The Philadelphia Phillies made one of the bigger splashes of free agency with the signing of starting pitcher Zack Wheeler. The 29-year-old righty agreed to a five-year, $118 million contract to jump from the New York Mets to their division rival.
On Wednesday's installment of "Nothing Personal with David Samson," Samson discussed the signing of Wheeler and believes that it's one that the Phillies could regret down the road.
"What if the signing of Zach Wheeler three years from now, you're paying him $23.6 million...you haven't gotten a ring or been back to the playoffs since the Girardi/Wheeler/Harper era began. Except now you're stuck with him. How do you all feel about Jake Arrieta?" Samson said.
The Phillies are coming off a season in which they put together just a 81-81 record and missed the postseason. This came after an offseason in which the front office spent "stupid money" to sign Bryce Harper to a massive 13-year contract.
Philadelphia was ravaged by injuries and a sub-par starting rotation that ultimately sealed the fate of manager Gabe Kapler. Now the Phillies have Joe Girardi in the dugout and hope that their fortunes will change.
Samson believes that Wheeler may not be the top-of-the-rotation pitcher that the Phillies are projecting him to be.
"$23.6 million tells me you're going to like Wheeler this year," Samson added. "But you're not going to like him for what you want him to be. You're going to have to like him for what he is. What he is is a nice number three or four starter that goes behind aces. The Mets rotation was good because they had Jacob deGrom and Noah Syndergaard."
Obviously, this is the first of several likely moves by the Phillies. However, the success of Wheeler over the first few years of this contract will determine if the franchise made a mistake.