Phillies Using 40 Man Roster As Bullpen

The Phillies’ 40 man roster is full of pitchers, a fact that becomes very clear they have any hitting injuries. Some of the pitchers on the 40 man roster (Drew Anderson, Franklyn Kilome, Jose Taveras, and Ranger Suarez) are prospects in development, and others like Ben Lively are rotation depth. The rest of the roster is relievers stuck in the process of trying to be major leaguers. In this era of baseball teams have used those pitchers as a taxi squad of sorts. The Phillies to open the year mostly stuck with their opening bullpen, only making changes when injuries demanded it. In the past week they have made the following moves.

  • RHP Luis Garcia to 10 day DL
  • Mark Leiter Jr to AAA
  • Jake Thompson to MLB
  • Yacksel Rios to MLB
  • Hector Neris to AAA
  • Austin Davis to MLB
  • Jake Thompson to AAA
  • Zac Curtis to MLB

Now these moves don’t look major from a distance. That is the back of a roster filler, and that is exactly what it is. The Phillies most nights are going to turn to some combination of Victor Arano, Seranthony Dominguez, Edubray Ramos, Adam Morgan, and Tommy Hunter to solve their problems. Neris and Garcia (who has fairly minor injury) had been part of that group, but had been struggling for a while. The long man on the roster had been seeing work every week or so.

With these moves, the Phillies seem to looking for the optimal set of marginal relievers. They have shuffled the long man (Thompson and Leiter) after they have pitched in games, and in the most recent move, promoted their 3rd LHP to majors. Given that the Phillies have cared little for conventional wisdom on stocking lefties (mostly because their LHPs have been bad), it is a bit of a curious decision. However, when we look at the Phillies’ next series it starts to make sense. The Washington Nationals feature an outfield of left handed hitters in Bryce Harper, Adam Eaton, and Juan Soto, and another prominent hitter in Daniel Murphy. This year, Harper is hitting .209/.346/.407 off of lefties, Eaton is hitting .167/.231/.167 (13 PAs), and Murphy had an OPS .137 lower off lefties last season. Zac Curtis may not be good, but if you are going to carry 8 relievers, having one that can be used for one out situations seems like a good thing to have, especially if it frees up Austin Davis and Adam Morgan for higher leverage situations.

The Phillies should be able to continue this trend after this series. Luis Garcia is out of options, but the Phillies have plenty of options on Davis and Rios to send them down temporarily. If they need to play more roster shenanigans, Ramos, Dominguez, Arano, and Morgan all have the ability to be sent down temporarily once Neshek is back. Even if the Phillies don’t mess with those players, they can run a bullpen of Arano, Dominguez, Neshek, Hunter, Morgan, Garcia, and Ramos and just rotate the final slot depending on the opponent. For a bullpen in need of help, the marginal help of a usable 8th arm, may give the Phillies a small boost where there is greatness missing.

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20 comments

  1. Romus

    June 23, 2018 09:08 AM

    Apparently Garcia could be riding the 10-day DL train a few more times this season.

  2. Wawa Mike

    June 24, 2018 09:23 AM

    It’s time to expand the 25 man roster. Maybe they can do a 3 man taxi squad. You could deactivate the starting pitchers of the 2 previous games, and a 3rd catcher (who would only be eligible in case of injury).

    • Romus

      June 25, 2018 09:45 AM

      Could be topic agenda for next CBA. Maybe tag along addendum/modification to the double-header rule. I am sure MLBPA endorses it… will increase its membership
      Management will need to come on board to incorporate 30-90 extra players in the league, and all the other aspects of computation of service time, changes to the option process if any, et al.

  3. Lew

    June 24, 2018 08:43 PM

    Who says a reliever has to throw 96-100mph to be effective!! When a reliever starts the inning with no runners on, it doesnt matter if he gets k’s or long fly balls. Ok rto change speeds, throw breaking balls etc. save your 98 mph til you need a k in a runners in scoring position situation

  4. William

    June 25, 2018 10:59 AM

    The Phillies could be in first place if they had a somewhat good closer.

    • Chris S

      June 25, 2018 12:47 PM

      This implies that Dominguez is not good, and that is just not true. Really would be nice to have Neshek in the bullpen though.

    • awh

      July 08, 2018 10:21 AM

      UPDATE: Dominguez IS the closer (relief ace) and they are in first place!!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Lyle Frehafer

    June 27, 2018 04:41 AM

    ABOUT TIME the Phillies tell Gabe Kapler that spring training is over . He thinks he is the
    ALL SEEING EYE playing an imaginary battery operated board game instead of a once revered
    major league baseball team.
    He’s not a manager , his moving players around has upset them because they’re not sure where
    they’ll be playing and what position will they hit in the batting order.
    Get rid of Gabe and the GM who hired him; buy them each battery operated baseball games and
    move them as far from Philadelphia as possible. Bring back major league baseball please !

    • Romus

      June 27, 2018 07:56 AM

      Joe Girardi perhaps?

      • Lyle Frehafer

        June 28, 2018 11:01 AM

        Joe Girardi is an experienced major league manager however, since their Iron Pigs manager is more familiar with the team having managed many of them before, I’d
        favor Dusty over Joe.
        My reasoning being Joe is too dependent on DH’s who have dragged the grand old game
        down along with the rules on walks, slides into bases, and instituted multiple playoff games at the end of the season to attract ‘losers” attention and keep the turnstiles turning.
        It’s a matter of preference, not an argument .

  6. Steve

    June 28, 2018 12:48 PM

    Instead of letting this site die a slow death, how about you just put your links to where ever you actually write your articles and people can than jump to those sites. This has become pathetic and you should be ashamed to even say you are managing this site. Bill where are you these days?

    • Romus

      June 29, 2018 04:44 PM

      You can go to a site like ” The Good Phight”.
      www.thegoodphight.com
      There are plenty of articles and every game has a Game Thread with a running chat room.
      A minor league report a few times a week.
      A writer covers prospects and drafted guys
      A general article on the Phillies.
      And a writer who dwells in analytics.
      Basically something for everyone.

      • Steve

        July 02, 2018 11:36 AM

        I know where all these sites are and I find it comical that I was down voted 3 times. By whom? This site has lost their way. The Phils just kicked ass and they can’t even find time to post one article. Defend them all you want Romus but this site needs a fork stuck in it.

  7. Jack

    July 04, 2018 08:34 AM

    Haven’t posted a story in almost two weeks. What gives?

    • dun and gone fishing

      July 09, 2018 02:13 PM

      Since Bill Baer quit this site, no writer stepped up as they all have their own personnel blogs that they manage and for some reason they won’t just shut this site down even though it has become irrelevant. Only Romus posts here.

  8. Wawa Mike

    July 05, 2018 01:01 PM

    I understand that Thompson was sent down to Lehigh. Does anybody know who is being brought up?

    • Romus

      July 05, 2018 02:47 PM

      Be nice if it were Irvin or De Los Santos, but neither are on the 40 so that seems ulikely…….and not Hector, let hope..
      Is Edu Ramos schedule to come off the 10-day DL?

    • Romus

      July 05, 2018 02:50 PM

      Ramos’ 10 days are up…..June 25, 2018 was his transaction date.
      His shoulder impingement must be healed.

      • Wawa Mike

        July 05, 2018 05:42 PM

        Romus … I heard that Ramos recovery has been slow.

      • Chris S

        July 06, 2018 08:56 AM

        That’s odd cause Ramos threw a bullpen on Wednesday. Unless that didn’t go well it seems like he is close to being ready to go.

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