It's that time of year again where us fans start thinking about what we want for next season (I started this half way through the season personally). Catching, right handed corner outfielder with pop, a starter and a reliever are the spots to fill. Here's my top 5. These are all free agents and I did not explore the trade route here.
1. Carlos Ruiz
I think a good place to start is signing Chooch back up. Part of me has thought about going in the direction of Pierzynski, McCann, or Saltalamacchia but I think Ruiz is practically a coach on this team and has handled the pitching staff well. Yes, there's injuries and last season's suspension that comes into play when deciding but when I weigh the other candidates, I still think Ruiz is the best option for the team. Pierzynski is a close second but Ruiz batting right handed tilted it in his direction.
2. Tim Lincecum
The two time Cy Young winner and World Series champion probably can use that to get get himself a decent contract despite two seasons of less than stellar results. Lincecum however seemed to figure it out eventually last season and even authored a no hitter. His ace days are over but he's a good bet to settle in the middle of a good team's rotation. There's plenty of names out there and the Phillies are sure to end up with one of them to fill out the rotation. Lincecum intrigues me the most. Matt Garza, Scott Kazmir, Ubaldo Jimenez, and Scott Feldman are also options.
3. Jason Giambi
Great bench option and a great clubhouse guy in his older years. Good for those interleague games where a DH is needed as well. The Phillies have had interest in the past. Would be a nice avenue to explore.
4. Michael Morse
In my dream world, Carlos Beltran is who gets signed but a more realistic option is Michael Morse who has had a few lean and injury plagued years lately. The right handed power bat would look great in left field at Citizens Bank Park where he's hit.351/.411/.667 in his career. He's also considerably younger than Beltran which helps his cause.
5. Brett Myers
OK, I've long campaigned against Phillies reunions. There have been a few over the past few seasons and they haven't worked out at all. Myers is coming off a season where he was mostly injured. Looking at the list of free agent relievers, I just feel that maybe the devil we know is the best option here. He'd be a great swing man I think and he knows the routine here.