3 players the Phillies absolutely need to extend through their arbitration years

The Phillies have eight players eligible for arbitration this offseason. There are three key pieces that the club should consider signing through their remaining arbitration years.
Ranger Suarez is just one player the Philadelphia Phillies need to extend through arbitration
Ranger Suarez is just one player the Philadelphia Phillies need to extend through arbitration / Harry How/GettyImages
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Alec Bohm

Bohm is entering his first arbitration year. He was the Phillies' first-round pick in 2018 out of Wichita State. He was projected as a strong hitter, but scouts noted that his defense could be suspect. The 27-year-old's career in Philadelphia has been full of ups and downs to this point. There have been notable issues with Bohm's defense in the past, but in 2023, the young infielder improved not just at his primary position, but also at first base.

This season, Bohm hit a career-high 20 home runs and knocked in 97 runs — the most in any one season of his career. While he scuffled a bit in the postseason, his value to the club is notable. His ability to play both first and third base gives the Phillies options when structuring their defense. Bohm also had the twelfth-highest OPS of all MLB third basemen in 2023.

The Phillies' infielder made just $748,000 last season. For reference, both Edmundo Sosa and the Phillies' first-round pick in 2023, Aidan Miller, made more in salary and signing bonuses than Bohm did. He's due for a big raise, given his productivity.

MLB Trade Rumors predicts that the third baseman will make $4.3 million in his first year of arbitration. That figure seems more than fair for the fourth-year player.

The club could opt to sign Bohm to a four-year deal that would take Bohm through arbitration and through one year of free agency to keep his salary manageable. The Phillies could structure a deal in which Bohm makes less per year in the early parts of his contract, and the figure would increase toward the end of the deal. This would help keep payroll lower while players like Kyle Schwarber and Nick Castellanos are still on the books.

At this point, the Phillies know what they have in Bohm. While he is not likely to become a top-five third baseman in baseball, he is a serviceable player who makes contributions. With players like Miller in the minor leagues, it may make sense for the Phillies to eventually move Bohm to first base full-time should they sign him to a longer deal.

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