July 23, 2020
Just over 24 hours before the players arrive at Citizens Bank Park to host the Miami Marlins in what will be the first game of their abbreviated 60-game 2020 season, the Philadelphia Phillies announced their Opening Day roster on Thursday afternoon.
Here's a look at who made the cut, which includes nine players making their first Opening Day roster...
Pitchers (16): Right-handers Jake Arrieta, Zach Eflin, Deolis Guerra, Tommy Hunter, Trevor Kelley, Reggie McClain, Héctor Neris, Aaron Nola, Nick Pivetta, Ramón Rosso, Vince Velasquez and Zack Wheeler and left-handers José Álvarez, Austin Davis, Cole Irvin and Adam Morgan
Catchers (2): Andrew Knapp and J.T. Realmuto
Infielders (5): Didi Gregorius, Rhys Hoskins, Scott Kingery, Jean Segura and Neil Walker
Outfielders (6): Jay Bruce, Kyle Garlick, Bryce Harper, Adam Haseley, Andrew McCutchen and Roman Quinn
For starters, you'll notice that the roster is expanded this year to help teams deal with any positive COVID-19 tests that pop up early in the season. In two weeks, they'll be trimmed to 28 players. Two weeks after that, they'll be trimmed again to the final 26-man size.
Interestingly enough, the Phillies have just 29 players listed on this roster, and while some may be hoping that spot would be left open for either top prospect Spencer Howard or Alec Bohm, but it appears that spot will belong to Malvern Prep grad Phil Gosselin, who had a nice camp this summer. Multiple reports from Phillies beat writers suggest that Gosselin could be added to the roster before Friday night's opener.
There are only 29 players on this 30-man roster. Phil Gosselin could be added before Opening Day. He had a billion hits in summer camp.— Todd Zolecki (@ToddZolecki) July 23, 2020
Most notably absent from the Opening Day roster, however, are Howard and Bohm. But, if Bryce Harper has his way, the former may join the team before long. And the latter could be just an injury away from getting a shot with the big club. With no minor league season this year, it wouldn't be a bad idea for the Phillies to use some of this shortened season to get those two some big-league reps, especially if they plan on having them contribute in 2021.
Before finalizing the roster, the Phillies reinstated Kingery, Neris, Hunter and Davis from the injured list and purchased the contracts of three others (Walker, Kelley and Rosso). The team also designated righty Robert Stock for assignment.
The team also announced that Seranthony Domínguez, David Roberston and Ranger Suárez will all open the season on the injured list, meaning in addition to the already scheduled roster reductions, the Phillies will have some more decisions to make if/when the aforementioned injured players are ready to return to the lineup.
The Phillies host the Marlins at 7:05 p.m. on Friday at Citizens Bank Park.
Follow Matt on Twitter: @matt_mullin
Like us on Facebook: PhillyVoice Sports