2020 Offseason

When will Bryson Stott be ready for the majors?

With Didi Gregorius hitting the free agent market, the Philadelphia Phillies have a question mark at the shortstop position. The team’s long-term answer could be one of its minor-league prospects, who may be ready to contribute sooner rather than later.

Bryson Stott is a former first-round pick. (Baseball Betsy)

Former first-round pick Bryson Stott, the top position prospect in the Phillies’ system, looks to be the most likely candidate to become the team’s regular shortstop in the near future, and could potentially reach the majors as early as this upcoming season.

Stott, who the Phillies selected at No. 14 in the 2019 draft, had his traditional minor-league season canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the left-handed hitter was still able to get his training in during the 2020 season, and perhaps had an even better experience than he would have in a typical season.

Despite never playing a full season in the minors, Stott spent much of the shortened season at the team’s alternate training site in Lehigh Valley. He hit well in intrasquad games there, while facing many pitchers whose talent sat on the fringe of Triple-A and major-league level. This was much more advanced competition than Stott probably would have faced in a minor-league season, considering he had only reached short-season Single-A in 2019.

The fact that Stott found success in Lehigh Valley could bode well for his development path. Showing he can handle more experienced pitchers could prove that the 23-year-old might be ready to make the jump to the majors soon.

Of course, expecting a rookie to step up on opening day of 2021 and immediately fill the shoes of Gregorius would likely be a bit unrealistic. Gregorius had an extremely impressive season with the Phillies in 2020. He hit 10 home runs with an OPS of .827 in 60 games with the team. His offensive production at shortstop will not be easy to replace if he leaves Philadelphia. But after the Phillies declined to give Gregorius a one-year qualifying offer, it seems very possible that the shortstop could leave in free agency.

Stott may be able to fill some of that lost offensive output down the line. Until he reaches that point, the Phillies could opt to sign a veteran infielder for the upcoming season. That player (or one of Scott Kingery or Jean Segura) could play shortstop in the beginning of the 2021 season. If Stott appears ready for big-league playing time at some point during the year, he could then likely take over at shortstop for the foreseeable future.

Re-signing Gregorius or acquiring another shortstop could change the Phillies’ plans for Stott. A position change could be in the cards, depending how things shake out. Regardless, Stott has developed nicely as a prospect, and it might not be much longer until he can be seen in Joe Girardi’s lineup.


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