Philadelphia Phillies general manager Matt Klentak believes that two of his organization’s more promising prospects, Spencer Howard and Alec Bohm, will be candidates to compete for a roster spot during the team’s summer training camp (h/t Tim Kelly, Phillies Nation).
Bohm and Howard are ranked No. 1 and 2 respectively amongst Phillies prospects and are top-40 young talents across Major League Baseball at Nos. 30 and 34.
Turning 24 in August, Bohm is forecasted to become the next big power bat for the Phillies, adding offensive prowess to an already affluent lineup that features Bryce Harper, Rhys Hoskins and JT Realmuto.
Originally expected to begin 2020 in Double-A, his track to the majors could be accelerated thanks to the universal DH rule implemented by Major League Baseball when agreeing to a 60-game schedule.
The first baseman would have had to make a move to third base if he wanted to see the majors any time soon under old National League rules as Rhys Hoskins has first locked down for the foreseeable future.
Now, Bohm and Hoskins could alternate days at first or at the DH spot.
Last season in A-ball, Advanced-A-ball, and Double-A, Bohm combined to slash .305/.344/.500 with 14 home runs and 42 RBI in 125 games.
Howard, a right-handed pitcher, showed plenty of upside despite dealing with a shoulder injury during the 2019 season. He went 3-1 with a 2.03 ERA in 15 starts at multiple levels of the minors.
The Phillies will be hoping that he can provide another viable arm for a rotation that is in desperate need of depth behind ace Aaron Nola.
An aging Jake Arrieta, who battled elbow issues last year, has been joined by former Mets righty Zack Wheeler after the Phillies dropped $118 million on him in free agency. But behind them, question marks remain when analyzing Nick Pivetta, Vince Velasquez and Zach Eflin.