March 14, 2022
Schwarber is beloved in this market with hitting jobs opening up all over the NL. If anyone asks who the biggest winner was in the CBA it’s undoubtedly Schwarbs! https://t.co/HOSBp5PboT— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) March 14, 2022
UPDATE: [9:45 a.m.] — As we mentioned earlier, the Phillies are continuing to address their bullpen first and could be adding another veteran back of the pen arm, in lefty Brad Hand:
Phillies are in talks with Brad Hand, one of the few good lefty relievers left— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) March 14, 2022
He is a three-time All-Star and most importantly is a left-hander. He has 126 career saves, as a closer by committee role seems to be developing for manager Joe Girardi to play with this season.
His deal is the same as Jeurys Familia's:
Left-handed reliever Brad Hand and the Philadelphia Phillies are in agreement on a one-year, $6 million contract, sources familiar with the deal tell ESPN.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) March 14, 2022
Conventional wisdom would suggest that a team looking to contend and spend in free agency would go after the big ticket items first, and then fill in on the margins afterwards. But the Phillies seem to be doing the opposite.
This past weekend, the team (which still badly needs outfielders, starting pitchers and a bevy of other things) reached a deal to sign 32-year-old former closer Jeurys Familia, and is reportedly also bringing controversial outfielder Odubel Herrea back. Familia will likely play a back of the bullpen role, while Herrera will potentially be a part of some kind of outfield platoon — possibly next to Matt Verling.
Even if that strategy is correct, the team needs another starting outfielder. Nick Castellanos and Kyle Schwarber are still out there, as is Kris Bryant, who can not only play a corner outfield spot but is also able to play at first and third.
Bryant is a former MVP and a very close friend of Phillies right fielder Bryce Harper and the recruiting may have already begin. With spring training games beginning this coming weekend, the clock is ticking for the Phillies to assemble their full roster, and so something could happen very soon.
We'll have you covered right here, in this space. In addition to updates as soon as news breaks, you can also follow the action below in our live MLB free agency thread and open stream:
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