Kincade & Salciunas: Weekdays 6am – 10am

Kincade & Salciunas: Weekdays 6am – 10am

Kincade & Salciunas: Weekdays 6am – 10am

The Philadelphia Phillies have unofficially set their 26-man roster to begin the 2024 regular season. They’ll take on the Atlanta Braves at Citizens Bank Park on Thursday, March 28 for MLB Opening Day.

A somewhat uneventful spring training didn’t produce many roster battles, but some surprises did emerge during the final week.

Phillies 26-Man Roster

Big names like Bryce Harper, Kyle Schwarber, and Zack Wheeler will always dominate the conversation surrounding the Phillies. However, lesser-known names weren’t locks to earn a spot on the active roster.

Johan Rojas ultimately landed a spot in the big leagues. He’ll most likely play center field on Opening Day despite questions about his offensive production. Cristian Pache benefits from the recent deal that sent Jake Cave to the Colorado Rockies. He’ll occupy a bench spot as an extra outfielder.

Pitching Shuffle

Orion Kerkering entered spring training as a dark horse to earn innings at the back end the high-powered Phillies bullpen. However, he suffered through the flu in Clearwater. He won’t be ready for Opening Day.

The absence of a right-handed arm opens the door for Yunior Marte, Connor Brogdon, and Luis Ortiz on the Opening Day roster. Which fringe roster player will prove himself?

Taijuan Walker will also begin the 2024 season off the 26-man roster, but the Phillies might not use a fifth starter during the first trip through the rotation. Spencer Turnbull would be the likeliest option if Rob Thomson needs a spot start.

“Our makeup and what goes on in that clubhouse is really special. It’s the best I’ve been around. So you want to keep that, but also they’re very talented. So they grind, and they fight. It’s almost sometimes like a college team (with) the energy that they bring and the way they grind, the way they fight for each other. It’s a really special group.” –Rob Thomson


 

  • Infielders

  • Bryce Harper

    Bryce Harper, Philadelphia Phillies

    The biggest superstar in the major leagues will stay in the spotlight for the duration of his contract with the Phillies. His memorable home runs have captured the hearts of Philadelphia fans, and his newest challenge is a permanent position change to first base.

    Expect Harper to exceed his previous two seasons numbers if he can stay healthy for 162 games.

  • Bryson Stott

    Bryson Stott, Philadelphia Phillies

    The Phillies benefitted from Bryson Stott’s breakout season at second base in 2023. The blossoming star showed off an excellent glove. He excelled offensively for most of the year, but he hopes to recover from a late-season slump.

    Stott is approaching status as a fan favorite after his dramatic grand slam to open the flood gates in the NL Wild Card Series at Citizens Bank Park.

  • Alec Bohm

    Alec Bohm, Philadelphia Phillies

    Alec Bohm improved as a third baseman in 2023 and added a little more power from the right side of the plate. He continued his smooth hitting approach. Fans enjoy his ability to hit to all fields and his consistency.

    Bohm won’t hit in the cleanup spot much in 2024 like he did during critical moments last season. He is, however, a good option toward the bottom of one of the deepest MLB lineups.

  • Trea Turner

    Trea Turner, Philadelphia Phillies

    The famous standing ovation seemed to change the momentum of Trea Turner’s first season in Philadelphia. The expected superstar struggled through the first four months of 2023.

    However, if Turner can progress back to his career averages, the Phillies gain a much better bat that they didn’t see during a slow start in 2023. The Phillies didn’t make many offseason upgrades, but they’re counting on improvement from Turner as a key difference in 2024.

  • Edmundo Sosa

    Edmundo Sosa, Philadelphia Phillies

    The Phillies will ask Edmundo Sosa to be their primary reserve infielder. The veteran utility man proved himself as a good addition before the run to the World Series in 2022. He’ll look to provide versatility off the bench in 2024.

  • Outfielders

  • Brandon Marsh

    Brandon Marsh, Philadelphia Phillies Outfielder

    Underwhelming performances against left-handed pitching pushed Rob Thomson to limit Brandon Marsh’s role the past two seasons. The 26-year-old improved his power numbers last season though.

    Marsh still offers a good glove in left field or center field. He’ll look to play an everyday role in 2024.

  • Johan Rojas

    Johan Rojas, Philadelphia Phillies Outfielder

    Johan Rojas became one of the biggest storylines of an otherwise uneventful spring training. The young center fielder ultimately earned a roster spot for Opening Day.

    His excellent glove forced Thomson’s hand despite underwhelming offensive numbers. Rojas could split time with other outfielders if Cristian Pache or Whit Merrifield play their way into more at-bats.

  • Nick Castellanos

    Nick Castellanos, Philadelphia Phillies Outfielder

    After a down season in 2022, Nick Castellanos provided one of the best bats in the middle of the order for long stretches of 2023. He ripped the cover off the ball early in the postseason, but he fell off a cliff with struggles in the NLCS.

    The Phillies will count on his right-handed bat behind lefties Bryce Harper and Kyle Schwarber. Castellanos still has two years remaining on the high-priced contract he signed with Philadelphia before the 2022 season.

  • Whit Merrifield

    Whit Merrifield, Philadelphia Phillies

    The addition of Whit Merrifield made perfect sense for the Phillies. The accomplished veteran brings positional versatility to the bench. He’ll provide insurance if Rojas or other regulars don’t improve offensively.

    Merrifield could step in for more at-bats if the Phillies suffer from the injury bug at some points this season.

  • Cristian Pache

    Cristian Pache, Philadelphia Phillies Outfielder

    The raw potential of Cristian Pache won’t carry him much further. The 25-year-old brings a good glove and speed on the basepaths. However, he must improve offensively to justify a full-time MLB roster spot.

    Pache earned himself a spot on the Opening Day roster. He is out of minor league options, and his future depends on his performance early in the season.

  • Kyle Schwarber (DH)

    Kyle Schwarber, Philadelphia Phillies Outfielder

    The most polarizing Phillies hitter will most likely hit in the leadoff spot to begin the season. Kyle Schwarber struggled as a full-time left fielder last season, but the lineup flexibility with a healthy Bryce Harper should keep Schwarber in the designated hitter spot.

    Schwarber has led the Phillies in home runs in his only two seasons with the club, and he’s doubled the number of any of his teammates.

  • Catchers

  • J.T. Realmuto

    J.T. Realmuto, Philadelphia Phillies

    The 33-year-old catcher is staring Father Time in the face. J.T. Realmuto built a reputation as the best catcher in baseball throughout a long and successful career. He posted excellent numbers in 2022, but he dipped offensively and defensively in 2023.

    Realmuto still provides excellent value behind the plate. He’ll look to silence the critics with a season that proves he’s got plenty left in the tank.

  • Garrett Stubbs

    Garrett Stubbs, Philadelphia Phillies

    The city of Philadelphia has fallen in love with the current group of Phillies. Backup catcher Garrett Stubbs doesn’t play a major role on the diamond, but he can’t seem to stay out of the spotlight in celebrations.

    Stubbs hasn’t provided much offensively behind Realmuto. He’ll look for a better statistical season to justify his roster spot.

  • Starting Pitchers

  • Zack Wheeler

    Zack Wheeler, Philadelphia Phillies

    Dave Dombrowski announced his confidence in Zack Wheeler with a lucrative extension during spring training. The staff ace has dominated in postseason starts (and one relief appearance) for the Phillies.

    He will debut a splitter on Opening Day, and he hopes to reenter the conversation as a candidate for the National League Cy Young.

  • Aaron Nola

    Philadelphia Phillies Fans Cheering on Aaron Nola

    The Aaron Nola debate raged after the stunning playoff exit. Would the Phillies sign their homegrown free agent pitcher after a down season?

    The organization locked up Nola on a long-term deal with the hope that he’ll rebound. The veteran righty will need to limit his tendency to allow a devastating long ball or a poorly-timed big inning.

  • Ranger Suarez

    Ranger Suarez, Philadelphia Phillies

    Ranger Suarez looks as composed as any big league pitcher on the mound. The 28-year-old Venezuelan hopes to pitch a full season in the starting rotation for the first time in 2024.

    His postseason numbers have been incredible, and the Phillies will see if their underrated third starter continues an excellent stretch in the majors.

  • Cristopher Sanchez

    Cristopher Sanchez, Philadelphia Phillies

    Dombrowski didn’t add a big name starting pitcher during the offseason. A major part of his logic was confidence in Cristopher Sanchez.

    The breakout lefty became one of Philadelphia’s best starting pitchers down the stretch of the regular season in 2023. He’ll begin the season in the full-time rotation.

  • Spencer Turnbull

    Philadelphia Phillies Photo Day

    Taijuan Walker will begin the season on the injured list. The vacancy at the bottom of the rotation opens a spot for Spencer Turnbull.

    The Phillies picked up Turnbull on a low-risk deal. He threw a no-hitter with the Tigers in 2021, and he’ll look for a strong start to the season to convince Rob Thomson that he deserves a longer look after Walker returns.

  • Bullpen Pitchers

  • Jose Alvarado

    Jose Alvarado, Philadelphia Phillies Bullpen

    The acquisition of Jose Alvarado from the Tampa Bay Rays turned out to be a steal. The powerful lefty has developed a devastating sinking fastball that reaches 100 miles per hour on the gun.

    He is the best option for Thomson out of the bullpen in high-leverage situations. While the Phillies won’t use a traditional closer, Alvarado could end up with the most saves on the team.

  • Seranthony Dominguez

    Seranthony Dominguez, Philadelphia Phillies Bullpen

    Seranthony Dominguez returned from injury with a vengeance in 2022. He proved himself as one of the best options in a strong bullpen by the time the Phillies reached the postseason.

    The Dominican fireballer took a step back in 2023, which tends to happen to bullpen pitchers. He lost his spot as the primary right-handed reliever to Jeff Hoffman when the Phillies reached the postseason. He has the tools to recover. Look for a big season from Dominguez in 2024.

  • Gregory Soto

    Gregory Soto, Philadelphia Phillies Bullpen

    Midseason injuries to Alvarado and Dominguez forced Gregory Soto into a bigger role. The powerful lefty wore down late last season.

    A more fitting role in 2024 could help to unlock an incredible bullpen arm. He earned two All-Star appearances with the Tigers before coming to Philadelphia last offseason. The Phillies expect that talent to reemerge.

  • Jeff Hoffman

    Jeff Hoffman, Philadelphia Phillies Bullpen

    Jeff Hoffman outperformed his career averages in most statistical categories last season. He worked his way into a trusted relief role at playoff time.

    His mission in 2024 is to prove that last season was no fluke. He is a middle relief option in one of the league’s strongest bullpens.

  • Matt Strahm

    Matt Strahm, Philadelphia Phillies Bullpen

    The Phillies handed a nice payday to Matt Strahm before the season. The swingman developed into a strong left-handed option in 2023. He showed his ability as an impactful weapon who can pitch multiple innings. He’ll play an important role as middle reliever this season.

  • Yunior Marte

    Yunior Marte, Philadelphia Phillies Bullpen

    Yunior Marte struggled in his first two major league outings last season. His statistics skewed based on the sample size. However, he showed enough flashes of dominant stuff to stay with the Phillies for 40 relief appearances.

    Orion Kerkering won’t begin the season on the active roster. Could the opportunity turn into Marte’s big break with the Phillies?

  • Connor Brogdon

    Connor Brogdon, Philadelphia Phillies Bullpen

    It wasn’t that long ago that Connor Brogdon drew comparisons to long-armed righty Ryan Madson. A midseason slump in 2023 resulted in a ride up to Lehigh Valley for the remainder of the season.

    His early-season performance will determine the future for a pitcher out of minor league options.

  • Luis Ortiz

    Luis Ortiz, Philadelphia Phillies

    The Phillies probably didn’t expect Luis Ortiz to make the 26-man roster when spring training began. The 28-year-old benefits from the roster shuffle, however.

    He pitched 14 games for the Phillies last season. He’ll have to convince the front office he deserves to stick at the MLB level.

  • 97.5 The Fanatic

    Watch Kincade & Salciunas on the 97.5 The Fanatic YouTube page for discussion about the latest breaking sports news in Philadelphia.

     

Sign me up for the 97.5 The Fanatic email newsletter!

Become a Fanatic MVP to get the latest info on the Philly Sports landscape, plus access to exclusive content and member-only contests.

*
*
By clicking "Subscribe" I agree to the website's terms of Service and Privacy Policy. I understand I can unsubscribe at any time.