The Philadelphia Phillies have an infield problem on their hands.
Between Scott Kingery, Jean Segura, Didi Gregorius, and Alec Bohm waiting in the wings, they have one too many starters for three spots.

Kingery isn’t going anywhere. He’s under control through at least 2023, and with club options for the three seasons after that at an affordable price, he’s going to be one of the cornerstones of this franchise moving forward. Plus, with him fully entrenched as the everyday second baseman, his stock is only going to go up.

That leaves Segura, Didi, and Bohm.

Bohm is going to play this year, there’s no doubt in that. He’s the number 30 prospect in baseball, and in a shortened season the Phillies need to let him play every day and get regular at-bats. Like Kingery, Bohm appears to be part of the nucleus of the club moving forward, the third baseman of the future, and the sooner he gets here the better the team will be because of it.

And then there were two.

Segura can’t become a free agent until after the 2023 season, while Gregorius is a free agent after this season. But should that make a difference? At first glance, it seems pretty easy. Gregorius will only be here for a year, and Segura will move back to shortstop in 2021.

But when you dive into it further, that might not be the best option for the Phillies, and the MLB lines for those games don’t lie.

Gregorius has been a great addition to the team this year. First off, his smile and a positive attitude can be infectious and can help the team through the unusual 2020 campaign and through the playoffs.

On top of that, he’s been one of the best players on the team this year, hitting .333/.412/.733 with two solo home runs.

Segura, on the other hand, has had a disappointing four games so far. He’s only hitting .200/.294/.200 with one RBI. This follows up a decent season last year, but not his best season. While he’s definitely a good player, he might have more value elsewhere.

When the trade deadline rolls around – August 31 this year – it’s going to look a little different. More teams will be in the hunt with the expanded playoffs. That might mean there are fewer sellers. With it being a month later this year, it also means that teams will be less willing to trade valuable prospects for a one to a two-month rental. After all, the chance of winning the playoffs is going to be lower for teams this season with the expanded field.

Instead, players who are under control for a few more seasons will be more valuable. Segura could be the perfect addition to a team in the hunt. He’s under control for a few more seasons and is a solid player. In return, the Phillies could get some bullpen help. A starting pitcher. Something they need more than Segura.

Now, this only makes sense if they can re-sign Gregorius. But with Segura’s money off the books, they could theoretically push that over to Gregorius.

Didi is the better player. After all, he took over at shortstop in New York for the all-time great Derek Jeter. It takes a special player to do that.

With Rhys Hoskins at first, Kingery at second, Bohm at third, and Bryce Harper in right, slotting Gregorius in at short for the next few seasons could go a long way to making the Phillies a bigger threat in the National League for years to come.

Featured Image: Mitchell Leff/Getty Images
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