Fresh off a surprising World Series appearance, the Philadelphia Phillies continue to make headlines amidst MLB free agency.
The Phillies signed free-agent shortstop Trea Turner to an 11-year, $300 million deal on Monday, which further shifts the balance of power in the National League.
The National League champions are adding a career .300 hitter with two All Star nods and a World Series title on his resume.
There are plenty of reactions to the rich getting richer and the reported reasons why Turner signed with the Phillies.
Why Trea Turner chose Philadelphia
Trea Turner is essentially playing the rest of his career in Philadelphia. Just like Bryce Harper, Turner’s contract has a full no-trade clause.
It’s been rumored since July that Turner was eyeing a return to the East Coast. Turner, 29, is from Boynton Beach, Florida. The Phillies hold Spring Training workouts in Clearwater, Florida.
Turner’s wife, Kristen, is a native of Flemington, New Jersey, which is about an hour away from Citizens Bank Park.
In addition to being familiar with the Philadelphia area, Turner is also familiar with a few players and coaches. Turner played with Harper for four seasons and with Kyle Schwarber in 2021 with the Nationals. Turner also played under Phillies hitting coach Kevin Long in Washington, where the two won a World Series together in 2019.
The star shortstop also reportedly turned down a larger offer from the San Diego Padres to join the Phillies.
The Nationals have been gutted over the years, losing Harper, Schwarber, Turner, Juan Soto and Max Scherzer via trade or free agency. The first three names on the Nationals’ departure list chose Philadelphia.
Phillies player and fan reactions to Trea Turner signing
Honestly, it wasn’t too much of a surprise when Turner signed with the Phillies. They had a need at shortstop, Turner knows several players and coaches and has family from the area.
Still, when the 10th $300 million contract in baseball history is signed by the Phillies, it’s big news.
Though Bryson Stott is likely to play second base after signing Turner, the 25-year-old took to his drawing skills to show his excitement.
— Bryson Stott (@bryson_stott10) December 5, 2022
It remains to be seen what the Phillies do with Rhys Hoskins, but the Hoskins household appears to be excited.
— jayme (@jaymehoskins) December 5, 2022
Maybe the real reason Turner said no to San Diego?
Here is the real reason Trea Turner chose Philadelphia over San Diego pic.twitter.com/jFXw9fA1A8
— Philly Sports Sufferer 🇺🇸 (@mccrystal_alex) December 6, 2022
Turner has already changed his Instagram bio to include the Phillies and an edited photo of himself in a Phillies uniform.
Here are some other reactions to Turner joining the Phillies:
TreaTurner!!!!!???? Wow. Go @Phillies
— Ruben Amaro, Jr. (@RAJr_20) December 5, 2022
Trea Turner is a Phillie pic.twitter.com/PE4KJvaLvm
— SPORTSRADIO 94WIP (@SportsRadioWIP) December 5, 2022
Here’s Trea Turner being ridiculously fast. pic.twitter.com/2utbuirWZ2
— John Foley (@2008Philz) December 5, 2022
Can Trea Turner be the best shortstop in Phillies history?
The Phillies do not have a rich history of great shortstops in franchise history. The only two that come to mind are Larry Bowa and Jimmy Rollins. Of course winning a World Series, as Bowa and Rollins did, etch your name in the franchise history books.
Turner will certainly have to do his fair share of winning, perhaps a ring, if he wants to pass Rollins as an all-time Phillies great.
To this point, Turner has better numbers than Rollins did in his career. Of course, there’s plenty of career left for Turner.
Turner’s 162 game averages include:
- .302 BA / .355 OBP / 24 HR / 83 RBI / 36 2B / 7 3B / 44 SBs / 112 R
Rollins’ 162 game averages include:
- .267 BA / .324 OBP / 16 HR / 67 RBI / 36 2B / 8 3B / 33 SB / 101 R
If Turner can keep building on his numbers, he’ll likely be the best shortstop in Phillies history. He’s proven over the past few years that his incredible speed and ability to hit for a high average can impact today’s game like only a few others.
Since Rollins, the Phillies have seen the likes of Freddy Galvis, Scott Kingery, Jean Segura and Didi Gregorious play shortstop, none of which did it at Rollins’ level.
Turner will be a welcome addition at shortstop.