The Phillies hire Juan Samuel to coach third base, move Perlozzo to first

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Wow, ever write a blog post and realize that you didn’t need much more than the headline.  Yep, that pretty much says it all: Juan Samuel will be the third base coach, Sam Perlozzo moves to first.

This pretty much negates everything I said about Samuel’s stolen base proficiency the other day, because it’s not too often that he’ll be talking a guy at third into snagging home.  More importantly, however, it may lessen the ire of a lot of Phillies fans who had grown unhappy with Perlozzo’s work sending and stopping runners.

It seems like every team’s fan base has some issue with their third base coach, and I don’t know that we’ve yet come up with a good way to determine, objectively, how good a job a third base coach really does (we do believe that they should send more runners).  However, Philly fans have complained about Perlozzo pretty steadily.  And that wonderful play in the NLCS in which Roy Oswalt ran right through Perlozzo’s stop sign to score was one of the more notable rebuke’s of a base coach’s authority in recent history. The pitcher, dude.  Even he trust you.

Phillies, Red Sox interested in Carlos Santana

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The Phillies and Red Sox appear intent on pursuing free agent first baseman Carlos Santana, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports. Santana rejected a one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Indians on Thursday and is expected to draw widespread interest on the market this winter. The Mets, Mariners, Angels and Indians could make a play for the infielder, though no serious offers have been made this early in the offseason.

Santana, 31, is coming off of a seven-year track with the Indians. He batted .259/.363/.455 with 23 home runs and 3.0 fWAR last season, making 2017 the fourth-most valuable year of his career to date. Although he was primarily stationed at first base over the last year, he could step back into a hybrid first base/DH role with the Red Sox, who are hurting for infield depth with Hanley Ramirez still working his way back from shoulder surgery.

As for Santana’s other suitors, the Mariners are far less likely to pursue a deal after trading for Ryon Healy last Wednesday. Neither the Mets nor the Phillies have a DH spot to offer the veteran infielder, and the Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins appears to be blocking the way at first base. Then again, Santana may not find a more enticing offer outside of Cleveland, where Edwin Encarnacion might otherwise be the club’s best option at first base. During the GM meetings, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff said he “love to have both [Santana and Jay Bruce] back” in 2018, but hasn’t backed up that love with any contract talks just yet.