Phillies News: Pitchers and catchers start Thursday, PECOTA projections, more
Thankfully, spring training gets started this week for the Philadelphia Phillies. While the city of Philadelphia is coming off the sting of the Super Bowl loss against the Kansas City Chiefs, at least we have Phillies baseball to cheer us up soon. Here is a look at where the roster stands, including spring training invites, going into camp.
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Baseball Prospectus released their PECOTA projections on Tuesday, and they have the Phillies finishing third in the NL East. Yet again, PECOTA seems to love both teams in New York and projects the NL Central to be the worst division in baseball. The latter seems just about right. Notably, most other projections have the division race being much more closely contested, but PECOTA certainly has a track record of some eye-catching projections.
Speaking of the Super Bowl, Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts recently shared his admiration for Bryce Harper when asked by a reporter. Noting his energy and passion, Hurts' comments certainly didn't seem like "lip service" and giving the easy answer.
Over at the main MLB site, the staff looked at some key advanced metrics and put together a fascinating look at five hitters that are prime candidates to break out in 2023. While no Phillies were listed, one NL East hitter did make the cut thanks to his best-in-baseball "sweet spot" rate. Not all of these guys are locks to have great seasons, but it is definitely more thought-provoking than wondering if six-time All-Stars could be good again.
There are a lot of rule changes coming to MLB in 2023, which are going to look a bit odd to the casual viewer if they are aware that the changes are even coming at all. To get everyone up to speed, MLB Network will air a special breaking down the changes on Thursday, February 16, at 7 p.m. EST.