The Phillies designated first baseman Tommy Joseph for assignment this evening to make room for Jake Arrieta, as announced by the team. Joseph will likely be released in the coming days if he’s not outright, leaving him to look for a new club.
Joseph is more than a 47-year-old man pretending to be a 26-year-old baseball player (look at that picture!); he is a former top prospect behind the plate who had to move away from the backstop due to concussion issues, and has swatted 43 home runs in 249 major league games.
Despite that power, though, Joseph’s play has otherwise left quite a bit to be desired—he’s struck out almost four times for every time he’s walked; he has no speed whatsoever; and perhaps most importantly, his horrendous first base defense has led him to be worth -0.8 wins to his team in the aggregate, per Baseball-Reference.
The Phillies signed Carlos Santana to a 3-year deal this offseason, pushing Rhys Hoskins to left field and pushing Joseph back to 3rd in line at first base behind those two players. And with a league that is suddenly inundated with power hitting corner players, Joseph’s skillset simply isn’t as valuable as it used to be.
The righty swinger reportedly almost went overseas to Asia to play, and if he’s released by the Phillies, that’s an opportunity that he could very well continue to explore.