This offseason should be an intriguing one for the Philadelphia Phillies. They head into free agency following their first non-playoff season since 2006. With no remarkable free agents thanks to the Cole Hamels extension and Shane Victorino and Joe Blanton trades, the Phillies really have no departures to worry ,but nonetheless have many a hole to fill.
Among the Phillies' biggest weaknesses this past season were the bullpen, outfield, third base, and despite offseason additions to prevent it, the bench.
Acquisitions such as Chad Qualls and Ty Wigginton blew up in the Phillies' faces, and while Jim Thome was a nice clubhouse presence to have back, he really doesn't belong on an NL team at this stage in his career. Laynce Nix was also average when he played, but he spent a good portion of the season on the DL with a calf injury.
Additionally, players such as Placido Polanco and Jose Contreras were signed for one year too many on their contracts, and with both of their options bought out, the two have become free agents. Midseason acquisitions Josh Lindblom and Nate Schierholtz struggled out of the gate as Phillies, the latter even possibly a non-tender candidate. And with Qualls failing to deliver as a veteran presence, the relatively young bullpen, on the whole, was atrocious, save for Jonathan Papelbon and Jeremy Horst.
Keeping that in mind, the Phillies have many positions in need of an upgrade. Here's five that stand out.
All projected Opening Day lineups courtesy MLBDepthCharts.com