Look, I’m just going, to be honest with you. I don’t think the Phillies’ season is over yet. They still have seven games left with the Atlanta Braves, the only problem is the Phillies are 7.5 games back right now. The Phillies need to win two out of three from the Miami Marlins this weekend, AND they need the Washington Nationals to take two out of three from the Braves. This is a tough ask, but I think it is possible. IF THIS HAPPENS, the Phillies will be 5.5 back from the Braves with seven left to play. Obviously, it is going to be very tough but that’s baseball. With all of that being said, I leave you with this question, is it too early to start talking about the Phillies’ offseason?
— SportsNet New York (@SNYtv) September 14, 2018
Phillies’ offseason 2018-2019
The 2018 season as a whole had a lot of ups and downs for the Phillies. This team was in first place for the first time in about five years, that itself should have been enough. But what often happens with a team that is ahead of schedule, the fans got excited. I’m not saying there is anything wrong with this, but the expectations for this team changed from before the season, during the season, and now the end of the season.
If we start to look at some of the potential moves the Phillies will make this season, an interesting story came out today.
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) September 14, 2018
I am one of the people who has been saying this for some time now. I fully expect the Phillies to sign EITHER Harper or Machado. The crazy part is, the Phillies could actually sign both. If you take a look of the money that the Phillies have locked up, it’s not a lot. They have Carlos Santana, Jake Arrieta, and Odebul Herrera. Besides that, there are no contracts on the books that would suggest this possibility is not out of the question.
Bryce Harper or Manny Machado??
For the Phillies’ front office and their fans, this is going to be a discussion for the entire offseason. Harper is primarily a right fielder who can also play center field. Machado was drafted as a shortstop but played an outstanding third base for the Orioles until this season.
This past offseason, Machado made it clear to management that he wanted to move back to shortstop. Think about that, probably the best third basemen in baseball wants to move to shortstop where he has become probably the best defensive shortstop in baseball. The only other player that I may put above him defensively is Andrelton Simmons.
So, if you are the Phillies who do you want? Obviously, you would want both but for this discussion to try to pick one. Harper has won an MVP before in 2015, but Machado has won numerous gold gloves and platinum gloves. However, Machado is no slouch at the plate. He is a career .282 hitter with 172 home runs and 499 RBIs. I’m not sure there is a right answer here. Both have suffered injuries that sidelined them for a significant amount of time. This is the classic pick your poison.
Phillies fans' dreams could be closer to reality than you think.
A couple of MLB executives believe the Phillies could land ✨both✨ Manny Machado and Bryce Harper this offseason.
— NBC Sports Philadelphia (@NBCSPhilly) September 14, 2018
My Prediction for the Phillies 2018-19 offseason
As you can see from the title of the article, I’m not sure if it is too early to talk about the Phillies’ offseason. However, since I am writing this article, I want my prediction to go down on the record. I have been saying this for some time now, the Phillies will sign BOTH Harper and Machado! I am all in on this. They have the money and the need for both of these players.
The things that will attract both players to Philadelphia are as follows; the young core of players, the starting rotation, and finally the stadium/fans. The young core of players overlaps with the starting rotation, but Rhys Hoskins, Aaron Nola, Nick Pivetta, Herrera (yes he is still young), Zach Eflin. These guys have shown the baseball world that this team is not that far away from being great.
The stadium is one of the best atmospheres in the MLB and the fans are so incredibly die-hard that players want to play for them. Harper and Machado will be penciled into the Phillies lineup next year in right field and shortstop respectively.
— Justin R. Choate (@ChoatesNotes) September 14, 2018