Two of last years starters were notified that their options were declined. Former MVP Andrew McCutchen and former All-Star Odubel Herrera will be playing elsewhere in 2022. So 2/3’rd of last years starting outfield will be looking for work elsewhere.
Its not all that surprising. McCutchen came to Philly in 2018 signing a 3 year, $47 million dollar deal. He became a club house favorite and a guy who showed he could get on base at an impressive clip. But his first season with the Phillies was cut short when he tore his ACL. And his second season was trying to regain his previous form in a shortened season. This past year, at the age of 34, he had a slash line of .222/.334/.444. He did however have 27 home runs with 80 RBI so he was productive when he did make contact. But his $15 million dollar option was too much for the Phils.
Herrera was a great Rule 5 find by the previous Phillies regime. His rookie season he proved to be a true Major League contributor. In 2016 he was the Phillies representative for the All-Star game, and in 2017 he led the league in doubles. Before the 2017 season he signed a 5 year, $30.5 million dollar deal, which looked like a steal at the time. But in 2019 he was suspended after a domestic dispute incident. His first full season back was 2021 and he finished with a slash line of .260/.310/.416.
The Phillies have heavily invested in the outfield in recent drafts, and they might be looking to go towards a youth movement around Bryce Harper. This would be a cheaper option than spending on the free agent market. Former 1st overall pick Mickey Moniak, former 8th overall pick Adam Haseley would likely be given first crack to win a spot or two. Although both were given every opportunity last year to do the same and they couldn’t seize the opportunity. There are also guys like Matt Vierling and Luke Williams who made an impact last season with the big club.