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June 10, 2024

Phillies about to walk tight rope with tough roster decisions

Will the Phillies risk losing a few players to waivers in the coming weeks?

Phillies MLB
Phillies-Edmundo-Sosa-061024_USAT Cary Edmondson/USA Today Sports

Edmundo Sosa might have a sudden position change ahead.

The Phillies could have a minor roster shake-up ahead as they prepare to welcome a trio of hitters back from injured list stints. 

Which means the team will be forced to make decisions on three guys currently on the roster, as well as some other longterm decisions that may effect the squad for the rest of the season.

Trea Turner should be first, as the superstar shortstop seems poised to return to the roster as soon as this week without a stint in the minors. Kody Clemens also appears to be close to returning after back spasms shut him down last week. And Brandon Marsh reportedly has a very minor hamstring injury that shouldn't keep him out much longer.

That could put three current hitters at risk. Which ones? 

Weston Wilson, Util

Wilson is the most obvious causality, he's gone 0-for-3 during his brief MLB stint and holds two minor league options. The least complicated move will likely be Wilson sent to Triple-A to open up room for Turner's return.

David Dahl, OF

The truly tough decisions begin with Dahl, who has hit two homers and a double in two starts with the Phillies and is 4-for-6 overall. The journeyman outfielder does not have any options remaining, which means the Phillies would risk losing him on waivers to another team. It's possible Dahl will have a little more time to make his case as the team waits for word on Marsh and Clemens, and you can expect to see him starting in left field a few times before decision day arrives. The thinking here is that the most likely outcome is a straight swap of Marsh for Dahl, with the Phils hoping to get lucky enough to stash him in Triple-A again.

Cristian Pache, OF

Another brutal call awaits on Pache, who made the 26-man roster in March out of spring training at the expense of Jake Cave. Pache has no remaining MiLB options, and the team likes his speed and defense. However he's been a complete non-factor on offense, hitting just .217 in limited opportunities. At just 25, the Phils might covet his services more than Dahl, who is 30. 

The Phils will most likely be making the decision here on whether to keep Pache or Dahl in the organization, or if they'd rather keep one of the two while sending Clemens back to the minors.

Kody Clemens, Util

Clemens was a sparkplug after his most recent call up, hitting three homers in 39 at bats with a .256 average. He has seven total extra base hits in his brief time with the team. Clemens has positional versatility, but he also has two remaining minor league options. Unfortunately for Clemens, the most likely scenario is his demotion after he returns from the IL, with an opportunity for a promotion upon another roster spot opening up.

Edmundo Sosa, SS

The final piece in the puzzle here is Sosa, who is not in any risk of demotion to the minors — but is at risk of being demoted to the bench after Turner returns to shortstop. Sosa has slashed .294/.358/.532 in 36 games this season, 28 of which were started at SS. The team will no doubt want to keep his bat in the lineup, and outfield is the position that comes to mind. He has exactly 5.1 innings of MLB experience in the outfield, but his right-handed bat could theoretically platoon perfectly with Marsh hitting from the left side upon his return. 

Whit Merrifield and Nick Castellanos are statistically the weakest hitters on the team but each is being paid too handsomely to be demoted. The team has a lot on its plate — but getting that duo hitting right is certainly a priority as the Phillies continue to solidify themselves as World Series contenders.

News on how exactly the Phillies will handle the upcoming roster swaps should trickle in over the next few weeks.

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