As a potential lockout looms, Major League Baseball's hot stove is burning up, and Philadelphia Phillies President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski knows the team has multiple holes to fill this offseason. Between the big names like Corey Seager, Nick Castellanos, or Kris Bryant, and with more and more of those big names coming off of the board, there lies an entire market of players that get lost in the fold, but can still serve a team well.
Among those free agents, the Phillies should look beyond the pricey, big names, and aim to find some players that could serviceably fill the gaps on their roster and come at a reasonable price. Here are four players currently on the free agent market that Dombrowski and the Phillies could consider bringing in that fit this criteria:
1. Andrelton Simmons, SS
Offensively, Simmons is not an appealing candidate, but his defense is where his value lies. The 32-year-old is a four-time Gold Glove Award winner, and could serve as a serviceable stop-gap shortstop for the Phillies until Bryson Stott is ready, especially with Didi Gregorius struggling defensively and not being guaranteed as the Opening Day shortstop. Simmons' defense would certainly be an upgrade at one of the most important defensive positions on the diamond, and would come at a cheap price (i.e. one-year, $3 million)
2. Corey Dickerson, LF
Dickerson was previously acquired by the Phillies at the 2019 trade deadline from the Pittsburgh Pirates, and then signed as a free agent with the Miami Marlins during the 2019-20 offseason. Dickerson was most recently on the Toronto Blue Jays, and is now a free agent once again. During his brief stint with Philadelphia, Dickerson batted .293/.307/.579 with eight home runs and 34 RBI in 137 plate appearances. The 32-year-old could serve as a platoon player in left field with Andrew McCutchen most likely gone, and provide the Phillies with a left-handed bat in their lineup.
3. Mychal Givens, RHP
Givens has already been rumored to be linked to the Phillies this offseason, and would definitely be a welcome addition to a depleted bullpen, especially after the departure of Héctor Neris. The 31-year-old was acquired by the Cincinnati Reds at the 2021 trade deadline, appearing in 23 games, picking up eight saves in 10 chances, and a 4.22 ERA in 21.1 innings pitched. Overall, the free-agent reliever possesses a career 3.41 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, and 466 strikeouts across 396.1 innings. With the Phillies' noted struggles during the back end of games, Givens being able to offer solid relief in the seventh, eighth, or ninth innings would be huge.
4. Andrew Chafin, LHP
Chafin is coming off a career-best showing between the Chicago Cubs and Oakland Athletics, pitching to the likes of a 1.83 ERA over 68.2 innings pitched, and walking a career-low 7.1% of batters faced. Chafin possesses a wicked slider that perplexes batters on both sides of the plate, and since 2020, he's held right-handed hitters to a .205/.262/.331 line and left-handers to just .190/.266/.267. And with the Phillies also being in need of another lefty out of their bullpen, Chafin would be the perfect fit.
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