out whether 1 year potential Andrew Painter will be able to make the Opening Day rosterAaron Nola’s future with the Philadelphia Phillies will likely be the main story in the club’s spring training.
Phyllis drilled, without thinking twice NOLA Club’s $16 million option for 2023. It came after a season in which he led all pitchers with a 6.3, to me fangrafs. To say that a four-year/$45 million deal — which, with option exercise, turned into a five-year/$61 million deal — was Nola’s team-friendly agreement is putting it lightly.
As Nola and his representative at Paragon Sports International look forward to his second major day, it’s clear the 30-year-old will be looking for a much bigger deal this time around.
And the Philly, it seems, must be anxious to appease Nola. The former first-round pick may not be all that great in the sense that Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee were, but over the past five seasons, he’s posted a 3.47 ERA and 3.24 FIP across an MLB-leading 871 2/3 innings.
So have President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski and General Manager Sam Fuld and Phils started talking about a new deal with NOLA?
“I think there’s been a loose dialogue, not necessarily just now, but really over a long period of time,” Fuld said earlier this week at the Philadelphia Athletic Association dinner.
“I mean, we love Aaron,” Fuld continued. “Obviously he was a big part of our run to the World Series, of course. But I think he was a big part of our culture and he was really a rock in that rotation. So I think it’s foolish not to try to keep someone like that in your organization as long as possible.”
The Phillies have the aforementioned painter likely to make his major league debut sometime in 2023, and likely Two other top possibilities for the organization – Mick Abel and Griff McGarry – also do the same.
The fact that the Phillies believe they have three potential starting pitchers on the cusp of the majors could serve as a good insurance policy if they are going to lose NOLA after the 2023 season.
Make no mistake, though, it would be nearly impossible to lose Nola and not become a worse team. The Phillies hope their three painters, Abel and McGarry, will become rookie frontline pitchers, but chances are at least one of them won’t. The most exciting part for the Phillies about possibly having their top three pitching prospect since Nola himself is that they can finally join him in the rotation.
Plus, Zack Wheeler could become a free agent after the 2024 season. He’s been stellar over his first three seasons with the Phillies, and if he continues in this cycle, one would think they’d want to keep him beyond his current five-year/118m contract. dollar.
But if you had to bet on whether Nola or Wheeler would age better, the former would probably have the edge as he never relied on a throwback in the ’90s and didn’t actually have Tommy John surgery once. (Nola is three years younger than Wheeler, and he will be 33 in May.)
As we noted earlierCarlos Rodon landed Six-year deal / $162 million In free agency from the New York Yankees off season. He would be a year younger than Nola if he made it to free agency, but he has more health concerns and less of a general track record. From Nola’s perspective, Rodon’s deal looks like the starting point for the kind of contract he should pursue. And given that he’s on his way to being one of the greatest pitchers in Phillies history, they might be tempted to meet that asking price.
If Painter is immediately an impact player, the Phillies will have one of baseball’s best runs in 2023 with him, Nola, Wheeler, Ranger Suárez and Taijuan Walker. And yes, it would be foolish not to try and keep this group of pitchers together for several seasons.
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