Truck Day is one of my favorite moments of the offseason.

First off, it’s pretty cool to see what goes into getting the team ready for Spring Training.


And the sight of the truck pulling away is enough to warm up anyone on a cold winter day.


Then there’s what’s in the truck that always boggles my mind, courtesy of Phillies.com:

  • 10,000 Powerade cups
  • Photo: Phillies.com

    2,400 baseballs

  • 2,000 shirts
  • 1,200 bats
  • 900 socks
  • 600 pairs of pants
  • 600 hats
  • 350 pairs of shorts
  • 300 batting gloves
  • 250 BP tops
  • 200 fleeces
  • 200 light jackets
  • 140 helmets
  • 125 belts
  • 75 pairs of spikes
  • 40 heavy jackets
  • 20 coolers and half a pallet of Powerade mix
  • 6 bikes

But the best part of all is that Spring Training is right around the corner. Pitchers and catchers have their first official workout on February 17th. This is bound to be an interesting one, and that’s not even taking the pandemic’s ongoing nature into account.


If the Phillies are serious about competing this season, they need to make the right decisions this spring when it comes to some of the position battles that will be going on.


Center Fielder

Manager Joe Girardi will need to find an everyday center fielder.

Right now, Scott Kingery, Adam Haseley, and Roman Quinn are the three contenders, with Kingery probably having the advantage as a super-utility guy.

The Phillies are under the impression Haseley can’t hit lefties, a virtually unproven line of thinking.

Girardi needs to give Haseley every possible opportunity against southpaws this spring. If Haseley can show that he can hit lefties, he more than deserves the starting job. Kingery would be best in his super-utility role, moving around the field and giving guys a rest. Quinn is best suited as a bench player, coming in late in the game as a pinch-runner and wreaking havoc on the basepaths.

4th and 5th Spots in Rotation

Then we have the fight for the fourth and fifth (or possibly sixth if the Phillies want to make a big mistake) spot in the rotation. Right now, the locks are Aaron Nola, Zack Wheeler, and Zach Eflin. After that, it’s wide open. Spencer Howard, Vince Velasquez, Matt Moore, Chase Anderson, Ranger Suarez, and Ivan Nova will compete for the last spots.

The best-case scenario would be Howard shows he can hang in the big leagues, and Moore pitches like the former top prospect he was. This would push Velasquez into the bullpen, where he can shine, and fans don’t need to worry about him letting up multiple home runs in the first inning ever again.

Bullpen

Speaking of the bullpen, that might be the most interesting area to watch this spring. After a historically bad 2020 that saw the bullpen posted a league-worst 7.06 ERA, the pressure on the pen to perform has never been more significant. There have been some acquisitions, such as Archie Bradley, but the pessimism still runs high.

If a handful of guys can step up this spring and put up even halfway decent performances, it should go a long way to easing the fear in the fan’s minds.


You’re also going to get the players who put up insane numbers during Spring Training and force their way onto the Opening Day roster.
But the team needs to focus on the center field, the back end of the rotation, and the bullpen to have any shot of competing in 2021.

Featured Image: Phillies.com
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