September 17, 2021

Roster Expands, Infield Shrinks, Josh Harrison Emerges (FanGraphs)

As part of the parade of non-tenders, the Phillies parted ways with two infielders on Monday: second baseman César Hernández and third baseman Maikel Franco. Both Hernández and Franco played important roles in the Phillies’ transitional phase, but in their first attempt at contention this past season, neither player contributed as the team would have hoped. Alas, they are now free agents.

The Phillies’ 2019 infield issues stretched beyond Hernández and Franco, however. Depth was often a problem. They did sign Sean Rodríguez and Phil Gosselin to minor league deals last offseason, and Rodríguez ultimately accumulated 139 plate appearances over 76 games while Gosselin saw 68 plate appearances across 44 contests. They also traded for Brad Miller in June; he made 130 trips to the plate donning red and white pinstripes. All told, these three players received roughly a half-season’s worth of playing time. They were worth 1.4 WAR — a mark that isn’t actually that bad. Still, considering Hernández and Franco themselves were worth just 1.2 WAR, the issues in the Phillies’ infield ran deep.

Phillies Infielders, 2019

Philadelphia will almost definitely make a…

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