Phils feel '16 will serve as barometer

When club returns to contention will depend partly on prospects' progress

February 20th, 2016

BONITA SPRINGS, Fla. -- Everybody wants to know the Phillies' time frame to win again.

Could it be 2017, '18 or '19?

Phillies' Spring Training info

Phillies president Andy MacPhail and general manager Matt Klentak have wisely not offered any hints because nobody truly knows when they will win again. But they do believe '16 should give them a pretty good idea about it.

"What we're going to find out this year more than anything is what kind of track we're on," MacPhail said Friday evening at Grapefruit League Media Day. "Are we on a fast track? Are we on a medium track? Are we on a slow track? That's going to be determined by the 25 we break with. It's also going to be determined by how some of those next-level guys progress and how many of them demonstrated they're ready to come to the big leagues."

Those next-level guys include six of the top 100 prospects in baseball, according to They will be in camp this spring: shortstop J.P. Crawford, outfielder Nick Williams, right-hander Jake Thompson, right-hander Mark Appel, catcher Jorge Alfaro and outfielder Roman Quinn.

"Matt has said this and he's absolutely right," MacPhail said. "You don't want to have to send somebody back. So it's important for the organization, when they promote them, they've got to feel like they're going to stick."