Phils getting look at potential outfield of future

Youngsters Herrera, Quinn and Altherr all candidates for 2017 roster

Phils getting look at potential outfield of future

PHILADELPHIA -- Roman Quinn, Odubel Herrera and Aaron Altherr started in the Phillies' outfield Thursday night at Citizens Bank Park.

It remains to be seen who among them will be playing regularly next year. The Phillies entered Thursday's 15-2 loss to the Pirates ranked last in baseball in runs per game (3.66) and on-base percentage (.296). If the Phillies want to add a veteran bat in the offseason, they seem most likely to find one in the outfield. But certainly Quinn, Herrera and Altherr are in the mix.

Herrera, who went 2-for-3 Thursday, represented the Phillies in the All-Star Game presented by MasterCard in July. He leads the team in WAR this season (3.3) and led the team in WAR last season (3.8). His 3.3 WAR this year ranks 13th among MLB outfielders according to Baseball Reference. But Herrera also has been dropping in the lineup as he has hit just .242 with a .661 OPS in 229 plate appearances since July 7. A lack of focus has been an issue at times. It would not be a surprise to see the Phillies listen to trade offers for him.

Herrera nabs Robinson at home

"I have a hard time looking at Odubel as a disappointment," Phillies manager Matt Klentak said. "I know there's a lot that's been written about that, but it's not easy to put up a three-win season two years in a row as a Rule 5 pick. He's one of the best center fielders -- one of the best overall outfielders -- in the National League, period. But I certainly realize the first half was different than the second half. But in the aggregate, I think Odubel Herrera is still a very valuable player to this team."

Quinn has looked good in his first week in the big leagues, going 6-for-18 with three doubles, two RBIs, three walks and one stolen base. He has hit, run, played good defense and showed a strong arm.

"I didn't know his arm was that good," Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said.

Statcast: Quinn's 96-mph throw

If Quinn continues to impress in the season's final two-plus weeks he could be in the conversation to make the Phillies' Opening Day roster.

"He certainly doesn't look overwhelmed at all this first week in the big leagues," Klentak said. "Ultimately if he's on the team next year in April or sometime later in the year, that's going to be up to him. First he has to stay healthy; that's been a struggle for him for much of his professional career. But if he's healthy and he's playing like this, he will likely be in the big leagues. But we've got a long way to go before that."

The Phillies were very eager to get a six-month look at Altherr, but he sustained a wrist injury in Spring Training. He returned in late July and played pretty well for a month, but he is hitting .135 (7-for-52) with one double and a .440 OPS in his last 18 games.

"He needs to hit better. That's pretty much it," Mackanin said. "He has the tools to be a real good player. Numbers matter in this business."

Todd Zolecki has covered the Phillies since 2003, and for MLB.com since 2009. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.