The Bryce Harper saga has finally come to a close, as the Phillies have inked the mega-star to a deal worth $330 million. So what do the Phillies look like now?
It’s official. The Philadelphia Phillies have signed Bryce Harper to a 13-year, $330 million contract that does not include any opt-outs. After months of speculation and thoughtful debate, Harper has found a home, and it’s exactly where most expected him to land from the get-go.
So now we ask — what does this team look like with the addition of Harper? Here’s what we may see to open 2019:
- Jean Segura, SS
- Andrew McCutchen, LF
- J.T. Realmuto, C
- Bryce Harper, RF
- Rhys Hoskins, 1B
- Odubel Herrera, CF
- Maikel Franko, 3B
- Cesar Hernandez, 2B
- Pitcher’s spot
Second-year manager Gabe Kapler will definitely have some different variations to consider, is this sets up a versatile lineup with guys who can hit in different spots. Hernandez and McCutchen each have experience hitting leadoff too, which is an option Kapler could explore.
But adding a generational bat like Harper’s to a lineup that already added significant talent this offseason just may be enough to make this team into a legitimate World Series threat.
Philadelphia finished dead last in the majors last year in batting average. They were also in the bottom-third in the league in runs scored, slugging percentage and OPS.
Evidently, the plan was to change that this offseason. They entered the winter rich with resources — a barren payroll and a multitude of trade assets. They turned those resources into Segura, McCutchen, Realmuto and now 13 years of Bryce Harper.
The starting rotation is certainly shaky behind Aaron Nola. But if Jake Arrieta can even come anywhere his 2016 Cy Young campaign, this rotation should be able to support a now-thunderous lineup.
It’s always a risk bringing so many new faces into a clubhouse at once. But if Kapler can get the chemistry to balance out, we may very well be looking at a new National League powerhouse.