5 dark horse candidates to fill out the Phillies 2024 Opening Day bench

Which Phillies players could surprise this spring to steal a bench role by Opening Day?

Philadelphia Phillies v Arizona Diamondbacks
Philadelphia Phillies v Arizona Diamondbacks / Chris Coduto/GettyImages
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Weston Wilson

Weston Wilson was signed to a minor league contract by the Phillies during the 2022-23 offseason. After spending six grueling seasons in the Milwaukee Brewers minor league system with mixed results, Wilson put together the best year of his professional baseball career with Lehigh Valley this past season.

He obliterated his previous personal marks by setting seasonal career highs with 90 runs scored, 31 home runs, 86 RBI, and 32 stolen bases. His 31 dingers also established the Lehigh Valley single-season record for home runs.

With that kind of performance, Wilson earned a promotion to the majors down the stretch and appeared in eight games. He held his own despite the limited playing time, batting .313 with five runs scored, one home run, two RBI, and three stolen bases. Most impressive was that his first home run came in his first at-bat in the big leagues, making it a moment he will never forget.

With the ability to play at first and second base, along with the corner outfield positions, his added flexibility, along with his potent bat, could give him the advantage heading into spring training in nailing down one of the final spots on the roster. And at age 29, he'll want to make sure he doesn’t see another game in the minors for his career if possible.

It’s obvious that not all five will be fortunate enough to land a spot on the Opening Day roster with the Phillies in 2024. But with many of these players having the future outlook of their careers on the line, don’t be surprised if one or more of them manage to unseat a regular from the Phillies’ bench to become a key contributor for the ballclub for the upcoming season.

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