who are hot: Whit Merrifield

The newest member of the Phillies, Whit Merrifield, is trying to make a good first impression on his new organization and the fans. Well, he’s done a pretty great job of that so far.

Merrifield started his spring with a bang, launching a home run in his first game, and hasn't cooled off since.

In 13 games this spring, the 35-year-old utilityman slashed .405/.405/.738 for an OPS of 1.143. Impressively, he led the team in home runs with two, doubles with six, and RBI with seven. In the field, he played second base, third base, and left field, showing manager Rob Thompson the versatility that will help to provide multiple lineup looks and the ability to find rest for some of the regulars.

Merrifield is a three-time All-Star, so it shouldn’t be a huge surprise to see him perform like this. But being inserted as a utility player can be daunting for a veteran nearing the tail end of his career. He has answered the call so far, and he will be a huge addition to this team if he can roll this success into the regular season.

Thomson elected to start him in left field in the final game of spring training. Could that be a sign that he will be given the Opening Day nod? If so, he has definitely earned that spot. His approach at the plate, his veteran attitude, and his hot bat will be a big boost to this Phillies lineup.