Philadelphia Phillies: 3 needs to address before Opening Day

Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports /
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Philadelphia Phillies
Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports /

My confidence meter for the 2022 Philadelphia Phillies isn’t so high right now. The team was a major disappointment in 2021—a running theme for the last several seasons.

You can spin it and say they finished above .500 or claim they still finished in second place. This doesn’t ease any of the worry. The Phillies are a faulty team with some major needs to address.

Among them all, these three are the most important.

The Philadelphia Phillies desperately need an outfielder

Should the Phillies look to upgrade in center field or left field? The true answer is both. Otherwise, we’re going to see them plugging in some guys best suited for Triple-A into one of these essential positions.

I previously looked at some center field options for the Phillies both internally and externally. Prior to that, in the pre-lockout days of Major League Baseball, I thought of a few cheaper options for the team to consider at the left-field spot in their pursuit to replace Andrew McCutchen.

None of it is all that exciting. The outfield market in free agency is rather weak. Each guy comes with some risk.

The bigger risk, however, would be to hand one of the starting jobs to someone like Adam Haseley or Mickey Moniak. Neither is ready for regular big league at-bats. At best, they’re a fifth outfielder, and each is trending toward becoming nothing more than this in their major league career.

If there was only one outfield position in need of an upgrade, the Phillies could get away with a lesser option. They could go with a defense-first player in center field and rely on offense from Bryce Harper and whoever their left fielder happens to be.

Unless they can pull a rabbit out of their caps and find someone fantastic for left-field duties in 2022, it’s not a secure plan.