Even as potential young power hitters like Rhys Hoskins shine in the infancy of Spring Training, it's hard not to think of the second greatest power hitter in team history.
Ryan Howard, who is a free-agent for the first time in his career, hasn't signed with a team yet in his quest to continue his career. One league general manager apparently believes that an American League East team should take a shot on the 37-year-old.
The Philadelphia Phillies hope that Friday's performance, in which it took them until the seventh inning to get a hit, isn't indicative of what's to come in 2017. As they attempt to defeat the New York Yankees in a rematch of Friday's game, they'll send Adam Morgan to the mound, who they hope doesn't pitch like he did in 2016.
After posting a 4.48 ERA in 15 starts for the Phillies in 2016, Morgan regressed in 2016, going 2-11 with a 6.04 ERA in 23 appearances, 21 of which were starts, in 2016. Given his lefthanded status, there's been speculation that the Phillies may move Morgan to the bullpen, so even though he's starting the game today, the short outing he'll have will likely go some way in determining whether he starts the 2017 season at the Major League level.
Morgan will pitch in front of much of what is expected to make up the team's Opening Day lineup, with the exception that Aaron Altherr will DH for the Phillies.
Mackanin hasn't formally set the order for the rotation, but it's fairly easy to project the order. If Hellickson starts on Opening Day, then Jerad Eickhoff will start the team's second game and new-Phillie Clay Buchholz will likely get the nod in the final game of the series.
Jayson Werth's legacy in Philadelphia will probably never represent how good he was in his four seasons with the Phillies. In the first four years of the greatest run in franchise history, Werth hit 95 home runs, drove in 300 runs and posted an average WAR of 4.5 per season. And in an organization that's featured Mike Schmidt, Ryan Howard and Chase Utley, Werth became the franchise's all-time leader in playoff home runs.
Werth left the Phillies after the 2010 season, signing a seven-year/$126 million deal with the Washington Nationals, that he's now entering the final season of. In a piece by Bob Brookover of the Philadelphia Inquirer, Werth suggested that winning was his primary reason for heading to Washington: